Scientology Shoop of the Year -- The Vote Is In!
We're continuing our year-end celebrations here at the (newly refurbished and upgraded) underground bunker. Today, we have the voting results for best Photoshopped image as chosen by you, our fellow Scientology watchers.
The squirrel theme was popular this year.
The talented Photoshoppers over at WhyWeProtest.net constantly turn out clever mashups that tease and taunt Scientology. We chose five finalists that we felt spoke most directly to the stories we've been following here at Runnin' Scared in 2011.
After the jump, let's see how your favorite image placed in the voting...
Fifth Place: "Y'all Busted"
Someone found a great way to use Chill EB's own Facebook portrait in this shoop that refers to an anti-psychiatry song he put out a couple of years ago, "Y'all Busted." Now that he's Scientology's in-house hip hop act, Chill puts out slick videos with anti-pharma messages and with links to the church's anti-psychiatry front group, CCHR. And church leader David Miscavige as Oompa Loompa? Well, sometimes satire hits below the belt!
Fourth Place: Gur Finkelstein and the Jaffa Org
The news out of Israel this year strained credulity -- Scientology's "Ideal Org" there was mired in a controversy about the church's local agent, an attorney named Gur Finkelstein, who is facing prison time after being indicted for trying to kill three different people (including a municipal official) and also for trying to set fire to the building, twice. So with that level of craziness going on, we thought this mashup of recent Scientology figures and memes made for a fun overall image. Do you recognize all of the faces?
Third Place: David Miscavige, Scientology's Pope
This wasn't really attached to any of our stories here this year. We chose it just because it gives some indication of the creative work being done at places like WhyWeProtest.net practically every day. This image really seemed to capture church leader David Miscavige's sense of entitlement and power.
Second Place: Squirrel Stuff
We were surprised to see this do so well in the voting, but the back story on this image is pretty fun. In August, we made an appearance on the Church of Lazlo show at Kansas City radio station 96.5 The Buzz, where we had once worked at a local paper, The Pitch. Lazlo likes to check with us on occasion about Scientology news. After that appearance, the local Scientology org sent a letter complaining about the show to the station's manager, along with some literature about the church. However, the church member who sent the materials also accidentally included an internal memo which gave her instructions on making the complaint. The letter said not to worry about the Voice, because the international branch of the Office of Special Affairs would be "handling" yours truly. The letter also contained a handwritten admonition that the church volunteer making the complaint not actually listen to our appearance on Lazlo's show, because the segment had "squirrel stuff." In Scientology parlance, that was a warning that the show contained material critical of the church and its upper-level teachings -- things that a low-level volunteer should not hear. Of course, to those of us not in the church, warning that a radio show was "weird and has squirrel stuff" was just about the best endorsement we could imagine.