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The David Miscavige summons, and other dire news for Scientology’s drug rehab network

MiscavigeRomeWe’ve been reporting on so many problems for Scientology’s drug rehab network, Narconon, and they just seem to be getting worse and worse.

For decades, when Scientology itself came under fire for its alleged abuses, odd beliefs, and bullying tactics, it reflexively pointed to its Narconon network as proof that it did good works. “But we get people off drugs!” was the rallying cry that the controversial church could always fall back on.

But increasingly, in the past few years, it’s the Narconon network that is getting Scientology more unwanted attention. The deceptions inherent in the rehab model are coming in for exposure in national media (last year’s excellent Rock Center episode, for example), as well as in a deluge of lawsuits and government investigations.

The federal lawsuit filed last week by the National Association of Forensic Counselors — accusing Scientology and Narconon of conspiring to abuse the NAFC’s trademarks to give the impression that Narconon and its employees held certifications that didn’t exist — is a significant new step, legal experts tell us. And the NAFC isn’t playing around. It has included not just dozens of Narconon entities and employees in the lawsuit, but even the leader of Scientology himself, David Miscavige.

To drive that point home, we thought you’d want to see the official summons that was issued for Miscavige. It’s a short thing, but longtime court watchers know that there is little else that will arouse Scientology’s legal brigade like such a document.

“A lawsuit has been filed against you.”



NAFC v Narconon: David Miscavige summons

And here’s another fact that veteran watchers know: Scientology never gives up. We’re reminded of that this morning as a story we’ve been looking forward to was published by the San Francisco Chronicle under the byline of Nanette Asimov.

Niece of the legendary science fiction author Isaac Asimov, Nanette is known for her blockbuster 2004 series that exposed Scientology’s attempts to get Narconon’s pseudoscientific beliefs about drugs into California’s school system. Her series was so effective, in 2005 California’s Department of Education warned all school districts about Narconon’s unscientific methods.

But now, she’s had to come back with a follow-up piece because despite that statewide warning, Narconon has kept pushing, and has succeeded at getting its bogus claims about how drugs act in the body taught in presentations in California schools.

Yes, while Narconon was shut down in Georgia after the death of a patient there and a state investigation into credit card and insurance fraud, and after three patient deaths in Oklahoma resulted in multiple investigations and a dozen lawsuits, and with federal lawsuits in the West popping up like mushrooms after a spring rain, Narconon and Scientology never stop pushing into schools and attempting to open new clinics and making outrageous claims about the effectiveness of their unscientific methods.

We’re just glad that journalists like Nanette Asimov hold them accountable for it.

A couple more links of note this morning on this Memorial Day in the United States. We wish a hearty congratulations to Derek Bloch for his hilarious piece about life in the Sea Org for Cracked. Derek’s story is still one of our favorites from our time at the Village Voice. And he’s been a big part of our community here ever since.

And speaking of the Sea Org, how’s this for irony. Back when the Tampa Bay Times did its incredible 2010 piece about forced abortions in Scientology’s inner corps, it was Tommy Davis, then Scientology’s spokesman, who admitted that yes, having children was against the rules in the quasi-naval Sea Organization.

In recent years, with the defection of many high-level Sea Org employees, we’ve seen something of a baby boom as these longtime Scientologists, after leaving the church, can finally start families. Marc and Claire Headley, John Brousseau, Mike Rinder, and Marty Rathbun have all started families after being prevented from doing so while they were in Scientology.

And now, apparently, so is Tommy Davis himself!

Over at ESMB, Garry Scarff revealed that Davis and his wife, Jessica Feshbach, have registered for gifts, and are expecting a child on October 1.


We extend our hearty congratulations to the expectant couple. Hey, Tommy, how about dropping us a line? We’d love to talk about life after the Sea Org.

UPDATE: We have now confirmed with a family source that Jessica Feshbach is expecting.


Scientology and Hollywood — the hype and spin

Another video from Karen de la Carriere about Scientology’s waning influence in the entertainment industry…



Thanks to you, a milestone

At some point today — probably around 11 am Eastern, the Underground Bunker will reach a small milestone: Half a million comments since we began this website in October, 2012.

We are humbled by the prodigious participation of our readers, and we are grateful for the community that has grown up here — even with a few trolls doing their best to make things miserable. (Just ignore them, please. Trying to guess their identity is just a waste of time.)

On to seven figures!


Posted by Tony Ortega on May 26, 2014 at 08:15

E-mail your tips and story ideas to or follow us on Twitter. We post behind-the-scenes updates at our Facebook author page. Here at the Bunker we try to have a post up every morning at 7 AM Eastern (Noon GMT), and on some days we post an afternoon story at around 2 PM. After every new story we send out an alert to our e-mail list and our FB page.

Learn about Scientology with our numerous series with experts…

BLOGGING DIANETICS (We read Scientology’s founding text) 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10, 11, 12, 13, 14, 15, 16, 17, 18, 19, 20, 21, 22, 23, 24, 25

UP THE BRIDGE (Claire Headley and Bruce Hines train us as Scientologists) 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10, 11, 12, 13, 14, 15, 16, 17, 18, 19, 20, 21, 22, 23, 24, 25, 26, 27, 28, 29, 30, 31, 32, 33, 34, 35, 36, 37, 38, 39, 40, 41, 42, 43

GETTING OUR ETHICS IN (Jefferson Hawkins explains Scientology’s system of justice) 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10, 11, 12, 13, 14

SCIENTOLOGY MYTHBUSTING (Historian Jon Atack discusses key Scientology concepts) 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10, 11, 12, 13, 14, 15, 16, 17, 18, 19, 20, 21, 22, 23, 24, 25, 26, 27, 28, 29, 30, 31, 32, 33, 34, 35, 36, 37, 38, 39, 40, 41, 42, 43

PZ Myers reads L. Ron Hubbard’s “A History of Man” | Scientology’s Master Spies | Scientology’s Private Dancer


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