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Scientology Sunday Funnies: What’s a little human trafficking between friends?

LtAndreDawsonSciWelcome to another collection of Scientology Sunday Funnies! Each week, we post some of the better Scientology fundraising fliers we’ve been forwarded by our great tipsters.

This week, we wanted to start off with something that our commenters have been talking about — a Los Angeles Police Department gladhander, Captain Dave Storaker, who runs a Twitter feed that’s about as smarmy as it gets. And the breathless way he promoted a “human trafficking” conference at Scientology’s LA headquarters was pretty awful. Scientology itself was investigated by the FBI for human trafficking violations in 2009 and 2010, and that probe was derailed for unfortunate reasons.

But what better way to distract from your own rotten record of treating workers like indentured servants — including children — than to operate front groups that pretend they give a crap about “human rights”? It’s kind of genius, when you think about it.

Anyway, we wanted to point out that Capt Storaker, based on his Twitter feed, is just a buffoon and it’s not really surprising that he’d pimp a Scientology dog and pony show.

What’s much more troubling is who spoke at the event.

Let us back up a little. In the summer of 2013, Leah Remini made her famous break from Scientology (a story we broke here at the Bunker), and then caused even more headlines when she filed a missing-person report with the LAPD, asking the police to look into the whereabouts of Shelly Miscavige, the wife of Scientology’s leader. Shelly vanished from Scientology’s International Base in the late summer or early fall of 2005, and has only been seen in public once since then, at the funeral of her father in the summer of 2007. Where has she been? Well, we know where she’s been all this time, but Leah, who was once close to Shelly, apparently wanted the LAPD to find out what’s been going on.


Remini filed her missing person report on a Monday, we found out about it two days later, on Wednesday night, and we broke the news about it the next morning, on a Thursday. By that afternoon, however, the LAPD began telling reporters that detectives had spoken with Shelly and determined that she was not “missing” and that she was all right. (Because our story appeared in the morning and the LAPD statements came out that afternoon, there was some confusion in the media and it was falsely reported that the LAPD had wrapped up Remini’s complaint in less than 24 hours. That wasn’t the case.)

Multiple lines of evidence convince us that Shelly Miscavige has, since 2005, been living and working at Scientology’s super-secret “CST Headquarters” compound near Lake Arrowhead in the San Bernardino mountains northeast of Los Angeles. This was a person who had been a very visible leader in Scientology, helping her husband to run an international empire. And we’d love to know how she really feels about being confined to a small base without even the chance to see members of her own family.

A missing-person complaint was an imperfect way to get that information. To the church (well, to David Miscavige at least) she’s never been “missing,” and the police aren’t in a position to do more than make sure Shelly is still breathing and happy where she is. We have to assume that church officials immediately whisked the LAPD’s two detectives assigned to the case right up to the CST compound after Remini made her report, and they were convinced that Shelly didn’t want to leave.

But we wanted to know, did they interview Shelly on her own, or was she in the presence of other church officials? Could she have been candid about her situation if other CST executives were present?

To find out, we called the supervisor of those two detectives who checked on Shelly. He is the LAPD’s Lieutenant Andre Dawson. Dawson assured us that Shelly was fine and didn’t want to make a public appearance. When we asked him if his detectives had talked to her alone, however, Dawson quickly fired back, “That’s classified.”

Oh, really?

The memory of that two-year-old conversation came rushing back when we saw who was a featured speaker at the human trafficking event held at the Scientology LA headquarters that Captain Storaker had been promoting. Here, see for yourself…

Human Trafficking

Yep. Lt. Andre Dawson spoke about human trafficking at the Church of Scientology — the same Lt. Dawson who oversaw the handling of Leah Remini’s missing person report about a woman who has been kept out of the public eye for more than nine years now at a secretive base above LA. (That’s a photo of him speaking at the event at the top of the page.)

Well, David Miscavige can rest easy, knowing with near certainty that the LAPD will never take the least interest in how he’s keeping his wife under wraps.

Let’s continue Sunday Funnies by moving on to something a little more humorous. Angry Gay Pope has put together a video mourning the loss of Scientology’s Hollywood Winter Wonderland. (A pathetic knockoff exists in Florida, but it was to Hollywood that L. Ron Hubbard donated a giant Christmas tree in 1983 — while he was deep in hiding — to start the tradition.) After we wrote about the demise of the Hollywood version recently, Pope made this tribute.


Longtime television producer and husband to actress Anne Archer, Terry Jastrow, is one of the last really gung-ho ‘celebrities’ in the Scientology stable, always seeming to be enthusiastic to speak up for the organization. Those must have been some wins, Terry!


“Toughness! How’s that sound!” This flier makes swabbing the deck of the Freewinds sound so fun.


The Golden Age of Tech II is pretty smooth!


Freshly squeezed Kiwis…


Does it ever dawn on them that these group shots are almost a perfect record of Scientology’s steep decline?


Oh, Emma. Wish you had that check back yet?


Ooh, we hope one of our moles can let us know who the “Surprise award-winning A-List New York Broadway Star, Film and TV Actor” is who plays the Fort Harrison on Christmas night.


Christmas morning. The Cross. “Reverend” Dave Petit. And even a quote from Hubbard, the guy who said on tape “There was no Christ.” Tsk. Tsk.


They just love publishing these membership lists. What a treasure trove.

holiday attendance 3

Hey, mom. What’d you get us for Christmas?


Sascha is digging the Sydney life.


And finally, we can’t stop staring at the latest flier from the Silicon Valley Ideal Org project. Can this be any more Scientology?

poster promo 1

Thanks again to our great tipsters!


Government money for a study of Scientology’s ‘Purification Rundown’

There’s a good new story this morning by the Capital Gazette’s Rema Rahman about a situation that’s been a concern to Scientology watchers for several years. Back in 2011, the researchers over at noticed that the Department of Defense was funding a study that was testing the effects of Scientology’s “detox” program on Gulf War veterans.

We wish Rahman had looked into some of the things WWP found back in 2011, that some of the co-investigators of the study had direct ties to Scientology itself. As for the lead investigator, David O. Carpenter, here he is on Alex Jones’ loopy conspiracy-obsessed website saying that cell phones cause cancer. (Mayo Clinic: “To date there’s no convincing evidence that cellphone use increases the risk of cancer.”)

So you have a credulous investigator who is on record saying he’s convinced the Purification Rundown is effective, working with a small group of veterans suffering with very real symptoms but from a maddeningly difficult reason to pin down, and asking them if they feel better after sitting in a sauna and running on a treadmill. Any doubt they’ll say yes? But we’ll be interested to see if Carpenter really thinks he can prove L. Ron Hubbard’s “science” — that marijuana or LSD or other drugs are stored in fatty tissue and can be “restimulated” even years later unless “detoxed” with the purification rundown. Yeah, good luck with that.


Posted by Tony Ortega on December 14, 2014 at 07:00

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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, 44, 45, 46, 47, 48

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, 44, 45, 46, 47, 48, 49

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