Marty Rathbun is Big in the U.K., Still Waiting for Major U.S. Treatment

MartyRathbunEmeter.JPG
Michael Zamora/The Independent
This weekend's lengthy profile of Marty Rathbun by The Independent's Guy Adams really brought back a lot of memories for us.

Last year, we brought you frequent coverage of the bizarre "Squirrel Busters" siege at Rathbun's house near Corpus Christi, Texas. For some five months, a strange spiritual showdown took place in little Ingleside on the Bay, and as it escalated, we kept waiting for major U.S. media to jump on the story.

Well, we're still waiting. But at least readers in the UK have now been treated to a thorough and entertaining telling of the tale.

Like the Texas Monthly before it, The Independent does a fine job summarizing what happened as a crew of camera-carrying Scientologists planted themselves on a South Texas cul-de-sac, day after day, claiming to be doing a documentary on Rathbun, who was once the church's second-highest ranking official until he defected in 2004.

(For some reason, neither publication reported what we established here at the Voice: that there was no question the "Squirrel Busters" team was an operation of the church itself, supervised by Dave Lubow, a private eye who has long been used for such retaliation schemes by Scientology. Come on, fellow journalists: don't let the church get away with its lame denials of a connection to the Busters when there's solid evidence to connect the two. You only do your readers a disservice by not pointing this out.)

Adams does a great job portraying Rathbun in his complex role: the church's former enforcer, Rathbun is now trying to draw longtime church members out of the organization with the use of his popular blog. Rathbun has plenty of detractors, many of them longtime critics who believe he hasn't done enough to explain and apologize for his own actions when he worked for the church. But that doesn't change the fact that he's reaching deep inside Scientology to help lead an exodus of members that threatens to cripple David Miscavige's leadership.

As Adams points out, we're coming up soon on the anniversary of John Allender and the other Squirrel Busters first showing up on Rathbun's porch with cameras strapped to their heads. We'll have to think of an appropriate way to observe that anniversary here, and we can only hope it motivates some major U.S. media to finally start paying attention to the split tearing apart the Church of Scientology right before our eyes.

----------------------------------------------

Scientology Sunday Funnies!

Just about every day, we receive the latest wacky and tacky fundraising mailers put out by Scientology orgs around the world. Thank you, tipsters, for forwarding them to us! On Sundays, we love to reveal them to you.

What better way to celebrate the Thetan-known-as-Jesus picking up a new meat body than to go to the Celebrity Centre in Hollywood and search for missing painted eggs?

Honestly, the sheer amount of pagan, Sci Fi, and New Testament freakout going on in this new flier is enough to upset my entire Whole Track...

CCEaster.jpg


It's not enough that yellow-jacketed Volunteer Ministers are willing to drop everything to go hand out pamphlets and practice touch-assist voodoo at the latest site of a natural disaster, but these unpaid volunteers have to pay $150 each just to attend their own convention? Ouch, right?

VMCon1.JPG
VMCon2.JPG
VMCon3.JPG


What is it about San Diego? Yet another flier from the home of Ron Burgundy that literally hurts the eyes with its atrocious graphic design. But that isn't the only thing in bad taste this time. Are we the only ones thinking maybe it isn't really such a good idea to use the 100-year anniversary of the deaths of 1,514 people as a fundraising tool?

SanDiegoTitanic.png


Hey, wasn't Scientology boasting just the other day that California is now the first All-Ideal Org state in the country? Well, apparently that was jumping the gun a bit. As this flier shows, there's still plenty to do to get the San Fernando Valley Ideal Org finished, so open those wallets, people!

IdealValleyRenovation.jpg

Thank you tipsters, and please, keep those fliers coming!


------------------------------------------------------

Commenters of the Week!

Last week, we started things off with something unusual -- word from Richard Nixon's foundation that it didn't think much of the Church of Scientology's rather weird revision of history which had Tricky Dick leading an attempt by atomic scientists to overthrow the U.S. government in 1945 with nuclear weapons.

In our Sunday Funnies, meanwhile, we found it odd that the Fort Harrison Hotel in Clearwater, Florida, was advertising a lecture that would connect Scientology with Masonry and the history of "magic." That prompted this response from BroekerBroekerBroeker...

The idea of CoS developing an interest in establishing relationships with Masons isn't all that far-fetched. After all, Masonic orders are shrinking in numbers, and are having a difficult time attracting new members. But they own some of the most striking properties in many American cities -- properties that I have to imagine DM would covet as Idle Orgs ...

Another flier encouraged Scientologists in Chicago to come back into the org to make up or redo basic training routines that they might have considered completed long before. John P. shared this thought about that...

I am stunned that people would fall for the made-up excuse to get them in and do hundreds of hours of low-grade nonsense after reaching lofty and exalted OT super powers. The sad thing is that the people remaining in the Church are probably so bereft of the ability for autonomous thought that they think this is reasonable.

...prompting this quick comeback by Noah Miller...

BUT RON DID IT THIS WAY!

Chuckle.

On Wednesday, we published video interviews that we'd done with Mike Rinder last month in Florida. Rinder, the Church of Scientology's former chief spokesman, talked about what it was like to be held in "the Hole," what the mass confessions there were like, and how Scientologists are able to tolerate so much abuse.

Radio Paul was clearly paying attention...

Sounds like Ronnie Miscavige is an SP who helps SP's. DM's own family!

We also appreciated the thought put into this comment by anne...

I feel for Mike Rinder, I really do. How could he not still be reeling from all of his experiences within the church. The proximity alone to "COB," not to mention the physical attacks that came from him, were enough to crush any man or woman. The best part of course in his telling of the story is of his departure. Instead of following orders to report to Saint Hill for MEST work, he simply picks up the only thing he owns, a briefcase, and heads for the tubes and out onto the streets of London. I felt liberated just hearing it. He'd given years and years and years to this church, and just walked away. My wish for you Mike is that some day you may reconcile with you children.

We have to agree with Skwerl King that Rinder gave us some interesting insights into Scientology mind-think...

Pay very close attention to Rinder's description of the indoctrination. It is one of the best explanations I've heard of how a normal, sane human being can begin to believe and do things everyone else finds unacceptable.

And once again, Jefferson Hawkins made us all feel a bit smarter...

Tony, thanks for filming these interviews with Mike and posting them. It is hard for anyone not in that culture to understand how that kind of environment is created and why people put up with it. Mike does a masterful job of explaining it. Mike was arguably THE most abused person on that Base. I recall one morning as I was clearing weeds in the "OGH" detention compound, I saw a horrifying apparition coming down the road - it looked like something from "Dawn of the Dead" - pale, skeletal, ragged, stumbling down the road, half alive. It was Mike, going to get a few hours sleep in a filthy dormitory after who know how many days without sleep. That's why it is a particular joy for me to see Mike well-fed, healthy, happy, and in a beautiful home. And speaking openly about his experiences. Every Scientologist, I don't care who they are, has some level of cognitive dissonance. They can see that the world of Scientology does not match up with what it is "supposed to be." When that dissonance becomes overwhelming, when they can no longer explain it all away - that's when they leave.

On Friday, we published an interesting update to our ongoing coverage of this year's "Writers of the Future" contest, with news that Karen Black and Nancy Cartwright have been added to this year's gala. The event appears to be turning into a big Scientology celebration, which should make some of the Sci Fi and fantasy writers uncomfortable. Or, as Anon anon song put it...

It would be safe to assume that a few other contestants/participants in the contest are on the fence as far as their attendance to the gala. My IT (Insight Thought) powers and current cloud formations give me the confidence to put down 10$ that the new scilon billing marquee will inspire a few strep throats, family emergencies or haircut appointments that CANNOT be cancelled.

JustCallMeMary had doubts about our (admittedly speculative) assertion that the big added names to the gala were a direct result of our previous coverage. But even so, she points out, the presence of so many Scientology figures does threaten to overwhelm the event...

Frankly, I think this event with the Scientologists headlining it was planned and organized before your article. Having all those names attached to the event and program in general is suicide. Every name listed there ( with the possible exception of Phil Proctor ) is a Scientologist. They were probably looking to use this event to expand WOTF further into the Hollywood scene. Between your original WOTF article, the defections from the WOTF and this article, Scientology is now indelibly linked with the contest.

We can hardly wait for the event on the 15th.

Enjoy your Sunday, whether it's a holy one for your family or just another great day off. Please check with our Facebook author page for updates and schedules of future posts. We have plenty of good stories in the hopper, so check in with us often!


**********
Tony Ortega has been the editor in chief of the Village Voice since March, 2007. He started writing about Scientology in 1995. You can reach him by e-mail at tortega@villagevoice.com, and if you ask nicely he'll put you on his mailing list for notifications of new stories. You can also catch his alerts at Twitter (@VoiceTonyO), at his Facebook author page, on Pinterest, a Tumblr, and even this new Google Plus doohickey.

New readers might want to check out our primer, "What is Scientology?" Another good overview is our series from last summer, "Top 25 People Crippling Scientology." At the top of every story, you'll see the "Scientology" category which, if you click on it, will bring up all of our most recent stories.

As for hot subjects we've covered here, you may have heard about Debbie Cook, the former church official who rebelled and is now being sued by Scientology. You might have also heard about the Super Power Building, Scientology's "Mecca," whose secrets were revealed here. We also reported how Scientology spied on its own most precious object, Tom Cruise. (We wrote Tom an open letter that he has yet to respond to.) Have you seen a Scientology ad on TV lately? We debunked some of the claims in that 2-minute commercial you might have seen while watching Glee or American Idol.

Other stories have looked at Scientology's policy of "disconnection" that is tearing families apart. You may also have heard something about the Sea Org experiences of the Paris sisters, Valeska and Melissa, and their friend Ramana Dienes-Browning. We've also featured Paulette Cooper, who wrote about Scientology back in the day, and Janet Reitman, Hugh Urban, and the team at the Tampa Bay Times, who write about it today. And there's plenty more coming.

My Voice Nation Help
268 comments
Are_sics
Are_sics

Agree.  Kudos to Noah for sticking with that.  Looks positively exhausting!  Well done, man.  Really well done.

DodoTheLaser
DodoTheLaser

Anyone ever going to apologize to Lisa McPherson or her family? Politics aside. R.I.P. Lisa.

Too Much
Too Much

Yeesh! Remember in the later 1990s when the insane crooks were loudly proclaiming that their business offices were "going Saint Hill size!" as if that was a good thing? These amusing demands of "give Dave money just because we ask you to" are as amusing as the notion the corporation's customer base is expanding.

Too Much
Too Much

Awesome! The drug-addled insane criminal L. Ron Hubbard came up with the organized crime frauds and scams, then David Miscavage took it over, now a third shit pile hopes to wrest away the syndicate's remaining customers and take over.

I'm so totally in favor! Let's put Marty and The Dwarf in a fenced-in cage with box cutters and let them sort out who runs the corporation from now on. Deathmatch 2012! Ticket sales would be greater than Battlefield Earth box returns.

Damian
Damian

Tony wrote"(For some reason, neither publication reported what we established here at the Voice: that there was no question the "Squirrel Busters" team was an operation of the church itself, supervised by Dave Lubow, a private eye who has long been used for such retaliation schemes by Scientology. Come on, fellow journalists: don't let the church get away with its lame denials of a connection to the Busters when there's solid evidence to connect the two. You only do your readers a disservice by not pointing this out.)"

All due respect Tony but I tend to think that an article that just reports without comment a claim that is obviously false, can be more effective than an article that says that the claim is false.  Having read that article, it seems to me pretty obvious what the author thinks of the claim it wasn't the CoS that sent the squirrel busters, and its more effective to treat the reader with respect than to ram it down his or her throat. 

TheWickRod
TheWickRod

http://www.bestdrugrehabilitat...

Another way to funnel money to the church.  This is Per Wickstoms new Narconon rip-off rehab.  Google him.  He's on his L's apparently.  I guess is you give enough money you can use the tech however you want and not be declared.

Xenu's advocate
Xenu's advocate

Marty has just put up his own sunday funnies flier that you all absolutely NEED to see! I don't know if Tony can just add it to the above, but if not, it is really worth the visit:It is called C-note sunday.

SP 'Onage
SP 'Onage

What has been happening in the Debbie Cook case? Are they still being harassed, followed by scientology pi's?

defrocked apostate
defrocked apostate

It's a horror that these Scientology criminals continue to commit their Vulture Ministers frauds against people. In the aftermath of the September 11th Saudi Arabian terrorist attacks against New York, Scientology idiots had to be constantly captured and escorted back behind police tape to the point where resce resources had to be diverted and to the point where the American Red Cross had to issue a special notice informing people not to give these criminals money.

The crooks were caught committing treason -- or at least trying to -- in emails which can be found here

cosvm . org/

Side Wiki
Side Wiki

Amazing. I like the idea of ex-criminals leading the Freezone in Europe since *someone* needs to tae the money from the marks. Let's just hope that Rathbun does not create another spin-off of Hubbard's Republican-based criminal corporation.

sharkattacksteve
sharkattacksteve

If you're interested in info on Cults in general check this out "The Cult Test (1-100)". I think it was compiled by anon orange.

" orange-papers org/orange-cult_q0 html "

Also check out Rick Ross (not the rap star) for general cult information at rickross com.

And I'm Cute, Too
And I'm Cute, Too

Easter Brunch at the Celebrity Centre... "Pepper crusted prime rib, honey baked ham, omelet bar, Belgian waffles, etc, etc...."

And by all accounts, prepared by members of the Sea Org, who'll get nothing but beans and rice, if they get brunch at all.  Sad to think about.

grundoon
grundoon

Interesting back-and-forth on Marty's blog yesterday at markrathbun.wordpress.Zcom/2012/04/06/vincent-magni-truth-revealed/#comment-196152 (remove Z from Zcom), responding to a poster who criticizes the lack of an Indie Org Board filled out with divisions and someone in charge of each one.

mjm
mjm

they can't get real celebrities to perform at their events, now they have to use fake ones. 

Noah Miller
Noah Miller

We can definitely agree on that. 

Noah Miller
Noah Miller

The speed the Church tends to work at, about three years from now we'll see the actual "documentary" that they manage to sludge together. I bet it'll be awesome.

BBSox
BBSox

Did anyone else notice the "LRH" reference on the VM Convention piece?  It's from HCO PL 21 Feb 91, five years after Hubbard's death.  I guess he must be providing some guidance from Target Two . . . . . 

bobx
bobx

Anybody else notice that the Easter Brunch is taking place in "Los Angles"?  Yeah, they got all the angles... seriously, why do these masters of study tech always display poor language skills?

JustCallMeMary
JustCallMeMary

Whenever a bad article was to come out in the news, OSA had volunteers run out and buy all the copies up  " to prevent the spread of entheta'.

Robert Robinson
Robert Robinson

The Independent's Rathbun article didn't show the best video though.  The one with Marty using Hose Tech to CLEAR the squirrel busters from out in front of his house.

SP 'Onage
SP 'Onage

I'm sure her father would be proud if she left the cult. Remember what Elvis said about scientology:

"That s.o.b group - all they want is my money."

Man, was he right!

Bob Bee
Bob Bee

The Independent's Rathbun article includes an embedded YouTube video Marty shot of 4 CoS "Squirrel Busters" (in silly Squirrel Buster T-shirts with a photo of Marty's head placed on a cartoon squirrel's body) showing up at his door in Texas to harrass him. They apparently kept coming around  for months thereafter, hired by Miscavige to get on his nerves. The video can make one feel sorry for Marty being subjected to such CoS bullying tactics..But then it may occur to one that Marty himself,when in the church, conducted fair-game operations on many SP ex-members. In  fact, Marty likely did things far far worse to people than these squirrel busters did to him.

Gerry Armstrong was just one of Marty's many targets & victims. If Gerry's correct, CoS operatives under Marty once ran his vehicle off the road, ran a vehicle into Gerry as a pedestrian on the street, & even stabbed him. Not to mention numerous law suits CoS brought against Gerry, suing him.

As far as I know, Marty's made no apologies to Gerry or any other of his "fair game" victims. Rathbun, who claims to be opposed to CoS' abuses of people (or at least members), should try to make amends with folks he wronged. I don't understand why he hasn't. I don't approve of CoS fair-game operations applied to anyone. Still, under the circumstances it's hard to feel overly sympathetic towards Rathbun re. his run-ins with Miscavige's "squirrel busters" gang.

MarkStark
MarkStark

Hubbard didn't speak in metaphors. His trip to the Van Allen Belt was "factual." He talked about science, research, "data," people responding to certain procedures. When he talked about a past life where he blew a gasket on his spaceship, and got splashed in the face with rocket fuel in a past life, it was supposed to be REAL. Next Rathbun will be claiming he never thought he was a prison warden on the "wholetrack," or that all these clams were just making up stuff about being Julius Caesar, Tintoretto, Jesus and Cleopatra.    

It's one of the major reasons theologians don't touch the theology of Scientology. It's so clearly made up BS Hubbard pasted on to disguise his self-help therapy scam as a religion, it defies analysis.

Now, someone might claim it's an esoteric religion. Xenu is not esoteric. It's comic book BS. It's obviously a way to get people to keep paying in, once they are Clear, so they don't think too much about being Clear, since there's not much too it. Xenu and the OT levels are the carrot on the stick, and thought-stoppers.

Xenu is a metaphor for: You need to keep buying into this crock of BS.

Noah Miller
Noah Miller

Nah I love this stuff, nothing exhausting about it. Wish that there was some job that let me argue with people I disagree with that wouldn't land me on Fox News.

Noah Miller
Noah Miller

No. No one will. 

And to be honest there are times I feel bad for continuing to use her death in arguments. There are many others who have died because of this organization-- and her death is the most well known.

TonyOrtega
TonyOrtega

I'm not talking about ramming anything down a reader's throat. I'm talking about giving a reader objective, verifiable information: Bert Leahy worked for the Squirrel Busters and saw that it was being run by a man who called himself "Dave Statter." Shown a photo of David Lubow, Leahy verified that Statter was Lubow, a private eye who has worked for the church of Scientology for years. That's the information that both the Independent and Texas Monthly left out and which took me all of two sentences to explain. Sure, let the church claim that there was no connection to the Squirrel Busters, but at least give the reader this basic information so then he or she can really make an informed decision about it. That's all I'm saying.

SP 'Onage
SP 'Onage

Now that's money-grubbing funny. They need more money for buying (bribing) political clout...and journalists.

I swear, only a knuckle-dragging, cousin-marrying neanderthal would fall for this scam. It's like watching a carnival sideshow.

defrocked apostate
defrocked apostate

As much as I like the idea of Rathbun becoming the new Lord of Saint Hill and taking money from Freezoners, I doubt that Rathbun has the sheer lunacy that Hubbard suffered from that made Hubbard such an amusingly crazy criminal.

Noah Miller
Noah Miller

Actually I think the Celebrity Centre has a hired or at least trained staff just for their food, they pimp that brunch to the public too much to have it thrown out of wack if someone blows.

Noah Miller
Noah Miller

Oh man that is interesting. Given what Marty is saying I may have misjudged him in some ways. 

But man--- Look at them clamor for a daddy in control, it's crazy. They seem to crave being commanded. 

There's people volunteering to be Ethics Officers because "you don't mess with them". It's like a cargo cargo cult!

Too Much
Too Much

They *could* have asked Kirsty Alley to show up at their Writeoffs of the Future event but I expect she demanded that she be paid to appear and David told her to go stuff herself. :)

Too Much
Too Much

Miscavage has been playing games with copyrights since he made sure Hubbard's coee was loaded with quality dope right up until Hubbard screamed himself to death with an ass full of visteral. It doesn't surprise me that much of what Miscavage releases shows that Hubbard is still alive.

DodoTheLaser
DodoTheLaser

It's complicated. Yet simple. Get trained.As a part of your training, you will see lotsof really lame "technical films", where youwill train yourself to tolerate much cringiness.

Then, you will be able to proceed with it all,thinking you are clearing the planet, while "auditing"others off of their bank accounts and not really freeing anyone.

Because of F/N, Cog, VGI's. What a scam.

Too Much
Too Much

They did that in Clearwater every time a local paper covered the Lisa McPherson murder protests.

Chocolate Velvet
Chocolate Velvet

It is my understanding that compassion and remorse are "low-tone" emotional states to scilons. Making amends in a decent human fashion would be tacit admission of a low ethics condition. In his world, Marty getting his ethics in effectively would be more about dealing with the evil SP Miscavige, and applying himself to the "correct" dissemination of the tech. This, because all the wrongs he committed himself stem from his compliance with DM and his "squirrel" application of LRHs tech. So, the remedy is to attack the source of the trouble. Facing individual victims and offering a sincere apology or reparation would be a distraction. Pretty convenient, eh? His head still seems to be pretty deep in the cult-think, so you can't really expect his actions to make sense to anyone whose thinking isn't twisted the same way.

Personally, I think Marty does owe it to the world to take out DM; since he propped the little man up for so long when he should've knocked the little psycho upside the head. But I would prefer the direct approach - some sort of cage match would be fun. A bare knuckle, tag-team, no-holds meleé full of bitch-slaps, finger-bending, and diving tackles. Rathbun and Rinder against Miscavige and Cruise. The Grudge on the Bridge; the Real "Tech Wars"; the Battle for the Cattle. The winner gets to boss people around and take a percentage of the money paid by anyone who still wants scientology. The loser gets to clean bathrooms with his tongue for the next billion years. Put it on pay-per-view. Will DM be taken out by a treacherous leg-hold? Will Marty finally have to choke him? Hell, I'd pay to watch! ;)

[The above is irony, for those who don't get the joke. I don't advocate violence.]

Too Much
Too Much

LOL! Remember the Buggs Bunny cartoon where every one of the loons in the insane asylum thought they were Napoleon? Ha! Scientology tells virtually all their customers that they were famous people in previous lives, so much so the old Buggs Bunny cartoon is made real thanks to Scientology.

It would not surprise anyone if Rathbun thinks he was George Washington and no end of fucking insane lunatic shit.

Billy Bob
Billy Bob

MarkStark wrote:

"Xenu is a metaphor for: You need to keep buying into this crock of BS."

Yes! This is gold, I tell ya;  Pure gold!  It's the essence of the long con, that bait and switch promise that all will become better once you get to the *next* level.

Noah Miller
Noah Miller

MAKE YOUR FRIENDS GIVE US 100 DOLLARS!

Too Much
Too Much

You say "cousin-marrying" as if that's a bad thing.

And I'm Cute, Too
And I'm Cute, Too

Ah, I see.  I remember reading about Valeska's experience aboard the Freewinds (esp. during TC's birthday bash), and figured life at the Celebrity Centre was much the same.  Didn't count on the fact that this event would be open to the public, not just Scientologists.  Pardon my ignorance, I'm quite new to commenting here.

Xenu's advocate
Xenu's advocate

Thanks Grundoon, and indeed Noah: 

"The obsession with having someone in charge of things is so implanted in the minds of Scientologists, the first and most difficult lesson they need to learn is that that obsession lead to their beloved philosophy becoming lost to one of the most totalitarian and inhumane operations of the 21st Century."

Given all the attacks we have seen here on Marty on the basis of the assumption that he wants to set up a new church or take over the old church structure, Marty's own response to the call for a new leadership is a bit surprising.

Noah Miller
Noah Miller

Remember all your real powers and abilities will show up when we release OT 9 through OT 20xx. 

But before you can pay to take those courses you have to pay to make a bunch of Saint Hill sized Idea Orgs. Then maybe... MAYBE you can pay to retake all your previous courses that will allow you to truly experience the new OT levels. Oh gosh but we forgot our Mecca needs to be made first and you have to pay to make that, and then pay to go there. 

Oh but before you can do any of that you have to pay to sec-check between each of your New NEW OT courses. Then, get ready Molly Sunshine, here coms the newly discovered ULTRA OPERATING CLEAR THETAN CLEAR PLUS!

Jgg
Jgg

  Friends don't let friends join cults.

Noah Miller
Noah Miller

MAKE YOUR FRIENDS MAKE THEIR FRIENDS GIVE US 100 DOLLARS!

Noah Miller
Noah Miller

Until I see otherwise I'll take him at his word. But evident from that discussion there are many indies who want to either be in charge or at least have a massive organization per LRH. While I still wholeheartedly believe that following the doctrines of Scientology as laid out by Hubbard will lead to violence, abuse, and sorrow, I am happy to see that at least some of the indies want to pull away from that in favor of their watered down vanilla version of that religion. 

Still they're completely wrong and believe false things created by a drug addled moneygrubbing madman... but it's a step in the right direction.

Noah Miller
Noah Miller

One thing I'm honestly expecting is some sort of reveal that there's a secret never before known collection of super secret investigators that Hubbard set up before he went out into the universe and they've been carrying on Hubbard's work with his blessing. Then suddenly NEW OT LEVELS! 

Now Trending

New York Concert Tickets

From the Vault

 

Loading...