This week we received something unusual and enlightening.
While we’ve been focusing lately on major crises gripping the top echelons of the Church of Scientology, it’s useful to remember there are still quite a few folks out there in far-flung locations, doing what they can to “clear the planet” — spread the word about Scientology so it can take over the world.
And what better way to do that than with ads placed on Craigslist?
One of our tipsters forwarded to us a 60-page “Craiglist Hat Writeup” put out by a local org. We’re going to hold back the location and the author for now. And we’re going to quote only a small portion of it as “fair use.” (In Scientology lingo, a “hat” is a job or role, so this is a packet of info for the person who wants to get hatted to place ads for the local mission or “org.”)
We can tell you that it’s a very enthusiastic document, and it provides a thorough guide for any Scientologist who wants to use Craigslist to bring in new people for classes…
Through a few years of trial and error, I have learned some successful actions for placing ads on Craigslist. Now I get people into the Mission on a weekly basis through Craigslist, and they start on courses regularly. I have passed this Craigslist hat to other Missions, Orgs and FSM’s, and when they have followed my hat write-up and posted enough ads, they’ve gotten wonderful results, too.
The best thing is that it takes little time, and it’s all FREE!
After that introduction, what follows is a detailed, step by step guide for how to place an ad on Craigslist, where there are several different categories to choose from — groups, activity partners, classes, and more.
You’re then told to place your ads in several different places, and to mix them up each day. For example, here’s a suggestion for your first two days…
Group > Group for Depression, Anxiety, and Stress
Group > Group for Self Improvement
Activity Partners > Lovers of Wisdom
Activity Partners > Seminar for Stress and Depression
Classes > Class for Getting Rid of Anxiety
Classes > Relationship Class
Classes > Relationship Support and Classes
Classes > Class for Dealing with Breakup or Divorce
Group > Help for Anxiety
Group > Group for Spiritual People
Activity Partners > People into Self Improvement
Activity Partners > Are you a divorced person?
Classes > Seminars + Counseling = Total Life Improvement
Classes > Class for Stress, Anxiety, and Depression
Classes > Class for Life Improvement
Classes > Three Important Things to Learn about Relationships
The writer says he has 200 live ads at any one time in his modest-sized city.
Sure, he runs into problems on occasion, as he explains in this next paragraph…
If anyone takes down any of your ads (by “flagging” it), it will appear pink on your list in your account page. Don’t worry. Just ignore it. I never worry about people flagging my ads. Some people do it for no reason, and there are SP’s who try to stop our dissemination efforts. Flagged ads can be reposted after 48 hours or its original posting date. I just repost the flagged ads after 48 hours. I see this as TR-3. Sometimes an area has SP’s, and you’ll need to TR-3 the same ad multiple times if it got taken down. My experience has been that TR-3 always wins. SP’s can’t duplicate, so they give up flagging your ads after a few weeks. I want to make this abundantly clear: SP’s cannot stop you posting ads if you simply persist!
Oh no, SP’s! “Suppressive Persons” are people who have been excommunicated from the church, although here we think he might be talking in more general terms about critics of Scientology. The repetition of “TR-3″ appears to be a reference to Scientology training routines. TR-3 has a student repeating questions “Do birds fly?” “Do fish swim?” to an auditor who resists answering. In other words, a Scientologist is trained to be persistent and repetitive until he overcomes any obstacle. (At least, that’s our interpretation — our former Scientologists can tell us how wrong we are in the comments.)
UPDATE: Those “SPs” the writer is talking about also probably refer to WWP’s “ClearCraig” program, which Anonymous has used to flag Scientology ads on Craigslist around the country since 2009.
Once you’ve placed your ads, you’re bound to get calls. So what to do then?
The writer gives us a detailed script for how to handle a call. (And this is verbatim. We have changed nothing.)
Tony: “This is Tony.”
Caller: “I just read your ad on Craigslist about the depression group. Can you tell me more about it?”
Tony: “Sure. This is the Hubbard Dianetics Foundation (or Church of Scientology). We are a non-profit organization, and we do many different activities to help people with getting rid of depression, anxiety, and stress. We also help people with relationship issues, too. We have short classes which are about 2 weeks to do which cost about $50 for the whole thing. We also have special lectures. Special lectures are different from the classes in that special lectures are one evening long, and the special lectures are free. We usually have 2 special lectures per month. Do you mind I ask you a personal question?”
Caller: “Sure. Go ahead.”
Tony: “Why are you interested in our group? You know, what do you most want to improve about yourself by coming to our group?”
Caller: “Well, I have this situation with depression, …. etc., etc., etc…. ruin… ruin… ruin…”
Tony: “Okay, I see. What you need to do is to come in and talk with Susan. Susan is the director here, and she has been helping people professionally for over 30 years. She is really good with helping people with stress, anxiety, depression, and relationships, and she can see you to show you how to get the help you need, too. There is no charge to talk with her. She is very helpful, and she can explain to you the different activities such as the classes we have, too, when we are here. She is a very good listener and she is very personable. I think the best thing for you to do is to come in and see her. She is here today from 1 pm to 8:30 pm, and tomorrow she will be here from 1 pm to 8:30 pm, too. Can you come in either today or tomorrow to see her?”
Caller: “I could come by today at 3 o’clock. Is that okay?”
Tony: “Yes, that’s a good time.”
Caller: “What’s the address there?”
So let’s get to some sample ads. We are provided many, and here’s the first…
Classes > Get Rid of Depression Class
Do you think you have depression?
Do you have painful experiences in the past which are still affecting you mentally?
Do you find it hard to relax or carry tension in your back?
Does your job constantly give you pressure or negative feelings?
Negative emotions can affect your health and your mind. It can affect your job performance, your relationship, and how you feel about yourself.
Depression/stress/anxiety classes are available here. We are a non-profit organization. Classes are usually 2 weeks long, and the cost for the whole thing is only about $35. Free consultations and free appointments are available. Evening classes are available, too. To talk to a live person right away, just call… We’ll help you get started to regain your happiness and joy in life.
Here’s a second sample…
Classes > What is life?
What is life?
What is the meaning of YOUR life?
Are you truly happy? And if not, what can you do about it?
Why is life so hard sometimes? And what can you do if you are mired down in difficulties?
Why are some people so negative?
Come to our class. We have seminars, classes, good books for you to read, and wonderful people.
“Classes,” he explains, is the single best category to use. In second place is groups. He provides many examples of ads for groups, and we thought we’d just provide their titles, to give you an idea…
Group for Depression, Anxiety, and Stress
Group for getting rid of depression
Help for Depression
Support for Depressions
Group to help you overcome depression
Upcoming Classes for Depression and Stress
Group to help you overcome stress
Help for Anxiety
Panic Attacks Relief
Group to Help with Stress and Worries
Group for Emotional Assistance
Life Improvement Group
Group for Self Improvement
Group for people into self-help
Self Help Book Readers
Group for learning about life
Do you like reading?
Self Help and Life Improvement
Group for Searchers of Spiritual Knowledge
Group for spiritual people
Alternative Spiritual Studies Group
Relationship Support and Classes
Relationship Improvement Group
Divorced and Depressed
Self Esteem Group
Don’t let your past affect your future
Feel Like Your Past Affects your Future?
Learn communication skills in our group
Self Esteem Group and Classes
Get your self-confidence back
Worried about the future?
And here’s another sample ad, for a group. We found this one particularly fun.
Group > Are you a truth seeker at heart?
Do you like reading books about life and truths about the universe?
Do you think that you possess untapped potentials that you would like to develop?
Have you ever had “spiritual” experiences before?
Does the move “The Matrix” touch you in an unexplained way?
Join our group. We have classes, speakers, books, and friendly people. Call….
Well, the writer has certainly done a lot of work for us. And what a great way to rope in new suckers…er, members. Anyway, we hope you enjoyed this look into Scientology’s Craigslist strategy. It’s a hoot!
Pennsylvania Lawsuit Is Not About Scientology, But It’s Funny
We noticed folks yesterday getting excited about a partial story at the Lexis news site, Law360.com, which indicated that a company named Gap International had filed a lawsuit in state court against some unnamed people who had anonymously called the company a “cult” and “compared it to Scientology.”
Well, we have the documents now, and it looks like this has nothing to do with Scientology itself. But we’re going to be very careful, because this Gap International — a business consulting firm which has nothing to do with Gap Stores, apparently — is both litigious and, well, stupid.
Why we say that is that Gap Int originally filed this suit in federal court, whining over some bad online reviews that probably only a few people saw. The first one it referred to was written by someone claiming to be a former employee who said the company was run by people into the Landmark Forum — an EST offshoot that the writer said was “a cousin to Scientology.” (For the best all-time story about Landmark Forum, read our Steve Jackson’s amazing piece for Denver Westword back in the day.)
Now, we have no way of knowing if Gap International has anything to do with Landmark Forum, we want to make that perfectly clear. However, we do wonder if the folks at Gap have ever heard of the “Streisand Effect,” and we wonder what they were thinking when they tried to make a federal case out of three anonymous Internet posters saying that they didn’t like working for the place.
We say “tried” to make a federal case, because ultimately, their federal lawsuit was dismissed. Now they’ve filed a new lawsuit at the state level, and they’re apparently still trying to figure out who the three anonymous posters were.
We’re going to provide the documents in the federal suit, and say no more. We have enough on our plate with Scientology, we don’t need Gap Int wigging out on us.
And Now, Back To Our Sunday Funnies…
The folks in the San Fernando Valley really pulled out all the stops for the big September 7 shindig, which we were hearing about for weeks. You’d think, maybe, they might now take a little breather before starting up even more fundraising for that white elephant. But of course that’s not the case! Here’s yet another chance for you to give, give, give to the Valley Ideal Org.
Dear All Valley Supporters,
What?! EARN $5,000… CASH MONEY!!!! How? Well the Valley Org is holding a C-Note Saturday COMPETITION LIKE NONE EVER BEFORE!!!
What you have to do is get the most amount of people to pay $100 to one of the largest Scientology Buildings on the PLANET, The Valley Org! That’s all:):)
I don’t know how many of you were at the last event, but the magnitude and the IMPACT this org is going to have I can’t even explain to you.
Be there on Saturday September 21st at the FUTURE Valley Org. 11455 Burbank BLVD. North Hollywood starting at 1:00 pm. Bring your rolodex, twitter, text, phone etc., it is going to be a dial for dollars for the greatest cause and game of this planet or any others. Also come see the building for yourself!
I want you guys to know why I am passionate about this building. If anyone has ever finished a course or auditing action before there is a question that the examiner asks you. Do you guys remember what that is? “Wouldd you want OTHERS to achieve the knowledge you now have?” Now WHY IS IT THAT THEY ASK THAT QUESTION? Think about it for a minute. Why doesn’t the examiner say, “Would you like to have more personal wins and gains?” Scientology is about HELPING OTHERS. It is about getting yourself up to higher states of awareness, survival and beingness so you can help OTHERS get to HIGHER states. If any one of you have ever said yes to the examiner on that question NOW is your chance to prove those words because this is HISTORY IN THE MAKING PEOPLE. These Ideal Orgs BOOM and our COMMUNITY BOOMS.
I don’t know about you guys, but I want my daughter to grow up in a sane society. I don’t know anyone else that is putting sanity out there.
Sorry to get long winded, but this is REALLY IMPORTANT to me and I wanted you all to know why. SO BE THERE ON SATURDAY, September 21st. Skip the Bowling game or the picnic or the movie date. Make up the course schedule if you are scheduled for course. Come take the prize of $5,000!!!! Oh and also help CLEAR THIS PLANET!!!
Love you guys! See you then.
Much Love, Dylan Gaines
Look at Nashville, clearing the planet! And they want to clear you, too!
That Gavin Potter, he just can’t be stopped, maybe.
We only wish we could have been on L. Ron Hubbard Way for this party Friday night. Imagine the fun.
Finally, we had to post this amazing Sea Org recruitment flier which Mike Rinder posted at his blog yesterday. Not only does it seem prophetic with the Sea Org logo and the words “The Final Call” over an image of the Super Power Building, whose grand opening was postponed indefinitely, but also that echo of the Nation of Islam’s publication, The Final Call, is just too eery.
Thanks again to our tipsters. Keep those mailers and fliers coming!
Posted by Tony Ortega on September 22, 2013 at 07:00
E-mail your tips and story ideas to firstname.lastname@example.org or follow us on Twitter. We post behind-the-scenes updates at our Facebook author page. Here at the Bunker we try to have a post up every morning at 7 AM Eastern (Noon GMT), and on some days we post an afternoon story at around 2 PM. After every new story we send out an alert to our e-mail list and our FB page.