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Joel Sappell Finds Former Scientology Enforcer Marty Rathbun To Be a Reluctant Whistleblower

SappellCrystalMuch of our coverage of Scientology in the past three years has focused on former church executive Marty Rathbun, and for good reason.

Rathbun is the most visible member of an “independence movement” that is splitting Scientology apart. He has participated in or masterminded several of the biggest legal and media offensives against church leader David Miscavige. And he has also been the target of some of the strangest and most outrageous retaliation in the history of Scientology’s well-earned reputation for vengeance.

But, as we’ve pointed out many times, there is an essential contradiction in Rathbun’s current role as the Church of Scientology’s biggest critic: Before he was the target of the church’s legendary retaliation machine, he was the man at its helm.

Perhaps no other piece has taken on that paradox like Joel Sappell’s masterful new story — his first on Scientology in some twenty years — which appears this morning in Los Angeles magazine.

We were given a sneak peek at the article, which went live this morning at the magazine’s website.

In “The Tip of the Spear,” Sappell tells the story behind the story, describing what he and his partner Robert Welkos went through as they spent five years investigating Scientology, culminating in a legendary 24-part 1990 series in the Los Angeles Times. For most people reading at the time, the Sappell and Welkos series was the first time they learned of Scientology’s secret upper-level teachings about “Xenu” the galactic overlord, or that the church was now being led by a young high school dropout named David Miscavige.

In response, Scientology pulled statements from the series that, out of context, sounded positive, and plastered them on billboards around L.A. It was a typically over-the-top (and expensive) reaction from the church.

In the years since, Sappell and Welkos have talked about some of the strange harassment they experienced during their investigation. Sappell found himself being questioned for a nonexistent assault by the police. Welkos was pulled over by the California Highway Patrol after an anonymous caller accused him of driving erratically. Welkos also found pamphlets at his home from a nearby funeral home with messages that he should plan for his funeral. Both men discovered that illegal inquiries into their credit histories had been made. But most famous of all, Sappell’s dog, a German Shepherd named Crystal, suddenly exhibited signs that she’d been poisoned before he had to put her down. (Sappell reveals that he received a call from Judge Ronald Swearinger, who had heard about Sappell’s dog and suspected that someone from the Church of Scientology had drowned his collie. Swearinger presided over one of the most famous lawsuits against the church, brought by former member Lawrence Wollersheim.)

Was it all being done by the shadowy forces of Scientology’s covert operations team, the Office of Special Affairs and its private detectives?

A few months ago, Sappell realized that he finally had a chance to answer that question now that Marty Rathbun, once the church’s top enforcer, was out of the church and had become its biggest enemy.

So in October, Sappell traveled to Rathbun’s home in Ingleside by the Bay, a small town near Corpus Christi in South Texas. (Rathbun and his wife Monique tired of the constant church surveillance they were under in their Ingleside home and recently moved to a more secluded house near San Antonio.)

Sappell captures perfectly what it’s like to meet and talk with Rathbun, and how different he seems today compared to the menacing church executive he was in the 1980s…

He looks like a regular guy — cargo shorts, sandals, a well-worn plaid shirt covering a middle-age paunch. The last time I saw Rathbun he was in his twenties. His athletic six-foot frame was clad in the strange spit-and-polish mock Navy uniform of Scientology staffers, members of the so-called Sea Organization, or Sea Org — and he was glaring at me. Today he reminds me of a high school gym teacher. His blue eyes have a friendly crinkle at the corners as he smiles at me for the first time, ever.

But if Rathbun has aged and mellowed, he’s not as forthcoming as Sappell was hoping.

Sure, Rathbun tells Sappell that he was followed by church spies…

This “patina of terror,” Rathbun tells me, was Scientology’s desired impact. “You were everywhere,” he recalls as we drink water out of jam jars. “And it was really pissing off Miscavige… ‘Fucking weasel Sappell. Fat fuck Welkos.’ This is the way the guy talked.” The message, Rathbun says, was clear: “Crush them.”

But if Rathbun confirms for Sappell what he’s wondered all these years — yes, there was an active and large-scale harassment campaign intended to unsettle the two reporters — the former enforcer proves maddeningly vague when Sappell tries to pin him down on specifics.

When I ask about the private investigators who dogged us, he quickly asserts, “I never hired an investigator to investigate you.” A moment later, however, he concedes that what he means to say is that he never personally hired an investigator. He says the “intel” guys under him took care of that job for him. “It goes through that machine, and I’m just getting reports,” he says so matter-of-factly that we could have been talking about the weather or holiday plans.

At times during their conversation, Rathbun admits to things like getting copies of Sappell’s phone records — but only second- or third-hand, through the actions of operatives he had no involvement with. At other times, he says he would never have approved operations like the CHP stop of Welkos, but that it could have been done by underlings he had no control over. Rathbun seems to alternate between taking the blame for years of heinous activity, and wanting to be seen as blameless for it.

“Sometimes he seems to be having a dialogue between the new Marty and the old,” Sappell writes.

There was no question, Rathbun told him, that Miscavige had a special hatred for Sappell and Welkos, and held brainstorming sessions to come up with ways to derail their series.

But Sappell keeps pushing for more specific answers.

Like, did Scientology poison his dog or not?

Rathbun tells him that pets were off limits and there was no way that he would have had anything to do with harming Swearinger’s dog or Sappell’s. But once again, he hedges, saying that it could have been “third parties” that wanted the church to look bad — maybe even agents of the IRS.

Sappell finds that doubtful. And then Rathbun admits that he keeps a close watch on his own dog Chiquita with so much Scientology surveillance going on. “I don’t put it past the sons of bitches, you know what I mean?” Rathbun tells him.

If Sappell didn’t find all of the answers he was looking for when he went to Texas, he writes that he did find it exhilarating — and somewhat terrifying — to get back into a subject he thought he’d left behind years ago.

As he explains, when you investigate Scientology at this level, you aren’t putting only yourself at risk. Before he was sure he would take on this piece, he talked to his family, his old partner Bob Welkos, even his ex-wife, all of whom he knew might come under a new round of “noisy investigations” and harassment.

It was his ex-wife Linda who had helped him care for their dog when it suddenly took ill, and that’s what they talk about when he calls.

I begin to tear up. I tell her I’ve always felt guilty that my job may have brought harm to the dog we both loved. I thank her for taking such good care of Crystal. Tacitly I’m also thanking her for putting up with my obsessive pursuit of a story, for her patience, for talking to me now. Before saying good-bye, I make her promise she’ll call if she gets any uninvited visitors.

We got the feeling, reading the concluding paragraphs, that Sappell is still unsure of his decision, and wonders if some will see his new investigation, all these years later, as a waste of time.

We can only assure Sappell that we are grateful that he decided to return to the fray.

As for Rathbun, this isn’t the first time he has been taken to task for not saying as much as he might about the church’s covert operations under his guidance. (Some of our commenters relentlessly hammer him for not saying more, for example.)

But Rathbun has defended himself in the past by pointing out that he was very forthcoming with the FBI three years ago, and that it wasn’t his fault that the agency dropped its investigation of the church. And when, for the first time, Rathbun was put under oath recently, he spilled his guts about a years-long conspiracy by the church to corrupt Florida’s state courts system.

Is he still holding back more than he should? If so, is he protecting himself or playing some kind of elaborate poker game and holding his chips for when they might be most effective to gamble? Or was he, as he tells Sappell, a high level report-taker who didn’t always know the reprehensible things that were being done in the name of the church?

Whatever the truth, Marty Rathbun is a fascinating character who may have done more in the last three years to cripple the Church of Scientology’s seemingly indestructible vengeance apparatus than the press and other critics have managed in decades.

And for that, he is worth the kind of attention that he’s getting from journalists in the UK and Australia. And perhaps Joel Sappell will begin to make a larger American audience realize that something very odd and intriguing is happening down in Texas.


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  • 1subgenius

    And then Rathbun admits that he keeps a close watch on his own dog Chiquita with so much Scientology surveillance going on. “I don’t put it past the sons of bitches, you know what I mean?” Rathbun tells him.

  • ze moo

    The LA Magazine story by Joel is at:

    Marty Rathbun hasn’t yet come to grips with all he had done for the CO$. He can still be useful for investigations by any law enforcement organization. I suspect that is Miscavige’s second fear about Marty. The first fear is the ecclesiastical battle Marty has been waging, Davy doesn’t want to lose more can holding, audit paying customers.

    • TonyOrtega

      You’ve posted the link to yesterday’s press release. The actual link to the full article is in my piece.

      • ze moo

        Thanks, I missed the full article earlier. More coffee……

  • Sidney18511

    Rathbun still has some of that Scientology mindset. He would KNOW if the dog was poisoned. I guess it’s not so easy to come clean regarding to your past atrocities. Especially killing someone’s pet. But he knows alright, he knows.

  • sugarplumfairy

    Thank God for people like Sappell, you, and all the others who risk retaliation in order to expose the scam of scientology..

    As for Marty, after getting away from co$ and realizing from a distance all the people harmed on so many fronts, it can’t be easy to acknowledge and deal with your own culpability.. But he’s doing it, slowly but surely..

    • I agree that Marty is probably struggling internally with a lot of the actions he either ordered, agreed with or knew about. I hope that with time he will be more open and that if he is those who he injured can be able to forgive him.

      • Beautifully and perfectly put.

      • villagedianne

        Very possible, but a couple of other options seem possible too. One is that Marty wants to protect the fledgling Indie movement by not admitting to anything that people might really react badly too, like killing a pet. The other possibility, which I hope is true, is that Miscavige knew Marty would not do certain things, like harming an animal, so Miscavige oversaw these type of things himself, and kept Marty out of the loop.

        • dennis l erlich

          As if Marty dint enjoy tormenting whistleblowers.

      • dennis l erlich

        Gerard, perhaps you could show me an example of the alleged internal struggle Marty you think is going thru. Because I musta mist it. He seems in the same mindset as when he was tormenting whistleblowers on behalf of the cult. He only seems remorseful about having been abused by Poodleboi.

    • TheNextMrsTomCruise

      Now Imma no Sciloon, but could someone (preferably Marty) explain to me how poisoning a dog is going to clear the planet?

      • BuryTheNuts2

        Marty says: No dogs were harmed in the delivery of this most serious intimidating message!

  • Jimmbo

    Kudos for the intellectual/reportorial honesty to tackle this, Tony. Rathbun’s been an important source for you, and you presumably have serious ties with him. But all parties merit examination in a story this big and complex.

  • scnethics

    “dogs were off limits”

    Oh, please. What limits? He’s playing with words. Maybe off limits to church employees. Or maybe off limits in that it was not to be written about in reports. But to an OSA operative, trained in LRH harassment technology and knowing they can do anything and be absolved of guilt via the “greatest good” clause, nothing is off limits.

    • mirele

      Were dogs off limits to the hired gun Scientology PIs? Hmmm?

      • grundoon

        Eugene Ingram, Scientology’s dirtiest PI, used to do stuff like breaking into a defector’s car to put a bouquet of funeral lilies on the driver’s seat. When ordered to harass someone, it’s easy to imagine that he might get a kick out of improvising nasty little twists like hurting the pets on his own initiative.

    • 1subgenius

      Pets were off limits, but Rathbun watches his dog because he wouldn’t put it past them.
      Both sides of mouth.

    • Michael Leonard Tilse

      Really, to someone who has become convinced that scientology is the ultimate and only salvation for each and every being in the universe, nothing is off the table. Nothing is off limits. If you really ‘get’ “Keeping Scientology Working”, then you know you are personally responsible for the salvation of the universe, regardless of the cost. You will risk prison or death to strike a blow against scientology’s enemies. It is “only one life” after all, among countless lives you’ve lived and will live.

      Those who are the real fanatics are well known to the management, just as Hubbard knew. He created a whole cadre of fanatics, called the Sea Org. Rising to greater responsibility in the Sea Org is a result of demonstrating more focused, more inventive, more dedicated fanaticism.

      Those who don’t qualify for the Sea Org sometimes become fanatic. They hope to be allowed to join, so they volunteer for “operations”. OSA or an OSA volunteer may ask at first for low level things like following pickets at anonymous, etc. When they appear trustworthy, don’t talk about what they are doing, show initiative in these tasks, then more sensitive things get asked. All this is documented. There was a spreadsheet posted in the last couple of years of OSA operatives and what they were trusted to do.

      Scientologists who are trying to get onto the “Upper Levels” or who are “barred from auditing” due to criminal or psych history sometimes can “buy” a pass onto the levels or onto auditing lines by doing things for OSA. These people can become infiltrators into groups like Marty’s or other splinter groups. Sometimes they take it upon themselves to just do something.

      My ex-wife helped edit Lee Coleman’s anti-psych book. She also worked at various law firms as a legal secretary. I’m pretty sure she did a lot of OSA stuff she never told me about. I helped the “squirrel busters” harass the Mayo group.

      As a fanatical scientologist, it is completely understood that ‘impinging’ (read: make something happen that drives home the idea that messing with scientology is bad.), is the duty of the scientologist when there is a war on. Like a lawsuit, investigation, negative reporting, negative depictions in media or movies, etc. To the scientologist, these are wars. So, even if not explicitly ordered, things will be done.

      I personally have no doubt that a scientologist ordered, orchestrated or accomplished the poisoning of Joel’s dog. It might have been the independent idea of someone in guardians office/osa or ordered explicitly from the top. It might have been generated by an order to “make life hell” for Joel and someone had a bright idea. A scientologist is supposed to be all sweetness and light. But they sure indulge in their evil intentions when it can be directed toward an identified “enemy” of scientology. Then they have a glee of invention on how they can psychologically or spiritually mess with someone.

      Tory had a small metal turtle sculpture that she had on her porch. She showed it to me when I visited her in L.A. Someone had been coming by and snapping off the legs. One leg one day, another on some other day. It’s just the kind of mindfuck that OSA does to subtly let someone know they are being watched coupled with just that hint of implied threat and violence. Poisoning a dog is just this kind of thing, if a bit less subtle.

      In an internet post, I expressed sorrow for this happening. I was just trying to show sympathy to her. But I think she may have thought I had been the one doing it. Just for the record Tory, it wasn’t me.

      Rathbun is being disingenuous to make it seem there are things he wouldn’t have done or ordered. Or that he didn’t know about it. At the very least, it would have been reported with glee. To be fair, Rinder, or whoever was over OSA probably knew more or was the direct initiator.

      Rathbun is in a difficult position. To admit to any of this makes him part of a conspiracy. Possibly still liable for criminal and/or civil action. Also, it makes him less attractive as a opinion leader/alternative leader for those leaving and thinking about leaving organized scientology.

      Rathbun’s activities make sense in one way, that they have formed a “bridge” off the corporate “BRIDGE”. I know that many won’t leave unless they have an alternative. Unless they think a more pure, more ‘on-source’ expression of hubbard’s scientology is available. In that, he is doing a service. He is helping dismantle organized scientology. Working with the FBI and testifying in court suggests this is his strategy. Protecting his image by being vague keeps his alternative attractive to those thinking about leaving.

      Another reading is that he is himself a sociopath, trying to build his own version of the scientology scam. Possibly positioning himself to become the next leader and reap all the billions. As he is seeming to confront his responsibility, I am a little less inclined to assert this is what is going on.

      There is so much at stake here in terms of money an in terms of lives that I wouldn’t be surprised this is more a corporate battle between lawyers and backers of Miscavige who are benefiting from his leadership and lawyers and backers of Rathbun who hope to take it over and rape it for what’s left.

      • scnethics

        I agree that Marty is valuable and when he is doing damage to the church, I’m cheering him on.

        I had never considered the idea of there being backers or lawyers behind Rathbun with an eye toward getting their hands on the fortune. I once thought of Marty and Mike having that plan, but they have done a good job of acting like they don’t. I’ve always thought of everyone around them as ex-church members stopping for a little while on their way to being ex-scientologists. It has seemed impossible to me that Miscavige would lose power, but that’s not true, is it? He could lose power in any number of ways including being arrested, dying, or going into hiding to avoid an investigation.

        Now that I think about it, it’s silly to think that everyone who is “with” Rathbun is reading and posting on his blog. If he doesn’t have such a group of backers and lawyers, he should form one right away 🙂

      • richelieu jr

        Yes, he is doing damage to the current church. He is also metastasizing Scientology…

      • Sinistar

        Very interesting post, thanks

      • grundoon

        Twice already this year, the Chruch of Scientology has paid out multimillions of dollars in settlements, in part because of David Miscavige’s fear of what Marty Rathbun could truthfully reveal under oath. Skulduggery revealed by Marty on the witness stand may yet bring down the Miscavige regime, and very likely will cost DM millions more to settle future cases. Yet if Marty were to reveal that same information in the press or on the Internet, it would cost Scientology approximately $0. Furthermore Scientology lawyers would love to be able to impeach Marty’s credibility as a witness by painting him as a self-confessed dog killing psychopath. Really, Marty could quickly neutralize himself as any kind of courtroom threat against Scientology if he were to carelessly blab certain reminiscences to a reporter. I hope Marty hangs on to a strategic reserve of inside knowledge and deploys it under oath to maximum effect.

  • Dean Fox

    I’m sure that Marty Rathbun had plausible deniability, just as Miscavige does. He would “sanction” things like poisoning a dog BUT his underlings wouldn’t be discouraged from doing so. The “crush them” message can be interpreted very broadly.

    • scnethics

      Exactly. I wonder why Marty would not be forthcoming about this?

  • BosonStark

    So, who were the intel guys under Marty who did the job? If Marty doesn’t known exactly, it would be helpful if he came up with a few names of people who might know besides Miscavige. Maybe it would explain why some of these people are stuck doing Miscavige’s bidding to this day, like Starkey and Wilhere.

  • Chocolate Velvet

    It is important to remember, Marty left the COS, not in protest of DM’s treatment of “enemies”,, but because HE was the target. It was self-interest, not moral indignation that drove him out.

    • Mighty Korgo of Teegeeack

      Thanks, for the reminder. Good point. Sometimes it takes that big boot hitting your butt to start the cycle of realization that turns a person into an ex-Scientologist.

      • BosonStark

        I would go further and say it’s that most people leaving CoS only leave when something happens to them personally — just look at Debbie Cook. It’s the main reason people leave CoS, and it’s not only on the executive level. Marty is the one of the strongest examples of that, in that he actually was slapping people around, hunting them down, and intimidating them — all on Miscavige’s orders AND for the sake of Dr. Hubtard, to clear this sector of the galaxy. In a way, Miscavige did Marty a favor. If Starkey had become leader, Marty still might be hunting people down and ordering PI’s to follow people, making up stuff about them because they are critical of Scientology — following the policies of Dr. Hubtard.

        Marty’s rethinking of Scientology, such as it is, only occurred after having to start with very little.

        In the Sea Org, developing that dedicated glare of absolutely certainty can make people do a lot of crazy things, and they won’t notice until the real crazy starts happening to them. In that way, I disagree with Joel Sappell a little bit in that the process of removing a person’s “reactive mind” and making them trust, and be so certain, is a dangerous thing and at the very core of Scientology auditing practice. It’s suppose to be seeing “what is true for you,” but it really isn’t. That is only the bait.

        • Midwest Mom

          Unfortunately, there are many people who don’t feel compelled to take action in circumstances of wrongdoing unless it affects them directly. We’ve all seen this on a personal level and it’s always disappointing to see people, especially those whom we had formerly respected, refuse to speak up or take action because “it’s none of my business” or “it’s not my place to interfere”, etc.

          I find this forum very helpful in understanding the circumstances of former Scientologists and Sea Org members regarding their “Aha!” moments in seeking information to answer nagging questions about the Co$ and examining their conscience about complacency in their and others’ actions and deciding to break away form them, even when they know that the Co$ will attack, malign,and smear their character and force disconnection., not to mention will perpetrate other hideous act against them.

          I guess for me, it’s not a question of whether one’s “Aha!” moment is more or less altruistic than another, since it’s similar to the circumstances of someone living and working under communism rule. I am just grateful that they are out and have the chance to decompress from their experiences and learn to recognize the propaganda which was used to promote lies and fears and can learn to research and ask questions to learn the truth about issues, historical fact, and legal rights.

          Former Scientologists have gone through so many things that we never-been-ins can truly understand, because it’s so different from our experiences. It’s not easy for them to speak out and it’s worth our effort to extend compassion and to listen, even when we don’t always agree. We learn so much from each other and attitudes can soften, information can be shared and understanding can be found through patience, respect, and thoughtful dialogue.

          Remind me of this on the occasions when I don’t practice what I preach! Sometimes I re-read things I have written and I realize that I’ve blundered in my comments and I need to be more mindful of the fact that something which sounds perfectly fine in my head can translate dramatically in tone and clarity in written form!. Thanks for your patience with this long post. 🙂

          • BuryTheNuts2

            Ditto your sentiments here…

            To your last paragraph. Ditto, you may have to remind me occassionally as well.
            We can make a pact!

    • Chocolate Velvet

      A random thought occurred to me as I was looking at comments on Marty’s latest blog post. One of the commenters was nattering about critics who weren’t there and don’t know, but somehow dare to have opinions and make analyses anyway. (John P, I’m looking at you! LOL). Then I recalled the discussion recently on Marty’s blog about “returning” scilons, and why there aren’t more who just pick up where they left off on the bridge in their last life.

      Here’s a thought; maybe all of us critics who “weren’t there” really WERE there in a past life. What if scientology critics ARE those reincarnated scilons, now bent on stopping LRH’s predatory scam that ruined their lives? Perhaps the Chocolate Velvet was with Hubs back in the day, and I saw what he did, and that is why I am so interested in the subject now. That would be hilarious!

      Ahhh yes, scientology works. Only, not the way the “indies” think. LOL

      • BuryTheNuts2

        HA…LOVES IT!

      • class6survivor

        So, if you were a scientologist, then it’s OK? But for anyone else, not OK? What a perfect little window into the tiny mind of a scientology watcher.

        • Chocolate Velvet

          Oooooh, non sequiturs! How fun! Here’s one:

        • Sinistar

          Aren’t you the creepy CV stalker? Your thoughts are formulated like that “troll_whose_name_can_never_be_uttered,” but starts with M.

    • richelieu jr

      Amen, CV.

      He didn’t split when he was sitting pretty and holding the whip-hand. He jumped when his position as sadistic thug-in-chief was threatened and now wants to act like Gandhi. of course he’ snot going to admit to anything nasty (let alone actionable), as it would make him look bad and might harm the scam which he has every intention of running once the dwarf is deposed.

    • Sinistar

      But the bottom line… it’s his profession.

      It would be like a Mercedes mechanic insisting everyone ride bicycles, if he were to act otherwise.

  • BuryTheNuts2

    Well, I guess this tells us Marty still has a long way to go in being completely honest with himself.

    • class6survivor

      Don’t we all!

      • BuryTheNuts2

        Oh yeah…don’t WE all.

        So you teaming on a Fair Gaming of all of your targets as a Pair?
        I guess that answers that question about original goodness.

        Do what thou wilst!

      • No.

        I’ve never threatened to kill anyone, stalked anyone, harassed the families and friends of people who didn’t like me, conned anyone out of money, enslaved children, covered up rape, or murdered anyone’s pets. When I do mess up — and my screw-ups are nowhere near the level of Rathbun’s, not even the same category — I admit it. I’m no saint; that’s just what adults do.

        Rathbun is like a kid in Family Circus. He blames “I Dunno” and “Not Me” for everything. The rest of us moved away from toddler ethics in elementary school.

  • Observer

    I think what Marty says about keeping an eye on his own dog is pretty much the answer to Sappell’s question.

    • I thought exactly the same thing!

    • 1subgenius

      you observe well
      noticing is an art

  • Joe_Lynn

    Marty may be trying to whistle dixie, but, it keeps coming out as ‘Pop Goes the Weasel’

  • Nice piece, Tony. I tip my hat to Joel and Bob. Their great series was such an extraordinary public service, and they paid dearly for it when the church struck back. I can appreciate Joel’s mixed feelings after his visit to Texas. I had a similar reaction after a few conversations with Marty and Mike Rinder during the past few years. While I applaud them for leaving the church, and for having the courage of denouncing and regretting what they did in its name, I also came away with a sense that they weren’t as forthcoming with me about the details — as perhaps they could have been. Marty told me that — between the church’s lawyers and private eyes — they spent an estimated $25 million against me and Time magazine in the 1990s. (That’s about $35-40 million in today’s money.) Exactly WHAT that loot purchased is something I’d like to know someday.

    • dennis l erlich

      They spent millions against me too, Richard. I’d like to know what those monies bought in operations against me and my family. Though I’m not gonna hold my breath for Rathbun to come clean.

      • 1subgenius

        Nice avatar Dennis.

      • BuryTheNuts2

        So The Church of Scientology has easily spent hundreds of millions of dollars Fair Gaming and spying on their “enemies”.
        David still has at minimum one billion,… up to possibly six billion in his …um…war chest/slush fund/future travelers checques, whatever you want to call it.
        Some days it is hard to accept what one already knows.
        This appears to be one of those days for me.
        It always comes back to the money trail.
        Money is the GOD of Scientology and also its heavy hammer.

      • Clam InAHalfshell

        I applaud you both. I read your articles lo these many years ago. It’s nice to see you here on Tony O’s blog.

    • HeatherGraceful

      Folks, we’ve been joined by Richard Behar, author of the 1990 Time Magazine article, The Thriving Cult of Greed and Power. Kudos to you, Richard and to Joel and Bob.

      • BuryTheNuts2

        This blog of TO’s never ceases to amaze!

    • villagedianne

      Now that you have commented on the board, Richard Behar, I am sure many of us would like to know your thougts about the current anti-Scientology movement, Tony Ortega, anonymous, etc. Some of the anon protestors were not even born when your article came out. However I remember your article very well and it is really great to see your name here.

    • JustCallMeMary

      Thanks for your input on this. I hope we all find out where all that money went.

      When’s that book on Madoff coming out? 🙂

    • XNU

      What that loot purchased should be obvious. Scientology lost that battle, but won the war. Editors and publishers everywhere undoubtedly took note of the money that it cost Time Magazine to defend itself and quietly put Scientology on their DNP (Do Not publish) list. Not until Tom Cruise’s antics put Scientology in the spotlight did occasional articles begin to appear in newspapers that were not published in the immediate vicinity of major Scientology ‘orgs’ in Los Angeles and Clearwater.

      Did anyone notice the non-sequitor in Sappell’s article? He wrote: “Nobody got it worse than Paulette cooper, who in 1971 wrote the book The Scandal of Scientology. She was framed by GO operatives, who obtained stationery with her fingerprints on it and mailed a bomb threat to the church.Cooper was indicted but later cleared. Eleven ranking members of the church were sentenced to prison, including Hubbard’s wife, Mary Sue, who oversaw GO’s many criminal acts”.

      In fact, they were sentenced for their parts in ‘Operation Snow White”, a successful infiltration of US government offices by Scientologists working as clerks, who, after hours, made copies of all files they could find about Hubbard and Scientology, and sent the copies to the GO.

      The discovery of “Operation Freakout”, against Paulette Cooper was a by-product of the FBI’s raid on Scientology offices in Washington and Los Angeles…details were among the files that were seized. That is why Marty said: “shredded”. Orders are written for all “ops” mounted by OSA, but as soon as the “op” is completed, the orders are shredded so that there is no written proof that it existed.

      • richelieu jr

        These stories cannot be repeated enough,e specially with L Ron till the acting and official head of the serpent. Miscavige had nothing to do with the largest espionage operation in US History– but Hubbard’s wife got sent to the cupboard for it…

        On two sepearate occassions (on two separate continents, from tow separate people I was told this was ‘a minor affair of unauthorized photocopying”, basically “exceeding the daily limit”.. or.. ‘something’… This is obviously the way the story is dealt with internally, and externally with the whole- ‘They broke the law, went to jail, and we’re glad becaude we love America so much we poop apple pie, etc…’

      • sugarplumfairy

        …”scientology lost that battle, but won the war..”

        the war ain’t over yet, XNU..


        • DeElizabethan

          Betta believe it!

  • Typical Rathbun – Typical Scientology Speak

    “Rathbun tells him that pets were off limits and there was no way that he would have had anything to do with harming Swearinger’s dog or Sappell’s. But once again, he hedges, saying that it could have been “third parties” that wanted the church to look bad — maybe even agents of the IRS.”

    • BosonStark

      Yeah, that one made me think, “You can take the clam out of the cult, but you can’t take the cult out of the clam, as long as they still think they were a clam,” and must follow Dr. Hubtard’s contradictory mishmash of ideas, paranoia, policies, cuckoo and only-way-to-clear-the-planet BS.

      This doesn’t mean I don’t agree with Tony about Marty’s current influence and importance. A few of Marty’s appearances on TV have been quite devastating to the cult and although Marty might fail miserably in stepping up to the plate on Mayo, Erlich, Armstrong or Sappell (and many others), he is one huge thorn in Miscavige’s side. It’s the fact that he was so complicit in the top-level workings, yet willing to squeal on the #1 that makes him singular, as well as the power he has to draw existing members out. I’m sure you know this anyway. I just meant the first comment in agreement to yours.

      Regarding a comment on Marty’s blog, that you have to have been in the Sea Org, to have a valid opinion about it or understand anything about Scientology, and everything else is “natter.” So, all the historians who write books about people or events who were long gone are doing nothing, because they’re relying on the stories and experiences as related by others who were there? We shouldn’t use war reporters, because they aren’t actually in the war?

      I mean when you’re in an organization like Scientology, first of all you’re seeing only your narrow sphere of operation and are responding to what is going on in your own mind, which in Scientology happens to be a lot of delusion about clearing the planet. You need someone from the outside to examine it more objectively, and to pool the collected stories of people, as Russell Miller or Richard Behar did so well. An outsider can ask questions like, are they really clearing the planet? Are there really 12 million of them? How much of the success is from the placebo effect? In-the-cult insiders are not capable of doing this.

      Since Scientology itself is such a mishmash of common sense, contradictory BS, and totalitarian mind control, trying to get relevant and meaningful information out of true believers is like milking a stone. It’s like the chapter in Rietman’s book on the bright young law-school-bound believer. Damn, it was weak.

      Again, I think it’s quite possible that Marty didn’t know anything about any hits on dogs though. However, for him to just say they don’t do that, is like saying “disconnection was cancelled” by Hubbard, which is of course what he and Rinder said when they were in the cult, and kept working at disconnecting people. Now they blame that mostly on Miscavige.

  • There are a lot of things that both Marty Rathbun and Mike Rinder are not forthcoming about.

    If they really are who they say they are, they need to come clean about all of it. They are creating a group of Scientologists who are being tended to like little mushrooms – give them a little bit of light, and a little bit of water, but mostly lots of bullshit – to keep them growing while in the dark.

    Look at the other Int Execs who came out from the same top positions that Rathbun and Rinder came out from: Jesse Prince, Vaughn Young, Gerry Armstrong and others. These people made sure that everyone was told everything they knew. They made sure that Scientologists were given the information they needed to make informed decisions about Scientology.

    When you compare Rathbun’s and Rinder’s behavior to those former Int employees, you can see that something is very wrong in Indie-Land.

    It is a continuance of the deception and lies that Scientology has always played against Scientololgists.

    It needs to stop.

    Marty Rathbun and Mike Rinder need to come fully clean.

    Thank you for this article, Tony.

    And thank you to Joel Sappel for re-entering the fray.


    • Trustmeonthis

      This is why I distrust Marty. I think he still speaks out of both sides of his mouth quite a lot.

      I also wonder about Statute of Limitations concerns. I’d love to see him subpoena’d. That would be… interesting.

      Thank you, Alanzo, for your always thoughtful posts. I always prick up my ears when I see your avatar.

    • Kim O’Brien

      If he was as “forthcoming” with the FBI as he has been with those that he harmed…and other people like Tony …it is no wonder they did not move forward

    • richelieu jr

      The problem is the rot goes so deep in the Scientology scam that you
      can’t just scrape of the Miscavige scab and call the wound healed– As
      long as they are still carrying water and defending the LRH mindset,
      they are part of the problem… I can understand his being cagey to
      admit the serious crimes he committed while playing head goon for
      Miscavige, but this is worse than that- they are laying the groundwork
      for a return to ‘respectability’ for Scientology. Even if their motives
      were pure (which I do not believe), the new organization would be pried
      to accept a new guru/fuhrer. It is inevitable and intrinsic to the whole
      secretive, paranoid gim-crack whiz-show…

      Founded on lies, run
      by liars, they are merely the first rats off a sinking ship, not heroes.
      OK, “The enemy of my enemy…” and all that, but don’t kid yourself
      that by lying and selling the same hocus-pocus ‘newly re-purified with
      original ‘LRON’-brand fertilizer’ they are going to grow a new plant…

      we say here in France, “Dogs don’t make cats…” Meet the new boss,
      same as the old boss only balder and taller… With only the feeblest
      effort to appear to be coming clean they welcome the briefly free with
      crocodile tears of sympathy and the reassurance that they weren’t
      totally wrong, just temporarily misguided by Miscavige’s mismanagement.
      What a crock.

  • Mighty Korgo of Teegeeack

    So, in this science-fiction religion, Rathbun is both Smeagol and Gollum. He is having a conversation with himself about his place in a world of good and evil that he thinks, contains few grey areas. The hobbits, with maybe Tony and Mark playing Frodo and Sam, need him to help destroy Sauron who is played by David Miscavige. Me, I am being paid ten dollars an hour as an extra. The drug companies, of course, are picking up my fee.

    When we go to the next set on the lot, we find the Wizard of Oz being filmed. Hubbard, of course, is the big, fat fraud behind the curtain. No matter what Rathbun does or says, there is a big, fat, fraud, behind the curtain.

    • richelieu jr

      Da noive of dat guy!

  • Come on, dead dogs are probably a stat.

    • scnethics


    • BuryTheNuts2

      Ouch Woman! Lulz.

  • The idea that Marty did not know all in what is a military like command structure is absurd. You get promoted for your leadership and victories and orders come from the top down. An Inspector General or someone headed towards that job would be at the controls. I suspect one reason he has not ratted DM out directly is because DM could point the finger right back at Marty. I am sure that what we are seeing is a information standoff with a equal arsenal of info. It kinds reminds me of the Cold War where both side are fighting by proxy with conventional arms but either side knows if they pull out the Information H-Bomb it means mutual destruction.

    • Valkov

      Actually in that kind of structure Paul, Rule #1 is CYA. Much of reality remains denied and often unseen.

  • dennis l erlich


    Rathbun orchestrated scieno Fair Game terror actions against me, my children, my parents, friends, landlords and employers from (at minimum) the early 1990s til 1999 when my case settled. I was continually followed by his operatives, sometimes 3 chase vehicles at a time. My parents home was picketed and their car was vandalized. My scieno ex-wife was paid to sue me in Family Court while the cult harassed me for years in Federal Court over my whistleblowing. My neighbors were repeatedly leafleted, calling me a drug dealer and child molester. That isn’t the half of it.

    When I recently asked Marty on his blog to reveal to me the operations they had run against me that affected my family, he banned me from his blog and said I deserved what I got for being such a Suppressive.

    How he quickly transformed from top henchman and vicious perpetrator to exalted victim and trusted whistleblower in your estimation leaves my stomach in a knot. The countless individuals who withstood and survived his campaigns of harassment for years to bring HIS abuses to light deserve more than this BS:

    “Whatever the truth, Marty Rathbun is a fascinating character who may have done more in the last three years to cripple the Church of Scientology’s seemingly indestructible vengeance apparatus than the press and other critics have managed in decades.”

    “Whatever the truth …” seems to be the loose standards you use to pick your trusted sources.

    How about telling the stories of his many victims, or getting him to reveal his part in their harassment, instead of sucking up to him by making him seem the brave victim instead of the vicious perpetrator who clearly enjoyed tormenting others.

    Thanks in advance,

    • TonyOrtega

      Thanks for that message, Dennis.

      I have said to every journalist who has asked that Marty Rathbun and his blog is the single biggest threat to the continuing existence of the Church of Scientology, and it’s something I truly believe.

      As a journalist, I am going to continue to cover that story, which is happening now, in real time.

      Would I also like to uncover what was done under Rathbun’s orders in the 1990s to victims like you? Of course I would, and it’s something I’ve repeatedly asked him about. Like Sappell, I was given less than satisfactory answers.

      That isn’t, however, going to keep me from covering the story unfolding in front of me right now, that Rathbun is causing Miscavige serious damage, and the church is retaliating against him in a big way.

      I completely understand the way you feel. But this is the way I’m going to do this job, using Rathbun as a source for the ongoing collapse of Scientology.

      • dennis l erlich

        I understand, Tony. Follow the breaking story with the sizzle and leave dull history to historians. Whatever moves the issue toward resolution. Keep it up.

        • “Follow the breaking story with the sizzle and leave dull history to historians.” I’m pretty sure that’s how journalism indeed works.

      • mattekudasai

        Thanks Tony for your answer to Dennis. I’m always shaking my head at why you continue to give Marty a fair shake. Ultimately he gets a good brow beating from most of the bloggers here. We smell bullshit when it’s under our noses.

        • ze moo

          Rathbun referenced the Sappell story on his blog this morning.
          Writes Marty about Sappell:

          “While he obsesses with attempting to exact a confession for something
          that simply did not happen, the story does contribute an interesting
          perspective on the history of corporate Scientology.”

          I used to look for a pattern in Marty’s writings. I suspected a non-disclosure agreement at first, but Marty has said too many things about corporate CO$ that would have brought a Debbie Cook type of lawsuit if there had been a NDA.

          It is possible that really criminal acts by Miscavige were compartmentalized from Marty, I just don’t see Miscavige trusting anyone enough to use them as a go between for criminal acts. How Miscavige gets his rake off to a swiss bank is the real question about today’s CO$. Who does Davey trust to move ‘his’ money around?

          Marty’s knowledge about how the CO$ works and his previous relationship with the dwarfenfürher has made him useful in depositions that helped Debbie Cook settle (or was it re-settle?) her exit from CO$. Law enforcement uses informants to bring cases against criminals, these informants seldom have clean hands but you use what ever tools are available to do the job.

          Marty could write an incredible tell all book and make a lot of money, I don’t understand why he hasn’t.

          • dbloch7986

            The most disturbing thing about Marty’s reluctance to reveal everything he committed in the name of Scientology is that he walked out without an NDA.

            • BuryTheNuts2

              Not too long ago…I was thinking Marty might be ready to come clean soon even if the consequences might include some jail time.
              There are so many considerations, secrets and lies….

              Marty and his particular situation always gives me cognitive dissonance.

            • John Onthego

              Let’s face it… if Marty makes certain statements about his own culpability in actions done within the Co$, he gives himself too much exposure to lawsuits by his victims, and takes the onus off the corporate church and Miscavige.

            • Clam InAHalfshell

              If you can’t take the heat, don’t be Miscarriage’s right-hand man. He deserves to be held responsible for his actions.

          • Clam InAHalfshell

            Maybe because if he admitted to what he did, he could be liable to lawsuits? I’m dead serious. Marty strikes me as a master of the art of CYA.

            Hey Marty–what are your crimes?

        • Valkov

          Don’t you think Tony gives Marty “a fair shake” because Tony has integrity and it’s the right thing to do, to give others a fair shake?

          • mattekudasai

            Marty gets a fair shake so the dialogue can continue “to use Rathbun as a source for the ongoing collapse of Scientology.” Tony also admits to getting less than satisfactory answers. I believe Tony strives to work within the Journalists Code of Ethics, present the facts from all sides as stated and allow us to present our views. I’m here to offer support and encouragement and lend an ear to anyone who needs to tell their story of abuse, lies and false promises and deaths. Then I feel an obligation to counter the CoS’s blatant lies about disconnection, retaliation,crush regging and inflated member statistics plus a seriously flawed drug rehab program. I’m just an ordinary girl, who’s spent most of my adult life being a mom and caregiver to the elderly and if I thought a client of mine was not being treated with proper respect and care I would let the agency know. Scientologists are taught to turn in the one who wants to reveal Scientology’s faults. I vacillate often in my mind as to what Marty’s true intentions are. I just feel Sappell’s dissatisfaction with the answers he received. Marty tells Sappell he’s worked off a lot of Karma for what he’s done and feels the scales are even. What does that mean? I can’t say I hate Marty only hate what he’s done in the name of that bogus church and I think he still needs to say and do more and I believe there can be forgiveness but the stories show that there is something sadly lacking. It’s time for bed now but I’ll consider your comments about giving someone a fair shake. Thanks

        • From somebody who was never a Scientologist – I find it difficult to feel such a bitter hatred towards Marty as many people do on this blog. I see him today as somebody who is heavily harassed by Scientology and who does quite a good job pulling many members out. I hope for all of you to whom he caused suffering get your vengeance or find a way to forgive him and move on.

          • dennis l erlich

            Mila I would consider forgiving Rathbun if he had ever shown anything even remotely resembling remorse. Rather I see insane glee and twisted joy in recounting his many disgusting exploits while attempting to utterly destroy those who spoke out against his kind. He reveled in how well he could harass and lie. Those were the skills he honed in the cult. When he was on the receiving end of what he dished out for years, he left and suddenly became a victim. Maybe I -know too much about how the cult-mind works, but to me it seems he is orchestrating his own harassment by the way he feeds into what he knows are their tactics (because he practiced them for years) to attract attention and pull in more deluded followers. YMMV

          • Joe_Lynn

            Mila, I didn’t have ‘bitter hatred’ for Marty Rathbun (or Mike Rinder) back when they were running the malicious mechanism of the ‘Church’, and I don’t now. I considered them the sociopathic expression of Scientology itself, and to be expected.

            My opposition to them now is for the same reasons I had then; their lies, evasions and historical revisionism follow the same purposes as then; to promote the continuation of Scientology as a viable if deplorable entity. The tactics have changed slightly, but, the goal is the same.

            And, unfortunately, thanks to the happy-face du jour, they’re far more successful at pulling the wool over gullible eyes.

      • Deckard_Cain

        Tony, Dennis has more than just a good point he is pointing out that it should be your duty to report on his (and others’) stories about the Fair Game attacks that he suffered and it is your responsibility to get Marty’s reaction in print. I’ve been one of your more loyal readers for about 1.5 years and I do not recall seeing a story regarding these issues (i.e. outside of the Annie Broeker Tidman and Rathbun’s statements on the McPherson debacle awhile back, I do not recall where you laid out specific events that were under the “purview” to either Rinder or Rathbun).

        And this subject is not irrelevant due to passed time. The fact that Joel Sappell is garnering this much news buzz should be proof of that. As a talented journalist that tries to capture all sides of this incredible subject, it is your duty to start reporting on this stuff and forcing the abusers to face their actions.

        Frankly, I’ve been a bit disappointed in your reporting since you left the Village Voice. I realize that you’re no longer backed by deep pockets and a legal team, but there are many other topics paramount to this discussion that would minimize your exposure, including conducting more probing interviews with ex-Executives. Also, there is some ground breaking research being done in the field of Early Intervention Psychosis that would prove Scientology’s tech harmful. I’d love for you to tackle that topic.

        • I hope you realize that Tony is not an activist, but a journalist. And right now he is simply a dude with a blog. So stop whining and be thankful that Tony spends his time running this blog in the first place. If you want better investigative reporting, why don’t you pick up the tab for running this blog, travelling to do some investigative work and the costs of having a full time legal team. Only then will you have the right to request more articles on a certain topic.

          • TonyOrtega

            Appreciate that, Mila. The funny thing is my Village Voice self would have been thrilled to break the news that Homeland Security is investigating Scientology. Or to bring to the world Nazanin Boniadi’s first public utterances on Scientology and Tom Cruise. Or to witness the reunion of spies Paul Marrick and Greg Arnold with their old boss, Marty Rathbun.

            Actually, seems like we’ve been having quite a time here at the Bunker, which is reflected in the fact that we’re now actually getting MORE traffic here than we did at the Voice. Amazing to think about, isn’t it?

            But Deckard is free to tell me what I ought to be covering, and I’ll keep charging him what I always do to read the blog. Everyone wins.

            • 1subgenius

              “we’re now actually getting MORE traffic here than we did at the Voice.”

              And I, for one couldn’t be happier for you. I hope you can show that you don’t need much capital to do well on the internet if you have something to say.

              And a cause for great justice.


            • I hope he’s not paying less than I am to read your blog.


            • richelieu jr

              We’re all on a ‘favoured-nations’ sexual services contract, right?

              … right?

            • class6survivor

              What if this Captain Howdy guy kills somebody? What are you going to say then? He is a sick and seriously hostile individual. Are you so blinded by your own hate to see that?
              Just because Joe down the street had some auditing doesn’t give you the right to slash his tires. Just because Jane took a course doesn’t give you the right to throw eggs at her window.
              Even those two investigators Paul Marrick and Greg Arnold said most Scientologists are decent people.
              But when someone is evil (or stupid) enough to solicit murder in a public forum, your silence, Mr Ortega, is in effect tacit approval.

          • dennis l erlich

            Nobody’s whining about Tony. We are providing feedback which I know he appreciates. Blunt as it is, it’s meant to help him gain perspective on the story.

        • Sinistar

          I’m not sure you have wirt’s leg to stand on, Deckard, to tell other people about their “duty.”

          And are you aware of all the projects that Tony is working on, which he couldn’t do if he was still the Editor in Chief of the VV?

        • jensting

          Dennis’ story up to the point where he settled is hardly hidden away (unless google groups has become worse than useless recently). There’s videos available.

          Moving on, I – for one – am really looking forward to a book by Jesse Prince (there was a rumour some time ago) – that would work for me. The LMT had it rough.

      • class6survivor

        Is it of any concern to anyone that one your commenters named Captain Howdy has posted a 2 different wish lists of people he’d like to see killed in the next public massacre? He was extremely hostile towards me. Will you at least notify the appropriate authorities?

        • Captain Howdy

          The authorities on the mind ? Gosh you’re funny.

        • grundoon

          Call 911! Call the Marines! Captain Howdy is comin’ to getcha through the Intertoobz! Stop him before he wishes again!

          • class6survivor

            He asked me if I was a practicing Scientologist. What if I were? Does that make me “fair game”? Fair game is one of the most hideous practices of Scientology management. How can someone criticize that when they practice it themselves.?

            • grundoon

              You’re trying to drum up trouble in real life for a complete stranger who you perceive as vulnerable. Is there a limit to how far you will go to silence Captain Howdy (and your previous target, I forget who it was)? And what is this “fair game” practice that you’re so excited about?

        • sugarplumfairy

          Thanks for calling attention to that great tongue-in-cheek comment from the good Captain.. I missed it first time around.. He forgot to add trolls..

          kinda hard to believe you survived anything, twit.. Have you thought about how you’ll spend all your extra time once co$ gets sucked into hell?

          • sugarplumfairy

            And just for clarification, my last words weren’t tongue-in-cheek.. I really pray that co$ gets sucked into hell..

          • class6survivor

            You are so ignorant!

    • Chocolate Velvet

      “When I recently asked Marty on his blog to reveal to me the operations they had run against me that affected my family, he banned me from his blog and said I deserved what I got for being such a Suppressive.”

      Wow. What a fucked-up mindset! Not surprising, though. Thanks for posting that, Dennis. That certainly clarifies things for anyone who was wondering how much Marty is still in the cult. Sad, really.

      • class6survivor

        The fact that Rathbun defends his own ego proves he’s still a Scientologist? IMHO, that’s about as ignorant a thing as you could possibly say.

        • Chocolate Velvet
          • class6survivor

            At least you’re consistent!

            • Captain Howdy

              LOL How many soxs you got there chumley ?

        • Captain Howdy

          “Any comments?”

          Yea, I’m bemused that it’s apparently lost on corporate and indie scientologists that “free speech” means having to listen to those you don’t “agree” with. You can’t selectively listen to what you want to hear.

          From YouTube Cof$, CCHR offical vids to Marty’s blog, it’s “comments have been turned off” to “comments pending approval”.

          As far as I’m concerned, Rathbun, Rinder and the Indies are still something to be considered enemies of freedom and humanity.

          • class6survivor

            I’m not so sure the indies are a threat to humanity!
            I agree wholeheartedly with your statement that “‘free speech’ means having to listen to those you don’t ‘agree’ with.”
            Have you seen the light?
            How do you reconcile your support of free speech with your other recent comments like
            “How come CPWG (crazy people with guns) never target the right people ? How come you never hear about some CPWG storming the Operation Rescue HQ or the WBC compound or the radio shows of certain demagogues?”
            “I mean why don’t crazy people with guns go after the people who
            constantly advocate violence like Randall Terry, Shirley Phelps,Ted

            We human beings are not entirely rational creatures, are we!

            • Captain Howdy

              So to clarify, are you a practicing scientologist ? If so, that would explain your lack of appreciation for satire or irony.

              Scientology is a totalitarian philosophy in whatever guise. It needs to be ostracized and educated out of existence.

              Why are obstinately loitering around here defending your guru ? What are your previous names ?

            • Midwest Mom

              Free speech is the right to express one’s opinions and ideas. We don’t have to reconcile our support of anyone’s comments here since everyone is free to express their opinion.

              I don’t frequent blogs where everyone has offensive language or doesn’t allow a different opinion to be expressed. I also don’t demand that they change to accommodate my moral code, nor do I return to try to prove a point. This is why I don’t hang out at Pro Scientology sites or Communist Party sites. You can’t push ethics into others, and you’re not going to do it here,

              Respect is not something you demand -it’s something you earn. Captain Howdy has earned my respect and he and I don’t agree on everything, but we don’t have to agree on everything, to be considerate of one another. He also has great taste in music an knows if I mention a teenage lobotomy it’s in reference to a Ramones song, not an actual lobotomy.

              If you don’t find the company to your liking, force yourself to move on and find a site more reflective of your personal convictions.

            • Captain Howdy

              HEAR, HEAR Midwest Mom !!!

              And I dedicate this song to you. “There’s no stopping the thetan mocking !””


            • Midwest Mom

              Thanks, Captain!

            • Valkov

              This is quite right. No-one (except perhaps some OSA), is forced to come here and read comments they don’t like.

          • Valkov

            This – “You can’t selectively listen to what you want to hear.” – is patently false The freedom of association includes freedom to not associate with those you choose not to associate with.

            Where is the freedom in being forced to associate with or listen to?

      • class6survivor

        Marty is still a Scientologist because he’s a class XII auditor. That’s what he knows how to do, and apparently what he wants to do. It’s not like he left Scientology and became a private investigator. If he could make money auditing his indie clientele with out any interference from David Miscavige, do you think he’d be doing anything at all to expose Scientology, if he were not a target himself? I wonder. I almost think he’d rather leave that all behind him.

    • 0tessa

      Rathbun said you deserved it?! Sounds like a huge motivator to me – if you get my meaning.
      I’m glad you came here with your story. Hope you’ll have more.
      I am so sorry for you to have to undergo all this suppression from Rathbun c.s.

    • Like my good friend, Dennis, my family and I were also subjected to a concerted campaign of harassment and intimidation in the 1980s and 1990s – orchestrated by Rathbun, Rinder and Laws. I have also been blocked from Marty’s blog. It’s good to see so many people on here seeing through his bullshit! It seems likely to me that Marty and Miscavige have certain no-go areas, where neither of them will tread for fear of mutual self-incrimination. But the truth will out, sooner or later. Has anyone tried to talk to Pat Broeker?

      • BuryTheNuts2

        Robin, I think I remember Tony saying he had tried but was unsucessful as Pat just wanted to be left alone. Maybe he can clarify that.

      • BuryTheNuts2

        By the way, I imagine there are quite a few others blocked from Marty’s blog.
        Caliwog had or has a site for those blocked? Correct?

        • ze moo
          • richelieu jr

            And a good site, worthy effort it is.. quite enlightening when you look at what Marty doesn’t want said in his new age of freedom and mutual respect…

        • I’m blocked, too.


          • BuryTheNuts2

            Are you still blocked on ESMB?
            You gotta quit pissing in peoples wheaties…………LOLZ

            • I’m lucky to be able to post anywhere these days.

              I have to pay Tony to post here. But I get free “likes” with every one of my posts he lets through.

            • Jonny Jacobsen

              Alanzo, feel free to pay to post at my site too.

          • Sandy

            I am blocked, and I am a nobody, harmless lurker. i have no idea what I did to piss him off …

        • InTheNameOfXenu

          Marty has allowed criticisms of Hubbard lately. If you read his ‘Does Scientology Work?’ feedback, there’s a good thread on Hubbard’s culpability in the Snow White affair. Rinder, of course, is defending him like any good Ron-bot.

        • Clam InAHalfshell

          I’m not blocked…I’m kind of jealous.
          Then again, I never tried to post there. I was kind of skeeved out by the cultie mentality EVERYWHERE. People talking about tone scale, not in a tongue-in-cheek manner, but as if it were a real thing. I mean, SERIOUSLY.

      • 1subgenius

        “mutual self-incrimination”

        Saddam Hussein, and many other despots, survived for as long as they did because they got others to do things on their behalf they could never absolve themselves from.
        My motto?
        “Don’t touch shit. Even with gloves on.”
        Marty’s edge is getting thinner day by day.
        The longer he delays it, the worse its going to be. Bite the bullet. Take the hit.

        Poor Monique, who, reportedly he met on match. com.
        She, not only may be the last “new” “indie” “scientologist”, but may be the winner of the “wrong place, wrong time” award.
        Unfortunately, I detect a crusader (co-dependent) aspect to her personality, but also quite unfortunately, she fell into the wrong issue at the wrong time. She has no clue what she’s gotten into.
        No one with any sense has bought into any version of LRH voluntary brainwashing since circa Jan. 2008.

        • InTheNameOfXenu

          Yeah, poor Monique. Does she have any idea that this ‘fair-game’ harassment is a life-long commitment? So long as Miscavige is alive and Marty keeps speaking out; there will be no end to their torment. That’s hell on earth. Marty dished it out to many people, so it’s only fitting he and Rinder alike take the brunt of it. They both have a moral obligation to see this to the end.

      • Robin and Dennis,

        Both you will appreciate this Hubbard interpretation I’ll make of Marty.

        He didn’t consider what he did to either of you, and to others he’s banned from his blog, as transgressions.

        Until he switches in his head, that his acts were not good things, but actually transgression, he’s basically “cleared cannibal” to all those people he thinks deserved all his great accomplishment handlings.

        He likewise only jumped on Mayo’s misdeeds and Mayo’s turning against Hubbard rather than see anything wrong in the obliteration of the Mayo group.

        I noticed he almost was proud of himself, equated himself with the Terminator when talking about how he just kept coming against the FSO exec Don Jason, who Marty doggedly tracked down, when Jason escaped. And Marty was oh so proud of himself, when Annie Broeker gave up, when Marty caught up to her when she defected.

        He doesn’t consider these actions transgressions, but he’s still got these filed as accomplishments, and why he was so effective and so deserving to be “number 2” right hand man, even better than the other right hand man, Greg Wilhere.

        One string to pull, is on what Marty did admit.

        Marty admitted, in the Sapell article, to having shredded the reports once those reports were given to Miscavige.

        People who don’t know how LRH operated, would not know that this same scenario is how LRH also operated. LRH got the apparantly dirty details from the GO on the stuff done on Paulette Cooper, and all those reports of what was done, were at least shredded, the things not shredded were just things they failed to shred.

        Anyone who’s read the “Simon Bolivar” policy will appreciate the fact that both Miscavige and LRH violated this very policy, because the policy says the leaders WON’T want the detailed reports.

        All the leader will want is the dirty deed done, and the leader doesn’t want to be even seen as having issued the order.

        Well, Marty has admitted that Miscavige was all over Sappell and Welkos’ “handlings”. And Marty’s admitted to shredding the reports.

        Marty’s mind can’t see the actions as transgressions.

        As far as Marty can relive history, this is a good as it gets, until he sees what was done against these men and against you Dennis and Robin, and all the others, as wrong.

        LIkely he still sees what the squirrels and critics did totally justified the Simon Bolivar “pink legs” handlings that you got, and all the old GO tactics that you got.

        That’s still all LRH’s orders and Marty was so good at it.

        He’s gotta refile in his mind, all his running of Gary Klinger, and whoever else.

        There are a whole bunch of other RTC staff of the 1980s, the auditors and C/Ses.

        Jesse Prince, is so important to putting Marty’s feet to the fire, for that period that Jesse knows as good or better than Marty, of what stuff was being done.

        • BuryTheNuts2

          Nice post Chuck.

        • dennis l erlich

          Chuck, as long as his sucko-fantic followers won’t challenge him for tormenting dissenters and whistelblowers, there is no reason for him to re-evaluate his former terrorist actions.

        • InTheNameOfXenu

          Great post Chuck. I was on Marty’s blog discussing LRH’s culpability in the Snow White affair. Rinder said that he knew MSH and LRH very well. He said that MSH would never allow her husband to know all the details of the illegal activities. I begged to differ. I said with no uncertain terms that Scientology was always oppressive long before Miscavige took over. I stated that if they wanted to know the real reason why Scientology is so controversial all they had to look at were Hubbard’s antiquated policies of ‘fair-game’ and G.O. tactics. The ‘buck’ stops with Hubbard. It doesn’t give Miscavige a free pass, because he made Scientology an even worse cult. I never got a response from Rinder. When they are confronted with the fact that the problem with Scientology is Scientology itself…well they put their heads in the sand. In any case, I’m surprised that Marty did not censor my comments and others that were critical of Hubbard. Is he learning something?

          What happened to Jesse Prince? He hasn’t posted anything on his blog since June of this year. He beat cancer and was writing a book on Hubbard’s final years. I hope he’s alright. Have you heard anything from him?

          • dennis l erlich

            I’m surprised too, X. Perhaps a few grains of reality are slipping thru the non-permeable membrane surrounding his cult mindset.

            I talked to Jesse months ago about his obsession with conspiracy theories. He promptly started attacking me using OSA generated dead agent material and threatening to expose me (as what) by finding and bringing my ex wife to the discussion. I was like, WTF? I’ve seen this kind of vicious reaction from others when their beliefs were questioned at all. But never before from my former friend. I wrote it off to delirium and blocked him so I didn’t realize he was MIA. Tell him get well soon if you talk.

      • dennis l erlich

        Robin and his family paid dearly for his being the first to reveal the NOTs material to the world. I have great respect for his bravery and self-sacrifice.

    • 1subgenius

      “But, as we’ve pointed out many times, there is an essential contradiction in Rathbun’s current role as the Church of Scientology’s biggest critic: Before he was the target of the church’s legendary retaliation machine, he was the man at its helm.

      Perhaps no other piece has taken on that paradox like Joel Sappell’s masterful new story”

      Methinks TO knows how to fiddle.

      • dennis l erlich

        Sure, Tony knows of how Marty’s many victims may feel about him, and why. But when the praise gets too thick for the scumbag, someone has to speak up for his many victims.

    • grundoon

      Dennis, in the settlement, weren’t both you and the Chruch gagged?

      • dennis l erlich

        No. Do I look gagged?

        • grundoon


  • BuryTheNuts2

    I am guessing Marty will never be able to really come totally clean….at least not as long as he has his well worn “Agenda”.
    And I don’t think THAT is going away anytime soon.
    The transference of blame directly to Miscavige (and him only) by both MR’s just doesn’t wash.

    The Dog: Marty says maybe third parties who wanted the church to look bad-or perhaps the IRS.
    Yet he is smart enough to keep his dog very close.

    Good for Sappell! Glad he came back to it. Great timing too.

  • mattekudasai

    Marty Rathbun has very convenient memory lapses. Marty reveals on his site that the incident of ECT done on his mother while he was in her womb was recalled through Dianetics and Scientology auditing. Well, since he claims the now unsquirreled properly delivered auditing is available by himself and other Indies then why the hell doesn’t he wrap his fingers around those cans and let the recalling begin. Him and the indies claim to have the only true LRH workable tech available, so why doesn’t he put his mouth where the money is and get down to some Total Recall.

    The indies wax rhapsodic about how wonderful LRH’s religiously applied philosophy is by giving them OT Powers and heightened communication skills blah blah blah yet they are so blatantly ineffectual at bringing down the one person – Miscavige – whom they claim messed with the TRUE tech. And the slow-motion skid continues (nod to Alanzo).

  • Joe_Lynn
  • Jonny Jacobsen

    Given the senior positions that both Rathbun and Rinder occupied, I cannot see how it can fail to be the case that they know more than they are telling. The other telling point for me is their rather selective remorse: they are quite prepared to kiss and make up with their colleagues in the independent movement. But Marty in particular appears to maintain the same disdain, if not contempt, for veteran ex-members turned critics such as Gerry Armstrong and Dennis Erlich, that they expressed while inside the mainstream movement. I understand why some former colleagues might want to cut them some slack, but they can’t expect a free ride from everyone.

    Reading what happened to Sappell, Behar and co when they tackled Scientology back in the day makes me glad I’m operating in the Internet age — with Anonymous watching my back. Even in the 1990s, Erlich, Arnie Lerma and others paid a high price for being among the first to challenge Scientology online.

    • JustCallMeMary

      Thanks for putting things in perspective, Jonny.

    • Sinistar

      Why would it be surprising that M&M are harsh on the ex-scientologists? One party is anti-SCN, the other party is pro-SCN….. seems clear.

  • N. Graham

    Man, I can stomach a lot of terror, but when they start killing pets that really throws me. I’m glad Marty at least didn’t admit to that because I would have to hear a LOT of good stuff against Scio from him just to tolerate reading anything else ever about him. I was reading about Mr. Lerma’s cat that had its throat cut (!) AND poisoned. At least this one ended happy as the cat actually pulled through.

  • InTheNameOfXenu

    Marty’s holding back on Sapell. If Marty was afraid for his own dog, you can bet your bottom dollar that he knew about the murder of those to dogs. At one point during Operation Freakout, the G.O. contemplated hiring the mob to kill Paulette Cooper. They thought against it because it would have caused a tremendous PR flap if the truth were to come out. OSA-bots firmly believe in the ‘fair-game’ doctrine and the end justifies the means as well. Marty may not have ordered the murders(most likely came from Miscavige), but he damn well knew about it. He’s playing his cards and not revealing the dirt until he has to or has no choice.

    • Ciru

      Maybe he’s afraid of the IRS killing his dog.

      • BosonStark

        Or SMERSH.

    • 1subgenius


    • 1subgenius

      “if Marty was afraid for his own dog, you can bet your bottom dollar that he knew about the murder of those two dogs.”
      I tried to, but didn’t, say it better.
      I should stay with “this^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^””.

    • richelieu jr

      Yeah, instead they just hired some guy to play her best friend and nearly push her off a roof… Much, much better. Glad they came to thier senses, huh?

  • BuryTheNuts2

    Well Marty posted rgarding Sappell.

    • mattekudasai

      At least an hour has passed since Marty’s post. Not one comment yet. Slowest response I’ve ever seen. Maybe, some are actually scratching their heads on how to reply to this one.

      • stillgrace

        Marty monitors all posts. He only posts the ones he approves (it is, after all, HIS blog). If he’s busy, the posts can accumulate. As soon as he finishes up whatever he is doing, there will be lots of posts, all at once.

        • stillgrace

          First round is up now.

  • Observer

    After all these years I just can’t grasp the fact that an alleged church whose “scriptures” include exhortations to slander, torment, attack, utterly ruin, and murder (auditing process R2-45) its perceived enemies has CHARITABLE ORGANIZATION tax-exempt status!

  • I havent read the article yet, but nice of Marty to let us know this; “While he obsesses with attempting to exact a confession for something that simply did not happen,”
    Why are we even talking about this? We must be obsessed, sure that’s it!
    Marty is so annoying sometimes.

  • scnethics

    Marty is settled into his role as scientology guru. He makes money by being a respected scientology counselor. He’s happy to do what he can to hurt the church, as this is good for his business. I don’t think he sees much value in implicating himself in dirty deeds, unless the narrative shows him in a position of great power.

    He positions himself as the Anti-Miscavige. In the criticisms he chooses to make of Hubbard, he says, “I’ve got Hubbard’s tech, but I don’t have his personality disorders.” He makes a show of being open-minded and all for open lines of communication. Of course, if you are on a campaign to denigrate the counseling techniques he uses and give people the full truth about Hubbard, well, you are bad for business, and he’d sure like to squash you.

    Gurus follow a predictable trajectory down a not-so-pleasant road. It’s what Marty has coming to him.

    He and people like him are the future of scientology. Eventually, it will be a scattered bunch of gurus holding onto a limited number of followers, too small for anyone to care about. I’m really looking forward to it…

    • Of course Rathbun doesn’t have Hubbard’s personality disorders. He has his very own personality disorders. He might not end up in a van in the desert, but he will probably end up in some very unhappy place.

    • richelieu jr

      Rathburn reminds me of the guy at work who is always coplaining about management and the way it treats the workers… Until one day he gets a promotion and is worse and you realize that he wasn’t against management, or abusing the workers, he was just against any one ding it but him.

      Why isn’t he harassing, strong-arming, threatening and bullying people any more? Because he doesn’t have the money. It was out or into the hole, and he chose out, hoping to sweep back in like Khomeini after the Shah fell…

  • Joe_Lynn

    Since Sappell is now working for LA County Supervisor, Zev Yaroslavsky, it’d be wonderful if he looked into the obscenely cozy relationship between the Cult and LA County Sheriff Lee Baca. But, maybe that’s wishful thinking.

  • 0tessa

    I suppose Rathbun cannot tell everything he knows, he might face a judicial investigation. He knows e.g. exactly how the church got its tax exemption. Miscavige and Rathbun pulled it off together.
    He was responsible for everything that happened on his watch. He read the reports! He must have known what was going on. He cannot say ‘wir haben es nicht gewusst!’ (we did not know it.)
    He could have brought down Miscavige years ago. But they know too much of each other to pull the trigger.

  • Kim O’Brien

    ~Pete and Repete are in a boat – Pete jumps out …who is left ? ~

    My daughter told me this joke when she was 7 and it totally applies when it comes to scientology . I take a long break and then check in …and surprise …an old right hand man of a sociopath is back with more . I think that some people who were so high up …like Marty and a few others( not all ) …must have some sort of scent or vibe to them because Miscavige knows just who to pick. He can smell someone with no compass ~Kind of like how pedophiles can not only spot each other but can tell which kids are vulnerable …which ones are easy to target . I think Marty had some serious problems …and DM smelled it …knew that he would get off on being in the post he was for so long. Marty enjoyed it …was really good at it …until the pit bull turned on him . Now it is like a game for the both of them ….what would DM and Marty do without each other ? They both need to feed off of that same scent that brought them together in the first place. Marty might be trying to help people out of the bigger cult …but i think a large part of it is because he knows it is driving DM nuts …he gets a rush out of it . They both do.

    Side note …i just finished the first Jack Reacher book and was LOL trying to picture Tom Cruise as a rugged , tall , broad shouldered 37 year old ex military guy.

    Hope everyone here is well …hug your kids …be safe over the holidays …and have a great New Year

    • dennis l erlich

      Yes, Kim. If you read Marty’s accounts of the operations he ran to utterly destroy enemies of the cult, he clearly took pride and pleasure in inflicting pain on others on behalf of the poodle.

      • Kim O’Brien

        I am so sorry you had to go through that.

    • villagedianne

      From many accounts, Miscavige is very good at reading people.

    • richelieu jr

      I think you are dead-on, here Kim.. What’s more, let’s face it- all this ‘tech’ works really well at turning relatively normal people (“Tired, Lonely, Lost? Come in!”) into psychopaths through lack of sleep and concentration games… Those whoa re already psychopaths have a good head start. A bit of sadism and you are definite management material…

  • Well Joel describes Marty as hunkering down warding off blows from the church, calls him a squirrel and then drops the churches unhinged/militia mentality quote in. I’m thinking DM would be quite pleased with this article.

  • eatspaste

    “Rathbun seems to alternate between taking the blame for years of heinous activity, and wanting to be seen as blameless for it.”

    ??Sounds like kind of a smeagol/gollum thing going on there.

  • TheHoleDoesNotExist

    It’s the pink leg syndrome. That is all.

  • I wonder why Sappell didn’t have a toxicology report done on his dog when it died. I’m sure it would be costly, but if the dog is in a pet cemetery, could it be exhumed and tested now? They do it for humans when there is a suspected poisoning.

    • BuryTheNuts2

      Unfortunately that wouldn’t tell them WHO poisoned the dog.

  • Wolf in Cheap Clothing

    The problem that I see with any Fair Game policy, is that you are promoting the idea to others that they should use whatever they can come up with to attack the person being fair-gamed. It may be true that pets are off limits officially as part of actions sanctioned by Sea Org internally…. but what about any of the Scilons who would do anything their Church told them, especially those who are most fanatical about supporting it… I can easily see them poisoning the dog and probably thinking they did a good thing they’d be rewarded for, and I doubt anyone in the Church would have condemned their actions.

  • 1subgenius

    The odds of two dogs owned by perceived enemies of Scientology dying by coincidence contemporaneously are about the same as OJ finding the real killers.

  • Rathbun is as guilty as, if not more so, than Miscavige in perpetrating crimes against people. Rathbun is a lying sack of shit weasel who has no remorse towards those that he harmed in the name of scientology. Given half the chance Marty would and will run the church the same way. If anyone believes that Marty isn’t trying to wrest control of scientology and the power that goes with it from Miscavige, they are sadly mistaken and deluded. Marty will say what ever he has to, to cover his own ass. You just watch, at some point he will throw Rinder under the bus to save himself. He was the one that ran those operations for Miscavige. He was the one who came up with the plans on how to deal with the critics. He was Miscavige’s “make it go right” man who did what ever it took to silence the critics. He claims that Miscavige micromanaged everything but I can see Miscavige being the kind that would say, “I don’t care what it takes, fix it.” Then Marty doing just that.

    • stillgrace

      You are free to express your own opinions about Marty.

      However, I hope your parting comment was meant to be a (poor) joke. After watching Monique handle Squirrel Busters on You-Tube, I am a big fan of hers! Flunk.

    • DeElizabethan

      Wow SP1, are you a spokesperson? Sounds like straight out of Miscabitches personal PR. I take it you don’t like Marty and would be extremely happy if he were completely out of the picture and not hurting poor Davy boy and his Failing cult.
      Yes, Squirrel Busters was brilliant and people laugh every day at them and the organization.

    • dennis l erlich

      “He was the one that ran those operations for Miscavige. He was the one who came up with the plans on how to deal with the critics. He was Miscavige’s “make it go right” man who did what ever it took to silence the critics.”

      Yes Local. And he obviously enjoyed his work; destroying critics.

    • “Rathbun is as guilty as, if not more so, than Miscavige in perpetrating crimes against people.”

      As guilty? Sure. More? No. Not possible. Marty was extremely high in Scientology, but Miscavige was his boss. The U.S. has an upside-down way of blaming the people at the bottom and letting the person at the top get off with a slap on the wrist, if that, but it’s morally and practically repugnant. It doesn’t fly for Rathbun, and it doesn’t fly for Miscavige either.

      They had a symbiotic relationship until they had no one left but each other to fight. I’m happy to watch them tear each other apart.

  • Joe_Lynn

    From the ‘Bolivar Policy’:

    “. . . When you’re close to power, get some delegated to you-enough to do your job and protect yourself and your interests-for you· can be shot, fellow, shot, as the position near power is delicious but dangerous, dangerous always, open to the taunts of any enemy of the power who dare not really boot the power but can boot you. So to live at all in the shadow or employ of a power, you must yourself gather and USE enough power to hold your own-without just nattering to the power to “kill Pete,” in straightforward or more suppressive veiled ways to him, as these wreck the power that supports yours. He doesn’t have to know all the bad news, and if he’s a power really, he won’t ask all the time, “What are all those dead bodies doing at the door?” And if you are clever, you never let it be thought HE killed them-that weakens you and also hurts the power source. “Well, boss, about all those dead bodies, nobody at all will suppose you did it. She over there, those pink legs sticking out, didn’t like me.” “Well,” he’ll say if he really is a power, “why are you bothering me with it if it’s done and you did it. Where’s my blue ink?” . . .”

    Where are the pink legs Marty?

    • Observer

      I read stuff like this and wonder how Hubbard ever earned a penny as a writer. And that’s not even taking into account how demented this sounds.

      • BuryTheNuts2

        You ever tried to slog through Dianetics?

        • Sinistar

          Don’t do it, just slowly… put the Dianetics book on the floor…. and slowly step away.

          • BuryTheNuts2

            Ok, now that is funny

        • Observer

          Nope. The excerpts of his stuff I’ve read here and other places have cured me of any desire to do so. The only thing he wrote that I enjoyed and want to see more of are the OODs.

          • Sinistar

            You should! It’s so f*&cking awful it’s hysterical!!

            Shouldn’t you personally know how much ridicule LRH deserves? You can determine that, by even briefly glancing as Dianetics.

        • Mrs Libnish

          Yes and I wanted to stab myself in the eyeball.

    • scnethics

      I thought of this policy too. Unlike the 500 page “Full Information Hat” that some OSA-bots train on, this is not a secret policy and is really well-known among scientologists. Hubbard couldn’t have been more clear about what he desired from his followers.

    • grundoon

      Marty had this to say about the Simon Bolivar policy…

      Miscavige crammed me and ordered me to cram others on The Responsibilities of Leaders
      many times; all in the context of emphasizing the brutal, blind loyalty
      requirement aspect of it as outlined in the text cited above.

      Miscavige and his wife Shelly required RTC executives to read several books on Simon Bolivar (the subject of The Reponsibilities of Leaders policy letter) to drive the point home.

      Did anyone notice that one of the first Miscavige “re-issued” LRH
      books that was released in the late eighties after LRH’s death was the
      Ethics book, and that suddenly it had 12 pages of The Responsbilities of Leaders added? From thenceforth, DM’s control manual was required reading and a part of one’s hat, not only for staff but for public.

      More at

  • mook
    looks like Erika Christensen is posting on Celebitchy’s comment section re: Juliette Lewis’s CCHR Twitter links:

    “and Juliette Lewis…

    You should be so ashamed of yourself. We would normally call out such asinine comments in light of such a horror, but…some people just aren’t worth it.

    You know, you really do see people’s TRUE COLORS when a sick/cruel tragedy has happened dont you? Ever notice that? I did when my car accident happened, left me hospital for 4 mths., people who had so much to be grateful for seemed to be the ones who complained about everything.

    Bitching, cryin’, asshole comment making “Xenu…psychiatry…..ehhh….(fart)…” about how troubled your blessed life is infront of mourners…

    whatever Bitch.

    You poor, poor woman. I feel so sorry for you.”

    if this is Erika, ANOTHER Sci-celeb leaves the cult.

    • BuryTheNuts2

      Oooh Great link, Thanks.
      Sorry about your car accident. That sounds like it was horrible. Hope you are completely well now.

    • Midwest Mom

      It’s a person using the name Erika for the post, but it doesn’t mean it’s Erika Christensen. It appears to be just a random poster on the blog.

      • mook

        but if it is actually her….

    • I hope this terrible thing doesnt shut down communication.
      Being familiar with aspergers myself, it wouldnt be wrong to question what this poor boy may have been subjected to. And he was very young, only born in 1992. These psych drugs can do horrible damages at early ages, especially under a misdiagnoses regarding aspies in particular, which isn’t uncommon.
      Please lets not allow this to shut down communication, and god spare us ANY agenda in trying to make things better for everyone after such a devastating event.
      I wish CCHR was what is says it is… we need a real one.
      I see a different side of this picture, a desperate mother with a deeply disturbed son.
      But I understand the party line; Mother was a gun nut, son was a psycho.
      That makes it a little easier. Well, it isn’t easy, even when the media tries hard. And using ANY agenda in regards to this is just a big fucking overt.

      • sugarplumfairy

        Victoria, I luv ya but no mom needs an assault rifle at home.. And when all is told, the problem with this young man will not be psyche meds, but lack of psyche meds.. No matter how you spin it, scientologists are dead, flat-out wrong about psychiatry and psyche meds.. All the black PR in the world can’t change fact.. That’s all i’m going to say on the subject.. And that’s all she wrote..

        • Mrs Libnish

          Completely true. It is a well known FACT that chemical imbalances occur in the brain which makes people act impulsively and have no control over their emotions. Drugs help get those imbalances corrected. A lot of it can be fixed in a short term round of drugs. Some have to take them their whole lives, it just depends.


    Smurf points to this Fishman doc on OCMB. (points 19-23)

    “Steve Fishman filed an afidavit with the court in 1993 regarding the drowning of Judge Swearingen’s dog on Rick Moxon’s orders.”

    • stillgrace

      Over on Marty’s blog, Marty states that virtually ALL of the affidavit that you linked to above is FICTION.
      I thought the level of detail had some teeth.
      But I don’t know for sure.
      Can anyone that is “in the know” about the validity of Steven Fishman’s 1993 affidavit PLEASE give me the inside scoop? Sure, the guy was a weasel and all, and he did time for his financial crimes, but is it the general consensus that he lied in this affidavit? If so, WHY? If not, why won’t Marty post the link to his affidavit?

      What don’t I know?

      • stillgrace

        Mark Bunker posted interviews with Steven Fishman on You-Tube last month regarding his affidavit, however, now they are blacked out and won’t play!

        • DeElizabethan

          Speaking of blacked-out, since last week I’m unable to get pic or sound on most, not all, UT videos, even those linked here. I’m safari, mac and google. Call’s in to my man. Familiar?

          Tony O, have I told you that this new system is the very BEST? Yes sir! Kudos.

          • DMSTCC

            Update virus protection
            Run virus scan
            Stay off porn and C0$ websites
            (not a guarantee, but hope it helps) 😉

            • DeElizabethan

              Thanks, my Mac man thinks he knows and hopefully fix when he gets here(?)
              A friend in Orlando on Mac etc had same problem same time period. 12-12
              I don’t do porn (not today anyway) nor co$ and this info is helpful. 🙂 Odd that it is not all UT’s but most and all that have scio in title, weird.

          • stillgrace

            Hello Dee!

            Make sure you have the latest version of Mac OS 10 and the latest versions of your video plug-ins. I recently had to update OS and the Mac version of Microsoft Silverlight.

            Many Mark Bunker videos (both on You-Tube and XenuTV) continue to be blacked out for me. I found viable versions of the Fishman affidavits on ESMB.


            • DeElizabethan

              Hi Grace and thank you. Will tell my man that. Have noted it down to help if needed. My big Mac went down last year and am on old iMac now, but this info should help. I learn, but am dumb-dumb on tech. I can access all sites.

            • stillgrace

              I just noticed that I had the same problem as you with You-Tube titles with the word “Scientology”. (???!!) I pulled down the Safari menu item across the top of the screen and executed both “reset Safari”, and “Clear Cache” and then rebooted. Fixed the problem for me.

            • DeElizabethan

              Super Grace, will try or leave it for him. You’re a beautiful flower and lovely person, appreciated too!

      • villagedianne

        As I recall there were problems with Fishman’s credibility. For instance, a woman friend of his who Fishman asserted had been raped by a Scientologist, categorically denied that this ever happened to her.

        • DMSTCC


        • stillgrace

          I went down another Co$ rabbit hole investigating Fishman (damn! after swearing off Co$ rabbit holes due to severe, unwelcome nightmares). I know more about Fishman now than I want to. He has a website (not updated since 1997), and wrote a book “Lonesome Squirrel”. He is apparently not liked (or is pitied) by Co$, many exes, indies, freezoners, and Marty.

          I found copies of the videos that are not blacked out. This poor guy appears to be unhinged. Many exes think he was unhinged before he got involved with Co$. Some think he should have been turned away from Co$ due to his mental condition. Since he had money, however, he was milked to the max. Apparently, he has a most impressive library of Hubbard texts and tapes.

          Others think he scammed the Co$ with his lies and shenanigans. He appears to mix truths and lies (or delusions) so thoroughly, that he is generally not trusted.

          Still doesn’t mean the judge’s dog wasn’t drowned by Co$.

          • PreferToBeAnon2

            I also found a copy of the Fishman deposition. There was a note in the comments section that made me pause–that Heber Jentzsch tried to convince Fishman to commit suicide. Anyone have any info on that?

      • DMSTCC

        The good thing is that he put it out there. Now his blog followers can do their own evaluation, but not expecting anything positive.

        • stillgrace

          He posted my post, but removed the link to the document.

  • dbloch7986

    It’s interesting that this has brought up a memory for me about our dog that died of what we assumed to be some kind of poison. My dad accused the old, gay couple next door of killing them, because they were gay and for no other reason. He didn’t use kind words either. :/ Just thought I’d share that bit of Scientology fanaticism and hatred for you guys in case you forgot how hateful the religion is.

    In any event, Rathbun was probably uncomfortable talking about this because of the death of the man’s dog. His reluctance to be forthcoming and his attempt to shunt blame off of himself tells me that he was closely involved with the death of the man’s dog. He is quick to sound off about anything that he can blame on Miscavige, but this sounds like something he might have to take some blame for himself.

    It could also be that he knows who did it and doesn’t want to be pressured to drop the name.

    I guess my point is that there is obviously some kind of guilt felt by Rathbun or he would have quickly admitted it. I find it hard to believe that, “Pets were off limits.” Nothing is off limits for the Church of Scientology.

  • Fantastic conclusion to Joel’s article:

    …As corny as it may sound, I know that the Scientology project taught me powerful lessons, the biggest among them being how to push through fear and self-doubt. If given the chance, I’d do it all over again. After we published our series, I remember thinking no professional challenge would ever be harder, and that has turned out to be true. While I can’t say for sure what drove me—common sense be damned—to seek out Rathbun and write this story, I think it has something to do with proving to myself that I’d not only survived but thrived. The patina of terror didn’t back me down.

    Awesome, Joel.

    Unfortunately, nobody comes out of Scientology – any part of it – unscathed.

    They make sure of that.

    Thank you very much for your courage.


  • 1subgenius

    Dennis, I think Tony is doing what good cops, and good journalists do.
    Won’t go further than that.

    • dennis l erlich

      Yah, Tony is a true prince amongst men and a fine journalist. Fortunately he encourages and appreciates our feedback. This kind of honesty is refreshing in the realm of cult reporting.

  • 1subgenius

    “perhaps Joel Sappell will begin to make a larger American audience realize that something very odd and intriguing is happening down in Texas.”


  • TheHoleDoesNotExist

    Oh wait. I get it now. Sappell is the BT (ghost) of Christmas Past! Oooooh, can’t wait to see who’s the BT of Marty’s Christmas Present.

  • Sherbet

    Off topic, but the light is shining on WBC’s despicable behavior. The cos-related petition didn’t fare so well, if I recall.

  • BuryTheNuts2

    I need some popcorn!

    • Sinistar

      what does that mean

      • BuryTheNuts2

        Your the smart one.

  • DeElizabethan

    I find this to be a truth at least for what I know. “as he tells Sappell, a high level report-taker who didn’t always know the reprehensible things that were being done in the name of the church?’
    The “need to know” is used with OSA and they are very covert with it’s members up and down so that no one knows the whole story or what another is doing. Seems to work for them. Hrrumph!

  • D.Geiger

    Great book coming out soon.Here is a quick exerpt.

  • The scions are really going all out to get new business…. they’ve even come out with a new iPad app… ‘The truth about drugs ‘ …. details on my site.

    I’ve written that anyone with an iphone or ipad should download it and write a review.

    The direct link for the app is

  • richelieu jr

    What is needed here, is a private civil society version of a Truth Commission like they had in South Africa, where everyone gets a chance for amnesty if they truly come clean… This might even get Marty off the fence, or at least box him in in his little whitewashing game.

    Sunlight is the best disinfectant, and the whole house of cards that L Ron built is based on secrecy and lies (‘Don’t tell anyone that you were Jesus in a past life/ That Miscavige beat you/ That Fair Game continues by another name/disconnection is alive and festering/ The secrets of OTVII/ The Wall of Fire- You’ll die or kill them/etc, etc, etc…)

    Everybody is lying to each other, the outside world and most importantly– themselves.

    Scientology exits by boiling frogs- To much Xenu isn’t good for the bottom line… Don’t want anyone to know that when you reach a certain level, you find out that all the past life stuff was bogus and just a ‘test’, etc..

    If you had sworn testimony, with eprson after person speaking the truth about ‘tech’, Hubbard’s life, where the money goes (!) and disconnection, beating, the RPF, etc… The church would die. So dead that even Marty and company couldn’t huff and puff enough to breathe life back in it again…

    And even if it failed, we could say- Well, if you fall for it now, you deserve what you’re getting.

  • DeElizabethan

    Joel Sappell, What a wonderful story you wrote in the LA magazine. I was enthralled and delighted with all the comments from Marty and your thoughts were just so interesting. Thank you for doing something you didn’t have to do, but knowing it would be helpful to you, the public, and having the courage to follow through. Personally, it helped me too. Blessings, Dee

  • jensting

    Great story. Marty makes his own choices about the dialogues he enters into and the answers he gives. If he bans from his blog former victims of the harassment that he was involved with – in a way which we’re left to having to speculate about – that is a powerful statement in itself.

  • 0tessa

    My conclusion for now is that Rathbun did the dirty work for Miscavige or at least gave orders or did know about it. He was the Dirty Works I/C. He was the ‘executioner’.
    Sorry, but I’m European, and cannot help but think of another dictator who could stay on because of his helpers who did the actual work for him, like Hess, Himmler and the like. Of course there are more recent examples. Also Hubbard himself wrote about SP’s (suppressive persons) who can only thrive thanks to his ‘helpers’ or people who operate on ‘befehl ist befehl’ – an order is an order. Without helpers the SP cannot do a thing. So who is more guilty: the nutcase with strange ideas or the one who is executing them?

  • Sid Snakey

    I found the following comments from Jesse Prince to be interesting on the subject of what Marty might know but be holding onto:-

    mentioned in my earlier declaration, at some point I was David
    Miscavige’s “auditor” which means I practiced and used the rituals on
    him. David’s complete auditing file was available to me when I needed
    it. This was not the case with Marty’s auditing files. I was not allowed
    to view his auditing files. I
    remember asking Vicki Aznaran, who was the corporate president of the
    Religious Technology Center (RTC) what the deal was with Marty’s
    auditing file. She told me the only people that had access to Marty’s
    auditing files were people who had a special security clearance given
    only by Miscavige. She also told me there was really nothing to see in
    his files because his auditing records were destroyed the day they were
    made in most cases due to the nature of the information. She discouraged
    me from even enquiring about his auditing files because it would not be
    good for me to know the details of Marty’s work. She explained if law
    enforcement could tie me into those activities it could mean the end of
    my life as a free man. I went along with her advice.
    it’s clear how Marty earned his credentials and place at the table of
    his peers. Whatever David told Marty to do he did to the best of his
    ability but there is no record due to the nature of the information.
    There was no other person in all of Scientology that held the
    distinction of having no records of actual service. ”

    There’s more on this topic from Jesse at his “princejesse53” blog on blogspot.

    • BuryTheNuts2

      Wow, this is an interesting post. Um, how is Marty supposed to progress if his auditing records are immeditately shredded.
      Conundrum much?
      So WHO was auditing Marty? Anybody know?

  • DodoTheLaser

    Joel Sappell – Los Angeles Magazine generated 66 coments on Marty’s blog.

    Joel Sappell – Finds Former Scientology Enforcer Marty Rathbun To Be a Reluctant Whistleblower 202 Comments and counting.

    KSW is still strong strong in the Indie world. Mike Rinder has a nice update though.

    Oh, and FUCK YOU sideways, David Miscavige.

  • SP ‘Onage

    Love the new site, Tony!

    I found this interesting comment at an older site. Sorry if this has been posted already. Haven’t been able to read all the posts.

    EXscientology | Jun 11, 2009
    Former CoS agent Steve Fishman confirms that CoS attorney Ken Moxon ordered OSA agents Lenny Leibowitz and Clarice Guidice to drown a dog. Through a coordinated effort, Lenny and Clarice managed to arrive at Judge Ronald Swearinger’s (Scientology vs Wollersheim) house. Lenny threw the Collie “Duke” into the pool and “sat on the dog” until the dog drowned.

    As of May 30, Boris Korczak’s 6 month old puppy was poisoned.

    Link –


    I don’t know if it’s bat-shiat crazy or the truth? Wasn’t Boris Korczak an ex- CIA operative? Maybe he knows something about this?

    • PreferToBeAnon2

      Haven’t seen you SP ‘Onage in awhile–welcome back!

  • mook

    can anybody confirm this info about Lawrence Wright’s UK book publisher has pulled out of marketing his book?

    • From Private Eye on-line

      Books and Bookmen

      With Bookworm: “Pulitzer Prize-winning author Lawrence Wright’s detailed exposé of the inner workings of the Scientology organisation is due for publication in January in the US… The book, entitled Going Clear: Scientology, Hollywood and the Prison of Belief, was to be published at the same time in the UK by Transworld’s Bantam and Transworld Digital divisions, but (although some online bookshops still list it for pre-ordering) they have pulled the plug, acting on legal advice…”

      • BuryTheNuts2

        Wait? The UK is pulling the plug on legal before the US?
        That’s rich!
        And that sucks.
        I hope there is enough momentum in the US to keep this going.
        I think they are weak enough now that Random House will keep rolling.
        Or, Maybe I am just an Optimist!

  • Scientia

    Hodkins lose High Court Co$ marriage bid

    • BuryTheNuts2

      OK. The UK is one for one this morning!

  • Yesterday catbird seat, today birdhouses.
    “Monique—a dark-haired woman with a soft voice and watchful eyes—sits close by, perched at a small table near their front window, quietly tapping away on a laptop. The “catbird seat,” they call it.

  • Jo

    I find it profoundly disturbing that Marty will not acknowledge his part in the underhanded goings on while he was in the Sea Org. He uses terms that I’ve previously only ever heard serial killers use… things like “what was done” instead of “what I did”. No personal responsibility at all. I am an avid reader of Marty’s blog, and I am grateful that he saw the light and got out of the Co$, and I’m grateful that he’s told all he’s told. It just seems like there is sooo much he’s not telling because the statute of limitations isn’t up yet.