Scientology Sunday Funnies: Bowl With The Valley Girls!

And here we thought the Ideal Org caper was winding down.

An alert reader guided us to this video, which shows that the clever gals at the Operating Thetan Committee of Scientology's San Fernando Valley Celebrity Centre (CC OTC) know how to get the membership pumped up for some of that endless fundraising the church is known for.

How endless? Well, we looked around and found this enthusiastic pitch for a Valley Ideal Org dated seven years ago. Looks like they've been throwing gutter balls for a long time!

For those of our readers who may not be up on the Ideal Org push, it's a campaign for local Scientologists to raise millions of dollars for a new local building -- after they've already been "regged" (pressured) for expensive courses, donations to the church's war chest (the International Association of Scientologists), and donations for the Super Power project in Florida.

A new San Fernando Valley building would need to be "Ideal," so locals would be pushed to raise money for a big, historic structure that would need millions more in renovations (also pried out of local hands), and would also cost the locals additional money to maintain. All this, and yet the ownership of the edifice would go to the international church, a neat trick that keeps the mother church wealthy and the locals struggling to pay their bills.

Why does Scientology leader David Miscavige push his members to pay for fancy new buildings, when there's no indication that the locals really need them? We made a cheeky guess that actually points to the true answer: Miscavige knows that if he can fly in for a quick opening ceremony, he can convince some of the more credulous local press, politicians, and public that Scientology is actually expanding.

Anyway, these ladies at the San Fernando Valley org certainly make a valiant effort in this video, and we'd love to know who they are. So commenters, help us out!


More Sunday fun

Thank you to the reader who passed along this fun offer of a badge you can put on your car. Because nothing says "I can manipulate car accidents with my mind" like a Scientology emblem on your auto!

SciBadge1.jpg
SciBadge2.jpg


Cynics will say that with membership dwindling, and fewer people than ever getting to the higher levels of the Bridge, there just isn't much demand for OT 8 completions on Scientology's private cruise ship, the Freewinds, and that's why the church is advertising so many other, less-important conventions on the boat instead. On the other hand, imagine how good your golf game, driving skills, and ghost-hunting abilities are going to be after you tune up your OT abilities on this excursion!


OTAbilities1.jpg
OTAbilities2.JPG


So much OT, so little time.

Cartagena1.jpg
Cartagena2.jpg
Cartagena3.jpg



See also:
"Tom Cruise worships David Miscavige like a god"
Scientology's president and the death of his son: our complete coverage
What Katie is saving Suri from: Scientology interrogation of kids
Scientology's new defections: Hubbard's granddaughter and Miscavige's dad
Scientology's disgrace: our open letter to Tom Cruise
Scientology crumbling: An entire mission defects as a group
Scientology leader David Miscavige's vanished wife: Where's Shelly?
Neil Gaiman, 7, Interviewed About Scientology by the BBC in 1968
The Master Screenplay: Scientology History from Several Different Eras
And a post that pulls together the best of our Scientology reporting

Please check out our Facebook author page for 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 was 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.



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304 comments
ClamOnAHalfshell
ClamOnAHalfshell

Oh, the havingness! The havingness I am having are LOLs. So many LOLs.

deElizabethan
deElizabethan

Interesting! since this evening I can pull up and logged in

Wed. Aug 8

Friday Aug 10

Sunday Aug 12

The Narconon articles cannot, just keeps spinning

August 11,

August 14

 

deElizabethan
deElizabethan

Well, there seems to be a problem.... I can not get back onto today's Tuesday blog after shutting down and coming back on later. It just keeps twirling for 10 minutes. So I came onto this Sunday one and is OK. Something is jamin' with the jivin'.  Will try later this evening.

Obnosis
Obnosis

Tony, there is a popular and often quoted reference within the "Church" that I can't help be reminded of after watching the video:

 

"Dilettante-ism

 

"Dilettante = One who interests himself in an art or science merely as a pastime and without serious study.

 

"In an org, this manifests itself with "people shold live a little." "One needs a rest from Scientology." "One should do something else, too." All that kind of jazz.

 

"It also manifests itself in nonconsecutive scheduling, part-time students, "becasue things are different in this town and people can come only two nights. . . . " Ask what they do with other nights. Bowling. Horse racing.

 

"Scientology, that saves lives, is a modern miracle, is being compared to bowling.  Get it?

 

"That org or portion of the org just isn't serious. Scientology is an idle club to it, an old lady's sewing circle. And to somebody, selling training and auditing are just con games they put over on the public."

 

-- L. Ron Hubbard, HCO (Hubbard Communications Office) Policy Letter of 16 May 1965 Issue II, Indicators of Orgs

 

So yeah, dilettantes go bowling.

torymagoo44
torymagoo44

Oh my Gawd::: The Scientology Car Badges! I remember them well. ALWAYS the *only* people who had them on their cars were the people who had THE worst cars. Great promo, eh? Oh yeah...I really want to be like *him*. truefax. :) Best, Tory/Magoo

BurytheNuts
BurytheNuts

I just spent several days explaining the Scions to my sick mother in law. She came out of a deep depression and laughed like hell.

I am not sure what to make of this ....

:)

A1beF1k312b1
A1beF1k312b1

You guys must have all been born on the highway!!  That's were all the accidents happen!!  LOL time for you to up the medication!!

Sherbet
Sherbet

I figured out why the car badges are so cheap.  They're made from asbestos removed from the Freewinds.  Hey, the church has to get rid of it somehow, right?

dbloch7986
dbloch7986

Only $180/day to be trapped on a ship with ruthless fundraisers with the added bonus of asbestos exposure and many other undiscovered health code violations! Make sure to sign up for the free trip to the engine room so you can watch teenagers get tossed around in the bowls of the ship while attempting to clean hundreds of moving parts.

 

We have the special "Ethics & Finance" seminar to teach you that is unethical to send your money anywhere except to the church.  There is the "Prosperity" seminar to teach you how to make the church prosper. Be sure to take advantage of the "Havingness & Expansion" seminar to teach you how to give everything you have to the church so it can expand.  The "Power & Leadership" seminar will show you how to make the church more powerful so it can lead you better. Go to the "Abilities Convention" so we can assess your ability to donate and pay for more services. Finally, the "Competence and Leadership" course will teach you that no matter what people say the church's management is always competent and that you should submit yourself to their leadership with unquestioning devotion.

 

Don't forget to engorge yourself on our buffets full of exotic and delicious food while the hungry Sea Org members serve you until they are permitted to take their 20 minute dinner breaks to eat beans and rice.

 

To expound on the "Abilities Convention" we would like to list the parts for you:

 

First we will talk about Beingness and Self-Determinism: You will first learn how to be a Scientologist and then learn to surrender your self-determinism to the church.

 

Then we will talk about Creating Time: You will learn how to create more time in your day to dedicate to the church and church-related activities. This may involve quitting your job and losing your income, but don't fret. We always have openings in the Sea Org where room and board will be taken care of and you will receive a weekly stipend of no less than $30!

 

Handling Maybes: This will change your mind from "maybe" giving everything you have to the church to "definitely" and will expand your decision to include the very shirt of your back. There are many Sea Org members who can't afford clothes besides their uniforms. So rest assured your shirt will be put to good use.

 

Entrapment: Will teach you that you are not entrapped and if you ever feel that way you need to give more money to the church because it is the only option that will free you from the trap.

 

Giving life: This will work in two ways. One you need to have more children so we can turn them into good little dedicated Scientologists. Then once your children are of age to join the Sea Org (at least 9 years old) we will ask that you give your life and many future lives to the church by signing your Sea Org contract with your child.

 

Postulates: We will teach you about how Hubbard postulated that his way is the only way and that following his methods you will learn how to be better at golf and telepathically chase ghosts from your home!

 

There is much more to this convention but it all boils down to one thing: Make sure to bring your credit cards and mortgage papers! Because when we're done with you you will want to hand over everything you have to us!

 

Make sure to buy your car emblem before coming because anyone else than a proud, dedicated, proselytizing Scientologist is an SP and will be declared. 

AussieCase
AussieCase

http://www.digitalspy.com/movies/news/a398952/philip-seymour-hoffman-the-master-is-not-about-scientology.html

 

We are told "The Master" is not directly about Hubbard, and that Anderson was interested in lost souls returning from WW II.  Watchers are invited to draw their own conclusions.

 

As I have mentioned before, I suspect the movie will apply to more broad themes than simply Scientology. Of course, Scientology was one cult from the time, and we here are familiar with it, so we should expect to see a lot of similarities.

 

I also think society is in a similar situation today. We have people returning from at best questionable military operations, economic uncertainty, and concerns about environmental sustainability. There are a lot of young "lost souls." These conditions are consistent with those Margaret Singer described as conducive to growth in totalist group (cult) membership--perhaps not Scientology growth as it has not adapted to modern times.

PeggyToo
PeggyToo

 @BurytheNuts

 Hey...whatever works.  Glad she can smile, thats the first step. ;-)

PeggyToo
PeggyToo

 @A1beF1k312b1

 We had a troll on Saturdays  postings and I thought it was you. Oops...my bad.

Anonymous
Anonymous

 @A1beF1k312b1

Two codes mixed...very clever...

 

A + 7 = H

1 = A (1st letter of alphabet)

b + 7 = I

e + 7 + L

 

F + 7 = M

1 = A

k + 7 = R

3 = C

1 = A

2 = B

b + 7 = I

1 = A

PoisonIvy
PoisonIvy

 @dbloch7986 ...and by the time you leave the ship, you'll have turned your pink slip over to us (and won't have a car anymore.)

media_lush
media_lush

 @AussieCase surprised Hoffman is taking this approach .... no one has commentated there yet so I added my bit:  I

 

'm sorry, but this movie is 100% about scientology and L Ron Hubbard. The script has already been leaked and examined by ex scientologists and there are dozens of similarities that leave no margin for interpretation whatsoever. I have no idea why Hoffman is being disingenuous denying the link - maybe he's heard about scientology's "Fair Game" policy and is kidding himself here.  

 

what's interesting is that the writer said that Hoffman said this to "Entertainment Weekly" - I had a look at their site and can't find this reference at all... tried putting 'The Master' and then 'Hoffman' in their site search.... nope!

 

hmmm... strange

SvenBoogie
SvenBoogie

 @AussieCase It is obviously directly about Hubbard. There is no question about it whatsoever. He is saying this so the 'church' will leave him alone. I think he underestimates them. 

BurytheNuts
BurytheNuts

 @PeggyToo 

that is kind of what I thought....right on...just laugh at it.

I do when I am not spitting acid!!!

PeggyToo
PeggyToo

 @Anonymous  

 Good job Anon. I knew it was him, just couldn't get the code except for the A.

A1beF1k312b1
A1beF1k312b1

 @PeggyToo 

 

I have no idea what you are talking about, you burly-boned, fat-kidneyed fustilarian minnow. Up your meds, quick!  And didn't you know, it's racist to pick on gingers. LRH couldn't help it!

AussieCase
AussieCase

 @media_lush Should I continue to dig my own hole, or should I stop? And I wonder how I became involved in Scientology.  

 

The film clearly draws on the story of Hubbard and Scientology, but it may also draw from other elements in different ways. Certain themes of mind control may parallel Scientology while also paralleling cults or movements. Lifton's work on totalist groups indicates that Scientology is consistent with other cults. The lead character's personality may not be based solely on or even primarily on Ron, it may be somewhat based on Orson Welles as Hoffman says. Character development is key in the making of a good film, and this part may diverge, even if elements of the plot are similar to Scientology. The true story of Ron Hubbard's character development may not be fun to watch.  

 

I suspect there are enough facets of the film that do not directly draw from Scientology that Hoffman and Anderson are correct if they state the film is not directly based on Scientology.   

 

If Hoffman really did say this, and I defer to your opinion here, then I see no reason to assume he is lying.

 

If the film is good, as I suspect it will be, then I will enjoy watching it, and it will draw attention to the abuses and absurdity of Scientology. However, I won't be surprised some think it lets Hubbard of the hook in some manner, or gets a few things "wrong." It is fiction.

 

 

Claude
Claude

 @media_lush  @AussieCase 

 

They are probably having a good joke with it.  They figure it will generate buzz, and interestingly enough.... this "mystery" means more people will have to learn about Scilons themselves to make their own mind up about the movie...

 

Guess where the best place to learn about Scientology is?  Right here,.

PoisonIvy
PoisonIvy

 @SvenBoogie  @AussieCase What can the church do, really?  It's fiction.  No matter whether Anderson says he never even heard of Hubbard, or if he says, yes, he read about Hubbard and it got his imagination going and directly inspired the film.  It's fiction; even if it's 'biographical' or 'historical' fiction', you can't defame a dead person.   Remember "The Last Temptation of Christ"?  You can picket the movie all you want, but you can't legally get Jesus of Nazareth and his estate to sue.

PeggyToo
PeggyToo

 @JohnPCapitalist

 Thanks.  btw....I love your answers but I have to pull out my 'Geek' magazines to figure out what you said. ;-)

JohnPCapitalist
JohnPCapitalist

 @PeggyToo It is unclear whether the new "feature" of listing twitter mentions of the article is screwing things up.  I think there are two major categories of problems with LiveFyre: 

 

1)  Back end scalability and performance: when you click "next 50," it returns zero results after waiting for about 5 seconds.  It seems to retrieve comments one at a time from a database of some sort and assemble them into a list, despite the fact that storing the list as a single XML document would make a lot more sense, since a given comment is only going to appear in one place in the comment base.  It is appalling in this day and age to believe they can't support 1,000 simultaneous readers (not updaters, but just people looking at a page) with 150 comments.  

 

2)  Browser compatibility.  A lot of flakiness about how things work in different browsers, both on desktop systems and on mobile devices.  It is indeed difficult to test all this Ajax code that they use, but even given the difficulty, the results they have been able to deliver in this day and age are unacceptable (the number of screw-ups would have been expected circa 1997 when nobody understood browser compatibility, but in 2012, this is more of a solved problem). 

 

I don't know that the Twitter groups are causing the problem unless they're affecting back end scalability by causing things to time out due to the extra retrievals.  

PeggyToo
PeggyToo

 @JohnPCapitalist

 Hey, do you know what's going on on todays posts?? Am I correct thinking that the Twitter postings are screwing up the system??

JohnPCapitalist
JohnPCapitalist

 @PeggyToo I took a gander at that one last night as well.  Early in my career, I used to be able to read memory dumps in hexadecimal, which will tell you just how much of a geek I used to be.  There's not much demand for that at Global Capitalism HQ these days, so my skills are a bit rusty.  I tried a few tools from my Super Geek Swiss Army Data Conversion Knife and came up with nothing.  I think it was a random troll, since there are not even clusters of 8 bits to form characters.  Good to see someone else who knows about such things also cratered in the attempt. 

PeggyToo
PeggyToo

 @JohnPCapitalist

 JohnP, help.  What the heck does it say??? I tried binary, backward binary, binary mixed with something else and I just can't figure it out.

JohnPCapitalist
JohnPCapitalist

 @A1beF1k312b1  @Anonymous  @PeggyToo OOOoooooo!!!  Mixing faux Shakespeare with cult jargon gets my English major spidey-sense going all tingly.  Good thing I'm reading this at work on a slow day and not flying left seat on the G5; I hate when I snort coffee all over the flight director computer screen. 

10101100101001010110
10101100101001010110

 @Anonymous  @PeggyToo 

 

1010111010101110101010101, 00110101010100101110:

 

01010101001010111010100011!!!

 

0100101011101011101010, 101011:

 

101011101010000110101110101110!  LOL

A1beF1k312b1
A1beF1k312b1

 @Anonymous  @PeggyToo 

 

It should be kept in your knowingness, that (a) the code needs to be solved before Tony's next post and that (2) last time nobody could get it without a hint.  But you get the gold medal this time, thou subtle magnificent bastard!!!!

Anonymous
Anonymous

 @A1beF1k312b1  @PeggyToo

 Now, when you start using one code for the capital letters, a different code for the lower-case, and yet a third code for the numerals, you'll have mastered cryptology at a OSA-calibre level. Maybe throw in some random symbols like & or * that shift the entire code up one level temporarily.  Even a Delphi dropout could figure out your current coding scheme.

 

Ever send invisible-ink messages in lemon juice?  Is there an internet equivalent? I keep getting lemon seeds all over my keyboard.

PeggyToo
PeggyToo

 @A1beF1k312b1  @Anonymous

 Okay, what the hell is fustilarians??? Best I can find is fusty - impaired by age or dampness. What are you saying here?? I'm not old or damp.

A1beF1k312b1
A1beF1k312b1

 @Anonymous  @PeggyToo 

 

Obvious!! In civility thou seem'st so empty!!  There are machinations within machinations!  What may seem obvious now, may lull the most necessary part of your knowingness to sleep for our next encounter, thou toasted cheese-eater!  And keep in mind, there was a time, long ago, when I did it backwards no caps, you fustilarians!!!

Anonymous
Anonymous

 @PeggyToo

 They're actually getting more obvious, once you know what the end result is supposed to be. Anything with 12 characters is a giveaway.

 

He has to change his name or give us different "messages" to decode to keep up the challenge.

 

Xenu decoder rings, anyone?

AussieCase
AussieCase

 @SvenBoogie Yes I saw the story points based on the script, but I'll stop digging now, and I will wait to see the film.

 

I agree it should be fun when the film comes out.

media_lush
media_lush

 @AussieCase 

 

I can't imagine any media outlet pretending that this film is anything other than being based on scientology.... if truth be told I would like to see one try just to see the massive retaliation that the commentators here (and I'm sure Tony) would launch.

 

Re "If Hoffman really did say this, and I defer to your opinion here, then I see no reason to assume he is lying."  .... the thing is I couldn't find the actual reference the 'journalis't from Digital Spy linked.... the link given was a general one to Entertainment Weekly. This also brings to mind the story of Paul Andersen apparently showing Tom Cruise a private screening of the film and the fact Cruise had "issues" with it; I tried to track down the source of that story, too and couldn't find it anywhere... it seemed to be a random quote that just appeared on the net with no credible back-up at all. 

 

Either way I anticipate major lulz when this film hits the PR circuit.

 

 

 

 

 

SvenBoogie
SvenBoogie

 @AussieCase There are multiple direct quotes in the film from LRH. There are multiple direct story points that are events in the life of LRH. The more you post, the more concerned I become for how much of your sanity was lost during your time inside. 

SvenBoogie
SvenBoogie

 @A1beF1k312b1 You've already been outed. Your encryption is childish and you are not the interesting person you seem to think.

AussieCase
AussieCase

 @A1beF1k312b1 Hey! Your fedora hat wearing, 1950's fire engine Confederacy is missing you. Phone home.

AussieCase
AussieCase

 @Capt._Howdy Has anyone seen this? Should I watch it, or I am I better off yelling at an ashtray?

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