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


Scientology is trying hard to make 2022 the year America goes ‘Ideal’!

After the series of disclosures coming from our new inside source (and there’s more coming tomorrow!), we can’t help looking at this “Ideal” malarkey coming from Scientology in a different light.

Here’s the latest twaddle coming from the church that was sent out this week, trying to get the flagging membership somehow excited about having their pockets picked in online gatherings so that leader David Miscavige can open more monuments to himself in places like New Haven and Albuquerque.



And some other examples of propaganda that went out this week…



On the other side of the coin, we were excited to see that Karin Spaink has begun a terrific new series describing her legal war with Scientology that began in 1995. She edits an investigative journalism website in the Netherlands, (for “follow the money”), and yesterday she posted part one about the state of the nascent Internet in 1995 and how she became interested in Scientology’s fight against online freedom.

We spend a lot of time here at the Underground Bunker thinking about the early history of Scientology, which has been so excellently dug up by authors such as Russell Miller, Jon Atack, Chris Owen and others, and of course we do our best to keep you up to date on the latest news regarding the church. But if there’s one period of Scientology history we’ve always felt needed better coverage, it was the Internet fights of the mid-1990s. It’s great to see Karin Spaink taking that up now, as she was in the thick of it.


And another development here on the week when nothing is supposed to happen: In France, there’s a court development giving us a déjà vu moment because it’s very similar to what just happened in Ireland.

You may remember that we were very skeptical that Scientology would ever open an Ideal Org in France because of the way that country has treated the organization. But then we learned that David Miscavige had spent a boatload on a big building near Paris that would eventually get the “Ideal” treatment. But like in Ireland with a building intended for a Narconon, local government stepped in and held up Scientology’s plans. In this case it was a local mayor, of the communist persuasion, who said the building didn’t meet safety requirements or something.


But an appeals court ruled that this was not really true and the mayor was simply holding it up because it was Scientology. So now the project can go forward.

The lesson? When Scientology wants to spend millions rehabbing a building, it’s difficult for local governments to stop them. But rest assured, Parisians, as our Insider explained recently, after some brief hoopla, that Ideal Org in Paris will go moribund, and eventually will become a dead monument to Miscavige’s ego.



Continuing our year in review: The stories of August 2021

Early in August we noted that Danny Masterson, while awaiting trial, was starting a new venture in “orange wines,” and that his money problems with his Hollywood Hills home had apparently been alleviated with a loan from mom and stepdad.

On August 6, we started a new list, this time counting down Tom Cruise’s Scientology superpowers. We started at #15: His ability to find the best parking space.

The next day, we highlighted ABC Channel 7’s excellent report on the Danny Masterson criminal case by producer Lisa Bartley and that featured your proprietor. No one else in the media has come close to anything this informative about the nature of the prosecution of Masterson.

On August 9 we were in attendance, virtually at least, while our motion to quash Danny Masterson’s subpoena was being heard in California. Thanks to the good work of our attorneys, Scott Pilutik and Graham Berry, that subpoena went down in flames. Judge Charlaine Olmedo also quashed the other subpoenas that had been aimed at Masterson’s accusers and others.

A week later we reported that Masterson’s quixotic federal lawsuit over his house was finally kicked out of court for good, and we said there were signs he was about to put the house on the market. Literally hours later, he did.

We were then surprised to learn that Laura Prepon, in an interview with People magazine, claimed that she’d left Scientology. While some of our sources were skeptical about her veracity, Mike Rinder said there was no question that this kind of announcement was a nightmare for David Miscavige.

When Alex Jones endorsed Rizza Islam, who had been identified as one of the twelve worst sources of vaccine disinformation on earth, we wondered what it was going to take for the Los Angeles Times to write a single word about this Scientology/Nation of Islam figure who is facing felony Medi-Cal fraud charges there in the newspaper’s hometown.


On August 26, we noted what a slime job the slimy CESNUR apologist journal had done on Gerry Armstrong over the notorious L. Ron Hubbard “pinks & greys” letter.

And we finished up the month by reaching #3 on our Tom Cruise countdown, this time looking at his ability to resist between-life implanting. Hip, hip, hooray, Tom!

A LOOK BACK AT AUGUST 2020: We started a new list, Top 25 People Enabling Scientology. Judge Burdge denied Valerie Haney’s motion for reconsideration. New Clearwater city councilman Mark Bunker suggested making Scientology a tourist attraction. And episode one or Bryan Seymour’s spiked ‘Black Ops’ series leaks here at the Bunker.

A LOOK BACK AT AUGUST 2019: Chris Owen detailed Scientology’s 1970s attempt to take over the UK’s National Association of Mental Health. Rod Keller looked at Scientology attempts to make inroads with the Trump administration. Victoria Locke describes her abuse in Scientology. Danny Masterson’s accusers sue him and the Church of Scientology. Leah Remini and Mike Rinder finished their A&E series ‘Scientology and the Aftermath’ with a powerful final episode.

A LOOK BACK AT AUGUST 2018: David Miscavige’s “transparency medal” blew up into a major press story in Colombia as senators there call for an investigation. R.M. Seibert delivered again with a government document showing the US was fully aware of Scientology’s essential scam 50 years ago. Scientology scrambled to throw money at Efrem Logreira after realizing how much trouble it was in. The mid-year Maiden Voyage whales surfaced. Sea Org was now expected to salute donors. Scientology had to remove a kiosk from an LAPD station.

A LOOK BACK AT AUGUST 2017: Carol Nyburg told us about her part in an unaired TV series. Leah’s second season started off with a bombshell about child molestation. Michael Peña’s wife Brie Shaffer backed her former employer, Danny Masterson. Pastor Willy Rice got the Scientology smear treatment. We made the full 2009-2010 FBI file about Scientology trafficking public (and on the same day we took in the solar eclipse with Jefferson Hawkins). We attended a San Antonio court hearing about Marty Rathbun.

A LOOK BACK AT AUGUST 2016: Scientology didn’t make us feel very welcome at its Harlem grand opening. Life in retirement looks pretty good for Scientology’s notorious dirty trickster, Eugene Ingram. In the presidential campaign, a lot of comparisons between Donald Trump and L. Ron Hubbard were being made, but we pointed out that it was the Clinton White House that had serious Scientology baggage.

A LOOK BACK AT AUGUST 2015: Steve Fishman, of the famous Fishman Papers, is doing serious time for a bizarre crime. Tom Cruise gave a speech in Spanish, and turned up at a Scientology org in Colombia. And Paulette Cooper had an amazing encounter in Europe.

A LOOK BACK AT AUGUST 2014: We remembered Denise Brennan on the occasion of her passing. Mary Sue Hubbard’s house finally went up for sale, as we had predicted. And Kim Poff and Michael DeLong filed lawsuits over the troubling behavior of Oklahoma state officials who were too afraid to take on Scientology.

A LOOK BACK AT AUGUST 2013: Leah Remini filed a missing-person report on Shelly Miscavige, PZ Myers read A History of Man with us, Gerry Armstrong helped us tell his tale, and Monique Rathbun filed her harassment lawsuit.

Six of our favorites from the most-upvoted comments of August 2021

August 6: Mat Pesch


In all my years in Scientology and the Sea Org there actually was one consistent demonstration of ability that seemed to be “OT”. There was an over weight, veteran registrar at Flag named Paul. He had a VERY severe case of sleep apnea that was not understood by the organization. Like everything non optimum about a person from the Scientology viewpoint, Paul’s problem was attributed to “out ethics”. Paul would call a public on the phone to ask for money. During the conversation Paul would fall asleep, drop his lit cigarette onto his desk top or the plastic mat under his chair, each of which had a 100 burn spots. Drool would run out of his mouth and down his disgusting tie. Paul would drop the phone on the floor while the person continued to talk at the other end. Paul would regain consciousness and reenter the conversation without missing a beat. He did the same thing when dealing with public in person. Public would sit there in amazement and patiently and politely deal with the situation. Did I mention that he also snored very loudly. I would be seeing this from the sales office via the hidden cameras and microphones and I’d try to run interference when I could. The amazing and “OT” aspect to this is that Paul would consistently complete these insanely awkward “conversations” by taking in thousands of dollars. Paul averaged a weekly income of over $250,000 (2nd best only to a registrar named Sonya) and book sales of close to $50,000. How he managed to consistently follow phone conversations while asleep and the phone sitting on the floor and bring in the money that he did, was truly amazing and might I say – “OT”.

August 7: Rusty S

Loved the way the Lisa Bartley included the Tom Cruise clip explaining a world without SPs. That clip has not aged well. He looks more unhinged than ever. Excellent report.

August 9: UTR

Quash is such a lovely word.

August 14: Phil Jones

I did OT4 and was pretty disappointed with it. I really got nothing out of it. My body thetans though are totally happy about bring released and they’ve all gotten together to open a bar on the planet Farsec.

August 18: Mat Pesch

I love logging into the Bunker each morning and reading about yet another nail in Scientology’s coffin.

August 26: Graham

So Hubbard didn’t come up with Xenu ad the Wall of Fire whilst high on pinks & grays. He came up with it whilst stone cold sober. And that somehow makes it better?


Sign up for a daily email when we post a new story on Scientology.


Did you know you can get an email every morning when we post our daily Scientology story? We know some of the folks who come to the Underground Bunker aren’t here to talk about the politics of the day, and that’s why we created a daily politics feature over at our other blog, The Lowdown, and we ask readers to take their political discussions over there. And if you drop us a line at tonyo94 AT gmail, we’ll put you on the list so you get a morning reminder that a new Scientology story has been posted — and only for our Scientology stories.


Source Code

“The term thetan, of course, is one which is derived as a mathematical symbol, derived from that symbol, and is an effort to have a precise word, which will describe a precise thing: The unit of beingness, which is the individual. Theta is a Greek letter and you know mathematicians they can’t talk English, so they use Greek symbols and mathematicians long since have picked on theta as a symbol, which they commonly use and the Greeks used it to symbolize thought. And so we have theta, thought, mathematical symbol and then we just put ‘thetan’ on it, and we have something which could describe at once, but doesn’t describe really: the human soul, a ghost, a spirit, a saint, a god, an individual, a being. It’s one of these nice big ‘group’ words. Why? Because it is the word which describes the energy-space production unit which is the individual himself.” — L. Ron Hubbard, December 28, 1953


Avast, Ye Mateys

“TO ANCHOR: We’re going out to anchor so don’t walk off the gangway if there’s no boat under it! (Joke).” — The Commodore, December 28, 1970


Overheard in the FreeZone

“You don’t need OT power to get sex, the body has more X-rated stuff in it than 50 universes put together over trillions of years of accumulation. Once the Black V starts to clear up, your dreams will be so XXX-rated it will make you blink.”



Past is Prologue

1995: An article from the Clearwater Times was posted this week, reporting a request for cult members to assist in building the Super Power building in downtown Clearwater. “In a survey sent out this week, the church seeks ‘professional Scientologists’ to create sculptures, carry out engineering work, and even supervise aspects of the project, expected to begin in the spring. ‘We are also looking for professionals who know how to put a building together and to manage the personnel who will construct the building,’ the pamphlet says. ‘In fact, we are looking for anybody who has been involved or is involved in the design, planning, and construction of buildings.’ The new facility will be designed for a series of courses dubbed ‘Super Power’ by Scientology founder L. Ron Hubbard. Clearwater, the international spiritual headquarters for the church, would be the only place in the world where the courses would be offered. They are not available now. According to Scientology literature, Super Power courses enable a participant to ‘predict and build the future’ and think better. The courses also ‘restore the power of choice.’ The Super Power project is planned for the site across S Fort Harrison Avenue from the Fort Harrison Hotel, Scientology’s signature building in Clearwater. At 170,000 square feet, it would be the largest commercial office building downtown.”


Random Howdy

“I’m guessing Dan Sherman has a ‘Word of the Day’ thing he sends out on the telex doohickey.”


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

Criminal prosecutions:
Danny Masterson charged for raping three women: Next hearing set for February 8. Trial scheduled for August 29, 2022.
‘Lafayette Ronald Hubbard’ (a/k/a Justin Craig), false imprisonment, aggravated assault, plus drug charges: Next hearing scheduled for January 18.
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 January 22 in Los Angeles
David Gentile, GPB Capital, fraud: Next pretrial conference set for February 11.
Joseph ‘Ben’ Barton, Medicare fraud: Pleaded guilty, awaiting sentencing.

Civil litigation:
Luis and Rocio Garcia v. Scientology: Eleventh Circuit affirmed ruling granting Scientology’s motion for arbitration. Garcias considering next move.
Valerie Haney v. Scientology: Forced to ‘religious arbitration.’ US Supreme Court denied Valerie’s petition Oct 4.
Chrissie Bixler et al. v. Scientology and Danny Masterson: California Supreme Court granted review on May 26 and asked the Second Appellate Division to direct Judge Steven Kleifield to show cause why he granted Scientology’s motion for arbitration. Oral arguments held November 2, awaiting a ruling.
Brian Statler Sr v. City of Inglewood: Third amended complaint filed, trial set for June 28, 2022.
Author Steve Cannane defamation trial: Trial concluded, Cannane victorious, awarded court costs. Case appealed on Dec 23. Appeal hearing held Aug 23-27. Awaiting a ruling.
Chiropractors Steve Peyroux and Brent Detelich, stem cell fraud: Lawsuit filed by the FTC and state of Georgia in August, now in discovery phase.



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] Scientology social media is like space age Christmas, praise Xenu!
[TWO years ago] Danny Masterson asks for more time to answer lawsuit — while he’s skiing in Park City
[THREE years ago] Best Scientology shoops in the Bunker this year, and let’s see your faves too
[FOUR years ago] Joy Villa on the prospect of Trump going after Scientology’s tax-exempt status: ‘Nope’
[FIVE years ago] After Steve Cannane’s big year writing about Scientology, we hit him up for a look back
[SIX years ago] Confirmed: Narconon’s entire Northern California network splits with Scientology
[SEVEN years ago] Scientology’s 2014 in review: New lawsuits and a house for sale in August!
[EIGHT years ago] Scientology’s 2013 in review: July fireworks, courtesy of an actress from Brooklyn
[NINE years ago] Scientology’s 2012 in Review: The Master Goeth Before a Fall
[TEN years ago] Scientology Story of the Year — The Vote Is In!


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 2,528 days.
Katrina Reyes has not seen her mother Yelena in 3,033 days
Sylvia Wagner DeWall has not seen her brother Randy in 2,553 days.
Brian Sheen has not seen his grandson Leo in 1,573 days.
Geoff Levin has not seen his son Collin and daughter Savannah in 1,464 days.
Christie Collbran has not seen her mother Liz King in 4,771 days.
Clarissa Adams has not seen her parents Walter and Irmin Huber in 2,639 days.
Carol Nyburg has not seen her daughter Nancy in 3,413 days.
Doug Kramer has not seen his parents Linda and Norm in 1,744 days.
Jamie Sorrentini Lugli has not seen her father Irving in 4,217 days.
Quailynn McDaniel has not seen her brother Sean in 3,533 days.
Dylan Gill has not seen his father Russell in 12,099 days.
Melissa Paris has not seen her father Jean-Francois in 8,018 days.
Valeska Paris has not seen her brother Raphael in 4,186 days.
Mirriam Francis has not seen her brother Ben in 3,767 days.
Claudio and Renata Lugli have not seen their son Flavio in 4,028 days.
Sara Goldberg has not seen her daughter Ashley in 3,064 days.
Lori Hodgson has not seen her son Jeremy and daughter Jessica in 2,779 days.
Marie Bilheimer has not seen her mother June in 2,304 days.
Julian Wain has not seen his brother Joseph or mother Susan in 659 days.
Charley Updegrove has not seen his son Toby in 1,834 days.
Joe Reaiche has not seen his daughter Alanna Masterson in 6,385 days
Derek Bloch has not seen his father Darren in 3,534 days.
Cindy Plahuta has not seen her daughter Kara in 3,854 days.
Roger Weller has not seen his daughter Alyssa in 8,709 days.
Claire Headley has not seen her mother Gen in 3,828 days.
Ramana Dienes-Browning has not seen her mother Jancis in 2,184 days.
Mike Rinder has not seen his son Benjamin and daughter Taryn in 6,487 days.
Brian Sheen has not seen his daughter Spring in 2,593 days.
Skip Young has not seen his daughters Megan and Alexis in 2,991 days.
Mary Kahn has not seen her son Sammy in 2,867 days.
Lois Reisdorf has not seen her son Craig in 2,450 days.
Phil and Willie Jones have not seen their son Mike and daughter Emily in 2,945 days.
Mary Jane Barry has not seen her daughter Samantha in 3,199 days.
Kate Bornstein has not seen her daughter Jessica in 14,308 days.


Posted by Tony Ortega on December 28, 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


Tony Ortega at The Daily Beast


Share Button
Print Friendly, PDF & Email