2017-07-22, Mike Rinder, Something Can Be Done About It
Leah and I wanted to clear the air about the planned episode of Aftermath focusing on Clearwater.
We were very excited about shooting this as there is an amazing story to be told about the history of scientology in Clearwater, from the earliest days all the way to the present.
Unfortunately, circumstances beyond our control conspired to make it impossible for Leah and me to put together the show in the way we had intended. If you know anything about us, you would know we do not like to compromise when it comes to trying to do justice to stories that need to be told.
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.
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As a former Scientologist, my goal is to bring awareness to the abuses of this dangerous organization. I work tirelessly to expose the crimes of Scientology and I help others everyday who are victims. I am working on many big projects this year, including a book and two documentaries, to shed light on what really happens inside Scientology. As one person with a camera and a YouTube channel, I have simply run out of resources to tackle this massive criminal enterprise on my own. I have started a Patreon page to receive monthly pledges so I can have the ability to fund projects to take down Scientology and to hopefully aid in revoking their tax exemption. This video will explain in detail how I plan on doing so and how you can help. I also am offering some amazing giveaways, meet ups with me in Los Angeles, and other one of a kind rewards to those who join my Patreon. Thank you for all your support!
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Jon Atack is the author of A Piece of Blue Sky, one of the very best books on L. Ron Hubbard and Scientology. For more than three years he's been helping us sift through the legends, myths, and contested facts about Scientology that tend to get hashed and rehashed in books, articles, and especially on the Internet. Today, he's introducing a new book he wants you to be aware of.
Janis Gillham Grady's Commodore's Messenger: A Child Adrift in the Scientology Sea Organization is a vital addition to the history of Scientology.
The three Gillham children were the founding members of the Commodore's Messenger Organization. As Janis says, "As a child of 11, in January 1968, I arrived on the Scientology ship, the Royal Scotman where I became an original Commodore's Messenger for L. Ron Hubbard. Over the next 11 years I spent six hours or more a day with L. Ron Hubbard, until December of 1979, when shortly after, Hubbard went into 'hiding' with fellow Commodore's Messengers, Annie and Pat Broeker."
While the slogan may seem innocuous enough, it is believed to be a cover for the local branch of the Church of Scientology.
Unlike the US, Germany does not recognize Scientology as a religion; it has instead been regarded as an 'anti-constitutional sect' in Germany since 1997, and is observed by the Federal Office for the Protection of the Constitution, Germany's domestic security agency.
For this reason, the group - which has come under fire for controversial beliefs such as rejecting psychiatry and for harassment of critics - often operates under different names in Germany.
(Cindy Plahuta's letter didn't sit well with Scientology attorney Wally Pope)
On Wednesday, we revealed that Tampa federal Judge James D. Whittemore had put two letters into the court file of the federal fraud lawsuit filed by California residents Luis and Rocio Garcia against the Church of Scientology.
The two letters, sent independently by former Scientology members Cindy Plahuta of Colorado and Marcel Wenger of Switzerland, explained to Judge Whittemore that when they tried to communicate with Scientology about the arbitration process that the church was insisting the Garcias need to go through in lieu of their lawsuit, they received no replies — and they said it was further proof that the arbitration system doesn't really exist, is mentioned in contracts signed by church members as a sham, and that the court is being lied to.
Aaron Smith-Levin has another clip from his YouTube project, "Growing Up in Scientology," and this one is really something. Once again, he's interviewed Nick Lister, who was talked about in Alex Gibney's documentary Going Clear. Nick has some revelations about working in the Tom Cruise household and how seriously Tom holds Scientology's concepts of discipline, even as it applies to his own family. Aaron has supplied us with this description of what you're going to see...
Some in the media have speculated that perhaps Tom Cruise is considering leaving Scientology so he can spend more time with his daughter Suri. More serious media outlets know that this is just spin. Nick has a story which provides some new insight into just how militantly Tom uses the policies of Scientology and to what degree the Church of Scientology has been involved in every aspect of his life, beyond finding him girlfriends and tricking out cars and airplane hangars.
In this video Nick describes how shortly after Tom Cruise won his IAS Freedom Medal of Valor in 2004, Tom kicked his niece Jamie Lesavoy out of the family (who was 14-years old at the time) for about two years for behavior which he deemed was "unbecoming of a Scientologist and out-PR" (creating a bad image for oneself or Scientology).
Tony Ortega, a former editor of the Village Voice who became equally well known for his relentless pursuit of the Church of Scientology and its inner workings is in Houston today to talk about his research and to promote his book The Unbreakable Miss Lovely about Paulette Cooper, a critic of the church.
The Humanists of Houston are sponsoring the talk at the Fox and Hound, 11470 Westheimer, at 7 pm today. Ortega, who's now with TheLipTV, says Cooper who wrote one of the first books critical of Scientology in 1971 was spied upon by the Church which sued her repeatedly in the years that followed.
Ortega has himself experienced some of the the church's retaliatory tactics. "The New York Times recently confirmed that the Church of Scientology was behind an illegal hacking attack that sent a private investigator to prison, and that I was one of the targets of those attacks. Scientology could not have more succinctly proved the point of my book, that it has always engaged in dirty tricks against the people it considers enemies, and always will," he says.
For today's story, we turned to our helpful translators again for assistance with another article from the German press.
This item appeared in the weekly publication Kontext and provided some interesting history of Scientology in Stuttgart, saying that the local Scientologists have actually been "on the sidelines" as plans to replace a drab, poorly situated org with a gleaming new Ideal Org in a better location have stumbled, and part of the reason involves a mysterious Israeli entity.
The magazine drew on information from Germany's Federal Office for the Protection of the Constitution, which keeps a close eye on Scientology. Earlier this month, we told you that the agency reported that Scientology is all but dead in Berlin. But Stuttgart has remained an area with more adherents of the organization.
Lori HodgsonLeah Remini's defection from Scientology put into stark relief one of the church's most toxic policies: Disconnection. Because Remini and her family dared to walk away, their longtime Scientology friends were told to cut off ties with them as quickly as possible.
The church put out a statement, denying that its members are forced to disconnect, but we asked our readers for examples that prove the policy is still in force and is quite common. Mike Rinder and other former Scientology officials tell us that the church uses Disconnection as a way to have "leverage" over its members and keep them controlled. After we made our call for entries, we received a remarkable outpouring of stories, but some came in later and we wanted to highlight a couple of them today.
We're starting off with a letter from Lori Hodgson, a woman we've written about before. The last time we checked in with her, she had made a trip to Texas to surprise her son for Mother's Day.
2013-07-22, Mike Rinder, Something Can Be Done About It
Following is a posting sent in to me by Mike Wreggitt. It falls into the category of some of the earlier postings I called "Life Is Good." Things have been a bit frantic with "hard news", so this is a nice change of pace.
Hey, I wanted to introduce myself to the independent Scientology community.
My name is Mike Wreggitt. I've made a few posts a year or so ago on Marty's blog, under my own name, but other than that I haven't been too vocal. Also, I'm #140 on the Indie 500 list.
Today marks the first anniversary of the death of Stacy Murphy, one of three people found dead at Narconon Arrowhead in less than a year.
In the early morning hours of July 20, 2012, Murphy, who was 20, was found dead in a detox room at Narconon Arrowhead.
Murphy's was the third reported death at the facility within a year and opened the door for a multi-agency investigation into her death and that of three others.
2012-07-22, Tony Ortega, Runnin' Scared, Village Voice
It was a pamphlet, dated 1969, titled "A Report to Members of Parliament on Scientology."
The 14-page item was published by Scientology's "World-Wide Public Relations Bureau" at East Grinstead in Sussex. It contains the church's responses to various objections to Scientology that had been raised by the UK and other Commonwealth governments at the time.
2012-07-22, Marty Rathbun, Moving On Up a Little Higher
For those new to the blog, I recommend an essay I posted almost three years ago titled The Great Middle Path redux. I discussed then the idea that the extreme sides of the Scientology spectrum in many ways reflect one another. The zealots on the Miscavige side and the 'critics' on the 'book burner' side nurture one another as convenient evils to make life combative enough to be interesting.
I once heard a pundit remark that probably the most straight, truthful news from the Middle East comes from the Al Jazeera news agency. He reckoned that based on an objective study of international news reportage on the region over a several year period. He cited as corroboration for that analysis the fact that Al Jazeera was the only news outfit in history to be bombed by both of the opposing sides of a military conflict.
If you check out the reader reviews on Amazon books for What Is Wrong With Scientology you will see that most who care to comment express strong feelings one way or the other about the book. A lot of people seem to either hate it or love it. Add to the mix both extremes of the Scientology spectrum. On the one side are the anti-Marty sites, authored and edited by David Miscavige. On the other side is the most prominent and persistent of Scientology ridiculers, Tony Ortega at the Village Voice.
Steve Hall was a member of the Church of Scientology from 1987 to 2004, and was a marketing staffer in Scientology's international management headquarters in Gilman Hot Springs, near Hemet, California. He wrote the church's advertising tagline, "Know yourself, know life."
He spent years scripting speeches for Scientology leader David Miscavige and shooting videos for its conventions. He did it all as a volunteer, in return for room and board and a small amount of cash.
While famous Scientologists who donate their money to the church, like Tom Cruise and John Travolta, get to live their own lives at home, Scientologists who volunteer their labor instead can find themselves posted full-time at the Gilman Hot Springs HQ, which is an hour's drive through the desert from Las Vegas.
2011-07-22, Marty Rathbun, Moving On Up a Little Higher
It seems the Creed of the Church of Scientology worked like water on the wicked witches of the west. "OT VIII"s Allender and Ed Bryan have not been seen since; apparently given the mushroom treatment by Miscavige.
Camera man Bart Parr was also subbed out today for another fellow.
Pictures of today's subs are below.
2010-07-22, Mike Ferriss, Opinion, ABC News (Australia)
Senator Nick Xenophon's back-door approach to bring Scientology under scrutiny through an ill-conceived Tax Amendment Bill on charities has had the effect of alarming religious groups large and small to his unholy crusade. Now they too could be drawn into the strange vortex Xenophon is creating with his call for charities to be measured not only by public benefit (which they currently already are) but also by the criteria of detriment or harm.
2010-07-22, Jefferson Hawkins, Leaving Scientology
I have occasionally used the term sociopath to describe David Miscavige. I use the term advisedly, not as some random insult. Mainly because every description of a sociopath that I have read fits Miscavige to a T.
And please, don't make the mistake of saying, "oh yes, sociopath – that's the same as an SP. And I already know all about SPs, therefore I don't need to learn anything further." That's known as thought-stopping, a phenomenon that deserves its own post. One of the biggest barriers to learning something is thinking you already know it.
In my opinion, "Suppressive Person" has always been primarily used as a political term in Scientology. Sure, there's a list of "Characteristics of an Anti-Social Personality" in the Ethics book, but come on, really, when was the last time you saw someone methodically going down through that checklist before declaring someone? And when was the last time you saw someone declared SP who actually had a majority of those characteristics? No, it's a way to label and isolate people who challenge the power and authority of the Church – and specifically these days, David Miscavige.
2009-07-22, Jefferson Hawkins, Leaving Scientology
In HCOB 22 December 1960, O/W, A Limited Theory, LRH points out that we use O/W as it "explains phenomena found at a low humanoid level." It is not, he states, a senior governing law of the universe. As one moves up the line, it drops out.
Makes sense. As one moves up to OT, one should become more and more rational, more and more ethical. Trips to the Ethics Officer should be less and less. And Security Checks should be fewer and fewer.
In theory. But that's not how it works, is it? In fact, it seems that the higher you are on the Bridge, the less you are trusted. Security Checks become more and more frequent. Anyone on OT VII, in fact, has to go to Flag twice a year for their "6 Month Check," which includes at least one intensive of Security Checking, often two or more, at $7,500 an intensive. Add in the bill for your 6-month C/Sing, your Accomodations and food, and you're looking at spending $20,000 or more twice a year.
IT'S the belief system which actor Tom Cruise says has changed his life and made him a better man.
But the controversial Church of Scientology was criticised last week after claims it was preying on people caught up in the London bombings.
Packs of yellow-shirted believers arrived at the scenes of carnage, offering "spiritual healing" to distraught relatives - and £3 booklets titled How To Improve Conditions In Life.
And yesterday 200 "volunteer ministers" were sent out across the capital to talk to people after the latest alerts.
The dossiers, which disappeared in 1998 from the Justice Ministry, were part of a case opened in 1990 against 16 regional Scientology leaders for alleged fraud, illegal practice of medicine and premeditated violence.
The case stemmed from a complaint by a former Scientologist, Juan Esteban Cordero, who accused the Church of Scientology of "progressive mental conditioning" that led him to spend more than $177,000 on Scientology-related courses.
In June, the Church of Scientology subpoenaed AT&T Corp., invoking the Digital Millennium Copyright Act to demand that it reveal the identity of a WorldNet subscriber who was posting excerpts from "Introduction to Scientology Ethics" on alt.religion.scientology under the pseudonym "Safe." Faced with the law, AT&T quickly ponied up the user information, an act that Steele says "the fourth amendment protects against -- it's a misuse of the civil justice system for companies to be [defeating] anonymous speech."
From the regular demos in front of the church's Yonge Street offices to the photographing of church members and posting of their mugs on the Internet, Hagglund has been relentless in his attempts to expose the "truth" about the curious practice of Scientology. Behind the scenes, he's been trying to put the kibosh on the church's controversial efforts to win charitable status.
SAN FRANCISCO (AP) _ Some on the Net call it cyberspace's Vietnam. Others prefer the analogy of the Spanish Civil War.
Whichever it is, the back-and-forth skirmishes of this guerrilla conflict are an excellent example of the kind of vigilantism that rules in the anarchy that is the Internet.
The battle pits the Los Angeles-based Church of Scientology against a few loosely organized bands of free speech advocates who have taken up what they believe to be the flag of truth.