You are probably aware that evangelicals who are "young-Earth Creationists" figure that our planet is only about 6,000 years old, right? But were you aware that Scientology is notable because it also has a pretty warped idea about the age of our universe — except in the other direction.
Our longtime readers are well aware of this, but we wanted to make sure that our newer readers are clued in as well as we continue to count down Tom Cruise's Scientology superpowers that he would have attained during his decades in the church.
Cruise, like other dedicated Scientologists, ascribes to L. Ron Hubbard's conclusion that the universe is quadrillions of years old, and that you and us and everyone else are actually immortal beings, "thetans," that have lived for trillions of years, inhabiting innumerable physical bodies lifetime after lifetime. (Actual scientists say the universe has only been around for about 13.8 billion years, but what do they know.)
2020-08-22, Mike Rinder, Something Can Be Done About It
A tiny Mission in the LA area sent out the following in memoriam announcement about 3 of its members.
This is a significant number of deaths in a group of people that probably numbers no more than 100, and that is being very kind.
Scientology doesn't actually promise you will never die — though they come mighty close. These people certainly didn't discard their bodies to continue their OT research unencumbered by a meat sack as L. Ron Hubbard is claimed to have done. Therefore, according to scientology they must have been PTS, and probably had unflat NOTs. This is the cause of all illness. Maybe they weren't ill and just died in their sleep. Seems unlikely as the oldest of then was only 73. But that is not the point of this posting, nor the absurdity of "we can't wait to see you again" in the face of tens of thousands of scientologists who have died in the last 70 years and not a single one has "come back."
This week, Point of Inquiry welcomes actor, comedian, and former Jehovah's Witness, Jerry Minor. Minor has been a cast member and writer on Saturday Night Live and appeared on HBO's Mr. Show and various other television and film spots throughout his career. He joins Jim Underdown to dive into his life during and after being a Jehovah's Witness. They also get into how the Jehovah's Witness religion drove Minor to attempt suicide, the different Christianity sects and how Minor views them as cults, and how his past faith has shaped his career as a comedian and entertainer.
Together with friend, Tony Ortega, Underdown and Minor host their own podcast, The Cult Awareness Podcast, where they explore the latest in cult news.
Please share this episode either through a tweet, email, facebook, postcard, or letter with friends and family. Your support helps the show and we appreciate it.
The Proud Boys for years have helped organize street fights in Portland, Oregon ― gatherings thinly veiled as political freedom rallies in order to secure permits or police escorts from the city.
This week, that veil was lifted, as the group's leader admitted the ugly and obvious truth: The events are staged with the intention of spurring fights, wasting city resources and winning a game of optics against their anti-fascist nemeses.
"We've wasted all their fucking resources to make this rally," Proud Boys leader Enrique Tarrio said in video captured during the latest extremist rally held Saturday in Portland. "We want them to waste $2 million and we'll do it again in two months."
Yesterday, Scientology and the Aftermath participant Aaron Smith-Levin posted a notice on Facebook about a Reuters reporter who was looking for recent examples of Scientology fraud.
Apparently, this Reuters reporter hasn't been paying attention to the Underground Bunker. In the last year, we've practically been specializing in new cases of Scientology financial crime.
— There was the case of Efrem Logreira, a 75-year-old man who, within a year of joining Scientology in 2017, was nearly homeless because of the interest payments on credit cards the church had taken out in his name and used them to spend tens of thousands for courses he would never need. You might remember the amazing image Efrem snapped of three Sea Org women who took him out for ice cream while hitting him up for $20,000 in unnecessary charges that you see at the top of the page. Thankfully, attorney Graham Berry was able to make Efrem whole by pointing out that the church was in violation of several laws, including elder abuse statutes. And besides getting his money back, Efrem also spoke with federal investigators (although not from the FBI).
In June, Canada added neo-Nazi group Blood & Honour and its armed wing Combat 18 (C18) to the federal list of outlawed terrorist organizations, the first time right-wing extremist groups were included on the list that now includes 60 groups.
The addition of these groups was praised by many extremism experts and anti-racist advocates as a positive — and overdue — step in tackling the rise of the far right.
While it is not a crime to be on the list, the designation allows law enforcement to go after the finances and assets of the groups. It also becomes an offence to support them financially and prohibits anyone from knowingly participating in or contributing to the activities of listed groups.
Our man in Bogotá, a local Colombian journalist who prefers that we not name him, sent us this wild dispatch about what happened yesterday in that country's Congress regarding the swirling scandal involving the Church of Scientology. We can only dream that something like this was happening in the halls of power up here…
Yesterday the Colombian Senate's Second Commission, focused on defense and national security, called the recently appointed Minister of Defense, Guillermo Botero, and the commanders of the nation's armed forces to answer questions about their relationship with Scientology.
It's the first hearing faced by the new Colombian government of President Iván Duque, who took office on August 7, and it's a consequence of the scandal that has been keeping the attention of the country since photos of retired national police General Carlos Ramiro Mena in Barbados pinning a medal on Scientology leader David Miscavige became a national news story. In the last three weeks, more photos and videos have been dug up by newspapers, TV networks, and radio stations, showing how Scientology front groups Youth for Human Rights and The Way to Happiness have been promoted inside the military.
U.S. Defense Secretary Robert M. Gates and Colombian Minister of Defense Dr. Silva discuss defense cooperation plans at the Colombian Ministry of Defense in Bogota, Colombia April 15, 2010. DoD Photo by U.S. Air Force Master Sgt. Jerry Morrison(RELEASED)
The above photo is located on the US Department of Defense archive website. Link to Photo. Per the official caption, this 2010 photo is of then U.S. Defense Secretary Robert M. Gates meeting Colombian Minister of Defense Dr. Silva in Bogota in 2010. The significance of the photo is explained in this article.
In the "Meet a Scientologist" episode with Colombian Scientologist and comedian Andrés López, López makes the claim that widespread "word of mouth" enthusiasm resulted in the Colombian Ministry of Defense coming to know about a free show he was doing to entertain a brigade of Colombian troops.
2018-08-22, Mike Rinder, Something Can Be Done About It
This information was provided by one of our readers who has familiarity with the situation in St. Louis and is a follow up to the earlier post The Real State of Scientology, St Louis Style.
Church of Scientology Missouri owns a building at 6901 Delmar in University City.
It is approximately 15,000 sq.ft. on three floors with parking for about 50 cars.
This week I have a new interview with a former Scientologist who really only had a brief but devastating experience many years ago and has been trying to deal with the consequences ever since, especially difficult since her mother is not just still a Scientologist but a staff member here in Denver at the \"Ideal Org.\" Every story counts and Kat McElhinney's story is all too typical for those who have even a brief encounter with destructive cults during their formative years.
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In the span of just a week, the far-right Rebel Media has gone from a vanguard of the alt-right media to a public pariah, facing public condemnation and an internal mutiny.
The website and online commentary show has found one of its star hosts rubbing elbows with neo-Nazis, had its founder surreptitiously recorded promising "hush money," and has faced condemnation from across the political spectrum in Canada.
But while the site has pit itself squarely in the middle of a culture war, a half dozen former staff, associates, and contributors with The Rebel paint a picture of an organization more concerned with building its email list and attracting donors than with accuracy.
Crisis ensues inside the Church of Scientology following the debut of season two of Leah Remini's show Scientology and the Aftermath. As reported by Mike Rinder today, the Church's poisonous Office of Special Affairs and its lackeys are sending a stream of e-mails urging Scientologists to write letters to Leah's sponsors.
Long-time Los Angeles Scientologist Joel Philips — who ran Scientology hate websites for many years — is one of the OSA volunteers leading the charge. Here is text from Joel's leaked e-mail with my comments:
Hello Friends,I'm pretty sure you are aware of Leah Remini's show on A & E attacking Scientology and further that is has been nominated for an Emmy in the "Best Informational or Series Special" category. Unbelievable.Currently, we are helping on a campaign to counter and stop this insanity.What is needed and wanted right now are letters (emails) to the *sponsors* of this show. We want them to back off on their support, and without their support, the show will likely be pulled.If you would be willing to write an email, guidelines follow. The content needs to be original from you. Here are some points you can use to help you, but please put them in your own words.Not to support religious hate and bigotry since this leads to violence against people and property.
2017-08-22, Mike Rinder, Something Can Be Done About It
It seems to be all hands panic stations inside the scientology bubble.
In violation of Hubbard policy and all earlier practices, they are now "spreading the flap" by announcing it to all scientologists and "encouraging" them to write letters and sign a petition to shut down The Aftermath.
This really is an unprecedented action in the annals of "attack the attacker" history. Scientology usually does its best not to make their public aware of "bad media", knowing most of them will not look at it anyway. Standard practice is to pretend it doesn't exist.
Tonight's episode of Scientology and the Aftermath packed quite a punch for us, even though we were already pretty familiar with both stories that Leah Remini and Mike Rinder tell in this, the second installment of the second season.
The episode begins with Marie Bilheimer talking to Mike and Leah about the 2004 suicide of her husband Aaron Poulin at the Hollywood Inn, a very familiar Scientology building on Hollywood Boulevard.
As we pointed out in our story last year about Marie and her family, it was really quite remarkable that the Church of Scientology managed to keep quiet that a 21-year-old Sea Org member had hanged himself in a Scientology facility in the middle of Hollywood. Not only had the death not been reported in the Los Angeles Times, Mike Rinder told us that he hadn't heard anything about it at the time even though he was a high official in the church.
2016-08-22, Mike Rinder, Something Can Be Done About It
Some great news from our long term friend, Dan Koon about his wife (Mariette Lindstein)'s prize-winning, best-selling book.
For those unfamiliar with Mariette, I asked Dan to provide us with a short biographical sketch. I have known Mariette for many, many years, in fact it was me that brought her to "Int" to become Watchdog Committee Scientology in 1983.
Mariette grew up on Sweden's southwest coast in Halmstad. She became involved in Scientology after graduating the Swedish equivalent of high school around 1978. Soon, she was working at the Malmö Org where she and a couple other Div 6 people put copies of DMSMH into the hands of commuters coming out of the busy train station and 10Xed the central files. Within a year or so she was the ED. She and her former husband Billy Lindstein were recruited into the SO around 1983 and both were soon at Int and part of WDC. In 1989David Miscavige made Mariette the CO of the entire HGB (the Int Liaison Office or upper middle management located in the Hollywood Guaranty building in Los Angeles) but brought her back to the base in 1991 and made her the AVC Int Authorization In Charge (meaning she approved all iussues, evaluations, programs and anything else that required clearance before publication). For the next several years Miscavige was her direct senior and she worked closely with him. As with literally anyone forced into that orbit for long, she was squirted out like a watermelon seed between the thumb of DM's sociopathy and the forefinger of his management "style," and found herself twinned with Ray Mithoff on the RPF. After graduating she wound up on Marketing and worked with Jeff Hawkins and me to assemble the books and lectures marketing that became known as the Golden Age of Knowledge, or GAK, which is the redheaded stepchild of YECCH. After I blew in late 2003, Mariette became one of the charter inductees into The Hole. From there she devised a brilliant plan to be sent off the base down to the PAC RPF, and from there she escaped in 2004. She and I moved to Sweden in 2011 and instead of flipping burgers at McDonalds is now making her mark in the literary world.
We hear it all the time. Doesn't Donald Trump remind you of L. Ron Hubbard?
The Daily Beast was one of the first to be overt about it with a fun article and illustration in April. But we've heard it dozens, maybe hundreds of times since then: Trump is like Hubbard. His organization is like Scientology. His followers are bullies just like Scientology's goons.
And yes, all of that may be true. But being "like" Scientology is not the same as having a connection to Scientology. That hasn't prevented many people, some of them our regular readers, from straining mightily to find something solid putting together Trump and David Miscavige's wacky church.
Frequent contributor Jeffrey Augustine is back with another fun dive into Scientology's own publications and documents to show us what Scientology promises, and what it actually delivers...
Issue 149 of Scientology's Impact magazine, the official magazine of the International Association of Scientologists (IAS), repeats a hackneyed old IAS cliché: The IAS is "Guaranteeing Mankind's Freedom." As the leading IAS member, David Miscavige is given the cover of Impact and is shown doing his best at a recent event to guarantee that freedom for mankind.
Inside, we learn that the IAS is a "kingdom," which makes Miscavige its mighty king...
2015-08-22, Mike Rinder, Something Can Be Done About It
I have been noting for some time now the strident, arrogant and often bizarre responses to the media that emanate from David "Karin Pouw" Miscavige.
And here is the latest response to a small piece in the Tampa Bay Times.
Interesting he is so unfuriated about the media mentioning that a politician and his wife are at the Ft. Harrison. Why?
The grand jury heard testimony from multiple witnesses and reviewed numerous exhibits "concerning allegations of insurance fraud at Narconon Arrowhead," the report states.
The grand jury began meeting 18 months ago in Oklahoma City to hear evidence gathered by more than 100 law enforcement agencies or agency divisions. The grand jury did not issue any indictments of Narconon officials among its 17 indictments.
"There is still work to be done in this investigation," states the grand jurors' final report, issued Thursday. "This Grand Jury supports and recommends the continued investigation of these allegations."
We will admit to a lifetime of Anglophilia. Though we've never been to Albion's shores, we tend to put its residents on a pedestal. And so it always amuses us that Scientology has found so much success there (at least historically). L. Ron Hubbard? In the UK?
And yet, here is video proof that the few Scientologists left in Blighty are still moving up the Bridge. A few days ago we had graduation videos from Copenhagen. Now let's take a look at what's been happening at Saint Hill Manor, Scientology's headquarters in England!
Hamish Bulger has completed the Survival Rundown...
Stacy Dawn Murphy In June, we told you that we had learned the Oklahoma Multicounty Grand Jury was investigating evidence of insurance fraud at Scientology's flagship drug rehab center, Narconon Arrowhead.
The Multicounty Grand Jury was empaneled in January 2013 and just finished its work, submitting a final report yesterday. It listed numerous murders and other crimes that it looked into. And near the end of its report, it had a single paragraph about Scientology's rehab center:
"The Multicounty Grand Jury heard testimony and reviewed evidence from multiple witnesses concerning allegations of insurance fraud at Narconon Arrowhead, located in Pittsburg County, Oklahoma. The Grand Jury also received numerous exhibits concerning these practices, but there is still work to be done in this investigation. This Grand Jury supports and recommends the continued investigation of these allegations."
2014-08-22, Mike Rinder, Something Can Be Done About It
My own free bookmark for all readers.
This probably should have been saved for the Thursday Funnies as it is so ridiculous.
But then again, most promotional items that emanate from corporate scientology qualify for the "funny pages."
The wife of a former Church of Scientology executive has blasted the 'notorious, multi-billion dollar cult' in a lawsuit claiming harassment by the group.
Marty Rathbun's wife Monique has never been a Church member - but claimed in court papers filed in Comal County, Texas, that it has made 'numerous, aggressive attempts to intimidate her'.
Mrs Rathbun was granted a temporary restraining order last Friday against the Church - and claims she has been 'harassed, insulted, surveilled, photographed, videotaped, defamed, and humiliated'.
2013-08-22, Mike Rinder, Something Can Be Done About It
Miscavige marionette Karin Pinocchio Pouw has issued another patented ad hominem attack to the media as a "response' to the lawsuit filed last Friday.
Quote from the Tampa Bay Times article:
Church spokeswoman Karin Pouw said Wednesday that the church had not been served with the lawsuit. But she added: "Based on your questions, the complaint filed in Texas is nothing more than a pathetic get-rich scheme cooked up by unemployed blogger Marty Rathbun, a self-admitted suborner of perjury who is now resorting to using his wife in an attempt to extort money from the church."
The Fringes of the Internet met the Fringe Festival NYC last night, and we have a few photos to make you wish you'd been there with us as we had the pleasure of meeting Brandon Ogborn (above) and the rest of his talented cast.
Even after reading Sindy Fagen's reports about The TomKat Project when it initially burst upon the scene in Chicago last fall, we weren't quite ready for how this brilliant production unfolds. We didn't realize, for example, that Ogborn not only wrote this cutting examination of tabloid news culture and celebrity worship, but he also narrates it on stage — although "narrates" doesn't really quite capture what he's doing up there. Perhaps a better description is that he guides, cajoles, castigates, and ultimately upends the story as it's happening.
And yet, Ogborn isn't the star of his own production. The six other actors play a dizzying array of characters as they describe the weird triangular relationship of Katie Holmes, Tom Cruise, and Scientology leader David Miscavige.
2011-08-22, Marty Rathbun, Moving On Up a Little Higher
Anat on the tundra
I've been following Marty's site for over a year now. Thank you dear Marty for having a blog where we can get the latest and be allowed to communicate and share our views freely! I admire and respect so many of you I met on this site!!! Thanks to you, I have so much more understanding and realizations. Thanks to you I feel I am not alone!
This is my story:
2011-08-22, Tony Ortega, Runnin' Scared, Village Voice
Scobee, like several other recent defectors, had worked closely with Scientology leader David Miscavige. And as a group, these former executives came forward to tell the world how bizarre and awful it was to work for a leader so irrational, impulsive, and violent. Since Scobee and others came forward in the landmark 2009 St. Pete Times series, "The Truth Rundown," a new picture of Miscavige and Scientology has emerged, one that is focused on the abuses of an organization rotting from its apex.
In her book about her experiences, "Abuse at the Top," Scobee describes her entire 27-year journey in Scientology, which began in 1978 when she was only 14 and went to work for the church. That first year, she writes, she was raped by her 35-year-old boss, but the incident was swept under the rug. Still at only 16, she joined the Sea Org and signed its billion-year contract.
2010-08-22, Marty Rathbun, Moving On Up a Little Higher
I highly recommend that you dial into and watch and listen to the Louis Farrakhan's Sunday 22 August, 2010 sermon, titled Put On The New Man. It is approximately 1 ½ hours long. http://www.noi.org/webcast/aug-22-2010/
I watched the live webcast of the sermon this morning.
Farrakhan does not mention the words Hubbard, Scientology, or Dianetics – but his sermon is so throroughly strewn with LRH's nomenclature, there is no doubt to what he is referring to. He announces that at a smaller gathering of more trusted people scheduled for this Tuesday he is going to connect the dots and speak in more particulars to that which he not so vaguely refers.
The church says it is concerned about the pharmaceutical links between medical researchers and psychiatrists and denies the request is harassment.
The University of Sydney has refused to release the requested documents and Monash is still processing the request.
Church of Scientology Australia president Vicki Dunstan said the documents were requested so the church could correct information being disseminated about itself.
Shelly Wilkins, executive director of the Scientology-funded Citizens Committee on Human Rights, said the FOI requests into mental health experts including Prof McGorry sought to expose links between psychiatrists and the pharmaceutical industry.
Dr Allison Fraser, who has been in charge of Sandwell Council in the West Midlands over the last two years, will attend courses in the Avatar Professional Course to learn how to become 'more likeable'.
2008-08-22, Protest Against Scientology's Abuses , YouTube
Scientology's leader, David Miscavige, discusses the cult's war against psychiatry. (Scientology 2006/2007 New Years Celebration)
Their stated goal is "The Global Obliteration of Psychiatry".
Scientologists are heavily indoctrinated with anti-psychiatry propaganda, based on the writings of L. Ron Hubbard. They believe that all atrocities are caused by psychiatry, from the Holocaust to modern day terrorism.
In fact, L. Ron Hubbard's opposition to psychiatry arose because psychiatrists condemned his book, "Dianetics". Hubbard wanted the psychological techniques described in Dianetics to replace those of psychiatry.
Without support from the medical or research community, he discovered a way to continue profiting from his untested and potentially harmful techniques - he incorporated Dianetics into Scientology, a "religion" of his own making.
The cult of Scientology has attracted criticism because of its extremely abusive practices and policies. Scientology policies encourage Scientologists to commit offenses including fraud, practicing medicine without a license, unlawful detention, harassment and extortion. Extreme methods are authorized according to Scientology ethics, particularly when dealing with "suppressive persons" - anyone considered to be an enemy of Scientology.
He's been a child star, cult film director and bestselling peddler of Hollywood scandal. Now in his seventies, Kenneth Anger is back with three new films, an exhibition presented by that "bitch" Anita Pallenberg and plans to publish the last in his Hollywood Babylon trilogy, a book that threatens to unleash an avalanche of litigation. Sanjiv Bhattacharya coaxes him out from behind his chicken-wire fence
A MAJOR anti-drugs festival taking place in Edinburgh this week is being backed by a controversial quasi-religious organisation.
The Say No to Drugs Festival has attracted high-profile sponsorship from the Church of Scientology which counts celebrities such as John Travolta and Lisa Marie Presley among its members.
But the festival has been criticised by leading councillors and churches, who say scientologists are not the best people to be associated with the two-day event.
Paulette Curry was barely awake when she picked up the telephone at 7:30 a.m. and heard her son gasping on the other end of the line.
Andre Curry, 16, told his mother he was having an asthma attack and that the counselors at the Primavera Treatment Center, a private drug rehabilitation center in Culpeper, were not taking it seriously.
The story of what happened to the 16-year-old after he telephoned his mother July 28 illustrates the rarely publicized but increasingly common tug-of-war that occurs between parents of juvenile drug users and drug abuse counselors, experts in the field say.
"The best way is to make cults obey the existing law, or to catch them breaking it," says Peter Georgiades, chairman of the American Bar Association's Subcommittee on Cult-Related Litigation. Many cults give law-enforcement agencies plenty of material to work with. Groups have been prosecuted in the past for myriad offenses: tax evasion; breaking zoning laws; mail fraud; keeping children out of school; stockpiling weapons (purportedly in preparation for Armageddon); drug trafficking; kidnapping; rape; child abuse; medical neglect; prostitution; extortion, and immigration abuses. In one case the crime was murder.
Some cult members have chosen to seek retribution through civil suits. Earlier this year, more than 500 people filed a $1-billion class-action suit against the Church of Scientology, the group founde by science-fiction writer L. Ron Hubbard, charging that confessions they made in private were being used to coerce them and extort money from them.
Officials from Commodore Cruise Lines, the owners of the 11,800-ton ship that has cruised the Caribbean for two decades, said they do not know if the ship would continue sailing out of St. Petersburg.
"We don't even know who the new owners are," said Bob Gerity, Commodore's marketing director, who was to make the announcement this afternoon. "We were just notified by the owners in Finland that the ship has been sold and that, for now, they wish their name not be known."