Scientology

Discussion in 'Religions & Cults' started by Anonymous, Nov 12, 2001.

  1. EnolaGaia

    EnolaGaia I knew the job was dangerous when I took it ...

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  2. Swifty

    Swifty Beloved of Ra

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    Call it what they will .. it's simply pyramid marketing on a larger scale dressed up as a religion this time.
     
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  3. ramonmercado

    ramonmercado CyberPunk

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    Aaron Smith-Levin appears on ‘Leah Remini,’ hours later gets own Scientology attack site

    We were thoroughly blown away last night watching Aaron Smith-Levin talk about his family’s complex history in Scientology. We couldn’t believe how much territory Aaron and Leah Remini and Mike Rinder covered on the latest episode of Leah’s A&E series, Scientology and the Aftermath, from the IRS granting Scientology tax exempt status in 1993, to Aaron breaking down as he described losing his twin brother in a car accident while they were separated by Scientology’s “disconnection” policy.

    We wondered what the Church of Scientology was going to put up as a reaction to the show. We didn’t have to wait long. A couple of hours after the episode aired, the church posted a number of videos to the website it maintains to rebut Remini’s show.

    Among the people Scientology convinced to talk on camera about Aaron were his wife’s mother and sister. (Aaron’s wife Heather didn’t speak for Leah’s show, but she has sided with her husband against the rest of her family.)

    With glassy-eyed performances, Heather’s mother and sister robotically repeated claims that Aaron was a scary guy who snapped at them and was probably a danger to his own wife and kids.

    It was unseemly. And it probably won’t get any traction. But we wanted to point something out.

    Two years ago, we wrote about the Smith family drama, and our story was told to us by Gayle Smith, Aaron’s mother. If you look at that article today, you can see that Gayle’s story matches the one her son told on Leah’s show last night.

    Also, this story has played out over several years, and many of us were privy to the details, including Mike Rinder, who has worked with Aaron in his corporate research business. ...

    http://tonyortega.org/2017/01/04/aa...hours-later-gets-own-scientology-attack-site/
     
  4. JamesWhitehead

    JamesWhitehead Piffle Prospector

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    Scientology Buildings in Manchester.

    The cult can afford to buy a large building and leave it empty for ten years. :rolleyes:

    We are promised that the "change-of-use" issues may be resolved. The "Ideal.Org" may have landed! :cool:
     
  5. dr wu

    dr wu Doctor Prog

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    I missed that comment somehow, but Buddhists, Hindus ,and even Gurdjieff much earlier than Hubbard's gang was doing the same thing long before Scientology started ripping people off.

    ;)
     
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  6. ramonmercado

    ramonmercado CyberPunk

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    Scientology wastes no time making a move on the new president, but where does Trump stand?

    Back in August, we pointed out that while many people have noted similarities between Donald Trump and L. Ron Hubbard, at least in their personal styles (something we’ve acknowledged as well), we hadn’t really seen any substantial connections between the Republican candidate and the Church of Scientology itself.

    But now that he’s president, we’re very curious to find out what Trump thinks about Scientology, which increasingly faces calls from the public to be investigated by federal agencies like the FBI and IRS.

    We’ve heard from several conservative friends — even some with fairly impressive connections in Washington — that they feel confident Trump can be convinced to crack down on Scientology in a way his predecessors have not. And indeed, especially since the airing of A&E’s Leah Remini: Scientology and the Aftermath, we’ve seen much more interest in the church’s controversies from the conservative media after Leah publicized Scientology’s use of forced abortion against Sea Org workers.

    On the other hand, there’s Trish Duggan.

    Our tipsters spotted her at the inaugural Friday, chatting with former Speaker of the House Newt Gingrich and his wife Callista, as well as with Kellyanne Conway, who was Trump’s campaign manager and has been appointed presidential counselor.

    Trish Duggan and her husband Bob are the wealthiest Scientologists in the world, currently worth about $2.5 billion. Each year, the Duggans are listed as Scientology’s biggest donors, and we last estimated (conservatively) that their giving just to one Scientology fundraising arm, the IAS, has reached about $70 million. They’ve given millions more to various Scientology construction projects, particularly in South Africa, where they’ve also had an odd family arrangement.

    Photos of Trish Duggan at the inaugural were posted online by another wealthy Scientologist, Grant Cardone, who last year started spending a lot of time with the Duggans. ...

    http://tonyortega.org/2017/01/23/sc...-the-new-presdent-but-where-does-trump-stand/
     
  7. ramonmercado

    ramonmercado CyberPunk

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    Welcome to your Scientology nightmare, people of Clearwater, Florida

    Rod Keller fills us in on the latest tug of war between the residents of Clearwater and the Church of Scientology…

    On February 6, commissioners for the City of Clearwater, Florida approved the “Imagine Clearwater” plan for the downtown waterfront district. The plan calls for the demolition of City Hall and the Harborview convention center, reworking the waterfront into a concert and event venue. The 50-year-old Harborview has been an eyesore for many years and has failed the original purpose as a convention center. Officials claim that City Hall is unsuitable for its purpose, being too small to house all city departments and too expensive to maintain. Rather than rebuild on the same site officials are leaving the downtown area and building a new City Hall elsewhere.

    In 2013 a referendum passed to redevelop the entire site as the new home of the Clearwater Marine Aquarium which had experienced a boom in the aftermath of the movie Dolphin Tale, based on the story of Winter the dolphin who is on display at the aquarium. Scientology began working behind the scenes to oppose the plan and in 2015 the aquarium decided not to pursue that location. Scientology offered to purchase parts of the property in 2016 to develop additional hotel facilities, but that offer was not accepted.

    The plan concerns itself with the blocks East of Osceola Avenue, between Drew and Court Streets to the North and South.

    What the plan doesn’t really emphasize is that the parcel is surrounded by the Scientology buildings and properties that make up the “Flag Land Base,” the “spiritual mecca” of Scientology, which arrived in Clearwater surreptitiously in 1975.

    In this view, with north at top, the area that the city wants to redevelop is on the left, near the bridge, and you can see that it’s surrounded by Scientology’s key properties, including the Fort Harrison Hotel and Flag Building, as well as the Skyview, a private condominium project whose double penthouse is reportedly being developed for Tom Cruise so he can live right in the middle of Scientology’s mecca. ...

    http://tonyortega.org/2017/02/12/welcome-to-your-scientology-nightmare-people-of-clearwater-florida/
     
  8. dr wu

    dr wu Doctor Prog

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    My family used to have a condo/apt in Clearwater....we sold it about 15 years ago......I'm glad we did.

    ;)
     
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  9. ramonmercado

    ramonmercado CyberPunk

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    Scientology’s next move in forced-abortion lawsuit: Deposing defectors

    We finally have an update for you on Laura DeCrescenzo’s forced-abortion lawsuit against the Church of Scientology, which is nearing eight years since she filed it in 2009.

    In September, Scientology lost an appeal to the California State Supreme Court, which affirmed the trial court’s decision to deny Scientology’s second motion for summary judgment in the lawsuit. This cleared the way to a trial, but it still looks like it’s going to be a long time before Laura gets her day in court.

    No trial date has been set, but discovery is proceeding, and we’ve learned that Scientology’s next move is to pull in several familiar names for depositions in March.

    We confirmed with Marc and Claire Headley, Astra Woodcraft, and Nora Crest that they have all been notified that Scientology is pulling them in for depositions that will take place in Los Angeles.

    It might not surprise you to hear that they are not thrilled about it.

    “They’re just fishing for information. And they’re trying to get as much current information on us as possible, and they’re just using up more time and expenses,” Claire Headley tells us.

    Claire did know Laura while they were both in the Sea Org, but she says she really doesn’t know anything that is pertinent to the lawsuit. “I knew of her and I’d seen her a few times. But I can’t really remember a conversation I’d had with her. We worked at completely different locations.” Questioning her won’t shed any light on Laura’s case, she says. “Not to mention I gave four days of depositions over a two year period in our own lawsuit all about abortions. I’ve already told them everything.”

    She says she’s asked that Marc be left out of the grueling days of questioning, but so far it looks like he’s going to be pulled in as well. ...

    http://tonyortega.org/2017/02/17/sc...n-forced-abortion-lawsuit-deposing-defectors/
     
  10. dr wu

    dr wu Doctor Prog

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    I simply don't know why the govt doesn't audit these jerks......I have no doubt there would be enough irregularities to shut down Scienfoology.
     
  11. Tribble

    Tribble Furry Idiot

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    1) The CoS would flood the government with lawsuits, just as they did with the IRS to get their tax exempt status;
    2) The risk of an Operation Snow White II;
    3) Lobbyists putting pressure on politicians, and politicians wouldn't get invited to fancy dinners;
    4) Other dodgy "religious" organisations, fearing they'd be next, would join in the noise, claiming First Amendment rights;
    5) No incentive. Islam is the latest scapegoat. Targeting the CoS wouldn't get the voters riled up and might even get them thinking the government is messing with religion.
     
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  12. GNC

    GNC King-Sized Canary

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    Interesting to see Jason Bateman playing an explicitly asshole Scientologist in that Central Intelligence comedy (which is a funny movie, if you're interested).
     
  13. dr wu

    dr wu Doctor Prog

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    He better watch it....now he'll be on their shit list.


    ;)
     
  14. Tribble

    Tribble Furry Idiot

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    I'd consider that a badge of honour :) It's a nice sign that people are willing to take such a stance - shows that the CoS's displeasure isn't seen as a threat to one's career nowadays.
     
  15. ramonmercado

    ramonmercado CyberPunk

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    Scientology’s Celebrity Whisperer: An inside account of life in the fame-obsessed church

    Quailynn McDaniel was exactly what Scientology was looking for. The yoga instructor was fit and pretty, and her husband worked for a major software firm.

    They had children. They were well liked. And they had money.

    And that’s how she became one of the people chosen for a special role in the odd church that caters to the wealthy and famous.

    “I was their ideal candidate to entertain celebrity families,” she says.

    Now, after some 20 years as a member of the Church of Scientology, McDaniel and her husband have been cast out, their families ripped apart. And the celebrities too, have disconnected from them.

    Still reeling from her recent departure, McDaniel, 43, agreed to tell us about her entire journey into and out of Scientology, and in particular about her years in a special role that we haven’t seen in this much detail before: The Scientologists whose place it is to pamper and protect the church’s most precious product, its celebrity endorsers.

    Originally from Redmond, Washington, Quailynn Panek was just 19 and starting at the University of Washington when she met Paul McDaniel at a Lollapalooza concert in the summer of 1992. They started dating, and she soon learned that Paul had grown up in the Church of Scientology.

    “I knew nothing about it,” she tells us. “I couldn’t decide if they were health nuts or scientists. What the hell are you talking about, I thought.”

    Quailynn’s parents had a family restaurant in Kirkland, and they weren’t happy that she moved in with Paul at such an early age. And things for the couple weren’t smooth at the start. Paul’s parents suggested to her that she take a Life Improvement Class at the local Scientology org, and go through the “Purification Rundown” — a sauna-and-vitamins regimen.

    “I was into yoga, and I was fit. So I thought, why not do the Purif.” ...

    http://tonyortega.org/2017/02/23/sc...-account-of-life-in-the-fame-obsessed-church/
     
  16. GNC

    GNC King-Sized Canary

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  17. Vardoger

    Vardoger Skeptical by nature

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    An information film from the $cientology Church.

     
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  18. Mythopoeika

    Mythopoeika I am a meat popsicle

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  19. ramonmercado

    ramonmercado CyberPunk

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    Louis Farrakhan, Leah Remini, and a document that helps explain the Scientology-NOI pact

    Last month, we told you that Minister Louis Farrakhan, speaking at the Nation of Islam’s annual “Saviours’ Day” celebration, mentioned his organization’s relationship with Scientology, saying that he planned to stick by the church as it was being buried under negative press, and as Leah Remini “went in hard” against it on her A&E television program.

    Farrakhan mispronounced Leah’s name, saying “Mrs. Remmy” as he speculated that she was criticizing her former church because “she’s hurt, by something.”

    Since then, we’ve learned more about Scientology’s relationship to the Nation of Islam and how that relationship got started. We got our hands on a document that provides some surprising perspective about who helped David Miscavige and Louis Farrakhan bring together their two odd organizations, supplying some of the effort — and substantial amounts of money — to bring Nation of Islam members into Dianetics counseling.

    Would you believe, it was Leah Remini?

    According to the Nation of Islam’s official publication, The Final Call, Louis Farrakhan began having NOI members take courses in L. Ron Hubbard’s Dianetics on May 8, 2010. Two weeks later, on May 23, an official Scientology commendation was awarded to Remini, giving her credit for helping to create “one of the most important dissemination cycles of Scientology in history to get LRH Tech to Black People.”

    The commendation was signed by the two people most often associated with the relationship between the two groups — the Nation of Islam’s Minister Tony Muhammad, and Scientology’s Rev. Alfreddie Johnson Jr.

    According to the document they signed, Leah was instrumental in forging the bond between the two churches by, in part, “sponsoring” courses for Tony Muhammad (in other words, paying for them), and for spending the money to help build the Inglewood Ideal Org, which opened in a prominent greater-Los Angeles black neighborhood the next year, 2011.

    “Leah has always had huge affinity and desire to help Black People through out the world,” the commendation says. “As a Result of her help on this cycle, Min. Louis Farrakhan and all of the top NOI Execs are now on services.”

    That’s right — it was through the largess of Leah Remini, this document says, that Minister Farrakhan himself was taking Scientology courses. But seven years later, he can’t remember her name and dismisses her expose of Scientology as a personal vendetta because she’s “hurt.”

    Besides revealing Leah’s role in bringing the two groups together, the document also confirms something we’ve long assumed — that for Scientology’s part, bringing in Nation of Islam members for courses was mostly about trying to increase black involvement in an overwhelmingly white church.

    But what is Farrakhan getting out of it? In his address last month, he seemed to be aware that the accusation has been made that he’s receiving cash commissions for sending his people Scientology’s way. But he claimed that he hadn’t made any money on the two groups coming together. ...

    http://tonyortega.org/2017/03/10/lo...-that-helps-explain-the-scientology-noi-pact/
     
  20. ramonmercado

    ramonmercado CyberPunk

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    State investigators fired for blowing the whistle on Scientology’s rehabs get hearing in Denver

    Yesterday, attorney Rachel Bussett argued before the federal Tenth Circuit Court of Appeals in Denver, and we caught up with her after she’d gone through the heady experience.

    “I’m feeling good about it. The heads in the courtroom were nodding,” she told us. It was a big moment for the 41-year-old Oklahoma City lawyer representing two former Oklahoma state investigators, Kim Poff and Michael DeLong, who found terrible conditions at Scientology’s flagship drug rehab, Narconon Arrowhead, but when they recommended that it be shut down after a series of deaths in 2012, their bosses buried the report and fired them when they complained.

    Poff and DeLong filed suit over their terminations, but their cases were gutted and then dismissed by the district court in Oklahoma. Bussett was in Denver to argue to the appeals court that the lower court erred when it considered the retaliation claim in DeLong’s lawsuit but not in Poff’s, who had also sued over gender discrimination.

    The meat of their lawsuits, Bussett says, was the claim that they had been fired because they dared to complain that their bosses were too afraid to take on the Church of Scientology. The suits should not have been dismissed without considering the retaliation claim in both — that was Bussett’s argument to the appellate judges, and she felt she got a good reception.

    A decision from the court may not be coming for six months or more, she says, which puts back yet again the chances we’ll get our hands on the central document in these cases — the actual investigative report that Poff and DeLong wrote after studying conditions at Narconon Arrowhead, where three patients had died over a nine month period ending with the overdose death of Stacy Murphy on July 19, 2012.

    Bussett pointed out to us, however, that the state civil trial over Stacy Murphy’s death is rapidly approaching — it’s scheduled for May in Tulsa, and we know from our previous reporting that the attorney representing Stacy Murphy’s family, Gary Richardson, also received a copy of the Poff and DeLong report under court order. Will the trial finally give us access to the report, as well as the many depositions that Richardson has taken while he investigated numerous deaths at the facility? ...

    http://tonyortega.org/2017/03/23/st...on-scientologys-rehabs-get-hearing-in-denver/
     
  21. ramonmercado

    ramonmercado CyberPunk

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    SCIENTOLOGY TV: It’s really happening! Spectrum blocks out a channel for Miscavige

    Plenty of us scoffed when Scientology leader David Miscavige spent millions to purchase and renovate the KCET studios in Los Angeles and rename it Scientology Media Productions, which he opened last May.

    After buying the five-acre complex in 2011, Miscavige pressured his followers to make donations so the complex could be completed — and in return, he promised that they would have a 24-hour television station to broadcast Scientology’s message around the country and around the world.

    Since then, Miscavige has been mocked for making that promise as the SMP hasn’t appeared to produce much of anything.

    But now, oh ye doubters, we have proof that this summer, Scientology is getting that 24-hour cable station, just as Miscavige promised.

    A tipster informed us that a simple search now shows that Spectrum (formerly Time Warner Cable), the nation’s second-largest cable system with 25 million customers in 41 states, has blocked out a channel for Scientology Media Productions, with programming to be announced. ...

    http://tonyortega.org/2017/03/29/sc...rum-cable-blocks-out-a-channel-for-miscavige/
     
  22. GNC

    GNC King-Sized Canary

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    What next, a Mafia channel?
     
  23. ramonmercado

    ramonmercado CyberPunk

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    Scientology leader David Miscavige launches new personal attacks at Leah Remini

    As we mentioned earlier, since Leah’s defection became public in 2013, Miscavige had seemed to treat her with kid gloves, holding back the kind of retaliation he let loose on other prominent members who had turned critics, such as Jason Beghe, Paul Haggis, Amy Scobee, and Mike Rinder. Each of them had been smeared mercilessly with the use of private investigators and online attacks. But for the most part, Leah had escaped that treatment, despite her high profile. Even when the first season of her show proved to be a huge unexpected hit for A&E this past fall, the website Scientology put up to attack it was targeted more at her guests than at Remini herself.

    But then, with the news two weeks ago that A&E had approved a second season, the gloves came off. Suddenly there were pages at the attack site which made it clear that Scientology’s private eyes have been digging into Remini’s past, interviewing former friends and family members, all in an attempt to attack her in personal ways.

    Last time, we told you about a video that was made by someone who at one time had been Remini’s best friend, singer and longtime Scientologist Stacy Francis. Now, another new page has appeared at the attack site which hosts five new videos featuring people who were formerly close to Remini.

    We wanted you to see their transcripts to get some sense of how Scientology thinks. Rather than address any of the actual issues that Remini’s series has brought up — forced abortions, families ripped apart, fortunes extorted — Scientology follows L. Ron Hubbard’s playbook to the tee and goes after Remini in order to “dead agent” her. Miscavige can’t answer the allegations being made about Scientology, so he’s trying to make the same allegations against Remini by having her former friends who are still Scientologists give POW-style videos.

    Take a look at what they say, and imagine that this strategy makes sense to David Miscavige. We hope that some of these people, after they inevitably leave the church as nearly everyone does sooner or later, are able to recognize how they were misused by something that calls itself a “church.” ...

    http://tonyortega.org/2017/04/03/sc...launches-new-personal-attacks-at-leah-remini/
     
  24. ramonmercado

    ramonmercado CyberPunk

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    Another Hubbardite Front slips through. I've alerted some councillors about this.

     
  25. ramonmercado

    ramonmercado CyberPunk

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    Scientology spends millions on its shiny new buildings, but its workers have to beg for food

    Rod Keller keeps a watchful eye on Scientology’s social media, and he has another great report for us this week…

    The Scientology org in northern Johannesburg is preparing to open a new ideal org facility. They have been raising funds from members for years, but this week put out an appeal on Facebook for donations to feed some of the new staff members who are having trouble making ends meet.

    Dearest friends, I am a fully GATII Trained auditor and Clear, originally from South Africa. I have had the privilege of being Trained and Cleared in the renowned Melbourne Ideal org Australia. I have recently been on a mission in South Africa to help establish the new Ideal Org of JHB North, to open concurrently with the AO Africa. My job is to Qual check and audit the new auditor trainees here in Joburg and get them to Flag ASAP.

    We have an ongoing PTP (present time problem) however over here, that I would tremendously appreciate assistance with. These kids who we are sending to Flag are primarily from townships in Johannesburg, they are so bright and have all the right theta endowment to do the most important job on Earth ie: Clear people.

    We have a lot of new staff, who in order to do full time training, would need donations of food supplies to get these guys through their training and off to flag with no distractions We are only a handful of people here at the mission and we really need some theta flow from the globe. I am currently trying to find out the legalities of opening an account for donation purposes for Africa in Australia. How many of you out there would be willing to pledge even a
    small amount of $10 for the cause? Also any idea on how I best run a campaign like this would also be appreciated.

    It’s an admission that staff pay at Joburg North is not enough for subsistence living, even in the former apartheid township of Soweto. It’s also a lie to the trainees, who are being told they will be sent to Clearwater to join the Technical Training Corps, or TTC for auditor training. The reality is that the trainees will probably never be auditors. They will be placed in low-level positions in reception, running the film room, distributing or grading the OCA personality test, or as a central files clerks. They will never be sent to Clearwater because most of them are poorly educated and receive low scores on the OCA and IQ tests. They speak either Zulu, Tswana or Sotho as their primary language and the wording of the tests are unfamiliar to them. If past trainee patterns are repeated, at least half will have blown in a year, and none will be left in three.

    In other organizations this would be a failing. In Scientology it is deliberate. It is a pattern of recruitment endorsed by L. Ron Hubbard in the policy “RECRUIT IN EXCESS” (29 Aug. 1970) in which he writes “I have always followed a doctrine of hiring or recruiting in excess. There is a heavy turnover in personnel.” and “Over-recruit always. If you have an idea you will need 20 people in the next six months you had better take on at least 40 and you will have your twenty. And double is a low figure.”

    The food shortage among trainees comes at a time that the money is flowing towards opening the new Ideal Org. This is the second time Joburg North has raised large sums of money. The first time the fund was drained to open the Pretoria Ideal Org, and Joburg North had to start over. Members may think they’re donating to the local org, but that can be diverted elsewhere without their consent. ...

    http://tonyortega.org/2017/04/09/sc...ildings-but-its-workers-have-to-beg-for-food/
     
  26. Tribble

    Tribble Furry Idiot

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    "reguarly". Tchh, you'd think their mental superpowers would extend to turning on a spellchecker.
     
  27. Shady

    Shady Bring me Dreamies Human

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    Reminds me of a Nigerian scam
    And why use an acronym then write it in full at the side
    Plus they can piss off and ask Tom and John
     
  28. ramonmercado

    ramonmercado CyberPunk

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    With Scientology at war in Clearwater, religious studies types still seeking its warm & fuzzy side

    With all of the amazing news happening lately, Scientology’s true nature is finally getting through to the larger public: The church has the knives out in Clearwater, Leah Remini is laying Scientology’s abuses bare on television, and so many other things are exposed here at the Underground Bunker every day. So you’d be forgiven if you were unaware that there’s a very different story about the church being told elsewhere.

    It’s pretty easy to ignore, but the religious studies academics continue to examine Scientology in their papers and conferences, few of which are worth mentioning. Except for Reza Aslan, few academics make much of an impact on Scientology media coverage.

    One exception is Ohio State University professor Hugh Urban, who in 2011 came out with a highly readable history of the church that attempted to put its many controversies and court cases into a formal academic frame. We enjoyed that book and interviewed Urban at the time, and found him to be quite an interesting guy.

    He also wrote one of our favorite examinations of Scientology and the occult for the academic publication Nova Religio: The Journal of Alternative and Emergent Religions, and he encouraged us to publish some of L. Ron Hubbard’s infamous “Affirmations” while we were at the Village Voice.

    We were less enthusiastic when Urban took some shots at Lawrence Wright’s 2013 history of Scientology, Going Clear. Urban carped about Wright relying on the accounts of ex-Scientologists (a common religious studies complaint, though ex-church members continue to provide consistent accounts that are rarely, if ever, proven to have been untrue), but he also made a point that we often find in the writing of religion academics. Urban criticized Wright for focusing on the celebrities of the church, and he complained that there hadn’t been more work done on “ordinary” Scientologists. Well, point taken, but we find that religious studies academics tend to fetishize the idea of a mythic “ordinary” Scientologist who isn’t caught up in the craziness of David Miscavige and his ruinous campaigns of intense fundraising and terroristic disconnection.

    Somewhere, these academics assert, there must be examples of simply content Scientologists who are the real, pure example of the faith.

    Yeah, let us know when you find them. ...

    http://tonyortega.org/2017/04/28/wi...-types-still-seeking-its-warm-and-fuzzy-side/
     
  29. ramonmercado

    ramonmercado CyberPunk

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    Complaints filed against Scientology advertising in Dart and train stations
    April 28, 2017

    Complaints have been filed with the Advertising Standards Authority for Ireland over a Church of Scientology campaign to advertise course to help with job insecurity.

    The print edition of The Sunday Times reports that the ASIA is investigating claims that the ads, which appear in Dublin’s train and Dart stations, are misleading.

    The advertisement says “when jobs security turns into insecurity, success beings with personal efficiency”. It then advises people to “attend a course in Scientology” to get that security back.

    Gerard Ryan, the Irish director of Scientology, says this is the first time Scientology courses have been advertised this way.

    Frank Goodman, the ASAI chief executive said the agency had “a small number of complaints” and have decided the advertisement warrants further investigation. ...

    http://newswhip.ie/national-2/compl...advertising-in-dart-and-train-stations-24699/
     
  30. ramonmercado

    ramonmercado CyberPunk

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    Professor Hugh Urban takes us to task for our review of his Scientology OT 8 investigation

    On Friday, we expressed our disappointment with Ohio State University professor Hugh Urban’s newest paper, this time about Scientology’s original OT 8 material, which we have also written about. We titled the piece “With Scientology at war in Clearwater, religious studies types still seeking its warm & fuzzy side.” Hugh asked to send a response to our critical review, and we’re glad to present it today, along with our own answer.

    I guess I should be flattered that Tony Ortega has taken the time to read and comment on my work. However, I also found many parts of this piece problematic, and I would like to respond briefly to several points that are inaccurate and misleading. For the sake of space, I will limit my comments to the following three.

    1. Let’s begin with the title and my alleged search for Scientology’s “warm and fuzzy side.” Anyone who has read my book and the ten or so articles I’ve written on Scientology knows this is pure nonsense. There is neither fuzz nor warmth in anything I’ve written about the church – if anything, I’m usually accused of the opposite. After writing a very positive review of my book, interviewing me at length, and extensively discussing my article on Scientology and the occult, Ortega obviously knows this. I can only conclude that the title here is purely a means of attracting readers with a provocative, titillating headline. But it is extremely misleading and (it would seeming) knowingly so.

    2. Ortega took issue with my review of Lawrence Wright’s “Going Clear,” particularly my suggestion that the book focuses too heavily on celebrities and doesn’t discuss the lives of ordinary, non-celebrity Scientologists. He writes: “we find that religious studies academics tend to fetishize the idea of a mythic ‘ordinary’ Scientologist who isn’t caught up in the craziness of David Miscavige and his ruinous campaigns of intense fundraising and terroristic disconnection. Somewhere, these academics assert, there must be examples of simply content Scientologists who are the real, pure example of the faith. ” ...

    Ortega responds:

    Hold on there, professor. You’re not going to slip out of this noose so easily. In your response, you claim that the advertising of the OT levels in the church’s Advance magazine in the late 1960s and early 1970s was “meant for public consumption.” Today, you’re saying, the church doesn’t advertise such things to “the public” anymore because of “embarrassment.”

    Again, you’re making a huge mistake. Advance was never meant to reach the public outside the church. The advertisements in Advance were always for lower level Scientologists to entice them up the Bridge, just as Scientology publications do today.

    What you’re saying is that this advertisement in Advance in the early 1970s…

    http://tonyortega.org/2017/05/01/pr...review-of-his-scientology-ot-8-investigation/
     

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