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Does Scientology know that it’s a Truman Show? Let us show you their newest magazine cover.

[Jim Carrey in the 1998 film ‘The Truman Show’]

We want to thank the tipster who sent in a scan of the cover of a new Scientology magazine they just received. They knew that we’d do a spit-take when we saw it.

Surely you remember the 1998 film The Truman Show starring Jim Carrey as a man unaware that he’s living on a giant sound stage and that everything in his world is actually being put on by the producers of a television show. Over the years, we’ve often heard from former Scientologists who tell us that the movie reminds them of what it’s like to be a member of the church, insulated from the outside world and anything not prescribed by the writings of founder L. Ron Hubbard.

So it’s kind of stunning to see the new issue of Freewinds magazine, which invites Scientologists to come to the ship, which hasn’t budged since March 2020 when pandemic lockdowns began, so they can join the “OT Bubble”…



Could this thing be any more on the nose? It brings to mind those fundraisers they put on with pirate and gangster themes, where costumed members holding toy machine guns and sabers jokingly forced attendees to write their donation amounts on the whiteboard, hardy har har. What fun.

What do you think, does Dave not see the problem here or, like Hubbard, is he seeing how far he can push his followers and mess with them before they break?

Now let’s take a look at a few more things in this issue. The number one thing we’re interested in as far as Scientology’s barge the Freewinds is whether it’s ever going to sail again.

Scientology was run from a small armada of ships by founder L. Ron Hubbard between 1967 to 1975, and in the mid-1980s, with Hubbard in hiding, an initiative was launched to purchase a new cruise ship where the culminating experience of Scientology’s expensive “Bridge to Total Freedom,” known as Operating Thetan Level Eight, or OT 8, could take place. Hubbard died in January 1986 and the Freewinds had its maiden voyage in June 1988. Ever since then it’s plied the waters of the Caribbean and wealthy Scientologists have flown there to do OT 8 and other courses and “conventions.”

But then, when the pandemic hit, the Freewinds was stuck in Aruba in March 2020, and it hasn’t budged since. We’ve been told by people who know cruise ships that it’s a problem for a ship to sit idle that long, some 14 months now, and getting going again isn’t just a matter of spinning up the propellers and setting sail.

Scientology, meanwhile, not only is still begging Scientologists to come to the ship to spent gobs of money on stuff like OT 8, but they’ve even been advertising it as a place you should move to and set up office. And that certainly didn’t sound like the kind of scow that was going to be moving any time soon. So with all that in mind, we looked closely at this new issue of Freewinds magazine for some clues as the ship’s future.


Would you like to detach from the outside world, yet still have the option to get some work done? Not a problem on the Freewinds. We may be off the crossroads, but our high-speed internet connection allows you to plug in when you need to. That’s what Field Staff Member Lesley McCaffrey and her husband, Bill, the Chief Technological Officer for an educational company, did. They had been working from home for months when they heard the Freewinds was about to open up. While they knew they couldn’t totally check out from their business lives, since they were working online anyway, they thought, why not head to the Ship? It was a smart decision. “We’ve gotten so much more work done since we’ve been here and we are both doing amazing, life-changing services,” says Lesley.

For the McCaffreys, who’ve been coming to the Ship for years, this homecoming was a special one. As Lesley says, “The crew has bent over backward to accommodate every single thing I needed and wanted during our stay. The service has always been amazing, but on this trip I have felt like royalty.’

So grab your laptop and come aboard the Freewinds, or as Lesley refers to it, “the most theta office space on the planet.”


As several have pointed out, “off the crossroads” is how the Freewinds has always been advertised. But we’re still thinking that if they want people to move there to use as an office, Scientology’s own Queen Mary sounds like it’s not going anywhere anytime soon.

Also, you might note that the unnamed ‘educational company’ where Bill McCaffrey is CTO is, in fact, Age of Learning, the Doug Dohring firm that puts out ABC Mouse.

But even if the ship is idle, Dave is working his magic and it seems like he’s had an increase in people coming to pay the big bucks for OT 8 and the accommodations required for it. Here’s the new crop of superhuman Scientologist OT 8s…


Alejandro Arias, Efrat Artzi, Larry Bonifacio, Jessica Brown, Michal Bucko, Rubina Chaushian, Sharon Dabbah, Marisol Defino, Evgeniy Frolov, Michele Giussani, Valerie Grange, Bill Green, Jose Ricardo Groenewold, Orli Gruber, Sandra Guaglio, Bertil Haglund, Barbara Hills, Jenny Hsu, Ryan Johnson, Kyera Keenne, Margarita Khodortsova, Claudia Layton, Tsai-Ting (Tracy) Lee, Fabrizio Locatelli, Tatiana Luzhbina, Carter Manierre, Jim Mets, Philippe Morellon, Yuzuru Ogura, Giovanna Pardini, Gabriele Patelli, Brian Pool, Angela Reid, Sandra Ricart, Volker Richter, Anna Rubin, Daniel Rusinko, Daniel Sadeh, Marian Llop Segui, Christine Sobolev, Cecilia Sosa, Yvonne Steiner, Kinga Szabo, Charlene Thorburn, Randall Michael Tobin, Jenny Trinh, Marco Veniani, David Wagner, Sheng-Ming (Jammy) Wang, Anne Wilsen, Margrit Zanetti

And among the other completions listed in the magazine, these stood out to us.

Sofia Milos (The Route to Infinity)
Liz Baybak (Scientology: A History of Man book & lectures)
John Allender (London Clearing Congress)
Lallah Rowe (Clearing Success Congress)
Denise and Jerry Gentile (Melbourne Congress)


The mugshot of Denise Gentile


Leah Remini podcast: Jeffrey Augustine

Says Mike: “This week we have the pleasure of speaking with whistleblower, investigator, researcher and friend Jeffrey Augustine. Jeff does great work tracking and exposing Scientology, especially in the realm of financial crimes. This episode contains a rundown of Scientologist criminals and their legal troubles and the juxtaposition with the public claims of Scientology being the most ethical group on earth.” Listen to the episode right here.


Source Code

“The guy for the last five years has been having trouble with his leg and he just sits in the auditing session with this hidden standard. He runs cows, crocs and alligators with great happiness. And at each moment after he runs the command, or every few commands, why, he kind of thetawise looks down at his leg, you see, to see whether or not that has been affected. “Well, alligators didn’t fit in that leg, so it must be something else,” you see? He’s running with his attention fixed on something else. And he broke his leg five or ten years ago and it has troubled him ever since. Well, you can assess that leg, and by the way, you can even assess it this way: His name, let us say, is John; you can assess ‘John’s leg,’ something of that sort. It’s always best to inspect the meter for a bit of reaction, but oddly enough, you don’t even have to, to do that. You just know this is a long-duration PI problem. The best way to do it is to make a list of terminals that the PC thinks it is. And then take a specific one, not take a general one. See, you don’t want this thing to be a profession. You don’t want it to be a profession, that’s all. Because he’ll run on it for quite a while if you take it as a general thing, see? ” — L. Ron Hubbard, June 1, 1961


Avast, Ye Mateys

“Mr. Sibersky will be arriving aboard in a special motorcade. Any persons who wish to welcome him aboard on arrival are invited to be on hand, observing the following: 1) Dress Neatly, 2) To avoid a mob scene — crew and students should be on the dock lined up by Org (FB, FAO, FSO) and by course (for full-time students) (FEBC, CL X). The gangway, and all accesses to gangways should be kept clear except as noted in FSO 391. 3) Be on time. When exact ETA is known this will be made known by HCO Messenger so people can assemble ahead of time.” — W/O Mike Douglas, Org Off FSO, June 1, 1971



Overheard in the FreeZone

“The being is a GodSoul, one coin, two operating mode sides. The Operating Thetan side is the God side. The preclear side is the Soul or human side. The difference between a human and an OT is only this: The OT says ‘I chose this.’ The Human says ‘I didn’t choose this.’ Above 26.0 on the tone scale the being is an OT operating in Creator mode. Below 26.0, the being is human operating in creature mode, whether he has a body or not.”


Past is Prologue

1995: Dennis Erlich reported new acts of harassment this week. J.J. Gaw, the Scientology private investigator, visited his landlord looking for dirt. Also, the company that holds the mortgage on Dennis’ house was hit for some documents, billed to the landlord. More random acts: “Two nights ago I noticed that the automatic lights in front of my house didn’t turn on when I approached. Checking the bulbs, I found them to have been screwed out 2 turns. “Three weeks ago someone came by and sanded the street # off the curb in front of the house. No other houses on the block got this treatment.”


Random Howdy

“Scientology’s aesthetic muse is the Hallmark Channel filming on location in Branson, Missouri with some Space Opera whipping on top.”



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

Criminal prosecutions:
Danny Masterson charged for raping three women: Held to answer for trial, next arraignment set for June 7.
Jay and Jeff Spina, Medicare fraud: Jay sentenced to 9 years in prison. Jeff’s sentencing to be scheduled.
Hanan and Rizza Islam and other family members, Medi-Cal fraud: Pretrial conference August 21 in Los Angeles
David Gentile, GPB Capital, fraud: Next pretrial conference set for June 18.

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.’ Petition to US Supreme Court submitted on May 26. Scientology has until June 25 to respond.
Chrissie Bixler et al. v. Scientology and Danny Masterson: California Supreme Court grants review on May 26, asks Second Appellate Division to direct Judge Steven Kleifield to show cause why he granted Scientology’s motion for arbitration.
Matt and Kathy Feschbach tax debt: Eleventh Circuit ruled on Sept 9 that Feshbachs can’t discharge IRS debt in bankruptcy. Dec 17: Feshbachs sign court judgment obliging them to pay entire $3.674 million tax debt, plus interest from Nov 19.
Brian Statler Sr v. City of Inglewood: Second amended complaint filed, trial set for Nov 9, 2021.
Author Steve Cannane defamation trial: Trial concluded, Cannane victorious, awarded court costs. Case appealed on Dec 24.

Concluded litigation:
Dennis Nobbe, Medicare fraud, PPP loan fraud: Charged July 29. Bond revoked Sep 14. Nobbe dead, Sep 14.
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.



We first broke the news of the LAPD’s investigation of Scientology celebrity Danny Masterson on rape allegations in 2017, and we’ve been covering the story every step of the way since then. At this page we’ve collected our most important links, including our four days in Los Angeles covering the preliminary hearing and its ruling, which has Danny facing trial and the potential sentence of 45 years to life in prison.


After the success of their double-Emmy-winning, three-season A&E series ‘Scientology and the Aftermath,’ Leah Remini and Mike Rinder continue the conversation on their podcast, ‘Scientology: Fair Game.’ We’ve created a landing page where you can hear all of the episodes so far.


An episode-by-episode guide to Leah Remini’s three-season, double-Emmy winning series that changed everything for Scientology watching. Originally aired from 2016 to 2019 on the A&E network, and now on Netflix.


Find your favorite Hubbardite celeb at this index page — or suggest someone to add to the list!

Other links: SCIENTOLOGY BLACK OPS: Tom Cruise and dirty tricks. Scientology’s Ideal Orgs, from one end of the planet to the other. 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 a weekly series. How many have you read?



[ONE year ago] Boarded up and shut down, Scientology struggles to stay relevant in uncertain times
[TWO years ago] Scientology Lit: The verse stylings of L. Ron Hubbard, commodore of cool
[THREE years ago] When the famous war protester met Scientology: A spiritual encounter in Los Angeles
[FOUR years ago] Remembering another Scientology ‘warrior’ — with the help of Mark Bunker
[FIVE years ago] Now that Scientology has a TV and radio complex, will it air what Scientology really is?
[SIX years ago] Listen to Jim Jones root for Scientology against Paulette Cooper in a 1978 Jonestown address
[SEVEN years ago] Sunday Funnies: Scientology’s latest attempts to get you amped up!
[EIGHT years ago] Here’s Some Photographic Proof that Scientology’s “Ideal Orgs” Are Killing the Church
[NINE years ago] AUDIO: “Touch Me,” Creepy Scientology Goon Repeatedly Tells Protester


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 2,318 days.
Katrina Reyes has not seen her mother Yelena in 2,823 days
Sylvia Wagner DeWall has not seen her brother Randy in 2,343 days.
Brian Sheen has not seen his grandson Leo in 1,363 days.
Geoff Levin has not seen his son Collin and daughter Savannah in 1,254 days.
Christie Collbran has not seen her mother Liz King in 4,561 days.
Clarissa Adams has not seen her parents Walter and Irmin Huber in 2,429 days.
Carol Nyburg has not seen her daughter Nancy in 3,203 days.
Doug Kramer has not seen his parents Linda and Norm in 1,533 days.
Jamie Sorrentini Lugli has not seen her father Irving in 4,007 days.
Quailynn McDaniel has not seen her brother Sean in 3,323 days.
Dylan Gill has not seen his father Russell in 11,889 days.
Melissa Paris has not seen her father Jean-Francois in 7,808 days.
Valeska Paris has not seen her brother Raphael in 3,976 days.
Mirriam Francis has not seen her brother Ben in 3,557 days.
Claudio and Renata Lugli have not seen their son Flavio in 3,818 days.
Sara Goldberg has not seen her daughter Ashley in 2,856 days.
Lori Hodgson has not seen her son Jeremy and daughter Jessica in 2,569 days.
Marie Bilheimer has not seen her mother June in 2,094 days.
Julian Wain has not seen his brother Joseph or mother Susan in 449 days.
Charley Updegrove has not seen his son Toby in 1,624 days.
Joe Reaiche has not seen his daughter Alanna Masterson in 6,175 days
Derek Bloch has not seen his father Darren in 3,324 days.
Cindy Plahuta has not seen her daughter Kara in 3,644 days.
Roger Weller has not seen his daughter Alyssa in 8,499 days.
Claire Headley has not seen her mother Gen in 3,618 days.
Ramana Dienes-Browning has not seen her mother Jancis in 1,974 days.
Mike Rinder has not seen his son Benjamin and daughter Taryn in 6,277 days.
Brian Sheen has not seen his daughter Spring in 2,383 days.
Skip Young has not seen his daughters Megan and Alexis in 2,785 days.
Mary Kahn has not seen her son Sammy in 2,657 days.
Lois Reisdorf has not seen her son Craig in 2,240 days.
Phil and Willie Jones have not seen their son Mike and daughter Emily in 2,735 days.
Mary Jane Barry has not seen her daughter Samantha in 2,989 days.
Kate Bornstein has not seen her daughter Jessica in 14,098 days.


Posted by Tony Ortega on June 1, 2021 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, 1995-2020 Just starting out here? We’ve picked out the most important stories we’ve covered here at the Underground Bunker (2012-2020), 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, 15 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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