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Mike Rinder on Scientology’s smears, Miscavige’s fears, and waiting for ‘Aftermath’ news

Here’s a timely treat for us today as Jeffrey Augustine talks with Leah Remini’s Scientology and the Aftermath costar Mike Rinder about several issues that we’ve been concerned with here at the Bunker lately.

Rinder is one of the chief targets of Scientology’s smear machine, headed up by OSA goon Ed Parkin and his “STAND League.” Here’s what he had to say about it:

“What Ed Parkin does is he gathers together typical Scientology smear material about anybody that appears on ‘The Aftermath’ or about Leah and me and sends this out primarily on Twitter but also on their Facebook page, and you know most of which I can’t even see because though I’m one of the main targets of the quote ‘STAND League’ —they have me blocked. So they’re out there tweeting about me all day long but they don’t want me to see it, which sorta ought to tell you just about everything you need to know about the legitimacy of what it is that they’re saying.”

And on the controversy that we’ve been following about letters the STAND League promotes, supposedly written by prominent Los Angeles religious figure Rev. Dr. Cecil “Chip” Murray, who is also a fellow at USC. The letters are addressed to Disney CEO Bob Iger, and they condemn ‘The Aftermath” as a bigoted attack on religion. But the university has said publicly that Murray didn’t write the letters, Scientology has insisted that he did, and Murray himself has kept his mouth shut about it.


“[Rev. Murray’s] silence speaks volumes, frankly. The fact that he has not come out and made a statement one way or the other — he is caught between a rock and a hard place. He doesn’t want to come out and say anything that contradicts USC because that’s part of his, you know, legacy and where his money comes from. And on the other side of the equation is the Church of Scientology…he doesn’t want to kick that dog and have that dog turn on him. I suspect we’ll never hear from him.”

Mike is also asked why Miscavige himself never makes public pronouncements about Leah’s show.

“[Miscavige] believes it is…beneath his station in life to do that…He’s afraid that if he were to make commentary about that and express his opinion or speak about it, that it would open him up to a potential lawsuit. And he is really paranoid about ever being put in a deposition. And that’s why he doesn’t appear publicly, because he fears that someone will serve him with a subpoena, or there’ll be a reporter there, or someone from the government to serve him with a subpoena, or at this point he fears that someone with an iPhone will ask him a question that he can’t answer, and it will go viral…Can you imagine Miscavige out in public where everybody has a cell phone and walking up to him and saying, hey, Miscavige, where’s your wife Shelly? He can’t deal with that, and that’s just one example.”

And about Shelly’s disappearance:

“[Miscavige] got rid of the last person who was able to challenge him in any way (or his authority) which is his wife — just like Hubbard did.”

Jeffrey also felt compelled to ask about a season four of ‘Aftermath.’ Is it happening?

“No news, Jeff. And it’s not because I’m withholding some information or Leah is withholding some information. There is just a lot of moving parts that go into a thing like this. There is the production company, there is the network, there is the audience, there is the time and other commitments and all sorts of things and literally things are just up in the air right now as to what happens next.”



HowdyCon 2019 in Los Angeles

Janis Grady has set the June 22 combined event. Her annual reunion and barbecue will coincide with the Saturday event for HowdyCon. If you wish to attend, you will need to RSVP with Janis (, and there will be a small contribution she’ll be asking for to help pay costs.

HOTEL: Janis tells us she’s worked out a deal with Hampton Inn and Suites, at 7501 North Glenoaks Blvd, Burbank, (818) 768-1106. We have a $159 nightly rate for June 21 and 22, and we’re looking into getting the same rate for June 19 and 20.

Also, we have now secured our Friday night venue in Los Angeles, a small theater similar to our venue last year in Chicago. If you plan to join us, please rsvp to your proprietor at tonyo94 AT gmail.



Scientology’s celebrities, ‘Ideal Orgs,’ and more!

[Erika Christensen, Ethan Suplee, and Juliette Lewis]

We’ve been building landing pages about David Miscavige’s favorite playthings, including celebrities and ‘Ideal Orgs,’ and we’re hoping you’ll join in and help us gather as much information as we can about them. Head on over and help us with links and photos and comments.

Scientology’s celebrities, from A to Z! Find your favorite Hubbardite celeb at this index page — or suggest someone to add to the list!

Scientology’s ‘Ideal Orgs,’ from one end of the planet to the other! Help us build up pages about each these worldwide locations!

Scientology’s sneaky front groups, spreading the good news about L. Ron Hubbard while pretending to benefit society!

Scientology Lit: Books reviewed or excerpted in our weekly series. How many have you read?



[ONE year ago] Scientology TV is now installed at the Ideal Orgs — when do the rest of us get to see it?
[TWO years ago] Leah Remini’s ‘Troublemaker’ finally gets a UK publisher — and you can probably guess who!
[FOUR years ago] NEW TODAY: Memoir with shocking claims by notorious Scientology spy, Merrell Vannier
[FIVE years ago] Sunday Funnies: Scientology nuttiness on Oscar Day!
[SIX years ago] Scientology Mythbusting with Jon Atack: That L. Ron Hubbard TV Ad!
[SEVEN years ago] Scientology on the High Seas: Three Major Enemies Scalped!


Scientology disconnection, a reminder

Bernie Headley has not seen his daughter Stephanie in 5,376 days.
Valerie Haney has not seen her mother Lynne in 1,507 days.
Katrina Reyes has not seen her mother Yelena in 2,009 days
Sylvia Wagner DeWall has not seen her brother Randy in 1,489 days.
Brian Sheen has not seen his grandson Leo in 552 days.
Geoff Levin has not seen his son Collin and daughter Savannah in 440 days.
Christie Collbran has not seen her mother Liz King in 3,747 days.
Clarissa Adams has not seen her parents Walter and Irmin Huber in 1,615 days.
Carol Nyburg has not seen her daughter Nancy in 2,389 days.
Jamie Sorrentini Lugli has not seen her father Irving in 3,163 days.
Quailynn McDaniel has not seen her brother Sean in 2,509 days.
Dylan Gill has not seen his father Russell in 11,075 days.
Melissa Paris has not seen her father Jean-Francois in 6,995 days.
Valeska Paris has not seen her brother Raphael in 3,162 days.
Mirriam Francis has not seen her brother Ben in 2,743 days.
Claudio and Renata Lugli have not seen their son Flavio in 3,003 days.
Sara Goldberg has not seen her daughter Ashley in 2,043 days.
Lori Hodgson has not seen her son Jeremy and daughter Jessica in 1,755 days.
Marie Bilheimer has not seen her mother June in 1,281 days.
Joe Reaiche has not seen his daughter Alanna Masterson in 5,370 days
Derek Bloch has not seen his father Darren in 2,510 days.
Cindy Plahuta has not seen her daughter Kara in 2,830 days.
Roger Weller has not seen his daughter Alyssa in 7,686 days.
Claire Headley has not seen her mother Gen in 2,805 days.
Ramana Dienes-Browning has not seen her mother Jancis in 1,161 days.
Mike Rinder has not seen his son Benjamin and daughter Taryn in 5,463 days.
Brian Sheen has not seen his daughter Spring in 1,569 days.
Skip Young has not seen his daughters Megan and Alexis in 1,971 days.
Mary Kahn has not seen her son Sammy in 1,843 days.
Lois Reisdorf has not seen her son Craig in 1,426 days.
Phil and Willie Jones have not seen their son Mike and daughter Emily in 1,921 days.
Mary Jane Sterne has not seen her daughter Samantha in 2,175 days.
Kate Bornstein has not seen her daughter Jessica in 13,284 days.


Posted by Tony Ortega on March 2, 2019 at 07:00

E-mail tips to tonyo94 AT gmail DOT com or follow us on Twitter. We also post 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 new book with Paulette Cooper, Battlefield Scientology: Exposing L. Ron Hubbard’s dangerous ‘religion’ is now on sale at Amazon in paperback and Kindle formats. Our book about Paulette, The Unbreakable Miss Lovely: How the Church of Scientology tried to destroy Paulette Cooper, is on sale at Amazon in paperback, Kindle, and audiobook versions. We’ve posted photographs of Paulette and scenes from her life at a separate location. Reader Sookie put together a complete index. More information can also be found at the book’s dedicated page.

The Best of the Underground Bunker, 1995-2018 Just starting out here? We’ve picked out the most important stories we’ve covered here at the Underground Bunker (2012-2018), The Village Voice (2008-2012), New Times Los Angeles (1999-2002) and the Phoenix New Times (1995-1999)

Other links: BLOGGING DIANETICS: Reading Scientology’s founding text cover to cover | 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 | 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 | 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

Watch our short videos that explain Scientology’s controversies in three minutes or less…

Check your whale level at our dedicated page for status updates, or join us at the Underground Bunker’s Facebook discussion group for more frivolity.

Our non-Scientology stories: Robert Burnham Jr., the man who inscribed the universe | Notorious alt-right inspiration Kevin MacDonald and his theories about Jewish DNA | The selling of the “Phoenix Lights” | Astronomer Harlow Shapley‘s FBI file | Sex, spies, and local TV news | Battling Babe-Hounds: Ross Jeffries v. R. Don Steele


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