Tony Ortega's Scientology Book Tour - 2015-09-28
Tony first corresponded with Paulette Cooper, who as a young journalist in the 1970s wrote the first major critical book about Scientology, The Scandal of Scientology, when she wrote him a complimentary email about some of his writing. About the time he left the Voice, he had decided that Paulette's story, although already told in some fashion in virtually every major story or book about Scientology, had not been told in the detail that it deserved.
His talk, entitled "Scientology's Abuses: Then and Now," told his own story and Paulette's, and compared the methods of abuse through "noisy investigations" designed to intimidate and quieter, secretive investigations by private investigators designed to keep tabs on critics who are considered particularly threatening, including the daily monitoring of Hubbard's former heir apparent, Pat Broeker, and of Ron Miscavige, Sr., the father of the head of the Church. Tony also elaborated a bit on an example of each directed at him–a visit to his mother by Scientology private investigators that he recounted for the first time in the Emmy-winning Alex Gibney documentary, "Going Clear" (noisy investigation), and an apparent attempt to hack his email as well as the email of ex-Scientology leader Mike Rinder by hackers hired by private investigator Eric Saldarriaga, who revealed after he was sentenced to prison earlier this year that one of his clients was the Church of Scientology. The main difference between Scientology's abuses of old and those more recently is that Scientology's Guardian Office used to recruit Scientology staff to engage in dirty tricks, and now they are more likely to use private investigators, perhaps hired by a Scientology-owned law firm, for more questionable activities.