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Joey Chait’s sentencing memo: Abused in Scientology’s Sea Org and in fear of wealthy dad

ChaitArt

 
Earlier this month, Joey Chait, 38, was sentenced by a New York federal court to a year in prison for conspiring to smuggle art objects made of rhino horn, ivory, and coral. Joey was in the employ of his father Isadore Chait, whose eponymous I.M. Chait Gallery in Beverly Hills is one of the best known auction houses for Asian art in the world. Izzy Chait, for his part, is also well known to Scientology watchers, who remember his bizarre 2011 appearance along with the “Squirrel Busters” at Los Angeles International Airport in an attempt to unnerve former Scientology official Marty Rathbun.

There was even some precedence for the Chait Gallery being associated with the illegal sale of art objects: Izzy Chait, in 2007, sold a Mongolian Tyrannosaurus bataar skull to actor Nicolas Cage, and after the skull’s provenance was uncovered, Cage had to return it to the Mongolian government last year.

It seemed a simple story. Scientologist son of a somewhat unhinged wealthy and well known church figure had traded in goods that fuel the slaughter of endangered rhinos and other animals. Joey got little sympathy on the various Internet forums, and rightly so.

But we did notice something interesting about the government’s sentencing memorandum that was made public when Joey was given twelve months and a day in prison by Judge J. Paul Oetken. Prosecutors, who were asking that Joey be put away for 2.5 to 3 years, made several references to a sentencing memorandum prepared by Joey’s attorney, Judith H. Germano, which apparently had something to say about Joey’s upbringing in Scientology and his relationship with his father.

That document, by Germano, was not included in the court file when Joey was sentenced. But now, we have it, and we think you’re going to find it pretty interesting.

 
Guanyin

[The rhino horn figure of Guanyin that sold for $190,000 (plus fees) in 2011 as part of a government sting]

 
Based on both documents, from the prosecutors and defense, a picture emerges of a federal law enforcement sting operation that was intended to catch the Chait Gallery selling illegal art in order to make an example of one of the most prominent art dealers in the country. In 2011, an undercover agent convinced the Chait Gallery to auction an item for him that was made of rhino horn, and another undercover agent then bid on the item at auction and purchased it, for a winning bid of $190,000. Joey Chait then helped the winner hide the nature of the item with a bogus sales receipt so the buyer could then smuggle it out of the country. In January 2013, the FBI served a search warrant on the gallery, and the Chaits waited to see what was going to happen. Then, in April 2014, Izzy Chait had a heart attack that deprived his brain of oxygen, giving him brain damage and making him mostly incapacitated. Since then, he’s been diagnosed with cancer.

Two months later, in June 2014, Joey Chait learned that he was going to be charged with a crime. But in his sentencing memorandum, his attorney says that Joey’s entire life had been run by the Church of Scientology and by his father Izzy. A gay man told by his father that his homosexuality could be “handled” by Scientology, Joey was so powerless in his own life he didn’t even get pay stubs working at the Chait Gallery and made no extra money by selling the rhino horn figure. Joey’s life, his attorney writes, was simply about following his father’s constant dictum, “don’t screw up the sale.”

If the federal government had set out to take down Izzy Chait and his legendary gallery, Izzy’s debilitating heart attack made that less viable, and so they turned to his oldest son, who turned out to be a man motivated more by fear of his father and Scientology “disconnection” than by greed, according to his attorney. As a sign that Joey had only been going along with his father’s orders, Germano writes, Joey was happy to cooperate with prosecutors, and even participated in another attempt to sting a dealer in illicit goods with the use of a fake email account.

 
Joey_Chait

[Joey Chait]

 
In their own sentencing memorandum, prosecutors downplayed Joey’s helpfulness, and also argued that his Scientology upbringing was irrelevant.

But Judge Oetken seemed to agree, at least in part, with Joey’s version of events. At the sentencing, Judge Oetken, the first openly gay man on the federal bench, said that he did take into consideration Joey’s relationship with his authoritarian father, and the abuse he reportedly suffered in Scientology’s Sea Org. He then sentenced Joey not to the 2.5 to 3 years that prosecutors were asking for, but to 1 year in prison, and the minimum fine, $10,000.

It’s completely expected, of course, for the attorney of a client facing prison time to paint a picture of his or her background as sympathetically as possible. But it’s also interesting to see life in the Sea Org portrayed as a living hell in any court document, and to see what Joey, through his attorney, had to say about working for his famous dad.

We look forward to your own thoughts on the narrative that Judith Germano spells out in this document, as she describes how Joey found himself helping buyers smuggle illegal items out of the country.

— Joey went to Scientology schools, and at 18 joined the Sea Org. At 23, he went to work for his father at I.M. Chait Gallery. These were the only two jobs Joey ever had. “Joey’s conduct was largely attributable to the cruel abuses, beliefs and ambitions of his father and the Church,” the document says.

— In the Sea Org, “Joey was beaten and constantly subjected to sleep and food deprivation as well as the constant fear of interrogation. The mandated conformity took away one’s ‘right to self.’ Joey, like all members who take classes, also had to sign a confidentiality agreement, promising not to divulge the Church’s philosophy, practices, or assaults.”

— Joey oversaw the delivery of OT III, the “Xenu” story that reveals to upper-level Scientologists that their being is made up of thousands of invisible alien entities. “When Joey’s statistics (i.e., his ‘well-done’ auditing hours) were low, his supervisor would smack him on the head with her hand or anything else she was holding. When Joey provided an explanation, the supervisor would scream at him in front of the other auditors and call him a ‘faggot’ and a ‘degraded being’.”

— “He was also forced to endure ‘corrective therapy’ to ‘fix’ his homosexual tendencies. In addition, his penalty included hard labor, such as cleaning toilets, cleaning the kitchen, and emptying the huge trash dumpsters. Furthermore, he was subjected to mental abuse by interrogators, who put him on an E-meter and grilled him for hours until he confessed his sins.”

— “Further humiliation came when the Church imposed a $39,000 ‘bill’ for Scientology counseling and courses that he had completed under the billion-year contract. Izzy told Joey that he had to pay off this ‘debt’ to the Church by working at the Gallery. Joey’s parents also requested that he remain with the Church in the hope that he would be turned ‘straight’.”

— So, hit with the classic “freeloader’s debt” that a departing Sea Org member is saddled with, Joey went to work at the gallery, where employees were forced to sign L. Ron Hubbard “business management” contracts in order to work there.

— “Until his father fell ill three years ago, Joey had no personal bank account, a business credit card with a low limit, and he did not know what his salary was. His father, and the company accountant, completely managed his affairs. This was, according to Izzy, because Joey could not manage money and because the business had to pay Scientology for Joey’s debt.”

— “Izzy had total control of the business and was in charge of all of the buying as well as policies and procedures.”

— “Joey occasionally shipped art carvings made from ivory and rhinoceros horn to U.S. based third parties, such as UPS stores or friends/family members of the buyers. Joey understood that the artwork would be sent out of the United States, but he never verified that the buyers obtained the required export permits. The first time that this issue arose, Joey asked Izzy what to do and Izzy characteristically responded, ‘don’t mess up the sale’.”

Germano, having set up that dynamic between Joey and his father, also describes how byzantine the federal regulations are that govern antique art items made of rhino horn, and that Joey struggled to understand them. She says that Joey did realize that what he had done was wrong, and he pleaded guilty. But she pointed out that art dealers who had previously been charged and who were more obviously motivated by greed, had received probation and not prison time. Joey, she argues, was motivated by fear, and regretted it. She quotes from a letter written by Joey himself…

I knew that it was wrong to falsify customs forms, and I knew that some of our international buyers were taking these pieces of art out of the country without the proper permits. I kept my mouth shut when I knew it was wrong, and I broke the law.

It bothered me at the time, and it continues to bother me today. I should have said something. I should have stood up to my father and spoke my mind. I should not have made false statements on those shipping forms or turned a blind eye when I knew carvings that buyers purchased at our art gallery would be taken out of the country. If only I had listened to my own judgments, instead of following the orders I was given, I would not be standing before you for sentencing.

Germano writes that since his father’s debilitating illness, Joey is taking control of his life. He received an actual pay stub for the first time in July 2015, he’s pursuing education again, he is getting therapy to help with leaving his Scientology life behind, and he’s engaged to be married.

And now, he’s facing a year in federal prison. We called him, but he asked us politely to direct any questions to his attorney.

Take the time to read Ms. Germano’s memorandum, and let us know what you think. Personally, we think there may be no lower life form on earth than poachers who kill animals like endangered rhinos and elephants. And we applaud the federal government for going after dealers who fuel that trade. But as veteran Scientology watchers, we’re also fascinated by the story that is told in these legal documents, and we can understand why Judge Oetken came to the decision that he did.

U.S. vs. Chait: Sentencing Memorandum, Defense

 
——————–

Bonus items from our tipsters

For once, the Church of Scientology is getting some positive press for the good works that it does in the community. Rapper The Game showed up at Scientology’s community center in South Central L.A. yesterday for a gang summit and peace accord that he had organized with Snoop Dogg (who didn’t show). Gang leaders and The Game met with L.A. police chief Charlie Beck against a backdrop festooned with Scientology logos. Church leader David Miscavige will be boasting about this one, and why not. For once, Scientology did the selfless thing and tried to help society…wait, what’s that? Who made the scene? Alfreddie and Rizza? Aw, well. It was funny business as usual, then.

 
RizzaAlfreddie

 
——————–

3D-UnbreakablePosted by Tony Ortega on July 18, 2016 at 07:00

E-mail 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. After every new story we send out an alert to our e-mail list and our FB page.

Our book, The Unbreakable Miss Lovely: How the Church of Scientology tried to destroy Paulette Cooper, is on sale at Amazon in paperback and Kindle editions. We’ve posted photographs of Paulette and scenes from her life at a separate location. Reader Sookie put together a complete index. More information about the book, and our 2015 book tour, can also be found at the book’s dedicated 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 L.A. 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

Other links: Shelly Miscavige, ten years gone | The Lisa McPherson story told in real time | The Cathriona White stories | The Leah Remini ‘Knowledge Reports’ | Hear audio of a Scientology excommunication | Scientology’s little day care of horrors | Whatever happened to Steve Fishman? | Felony charges for Scientology’s drug rehab scam | Why Scientology digs bomb-proof vaults in the desert | 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 | Scientology boasts about assistance from Google | 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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  • iampissed

    RNC house band sucks

    • MaxSpaceman

      sucks big time

    • flyonthewall

      i think the guitarist use to be in the SNL band back in the 90’s

      • Kay

        GE Smith? I’m not near a TV so I can’t see but that’s who played guitar for SNL in the 90s I believe. Long blonde hair, bandana.

        • flyonthewall

          yep, makes weird faces. 99% sure it’s him

          • Observer

            Gilda Radner’s first husband

            • flyonthewall

              really? Cool, I did not know this

            • Observer

              Yup. Seems like an odd couple, doesn’t it?

    • Oof, painful… http://pitchfork.com/news/66905-rnc-house-band-perform-david-bowies-station-to-station-watch/ :

      “It’s not the side-effects of the cocaine
      I’m thinking that it must be love
      It’s too late
      – to be grateful
      It’s too late
      – to be late again
      It’s too late
      – to be hateful
      The European cannon is here”

      and Bowie’s own thoughts on the character he brought into Europe:

      “The Thin White Duke was a very nasty character indeed…an isolationist, very much on his own with no commitment to any society at all'”

      O.o

  • Did Duck Dynasty just say, “Trump Train.” -TF!

    • Kay

      YUP

  • daisy

    OT – Just saw a clip of Trump on 60 min. Commentator- I know you are not a humble man . Trump – I am a very humble man. Bragging about being humble LOL. Does any of his supporters actually listen to him.

    • MaxSpaceman

      Yes– and they love it! Every feckin’ word.

    • jazzlover

      “If I weren’t so humble, I’d be talking about how awesome I am ALL the time”

    • Harpoona Frittata

      I heard that part of the interview too. Totally hilarious! He said it without a hint of irony either, as if bragging about being really humble ISN’T the exact opposite of what you’re saying!

    • Robert Eckert

      He has the best humility, it’s really fantastic, he’ll be so humble you’ll get tired of him being humble.

      • daisy

        All the humbles love me. I really like those little figurines. We carry them in the Trump giftshop. They are uge uge sellers.

    • Always Amazed

      …….its hard to be humble, when you’re perfect in every way.

  • Kim O’Brien

    Colorado delegation ALL walked out …wha?

    • flyonthewall

      they did?? awesome. I heard VA and others were planning to

      • NOLAGirl (Stephanie)

        This news makes me happy. 🙂

    • Kestrel

      Well, it’s 4:20 somewhere.

  • MaxSpaceman
    • Narapoid

      Wow. I guess his covering for the scilons was just a pinch of his wrong doing!

  • nunyabidnes

    I love how the judge quoted Lawrence Wright in the document. That is so awesome.

  • jazzlover

    2 Broke Girls strikes again:

    Hotel manager (to Max and Caroline): “You need to get out of your room for an hour. I have an A-list movie star that wants to have an impromptu (air quotes) private meeting.”

    Max: “Is it a John Travolta-masseuse kind of thing?”

    Hotel manager: “I said A-list”

    • Intergalactic Walrus

      I’m afraid that with his Emmy nomination last week, he’s back to being A-List 🙁

      • jazzlover

        You sure it’s not “Emmy Considered”? 😉

        Still a few thousand notches below Oscar-nominated, though.

        • Intergalactic Walrus

          Well, I certainly considered his performance lacking but unfortunately the Emmy folks loved it. SMH

          • jazzlover

            If nothing else, it was amusing to stare at him for a few episodes 🙂 I wouldn’t get too sussed. The people who pick the nominees for almost anything are hardly what I would call great purveyors of taste.

            • Intergalactic Walrus

              At the ceremony, I sure hope he doesn’t run into the HBO docs folks who were responsible for last years “bigoted” winner Going Clear. That might be AWKWARD! 😉

            • jazzlover

              The Gibney death stare 🙂

  • Intergalactic Walrus

    Ever wonder what kind of “talent” goes to a CO$ showcase? Here you go…

    https://youtu.be/0OCrnVZpW1c

    • daisy

      How can you pick just one? Ok red leotard and ripped jean girl for the win.

      • def a hard decision, but i’m going with 5:10 Larry the Cable Guy makes it rain w/ “rose petals” and kinda does what I assume is the robot … ?

        • jazzlover

          LOL. I was kinda hopin’ for the moon walk.

        • madame duran

          Several of the acts were doing the robot dance. Ronbots doing “the robot”. Art imitating life.

      • Intergalactic Walrus

        They used to lure folks in with the promise that they’d get a professional copy of their performance which the “talent” could then send out to get gigs, representation, etc. I think that is what this is. The hip-shaker in ripped jeans or the “ear, nose & throat” gal would be my faves, if I had to choose. Let’s hope this was everbody’s one and only brush with the clams.

        • jazzlover

          Of course, there’s the free personality test on the way out 😉

    • madame duran

      WHERE IS JOY VILLA???

      • Kestrel

        She didn’t make the cut.

        • madame duran

          Not even “Celebrity Centre talent show-considered”? Damn.

          • Kestrel

            Considered, but not nominated.

  • jazzlover

    Less than 2 weeks to the (Spanish) Harlem Org opening:

    (still the cleanest tone on the planet)

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=6Whgn_iE5uc

    • Intergalactic Walrus

      Someone needs to re-write to lyrics to “Spanish Harlem”! “Clammish Harlem”?

      • jazzlover

        I was thinkin’ that maybe Chillie Beans and Farrakhan could do it as a rap duet 🙂

        • Intergalactic Walrus

          Via social media, I saw some of the “entertainment ” at this weekend’s Maiden Voyage event at Big Blue. “The Calypso Pirates” was one of the bands (and no, l know what you are thinking but little Davey M. was not the lead singer). Another band played THE WORST version of “The Letter” that I have ever heard: https://www.instagram.com/p/BH8l7b8DeMa/

          Believe it or not, Chilli Bean would actually be an improvement!

          • jazzlover

            Good thing Davey didn’t carry a pistol on board 🙂 Love the comment – “Don’t know who they are but they getting down”. Down to where? 🙂

          • Kestrel

            That rendition was void of any sense of feeling whatsoever.

    • daisy

      Love this.

      • jazzlover

        Awesome song. Heard it on the radio today and had to find a way to get it in here. The vid was either filmed in Spanish Harlem or in the Bronx.

  • Narapoid

    Here’s something Panopea Abrupta put out a while back. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Z4W0h7kym00 Made me laugh again!

  • Baby

    Went to ER today ( by myself) with severe chest pains and what I thought was GERD wasn’t.

    I had an EKG , blood work, urine test and Chest Xray. I was put on the worst medicine known to man on 7/5/16.

    All the problems that I have had is due to the side effects of Ciproflaxocin 500mg. It has a Black Box Warning. I have had burning sensations all through my body especially my chest. My Sternum hurts so bad.. and am having back spasms and severe chest pains.

    I was there for maybe 3 hrs. and thought I was dying. My dad died at 52 from heart and my brother had open heart surgery at 60..

    Still can not sit without stabbing pain.. Left the hospital with medication for an ulcer ( Ranitidine )
    and of course I’m by myself ..

    and OMG Nitrostate ( Nitroglycerin) and if I have the chest pain that last for 10 minutes..place under tongue and
    CALL 911.. sigh..

    Just wanted you to know. I consider you my friends. Love baby

    • jazzlover

      Baby, so sorry to hear. Hang in there — you’re tough, and we’re here with you.

      • Baby

        Thank you Jazz.. I don’t feel tough.. That Ciproflaxocin should be outlawed. It is very dangerous shit.

        • jazzlover

          Yeah. All these medicines have more side-effects than you can count. FDA needs to tighten things up a bit. Have you ever noticed that 3/4 of the time in any drug commercial is taken up with warnings?

    • Hugs, Baby. Keep your phone nearby. 911 is your friend. <3

      • Baby

        Yes absolutely.. thanks Dodo.. hugs back

    • Kestrel

      Sorry you are going through so much. You’re missed … and loved.

      • Baby

        Thanks Kes. At least my fever broke. Of all times for Mac to be out of town.. sigh

        • Kestrel

          I’d fly out and make you a grilled cheese sandwich and tomato soup. It always seems to work for humans. For birds, not so much.

          • Baby

            Thanks Kes. OK back to day bed..it hurts when I sit up.. ergh

        • Robert Eckert

          We’d make you laugh, but it sounds like that might hurt right now. Get better soon <3

          • Baby

            Thanks Robert.. I want it healed NOW! errrrrrrgh

    • daisy

      I am so sorry you are still having pain. Do you have someone to stay with you? You sound sick enough that maybe you should have someone with you. I imagine with the EKG they would be able to assess cardiac problems. It sounds like a thorough work up was done. Try and rest. Ranitidine should help.(((( big hugs ))). Come visit me I will take care of you, and you can walk around with no pants.

      • Baby

        I don’t have anyone. My friend Tami is a snowbird who is in Maryland for the summer. I left a call for Mac.. He will come home immediately. He is around 2 hrs. away. I need to rest, but can’t..

        No pants? Sounds like home honey.. xo

    • Kim O’Brien

      oh Baby ..i wish i lived close by …hugs

      • Baby

        Oh I wish you did too Kim.. hugs back..xo

    • Rasha

      Hugz for our Nitro-Burnin’, Smokin’ Hot Babbeh!!! Sorry about the pain – I know how that feels. 🙁 We’ll get through this….

      • Baby

        Thanks Rashie.. I am having a pity party.. and waiting for the chest pain.. Gawwwwwwd it’s scary

    • iampissed

      Proud that you made the call to go to ER. If you have someone around
      Who you can let know you are having problems that will help your mind.
      Bright bleessings

      • Baby

        Thanks Pissed. I know Mac will call me soon. My daughter is a nurse and she is in N. Carolina now on vacation and is keeping tabs.. xo

        • iampissed

          Glad to know someone is watching

    • Vaquera

      Oh baby! I wish I could sit next to you until Mac gets home.
      Talk to you, keep you calm until your love returns.

      • Baby

        He is on his way home Texas.. He just called. Thanks honey..

    • Justmeteehee

      Oh baby! I’m gone tomorrow for a week but will be sending healing energy ❤️

      • Baby

        Thanks Teehee.. For your Sandals Anniversary Trip? If yes..have fun sweetie.. thank you..

        • Justmeteehee

          Yes, the big 25! Thanks Baby, big hugs.

          • daisy

            Oo so much fun , congratulations. 25 rare these days.

    • Illinoisian

      Baby, the Illinoisians are thinking of you and sending loving thoughts. You’re not alone. Hugs from both of us.

      • Baby

        Oh you guys.. so sweet.. thank you.. xoxox give each other a kiss for me.

    • TheMirrorThetan

      Jeezus Baby. I just looked that shit up. I cant believe all the side effects and warnings. No wonder you thought you were dying. “Ciprofloxacin may cause swelling or tearing of (rupture) a tendon. It can also have serious effects on your nerves, and may cause permanent nerve damage.”
      Look after yourself.

      • Baby

        It really is some dangerous shit..I will NEVER take it again.. NEVER.

    • Narapoid

      Holy cow darlin! Take care dear!

      • Baby

        Thanks Narapoid.. I’ve missed you!

    • OOkpik

      Good lord, Baby! I’m surprised they sent you home in such an awful state. You must be exhausted too!
      Wish I could wrap you in comfort. <3 <3

      • Baby

        Thanks Owl. Ugh.. Just woke up. Feeling like shit still.. appointment today to read results.. <3 <3

    • Kay

      Cipro can have a lot of side effects. If they kept you on it, make sure you eat it with some food (except no dairy products) If they took you off of it, you should be feeling a lot better. Everytime I’ve had to take it it has made me feel really peculiar all over. The Ranitidine will help if you have an ulcer or gastritis. It’s really hard to differentiate between GERD, gastritis, ulcer pain and a heart attack, but it sounds like they did all of the labs and EKG stuff to rule out a heart attack for sure.
      Sleep with your head elevated, don’t eat spicy foods for awhile. Don’t let the nitro thing scare you, that is just a standard deal that ERs do with people who present with chest pain. I don’t like you being alone…is there anyone who can stay with you at least for the night?

      • Baby

        Thanks Kay.. I completed the 10 day cycle.. and felt like shit the entire time..didn’t put 2-2 together.. I have to go back today for results of tests..

        I felt/ feel so peculiar all over still.. I just want it to go away! Mac came home.. xo

    • thetastic

      Oh no! That has to stop, lickety split! Feel better, love!

      • Baby

        thanks birdie.. Just woke up and feeling miserable. ugh.

    • 5 Feet Long and Luminous

      Holy shit, B–that’s frightening. I hope those side effects subside soon. It’s no good when the treatment just makes you sicker. Best wishes for better health…

      • Baby

        Thanks 5.. It is frightening. ugh xo

    • Free Minds, Free Hearts

      Oh no, Baby. I agree with all the comments below, especially to call 911 if needed. I assume by now Mac is home. Those side effects sound horrible. I am thinking of you and sending good thoughts your way.

      • Baby

        Oh absolutely ..I won’t hesitate. Promise.. Yes.. he broke speeding laws to come home. I fell asleep with him rubbing my back.. and just woke up!

        • Jenyfurrrrr

          Oh good! Was hoping to see a post that he’d gotten home. Made me nervous, you being home alone like that! So sorry you’re still feeling so icky but very thankful you’ve got a gem over there taking good care of you! You deserve it!

          • Baby

            OH Jenny.. I loved the picture of the kids you sent me.. I haven’t answered your e mail .. it hurts to sit.. xoxo

            • Jenyfurrrrr

              Don’t even worry! And I’m glad you liked the pics – hope they made you smile. You just take care of YOU and we can catch up when you eventually feel better. You poor thing! Is it getting any better yet?

            • Baby

              I’m just sleeping a lot..drinking lots of water..the back spasms aren’t as intense as they were 2 days ago.. xo

            • Jenyfurrrrr

              Glad to hear some symptoms are improving (just wish they’d go away altogether)! The water seems like a great idea, since it should help flush it out of your system faster. Hope you keep feeling better & better so you can go to the Billboard event. Just VERY thankful you’re ok – read up on Cipro after your warning. SCARY stuff! Take care, Lovely!

    • April

      You’re my favorite baby. I’m so sorry you’re not feeling well. 🙁

      • Baby

        Awww thank you April.. Don’t ever change your avi.. I absolutely love it!

    • <3

      • Baby

        <3

    • Douglas D. Douglas

      One more reason I am so grateful that Scientology is so ineffective at taking any real control of the world. They’d have you sitting in a sauna taking mega-doses of niacin with a cup of cal-mag when you needed nutrition.

      Get well, m’dear. Please.

      • Baby

        God Forbid!

        Thanks 3D..

    • Jenyfurrrrr

      Oh man… Gentle hugs to you Baby! That’s horrid and scary! So glad you went in and didn’t just try to tough it out!!! So this was all due to a Cipro side effects?!?! Scary, any kidney stuff I’ve had they always prescribed that one, good to know but NOT a good way to find out. Hope you’re starting to feel better soon, able to rest/sleep and that the chest pains abate soon, lovely! Lots of love to you!

  • jazzlover

    Rudy G currently working all the nuts into a tizzy with talk of Islamic terrorism. What a dick this guy is — still the same after all these years. And he’s saying with a straight face that Trump will make a great President. It is time to end bi-partisan politics.

  • daisy

    PPP

  • Kim O’Brien

    OK …my neighbors cousins just moved here from Colombia …and they speak better English than Trump’s 3rd trophy wife from Slovenia who has been here for 20 freaking years .

    WHAT THE HELL IS HAPPENING ??????????

    • jazzlover

      I feel like I’m in an Orwell novel. These people are eating this up.

      • Kim O’Brien

        Johnny Tank McNaked pants is going to have to build a huge guest house for a bunch of us in Oslo ..i don’t know how much more of this i can take .

        how hard is it to pronounce a T-H sound ???!!!!!!!!!!

        • Vaquera

          Can we be roommates in said house?

          • Kim O’Brien

            hey , it’s Europe …we can get crazy and call it ” chic “

            • Vaquera

              Sign me up!

      • Anony-Lurker

        Not to fret, more people attend a Lady Gaga concert.

        • jazzlover

          And come away just as dazed 😉

    • Robert Eckert

      I loved that she came on after a diatribe from Sen. Sessions about how we have way too many immigrants.

      • Kim O’Brien

        but not ENOUGH immigrant underwear models . Notice the nuance 😉

        • Anony-Lurker

          lol

          Demagogues always need a scapegoat, don’t they.

    • aquaclara

      You are picking on her accent? Really??

      • Kim O’Brien

        immigrants from a communist country , like her , should have to prove their loyalty to the USA and learn the language or GTFU . We have no idea where their loyalties lie …most of them are rapists and criminals because they grew up with the communist mindset .It is hard to vet them because they do not have a long form birth certificate . That is totally against our founding fathers and their christian values . They need to denounce communism , there needs to be a test …we can;t just keep letting these people in or else we just won’t have a country anymore

        there …now do you see the irony ?

        • Anony-Lurker

          Don’t you realize Kim that Melania was a mail order bride, same as Ivana was. Big business in Eastern Europe. With Melania she says she fell in love with him, but I really think it’s 2 words:
          Billions
          High Cholesterol.

          • Kim O’Brien

            he actually loves to tell the story that he was on his plane …saw her in an underwear ad in a magazine , pointed at her , and said ..” get me her ”

            team america – fuck yeah

            • Anony-Lurker

              Yea, I heard that story, but the version I heard was the same except he really said: “I want to f— her. After the first meet, he told his butler to giver her $1000 and pay her cab ride home.

            • Kim O’Brien

              oh great …Trump – always worse than you think . Gross

            • Anony-Lurker

              An extra 100$ if she’d sign a non disclosure agreement.

        • aquaclara

          Sorry, I have a Philly accent, with bits of southern interjected. I must be stupid, so you’ll have to speak slowly. Is it tomato, or tomahto?

          Oh, and I am here legally.

          • Kim O’Brien

            she’s a commie . proven fact that they use sleeper cells …and her hubbie praises Putin …i see a connection . Then she had an anchor baby . It’s the 2nd generation …those are the ones we gotta keep an eye on . Just like San Bernadino …

  • iampissed

    Just as a discussion point… I think that we all need to KNOW our neighbors be they
    Whatever scientologist, catholic, pagan. My neighbors at times I don’t agree with
    but if I stumble over to there house I know they will help! It’s a good place to start.

    • jazzlover

      Couldn’t agree more. And that’s an idea that never gets mentioned in all this “Make America Great/Safe Again” talk. Safe means “stay the hell away from me”.

  • Thank you to every police officer who became one to keep everyone safe.

    • Robert Eckert

      And no thanks to the police officer who became one to bully people and make himself feel big.

      • Your percentage may vary.

        • Robert Eckert

          It takes very few to make it difficult to trust. There are certain towns around here I prefer not even to drive through.

      • daisy

        I don’t like the us or them mentality of late. Yes absolutely there are some bad police who do that , but the majority of police are hard working men and women who facilitate the public they serve. They just don’t get as much press.

    • aquaclara

      We have a dear friend who has served heroically. The stories are worse than one could ever imagine. Pray for all our first responders, our men and women in uniform and those who think of others before themselves.

  • Anony-Lurker

    To everyone here watching the convention and shaking their heads:
    Everyone is parroting Trump..same rhetoric perhaps some paraphrasing.
    Everything being said is convoluted logic, based mostly on lies. Except Melania who sounds very much like Eva Gabor in Green Acres. (Not the accent but her words)

    There is a great article in “The New Yorker” about Tony Schwartz who ghosted Trump’s book “The Art of the Deal”. He summed up Trump with one word: Sociopath.

    The convention is really related to Scientology as we’re seeing cognitive dissonance, but on a very large scale.

    • Robert Eckert

      For those who haven’t seen the New Yorker article:
      http://www.newyorker.com/magazine/2016/07/25/donald-trumps-ghostwriter-tells-all

      • jazzlover

        “I genuinely believe that if Trump wins and gets the nuclear codes there is an excellent possibility it will lead to the end of civilization.”

        Schwartz says this with a sense of certainty that makes me say to myself “I knew it”.

        • Anony-Lurker

          Funny how Trumpies say if Hillary wins, it will be the end of the world. The have the same fears we do, though I don’t think mine is irrational.

          • jazzlover

            I don’t know where you’re from, but all I can say is that we New Yorkers have been aware of how much of a scumbag he is for at least 35 years. In other words, our (my) fears are based on some firsthand knowledge. Trust me when I say: Trump – He’s always worse than you think. Sound familiar? 🙂 That’s why it was so shocking to me this evening to watch Giuliani lick his asshole on national TV. I can guarantee you that when Rudy was Mayor of NYC, he had more than his fair share of run-in’s with Trump. The sticking together of party-mates has gotten just a little bit more than disgusting in this country. It’s less about the people than it ever was.

            • Anony-Lurker

              I live in Manhattan. Always have.

            • jazzlover

              So you know.

            • Anony-Lurker

              Yup, I know too well! Politics is theater to a large extent, but some actors are despicably obnoxious. i.e Trump and Giuliani

            • daisy

              I respect Republicans more this year than any past elections. I was impressed that many of them refused to attend RNC and support Trump.

          • daisy

            I like neither , I had a little crush on grumpy old man Bernie. I enjoyed his shouting. I am not really worried about Trump. I think he will play president for a couple of months like a shiny new toy. He will then abandon it for something else, unless someone insults him He never drops slights. He would probably bomb the shit out of Rosie , collateral damage be damned.

            • jazzlover

              You take quite a casual viewpoint from the safety of Canada 😉

            • daisy

              Canadians by geography alone are not casual observers. Like it or not we are Siamese twins.

            • jazzlover

              I will have my St. Bernard hunt you down with a case of Molson tied to his back 🙂

    • MadMaxi

      The article is a must read, if for nothing else Tony Schwartz’s creative descriptors.

      • Anony-Lurker

        In a sense, he says nothing new, or another way…stuff we all knew about. still it’s interesting.

    • jazzlover

      Does this make Trump the modern day Eddie Albert?

      • Anony-Lurker

        No, more like Arnold!

        • jazzlover

          LOL

    • daisy

      I agree, we sometimes get heck for talking politics on this blog. I understand why people would think that, but I see a lot of parallels in this election ( Trump ) and scientology. One of my very bright lovely rational friends supports him whole heartedly . She cannot point to any one policy or statement she likes, except he tells it like it is. She did not care to hear all of his documented lies. This same friend would absolutely never ever fall for a cult , she thinks. Do not mistake this post for an endorsement of Hilary. I just think she is not as thin skinned and reactionary as Trump. She at the very least would consult advisors.

      • Anony-Lurker

        It doesn’t matter how many investigations done by both sides of the aisle with the same findings again and again about Benghazi. No culpability pointed, yet these people keep blaming Clinton and Obama for murder. Cognitive dissonance at it’s finest.

        Daisy, I haven’t read the Bunker much lately because I’m seeing the same magnified greatly in the election cycle. It fascinates me, kind of like people who slow down to gawk at an accident. Some morbid type of fascination.

        • aquaclara

          If you knew someone who was there personally, you would rethink your comments. Guessing that’s not the case here.

          • Anony-Lurker

            Just reporting the findings of all the investigations done to date. Way too simplistic to call Clinton or Obama a murderer. Unless, as Trump says, every investigation done by both sides were rigged.
            It’s like calling Roosevelt a murderer for 400,000 Americans killed in WW2.

            • jazzlover

              That depends on your view point and what you believe to be facts, such as they may be.

            • Anony-Lurker

              Again, just reiterating the many investigations, even the republican ones.
              At some point you have to let it go.
              Than again tens of thousands of studies on Global warming and it’s harmful effects and watching people refuse to believe it.

            • jazzlover

              Well, if anything, scientology watching has made me more aware of eugenics, the tie-in to Hitler and L Ron’s real goals. Given that the Roosevelts were known supporters (among others), and the immigration laws of 1921 and 1924, and the fact that you couldn’t show me an American History book that even mentions that stuff, I’m sure you can figure out the rest. Not saying it’s all true (thankfully I didn’t live through those times), but the possibility exists. If you can conceive it, you can believe it, I always say.

            • Anony-Lurker

              Or as Trump would say…if you conceive it, you can deny it’s yours.

            • jazzlover

              Put 2 and 2 together. Your statement about FDR was nothing short of ironic. I was already hearing rumblings about Pearl Harbor by the time I was 10. Now that I’m older, I think there just might be something there. Everything about us getting involved in WWII seems so calculated.

            • jazzlover

              Just wondering why you deleted your last comment. Perhaps you realized that I’m not so naive as to not understand the economics of war? But here’s the thing — WWII was about much more than economics. We may very well have had a hand in creating the monster in the first place, and there was increasing pressure put on the administration to do something about what was going on. FDR finally realized that this situation presented us with a “win-win”, and of course, the rest (and those sacrificed in the process) is history.

            • Anony-Lurker

              I didn’t delete it or anything for that matter????

            • jazzlover

              This (from you) appeared in my email inbox, but is nowhere to be found in the actual text of our discussion in yesterday’s post. I assumed that that happened because you deleted it:

              Wars are seldom about Freedom. There are always economics involved.
              WW2 The U.S. couldn’t afford to lose Britain, France, even Germany as trading partners. Hitler threatened this which would have devastate our economy even more as we were stagnant in a great depression.
              No surprise that at the end they immediately started repairing Japan’s and W Germany’s economies. The U.S. really developed their industries and now needed these powers to buy from us.
              As icing on the cake, the war ended the great depression. Roosevelt knew this very well as the “New Deal” never really worked too well.

            • Anony-Lurker

              Yes I wrote that, it’s gone??

              I don’t even know how to delete a post, how do you do it??

            • jazzlover

              I’m not sure. But, of course, if you didn’t delete it, it could have been moderated out. Perhaps we were getting too far into “tin hat” territory? 🙂 Even in the 21st Century, it occurs to me that there might be some possibilities better left unmentioned. Sad. We are still as repressed as ever, and insist in worshiping our “heroes”. This is why the political system might go unfixed forever.

        • califa007

          Star Rate Cognitive Dissonance. CD is the emotion or state that you are in when you hold conflicting beliefs simultaneously. You resolve CD with another Defense Mechanism, Rationalization. You are Rationalizing when accept only some facts and dismiss others out of hand, such as you are doing with Benghazi. There are better ways to resolve Cognitive Dissonance.

    • Snippy_X

      She also sounds exactly like Michele Obama. Does this mean Michele plagiarized Eva Gabor?

    • Snippy_X

      Wait till the shoops come out with all those empty seats filled in.

  • aquaclara

    Just a comment. Our very own deeply respected The Hole Does Not Exist left here in part because of the fairly nasty comments made by those who frequent here. In respect for those who have been hurt by this damn cult, let’s keep things kind, ok?
    I am disappointed by the number of mean comments tossed out here lately, too. We can do better.

    It is not exactly painful to say nice things. So just a suggestion. Leave your sh*t at the door! unless you are truly trying to be mean. And if that’s your goal, God help you. I thought there was already enough hate going on in this world, evidenced by Orlando, France, Dallas, Turkey and more.

    As I said, just a suggestion. If you disagree, I don’t actually care. I have had enough.

    There was a gorgeous blue sky out this morning. Surely, there can be good things ahead.

    • daisy

      I admit to not noticing a lot , but what kind of mean things? I would really hate to give up ragging on KA . TC and Grant . I will probably continue to do so, until they stop promoting scientology. I certainly agree with your sentiment but people should be able to interact. Other people should be allowed to call them out on it as you just did. It would be helpful to know what posts are offending.

      • aquaclara

        It wasn’t about Kirsty or TC or Grant.

        • daisy

          LOL good Whew

          • Kim O’Brien

            or anyone else in real life . Melania Trump is being picked on here …and it is a travesty

    • You can now block people if you think they are “mean” and you don’t want to hear what they have to say.

    • Commodore H. McCringleberry

      Agree with your sentiments. I try to only be mean in rebuttal to a mean comment and in an effort to set someone straight who might be a bit off the rails. I’ll be more cognizant.

      That said, I lived in Turkey for a few years, traveled and worked there many other times, and got to know how things run over there. Don’t be surprised if in a couple of months (or more likely a couple of years) you read that things weren’t “on the level” with this coup. The Turkish Army fits into that culture differently than any other place I’ve been in that they think of themselves as the guardians of certain ideals on which the modern state of Turkey was founded. Also, they’re not a likely group to fracture like that. I’ve got a couple million “old” Turkish Lira that says that a certain guy’s leadership antics might have gotten a little too stale for the home crowd and a little too big for his britches on the world stage. Nothing says Instant Popularity! like coming out on top of an effort to bump you off.

    • Jenyfurrrrr

      Plz feel free to put me in check if I say/do anything to offend. Wouldn’t ever want to contribute to this being a place that makes people uncomfortable. Thanks for having the courage to put that out there, too!

    • Dee Findlay-DeElizabethan

      I hadn’t understood your comment until reading many comments. Sorry about THDNE.
      I get enough to satisfy my curiosity on the world news channels and really only pay attention to cult news and discussions here. Therefore, I’m not here a lot recently since putting my head to education of all the world events and all opinions. Of course I check in each day for the cult news.
      Love to all Bunkerites and Tony for continued fine work.

  • Simi Valley

    Do we know if Joey Chait is engaged to a man? I seriously hope so and that he isn’t continuing to cave to family pressure.

  • Intergalactic Walrus

    And I thought that the CCHR commercial aired tonight during RAW wrestling on the USA cable channel meant that the CO$ advertising was scraping the bottom of the socio-economic barrel.

    Here is the shopping cart rack in the parking lot of the Los Altos Ranch Market grocery store in Phoenix, AZ…
    (refresh)

    • Harpoona Frittata

      C’mon now, you know as well as I do that body slamming your co-auditing twin is the poor man’s way to get rid of all those pesky BTs 😉

      • Intergalactic Walrus

        If this CO$ sh#t shows up at any of my neighborhood markets, I’m gonna be tempted to body slam someone! ETA: And slap “$cientology” warning stickers on them, as that toxic word is not on them.

        BTW – This one was posted here earlier by nottrue and is in a Safeway parking lot in the San Jose, CA area. I bet the local clams are probably being hit up to fund these too. (refresh)

        https://www.instagram.com/p/BH-UU5UDfJG/

        • Harpoona Frittata

          “Free online courses”

          Mmm, hmm…when “free” is still way too high a price to pay.

          Speaking of great anti-scilon bumper stickers, isn’t it way past time that someone ran off a fresh supply of those totally classic “Scientology KILLS” bumper stickers?

          I sure think so…simple, direct and completely unambiguous in its meaning!

          • Intergalactic Walrus

            Yeah, slapping some “Scientology KILLS” bumpers stickers on there would look real good.

          • Commodore H. McCringleberry

            I have to order a rack of new business cards this week. If there are any ad-on sales on stickers, I’m on it.

            • Harpoona Frittata

              Excellent! Bumper stickers are an effective and inexpensive means of reinforcing existing memes. In this case, $cn’s various suppressive strategies have attained media prominence for awhile now. So, a bumper sticker like, “Scientology KILLS” doesn’t need to make the case, but just sum it up!

              And while it sounds like a typically hyperbolic statement to make…if they only knew how literally accurate it is!

              In addition to car bumpers, these self-sticking little placards will adhere to (hint, hint ) glass storefront windows, stop signs, telephone poles and most anything else that humans are likely to rest their eyes on.

              A little bird informed me that if you affix them above the height that a typical human can reach that the Gods will look down upon you with favor;)

        • Commodore H. McCringleberry

          While I’m not too sure of the efficacy of the “body slam”, you shouldn’t require any more reason or provocation. I just checked and there are many online outlets selling stickers for as little as $28 for 1000. That’s 500 stickers for each of these ads! Brilliant!!!!

    • Susan black

      A “call me” sticker tucked in a corner of this ad would look nice

    • As someone who recoiled from the barely concealed xenophobia and bigotry of the UK ‘leave’ campaign, only to see them win, I urge you not to underestimate the effect of this kind of approach.

      It’s very strange that the same target audience would likely laugh at a Scientology recruiter on the grounds he represented ‘that space alien crap that Tom Cruise does’ but take CCHRs anti-psychiatry nonsense seriously.

  • Intergalactic Walrus

    ACK!
    (refresh)

  • F5 – We know how much the scios is spending $$$ on their websites!
    Apparently they just don’t get the credit for it!!!
    Compared to the value of Tony’s website that is crowdfunded and based on opensource.

  • 0tessa

    Warning: I am an atheist and very critical on any religion, especially the three monotheistic religions Christianity Islam and Judaism. And I’m not very PC about it.
    Mr Chait’s lawyer asked for attenuation because of the possible negative influence by the Scientology religion. It would have of course been very politically incorrect to ask for the same because of the influence of his father’s monotheistic religion, Judaism, depending on the degree of orthodoxy of course.
    I just mean to say this line of defense seems very hypocritical to me.
    I don’t mean to offend anybody.

    • Commodore H. McCringleberry

      Did you mean Christianity instead of Catholicism? As one of those damned Catholics, we take some shit from the more hardcore prots on account of our veneration of Mary and the practice of prayer to saints. Some of the really fundamental ones even call us pagans or polytheists. Anywhoo. . .

      I’ve heard of several cases (though not in a position to look them up just now) in which sects of the three religions that you cite have been suggested as having potentially exculpatory negative influences on people. There have been several Islamic honor killings (it’s either three or five, again can’t recall exactly) wherein the perpetrator has not been found guilty of murder. If you consider the Mormons to be Christian (some do, some don’t), people have been found less guilty of certain offenses due to the influence of the more funamentalist LDS groups. I’m certain that similar examples (of what they call Undue Influence, in this case) can be found among sects of Judaism and Christianity that share a level of extreme dogmatism and both moral absolutism and isolationism as Scientology. In this instance, as with the others, the branding changes, but the theory remains the same.

      • 0tessa

        You are right, I meant Christianity. Thanks.

    • Douglas D. Douglas

      I am, of course, fairly deeply religious, but I am not offended by the comparison. It would depend on whether there was a demonstrable cause and effect. There have been religious fanatics of all stripes whose activities have been cited in legal cases. Scientologists have the mistaken notion that simply being a religion makes anything they do legal. That is not the case, as is not the case for Catholics, Protestants, and Jews.

      • 0tessa

        I don’t mean necessarily fanatism. It’s more the psychological effects of a religious indoctrination, that lays the groundworks for any later form of fanatism, like ascetism or jihadism etc, or mental damages. There is a lot of literature about young people struggling to coming to terms with their religious upbringing.
        It is true that Scientology teaches ‘the greater good’, i.e. the end justifies the means, But their army of consiglieri is also there to prevent them from doing anything illegal. Immorality does not have a place in that. They know exactly what’s legal and what’s not. They have to. That’s why they have a whole legal department.
        History is full with illegal activities by Christianity, Islam and Judaism. In fact there is an extensive ‘Criminal History of Christianity’, in german, by KarlHeinz Deschner. I am aware that what we call nowadays illegal, wasn’t that in the early days. But genocide is genocide, exterminating entire villages is what it is.
        It is a complicated discussion whether someone’s religion should be taken as an excuse to something illegal when dealt with in a court case. That would lead to discrimination of persons having done the same illegal act but without a religion to excuse them.

        • I’ll go with you so far. Beliefs bases on propositions that are unfalsifiable are relatively easily hijacked. You can’t prove that God does not want you to go to war with the Heathen, because you can’t even prove that he exists. Anything can be justified if you try hard enough.

          However, religious beliefs exist in a social context. There are moderate religious traditions and cultures which behave in a civilised way because that’s how they always have – and they read their scriptures in such a way as to prove that this is the right belief.

          In contrast, religious doctrine can also be hijacked to further an essentially political agenda – and that is the calamity that has presently befallen Islam. Jihadists read what they want to see into the scriptures, and moderates argue that this is not the correct interpretation. Since there is no way of setting this argument, they might as well dispute (as Christians did in the middle ages) about how many angels can dance on the point of a pin.

          It’s interesting that I come from a culture which is, for all intents and purposes, secular. Religion hardly intrudes into everyday life for most people in the UK, and they would be hard-pressed to explain the basic tenets of Christian belief.

          Perhaps self-identified atheist, like yourself, have a harder time in cultures where religious organisations and belief have greater secular power, and there are more occasions of intolerance towards non-believers.

          The court emphatically did not decide that his religion gave him the right to do something illegal. He was found guilty and punished. The arguments only concerned pleas in mitigation of his sentence. The argument there was that he was brought up in an oppressive and abusive ‘faith’ and that influence should be taken into consideration.

          If someone had broken the law under the influence of an abusive spouse, and found guilty, they might properly receive the same consideration, so this is not discrimination.

          • 0tessa

            Thanks for your reaction. I can see the influence of an abusive spouse when, e.g. she hit him real hard. But I doubt it whether I would see the influence if she was dealing in endangered species. It’s hard to bring the two things together somehow. If he would have smashed in the windows at Flag, yes, I would see his past being part of this.

            • When I say ‘abusive’ I was thinking ‘psychologically controlling’. I was thinking of a physically big man I once knew who was totally under the control of a girlfriend who would have mad tantrums at the drop of a hat.

              He did things for her that he didn’t even know he was doing, half the time.

              As for the case, the man was convicted, and will serve time in prison. The only question is whether the fact that he was abusively controlled by his father and the doctrine of an organisation that claims to be a religion should mitigate the length of his sentence.

              If we had been the judges, we would likely have come to different conclusions on this matter – but both would have been arguable.

              I doubt his father would have received the same consideration and, if he had have come to court, Scientology would likely have looked even worse.

              The reasons he did not appear probably constitute their own punishment (another example of a ‘super being’ neglecting their health?).

              Overall, I think it’s a human calamity which has added to the pointless pile of money being accumulated by the CofS, so that they have the power to keep doing it. Take away the CofS and its worship of cash donations and this situation might never have arisen.

        • Douglas D. Douglas

          I, of course, use the term “fanatic” to describe those who go beyond the bounds of what I consider proper within my own belief system. I also recognize and acknowledge that there is a higher societal standard. So the use of the word fanaticism should be considered in that context. I say all that to say I agree it isn’t only fanatics that can damage people with religion.

          (My wife is a big fan of mega-church preacher Rick Warren. One of his mantras is, “The reason that many people don’t like Christianity is because they’ve met a Christian.”)

    • Baby

      Otessa.. One thing about the Underground.. we are not easily offended about religion. I deplore any organized religion. The court recognized Scientology as being Abusive.

      • Missionary Kid

        The classic line is, “I don’t belong to an organized religion, I’m a Baptist.” (Insert any other sect or religion).

        • I know an English Baptist who would laugh at that. Then point out that they can always organise a cup of tea.

          • Missionary Kid

            It’s been said about many different denominations, and most will laugh at that one.

            • He’s the guy who told me that his church’s adult nativity play had been cancelled because the congregation didn’t include three wise men and a virgin.

            • dungeon master

              Sadly, the court, in my experience, wants not to hear about a lifetime of control and abuse. They want the nice speech that you’re going to church and reading your bible and following all the court’s instructions (and of course paying off all your fines). They don’t care if you were victimized your entire life. I think the judge did take this into account in joeys case, reducing his sentence to roughly a year. If he behaves himself, he’ll get out in maybe 9 months. Consider, the court’s used to sentence a man to prison for 15 years for a quarter ounce of weed. The justice system in this country could use a lot of work. Turning a blind eye to victimized people and treating them the same as criminals is not the only problem. Stepping off soap box..

            • Missionary Kid

              That’s a variation on an old joke, too, but I can’t remember where I first heard it.

        • Robert Eckert

          It’s a modification of Will Rogers, “I don’t belong to any organized political party. I’m a Democrat.”

          • Missionary Kid

            You’re right. We need Will today.

    • I, too, am a thoroughgoing atheist (although I think of myself as a rationalist – defining yourself by something you don’t believe is daft – I’m an a-easter-bunny-ist, too, but I don’t call myself that at Easter).

      It seems to me that, if the lawyers client had been born into an extreme and abusive sect of Judaism or Christianity or Islam or… whatever – a sect which controlled every aspect of a members life in an oppressive way – it would have quite acceptable for the law to show mercy on those grounds.

      Representatives of the moderate majorities of those groups would probably have approved, arguing that that oppression was not part of their faith – and mainstream religions do have moderate majorities.

      I know good people, born into a religious tradition, who believe things which strike me as arbitrary and very strange indeed. However, they remain good people, and the churches to which they belong do good works.

      We talk about our contrasting beliefs with mutual respect, but I’m not a proselytizing atheist – if someone’s faith enables them to live a fulfilling life, I don’t particularly want to take that away from them. I think I’m right and will argue for my beliefs vigorously, but I don’t think I’m the thought police.

      Religious organisations are a different matter. They are subject to real politik like any other social group. The fact that they don’t often live up to their moral aspirations is often due to the fact that those aspirations are unrealistic. Human can’t condemn them fas a class, without condemning all other organised human efforts too. You can only judge on a case-by-case basis.

      If someone is living a good, socially beneficial, life and does not try to impose his or her beliefs on others, that’s good enough for me. If I expect the freedom to put my point of view, and believe what I believe, they have to have the same.

      Scientology is a special case here. It has no tradition – it pioneered theology as Space Opera (which was independently invented by the founder of the relatively benign Atherius Society at about the same time).

      In its Orthodox form it is controlling and repressive. Getting money from its members is built into every aspect of its doctrine and practice, and it is difficult to see how that can be moderated without
      it dying out, or becoming something different.

      Scientology should be condemned for hurting people not for its claims to be a religion (which are questionable in any case). Every time that the fact it does this is recognised in a court of law, that’s a victory. Having read the stuff in the legal document above I have to say that Scientology came out very badly indeed, and the court emerged with credit.

      That’s plenty good enough for me.

  • Lady Squash

    That is a sad story about Joey Chait. His story of abuse in the Sea Org and by his father is disturbing. I knew Izzy Chait socially; he made me uncomfortable and I couldn’t understand why he was such a big shot. Now I get it. Scientology glorifies power and money. He had both. So sad. Best of luck to you, Joey.

  • The Explorer Race

    Good luck Joey 🙂

  • Missionary Kid

    Leah Remini’s Reality Show, It’s All Relative is playing right now on The Learning Channel. It’s been playing early in the morning on DirecTV. I think I’m getting the east coast feed.

  • indie8million

    Regarding this, “. Gang leaders and The Game met with L.A. police chief Charlie Beck against a backdrop festooned with Scientology logos.”
    Where the hell is Chill E.B?
    He has a history of working with kids in schools and with gangs. Say what you will about him, but he has been a caring human being his whole life. His songs have always had social import.
    Were they worried that Chill E.B. might connect with “The Game” and have another option for his career than just running around the world bringing hundreds of people in for the IAS to reg, yet not getting any of the commissions from it?

    Chill E. B. is a classic rapper in his own right. Ask any rap fan who he is and they’ll know.
    I wish they’d let him go.

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=4YejSh_6v5c

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=rEWdFjkE5_I

  • Mission Impossible:DonkeyPunch

    Question: Is Joey Chait engaged to be married to a man or a woman? Did C.O.S. cure him of the gay?