Sure, go ahead and laugh, you doubters. It's true that in May Scientology's cruise ship the Freewinds was a world-wide laughingstock when it was quarantined for a measles case and overnight became the symbol of our dumb era of anti-vaxx panic. And subsequently (and perhaps because of it?) the annual June "Maiden Voyage" week celebrating the anniversary of the ship's 1988 rechristening was pared down a bit from previous years.
But whatever odds were stacked against it, Maiden Voyage 2019 ended up being a totally amazing super-colossal big fat success, and we know that because the Church of Scientology's official press release says so.
"A weeklong religious retreat at sea, the cruise is a celebration of the highest levels of Scientology, when the most advanced Scientologists from across the globe gather for a midyear review of accomplishments and subsequently set their course for future expansion toward creating a better world," the church assures us.
I finally reveal the names of two long-time Scientologists who sent me hateful messages. Russell Posyton and Fazil Ahmad are both long-time Scientologists. Their behavior serves as an example of Scientology's "Fair Game" policy in action.
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The Matrix, Scientology & Disconnection: https://bit.ly/1iWFT3z
2018-07-01, Chris Shelton, Critical Thinker at Large
The weekly show where I answer viewer questions left for me in the comment section of my Q&A videos or sent to me by email at AskChrisShelton@gmail.com. This week, the questions I answer are:
(1) How would you explain the concept of "make it go right"? I've been a Scientology watcher for several years and I've consumed hundreds hours of entheta at this point, but while I feel I have a good grasp of what "make it go right" means, I don't think I could effectively explain it. What's the best description you can come up with?
(2) Hearing the story of you in the bathroom of the Santa Barbara Org yelling at ghosts to go and get a body got me thinking. If you could go back in time in a time machine for 30 minutes, where and when would you go? What would you say to yourself and how would it have changed your life?
"Ron Miscavige Life After Scientology" will explore Ron's time with the Church of Scientology and expose information that the Church does not want you to know.
Please support my Patreon: https://www.patreon.com/itmuststop
Visit my website: https://www.therealronmiscavige.com/
Thanks to Pete Griffiths for making us aware that Scientology has posted its photos from this year's Maiden Voyage activities at its website.
Thirty years ago, in 1988, Scientology first started sailing its barge, the Freewinds, after purchasing it from a previous owner who had called it the Boheme. Since then, the vessel has been used to deliver the highest auditing level on Scientology's "Bridge to Total Freedom," known as "Operating Thetan Level Eight" or OT 8, to wealthy church members who consider it the ultimate rite of passage.
Those who have been through OT 8 tell us that it's actually the ultimate rooking. After years and perhaps millions in fees and donations, you learn that it's all been for naught and you're no closer to learning who you are than when you started. But hey, you get that certificate.
Official Scientology Photo Caption: "On behalf of the National Colombian Police, General Carlos Ramiro Mena Bravo presented Mr. Miscavige with the Brigadier General Jaime Ramírez Gómez Inspector General Transparency Medal. In presenting the medal General Mena declared: 'The National Police praises, acknowledges and materializes our great gratitude for all the training, motivation and respect Mr. Miscavige has given, not only to every police officer and Colombian military officer, but to every citizen that has benefitted (sic) from L. Ron Hubbard's technology and the humanitarian campaigns he inspired… Thank you for your invaluable support in helping us build a new society and for making us part of your team.'"
David Miscavige loves wearing medals. And now it looks like the self-aggrandizing Scientology Dictator has paid the corruption-ridden Colombian Police for a medal. As reported by our good friend Pete Griffiths on Facebook, the proclamation declaring Miscavige a hero is nauseating:
The National Colombian Police presented "a medal of the highest honor to the ecclesiastical leader of the Scientology religion, Mr. David Miscavige, for "saving humanity from violence, evil, terrorism, drug dealings and all the negative factors that threaten it... In an official presentation ceremony held at the launch point and final stop of the Maiden Voyage in Bridgetown, Barbados, National Colombian Police General Carlos Ramiro Mena Bravo presented Mr. Miscavige with the Brigadier General Jaime Ramírez Gómez Inspector General Transparency Medal. The award is among the most prestigious of the National Police and represents 'courage, bravery and honesty' and the 'display of the highest ideals, morals and ethical values.'"
2018-07-01, Mike Rinder, Something Can Be Done About It
This fundraising pitch highlights a truth about scientology they try so hard to avoid.
Far from "taking over the planet" and "Clearing Earth", they are in fact going backwards.
A whole promotional piece to highlight the wonders and importance of South Korea.
The show where I answer your questions. Please leave any comments or feedback in the comments section here below. I see everything and want to hear from you.
My Critical Picture channel: https://goo.gl/zzKx7p
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Last Saturday night in Denver, HowdyCon was capped off with a performance by Cathy Schenkelberg, who dazzled us with a scene taken from her one-woman play, "Squeeze My Cans." She has generously shared her script from that scene for the rest of our readers to enjoy. In the play, she dramatizes her journey in Scientology, which cost her nearly a $1 million for counseling and interrogations...
[CATHY, speaking to the audience as Narrator...] "Finally, I get a few sessions in, but I run out of money. My registrar had opened up an American Express card under my name. She said something about Thursday before 2pm. It's week ending? Stats up! But she didn't tell me it had to be paid off in a month. So I was sent home to make more money.....and I did."
[Recorded voiceovers of Cathy working in advertising...] "Kaluachino, How come you taste so good — alcohol free mix." "This woman shops at Sears Brand Central...This woman's a brain surgeon." "Want a tough stain out? Shout it out!"
CLEARWATER — A Church of Scientology lawyer says the city's recent decision to back away from a land swap with the church was "unfounded," and she signaled in a letter that her clients will be watching to see if religious discrimination might be at play.
The lawyer, Monique Yingling of Washington, D.C., said the swap had been in the works for six months, with city staff never expressing "even a hint of a concern" about needing the three small parcels it would be giving up. Plus, the city would be gaining, in exchange, a vacant lot on Cleveland Street it needs for parking worth $175,000 more than the three parcels combined.
2017-07-01, Mike Rinder, Something Can Be Done About It
In his HCOPL of 4 September 1959, Completed Staff Work (C.S.W.)—How to Get Approval of Actions and Projects, The Most Important Piece of Your Hat, LRH introduced a piece of policy from his days in the military to "reduce dev-t and increase speed of action."
Developed traffic: work that juniors put on seniors' lines that add time and effort to the exec's busy schedules. Little is more important to Scientology personnel than speed-of-particle-flow—getting tasks done as quickly as possible. Not only is Earth rotating on borrowed time, all staff member's stats are due on Thursday at two.
LRH wrote, "Completed Staff Work is an assembled dispatch or packet which
Houston, Texas is now the fourth-largest city in the United States, and with 2.2 million people, it's only outdone by New York (8.5 million), Los Angeles (3.9 million), and Chicago (2.7 million).
Yet, despite that size and rank, Houston only rates a Scientology mission, and not an org.
If you think about it, that's pretty astounding. For how many years has Scientology claimed that it has millions and millions of members, and yet in the country's fourth biggest city, it can only manage a mission, an outlet that these days tends to have something like 50 to 100 active members, depending on how well it's doing.
The father of Church of Scientology leader David Miscavige has reportedly signed a deal to write a book about his son's life. But the working title, If He Dies, He Dies, suggests the story may not be a flattering one.
The words refer to an account given by another father and son, Dwayne and Daniel Powell, who told police in 2013 they were hired to conduct close surveillance of Miscavige's father, Ron Miscavige Sr.
The elder Miscavige had left the Scientology staff in 2012 and was living in Wisconsin.
We don't always see the newest issue of the Freewinds, a Scientology publication that gets passed around a little less often than Impact or Celebrity or International Scientology News.
But a new edition made its way to us, and it contained a story we thought you'd want to hear about. We'd been hearing some things about New Jersey dentist Louis Feldman. He's an OT 8, the highest level of spiritual achievement that a Scientologist can attain. And he penned an article in Freewinds about how he's gone back down to the bottom end of the Bridge to do low-level courses like the Student Hat, a basic introduction to learning.
Why? Well, Louis says he's getting ready for the next great Scientology advance, the release of levels OT 9 and OT 10. He's also reportedly been telling people that he's been given the role as ambassador specifically to prepare people for the release of the new levels. We wanted to ask him about that, but the number at his dentist's office asked us to enter a code to access a voice mail system. Odd.
The title refers to a story in an April 8 Los Angeles Times article that revealed that David Miscavige had put his father under surveillance because he had grown estranged from the church and his son. When one investigator saw Ron grab his chest in an apparent heart attack, he called his Scientology employers to see if he should intervene. David personally called him back and said, "If he dies, he dies."
[The Church of Scientology disputes the investigator's account: "Mr. Miscavige has always taken care of his father and continues to do so," wrote Church spokesperson Karin Pouw in a statement to THR. "Beyond that, as a matter of policy, neither the Church nor Mr. Miscavige comments on members of his family." See full statement below.]
2014-07-01, Mike Rinder, Something Can Be Done About It
Shake and Bake Flash is at it again. I wonder if he knows the information he is circulating is bs, or if he thinks it is the "greatest good" to keep getting money out of people to "save the planet" even though there is not a shred of evidence any such thing is happening.
Check out his pitch and then a few comments afterwards to put things into perspective.
Here are the ACTUAL statistics for scientology.org from Alexa.
Pam Bondi, Florida AG On Sunday, we broke the news that Scientologists were holding a campaign fundraiser for Florida Attorney General Pam Bondi, who is running for re-election this year.
One of our tipsters had forwarded to us a mailer that was not meant to be spread outside the church, showing that several high-level Scientologists were organizing the event at the luxury Clearwater condominium of wealthy church members Michael and Liz Baybak. The fundraiser is scheduled for tonight, and attendees are asked to donate at least $1,000 each to Bondi's campaign.
Bondi is a Republican and former prosecutor who was endorsed by Sarah Palin when she first ran for election and won in 2010. Most recently, she's been in the news for announcing that she would be vigorously defending Florida's ban on gay marriage in the state and federal courts.
2014-07-01, Fire Ant, New Times Broward-Palm Beach
So there's a big party and fundraiser for Florida Attorney GeneralPam Bondi tonight, in some swanky digs in Clearwater. If you're in the neighborhood and have a spare grand, you might wanna drop by. Just be prepared to be audited at the door. Not IRS audited. Scientology audited.
No criminal activity within the Church or on Church property committed by Scientologists is reported to Law Enforcement. It is considered "Bad PR" ~~ Bad Public relations that a Scientolgist committed a crime. It is reported to the Ethics division and to Office of Special Affairs for cover up.
This includes child molestations, beatings, felony assault and battery and routine kidnaps, hostage taking, held against will.
While researching Scientology Inc.'s byzantine and notoriously dishonest refund policy — and this will be the subject of several future posts — I came across a singularly bizarre contractual condition to which one must agree to prior to receiving their refund. This condition is even stranger than the indestructible, yet nonexistent, Scientology obelisks.
Essentially, upon receiving a refund one indemnifies the Church against all claims for, "damages, injuries, or losses sustained of any kind or nature, whether known or unknown, which I may have from the beginning of time up to and including this day." As far as I can determine, this excerpt from a Flag contract is embodied in all Scientology Inc. refunds:
Scientology founder L. Ron Hubbard dated the beginning of time to four quadrillion years ago. Therefore, by agreeing to hold Scientology Inc. harmless for all of your Scientology-caused injuries — known or unknown — since the beginning of time, you have signed a singular contract that specifies an amount of time far greater than the age of our universe.
Scientologist Eric Roux will be addressing another academic conference this week. Will there be anyone on hand to challenge his claims?
Eric Roux Frenchman Eric Roux is arguably Scientology's most prominent ambassador in Europe. A member for more than 20 years, his current post is President of the Union of the Church of Scientology in France.
During the later stages of Scientology's court battle in France he spoke for the ParisCelebrity Centre, one of two Scientology organisations convicted of organised fraud.
The twin sister of Scientology leader David Miscavige is fighting drug possession charges after she was arrested earlier this year when police allegedly found with nine marijuana-filled 'blunts' in her SUV.
It is also claimed that Denise Gentile knowingly allowed a rental property she owned in St Petersburg, Florida, to be used as a drug den and allowed one of her tenants to pay his utility bills by giving her drugs.
We reached out to Jenna Miscavige Hill for a comment about the stunning news that showed up this weekend in the Tampa Bay Times about her aunt, Denise Gentile, who is the twin sister of Scientology's leader, David Miscavige.
Joe Childs reported for the Times that Gentile was arrested in January for DUI and marijuana possession, and in his investigation of the arrest, he found that she and her husband Gerald had rented out run-down properties that were used by tenants for drug dealing. One tenant claimed that he paid Denise rent in the form of marijuana "blunts."
Jenna, meanwhile, has been on a months-long publicity campaign to support her memoir, Beyond Belief, which was published in February. In it, the niece of David Miscavige and Denise Gentile describes the difficulties of her upbringing in the church. She portrays her uncle as a cowardly bully, but Denise Gentile gets a more sympathetic treatment. How, we asked Jenna, does she feel about this weekend's news?
Scientology's motion for a protective order in Laura DeCrescenzo's forced-abortion lawsuit was denied in part today, and as a result the church's attorneys said in court that they will be turning over a compact disc with 18,000 pages of unredacted evidence to DeCrescenzo tomorrow.
Los Angeles Superior CourtJudge Ronald Sohigian did agree with the church that third-party names in the files should be removed. So he ordered the church to produce another set of the evidence with third-party names redacted within 30 days.
After appeals to the California and U.S. Supreme Courts failed, Scientology had no further way to delay turning over the documents, which Sohigian had ordered the church to fork over this spring in DeCrescenzo's four-year legal odyssey.
2013-07-01, Mike Rinder, Something Can Be Done About It
One of our Special Correspondents sent this in and I felt it worthy of a separate post.
I am interested in your comments. I don't agree with some of the sentiments expressed here but I believe it is food for thought and perhaps from the responses we might gain some insight into what is considered valuable, important or unwanted.
2013-07-01, Marty Rathbun, Moving On Up a Little Higher
Some hard-core 'independent' Scientologists have ruminated among themselves lately the idea that I am somehow trying to bring down L. Ron Hubbard and Scientology. Otherwise, they reason, 'why wouldn't he just move on and let it be?' I am going to try to address this concern as directly and succinctly as I can.
L. Ron Hubbard developed a number of unique, aggressive methods for tackling problems of the human psyche. Used intelligently there is nothing that compares to their direct, predictable effectiveness in intensifying present awareness.
However, there is a potential trap in the fields of therapy and spiritual practices discussed by Ken Wilber in his Kosmic Consciousness interview series that applies in spades to Scientology. In segment eight of the series, Wilber speaks of people attaining ecstatic, exalted altered states in their particular discipline that they consider to be so miraculous as to be without compare. They are convinced that they have found the only way, which results in a sort of tunnel vision and puts a figurative ceiling on their own continued growth and development. Such people become opinionated, exclusive and intolerant – ultimately repelling others from experiencing the transcendence they experienced and losing whatever they gained in the process.
After years of silence Jon Atack, who literally wrote the book on Scientology, made a brief but effective television appearance in May - and the good news is, he is working on a new book.
See here for the new edition Jon Atack, whose book A Piece of Blue Sky remains the definitive work on Hubbard-era Scientology, made a fleeting appearance on British television in May.1
Atack's television appearance does not signal a return to the front-line against Scientology: it is more of a one-off gig.
2012-07-01, The Final Call - Uncompromised News \u0026 Perspectives, YouTube
Minister Louis Farrakhan comments on the Church of Scientology, L. Ron Hubbard and dianetics during public address titled, "All Is Vanity" at the Nation of Islam's headquarters Mosque Maryam in Chicago, IL., July 1, 2012. MP3 & DVD @ http://Store.FinalCall.com
2012-07-01, Tony Ortega, Runnin' Scared, Village Voice
Yesterday, RadarOnline, one of several online tabs trying to churn out incremental stories about the celebrity story of the year, grabbed for attention by quoting two lawyers who said it was unlikely that Tom Cruise's Scientology would be allowed as an issue in his divorce with Katie Holmes.
Aside from the fact that it was obvious Radar's two "experts" didn't know the first thing about Scientology, our own legal expert tells us that they're flat out wrong anyway -- family court is different than civil court, he says, and the religion of a parent can become an issue when a judge is trying to decide which parent should take custody.
After the jump: our legal expert, Scott Pilutik, a Manhattan attorney with a deep understanding of Scientology history, fills us in on how New York's family court may indeed be forced to consider the religious question of Suri's upbringing.
2011-07-01, Tony Ortega, Runnin' Scared, Village Voice
Your reward for slogging through the impenetrable Dianetics: Face time with Farrakhan! There's nothing like the Fourth of July weekend to amp up our pursuit of happiness and help us reflect on what this country stands for: freedom, baby!
Of course, having our great freedoms of conscience and speech means that some folks are going to do some pretty freaky things with their time, money, and independence!
For example, we've been watching warily as members of the Nation of Islam are spending their spare time with e-meters, engrams, and the writings of L. Ron Hubbard.
2008-07-01, Roger Friedman, Celebrity Gossip, Fox News
But the goat - this is what is making me nervous about New Village Academy. It's not just the presence of a Scientology curriculum; it's that the school was devised by movie stars who homeschooled their kids because they didn't concur with the National Education Association or the United Teachers, groups that disseminate public education to 99 percent of the schoolkids in the United States.
The Church of Scientology last month paid just under $8 million for a vacant 15-story office building and an adjoining one-story former toy store in the heart of downtown: the 1300 block of Chestnut Street - across the street from Macy's and next door to the furniture store Mitchell Gold + Bob Williams.
The Scientologists - outgrowing their modest home on Race Street - plan to combine and renovate the properties at 1312-16 Chestnut St. into a center that will include a chapel, offices, an academy, and displays on the church's community programs, said Bruce Thompson, public-affairs director of the Church of Scientology of Pennsylvania.
NEW YORK, July 1 (UPI) -- Brooke Shields has fired back at Tom Cruise, who recently criticized Shields publicly for using prescription drugs to treat postpartum depression.
Cruise told NBC's Matt Lauer that neither Lauer nor Shields, who has written a book about postpartum depression, knew anything about the history psychiatry. Cruise, whose religion, Scientology, disapproves of psychiatry, said he knows the history of psychiatry and questioned Shields' use of drugs to deal with postpartum depression.
"I feel compelled to speak not just for myself but also for the hundreds of thousands of women who have suffered from postpartum depression," said Shields in an op-ed piece in Friday's New York Times. "I'm going to take a wild guess and say that Mr. Cruise has never suffered from postpartum depression."
Brooke Shields took aim at Tom Cruise's "Today" show diatribe against antidepressants, saying the drugs helped her survive feelings of hopelessness after the birth of her first child.
"I'm going to take a wild guess and say that Mr. Cruise has never suffered from postpartum depression," she wrote in an op-ed piece published Friday in The New York Times.
Cruise had criticized the actress for taking the drugs, and became particularly passionate about the issue in an interview on "Today" last week.
We had seen the Scientologists offering "free stress tests" in the middle of the Times Square subway station. In the name of research and curiosity, we decided to take them up on the offer, approaching discreetly and separately.
But the Church of Scientology's war on psychiatry is no joke. For decades, Scientologists have maintained that the very notion of mental illness is a fraud. They base this belief on the views of Scientology founder L. Ron Hubbard, who proclaimed that psychiatry was an evil enterprise, a form of terrorism, and the cause of crime. Now, they're attempting to enshrine their contempt for psychiatry in laws across the country.
Recently, Scientologists have promoted legislation in Florida, Utah and New Hampshire that seeks to discredit psychiatry and drug therapies, especially for kids. The laws would penalize, even criminalize, schoolteachers who recommended mental health treatments to students or parents. At the same time, Scientologists have infiltrated the public schools, promoting a drug abuse program that presents information -- that drugs like marijuana and LSD, for instance, accumulate in body fat and create constant cravings -- roundly dismissed by medical experts.
I WAS hoping it wouldn't come to this, but after Tom Cruise's interview with Matt Lauer on the NBC show "Today" last week, I feel compelled to speak not just for myself but also for the hundreds of thousands of women who have suffered from postpartum depression. While Mr. Cruise says that Mr. Lauer and I do not "understand the history of psychiatry," I'm going to take a wild guess and say that Mr. Cruise has never suffered from postpartum depression.
We don't have to tell YOU about L.Ron Hubbard, his book Dianetics, and the religion it spawned -- Scientology. In fact, until just recently, most media outlets WOULDn't tell you about it given Scientology's well-deserved reputation for litigation. Instead, let us tell you about Tory Bezazian.
PARIS (AP) _ France's highest court has upheld the acquittal of nine members of the Church of Scientology accused of corruption and theft, ruling it lacks the authority to decide whether Scientology is a religion.
In 1997, the nine church members were acquitted by an appeals court in the southeastern city of Lyon which ruled that they had been convicted without sufficient evidence.
Prosecutors had argued the church was a sect that defrauded people of their money. The defense had argued it was a legitimate religion with the right to ask members for money.
1999-07-01, Marco Frenschkowski, Marburg Journal of Religion
No New Religious Movement has been a subject of more public interest and of more heated discussions in Germany during the last two decades than Scientology. I first became interested in this debate in the early Eighties, but only in 1996/1997 - after completing a similar project about Theosophy and Helena Blavatsky - I seriously started to search for available material on Hubbard and the movement he founded. Only then I became aware of the rather paradoxical situation in Germany, that there exists a large New Religious Movement (whose status as a religion nevertheless is doubted by some) which is being discussed on German TV almost every week, which forms a topic of forensic debate in many legal proceedings, and which is the one movement treated most extensively in the official report on New Religious Movements published by the German parliament (Endbericht der Enquete-Kommission des Deutschen Bundestages "Sogenannte Sekten und Psychogruppen", 1998) - but nevertheless has almost never been treated on an academic level of research.
One simple reason for this situation immediately became clear to me: no German public (or academic) library has a collection of the pertinent material deserving the name. Some of the critical books about Scientology (Kaufman's, Haack's, Thiede's) are easily available. There is also no dearth of books by former Scientologists that want to expose the movement. Some of these are quite valuable (as Atack's A Piece of Blue Sky). Others are not. Also they are extremely repetitive. When turning to the sources (that is, the writings of L. Ron Hubbard) I quickly discovered that they were hardly read by critics and sometimes not much more by sympathisers. Of the large output of Hubbard, the same 5 or 10 titles turned up again and again. A first step into research seemed to me to compile a bibliography of material available and to get a personal look at Hubbard as a writer. A minor outcome of this is my biographical article on Hubbard forthcoming in the supplements to Biographisch-Bibliographisches Kirchenlexikon (Verlag Traugott Bautz, Herzberg). This article contains as an appendix also a bibliography of which the following is an abridged, but also annotated version.
1999-07-01, Stephen A. Kent, Marburg Journal of Religion
Although some social scientists insist that Scientology is a religion, the more appropriate position to take is that the organization is a multi-faceted transnational corporation that has religion as only one of its many components. Other components include political aspirations, business ventures, cultural productions, pseudo-medical practices, pseudo-psychiatric claims, and (among its most devoted members who have joined the Sea Organization), an alternative family structure.
The Church of Scientology uses private detectives and bulldog litigators to pursue its numerous detractors. It also hires low-key establishment lawyers who work quietly within the system. So who is directing the $ 416 million libel suit against Time?
The PR firm was also under pressure from its parent, WPP Group PLC, to drop the Scientologists, but the agency executive said that was not the determining factor in Hill & Knowlton's decision.
WPP also owns the ad agency J. Walter Thompson, whose clients include Eli Lilly & Co., an Indianapolis-based drugmaker that has been feuding with the Scientologists over Prozac, a Lilly anti- depressant drug.
The body was found about 10 a.m. floating face-down along the shore off Victoria Drive near Main Street, Dunedin police said.
The body probably had been in the water about eight hours, said Dunedin Police Sgt. G. M. Hollis. The man apparently drowned, Hollis said, and no foul play was suspected. The medical examiner's office planned an autopsy and had not determined the cause of death Thursday.