Daily Notifications
Sign up for free emails to receive the feature story every morning in your inbox at


Clearwater Councilman Mark Bunker’s radical suggestion: Embrace Scientology?

After the most recent Downtown Development Board meeting, Clearwater City Councilman Mark Bunker had a brainstorm. He just sent us this video, and we agree with him that our readers could run with this idea.

We love the example he cites, that the city of Salem in Massachusetts doesn’t fight against its reputation for witch-burning. Instead it embraces it for the tourism! Shouldn’t Clearwater do the same?

After all, what other reason could anyone today possibly want to visit downtown Clearwater except to gawk at Sea Org members and stare at the Flag Building. So why not turn it into a going concern?

Watch Mark’s pitch and then please help him out with your ideas and suggestions. This should turn out to be fun.




Steve Cannane trial returns for final arguments

After a break of several weeks, the libel trial of journalist Steve Cannane, which we were watching earlier, has returned for final arguments.

The publication The Australian has a really good piece about the presentation made by Cannane’s barrister Tom Blackburn that summarizes much of the testimony in the trial.

We can amplify that article’s description of the testimony made by the two former Chelmsford Private Hospital doctors, John Herron and Dr. John Gill, whose patients died while undergoing “deep sleep therapy.” Their testimony not only didn’t vindicate them, it only provided even more detail about the shocking way they treated patients in their care.

And as for Cannane’s testimony about why he made the choices he did preparing his book, the Australian said…

Mr Blackburn said Cannane had made “frank concessions” as he gave evidence but no real deficiencies in his reporting had been exposed.

“One can always look at a book painstakingly written by a journalist over many years and say ‘you could have done that better’,” he said. “But in terms of laying heavy blows, they haven’t laid a glove on Mr Cannane.”

Last night (which was Friday morning in Sydney), barrister Sue Chrysanthou, representing Gill and Herron, naturally presented a very different view, that Cannane had made admissions proving that he’d libeled the two men. And now we’ll wait to see how the judge feels about it.



Source Code

“I’ll give you an idea. You’re coffee shopping with somebody and you say, ‘You realize that there’s a GPM devoted to homosexuality in the between-lives implants? There is one!’ And he says, ‘Oh, I don’t really think so.’ He says, ‘Well, get the idea now, just get the idea of “to be a homosexual.” Just get that idea for a moment, and you’ll see.’ Ha! That, of course, throws that GPM alive, see? Just discussing it isn’t going to do very much about it, see. You got to concentrate, somebody’s got to concentrate his attention on it! Him or somebody else, you know, has got to look right at it, you know, straight at it and bang!” — L. Ron Hubbard, August 28, 1963


Overheard in the FreeZone

“Great Success Story for OT 9 (CBR). Well, I certainly know why this level is called Phoenix. That is the perfect name! I am only a few sessions in, but let me see if I can describe it for you. We all have constructs we have assembled for one reason for another and by which we operate. Both sides of the bridge, from my observation, serve to dismantle constructs so that we my operate more by postulate and closer to a native state. Constructs are sneaky things in that until revealed by auditing or training they are difficult, if not impossible to find. What Phoenix does is find, reveal and implode constructs. Each session is not at all dissimilar to placing charges on key structural points of a huge building in your city, detonating them and then watching an old, outdated and imposing edifice crumble before your eyes… AND THEN literally emerging from the ashes. There are a few more constructs in my city to address, but without these first few obstructions in the way I am enjoying a view of the blue sky that was hidden behind them.”


Random Howdy

“Hezbollah, Hamas, Black Panthers, IRA, and Hells Angels have all done more charity work than the Church of Scientology ever has or will.”


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

Criminal prosecutions:
Danny Masterson charged for raping three women: Arraignment scheduled for September 18.
Jay and Jeff Spina, Medicare fraud: Jay’s sentencing is set for August 27 in White Plains, NY, but attorneys are asking it be moved back. Jeffrey’s is set for October 24.
Hanan and Rizza Islam and other family members, Medi-Cal fraud: Next pretrial conference set for Jan 12 in Los Angeles
Dennis Nobbe, Medicare fraud, PPP loan fraud: Charged July 29

Civil litigation:
Luis and Rocio Garcia v. Scientology: Oral arguments were heard on July 30 at the Eleventh Circuit
Valerie Haney v. Scientology: Forced to ‘religious arbitration.’ Motion for reconsideration denied on August 11
Chrissie Bixler et al. v. Scientology and Danny Masterson: Sept 4 (CSI/RTC demurrer against Riales, Masterson demurrer), Oct 7-19 (motions to compel arbitration)
Jane Doe v. Scientology (in Miami): Jane Doe dismissed the lawsuit on May 15 after the Clearwater Police dropped their criminal investigation of her allegations.
Matt and Kathy Feschbach bankruptcy appeal: Oral arguments were heard on March 11 in Jacksonville
Brian Statler Sr v. City of Inglewood: Amended complaint filed, trial set for Nov 9, 2021. Plaintiffs granted permission to file changes to amended complaint by Sept 4.


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

[Stacy Francis, Jason Dohring, and Anne Archer]

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] London, Scientology is coming for you!
[TWO years ago] It’s primary day in Florida, and here’s how Scientology will be voting
[THREE years ago] Tomorrow’s ‘Leah Remini’: When Scientology destroys a family, it burns it to the ground
[FOUR years ago] How Scientology’s anti-psychiatry front turns a real controversy into fake outrage
[FIVE years ago] California judge orders trial to determine if Scientology drugged incoming rehab patients
[SIX years ago] Ladies and gentlemen, the greatest Scientology video in the history of Scientology videos
[SEVEN years ago] Scientology Legal Roundup: Per Wickstrom’s Fine Whine, And More!


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 2,043 days.
Katrina Reyes has not seen her mother Yelena in 2,547 days
Sylvia Wagner DeWall has not seen her brother Randy in 2,067 days.
Brian Sheen has not seen his grandson Leo in 1,087 days.
Geoff Levin has not seen his son Collin and daughter Savannah in 978 days.
Christie Collbran has not seen her mother Liz King in 4,285 days.
Clarissa Adams has not seen her parents Walter and Irmin Huber in 2,153 days.
Carol Nyburg has not seen her daughter Nancy in 2,927 days.
Jamie Sorrentini Lugli has not seen her father Irving in 3,731 days.
Quailynn McDaniel has not seen her brother Sean in 3,047 days.
Dylan Gill has not seen his father Russell in 11,613 days.
Melissa Paris has not seen her father Jean-Francois in 7,532 days.
Valeska Paris has not seen her brother Raphael in 3,700 days.
Mirriam Francis has not seen her brother Ben in 3,281 days.
Claudio and Renata Lugli have not seen their son Flavio in 3,542 days.
Sara Goldberg has not seen her daughter Ashley in 2,580 days.
Lori Hodgson has not seen her son Jeremy and daughter Jessica in 2,293 days.
Marie Bilheimer has not seen her mother June in 1,818 days.
Charley Updegrove has not seen his son Toby in 1,348 days.
Joe Reaiche has not seen his daughter Alanna Masterson in 5,908 days
Derek Bloch has not seen his father Darren in 3,048 days.
Cindy Plahuta has not seen her daughter Kara in 3,368 days.
Roger Weller has not seen his daughter Alyssa in 8,223 days.
Claire Headley has not seen her mother Gen in 3,342 days.
Ramana Dienes-Browning has not seen her mother Jancis in 1,698 days.
Mike Rinder has not seen his son Benjamin and daughter Taryn in 6,001 days.
Brian Sheen has not seen his daughter Spring in 2,107 days.
Skip Young has not seen his daughters Megan and Alexis in 2,509 days.
Mary Kahn has not seen her son Sammy in 2,381 days.
Lois Reisdorf has not seen her son Craig in 1,964 days.
Phil and Willie Jones have not seen their son Mike and daughter Emily in 2,459 days.
Mary Jane Barry has not seen her daughter Samantha in 2,713 days.
Kate Bornstein has not seen her daughter Jessica in 13,822 days.


Posted by Tony Ortega on August 28, 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


Share Button
Print Friendly, PDF & Email