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Clearwater takes a stand against Scientology: MARK BUNKER WINS!

UPDATE: With 100 percent of precincts reporting, Mark Bunker wins a city council seat in Clearwater tonight with 5988 votes, 200 more than the second-place candidate.

We just talked to him on the phone. Here’s what he had to say…

“I really am shocked that the message got out to as many people as it did. We did not have the money to send out a lot of mailers. Other candidates sent out mailers almost every day — we sent out one. And we had fewer yard signs than everyone else. But we got the word out there anyway. And the pent-up demand of people here in Clearwater to do something about Scientology did the trick. It is so important to show that Scientology does not have the power that it seems to have. There’s no reason to be afraid of Scientology. They couldn’t even stop me from being elected.”

[And now back to what we posted this morning…]


We’ve known Mark Bunker for more than 20 years, long before he was dubbed “Wise Beard Man” by the Anonymous movement in 2008. And over that time we’ve had a great respect for his decency and fairness while he has tried to tell the world about the abuses of Scientology.

Now, he’s taken on his greatest challenge yet, running for a seat on Clearwater, Florida’s city council, and making his candidacy largely a referendum on Scientology itself.

In 1975, Scientology used subterfuge to invade Clearwater, buying properties under a front in order to conceal their aims to take over the downtown of the Gulf Coast town. And that project is still going on — last year, Tracey McManus at the Tampa Bay Times revealed that Scientology is still buying up property secretly in the city, and has doubled its footprint in recent years.

Bunker wants the city to stand up to Scientology if it has any hope of restoring some life to its downtown. Will the citizens of this town under siege cast their votes for him? We’ll find out some time after ballots are cast today.

We’d love to see what Mark could do in that seat. We hope he wins it.


Scientology inviting its members to congregate during the pandemic

Wow, it’s hard not to read this as a pretty outrageous example of Scientology trying to sell courses while putting its members at risk. From the Valley Org…

Due to the recent events —if you’re at home, not working, kids not at school—bring your family, friends and selectees to the org!

Whatever is happening – even if you are working and don’t have kids – come into the org and get on course!! Help out in CF. Help us get others on course!

It’s the cleanest, safest and best place to be! The org is being cleaned and sanitized with completely safe non-toxic, kid and environmentally friendly products.

We also have booklets from our church on how to keep yourself and others well. These are free booklets available to you, your family and friends.


We have courses for your kids,

A children’s course room

A full time nanny day and foundation

Life Improvement Courses

Children’s courses

We have it all.

Let’s not forget it is LRH’s Birthday week and what we can do is flourish and prosper by availing ourselves of the tech.

See you at the org!!




Ask a Scientologist!

Here’s a question that came in to, and we thought Brendan Tighe might be the best person to answer it. If you have a question for one of our many experts, please send it in!


I’m a never-in, but I am a food vendor who calls on the Fort Harrison. And even though I believe the testimonies of people who have left Scientology, whenever I go to the hotel, everyone seems so happy to be there. The guests look like they are enjoying being at this very upscale hotel. The families at the pool are swimming and laughing and act much like my family acts when on vacation. Can someone please give the details of what it’s really like to be a guest there?

In my experience many are “happy in the moment” to be there. But this is after being heavily pressured to part with money to be there. Many parishioners would rather spend less money at a local non-Scientology hotel. But they are threatened with ethics action and many cave and stay at on-site Scientology hotels. The hotel staff are faced with even greater pressure and daily threats to get the hotel rooms filled. Often times this means not being allowed to go home until rooms filled quotas are met. My ex-wife was (and may still be) responsible for Fort Harrison Hotel occupancy. I would sometimes not see her for days if she slept at her desk because she was prevented from going home with too many empty hotel rooms.

— Brendan Tighe


Our man in Italy serenades St. Pat’s Day

Richard celebrates the holiday for us in song…



Source Code

“With governments leaning all over Scientology and looking down our throats, for instance, the probability — Mary Sue was always curious. She always said, ‘The government wants something out of Scientology.’ She’s always saying this. ‘The government wants something. There’s some reason for this.’ And we finally found it. They want the E-Meter for front-line combat troops. I thought that was very interesting. Yeah, it’s pretty crazy, isn’t it? Typical. You see, they get so much infiltration — this is serious — they get so much infiltration in modern warfare of the type that is being fought, that they can’t tell friend from foe. So they’re going to equip front-line combat troops with portable lie detectors. And, of course, there’s only one portable lie detector in the world, the E-Meter. I knowed something was getting those chilluns, you see? But apparently they have some kind of an interest in it. And you would — a thief or a criminal never can ask you for something. They’ve got to steal it. And I wasn’t saying all the governments are thieves or criminals. Don’t get me wrong. I think there’s one or two that aren’t. I know this is about the wildest curve you ever heard of and it’s completely unbelievable. You can see a soldier walking around carrying an E-Meter. Before he shoots the guy, you see, he puts the electrodes in his hands, you know? Bunch of psychotics. I know, it doesn’t sound right. But it sounds just exactly what a government would do.” — L. Ron Hubbard, March 17, 1964



Overheard in the FreeZone

“This whole planet belongs to Marcab. And they are not ‘evil.’ The games are not about good-vs-evil, but just about domination. Since various Invaders come from older universe to this one, and seeks to expand their space empires, the nearby space empires like Marcab are just defending themselves. Any intelligent and or spiritual beings are staying away from conflicts, they do not care who is in charge. I believe that Ron and Captain Bill have nothing to do with any conflicts, except that while alive they tried to ‘make themselves and other people free,’ and thus got removed and reimplanted and recycled back to weak human state. They may arise again, I hope so. If you wonder what this non-free planet has to do with any of this, it is that Marcab is implanting us and preparing us to become all space soldiers and fight against the next incoming Invader waves. Nice science fiction? Look better, watch for clues, some are too obvious.”


Random Howdy

“Capt. Howdy swears by some Dr Pepper and Jim Beam Black at the end of another lackadaisical day.”


Full Court Press: What we’re watching at the Underground Bunker

Criminal prosecutions:
Jay Spina: Sentencing set for April 3 in White Plains
Hanan and Rizza Islam and other family members: Trial set for April 14 in Los Angeles

Civil litigation:
Luis and Rocio Garcia v. Scientology: Waiting for an appellate decision from the Eleventh Circuit
Valerie Haney v. Scientology: Forced to ‘religious arbitration.’ Hearing on motion for reconsideration set for April 16
Chrissie Bixler et al. v. Scientology: April 22 (plaintiff attorneys pro hac vice), June (demurrers by Masterson and Scientology), June (motions to compel arbitration)
Jane Doe v. Scientology (in Miami): Jane Doe’s attorneys have asked for discovery, March 19 depositions (Warren McShane, Lynn Farny), March 24 deposition (David Miscavige), April 20 hearing set (motion to compel arbitration)
Matt and Kathy Feschbach bankruptcy appeal: Oral arguments were heard on March 11 in Jacksonville
Brian Statler Sr v. City of Inglewood: Complaint filed.


Start making your plans…

Head over to the convention website and meet us in St. Louis!


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

[The Big Three: Tom Cruise, John Travolta, and Kirstie Alley]

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 pitches a fit about sensible mental health reform in wake of Parkland shooting
[TWO years ago] Scientology’s L. Ron Hubbard considered James Bond’s nemesis SMERSH his biggest enemy
[THREE years ago] A HowdyCon 2017 announcement: Special guests and performances!
[FOUR years ago] Scientology’s ‘personality test’ taken apart like never before, and by a former member
[FIVE years ago] More proof that Scientology used the ‘R2-45’ method to intimidate enemies
[SIX years ago] Here are the wealthy people keeping Scientology alive
[SEVEN years ago] ABC finally takes on Scientology…with General Hospital
[EIGHT years ago] Why Irish (Ex-Scientologist) Eyes are Smiling


Scientology disconnection, a reminder

Bernie Headley (1952-2019) did not see his daughter Stephanie in his final 5,667 days.
Valerie Haney has not seen her mother Lynne in 1,880 days.
Katrina Reyes has not seen her mother Yelena in 2,384 days
Sylvia Wagner DeWall has not seen her brother Randy in 1,904 days.
Brian Sheen has not seen his grandson Leo in 924 days.
Geoff Levin has not seen his son Collin and daughter Savannah in 815 days.
Christie Collbran has not seen her mother Liz King in 4,122 days.
Clarissa Adams has not seen her parents Walter and Irmin Huber in 1,990 days.
Carol Nyburg has not seen her daughter Nancy in 2,764 days.
Jamie Sorrentini Lugli has not seen her father Irving in 3,538 days.
Quailynn McDaniel has not seen her brother Sean in 2,884 days.
Dylan Gill has not seen his father Russell in 11,450 days.
Melissa Paris has not seen her father Jean-Francois in 7,369 days.
Valeska Paris has not seen her brother Raphael in 3,537 days.
Mirriam Francis has not seen her brother Ben in 3,118 days.
Claudio and Renata Lugli have not seen their son Flavio in 3,379 days.
Sara Goldberg has not seen her daughter Ashley in 2,417 days.
Lori Hodgson has not seen her son Jeremy and daughter Jessica in 2,130 days.
Marie Bilheimer has not seen her mother June in 1,655 days.
Charley Updegrove has not seen his son Toby in 1,182 days.
Joe Reaiche has not seen his daughter Alanna Masterson in 5,745 days
Derek Bloch has not seen his father Darren in 2,885 days.
Cindy Plahuta has not seen her daughter Kara in 3,205 days.
Roger Weller has not seen his daughter Alyssa in 8,060 days.
Claire Headley has not seen her mother Gen in 3,180 days.
Ramana Dienes-Browning has not seen her mother Jancis in 1,535 days.
Mike Rinder has not seen his son Benjamin and daughter Taryn in 5,838 days.
Brian Sheen has not seen his daughter Spring in 1,944 days.
Skip Young has not seen his daughters Megan and Alexis in 2,346 days.
Mary Kahn has not seen her son Sammy in 2,218 days.
Lois Reisdorf has not seen her son Craig in 1,801 days.
Phil and Willie Jones have not seen their son Mike and daughter Emily in 2,296 days.
Mary Jane Barry has not seen her daughter Samantha in 2,550 days.
Kate Bornstein has not seen her daughter Jessica in 13,659 days.


Posted by Tony Ortega on March 17, 2020 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, 1995-2019 Just starting out here? We’ve picked out the most important stories we’ve covered here at the Underground Bunker (2012-2019), 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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