Because of various problems with Blogger, I've copied everything as of November 26, 2012 over to WordPress. The new location is Ask the Scientologist. I am not deleting this blog and will still accept comments and answer questions here too, but any new articles will appear at the WordPress location. I apologize if this causes any problems.

Monday, March 31, 2008

Conspiracy Theory (part 2)

Perhaps the thing that annoys me the most is self-deception. People behaving badly, it's pretty clear to everyone that they are behaving badly, but they have these, you know, excuses. And somehow, that makes it OK for them to continue behaving badly.

Take the Church of Scientology.


(Sorry, old joke)

Take the Church of Scientology: As covered in the previous post, they have this wonderful excuse for everything bad they do. They are the target of a vast, super-powerful, immensely rich, evil, world-wide, trillions of years old conspiracy. A fictitious but very, very evil and powerful conspiracy, which the church must fight, with dirty tricks, lies, [the abusive practice formerly known as] fair game, lawyers, harassment and other crap.

The church is forced (I tell you forced) to use these criminal and illegal tactics because their fictional evil enemy does that all the time! Really! Trust me, the absolute proof of all this is in the mail.

Did I let slip that this super-powerful, super-evil, anti-Scientology conspiracy doesn't actually exist?

And, since it doesn't exist, there goes the Church of Scientology's only excuse for its very, very bad behavior.

I can hear the true believer Scientologists now, "If our beloved conspiracy theory is false, then why, oh why are we being attacked? And by whom?"

Ah! Where do the critics come from, if not from the Vast, Evil, Anti-Scientology Conspiracy?

They came into existence as a result of Church of Scientology footbullets.

If you trace any Scientology critic's history back to when and why they became angry at the Church of Scientology, you will find that the church shot itself in the foot, did something really, really stupid, hurt someone, refused to admit it or make it right--and the victim decided to do something about it.

Now, of course, Scientologists are not allowed to do that sort of investigation, but anyone else can easily track every single critic's history back to a point where the Church of Scientology did the exact wrong thing at the exact wrong time and really messed things up.

Example: GlossLip, the gossip blog. It was just happily posting celebrity gossip stuff in mid 2007, and there was news about Tom Cruise and Scientology. GlossLip reported what was out there and would have been happy as can be moving on to another celebrity, but ... wham! Vicious attacks by the Church of Scientology. Name calling. Ugly stuff.

What's a blog going to do? So GlossLip looked deeper into who and why it was getting attacked. The more investigation, and reporting, the more vicious the attacks. The more vicious the attacks, the angrier Dawn got. Wouldn't anyone? And the deeper the investigation went.

If the Church of Scientology hadn't done it's [abusive practice formerly known as] fair game, hadn't lied, hadn't over-reacted, GlossLip would quite probably have just moved on to the next celebrity gossip, making no further deal about Cruise and Scientology.

But because of the very, very stupid and vicious reaction of Church of Scientology, GlossLip is definitely angry. Sorry, Scientology, that's a footbullet, you created an enemy where none existed before.

And so it goes.

Anonymous wasn't the slightest bit interested in the Church of Scientology until the church used illegal and abusive tactics to attempt to suppress free speech on the Internet. Anonymous took that personally and just started to poke at the church's site. It got a bit rough, but it was in reaction to the church's stupid attacks.

Then the church really goofed. They pulled out their Great, Evil Conspiracy playbook and started really attacking Anonymous. Wild accusations, manufactured bomb threats, fake postings, all the usual "How to ensure that a minor annoyance becomes a dedicated enemy" footbullets.

Anonymous linked up with other victims of Scientology's abusive and illegal attacks and the recent protests were off and running. It never would have happened, not in a million years, if the Church of Scientology had simply respected the law and the rights of others. Another footbullet, another enemy of Scientology created by the Church of Scientology itself.

Do you see the pattern? Do you see cause and effect?

Pick any critic and trace their history back. There at the root of the problem was the Church of Scientology, doing something bad, something illegal, something unethical, and then refusing to admit it or fix it.

So, who is behind all the attacks on the Church of Scientology? Well, if you track it down, the original cause of all those attacks is, totally and completely, the Church of Scientology itself!
Gee, doesn't that make the Church of Scientology itself the Great, Evil, Secret, World-Wide, Super-Powerful, Anti-Scientology Conspiracy?

UPDATE: I just recalled that Hubbard himself said at one time that every single attack on Scientology could be tracked down to a failure on the part of the church to deliver what was promised. Today's church has forgotten that concept entirely.

Even Hubbard agrees with me!

Sunday, March 30, 2008

Conspiracy Theory

The Church of Scientology has an excuse. A really good excuse.

It is the excuse for why it is so litigious.

It is the reason it has to use [the abusive practice formerly known as] fair game.

This was given to me, not long ago, as the excuse on why the Church of Scientology simply cannot ever be honest and open.

This is the reason it finds "Suppressive Persons" around every corner, why it can never admit to any wrong-doing, why it keeps everything secret, why it is failing, why it is attacked, why - well - just about anything that is wrong.

The excuse?

The Church of Scientology is under continuous attack from a world-wide, super-powerful, immensely rich, secret, evil conspiracy.

I'm not kidding. This is the ultimate Church of Scientology excuse for everything.

Who are the conspirators? Well, it seems to be, who else, the psychiatrists. Also the drug companies. Big media. And don't forget the international bankers. I think George Bush Sr. is in there somewhere, as well. And now, don't forget Anonymous. (Anonymous, you are part of something BIG!)

Are you not impressed?

Not only that, but, according to L. Ron Hubbard, these conspirators represent Whole Track Evil and have been battling Whole Track Good for trillions of years. ("Whole Track" means "from the beginning of time").

Pretty cool, eh?

Now for the proof that this is so:



Um, Hubbard said so?
That's about it.

Scientology used to claim that the conspiracy was why the IRS did not recognize Scientology as a religion, but that is no longer true.

Scientology used to claim that "big media" never gave Scientology a decent break because of the conspiracy, but that's no longer true either, for years "big media" has been significantly even-handed about Scientology.

And I don't see how the psychiatrists fit in. Where is the psychiatric anti-Scientology organization equivalent to CCHR? Where is psychiatry's Scientology attack videos?

Scientologists (illegally) infiltrated many U.S. Government offices and had free access to many, many documents. One thing they did not find was any evidence of that global, anti-Scientology conspiracy. They found lots of interesting documents, but nothing supporting that theory!

So, where is this big conspiracy? They can't have it both ways. If there is a big, all-powerful, world-wide, anti-Scientology conspiracy then absolutely no positive things could have happened, or they would have been short-lived at best. Since many positive things did happen, and continued, just where was the conspiracy?

Scientology might claim that it was their excessive litigation that forced those changes. But, now, think logically. If there were a super-rich, super-powerful conspiracy, don't you think they could afford 100 times the lawyers--out of petty cash? And if this conspiracy's entire purpose was to eradicate Good (assuming for the moment that Scientology represents that Good) would they have just given up and allowed those positive things to continue? Is it super-rich, super-powerful or not? Which is it?

There is no evidence at all of such a conspiracy. In fact, all the facts available show that there couldn't be such an super-powerful conspiracy. The whole conspiracy theory just doesn't hold water!

So, in summary, after 58 years, the Church of Scientology has never found any evidence that their beloved conspiracy exists. On the contrary there is tons of evidence that such a conspiracy doesn't exist.

Perhaps Scientology's big conspiracy theory persists simply because it is a convenient excuse for Scientology's continued bad behavior.

Ya' think?

Friday, March 28, 2008

The Third Option

The Church of Scientology is forbidden from "defending" itself by Hubbard. Hubbard said "Attack, never defend!"

Now, everyone knows what the church does to critics. It used to be called "Fair Game". Now I guess we have to call it "The abusive tactic previously known as Fair Game."

The church believes that anything destructive can and should be done to someone "declared Suppressive" -- both legal and illegal.

Recently it was Gregg from Boston. He is an active critic who, for some reason, the church singled out for attack (by TATPKAFG - "The abusive tactic..."). Apparently, after trying many things they finally got some minor complaint to stick.

Is this what an honest organization would do?

It is and has been much worse. Search for "Scientology Fair Game" for many examples. Google "Paulette Cooper". Or just see any recent news article about what the Church of Scientology is doing. The church is following Hubbard's orders to "attack, never defend".

But is that what an innocent organization would do?

The church calls in their lawyers and tries just about any legal action against critics, as with Gregg of Boston, as with the recent attempts in Clearwater. These actions are mostly not successful, but they do waste a critic's money and time, and they may sully the critic's reputation.

But is this what an decent organization would do?

The church dredges up past negative information on critics, even old, known-to-be-false information. The church creates negative information about critics, such as bomb threats. Any positive information is, of course, buried. Any negative information is magnified. Often it is just false accusations, but because the church usually does this anonymously (ironic, that) the accusations cannot be easily refuted or stopped.

But is this what an honest organization would do?

There are stories about critics being stalked by menacing men, intimidating people claiming to be "process servers" showing up at critics' doors, critics' property being damaged, even critics' pets being poisoned. These things are believed to be the handiwork of the Church of Scientology. Sometimes a critic is scared into silence, but such stories only increase the number and dedication of critics in general.

No honest, decent, innocent organization would do these kinds of things!

The church claims that all the accusations are false-false-false, but it does not react as an innocent organization would react. What it does do is try to cover up evidence and silence or "discredit" critics. What it does not do is answer the questions raised.

The actions of the Church of Scientology are not the actions of an honest organization!

What is lost, I believe, in all this battling is an idea of what this whole fight would look like if the Church of Scientology were an honest and decent organization.

Here's an example of what an honest and decent response to the reports of crimes, abuses and fraud would look like. This is what a basically good church would say.
"We are very concerned about these reports. We welcome an open, independent and thorough investigation into any and all reports. We will assist any such investigation to our fullest ability. We want to clear our good name. If any crimes are uncovered, we will do everything we can to see that those responsible within the church are brought to justice."
But, of course, just saying that is not enough. The ethical, moral and honest thing to do next is to then encourage and support an independent (not Scientology-linked) investigation of everything. Open the church's compounds, shine the light into every corner. Let everyone within the church talk freely without supervision or punishment. Purge the criminals, stop the abuse, see that it never happens again. Let all who are held against their will go free. Let families be reunited. Stop all attempts to "fair game" people. Continue these actions until it is clear that all criminals in the church have been located and brought to justice and that crimes and abuses are no longer being committed or tolerated by anyone in the church.

But just compare that with what the Church of Scientology has said; What it has done.

You see, the church believes that there are only two possible courses of action, defend or attack, but they are forbidden by Hubbard the option of defending themselves. They believe they must, therefore, attack, even when they are guilty.

I suggest that there is a third option:
Be open and honest

Wednesday, March 26, 2008

Scientology's Biggest Enemy

Anonymous' biggest ally in its effort to bring down the corporation of Scientology is ... David Miscavige, the leader of the Church of Scientology.

By this I mean that Miscavige has done and is doing more to damage the Church of Scientology than anyone else in its short history.
  • He has destroyed the church hierarchy,
  • He has destroyed the technology,
  • He has abandoned any past workable activities within the church,
  • He has gotten rid of or destroyed any effective leadership within the church,
  • He has created enemies everywhere in the world,
  • He has created an operating climate within the church that promotes criminal activity as the preferred method of operation,
  • He has converted the church from a service organization to a parasitic donation-with-no-exchange organization,
  • He has destroyed any credibility the church might have had by spouting his easily disproven lies,
  • He has destroyed any legitimacy for his "religion" by always rejecting religious actions and always embracing aggressive business practices,
  • He has and is alienating all the members of his church by treating them as enemies or, at best, a large money bag that can simply be squeezed for more money constantly,
  • He has committed and continues to commit crimes that put the whole church at risk,
  • And so much more.
The Church of Scientology is weak and getting weaker. The membership is shrinking so fast it could be said to be imploding. Money is flowing out of the church much faster than Miscavige can force the parishioners to cough up more. The church can no longer spend money on its attacks in the quantity it used to.

However, do not be fooled into thinking that Miscavige is not dangerous. He is unstable and unpredictable. He is capable of great evil and he does not feel constrained by laws, ethics or morality. While his actions become less and less effective, they can also be randomly destructive.

One side note: I am truly sorry that those near Miscavige are getting hurt, and it is an unfortunate side-effect that the work to get rid of the criminals of Scientology does cause Miscavige to be even more cruel to those near him. I can only hope that those people can escape. However, the fact that people near Miscavige are getting hurt is no reason to mitigate the attacks.

When Anonymous says they are attacking the corporate evil that is the Church of Scientology, Miscavige "knows" that they are attacking him, personally. He is taking it very, very seriously.

So, it is important that Anonymous not take it seriously. The best weapon to use against Miscavige is Miscavige. Meaning: Laugh at him. He can't stand being laughed at. Point out what an absolute fool he is. Let everyone know what he has done and is doing. He is insane. He is a criminal. He is unstable. Laugh at him because he is ridiculous. He may just take the final actions to destroy the corporation of Scientology himself.

I've seen various suggestions about what the theme of Anonymous' May protest should be. May I suggest "Laugh!"?

Sunday, March 23, 2008

What is a Suppressive, Today?

To give a quick summary, a “suppressive” is, according to L. Ron Hubbard, someone who is still fighting a long-ago and long-lost battle. The suppressive is trying to destroy rather than help. And a suppressive wants to stop people from getting better.

Hubbard estimated that the number of suppressives was some 2½% of the population. At another time, he said that the number of true suppressives in the world were quite few, less than a dozen.

That's “suppressive” with a small “s”.

After Hubbard defined “suppressive”, he then created a long list of “crimes” against the Church of Scientology, or against himself, which, if someone was found guilty of committing one or more of them, they would be “declared Suppressive.” Meaning that the church considered that person “suppressive”. They didn't actually have to exactly fit the definition of “suppressive” but they were labeled “Suppressive”.

That's “Suppressive” with a capital “S”.

So, you have two different things here: A type of destructive personality, called, by Hubbard, “suppressive” and a Church of Scientology label called “Suppressive”.

It is important to understand that these are not the same thing. Originally, perhaps, the intention was that they were related, but as time went on, they became completely disassociated.

Over time, the list of Suppressive acts has been greatly increased and the added entries have been worded so generally that, well, pretty much anyone can now be considered, and labeled, Suppressive if the church so desires. In practice, a Suppressive is whoever Miscavige or the church says is one. They can decide to declare someone any time for any reason, or no reason—then cherry-pick from the list any of a number of very generally worded “crimes” to justify it. Because these “crimes” are so awfully general, they can never be disproved.

The practice of declaring someone Suppressive has simply become a way to keep the faithful in line. The threat of declaring a true-believer "Suppressive" is to threaten to take away what they believe is their one chance for eternal salvation. It is also a threat to cut them off from any family members or friends who are still in Scientology. For those who work for a Scientologist, being declared Suppressive means they will lose their job. For those business owners who have Scientology clients, it means losing their clients and, possibly, going out of business.

This is not a mild punishment. Being declared Suppressive by the Church of Scientology can, literally, ruin a person's life.

And understand, it is done without “due process”, without any strict “rules of evidence” and is usually done in secret. The accused is usually not present. If the accused does attend and tries to bring a lawyer to the proceedings, the Suppressive declare is immediate and automatic. Or, to put it more bluntly, if the church wants to declare someone Suppressive, there is no defense, no way to stop them.

In addition, if a church staff member or a parishioner uncovers information the church is trying to cover up, the church declares them Suppressive to ensure that they cannot talk with any other Scientologist. Therefore, it has become standard practice at the International Management compound to quickly declare anyone who leaves the compound, a Suppressive. This is to ensure that the things that go on at International Management cannot be disclosed to other Scientologists.

As a result, the number of people “declared Suppressive” by the Church of Scientology is now estimated to exceed the number of all Scientologists currently in “good standing”!

It is reported that Miscavige has said privately that all "wogs" (non-Scientologists) are suppressive, all Scientologists who are not on staff are suppressive, and, further, that all Scientology staff outside of his core group at International Management, are suppressive as well. And he has made it abundantly clear, many times, that he's not too sure about that core group either—most of those who have worked directly for Miscavige over the years have been declared Suppressive.

In fact, the only person in the whole world that Miscavige is positive is not a suppressive is himself.

Today, people can be, and are, declared Suppressive for these types of “crimes”:
  • Reading the “wrong” book, article, or blog,
  • Saying the “wrong” thing,
  • Listening to the “wrong” things,
  • Associating with the “wrong” people,
  • Thinking the “wrong” thoughts (yes “thinking”), as discovered in auditing sessions,
  • Mentioning that Miscavige's recent tech alterations violate “Keeping Scientology Working”,
  • Complaining about Hubbard being removed from Scientology.
Note that none of these include actually harming anyone or anything. The crimes here are for speaking, listening or thinking, not for actually doing anything.

In the Sea Org, at the level of International Management, the unofficial list has been expanded to include:
  • Getting pregnant and refusing to get an abortion,
  • Being married and refusing to get divorced when ordered to,
  • Trying to get more sleep than the four hours allotted,
  • Having the wrong “look” on your face when Miscavige is speaking (I'm not kidding),
  • Being at the wrong location at the wrong time when Miscavige is angry,
  • Defending yourself when a senior executive is beating you,
  • Refusing to violate LRH standard tech when ordered to,
  • Refusing to violate LRH standard policy when ordered to.
All these declarations, of course, have a domino-effect, because one of the most serious crimes in the Church of Scientology is “continued association with a declared Suppressive”. Every Scientologist, in order to stay in “good standing” with the church, is regularly faced with the requirement that they must “disconnect” (cut all contact) from parents, children, brothers, sisters, other family members and friends. Sadly, many do.

If a person refuses to stop talking with their declared parents, if they refuse to stop talking with their declared children or whoever, they are quickly declared Suppressive themselves.

Today, as a result of all this, those people labeled “Suppressive” by Miscavige and the Church of Scientology, consider it a badge of honor. These are the people who stood against tyranny. These are the people who stood up for what was right and good. These are the people who did what they knew to be the right thing despite heavy pressure by the church and by Miscavige against it.

That's what a Church of Scientology declared “Suppressive” is today: A hero.

Thursday, March 20, 2008

Scientologists: Don't you wonder?

L. Ron Hubbard wrote the books of Scientology. Over the many years of his life, he had the books reprinted many times, often with minor corrections and modifications. Years after his death, in the 1990's, David Miscavige had all the books revised and reprinted to "bring them back to source," requiring all Scientologists replace their libraries. Then, in 2007, Miscavige once again had all the books revised, this time radically, and required, once again, that all Scientologists replace their libraries at great cost. Are we supposed to believe that Ron, through all those years, through all his own re-readings and all those reprints, never noticed that his books were completely wrong?

Doesn't that make you wonder?

Do you know that "L. Ron Hubbard" is no longer, officially, the author of the books on Scientology? Did you know that the name "Hubbard" no longer shows up on the front page of the main Church of Scientology web site? Have you noticed that Ron's name and photos are disappearing from the events and from the publications? Instead, you see Miscavige's name and photos.

Doesn't that make you wonder?

When Ron was alive, he was very satisfied with his tech. In fact, he wrote "Keeping Scientology Working" in which he said it was complete and shouldn't be altered in any way. To alter any of his technology was the work of an enemy of Scientology.

And yet, years after Ron's death, his technology was radically changed. Everyone who had been trained before that time had their certs canceled and they were required to re-train under the new technology, even those who were trained personally by Ron!

Doesn't that make you wonder?

But, anyone who complains that Ron's "Keeping Scientology Working" policy explicitly forbids exactly that sort of alteration, has been immediately declared Suppressive. Most of those who knew Ron, worked with Ron, trained under Ron, have been declared and kicked out.

Doesn't that make you wonder?

As you know, the lavish events put on by David Miscavige are flashy and impressive. The news announced in these events is extraordinary: The Church of Scientology's expansion and impact on the world is amazing.

And yet, outside of those events and the church's own press releases, evidence of all those amazing things is missing. Every day there are news stories about Scientology, some positive, some negative, but lacking in all the news stories is any mention of those big wins announced in the events. You look at your local church and you see the place is virtually empty and the staff is struggling. Your local church has been that way as long as you can remember. If you know of an "Ideal Org", did you notice that, after all the fuss and bother, the church went back to almost empty and struggling? You look at Flag and you see it is much emptier than it was years ago, and the staff is struggling. Ron says a well run course fills up and a poorly run course will empty.

Doesn't that make you wonder?

Have you noticed that your circle of Scientology friends has been shrinking? Some Scientologists have been "declared". Others have moved away and quietly disappeared. Some are still around somewhere but they are no longer active or interested. It keeps happening. Do you see that Scientologists you know, who are good people, doing good work, have suddenly found themselves in serious trouble with the church? Do you see Scientologists, maybe even yourself, struggling for years to try to make progress, but not making it?

Doesn't that make you wonder?

And if you wonder about any of this, do you get the strong feeling that you'd better not ask any questions? Do you get the feeling that you'd better be careful or you'll be next?

And doesn't that make you wonder?

Sunday, March 16, 2008

An Open Letter to All Scientologists

Dear Scientologist,

I am writing to you in hopes of bringing some clarity to the recent upsets and protests.

L. Ron Hubbard speaks much about integrity, responsibility, honesty and ethics. These are good things. The world needs more honesty and people need more integrity, better ethics, and need to take more responsibility.

But we have a problem.

I'm sorry but I must be blunt here. You have given up your responsibility for your church. You have given all the responsibility for your church to unnamed and unseen “others” of church management. Most Scientologists only know of one person, David Miscavige, who is in charge.

You trust that your church management is doing a good job. You trust that they are doing the right things. But your only source of information on how and what management is doing is management's own event presentations, which are, obviously, produced to make management look good.

The actual actions and statistics of the Church of Scientology management are hidden. The actual people involved in church management, except for David Miscavige, are hidden.

You are told that all information from outside sources about the church is false, and that church management's event presentations are the only valid sources of information. And you believe, and follow that.

This is irresponsible.

It is your church. You are responsible for the Church of Scientology. You. Not David Miscavige, not some mysterious and unnamed “management team”, not “someone else”, you.

You have been told that your "responsibility" is to follow management's orders. This is not responsibility. "Obedience" is not part of any definition of responsibility. Responsibility involves knowledge and it includes action--knowledge you have gathered for yourself, not some spoon-fed, predigested presentation, and action you have decided is best, based on your own personal knowledge.

I won't tell you what you should do, except to say that you need to take responsibility. The information available on the Internet won't kill you. Millions of people have read everything available and no one has died from it. No one has even gotten sick. Scientology has certainly not made you weaker than those people. It is safe for you to look.

Some of the information may be upsetting. So? Is your faith so weak that it falls apart at the slightest contrary opinion? Don't you think you have the intelligence and awareness to spot truth and lies? I think you do.

Taking responsibility has never been easy, but it has always been necessary. It is time for you to step up and assume the responsibility you abandoned.

You should be ashamed that others have felt it necessary to take responsibility for your church. They might not understand and may be clumsy in their attempts to correct things. You would obviously be better at it but you haven't done anything.

Take responsibility for your church. It is time.

Friday, March 14, 2008

What's the deal with Anonymous and the bomb threat?

By now, you might have heard of, or seen, the video purporting to be from "Anonymous" that contains a bomb threat to the Church of Scientology.

Pretty nasty stuff, eh?

Whoever did that was evil.

Well, experts have examined the video and the method of its distribution and have determined that the video was almost certainly produced by ... the Church of Scientology.

The video was posted on youtube by "anonymousfacts". The Church of Scientology has admitted that they are anonymousfacts, but claim they didn't produce the video.

Hokaaaay ... then, where did it come from? It wasn't posted anywhere else. The official "Anonymous" sites repudiated the thing. It was first posted by the Church of Scientology themselves, on their youtube page. Any guesses as to who created the evil thing?

Additional information has been posted on Glosslip about this. From that post:
... what they are saying is the Scientologists have what seems to be the original source of the video, rather than a copy obtained from the internet. You can draw your own conclusions ...

The Church of Scientology has staged bomb threats against themselves before in an attempt to frame a critic. See "Operation Freakout".

So, whoever created the bomb threat was evil, weren't they? Gee, making a bomb threat, even against yourself, is a crime, isn't it?

Ironically, the Church of Scientology's greatest enemy is, and always has been, the Church of Scientology.