The city of Garden Grove, which is in Orange County, California and is home to one of the largest Vietnamese populations in the country, is changing the way it elects its city council this year. It’s moving from an at-large system — which has each city councilmember elected by everyone in the city — to a district system, which will elect six councilmembers from six separate districts.
District elections are held in about 40 percent of US cities, and political science experts will tell you that electing by district increases the chances that minority candidates can get elected, which is a good thing.
But there’s another effect of voting by district. Voters already pay little attention to municipal elections, and dividing them into even smaller zones increases the possibility that voters won’t take the time to learn who they’re voting for.
In Garden Grove, for example, running in the 3rd District this election cycle is a man named Clay Bock.
Clay is a bit of a stiff, as you’ll gather from his campaign videos, which he’s uploaded to his YouTube channel.
But if Clay’s personality is a bit wooden, he does seem like a solid choice for city council, judging by what he’s said about himself at his Facebook page. He’s a longtime resident of the district, and he has his custom jewelry business there. He’s also been involved in local civic groups. What’s there not to like?
We sent an email to Clay yesterday asking him about his Facebook campaign page. Thanks to Bunker reader Intergalactic Walrus, we learned that Clay’s campaign page contains nothing about his years of extensive work for Scientology’s rabid anti-psychiatry front, the Citizens Commission on Human Rights (CCHR).
Clay’s a longtime Scientologist. The church’s own publications indicate that Clay went Clear as long ago as 1980, and that he was working his way through the OT levels a decade ago.
Not that there’s anything wrong with a Scientologist running for office. Sonny Bono was a US Congressman, for example.
But we figure the voters of Garden Grove’s Third District might want to know before casting their vote that Clay has been so active with CCHR, Scientology’s most unhinged front group.
We haven’t heard back from Clay, but here’s a video he shot and posted just three months ago after attending a CCHR protest in Atlanta in May.
Clay doesn’t say whether he was the videographer for this 1999 video that he posted to his channel in 2011, but it seems likely, and whoever is filming sounds like Clay when he speaks. The video was shot in Washington DC, and at the 3:20 point, the view zooms in on Bruce Wiseman and Jan Eastgate. At 11:08, we see Kirstie Alley, holding her daughter, with Lisa Marie Presley at her side.
CCHR loves to disrupt these psychiatry conventions. And as Rod Keller showed us yesterday, the front group is talking about issues that are controversial with the public, and issues that concern the public even without Scientology’s involvement. But what CCHR doesn’t say publicly is that the reason they are so adamantly opposed to psychiatry is that Scientology must follow to the letter the writings of L. Ron Hubbard, who revealed that psychiatrists come from the planet Farsec, and have been booby-trapping our lives for trillions of years by implanting our minds with harmful mental image pictures.
So, you see, a guy like Clay Bock is on a pretty serious mission.
In 1997, the Orange County Register caught Clay trying to take advantage of the “Back to Basics” education reform movement then raging in California by setting up his own Back to Basics group with an anti-psychology flavor and inviting local leaders to it.
In 1998, OC Weekly pointed out that by then, Bock was already something of a notorious character in the city’s school district.
A few Garden Grove Unified officials interviewed by the Weekly said Bock has long since worn out his welcome there. He has appeared before the Board of Education numerous times over the past few years to complain about the district’s math curriculum, charging that the program attempts to “indoctrinate” and “scare the hell out of” students. His letters proclaiming that Orange County schools “cannot be trusted” have been published in the Times Orange County and The Orange County Register.
That’s some background in the local schools and politics. We’re sure the voters of the third district will do their homework before they make their choice between Clay and his opponent, mother of three and research scientist Diedre Thu-Ha Nguyen.
We’ll be watching!
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Our book, The Unbreakable Miss Lovely: How the Church of Scientology tried to destroy Paulette Cooper, is on sale at Amazon in paperback and Kindle editions. We’ve posted photographs of Paulette and scenes from her life at a separate location. Reader Sookie put together a complete index. More information about the book, and our 2015 book tour, can also be found at the book’s dedicated page.
Learn about Scientology with our numerous series with experts…
BLOGGING DIANETICS: We read Scientology’s founding text cover to cover with the help of L.A. attorney and former church member Vance Woodward
UP THE BRIDGE: Claire Headley and Bruce Hines train us as Scientologists
GETTING OUR ETHICS IN: Jefferson Hawkins explains Scientology’s system of justice
SCIENTOLOGY MYTHBUSTING: Historian Jon Atack discusses key Scientology concepts
Other links: Shelly Miscavige, ten years gone | The Lisa McPherson story told in real time | The Cathriona White stories | The Leah Remini ‘Knowledge Reports’ | Hear audio of a Scientology excommunication | Scientology’s little day care of horrors | Whatever happened to Steve Fishman? | Felony charges for Scientology’s drug rehab scam | Why Scientology digs bomb-proof vaults in the desert | PZ Myers reads L. Ron Hubbard’s “A History of Man” | Scientology’s Master Spies | Scientology’s Private Dancer | The mystery of the richest Scientologist and his wayward sons | Scientology’s shocking mistreatment of the mentally ill | Scientology boasts about assistance from Google | The Underground Bunker’s Official Theme Song | The Underground Bunker FAQ
Our Guide to Alex Gibney’s film ‘Going Clear,’ and our pages about its principal figures…
Jason Beghe | Tom DeVocht | Sara Goldberg | Paul Haggis | Mark “Marty” Rathbun | Mike Rinder | Spanky Taylor | Hana Whitfield