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Another wacky Scientology testimonial video — and an Underground Bunker announcement!

Scientology has sent out another frenetic video to its members, including it in a DVD that they’ve mailed out with a glossy magazine, ‘International Scientology News.’

If you’ve seen these “wins” testimonials before, you know what to expect — the faces may have changed, but it sounds to us like they’re using the same up-tempo music track that they used the last time. Somehow, the testimonials themselves have become even more vague than ever — numerous times, the Scientologists have to resort to sound effects to describe what their courses in the Golden Age of Tech Phase II are bringing them.

We look forward to your reactions to this latest circus of Hubbard tech…




And now, for something completely different…



Announcing ‘The Unbreakable Miss Lovely’ tour, including the Jamie DeWolf hijack!

In order to promote the May publication of The Unbreakable Miss Lovely, our book about legendary journalist Paulette Cooper, your proprietor and Paulette will be heading to California for a weeklong tour of appearances next month.

We’ll be kicking things off on Saturday, May 16 at the Santa Barbara Humanist Society. The next day, on May 17, James Underdown at the Center for Inquiry West in Los Angeles will introduce us at the Steve Allen Theater in Hollywood at 11 am. In the afternoon, we’ll be at the Costa Mesa Community Center as Center for Inquiry Orange County hosts us for its “Feed Your Brain” series at 4:30 pm.

On Friday night, May 22, our tour will be hijacked by Jamie DeWolf, the great-grandson of L. Ron Hubbard, a Bay Area performance artist and frequent subject of the Underground Bunker.

Jamie is a well known local performance artist who puts on some wild extravaganzas. For us, he’s putting on a special macabre evening that should be a pretty singular SF experience. Here’s his description of it…


For one night only, the award-winning variety show “Tourettes Without Regrets,” winner of “Best of the Bay” several years running, turns its irreverent eye towards the world of cults and puts Scientology in its center bulls-eye. Hosted by Jamie DeWolf, the comic vaudevillian and great grandson of L. Ron Hubbard himself, the show features an array of cult-related burlesque, stand up comedy, slam poetry, circus arts and audience interactive mayhem where one side of the audience battles the other for comic ‘salvation’ in a series of increasingly deranged contests.

The show features an opening hard-hitting discussion with award-winning journalist Tony Ortega — featured in HBO’s Going Clear — and legendary journalist Paulette Cooper, who wrote one of the first exposes on Scientology in the 1970’s and was subsequently subjected to one of the most brutal wars enacted by the cult, including being framed for bomb threats to the “church.” Prepare for a night of jaw-dropping revelations and boundary-pushing expression that revolves around the absurdity of belief and the danger of the zealot.

Hey, that sounds like a diverting evening. We hope you can join us.

We’re still nailing down a date and location in San Diego for Wednesday, May 20, and we have other dates and times open for other appearances, so please let us know if you’d like to see Paulette Cooper and Tony Ortega talking about Scientology while we’re in the Golden State.



Showing of ‘Going Clear’ held up in the UK because of libel law concerns

The Guardian last night reported that plans to show Alex Gibney’s documentary Going Clear in Great Britain have been held up because of a quirk in that country’s libel law reform.

The film is based on Lawrence Wright’s 2013 book of the same name, which was not published in Britain because of that country’s notoriously pro-plaintiff libel laws. But since Wright’s book came out, changes were made to the law, and it was expected that Gibney’s film would benefit.

But the Guardian reports that Northern Ireland did not adopt the new libel law changes, and Sky Atlantic, the network that owns the UK rights to the film, cannot broadcast it in a way that keeps it from being seen in Northern Ireland.

“The broadcaster could be exposed to libel claims from David Miscavige, the leader of the church, or others. This appears to have caused the company to postpone transmission, if not to cancel it entirely,” reports the Guardian’s Edward Helmore.

Well, that’s certainly a blow. But it makes you wonder how the BBC got away with its two specials about Scientology, featuring John Sweeney.

“This is depressing,” Sweeney tells us. “A major step towards freer speech in the UK is being blocked because politicians in Northern Ireland, where bigotry is not unknown, have not changed old laws that help gag bold journalism. Going Clear bravely tells of allegations that Scientology’s Pope, David Miscavige, is a violent thug. The Church and he deny this. People can watch it in the United States but not in Britain. Likewise, Going Clear the book has not been published in the UK. Likewise, my book, Church Of Fear, was rejected by every big UK publisher and only exists because my agent published it. In the UK, we still live in the libel Dark Ages.”


Bonus photos from our tipsters

Actual Instagram caption: “These Scientologists have been staring at Franklin & Co for two hours. They have not moved.” (Franklin & Co. is a pub across the street from Scientology’s Hollywood Celebrity Centre.)


Tying the knot in Portland…


Fruit goes OT on the Freewinds


Have you stopped by the booth for a book today?


From Sydney, results from a stress test. Looks legit. Actual caption: “According to the church of Scientology I’m extremely depressed and unhappy….damn….but don’t worry a couple of courses for 300$ will help me!”


Scientologists are using social media more than ever. Drop us a line if you spot them posting images to Instagram or Facebook!


Posted by Tony Ortega on April 19, 2015 at 07:00

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 cover to cover with the help of LA attorney and former church member Vance Woodward

UP THE BRIDGE: Claire Headley and Bruce Hines train us as Scientologists

GETTING OUR ETHICS IN: Jefferson Hawkins explains Scientology’s system of justice

SCIENTOLOGY MYTHBUSTING: Historian Jon Atack discusses key Scientology concepts

PZ Myers reads L. Ron Hubbard’s “A History of Man” | Scientology’s Master Spies | Scientology’s Private Dancer
The mystery of the richest Scientologist and his wayward sons | Scientology’s shocking mistreatment of the mentally ill
The Underground Bunker’s Official Theme Song | The Underground Bunker FAQ

Our Guide to Alex Gibney’s film ‘Going Clear,’ and our pages about its principal figures…
Jason Beghe | Tom DeVocht | Sara Goldberg | Paul Haggis | Mark “Marty” Rathbun | Mike Rinder | Spanky Taylor | Hana Whitfield


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