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Scientology Scrambling to Deal with Bad Publicity

This report from CNN today gives you an indication of how the Church of Scientology is fighting back at Larry Wright’s book, Going Clear. It’s really quite entertaining. And should be even more so when, we hear, Wright appears on Anderson Cooper 360 tonight. Let’s all tune in! (Go here if you can’t get enough of the hilariously huffy lawyer letters that Scientology has sent CNN.)

Also, we hear that a major new Scientology story is going to break tomorrow, but we can’t say anything about it yet. We’re full of secrets today.

So we’ll take this brief lull to catch up on some of the items that have reached the bunker while we’ve been dealing with so many recent emergencies.

A SPLIT DECISION We haven’t had time, for example, to follow up on a story we wrote last month that involved a court fight in Hernando County, Florida. The county denied a drug rehab facility known as Suncoast Rehabilitation Center the opportunity to expand after local residents complained. Toucan Partners LLC, the company that owned the land the facility sits on, sued the county, alleging fair housing discrimination. Toucan Partners is owned by legendary Scientologist Kurt Feshbach, who, along with two brothers, became notorious as short-sellers in the 1980s, and were also known for donating fabulous sums to the church.

The county wasn’t going to roll over, however, and in depositions preparing for trial asked witnesses what they thought about Suncoast’s connection to Scientology and its drug rehab program, called Narconon, and if they’d heard about several patient deaths that has Narconon battling lawsuits in Oklahoma and Georgia. We got interested in the case when attorneys for Toucan Partners filed motions asking that a jury not hear about Suncoast’s connection to Scientology, and not hear about the patient deaths.

But perhaps the thing that got the most reaction from our story was the image of Feshbach which we posted, and that we will inflict on you again because of its obvious news value…

KurtKannonFeshbach

That’s a painting of Feshbach and his young pregnant wife Kannon (pronounced kuh-NON) created by Scientologist artist Dick Zimmerman, who charged $300,000 for a similar piece, of Mexican billionaire Carlos Slim. Rich people have funny taste.

Anyway, here’s the followup: The judge in the case decided that the county’s attorneys could bring up SunCoast’s connection to Scientology at trial, but not the deaths. A trial was then held this month and Hernando County was, in fact, found to have discriminated against the drug rehab facility under the Fair Housing Act. However, the damages award was stunningly low: only $74,490 to the Narconon center and nothing for Toucan Partners. (Toucan Partners had been asking for $6.4 million.)

The upshot? We’re guessing the jury felt some sympathy for the drug rehab patients at Suncoast, but didn’t want to give a dime to a business owned by a wealthy Scientologist. But if the county was celebrating the shockingly low damages award, it probably won’t have a leg to stand on if it tries to oppose another attempt to expand the facility. It’s a mixed bag.

 
DAMAGE CONTROL DOWN UNDER We want to thank our tipsters who flooded us with the humorous news coming from Australia today. It’s really been fascinating to see how the church has tried to derail the avalanche of publicity surrounding the publication of Wright’s book, and how those attempts are generally backfiring in a big way (particularly the Atlantic magazine disaster). In Australia, local media is marveling at the timing as the church there has suddenly come out with a media kit that attempts to influence the way reporters write about Scientology.

The Australian journal Crikey had this to say

There’s no mention of Tom Cruise, the evil ruler Xenu or the Galactic Confederacy. But a media guide produced by the Church of Scientology has been sent to journalists to “address a number of misunderstandings” about the religion.

Church spokesperson Virginia Stewart denies the guide’s release is related to a new controversial book that examines the inner working of the church. “It just happened to be when we finished it,” she told Crikey.

Among the media guide’s assertions is that “Scientology has no religious belief that we are descended from aliens or have aliens living inside us.”

Well, that’s a clever dodge. Thetans and body thetans are not “aliens,” people, so try to keep that straight. The disembodied spirits that infest our bodies by the thousands and prevent us from realizing our superhuman potential have nothing in common with ET, got that?

To our Down Under colleagues, we only advise that before they take anything Virginia Stewart says at face value, they ought to read our lengthy story about her particular relationship with the truth.

 
REMEMBERING STACY MURPHY Six months after her death at Narconon’s flagship facility in Oklahoma, Stacy Murphy is being remembered this Saturday with an event to raise funds. Her father, Robert Murphy, sent us this flier, and we’re happy to post it here…

Stacy_Murphy_Fundraiser

We’re still waiting to hear about multiple investigations into the deaths of Stacy Murphy and other patients at Narconon facilities in Oklahoma and Georgia. We’ll let you know if we hear anything new.

 
UPDATE 7:45 PM We’re back after a quick appearance on national Canadian television (“Direct” on CTV at about 6:45 pm), and we’re waiting to see if Larry Wright will be appearing on the 8 pm edition of Anderson Cooper 360.

Hm. Anderson didn’t talk about Wright in the promo he just did.

Will Larry be on the 10 pm version? (I’m told the 10 pm version is just a re-run of the 8 pm show.)

Some of our commenters were talking about Larry being questioned by Anderson earlier in the day. Was it obvious that it was part of a larger segment? Maybe it got bumped to tomorrow because of the Texas shooting.

JUST GOT CONFIRMATION: The segment will air on tomorrow night’s show. It was bumped tonight for the Texas shooting.

UPDATE 8:55 PM Here’s my Canadian TV appearance. Can someone figure out how to get an embeddable version?

CanadianTV2

This is probably the closest we’ll get to Scientology being talked about on ABC. Heh. (Canada’s CTV had me talk from the ABC studio for its broadcast.)

————–

Posted by Tony Ortega on January 22, 2013 at 11:05

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  • DodoTheLaser

    Also, this from Wright’s book:

    “Six weeks before the leader died, Pfauth hesitantly related, Hubbard
    called him into the bus. He was sitting in his little breakfast nook.
    `He told me he was dropping his body…….He told me he failed, he’s
    leaving.’…………………………

    I mentioned the legend in Scientology that Hubbard would return.

    `That’s bull crap,’ Pfauth said. `He wanted to drop the body and leave.
    And he told me basically that he failed. All the work and everything,
    he’d failed”.

    Amen.

    • 0tessa

      This would confirm my thoughts (since long) that Hubbard knew that he failed. But the question is: in what did he fail – failing to wipe out the psychs and/or failing in creating real OT’s i.e. the bridge failed?

      • Observer

        He failed at so much that it could be anything.

        • 0tessa

          Right.

      • Well, just his admission that he failed would make the idea that is was simply all about money invalid. What a mess, Wrights book actually made me feel sorry for Hubbard. I’m more comfortable when I can hate him actually;/

        • Midwest Mom

          I don’t promote hatred. It is a toxic emotion that consumes those who cling to it like a poison or a metastasizing cancer. I do however, believe that Hubbard was evil, and condemn his actions and lack of empathy and compassion, as well as his seething hatred toward others, even his own family, all for his own benefit.

          His confession of failure, in the context of Pfauth’s quote seems more self-serving than of contrition toward his wrongdoing toward others. There was no apology or remorse for others; only for himself and his goals.

          This is the man whom many consider the source of wisdom, spirituality, communication, and “all knowingness”? He was not even man enough to apologize for the pain he propagated toward others and did not seek reconciliation or forgiveness. His regrets, just like Hubbard himself, exemplify extreme selfishness and egocentrism.

          • Wow, MM you make a good point. Yes, thinking only of “hisself” down to the end.

        • Poison Ivy

          Exactly. I actually ended up with a more multi-dimensional understanding of Hubbard from Wright’s book. I don’t like him any better, but like you I experienced more complex feelings. You know, shades of gray, things that Scientologists avoid like the plague.

        • I feel sorry for Hubbard, but pity never makes me like people more. He was a pathetic person, and he hurt a lot of other people in his grasping for power. Hate, though? Meh, he’s dead, and hating him would give him far more power than he ever deserved.

        • grundoon

          L. Ron Hubbard, unlike David Miscavige, was not all about money.

          A workable plan for world domination requires plenty of minions and plenty of money. In preparation, Hubbard began to steer more money toward himself, creating higher-priced services offered only by new central orgs under his direct control. He created new processes and policies to produce a flow of reliable minions to staff his imagined future domain. As his plans advanced, he ramped up the demands for funds and tightened his control of the inner cadres.

          Years later, with Mary Sue jailed and Hubbard reduced to going about in disguise to dodge process servers, it was obvious that the plan for world domination was kaput. Hubbard had no longer any particular use for the large quantities of minions and laundered cash still pouring in. If he could not be the father of a country, he could at least win back the world’s acclaim as an SF author. He would retire and write a book, a record-setting book, the biggest-ever space opera.

          In retirement Hubbard had no use for more than a few millions of dollars a year. To spend more would draw attention and risk blowing his cover. But it galled him to think that his franchise (mission) holders were walking around free, traveling the world and enjoying the trappings of affluence, profiting from Hubbard’s millions of written words and hours upon hours of taped lectures, while Hubbard himself had cows and horses for company and had to hide his face in a trailer whenever a car drove by. Fuck them. He sent the Finance Police to clean them out. After the Old Man got done rolling in his dough and dropped the body, his faithful minions could take whatever he coudn’t spend, and use it to build eternal monuments to him, and then with his blessing they could go on playing dress-up Navy for as long as they felt like it.

          Hubbard liked money. But it was never all about the money with him.

      • I think he was lamenting his failure to become master of the world. I believe he sought total control like many megalomaniacs.

      • grundoon

        L. Ron Hubbard wanted to go down in history as the father of a country, like Cecil Rhodes. The first Scientology country, where Scientology ethics and justice and admin would be the law, and so on in education, mental and physical health, right on down the line. If not a country, then a town like Clearwater would do for a start, and build from there.

        LRH wanted the world to buy into his ideas and shower him with praise and gratitude. The world, not just some thousands or millions of indoctrinated stooges.

        He wanted the hide of everyone who ever stood in his way, thwarted his plans or belittled him.

        He wanted to stay out of jail and never again be put in a position of weakness by doctors, judges or tax collectors.

        He failed at all but the last.

    • Sarge said Hubbard named a particular star he was going to circle after he dropped the body. One that rehabs the being. (I believe the storyline would make that Arcturus.)
      Sarge also said that Hubbard was having trouble getting rid of a body thetan. He wanted Sarge to build a machine that would up the voltage and blow the thetan away. It wouldn’t kill the thetan but just get it out of there. AND ALSO KILL THE BODY.
      Wrights askes if it was a suicide marchine and Sarge said; “Basically.”
      Sarge built a mechanism that would increase voltage without increasing the current, and Hubbard blew up Sarges e-meter with the thing.
      This brings to mind some of the stuff I read on Marty’s blog about Miscavige grabbing copper poles that had been dug into the ground.
      My god, if you seriously believe that you have all these millions of entities attatched to you, how could you ever be SANE, in any way shape or fform?

      • I wonder if the body thetan LRH was trying to get rid of was him.

        That’s the real problem with Scientology’s technology of exorcism.

        The whole time I was in Scientology, I had a little voice inside me telling me, “No! You don’t want to do that!” and “No! This is not right!” I always designated this as my “bank”.

        When I finally got out of Scientology, I realized that little voice was me.

        The OT Levels, and all the tech of Scientology, split you up and alienate you from yourself.

        This was Hubbard’s case. This was Hubbard’s final, nuclear solution to going “Clear”.

        • Chocolate Velvet

          “When I finally got out of Scientology, I realized that little voice was me.”

          This brought tears to my eyes, Alanzo. This is the essence of spiritual exploitation.

          The heartbreak of cults: they estrange you from yourself, from your own good and wise heart.

        • I am glad you are listening to yourself now ~ you won …hugs to you

        • Poison Ivy

          “When I finally got out of Scientology, I realized that little voice was me”. Beautifully said, Alanzo. That little voice is always you. And unless you are as batshit crazy as Hubbard, it always has your best interest at heart.
          Hubbard and the body thetans…your analogy is appropriate. There’s a saying that you can run and you can hide but you always end up taking yourself with you…

        • Midwest Mom

          That little voice Is proof that you have a conscience, my friend.

          It scared me when a few months ago when the poster BM claimed not to know what a conscience was and even made fun of its existence, and said he never felt one.

        • cultwife

          The realization about the little voice … that is beautiful, Alanzo.

        • The little voice. It’s hard to judge sometimes what to think of the little voice. But if it’s always saying the same thing: ‘no! no! no!’ —It might be worth listening to. Even if it goes against what the voices of people outside your head, are saying.
          I went to Tony O’s blog on the Village Voice yesterday and saw it had closed down. Someone pointed me over here.
          I really think all dogmatism of any kind is lethal…..a guy I met on the train last month got a text from a friend that he shared with me, and part of it was, ‘definition is the death of discovery.’ I’m not sure where that phrase came from, but it really resonated..

        • grundoon

          From the very beginning, maybe even before you set foot in an org, Scientology sets out to divide you from yourself. “Who is looking at that picture of a cat?”

          By putting you at odds with yourself, you become easier to control.

          The thetan, stripped of mass and energy, has nothing with which to hold a position in space.

      • villagedianne

        Posession is an accepted belief in many spiritual and religious traditions.

        • Exactly, and why Scientology/Hubbard hide their extensive exorcism levels (OT 3, 4, 5, 6 and 7 are all secret exorcism), when just admitting they do a whole LOT of exorcism, would help their case for being a religion.

          if you look at their actual past lives trauma clearing, and their extensive exorcism, those two major practices put them in the religion field, but they hide and have all manner of bad excuses for not being open about their key practices that lead to their two biggest spiritual achievements, namely one has to actually do a pretty good amount of past life trauma clearing to finally get Clear, and one has to do substantial exorcism to become their top of the line “OT” state.

          The whole durned subject, as a spiritual achievement practice, they just don’t and they never learned, and Hubbard had so many reasons NOT to simplify what they are doing, and fit in with religious tradition.

          They do so much dodging verbally, all due to Hubbard’s endless bad reasons.

          They’re at heart, the lower levels strip off a lot of mental charge in a person’s life. Then they do past life trauma clearing, to achieve Clear. Then they do a lot of exorcism, to clean off the body thetans, and make themselves OT, operating thetan.

          • So when you do past life trauma clearing, is that the idea that bad things happened in former lives…or in your actual childhood? Because traditional psychotherapy does focus on coming to terms with trauma and it can be very effective. I get the idea from how this was written, that it addresses things that happened in other lifetimes. My question: does it help? Do you feel better? Is it comforting?
            The thing about all this stuff is, it does sound awfully complicated and fussy. So many rules and definitions. Like many belief systems. Sort of hurts my head to have to define everything so obsessively…

      • There’s a place in Wrights book where he points out Hubbard’s mistake is that Hubbard was trying to make his fiction religion a reality.

        And the point I take from the final page and the Pfauth final story, is that LRH just didn’t get that point, and Hubbard was still, to the bitter end, thinking that he would go flying out into space, like a pure soul, and do his circular hike.

        Of course, Hubbard won’t even be doing that imaginary circular “running program” for OTs.

        • jensting

          Hugh Urban gets something slightly different out of that: he wonders if Hubbard didn’t achieve one God like quality: he changed the reality of people who believed in him (or in his work). (Something like that, it’s been too long and I’m busy reading something else while waiting for the Wright book.)

        • grundoon

          L. Ron Hubbard always had an unusually flexible relationship with reality.

          Around 1947 Hubbard prepared a list of instructions (“The Admissions”) which he sought to have hypnotically implanted in himself. In several of the hypnotic commands to himself, he reveals a fear that his thoughts might become unpleasantly real.

          Your eyes are getting progressively better. They became bad when you
          used them as an excuse to escape the naval academy. You have no reason to keep them bad and now they can get well and they will become eventually starting now as keen as an eagle’s with clear whites and green pupils. Sunlight does not affect them. Lack of sleep does not affect them.

          Your stomach trouble you used as an excuse to keep the Navy from punishing you. You are free of the Navy. You have no further reason to have a weak stomach. Your ulcers are all well and never bother you. You can eat anything.

          Your hip is a pose. You have a sound hip. It never hurts. Your shoulder never hurts.

          Your foot was an alibi. The injury is no longer needed. It is well. You have perfect and lovely feet.

          Your sinus trouble is nothing. It is not dangerous. It will vanish. A common cold amuses you. You are protected from further illness. Your cat fever has vanished forever and will never return.

          You do not have malaria. When you tell people you are ill it has no effect upon your health. In the Veterans examination you will tell them how sick you are. You will look sick when you take it. You will return to health one hour after the examination and laugh at them.

          No matter what lies you may tell others they have no physical effect on you of any kind. You never injure your health by saying it is bad.

  • Sherbet

    Excuse me if I’ve been dense, but the CNN video describes Lawrence Wright as “scientology defector.”

    He was a scn? I guess I don’t know enough about him.

    • DodoTheLaser

      No.

    • TonyOrtega

      CNN goofed. It’s Haggis who’s the defector, obviously.

      • Sherbet

        OK, then I haven’t been dense after all. Thanks.

  • dagobarbz

    The letters from Scientology, Inc. to CNN bawws about “inaccuracies.” The truth is in the tunnels under L. Ron Hubbard Way.

    • IIRC, there is just the one tunnel under the street. It extends from the basement tunnels under the main, “Y” shaped building over to the basement of the AOLA building. It has steam and electrical pipes in it as well as a walkway. There is another long tunnel that extends from the basement of the steam plant building, which has housed over the years publications and renovations organizations, under the parking lot, over to the basement between ASHO and LAOrg. Comes out right at the stairwell between them. The RPF disguised that one by building a wall across the entrance and putting up the tacky green linoleum wainscoting and trim so it seemed a regular wall with a regular locked room door. They used to store folders and other docs along that tunnel. Near there in the basement was the cyclone fence style wire cage that was used as locked berthing for RPFs RPF during at least part of the late 70s.

    • Michael Stern

      Wait, what?

      • dagobarbz

        There have been reports of people being held in the tunnels for years. They have their own society down there, and their children have no eyes.

        Google ‘tunnels under Big Blue Scientology.’ It’s all there.

  • Observer

    OMG, that painting again! You could at least provide complimentary eye bleach when you post that abomination.

    I think it’s hilarious that Scn is so far off-balance that their “always attack, never defend” mandate is slipping and they’re getting dangerously close to defending themselves. Because LRH tech always works just like he promised. SNORT

    • TheNextMrsTomCruise

      Not only eye bleach, I will also require brain bleach. Kuh-NON is trying to hypnotize me and/or induce a psychotic break with those eyes. The smugness alone is enough to drive me to copious amounts of drink in an attempt to erase it from my brain. GAH! Can’t wait to hear what they name the kid. Kurt-ness? Upstatness? Enturbulat-NON. Or will they go with the obvious and just name it Money?

      Poor baby.

      • Midwest Mom

        Tony, Admit it. You were chuckling when you added the photo of that horrible painting to today’s post, weren’t you? You knew it would get a reaction out of us, just like those boys in grade school who used to flip their eyelids back to make us screech! Honestly! By the way, I know you’re still chuckling, Mister. (!!!)

    • BuryTheNuts2

      Some things should come with a very large CAUTION banner!

      Every time I see that painting I start thinking of John Hurt in the original Alien.
      I expect the little Scientologist to eat it’s way out.

      • 1subgenius

        I thought you were gonna say Hurt in “The Elephant Man”.
        BTW, John Hurt is an actor. “Caligula”, “Elephant Man”, “The Naked Civil Servant”…..etc.
        Tom Cruise, no.

        • BuryTheNuts2

          True that!
          1984.

    • The artistic style reminds me of those ’70’s paintings of Elvis done on black velvet.

    • I have no reaction to the painting beyond noting that it’s tacky. Stuff like that is quite common in Florida. I guess I’m inured to it by now.

      • Observer

        Note to self: don’t move to Florida … lol

  • 1subgenius

    At the Crikey link there is a pdf of the CoS “Media Guide”, for your amusement.

    http://media.crikey.com.au/wp-content/uploads/2013/01/Scientology-Media-Guide-2013.pdf

  • Is there a way to donate to Stacy Murphy without attending?

  • John P.

    CNN: The letters from the cult are as hilarious as ever. A couple of low points:

    The cult’s own letter points out the bizarre questions that Larry Wright asked, and believes that relaying them will impeach his credibility. I think that’s the work of a smart interviewer — you put in a bunch of bogus questions to keep the subject of an adversarial interview from guessing exactly where you’re going to go. I use this technique all the time at Global Capitalism HQ when interviewing the CEO, or more usually the CFO of a company we’re thinking of investing money in. I always ask a bunch of details about obscure accounting issues to a) convince them I am smarter than I actually am and b) to hide the questions that I am using to determine their credibility as trusted recipients of our investment dollars. It’s the technique the TV detective Columbo used to such great effect… he asked random questions in no particular order, and was dismissed as a bumbler until the last three minutes of the show where we discover that he knew who the villain was all along.

    The Jeffrey Riffer letter is the funniest, as always. More hagiography of Miscavige that just curdles the brain: “Mr. Miscavige is one of the great individuals of our time.” Interesting that Riffer doesn’t say that Miscavige is doing a fabulous job carrying on the legacy of Hubbard, who was one of the all-time greats… Nope, all about Miscavige. I also love his romp through journalists who fabricated stories in toto like Jayson Blair at the NYT and all the rest, and how he expresses hope that CNN won’t join such notorious company.

    Feshbach family portrait: Please, please, pretty please don’t ever publish that photo again! That goes under the heading of “things which, once seen, can not be unseen, no matter how hard you try.” It’s amazing that Dick Zimmerman makes the kind of dough he does for these crappy paintings, which exude the aura of Elvis on black velvet. The painting is so disgusting I am almost forgetting to comment about the decision in the Narconon suit, which I’m not sure I fully understand.

    Australian media spin frenzy: I was amused by the dissembling in the media guide. I strongly suspect that it was approved by HQ, given that “Karin Pouw” prose increasingly sounds like it was written by Danny Sherman, who clearly has Miscavige’s ear far more directly than the real Karin ever did.

    I particularly liked how they said “we don’t believe man is descended from aliens.” That’s correct. Thetans are not only independent of gender but also of home planet. In other words, we are not descended from aliens, we are reincarnated aliens. Big difference. Duh. And we’re not filled with aliens. Literally true but a bit of a misdirection as well: body thetans (a.k.a. “dead space cooties”) cling to the surface of our skin, they’re not inside us. I posted a comment pointing this out but, apparently due to the time zone difference, they haven’t approved it yet.

    • Re: Feshbach portrait – I just posted the same “Elvis on black velvet” observation. Hadn’t gotten to see your reaction. Do you think “Space Jazz” playing in the background while they were sitting?

      • John P.

        I hope not. Don’t they have all sorts of bizarre rituals during labor & delivery about “silent birth” to avoid giving the baby a bunch of nasty ol’ engrams? Listening to that in utero would probably give your average fetus some pretty serious doubts about emerging into the world… unless, of course, your parents are the sort who have the bad visual taste to spend $100k or so on a black velvet family portrait. Maybe the gene pool has similar markers for musical taste.

        • Just listened to “Earth, My Beautiful Home.” It tries to sound like a jazz composition but misses by being redundant, uninspired and disjointed (what is the vocal track about?), although compared to “Windsplitter” it’s a masterpiece.Truly Hubbard’s life is a study in the adage “A Jack of all trades, master of none.”

      • stanrogers

        Sitting? As both a painter and photographer, I’ll guarantee that’s done from a photo (and not well, I might add — and by that I mean *both* the photo, which was badly exposed, losing detail in both the highlights and shadows — not to mention the cheesy ’70s Vaseline smear effect — and the painting, which failed entirely to add the details lost in the photography, but faithfully copied the goop glow). I really wish I’d had the balls to charge 300 kilobucks a pop for stuff like that… a fellow could knock out six or eight 30x40s a year and live pretty comfortably, I’d think.

    • Midwest Mom

      Did someone say “Black Velvet” in reference to religion? It reminds me of the Allanah Myles song.http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-kSz19PJFT0

      • Kitz

        Love that song. 🙂

    • 1subgenius

      Liars usually say something that is true, but completely misleading.

      • Midwest Mom

        I’ve met some liars who spin tales of total fabrication,and do so quite easily and believably, even over trivial things.

        On that note, I’m proud to say that my new bathing suit poster has outsold Farrah’s poster from the 70’s and my new DVD has surpassed the sales of Elvis, Michael Jackson, The Beatles and Boxcar Willie combined.

        • I was believing you, up until you had to throw in Boxcar Willie.

  • I think one thing that should be hammered home in the Anderson Cooper interview is how there is no actual person willing to appear in front of the cameras to defend the cult. They should both mock the ridiculous scion defence letters and insinuate that it is only Miscavige writing them…. maybe joke how they haven’t even heard Karin Pouw on the phone so they don’t know if she actually exists – challenge the church to show a real person. I think a killer line for Cooper to say would be something along the lines of:

    “We’ll, we’ve tried numerous times to get a face to the letters to respond …. maybe we should try asking some of the high profile scientologists themselves to defend their church, so let me me make a public offer to Mr Cruise, Ms Alley, Mr Travolta, hell – I’ll even take Ms Elfman…. I publicly invite you to appear on my show to discuss these allegations made by Mr Wright…. no one else in your church has the courage to do so”.

    Boy, could you imagine the ring-piece puckering of tiny fists if this was broadcast!

    I sure hope someone from the program reads this and uses it.

    • Anon Nom Nom

      I love the Ms Elfman line. If it were me, I’d tack on “but not Nancy Cartwright…we have some standards, after all.”

    • Everyone who appears on camera as a spokesperson or who has extended contact with journalists or critics has blown or winds up in the hole. They get the truth virus and it eats away at the brainwashing.

      • Poison Ivy

        It was a fun blast from the past to see Tommy Davis again. I wonder how he’s reacting to all this from his Texas “retirement”?

        • Midwest Mom

          I liked how he was nodding “yes”, despite his lips saying “no”.

    • Unex Skcus

      Or Anne Archer, “how DARE you!”

  • There’s a similar ‘grasping at straws’ tech going on over at Marty’s blog. The lengths that Scientologists (both inside and outside the cult) will go to prove that the emperor has clothes is amazing.

    • Observer

      Understandable–I sure wouldn’t want to see Emperor Ron naked!

      • BuryTheNuts2

        That just gave me the serious heebie jeebies. My whole body shuddered…and NOT in a good way.

      • ze moo

        For those who have the stomach to see Lron naked.

        http://www.homesafe.com/manatee/photographs/index.html

        • Oh, the huge manatee!

        • Observer

          Not looking. Nope nope nope

          • 1subgenius

            whatever happened to the rickroll?

      • SP ‘Onage

        Ewwwwww….Fire crotch!

    • John P.

      I take it you’re referring to the “op ed” Marty published a few minutes ago by Tom Martiniano (link: http://markrathbun.wordpress.com/2013/01/22/l-ron-hubbard-by-tom-martiniano/). Interesting that Marty promises to discuss his divergent views in a future post… That piece sounds like it could have been written by the old incarnation (i.e., not the current Danny Sherman bloviation factory) of Karin Pouw. It literally sounds like it was lifted verbatim from the cream of the pro-cult rhetoric, which is amazing considering it was written by a self-professed “indie.”

      Incidentally, the previous story (http://markrathbun.wordpress.com/2013/01/20/going-clear-muddies-the-water/) on Marty’s blog contains lots of “research” by a couple of die-hard believers (most especially “Margaret”) trying to dig up arcane “facts” to counter the details penned in Larry Wright’s book. Some of the reality-twisting, particularly around Hubbard’s service record, is utterly fascinating to watch. I particularly love how a politely written comment by Wise Beard Man (Mark Bunker) himself pointing out the fallacy of impeaching critics who have never been “in” was greeted by … crickets … The comments are extremely revealing and are highly worth reading on this particular article.

      • I have yet to see Rathbun’s (or his merry band of morons’) latest contribution to the discussion, but I’m sure it is in the similar tone as the last few days. I really thought the ‘war record’ argument was widely accepted to be false and over so I was a bit surprised to see that one resurface.

        Using logic on that blog usually equates to hearing crickets or attack-never-defend bullshit.

        • BuryTheNuts2

          I have had to take a “Marty” break lately. Between him and even more so.. the comments…
          Well….I just needed a mental health break.

        • Poison Ivy

          That reminds me – my late Dad always lied one year about his age. Even in his late 80’s! I always called him on it, but he would invariably say, “That’s the birthdate the Navy put on my enlistment papers and the Navy is always right!”

          • 1subgenius

            I always add at least 10 years.
            One usually looks good for their age plus 10, but horrible for age minus 10.

            • Poison Ivy

              Ha ha! My Dad lied by subtracting one year. Though he kept me at 39 for a lot longer than I actually was 39 (“I don’t look like I should have a 40 year old daughter!) I finally made him stop when I wanted to throw him a blowout 90th birthday party. The REAL 90.

            • cultwife

              Wow, you’ve got more guts than I do. I usually say I’m a year older than I am. When you’re a woman of a certain age, you always get the answer “Wow! You sure don’t look it!”

            • i ditto that …but i stretch it to 5 years…tons of compliments 😉

      • Your links both got broken because Disqus decided the ) was part of the URL. http://markrathbun.wordpress.com/2013/01/22/l-ron-hubbard-by-tom-martiniano/ is to the “LRH is great” piece and http://markrathbun.wordpress.com/2013/01/20/going-clear-muddies-the-water/ to the Wright review with the hilarious comments by Margaret et al.

        • John P.

          Fixed. Thanks for pointing that out.

      • Unex Skcus

        That Tom Martiniano piece has some fascinating comments… search the page for user ‘Centurion’, where he/she says:
        “Check this out. If it holds up, it is just another clue to the accuracy of what LRH informs us what was going on back then. http://beforeitsnews.com/beyond-science/2013/01/300-million-year-old-machinery-found-in-russia-experts-say-aluminum-gear-not-the-result-of-natural-forces-may-be-extraterrestrial-2440610.html

        The link is an absolute cracker .

        • John P.

          One of the reasons that you find stuff embedded in coal is that coal is soft and easy to implant stuff in. If these artifacts were emplaced in coal hundreds of millions of years ago, pressure and corrosive effects of the chemicals in coal would certainly have altered them beyond recognition. It’s one thing to publish an article full of clever scientific fraud as fact, it’s another thing entirely to publish something as lame as this particular fraud.

      • cultwife

        The comments that support Martiniano’s piece make my jaw drop. Yes, by all means, follow someone blindly, rather than stumbling around in the dark. (That’s a paraphrase.) The thing is, if you stumble in the dark, you just might bump into something real. And as for choosing a path and never, ever questioning it, I can only say that “The unexamined life is not worth living.”

        As for Margaret’s comments on Marty’s previous post–and passing over the fact that she thinks every date in official records is always true (they’re notoriously wrong concerning travel, as changes are often made when it’s too late to change the records) her conclusion about how Hubbard eventually flew back to the U.S. with an army dignitary is pure (hopeful) conjecture, based on a date that fits her agenda. If you can’t prove it, then, well, you haven’t proven it. End of story.

  • Anononyourside

    If the church follows through on legal action against Wright and CNN, I will be very surprised. After the fiasco of Debbie Cook’s day in court, is Miscavige really willing to have the world see multiple victims of the church testify as to the truth of their stories? Is Miscavige really willing to undergo depositions? Did the church learn nothing from the embarrassment it suffered over those insane threatening legal letters it sent to Vanity Fair? So far, it has threatened Wright, Knopf Publishers, NBC and CNN. If the church fails to follow through with legal action, like it did with Vanity Fair, the world will once again see what liars the church and Miscavige are and how terrified they are of the truth being told. I am gleefully awaiting the response of the church and Miscavige to Jenna Miscavige’s book.

    • BuryTheNuts2

      I agree with you. It is all smoke. I don’t think they are going to sue anyone after the Debbie Cook fiasco.
      Can you imagine that happening right now after the past year of publicity they have had?

      They are just going to continue sending the same style threatening letters ad nauseum.
      Davey and his bucket will keep bailing and bailing until he finally figures out his feet are getting wet and the ship is sinking.

      • Anononyourside

        It won’t be long before the media figures out the letters are just threats, and the reason Miscavige and Pouw refuse interviews is they are terrified of public exposure.

  • 0tessa

    It must be very hard to confront by the Independents that Hubbard, just before he died, confessed that he had failed.
    The man after all had a moment of truth, which I respect.

    • Sherbet

      It could have been the drugs talking in the vein of “poor me,” which is a recurring druggie theme.

      • Sherbet

        To whomever gave me the down vote: I wasn’t disparaging drug users or trying to be sarcastic, and users often call themselves “alkies” or “druggies.” I’ve been around enough weepy users to know that they often feel sorry for themselves as their losses become clear, their illness becomes harder to ignore, and drug-induced depression intensifies.

        • Poison Ivy

          When you read the “Affirmations,” you can see that Hubbard had narcissistic self-pity along with his narcissistic rage pretty much his whole life.

  • Anononyourside

    I have to add to my earlier comment, the letters to CNN make a huge mistake in referencing the decision of the British and Canadian publishers not to publish the Wright book. When they do publish, and they will, what then?

  • LongNeckGoose

    Caption for painting: “It’s not yours.”

  • SP ‘Onage

    Lawrence Wright on Anderson Cooper tonight, hell yeah! Are we going to watch it together?

    When is scientology’s “Dear Leader” going to go public? It’s pretty sad he hides behind his lawyers. Like Lawrence Wright said, “I’m here, why isn’t David Miscavige here to defend his church?”

  • mook

    can anybody give more info about this Anthony Michael Glassman?
    http://www.cnn.com/2013/01/22/us/scientology-response/

    • Not quite sure there’s much to say. He’s a high priced, Beverly Hills lawyer-flunky for a cult.

      • mook

        another Monique Yingling…

  • BosonStark

    The bare underbelly of Scientology scrapes on the truth again — lawyers pregnant with indignant claims of besmirchness.

    How about clinging clusters of dead space alien souls that were blasted onto us by Xenu the even galactic overlord, after they were transported to Teegeeack in DC8-like aircraft 75 million years ago? I picture Ginny giggling and saying, “Oh we’ve got those!”

  • Tony Ortega, once again, maintains Ground Zero for the Scientology Internet.

  • Peter Robinson

    Interesting that the GBSJ letter to CNN specifically states that
    publishers in UK and Canada backed down for legal reasons, which
    somewhat undermines at least the claims of the UK publishers that their
    decision not to publish was not because of legal threats from
    scifiology! Wonder what they will say now? Or are GBSJ lying? While they
    may be shills for scifiology one suspects they have that information on
    good authority, perhaps from the the lawyers for scifiology in the
    U.K.?

    • jensting

      The legal threats in the UK do now have to be from the criminal organisation known as the “church” of $cientology. It could be from (lawyers representing) an individual. And the terms could well be that it is a crime to even mention the existence of the legal instrument (super injunction).

      But, of course, if there’s a possibility to screw up, the Co$ is all over it, like body thetans – ‘scuse me, cocaine bugs – on a science fiction writer.

  • SP ‘Onage

    You think they’re bawwing now…wait until Jenna Miscavige’s book comes out, lulz. Are they going to stop the English publication of her book too?

    • Poison Ivy

      UK libel laws are really really nasty. There are even “libel tourists” who wait for books to be released in the UK in order to sue when they can’t sue anywhere else. I have a book being published by a UK outfit and I tell you, the publishers are scared shitless. I had to change all sorts of stuff that would have not elicited a blink in America. It’s not Scientology stopping it; it’s publishers who don’t want to end up in expensive libel court.

  • The cult just doesn’t seem to get the Barbara Streisand Effect. All that CNN report made me want to do is buy and read the book more than I already want to do.

    • SP ‘Onage

      The homo-novis can’t understand that phenomenon. 🙂

  • BosonStark

    I picture the Aussie journalists getting their package of Scientology crap — the cult-approved way to think about Scientology — and thinking, “What’s this? Must be that new book that came out.”

    I’m sure they’re not thinking, “Oh boy, let’s educate the public on what all of these goofy cult symbols mean and the important humanitarian work Sciloons do around the world.”

  • jensting

    Ooooh – more tease, as usual!

    Seriously, the timing of the press pack in Australia is, of course, a coincidence. There are critical books coming out all the time 🙂

    Also, about spokespeople for the criminal organisation known as the “church” of $cientology: I think the apology read out in the High Court in England summed it up quite nicely

    “The Defendants
    have now acknowledge that the allegations about Mrs Woods
    were untrue. They are here by their Counsel today to withdraw
    them and to apologise to the Plaintiff. They have agreed to
    pay Mrs Woods a substantial amount of money in respect of
    her claim for damages for libel, and to undertake to the Court
    that they will no longer make these untrue accusations against
    her.

    Defendant’s Counsel: On behalf of the Church of Scientology
    and all the Defendants I wish to associate myself with all
    that has been said by counsel for the Plaintiff”

    One of the defendants was that old favourite of Australia: CHURCH OF SCIENTOLOGY RELIGIOUS EDUCATION COLLEGE INC.

    http://www.escapeint.org/legal/apology.htm

  • ze moo

    The tone and content of the letters to cnn brass is hilarious. They all have the ‘straight upwards expansion’ and ‘bitter apostates’ lines that have become the hallmark of CO$ propaganda. Apparently they haven’t unchained the one copywriter they still have for years on end. The CO$ media handling is right out of Bill Murray’s ‘Groundhog Day’. These people make me doubt Darwin…..

  • 0tessa

    The Op Ed published by Marty Rathbun on his blog is obviously published to reassure the believers.

  • I was sitting here thinking about something fantastic or intriguing to say after watching the CNN clip …but then i scrolled down and saw the portrait …my eyes ..they burn

    • Observer

      Seriously. I would have loved to have seen the faces of visitors to their home as they proudly showed that thing off. What would you even say?

      • there is a certain ‘Rosemary’s Baby meets Alien” feel to it

        • Observer

          Hmmm … maybe it’s LRH’s new meat body.

          • Midwest Mom

            I thought he reincarnated into beef jerky?

            • Observer

              Not turkey jerky? 😉

            • Midwest Mom

              That’s a Bingo, Obsie!

  • Sidney18511

    Oh my, Louanne is over on the CNN board typing her little fingers off to protect her scam of a religion. Bless her little heart.

    • link?

      • http://www.cnn.com/2013/01/22/us/scientology-response/
        Louanne and kin, however, are heavily outnumbered. There are a couple of angry-atheist “aw, every religion sucks” types, but that is as close as you get to a Scientology defender without scrolling down a long way.

        • Midwest Mom

          I had to laugh at one of the posts, which I presume was made by a Scientologist troll with the intention of creating an argument about religion on the Hollywood Reporter’s comment section for the excerpt about John Travolta/Spanky from Wright’s book. The commenter’s name was “Athiest”, giving the same old religion derailment spiel. Yes, that’s right. They spelled “Atheist” wrong.

          • Excellent. I got seriously delayed finishing my read of this thread by plowing through the CNN thread: closing in on 800 comments!

        • Poison Ivy

          The atheist “every religion sucks” line of argument is one I’ve seen used by OSA trolls. It’s one of their more “sophisticated” response techniques. Of course I’m sure many of them are simply uneducated atheists. Even if it were true (and of courst it can be argued) that ‘every religion sucks,’ those following that logic need to understand that Scientology does not operate in any way, shape or form like those “other” religions.

          • Every one of the so-called atheist “every religion sucks” posters I’ve seen is an OSA troll. When confronted by an actual atheist, they have no idea how to react.

    • SP ‘Onage

      Trolling for the cult = Fail

      • BuryTheNuts2

        trolling for beans = dinner

        • SP ‘Onage

          LOL! Sad, but true.

  • danlocke

    Phew! So much relief! I went to http://www.lawrencewrightgoingclear.com and it cleared everything up. Apparently the C of S has never, ever done anything wrong. It’s all explained very carefully at this site.

    I thought Norm Starkey is a bit mean though. He was the Captain of the Apollo during much of the time the book covers. He tells us that Ron Hubbard “…was always warm, sincere and friendly…”

    Wouldn’t it have been nice if a little of that had rubbed off on Norman? Speaking of shipmate Karen de la Carriere, he says, “She was an insignificant ‘nobody’ on the Apollo and I barely recall her being there.” and then: “she was, in fact, a faceless nobody on the Apollo”; also “Karen has huge delusions of grandeur.”

    My goodness! I am pretty sure that Norman would have been Clear by the time he was captaining the Apollo, don’t you think? And, isn’t that supposed to give one’s recall abilities a bit of a boost? And wasn’t Karen there being personally trained by Ron himself as a Class XII?

    I’m not so proud of a ship captain who would describe anyone of his crew as “faceless” or “insignificant”.

    “Huge delusions of grandeur”? Who in the Sea Org didn’t? All of us faceless nobodies and bitter apostates who were once a part of it had the same delusions as those people still involved. Re-read the definitions of the various grade chart processes you’ve done, Norman. We all had or have those same delusions.

    Just one more thing that does not make sense at all. If you have see any pics of Karen on the ship you’ll see that she could not have been considered “faceless” by any man. If she wasn’t the prettiest girl on the ship, then someone else may have tied for first place. Norman’s either lying or was in a chain locker the whole time or was castrated and there’s a bigger story to be told.

    • With all their great “tech” and “brilliance” they’ve yet to realize how their constant, unrelenting and complete denial at every turn simply comes across as admission of guilt. If they were a litter slicker, a little nicer, a bit more savvy they’d get further and maybe even hoodwink a person or two. As it is, no one in their right mind can believe a single word they say. Thank goodness! Their actions, exactly dictated by the doctrine they follow, are their own undoing. It is inevitable. They have no other fate, it’s built in to the program. The self-destruct button has already been pushed. T -10 and counting….

      • John P.

        Following a 50-year-old playbook is rarely a good idea… unless you live in medieval times and the world changes at a glacial pace. Their 50-year-old PR playbook ginned up in a day or two by someone who had no clue about PR is becoming a joke. And to think that the guy who beat into his followers that the belief system must never, ever change one single iota was a science fiction writer boggles the mind — science fiction is, one would expect, the field of literature that would embrace change and evolution. Apparently Hubbard never got that memo.

      • Poison Ivy

        “..they’ve yet to realize how their constant, unrelenting and complete denial at every turn simply comes across as admission of guilt. If they were a litter slicker, a little nicer, a bit more savvy they’d get further and maybe even hoodwink a person or two. As it is, no one in their right mind can believe a single word they say.” Touche, Synthia! Why don’t they understand that “everybody in the world is lying except us” is a dead giveaway – not only to guilt, but to a sick culture of compulsive lying!

        • cultwife

          A lot of cults use the approach of “don’t respond, always attack,” and the attacks are grotesque. Then, as icing on the poisoned cake, they add outlandish praise of their very great leader. The problem is that they can’t listen to other people, because they’ve stopped listening to themselves … they smother the little voice that’s struggling inside (described by Alanzo so beautifully above). Well, if you don’t have contact with your own soul and your own will, you won’t have insight into anybody else’s, let alone how your actions look to the world. … It astonishes me, for instance, that one of their legal letters suggests that Anderson Cooper read that Freedom rag, which any balanced person can see is insanity and filth.

    • Sherbet

      Speaking of pictures, the cult thinks if it puts the worst picture it can find of Lawrence Wright onto that “truth” website, then it undermines his credibility, because, you know, unflattering pictures mean the person is lying, right?

      • Actually, someone at WWP discovered that the picture they used on that website is the same one Wright has on his book cover but shooped (the eyes and coloration are changed).

        • Sherbet

          How mature. It’s the equivalent of doodling crossed eyes and blacked-out teeth on magazine pictures to deface them.

    • TheWidowDenk

      There’s always the chance that Norman Starkey didn’t write those words.

      • Midwest Mom

        That makes sense. They use Karin Pouw’s name and we have no proof it’s really her writing the statements bearing her name. Good point!

      • danlocke

        Thank you for bringing up that likelihood. He always seemed to be a good person to me. It seemed out of character for him to talk that way.

    • Ozzie

      Norman Starkey was a drunk on the Apollo – as Capt! I was there – he eventually got removed because of his drunkenness. He is a liar!!!

  • Anononyourside

    What I find interesting about the Toucan case is the fact that the jury ruled against Toucan on all issues, in other words, without Narconon’s involvement, the County would have won the entire case. The only reason that makes sense to me as to why the jury ruled for Narconon, and not Toucan, is they believed Narconon was actually involved in doing something useful.

    • Poison Ivy

      I see the need for much more public exposure of Narconon’s dangerous quackery…

  • Marty is a douche. I can’t believe someone with a minimal education ..and a decades in Scientology fuckwit ..would think that he is helping people really get out . He and his “knowingness” is now a book reviewer with a not too subtle way of forming the “indies” opinion for them . The man is a fucking snake .

    “Having read a number of Wright’s previous works, I anticipated much more from the Pulitzer prize winning author. I never wrote a review of Janet Reitman’s Inside Scientology because I considered it a rather dry, overly academic history of Scientology”

    Self serving twat .

    • cultwife

      I got very irritated, reading all those claims on Marty’s blog that Wright got some of the details wrong. I’m not in a position to know if that’s true. But I spent ten years as a magazine factchecker, veryifying 6,000-word pieces, and I also checked books.( I was trained by the head of the New Yorker’s checking department.) I can tell you that no writer and no checker is a Perfection Robot. You can check dozens of articles (let’s say with 100 facts her piece) perfectly, and get caught with a single error on the next. And books? I checked two books that ran 400 pages, with 30 to 100 facts per page. As sure a shootin’, something will slip through the checker’s net when you’re working on something on that scale. If the chorus of Wright critics over at Marty’s care to write and publish a book that is 300,000 words long and right in every single detail, they will be the first in the world to do it.

      I once checked a magazine piece about someone VERY highly placed in an ancient, world-wide religion. Well, this official was caught by our writer, on tape, expressing some revisionist views on history, as well as political views that most would find offensive. I doublechecked this from the tape. I also asked the official’s assistant to listen to the tape with me. And I spoke to the official himself. All that controversial info–which I knew would make the news the day we published (and it did)–was checked into the ground.

      But because I was so concerned with this, I missed one of several hundred facts. I forgot to check the color of a building. Well, you can predict what happened. Everyone who didn’t want to believe that an authority in their church had said such controversial things wrote scathing letters, saying that if a writer who couldn’t see the color of a building correctly, he couldn’t be trusted on a single statement. (The writer had gotten this wrong in the first place because, like me, he was so worried the potentially scandalous paragraphs. And we both had lawyers watching our every move, which intensified our stress.)

      I still have the incriminating tape. And I still think that people who seize on a handful of details to cast doubt on a whole book or article are …. well, desperate. It’s ironic that some of the indies who criticize Wright for getting some details wrong (if he did) are totally fine with LRH telling lies here, there and everywhere. LHR, after all, was only human. But it seems that Wright and his checker have to be godlike in perfection.

      • I am glad you are here !

        • cultwife

          Well, I can get pedantic about publishing details, but I’m glad it was usefui to you, Kim.

          • Your input is useful to all of us 😉 I just get mad and swear LOL

            • BuryTheNuts2

              But you are so good at it! One of the best.

            • thanks – i work out 😉

      • I wish that you would cut/paste this comment over at Marty’s blog (or that Tony would interview you, somehow). What you are saying is very important and counters the logical fallacy made countless times by people still so lost in the clam juice.

        They are rejecting entire premises over minor details (and also completely disregarding incorrect “facts” about their beloved LRH).

        I agree….their sad attempts to salvage what is not salvageable is really desperate.

        • I agree….what you said is really interesting, and true…I’ve always been interested in finding and vetting facts and even getting one thing wrong will be fodder for those who do not want to believe you or who want to attack your cred for their own reasons.

    • Someone put this link on his blog and said “maybe aliens are for real” half jokingly maybe?….it’s a pretty cool story, anyway..

      http://beforeitsnews.com/beyond-science/2013/01/300-million-year-old-machinery-found-in-russia-experts-say-aluminum-gear-not-the-result-of-natural-forces-may-be-extraterrestrial-2440610.html

      “The real proof that there’s intelligent life in the Universe is that none of? them has tried to contact us.” – Calvin

      • Guest

        i was banned from there …( taking a bow )

    • How much do you want to bet that he never “reviewed” Reitman’s book was to prevent the Streisand Effect, which would guarantee some of his flock would read the damned thing.

    • I never wrote a review of Janet Reitman’s Inside Scientology because I considered it a rather dry, overly academic history of Scientology

      This is such a Scientologist thing to say. Waah it’s boring and hard. It makes them sound like particularly lazy college Freshmen. I take it the real English words were too difficult for him?

  • mook

    Lawrence Wright on Anderson Live right now, going into detail about Nazanin and TC.

    major pwnage!

    • Poison Ivy

      Going to have to watch it online. Maybe Tony will post clip? (Thank you Tony for the terrific CNN story!)

    • SP ‘Onage

      Wat?

      • BuryTheNuts2

        Earlier comment from morning…its just rolling.

        • SP ‘Onage

          Oh, why does it say 7 min ago? It’s confusing. Thanks!

          • BuryTheNuts2

            I don’t know. Its driving most of us a bit batshit.

  • I think this response from Scientology can only mean one thing. That the cult members are communicating up that they have read this stuff or are being asked questions about it. If the cult could ignore this they would but clearly the stuff is hitting the fan.

  • BosonStark

    I like how the cult claims any unflattering information that comes out is from an “unreliable source,” as if Hubbard were rock solid when it came to truth telling — the person they call Source.

    Their definition of “reliable” is obviously someone who is willing to lie for the cult. Hubbard is the one who taught them “acceptable truth” and things like, being certain about certainty.

    As far as the truth, you could rely on most ex-members to describe something that happened to them — to tell the plain truth about something that happened or was said, without the inclusion of Marcabians, Mongol bandits or Filipino Pygmies. Really, CNN should play that clip of Hubbard and ask viewers to consider how “reliable” and honest that story sounds and how can we expect the truth out of his followers?

    Who would the cult consider to be a reliable source for a story about Tom Cruise? Would Katie be a reliable source? Anyone but Tom and his lawyer? Would Shelly Miscavige be a reliable source on David Miscavige? The media should demand to have Shelly personally interviewed on live TV, and asked questions about her husband. If the cult can’t do that, the media should stop printing their official responses because they aren’t credible and the media shouldn’t be shilling for the cult by suggesting that they are credible. In the very least, as Wright requested himself, the media should ask on television for a cult spokescreature to come on TV and talk over these issues of contention in the book.

    What are they going to do now — launch massive law suits against Wright and many of the people he interviewed? Wow, that would really be catapulting Wright’s book into the stratosphere and not making any of these issues ever go away.

  • I love the threat letter from Karin Pouw where says “I do not think it would be in the interest of CNN to rehash the allegations by Mr. Wright” WOW she cares so much for CNN or is that a valid threat? LET ME BE CLEAR, IF THE CULT SUES LAWRENCE WRIGHT I WILL SELL ONE OF MY FUCKING KIDNES TO HELP PAY FOR HIS LEGAL FEES.

  • Chocolate Velvet

    Oh boy, I just spent too much time commenting over at CNN. Now I’m gonnaneed a nap. 🙂

    This is why the Chocolate Velvet usually doesn’t comment elsewhere. ‘Cause, don’t get me started, that’s why. I have stuff to do, dang it! 🙂

  • Shannon

    John P going at them in the CNN comments! Good on you for calling them out on deleting your posts! Get em!

    • Comments with links in them don’t get through. That might be all there is.

    • John P.

      Truth be told, I was as upset that they deleted some of the pro-cult trolls posts. One of them called me a liar about my characterization of the Volunteer Ministers in Haiti, claiming that he spent many months down there working his fingers to the bone, and I was just about to post some links exposing the ineptitude and general getting-in-the-way obnoxiousness of their efforts as penned by some credible aid workers, I discover that not only is his post gone, but so is mine.

      It is possible that the CNN disappearing comments could be a cache bug in Disqus, like we saw back at the Village Voice on a couple of occasions, but I’m not sure. Other comments (which have since disappeared from CNN) were objecting to their comments being deleted as well…

      • OK, so it isn’t just things with links. Possibly CNN was intending to keep moderator control, but was not prepared for an avalanche of this size, and is slowly playing catch-up.

      • Shannon

        I feel like if they were going to just post all those letters from Scientology’s lawyers like that they should be ready for the comments to go batshit.

      • Midwest Mom

        i left two comments, but the comments are overwhelmingly in the context of mocking all religions, instead of staying on topic. It upsets me a great deal to see that happen, however, the majority of people who link on to CNN stories do not take the time to scroll through comment threads, particularly when the comments are taken over by trolls with the intent to derail the thread.

      • ze moo

        There are currently over 1 thousand comments on this story. It appears to be the usual ‘all religions are alike’ sock puppets and a huge population of ‘Lron was a sci-fi clown’ people. This interest and the resulting ‘kerfuffle’ are why stories about scamatology are becoming common and taking all of the CO$es attention. New meat?? What new meat??

        • I don’t think the “all religions are alike” population there consists of sock puppets: on Tampa Bay Times threads, the “why don’t you attack other religions?” deflectors almost always mention the Catholic Church and nobody else, for example; that’s their script. No, on CNN I think it’s the kind of angry-atheists that you find fighting the fundies, and denigrating any kind of Christian as being just as delusional as a fundy, on lots of boards.

  • Chocolate Velvet

    Wait, there’s really an Aussie journal called “Crikey”?

    No way! That makes me LOL. Maybe I do need a nap.

  • Poison Ivy

    Flew to LA from freezing NYC yesterday for a screening/business & started Wright’s book on the way. It is FABULOUS! I am only 1/3 through it but what is ironic about Scientology’s response is, Wright is amazingly fair and even-handed, at least on Hubbard. This book is so much kinder to Hubbard than “Barefaced Messiah” or “Piece of Blue Sky” or “Madman or Messiah.” I am learning so much I didn’t know about how Hubbard came up with Dianetics…about the whole mess with poor Sara…about his life pre-Scientology. Wright goes out of his way to phrase things in a non-accusatory way. The fact that he is such a terrific writer and meticulous journalist and STILL Hubbard is revealed to be the horrendous person that he was speaks volumes…
    I hope Wright, Random House, CNN et al will NOT back down this time. Let Scientology take you to court. I know you’ll have to dip into your E&O/liability insurance but honestly, the discovery process will provide you with so much more fodder for news & entertainment down the line.
    Speaking of LA (where I lived for 20 years), yesterday Mr. Poison Ivy and I were driving down Hollywood Blvd and passed the Author Services building. There was a lot of traffic due to a premiere and we were stalled right in front of it for a while. My husband looked up and said “Are those cameras up there?” He could not get his mind about why they would need security cameras. “What do they care about the tops of people’s heads?” Because he loves Wright, he may actually read the book. At least then perhaps he will understand the rabbit hole that most of us here have fallen down…

  • 0tessa

    Now on Huffington’s: “Scientology’s secrets exposed in new book”.

  • That portrait… Past the Tiajuana black velvet aesthetic and the “god light” giving them a 12 carat aura I sense the proud ownership Kannon feels. She won the game. She got her man. And beneath that the wry sardonic knowingness that when her brood finally hatches she will serenely look on as they, scuttling on needle claws, devour him.

    • scnethics

      LOL

    • Chocolate Velvet

      My god, that was hilarious!

    • Kitz

      *Snerk* I’m giggling as much now over this, as when you showed me earlier…. And giving me the willies the same way. 😛

  • dwayners13

    You know your religion’s image is in trouble when you have to send out press releases which seek to clarify that people are not descended from aliens & that your church doesn’t believe that people are filled with alien parasites.

    • John P.

      Especially when the real clarification that they left unsaid is that you are not descended from aliens; you are actually a reincarnation of a being that was probably an alien more times than it was an earthling. Also, you are not filled with alien parasites. The truth is that your skin is covered with dead space cooties — they are on you but not in you. A world of difference.

      • scnethics

        Naw, they’re in you, too. They might believe they “are” your elbow, for example. And they are dead aliens, since when they last had their own body it was on another planet. There’s nothing inaccurate about saying scientology teaches at its highest levels that your body is infested with the spirits of aliens.

      • SP ‘Onage

        Exactly, typical sci’s twisting the truth.

  • ParticleMom

    Love the scroll down Tony’s blog from yesterday on the CNN video!

    • TonyOrtega

      Hey, yeah! I didn’t see that at first.

  • dbloch7986

    This is the comment I left. I wrote two more before this but they didn’t make it onto the thread.

    “I was a Sea Org member from age 15-18, Sep 2001 – Jul 2004. They are lying when they say they do not work kids long hours. To some a “teenager” may not be a “child” but under the law they are. I was kicked out for being gay; I had developed a relationship with a fellow male staff member.

    I was working from 8 am until Midnight most days, many days I did not sleep. I had maybe a handful of days off during that time. When I was getting what they refer to as “schooling” I had to make up the time I spent in “school” after hours working. I managed to get a CHSPE, but most of us did not.

    The Church of Scientology cooks up massive conspiracies of thousands of people, probably because they genuinely believe that is what is happening. Scientologists are paranoid, schizophrenic and deluded. They believe that the people they call “apostates” are part of the conspiracy of psychiatry to wipe out Scientology.

    In the real world, not the fake, crazy, sci-fi world of Scientology, we call what these “apostates” are doing corroboration.

    Frankly, I’m glad there are so many Scientologists willing to tell the truth about their experiences. Scientology teaches its followers to lie so much it almost becomes unnatural to tell the truth. Being able to be truthful about myself is one of the best things I have ever experienced after being booted out of the church.”

    I wish the fucking douchebags that run the goddamn cult would just stop releasing statements to the media already. No one believes them, no one trusts them and they are wasting their time. Anyone who has ever been in the Sea Org can corroborate the fact that children work long hours doing manual labor at times. Most of the work they do is office work. The church stating that they “comply with child labor laws” does not mean they give a flying fuck about children anyway. And the ministerial exemption that the courts keep giving them for wages is bullshit.

    There is no ministerial work going on except for people who are or are training to be auditors. The rest of it is all administrative office work. I filed papers, called people, sent e-mails and letters to people, sent out promotion, acted as a secretary, etc. for the first major part of my Sea Org experience. The rest of it I was studying, until I was made to go down into the tunnels under Hubbard Way in Hollywood and file moldy papers, and spend 14 hours a day shredding documents in their giant shredding machine.

    Fuckin BS i tell ya.

    • A somewhat cleaned-up version of that finally did appear at CNN

      • dbloch7986

        Hahaha, I only put the part in quotes on the CNN site. The rest outside of the quotes is only for here. I didn’t want my comment moderated for cursing.

        • Ahhh… I didn’t see the end quote. ((((Hugs))))

    • Midwest Mom

      Sending big hugs and much love to you, boo.

      • dbloch7986

        Love you to MWM! Back atcha with those hugs!

      • i love that you used the word boo …love,love,love!!

        • Midwest Mom

          My kids feign that they are choking when I say, “What up, boo?” or “Don’t be jelly”, especially in front of their friends.

    • Out of curiosity, what were you shredding, Derek?

      • dbloch7986

        I don’t know, I didn’t read much of it. It was papers from all over big blue on all different topics. It wasn’t like a big project of one particular group of documents or anything. Scientology is very, very shred-heavy. They shred any document that could be considered a “security risk”. Old dispatches, old letters, policy letters, old course packs, old books, anything with names or dates on it, anything that involved orders from one staff member to another, old invoices…allllll kinds of things. Even old promo material, like the sunday funny stuff.

        • Thanks for the detail, Derek. After the FBI raids of the 70s, their paranoia probably went through the roof and continues to this day.

          By the way, your posts made it to the CNN page.

          • dbloch7986

            Sweet. Thanks for letting me know!

            Yeah Scientology is a world of paranoia. To me, it is so simple to understand why the Church should be forced to pay it’s employees minimum wage. I don’t understand why a court cannot see that. They are not monks, they are office workers. Just like any administrative arm of any organization.

            • ze moo

              The ministerial exception to any laws is always great problem for any agency charged with enforcing laws. Basically, any religion can do anything (excepting children) they want. Ok, real human sacrifices would be a problem.

              Salvation Army Majors (head of an entire town or county and all the programs in it) earn 50k per year and they get a ‘sturdy’ pair of shoes. Salvation Army seems to obey minimum wage laws and they really benefit their communities.
              http://www.glassdoor.com/Salary/Salvation-Army-Salaries-E2965.htm

              Catholic Charities pays their workers less then similar jobs in the government sector, but they get some of the ‘feast days’ off.

              The old adage of ‘you get what you pay for’, seems to apply here. The Salvation Army and Catholic Charities pay less then the market rate, but much more then the CO$. The communities served by Salvation Army and Catholic Charities actually get services that help their people. The CO$ pays nothing to their people and provides nothing to any area they inhabit (I was going to use the word ‘infest’, but that is little too nasty).

              The religious angle covers the CO$ slavery with the impenetrable cloak of religious freedom. A cloak that can only be lifted by the opened eyes of the slave.

          • Not long after the FBI raids in the 70s, David Miscavige ordered the staff of Mission Operations Pac Move, (MOPM) to go through all the dispatches the various cedars complex renovation missions had and remove all mention of LRH, L. Ron Hubbard, Ron, and his signature with a razor blade. This was called vetting.

            I was on the MOPM project mission “Mission Signs Exterior” and Hubbard was reported to and replied regularly on our designs and what we were doing. Patti LeMarr, Doug Harlan and I were given an LRH commendation for our work, signed by Hubbard.

            Typically Hubbards orders, comments or dispatches were on thin onion-skin blue paper. I resisted destroying these documents and asked Mark Ingber, who was head missionaire of MOPM if Miscavige had the authority to order this vetting and destruction of documents. Mark Ingber told me he did and to do what he said.

            These documents were clear evidence that Hubbard gave orders to and thus was in control of the entire scientology enterprise, even down to approving contracts and selecting paint colors.

            So I sat, with the rest of the missionaires and went through page after page, cutting out ron’s signature and any reference to him with a razor blade and putting the pieces in a trash bag that was then collected.

            After that, in many dispatches the asterisk, *, was used to stand in for any reference to Hubbard in communications.

            • TheHoleDoesNotExist

              Wow. This was from reno’s paperwork then? And those colors? oh now it all is becoming so Clear! hahaha the colors, first sets and combo’s were nauseatingly psycho-delic, and we were told the person who chose them had some kind of drug problem or drug history. The next series was just plain putrid. If you can imagine, more depressing than army colors. So basically this was Hubbard first on a high, then crashing.

              Back to more important history…so Hubbard Knew that Miscavige was ripping him out? Holy razor blades!

            • dbloch7986

              My snot used to look like fireworks because of all the different colors of paper I was shredding. Sometimes it was yellow, orange, green, blue, white, grey. It was craziness. My ears always hurt because of the never ending noise.

            • Well. I’ve heard that. Doug and I did those designs and specified the paint. Samples of the paint, paint color chips and renderings using illustration markers were forwarded to Hubbard and he returned the ap

            • They blamed it on one of us having some kind of big drug history, but Hubbard himself wanted the least possible amount done and his bright idea was to change the inside feel from hospital to not-hospital using paint and design alone. Our bright idea was to use geometric shapes to break the outline of the internal institutional architecture. I do agree it was a bit clashing in spots, and not very usual. I think it was bright and gave the spaces an open feeling. But when he approved the schemes, he said “This is more modern than moderne”. He approved the design. If it was too weird then he should have said something. Blaming Doug and I is just a way to protect Hubbard’s rep and disguise his involvement. We used specially mixed paint with super high pigment load and low odor. Hubbard wanted it to stand out and make a statement. I know that the original exterior color seemed too bright once acres of it got put on, but it actually matched in color and value to the illustrations when they went up to Hubbard for approval. Those illustration markers fade over time due to oxygen in the air and acid in the illustration boards. Going back a few years later and complaining they don’t match is just stupid.

            • I worked in a large labyrinth-style complex that had 70s style geometric shapes on the walls and at the end of hallways. They were in crazy colors, too, and this was a military contractor. It was supposed to make you feel less closed in. I think it was the thing at the time.

    • TheHoleDoesNotExist

      I wish Anderson Cooper would interview You, Derek, as a follow up. Okay, the fucking douchebag comments might get bleeped, but the facts and passion and horror wouldn’t. Maybe he or Brian Smith will be covering Jenna Miscavige Hill’s book. You certainly could be an important corroborating eyewitness and more recent to evidence is has been going on for a long time.

      • dbloch7986

        I would be down with that. Finding time off work would be the only obstacle.

        • TheHoleDoesNotExist

          I do believe the networks have the technology to handle those kinds of things, skype, taping shows ahead, etc.

          • dbloch7986

            That’s true. I have no idea if I could even pull off a TV interview. I would be so nervous! Just thinking about it makes my palms sweat.

            • Observer

              You’d be great!

            • Midwest Mom

              Think of it as a conversation with the interviewer. It’s okay if you’re nervous; most people are nervous in that situation! Since you’ll be telling the truth, you don’t have to worry about what to say. It will probably be less scary than you assume, ya cutie.

              You can have some close friends there for support and by that time, perhaps some of the kind people here, from the L.A. area, could do some practice interviews with you on video camera, or perhaps Mark Bunker could meet with you first for some pointers. We’re rooting for you!. 🙂

            • John P.

              If you get a gig, send me a message on facebook. I’ve done TV interviews related to work at Global Capitalism HQ a million times… there are a couple tricks to keep in mind, and you’ll be fine. I’d be happy to go over anything you need.

              You probably won’t have to go far for the interview; there are remote camera studios all over LA. I bet you wouldn’t have to drive more than about 10 miles. It’s way easier than if you lived in, say, Frostbite Falls Minnesota.

            • TheHoleDoesNotExist

              See, Derek. Thanks, JohnP. Okay, who else can help Derek’s story heard? I brought talc powder.

            • dbloch7986

              Ugh I can already imagine how sweaty and clammy my hands will be and my heart will be racing.

            • TheHoleDoesNotExist

              Just don’t drill those Hubbard “stage fright” instructions. lol. JohnP has the experience for interviews to give tips. Just be a boy scout and be prepared. You could always write to Anderson you know. You have a blog you can point him to for additional info.

            • Derek, do you have a blog or a website of some kind where you write?

            • dbloch7986

              Thanks dude! If it happens one day I will let you know for sure!

            • ze moo

              Your posts are usually articulate and always well reasoned. You would not have a problem interviewing for anyone. It is just a matter of practice.

            • TheHoleDoesNotExist

              Too late, I already suggested it on the CNN blog right under your comment and Why I suggested your story be heard. I’ll send you some talc powder :0

            • You can always have them do you in silhouette. I think everyone looks ugly on TV ….even beautiful people.

            • dbloch7986

              Hahahahaha and one of those funky voice changers. I want them to make me sound like darth vader and to play the dark side music when I walk in.

            • BuryTheNuts2

              That would be cool. But only if you said: Luke…I am your Fathuuuuh

            • Midwest Mom

              Derek is adorable! I want to see that handsome face!

            • Absolutely. But I can understand being camera shy….being on tv would be very scary!

    • Observer

      There IS a conspiracy to wipe out Scientology, but it’s not the psychs. It’s the exes and wogs who know the truth about Hubbard, his teachings, his mental illness, his cruelty and the abuses he built into his sham religion which are being carried out and expanded upon by Davey Miscavige, the shining example of an adolescence spent learning at the Master’s knee and an adulthood bringing the results of the Master’s teaching to fruition.

      My English teachers would not approve of that run-on sentence.

      • dbloch7986

        But that’s not a conspiracy, it’s just a bunch of people corroborating each other’s stories. If there was a conspiracy it would be everyone plotting to take down the church, which isn’t happening. It’s just a bunch of people who are speaking out about their experiences. The fact that those experiences are bad PR for Scientology is Scientology’s fault and no one else’s. These people are not working to take down Scientology, Scientology is taking down itself.

        • Observer

          You mean I’m the only plotting? Rats.

          • dbloch7986

            Serendipity is the term I believe.

            • BuryTheNuts2

              LOL, Miscavige may use a slightly different term…but hey…It sucks to be him.

    • cultwife

      Derek, I’ve just finished reading your blog, and it is so, so moving. I’ve heard the expression “aristocrat of pain,” and if that means enduring and triumphing over pain makes someone an aristocrat, you are one of the kings.

      • dbloch7986

        Thanks so much for the supportive words! I need to keep writing on my blog. I have a lot more to add.

    • It’s Derek Bloch! I loved your story in the VV. Hope you’re working on a book or at least doing some writing. You have such a refreshing voice. This business of working kids like that is terrible. 8am to midnight? That is just wrong.

    • The Dakini

      Hi honey! Hope you are doing well. Hugs and kisses!

      • dbloch7986

        Aw thank you! xoxoxoxox I’m doing okay right now!

  • DeElizabethan

    Tony, haven’t gone past your first “Go Here” in first para. CNN blog all day fascinating. I’ll be back!

  • dbloch7986

    I posted this for the OSA puppets that go on there about “all religions are the same blah blah”:

    “Everyone that keeps saying “all religions are the same” obviously has not been around a mainstream religion in a while.

    Most religions do not try to plant someone’s fingerprints on a bomb threat letter to get them imprisoned simply because they published a book denouncing the church.

    Most religions do not ban their members from speaking to other members because of differences in philosophy.

    Most religions do not exploit children for hard labor while separating them from their parents because their parents are too busy working for the church.

    Most religions do not drive a wedge in between families forcing them to shun their members who are not also part of the religion.

    Most religions do not harass people who speak out about abuses occurring within the church.

    Most religions do not hire PIs to follow people around for 25 years for an untold sum of money paid in cash every month.

    Most religions do not drive their members into bankruptcy with aggressive and abusive sales tactics.

    Most religions do not put their members in a gulag when they make a typo on a promotional letter.

    Most religions seek to improve the family bond and encourage loyalty to your parents while Scientology uses children as informants against parents who are critical of Scientology and does everything they can to destroy the bond between families.”

    • Sherbet

      Most religions don’t charge their parishioners before revealing church beliefs to them.

      Most religions have a credible spokesperson or ecclesiastical leader who will talk to the media.

      • dbloch7986

        You should go add that on the CNN wesbite. Haha we could start a big ‘ol thread like this.

        • Sherbet

          Oh, you’re doing fine by yourself. Plus, if I don’t want my blood pressure to rise, I have to stay away from the CNN website. I read the posters for a bit today, and steam began coming out of my ears.

          Feel free to add my suggestions, though!

    • you rock it !! more hugs for you !! i am going to want your autograph!

    • anonymous

      well said, please post this comment everywhere Derek!

    • SP ‘Onage

      Nice! 🙂

    • noseinabk

      I am having a great time watching you and a few others juggle the OSA puppets. That you can reply without anger. Reminds me of Great Beard Man and Tori.

  • 0tessa

    “David Miscavige is one of the great individuals of our time”, says the consigliere in his letter CNN posted.
    On which planet does this consigliere live?

    • BuryTheNuts2

      I was going to type that line just to make fun of it..
      But I couldn’t bring myself to do it and not throw up.
      Thanks for that.

    • jensting

      Apparently, in one of the Canadian trials, the counsel for the criminal organisation known as the “church” of $cientology argued that ex-clams should not be believed because they had been trained to lie. The mind boggles.

      I refer again to the apology above where the criminal organisation had to settle and admit to lying.

    • grundoon

      It said “short,” but Dave crossed it out and put “great.”

  • ze moo

    At 6:19 pm est, there were 706 comments on the cnn piece. There were over 1 thousand at 5pm est. Where did the other 300 comments go??? Disqus can be bad, but seldom that bad. Seems to be a very ‘moderated’ article.

    • I have found CNN deletes comments, and heard others say the same….

  • Bella Legosi

    Hello, I absolutely love this site! Was on it for the last two days reading all the delicious tidbits concerning Co$. And keep it up commenters! For serious, I have read many comments that have brought up very valid points; like how SciDy may run itself financially, low low low low low public numbers, ect. And I really find this a great atmosphere to see and participate in discussions about the “Reformation” and Marty, but what impresses me the most is Alonzo’s comments towards that subject, and that is enough to keep this Portlander coming back for more.

    I believe that the investigation conducted by the FBI is only going to be the tip of the ice berg for poor SciDy culties. There has been too much done, said, covered up, lied about, and spent to keep up the appearance that Scientology is infact a “religion” that benefits society more then the COB of the RTC (wow talking in acronyms really is a shortcut to thinking). My only hope is that the IRS has not been asleep for the past 20 years and have been amassing documentation and evidence on this scam; along with any intelligence agency. As much as I do not like alphabet agencies and bureaucracy’s I have to imagine they have long memory’s and can hold a grudge. Hell, I would be holding a grudge for Operation SnowWhite (yay Rock Center!) had I been in any agency during that time. So, lets all cross our fingers that the SuperPower Scilons really do pull out the big guns on this awful awful week of “entheata” so that whatever agency happens to be watching may note it down!

    Tis not everyday that ones sees a religion die before their eyes. =) Keep up the good work guys and thank you!

  • ze moo

    Hmmmm, the cnn article had a total of 9 pages from lawyers and 8 pages from the Karin Prouw avatar. Given the time and research that went into the lawyers letters, I think they spent 20 man hours on their letters. At a very conservative $300.00 per billable hour, the CO$ spent 6 thousand dollars on their reply. If the Sea Arghhh is wondering why their rice has no beans this week, well, it was spent on legal research. The Prouw letter cost nothing, 2 monkeys trained to ‘cut and paste’ did it for bananas.

    • OTVIIIisGrrr8!

      Ze moo: You’re not counting the cost of enturbulating COB.

      COB’s enturbulated Theta caused 1,163 Ideal Orgs to not be opened due to the distractions caused by this attack on the Church.

      As a result, hundreds of millions people were not personally saved by COB and thus remain in the dwindling spiral. While some would say that a cost cannot be put on such suffering, we in Scientology can in fact monetize using our religious pricing structure.

      The economic loss to the Church caused by enturbulating COB was $7,880,615,049.

      Who is going to make Scientology whole on its loss?

      We suggest that the Wog World is itself guilty and that everyone in the world should be made to pay us $1.00. That will make the Church whole and allow the world to make amends to us for the damage it caused to COB as a thetan.

    • And I’m Cute, Too

      “…2 monkeys trained to ‘cut and paste’ did it for bananas”

      HA! I almost LOL’d at work. Love it!

  • Chocolate Velvet

    God bless Stacy Murphy’s family. I know how important it is to have a headstone. My nephew was murdered in cold blood in 2010, and we still don’t have a marker for him, and it is very painful for the family.

    Is there a fund or address where others can donate for Stacy’s memorial?

    • BuryTheNuts2

      Sorry to hear about your nephew CV.

      • Chocolate Velvet

        Thank you, BTN. He was 21. His name was Paul.

        Every time my own 20 year-old son goes out the door, I k n o w it could be the last time I get to say “I love you”. There is no such thing as — it could never happen to me. Know what I mean?

    • N. Graham

      I would like to know also.

  • I notice that many of us decamped to bring balance and reason to the CNN site. It appears to have worked. Louanne left after an hour and only a handful of comments.

  • SP ‘Onage

    742 comments at CNN right now. Ka-Pouw!

  • mook

    why does that horrific photo remind me of Demi Moore’s Vanity Fair cover ca. ’92 when she was nude and pregnant?

    • Ya’ll probably will think I’m nuts but I actually think pregnant bellies are cool.

      • EnthralledObserver

        They are cool… that particular pic above isn’t though. As for Demi’s mag cover… sorry, mook, will have to disrespectfully disagree, I like it.

        • BuryTheNuts2

          Yeah, I thought hers was quite well done.

          Not so much that thing above.

    • SandiCorrena

      It’s a little reminisent of that Rockwall painting, just missing the pitch fork – or Ma and Pa Kettle…..

      • Sherbet

        Not Rockwell. Grant Wood. American Gothic.

        • Sherbet

          And DM borrowed the pitchfork!

  • TheHoleDoesNotExist

    So, Anderson Cooper show is tonight 8 pm EST CNN or tomorrow?

    • SP ‘Onage

      Tony said, it is tonight.

      • TheHoleDoesNotExist

        tks

        • SP ‘Onage

          🙂

      • Not anymore

  • Hmmmm…..just watched the Anderson Cooper lead-in and he did not make a mention of the Wright story. I hope it wasn’t pulled.

    • SP ‘Onage

      If they caved into the cult, I’ll be pissed.

      • Anderson Cooper has yet to cave into the cult so it is not likely that he’ll do that now, but anything is possible.

        I think the Texas shooting (ugh….another one) stole our thunder. Maybe it will be a better story for tomorrow in tandem for what Tony teases will be released then.

        • SP ‘Onage

          I think you’re right. I am so sick of these freakin’ shootings.

    • SP ‘Onage

      Yeah. No lead-in. Talking about the Texas College Shooting right now.

  • Chocolate Velvet

    couldn’t find ca definitive answer. Anyone know offhand?uestion: are both of DM’s sisters still in thecult? I couldnt

    • BuryTheNuts2

      Yes, both are still in. Lori was doing her OT preps as of August 2009 and Denise has got some wierd Service Completions…showing she was OT IV in 1988 and an odd blend of completions since then.

      • Chocolate Velvet

        Thanks! I guess they keep a low profile. I wonder when they’re going to blow? It seems to be a family tradition at this point…

  • SP ‘Onage

    Anderson Cooper 360 on in 4 minutes here on the West coast.

  • sugarplumfairy

    The TX shooting may have changed CNN’s plans..

    • Yes, but it looks like we’ll still get a heaping, steaming shit story about Michelle Obama’s fucking dress.

      Let’s see……rampant child abuse……Michelle’s ugly dress……child labor violations……knowing about that red hideous pile of rags (the dress, not Obama).

  • BuryTheNuts2

    I thought it was at 10PM Eastern…cable shows another AC360 at that time.

    • TheHoleDoesNotExist

      Schedule said 8 pm and then shown again at 10 pm eastern

  • sugarplumfairy

    I saw the morning show.. It was maybe a five minute segment and they didnt mention anything about tonight.. But AC’s morning show is on CBS..

  • TonyOrtega

    JUST GOT CONFIRMATION: The segment with Larry was bumped to tomorrow night because of the Texas shooting.

    • SP ‘Onage

      Thanks Tony!

    • Thanks, Tony. I can now go back to my regularly scheduled nap.

    • TheHoleDoesNotExist

      Thanks. I must still be OT. I have a note to watch CNN on Wed night which is why I was confused earlier.

    • BuryTheNuts2

      Thanks!

    • Am I the only one who wondered if Miscavige ordered the Texas shooting to distract from the subject?

  • sugarplumfairy

    Cool.. tomorrow night it is..

    I just checked the AC Live show.. The have videos posted of all the segments of today’s show.. The only one that doesn’t work is the Lawrence Wright segment..

    http://www.andersoncooper.com/2013/01/22/videos-anderson-on-attending-inauguration-marilyn-milian-on-botox-and-more/

  • I think this whole controversy with Scientology have to do with Tom Cruise have been extramamente brave and exposed their bigotry without fear. (more fanaticism is bad we should applaud the guy for courage). Maybe there should be an overhaul in the high dome of the church, I believe that the current leader Miscavige is vain and loves flatter celebrities (that video delivery medal Cruise’s hilarious, it feels a gong medal, lol).

  • HM, I wonder what would happen if COS was more opened and less secretive? I suppose they don’t want to open the gulag up or they would be forced to change. But if they would really open up the public may be less suspicious.

  • SP ‘Onage

    Dammit, I can’t view Tony ‘s Canadian TV appearance.

    • N. Graham

      Try opening it in a different browser, especially if you are using Explorer.

      • SP ‘Onage

        Thanks! I don’t know what I’d do without you guys.

  • TonyOrtega

    I’ve added a link to my Canadian TV appearance at the end of the post, and a still from the video. If I can get an embeddable version, I’ll put it into a new post.

    • sugarplumfairy

      Yay, Tony! Great job! A++ for objectivity and fair-mindedness.. as usual..

    • Midwest Mom

      You looked pretty spiffy there, Tony. Was that a Gordon New Tartan tie that you were sporting?

      • ParticleMom

        The tie was great, I noticed it, too 🙂

    • Once again. Level headed, clear, with Ray Suarez-like objectivity.

      But if you really want an exciting interview that draws a crowd, you need a less stable, more opinionated ex-Scientologist beside you for “color”. You know, someone who can call it a “cult”. (:>

      Great job, Tony.

    • How is it that you got to use the ABC studio for an interview with CBC?

  • The Dakini

    Whoop! Looks like dust storm is getting another front. This was posted less than an hour ago and details the claim of fraud in Alberta CAN.

    “The Competition Act contains provisions addressing false or misleading representations and deceptive marketing practices in promoting the supply or use of a product or any business interest. All representations, in any form whatever, that are false or misleading in a material respect are subject to the Act. If a representation could influence a consumer to buy or use the product or service advertised, it is material. To determine whether a representation is false or misleading, the courts consider the ’general impression’ it conveys, as well as its literal meaning.”

    Mr. Love is no longer the only voice speaking out. David Lee and former addict, patient, staffer and recent poster to Anonomous, is now talking public ally about his experiences as well.

    http://www.examiner.com/article/canada-scientology-drug-rehab-mass-marketing-fraud

    • The Dakini

      My apologies, Mr. Lee began posting on the Tipping Point site most recently.

  • Midwest Mom

    It looks like I was right about Laura, our Portuguese visitor yesterday, after all. She left some messages in English on yesterday’s comment thread.. It really bothered me that she used the word “honest” when she said that she didn’t know that Tom Cruise had children. She has commented on every story regarding Tom Cruise for months. She criticized Katie and Nicole, and Tony while defending Tom Cruise, (as usual) stating that she is Catholic and that his beliefs aren’t any stranger than Catholicism (no practicing Catholic would ever say that) and has 68 posts defending Scientology celebrities, etc. on this account alone.

    I actually felt guilty for not giving her the benefit of the doubt yesterday when she first posted, but she is indeed a Sci-puppet, as I presumed. I suspect that the Co$ is assigning new posters here to leave a post or posts which seem innocent to establish acceptance, and then will unleash a derailment comment or comments to make it look like it’s coming from one of Tony’s regulars. I suspect this was the case with another poster yesterday, who commented negatively about Bella and her fiance. Heads up!

    • SP ‘Onage

      I noticed that lately. Like that post with the “ironron” link in it.

    • I thought she seemed too ignorant to really be a Scilon. That will teach me to underestimate their level of ignorance.

    • MM, there’s an interesting thread over at ESMB about a Scieno Public being called into posting on websites discussing Wright’s book. It is like using a soup spoon to bail out the sinking Titanic.

      http://www.forum.exscn.net/showthread.php?30144-Going-Clear-A-call-from-the-org

      • Midwest Mom

        Ha Ha! Good analogy! Thanks for the link. 🙂

      • DeElizabethan

        That was interesting. I only go there when someone gives links, so thanks.

      • BuryTheNuts2

        What an awful position to be in!

    • Observer

      If that’s the case with “Anne Smith”, Insult Dietician, then she was likely assuming us contemptible wogs would jump on the bashing bandwagon and would have used that to discredit us. Must have been a shock when the opposite happened.

      • BuryTheNuts2

        Yeah, what happened to our nutritionist?
        And a few other poster’s who come here and throw out a few molatov cocktails and then retreat.

        We must be a highly disappointing group to try and troll.

    • BuryTheNuts2

      Always go with your gut instinct. It rarely lets you down.

    • moxonmoxoff

      I second this assessment. I have come across Laura on other comment boards. I called her out on one of her posts and she politely retracted it, but if you link through to her Disqus account the picture emerges. More subtle than we are used to. Maybe it’s that European touch.

  • Tony, if you wore glasses you would look just like Ray Suarez on The News Hour.

    I think you should go for it.

    Alanzo

  • Guest

    Shame to see another Indie Dependent lie filtering into the news. The idea that it was David Miscavige who decided to focus Scientology recruitment tactics on celebrities is easily dismissed with the attached DOX written by L Ron Hubbard in 1955.

    • grundoon

      Liberace and Hedda Hopper could have given LRH a fashion upgrade. That would deserve more than a small plaque.

  • Guest

    What a shame to see another Independent Scientology lie being vectored into the MSM media discussion on Scientology. It was not David Miscavige who decided to focus recruitment tactics on celebrities – it was L Ron Hubbard and he did so back in 1955.

  • And there is no way that Beyonce lip-synced that.

    No way.

  • SP ‘Onage

    Robert Platt Bell on CNN comments seems to be osa. They always comment after everyone leaves.

    • Definitely. I’ve been trying not to leave any of his unanswered, if nobody else has gotten to them. CNN just did another sweep of that thread (which amazingly is still getting a few posts a day after) to kill most of the ProphetMaximation nonsense.

  • stillgrace

    I just got home … full day …. looks like I missed all the fun!

    Had my DVR set up to record AC360, but it sounds like the Wright interview was postponed (?). I just heard about the shooting in Texas.

    It’s going to take hours to catchup with all the comments here and over at CNN. I did see Derek’s comment. Derek has such an honest voice in his writing. He is making a difference. {{Hugs}} to Derek and all that fought the good fight today.

    • You will never catch up with the CNN thread, lots of stuff was up there for hours but then the moderators cleaned up, killing good stuff as well as bad. Derek’s posts are still there. One thing that my eagle eye did not catch but some posters there have had fun with: one of the Scilon lawyers wrote that “the statue of limitations has started to run.” That statue must have fewer limitations than most statues, if it started to run. Is it running around a pole, I wonder?

      • stillgrace

        Well, I’m sorry I missed that one! Heh Heh! I appreciate hearing about it here!

      • BuryTheNuts2

        Until its teeth fall out.

    • DeElizabethan

      Robert is right I’ve been on all day. What a blast. Have fun!

  • May_West

    Thrilled to see you on CTV. Canada needs more TOrtega.

  • EnthralledObserver

    I left my opinion on the “Crikey” article… may it make a difference… amen.

  • mouseyhair

    Wow, the CNN thread is one wild ride. I have been on and off there all day! I wonder if I might ask a question regarding something I read in Going Clear? In the book Wright wrote of several instances early on in DMs life where he had explosive behavior. Do we know how/what/when/why this started? Was he abusive to his family as a young child? Just curious, as his behavior as an adult just appears to be so evil. And I do not use that term lightly or without cause.

    • 0tessa

      Looks like real sociopathic behaviour at a young age.

    • grundoon

      You’ll enjoy this January 3, 2012 profile by Jason Nark of the Philadelphia Inquirer… http://articles.philly.com/2012-01-03/news/30583520_1_david-miscavige-scientology-lrh

      • BuryTheNuts2

        Very interesting. Thanks.

      • mouseyhair

        Good info…..thank you for the link.

    • DeElizabethan

      Looks like they the Cof$ brought in a professional called the Prophet and although more than 300 more comments in today. Not much use. Yesterday was fun and productive however.

  • OTVIIIisGrrr8!

    We in RTC are so busy saving the lives of hundreds of billions of thetans that we have no time to read the one or two books written by bigots that attack the Church of Scientology or its leader COB RTC David Miscavige.

    COB has no time for any of this wog nonsense! No go away before we have you arrested and then sue you!

    http://otviiiisgrrr8.com/2013/01/23/we-in-rtc-respond-to-lawrence-wrights-book-attacking-scientology/#comment-778

    • Sherbet

      Dear Grrr8: I just read your blog after having neglected it for awhile. I forgot how funny it is. Thanks for the laughs, even for a PTS like myself.

      I must say DM looks pretty nifty at the inauguration, with his little bow tie and all. Still, I hope Sasha and Malia gave him a couple of kicks in the ankle for ruining their photo op.

  • EnthralledObserver

    You know how Scientologists say : “If it is true for you, it is true for you.” Is that the way it is portrayed in the Church literature… because, during that hour or so the day before when I listened to L Ron blab on all his bragging, well he said Snake Thompson said to him “If it’s NOT true for you, then it’s NOT true.” This saying has an entirely different meaning, and actually makes some (wog) sense. i.e If the evidence doesn’t add up, then it probably isn’t true and might need further investigation at the least. Can I get some clarification on this, please?

  • Great to see you on Canadian TV! I can feel the desperation of the “Church” in their responses!!! And it makes me smile!!!!

  • Even the Financial Times is dissing the church:

    http://blogs.ft.com/the-a-list/2013/01/22/davies-davos-diary-why-the-forum-is-like-scientology/#axzz2InevwMPz

    The analogy they use reminded me of that Cheers episode where Frasier and Niles kept on discovering different levels at this exclusive Spa only to be turfed out looking stupid

    [hint…. you might find it easier to click on the link a second time as the first click gives you all that sign-up spam crap]

    • stillgrace

      I remember that episode, it was actually the “Frasier” show, and It was hilarious.

    • The article compares the Davos conference to Scientology because, just when you think you have the badge that lets you get in everywhere, you find out there is an ultra-secret level yet higher. The first comment: “I think this is a very unfortunate and mean comparison.” The commenter does despise Davos, but– comparing it to Scientology is just too low a blow.

  • koki

    from LRHs Bulgravia it is A Mission Impossible to watch that video….

    big hello from LRHs Bulgravia…

  • TheHoleDoesNotExist

    Sharp interview, intelligent, thoughtful questions, tie matches salt and pepper hair. Just kidding. The answers are also focused (practices, behavior not beliefs), void of ridicule or editorial, just the facts, ma’am. This is a keeper.
    Thanks to CTV and Tony.

  • whingeybingey

    And I said there were no great Scientologist artists! I stand corrected!

    • BuryTheNuts2

      You kicked some Crikey ass woman! Good job.

      • whingeybingey

        Thanks, BTN2! If only they wouldn’t keep commenting and pulling it in!

  • BuryTheNuts2

    Ok, I am dying to know what “Secrets” Tony O. has…What the major story breaking today will be.

    • Sherbet

      Tony is a blog teaser.

    • whingeybingey

      Me too! I should have been in bed hours ago!

    • Just posted.

  • Sid Snakey

    Great interview on Canadian TV news Tony, you handled those questions very well. There is no point wasting air time over definitions of a cult or a religion, it’s the abusive practices that count.

  • Hermesacat

    At cnn.com, in their search box I plugged in “Scientology Wright” just now, & at the top of the results page
    in bold titles were these 3 “sponsored links” ads from Scientology: Below, I’ve removed Scientology’s links & left the text of the ads.

    QUOTE: “Sponsored Links
    Truth About Scientology
    [CoS link]- You’ve heard the controversy. Now Get The Facts. Watch Online Videos!
    Free Scientology Course
    [CoS link]- No matter the difficulties, we can help. Free online life courses!
    What is Scientology?
    [CoS link]- Get definition, infographic, videos & more. Get the Truth. Learn more. ”

    This wasn’t a google search .So, it’s not just The Atlantic. Now CNN appears to be accepting ad money from Scientology to run their “sponsored links” to CoS propaganda as the first thing a reader sees after searching
    the term “Scientology” on CNN’s site.

  • Why do they call it “controversial?” It’s not. Nobody is saying anything in the book is subject to controversy, the Scientology crime syndicate does not get to have an opinion.

  • CoolHand

    Haha! Having sat in Kurt and Kannon’s living room in Clearwater a few years after that portrait was painted, I have to laugh every time I see it. How utterly ridiculous.

  • DeElizabethan

    Tony O, is there anywhere I can play your video without adding apps? Sure would like to see it. Thank you.