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We’re giving thanks here in the Underground Bunker, and we hope you’ll help us out


Here in the United States, today is the biggest Thursday of the year. It’s the day we give thanks, and the Underground Bunker certainly has a lot to be thankful for this year.

We thought we’d pause this Thanksgiving and express our gratitude to the many people who have made this the best year of reporting Scientology that we’ve ever experienced. And first and foremost, we have to thank…

Paulette Cooper and Paul Noble

…who made 2015 a wild adventure. They put up with a lot of nonsense as we spent a couple of years putting together our book on Paulette. Finally, when the book came out in May, Paulette began to get some of the public attention she greatly deserved. And traveling with Paulette and Paul could not have been more fun.


We have so many other people to thank. We’re going to focus on the people we actually got to meet on our global travels this year, as well as others who helped us keep this website going. This is only a partial list, but our gratitude is a bursting cornucopia. Please tell us, in the comments, what you’re thankful for as Scientology Watchers…

Leah Remini, for crashing our LA party | Karen de la Carriere, for her invaluable assistance to the Underground Bunker | John Brousseau | James Underdown and the rest of the gang at CFI-Los Angeles | Derek Bloch | TheHoleDoesNotExist, for the songs and the parties | John Duignan | Jonny Jacobsen, our man in Paris | Richard Ruelas & Georgeann Yara | Cathi and Jeff Newlin, for our Portland reunion | Nancy Many | Scott Pilutik, who keeps us out of trouble | Ray Jeffrey and his dogs | Luke Y. Thompson & Julia Thompson | Jamie DeWolf and his crazy troupe | Vanessa & Travis | Steve Cannane, for Sydney and Melbourne | Bryan Seymour and Dianne Malheiro, for Adelaide and Perth | Jeffrey Augustine, for his insightful articles | Joy Heller | Steve Hall, who showed us Dallas | Dan Branstrom | Sid Rodrigues and Conway Hall in London | Jeff Jacobsen | King of Sweden, for the beer in St. Paul | Jesse Prince | Portland party hostess Robin DesCamp | John & Connie Zamora and the animals | Trevor and Tami Cooke and the animals | Jacques Lamarre and Mark Twain House | Dennis Erlich | Bryan McFarland, for the summit in his backyard | Patty Moher | Christian Stolte, for a stunning Chicago moment | Pete Combs | R.M. Seibert, for her dogged research | Rick Ross | Alex Gibney, for letting us into your adventure | Ford Greene | Steve Bratteng, Rachel Harger and CFI-Austin | Jenna and Dallas Hill | Lawrence Wright, for showing the way | Mark Bunker | Sara & Shel Goldberg, for your strength | Mark Ebner and Josh Olson | Jon Atack, for not retiring | The Underground Bunker animals | Richard Behar | Mark Taylor and CFI-Canada in Toronto | Mary McConnell | Aaron Smith-Levin, for the videos | Paulien Lombard | Mike Rinder — thanks for putting up with all the dumb questions | Susan Messing | Spanky Taylor, for everything | Marc & Claire Headley, for setting the example | Danielle Iannella, for The Wheat in Adelaide | Joel Sappell | Lauren Wolf, for the Hubbard insights | Michael Fairman | Nicole Greason, for the event at Barrett Honors College | Shelley Ashurst | Kristen Vaurio, for your lovely movie | Gerry Armstrong | Peter and his great 7 Dining Lounge in Vancouver | Lynn Campbell | John Sweeney & Tomiko Newson, for putting up with us | Christie Collbran | Humfrey Hunter, for your guts | Dr. Stephen Kent | Russell Miller, for the book that beats all books | Larry Anderson, for orienting us | Chuck Beatty | Pete Griffiths, for the silver suit | Don Device | Andrea “i-Betty” Garner, for arranging the pubs in London | Spike Robinson | Bernie Headley, for great help in Denver | Jason Beghe, for the education | Fly, for capturing your proprietor in Lego | Sindy & Dave Fagen | John Dowd | Paul Haggis, for blazing a trail | Brandon Ogborn | Cindy Plahuta, for such a great reception | Graham Berry | Tom DeVocht, the most fun to interview ever | Sam Freeman | Louis Theroux, for your great movie | George White | Bert Leahy, for the help in Dallas | Chrissie Weightman | Andrew Perez, for a stunning portrayal | Ursula Caberta | Hana & Jerry Whitfield, for surviving years of hellacious treatment | Melissa Paris | Marty Rathbun, for the jousts | Andreas Heldal-Lund | Laura Dieckman, for bringing us all Oliver | Yannus Sufandi | The great folks at the Giant Dwarf in Sydney | Robert Sheaffer & Tom Pickett and everyone at the San Diego Association for Rational Inquiry | Meshell Little | Luis & Rocio Garcia, for all that you’ve been through | Geir & Anette | Vic Wang and the Humanists of Houston | Bent Corydon, for San Diego | Bruce Hines | Nora Crest, for speaking out | Kathy Nather Thomas, for Santa Barbara | Bury the Nuts, for Clearwater crazy | Sinar Parman, for keeping us informed | Steve Hassan | Sunny Pereira, for the insights | Roger Boswarva | Wheeler Center in Melbourne, for such a huge event | Ramana Dienes-Browning, for Sydney | Vaquera | Valeska Paris, for Perth | Kevin, François and the Boston Skeptics in the Pub | Virginia McClaughry | Michelle “Emma” Sterling, and the wombats in Healesville | Nono le Clown | Cheryl Dickens-Harlow, for putting up with David Love | Tory Christman, for never giving up | Pan, for the cat totem | Miss Tia, for the day in Cleveland and that amazing needlework | Bill Franks | Monique Rathbun, for saying ‘enough’ | Chris Shelton and The Secular Hub in Denver | Nick Lister, for the videos | Cathy Shenkelberg, for standing alone (on stage) | Simon Chinn, for your patience | Richard Horgan, for the steady coverage | Emily & Brett, for the constant help | Amy Scobee & Mat Pesch, for Seattle | Eric Jayne and the Minnesota Atheists: Grumpy’s rocked | Robert “Murph” Murphy, for your spirit | Neil, for the killer research | Juicer77, for the cam demonstration | Lori Hodgson, for hanging tough | Mark Plummer, for the hat | Frank Oliver | Martin Duggan | Our man in London government, for the killer tour | John McGhee | Gary “Jackson” Morehead, for the wonderful US Fest yarn | Mark Fisher | Sherbet, for the great T-shirt | Martin Padfield, for bringing the tie | Mareka Brousseau | Tiziano, Jamie, & Veda | Rick Barrs and Jeremy Voas | Claudio & Renata Lugli | Michael Leonard Tilse, we’ll always have 26 | Ron Newman | Chad Essley, for the slick illustrations | Simi Valley | Jennifer Estlin, for an amazing venue | Sylvia & Tim DeWall, for the best story all year | Marisa Sigmond | Allison Hope Weiner, for the mayhem | Arnie Lerma | Hartley Patterson, for all that you’ve done | Garry Scarff | Mary Kahn, for a great party | Michael Laws | Maureen Bolstad | Dee Findlay, for so many things | Chris Owen | Jim Lippard, for a last-minute event in Phoenix | Jimmy3 | Steven Mango | Gustavo Arellano, who got the details right | Daryl Sorrentini | Kate Bornstein & Barbara Carrellas, for the top secret pizza parties | Esther Schindler | John P, for the supermodels | Nathan Baca | Jefferson Hawkins, for your insights | Joy Graysen | Len Zinberg, for your courage | Roz Cohn | Nan McLean and her son John, for Toronto | Jim Dincalci | Christine Hansen, for not giving up the chase | Camilla Andersson | Mark Tiborsky & CFI of Northern Ohio | Tom Tomorrow, for putting up with us in Hartford | Keith Henson & Arel Lucas | Colin Gordon & the Humanist Society of Santa Barbara | Jonathan & Hiya | Mike & Cary Seely | Mark and Observer, for the shoops | What’Sup for meeting us at the end of the planet | Nick Xenophon, for the weirdest dinner ever | Rick O’Keefe and CFI-Tampa Bay | James Beverley | RMycroft, for the indefatigable collating, and fun in Toronto | Kim O’Brien | Chocolate Velvet | Robert Wilonsky, for the help in Dallas | Johnny Tank, for traveling so far | Brian Harvey and CFI-Portland | Martin Ottmann | Paul Case and the Seattle Skeptics and Seattle Atheists | EnthralledObserver, for coming so far | Dibythesea | Jim Jackson, for coming forward | Alex Hageli | Baby, for all the drama | Aeger Primo, for the photos | All of the commenters who make every day an adventure | All of our great sources and tipsters whose names we can’t say |


Babywatch, day eight: Lisa McPherson in Room 174

While we celebrate our holiday, twenty years ago today Lisa McPherson was going through another miserable day in the cabanas at the Fort Harrison Hotel. Valerie Demange was again working a long shift as her caretaker, from 3:30 am to 4 pm. She reported that Lisa slept only from 1 to 2 pm, and that she had just a small amount of orange juice and refused to eat the food brought to her — even the protein shake she usually accepted. Otherwise, Lisa continued to talk incessantly and incoherently, as she had for days.

Another caretaker, Rita Boykin, also submitted a report for November 26, and said that while Lisa refused cold cuts and a protein shake, she did eat some mashed up banana with protein powder. Rita fed her while she lay down in the bed.



We didn’t get a chance to include photos in our book, so we’ve posted them at a dedicated page. Reader Sookie put together a complete index and we’re hosting it here on the website. Copies of the paperback version of ‘The Unbreakable Miss Lovely’ are on sale at Amazon. The Kindle edition is also available, and shipping instantly.

Our book tour is concluded for now. (But you can re-experience it through this nifty interactive map!) We’ll let you know about future appearances. Previous events: Santa Barbara (5/16), Hollywood (5/17), Orange County (5/17), San Diego (5/20), San Francisco (5/22), New York (6/11), Chicago (6/20), Toronto (6/22), Clearwater (6/28), Washington DC (7/12), Hartford (7/14), Denver (7/17), Dallas (7/20), Houston (7/22), San Antonio (7/24), Austin (7/25), Paris (7/29), London (8/4), Boston (8/24), Phoenix (9/15), Cleveland (9/23), Minneapolis (9/24), Portland (9/27), Seattle (9/28), Vancouver BC (9/29), Sydney (10/23), Melbourne (10/25), Adelaide (10/28), Perth (10/30)


Posted by Tony Ortega on November 26, 2015 at 08:30

E-mail your tips and story ideas to tonyo94 AT gmail DOT com 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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