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Tom Cruise’s ‘religion’: Scientology has kept this family apart for a decade

[Phil and Willie Jones and their kids Mike and Emily]

As of this week, it’s been 10 years since we’ve seen our kids, Emily and Mike.

Scientology made them disconnect from us once we were out and criticized the cult. There is always a sense of amazement to me that the kids would go along with this L. Ron Hubbard mandate about disconnection, but then I look at how insidious the conditioning is in Scientology and how I also fell into its thrall for so many years.

Both Michael and Emily are in the Scientology Sea Organization. They’ve committed their lives to it.

Emily works at Galaxy Press (Author Services, Hubbard’s fiction books publisher) in Los Angeles. She’s married to John Goodwin, who is president of Galaxy Press. John is her third husband.


Her first marriage was to a young Scientology security officer at Flag. Their ‘senior’ (Scientology boss) ordered them to get married after she saw the two of them sitting together on a step one day and perhaps flirting a bit.

The first marriage didn’t last long as Emily was whisked away to the Scientology Int Base where she met and married another nice man named Aylon (not sure of the spelling). Apparently, Scientology leader David Miscavige wouldn’t let them “be together” until he had also performed a marriage ceremony, which he never did. Eventually, they divorced.

Emily then worked for Author Services in Los Angeles and married Goodwin. I do sometimes wonder if this also was a marriage “ordered” by Miscavige to keep her in the fold. John is nearly my age. Maybe I’m just not seeing it right due to my own biases though.

Then there is our son Mike. Back when we lived in Clearwater, Michael studied and learned to play guitar. He was quite good at it. When he was old enough he packed up his car and went to California to pursue a music career. We always encouraged him with this and throughout his life we paid for guitar lessons with several different teachers.

It wasn’t too many months after Mike went to LA that he called me and told me that Pasadena Org wanted him to join staff. Sure, a young single Scientologist would be a prime target for a recruiter. I told Mike not to join and continue his music career. He moved on.

Again, a few months later Mike called. This time I think it was the Orange County Org. Again I told him not to join and to continue with music. He again moved on.

There were a few others but I was able to encourage Mike to keep on his path. It was his dream to be a guitar player ever since he was young, way back in our Toronto days.

Then one day he bumped into Celebrity Center. They promised him he could join the Sea Org and continue to be a musician. He could continue to play his guitar. Supposedly they had a band and he could be in it. Mike joined up, signing a billion-year contract, and was then in the Sea Org.

Over the years I would ask Mike if he’s still playing his guitar. Willie and I even bought a very expensive guitar for him and had it shipped out to him at Celebrity Center. For a while, he said he still played, but as the years went by it was less and less, until the times when I asked the question and there would just be silence on the other end of the line.

We love our kids. In no world would we ever disconnect from them. But I also know how deep Scientology conditioning can be and the lies they will tell to enforce their edicts. So, we don’t blame them. We aren’t angry with them. We just want Scientology disconnection to end so that we can have our family back.

— Phil Jones


Technology Cocktail


“The meter in actual fact does nothing but locate charged areas below the awareness of the pc and verify that the charge has been removed. The meter cures nothing and does not treat. It only assists the auditor in assisting the preclear to look and verify having looked.” — L. Ron Hubbard, 1964



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 [50] Bruce Hines [51] Spanky Taylor and Karen Pressley [51] Geoff and Robbie Levin [52] Sands Hall [53] Jonny Jacobsen [54] Sandy Holeman



Source Code

“One of the more fiendish tests that I conducted on this was on my own kid, I wouldn’t have done it to somebody else’s kid. I pretended to scatter an enormous amount of pepper into the palm of my hand and then pretended to eat it with some relish. I didn’t scatter any pepper at all on my hand. Hand it to my little girl, she promptly threw some pepper into the palm of her hand and ate it with considerable relish. And for some days was busy enjoying pepper in great quantity.” — L. Ron Hubbard, December 8, 1954


Avast, Ye Mateys

“PROGRESS: We are continuing to make progress against the enemy who has shot at us and the planet for 18 years. The code name he now has is ‘SMERSH’ (from 007 fame) and his branch of offices are ‘Black Hats.’ He is oddly enough on both sides of existing political parties except in SA where he is mainly UP. This was a hidden government. It aspired to world domination! If you can imagine a psychiatrist in such a role. Wonder what it would be like to be governed by shock cases. Red as paint, he was really having a ball. We were in his road. Because we were fully effective. We undid his implants. A real psychotherapy had come along. This was not part of his plans. He shot at Scn to discredit it. It is quite obvious that western governments are fantastically weak and very unaware. They cannot or will not protect their people or their institutions. Thus, only one course is left open. To get rid of SMERSH and their thousands of kills weekly. Oddly enough, we’re doing just that. The one BIG mistake they made was to attack Scientologists. Which they did from hiding for 18 long years. It set us back, kept our field upset, our staffs enturbulated. But it also made us get tough and grow strong. SMERSH was the hidden government. Long may it fall.” — The Commodore, December 8, 1968


Overheard in the FreeZone

“I was born this lifetime in 1957. So whatever I may say about the early days of Dianetics and Scientology is generally from my last lifetime, where I was more or less in the thick of things. I did know LRH, and I did attend some, but not all of his lectures. He and I were not ‘pals,’ but I had enough contact with him to be able to size up his character. This lifetime, I ‘returned’ to Scientology in 1976, at the tender age of 19.”



Past is Prologue

1999: “NoScieno” reported a protest in Chicago. “I printed up 70 flyers based on Deana Holmes’s excerpts from Agent Strope’s affidavit, adding a few links for more information, and managed to pass out about half of them in the blocks surrounding the org. No I wasn’t so foolish as to try a solo picket of the org itself. Not only would they try to tail me home and ‘destroy me utterly’ for my heinous crime of spreading a little public awareness, but I’m sure it would be impossible to keep a dialog going with the people on the street. Basically I just kept moving, and telling everyone about the death of Lisa, and offering flyers. Just about every time, when I stopped to talk with anybody, 4 or 5 other people would gather around to listen. There was a lot of sympathy for Lisa and her family from almost everyone. Only two people didn’t already know about Scientology’s reputation, and began to scold me for ‘attacking a church.’ A quick listing of just a few of its crimes and unethical practices was enough to show that I was not ‘against religion.’ I got a lot of support from more knowledgeable others in my ‘audience’ when that happened, and it almost seemed as though I could organize a picket from volunteers right there!”


Random Howdy

“On more than one occasion I have met someone and after a few minutes of casual conversation I have been forced to ask myself whether this person is the sort of fellow who is going to attempt to run off with my wife and my car or if he’s the kind of guy that’s going to try and run off with my girlfriend and my boat. Thanks to L. Ron Hubbard I have knowingness of scamingness.”


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. Sentenced to 30 years to life 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. Next pretrial hearing October 30.
David Gentile, GPB Capital, fraud.

Civil litigation:
Leah Remini v. Scientology, alleging ‘Fair Game’ harassment and defamation: Complaint filed August 2, Scientology submitting anti-SLAPP response Oct 26.
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: Discovery phase.
Jane Doe 1 v. Scientology, David Miscavige, and Gavin Potter: Case unsealed and second amended complaint filed. Scientology moves for religious arbitration.
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] EXCLUSIVE: The Danny Masterson jury foreman speaks in first public interview
[TWO years ago] Irish courts issued 14,000 words on Narconon rehab: Not a single one was ‘Scientology’
[THREE years ago] Scientology social media: Gearing up for R6, or what you humans call ‘Christmas’
[FOUR years ago] Scientology’s biggest donors of late 2019: The whales giving millions to David Miscavige
[FIVE years ago] Academic goes ‘Among the Scientologists’ to bring back what we already knew
[SIX years ago] A grim anniversary that should remind us Scientology has no business ‘testing’ anyone
[SEVEN years ago] Leah Remini told you about Scientology’s ‘Fair Game’ — and here’s the worst example of it
[EIGHT years ago] Leaked Scientology video: Tom Cruise and Katie Holmes front and center for ‘psych busting’!
[NINE years ago] SUNDANCE BOUND: HBO’s film about Scientology will debut in Utah on January 25
[TEN years ago] Sunday Funnies: Scientology Gets Ideal in Taiwan
[ELEVEN years ago] Scientology and Past Lives: Was L. Ron Hubbard Actually Serious?


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 3,237 days.
Katrina Reyes has not seen her mother Yelena in 3,752 days
Sylvia Wagner DeWall has not seen her brother Randy in 3,302 days.
Brian Sheen has not seen his grandson Leo in 2,292 days.
Geoff Levin has not seen his son Collin and daughter Savannah in 2,173 days.
Christie Collbran has not seen her mother Liz King in 5,477 days.
Clarissa Adams has not seen her parents Walter and Irmin Huber in 3,348 days.
Doug Kramer has not seen his parents Linda and Norm in 2,453 days.
Jamie Sorrentini Lugli has not seen her father Irving in 4,900 days.
Quailynn McDaniel has not seen her brother Sean in 4,242 days.
Dylan Gill has not seen his father Russell in 12,808 days.
Melissa Paris has not seen her father Jean-Francois in 8,727 days.
Valeska Paris has not seen her brother Raphael in 4,895 days.
Mirriam Francis has not seen her brother Ben in 4,476 days.
Claudio and Renata Lugli have not seen their son Flavio in 4,737 days.
Sara Goldberg has not seen her daughter Ashley in 3,773 days.
Lori Hodgson has not seen her son Jeremy and daughter Jessica in 3,489 days.
Marie Bilheimer has not seen her mother June in 3,053 days.
Julian Wain has not seen his brother Joseph or mother Susan in 1,368 days.
Charley Updegrove has not seen his son Toby in 2,543 days.
Joe Reaiche has not seen his daughter Alanna Masterson in 7,094 days
Derek Bloch has not seen his father Darren in 4,225 days.
Cindy Plahuta has not seen her daughter Kara in 4,563 days.
Roger Weller has not seen his daughter Alyssa in 9,418 days.
Claire Headley has not seen her mother Gen in 4,537 days.
Ramana Dienes-Browning has not seen her mother Jancis in 2,893 days.
Mike Rinder has not seen his son Benjamin and daughter Taryn in 7,196 days.
Brian Sheen has not seen his daughter Spring in 3,302 days.
Skip Young has not seen his daughters Megan and Alexis in 3,700 days.
Mary Kahn has not seen her son Sammy in 3,576 days.
Lois Reisdorf has not seen her son Craig in 3,141 days.
Phil and Willie Jones have not seen their son Mike and daughter Emily in 3,654 days.
Mary Jane Barry has not seen her daughter Samantha in 3,908 days.
Kate Bornstein has not seen her daughter Jessica in 15,017 days.


Posted by Tony Ortega on December 8, 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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