As Tony pointed out on Tuesday, the stem cell therapy business is having a Wild West moment, and so it's attracting shady Scientologists who want to get in on the action.
In fact, the first Scientologist to enter the stem cell treatment business was Matt Feshbach, a familiar name here at the Bunker, and a notable figure because he was among the first to go through the "Super Power" processes as a reward for making a $1 million donation to the church.
In 2013 Feshbach opened the Okyanos Heart Institute in The Bahamas. A 2014 press release claimed that the clinic would "bring a new standard of care and a better quality of life to patients with coronary artery disease using adult stem cell therapy."
I explain why Scientologists don't see a problem with L. Ron Hubbard having been a Science Fiction writer. I also explain how Scientologists believe L. Ron Hubbard was the reincarnation of Buddha.
David Miscavige BJ story: https://bit.ly/2EF9N9f
2019-03-05, Mike Rinder, Something Can Be Done About It
The new "ideal org" that is no longer in Santa Barbara (they'll just have to without an org now) has the welcoming appeal of the Death Star or Tower of Mordor.
A couple of our faithful readers recently drove by to check it out.
Right alongside the freeway in Ventura, it is hardly an "ideal" location (the current org is right in downtown Santa Barbara).
> Mary Sue Hubbard, wearing sunglasses in the center, wife of the founder of Scientology, L. Ron Hubbard, leaves court in Washington on Aug. 17, 1978. (Ira Schwarz) By Ian Shapira Ian Shapira Enterprise reporter covering the Washington region and beyond Email Bio Follow March 5 at 7:00 AM The tiny article inside the The Washington Post on Jan. 13, 1979, read like something from a cartoonishly sinister spy show: "CIA documents released yesterday show the agency once considered using drugs, shock treatments and even removal of parts of the brain to 'dispose of blown agents, exploited defectors and defecting trainees.'"
The CIA wanted to cut out parts of people's brains? The Post article says the agency memo makes it clear that "lethal methods were ruled out."
By then, the American public had read countless stories about investigations into Langley's infamous program code-named "MK-Ultra," which carried out mind-control drug experiments in the 1950s and 1960s on U.S. and Canadian citizens. But this small wire story in the Post seemed to add a new, more menacing allegation in the saga of the CIA's once-top-secret efforts.
(CNN) During his rambling, two hour talk on Saturday at the Conservative Political Action Conference, President Donald Trump said he soon will sign a free speech order for college campuses. What he left out was that the justification for the order is based on a false interpretation of what is actually happening at America's colleges.
Trump claims he plans to cut off federal funding, at least in part, to colleges that do not protect views across the political spectrum. To make his point, he called Hayden Williams, a conservative activist, onto the stage. Williams alleges that he was punched at the University of California Berkeley when he tried to express a conservative viewpoint.
In fact, what appears to have happened is that Williams -- who was not a member of the university community -- wandered onto the campus and got into a political quarrel with another person, who was also not a member of the university community. The man who allegedly assaulted Williams was promptly arrested . Berkeley released a statement explaining that the incident was being "willfully distorted and inaccurately reported " and that the campus remained committed to freedom of expression.
We were thrilled to learn that our man in Los Angeles, Jeffrey Augustine, took his camera down this weekend to Scientology's attempt to relate to the people who live in its neighborhood.
"It was an emergency preparedness, community food market, and blood drive at Big Blue on Sunset Boulevard, and there were tents all over the place. I guess they thought if they threw enough things at the wall, something would stick," Jeffrey tells us. "But it was clear to me that PAC Base was lost and just couldn't relate to the residents of East Hollywood. Scientology has nothing to offer them."
Jeffrey took lots of snapshots, and generously provided them to the Bunker along with his captions. We think you'll find them fascinating.
We spoke this weekend to Alexander, a New Yorker who last week participated in a focus group in Manhattan at a research company where he's participated in other surveys in the past.
But this one was pretty unusual, he tells us. The focus group was told that the Church of Scientology is about to premiere its very own television network, and it wanted some feedback on the sorts of commercials the church plans to run to promote the new TV channel.
"We saw about five commercials. Only one featured L. Ron Hubbard," Alexander told us. For his participation in the focus group, he was paid $100.
2018-03-05, Mike Rinder, Something Can Be Done About It
As scientology prepares to launch SuMP TV, we are launching something we believe will be far more beneficial and hopefully grow to have even greater impact.
Scientology and the Aftermath has exposed many abuses commonplace in scientology. Harsh punishment, child and sexual abuse, enforced disconnection from family members and much more…
Were it not for the fact that they are able to hide behind the cloak of First Amendment law, they would likely already have been dismantled.
2017-03-05, Chris Shelton, Critical Thinker at Large
The weekly show where I answer viewer questions left in the comments section of my Q&A videos or sent to me by email at AskChrisShelton@gmail.com. This week the questions I answer are:
(1) Did you hear about Scientology's new anti-bullying website? It's called STAAND (Scientologists Taking Action Against Discrimination).
(2) I listened to your Sensibly Speaking podcast with Pete Griffiths recently and noted that you both reflexively and emphatically denied being in an "anti-Scientology cult."
The Scientologists behind a new movie called "In Search of Fellini"– co-written by Nancy–voice of Bart Simpson–Cartwright– and another long time Scieno, Peter Knenaas, and produced by Tom Cruise former BFF and former reported Scieno snitch Michael Doven— got a big surprise recently when their film debuted at the LA-Italia Film Festival.
"Fellini" stars Maria Bello (how she wound up in this who knows). When the festival wanted to honor her at the movie's premiere on February 24th who did they call? Why Paul Haggis, famous former Scientologist, Oscar winner, and great friend of Bello.
This move didn't go over very well at the festival, where Haggis had to be on guard because of all the Scienos in the audience. Haggis was the main source for the book and documentary called "Going Clear," which outed a lot of the cult's misdeeds and named Doven as Cruise's chief of staff. I've written about Doven over the years as well.
My motherly figure Sherri hilariously interviews me about my knowledge and experiences regarding Scientology. Firstly, we call an ex-Scientologist to ask her "Why is Big Blue actually blue?" We also discussed the LGBT stance of Scientology and my experiences being in the closet in a homophobic cult. Sherri asked me about sex and masturbation within Scientology and the answer may surprise you!
Please subscribe to my channel and comment your thoughts below :)
Steve Takes Sherri to a Sex Class at Sex Shop: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=lXgo8...
When out to Scientology's Gold Base (between Beaumont and Hemet) to film the gate and see if we could encounter the bully Danny Dunigan. Offered to a few Scilon Slaves the opportunity to escape with Natsy Nathanial and I. Scientology Security false called the Police claiming we were fighting in the street.
2017-03-05, Mike Rinder, Something Can Be Done About It
Another in the continuing series of provocative essays from Terra Cognita
Scientology, Where You're Always Worse Off than Everybody Else
Is it just me, or did other people feel slightly unworthy inside the bubble? On one hand, all Scientologists are taught they're more able than anyone else. On the other, there were always members who were:
Rod Keller keeps a close watch on Scientology's front groups, and this week gives us another report on the church's drug rehab network, Narconon…
The Narconon drug rehab facility in Fort Collins, Colorado is known as "A Life Worth Saving." The former Diamond Crest Assisted Living center was purchased by Narconon in 2008, and the center offers the Scientology program of saunas, megadoses of vitamins, and "TRs" or "training routines." In 2014 attorney Ryan Hamilton sued the facility on behalf of patients Tyler Mathys and Nikki Mott, claiming that the facility doesn't provide actual treatment for drug addiction, and that it caused psychological injuries. (The suit was later settled.) No deaths have been reported at the facility, unlike others in the Narconon system.
Baltimore resident Joseph Dahdah attended the facility briefly in 2015, and his experience suggests that even after years of patient deaths, government investigations, and dozens of lawsuits, the rehabs are still operating with almost no change at all. I spoke with him and his mother Christine this week and they described the experience.
After he signed a three-month, $8,200 contract for a billboard about Scientology with the Los Angeles office of Outfront Media, former Scientologist Phil Jones has learned that the New York head office of Outfront — formerly CBS Outdoor — canceled the contract without explanation.
"The head office in New York decided to cancel the contract and they said they won't be giving us any space," Phil tells us. "I asked, but they wouldn't say if there was any outside influence. Might have just been the Scientology thing. It does worry people."
The billboard would have called attention to the Church of Scientology's policy of disconnection, which requires members to cut off all contact from former members who have been declared "suppressive" — Scientology's version of excommunication. Phil and his wife Willie are former members who no longer hear from their grown children, Mike and Emily, who both work for the church. Like other families, they are struggling against disconnection by trying to raise awareness about it.
2016-03-05, Mike Rinder, Something Can Be Done About It
3 times through in less than 2 years.
This one is a real money-spinner. You can keep sending people back to do it over and over. You don't need anything to deliver it — just someone who tells them to keep running and a "C/S" who just tells them to "keep running." It's a bottomless goldmine. It's like an LA Fitness Club.
I do not doubt that people enjoy running. Or that it results in good feelings. There are millions of people who do it every day. Convincing people that running around in a circle is an "Whole TrackOT objective process" that is worth paying thousands of dollars for (a membership at LA Fitness is $29 a month) is an amazing feat of salesmanship.
Of all the roadblocks he encountered, the most surprising was outlets' resistance to supplying footage.
When Oscar-winning documentary filmmaker Alex Gibney was putting the finishing touches on Going Clear—his expose of the Church of Scientology that premieres March 29 on HBO—he asked for permission from America's broadcast and cable networks to use some of their Scientology-related material in his movie.
Even though he was willing to pay for the privilege, he says their answer was unanimous: No.
It certainly appears that Captain David Miscavige and his inner circle entered into a conspiracy to publicly lie to Scientologists about the facts surrounding the death of L. Ron Hubbard.
This blog made a detailed post concerning the Church of Scientology's lies to its members about the death of Mr. Hubbard. This post included the Sheriff-Coroner's report and described details of Hubbard's death. Hubbard did not "causitively drop the body" as Church officials claimed. Rather, Hubbard was in poor health and had a series of strokes that killed him. End of story.
The report also included the fact that Hubbard had been treated with the psychiatric drug Vistaril in the days before his death.
Residents in the area have overwhelmingly rejected the development and the church's plan to implement their controversial Narconon program at the site.
Locals managed to put a stop to the development after lodging complaints with Wyong Shire Council, which rejected the church's permit application for the treatment facility in April last year, citing risks associated with its flood-affected site.
But the Scientologists have not given up the fight, launching a new challenge which is now before the courts.
Your proprietor has been laid low by a virus right in the middle of all this intense publicity for Alex Gibney's film, Going Clear. This is what we get for leaving the confines of the Bunker and interacting with germy human beings.
So we're going to keep things short today, and trust our commenters to fill in by keeping an eye on all of the crazy press going on as we near the movie's theatrical debut next week.
So we'll start with yesterday's Daily Beast article that took some people by surprise. In it, Mike Rinder and yours truly were quoted to say that Will Smith is not a Scientologist. We want to elaborate on that a little.
In the now-it-can-be-told department: We first heard from Larry Anderson back in 2010, but it wasn't until last year that we finally met the tall LA actor originally from Minnesota.
For Scientologists of a certain era, Larry's image is branded into their memories from multiple viewings of the Orientation film that they were all required to watch. The 40-minute movie was used to recruit new members and pump up staff workers. It featured Larry talking with Norman Starkey about L. Ron Hubbard's exploits, visiting a bookstore, and winding up to make a heavy pitch at the end.
Here's a sample of Larry's hard sell...
Tampa Bay attorney Ed Armstrong is leaving his longtime firm.
Armstrong, 55, will leave Johnson, Pope, Bokor, Ruppel & Burns to open a Clearwater office for the Tampa firm Hill Ward Henderson, the Tampa Bay Times said. Armstrong is known for specializing in land-use cases and represented developers including JMC Communities, Ocean Properties, Ryland Homes, David Mack and Nickel Plate Properties.
We're starting a new feature today, and we're really excited that Claire Headley has agreed to help us out! Claire is well known among Scientology watchers for the way that she and her husband Marc escaped from the International Base after many years as "Sea Org" workers. She spent years working with Scientology's "tech," and was trusted to oversee the auditing of Tom Cruise. And now she's going to help us as we take a trip up L. Ron Hubbard's famous "Bridge to Total Freedom." That's right — we're all going to train to be Scientologists, and tally up the costs along the way!
Claire, we don't know if this was always the case, but at least in recent decades, for most people their first encounter with Scientology is the "Oxford Capacity Analysis."
When we see signs that advertise a "free personality test," they're talking about the OCA, right? But when they say "free stress test," is that something else?
In March 2013 we started a new feature with Claire Headley's help. Claire is well known among Scientology watchers for the way that she and her husband Marc escaped from the International Base after many years as "Sea Org" workers. She spent years working with Scientology's "tech," and was trusted to oversee the auditing of Tom Cruise. And in "Up the Bridge," she helped us take a trip up L. Ron Hubbard's famous "Bridge to Total Freedom." We were all going to train to be Scientologists, and tally up the costs along the way.
As we moved into the upper reaches of the Bridge — the "OT Levels" — we asked former church member Bruce Hines to help us out as well.
Here are the many installments in our series...
2012-03-05, Tony Ortega, Runnin' Scared, Village Voice
They survived the Nazi occupation, but they had lost their parents. In 1946, Suzy was adopted by their aunt and uncle. Two years later, Paulette was adopted by the Coopers, a wealthy couple who took her to the United States.
2012-03-05, Marty Rathbun, Moving On Up a Little Higher
LRH's Birthday Game was designed to encourage Organizations to make it up to the size and productivity of Old St Hill. During the life of LRH the game consisted of orgs competing by reporting up a number of production statistics reflecting delivery of Scientology services to the public. During that time and for a few years after LRH passed away the Birthday Game resulted in several orgs actually achieving something on the order of Old St Hill size.
Since David Miscavige's assumption of total dictatorship over Scientology Inc the LRH Birthday Game has been gradually corrupted into a Con. The game receives lip service for the sole purpose of giving Miscavige justification for conducting an event each March 13th wherein he can have awards passed out. For St Hill size orgs? For the past decade and one half, no. The "game" has been so corrupted it does not even lead to expansion. Instead, it leads to a bunch of busy work on statistics that lead to a photo op in some Div 6 course room, at best. Recent evidence indicates the game is now little more than a con.
The email below authored and circulated by the Birthday Game I/C of the Los Angeles Foundation Organization says it all. LA Foundation is vying to win the Birthday Game by:
2011-03-05, Tony Ortega, Runnin' Scared, Village Voice
Today, Daniel turns 20 years old. Yesterday, he filed two stunning lawsuits against Scientology with the help of attorney S. Christopher "Kit" Winter.
Winter helped Montalvo avoid the grand reaching that tends to characterize lawsuits against Scientology, and instead kept his complaints laser-focused on damning charges about how children are used by the church in troubling ways.
Specifically, Montalvo's lawsuits paint a picture of a child who was essentially abandoned by his two Scientologist parents to the organization, was signed to a billion-year contract at only 6 years of age, and through his teens was forced to work up to 100 hours a week with only the barest schooling, and for wretched pay (about $35 a week).
2011-03-05, Marty Rathbun, Moving On Up a Little Higher
"You have seen how a man was made a slave; you shall see how a slave was made a man."
- Frederick Douglass, 1845
S. Christopher "Kit" Winter of the Dykema law firm (HQ Detroit, offices around the U.S.) has filed two lawsuits in the Los Angeles Superior Court this afternoon. Both are brought on behalf of his client Daniel Montalvo. Copies of the suits can be found at the links below.
A runaway from the Church of Scientology's restrictive religious order, the Sea Org, alleges in two lawsuits filed Friday that the church violated California laws regulating child labor, wages and school attendance.
Daniel Montalvo, who turns 20 today, also contends his parents, who remain in the Sea Org, neglected him and breached their duty to protect him from harm by ceding his care to the church.
HOLLYWOOD: Last year, the Church of Scientology of Los Angeles on Sunset Boulevard got a really big sign, and now a new building is coming to their campus, according to a rep. She writes in an email: "The construction site you see is the renovation and expansion of the Church of Scientology of Los Angeles. The building is about 65,000 square feet and will open sometime this spring. It is part of the Church's international expansion program. Since the beginning of 2010, we have opened new Churches in Brussels, Belgium; Quebec City, Quebec; and Las Vegas, Nevada." Looking forward to seeing what goes up.
2008-03-05, Raffy Boudjikanian, West Island Chronicle
West Island Liberal MP Bernard Patry defended his recent endorsement of anti-drug organization Narconon Trois Rivière's prevention campaign despite the latter's supposed links to the Church of Scientology.
2005-03-05, Dana Littlefield, San Diego Union-Tribune
A North County man was placed on three years' probation yesterday for his role in the death of his mother in what a judge said was one of the most unusual cases to come before him.
Superior Court Judge Richard E. Mills also ordered Leo Dunckley, 62, to complete 300 hours of volunteer work.
The judge said he had never seen a case like Dunckley's in which the defendant had made such an effort "to do the right thing" and still ended up being convicted of a crime.
They are also suspected of intending to spread the doctrine "with the aim of spreading riots." The Church of Scientology has denied the charges.
"They were not official representatives of the Church of Scientology," said Goodman. "They were representing the Italian branch of New Era Publications, which publishes the works of L. Ron Hubbard, the founder of Scientology."
Goodman said Massarwa and Ahmad were in Egypt to promote Hubbard's book "Dianetics," which she said does not promote any religion or discuss the subject of religion. She also stressed that the Egyptian censorship authorities had authorized the book's entry into the country.
CAIRO, March 5 (UPI) -- Two members of the Church of Scientology are being held by Egyptian authorities under charges of "contempt of religion." They are accused of trying to spread their doctrines "with the aim of sparking riots."
"Contempt of religion" is a charge that has come up increasingly often in Egypt in recent years. Similar accusations have been used against other non-mainstream religious groups or to punish groups whose activities are not illegal.
The Church of Scientology has denied that it had sent people to establish a branch in Egypt, saying that the two were representatives of an Italian publishing firm that sold the works of Scientology's founder, L. Ron Hubbard.
1998-03-05, Joseph Mallia, Inside the Church of Scientology, Boston Herald
But the video company - known as FASE - has a hidden agenda promoting the "Purification Rundown," the Church of Scientology's $1,200 per-member detoxification ritual, said former top-ranked church member Robert Vaughn Young.
"FASE was originally created to put Scientology covertly into schools and government, to give the Purification Rundown an air of respectability," said Young, of Seattle.
"Scientology created FASE so they could use it to get in the door," the church defector said.