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VIDEO LEAK: Late-stage Scientology is even more depressing than we thought

[Birmingham gets its Ideal Org, 2017]

Wow, this is a fun one, kids. An Underground Bunker reader has leaked us video that they shot while attending an event at Scientology’s Birmingham, England “Ideal Org” earlier this year.

We have the video for you, as well as a transcript, and we want to set it up a little so you fully understand what it is you’re seeing and hearing.

We go way back with the Birmingham org, which has consistently been one of the most fascinating Scientology outposts over the years. We certainly remember the fundraising efforts in Birmingham to go Ideal. In 2011, there was a leak from Birmingham’s computer system, and Anonymous got its hands on a lot of photos from fundraising events that were never meant to be made public, along with a song that had been made for an event. Someone at Anonymous put the music and photos together for a wince-inducing video that really captures how awkward Scientology fundraising can be…

 

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One of the people who can be seen in that conga line, by the way, is English mystery author R.J. Ellory, who is one of Scientology’s very few UK “celebrities.”

 

 
Just as embarrassing were thousands of emails that also leaked out from Birmingham’s servers, and which included some pretty depressing insights into the kinds of pressure church members were under to fork over ever larger amounts of money, particularly for the new building that would become the “Ideal Org.”

After years of extorting its members, Scientology finally held the grand opening for its Birmingham org on October 21, 2017.

Was it worth it? Well, now we get our first look inside, and it’s pretty underwhelming.

The video was shot by a person who we’re not going to name, but who told us they had soured on Scientology after only a short time in, and so they decided to take out their phone and record a few minutes of a recent “briefing.”

It took place in March, and the occasion was the 108th birthday of Scientology’s founder, L. Ron Hubbard, who died in 1986.

Each year around the date of Hubbard’s birth, March 13, a couple of thousand Scientologists gather in Clearwater, Florida at Ruth Eckerd Hall to see church leader David Miscavige give his usual hourslong presentation about all of the successes Scientology is having. The event also features the church’s official Hubbard biographer, Dan Sherman, who spins a few embellished yarns about Hubbard’s life. But Miscavige is the star, and he begins and ends the presentation, which is recorded on video.

A week later, that video is shown at the local orgs around the world so that Scientologists who couldn’t go to Florida can experience it. And that was happening at the Birmingham Ideal Org, with Miscavige winding down his long presentation on the video screen, when our correspondent began recording on his smartphone.

[David Miscavige:] And that brings us to the close of this evening’s event. And returns us to what I told you at the outset of this year, that we would tick off 2019 with a bang. And as is obvious, I was not just alluding to confetti cannons and party poppers. On the contrary I was referencing the kind of thunderbolts Zeus was said to wield. And having delivered that bang, we’re now about to deliver an electrical storm embracing this whole planet. Well, let’s now close this event on a quiet note. LRH tells us we are only as alive as we still cling to dreams. And while we cannot fulfill those dreams in a single breath, we nonetheless possess the tech to eventually make them come true. Well, even more than that we possess the means to fulfill that most enduring dream of every spiritual being, which is total spiritual freedom. And which is both our beginning and our end. So let this be my final word. In all due time you will indeed see the stuff of which dreams are made. Continental rings of Ideal Orgs. Even more new Advanced Orgs rising in Canada and Mexico. And a technical release to rekindle dreams in any human being who might cross your path. But as was said so long ago, in dreams begins responsibilities, and to make those dreams an actuality requires ascending his carefully marked trail upwards, wherefore comes what was also prophesized long ago, that even before we meet him on the other side, he would draw closer than you ever imagined. And, in fact, I can’t imagine you don’t feel it, right now. Thank you, and forevermore to LRH. [applause] Thank you very much. Happy birthday, sir. Good night.

 

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This is bog-standard stuff. The writing is Sherman, the delivery pure Miscavige. And it’s like every other major event that the church puts on during the year.

In the room at the Birmingham org, you can see the crowd rise to its feet along with the audience that they’re seeing on the video, and we think we can hear them chiming in a little to the “hip hip hoorays” happening on screen.

Then, the video is interrupted and the house lights go on as the Birmingham Org’s “Foundation Executive Director” (in other words, the person in charge during the evening shift), Jules Fleetwood, begins her remarks.

We are grateful to our correspondent for bringing us this view into the bleak state of affairs in late stage Scientology. Well, check it out for yourself…

 

[Jules Fleetwood:] Can you hear me? Oh, wow, that was wild. OK, wow. Wasn’t that an incredible event tonight? Yeah. There is some music, that’s why we cut it short, because I wanted to say a few words before we roll into the music, so, first of all I just want to say there’s a few new faces here I’ve never seen, so welcome. And thank you very much for coming along. I wanted to firstly tell you that we’re going to be celebrating LRH’s birthday shortly with a beautiful cake, which is going to be brought forward in just a moment, so be excited about that. We have got some surveys for you to complete which will be either on or underneath the seat, so if you could take a few moments, please, and fill that. We will also be giving you what we call the gift form, as we have been working with our alliance organization. We have a few organizations similar to this, in Edinburgh and Manchester, who we’re supporting to have their new Ideal building. And this requires help from all of you, so I’m going to give you one of those as well, so if you would like to fill one of those in that would be wonderful. OK? Now, I just would like to say as the executive director of the Foundation team, how privileged I was to be at Florida in Flag organization which is the largest organization on the planet. Just got back yesterday. And I attended the event live and also had some very inspirational briefings, as well, with the Chairman of the Board RTC. And I do want you guys to know that this has already been a phenomenal year with the opening of the Africa Advanced Organization. And there’s so many more things set to come. It’s just incredibly exciting. What we would really like from all of you is to be here and to be on services doing your courses, going in session, coming and being part of the team. You’re very welcome to join our team. We’re an amazing bunch. We have many different things that you can help us with here. And we have a lot of voluntary activities that you can also get involved with. In fact, I will tell you we have an event happening in April which is called the IAS World Tour. And, who came to the last IAS World Tour, raise your hand. OK, good. So, we will be showing you all the different campaigns that we’re involved with which you’ll have seen on the Scientology TV clip. We help people in the community with the Say No To Drugs campaign, we have a Human Rights education campaign, we have a literacy campaign, Way to Happiness campaign, and all of these campaigns are for you to get involved with and for you to find the one that you’re interested in and get involved. We’ll be teaching you how to do that, giving you all the materials that you need. And that will be happening on Saturday the 13th of April in the afternoon at 1 o’clock. So if you’d like to attend, then you can let one of the staff know, OK? Great. Next week on Friday we will actually be doing the full Advanced Organization of Africa grand opening. And that is next Friday so, if you’d like to see some more of those incredible speakers and see some of the music again, you’re welcome to attend. That’s next Friday, OK? Good. That’s not too much information. You will get given this in writing, OK? And then the following Friday, we have a special event just dedicated to the music. So that incredible African music that was played, not only do we have a CD available, which you can get a copy of, of which some of those songs were written by L. Ron Hubbard himself, we will be doing an event to show the full musical presentation. And that will be on Friday the 30th of March. OK? So do you feel briefed? Great. OK, good. All right, so once again I would like to thank you all very very much for coming. I think the cake might be here now. Do we have a cake? OK, is anyone able to take a chance holding it up to show everyone? OK. You need to see this amazing cake. Hey, there we go. OK, so we’re going to be taking that through to the cafe. You’re all welcome to have some. We’re going to play some music for you now. So please complete your surveys, your gift forms, and enjoy the rest of the evening, you’re welcome to stay here all evening and enjoy the atmosphere, OK? Great, thank you very much.

 
Keep in mind that this is one of the four biggest events of the year, so the fact that they have managed to get a few score people into this room is not really impressive — Ideal Orgs were supposed to produce major recruitment effects, with thousands of new members pounding down the doors.

But it’s just really eye-opening to see that even behind closed doors, the members are getting hit with the same painfully dull come-ons that are already being featured in every magazine and video put out by the church: Donate, donate, donate to Ideal Orgs, to the front groups, and their campaigns. It’s endless. And it’s been driving people away for years.

What a depressing glimpse this is. And we thank our correspondent for having the gumption to get it to us.

 
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Kansas City’s party is today!

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As we explained yesterday, David Miscavige is holding his first ‘Ideal Org’ grand opening in more than a year, and it’s scheduled today for downtown Kansas City.

We don’t know if we will get any eyewitness accounts today, but eventually some photos should start arriving from the party. So check back in later today.

 

 
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Source Code

“I, one time, asked a bunch of mothers why they didn’t shorten the school hours and so forth and make it a little bit easier on the kids and so forth. And they were shocked. And I very carefully cross-questioned them and discovered that uniformly these ladies had no idea whatsoever of their child being educated — that there was any advantage whatsoever in learning how to read or write or do things in school, but boy, you sure had a lot of free time there with no kids underfoot! Now, that’s a brutal statement, but that’s why they put the kids in school; school is a wonderful method. These people, by the way, had children in the third, fourth, fifth, sixth grades. And they were — they were flabbergasted that I would be interested in whether or, what the child was being taught and what good it was doing the child.” — L. Ron Hubbard, November 2, 1953

 
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Overheard in the FreeZone

“Captain Bill said in his tech briefing number five, it’s on Youtube, that once you do ot3 and the solo stuff you will no longer be at affect of the implanters. I disagree because once someone has done that stuff they still have to breathe chemtrail air, they still have no idea what chemtrails are, they still can get tricked by a false flag like 9/11, they still can get abducted by an alien and get semen taken then have a false memory implanted as to what occurred during the abduction. I’m sure they’ve had great wins but I think what Captain Bill has said makes someone think they can become invincible just by doing the levels alone. I don’t think so.”

 
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Random Howdy

“Miscavige became Emperor through the Hubbard-approved Roman rules of ascension, which he achieved by his control of the Praetorian guard of the Sea Org, the CMO. Once becoming Caesar, how could he smash his name into the history books of his hermit kingdom? He can’t add to the ‘tech’ so all that is left for him to do is BUILD BUILD BUILD. It’s all about the ruinous runt’s ego.”

 
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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?

 
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THE WHOLE TRACK

[ONE year ago] Freewinds, part 3: How the cruise ship fits Scientology’s methods of obfuscation and lies
[TWO years ago] Read the threatening letter Danny Masterson’s attorney Marty Singer sent a victim’s husband
[THREE years ago] What the first trailer for Leah Remini’s Scientology series tells us about her show
[FOUR years ago] Chapter by chapter, the best parts of Leah Remini’s book ‘Troublemaker’
[FIVE years ago] Sunday Funnies: Scientology is finger lickin’ good!
[SIX years ago] Jon Atack Answers The Question: How Do Smart People Fall for Scientology?
[SEVEN years ago] Scientology on the High Seas: The Final Dispatches
[EIGHT years ago] Scientology Leader David Miscavige Fed Gourmet Meals Every Few Hours: Australian TV
[TEN years ago] Proof that Scientology Works!

 
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Scientology disconnection, a reminder

Bernie Headley has not seen his daughter Stephanie in 5,616 days.
Valerie Haney has not seen her mother Lynne in 1,745 days.
Katrina Reyes has not seen her mother Yelena in 2,249 days
Sylvia Wagner DeWall has not seen her brother Randy in 1,769 days.
Brian Sheen has not seen his grandson Leo in 789 days.
Geoff Levin has not seen his son Collin and daughter Savannah in 680 days.
Christie Collbran has not seen her mother Liz King in 3,987 days.
Clarissa Adams has not seen her parents Walter and Irmin Huber in 1,855 days.
Carol Nyburg has not seen her daughter Nancy in 2,629 days.
Jamie Sorrentini Lugli has not seen her father Irving in 3,403 days.
Quailynn McDaniel has not seen her brother Sean in 2,749 days.
Dylan Gill has not seen his father Russell in 11,315 days.
Melissa Paris has not seen her father Jean-Francois in 7,234 days.
Valeska Paris has not seen her brother Raphael in 3,402 days.
Mirriam Francis has not seen her brother Ben in 2,983 days.
Claudio and Renata Lugli have not seen their son Flavio in 3,244 days.
Sara Goldberg has not seen her daughter Ashley in 2,283 days.
Lori Hodgson has not seen her son Jeremy and daughter Jessica in 1,995 days.
Marie Bilheimer has not seen her mother June in 1,521 days.
Charley Updegrove has not seen his son Toby in 1,047 days.
Joe Reaiche has not seen his daughter Alanna Masterson in 5,610 days
Derek Bloch has not seen his father Darren in 2,750 days.
Cindy Plahuta has not seen her daughter Kara in 3,070 days.
Roger Weller has not seen his daughter Alyssa in 7,926 days.
Claire Headley has not seen her mother Gen in 3,045 days.
Ramana Dienes-Browning has not seen her mother Jancis in 1,400 days.
Mike Rinder has not seen his son Benjamin and daughter Taryn in 5,703 days.
Brian Sheen has not seen his daughter Spring in 1,809 days.
Skip Young has not seen his daughters Megan and Alexis in 2,211 days.
Mary Kahn has not seen her son Sammy in 2,083 days.
Lois Reisdorf has not seen her son Craig in 1,666 days.
Phil and Willie Jones have not seen their son Mike and daughter Emily in 2,161 days.
Mary Jane Barry has not seen her daughter Samantha in 2,415 days.
Kate Bornstein has not seen her daughter Jessica in 13,524 days.

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Posted by Tony Ortega on November 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, 14 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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