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David Miscavige and his shills open Scientology ‘Ideal Org’ in Chicago

For the third time in nine days, Scientology leader David Miscavige presided over the grand opening of a new ‘Ideal Org’ that had been sitting, ready to open, for years.

Last week he was in Austin, Texas, on Friday night he was in Mexico City, and yesterday afternoon Miscavige was in Chicago to open the Ideal Org on Clark Street to the sounds of music from the movie The Blues Brothers.

Miscavige himself played on Chicago’s love for its sports teams.

“Today this Second City is truly Second to None. While before that Windy City ribbon comes cascading down, this is also the moment to recognize what you already know: how just as Chicago was once reborn, so today there is room for a new beginning. And thus, room for restoring to individuals the ability to live a better life—in their own estimation and with their fellows and the playing of a better game.”


Please note, as usual he was wearing his wedding ring, even some 18 years after he stashed his wife Shelly in a secretive compound in the mountains northeast of Los Angeles, and doesn’t allow her out to see any of her family or to make any public statements of any kind.

But yesterday was not a day for such controversies. It was a celebration. And also as usual there were local shills on hand to help Dave out.

First up was Rob Fioretti, who was identified by Scientology only as “adviser to the City of Chicago,” which sounds vague. A quick search, however, reveals that he’s a former city alderman who was elected twice, in 2007 and 2011, and that he’s run unsuccessfully for mayor since then.

“Chicago stands tall—a bold slugger with one of the world’s most recognizable skylines. Designs born here define the skylines of America and, indeed, the skylines of the world. And what’s awesome about the Church of Scientology is that you get it. You understand the character of this city on so many levels. As a city councilor, I fought with you to secure this heritage site. And through our co-endeavor, I watched as the Church restored this landmark to her 1915 splendor. More than 25,000 hours were invested—twenty-five thousand hours. And let me tell you: every second, minute and hour is proof that you are a prized and trusted custodian of this city!”

Next up was Gwen Appleberry, who was identified as “Citizen Advisor to the Chicago Police Department and the Board of Education.”

“I do know a little something about the potential inside those doors. You see, 47 years ago, I first laid my eyes on Dianetics. It resonated with me before I even took it off the shelf. And to this day, I keep his works on my shelf so I can always have his wisdom with me. It’s what I call the booster shot of living. The booster shot of living! Let me tell you, you’re precisely what Downtown needs. You are going to light up the South Loop!”

Kweli Kwaza was identified as “Executive Director of the Club 21 Initiative, a coalition of neighborhood block clubs promoting unity.”

“I set about getting neighborhoods to not only survive, but thrive. You came back again, and again and again. So yes, you are community partners. With this new Church and the transformative programs you will infuse into our community, we have a blueprint to build, block by block, a city we are proud of. And it will now stand on the unbreakable foundation of our people, our organizations and upon centers of change like this new Church of Scientology!”

Dave’s final shill was Norman White, who was identified as a member of Chicago’s “Commission on Human Relations.” He spoke about Scientology’s Volunteer Ministers handing out pamphlets and sending out decontamination teams during the pandemic.

“I was damned impressed. You guys were on top of it. In fact, if it were a superhero movie, then while the rest of us were still in bed reaching for our masks, you had already zipped up your suits, put on your yellow jackets and were out there ‘doing something about it’! It’s all you! You’ve been keeping Chicago safe. You have demonstrated an inherent willingness to help—indiscriminately. You see, there is a whole lot of need out there. And to have you answering the call is precisely what this city needs. Here stands a crown jewel which represents a friendlier, more supportive and more open city. What more could you ask for? So today, let’s recognize what stands before our very eyes—a home for every resident where we can unite and thus get better, together. And let’s make the most of today to make an even greater tomorrow in this city of Chicago!”

An overhead shot revealed that there were only about 400 people crammed into a small space where Scientology was able to shut down Clark Street. But of course with the church’s use of wide-angle lenses, it ends up looking like a bigger crowd…

So another Ideal Org goes through the motions, each of the three ceremonies very much alike. Paris was supposed to go first, but for some reason it was held up and will go last.

We want to extend great thanks to our helper who has been going by the Chicago building literally for years to check on its progress. He was there yesterday, and offered these observations.

“They opened with Soul Man. What a bunch of jagoffs,” he said. “Not that I thought that opening would be majestic, but the blue ribbon looks sad. I can detect my own saline content waiting for this to end.


“When I walked through yesterday I could sense excitement from people entering and exiting the org. This was while crews were building their wee stage. Today was more tense. The new uniforms are shiny. I am sure that they were picked to convey ‘Chicago Tough,’ but they just reminded me of car salesmen who will correct you by saying ‘pre-owned vehicle’ every time you say ‘used car.’

“As far as I can tell there’s no news from any real media outlets. Not the Tribune, not the Sun-Times. I didn’t see a news van. In the end, the local org would have been better off if they had settled for a suburban industrial park, next to a yogurt factory. The new location is ‘too reasonable.’ The building just doesn’t inspire awe or wonder. It was reasonable to put near a college dorm, assuming you came from a family that treasures memories of their first Scientology experiences in college during the Golden Age of Mimeographs. They are next to art school kids—I wouldn’t be too surprised if someone would try to pose in front of the org wearing a raw meat dress as part of a performance art project.”

A big Bunker salute to our helper for keeping us up on the happenings there in Chicago, and for being there yesterday.

Well, Chicago, you are now ideal. How does it feel?


Technology Cocktail

“It is interesting to note that my new developments on Targets and Purposes in recent HCO Pol Ltrs are possibly adaptable to COMPUTER PROGRAMMING. Meaning they apply to and could make a new level of Computer action and usefulness.” — L. Ron Hubbard, 1969



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

“Theta doesn’t have space or time. And therefore it’s very simple: Theta can just as well be in Milwaukee as Paris, simultaneously. And the only reason why you are this size conceptually and not the size of the galaxy conceptually is because you find it handier to conceive yourselves to be this size. And you’re actually looking at a piece of the physical universe — you, your body. But as far as your mind is concerned, there is no reason why it can’t only stretch through this galaxy but could go through all the island universes. You see how that could be? There is no limit, then, on how wide a mind can expand or how small it can contract, because it’s not size and it’s not time or space. Also, there is no reason why I can’t think something today and have you pick it up six months ago.” — L. Ron Hubbard, March 4, 1952


Avast, Ye Mateys


“ACTION BRIEFING: An FO-CBO on Action’s Responsibility for Briefing is issued in the wake of the first weeks stat reduction of Jbg, Celebrity Center and possibly London. The foremost WHY is that these were ‘loners,’ only sent one person to the FEBC who then went home and got his hard. Morale — 2 minimum FEBCs must be sent. In short, Hades broke loose here when the stats didn’t go up at once there in two instances. Those lone guys better get a 2nd FEBC here in a hurry. It takes a team. Lovely stat boosts in all the rest we sent out.” — The Commodore, March 4, 1971


Overheard in the FreeZone

“The current world situation is a conflict of powerful beings without individual identities but who operate as group identities and control first and second dynamic oriented beings. Scientology has barely touched these beings. They do not run individual bodies. I am just scraping the surface of the charge involved. There are probably only a few who will read this and become aware of the higher dynamic beings that they are attached to. Once one has freed oneself of the beings who have been BTs attached to oneself then it is time to look at who has one been a BT to and detach oneself from them. That will require a massive leap in responsibility. How to audit this is not easy to look into. LRH went into this in Class 8 tape one but I have only recently realized what he really meant. OT3 and NOTs are about freeing oneself from one’s BTs. After that one has to realize who one has been a BT to and free yourself.”


Past is Prologue

1996: Tilman Hausherr posted new prices for Scientology processing and courses, from the January 1996 issue of The Auditor. “Student Hat $680; Method 1 co-audit course $680; Hubbard Key To Life course $5,200; Hubbard Life Orientation course $2,100; Hubbard New Professional TRs course $600; Hubbard Professional Upper Indoc TRs course $1,800; Solo Auditor Course Part One $2,400; PTS/SP course $800; OEC, per volume (there are seven!!) $3,120; Hubbard Elementary Data Series Evaluator’s course $2,560; Saint Hill Special Briefing course SHSBC, individual level (there are 16!!) $1,200; SHSBC (all level paid for at one time) $14,400; Case Cracking 12 1/2 hour intensive $3,760; New Era Dianetics 12 1/2 hour intensive $3,760; Expanded Dianetics 12 1/2 hours intensive $5,600; Clear Certainty Rundown 5 hour intensive $1,880; Sunshine Rundown free with CCRD; Power (Grade 5) & Power Plus (Grade VA) 25 hour intensive $10,000; OT preparations 12 1/2 intensive $3,760; OT Eligibility 12 1/2 intensive $3,760; The Expansion of Havingness Lectures $240”


Random Howdy

“Bob, no offense, but thoughts don’t have mass.”



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 March 26, 2024.
David Gentile, GPB Capital, fraud.

Civil litigation:
Leah Remini v. Scientology, alleging ‘Fair Game’ harassment and defamation: Complaint filed August 2, motion to strike/anti-SLAPP motions by Scientology to be heard January 9, 2024.
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: motion to file new complaint, hearing on March 20.
Jane Doe 1 v. Scientology, David Miscavige, and Gavin Potter: Case unsealed and second amended complaint filed. Scientology moves for religious arbitration, hearing on March 26.
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] PODCAST: Steve Cannane checks in after reporting from the war in Ukraine
[TWO years ago] Scientology: Valerie Haney can’t rely on a court ruling that hasn’t been published!
[THREE years ago] Read the brief filed by constitutional scholars supporting Danny Masterson’s accusers
[FOUR years ago] Los Angeles District Attorney: Jackie Lacey leading as slow vote tally continues
[FIVE years ago] Scientology made him suicidal, but that was only the beginning of his problems
[SIX years ago] Scientology laying on the ‘religious freedom’ act thicker than ever as its TV channel nears
[SEVEN years ago] In Scientology, you get to blame everything on your trillion-year-old mental booby traps
[EIGHT years ago] Scientology officials panicked about overdose death of star Narconon pupil: Boyfriend
[NINE years ago] Scenes from the ‘Going Clear’ publicity caravan in midtown Manhattan
[TEN years ago] Bruce Hines takes us through Scientology’s Original Operating Thetan Level Seven!
[ELEVEN years ago] Document Leak: Scientology Sexual Histories


Scientology disconnection, a reminder

Bernie Headley (1952-2019) did not see his daughter Stephanie in his final 5,667 days.
Tammy Synovec has not seen her daughter Julia in 2,829 days.
Valerie Haney has not seen her mother Lynne in 3,324 days.
Katrina Reyes has not seen her mother Yelena in 3,839 days
Sylvia Wagner DeWall has not seen her brother Randy in 3,389 days.
Brian Sheen has not seen his grandson Leo in 2,379 days.
Geoff Levin has not seen his son Collin and daughter Savannah in 2,260 days.
Christie Collbran has not seen her mother Liz King in 5,564 days.
Clarissa Adams has not seen her parents Walter and Irmin Huber in 3,435 days.
Jamie Sorrentini Lugli has not seen her father Irving in 4,987 days.
Quailynn McDaniel has not seen her brother Sean in 4,328 days.
Dylan Gill has not seen his father Russell in 12,895 days.
Melissa Paris has not seen her father Jean-Francois in 8,814 days.
Valeska Paris has not seen her brother Raphael in 4,982 days.
Mirriam Francis has not seen her brother Ben in 4,563 days.
Claudio and Renata Lugli have not seen their son Flavio in 4,824 days.
Sara Goldberg has not seen her daughter Ashley in 3,860 days.
Lori Hodgson has not seen her son Jeremy and daughter Jessica in 3,576 days.
Marie Bilheimer has not seen her mother June in 3,140 days.
Julian Wain has not seen his brother Joseph or mother Susan in 1,455 days.
Charley Updegrove has not seen his son Toby in 2,630 days.
Joe Reaiche has not seen his daughter Alanna Masterson in 7,181 days
Derek Bloch has not seen his father Darren in 4,312 days.
Cindy Plahuta has not seen her daughter Kara in 4,650 days.
Roger Weller has not seen his daughter Alyssa in 9,505 days.
Claire Headley has not seen her mother Gen in 4,623 days.
Ramana Dienes-Browning has not seen her mother Jancis in 2,980 days.
Mike Rinder has not seen his son Benjamin and daughter Taryn in 7,283 days.
Brian Sheen has not seen his daughter Spring in 3,389 days.
Skip Young has not seen his daughters Megan and Alexis in 3,787 days.
Mary Kahn has not seen her son Sammy in 3,663 days.
Lois Reisdorf has not seen her son Craig in 3,228 days.
Phil and Willie Jones have not seen their son Mike and daughter Emily in 3,741 days.
Mary Jane Barry has not seen her daughter Samantha in 3,995 days.
Kate Bornstein has not seen her daughter Jessica in 15,104 days.


Posted by Tony Ortega on March 4, 2024 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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