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PODCAST: Kate Bornstein is plugged into our Danny Masterson retrial coverage

We can’t believe it’s been 11 years since we put Kate Bornstein on the cover of the Village Voice.

It’s one of our proudest moments during our five years at the Voice, and it was a real treat to spend time catching up.

Kate’s an avid reader of our Danny Masterson retrial coverage, and now that we’ve finished with testimony in the case (closing arguments are scheduled to take placed on Tuesday), we thought we’d check in.

We ended up having the tables turned on us as some really interesting questions about the trial came our way.


Listen to the podcast here.


Technology Cocktail

“If an individual is to have anything to do with facsimiles, he is going to be somewhere between solids and thought. By gradient scales of concatenation and by lots of postulates about association, which gets into identification, finally this scale can become relatively solid. He can think a thought and turn on the solid at the other end of the scale.” — L. Ron Hubbard, 1958



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 as Danny faces a potential sentence of 45 years to life in prison. NOW WITH TRIAL INDEX.


THE PODCAST: How many have you heard?

[1] Marc Headley [2] Claire Headley [3] Jeffrey Augustine [4] Bruce Hines [5] Sunny Pereira [6] Pete Griffiths [7] Geoff Levin [8] Patty Moher [9] Marc Headley [10] Jefferson Hawkins [11] Michelle ‘Emma’ Ryan [12] Paulette Cooper [13] Jesse Prince [14] Mark Bunker [15] Jon Atack [16] Mirriam Francis [17] Bruce Hines on MSH


— SPECIAL: The best TV show on Scientology you never got to see

[1] Phil Jones [2] Derek Bloch [3] Carol Nyburg [4] Katrina Reyes [5] Jamie DeWolf

— The first Danny Masterson trial and beyond

[18] Trial special with Chris Shelton [19] Trial week one [20] Marc Headley on the spy in the hallway [21] Trial week two [22] Trial week three [23] Trial week four [24] Leah Remini on LAPD Corruption [25] Mike Rinder 2022 Thanksgiving Special [26] Jane Doe 4 (Tricia Vessey), Part One [27] Jane Doe 4 (Tricia Vessey), Part Two [28] Claire Headley on the trial [29] Tory Christman [30] Bruce Hines on spying [31] Karen de la Carriere [32] Ron Miscavige on Shelly Miscavige [33] Karen de la Carriere on the L’s [34] Mark Bunker on Miscavige hiding [35] Mark Plummer [36] Mark Ebner [37] Karen Pressley [38] Steve Cannane [39] Fredrick Brennan [40] Clarissa Adams [41] Louise Shekter [42] John Sweeney


Source Code

“You ever been on the Pacific Ocean? You look an awful long distance on the Pacific Ocean and you’ll find space, you know. The speculative horizon is like that. It’s way out, man. Boy, I mean we’ve collided with data which is highly debatable as to whether it will be popular or unpopular. And I’m afraid I have to go along with the first foundation decision I made, back in 1950 when they had that board meeting and told me I wasn’t to research on any more past lives. I don’t think they ever did get that end of the building back together again. The bricks are still cracked. And I said, well, psychology and other activities in the field of the mind have always had a large eye on popularity. And they would actually throw away materials which didn’t agree with things. They’d throw away the things which didn’t agree. And that’s why they’ve not come up with any answers. They consult this thing of the popularity of a datum, the acceptability of a datum and have therefore compromised truth. So you either accept truth or popularity.” — L. Ron Hubbard, May 14, 1963


Avast, Ye Mateys

“Smersh operates on false data and has not changed his Situation Analysis in a whole score of years and does not vary tactics to fit new situations. That is valuable information. A general who fought that way would be busy fighting the 151st Bavarian Light Infantry as they were deployed at Niems in 1870! Since then they’ve been disbanded, forgotten, and that trench has been empty for 80 years. Yet such a general would have his whole army concentrating on it! Viewing national governments through this developed logic tech applied to their data and their idea of the situation reveals them to be crazy. And gives one the reason for both war and failing societies. No wonder they end up shooting people.” — The Commodore, May 14, 1970


Overheard in the FreeZone


“I’m not sure if LRH agrees with the CIA and IRS running Scientology after 1982. There was a takeover. That’s a turning point. That’s not real Scientology after 1982 and I no longer ‘felt’ LRH on lines after that. Of course I could grow my own food, but why be forced to grow food just because a fucking pack of R6 zombies don’t see the poison in their diet? And more, they follow R6 commands to lynch you if you happen to ‘open their eyes’ to see. Sorry, but it’s some three years now I can’t get my body clean of this fucking R6 zombie food. Nice you have your own RPF (mest work). You won’t be running to LA to climb the barbed wire at Hemet to pound on ‘The Hole’ to meet Heber to share some rice and beans.”


Past is Prologue

2001: The Los Angeles Times reported that the investigation is continuing into alleged fraud by Scientologist Reed Slatkin against a group of investors that included many other Scientologists. “The Hollywood insiders, Internet entrepreneurs and just plain folks who turned to Slatkin for help with their investments now are trying to find out what happened to the hundreds of millions of dollars they entrusted to a man who wasn’t even a registered investment advisor. The 52-year-old Slatkin, a co-founder of Internet provider EarthLink and a Santa Barbara socialite, is under investigation by the Securities and Exchange Commission for investment fraud. He also faces lawsuits by investors and filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy two weeks ago. Federal investigators raided his office Friday, but have been able to locate only a fraction of the money Slatkin controlled, and investors’ claims eventually could surpass $600 million, officials say. Indeed, government investigators say the collapse of his investment empire may be one of the largest Ponzi schemes they’ve ever encountered.”


Random Howdy

“The FDA could have busted Scientology a thousand times over for medical fraud if they simply sent in undercover agents wired for sound and vision to sign up for courses. Scientology registrars will promise any and all medical cures as long as you show them the money. The government is an ass.”


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

Criminal prosecutions:
Danny Masterson charged for raping three women: Mistrial declared November 30. Retrial scheduled, jury selection begins March 29. Next pretrial hearing: Feb 16.

‘Lafayette Ronald Hubbard’ (a/k/a Justin Craig), aggravated assault, plus drug charges: Grand jury indictments include charges from an assault while in custody. Next pretrial hearing Feb 13.
Rizza Islam, Medi-Cal fraud: Trial scheduled for March 1 in Los Angeles
David Gentile, GPB Capital, fraud: Next status conference Feb 13.

Civil litigation:
Baxter, Baxter, and Paris v. Scientology, alleging labor trafficking: Complaint filed April 28 in Tampa federal court, Scientology moving to compel arbitration. Plaintiffs filed amended complaint on August 2. Hearing November 17 to argue the arbitration motions, awaiting ruling.
Valerie Haney v. Scientology: Forced to ‘religious arbitration.’ Selection of arbitrators underway. Next court hearing: March 15, 2023.
Chrissie Bixler et al. v. Scientology and Danny Masterson: Appellate court removes requirement of arbitration on January 19, case remanded back to Superior Court. Stay in place at least through February 7.
Author Steve Cannane defamation trial: New trial ordered after appeals court overturned prior 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.



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] ‘Aftermath’ subject Liz Gale is sharing her Scientology experiences on TikTok
[TWO years ago] Why is Scientology desperate for a tiny plot in Clearwater? Let us draw you a picture.
[THREE years ago] A look inside a Scientology org as it prepares to reopen for the public
[FOUR years ago] Why the quarantine is such a fail: Scientology ship was set up as an interrogation factory
[FIVE years ago] Scientology’s reclusive ‘president,’ 82-year-old Heber Jentzsch, tells a niece he’s doing fine
[SIX years ago] With its Mexico City project halted, Scientology fans out across town to promote its pablum
[SEVEN years ago] Ron Miscavige shakes off Scientology smears, rockets to #1 in ebooks
[EIGHT years ago] Guest post: Five extreme examples of hypocrisy in Scientology’s ‘Freedom’ magazine
[NINE years ago] Falling death of a Russian Scientologist in Clearwater: The police investigation
[TEN years ago] How to Confront and Shatter Suppression, Scientology Style!
[ELEVEN years ago] Lisa Marie Presley Removes All Mention of Scientology From Her Official Website


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 3,029 days.
Katrina Reyes has not seen her mother Yelena in 3,534 days
Sylvia Wagner DeWall has not seen her brother Randy in 3,084 days.
Brian Sheen has not seen his grandson Leo in 2,074 days.
Geoff Levin has not seen his son Collin and daughter Savannah in 1,965 days.
Christie Collbran has not seen her mother Liz King in 5,269 days.
Clarissa Adams has not seen her parents Walter and Irmin Huber in 3,140 days.
Doug Kramer has not seen his parents Linda and Norm in 2,245 days.
Jamie Sorrentini Lugli has not seen her father Irving in 4,692 days.
Quailynn McDaniel has not seen her brother Sean in 4,034 days.
Dylan Gill has not seen his father Russell in 12,600 days.
Melissa Paris has not seen her father Jean-Francois in 8,519 days.
Valeska Paris has not seen her brother Raphael in 4,687 days.
Mirriam Francis has not seen her brother Ben in 4,268 days.
Claudio and Renata Lugli have not seen their son Flavio in 4,529 days.
Sara Goldberg has not seen her daughter Ashley in 3,565 days.
Lori Hodgson has not seen her son Jeremy and daughter Jessica in 3,281 days.
Marie Bilheimer has not seen her mother June in 2,845 days.
Julian Wain has not seen his brother Joseph or mother Susan in 1,160 days.
Charley Updegrove has not seen his son Toby in 2,335 days.
Joe Reaiche has not seen his daughter Alanna Masterson in 6,886 days
Derek Bloch has not seen his father Darren in 4,017 days.
Cindy Plahuta has not seen her daughter Kara in 4,355 days.
Roger Weller has not seen his daughter Alyssa in 9,210 days.
Claire Headley has not seen her mother Gen in 4,329 days.
Ramana Dienes-Browning has not seen her mother Jancis in 2,685 days.
Mike Rinder has not seen his son Benjamin and daughter Taryn in 6,988 days.
Brian Sheen has not seen his daughter Spring in 3,094 days.
Skip Young has not seen his daughters Megan and Alexis in 3,492 days.
Mary Kahn has not seen her son Sammy in 3,368 days.
Lois Reisdorf has not seen her son Craig in 2,951 days.
Phil and Willie Jones have not seen their son Mike and daughter Emily in 3,446 days.
Mary Jane Barry has not seen her daughter Samantha in 3,700 days.
Kate Bornstein has not seen her daughter Jessica in 14,809 days.


Posted by Tony Ortega on May 14, 2023 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, 1995-2022 Just starting out here? We’ve picked out the most important stories we’ve covered here at the Underground Bunker (2012-2022), 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


Tony Ortega at Rolling Stone


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