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PODCAST: Sands Hall updates us on her Scientology memoir adventure!

We’re such huge admirers of Sands Hall, a luminous writer and musician, whose memoir about her time in Scientology was first published in 2018.

It’s out in paperback now, and with a slightly different title. We talked about why that’s so, and how she continues to think about Scientology and the process of writing about it.

Also, if you haven’t seen her 2019 piece for the Los Angeles Review of Books about how she lost her voice during the Portland Freedom Crusade, you really must.

Listen to or watch the podcast here.



Technology Cocktail

“A thetan will not restore his own ability until he is certain he can withhold from things. When he finds he cannot then he reduces his own power. He will not let himself be more powerful than he believes he can use power. When he gets mad he of course can control nothing, neither can he really direct anything.” — L. Ron Hubbard, 1960



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 [43] Tory Christman [44] Kate Bornstein [45] Christian Stolte [46] Mark Bunker [47] Jon Atack [48] Luke Y. Thompson [49] Mark Ebner


Source Code

As there are sharks about the ship, the overboard ceremony is about to be resumed for Dianetic Auditors who flub commands, fail to complete sessions or fail to let PCs have wins or who fail to complete study from the Coaudit group and get onto auditing. Two flubbed Dn sessions out of 10 is about what we’re running just now and that is 2 too many. Dianetics is very simple to do. The great auditors are the VIIIs. We have had several Dianetic auditors who were great. They are now moving on up through VI to VIII. This new scarcity of flubless Dianetic auditors results I am sure from lazy study and false passes on materials and TRs 101 to 104. I want a flood of new Dianetic Auditors who have actually passed their bulletins and drills.” — L. Ron Hubbard, August 19, 1969


Avast, Ye Mateys

“SQUIRRELS: Been hearing reports on a couple squirrels — Bernie Green (in NY) and Jack Horner (in LA). They’ve been goofing it up for ages. Typical no case gain cases, up to their ears in undisclosed overts. They’d sell their grandma for a fast buck. Horner is wildly opposed to organizations or systems of any kind. He has the trick of talking somebody off the third dynamic into the first dynamic. He shows them how the system is doing them in and how it should all be only for No. 1. B. Green evidently got that way as a Terrorist in the Middle East. Horner totally flipped when he ruined one too many women. The first dynamic and the fast buck and how all systems are bad seem to be a common denominator to these poor nuts.” — The Commodore, August 19, 1970


Overheard in the FreeZone

“Can someone message me, I have questions about a dream I had that woke me up to telepathy and a purple cool telepathic space dude who looks sad but not angry but stern about teaching me and a lot about manipulation and group confidence as well as simple knowledge in telepathic process in the universe and how belonging is powerful. I mean in this dream we were all wearing white tuxedos and a white very old male was the Channeler and I have no idea about Scientology and what it stands for completely but one thing is for sure I’m not the same.”



Past is Prologue

2000: Jeff Jacobsen spoke before Clearwater’s City Council this week. “I didn’t know how far Scientology’s influence has spread in this community just from visiting once a year. But I’ve seen the influence now. Scientology gets away scot-free after the death of Lisa McPherson, while critics of Scientology are enjoined from even walking on certain sidewalks in Clearwater. A Scientologist hits a critic’s video camera with a hammer and the police do nothing. A picketer is assaulted not once but twice by a Scientologist, and despite the assaults being on video tape from different angles, the Scientologist is not arrested. Just a few weeks ago a German official from Hamburg came to town. I was at the airport when about 30 Scientologists greeted her with shouts of ‘Nazi Go Home!’ and attempted to manhandle her. I was there when the Scientology attorney came demanding that she be deposed in a case she has nothing to do with at the exact time she had already scheduled a news conference. Ms. Ursula Caberta has gone home after having been viciously treated by Scientology, and let me assure you that the European media, starting with Der Spiegel, have already begun to paint Clearwater as German-hating and nuts. I suspect you are going to be seeing fewer German tourists around here now, thanks to the actions of Scientologists. Maybe when Europe’s tourists boycott our wonderful community, the hit in your pocketbooks might wake you up to reality.”


Random Howdy

“I know of two people who left the Jehovah’s Witnesses and joined Scientology. You might be surprised at the amount of cult cross-pollination that goes on. There is a certain ‘follower’ personality type in this world.”


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

Criminal prosecutions:
Danny Masterson charged for raping three women: Found guilty on two counts on May 31, remanded to custody. Sentencing on Sep 7.
‘Lafayette Ronald Hubbard’ (a/k/a Justin Craig), aggravated assault, plus drug charges: Grand jury indictments include charges from an assault while in custody. Trial scheduled for August 15.
David Gentile, GPB Capital, fraud.


Civil litigation:
Leah Remini v. Scientology, alleging ‘Fair Game’ harassment and defamation: Complaint filed August 2, hearing on proof of service on Oct 3.
Baxter, Baxter, and Paris v. Scientology, alleging labor trafficking: Forced to arbitration. Plaintiffs allowed interlocutory appeal to Eleventh Circuit.
Valerie Haney v. Scientology: Forced to ‘religious arbitration.’
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 sentencing of Masterson on Sep 7.
Jane Doe 1 v. Scientology, David Miscavige, and Gavin Potter: Case unsealed and second amended complaint filed. Next hearing Nov 6.
Chiropractors Steve Peyroux and Brent Detelich, stem cell fraud: Ordered to mediation.



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] Danny Masterson lawyers telling tales of woe ahead of October rape trial: Another strategy?
[TWO years ago] Tom Cruise’s Scientology superpowers, No. 9: Mocking up an automobile out of thin air
[THREE years ago] Valerie Haney reacts to setback in lawsuit against Scientology: ‘I will continue to fight’
[FOUR years ago] Even when it gets good press, Scientology reminds us that it uses slave labor
[FIVE years ago] Oh gross: Scientology Sea Org now saluting donors who give for ‘Ideal Orgs’
[SIX years ago] What Scientology itself says about the way it’s going to change how your mind works
[SEVEN years ago] Gawker goes dark, but its impact on Scientology — and Tom Cruise — will never be forgotten
[EIGHT years ago] Why Steve Fishman — of the notorious Fishman Papers — is today serving 21 years in prison
[TEN years ago] How Does Scientology’s Cosmology Really Work? Historian Jon Atack Has a Theory
[ELEVEN years ago] (2012’s) Top 25 People Crippling Scientology, No. 21 & 22
[TWELVE years ago] The Top 25 People Crippling Scientology, No. 19: The Squirrel Busters


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 3,126 days.
Katrina Reyes has not seen her mother Yelena in 3,641 days
Sylvia Wagner DeWall has not seen her brother Randy in 3,191 days.
Brian Sheen has not seen his grandson Leo in 2,181 days.
Geoff Levin has not seen his son Collin and daughter Savannah in 2,062 days.
Christie Collbran has not seen her mother Liz King in 5,366 days.
Clarissa Adams has not seen her parents Walter and Irmin Huber in 3,237 days.
Doug Kramer has not seen his parents Linda and Norm in 2,342 days.
Jamie Sorrentini Lugli has not seen her father Irving in 4,789 days.
Quailynn McDaniel has not seen her brother Sean in 4,131 days.
Dylan Gill has not seen his father Russell in 12,697 days.
Melissa Paris has not seen her father Jean-Francois in 8,616 days.
Valeska Paris has not seen her brother Raphael in 4,783 days.
Mirriam Francis has not seen her brother Ben in 4,365 days.
Claudio and Renata Lugli have not seen their son Flavio in 4,626 days.
Sara Goldberg has not seen her daughter Ashley in 3,662 days.
Lori Hodgson has not seen her son Jeremy and daughter Jessica in 3,378 days.
Marie Bilheimer has not seen her mother June in 2,942 days.
Julian Wain has not seen his brother Joseph or mother Susan in 1,257 days.
Charley Updegrove has not seen his son Toby in 2,432 days.
Joe Reaiche has not seen his daughter Alanna Masterson in 6,983 days
Derek Bloch has not seen his father Darren in 4,114 days.
Cindy Plahuta has not seen her daughter Kara in 4,452 days.
Roger Weller has not seen his daughter Alyssa in 9,307 days.
Claire Headley has not seen her mother Gen in 4,426 days.
Ramana Dienes-Browning has not seen her mother Jancis in 2,782 days.
Mike Rinder has not seen his son Benjamin and daughter Taryn in 7,085 days.
Brian Sheen has not seen his daughter Spring in 3,191 days.
Skip Young has not seen his daughters Megan and Alexis in 3,589 days.
Mary Kahn has not seen her son Sammy in 3,465 days.
Lois Reisdorf has not seen her son Craig in 3,030 days.
Phil and Willie Jones have not seen their son Mike and daughter Emily in 3,543 days.
Mary Jane Barry has not seen her daughter Samantha in 3,797 days.
Kate Bornstein has not seen her daughter Jessica in 14,906 days.


Posted by Tony Ortega on August 19, 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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