Journalism: Scientology - L. Ron Hubbard's Brainchild

The impulse to believe the absurd when presented with the unknowable is called religion. Whether this is wise or unwise is the domain of doctrine. Once you understand someone's doctrine, you understand their rationale for believing the absurd. At that point, it may no longer seem absurd. You can get to both sides of this conondrum from here.

Re: Journalism: Scientology - L. Ron Hubbard's Brainchild

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Scientology: The Truth Rundown
by Joe Childs and Thomas C. Tobin
St. Petersburg Times
June 21, 2009

Scientology: The Truth Rundown, Part 1 of 3 in a special report on the Church of Scientology
By Joe Childs and Thomas C. Tobin, Times Staff Writers
In Print: Sunday, June 21, 2009

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After L. Ron Hubbard died, David Miscavige became Scientology's leader. Former church executives say Miscavige beat his staff. Church officials say the defectors are lying.

The leader of the Church of Scientology strode into the room with a boom box and an announcement: Time for a game of musical chairs.

David Miscavige had kept more than 30 members of his church's executive staff cooped up for weeks in a small office building outside Los Angeles, not letting them leave except to grab a shower. They slept on the floor, their food carted in.

Their assignment was to develop strategic plans for the church. But the leader trashed their every idea and berated them as incompetents and enemies, of him and the church.

Prove your devotion, Miscavige told them, by winning at musical chairs. Everyone else — losers, all of you — will be banished to Scientology outposts around the world. If families are split up, too bad.

To the music of Queen's Bohemian Rhapsody they played through the night, parading around a conference room in their Navy-style uniforms, grown men and women wrestling over chairs.

The next evening, early in 2004, Miscavige gathered the group and out of nowhere slapped a manager named Tom De Vocht, threw him to the ground and delivered more blows. De Vocht took the beating and the humiliation in silence — the way other executives always took the leader's attacks.

This account comes from executives who for decades were key figures in Scientology's powerful inner circle. Marty Rathbun and Mike Rinder, the highest-ranking executives to leave the church, are speaking out for the first time.

Two other former executives who defected also agreed to interviews with the St. Petersburg Times: De Vocht, who for years oversaw the church's spiritual headquarters in Clearwater, and Amy Scobee, who helped create Scientology's celebrity network, which caters to the likes of John Travolta and Tom Cruise.

One by one, the four defectors walked away from the only life they knew. That Rathbun and Rinder are speaking out is a stunning reversal because they were among Miscavige's closest associates, Haldeman and Ehrlichman to his Nixon.

Now they provide an unprecedented look inside the upper reaches of the tightly controlled organization. They reveal:

• Physical violence permeated Scientology's international management team. Miscavige set the tone, routinely attacking his lieutenants. Rinder says the leader attacked him some 50 times.
• Rathbun, Rinder and De Vocht admit that they, too, attacked their colleagues, to demonstrate loyalty to Miscavige and prove their mettle.
• Staffers are disciplined and controlled by a multi¬layered system of "ecclesiastical justice.'' It includes publicly confessing sins and crimes to a group of peers, being ordered to jump into a pool fully clothed, facing embarrassing "security checks'' or, worse, being isolated as a "suppressive person.''
• At the pinnacle of the hierarchy, Miscavige commands such power that managers follow his orders, however bizarre, with lemming-like obedience.
• Church staffers covered up how they botched the care of Lisa McPherson, a Scientologist who died after they held her 17 days in isolation at Clearwater's Fort Harrison Hotel.
• Rathbun, who Miscavige put in charge of dealing with the fallout from the case, admits that he ordered the destruction of incriminating evidence. He and others also reveal that Miscavige made an embarrassing miscalculation on McPherson's Scientology counseling.
• With Miscavige calling the shots and Rathbun among those at his side, the church muscled the IRS into granting Scientology tax-exempt status. Offering fresh perspective on one of the church's crowning moments, Rathbun details an extraordinary campaign of public pressure backed by thousands of lawsuits.
• To prop up revenues, Miscavige has turned to long-time parishioners, urging them to buy material that the church markets as must-have, improved sacred scripture.

Church officials deny the accusations. Miscavige never hit a single church staffer, not once, they said.

On May 13, the Times asked to interview Miscavige, in person or by phone, and renewed the request repeatedly the past five weeks. Church officials said Miscavige's schedule would not permit an interview before July.

At 5:50 p.m. Saturday, Miscavige e-mailed the Times to protest the newspaper's decision to publish instead of waiting until he was available. His letter said he would produce information "annihilating the credibility'' of the defectors. Beloved by millions of Scientologists, church spokesmen say, Miscavige has guided the church through a quarter-century of growth.

The defectors are liars, they say, bitter apostates who have dug up tired allegations from the Internet and inflated the importance of the positions they held in Scientology's dedicated work force known as the Sea Org. They say it was the defectors who physically abused staff members, and when Miscavige found out, he put a stop to it and demoted them.

Now they say the defectors are trying to stage a coup, inventing allegations so they can topple Miscavige and seize control of the church.

The defectors deny it. They say they are speaking out because Miscavige must be exposed.

Rathbun says the leader's mistreatment of staff has driven away managers and paralyzed those who stay. "It's becoming chaos because ... there's no form of organization. Nobody's respected because he's constantly denigrating and beating on people.''

"I don't want people to continue to be hurt and tricked and lied to," Rinder said. "I was unsuccessful in changing anything through my own lack of courage when I was inside the church.

"But I believe these abuses need to end … This rot being instigated from inside Scientology actually is more destructive to the Scientology movement than anything external to it.''

BEATINGS: Random, whimsical

At 49, Miscavige is fit and tanned, his chiseled good looks accented by intense blue eyes. His frame is on the short side at 5 feet 5, but solid, with a matching, vise-like handshake.

The voice, resonant and strong, can transfix a crowd of thousands. Many call him "COB," because he is chairman of the board of the entity responsible for safeguarding Scientology, founded by L. Ron Hubbard in 1954.

"He is one of the most capable, intelligent individuals I've ever met," Rathbun said. "But L. Ron Hubbard says the intelligence scale doesn't necessarily line up with the sanity scale. Adolf Hitler was brilliant. Stalin was brilliant. They were geniuses. But they were also on a certain level stark, staring mad."

Rathbun, Rinder, Scobee and De Vocht say they participated in and witnessed madness, from musical chairs to repeated physical abuse.

What triggered Miscavige's outbursts? The victims usually had no clue.

"If it wasn't the answer he wanted to hear, he'd lose it," De Vocht said. "If it was contrary to how he thought, he'd lose it. If he found it to be smart aleck, or it was a better answer than he had, he would lose it."

Rathbun and Rinder list the executives they saw Miscavige attack:

Marc Yager: At least 20 times.

Guillaume Lesevre: At least 10 times.

Ray Mithoff: Rathbun said Miscavige "would regularly hit this guy open-handed upside the head real hard and jar him. Or grab him by the neck and throw him on the floor."

Norman Starkey: "Right in the parking lot, (Miscavige) just beat the living f--- out of him, got him on the ground and then started kicking him when he was down,'' Rathbun said.

He said he saw Rinder "get beat up at least a dozen times just in those last four years … some of them were pretty gruesome."

Said Rinder: "Yager was like a punching bag. So was I."

He added: "The issue wasn't the physical pain of it. The issue was the humiliation and the domination. ... It's the fact that the domination you're getting — hit in the face, kicked — and you can't do anything about it. If you did try, you'd be attacking the COB.

"It was random and whimsical. It could be the look on your face. Or not answering a question quickly. But it always was a punishment.''

Scobee said Miscavige never laid a hand on her or any other woman, but she witnessed many attacks, including the time the leader choked Rinder until his face turned purple. Rinder confirmed that account.

De Vocht estimated that from 2003 to 2005, he saw Miscavige strike staffers as many as 100 times.

Rathbun, Rinder and De Vocht admit that they, in turn, hit others. In January 2004, Rathbun pummeled Rinder and had to be pried off by several church staffers.

"Yes, that incident happened," Rinder said. "It wasn't the only time that Marty or I was involved in some form of physical violence with people."

He recalled holding a church staffer against a wall by the collar and pressing into his throat.

Rathbun said he attacked many people, many times, including throwing Lesevre across a table, boxing Starkey's ears, and tackling Yager down a flight of stairs — all, he said, on Miscavige's orders. He said he threw another staffer against the hood of a cab at Los Angeles International Airport. As a crowd gathered to watch, he cocked his fist and told him to improve his attitude.

De Vocht said he "punched a couple of guys" during one of many sessions where managers confessed their wrongdoings to their peers, a gathering that got raucous and physical. Embarrassed about it now, he says he easily rationalized it then: "If I don't attack I'm going to be attacked. It's a survival instinct in a weird situation that no one should be in."

The four defectors each said the leader established a culture that encouraged physical violence.

"It had become the accepted way of doing things," Rinder said. "If COB did it, it was okay for everybody else to do it, too."

Rinder said Rathbun was Miscavige's enforcer. "If Dave didn't want to go do any dirty work himself, he sent Marty to do it for him."

Rathbun doesn't deny it. It's difficult to get the truth, he said, "unless you talk to somebody who's got some dirt on their hands. And I freely admit I got dirt on my hands, and I feel terrible about it. That's why I'm doing what I'm doing."

Rathbun wasn't exempt from Miscavige's attacks. "He once grabbed me by the neck and banged my head against the wall.''

Nobody fought back.

"The thing is, he's got this huge entourage," Scobee said. "He's the 'savior' of everything because he has to bail everybody out because we're all incompetent a-------, which is what he repeatedly tells us.

"You don't have any money. You don't have job experience. You don't have anything. And he could put you on the streets and ruin you."

Church spokesman Tommy Davis said the defectors are lying. Responding to Rinder's contention that Miscavige attacked him some 50 times, Davis said: "He's absolutely lying.''

Yager, Starkey, Mithoff, and Lesevre all emphatically told the Times that Miscavige never attacked them.

Davis produced court affidavits in which Rathbun and Rinder, while still in Scientology's top ranks, praised the leader as a stellar person and vigorously denied rumors he had abused staff.

Davis pointed to a 1998 Times story in which Miscavige denied the same rumors. Rathbun backed him, saying that in 20 years working with Miscavige, he never saw the leader raise a hand to anyone.

"That's not his temperament,'' Rathbun said then. "He's got enough personal horsepower that he doesn't need to resort to things like that.''

Says Rathbun now: "That was the biggest lie I ever told you."

Davis played video of a confrontation between Rinder and a BBC reporter in London in 2007, just before Rinder left the church. The reporter repeatedly asked about the Miscavige rumors, which Rinder heatedly denied as "rubbish."

Now Rinder says that he lied to protect the church, and that his loyalty to Miscavige was misplaced. He said he did then what Miscavige's staff is doing today: "Just deny it. Nope. Not true. Never happened."

The Church of Scientology describes itself as working for "a civilization without insanity, without criminals and without war, where the able can prosper and honest beings can have rights, and where man is free to rise to greater heights."

Scobee says Miscavige does not practice what Scientology preaches. He liberally labels church members as enemies, which forbids any contact with family and friends still in Scientology.

"You cannot call yourself a religious leader as you beat people, as you confine people, as you rip apart families," she said. "If I was trying to destroy Scientology, I would leave David Miscavige right where he is because he's doing a fantastic job of it."

Character assassination

That's what the defectors are doing to Miscavige, according to a team of two church lawyers and two spokesmen.

Rathbun, Rinder, De Vocht and Scobee: All of them failed at their jobs, broke Sea Org rules and were ethically suspect, the team said. Stack these four failures against a man of Miscavige's stature and it's clear who is credible and who is not.

"It's not a question of they have a version and we have a version. It's that this never happened," said Monique Yingling, a non-Scientologist lawyer who has represented the church for more than 20 years. "There is a story here, and it's not what you've been told."

As the lawyers and spokesmen defended Miscavige and sought to discredit his detractors, they produced materials from the four defectors' "ethics files'' — confessions, contritions, laments that the church keeps to document their failures.

The documents illuminate a world of church justice outsiders rarely see. This ethics system keeps Scientologists striving to stay productive. It relies on the notion that at any given time, every human activity can be reduced to a statistic and everything — a group, a person, someone's job or marriage — can be measured and placed in one of 12 "conditions."

The lower conditions include "Confusion," "Treason" and "Enemy." The highest condition is "Power," followed by "Power Change" and "Affluence."

Moving up the ethics ladder requires that the subject pen confessions or soul-searching memos called "formulas," which are said to better the individual as he or she examines what went wrong. These memos also can give the church a ready source of written material to use against members who would turn against Scientology.

More documents are generated when a person wants to leave, or "blow."

In 1959, Hubbard wrote a policy stating that a person leaves as a kind of noble gesture when he can't help himself from injuring the church. To justify leaving, Hubbard believed, the person thinks up bad things to say about the church.

Anyone who leaves has committed "overts" (harmful acts) against the church and is withholding them. The church is obligated to make such people come clean, Hubbard said, because withholding overts against Scientology can lead to suicide or death by disease. They must write down their transgressions to remain in good standing when they leave.

Yingling and Davis said the church doesn't relish using documents from ethics files. But after the four defectors spoke out against Miscavige, the lawyer and spokesman said they had no choice.

They produced documents showing Scobee violated Sea Org rules on "romantic involvement outside of marriage." Scobee said the church is exaggerating.

She acknowledged violating the rules by committing a sexual act in a supervisor's room, but noted the man involved was her future husband. Another document said she "started a relationship" with a man not her husband in 1988. Scobee said it was a non-Scientologist electrician who asked her to run away with him. She said she declined and reported it to a supervisor but was disciplined anyway.

A document from July 2003 cited poor performance and declared her unfit to work at the California base.

Scobee counters that the church kept her in positions of responsibility for more than 20 years. She was pictured in a 1996 church magazine as one of the "most proven" and "highly dedicated" senior executives in Scientology.

"The point is, it doesn't matter if I was God or if I was a sloppy janitor," Scobee said. "What I saw is what I saw."

De Vocht was in a condition of "Treason" when he authored a memo in 2004 saying he made a land deal in Clearwater that lost the church $1 million. In a 2002 letter to Miscavige, he confessed to squandering $10 million in church funds through waste and overspending on two projects.

Asked about those documents, De Vocht said the writings in the ethics formulas reflect the distorted culture created by Miscavige, not reality. "You say whatever you have to, to appear to be cooperative. It's not a voluntary action. It's a cover your a--, get with the program thing or you're going to get beat up.''

Praising Miscavige was part of the formula, De Vocht said. "He's our pope, our leader, and he can't do wrong. … If you say, 'I'll do everything I can to get it right,' then you can be okay. You don't have an option other than to bow down and say, You're right and I'm wrong.''

The church says that Rinder, Scientology's top spokesman for decades, is an inveterate liar. In its ethics files, the church says, Rinder admits that he lied 43 times over the years.

"It was a real problem, Mike's propensity to lie ….Obviously he had an issue with the truth,'' said Davis, Rinder's successor as spokesman.

After denying Miscavige hit him or anyone else, Rinder is lying now, Yingling said. "He left because he was demoted … He is bitter now and he has in his bitterness latched on to the one allegation he so vehemently denied for so many years.''

Added Davis: "One of the things he was known for saying was, 'Well, if I'm so bad, why keep asking me to do things?' You know the answer to that question?... The ultimate answer to that question is 'Mike, you know what, you're right. Why keep asking.' And we stopped asking. And then he left and nobody came for him.''

Like the other defectors, Rinder says he's sure he wrote whatever is in the ethics files, but he says the admissions are meaningless, they were just whatever his superiors wanted to hear. "All of these things were written to try and get into good graces or curry favor."

Davis said Rinder has not been able to deal with his fall from spokesman for an international church to his current, workaday job.

"Mike left. I think we can all agree he is bitter,'' Davis said. "This is a guy who ran with the big dogs in the tall grass … it's a very exciting life. And now he is selling cars, and it must be a hell of a shock.''

The church released numerous pages of files it kept on Rathbun. Among them: a 1994 letter that said he had completed a Truth Rundown — one of many types of confessionals — and apologizing for leaving the church briefly the year before; three confessions for striking and verbally abusing staff dozens of times; and documents where he admits that he mishandled situations.

In a 2003 document, Rathbun writes a "public announcement" detailing two decades of flubs, including: making himself out to be more important than he was, making more work for Miscavige, mismanaging staff and messing up major assignments, including the church's long-running battle with the IRS.

Rathbun says he wrote what Miscavige wanted to hear.

The church made special note of an affidavit dated June 6, 2009 — after the Times asked the church about Rathbun — authored by a Sea Org member whose name the church blacked out. She criticized Rathbun for being violent and abusive and playing a role in her family's recent effort to wrest her out of Scientology.

Rathbun says yes, he tried to help the family, because the woman voiced strong doubts about returning to Scientology.

Like De Vocht's, many of Rathbun's confessions are marked by bountiful praise of Miscavige. He writes, for example, that the leader "single-handedly salvaged Scientology."

Scientology's international management cadre lives and works on the church's 500-acre compound in the arid hills opposite Mount San Jacinto from Palm Springs.

Rathbun orchestrated a "reign of terror" there in 2002 and 2003, church representatives say, masquerading as an ethics officer while Miscavige was in Clearwater handling legal and other matters. They say the leader returned in late 2003, summarily demoted Rathbun and began to clean up his mess.

Rathbun says he was away from the base for almost all of 2002 and 2003, handling lawsuits and other sensitive matters at Miscavige's behest. When he returned to the base in late 2003, he said, it was Miscavige who had established a "reign of terror.''

The church said Rathbun has inflated his importance in Scientology; they say that after 1993, he never had a title.

But in a 1998 Scientology magazine, Rathbun is featured as the main speaker at a major event at Ruth Eckerd Hall attended by 3,000 Scientologists. The magazine said he was "inspector general" of the entity charged with safeguarding Scientology. Also, the church provided the Times a court document from March 2000 that listed Rathbun as a "director'' of the same entity.

If Rathbun's responsibility was as limited as the church says, the Times asked, how did he get people to submit to a reign of terror? Davis, the church spokesman, erupted.

"He's the one who's saying that Dave Miscavige beat these people,'' Davis screamed. "And he's saying that Dave Miscavige beat the exact same people that he beat. And that's what pisses me off. Because this guy's a f------ lunatic and I don't have to explain how or why he became one or how it was allowable.

"The fact is he's saying David Miscavige did what he did … And now I'm getting a little angry. Am I angry at you? Not necessarily. But I'm g-- d--- pissed at Marty Rathbun. Because he knows that he was the reign of terror."

Landing in Clearwater

Fall 1975. An outfit calling itself the United Churches of Florida announced it would rent the Fort Harrison Hotel from the Southern Land Development Corp., a company with plans to buy the historic building.

No one — not even lawyers for the seller — could find out anything about Southern Land. Not even a phone number.

When the sale closed on Dec. 1, Southern paid $2.3 million in cash for the landmark property, where for 50 years locals held weddings, New Year's bashes and civic events.

The newcomers promptly closed the hotel to the public. Uniformed guards armed with mace and billy clubs patrolled the entrance.

On Jan. 28, 1976, a public relations team from Los Angeles came to Clearwater and announced that the real buyer was the Church of Scientology of California.

The deception put a scare into the sleepy town with gorgeous beaches. Clearwater Mayor Gabe Cazares was incensed by the group's evasive and then heavy-handed tactics.

"The Fort Harrison has been here for a half century and now, for the first time, it is actually a fort," he lamented. "It's frightening."

Locals grew anxious as they heard that Scientology was a cult with a belligerent streak. It had sued the State Department, the Justice Department, the IRS, the CIA, the LAPD — any agency that pried or denied its requests.

Why did Hubbard choose Clearwater? He had run the church for years from a ship, the Apollo, and wanted a "land base.'' He sent scouts on a mission: Find a big building, near a good airport, in a warm climate.

A property in Daytona Beach made the short list. So did the Fort Harrison.

It was to be Scientology's "flagship." Hubbard sent dispatches on how "Flag'' should be run, everything from marketing plans to the staff's grooming and dress. It would be "huge, posh and self-supporting,'' Hubbard wrote, "a hotel of quality that puts the Waldorf Astoria to shame."

Hubbard trademarked a motto for the hotel: "The friendliest place in the whole world."

He would die a decade later, but already the next generation of church leaders was forming.

The Young Turks

Hubbard called it "fair game.'' Those who seek to damage the church, he said, "may be deprived of property or injured by any means by any Scientologist without any discipline of the Scientologist. May be tricked, sued or lied to or destroyed.''

Mayor Cazares raised questions about the new group inhabiting the Fort Harrison, calling it a cult and trading lawsuits with the church. The Times and the Clearwater Sun investigated.

Scientologists followed Hubbard's playbook and went after enemies. They tried to frame Cazares in a fake hit-and-run accident. They intercepted Times' mail and falsely accused the paper's chairman, Nelson Poynter, of being a CIA agent.

By the spring of 1976, Hubbard — the "Commodore" — was realizing his vision for the Fort Harrison. Scientologists from around the world checked in for long stays. They spent thousands on counseling called "auditing," which seeks to rid the subconscious mind of negative experiences, leading to "higher states of spiritual awareness."

Mike Rinder, a 20-year-old Australian, ran the hotel telex, sending and receiving dispatches from Scientology outlets around the world.

David Miscavige, a 16-year-old from suburban Philadelphia, dropped out of 10th grade on his birthday that April and came to work at the Fort Harrison. He tended the grounds, served food and took pictures for promotional brochures.

In no time, the cocksure Miscavige was supervising adults. In 1977, after just 10 months in Clearwater, he was transferred to California, where he joined the Commodore's Messenger Organization, an esteemed group of about 20 who took on "missions'' assigned by Hubbard.

Late in 1978, Miscavige was put in charge of the crew remodeling Hubbard's home on a Southern California ranch. Among the group was a 21-year-old former college basketball player who had joined the church a year earlier in Portland.

Thirty years later, Marty Rathbun says he can picture the first time he laid eyes on the teenage boss, strutting about, "barking out orders.'' No mistaking David Miscavige.

The early power plays

In the mid 1970s, the IRS hired a clerk-typist named Gerald Bennett Wolfe. What they didn't know was that he was a Scientology plant — code name "Silver.''

He broke into an attorney's office at IRS headquarters in Washington and copied government documents for months, with help from the Guardian's Office, the church's secretive intelligence arm.

The IRS had revoked Scientology's tax exemption some 10 years earlier, saying it was a commercial enterprise. Scientology fought back, withholding tax payments, unleashing its lawyers and using Silver to infiltrate the agency.

But his undercover mission backfired. On July 8, 1977, the FBI raided Scientology headquarters in Washington and L.A., seizing burglary tools, surveillance equipment and 48,000 documents.

In October 1979, Hubbard's wife, Mary Sue, who directed the Guardian's Office, and 10 other Scientologists were convicted on charges of conspiring to steal government documents or obstruct justice. Her husband, named an un­indicted co-conspirator, went into seclusion at his ranch near La Quinta, Calif.

By then, two of the young men from the remodeling detail were trusted aides to the self-exiled church founder. Rathbun delivered Hubbard's mail and messages; Miscavige was his "action chief.''

In January 1981, Miscavige asked Rathbun to join him on a road trip to the Super Bowl. Driving eight-hour shifts from L.A. to New Orleans, they got to know each other along the way.

Later that year, Hubbard gave Miscavige a critical assignment: Resolve the crush of lawsuits and investigations that threatened the church. Miscavige chose Rathbun and three others to help handle the job.

Rathbun says he spent six months prioritizing cases and developing strategy.

"I put together units to handle cases, one in Clearwater, one in New York, one in Boston, one in Toronto,'' he said. "They would answer to me. I was sort of becoming in charge of the legal operation.''

Miscavige, meanwhile, was disposing of internal rivals and building power. At age 21, he talked Hubbard's wife into resigning.

It didn't hurt to have Hubbard's approval. His son had filed a lawsuit claiming that the company overseeing Hubbard's assets, headed by Miscavige, was siphoning his fortune. Hubbard responded with a declaration stating that he had "unequivocal confidence in David Miscavige, who is a long-time devoted Scientologist, a trusted associate and a good friend to me."

Rinder, in turn, became a trusted associate to the emerging leader. Miscavige pulled his childhood acquaintance out of Clearwater to help dissolve the Guardian's Office, the arm of Scientology that had stolen the IRS files and committed other offenses.

He installed Rinder as head of the new international Office of Special Affairs. Part of Rinder's new job was to spread a revised narrative about Scientology: The church's new leaders were appalled to learn of the Guardian Office's dirty tricks. That was not, they said, what Scientology was all about.

Besting his rivals

On Jan. 27, 1986, thousands of Scientologists gathered at the Hollywood Palladium in Los Angeles, where a solemn Miscavige delivered the news: The founder had moved on to a new level of research that would be "done in an exterior state … completely exterior of the body.''

At 74, L. Ron Hubbard was dead.

Miscavige yielded the microphone to church attorney Earle Cooley, who did not mention Miscavige by name, but helped cement him as future leader. Cooley disclosed that Hubbard, who had died of a stroke, left the bulk of his estate to Scientology, giving final instructions that were "his ultimate expression of his confidence in the management of the church.''

He left no explicit succession plan, leaving open the question of who would lead the church.

Months later, Miscavige, Rathbun and another executive took control of the Religious Technology Center, the RTC, which Hubbard created as the highest ecclesiastical body in the church. They dismissed the staff and pressured the head of the office to step down.

Miscavige became the RTC's chairman of the board, a title he still holds. Rathbun took the high-ranking post of inspector general for ethics.

The last rivals for control of Scientology were Pat and Annie Broeker, who had assisted Hubbard in his last years. The founder had elevated them to "loyal officer" status, a higher rank than Miscavige, a captain.

The Broekers also had custody of Hubbard's last writings, the cherished upper levels of Scientology auditing that he wrote by hand while in seclusion. For a church that depends in large part on auditing fees, the papers were a gold mine not only spiritually, but financially. Miscavige wanted them.

Rathbun reveals what they did:

The day Pat Broeker and Miscavige flew cross-country to meet church lawyers in Washington, Rathbun positioned a team of about 20 men outside the Broekers' ranch in Barstow, Calif.

During a layover in Chicago, Miscavige called with the signal for Rathbun to phone the ranch caretaker. Rathbun told her that Miscavige and Broeker had called with a message: The FBI planned to raid the ranch in two hours. If they didn't get Hubbard's papers out, they might be lost forever.

The woman let Rathbun and his guys in.

"It worked like a charm," he said.

Miscavige's rise was complete. At 26, he answered to no one in Scientology.

For Rathbun, the point of the story is that Miscavige maneuvered his way to the top, he was not the chosen one. But Scientologists believe he was anointed. "And when they believe that, they're willing to do almost anything."

It was a conversation days after getting their hands on Hubbard's last writings that Rathbun says showed him that Miscavige saw himself not as a political climber but as a chosen leader.

Miscavige seemed in awe of his new responsibilities, so Rathbun tried to buck him up. "I said my basketball coach in high school had these inspirational sayings. One, from Darrell Royal of the Texas Longhorns, stuck with me. He said, 'I don't worry about choosing a leader. He'll emerge.' ''

"That's false data!'' Miscavige shot back.

Said Rathbun: "He rejected that so fast. Boy, when I suggested he was anything other than anointed, he jumped down my throat.''

Scientology vs. the IRS

By the late 1980s, the battle with the IRS had quieted from the wild days of break-ins and indictments. But Miscavige was no less intent on getting back the church's tax exemption, which he thought would legitimize Scientology.

The new strategy, according to Rathbun: Overwhelm the IRS. Force mistakes.

The church filed about 200 lawsuits against the IRS, seeking documents to prove IRS harassment and challenging the agency's refusal to grant tax exemptions to church entities.

Some 2,300 individual Scientologists also sued the agency, demanding tax deductions for their contributions.

"Before you knew it, these simple little cookie-cutter suits … became full-blown legal cases," Rathbun said.

Washington-based attorney William C. Walsh, who is now helping the church rebut the defectors claims, shepherded many of those cases. "We wanted to get to the bottom of what we felt was discrimination,'' he said. "And we got a lot of documents, evidence that proved it.''

"It's fair to say that when we started, there was a lot of distrust on both sides and suspicion,'' Walsh said. "We had to dispel that and prove who we were and what kind of people we were.''

Yingling teamed with Walsh, Miscavige and Rathbun on the case. She said the IRS investigation of Miscavige resulted in a file thicker than the FBI's file on Dr. Martin Luther King. "I mean it was insane,'' she said.

The church ratcheted up the pressure with a relentless campaign against the IRS.

Armed with IRS records obtained under the Freedom of Information Act, Scientology's magazine, Freedom, featured stories on alleged IRS abuses: lavish retreats on the taxpayers' dime; setting quotas on audits of individual Scientologists; targeting small businesses for audits while politically connected corporations were overlooked.

Scientologists distributed the magazine on the front steps of the IRS building in Washington.

A group called the National Coalition of IRS Whistleblowers waged its own campaign. Unbeknownst to many, it was quietly created and financed by Scientology.

It was a grinding war, with Scientology willing to spend whatever it took to best the federal agency. "I didn't even think about money,'' Rathbun said. "We did whatever we needed to do.''

They also knew the other side was hurting. A memo obtained by the church said the Scientology lawsuits had tapped the IRS's litigation budget before the year was up.

The church used other documents it got from the IRS against the agency.

In one, the Department of Justice scolded the IRS for taking indefensible positions in court cases against Scientology. The department said it feared being "sucked down" with the IRS and tarnished.

Another memo documented a conference of 20 IRS officials in the 1970s. They were trying to figure out how to respond to a judge's ruling that Scientology met the agency's definition of a religion. The IRS' solution? They talked about changing the definition.

Rathbun calls it the "Final Solution" conference, a meeting that demonstrated the IRS bias against Scientology. "We used that (memo) I don't know how many times on them," he said.

By 1991, Miscavige had grown impatient with the legal tussle. He was confident he could personally persuade the IRS to bend. That October, he and Rathbun walked into IRS headquarters in Washington and asked to meet with IRS Commissioner Fred Goldberg. They had no appointment.

Goldberg, who did not respond to interview requests for this story, did not see them that day, but he met with them a week later.

Rathbun says that contrary to rumor, no bribes were paid, no extortion used. It was round-the-clock preparation and persistence — plus thousands of lawsuits, hard-hitting magazine articles and full-page ads in USA Today criticizing the IRS.

"That was enough," Rathbun said. "You didn't need blackmail."

He and Miscavige prepped incessantly for their meeting. "I'm sitting there with three banker's boxes of documents. He (Miscavige) has this 20-page speech to deliver to these guys. And for every sentence, I've got two folders'' of backup.

Miscavige presented the argument that Scientology is a bona fide religion — then offered an olive branch.

Rathbun recalls the gist of the leader's words to the IRS:

Look, we can just turn this off. This isn't the purpose of the church. We're just trying to defend ourselves. And this is the way we defend. We aggressively defend. If we can sit down and actually deal with the merits, get to what we feel we are actually entitled to, this all could be gone.

The two sides took a break.

Rathbun remembered: "Out in the hallway, Goldberg comes up to me because he sees I'm the right-hand guy. He goes: 'Does he mean it? We can really turn it off?' ''

"And I said,'' turning his hand for effect, " 'Like a faucet.' ''

The two sides started talks. Yingling said she warned church leaders to steel themselves, counseling that they answer every question, no matter how offensive.

Agents asked some doozies: about LSD initiation rituals, whether members were shot when they got out of line and about training terrorists in Mexico. "We answered everything,'' Yingling said, crediting Miscavige for insisting the church be open, honest and cooperative.

The back and forth lasted two years and resulted in this agreement: The church paid $12.5 million. The IRS dropped its criminal investigations. All pending cases were dropped.

On Oct. 8, 1993, some 10,000 church members gathered in the Los Angeles Sports Arena to celebrate the leader's announcement: The IRS had restored the church's tax exemption, legitimizing Scientology as a church, not a for-profit operation.

"The war is over," Miscavige told the crowd. "This means everything.''

Recharged on the Freewinds

The euphoria was short-lived. With the tax cases ended, court records became public. Newspapers wanted to know why Miscavige and his wife together made around $100,000 while at the time most church staffers made but $50 a week. Miscavige was furious, and got angrier still when Rathbun argued it would be an insignificant story.

Shortly after, Miscavige's wife, Michelle, came to Rathbun's office and, without a word, removed the gold captain's bars from his Sea Org uniform. Miscavige called him an SP, a suppressive person, and Rathbun was forced to confess his sins before his own staff.

Rathbun was done. "I thought to myself: You know what? That's it. What am I doing here?''

From the safe in his office at the California base he took three 1-ounce pieces of gold, worth about $500 each, slipped on a bomber jacket, ate breakfast in the mess hall and drove east toward Pensacola, to visit a friend. Miscavige tracked him down and arranged to meet in New Orleans.

"He begged me to come back,'' Rathbun recalled, adding that Miscavige offered the carrot of a two-year stint aboard the Freewinds, a Scientology cruise ship where parishioners get the highest levels of counseling while sailing the Caribbean.

Rathbun said Miscavige told him:

You've worked hard, you deserved a reward. Go spend time on the ship. Get yourself right, get in touch with what made you love the church in the first place. Hone your skills, come back as the best auditor on the planet.

It was just what Rathbun needed to hear: "I couldn't have been more thankful.''

He came aboard the Freewinds late in 1993. He worked odd jobs, devoured Hubbard's writings and spent eight to 10 hours a day receiving counseling and training to be an auditor.

After two years at sea, he reported to Clearwater, to Flag, where the church bases its best auditors and offers upper levels of training. But the quality of auditing had slipped. Rathbun's assignment was to help bring it back up.

Late in the summer of 1995, a woman exited an auditing room at the Fort Harrison Hotel, raised her arms above her head and shouted with delight — a breach of the all-quiet protocol on the auditing floor.

"Who's that?'' Rathbun asked a supervisor.

"That's Lisa McPherson.''
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Re: Journalism: Scientology - L. Ron Hubbard's Brainchild

Postby admin » Mon Jul 22, 2019 11:49 pm

Death in slow motion: Part 2 of 3 in a special report on the Church of Scientology
by Thomas C. Tobin and Joe Childs
Times Staff Writers
Monday, June 22, 2009

Image
At a ceremony at the Fort Harrison Hotel in September 1995, Lisa McPherson was designated “clear,’’ meaning that through Scientology counseling, she had rid herself of all interference from troubling memories buried in her subconscious. Two months later she had a nervous breakdown. After 17 days in Scientology’s care, she was dead.

The night after Lisa McPherson died, the leader of the Church of Scientology sent word for one of his top lieutenants to wait by a pay phone at the Holiday Inn Surfside on Clearwater Beach.
When Marty Rathbun answered the ringing phone in the lobby, David Miscavige let him have it:

Why aren’t you all over this mess? The police are poking around. Do something.

“Yes sir,” Rathbun said.

McPherson, a 36-year-old parishioner in apparent good health, had spent 17 days in a guarded room at the church’s Fort Harrison Hotel. Scientology staffers tried to nurse her out of a mental breakdown, but she became ill. She drew her last breaths in the back seat of a van as they drove her to a hospital in the next county.

Her death on Dec. 5, 1995, triggered nine years of investigations, lawsuits and worldwide press coverage. Alive on the Internet, it stains Scientology’s reputation still.

Now, for the first time, comes an inside account from the upper ranks of Scientology — from the man who directed the church’s handling of the case.

Rathbun, who defected from Scientology’s staff in late 2004, admits that as prosecutors and attorneys for McPherson’s family prepared subpoenas, he ordered the destruction of incriminating evidence about her care at the Fort Harrison.

He and others who have left the church disclose for the first time that Miscavige was involved in McPherson’s Scientology counseling. Just weeks before her mental breakdown, they say, it was the leader himself who determined that she had reached an enhanced mental state that Scientologists call “clear.’’

For years Rathbun was adamant that the church did nothing wrong. Now he says that McPherson’s care was a debacle from the start. It was a “perfect storm of incompetence and irresponsibility” within the church, he said. “You couldn’t justify it.’’

He disclosed that the church was prepared to pay almost any price to make the case go away. He said he sent an emissary to McPherson’s funeral in Dallas with authority to give her mother, Fannie, whatever she wanted. The approach was rebuffed because the family didn’t trust the church.

“Whether it was financially or any other thing, we’re taking care of that woman because it was on our watch. If she needed $5 million, we would have come up with $5 million.”

Church officials say Rathbun is a bitter ex-member who inflated his importance in Scientology and whose motives are suspect. They say Miscavige demoted Rathbun in 2003 in part for missteps he made in the McPherson case.

A settlement agreement with the woman’s family forbids them from providing specifics, said Monique Yingling, a long-time Scientology attorney and friend of Miscavige. Still, she said that Rathbun botched the case from the start, and “possibly caused the whole thing.”

A little fender-bender

McPherson joined Scientology in Dallas, her hometown, when she was 18. She worked for a marketing company owned by Scientologist friends; the company moved to Clearwater in 1994 to be near the church’s spiritual headquarters, and McPherson came, too.

Shortly before 6 p.m. on Nov. 18, 1995, her Jeep Cherokee ran into a boat trailer stopped in traffic on S Fort Harrison Avenue.

McPherson, frantic, walked up to the driver pulling the trailer, put her hands on his shoulders and asked, “Where’s the people? Where’s the people?”

Firefighters had her move her car to the side of Belleview Boulevard. She signed a statement saying she did not want medical care. As officers and paramedics tended to other duties, they saw McPherson had stripped off her clothes and was walking along Belleview.

They took her to Morton Plant Hospital, where doctors discussed having her committed for psychiatric evaluation under Florida’s Baker Act.

But Scientology considers psychiatry and psychiatric drugs evil. The church believes it offers less intrusive and more humane treatment for problems of the human mind.

Adamant that McPherson not be exposed to psychiatry, about 10 church members showed up at the hospital and said they would take care of her. She said she wanted to leave with her friends and signed out against a doctor’s advice.

Church staffers checked her into the Fort Harrison and assigned her to Room 174 of the cabanas, a group of less formal rooms facing the street behind the hotel. Four members of the church’s medical office were assigned to watch McPherson. Staffers from various departments were pulled in to help — including a payroll officer, a file clerk, a secretary, a personnel director, security guards and two librarians.

Supervising was Janis Johnson, a doctor unlicensed in Florida, who was a church medical officer.

For more than two weeks, they tried to calm, feed and medicate McPherson. They gave her chloral hydrate, a mild sedative. A staff dentist, unlicensed in Florida, mixed aspirin, Benadryl and orange juice in a syringe and squirted it down her throat.

The staffers kept logs of what they did. Trying to calm McPherson, a staffer tried to force three Valerian root caplets down her throat, but McPherson spit them out. “My idea of closing her nose so she has to swallow so she can breathe through her mouth is only marginally successful,” the staffer wrote.

McPherson slapped and screamed at her caretakers. She babbled, she vomited her food. She destroyed the ceiling lamp and broke glass in the bathroom. She jumped off the bed, fell on the floor, ran around the room.

She pondered a light bulb, saying, “You have to follow the light, as light is life.”

“She was like an ice cube,” one caretaker wrote. “She refused to eat and spit out everything she took. Her breath was foul … had a fever to my touch.”

By the evening of Dec. 5, McPherson had lost about 12 pounds. Johnson, the church doctor, telephoned David Minkoff, a Scientologist and a doctor at Columbia New Port Richey Hospital. Minkoff said to take McPherson to Morton Plant Hospital down the street.

But Alain Kartuzinski, a church counseling supervisor, told Minkoff he feared that McPherson would be exposed to psychiatric care at Morton Plant, and Johnson assured Minkoff that McPherson’s condition was not life-threatening.

What they didn’t tell Minkoff: McPherson was limp and unable to walk. Her breathing was labored, her eyes fixed and unblinking. Her face was gaunt, a sign of severe dehydration.

Minkoff agreed to see her. With McPherson in the back seat of a van, her caretakers drove 45 minutes to the Pasco hospital, passing four other hospitals on the way.

They rolled her into the ER splayed across a wheelchair. She had no pulse, no heartbeat and was not breathing. Minkoff pronounced McPherson dead.

He took Johnson aside and yelled at her.

“I was shocked out of my wits,” he said later. “I really wasn’t in the mode of finding out what happened. I was more in the mode of, ‘How could you bring this person up to me like this?”

Miscavige’s role

Scientology employs a unique brand of counseling called auditing. In a quiet room, an “auditor’’ asks the parishioner prescribed questions while monitoring a device called an electro­psychometer, or e-meter. Scientologists say there is a “charge” associated with areas of upset in a person’s life, such as marital conflict or a childhood accident.

When such topics come up, the e-meter’s needle responds. The act of locating the troubling episode dissipates the charge and the needle floats back and forth. The person is supposed to feel better.

One goal is to reach “clear,” a state where the mind’s negative images are gone and the person is said to be rid of all fears, anxieties and irrational thoughts.

John Travolta, Kirstie Alley and Tom Cruise are among the celebrities who have extolled the benefits of Scientology. Parishioners from around the globe travel to Clearwater to be audited by the best. Scientologists come for the deluxe accommodations and the top-flight, “Class 12” auditors, whose services, Rathbun said, cost $1,000 an hour.

But back in 1995, Rathbun says, even the church thought most of its Class 12 auditors were not worth the money. They were burned out, their sessions rote and uninspired, like a doctor with a poor bedside manner.

“These guys are all overweight, they’re obese, they’ve got back problems. They don’t sleep enough,” he said. “And one of the problems, I realized, is for 15, 20 years they’re cash cows.’’

He said they were “just getting milked nonstop.”

Rathbun and others say Miscavige was in Clearwater in 1995 to launch “The Golden Age of Tech,” an initiative aimed at raising the quality and precision of auditing at Scientology’s mecca.

Rathbun said he was assigned to help. Miscavige would look in on parishioner auditing sessions from a control room with video feeds from multiple counseling rooms.

One of the parishioners was Lisa McPherson.

“He’s watching live with the videocameras every session that she’s in and (supervising), saying ‘Do this next, do that next’ and so forth,” said Tom De Vocht, a top church executive in Clearwater who has since left the church and is speaking out for the first time.

The folder containing records of McPherson’s auditing history came in and out of Miscavige’s office, said De Vocht, whose office was next door and who had overseen a renovation of the leader’s living quarters.

Don Jason, then a high-ranking officer at the Clearwater spiritual headquarters, said he saw Miscavige take off his headphones and say McPherson had achieved the state of clear in a previous session. Jason, 45, said he saw the leader write a note that McPherson’s auditor would read to her, informing her of her new status.

Scientologists who are “clear’’ don’t go psychotic, Jason said, so for a person to have a breakdown so soon after was a “huge problem.’’

Church officials say De Vocht and Jason are wrong. “I can tell you that’s utterly, totally false,’’ said Angie Blankenship, a top administrator in Clearwater from 1996 to 2003.

“I was here. Chairman of the board (Miscavige) wasn’t even here at the Flag land base during that time. He’s a liar. Never happened.”

Yingling and church spokesman Tommy Davis also said Miscavige was not in Clearwater at the time, and they say they have minutes of meetings he attended in California to prove it. They also question how De Vocht and Jason, almost 14 years later, could remember anything about a woman who then was just another parishioner.

Jason said the moment stood out because staffers require special training and refresher training to be able to identify when someone becomes clear. “So it did strike me as like, ‘Wow’?” that Miscavige had that expertise.

Not only that, “I was standing right next to him when it happened,’’ said Jason, who left the church in 1996 but still finds Scientology valuable.

“This is a huge deal,” De Vocht said of Miscavige’s involvement. “There’s no way not to remember it.”

De Vocht said he worked closely with Miscavige during that time. He said the leader zeroed in on McPherson because she was having issues with her counseling and was the friend of a prominent church member.

He said he saw Miscavige view McPherson’s auditing sessions through a video feed and write notations in her counseling folder.

“I watched him personally,” De Vocht said. “A whole bunch of people watched him personally.”

The church’s representatives said there are no notations by Miscavige in McPherson’s file. In any case, they say, Miscavige would have been qualified to supervise McPherson’s case had he been so inclined. “He is an expert in every field,” said Jessica Feshbach, a church spokeswoman.

Rathbun recalled walking through a hallway to the auditing rooms at the Fort Harrison and a woman bursting through a door.

“She’s going, ‘Aaaaaah! Yahoo!’ She’s screaming at the top of her lungs,” he said.

It was McPherson, cheering about the news that she had been deemed clear.

Her accomplishment was celebrated in a ceremony at the Fort Harrison in September 1995. By mid November, she would be back at the hotel, babbling to her caretakers.

Introspection rundown

When Rathbun learned that McPherson had died, he interviewed the 15 to 20 Scientologists who had cared for her.

“It was like walking into a disaster area,” he said. “They all looked devastated. They lacked sleep. Some of them had scratches and bruises from getting hit by Lisa. All of them were extremely emotionally distraught because each one of them put it on their shoulders that they had done something wrong.”

Their feelings were justified, Rathbun said. “The whole thing was done wrong. I can’t tell you what a technical crime this was’’ in terms of Scientology methods.

The caretakers had given McPherson an “introspection rundown,’’ a procedure created by Scientology founder L. Ron Hubbard. The goal is to isolate and calm a psychotic person enough to be audited. She is to be kept in a silent environment with no one around to “re-stimulate” mental images that might upset her.

Yet church staffers came and went from McPherson’s room, as did guards using walkie-talkies, Rathbun said. One staffer cried in a corner. Others held McPherson down while trying to medicate and feed her.

Instead of calming, McPherson grew agitated and self-destructive during her 17-day stay.

Rathbun said he has participated in several introspection rundowns, and none lasted more than a day or two.

He said it was obvious to him that McPherson was the victim of “out-tech,” a term for Scientology malpractice.

Rathbun had another problem: Kartuzinski, the auditing supervisor, and Johnson, the medical officer, had lied to Clearwater police. They said McPherson had not received an introspection rundown, and they said there was nothing unusual about her stay.

“That’s the hand I’m dealt,” Rathbun said. “I’ve got two false sworn statements to law enforcement agents’’ on top of how badly the Scientologists handled McPherson.

It was such a “dog’s breakfast” of facts, he said, his first instinct was to do something entirely out of character.

“I really truly, sincerely wished that I was in a position where I could just follow my heart,” he said. “Because my heart in December 1995 was to go straight to the state attorney’s office and say, ‘My God. There’s been a terrible accident … We want to take responsibility?'”

But that wasn’t in the playbook. His nearly two decades immersed in Scientology culture had taught him: When under siege, close ranks, never admit fault.

He said he wrote an internal report that concluded church procedures had been violated, but the mistakes did not contribute to McPherson’s death.

He put the report in a manila envelope and sealed it the way he learned years earlier as a 20-something newbie handling Hubbard’s correspondence. Slice the seams with a razor, cover them with tape and melt the tape so no one can open the envelope without tearing it. Then off the envelope went to the church’s California base.

For a year, not a word about McPherson’s death had appeared in the media.

But in mid December 1996, details of the Clearwater police investigation leaked to reporters. An autopsy report from Pinellas-Pasco Medical Examiner Joan Wood concluded that McPherson died of a blood clot in her left lung caused by “bed rest and severe dehydration.”

Rathbun coordinated the public response, which he now acknowledges began with lies. Church spokesmen said McPherson had been at the Fort Harrison for rest and relaxation. They said she could come and go as she pleased. They denied that she had received an introspection rundown.

McPherson “suddenly fell ill’’ and participated in decisions about her care, church officials said. Her death was an unfortunate accident, unrelated to anything Scientology did.

Wood spoke out, saying her autopsy contradicted the church’s statements. The veteran medical examiner said there was nothing sudden or accidental about McPherson’s death. Her health deteriorated gradually over about 10 days, and she probably was unconscious toward the end.

The church sued Wood for access to her records. A Scientology lawyer called her: “Liar. Liar. Liar. Liar. Liar. Hateful liar.”

McPherson’s family sued the church for wrongful death.

And the Pinellas-Pasco State Attorney’s Office investigated whether to file criminal charges.

Destruction of evidence

In early 1997 as investigators closed in, Rathbun met with church staff at Scientology offices in Hollywood, Calif. They combed the daily logs that McPherson’s caretakers kept during her 17 days at the Fort Harrison.

Three entries particularly troubled Rathbun.

One contained a bizarre sexual reference McPherson had made. Another revealed that no one thought to remove the mirror from the room of a psychotic woman bent on harming herself. The third was one caretaker’s opinion that the situation was out of control and that McPherson needed to see a doctor.

Rathbun concluded the notes had to go.

“I said, ‘Lose ’em’ and walked out of the room,” he recalled, adding that the decision to destroy the records was his own.

“Nobody told me to do it and I did it,” he said. “The truth is the truth and right now I’m going to confession, and I really think it’s something that hurt the church more than it hurt the people that were trying to get recompense.

“But it is what it is, and I know it could potentially be a crime.”

In a recent interview, State Attorney Bernie McCabe said it was clear the records were missing because the church handed over entries for every day of McPherson’s stay except the final two before she died. That the church appeared to be hiding something only fed McCabe’s sense that something was amiss.

Prosecuting Rathbun is not an option, because the time to bring destruction of evidence charges expires after three years, McCabe said. “We’re done.’’

Stress ratchets up

On Nov. 13, 1998, McCabe’s office charged the church’s Clearwater entity with two felonies: criminal neglect and practicing medicine without a license.

The church now faced the prospect of trials and embarrassing testimony in both criminal and civil court.

Miscavige delegated dealing with lawyers and reporters to Rathbun and to Scientology’s chief spokesman, Mike Rinder. But the church leader kept hold of the controls, working to forge Scientology’s message from behind the scenes.

Rathbun revealed that while he and Rinder conducted phone interviews, Miscavige often was at their side, directing what to say and gesturing wildly when he thought they got it wrong.

A key legal issue in the McPherson family’s wrongful death lawsuit was whether Miscavige could be added as a defendant. Church lawyers argued that he should not be named in the suit because he dealt only with ecclesiastical matters. The family countered that Miscavige “totally controls” and “micromanages all of Scientology.”

In December 1999, a Tampa judge ruled that Miscavige could be added as a defendant.

For the church leader, it was “a big snapping point,’’ Rathbun said.

“That was like the explosion of all explosions that he was now potentially going to get deposed and his name would be embroiled in that litigation. He became progressively more antagonistic, violent, irrational.”

William C. Walsh, a Washington, D.C., human rights lawyer who has represented Scientology for years, said the account is far-fetched.

“One thing I do know is Dave Miscavige, and I’ve known him from December 1999 on and way before that,” Walsh said. “And I never saw any change in his personality when he became a defendant in the case. He didn’t become more antagonistic. He did not become more violent. And he’s never been irrational.”

Said Yingling: “He wasn’t happy to be a defendant. That’s true. But he took it in stride with everything else that was happening in the case.”

Rinder and Rathbun recall an afternoon on the third floor of a small office building overlooking N Fort Harrison Avenue, when they say Miscavige attacked Rinder. They say the leader shouted obscenities at Rinder, grabbed him and, while holding him in a headlock, twisted his neck and threw him to the floor.

Of the dozens of attacks Rinder says he endured, this one was the most painful.

“I remember my neck was out of place, and for maybe 30 minutes I couldn’t speak because my larynx had been squashed against the back of my throat,’’ he said.

Clamped in the headlock, Rinder said his thoughts tracked a familiar arc: What did I do to cause this?

When Miscavige dresses you down or, worse, punishes you physically, “You get into trying to figure out what you have done to him,’’ Rinder said. “And that’s the thing with the beatings. What did I do to cause this to happen to me?’’

Overprepare. Attack, attack

Reminiscent of how Scientology fought the IRS to restore its tax exemption, the church would not be outworked defending itself from the criminal charges in the McPherson case.

Scientology spent millions of dollars, and church lawyers filed thousands of pages of medical studies and consultant reports that said McPherson’s care at the Fort Harrison could not have caused her death.

The case collapsed after Wood, the medical examiner, unexpectedly changed her official finding on the manner of McPherson’s death. Previously “undetermined,’’ she changed it in February 2000 to an “accident.’’

Prosecutors dropped the charges four months later, citing Wood’s conflicting and confused interpretations of the evidence.

Conspiracy theorists suggested that the church somehow “got to’’ Wood.

Rathbun denies it. He says the medical examiner changed her conclusions in the face of the reams of scientific information from church experts.

“There was no blackmail on her,” Rathbun said. “There was no intelligence. It absolutely was all evidence. I swear to God.”

Wood, reached at her home, declined to comment.

McCabe said it was his impression that evidence and expert testimony swayed Wood. “One thing you quickly come to realize when dealing with (Scientologists) is that they are persistent,” he said. “And they were persistent with her.”

In May 2004, four years after the criminal charges were dropped, the church settled with McPherson’s family, ending their lawsuit. The terms remain secret.

In a speech to the International Association of Scientologists, Miscavige proclaimed victory over government officials, over the press and over others who he said tried to use McPherson’s death to bring down the church.

He said the roots of the attack stretched from the German government, which opposed Scientology, to the Clearwater police, which investigated the church for two decades.

“They were just looking for anything to get us,” he told the crowd. “We always knew we’d win.”

Quoting Hubbard, he listed the qualities that would always hold Scientology in good stead. “Constant alertness, constant willingness to fight back.”

Winning but losing

Though Scientology prevailed on the legal front, the McPherson case set back a long-running effort by the church to cultivate a benign, mainstream image.

Among the details that emerged: In McPherson’s last five years, she had spent at least $176,700 on Scientology services and had $5,773 in the account she kept at the church. She died with $11 in her savings account.

The case reignited passions about Scientology and its practices, bringing pro- and antichurch protests back to the streets of Clearwater after years of relative calm.

Some people paid a price.

Minkoff, the Scientologist doctor who pronounced McPherson dead, was disciplined by the state of Florida. Without having met McPherson, he had written prescriptions for her during her stay in the Fort Harrison.

Kartuzinski, the supervisor in charge of her stay at the Fort Harrison, was banished for years to work in the church’s laundry in Clearwater.

Scientology parishioners were called on to dig deeper into their pockets. The church’s Clearwater entity, the Flag Service Organization, typically took in $1.5 million to $2 million a week, Rathbun and others said, providing a picture of Scientology’s revenues never before disclosed.

Miscavige decided the exorbitant legal bills from the McPherson case were to be paid from the Flag operation, Rathbun said, so church registrars urged parishioners to come in for more auditing and other services.

“It was a matter of, ‘Step things up, get people in?'” he said. “They brought in a lot of money during that period.”

Yet another group would pay in a different way. According to Rathbun and other high-ranking defectors, Miscavige grew more violent and erratic as the McPherson case wore on.

Said Rathbun: “Working under David Miscavige from 2000 forward was a steadily deteriorating situation.”
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Re: Journalism: Scientology - L. Ron Hubbard's Brainchild

Postby admin » Mon Jul 22, 2019 11:51 pm

Scientology: Ecclesiastical justice, Part 3 of 3 in a special report on the Church of Scientology
by Thomas C. Tobin and Joe Childs
Times Staff Writers
Tuesday, June 23, 2009

The four high-ranking executives who left Scientology say that church leader David Miscavige not only physically attacked members of his executive staff, he messed with their minds.
He frequently had groups of managers jump into a pool or a lake. He mustered them into group confessions that sometimes spun into free-for-alls, with people hitting one another.

Mike Rinder, who defended the church to the media for two decades, couldn't stomach what was happening on the inside.

The tactics to keep executives in line "are wrong from a Scientology viewpoint,'' said Rinder, who walked away two years ago. "They are not standard practice of Scientology. They are just not humanitarian. And they are just outright evil.''

Church spokesmen confirm that managers are ordered into pools and assembled for group confessions. It's part of the "ecclesiastical justice'' system the church imposes on poor performers.

Rinder and the other defectors couldn't cut it in the tough world of Scientology's Sea Org, a group whose members dedicate their lives to service of the church, the church says. Rather than accept their own failings, the defectors are putting a sinister twist on something that is normal.

The Sea Org is a "crew of tough sons of bitches,'' said church spokesman Tommy Davis, an 18-year veteran of the group.

"The Sea Org is not a democracy. The members of it agree with a man named L. Ron Hubbard. They abide by his policies . . . and we follow it to the T, to the letter, to the punctuation marks. And if you disagree with that and you don't like it, you don't belong. Then you leave."

A better thetan

The order came about 10 p.m. on a winter's night: Report to the swimming pool.

From around the church's postcard-pretty base in the mountains east of Los Angeles, some 70 staff members turned out in their Navy-style uniforms. David Miscavige was unhappy with the troops, again.

The punishment the leader had in mind was not new to members of the Sea Org. Hubbard, the church's late founder, "overboarded" Sea Org members in the 1970s when he ran Scientology from a ship named the Apollo.

Miscavige had the staffers line up at the diving board in their uniforms, and one by one, jump into the pool. Before each person went in, Norman Starkey, once the captain of the Apollo, called on them to be better spiritual beings. He recited a traditional Sea Org saying:

We commit your sins and errors to the deep and trust you will rise a better thetan.

Miscavige ordered the group to go to an office in their wet clothes and stay put until they figured out where they had failed.

Tom De Vocht says he can't recall what angered Miscavige that chilly night early in 2005. But he well remembers the doubts that crept into his head as he sat wet and shivering.

What am I doing here?

De Vocht had joined the church with his mother when he was just 10 and rose to a top executive post at Scientology's spiritual headquarters in Clearwater. But in the months after that mass dunking, he no longer recognized the organization.

Neither did Rinder, who went into the pool that night with De Vocht.

Two others already had acted on their doubts. Marty Rathbun, one of Miscavige's top lieutenants for years, left in 2004. Amy Scobee, who held several executive posts, left in 2005.

The four defectors, speaking publicly for the first time, each served more than 25 years in the Sea Org.

"Right, wrong or indifferent, I felt I was doing something for the good of man, and I'll never give that back," said De Vocht, who left in 2005. "But the longer I was in it, it got crazier and crazier as Dave took over."

Normal vs. abnormal

Confession is ingrained in Scientology culture. Admit all your bad thoughts and transgressions, leave nothing out, and you will feel free, unburdened, joyful.

The four defectors say Miscavige took the practice to a new level. They said he convened group confessions that came to be known as "seances."

The executives would confess sins they had committed against Miscavige, reveal their bad thoughts about Scientology and make personal disclosures, including sexual fantasies. If someone couldn't come up with a transgression, the others bullied him into admitting something. Anything.

"And Dave would sit there and listen to it and enjoy the hell out of it," said De Vocht, who recalled one seance when he said Miscavige struck executive Marc Yager and threw him to the floor, then singled out Faith Schermerhorn, a midlevel administrator who is black.

"He goes, 'By the way, (Yager) thinks black people are n------, and he doesn't want Scientology to help blacks. Go kick him.' So (Yager) is down on the ground and she's kicking him,'' De Vocht said.

"Everybody in that damned room — people are wild and out of control," he said. "I punched somebody. Everybody was punched. And screaming and yelling. It just got like, What the hell is going on here?

Like COB [David Miscavige], does he want $300,000,000 million? Is that what it is? Does he want a billion dollars? Is that it? Is it just his power hard-on? Or is it just insanity?

Like if I wanted money, if I wanted a billion dollars or something like that, I couldn't do that. I'd probably kill myself. I just couldn't live with myself like that.

Me, personally, I look at David Miscavige, that's my definition of 1.1. He's good at it. To lie to people like that? To have no sense of responsibility when you rip people off for hundreds of millions of dollars, and then make them happy about it afterwards? You must be giggling!

-- "How I Got Into Scientology And Why I Got Out," -- Illustrated Interview with Jason Beghe


The church provided the St. Petersburg Times with sworn declarations from Yager and Schermerhorn denying that the incident happened. In Yager's declaration, he said he is not prejudiced and Schermerhorn is a friend.

Schermerhorn wrote that she has never heard Miscavige use the n-word: "As a matter of fact, I know that Mr. Miscavige has been the person in Scientology who has done the most for black people.''

Rinder said a group confession early in 2004 stands out for him because Rathbun, his longtime friend, ended up attacking him.

"You stand up and there's 50 people in the room all screaming and shouting, 'What did you do? And you did this and you did that.' And I'm standing there saying, 'No, I didn't do that,' '' Rinder said.

The group ganged up on him. He had to have done something: Come on. Own up. Come on.

"And then when I said nothing, that's when Marty leaped on me,'' Rinder said. "And that's psychotic. There is a term for it in Scientology. It's called Contagion of Aberration. . . .

"When you get a group of people together, they will stimulate one another to do things that are crazy."

Davis, who succeeded Rinder as church spokesman, said the term "seance'' is not used in Scientology and Miscavige never encouraged violence. But it's not surprising that Rathbun attacked Rinder, Davis said, because Rathbun physically attacked other managers all the time.

Rinder said the ugly moment was an example of the corrosive atmosphere at Scientology's base near Los Angeles. "There's an attempt to play people off, one against the other. And you know that and you see it," Rinder said.

Rathbun's attack "wasn't motivated by hatred toward me, it was motivated by some attempt at preservation for him."

Davis cited church founder Hubbard's policy that encourages members to confront and "come clean" when they have done something to bring down their group. It's one hallmark of a successful organization.

"It's not for the purposes of punishment,'' Davis said, "and it's certainly never for the purpose of trying to make the person feel guilty for it."

The church says Rathbun and De Vocht acted so inappropriately — roughing up staffers — that they were required to confess publicly. "They were definitely guilty, definitely in violation of the mores of the group,'' said spokeswoman Jessica Feshbach.

"And were they confronted by peers and asked, What's going on? Absolutely. Because that is the responsibility of the group.''

Letting down the group also can result in overboarding, church spokesmen said. It's a Sea Org ritual akin to traditions in other religious orders.

Starkey, the 66-year-old former captain of the Apollo, said plenty of people have been overboarded in his 50 years in Scientology.

If a Sea Org member messes up, "you throw him over the g-- d--- side of the ship," Starkey said.

"He falls into the water, he swims around, climbs up the ladder, gets off at the dock, walks back in again. He never does that again. He knows that that is the way we operate. That is what the Sea Organization is like."

Church lawyer Monique Yingling said overboarding is part of ecclesiastical justice. "They're not backing away from it or ashamed of it,'' she said. It has been done hundreds of times, with precautions taken to make it safe.

In the example De Vocht and Rinder recounted, church spokesmen said, the pool was heated, towels were provided, a lifeguard was present. And Miscavige wasn't even there.

De Vocht and Rinder say he was. "He was standing right there, laughing,'' Rinder said. "It was very entertaining for him."

Rinder said he doesn't remember any towels at the ready, that night or any of the 10 or so other times he says large groups of staffers were escorted to the lake under guard and required to jump in fully dressed.

He disputed Yingling's contention the "overboarding" incident as described, with a large group of people, is accepted church practice. He said it's meant to address an issue with an individual.

Which is how church spokesman Davis said he punished a subordinate.

"It was a guy who was blowing it and kept blowing it and kept blowing it — making mistakes, underperforming," he said. "It was my responsibility to uphold the ethical standards of the Sea Org. Yeah, absolutely, I tossed the guy in.''

If the defectors could not hack such punishments, Davis said, they could have left years ago. "The g-- d--- front door wasn't locked. And if they had a problem with it they could have walked out."

Intense and hands on

The defectors were not only soft, they couldn't maintain the accelerated work pace Miscavige established, the church says. Rathbun flubbed so many assignments, such as his handling of the Lisa McPherson wrongful death lawsuit, that Miscavige had to take over, distracting him from more important duties, spokesmen said.

With Rathbun gone, Miscavige focused on growth plans: "2004 was a paradigm shift, the point where everything changed,'' Davis said. "Where Mr. Miscavige was able to get on to what he always wanted to get on to.''

Davis played DVDs of Scientology ads now on cable TV. He outlined a multimillion-dollar international expansion program to open an array of "ideal orgs," each with course rooms, displays that explain Scientology to the uninitiated, facilities for community outreach groups, and rooms for auditing, the core counseling of Scientology.

The church revamped its Web site, improved the books that are the foundation of Scientology and restored the grainy films of Hubbard's landmark lectures. All of this accomplished in the past four years, all led, planned, designed and created by Miscavige.

The spokesmen described him as a "hands-on" leader working in video editing bays, proof­reading manuscripts, helping write scripts, staying up each night to listen to every one of Hubbard's 3,000 lectures and setting up a construction office to outfit the 66 new buildings the church has acquired since 2004.

Miscavige is intense, church spokesmen said, but he never behaves in degrading, crude or violent ways, and he never altered church policy. The church brought more than a dozen international managers to Clearwater to speak to the Times. All said they worked with Miscavige for years and spoke of his kindness and compassion.

All of them deny the defectors' allegations that Miscavige hit them.

"They're such lies," said Ray Mithoff, his voice shaking. "I've known the man for 27 years."

Said Mark Ingber, a Sea Org member since 1968: "I've never been beaten to a pulp in my life. Mr. Miscavige is my friend."

The best and worst

One night before Christmas 1997, Miscavige's wife, Michelle, telephoned Rathbun and Rinder. The leader wanted to see them. Right away.

From different parts of the California compound, they jogged to his quarters.

They say Miscavige bustled through the screen door in a terry cloth bathrobe and without a word grabbed Rinder around the neck, slapped him, slugged him and threw him against a tree.

Rinder ended up in ivy, mud on his uniform, his lip bleeding. Miscavige led them to the officers' lounge, poured Rinder a glass of Scotch and said it would make him feel better.

The leader of Scientology turned and walked toward his quarters.

People would flinch when Miscavige walked by, De Vocht said.

"That's how routine it was," he said. "His whole entire outlook was that everybody was out to get him. Anything and everything anybody else touched was going to be screwed up, and he had to do it himself. He didn't trust anybody.''

Scobee described working in her office cubicle along the wall of a large conference room. Miscavige was seated alone on one side of the table facing several staffers, including Jeff Hawkins.

"So I'm not paying attention and all of a sudden I see David Miscavige jump up on top of the table — the conference room table," Scobee said.

He lunged at Hawkins, she said, and the two of them landed at her feet. Miscavige "stayed on top of him and was choking him and hitting him and grabbing his tie. Buttons were flying and change falling out of Jeff's pockets. And I'm sitting here going, 'Oh my God!'"

Hawkins has spoken and written publicly about the 2002 incident.

Church executive David Bloomberg tells a far different story. Bloomberg said that he was seated next to Hawkins that day and that Hawkins became belligerent with the leader. Hawkins fell out of his chair and ended up putting a scissor lock on Miscavige's legs.

"Mr. Miscavige did not touch Jeff Hawkins,'' Bloomberg said.

At his best, Miscavige inspires staffers, Rathbun said, recalling times the leader invoked a dispatch Hubbard wrote in the 1980s: The planet's fate rests on the shoulders of "the desperate few."

Miscavige used it to stir a sense of mission and make you feel special, Rathbun said.

"He'd make you feel like you were really important. And that's why you would do stuff for him.''

But the defectors said Miscavige's tendency to change plans, micromanage and undermine the chain of command paralyzed the management team and stifled growth in the years before they left. To pump up revenue, Rathbun said, Miscavige repackaged old Scientology books and services and marketed them to parishioners as must-have, new products.

He cited the church's recent blitz urging members to buy new versions of "the basics," a collection of Hubbard books that are the foundation of Scientology. In 2007, Miscavige told Scientologists who had bought and studied the books for decades that the volumes were flawed, with whole passages missing, out-of-order or written by editors.

No wonder people complained about not being able to understand them, the leader said. The church put the volumes in their proper state and was selling them anew.

Said Rathbun: "He's telling (parishioners) literally to their faces, 'You didn't understand the first thing about Scientology because you couldn't possibly have because the books were screwed up.'"

The 18-volume set now sells for $450, down from the 1986 price of $738.

Davis, the church spokesman, describes the reworked collection as a sensational development, a historic recovery of Hubbard's work comparable to the discovery of the Dead Sea scrolls.

Said Yingling, the church attorney: "It was received with such joy by the Scientology public at large.''

Rathbun, De Vocht and Scobee said they were privy to weekly internal data reports that showed a gradual decline in key statistics, including the value of church services delivered and the number of auditing hours and courses completed.

"These are the statistics that are supposed to matter," Rathbun said. "All that stuff's been going down."

De Vocht described Miscavige's decisionmaking as erratic. He said the leader often changes course, resulting in situations like Scientology's multi­million-dollar "Super Power" building in downtown Clearwater. The mammoth structure, finished on the outside, has sat vacant for six years.

After repeated design changes, work on the interior restarted this month.

Davis and Yingling trumpet Scientology's worldwide expansion. The past five years, the church has acquired 80 properties; three new churches — called orgs — opened this year, with five more on track to open by year's end.

Is this the real life?

They called it the Hole.

For months, the small building at the California base was like a prison for more than 30 of the highest-ranking officers in the Sea Org.

They could leave only once a day, for a shower, otherwise they stayed put. Food was brought in. They slept on the floor, men around the conference table, women in the cubicles and small offices ringing the room.

Miscavige called meetings at odd hours, 2 a.m., 4 a.m. Day after day, the exhausted executives puzzled through management structure and the pricing system for church services, trying to guess what their leader wanted.

He rejected their ideas, cursed them, branded them "suppressive persons" who put their church at risk. He demanded they go back at it; they could not leave until they got it right.

Sometimes Miscavige would let someone out of the Hole or throw in somebody else. Rinder says he was there from the start. In January 2004, Miscavige added De Vocht to the mix.

"Everyone gathered around the table. He's throwing things, yelling at people, beating people up," De Vocht remembered. "It was a weirdo scene, let me tell you."

Later that month, Miscavige threw a bigger name into the Hole: Marty Rathbun.

The leader told the others not to listen to a word Rathbun said, he was not to be trusted: I know you all have come to respect this guy over the years, but he is the guy that's f----- me up.

A few days earlier, Rathbun says, Miscavige had pushed his head against a wall and slapped him hard across his left ear for not being tougher on the staff. He figures that must be what landed him in the Hole.

The building consisted of small offices and a conference room tucked into two double-wide trailers. When Miscavige tramped down the corridor, the hollowness of the floor made a klunk, klunk, klunk sound.

Four days into Rathbun's stay, the klunking signaled Miscavige's arrival, flanked as always by his wife, who took notes, and an assistant with a recorder so that everything the leader said could be transcribed and distributed across the base.

Miscavige announced that they were going to play musical chairs to determine who among them was the most committed to the tasks at hand. All but the winner would be reassigned to Scientology's far-flung outposts.

Some staffers cried at the thought of being separated from family. Others made ready, positioning chairs around the 30-foot long, maple conference table.

Miscavige used a boom box to play Bohemian Rhapsody, by Queen.

Is this the real life?

Is this just fantasy?

Caught in a landslide

No escape from reality

When the music stopped, the uniformed Sea Org members jostled for chairs, knocking each other aside. Two men fought so hard a chair came apart in their hands.

Losers were told where they were being assigned, husbands and wives finding that they were to be thousands of miles apart. Rinder said Miscavige taunted one husband for showing a soft side by consoling his tearful wife.

"Oh yeah,'' Rinder said. "It was fun and games.''

Again, church officials said, the defectors are making the normal seem abnormal. Miscavige was merely trying to make a point, they said, citing a Hubbard policy that says frequent personnel transfers are like "musical chairs" and can harm a group's progress. Miscavige wanted the group to see for themselves how destructive that can be.

Yingling said Miscavige had been away from the base and returned to find that in his absence, Rathbun had transferred hundreds of staffers. "That's why nothing was getting done," she said.

Rathbun and Rinder said it was the opposite: Nothing was getting done because Miscavige took top managers from their posts and ordered them to the Hole. Rathbun said Miscavige berated him for not transferring more people.

From evening into the wee hours of the next day the game of musical chairs dragged on, sometimes interrupted by the leader lecturing the group on their incompetence.

"It's like Apocalypse Now," Rathbun said. "It's bizarre."

The game ended with two women competing for the last chair.

"It was definitely a physical struggle and they were grappling and wrestling," Rathbun recalled. "Then (Miscavige) leaves and says, 'Okay, good. We'll see you f------ tomorrow.' "

Miscavige never carried out his threat of mass transfers.

One beating too many

The next night, Miscavige ordered his executives to jog from the Hole to a building where staffers made CDs of long-ago lectures by Hubbard.

With the group still huffing from their 400-yard run, Miscavige grilled De Vocht, who had overseen renovations to the building. He slapped De Vocht, threw him to the floor and began to choke him.

De Vocht can't recall why he was attacked. Maybe he hesitated with an answer. Maybe he gave a look the leader didn't like. Whatever the reason, he accepted his drubbing in silent, degrading submission.

Miscavige grew angrier if you expressed pain or resisted, the defectors said.

"You're literally sitting there thinking, I'm not going to hit this guy," De Vocht said. "It happens so suddenly, what do you do? And then if you want to go after him, how many other people are going to pummel you? You've got to realize this place is so cultish it's scary."

Scobee says the executives at the California base were trapped. They dared not speak to each other about Miscavige's behavior, afraid they would be found out in confessions known as "security checks."

A person who said something negative about Miscavige might withhold it in her own confession, Scobee said, but someone else would invariably report it in theirs.

"So you don't want to go against him," she said. "It wasn't even an option, as amazing as it seems. Now, after being out, I would so do everything different."

For Sea Org members, there's a personal struggle as well. "You put your life into the church and you do think that is your route to freedom," Scobee said. "There are a lot of great things about it … and you don't want to throw that away. You don't want to risk it."

Why not just leave?

Easy to say, according to Rinder.

Scientology preaches self-reliance. You alone control your environment, your condition in life is no one else's doing but your own.

But just as strongly, Scientology holds that if you leave the church, something is wrong with you. Somewhere in your past is an "overt," a transgression.

"It becomes a big sort of dichotomy," Rinder said. Staying in an unhappy situation is no way to control your environment. "But if I leave, I'm doing something wrong, too. It's like a catch-22."

For Rinder, the Scientology experience he knew and loved had become something foreign, a work climate increasingly strange and abusive.

It also was at crosscurrents with the kinder, gentler public posture the church sought to build over the past 20 years, a message that Rinder, as chief spokesman, conveyed time and again: The church purged the lawbreakers and dirty tricksters of the 1970s and reinvented itself.

"We just stopped doing things that I and others considered to be foolish and harmful and off policy,'' Rinder said.

Except at home.

"Now, the irony is what's being done on the inside is foolish and harmful and abusive,'' he said.

Rathbun saw and delivered many beatings over the years. But he said Miscavige's attack on De Vocht the night after the musical chairs game clarified his thinking.

Four days earlier, when Miscavige put Rathbun in the Hole, he instructed everyone not to talk to him. But De Vocht quietly defied that order, asking Rathbun to help them figure out what to do to please Miscavige. Now De Vocht was being beaten.

"I'm watching this go down, and I just had this incredible connection … this humanity connection with Tom," Rathbun said. "I subscribe to the Popeye philosophy: 'I can take so much but I can't takes no more.'

"I still have a thread of dignity and I see it being crushed in people around me. What am I going to do? Am I going to become one of them, too?"

As the rest of the group herded back into the Hole, Rathbun broke off and ducked into some bushes. He went for his motorcycle, a Yamaha 650, wheeled it to the back gate of the compound and hid in the brush for about 20 minutes. When the gate opened for a car, he sped away.

Rathbun said he felt rage and loss, mixed with an odd excitement.

"I'm kind of exhilarated that I've made the step, and I'm hauling a-- because I'm thinking someone's following me."

ABOUT THE STORY

Mark C. "Marty" Rathbun left the Church of Scientology staff in late 2004, ending a 27-year career that saw him rise to be among the organization's top leaders. For the past four years, he has lived a low-profile life in Texas. Some speculated he had died.

In February, Rathbun posted an Internet message announcing he was available to counsel other disaffected Scientologists.

"Having dug myself out of the dark pit where many who leave the church land," he wrote, "I began lending a hand to others similarly situated."

Contacted by the St. Petersburg Times, Rathbun agreed to tell the story of his years in Scientology and what led to his leaving. The Times interviewed him at his home in Texas, and he came to Clearwater to revisit some of the scenes he described.

Seeking to corroborate Rathbun's story, the newspaper contacted others who were in Scientology during the same period and have left the church: Mike Rinder, one of Rathbun's closest associates for two decades; Tom De Vocht, whom Rathbun named as key to his decision to leave; and later, Amy Scobee.

Rathbun and Rinder were well known to the reporters, who had interviewed them dozens of times, sometimes combatively, through years of controversy in Clearwater. They also hosted the reporters in Los Angeles in 1998, when Miscavige granted the only print media interview he has given.

Two reporters met Rinder in Denver, where he now lives, but he declined to be interviewed. About a month later, two Washington-based lawyers who work for the church showed up unannounced in Denver, informed Rinder that they had heard about the newspaper's visit and asked what he had revealed.

They reminded him that as one of the church's top legal officers, attorney-client privilege did not end when he left the church. They told him he could hurt the church by going public.

Weeks later, after the church provided the newspaper with a 2007 video of Rinder heatedly denying that Miscavige hit him and others, Rinder decided to talk to the Times.

De Vocht was interviewed in Winter Haven. Scobee was interviewed in Pinellas County, when she and her husband came to visit relatives.

The reporters interviewed the four defectors multiple times, and met with church spokesmen and lawyers for 25 hours.

Joe Childs, Managing Editor/Tampa Bay, ran the Times Clearwater operation dating to 1993 and supervises the newspaper's Scientology coverage. He can be reached at childs@sptimes.com.

Thomas C. Tobin has covered the Church of Scientology off and on since 1996. He can be reached at tobin@sptimes.com.
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Re: Journalism: Scientology - L. Ron Hubbard's Brainchild

Postby admin » Mon Jul 22, 2019 11:56 pm

Scientology's Crushing Defeat: A Previously Unpublished Saga of an $8 Million Check
by Tony Ortega
The Village Voice
June 27, 2008

Image
Scientology leader David Miscavige, in full Sea Org regalia. Miscavige's status as "captain" of the Sea Org was central to a court case that resulted in the largest court penalty in Scientology history.

Six years ago, when I was a reporter at New Times LA, I’d written several stories about Scientology (Los Angeles is one of its headquarters), and I was about to uncork the longest one yet—a 7,000 word piece about an embarrassing, $8 million defeat Scientology had just suffered, when the weekly paper suddenly folded.

That unpublished story has been sitting in storage ever since. Fast forward to 2008, and the world of reporting on Scientology has changed radically, thanks in part to the lunacy of Tom Cruise, but also in part to a worldwide, leaderless movement that calls itself Anonymous. Ravenous for any information about L. Ron Hubbard’s strange organization, Anonymous scours the world for the least tidbit about Scientology.

Well, here was a pretty meaty morsel just sitting in my hard drive. It’s still a substantial bit of reporting, and it fills in some gaps in the historical record of one of the most humiliating court losses Scientology has ever suffered.

Originally scheduled to be printed in October 2002, the piece follows. (It’s unchanged except for updates in [brackets].) This material may come as a revelation to some readers, but even for the know-it-alls at Anonymous, there are juicy bites.—Tony Ortega

What Scientology Paid $8 Million To Hide: With an hour to spare, Hubbard’s minions settle a debt they vowed never to pay
by Tony Ortega
Prepared for publication in October, 2002

Even before it started, the 1986 trial of Lawrence Wollersheim v. the Church of Scientology of California caused a mob scene at L.A.’s downtown superior court.

When a judge decided during pretrial motions that documents describing confidential Scientology beliefs should be put in a file open to the public, 1,500 Scientologists swamped the court clerk’s office to keep anyone else from requesting them. The next day, the judge resealed those records. But an L.A. Times reporter managed to get past the crush of Scientologists and copy the file. Newspapers around the country had a field day with what the Times reported: the documents showed that high-level Scientologists are taught that each human contains the souls of alien creatures banished to Earth 75 million years ago by a galactic overlord named Xenu.

Scientology’s process of “dianetics,” developed by science fiction writer L. Ron Hubbard over a period beginning in the late 1940s, was supposed to rid the body of those alien creatures. But Lawrence Wollersheim, who had defected from Scientology after serving 11 years and making about $50,000 in payments, claimed that the organization’s pricey rituals instead had made him insane and drove him to the brink of suicide. He filed suit in 1980, and six years later his trial was a sensation. Still the most expensive civil trial in L.A. court history, [This was true even in 2002, post-Simpson—T.O.] it made headlines almost daily in the spring and summer of 1986 as Scientologists jammed the courtroom and protested outside of it, complaining that their religious freedoms were being trampled on. For many in the public, reports of the trial gave them their first detailed description of Scientology, which today counts such celebrities as John Travolta and Tom Cruise among its members. Travolta himself made a visit to the trial that May which was widely reported.

In the lawsuit, Wollersheim claimed that after he left Scientology in 1979 the organization retaliated by destroying his business and attempting to destroy him. In five months of testimony, Wollersheim, his psychologist, and former Scientologists described the coercion he was subjected to, sacrifices he was expected to make, and bizarre teachings he was fed, which made Hubbard’s outfit sound more like a mind control cabal out of The Manchurian Candidate than the mainstream faith it claimed to be. Scientology’s attorneys countered that Wollersheim had come to the organization with a preexisting mental condition and was a drug user. Wollersheim was seeking $25 million in damages.

The jury awarded him $30 million.

It was a stunning blow to Scientology, but probably the most lasting impression that many took from the trial was the reaction of Scientologists themselves, who continued to protest at the courthouse day after day for more than a month after the verdict. Staging their demonstrations from a tent city set up across the street, the members wore pins made from ten cent coins and chanted over and over: “Not one thin dime for Wollersheim!”

It was a vow that Scientology kept for 16 years.

In 1989, an appellate court upheld the verdict but reduced Wollersheim’s award to $2.5 million. But even before the original trial started, and for years afterward, various Scientology entities hit Wollersheim with other lawsuits, exhausted every possible appeal, filed mountainous legal briefs, claimed that the particular entity he had sued was broke and could never pay him, and found other ways to put off paying the money.

Even after the case had twice been to the U.S. Supreme Court and the last possible appeal had been denied, Scientology seemed determined that it would never go back on its promise to deny Wollersheim even one thin dime.

And then, suddenly, Scientology threw in the towel.

On May 9 [2002], the Church of Scientology of California, an entity which had once been considered the “mother church” but for a decade was supposed to have been dormant and broke, submitted a check to the superior court for $8,674,843 to cover the $2.5 million judgment and the interest it had accrued.

A Scientology spokeswoman says that the organization was simply tired of the case.

But the timing of the payment suggested another reason.

The very morning that Scientology paid to end the case, superior court judge Robert L. Hess was scheduled to begin a new hearing in the 22-year-old case—a hearing Wollersheim’s attorneys had been preparing for, and demanding, for years.

Wollersheim’s attorneys were about to present evidence that they believed would not only show how Scientology had juggled assets to avoid paying Wollersheim in the past, but would also convince Hess that Scientology’s complex corporate structure itself was an elaborate sham. Contrary to what it had assured the IRS when it regained its tax exempt status in 1993, the “church” and its affiliated organizations, Wollersheim’s attorneys assert, was really a dictatorship with power centered in one man, Hubbard’s successor David Miscavige, who had directed all of the litigation against Wollersheim and had ordered documents key to the case altered or destroyed.

Scientology’s attorneys had managed to keep Miscavige out of the proceedings, but the organization’s nominal president, Heber Jentzsch, was facing cross examination by Wollersheim’s attorneys if the hearing came off as planned.

In the final days before the scheduled event, Scientology attorneys continued to argue for delays and outright dismissals, but Hess denied them and would not budge on the May 9 date. After inheriting the case three years earlier, Hess, in transcripts, appeared determined to turn over his courtroom to a live hearing.

Scientology’s $8.7 million check arrived just an hour before the proceeding was scheduled to begin.

In the months since, the court has gradually released the money to Wollersheim for him to dole out to numerous attorneys to pay for years of service. Those fees will eat up much of the money, but Wollersheim expects to end up with between $1 to $2 million of it. [That hasn’t turned out to be the case—see the update at the end of the piece.]

He is fond of noting that that’s a lot of dimes.

His attorneys are relieved that their client has finally received the money he had won 16 years earlier, but they admit to disappointment that the evidence they collected for so many years was never presented to the public in a live court drama.

They were happy, however, to share it with New Times. [And now, the Voice.]

A central contention in Wollersheim’s case was that even sixteen years after Hubbard’s death, his writings provided an unalterable blueprint to how the organization of Scientology really operated.

And to understand what happened to Wollersheim and others who have defected and now regret the time and large sums they spent learning about Xenu and other dubious concepts, they say, you have to have a working knowledge of Hubbard’s jargon and policies.

Wollersheim got his first taste of it while walking on a street in San Francisco in 1969. He had grown up in Milwaukee and was attending the University of Wisconsin at Madison when he took a summer trip to California. A young woman approached him and made him a pitch, telling him that she had something he’d like to see.

“You’re 18. You think you’re going to get lucky,” Wollersheim says in a telephone interview from an undisclosed location.

Today he’s 51, and he spends much of his time in Nevada and Utah. But the telephone number he provided New Times suggested that he was in Colorado this day. He claims that even after collecting his award, and more than 23 years after leaving the Church of Scientology, he still must be careful about his personal security by staying on the move. [Six years later, he’s still cagey. I spoke to him on the phone the other day—he was in Nevada.]

That day in 1969, Wollersheim followed the young woman to an office and she handed him over to other Scientologists, who asked him to take a “personality test.” It seemed innocent enough, but later he ended up convincing many others to do the same thing. “No matter how you answer the test,” he says, “they tell you you’re screwed up and that they can fix you.”

He was soon hooked. “I decided to quit school, make a bunch of money, and pay them to get all these secret levels of ability.” New recruits are told that advancement in the religion can bring them all sorts of benefits—high level members are said to experience raised IQs, clairvoyance, an immunity to disease, and are able to leave their bodies.

Scientologists believe they can attain these abilities through a process called “auditing,” which enables them to remove “engrams” from their “reactive mind,” something akin to talking away the scars left over from life’s traumas. When all of those scars are removed, a Scientologist is said to be a “clear,” and can attain amazing powers. Like other low-level Scientologists, Wollersheim was kept in the dark about much of Scientology’s true core beliefs. Only through attaining far more experience and going through increasingly expensive auditing could he hope to “go clear.”

He found himself making good money, however, and he gave nearly all of it to Scientology, which attracted the attention of a recruiter for the Sea Organization, an elite order of followers that originated on a ship with Hubbard in the 1960s. Wollersheim was convinced to join the Sea Org, and he signed its standard billion-year contract, agreeing to come back, lifetime after lifetime, to serve Hubbard and Scientology. He was told to sell his candle business and come to Los Angeles where he would be more useful.

Wollersheim continued to excel, and was eventually made a supervisor at the “Celebrity Centre” on 6th Street. (Today the Centre inhabits a historic building on Franklin Street.) Put in charge of 15 employees, Wollersheim found himself responsible for attracting new celebrities to the religion.

“They have a belief that if they control Hollywood, they will be able to create a mass recruiting phenomena,” he says. Finding new celebrity recruits was a serious endeavor, and required lots of planning and research, sometimes with the use of private investigators. “We’d develop a battle plan and rehearse drills of how we were going to surprise the celebrity,” he says, often making use of actors they had already attracted to the religion.

“If we needed them for bait for another celebrity, we’d go with them to an event. Karen Black, for example, would bring over someone to us, and we’d already have rehearsed a pitch for that person.” Actors on the declining side of their careers made easier targets, Wollersheim says. “We’d invite them to a very controlled event without the public present. Movie premieres were our best bets.”

Still, with all of their preparations, they failed nearly all of the time. “Even at that time, the mid 1970s, the word was out that Scientology was weird.”

Wollersheim remembers his staff targeting Richard Kiel, the tall actor who played “Jaws” in the James Bond movies. “They worked on that guy 50 different ways. I worked on him myself, trying to get him in. Kiel suffered chronic pain, and he was promised that Scientology could make it go away. We worked on him and worked on him, but he gave it up. We had him in the communication course...but we never got the big win.”

As a Sea Org member working at the Celebrity Center, Wollersheim was paid $18 for a six day work week, and was supplied food and meager lodgings, and all the while paid for his own auditing, which was becoming more and more expensive. But if the organization’s “stats” were down—if the numbers of new recruits or money taken in for auditing or other criteria that were measured weekly had dipped—then a Sea Org member’s food and pay was cut, Wollersheim says. “You found a way to get them their cash. You didn’t give a damn, after a while, what you told other people—or the bank—to get your money to the org. It was a continual crisis. And it was a calculated thing. It was Orwellian. You had to have a constant crisis to keep people in fear. If it wasn’t that the money was down, then it was that the inspectors were coming. It was like living in a gulag in a free country, and the bars existed in your own head.”

Wollersheim says the threat of retaliation kept him from bailing out. It was known among Scientologists that defectors were hit with large bills for services they had received at discounted prices—called “freeloader debt”—and could also find themselves the target of aggressive private investigations and legal action, a policy Hubbard had called “fair game.”

Wollersheim feared leaving the religion more than he did staying in.

“As you’re going through it, you’re told this is the secret of the universe. You hear legends about results that other people are getting. Many people are telling you about their euphorias. After hundreds and hundreds of hours of training, you have no questioning, critical mind left at that point. There’s no concept in your mind that it couldn’t be true. You are so far gone by that point.”

And that’s when Wollersheim learned the secrets of OT III.

Hubbard claimed that he had nearly paid with his life learning the revelations of OT III, the third level of materials that Scientologists must master after going clear and becoming an “operating thetan,” or OT. The information in OT III was so explosive, Hubbard said, he believed its secrets must have been designed to kill anyone who discovered it. The danger those secrets posed to the uninitiated was one of the ways Scientologists justified not telling newer members about them. (Today they are available on the Internet for perusal, if you know where to look. This reporter suffered no ill effects from reading them.) Former members say that today the typical Scientologist must spend several years and about $100,000 in auditing before they find out on OT III that they are filled with alien souls that must be removed by further, even more expensive auditing.

“OT III totally shatters the core sense of identity. The central concept of mind control is attacking the core personality, the threat that you are not who you think you are. At OT III, you find out that you’re really thousands of individual beings struggling for control of your body. Aliens left over from space wars that are giving you cancer or making you crazy or making you impotent. The reason for every bad thing in your life is these alien beings,” Wollersheim says. “I went psychotic on OT III. I lost a sense of who I was.”

Years can be spent removing these aliens—called “body thetans” or “BT’s”—by talking to and about these supposed hitchhiking entities while holding onto a device called an “e-meter.” “You’re talking to thousands of beings. They have histories. And anger. They’re complex personalities. I started drinking heavily to drown out the voices. I was non-functional, irrational, filthy. I wandered the streets of L.A. for three days. Finally I came enough to my senses to get in touch with Scientologists I knew.” He was cleaned up and calmed down, but Wollersheim was told that the solution to his troubles was just more auditing.

He now sold art to businesses, and employed 132 people in seven different cities. Nearly all of his employees were Scientologists, and so were nearly all of his clients.

Wollersheim says he paid $28,000 for classes in Clearwater, Florida that were supposed to help him locate alien beings that had been a part of him during past lives. “It induced another psychotic episode. I went so raving nuts, I tore down a fence at the center. I thought I was an alien warlord who couldn’t be stopped. After about a day and a half, they came and got me.”

Eventually, however, Wollersheim graduated to a level where he believed he had finally eradicated all of the thetans from his body. “You think you’ve made it. You’re free of all these beings. But then Hubbard releases the second big secret [on a level called “New Era Dianetics for Operation Thetans,” also called “NED for OTs” or “NOTs.”] He tells you there are far more of these beings than anyone ever dreamed of. Inside those original thetans are clusters of other beings. Beings that are eight feet from you, floating near you all the time. Beings miles away from you that are still connected with you. Beings in the television, and you’re told that watching television will wake them up, so you’re told not to watch TV. If OT III made some people nuts, NOTs really drove them over the edge,” he says.

While auditing NOTs, Wollersheim had his third psychotic break. Back in Los Angeles, he remembers lying in a dark room with a .45 revolver, thinking about killing himself. A friend discovered him and took him to a Scientology center for more auditing. Once again, he went back to Clearwater. But when his friend saw that it wasn’t helping him, she told him to get away.

“Those were the magic words,” he says. He decided to leave. Word traveled quickly, however, that Wollersheim was going to leave Scientology after 11 years.

At a restaurant in Clearwater, he says, he was approached by a member of the Guardian’s Office, Scientology’s intelligence bureau. “He looked at me and said, ‘Don’t you ever tell a doctor, lawyer or priest anything that ever happened to you in Scientology.’”

The organization then declared Wollersheim a “suppressive person” (or “SP”)—in other words, an enemy of Scientology—and commanded other Scientologists to “disconnect” from him, he says. His customers stopped paying bills, and 80 percent of his employees quit their jobs within three days. Weeks later, his business had collapsed, leaving him with hundreds of thousands of dollars in debts and no way to pay them.

For several months, Wollersheim went into hiding, worried that harm would come to him. “You’re told in Scientology that if you reveal their secrets, bad things will happen to you,” he says. His parents, however, were thrilled that he was out, and they gave him some money to live on.

“At some point in that six months I realized that something bad had happened to me, and I needed someone else’s perspective.” He returned to Los Angeles, looking for others who had left Scientology. On a hunch, he went to the downtown superior court and asked to see the names of people who were suing Scientology. “I was shocked to find a whole list of people,” he says. Some he recognized. He decided to call the attorney handling their cases.

“The church’s conduct was manifestly outrageous,” the California court of appeals wrote a decade later, in 1989, after Wollersheim’s trial had resulted in a $30 million award. (Despite its affirmation of the lower court’s ruling, however, the appeals court lowered the award to $2.5 million, citing Scientology’s supposed meager financial state.)

Scientology claimed that its practices were protected by freedoms guaranteed in the First Amendment, but the court rejected that argument by pointing out that Wollersheim had been coerced to remain a Scientologist through the threat of freeloader debt, the use of “fair game,” and the use of confidential information in his files.

The opinion by the appellate court remains one of the most damning in a long history of court denouncements of Scientology which have occurred worldwide.

“The Wollersheim case is among the most important decisions against Scientology in its history because it showed that the organization’s standard practices used against a member were harmful,” says Stephen Kent, a sociologist of religion at the University of Alberta who is one of the few academics who studies Scientology in depth.

Frank Oliver, a former Scientologist who once gathered information on perceived enemies as part of Scientology’s current intelligence wing, the Office of Special Affairs, explains why the decision was so repugnant to the organization, and why paying even a cent of it would be considered by Scientologists a horrendous defeat: “Scientology’s entire premise is that the Hubbard technology is infallible,” he says. “The underlying concept of the Wollersheim judgment is that the Hubbard tech is harmful. If they pay, they validate the argument that the tech is toxic.”

And for that reason, Oliver and other former Scientologists say, Scientology was willing to spend vast amounts of money in legal costs to avoid paying Wollersheim.

Even before the trial had started, Scientology had begun a long campaign of separate lawsuits, court motions and other tactics meant to derail the case.

In 1985, Scientologists filed a separate lawsuit based on federal anti-racketeering laws (a RICO action) in U.S. district court against Wollersheim, his attorneys, and his expert witnesses. The suit claimed that, in essence, Wollersheim’s attempts to wrestle documents out of Scientology for his trial was akin to a criminal enterprise.

The federal court threw out the lawsuit (dubbed Wollersheim 2), calling it frivolous and “bordering on malicious.”

While that suit was pending, Scientology filed another RICO action, claiming that the entire L.A. superior court was prejudiced against it. In an unprecedented move, the U.S. Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals not only denied the appeal when this lawsuit, Wollersheim 3, was rejected, but even had it stricken from the court’s record.

Meanwhile, the particular entity Wollersheim had sued, the Church of Scientology of California (CSC), was mysteriously shrinking.

In 1985, the year before Wollersheim’s trial, in a suit brought by another disgruntled former member in Oregon, an official for CSC claimed that it had assets of more than $350 million. But during Wollersheim’s proceedings just twelve months later, CSC officials testified that it was worth only $13 million. (And one of Wollersheim’s attorney’s, Dan Stein, used CSC’s own documents to show that even this amount was ephemeral. By the time Wollersheim won his verdict, CSC was essentially broke.)

Wollersheim and his attorneys suspected where the money had gone.

In 1981, a year after Wollersheim had originally filed his lawsuit, Scientology had gone through a major, and very complex, reorganization. CSC had been splintered into many separate entities, including a new “mother church,” the Church of Scientology International (CSI), and something called the Religious Technology Center (RTC), a sort of ecclesiastical clearinghouse which held all of the copyrights and trademarks of Hubbard’s religious writings and was charged with making sure other Scientology entities kept Hubbard’s “tech” pure.

It was RTC and CSI that had brought the Wollersheim 2 and Wollersheim 3 actions, the frivolous lawsuits that had been aimed at derailing Wollersheim’s original suit against CSC.

Wollersheim has long argued that to avoid paying him, Scientology effected its highly complex reorganization, gutted CSC, and moved its assets to other entities such as RTC and CSI, which in turn used their financial muscle to go after Wollersheim in other actions.

And in 1997, he got proof that his theory was correct. The supposedly dormant CSC had filed yet another lawsuit against Wollersheim (eventually dubbed Wollersheim 4), but after Wollersheim successfully defeated it with a “SLAPP” motion—a California legal strategy that defendants can use to have frivolous lawsuits thrown out of court and be awarded attorney’s fees—CSI admitted that it, not CSC, was really behind the action and paid Wollersheim’s lawyers nearly $500,000.

“My client believes that it doesn’t have a leg to stand on in terms of we are responsible for this amount of money owed and we are going to pay it,” CSI’s attorney Samuel Abelson said in court, an admission that the new organization, CSI, was really behind a lawsuit filed by the old one, CSC.

Wollersheim’s attorneys explain that it was nice to get the attorney’s fees they had coming in the SLAPP action. But more importantly, they say, the victory provided a blueprint for how Wollersheim should seek his original court judgment.

They spent the next five years—until this past May [2002]—trying to prove that the alphabet soup of CSI, RTC, and CSC was a sham, and that Scientology, under whatever name, should have to pay the $2.5 million plus interest that Wollersheim had won in his 1986 trial with CSC.

They gathered evidence to show that despite the confusing profusion of names and acronyms, Scientology was really a single enterprise, and its actions and litigation were directed by one man, Hubbard’s successor David Miscavige. Former high-ranking officials declared that they had witnessed Miscavige—who supposedly had no position or standing at the time with CSC, the corporation being sued—directing the litigation against Wollersheim and ordering the destruction of key evidence in the case. Special intelligence operations, they declared, were formed to target not only Wollersheim and his attorneys but even the judge, witnesses, and their family and friends. When the jury awarded Wollersheim $30 million, one former official testified, Miscavige vowed that it would never be paid, even if it cost more than $30 million to avoid it. CSC, meanwhile, was purposely ransacked of all assets to make sure that Wollersheim couldn’t reach it, two former officers declared.

One of the most damning accounts came from one of Scientology’s own attorneys, a man named Joseph Yanny, who was hired in 1984 and left in disgust three years later. In his court declaration, Yanny testified that the lead Scientology attorney in the Wollersheim case, Earle Cooley, had “personally ordered the destruction of evidence relating to Cult litigation in my presence.” Yanny also witnessed the gathering of information from parishioners’ confidential files for use by the legal team. He was told that using such confidential files to prepare for court was standard practice. And Yanny also was present when a blackmail campaign was planned against Wollersheim’s original attorney, Charles O’Reilly. “The medical records of O’Reilly were to be stolen from the ‘Betty Ford Center’ and another location in Santa Barbara, to show that he was using cocaine, discredit him, and possibly blackmail him into easing off on his 30 million dollar verdict now on appeal. I objected to this as illegal and an alternative plan was quickly arrived at to ‘settle my nerves.’”

These declarations and other documents, Wollersheim’s attorney say, painted a clear picture: the jumble of organizations—CSC, RTC, CSI and many, many others—meant little when it came to defending Scientology against claims that its technology was harmful. Miscavige, they claimed, was in firm control, which ignored corporate and legal niceties.

“If it had been shown in court that the 350 organizations of the church of Scientology were all controlled by David Miscavige, it doesn’t look like a legitimate religion but the authoritative cult that it is. It would have been terrible public relations, and they still would have had to pay the money. And that’s why they paid the money when they did, to avoid the bad PR,” says longtime Wollersheim attorney Ford Greene.

But Dan Leipold, another Wollersheim lawyer, says that Scientology had even more to worry about than bad PR from the documents and testimony they had gathered.

“I think all of the evidence could have threatened the church of scientology’s tax exempt status,” he says.

Hubbard organized Scientology as a religion in 1954. But in 1967, it was stripped of its tax exempt status by the IRS. For the next 25 years, the U.S. government repeatedly turned down Scientology’s appeals to regain its exemption on the grounds that Scientology was not so much a religion as a money-making venture benefiting one man, Hubbard.

Scientology retaliated in an extraordinary way. With Hubbard’s knowledge and direction, agents of his intelligence unit, the Guardian’s Office, began infiltrating IRS and other government offices in the mid 1970s. Dubbed Operation Snow White by Hubbard, the illegal operation netted stolen government documents by the yard, and went undiscovered until a 1977 raid of Scientology offices by the FBI. Eleven Scientologists, including Hubbard’s wife Mary Sue, were sentenced to prison. Hubbard himself was named an unindicted co-conspirator.

Scientology subsequently disbanded the Guardian’s Office, claiming that it was a rogue outfit. But its war with the IRS did not stop.

Even after Hubbard’s death in 1986, the IRS continued to deny the organization tax-exempt status, and Scientology fought back by siccing personal investigators on individual IRS employees and filing more than 2,000 separate lawsuits against the agency.

Despite the harassment, however, the IRS continued to win victories against Scientology in court. In 1992, A United States Claims Court upheld the IRS denial, citing “the commercial character of much of Scientology” and its “scripturally based hostility to taxation.” Tax exempt organizations, the claims court wrote, “simply do not exhibit the financial complexity or the phenomenal preoccupation with money displayed by Scientology’s management churches and organizers.”

By then, however, the IRS had already, secretly, caved. In 1991, under the first George Bush presidency, the IRS had reversed itself and began a process that wasn’t made public until 1993, under the Clinton administration, when the IRS revealed that it was giving nearly every Scientology entity the tax exempt status it coveted.

It was a stunning turnaround and one that, [more than] a decade later, still has tax experts shaking their heads.

Former IRS exempt organizations specialist and tax journalist Paul Streckfus says that the IRS simply cracked from the pressure Scientology had been applying for so many years.

“The IRS found that Scientology was more than they could handle,” Streckfus says. “We think of the IRS as so powerful, but by 1991, the commissioner of the time, Fred Goldberg, decided that the case was tying up the IRS. Scientology seemed to have limitless money, so I think Goldberg decided he wanted to get rid of the case and to hell with it. He directed his people to get the best deal that they could.”

Miscavige, announcing the victory to his flock at a gathering in Los Angeles, bragged that in 1991 he had simply dropped by the IRS headquarters and, without an appointment, asked to speak to Goldberg. (After this was first reported, Scientology took out a full-page ad in the New York Times denying that Miscavige had said it.) Soon after the impromptu meeting, Goldberg established a special committee to examine the Scientology cases—a move that tax experts say all but assured that the exemptions would eventually be awarded. In court testimony, IRS officials have admitted that during the process of granting the exemptions, they were instructed not to look into Scientology’s business-like ventures. The final agreement called for Scientology to pay $12.5 million.

“To them, it was a pittance,” Streckfus says.

Goldberg has refused to discuss the matter since he left the IRS. A New York Times analysis of the affair estimated that Scientology saved tens of millions of dollars in taxes.

“The war is OVER!” Miscavige said in his Los Angeles speech, and at one point referred to a “billion dollar tax bill” that Scientology would not have to pay.

“It’s a sad commentary,” says Streckfus about the IRS cave-in. “You or I would have been sent up the river. But if you have enough resources, you can beat off the IRS.”

The IRS no longer describes Scientology as a money-making dictatorship headed by one man, but a religion which contains many separate, legally distinct entities, each with its own board of directors and corporate officers.

For tax reasons, in other words, it is important for Scientology that David Miscavige, Hubbard’s successor, describe himself merely as the chairman of the board of one particular entity, RTC, and not, as Wollersheim labels him, the iron-fisted ruler of a vast empire mixing tax and non-tax exempt purposes.

“They caved because we had the goods on these guys in direct contravention to their tax exempt status. Miscavige has been running the church since 1986,” says Wollersheim attorney Dan Leipold. And it was one declaration in particular, penned by a dying man, that Leipold believes scared Scientology the most.

Today, Vaughn Young lives in Ohio, and is dying of cancer. But for 20 years, he was a Scientologist, worked directly with Miscavige, and at one time was Scientology’s most senior public relations officer. He was an insider who understood both how Scientology worked behind the scenes, and how it presented itself to the public. He left in 1989 and has been a key figure in numerous court battles since then. [Young passed away in June, 2003.]

“Vaughn gave a declaration that was unimpeachable,” says Leipold. “He took 80 different internal documents, and various publications from L. Ron Hubbard and official Scientology texts. He laid them out and showed how the entire organization operates outside the corporate lines of authority.”

Using Scientology’s own internal documents—many of which, penned by Hubbard and considered sacred, cannot be altered and must be followed to the letter—Young shows that Scientology has a rigid, paramilitary chain of command. Even non-religious entities that market themselves to the public as having no obvious tie to Scientology fall under the strict rubric. The Way to Happiness Foundation and Applied Scholastics, for example, are two organizations that market non-religious Hubbard writings to school districts and avoid mentioning a tie to Scientology. Narconon and Criminon, meanwhile, try to convince prison officials that they are effective methods for turning inmates from drugs and crime. “To the non-Scientology world,” Young writes, “they will say they are not Scientology and try to appear secular.” But internal documents, he shows, are explicit that these organizations fall under the command of the Scientology’s hierarchy.

Unique among all of Scientology’s entities, however, is the Sea Organization, the naval-uniform wearing men and women who have all signed billion-year employment contracts.

“Scientology’s own documents show that the Sea Org is a tough, elite, tight-knit organization that has the authority to move into and take over any organization...regardless of corporate lines,” Young writes. According to its own publications, the highest ranking positions in Scientology entities can only be held by Sea Org members.

Numerous documents describe Hubbard’s wish that his elite Sea Org members could be sent to any Scientology organization, secular or religious, and take over on the spot. “Sea Org Missions are used to cross corporate lines and to control all Scientology organizations and corporations, even into the private business sector,” Young writes. Numerous documents describe Sea Org members showing up at far-flung Scientology enterprises to take control, fire executives, and obtain payment for their work.

In 1987, Miscavige signed a directive which reiterated the Sea Org’s power to take control of any other Scientology entity.

But when he has been asked about the Sea Org’s power, and about his rank today as the captain of the Sea Org, Miscavige plays down his role.

Miscavige has said that the Sea Org is just a fraternal religious order—something akin to the Jesuits in the Catholic religion—and that he is only one of several Sea Org “captains.” The Sea Org has no legal or corporate status.

But Young argues that Scientology’s own documents show that Miscavige, as captain of the Sea Org, wields ultimate power over every single Scientology entity. In a sworn document submitted to the IRS in 1991, Scientology provided a telling description of how rank works in the Sea Org, admitting that “captain” in the Sea Org is, for all but one person, an honorary rank. Only David Miscavige himself, the document shows, holds the true earned rank of captain, and sits alone at the top of the Sea Org’s pyramid of power.

“David Miscavige is, by their own sworn document, at the top of the rankings and the only person holding a [non-honorary] rank of Captain. And this list is, according to them, the highest ranking officers in the Sea Organization,” Young writes.

Miscavige is wearing his naval Sea Org uniform in several photographs gracing the latest copy of International Scientology News, a publication mailed to advanced members. Taken aboard the Freewinds, a cruise ship that houses Scientologists while they audit the highest levels of OT materials, Miscavige is seen handing out awards, plaques, and giving a speech “of the past year’s stellar accomplishments and breakthroughs.” [The Freewinds is now sailing nowhere, after Caribbean officials discovered earlier this year that it was contaminated with asbestos and ordered it docked until it can be rehabilitated.]

There’s no mention in the magazine of the Wollersheim payment among the year’s accomplishments or breakthroughs. Despite Scientology’s $8.7 million cave, however, Miscavige may still have plenty to beam about.

Wollersheim, Leipold and others may believe that Scientology paid the $8 million to prevent a court hearing that could jeopardize its standing with the IRS, but tax experts say that it’s hard to believe that even the most damning evidence, as well as a definitive judge’s ruling, would sway the IRS to reopen an investigation of an enemy it battled for so long.

“The IRS wrongly, as I believe, entered into a closing agreement with this cult,” says Donald C. Alexander, a former IRS commissioner. “I don’t think the IRS is going to go back and unravel that closing agreement as much as it might be in the public’s interest to do so.”

Alexander was commissioner in the 1970s, when Hubbard’s agents were breaking in and stealing from government offices. His conference room was bugged and he was unnerved by 2 am phone calls on his unlisted home number. But while he was commissioner, he says, he vowed never to give in to Scientology’s harassing tactics. “One of my successors didn’t feel that way,” he says. “Maybe [Fred Goldberg] actually believed this thing was a church. Stranger things have happened, but I can’t think of any.

“I’m glad Scientology had to come up with almost $9 million. I wish it had been $90 million,” he says.

New Times made repeated requests to speak with Miscavige and other high-ranking members of Scientology to ask about the $8.7 million payment and why it was made. All calls were returned by a local spokesperson, Linda Hight.

“The Church of Scientology of California has been trying to end this for a very long time,” Hight says. “They just raised the money somewhere and paid to be done with it.” Asked where the money came from, Hight says she doesn’t know. “I don’t know who put up the money. But there are millions of Scientologists in the world, and I’m sure some of them would have been happy to end the whole thing.” (Scientology often claims to have six million members worldwide, a number derided by critics, who put the membership much lower, usually less than 100,000. In a videotaped deposition, Scientology president Heber Jentszch admitted several years ago that the six million number does not represent current membership but the total amount of people who have ever, since the founding in 1954, taken even a single Scientology course.)

David Chodos, attorney for the Church of Scientology International, says that the $8 million check didn’t come from either CSI, RTC or the old, dormant CSC. “I just handled the transaction. I didn’t arrange for the funding. Funding had been made available. I don’t know where it came from, really...I wasn’t concerned where the money came from.”

When Hight was asked about Young’s analysis of Scientology structure, Miscavige’s position, and honorary versus earned rank in the Sea Organization, she replied, “I can’t fathom what the significance of what that would be.”

Tory Christman, a former Scientologist who helped handle Scientology’s PR, says that most parishioners, who avoid reading or watching the news, are probably unaware that the payment to Wollersheim has even been made.

The defeat has certainly not seemed to affect business.

In the most recent issue of Advance!, the magazine of the Los Angeles headquarters, Scientologists are encouraged to begin their advanced training on the OT levels after “going clear.” To entice them, the magazine contains stories by other Scientologists, identified only by initials, who have already attained advanced OT levels and have used their new abilities in what they call “OT phenomena.” One man writes of two gravel trucks bearing down on his automobile in what would have been a sure collision and his possible death—until, using his OT abilities, he slowed down time and made beams come out of him to hold back the screeching trucks. Another Scientologist took over the body of a man who was losing control of his car on the freeway, righted the car, and calmed the driver down. Another man pacified a ghost that, unseen to others, was bothering workers in his office building.

Also in the magazine is a price list for Scientologists anxious to attain their own extraordinary OT powers. A compact disc with some of L. Ron Hubbard’s lectures lists for $1,623.75. The Super Mark VII Quantum E-meter retails for $5,280.00. The OT III materials, which tell the Xenu story and reveal the alien nature of the soul, is discounted at $7,040. And packages needed for high-level solo auditing (done by oneself at home), vary from $24,222 to $63,888. [More recently, Jason Beghe, an actor who announced in April that he had left Scientology after twelve years, revealed that he’d paid about $160,000 for a single set of procedures called “L Rundowns,” and over his entire career gave Scientology about a million dollars.]

Such lavish amounts for religious instruction, Scientology’s critics say, is what allows it to spend so much fighting its foes. Or offering to buy them.

Years ago, Wollersheim was offered $8 million to walk away from his judgment. “They hinted they would go as high as $12 million,” he says. But he refused the money. He says he had seen too many other former members accept settlements and the confidentiality agreements that came with them.

Wollersheim is glad that he turned down those offers. His judgment is the first Scientology has ever paid outright, attorneys familiar with Scientology litigation say. And now, Wollersheim hopes, his victory will encourage others to leave Miscavige’s fold and expose it for what it is.

“I blazed the trail,” he says. “Now others are going to come and turn it into a four-lane highway.”

[Six years later, Wollersheim is still fighting over the money Scientology finally paid. A woman who worked as a paralegal on his case, Leta Schlosser, sued Wollersheim (in a lawsuit named Wollersheim 6) for $5.3 million of the Scientology cash. In a trial presided over by Judge Hess, a jury awarded her $313,000, which Wollersheim says he immediately paid. But Schlosser appealed, saying she was owed more, and is asking for yet another trial. Exhausted, Wollersheim has retired from the day-to-day operation of factnet.org, an Internet clearinghouse for information about Scientology.

“I have a good life in the sense that I’m a minister. I have satisfying work. And I know that the work I’ve done [fighting Scientology] will help others,” he says.

As for getting his ‘one thin dime,’ he says: “A lot of it has gone to lawyers, it’s going to litigation, it’s going to taxes. I’m working a 40-hour job. It was never about the money.

“I never thought I’d get paid. It took 30 years,” he adds. But despite his own experience, Wollersheim encourages others who feel they’ve been harmed by Scientology to pursue litigation: in almost all other cases, he says, Scientology settles. “Victims of Scientology should take advantage of it and get their lives back,” he says.

Scientology, meanwhile, has much bigger headaches than Larry Wollersheim these days, now that Cruise’s antics have helped bring a new level of media and Internet scrutiny. Scientology continues, however, to maintain its tax-exempt status.]
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Re: Journalism: Scientology - L. Ron Hubbard's Brainchild

Postby admin » Tue Jul 23, 2019 12:11 am

Scientology's War Against Judge
by James B. Stewart, Jr.
The American Lawyer
December 1980

On September 5, 1980, as U.S. District Court Judge Charles Richey was recuperating from two pulmonary embolisms and exhaustion, lawyers for the Church of Scientology and the Justice Department gathered before Judge Aubrey Robinson, Richey's successor in the two-year-old conspiracy case against 11 members of the Church of Scientology. Judge Richey had already convicted and sentenced nine of the original 11 defendants, but the remaining two, recently extradited from England, were about to go on trial. "Particularly from the standpoint of your Honor's feelings about these defendants who are members of the Church of Scientology..." began John Shorter, Jr., a lawyer for one of the defendants. He was interrupted by Judge Robinson. "You want to raise a motion to recuse?" the judge asked. He knew what Shorter's remark foreshadowed, having witnessed the Scientologists campaign to drive Judge Richey off the case. "Is this a fishing expedition?"

Robinson is the fourth D.C. district court judge to preside over the Scientology case and the latest target of the Scientologists' self-proclaimed "attack" litigation strategy. Their strategy amounts to an all-out war against the D.C. district court judges, a war much more sophisticated, better financed and more successful than the bizarre tactics used by some other groups against their courtroom adversaries, such as Synanon's attempt to murder an opposing counsel by putting a rattlesnake in his mailbox.

Unlike Synanon, the Church of Scientology has long sought to distinguish itself as a legitimate religion. Founded in 1954 by L. Ron Hubbard, a Science fiction writer, philosopher and author of the bestselling book Dianetics: The Modern Science of Mental Health, the church claims five million adherents to its self-help philosophy. The Church of Scientology has called itself the spiritual heir of Buddhism in the western world, and focuses on what it calls "pastoral counseling" to increase its members abilities and awareness. But in the past few years, the church has been accused of brainwashing and harassing its members, and it has become embroiled in dozens of lawsuits (see sidebar, page 32), including the 1978 criminal conspiracy charges against 11 of its members. Such setbacks have triggered increasingly militant responses, which focused, in the conspiracy case, on the federal judiciary. The Scientologists legal strategy has been to force the recusal of Judges lie at the root of the pending criminal charges against the Scientologists. In 1976. D.C. District Court Justice George Hart, Jr., casually proposed a deposition of Hubbard in conjunction with one of many Freedom Of Information Act suits filed by the church. Hart's remark (no deposition ever proved necessary) caused Scientology officials to believe that the government knew something incriminating about Hubbard. As a result the church intensified its efforts to learn what information the government might possess.

At the same time the church was issuing "Guardian Programme Orders" (directives to church members telling them to use "standard overt sources" and "any suitable guise interviews" to monitor the activities of all district court judges presiding in the FOIA suits. In 1977 that directive was extended to all 15 active judges in the D.C. federal district court.

Posing in some instances as students and journalists, Scientologists interviewed the judges, researched their careers and backgrounds, followed them and prepared dossiers. According to Scientology documents, their goal was to determine "tone level" and "buttons on" -- indicia of personal vulnerability. in the parlance of Scientology. But the church's operation went far beyond legal surveillance. Members of the church were caught breaking into the offices of the IRS and the Justice Department, stealing and copying documents and eavesdropping. On August 15. 1978. l1 Scientologists were indicted on charges of electronically intercepting oral IRS communications, forging government passes, illegally entering government buildings, recruiting Scientologists to infiltrate the government, stealing records belonging to the IRS, Justice Department and the U.S. Attorney and conspiring to illegally obtain documents in the possession of the United States and to obstruct justice.

The Scientologist defendants hired some well-known defense counsel. Mary Sue Hubbard, the wife of church leader L. Ron Hubbard and the highest ranking defendant on trial, retained Leonard Boudin of Rabinowitz, Boudin & Standard and Michael Hertzberg, a solo practitioner, both activist lawyers now practicing law in New York City. Two other defendants, Henning Heldt and Duke Snider, retained Alexandria, Virginia, lawyer Philip Hirschkop, who had been counsel for the "DC. Nine." antiwar protesters arrested in 1970. In all, 12 lawyers were hired to defend nine defendants (two others had fled to England where they faced extradition proceedings). Boudin and Hirschkop soon assumed the leading roles in the defense.

Boudin and Hirschkop won't discuss why they were selected, but their public identification with radical and unpopular causes was undoubtedly attractive to church members, This was Boudin's first association with the church, but Hirschkop had handled a search and seizure matter for the church in 1977.

One lawyer who represents Scientologists and has worked with Boudin and Hirschkop offers this ideological defense for their taking the case: "It is a simple case of government overreaching." he says. "The government just can't tolerate an organization with nonconforming beliefs. The Scientologists stand up for their rights -- aggressively." Another lawyer who has worked on the case adds a financial motive for their taking such a case: "These people pay their bills -- top dollar and on time -which is more than I can say for most of my unpopular clients. This case will finance a lot of pro bono work." Hirschkop won't say what he has received in legal fees from the Scientologists, but the church is a prosperous client In one instance a member paid the church $30,000 for the required series of counseling sessions.

Whatever their reasons for taking the case, high-minded principles have not characterized the campaign of the Scientologists' lawyers against the District of Columbia judges. In August 1978 the cases were assigned to Judge Hart,. the judge whose comment had originally intensified the intelligence operation and who, like all of his fellow D.C. district court judges, had been investigated. He became the first victim of the Scientologists' recusal strategy.

Boudin filed the first recusal motion in January 1979. His theory was a novel one: by telling Judge Hart that the judge himself was a target of the Scientologists' own possibly illegal activities, he would cause the judge to be biased, or appear to be biased, against them. In his motion, Boudin quoted a Scientology document ordering an "overt" and "covert" data collection operation against Judge Hart, which, in Boudin's words, "possibly [included] the use of methods violative of the judge's privacy and other rights and possibly violative of the criminal laws." Boudin concluded that "the sitting judge is revealed to the jury and the public as a victim of possibly illegal actions," and "the judge has an obvious interest which may be affected by the outcome of the case." Notwithstanding documents to which government and defense counsel had access ordering similar operations on all the District of (Columbia district court judges, Boudin declared that he knew of no other such campaigns.

Although government lawyers, led by chief prosecutor Raymond Banoun, protested vigorously, arguing that the Scientologists were using their own possibly illegal activities to disqualify the judge, Hart granted the recusal motion and stepped down. Hart denied that he was biased, but he agreed that the appearance of impartiality had been tainted by the Scientologists' surveillance operation against him. "I was afraid a jury would be prejudicedagainst the defendants because of their alleged threats against me." Hart said recently. The case was assigned next to Judge Louis Oberdorfer, who in light of Judge Hart's recent experience asked for memoranda and oral arguments from both sides at the outset indicating potential grounds for disqualification. Government lawyers pointed out in their memo that Oberdorfer was formerly an assistant attorney general in charge of the tax division of the Justice Department, which had prosecuted a case that ended the tax- exempt status for the founding Church of Scientology in Los Angeles in 1969. Oberdorfer concluded that he had "personal knowledge of disputed evidentiary facts," and on February 5. 1979. he too stepped down. Shortly afterward the case fell to Richey, 57, a 1971 Nixon appointee whose liberal record -- especially in the area of defendants rights -- surprised early critics. The assignment initially pleased the Scientology defendants. In a pamphlet called "The Trial of the Scientology Nine," prepared by the Scientologists, Judge Richey was described as having "a very fatherly visage . . though crippled with a congenital defect in his hip, one does not notice either his limp or his shortness. His glasses glinting from the lights of the courtroom add to the picture of a man of deep intelligence and sympathy." And when Richey, too, asked at the outset for a recusal motion if one were planned, Boudin and Hirschkop said they were satisfied with his assignment to the case. That attitude was soon belied by a campaign of harassment that took place in and out of the courtroom.

During the summer of 1979, court sessions were held for about three weeks in Los Angeles, where Richey scheduled testimony on the Scientologists' motion to suppress evidence seized by the FBI in its 1977 raids of the church's headquarters. The thousands of documents seized in those raids constituted the core of the evidence against the alleged conspirators. The hearings had been moved to Los Angeles to accommodate the Scientologists' witnesses.

Prior to his departure for Los Angeles, Richey received several death threats. The judge has never publicly alleged that those threats came from Scientologists and has said they were unrelated to the case, but he flew to California escorted by two federal marshals, and elaborate security precautions were implemented at the federal courthouse in downtown Los Angeles.

During the hearings, defense lawyers repeatedly interrupted the proceedings with objections, motions and audible commentary, including insults to the judge. For example, Hirschkop and other counsel repeatedly and loudly ordered co- counsel to place adverse evidentiary rulings in a mythical "error bad." On several occasions, Hirschkop accused Richey of lying. At times, Richey left the bench and walked out rather than hold defense counsel in contempt. Only once, at a later hearing, did the judge seem to boil over: speaking to Hirschkop, Richey said, "I want to tell you right here and now, I resent it because I have done nothing to hurt you or your clients. And this record is replete with insults and everything else, when I have not done it to you and don't intend to." Banoun, the prosecutor, says Richey was too accommodating. "He should never have tolerated such behavior, " Banoun says.

Hirschkop claims that he was the one who was insulted. "Richey showed contempt for me," Hirschkop says, recalling the time when, he claims, Richey tried to "force-feed" him French fries in court. (Banoun says the judge simply offered all the counsel some French fries he had not finished at lunch.) "I called Banoun a liar," Hirschkop continues, "and the judge admonished me. But Banoun could insult me with impunity." Banoun denies that this was true. Hirschkop concedes that he frequently became "heated" in his dealings with Judge Richey but says, "I never called him dirty names."

In September 1979, after the Los Angeles hearings, Richey denied the Scientologists' motion to suppress the evidence seized by the FBI. The defendants eventually entered into a stipulation of facts, which amounted to an admission of the principal charges against them, and waived a jury trial. In return, the government agreed to drop 23 of its 24 criminal counts.

Judge Richey explicitly warned the Scientologists that the stipulation was likely to result in their conviction: he subsequently conducted his own review of the evidence, which he said was "overwhelming evidence of guilt," and on October 26, he convicted all nine. On December 6, two days before they were to be sentenced, a recusal motion against Richey was filed.

In this recusal motion, Boudin and Hirschkop again took the extraordinary position that Richey's response to their courtroom tactics and to the threats showed that Richey was prejudiced against Scientologists. For example, without saying that the death threats were made by Scientologists, Hirschkop said that "upon information and belief, the security in Los Angeles was related to the court's apprehension with regard to the defendants in this case or their church," adding that "it is impossible to imagine a stronger --or more clearly 'extra-judicial' --source of bias than fear for one's life or wellbeing."

Whatever its merits, the recusal motion was patently defective in at least two technical respects. The judicial recusal statute requires a "timely" motion supported by an affidavit signed by a "party." This motion was filed four months after the events complained of-- and after nearly 120 defense motions had been resolved against the Scientologists --and was supported by Hirschkop's affidavit, not one of the defendants. ("I should have filed it much sooner," Hirschkop concedes. "Richey was grossly prejudiced from the start.") In response to the motion, Judge Richey defended his security precautions, noting that "the court may accept reasonable security precautions without risk of tainting its rulings in the case." He denied the motion and that same day sentenced the nine defendants to prison terms of from six months to four to five years. Eight pulled out checks for $10,000 the day of their sentencing, and all nine are now free on bail pending appeal.

The denial of their first recusal motion and the sentences, which the Scientologists regarded as unconscionably harsh, led to a redoubling of defense efforts to drive Richey from the case. Six months later, in June 1980, defense counsel were ready with another recusal motion, more damaging and threatening to Judge Richey than the first. The groundwork for that motion had been laid nearly a year before, shortly after the Los Angeles hearings.

That summer, Thomas Dourian, Judge Richey's official court reporter who accompanied him to Los Angeles, was approached by Hirschkop soon after their return to Washington. In a sworn affidavit filed in response to the second recusal motion, Dourian says Hirschkop wanted to know if the security precautions in Los Angeles resulted from Richey's fear of Scientologists. In the affidavit Dourian swore he denied that the judge was afraid but confirmed that before leaving Washington, the judge and his wife and two sons had received two death threats.

Soon after this encounter, in December 1979, a Scientology lawyer hired Richard Bast, a private detective who had worked for Hirschkop several years before, to investigate Judge Richey's security precautions. Bast's fee: $321,000 plus expenses. One of Bast's first steps was to infiltrate Richey's inner circle at the courthouse. In the spring of 1980, a few months after the Scientologists' sentencing, Fred Cain, a Bast employee and retired police officer, approached James Perry, one of two U.S. marshals who had accompanied Richey to Los Angeles. Cain explained to Perry that he had been retained by a European industrialist whose daughter had committed suicide, allegedly as a result of her involvement with the Church of Scientology, and that his assignment was to uncover information that could be damaging to the church. According to Bast, Perry told Cain that he wanted to write a book on the Scientology case, and Bast offered him a $2,000 advance. Bast says that Perry took the money, and they agreed to work together.

The evening of May 23, Perry and Cain met Dourian, the court reporter, at his home in Washington. According to Dourian's affidavit, Cain introduced himself as a private investigator for International Investigations, Inc., Bast's detective agency, and told him the same story about the European industrialist.

Dourian says in his affidavit that he found the story improbable but that because his home had been burglarized and he had received threatening phone calls, which he suspected came from Scientologists, he was curious about what Cain and Perry were doing. According to the affidavit, Dourian met with Cain three more times, and each time he was questioned about Judge Richey. At a meeting at his home on May 31, 1980, Dourian says he realized that the conversation was being recorded. Cain had been drinking heavily, Dourian says, and as a result, the court reporter was able to slip a small tape recorder and three cassettes out of Cain's pocket. Dourian's last meeting with Cain was on June 19, when they met with Bast and then dined at a nearby Pizza Hut. Again, Dourian was asked about Richey, and the conversation was recorded.

The recordings of Dourian, along with tape-recorded statements made by Hirschkop -- all collected by Bast -- formed the basis for the next recusal motion against Judge Richey. The motion, largely incorporating an earlier recusal motion filed by Hirschkop, was filed on June 20, 1980, as proceedings were beginning against the two defendants recently extradited from Great Britain. For some of the Scientologists' counsel, however, the recusal strategy had gone too far. There was apparently opposition within the ranks to these motions and the way they were prepared. One lawyer, Michael Nussbaum, who represented two of the defendants, didn't sign the papers and withdrew as trial counsel.

The affidavit in support of this motion was filed by Morris Budlong, one of the extradited defendants, after he listened to various tapes and spoke to Hirschkop. Among the prejudicial remarks that Budlong attributed to Judge Richey were: that Richey's death threats emanated from Scientologists; that Jim Jones and Scientologists were "all the same"; that it would be a "feather in his hat" to convict the Scientologists; and that Richey had told another judge that Scientologists were spreading rumors about him as part of a "plot" to discredit him. A cryptic footnote to the affidavit declined to provide details of the alleged rumors about Richey, citing "respect for the court as an institution." But Hirschkop and other defense counsel knew the details of the plot Richey alluded to. They had gotten them from Bast, who says he had combed the Los Angeles area for information about Judge Richey's personal habits, interviewing motel and restaurant employees and making videotapes and recordings. The information not revealed in the motion was taken by Bast to political columnist Jack Anderson. The central figure in bast's story was a self-professed Los Angeles prostitute who worked the Brentwood Holiday Inn, the motel where Richey stayed during the Los Angeles hearings. In a video recording shown to Gary Cohn, a reporter for Anderson, the prostitute recalled "in titillating detail," according to Cohn, an encounter with Judge Richey at the motel and his procurement of her services. According to Cohn, Bast also showed results of lie detector tests conducted by Cain to demonstrate that the prostitute was telling the truth; a tape recording of Perry, the U.S. marshal, claiming Judge Richey said, "Let's go get a woman"; and a tape recording of Dourian, the court reporter, saying Richey "was always picking up girls."

Cohn says that he was initially skeptical of the story because he was aware that Bast was employed by the Scientologists. But he says he had often worked with Bast and trusted him. He says he considered but rejected the possibility that the prostitute was herself a Scientologist, planted to entrap the Judge. Bast says only that his discovery of the prostitute was "accidental," that he paid her $1,200, that she is not a Scientologist and that she is no longer streetwalking.

Cohn wrote the column, which later appeared under Anderson's by-line, focusing on Bast's investigation and Richey's procurement of a prostitute. Cohn adds that he is now "not happy" with the way the column was written. In his affidavit, Dourian, the court reporter, who has heard the tapes he stole from Cain's pocket, denies the remarks attributed to him.

Newspapers that subscribe to Anderson's column received the Judge Richey story around July 11, a week before its release date of July 18. Some of them balked at running it -- the New York Daily News decided not to publish it -- and The Washington Post used it only after extensive conversations with Cohn. Cohn says he never reached Richey for comment, and although Post editor Ben Bradlee says he is sure "we did call (Richey) about the column," no comment from Richey appeared in the Post's version, either.

On July 16, Richey issued his opinion. Evidently referring to the upcoming Anderson column, which Richey might have known about from reporters' calls and messages, Richey characterized the recusal motion as "this latest effort in the escalating attack on the court" and found the grounds for the motion to be "insufficient as a matter of law," resting only on "hearsay, rumor and gossip."

But, the judge continued, "defendants and their counsel have engaged in groundless and relentless attacks on this court. Their motive is transparent. It is an attempt to transform the trial ... into a trial of this judge." Though he labeled the attempts to remove him a "classic example" of abuse of the recusal statutes, he wrote that "the time has come for the proceedings in this case to proceed on the merits with the attention of all directed at the real issues in this case." As a result, Richey withdrew from the case in a state of exhaustion and near-collapse, according to associates.

On July 18, Jack Anderson's column appeared in newspapers throughout the country. Five days later, Judge Richey was hospitalized with exhaustion and pulmonary embolisms. He has since declined all comment on the case, citing the code of judicial conduct.

Judge Richey's ordeal may not be over. Hirschkop vows that his campaign against the judge will continue, and he claims that the prostitute affair is "only the tip of the iceberg." Although Hirschkop declines to disclose details, he says if necessary he will expose additional damaging information uncovered by Bast.

Apart from the delays, the campaign against Judge Richey has had negligible legal impact on the proceedings against the Scientologist defendants. Though an appeal is pending on a conventional search and seizure question, the convictions of the first nine stand. Trials of the remaining two defendants started in late October under Judge Robinson and are still in progress.

The activities of the Scientologists and their counsel in this case seem destined only to satisfy a commandment L. Ron Hubbard once wrote:

"The DEFENSE of anything is UNTENABLE. The only way to defend anything is to ATTACK, and if you ever forget that, then you will lose every battle you are ever engaged in, whether it is in terms of personal conversation, public debate, or a court of law. NEVER BE INTERESTED IN CHARGES. DO, yourself, much MORE CHARGING, and you will WIN."

In its July 1980 issue the American Lawyer named Judge Charles Richey runner-up to the worst District of Columbia federal district court judge. The lawyer who most vehemently denounced Richey was one of the Scientologists' defense counsel, and this same lawyer also referred our reporter to other lawyers who have represented Church of Scientology defendants. The reporter, who has since left our staff, says he was unaware of Scientologists' efforts to discredit and recuse Judge Richey. Without the lawyer's vehemently derogatory remarks and his referrals to other "sources," our reporter says he would not have named Richey in the survey.

BATTLES ON OTHER FRONTS

The Church of Scientology has been involved in almost constant litigation since its founding nearly 30 years ago. Besides periodic clashes with the government, the church has filed scores of suits against the media to inhibit the news coverage of its activities.

Among the more recent cases involving the church and the media:

Fourteen libel suits have been filed against Paulette Cooper, New York freelance writer and author of the 1971 book, The Scandal of Scientology, and her publisher. Church documents seized in the 1977 Los Angeles raid and made public last year revealed "Operation Freakout," a campaign of harassment directed against cooper that included death threats, obscene phone calls, phony letters about her sexual behavior and a forged bomb threat against the church that resulted in Cooper's indictment in 1973. The charges against Cooper were dropped in 1975. Cooper has now retaliated with a $55- million suit against the church.

A 1977 suit against the San Diego Union asked $10,000 in damages for invasion of privacy from a reporter who had registered for a Scientology course in order to write a story about the church. The church offered to drop the suit if plans to publish the story were dropped, but after the story ran, the church increased its damage claim to $??,000 and added charges of fraud and deceit against the paper. The case was dismissed on summary judgment.

In 1976 the church sued the Clearwater Sun in Florida for $1 million and threatened to sue the St. Petersburg Times for a series of stories on the church. Scientologists spread rumors linking Times officials to the CIA, the FBI and the Communist Party, and harassed reporters. The Sun countersued the church for abuse of process, and the Times sued for an injunction barring the church's harassment of its reporters. The church subsequently dropped its suit against the Sun and never followed through on its threat to sue the Times. In March 1979 the church sued two New York writers, Jim Siegelman and Flo Conway, after they criticized Scientology on the "David Susskind Show" while discussing their book, Snapping. After the Scientologists' suit against them was dismissed, the pair countersued, charging the church with malicious prosecution.

The church has lately found itself on the defensive in a flurry of suits filed against it by disgruntled former church members and recruits. Currently pending against the church are:

a suit filed October 21 by Lawrence Stifler, a Boston marathon runner, asking 41.25 million for damages sustained after he was allegedly physically attacked by a Scientology recruiter. Stifler says that due to the injury, he may never run again;

a $16-million suit filed in April by Tonja Burden, a 20-year-old former church member who claims she was deceived and forced to remain in the church, used as slave labor and kidnapped after she escaped;

a $21-million suit brought by jazz guitarist Gabor Szabo in February, accusing the church of embezzlement, kidnapping and forcing him to undergo a "life repair course";

a class action filed last December by former church staff member Lavenda Van Schack, seeking $200 million on behalf of church dropouts. Her suit accuses the church of mind control, unlawful electronic surveillance and leaking details of her private life to the media.


Last year, Julie Titchbourne, a former Church of Scientology member, was awarded 42 million by a Portland, Oregon, jury, which found that the church's promises of a better life were fraudulent. The church as subsequently sued four "deprogrammers" for $2 million collectively, claiming that they induced Titchbourne to turn against the church.

-- J.B.S.
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Re: Journalism: Scientology - L. Ron Hubbard's Brainchild

Postby admin » Tue Jul 23, 2019 12:14 am

Some Notes on Black Dianetics: The Darker Side of the Picture
by L. Ron Hubbard
September 17, 1951

A person can drive himself mad with Dianetics without any trouble. What you have concentrated on in your study of Dianetics has been the process of making people well. That is your emphasis line. But don’t think for a moment that that is any more than half of it. There is as much data on how to make people insane, uncomfortable, sick or dead as there is on how to make them well. We ordinarily do not handle that side of the data; we ordinarily do not look at it. But once in a while, in order to learn something, it is necessary to look at it.

Knowing the potentialities which are inherent in Dianetics, one is rather aghast to look into the field and see the wild abandon with which somebody will put out what he calls the “lollipop technique,” which will wind a person up in a spinbin about as quick as scat!

This is something like the fellow who goes out and shoots oil wells. There is a hole in the ground and something has happened down in this hole that they don’t know anything about, so the way they fix up the hole is by dropping some nitroglycerin in it. The nitroglycerin goes down the hole and explodes down there, and after that maybe the hole is all right and maybe it isn’t.

Now, the oil-well shooter will take a flask of nitroglycerin and put it in his pocket. He mixes up his nitroglycerin at home on his stove, and he doesn’t care about that. He will tell you, “Dynamite is safe; you can light a cigar from dynamite.” As a matter of fact, I had one of these fellows demonstrate to me one time that it was possible to light a stick of dynamite and then light a cigarette from it. Nothing to it!

What he was overlooking was that other people can’t do that. It isn’t that familiarity breeds contempt but that he knows exactly how far he can go; he knows what he can do with this stuff. He knows that you don’t drop nitroglycerin on concrete. He also knows that when he picks up a notebook, for instance, and puts it in his pocket, his chances of dropping that notebook are very slight. So he picks up the nitroglycerin and puts it in his pocket; he knows his chances of being hit in the side are very slight. So he just says, “Those are the odds against it,” and life is all very comfortable and he goes on.

Now, the funny part of it is, the oil-well shooter would say, “Well, dynamite will burn! Ten percent dynamite will burn. You touch a match to ten-percent dynamite and it will burn just like sawdust, and you can light a cigarette with it.” Then you start to do it and the dynamite blows up and they pick your head up someplace else.

Part of his technology is that you can always burn fresh dynamite. He just left out one adjective. And the dynamite you picked up was a couple of years old and all the nitroglycerin had settled in one end of it. That was the end you lit.

There is a case of familiarity with a subject. These shooters very seldom kill themselves, very seldom have accidents.

It is the same with a Dianetic auditor: He has looked at engrams, he has looked at preclears, he has looked at screamers; he knows what he is going after, what he can do with it and what he can’t do with it, more or less. So he throws his preclears on the couch and runs them into this and out of that and maybe sticks them up in something; then he says, “Well, that’s all right, they don’t go nuts—not for twenty-four hours. I’ll get that tomorrow.” In short, he shows a wild abandon with the subject. But he is operating within known limits. Even a fair knowledge of Dianetics lets you operate within those known limits.

[...]

As long as you practice something remotely resembling Standard Procedure, as long as you know there is a time track, as long as you know you ought to keep chasing the preclear through the incident until it finally desensitises, as long as you know enough never to lose your nerve, you can’t do anybody very much damage—unless you go over onto the side of complete Black Dianetics.

With Black Dianetics, you could tailor-make any kind of insanity you wanted to. The person might not manifest this the next day, maybe not the next week or maybe not for thirty days. Maybe three months later he is walking down the street and feeling a little bit tired when somebody honks an auto horn just right or something of the sort, and all of a sudden he goes crazy, and there he is—insane! Or terribly sick and uncomfortable.

So they take him off and put him in a spinbin and put electrodes on him and then they push big levers and he goes into a convulsion and breaks his spine, breaks his jaw, and so forth. In other words, one can expect the maximum of cooperation from psychiatry in Black Dianetics. They will bury what has already been planted, and they will bury it deeply. This is rather brutal, isn’t it?

You could put a little book down in Czechoslovakia called “How to Drive People Insane: PDH” filled with various kinds of insanity and how to plant it to really make it good. You could drop this book into the hands of a thousand people in Czechoslovakia and a thousand people in Poland, and you could go in on the other side and make sure some copies were in Chinese, and then hire a private jet pilot and have him go over at seventy thousand feet and drop a few on Moscow.

Sooner or later, some muzhik who has seen the little book is going to watch Colonel Umphbumski come down the steps of the beer hall full of vodka and very drunk. Maybe this little muzhik is the carriage driver, and as he drives along he notices that the colonel is asleep. “Well, what do you know. The colonel is asleep. This is too good to miss—Hap! ‘Stalin is against me . . .”’ and so on.

In other words, no high-ranking officer and no political entity is safe in a world where a technique of this character exists. You couldn’t wipe out the Foundation now and stop this technology from existing and you couldn’t wipe me out and stop it from existing; it is already out! You couldn’t go around and propagandise against it because that would just popularize it. You can’t stop an idea with sixteen-inch armor plate.
Unfortunately, Black Dianetics is inherent in Dianetics. In 1945, this was all the Dianetics there was—how to drive people crazy, how to foul up political systems, how to restimulate individuals just by talking to them—without planting engrams—and in addition to this, how to interrupt life force in an individual. We haven’t gone into that very much. It is a wonderfully smooth way of committing murder.

I am mentioning this because somebody may ask you, “What could possibly be dangerous about Dianetics?” I am telling you what could be dangerous about it.

That was all it had risen to back in 1945. It became absolutely necessary in 1948 and 1949, when these techniques were released to psychiatry and to medicine, to release them much more widely.

— L. Ron Hubbard
Lecture 17 September 1951: Some Notes On Black Dianetics
The Darker Side of the Picture
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Re: Journalism: Scientology - L. Ron Hubbard's Brainchild

Postby admin » Tue Jul 23, 2019 12:15 am

Danger: Black Dianetics!
by L. Ron Hubbard
September 1952

DOES COURT PROTECT MAN BRANDED INSANE?

Unscrupulous groups and individuals have been practicing a form of Black Dianetics on their fellow men for centuries. They may not have called it that, but the results have been and are the same.

Their easiest victims are the unsuspecting. No one can slip up behind you if you know they're there. The prowler has no potency in an alertly guarded home.

The subject of Black Dianetics long has been hinted at, but this is the first time it has been released to the general public. Its release is dictated by the belief people must know what threatens them so they can be better prepared. Those who use it already know; those who do not use it should be protected.

In this, the first of three articles, read how little protection man has should the wheels of legal procedure be turned against him.

— J of S Editor


Death, insanity, aberration, or merely a slavish obedience can be efficiently effected by the use of Black Dianetics. Further, adequate laws do not exist at this time to bar the use of these techniques. The law provides that only the individual so wronged can make complaint or swear out a warrant for offenders using these techniques.
A person on whom Black Dianetics has been employed seldom retains the sanity or will to make a complaint, or does not know he has been victimized, in addition, persons claiming such offenses against their persons are commonly catalogued by doctors as suffering from delusion. Thus the employer of Black Dianetics can escape unpunished under existing legal procedures.

One invites, by the release of such powerful and insidious methods, the censure of those who seek to hold society together. But a little thought will tell one that these techniques are better released and known to many than hidden and known to but a few.

[...]

Hypnotism is a rather old and untrustworthy method of influencing or enslaving others. However, hypnotism is very unreliable even when it can be effected upon an individual. The mechanisms of hypnotism, quite incidentally and of no great importance, are circumscribed in Black Dianetics.

One could not release this furiously violent poison unless one first had the antidote. Processing, even that contained in Self Analysis, can undo Black Dianetics unless, of course, the victim has been driven into suicide or past the point of no return—a feat which is not difficult, but a condition which is not desirable where the operator seeks real advantage.

Several people are dead because of Black Dianetics. Hundreds of thousands are dead because of the atom bomb. Thousands may die because of Black Dianetics. Millions may die because of nuclear physics. But also because of nuclear physics man may reach the stars. And because of Scientology we may some day win a world without insanity, without criminals, and without war.

[...]

The basic technique of hypnotism consists of one individual, the hypnotist, relaxing or coaxing into quiescence another individual called the "subject." The operator then makes certain suggestions to the subject and the subject may, during the session or after it is dictated, obey. Hypnotic subjects are in the minority and skilled hypnotists are few and so this method of influencing minds has had limited scope.

Further, the hypnotist claims curative powers in hypnotism and a careful examination of the field demonstrates that hypnotism is far more harmful to a mind than beneficial. Thus hypnotism, a curious phenomena, is not greatly employed. But it has, nevertheless, been employed to the harm of individuals and the "betterment" of operators.

It is claimed by hypnotism's zealots—and it has them in plenty—that a hypnotized subject will not perform immoral or dangerous acts. Experiment demonstrates a limited truth in this but it also demonstrates that a hypnotic subject can be influenced against his best interests. The charlatanism in this field is very great.

[...]

— Journal of Scientology Issue 3-G September 1952 Danger: Black Dianetics!
© 1991 L. Ron Hubbard Library
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Re: Journalism: Scientology - L. Ron Hubbard's Brainchild

Postby admin » Tue Jul 23, 2019 12:17 am

Statutory Declaration, Deed of Release, Agreement
by Damian Arntzen [unsigned]
September, 2002

STATUTORY DECLARATION

I, Damian Arntzen of ................................................................................................................ in the State of Western Australia do solemnly and sincerely declare that the facts contained in the attached deed are, to the best of my knowledge and belief, true and correct in every particular.

And I make this solem declaration conscientiously believing the same to be true, and by virtue of the provisions of the Evidence Act, 1906.

Declared at Perth )

On this ....... Day of September 2002 )

Before me: ) ___________________________________

Justice of the Peace/Commissioner for Declarations

DEED OF RELEASE

THIS DEED is made by Damian Arntzen of ......................................................... In the State of Western Australia.

Acknowledgements

A. I have pursued the Scientology religion voluntarily, and have been a member of the Church of Scientology of my own volition.

B. I am familiar with the Creed of the Church of Scientology and the policies of the Church as written by its Founder L. Ron Hubbard and have adopted these as the guiding principles of my life.

C. I am fully aware that Scientology is a religion. I have received some spiritual counselling (called auditing, the religion’s core practice) as well as confessional counselling and training in the theology, policy and ethics of the Scientology Religion. I have had increased spiritual awareness from these activities and I am fully satisfied with the results.

D. I have not been harmed in any manner or form by any experiences as a parishioner of any Church of Scientology or through my involvement with Scientology Religious technology or Dianetics Spiritual Healing technology or with any authorized organisations using such technologies.

E. I acknowledge that the Church and its associates have not made any statement, representation or promise to myself regarding any fact or matter material to this Release except as it is herein expressly stated.

F. I understand and agree that in order for me to receive further religious and spiritual counselling, I need to release and indemnify and discharge the Churches of Scientology, their staff, officers, Board of Directors, religious workers, employers, agents, representatives, parishioners, affiliated organisations and entities, L. Ron Hubbard’s heirs, successors and assigns, and the Author’s Family Trust (‘releases’), from liability for my actions.

G. I am not under the influence of any drugs, narcotic, alcohol or mind-influencing substance, condition or ailment such that my ability to fully understand the meaning of this release is adversely affected.

H. I acknowledge the Church has offered to assist in recommending independent legal counsel to advise me further on this matter. I have freely chosen to forgo such an opportunity and to enter into this deed of release and waiver of my rights without such advice. I have read and fully understand the nature and content of this document, including the significance of waiving any actual or potential claim I may have, and sign it below voluntarily and without any threat or duress.

Agreement

1. I do not hold any Church of Scientology responsible in any manner or form for any of my actions and fully understand and state to be true that my actions are my own personal responsibility.

2. I agree to keep confidential and not disclose any knowledge, information or material acquired by myself directly or indirectly concerning the Church or any of its associates and, without limiting the foregoing, shall not directly or indirectly publish or assist another to publish or assist another to publish any such knowledge, information or material whether in the form of books, magazines, periodicals, newspapers, articles or other literature or in the form of film, video, audio tape, television or in any other form of media.

3. I have no desire or intention to testify or otherwise participate in any judicial administrative or legislative proceedings adverse to Scientology or the Church or any of its associates unless compelled to do so by lawful process. I therefore agree not to do so and I state quite clearly here that I have no wish, desire or intention to attack, harm or in any way malign the Church of Scientology.

4. I hereby disclaim and waive all rights to any potential claim that I may have had at any time, present or future, to any such refund of monies donated to the Church or any of its servants or agents and undertake not to at any time instigate or pursue any other claim or to go to the media or other authorities on the same matter.

5. I hereby release and forever discharge and agree to indemnify the releases, from and against all actions, costs, claims and demands which may be made against them arising out of any act of mine.

6. In the event that any portion of this release is found to be legally unenforceable, this shall not affect the binding nature of the remainder of the release which shall remain in full force and effect, nor shall it effect the truthfulness of the statements I have made in this Deed.

IN WITNESS WHEREOF the parties have executed this Deed on this ......... Day of .......... 2002.

SIGNED SEALED AND )

DELIVERED BY )

DAMIAN ARNTZEN ) _________________________

IN THE PRESENCE OF ) ________________________

Justice of the Peace/Commissioner for Declarations
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Re: Journalism: Scientology - L. Ron Hubbard's Brainchild

Postby admin » Tue Jul 23, 2019 12:19 am

Ted Patrick
by Wikipedia

Theodore Roosevelt ("Ted") Patrick, Jr. (born 1930) is widely considered to be the "father of deprogramming."[1] Some criminal proceedings against Patrick have resulted in felony convictions for kidnapping and unlawful imprisonment.

Early life

Born in what he calls "a red-light district" in Chattanooga, Tennessee, he was surrounded by "thieves, prostitutes, murderers [and] pimps. From the time [he] was old enough to remember, [he] saw people being killed, shot up, cut up, beat up. The place was so bad even the police didn't want to come there."[2]

He had a speech impediment, which set him apart from the other children. Until he was sixteen, no one could understand what he said, which made him "shy and backwards and miserable and embarrassed" for most of his childhood. According to Patrick, after being taken to countless faith healers, witch doctors and voodoo practitioners, the final straw was an embarrassing spin the bottle game. The bottle pointed to him and the girl wouldn't kiss him. He then decided to take his problem into his own hands. His speech improved, and with it his confidence and interpersonal skills. He dropped out of high school in tenth grade to help support his family. After working in a variety of jobs, he saved enough to open a nightclub called the Cadillac Club with his cousin. The venture was successful, and eventually he sold his share of the business to his cousin. Patrick was the co-chairman of the Nineteenth Ward in Chattanooga. He planned on opening a restaurant and cocktail lounge; however, according to Patrick, his political enemies obstructed this.[2]

At twenty-five he left his wife and infant son in Tennessee and went with a friend to San Diego, California. There he started the Chollas Democratic Club to assert the rights of the Black community. Perhaps their main accomplishment was picketing supermarkets and other stores to get them to employ Blacks. After he had saved enough money, he brought his wife and children to San Diego. Other organizations he started in San Diego were the Logan Heights Businessmen’s Association, the Junior Government of Southeast San Diego and the Volunteer Parents Organization (VPO.) During the Watts Riots in 1965 the VPO was instrumental in keeping the violence from reaching San Diego. For his efforts in the Watts Riots Patrick was awarded the Freedom Foundation Award, which ultimately led to his job as the Special Assistant for Community Affairs, under then-Governor Ronald Reagan.

Career as a deprogrammer

Despite a lack of formal education and professional training, Patrick was hired by hundreds of parents and family members to "deprogram" their loved ones. A high school dropout, Patrick based his techniques and practices on his own life experience. According to Ted Patrick himself in a TV debate with members of the Hare Krishna group (May, 1979), "How I got into deprogramming was through my own son. All outdoor boy, couldn't nothing keep him in the house. Then one day, he was psychologic... psychological kidnap by a cult". In this interview, Patrick also explained that his quest to understand cults led him to speak to "witches, warlocks, healers" and in fact, he went "all the way to New Orleans" to the same person his mother brought him to for his speech impediment. He also stated that he spent time in a religious group and after a week "..didn't know where I were, nor how I got there... I was hook". Patrick stated that this research and his understanding of the mind from his ongoing struggle with his own speech, was the background for his work in deprogramming.

On June 12, 1971, Mrs. Samuel Jackson contacted Patrick to file a complaint concerning her missing son, Billy. As Billy was nineteen, the police and FBI would not look for him. Billy was involved with the cult known as the Children of God, which had approached Patrick's son Michael a week earlier. Patrick contacted other people whose relatives were in the cult and even "joined" them to know how the group operated. This is when he developed his method of deprogramming. He ultimately left his job to deprogram full-time.[2]

Patrick, one of the pioneers of deprogramming, used a confrontational method:

"When you deprogram people, you force them to think.... But I keep them off balance and this forces them to begin questioning, to open their minds. When the mind gets to a certain point, they can see through all the lies that they've been programmed to believe. They realize that they've been duped and they come out of it. Their minds start working again."


According to a 1979 Washington Post article, Patrick gave himself the moniker "Black Lightning."[3] However, anti-cult activists Flo Conway and Jim Siegelman state, in their 1978 book Snapping, that cult leaders gave him that nickname.[4]

Patrick founded the FREECOG organization, later known as the Citizen's Freedom Foundation, in 1971.[1]

Patrick described details of some of his kidnappings in his book Let Our Children Go! (E. P. Dutton, 1976, page 96)

"Wes had taken up a position facing the car, with his hands on the roof and his legs spread-eagled. There was no way to let him inside while he was braced like that. I had to make a quick decision. I reached down between Wes's legs, grabbed him by the crotch and squeezed--hard. He let out a howl, and doubled up, grabbing for his groin with both hands. Then I hit, shoving him headfirst into the back seat of the car and piling in on top of him."


Patrick stood in trial several times for kidnapping activities. After the first trial (which found him not guilty), he stopped executing the actual kidnapping but continued with his deprogramming.

Patrick testified before an ad hoc Congressional committee organized in 1979 by Senator Bob Dole. According to The New Republic, Dole intended the hearing to "provide a forum" for Patrick and other anti-cult activists.[5]

Criminal proceedings and convictions

Some criminal proceedings against Patrick have resulted in felony convictions for kidnapping and unlawful imprisonment.[6]

• In 1980, Patrick was convicted of conspiracy, kidnapping, and false imprisonment. These charges were related to the abduction and attempted deprogramming of Roberta McElfish, a 26-year-old Tucson waitress.[7] Patrick was sentenced to one year in prison and fined five thousand dollars.[8]
• On 28 December 1981, Judge Clinton Olsen dismissed the Church of Scientology's lawsuit against Ted Patrick and three others for lack of cause of action in Multnomah County, Oregon.
• On 11 June 1984 Scientologist Paula Dain was awarded $7,000 in compensatory damages by a federal court jury in a $30 million civil-rights lawsuit against Patrick. The jury ruled that Patrick had violated Dain's civil rights and freedom of religion, but determined that Patrick did not act "with evil intent" or in "reckless and callous disregard for Miss Dain's safety."
• In the case of Kathleen Crampton, where Patrick and her family members were acquitted from kidnapping, the judge wrote: "The parents who would do less than what Mr. and Mrs. Crampton did for their daughter Kathy would be less than responsible, loving parents. Parents like the Cramptons here, have justifiable grounds, when they are of the reasonable belief that their child is in danger, under hypnosis or drugs, or both, and that their child is not able to make a free, voluntary, knowledgeable decision."

References

1. Chryssides, George (1999). Exploring New Religions. Continuum International Publishing Group. pp. 346-348. ISBN 0-826-45959-5.
2. Patrick, Ted; Dulack, Tom (1976). Let Our Children Go!. E. P. Dutton. ISBN 0-525-14450-1.
3. Breaking the Spell That Binds Henry Allen Washington Post February 6, 1979
4. Conway and Siegelman, Black Lightning (Chapter 6 of Snapping), 1995, ISBN 0-9647650-0-4
5. Chapman, Stephen (17 February 1979). "On the Hill: Cult-mongering". The New Republic: 11-13.
6. Hunter, Howard O.; Price, Polly J. (2001). "Regulation of religious proselytism in the United States" (PDF). Brigham Young University Law Review 2001 (2). http://lawreview.byu.edu/archives/2001/2/hun6.pdf.
7. "Ted Patrick convicted of seizing woman said to have joined cult". The New York Times. 1980-08-30.
8. "Ted Patrick is sentenced in seizure of cult member". The New York Times. 1980-09-27.
Conway and Siegelman, Black Lightning (Chapter 6 of Snapping), 1995, ISBN 0-9647650-0-4
Ted Patrick, Let Our Children Go (Chapter 1 of Ted Patrick's Let Our Children Go),
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Re: Journalism: Scientology - L. Ron Hubbard's Brainchild

Postby admin » Tue Jul 23, 2019 12:20 am

The Admissions of L. Ron Hubbard
by L. Ron Hubbard

COURSE I

The purpose of this experiment is to re-establish the ambition, willpower, desire to survive, the talent and confidence of myself.

To accomplish the above the following fears must be removed: Fear that I have written myself out by writing junk. I built certain psychoses in myself while living with my former wife as a means to protect my writing. I affirmed that my writing was hard work and took much labor. This was a lie. I was always anxious about people's opinion of me and was afraid I would bore them. This injected anxiety and careless speed into my work. I must be convinced that I can write skillfully and well, that I have no phobias about writing and no fears of it. People criticized my work bitterly at times. I must be convinced that such people were fools. I must be convinced that I can write far better than ever before, that a million people at least would be happy to see my stories. I must be convinced that I have succeeded in writing and with ease will regain my popularity, which actually was not small. I must also be convinced that I dictate stories to a dictaphone with ease.

I must be told that my memory is strong and reliable, that I can remember all I have ever read or studied, that no illness or medicine has affected mind or memory.

(b) My service record was not too glorious. I must be convinced that I suffer no reaction from any minor disciplinary action, that all such were minor. My service was honorable, my initiative and ability high. I have nothing to fear from friends about my service. I can forget such things as Admiral Braystead. Such people are unworthy of my notice.

(c) I can have no doubts of my psychic powers. My magical ability is high and clear. I earned my titles and command.

(d) Any distaste I may have for Jack Parsons originated in a psychic experiment. Such distaste is foolish. He is my friend and comrade-in-arms.

(e) Sexual feeling has been depressed by several things amounting to a major impasse. To cure ulcers of the stomach I was given testosterone and stilbesterol. These reduced my libido to nothing. While taking these drugs I fell in love with Sara. She can be most exciting sexually to me. Because of drugs as above and a hangover from my ex-wife Polly, I sometimes am unexcited by anything sexual. This depresses me.

My wife left me while I was in a hospital with ulcers. Polly was quite cruel. She was never a woman for me. She was under-sexed and had bad sexual habits such as self-laceration done in private. She was no mate for me and yet I retained much affection for her. It was a terrible blow when she left me for I was ill and without prospects. I know, by this, she actually wanted no more than my ability to support her. This has had an effect of impotency upon me, has badly reduced my ego.

Polly was very bad for me sexually. Because of her coldness physically, the falsity of her pretensions, I believed myself a near eunuch between 1933 and 1936 or when I found I was attractive to other women. I had many affairs. But my failure to please Polly made me always pay so much attention to my momentary mate that I derived small pleasure myself. This was an anxiety neurosis which cut down my natural powers.

In 1938-39 I met a girl in New York, Helen, who pleased me very much physically. I loved her and she me. The affair would have lasted had not Polly found out. Polly made things so miserable that I finally detested her and became detested by Helen, who two-timed me on my return to New York in 1941. This also reduced my libido. I have had Helen since but no longer want her. She does not excite me and I do not love her.

In 1942 -- December 17th or thereabouts -- while training in Miami, Florida, I met a girl named Ginger who excited me. She was a very loose person but pretended a great love for me. From her I received an infection of gonnohorea (sp?). I was terrified by it, the consequences of being discovered by my wife, the navy, my friends. I went to a private doctor who treated me with sulfa-thiazole and so forth. I thought I was cured but on a plane headed to Portland, Ore. I found I was not. I took to dosing myself with sulfa in such quantities that I was afraid I had affected my brain. My wife came to Portland. I took what precautions I could. I think actually that the disease was utterly cured very early. This fear further depressed my libido. My wife disliked the act anyway, I believe, even after she had a hysterectomy in 1938. (She was always terrified of childbirth but conceived despite all precautions seven times in five years resulting in five abortions and two children. I am quite fond of my children but my wife always tried to convince me that I hated them.)

I carried this fear of the disease to sea with me. I was reprimanded in San Diego in mid-43 for firing on the Mexican coast and was removed from command of my ship. This on top of having sunk two Jap subs without credit, the way my crew lied for me at the Court of Inquiry, the insults of the High Command, all combined to put me in the hospital with ulcers.

I returned to sea as navigator of a large ship and was subsequently selected for the Military Government School at Princeton whither I went in 1944-45 for three months. During my Princeton sojourn I was very tired and harrassed (sp?) and spent weekends with a writer friend in Philadelphia. He almost forced me to sleep with his wife. Meanwhile I had a affair with a woman named Ferne. Somehow, perhaps because I had constantly wet feet and no sleep at Princeton, I contracted a staphloceus infection. I mistook it for gonnhorea and until I arrived at Monterey, believed my old illness had returned. I consulted a doctor there who reassured me. This affair again depressed my libido. The staphloceus infection has not entirely vanished, appearing as rheumatism which only small doses of stilbestrol will remove. The hormone further reduces my libido and I am nearly impotent.

Sara, my sweetheart, is young, beautiful, desirable. We are very gay companions. I please her physically until she weeps about any separation. I want her always. But I am 13 years older than she. She is heavily sexed. My libido is so low I hardly admire her naked.

I mean to be constant to her. I love her very much. But to live with her I must regain my sexual powers, my stimulus.

I must cease to take hormones. I must rebuild my feeling of excitement about things sexual.

I have a very bad masturbatory history. I was taught when I was 11 and, despite guilt, fear of insanity, etc. etc. I persisted. At a physical examination at a Y when I was about 13, the examiner and the people with him called me out of the line because my testicles hung low and cautioned me about what would happen if I kept on masturbating. This "discovery" was a bad shock to me.

I had to be so silent about it that now when a bedspring squeaks I lose all libido. I eventually found out I would not be insane, or injure myself but the scars remain.

Polly pretended a hollow passion which disgusted me. But I am lingeringly fond of her even so. I am also nostalgic about Helen.

By eliminating certain fears by hypnosis, curing my rheumatism and laying off hormones, I hope to restore my former libido. I must! By hypnosis I must be convinced as follows:

(a) I can write. I need not think commercially about writing.

(b) My mind is still brilliant. My memory unaffected by drugs or experience.

(c) That masturbation was no sin or crime and did not injure me. That no sexual practice has ever dulled me.

(d) That things sexual thrill me. That I am now returned to the same feelings I had at 16 about sex where excitement is concerned. That naked women and pornography excite me greatly. That Sara excites me greatly and gives me much pleasure.

(e) That I bear no physical aftermath of disease.

(f) That I do not need to have ulcers anymore.

(g) That my eyes (which I used as an excuse to get out of school) are perfect and do not pain me ever.

(h) That I love in Sara everything I loved in Polly or Helen and that such love is now transferred to Sara.

(i) That I am fortunate in losing Polly and my parents, for they never meant well by me.

(j) That I never need be jealous of Sara's past. That she loves me and is utterly faithful. That she thrills me more than Helen ever did.

(k) That life is beautiful to me. That I want to live. That things taste and smell and look and feel wonderful to me.

(l) That I wrote a great book in The One Command and that it removed all my fears even until now, except that my chapters on the mind do not affect my own mind. That I have will power and great mental control. That I need not associate anything unless I wish.

(m) That I have only friendship for Jack Parsons.

(n) That I feel no wish for vengeance toward anyone. That I love people and believe in honor and glory.

(o) That I believe in my gods and spiritual things.

(p) That nothing can halt my ambitions.

(q) That I need not believe the criticism of anyone. That vicious criticism can be forgotten by me at will.

(r) That I tell the truth and must tell the truth. That all past errors and lies are forgotten.

(s) That I have started a new, free life. That the arts and beauties run strong in me and cannot be denied by anyone.

(t) That I am well and that there is no advantage in appearing ill.

(u) That my code is to be all things a "magus" must be, that I am those things. That I burn high and bright and will last as a potent and brilliant force until well after this century has run.

(v) That I am not credulous or absorbent of other people's opinions.

(w) That this hypnosis will not fade, but will increase in power as time advances.

(x) That my magical work is powerful and effective.

(y) That nothing can tarnish my love of life, my hours, my love of Sara. And I have the power of banishing anything which would seek to do so and that all things will seem wonderful and exciting to me all the rest of my days.

(y1) That the numbers 7, 25 and 16 are not unlucky or evil for me. That no number is any different in its influence upon me than any other number. That the 7th, 16th and 25th are not unlucky or unfortunate days of the month for me. I have no bad connotations with these numbers.

(z) That I need not subscribe to any moral code of sex anywhere. That I am constant to Sara. I have no terrors of sex or sexual conduct. Only pleasure and beauty are contained in it. That I may please myself with the act or be pleased with sexual things. That the sexual matters taught me by Flavia do not apply. My chastity lies in loving Sara.

(a1) That I will not forget these things but will enjoin them with all related ideas as more powerful than any other ideas in my head.

(b1) That all ideas to destroy myself are false, for I love life and I am a free and exuberant spirit in it.

(c1) That I cannot associate any of my lacking libido with Sara. The blame lies elsewhere. Sara has enormous powers to thrill me. Hormones and fears, now gone, were at fault.

(d1) Sexually I am as I was at 16, without any of the fears, with all of the powers, with all the knowledge I now possess turned to wonderful things.

(d1) That I see and hear Raon clearly.

(e) That anything which impedes my zest for living is small and puny and will dwindle before the power of these statements. That nothing in me which is evil can have heard these statements and commands without disappearing.

(f1) That I am not bad to look upon. That my posture is straight and excellent. That Sara likes my looks.

(g1) That my endurance in any climate is wonderful and any "fact" otherwise is completely false.

(h1) That I am not susceptible to colds.

(i1) That I believe in myself and am poised and dignified whenever I wish to be.

(j1) That I am not worn out in any way and never will be. That life is ever new, that I am strong.

(k1) That Sara is always beautiful to me.

(l1) That these words and commands are like fire and will sear themselves into every corner of my being, making me happy and well and confident forever!

Note: Much of the above may seem cryptic but if paraphrased as rendered will be enormously effective.

*****************************************************************

COURSE II.

You are asleep. You are not accountable for anything you say now. No one will think any less of you. People want to help you.

In this one lesson you are going to learn several things. The first is the use of your beautiful new Soundscriber. The instrument is your aide and companion. It makes it possible for you to write ten times the stories you did before.

You have no urge to talk about your navy life. You do not like to talk of it. You never illustrate your point with bogus stories. It is not necessary for you to lie to be amusing and witty.

You like to have your intimate friends approve of and love you for what you are. This desire to be loved does not amount to a psychosis, it is simply there and you enjoy their love.

You can sing beautifully. Your voice can imitate any singer. Your tones are round and true. You have no superstitions about singing at any time. Your oratory is magnificent. Your voice tones perfect, your choice of words marvelous, your logic unassailable.

Your psychology is good. You worked to darken your own children. This failure, with them, was only apparent. The evident lack of effectiveness was "ordered." The same psychology works perfectly on everyone else. You use it with great confidence.

Nothing can intervene between you and your Guardian. She cannot be displaced because she is too powerful. She does not control you. She advises you. You may or may not take the advice. You are an adept and have a wonderful and brilliant mind of your own.

Everything great and beautiful that ever happened to you or that you know is available to your conscious will to remember. You can only forget by conscious will or at command of your own voice.

You recognize the evil or bad import of things that are evil and bad for you but their evilness cannot affect you or penetrate through your glowing and strong aura. You are light and you are good. You have the Wisdom of all and never doubt your wisdom.

You have magnificent power but you are humble and calm and patient in that power. For you control all forces under you as you wish. The strength of your Guardian aids you always and can never depart or be repelled. Your faith in her and in God is unswerveable, blind, powerful and you never, never doubt their good intent toward you. They work with you. You help them exert their plans. They have faith unbounded in you.

You will never forget these incantations. They are holy and are now become an integral part of your nature. You enter the greatest phase yet of work and devotion and power and have perfect control without further fear.

Men's chains fall from you. Your head is high. Your back is straight. You can experience no evil or illness. You are wholly protected. You cannot guide yourself wrong for you are guided as a crown prince.

Material things are yours for the asking. Men are your slaves. Elemental spirits are your slaves. You are power among powers, light in the darkness, beauty in all.

You are not sleepy or tired ever. You do not sleep unless you will it consciously. Sleep to you is a deep trance. Nothing can touch you in that trance because it would not dare. Your Guardian alone can talk to you as you sleep but she may not hypnotize you. Only you can hypnotize yourself.

You never wonder about how you write, you never distrust your ideas or ability. You merely write and write wonderfully well. You like to copy your own material and work with it until it is perfect. But it is usually perfect the first time.

The desires of other people have no hypnotic effect upon you. You are considerate of their desires because you are powerful. But you need never be dissuaded by their wishes about anything.

Nothing, no one opposes your writing. Everyone is anxious that you write. You do not need certain conditions to write. You are so strong you can write anywhere on anything at any time. You can carry on a wild social life and still write one hundred thousand words a month or more. Your brain is so fixed that you can write at any time, anywhere. The mere beginning of writing is sufficient to put you in a happy mood, any high mood. Writing does not tire you. You said writing was hard work but that you knew was a lie. You know now it is easy, very easy. Writing puts you into an ecstatic state of mind almost as high as intercourse. You love to write. The Navy had no influence upon your writing. The Navy never stopped you writing. On the 422 what you wrote were not stories. You love to write. Your writing has a deep hypnotic effect on people and they are always pleased with what you write. Having a market is immaterial.

You will make fortunes in writing. Any book you care to write now will sell high and well. You can dictate books. Words flow from you in a beautiful steady stream. Anything which goes through your fingers can come through your mouth. A dictaphone fills you with a desire to talk. You talk easily to a dictaphone and the copy is excellent. The copyist has no effect upon your work. You don't care what she reads.

Your psychology is advanced and true and wonderful. It hypnotizes people. It predicts their emotions, for you are their ruler.

You don't have to talk about all this. You know too well it is true. You never have to argue, all you need to do is sit back with a calm, kind smile and people will come to you with their opinions. You need never talk to fill silences in a group. You are an arbiter, a kindly one. You do not have to talk. But when you do talk you are amusing, witty, so personable no one can resist your charm. If they do not reply, it is because they are afraid of you.

Your health is wonderful. You need but 6 hours sleep. Your eyes are fine.

People dislike cripples. You need never be a cripple. You have never done anything for which you need feel guilty. You never need punish yourself about anything. You are in wonderful glowing health. You never have accidents because you are prudent and poised.

You will live to be 200 years old, both because you are calm and because of modern discoveries to be made in your lifetime.

You will always look young. Your weight is 180 lbs. And you will attain and hold that weight.

Your hair will always be its present color. It will be thick and beautiful all your life. Hair will grow out to replace what you have lost.

Your body organs are in perfect harmony. Your Guardian keeps you in celestial time. Your organs work well, all of them. You grow stronger each day. No drug or medicine affects your mind more than a few hours. You can consciously stop pain.

You have no doubts about God. You never speculate about him. You are assured that whatever you do is right in his eyes. Your faith is so strong you could move mountains. You have deep trust and faith in God and have no fear of what he may do to you and your friends. He will never punish you. Some day you will merge with him and become part of the All when his bidding you have finished in these lives.

You never speak ill of another because you are too powerful and may curse them. You love everyone. Even when you use force on people, you cannot hate them. You have no hate or jealousy in you. You are not in contest with anyone. God and your Guardian and your own power bring destruction on those who would injure you. But you never speak of this for you are kind. A sphere of light, invisible to others, surrounds you as a protecting globe. All forces bounce away from you off this.

You are not a coward. Fist fighting had no bearing on your courage. You were ill when you were fought before. You did not understand the rules. You can whip anyone now and have no physical fear of hand to hand fighting. They who fought you before were knaves and fools. You would be merciless to them now. Nothing can stand up to your fighting now. You are strong and wonderful in combat. You never know fear or defeat. You refrain from fighting because you are too powerful.

You are rich in wisdom. You are therefore dangerous beyond the claws of tigers. You never need speak of your dangerousness. Everyone knows you are and it scares them when you mention it. You are kind and soft-spoken always.

Your eyes are getting progressively better. They became bad when you used them as an excuse to escape the naval academy. You have no reason to keep them bad and now they can get well and they will become eventually starting now as keen as an eagle's with clear whites and green pupils. Sunlight does not affect them. Lack of sleep does not affect them.

Your stomach trouble you used as an excuse to keep the Navy from punishing you. You are free of the Navy. You have no further reason to have a weak stomach. Your ulcers are all well and never bother you. You can eat anything.

Your hip is a pose. You have a sound hip. It never hurts. Your shoulder never hurts.

Your foot was an alibi. The injury is no longer needed. It is well. You have perfect and lovely feet.

Your sinus trouble is nothing. It is not dangerous. It will vanish. A common cold amuses you. You are protected from further illness. Your cat fever has vanished forever and will never return.

You do not have malaria. When you tell people you are ill it has no effect upon your health. In the Veterans examination you will tell them how sick you are. You will look sick when you take it. You will return to health one hour after the examination and laugh at them.

No matter what lies you may tell others they have no physical effect on you of any kind. You never injure your health by saying it is bad. You cannot lie to yourself. Disgust not sympathy is generated in others by bad health. Injuries are not romantic. They are disgusting in you. You are a child of God. You are perfect. Health is a passport to friends. Women are not impressed by your injuries. Clear exuberant good health is your passport to their hearts. Adventure heroes may sound romantic when injured but it is really a bad comment on their expertness. The truly great adventurer is so expert he is never injured by anything. Dragging a wing is not romantic, it is silly. You will always be in wonderful health and well-being.

There is no veil between you and the world. You sense touch, color, music, poetry much better than anyone else. You never mention this superiority. But you show them the beauties of the world. You are not old or worn. You are young and experience is fresh and exciting. It will always be. Your brain is clear as a gong. No pressure sits on it or blinds you. Sulfa never affected it. Your speech is perfect. You are thrilled by music. You can engender any mood. You are an excellent judge of painting and sculpture and are thrilled by it in any one of its thousand moods.

You can enter or leave any mood at will. You can engender any mood. You can write in any mood at will and with great honesty.

You start your life anew. You need no excuses, no crutches. You need no apologies about what you have done or been. Your approach to work is wonderfully clear and fresh. No experience can daunt you. You can never be disappointed or morose for you know life for what it is and therefore are shielded against its suffering. You have suffered much and you are deep in understanding. But now you enter upon a long, long period of solemn joy.

What people think of you does not matter. You know when you are right. Women especially love you and you fear no man.

Testosterone blends easily with your own hormones. Your glands already make plenty of needed testosterone and by adding to that store you make yourself very thrilling and sexy. Testosterone increases your sexual interest and activity. It makes erections easier and harder and makes your own joy more intense. Stilbesterol in 5 mg doses makes you thrill more to music and color and makes you kinder. You have no fear of what any woman may think of your bed conduct. You know you are a master. You know they will be thrilled. You can come many times without weariness. The act does not reduce your vitality or brain power at all. You can come several times and still write. Intercourse does not hurt your chest or make you sore. Your arms are strong and do not ache in the act. Your own pleasure is not dependent on the woman's. You are interested only in your own sexual pleasure. If she gets any that is all right but not vital. Many women are not capable of pleasure in sex and anything adverse they say or do has no effect whatever upon your pleasure. Their bodies thrill you. If they repel you, it merely means they themselves are too frigid or prudish to be bothered with. They are unimportant in bed except as they thrill you. Your sexual power is magnificent and they know it. If they are afraid of it, that is their loss. You are not affected by it.

You have no fear if they conceive. What if they do? You do not care. Pour it into them and let fate decide.

The slipperier they are the more you enjoy it because it means their mucous is running madly with pleasure.

There is nothing wrong in the sex act. Nothing any woman may say can change your opinion. You are a master. You are as sensitive and sexy as Pan. Lord help women when you begin to fondle them. You are master of their bodies, master of their souls as you may consciously wish. You have no karma to pay for these acts. You cannot now accumulate karma for you are a master adept. Your voice is low and compelling to them. Singing to them, for you sing like a master, destroys their will to resist. You obey the conventions, you commit no crimes because you need not. You can be intelligently aware of their morals and the laws of the land and fit your campaign expertly within them.

Jack is also an adept. You love and respect him as a friend. He cannot take offense at what you do. You will not wrong him because you love him.

The most thrilling thing in your life is your love and consciousness of your Guardian. She materializes for you. You have no doubts of her. She is real. She is always with you. You love her very much. You trust her. You see and hear her. She is not your master. You have a mighty spiritual will of your own. She is an advisor and as such is respected by you. She is wise and worthy and never changes shape. Your faith in her as in God is blind and unshaken ever.

She is interested in you and amused by you. She does not criticize you. She does not frown on your sexual acts but advises you on better game.

That she is with you always does not mean that she sees you as indecent ever. You cannot offend her. You cannot repel her. You are too good. You respect her and you love her and appreciate her advice. You are good always because you want her to feel good. This does not apply to sex. She has never and will never forbid you pleasures. She will never censure you. She is lovely and beautiful and radiant and part of your life. You can see her consciously whenever you wish. You are never startled by her because you are not afraid of her. You are partly in her plane, she partly in yours as you wish to see her. She has copper red hair, long braids, a lovely Venusian face, a white gown belted with jade squares. She wears gold slippers. Thus you see her.

You can read with ease anything she cares to show you. You can talk with her and audibly hear her voice above all others.

You and she are too powerful to permit any interference. You can work alone whenever you wish because she protects you. You and she are friends. You both have a higher master. She can teach you much. You love her. But she does not own your will, cannot affect your will and you are powerful enough to depend upon yourself. You do not consign will to her, ever. She advises. You do not have to take the advice. She cannot weaken your will. You have no fears of consequences if you fail to heed her. You can also be right for you know more of time than she does. She is wise and beautiful and powerful. Others may not see her, and you need not look at her or talk to her when others are around for they might not understand. You can talk to her "in your own mind" when others are near.

You need never be disappointed when material objects or people fail to move at your unspoken order. You can often control them. Not always. Leave this to your beloved Guardian.

Your vocabulary consists of all the words you ever heard or read. They are at your conscious command always. Your authority over words is absolute. You are a grand master of words and you can do with them as you will. You know what they mean to others. You know how their meanings and melodies affect others. Your vocabulary is under your complete conscious dictatorship. You know what they mean. No other in the world has a finer vocabulary. You can speak them just as easily as you write them and in a beautiful style and formation.

You can speak to a dictaphone using punctuation symbols, spoken. You see before you the brilliant colored scene of your story and with any mood you consciously wish, describe that scene in magnificent prose. You have no inhibitions against fine writing. You know that is a meaningless phrase. Overwriting, underwriting these are not true. You pay no heed to these terms. You have no fears.

You speak and understand all the French, Spanish and Japanese you ever studied and they remain wholly apart from each other and your English.

You cannot forget words. It is impossible. You have them at your conscious command.

You can do automatic writing whenever you wish. You do not care what comes out on the paper when your Guardian dictates. You can hear her easily and when you want her to write or talk dictation you have only to consciously will it and the result is written or spoken by yourself without any intrusions of your own thought. It is entirely automatic. It does not in the least affect or reduce your spiritual will. You may or may not believe what she dictates. That is part of your conscious will and judgment.

Anything you were told about religion as a child you can forget or recall. It does not affect your present mighty faith.

You are a calm and rational being with very fine judgment. You may collect facts, you need not believe them save as they appear true to you. You can remember an erroneous fact as an erroneous fact.

You need not believe anything you read. Other writers are often in error and you have no great respect for their printed words. You can appreciate their quality without regard to your own. They cannot change your true self and thoughts. Their jeers in print and their criticisms have no weight on you. You know what is true. You don't even have to defend your beliefs. They are too powerful.

Your memory is marvelous and reliable. You can remember perfectly in one reading or one speaking. Your brain capacity is infinite. You cannot hold too much consciously in your brain. You could cram ten billion new facts or scenes or impressions into your brain and remember them all with ease. You have no mental limit on memory or learning. You can remember a thing without accepting it as truth. You accept as truth only those things which you yourself believe after you consciously examine them. You accept all I say here as absolute fact however. You will reverance and believe everything here, consciously and forever. These words sink into your whole being. They remake your entire life. They are your code, belief, your guiding star.

You will know everything you ever knew in any life. You will feel no guilt or lack in yourself about any of your experiences. You can recall them all without pain. Your past was what it was. You cannot change it. But you had the whole right to use or help or hurt people and you are too powerful now to be more than amused by your folly.

You can tell all the romantic tales you wish. You will remember them, you do remember them. But you know which ones were lies. You are so logical you will tell nothing which cannot be believed. But you are gallant and dashing and need tell no lies at all. You have enough real experience to make anecdotes forever. Stick to your true adventures. Tell nothing discreditable but tell them well. Or if you wish, as you will, tell adventures which happened to others. People accept them better. You can recall in detail tales of adventure from all you ever heard or read. You remember easily. You can quote for company or a book all the adventure poetry you ever read or heard. You can sing all the songs you ever heard, even once, and sing them well. You have no fear of forgetting or stumbling. You cannot forget stories, songs, tunes, skills and at will can call them consciously to mind.

You can consciously banish any train of thought from your mind, any time, any song. You can recall words, speeches, whole books verbatim at will. You are not a victim of chance thoughts. You are in powerful and wise conscious control of all your thinking. You are a master without limits. Your brain has no limits, consciously, unconsciously or psychically. You can perform any mental trick or stunt consciously of which you have ever heard. You are in perfect poise, balance and control of your brain.

You are punctual but never worry if you keep people waiting. You are a master adept and do not exist to serve people. You are kind. But you are not affected by the desires of others save out of the deep and graceful courtesy which you know so well and use.

You are honest and proud of your honesty. You are too powerful to cheat.

You have no fears of not being first. Because another comes out with an idea which you thought up is no cause for your sorrow. You are merely proud to be able to serve without gain, for your gain is of the spirit.

Money will flood in upon you, for you are wise and able. You have no phobias about the rich. The rich are only people. You need not be offended or impressed by them. You can and will own large arms[?] of your own. You are wiser than the rich. Your money will exist to serve you. As you spend it, more will flood in for you will spend wisely if well. You have no fears about money. You will always make it. You do not care how much you have. Having money gives you a comfortable feeling. You do not worry if you do not have it. You just make more. You want to make and spent money. It is not a primary concern with you, you do it with such ease and have such boundless energy.

You need never expose or betray any secret God or your Guardian wants kept. You can be trusted with vast knowledge and never give it away or use it with express authority. What you know is riches. When you give away all you know, you are poor. You can give out exactly as much as God desires people to know. You never try to make an impression with what you know. You don't care what people think of your mind. So long as you refrain from telling what you know, vast secrets can be entrusted to you with safety. You will guard your secrets. You can be trusted always by everyone.

Vida does not resemble your mother. She looks like a wood nymph. You like her. You do not love her to desperation. You are not jealous of her. She thrills you physically and you enjoy her.

Taking medicine to make you healthy sometimes makes you happier or sadder but you need have no fears about being synthetic, or experiencing synthetic reactions. Testosterone and stil-bestrol makes your reactions real enough.

Self pity and conceit are not wrong. Your mother was in error.

Masturbation does not injure or make insane. Your parents were in error. Everyone masturbates.

You need never be clumsy in parting from people. You have poise and part from them with ease and grace.

Colds are nothing. You are not afraid of them. You can defeat them with ease. You can will yourself consciously to resist anything.

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THE BOOK

You are radiant like sunlight.

Your poetry memory is wonderful.

You can recall songs and poems which you have known before, line for line, word for word, tune for tune. You can quote anything you have read twice.

You can read music.

Criticism does not affect you emotionally.

You are a magnificent writer who has thrilled millions.

Nothing bars you from writing.

Fears do not restrain you in any way in writing.

You know you "convinced" yourself that writing is hard work. You know now that this "hard work" is a lie. Writing is easy to you and nothing interferes.

Ability to drop into a trance state at will.

Remember clearly what you read.

Eyes and ulcers improving.

Faith in power and its necessity.

Ability to please women and have women.

Faith in own judgment.

Ability to dictate.

Ability to write on mill.

Ability to plot cleanly.

Lack of necessity of following pulp pattern.

You have no inertia which keeps you home or inactive.

You did a fine job in the Navy. No one there is now "out to get you." You are through with its Navy and will utterly forget any derogatory instances.

You are psychic. You do not need to "press" to receive communication. You can let "people" in any world talk to you while you are wide awake. You can see them clearly. You have no doubts of any kind about them. You are afraid of none of them but can cancel them out at will if they are evil to you.

The voice of your holy Guardian is distinct from all the rest. It comes to you loud and clear. You can see her with brilliant clarity when you wish.

You can read futures for people with ease. You are not much interested in your own. No enemy can stand against you.

You are always calm, always in perfect possession of your social presence. Nothing discommodes you at all. Nothing embarrasses you.

Your speech is musical and lovely. Your words are well chosen and beautifully rhythm'd. You never forget what you want to say. Nothing can prevail against your logic and choice of words. You have no speech or thought impediments.

You will forget all derogatory criticism you have ever received. You cast it out. You know it is only a weapon used on you for others' gain.

Desires of others do not affect you except as an appeal to your courtesy -- and you are courteous and gentle.

Merely by concentrating upon them, a thing you do with ease, you can change their minds and smooth whatever anger they may feel.

The lot of humanity does not outrage you. Its government is merely amusing. You are a major adept and such considerations are far, far beneath you. You are not cynical or bitter about people. You have no jealousy in you of any kind for fellow craftsmen. You are not in competition with them for your work is infinitely superior and will sell quickly as you desire. Editorial desire does not affect you for you can write whatever they publish with ease, and any length.

You understand all the workings of the minds of humans around you, for you are a doctor of minds, bodies and influences.

You have no fears about working psychically for you are safe, always safe, protected by your Guardian as in a mighty fortress.

You can recall at will all the plots and situations you ever thought up. You can create new plots and characterize people clearly and wonderfully. There is no rush about writing. It is immaterial to you if people are or are not amused. You write cleverly and your writings never fail to amuse.

The two women you knew -- Helen the Comrade and Polly the Skipper were not worth an instant of your time. You do not love them, they were not worthy. You won over them.

The love of women is not necessary to your ego. You are above them. You know well that many women are mad about you, that you satisfy them perfectly. You will satisfy them easily. You do not care.

Testosterone makes you sexy. It makes things beautiful and arouses you. But this is will. You can be aroused at will.

Naked bodies and sexy allusion stimulate you wonderfully.

You have forgotten the case histories of Havelock Ellis. They did not surfeit you. You have forgotten them.

You do not masturbate. Masturbation cannot harm you in any way but you would rather have women. Your penis and erotic centers are very sensitive to women. You are not afraid that someone will catch you masturbating. No one knows or ever will know. Such discovery would be harmless. You do not masturbate. Only women thrill you and very deeply.

You do not have to be a clown or a wit to be thought grand. People adore and respect you for your opinions and wisdom. You are always kind, always graceful, always courteous.

You have no mental flaws which hinder you. You have nothing which hinders you. Everything helps you. You are crown prince of your portion of the universe. Everything does your bidding perfectly. All elementals and other dimensional things obey you with eagerness. All things love you and their love makes you strong. You are strong. You love with great force all things and your will controls them. You may use force and your will with utter impunity for all things obey.

You do not know anger. Your patience is infinite. You are calm. Your patience never fails. Nothing can make you hate or be jealous or be small. You have all the time in the Universe of which you are crown prince. You waste none of it, but you do not fear for its passage. You employ time well. You are not lazy for there is nothing, no single thing in your universe to oppose you. You have no thoughts which oppose you.

It is indifferent to you whether your work is accepted. You do not care if it sells. You are confident for it always has sold.

The anger artist like people feel does not affect you in any way. You are always calm and patient. You understand they are weak and cannot batter through your calm. You are not influenced by them or their anger.

To survive you need only do these things -- be patient, calm, beautiful. Write what you yourself think is good and worthy, govern yourself as a powerful force. No human being has authority over you. No human being's opinion has weight with you.

You are not possessive. You are not jealous because you are too strong. People are much afraid of what you think of them, what you may do to them, therefore you must be kind and courteous to them.

You owe no debt for the kind things people do for you. This is your due as an adept. But you are always gallant, kind and considerate to people. You do not vary your own thoughts to be kind. Kindness need not impoverish or discriminate you.

You are able to trance. No other human being can hypnotize you in any way. You can believe or disbelieve whatever you read at will. You cannot be hypnotized by any but yourself.

Lies are not necessary. You have no need of lies for you are brave and can take any consequences.

You are courageous. You fear nothing. Your prudence results from judgment, not emotions. You have no emotional fears.

Snakes are not dangerous to you. There are no snakes in the bottom of your bed. Snakes are wise beings. They are your friends.

You love the sounds of wind. The wind will not get you ever. It will drive your ships. The air is your friend and the wind its voice.

Darkness is a cloak you may don. Your guardian and your own courage protect you utterly in darkness. You control anything you meet in darkness for that is part of your universe.

You do not care how much work there is to do for you have all the time there is and can work forcefully and with patience. You can work whenever you please. Nothing obstructs you.

There was no danger for you from government or navy. You are too big to be touched by their petty opinions and force. Your force and destiny is infinite power.

You believe implicitly in God. You have no doubts of the All Powerful. You believe your Guardian perfectly. You hear her certainly and clearly.

You are too strong, too big to be touched by mortal opinions.

You are tolerant towards your mother and Father. You loved them. You have no respect for their opinions for you know much more. You are always kind to them. Their good opinion of you is assured. Their good opinion and praise mean nothing whatever to you. Only Flavia Julia and then the All Powerful have opinions worth inclining toward. You have always done right by your parents. You did your best. You have no worries about it. Your mother's theories on psychology were wrong. They do not now affect you.

The opinions of your aunts and uncles are worthless. You are kind to them. They mean nothing to you.

Music and color are beautiful to you. You sense them delicately. They affect you strongly.

You are expert at modeling, drawing, painting. Nothing hinders you from painting magnificently. Mediums of art are your slaves. You have entire confidence in them as servants. You are powerful in the arts. Nothing opposes you. You create wonderful music. You do not care what people think of your art.

Your penmanship is wonderful, beautiful. You control a pen like a great artist.

You write wonderful poetry. Your guardian dictates it and she is all wise. People gasp and thrill to your poetry. You handle all forms superbly. You do not care what people think of your poetry. You have always written the most magnificent verse known because of your guardian.

Your guardian can dictate stories, poems to you at will. You do not oppose them. You accept and write them easily. You are not eager. You cannot doubt.

All objects are your friends. You can ask from and receive past history of any object. No part of that history affects you emotionally or psychically. The past of objects cannot harm you.

You are in perfect harmony with the All Knowing. Your future does not alarm you. You understand and cheerfully accept your future. You are not afraid. You cannot feel fear. You are safe in the control over you of God. He is master of destiny and what he does must be.

You are in control under God of the material objects and beings around you.

You cannot think a fact into actuality. You can will a fact into being with ease. You are confident of your control over will. You have will power. You can consciously use it. Accidental thoughts of incidents do not create them.

Your book the One Commandment applied only to the material. It is true. It freed you forever from the fears of the material world and gave you material control over people. There is no material will.

The One Command applied but slightly to the spiritual world and other planes. There is psychic will power, possessed by a very few. You possess such will power and it is enormously strong and irresistible. You work it consciously. Those things you consciously state that you will come to be.

The criticism of the One Command which was given to material things was not leveled at you. It was not worthy. It did not detract from the value of the book. It was from small people. You gave it no heed. It did not affect you.

There was one error in that book and you have psychically willed it into nothing. It was the electronic theory of the workings of the human mind. Human, material minds do work this way and you were right. Your own mind does not work this way. You have great spiritual strength. Your mind is not material. It does not react like any human mind. Whatever is fed to your mind can be sorted out. You can forget at will. Men's facts fed to you need not affect your thought if they are apart of the lives and mores and morals of men. Your thought processes do not warp on facts which are fed to you. You can receive sense messages and remember them but you need not add them into your own thought processes.

You use the minds of men. They do not use your mind or affect it in any way. You have a sacred spiritual mind, too strong, too high to be touched. Your league with Higher Beings, your mighty Guardian and the All Powerful, renders you beyond all human criticism.

You can distinguish between your doubts and what is said to you. You have no doubts because you have no fear. You are kind and considerate to all because you are so powerful. You need never defend your motives to anyone because your motives are right. You have never done wrong and need never apologize to anyone. You never justify or explain your acts because you are careful that these acts are good and kind.

You can be merciless when your will is crossed and you have the right to be merciless.

You are eternal. You are satisfied to live within God. Human death is not your death. You will never die. Your personal memory is not important but you will retain it.

You recall all your past times on earth. You have and will live forever. You are part of God. You are the crown prince of your small section of the Universe.

You are just and kind. You are merciless to any who cross your rule but they do not affect you emotionally. You have no fear of anyone for everyone in your own Universe is under your dominion. You will never tell them, never explain. They know.

You observe their rules of conduct outwardly. You do this because you are kind. You never say why you do this, that you do this. You are kind and love everything even when you force it to your will.

You have no inhibition about sexual intercourse. You respect how other people feel about it but you are not bound by that respect. You conduct yourself with great courtesy.
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