Nancy Cartwright and Karen Black Announced For 'Writers of the Future' Gala -- a Direct Response to the Voice?

Last week, we brought you several moments from Scientology's big L. Ron Hubbard birthday event that was held on March 10 in Clearwater, Florida. Here's another few minutes from that celebration that we alluded to earlier, during which church leader David Miscavige uses the church's "Writers of the Future" contest to burnish Hubbard's reputation.

Now, with a little more than a week to go before Writers of the Future throws its big annual gala on April 15, Scientology is pulling out the big guns, adding surprising names to this year's party. And someone who ran the contest for many years tells us that can mean only one thing: the contest is in big trouble.

As we reported on March 12, we discovered troubling ties between the prestigious contest -- which brings together some of the biggest names in science fiction and fantasy to honor up and coming new writers -- and the startling allegations of abuse at Scientology's international headquarters ("Int Base") about 90 miles east of Los Angeles.

We showed that at the same time a woman named Barbara Ruiz was running the contest as the executive director of Author Services (the Hubbard literary agency and church entity that administers the contest), she was seen by three witnesses helping church leader David Miscavige run "the Hole" -- the notorious office-prison at Int Base where fallen executives were held against their will and made to live under degrading conditions.

After that report, we heard from numerous writers who for years had been somewhat uncomfortable with the connections between the contest and the church -- despite the supposed "firewall" that kept contest participants from being proselytized. And after our story showed the disturbing connection between Author Services and the alleged abuse at the base, we heard from a couple of writers who are now publicly cutting ties with the contest, including Ithaca's Carl Frederick, who decided to turn down an invitation to participate in this year's week of workshops, which included an all-expense paid trip to Los Angeles.

We never did hear back from church spokeswoman Karin Pouw, who we asked about Ruiz and the contest. But this week, we learned that the church appears to be striking back...

WOTFGala2.jpg

Now added to the gala are a couple of surprisingly big names from the Scientology pantheon of celebrities. Karen Black, who has been very quiet about her affiliation with the church in recent years, but whose involvement goes back to the early 1970s. And even more startling, Nancy Cartwright -- the voice of Bart Simpson and one of Scientology's biggest personal funders -- will appear at the gala.

To get a sense of how unusual this is, I called up Rachel Denk, who administered the contest from 1986 to 1994, and then again from 1999 to 2004.

She told me there was no question that the church is scrambling to deal with a public relations nightmare inside the world of sci fi and fantasy.

"Your story has created a major flap in fandom," she says.

It is very unusual that figures like Black and Cartwright have been added to the program, Rachel says, and she remembers that back in 1994, for the 10th anniversary of the contest, Cartwright was approached about appearing, but the contest was unable to get her.

I told Rachel I thought it was strange that Scientology would call in its own big celebrities when it has tried so hard to keep the contest separate from the church. Wouldn't it make more sense to bring in big non-Scientology names? (Guests in the past have included Sean Astin, David Carradine, and NASA astronauts.)

"They probably cannot get the big [non-church] names because of the revelations of Scientology's abuse at the top," she says. "I doubt the big names will touch it."

Rachel says this is the third time that she can remember Scientology violating its strict firewall policies to keep the church and the contest separate.

"That was first broken in the early 2000s when the contest was promoted on the Maiden Voyage," she says, referring to a June 6 celebration of the church's private cruise ship, Freewinds.

"I was contest administrator at the time. I was told to get photos from the contest so they could be used at Maiden Voyage. But I wouldn't touch it. That's a church gig." She says that using the contest to pump up church members at an event like Maiden Voyage was exactly the kind of mixing that she was supposed to prevent. "I didn't think it was the right public, marketing to the church public," she says. "That was the first breach. And from my understanding it was ordered by David Miscavige."

The second breach? When Miscavige surprisingly showed up to attend the 2004 contest celebration at the Beverly Hills Hotel (the same year his Author Services executive director, Barbara Ruiz, was seen not only at the contest gala but also earlier that year leading mass confessions at "the Hole" and relaying information about them to Miscavige).

Later that year, on November 5, 2004, Rachel's husband Dr. Gene Denk -- who had been Hubbard's physician and personal friend -- passed away. A few weeks later, Rachel was told she was no longer needed at the contest. She felt kicked to the curb just as soon as the church could get away with it, after Dr. Denk's death.

"The third breach, and the big one," she says, "was talking about the contest at the LRH Birthday Event" as seen in the video above. "Those are the three breaches -- in the old days that would never have happened."

In the video clip, you can see Miscavige extolling the effectiveness of the contest just before he goes into a spiel about The Way to Happiness, an anodyne booklet of truisms that the church hands out around the world. He then announces progress in the church's drug treatment program, Narconon, and in their efforts to get school districts to accept Hubbard's "study tech." The writers contest, in other words, is just another tool that the church uses to spread Scientology around the world.

"I think what you see is that Miscavige is getting hard up for good PR, so he's diving into the contest itself," Rachel says. "He doesn't know what he's doing. He has no clue."

We'd still like to hear from more science fiction and fantasy writers -- particularly those who are helping to judge the contest -- about Miscavige's use of the contest to promote Scientology. We're listening.


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Rathbun and Rinder Speak Out on McPherson

On Wednesday, we published a series of video interviews with former Scientology spokesman Mike Rinder. That post produced a torrent of reactions, particularly in regards to what Rinder had to say about the 1995 death of Lisa McPherson.

McPherson was a longtime Scientologist who perished at the Fort Harrison Hotel -- headquarters of Scientology's spiritual home in Clearwater, Florida -- after being held there 17 days following a psychotic episode.

After her death, Rathbun and Rinder were brought in to deal with the legal and public relations fallout. For four years, they worked out of the Clearwater Bank building, fending off a state criminal complaint and jousting with McPherson family attorney Ken Dandar in a civil lawsuit (which was ultimately settled in 2004).

It was only much later -- after both had left the church themselves -- that Rathbun and Rinder learned that while she was still alive, McPherson's spiritual training in Clearwater was being "case supervised" by church leader David Miscavige from the Int Base in California.

Janet Reitman does a superb job telling this story over four chapters in her book, Inside Scientology. Reitman describes that while McPherson was dying, a number of Scientologists at the Fort Harrison bungled her treatment because they were blindly following a set of arcane rules and regulations in Scientology's fetishistic adherence to "policy."

Yesterday, Rathbun and Rinder went even farther than that, saying that those people were specifically afraid to anger Miscavige, knowing that he was supervising her case.

Writes Rinder:

...it was the fact that Miscavige himself had been personally involved in supervising her case. That set in motion a chain of catastrophic decisions based on the concern that "to not handle her would be regarded as an effort to make COB [Chairman of the Board, Miscavige] wrong."

Adds Rathbun:

...the RTC [Religious Technology Center, Miscavige's chief church entity] Representative was in a complete prison cell of Miscavige's own construction. To report to Miscavige that his C/Sing and programming had resulted in a psychotic break would have been suicide for her and worse. So, now everyone involved in the handling of Lisa's psychotic break were simply hoping she'd come out of it with doting care and love - and all the while trying to keep the episode quiet. To complicate matters even further, when it was apparent that Lisa was deteriorating physically the RTC representative and Alain in their horrific fear of Miscavige vengeance, began rationalizing and justifying that Lisa was "calming down." And Lisa wound up calming down all right, she calmed down to death.

My own take: I don't think anyone has told Lisa McPherson's entire story better than Janet Reitman, and I think her conclusion -- that some well-meaning people were unable to look outside some bizarre policies and rules and see that a woman in front of them was dying -- carries a lot of weight. Now, Rathbun and Rinder are coming forward and saying that these workers were under the additional pressure of Miscavige's involvement in McPherson's case, which puts the blame on his shoulders.

As I told Rinder, however, this finger-pointing loses some of its effectiveness when, for the last three years, the two of them have been using Rathbun's blog to blame Miscavige for every single thing wrong with the Church of Scientology. It's just not surprising that they would also blame him for the death of McPherson.

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Scientology on the High Seas

In November the Voice obtained hundreds of copies of L. Ron Hubbard's previously unpublished "Orders of the Day," which he gave to crew members as he sailed the Atlantic and the Mediterranean on the yacht Apollo. Our documents cover the period from late 1968 through 1971, and this time we're looking at what was happening the week of April 1 through 7 during those years.

This week, a couple of interesting rants by the Commodore...

1969

April 3

TROUBLE SOURCE

Our trouble has been isolated to the British Government. It uses British Consuls, Lloyds and reporters as part of its intelligence service.

It has been revealed that reporters in the UK, particularly those operating outside it, are members of their intelligence service while still being reporters.

The primary British effort in the world (which is what has caused its downfall) has been the practice of subversion to weaken all political threats. This involved her (by "maintenance the valance of power in Europe") in the Napoleonic wars and WW I and WW II. Her loss of colonies and dominions is due to this government characteristic of subverting by lies, rumours etc. using her intelligence service which consists now mainly of Consuls, "reporters" and the Lloyds network.

The English people for a long time have been unlucky in their "upper classes" in government. Her merchants and their people created the empire and the government took it over and destroyed it and are destroying England and her people.

The US health societies, groups, foundations and agencies are all members of SMERSH which is an English takeover of the work of Clifford Beers to bring protection to mental patients. In 1948 a group in England calling itself the "World Federation of Mental Health" incorporated in Delaware, USA and began the Fascist psychiatric trend behind the face of "humane mental health".

The Russians use this group's lines also and push their intelligence personnel disguised as "psychiatrists" along its lines. They disagree with its "treatments" and do not use them in Russia but still "put in mental institutions" whoever disagrees with the state such as writers, etc.

Fundamentally the orientation of this group is, however, Fascist.

By blackmail, corruption and pretense of being "the very best people" this group had the British government in its palm. It appointed the health ministers of both parties in England and throughout the Commonwealth and even Switzerland.

SMERSH is a world takeover type group, full of preposterous plans.

"Quacks" are anyone who would get in their way. Their Utopia was planned to seize anyone disagreeing with them and torture or kill them which is plain terrorism. All in the name of "mental health". "Mental health" has been broadened by them to mean all phases of education life and government.

Due to their political influence they can manipulate the Foreign Office and Home Office and their directors did own British press.

Up to the time they attacked us, they had it "in the bag".

Since our death camp campaign (and before) they have been losing. People see there is nothing wrong with us and then consider our attackers bigots or fanatics or Fascists.

The recent actual discovery of their Cardiff death camp is just the beginning.

Their technology (Wundt, 1879, Palov 1980) destroyed Russia, Poland, Austria and Germany. It is now actively destroying western nations whose governments look to them to dispose of malcontents without realizing SMERSH's degraded technology is violently opposed by Western peoples.

If we are careful, keep good security and continue to attack, SMERSH will collapse as they are trying to be a police state without either the police or army on their side.

The most senseless thing they ever did was attack us over the worlld. But in doing so they have exposed and destroyed what is probably the most sinister and bizarre conspiracy against man in all his centuries.

We must be alert to the Intelligennce factors of SMERSH and safeguard against their penetration of our security.

On our shoulders alone rests the possibility of freeing Mankind from the horror of one of these police states which could destroy Mankind. The rest, like sheep, have been taken in wholly.

LRH, COMMODORE


1971

April 4

ENEMY FINANCES

I found Scientologists do not know (and the world sure doesn't) the size and state of the enemy.

For years, our orgs have made more in a week than Swersh does in a year.

Two years ago Swersh was ₤25,000 in debt with little income in sight. Last year it was far worse.

So we will take over the presidents' job. Many candidates have been approached.

They closed in Switzerland, moved into a doctor's private office in Scotland, didn't have enough to incorporate, are shortly closing that office and are moing to a tiny South American island republic.

Their US chapters are "on their last legs."

Congress holds them in contempt.

Their Corfu agent "Major" Forte is being fired by the British and has just confessed publicly he was responsible for the trouble we had there and is in fear that people will say the Scientologists had him removed.

Brock Chisholen their world leader, just died, very few key figures are left.

Their mouthpiece "The Daily Mail" has just folded and Peter Younghusband who caused the Rhodesian upset has been sacked.

We have traced their origins to 2 years before Hitler and have traced the Nazi death camps and Nazi Philosophy to this group.

There were not 200,000 members at their peak.

So over the world we outnumber even their rank and file 25 to one at a very low estimate. We could buy all they own out of a week's income and never miss it.

Although a few skirmishes or even battles are still ahead of us, there is now no slightest question as to who is winning this war.

The Nazi Psychiatrist and Nazi psychologist will most surely to the way of the dinosaur.

No, there is no question now as to who will win this war. We will.

LRH, COMMODORE


Advance27Cover.jpg
Bonus 1970s Awesomeness

While L. Ron Hubbard plied the seas, back on dry land Advance! magazine was thrilling Scientologists with its tales of "OT Phenomena." Those church members who had reached the higher levels of spiritual training shared their stories of superhuman powers with fellow dupes -- er, enthusiasts. This excerpt is from Issue 27, December 1974...

My husband (Class 4, ARC Straightwire Release) and I had our long-awaited vacation last week. We went to a spot in Utah about 25 miles from where we went to two years ago. That time I had audited two beings (minus bodies) who were Indians and couldn't bring themselves to take up Caucasian bodies. That had been a super vacation, perfect weather etc., and I knew I had two eternal friends floating around. When we got up there this time I got back in comm with the one who was the chief's wife (her husband has a body now.) The previous auditing was because I noticed large areas of very dry land -- this time the suppress on water was off in one huge valley and it's now much greener. But there was a threat to this vacation -- it was going to rain for four days in the middle of our eight days. And the area in the valley below where we were staying was desert!

So, sitting in a restaurant having breakfast with my husband, I picked up a thetan (an old shaman -- also stuck in the area -- no body) who was keeping water off the desert so it was going to rain where we were. I audited this being and suddenly he cognited and was like a sun, so bright. Well, my husband perceived the change -- the restaurant brightened up and a few patrons had their thetan-attention on us, like they wanted some too?!!!

The rain never came on the mountains, but the desert (we could see the huge banks of rain clouds moving into the area and raining -- we being at 6000 ft. above the desert) got plenty, and we had perfect weather the whole time after that. Also I decided it wasn't cold enough to change the quaking aspen to autumn colors -- so the last two days there it was freezing at night and when we left the area it was popping up yellow, gold and red on the aspens -- beautiful! Whoever said weather and good times are luck? When you're an OT luck doesn't mean much, because you make your own! -- Diann Candill, OT IV


Again with the weather. I don't know about you, but if I'm going to plunk down $350,000 and several years of my life for superpowers, I better be able to do more than shift some rain clouds around.

Please remember to check at our Facebook author page for the latest updates and schedules.


**********
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
342 comments
eljeran
eljeran

actors are self absorbed douchebags that want more than anything else in the world to be better than and more special than everyone else in the world. scientology is religion that convinces them that they are exactly that. People give actors credit for being so brilliant because of their success. They are anything but smart. You actually have to be a shallow, unintelligent, phony in order to make it in the industry. there are some exceptions like Meryl and Jack but thats about it.

AnonymousSP
AnonymousSP

Just waiting for the cult celebrity shills to wake up and smell the coffee.Geesh!  Just how stoooopid are Karen Black, Nancy Cartwright, Marisol Nichols, Kirstie Alley, Kelly Preston, Juliette Lewis, Priscilla Presley?   ...and on and on and on.

DodoTheLaser
DodoTheLaser

The video where DM pronouncing lots of fancy words - SCREAMS of FAKE and LAME.

Time capsule opening is cute and a little intriguing. Hope it won't be as fake and lame.

R&R speaking out on McPherson appears to be half-FAKE and half-LAME. Time will tell.

Scientology on the High Seas/LRH's OOD's this week is just plain insane bullshit.I wish DM will publish them broadly at the next major event, so more people will blowafter reading these. Un-fucking-believable. And stupid. Correct me if I am wrong here.(Apollogists as Archaeologists OOD, will be my my favorite forever though, I think.)

And now, to the bonus of weather OT phenomena from Advance! #27 - it is REALLY lame and the cover is a culmination of both lame and fake. I'm such a religious bigot.

Sorry for my low-toned fixation on spotting things lame and fake.

DodoTheLaserA Fucking SP Moron

Love
Love

Dose anybody know why Tony O. stop to writ on a daily basis?

Noah Miller
Noah Miller

Hey in that video... Who the heck was giving those quotes?

Dantobaccus
Dantobaccus

I took vocal lessons from Raven Kane,when she was in NY in the early 80's...

Noah Miller
Noah Miller

So if OT3 is now an allegory, how can you determine what is and isn't an allegory? And just what the hell is it allegorical for? Don't do your taxes or else you'll get blown up? 

Are past lives allegorical? Is Clear and allegory? Is Sec Checking an allegory?Are the marcarbians an allegory? Hell is the entire book "Have you lived this life before?" an allegory? 

I'd love to know what you use to judge what is and isn't and allegory.

Aa
Aa

I thought the whole purpose (or at least the original concept) of a time-capsule was so that archaeologists of the distant future could one day dig it up and find a hermetically sealed, perfectly preserved snapshot of everyday life - a cultural "fossil record" frozen in time that doesn't require Pompeii event to achieve. Or if not the distant future, at least a lifetime removed. 

But for Scientology to break open a time-capsule after only 25 years, what's the point? Hell, we've probably got a few taped-up boxes in the attic older than that.

jensting
jensting

300 comments in 1 1/2 days. I'm sure that sounds like a lot :) 

Nibbles42
Nibbles42

Kinda pathetic that Karen Black, who hasn't done anything notable since the 80s, is one of Scientology's big guns.  I'd be pissed to get second billing to her if I were Nancy Cartwright; at least people know Nancy's name outside of the Co$ and she's involved with a ridiculously popular and influential show. 

Tye Solaris
Tye Solaris

Just as a sidebar...

Visited the Wiki page on Ron just now... was wondering what the 'greater' world was reading.

Take a visit... found this all too funny segment that links quite well with Ron's 'Orders-of-the-Day' ... here is a little tidbit;

After returning from Alaska, Hubbard applied to join the United States Navy. His Congressman, Warren G. Magnuson, wrote to President Roosevelt to recommend Hubbard as "a gentleman of reputation" who was "a respected explorer" and had "marine masters papers for more types of vessels than any other man in the United States". Hubbard was described as "a key figure" in writing organizations, "making him politically potent nationally". The Congressman concluded: "Anything you can do for Mr Hubbard will be appreciated." His friend Robert MacDonald Ford, by now a State Representative for Washington, sent a letter of recommendation describing Hubbard as "one of the most brilliant men I have ever known". Hubbard was said by Scientologists to be "a powerful influence" in the Northwest and to be "well known in many parts of the world and has considerable influence in the Caribbean and Alaska." The letter declared that "for courage and ability I cannot too strongly recommend him." Ford later said that Hubbard had written the letter himself: "I don't know why Ron wanted a letter. I just gave him a letter-head and said, 'Hell, you're the writer, you write it!'"[97] 

MarkStark
MarkStark

Has anyone else noticed how Scientology is expanding their press release program to swamp the Google news index with fluff stories about The Way to Happiness seminars etc.? 

Adron
Adron

I feel like it's worth mentioning that David Campbell, listed in the WOTF as the conductor of the opening performance, is the father of pop artist Beck, and provided string arrangements on at least 2 of Beck's later albums (that I know of). Another desperate angling for star-power cred? Although potentially risky territory, it could be interesting for the Voice to look into Beck's story. A lot of the personal narratives he gives to the media seem awfully full of contradictions and obfuscations, and for a long time in his early career he pretended to be poor and struggling, while keeping his Scientology upbringing a very hush-hush matter.

MarkStark
MarkStark

Good long article on Marty in The Independent. Marty says Xenu is allegorical and the "Church" responds by saying:

"This shows he is no longer a Scientologist.Scientologists are true to the writings of Mr Hubbard."

Oh Marty! Why can't you be true to the writings? They are the writings of Dr. L. Ron Hubbard, upon which this holy of holies you call Scientology is based.

I'd have to agree with the cult on that one Marty, sorry. True, Scientologists believe that every word of that lying windbag, teller of tall tales, is to be taken as "factual," just like his trip to Venus.  How about a debate on TV? Xenu: Allegory or fact? Did man really evolve from the clam? Allegory or fact. Can the e-meter date a person's past life accurately, back billions of years? There's so much important scientific and religio-monetary Dr. Hubbo "researched." I'm so glad the cult responded to that article.

Marty's blog has had 6 million hits total, 10,000 a day! I'm hoping 3,000 of those, at least, are coming from active "Church" members.  

OTVIIIisGrrr8!
OTVIIIisGrrr8!

We in RTC wish to correct the ever-obnoxious harridan Tony Ortega: We in RTC are not "reacting" to the VV story by adding celebrities to our Writers of the Future contest. That is a pie-faced lie that Ortega is using to flatter himself.

The fact is that we in RTC cannot "react" as we are free of our Reactive Mind you see. What factually happened is that several hundred celebrities called us and asked to make guest appearances at our Writers of the Future event. The audience for the live broadcast will be in the billions and every actor in Hollywood -- and all of them secretly get Scientology auditing at CC Int -- want to be seen at this event.

We in RTC did not want to have hundreds of famous stars overshadow the writers. Thus, by way of describing what is both a testament to the Tech and COB's unimpeachable wisdom in selecting the best people for the job, the list was narrowed down.

How could we in RTC say no to Kristi Alley after her recent triumphal appearance on American Idol? Kirsti boosted Idol's rating 6,268%. The show has plunged withour Kri... wait. Err, we in RTC have just been handed a note.

Sorry.

We in RTC meant Kirsti Alley. The show was apparently called "Dancing with the Stars" and not American Idol. In any case, Kirsti won a prize of some sort on the show. She will be at this Writer's event to speak out against the Psychiatric drugging of children, pass out some Drug Free Marshall badges to children, and, we suppose, she will Tweet the entire time as is her wont.

We in RTC further wish to point out that Christianity is where failed and troubled celebrities go to make some money. To wit:

* The Islam-hating Kirk Cameron

* The fossilized 200 year old Efrem Zimbalist Jr reads the Bible on the TBN Network

* John Tesh: Need we say more? Seriously. Scientology aside, we can probably all agree that John Tesh is an interminable religious bore. Glad we don't have him in the Church. If he ever does stop his R6 nonsense and shows up at a CC and asks for help, we will have him immediately escorted out the back door. There is actually a "John Tesh Handling" in place for such a contingency but we digress.

* Mel Gibson -- he's not a Scientologist.

To move uptempo, we in the Church of Scientology have a dazzling array of luminaries in every field of endeavor ranging from Human Rights to Hollywood. Karen Black is famous as is Nancy Cartwright, Tom Cruise, and the other usual celebrities whose confessional folders and session videos we have right here in our offices. 

We have folders on each of you as well. As always, we in RTC are watching you -- and when you least expect it we will have all of you arrested for being Psych Terrorists.

DeckardCain
DeckardCain

Who uses the word "yarn" besides copywriters for the Digital Cable on-screen guide?  Is that word even used by serious writers?

Chuck Beatty
Chuck Beatty

Thankyou again Tony for your reporting on Scientology.

I doubt any subject has gotten this amount of ex members coming out of the woodwork to lay to rest the subject's controversies.

This Hubbard Scientology has such a backlog of untold behind the scenes details to inform the public about, I can't thankyou enough for letting the whole story be shared publicly here by on this online Village Voice blog.

Chuck Beattyex Sea Org (1975-2003)866-XSEAORG

Olig
Olig

i am going to take the unauthorized opportunity to repost a post from Tony's Wednesday blog response section.  I did not write this.  Credit to the author, John Duignan:"Dude, you seriously need to stop viewing the world through the distorted lens of the pseudo-scientific, pseudo-philosophic cult of scientology and its sociopath founder.

There is such a wonderful world out here away from that mentally - and if you like, spiritually - restrictive frame. I was there for 22 years and I cannot express the sense of liberation, exuberance, freedom and grounding that I achieved within a few months of my disconnection.

(I will speak scientologese here for your sake for a tiny bit) I, as is any Scientologist, was PTS to Hubbard and his cult. I left and I recovered and I flourished and prospered. I false data stripped myself over a period of a few years, and that process was not merely lurking on message boards, I enrolled in university, I studied psychology and sociology (and English and Italian Lit so I am now better educated than Hubbard, Rinder, Miscavige and Rathburn :) )and I learned through dealing in a real and honest way with real people without filtering every perception through the Hubbard 'tek' grid.

I can only tell you, I cannot get in there and deal with that gaping empty chasm of need that people who stick to scientology tend to reveal every once in while. There is such a thing as the scientology junkie I suppose.

Good luck, dude."Awesome post, John.

Chuck Beatty
Chuck Beatty

There's no firewall in Hubbard's mind that prevented him from getting his messages to the world.

In a very weird way, I see Miscavige thinking oftentimes based directly on Hubbard's faulty blurring of the lines mentality.

Hubbard played loose with any "firewalls."    

One of ASI's major purposes is promoting and maintaining a high positive image for L. Ron Hubbard, and thus maintaining a high value for of his "products" (meaning ALL of his life's products that make money, and the church side makes a LOT of money, and the church side accomplishes his galactic megalomania goals).

I say let Miscavige do as Hubbard did, and daringly blur the lines between all the front groups and between ASI and the "church".

Hubbard's Scientology's "science of certainty" is glaringly absurd, because Hubbard's serious life's work was this church movement, with it's Xenu story and high volume exorcism of the movement's members' dead space alien souls (the "body thetans") which Hubbard believed are the most important aspect of humanity's "case" that needs dealing with.

What is so anti-magnetic to me, in hindsight, is Hubbard's serious life's work, which culminated with the "upper OT levels" which consist of the high volume exorcism of dead space alien souls, and the members take this practice as reality.

Luckily the rule where Scientologists won't openly discuss the Xenu story and their high volume exorcism, that rule keeps at least a firewall between Hubbard's serious fantasy work of the church, with the Writers of the Future.

In Hubbard's mind, he'd not allow Writers of the Future participants to read his "serious" church science fiction (whole track and Xenu story stuff), but THAT would be a neat PR briefing that ought be done to the participants, I think.

sharkattacksteve
sharkattacksteve

Check out Marty's blog it has a bunch of useful stats compiled by some OT8 that just blew.  It's amazing and confirms everything we've been saying for the last 4 years.

Too Much
Too Much

I have been reading Scientology's amusingly insane "Freedom Magazine" pages for Mike Rinder and Marty Rathbun and have been much smiles through it all. :)

Sadly there are no entries for Tony Ortega yet. I guess the lunatics they have writing that stuff have all blown and they're still trying to find someone to fill that hat. 

Chocolate Velvet
Chocolate Velvet

David Miscavige sounds like the keynote huckster at a trade show in Reno. That mechanical cadence is weirdly effective in paralyzing the audience, like spider venom. But it's a bit obvious for my taste. Watching him, I wonder, what is he on? The weird plastic calm of his eyes, and the mechanical deep breaths between phrases like Darth Vader - that's more than scotch whisky on board producing that somatic presentation. Reminds me very much of people on anti-anxiety drugs. Maybe they slip 'em into his food, to keep the crazy down? Or perhaps he has embraced psych drugs, just like LRH did? Why not? Dose up, call it "chemical externalization"; and find a way to profit from it!

Lemont
Lemont

He wanted to focus on writing even more in-depth which requires more time, not pounding out daily shorter stories. 

One of the benefits of this is that the comment sections go longer and more in depth, too.

Jgg
Jgg

  The Church of Scientology, which L. Ron Hubbard founded.  By the way, guess who owned Sequoia University, the diploma mill which Hubbard got his doctorate from.

Jgg
Jgg

L. Ron Hubbard was an allegory.

TheWidowDenk
TheWidowDenk

 "But for Scientology to break open a time-capsule after only 25 years, what's the point?"I think it's fun to see what folks said back then about today. Especially when these folks are from the science fiction and fantasy field."Hell, we've probably got a few taped-up boxes in the attic older than that."I'd probably be interested in your old boxes too! lol

sharkattacksteve
sharkattacksteve

Yea I noticed that a while back because I would Google news "scientology" every morning to look for stuff to put up on YT. It's mostly coming out on PR WEB. Google/YouTube are as vile as Co$ these days as far as I'm concerned.

The Independent article is really good. The way it's written it sounds like Co$ is admitting to the existence of Xenu which I find hard to believe.

Jgg
Jgg

  Well, I guess Marisol Nichols (whomever she is) will not overshadow other people.

Are_sics
Are_sics

Agreed Olig -- John's been on a bit of a tear lately!

sizzle8
sizzle8

 With all due respect Chuck, you seem to be hung up on the Xenu story.Almost all your posts now deal with that.You know that the vast majority of Scientologists don't know or even suspect that that's part of the OT levels.

I've been watching the Holy Week reporting from around the world - whether it's the Pope washing someone's feet or the voluntary crucifixions in the Philippines or the self flagellation in Guatemala, people will believe whatever they want.  For Scientology, like all other groups, it's the abuses not their beliefs.

media_lush
media_lush

yeah, but trying to follow threads is such a hassle now.... especially on an iPad.... a lot of comments often mean you have to scroll down to the end.... click on additional comments.... often twice. Personally I think he could still do daily posts and maintain in depth studies if he was to allocate separate days to 'non-journalistic' stuff like Captains Orders, Sunday Funnies and Best of Readers Comments  and add something like a Forum question of the week.... this would account for four days allowing 3 days for the in-depth stuff and/or an occasional Thursday upstat/downstat. I find it rather daunting to come to an article at 50 comments and then again at 400 comments.... it's a pain trying to find where you were.  Just my 2 cents

bobx
bobx

"guess who owned Sequoia University"?Well, don't leave us hanging!  Xenu?  Smersh?  The Marcabians?

DodoTheLaser
DodoTheLaser

Ron was a creator of L. Ron Hubbard. Allegory, indeed.

Allegory - noun.The expression by means of symbolic fictional figures and actions of truths or generalizations about human existence.

Potential Tribble Source
Potential Tribble Source

 I was thinking the same thing about the Church comment about the existence of Xenu.  It sounds like they are admitting that Scientologists have to believe the Xenu story or they're not Scientologists.

Are_sics
Are_sics

Whomever she is? Come on, man... she's the pretty one who is almost as pretty as that other one in that show show she used to be in, with the guy.

Noah Miller
Noah Miller

That's cause it's nutty and forms the backbone of church's ideology. 

The beliefs lead to abuse. When you make up and live your life by stories from a madman it's very easy to allow those ideas to dehumanize yourself. Hey you're not your meat body you're a thetan who lives forever, so when we beat you and make you live in what amounts to a closet-- No biggie, when you die you'll come back and have another awesome life. 

Lets say the majority of scientologists don't know about OT3, they do know that their religion preachers past and future lives, don't the deserve to know that idea is predicated on a pill trip that Hubbard took, which he then tried to sell as a movie?

Are_sics
Are_sics

If "the vast majority" of Scientologists don't know about Xenu, then clearly the "beliefs" are not irrelevant -- they're *part* of the actions.

The actions of the auditors doing the higher levels, and the actions of the church hierarchy, include *not telling PC's about Xenu*.  Or to put it positively, the action is withholding information about the goal, the path, the product.  Theyl not only sell you a vague idea of freedom, they later sell you the idea of what it is *exactly* you're not free from. Boy are you gonna be surprised. But they can't tell you now, because you wouldn't spend money, you wouldn't commit, you wouldn't be willing to shut out voices of reason, or competing theories of spiritual development.

Granted, there are lots of other cons in the system.  Like... clearing the planet.  Well, a billion year contract just sounds like metaphor for intense commitment when you are also told "we only have about 5 years to clear the planet...."  OK, my billion will get whittled down to five.  That's a con.

High dose niacin and sweat lodges are good for your liver.  That's a con. Oh, sorry... they'll help you get to a state where you can clear off these body thetans you don't yet know about.  It's not just about your meat body.  That'd be too small a con.

So yeah, of course people can believe what they want.  But the beliefs are not separable from actions.  Xenu is what Billy Bob just called "bait and switch".  Whether it's a religious belief or not, I'm not sure.  It's certainly a con, religious or not.  And it's immoral, as cons are.

Chuck is much more articulate about Scientology being an "exorcism cult" than anyone else I've read.  It's okay to have a point of focus. If you think he's "one note" then it's pretty easy to skip over the posts. Some of us -- or I, at least -- will celebrate the posts and participation of someone who knows as much and is as articulate about the big picture as Chuck Beatty.

sharkattacksteve
sharkattacksteve

If all we ever talked about were the "abuses" this thing would have fizzled out long ago. Even if you're dealing with horrible shit you have to learn to have fun with it or it will drive you crazy.

Billy Bob
Billy Bob

I'm pretty sure Chuck Beatty was talking about Xenu the first time I ever saw him post, and I doubt he'll ever stop.  Chuck's been at this for a long time.  And yeah, he may be repetitive, but I think he's effective.

 Some would say that it is abusive to sell a supposedly highly valued item, secret knowledge, based on known false promises of higher powers  then instead inflict psychic harm (the exorcism ritual that Chuck touches upon, and yes repeatedly!)  Bait and switch is not a religious belief.

I think he's got a valid point, not one that is meant to ridicule beliefs, but to reveal the truth behind the product that Scientology is selling.  I think that helps people, I really do.

Lemont
Lemont

Yes, it was an intuitive guess!!!  For me, those tend to be fairly accurate.  But I'm not claiming any research or science here. 

To the point, I do see a lot of awesome posts from late in the previous day that don't get attention when Tony's new post comes out the next day.

I also think there is a "lull" while readers absorb Tony's newest journalism.  Fewer posts mean fewer "lulls" and more back-and-forths within the comments.

media_lush
media_lush

eh, 30%?..... er, .... is this a guess?

I would actually disagree - I, for one, suffer from comment fatigue if there are too many comments..... especially some of the really long ones that get posted here.  I wish Tony would add a poll widget to one of his sites to see what people would prefer.... it's a pretty simple thing to do.

Lemont
Lemont

On the flip side, it's annoying when 30% of the old comments are unread by everybody as soon as a new post comes out.  People stop reading the comments from the old post.  So at least this way, the comments get gone over and everyone gets read, for the most part.  It allows more back-and-forth. 

I agree, though, that it would be nice if DISQUS just loaded ALL the comments, rather than 100 at a time.   It makes hitting F5 so much more fun.

Jgg
Jgg

  L. Ron Hubbard, that's who.  Name ring a bell?

Jgg
Jgg

  Well media lush, they are very good at creating their new and better (fake) realities.

media_lush
media_lush

well, "She became a member of Church of Scientology when she was introduced to it by her chiropractor" ..... funnily enough that's the second time I've seen a scientologist chiropractor 'introducing" someone to scientology....one of the commentators on Gawkers Rathbun story today mentioned their chiropractor really trying to get them to visit and get audited.... hmmm, hard sell chiropractor dude hustling in L.A. ,  lulz.

I also checked out the Golden Eagle Awards, they're like the Russian Oscars.... one category they DON'T have is "Most promising Actor or Actress", I reckon they thought this would never be checked, lol.... and her name doesn't register on their site at all.

media_lush
media_lush

"From Vegas Vacation to In Justice, her ability to switch effortlessly between comedy and drama has continually made her a go-to girl for some of the biggest directors and producers in the business...She has quickly become one of the most sought after actresses in Hollywood, working with some of the most prominent actors and directors in the business. The recipient of a Golden Eagle Award for Most promising Actor or Actress"

I reckon that sciientology DM speech writer dude wrote up her IMDB profile..... and what the hell is The Golden Eagle Award..... have we unearthed another secret Scion award thingy.... ? 

Jgg
Jgg

  OK, now I know EXACTLY who she is.  I bet she is somewhat flattered that the Church of Scientology considers her to be a celebrity.

Are_sics
Are_sics

Indeed.  "The Beliefs lead to abuse."  This is so obvious it surprises me how often the conversation is about bracketing this idea in the name of religious freedom, or tolerance.  Of course some beliefs don't lead to abuse, and anyone has the right to think what she wants.  But if the belief is that "these sacred ideas cause pneumonia in the unprepared," we now have a belief that "lying about this idea is good."  Or taking people's passports, draining their bank accounts, assuring no means of egress or transportation could be a "good" thing. Or, as Mike Rinder said in his video interview, you get so twisted up that you believe you can beat people, in the name of "ethics", and it's for their own good.   The space opera is not an isolated belief. It's tied to beliefs about lying, and beliefs about children being mature thetans in smaller meat bodies, and beliefs about taking money and setting up a pyramid scheme.  Many people here could elaborate all of this better than I can.  There are belief systems. 

Maybe a side-point, but I think it likely that the "study tech" teaches people precisely not to think in terms of systems, or bigger pictures, but to isolate.  Of course most any educational theory involves using a dictionary to look up words.  (Really).  But to think that dispels every type of comprehension problem is naive.  Or manipulative and part of the con. Depending on whether you're the perp or the victim.

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