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, June 30, 2008

Scientology's Real Battle

The Church of Scientology's most important fight is not with Anonymous. While this is part of the fight, it isn't the main fight. The protests could go away, and the church's real battle would continue.

The Church of Scientology's key fight is not with any Scientology critic, either. Again, they are a factor, but they are only another aspect of the fight.

Even the church's battle with web sites such as Wikileaks, Wikipedia are not the real fight.

These web sites, people and groups are all factors in the church's ultimate fight, but the fight is much more basic than that.

The Church of Scientology is fighting Truth.

Hubbard always was a storyteller. From the beginning he wove a rather fantastic patchwork quilt with colorful patches of imagination stitched together with threads of truth. He included just enough truth to hold the whole thing together and carry it forward. It was exciting to some. It sold.

Perhaps this patchwork was as he intended, or perhaps he got carried away with his own vision and started believing his own stories. In any case, when he died, what he left the church to work with had become a bit tattered. What he had claimed for Clear and OT far outstripped what he had ever, actually been able to deliver.

In actual fact, this was true of most of Hubbard's claims. The incredible successes that he claimed for his life, his philosophy, his technology and his administrative practices were just not showing up. Anyone who could view the whole fabric of Hubbard's creation would see the great gaping holes. It wasn't holding together.

It is entirely possible that it is because of these gaps between promises and delivery that Hubbard instituted a considerable level of secrecy in the Church of Scientology. All the information about Clear and OT was "confidential". Even the "OT" information that Hubbard had written and spoken about openly in the earlier days became secret, now. In addition, the management and statistics of the church became hidden. Bit by bit, the church, its management, its practices, its results, went into hiding.

This trend continued and accelerated after Hubbard's death, with whole organizations for upper church management coming into existence whose location, staffing and purposes were very secret.

It became the rule, rather than the exception, to keep secrets—from the world, from Scientologists, even from staff. The church and its activities became shrouded in multiple veils of secrecy, confidentiality and misdirection.

And with this extensive secrecy, inevitably came lies and misinformation. And the veils of secrecy became perfect cover for crimes, abuses and fraud. Agents from the church operated "missions" that were unknown to all but a few individuals at the top. "Operation Snow White", an illegal and covert operation of infiltration of the U.S. Government was carried out by the church under Hubbard's direction. "Operation PC Freakout", the illegal and despicable operation against a journalist who only reported the truth, is another example of the many activities that could only be carried out because of the shrouds of secrecy that now constitute the very fiber of the Church of Scientology.

And for each covert operation that bent, or more often broke, the law, there was the need for more secrecy, more lies, more misdirection, more "cover stories".

And it became the way of life for the Church of Scientology. Even when there was no need to be covert, to lie, it was the way of the church. Even Scientology's outreach programs into society, which, in a normal church, would have been simple and open, were operated by front groups whose connections to the Church of Scientology were buried or concealed. And these front groups were then vulnerable to more abuses and lies.

And, because of all the secrecy, the abuses were easy to pull off. The crimes were simple to operate. No one could see. No one was looking. The little bits that were displayed to the world and to the general Scientology public were the carefully selected "clean" bits. "Everything is fine, everything is good. Look at this shiny bit."

But behind the curtain of secrecy, the activities of the Church of Scientology and its upper management became darker and darker. Without visibility, who would ever know?

But there is, and always was, one fatal flaw to all this. The victims of the church's abuse and crimes will talk. Some of the other people who knew about the discreditable secrets would decide to disclose them. The secrets were never, entirely, secret.

And so it has happened with the Church of Scientology. For many years, the church has used an army of lawyers, threats, lawsuits, "Fair Game" tactics, "disconnection", "Suppressive Declares" and other ploys in a frantic attempt to keep their secrets hidden. At times it almost seemed to work, but finally all the church's dodging and ducking has failed. Now these tricks can never work. As much as the church might fight against it, the truth about their activities is out. Very thoroughly and completely exposed. Every day another of the church's secrets is exposed, verified or elaborated on.

So, the Church of Scientology is not, actually, fighting any specific person or group. What the Church of Scientology is fighting is truth and the exposure of its lies. It has already lost—the truth is already out there—their lies are known. Even true believer Scientologists can no longer ignore the truth; they are learning and they are leaving.

Yet, somehow, the church still believes it can suppress the truth and convince the world of their lies. Lost in his own little world, David Miscavige, leader of the Church of Scientology, still pretends that his secrets are all safe and that, somehow, the world still believes the church's lies.

Tuesday, June 24, 2008

Scientology's Admin Tech

Hubbard obviously believed that he was an administrative wiz. He wrote thousands of administrative "Policy Letters" over the years, covering everything from the broad organization structure down to the minutiae of how to clean windows, handle your "in-basket" and how to write letters.

Each and every policy letter is supposed to be followed to the letter in every Scientology organization. That means all the churches and every business using Hubbard's technology.

Some of the dictates from Ron are fairly obvious and seem to work well enough. But overall the result of applying all his policy letters is to cause an organization to, at best, struggle for survival and, more commonly, fail.

There are many examples of how bad this "tech" is. For instance, the whole structure is designed for extreme micro-management. It just invites every level of management to meddle in every employee's job. However, to keep things simple, I'll just expand on one good-sounding but hugely flawed concept.


It sounds okay. Every job someone does has one or more statistics that count the number of products that particular job produces. All the statistics are carefully graphed and actions are taken depending on whether the "stat" went up or down, and by how much.

Sounds like a lot of busy work, but doesn't sound harmful, does it?

It is.

Statistics: a good way to destroy your organization.

Oh, it's a real good idea to know how many widgets your company sold, and how much money in and money out. In general you do need that kind of information and every business does that kind of record keeping.

But every person, every job?

Here's the key part of this "tech". As part of the "handling" of statistics, if a person's statistic is up, that's good, they get rewarded. If their statistic is down, that's bad, they get punished.

Of course. What else would you expect?

And that is not the way to intelligently run a business. Anyone with real world business experience can see what's wrong immediately.

Judging a person's performance on their job by only counting "things" produced in a time period focuses attention narrowly on today or this week. Long-range ideas that might interfere with production for a few weeks, but would greatly improve things long-term will always be abandoned. Actions that improve quality, but decrease quantity must always be ignored. Things that would improve customer service, but which interfere with "getting the stats up" will never happen.

And, because the managers at every level are rewarded for "up stats" and penalized for "down stats" the whole structure becomes narrowly focused on "getting the stats up", every person, every job, every level.

The inevitable result of "stats" is "stat push". This is a heavy demand for ever-higher statistics from management and the frantic doing anything and everything to be able to report higher statistics by the worker.

Imagine a job, a section, a department, a division or a corporation where things like planning, scheduling, improvement, coordination, cooperation, responsiveness are all ignored in favor of "getting the stats up". That's chaos and disaster. It's deadly.

Imagine what happens when a worker must endlessly report higher and higher numbers of products, "or else!" Either the quality goes out the window, or the numbers are faked. As the demands for higher "stats" continue, it is, inevitably, both.

Another side-effect is that the statistics become less and less connected to reality. This is why the Church of Scientology reports eight million members (or is it twenty?) when reality is so much less: They have counted the "Scientologists statistic" for years and the statistic has been a flat-out lie. This is why you can't get off the mailing list: That would cause the "bulk mail out" statistic to go down, and that can't happen. This is why Scientologists get super-hard-sell pressure phone calls for money on Wednesday night: Stats are reported on Thursday and must be up "no matter what!"

The end result is crap products, upset employees, angry customers and eventual and inevitable business failure. And that is solidly built into "statistics" as defined and managed by the Hubbard Administrative Technology.

And, while statistics is considered one of the more important pieces of Hubbard's Admin Tech, it isn't the worst, by far. But that's enough for a sample.

A few times, some Scientologist has attained managerial status in a department of a major corporation and secretly implemented Hubbard Admin Tech in his department. Not going to name any names, but the departments so "enhanced" became disaster zones. Customer and employee complaints helped upper management track down and eradicate the Hubbard Tech to recover sanity. It really doesn't work.

For the True Believers of Scientology, this is hard to take. Their business fails and they blame themselves for not "applying it correctly". But the harder they try, the more exactly they attempt to apply Hubbard's instructions, the deeper they get into trouble. Unless and until they recognize that the fault lies with Hubbard's policies, they can't escape the endless downward spiral of hopelessly applying his policies more and more strictly while their business tanks and their employees suffer.

The Church of Scientology runs strictly on Hubbard Admin Tech. You will have noticed how effective they are. Anyone escaping from Scientology's Sea Org has horror stories relating to Hubbard's Admin Tech and the organizational insanity it engenders. This is just another reason why the Church of Scientology has failed, is failing and will always fail.

Wednesday, June 18, 2008

Scientology: Stopping Communication

If I had to pick one primary, overriding characteristic of the Church of Scientology, it would have to be "stopping communication". Beyond anything else the church does, this is what it does best and most.

Now, I do recognize that this is quite an ironic statement about a church that sells a number of "Communication Courses" and brags that its technology "increases your ability to communicate", but there it is.

The Church of Scientology just does not like any communication that it does not control completely and tightly. The disorderly and uncontrollable Internet drives it completely crazy. It would shut down all references (except its own) to Scientology on the Internet, if only it could.

Questions, comments, stories, discussion, documents and letters: The Church of Scientology opposes everything out there on the Internet and uses all sorts of tricks, both legal and illegal, to try to suppress it.

While the Church of Scientology does support pro-Scientology web sites and pro-Scientology blogs, these are always closed sites. No discussion. Any open discussion, where a negative opinion or fact might appear, is vehemently fought by the church.

But the Church of Scientology's abridgment of communication is not restricted to the Internet. Far from it.

The restriction of communication for new recruits starts early. One of the first things a new Scientologist does, once they have truly accepted the basic doctrines of Scientology, is to drop out of communication with friends and family. At this point, there really isn't any official church requirement that they do so, it just happens rather automatically. The new Scientologist gets wrapped up in the new terminology, the new concepts, the new ways of "communicating" (often referred to as the "Scientology stare"). They no longer feel much connection with the real world. To non-Scientologists, it sure looks like people doing the Scientology "Communications Course" become considerably worse at communicating!

The official restrictions from the Church of Scientology come soon afterwards.

Remember, this is an organization that claims that communication is key, and that Scientology "improves communication"!

One of the few ways that a new Scientologist may still communicate with friends and family will be their attempts to get everyone they know into Scientology. The church even teaches "dissemination drills" (sales patter) for this purpose. Of course, their friends and family will have questions and concerns, especially about the worrisome things they can see and read about Scientology. And this is a problem. Anything negative about Scientology is forbidden and these questions inevitably will concern negative things about Scientology.

The Scientologist may be initially instructed by the church to "handle" their friends and family, but if friends and family still refuse to buy into Scientology's view of things, if they still mention anything negative about Scientology, the Church of Scientology will demand that the Scientologist "disconnect" from (sever all communication with) their friends and family.

At this point, the cessation of communication is official Church of Scientology policy and is strictly enforced.

Keep in mind, this is still the group that prides itself on "improving communication!" And, every chance it gets, it stops communication.

And it does get worse. So far, the Scientologist has been allowed to stay in communication with friends and family only if those friends and family carefully avoid saying anything negative about Scientology. Many family members of Scientologists have learned this and will carefully avoid talking about Scientology with the Scientologist.

But if the Scientologist joins the Sea Org and especially if the Scientologist goes to the International Management compound in Hemet, the restrictions on communication become draconian.

Staff at the "Int. Base" in Hemet are not allowed to own or use cell phones. They are not allowed to own or use a radio or TV. They are not allowed to own a computer and have no access to the Internet. Their letters out are read and censored, their letters in are read and, if deemed unacceptable, discarded without notification. All staff phone calls must be made from specific phones which are monitored by security staff. As a result, staff rarely communicate outside the base, and when they do, the communications are as bland and short as possible. At the top of the Church of Scientology, where, one can assume, Scientology is applied 100%, all day, every day, all communication is stopped!

Stopping communication. It's what the Church of Scientology does.

Sunday, June 15, 2008

Scientology's Leader, David Miscavige, Doesn't Like You

It's true. David Miscavige, leader of the Church of Scientology does not like you. In fact, he thinks you are a Suppressive Person.

You may have noted that I haven't said specifically who this "you" refers to. This is because it doesn't matter who you are, David Miscavige really doesn't like you. You disgust him.

He said so, many times.

If you are a "wog" (non-Scientologist), of course he hates you. You are beneath contempt until you become enlightened and accept Scientology as the One True Path. Then you would graduate to the exalted status of Public Scientologist.

And Miscavige really hates Public Scientologists. He hates going out where Public Scientologists can see him and talk to him. Public Scientologists are all Suppressive Persons. Yes, he has said exactly that. Public Scientologists are scum. They never give Miscavige enough money or enough volunteer hours. If they were True Believers, they would go deeply in debt, donate all their money to him and join staff. All Scientologists should become Scientology Staff.

And Miscavige really loathes Scientology Staff. "Outer Org" (non-Sea Org) staff are all Suppressive. Yes, Miscavige has said so. Loudly. They don't work long enough hours, they actually have an outside life, outside interests. They usually have a second job (to pay the bills) instead of working full time at the Org. They are all off-purpose dilettantes. The Outer Orgs are all failing. Scientology's statistics are crashed. Orgs are empty. It's not Miscavige's fault! No, it's all the Outer Org Staff's fault. With Miscavige's "Ideal Org" design, he hopes to replace all the Outer Org staff with video terminals in the public spaces. The videos, carefully designed by Miscavige, can be trusted to disseminate "correctly", while Outer Org staff are all incompetent. And, further, if Outer Org Staff were at all True, Dedicated Believers, they would join the Sea Org.

And Miscavige really, really hates Sea Org Members. They are all Suppressive Persons. He has yelled this, laced with many obscenities, during top level meetings. Sea Org Members are failing to handle the horrible failures of Scientology around the world. It is not Miscavige's fault that Scientology is failing everywhere! No, it's not! Miscavige's ideas and his orders are perfect. But all those incompetent and, yes, Suppressive Sea Org Members, who were supposed to "make things go right", have failed. Yes, it's all their fault! Miscavige has already declared thousands of people Suppressive. The Scientology International Management base in Hemet has gone from over one thousand to just a few hundred Sea Org members. And they are all locked behind razor wire. But still the Church of Scientology is failing. It isn't Miscavige's fault! He knows that there are still Suppressives at the base and he will continue declaring them Suppressive and locking them up until he roots out every last one, even if he has to declare everybody Suppressive. Yes, he has said that.

The only person Miscavige is absolutely sure is Good and is not a Suppressive is ... Miscavige. Yes, he is probably the only person in the whole world who is not Suppressive.

So, if you're not David Miscavige, then David Miscavige hates you. You are a Suppressive Person. Miscavige said so.

Friday, June 13, 2008

The Church of Scientology Cries "Nazi!"

I really hate this. Anyone who wants to vilify a leader will call him a "Hitler". Anyone who wants to vilify a group will call them "Nazis". It's dumb. It's overused. It's pretty much always misused.

And so it is with the Church of Scientology. They've used this stupid trick for years. But now they're using it almost all the time in an attempt to defame their critics and position themselves as "poor victims". They hope to trick people into subconsciously thinking things about the Church of Scientology and its critics that simply are not true.

So, lets take an in-depth look at the subject of "Nazi", the Church of Scientology and its critics.

The definition of Nazi is:
An adherent or advocate of policies characteristic of Nazism; a fascist.
The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fourth Edition.
The definition of fascism is:
A system of government marked by centralization of authority under a dictator, stringent socioeconomic controls, suppression of the opposition through terror and censorship, and typically a policy of belligerent nationalism and racism.
The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fourth Edition.
Do the critics of the Church of Scientology have a centralized authority under a dictator? Do the critics of the church advocate socioeconomic controls? Do the critics practice suppression of opposition through terror and censorship?

Nope. None of those.

There is no centralized authority, no dictator. No critic is advocating any socioeconomic controls.

Do the critics suppress opposition? Actually, most critics of the Church of Scientology quite enjoy a good debate with Church of Scientology representatives or other Scientologists.

All the critics of the Church of Scientology have made it very, very clear, many times, that they do not have anything against Scientologists nor against the belief system of Scientology. At times, they actually defend the Scientologists' rights to believe as they wish, if comments get too critical of Scientologists. The critic's opposition is specifically and only to the organization known as "the Church of Scientology".
Aside: It must be noted that a group known as "Anonymous", when they first decided to attack the Church of Scientology, did use some unfortunate tactics, such as denial-of-service against websites, prank phone calls and faxes and the like. However, it should be carefully noted that it was long-time critics of the Church of Scientology who convinced these people to cease these ill-advised and short-lived attacks. These tactics are no longer sanctioned by Anonymous, and were never sanctioned by any critic.

It should also be noted that the so-called "terror tactics" against the Church of Scientology, such as reports of white-powder letters and bomb-threats, are believed to be products of the church's own "black ops" department, OSA. The FBI investigation of such incidents found no connection to anyone associated with any critical group. The Church of Scientology has a long history of trying to frame people they don't like, including creating fake bomb-threats.
Let me be very, very clear. If the Church of Scientology reformed and quit committing crimes, or if the Church of Scientology ceased to exist -- but all Scientologists continued to believe in, and practice, Scientology -- the critics would be quite happy. There is no campaign against the belief of Scientology nor against Scientologists.

So far, the label of "Nazi" just doesn't fit when applied to the critics of the church.

Dare we take a look at the Church of Scientology? Normally, I really would not care to do such a comparison, but the church keeps yelling "Nazi! Nazi! Nazi!" so, I'm afraid, this look needs to be taken.

Is the Church of Scientology run under a central authority, under a dictator?
Yes. All of the Church of Scientology empire, every church, every group, every front group, every Scientologist is specifically under the control of the main Church of Scientology organization, International Management.

The church's International Management is under the sole control of one person: David Miscavige. Recently, Miscavige decreed that his orders are absolutely senior, taking precedence over anything and everything else in the church, including anything written by L. Ron Hubbard. Yes, that is the characteristic of a dictator: Absolute control.
So far, the Church of Scientology does match the definition. But let's not be too hasty.

How about stringent socioeconomic controls?
Within the Church of Scientology empire, International Management and David Miscavige do have absolute socioeconomic control. This is completely true.

Every penny earned or spent by any church, group or front-group is tightly controlled by International Management. They require strict reporting. Specific percentages from each of these groups must be sent to International Management or allocated exactly as International Management dictates. Specific "earning targets" are set and enforced by International Management. In addition, International Management has final authority on staff postings, staff pay, services offered and all planning at all levels of the empire. Even the official events and parties are all centrally planned and scheduled by International Management.

International Management doesn't have legal authority to dictate to the individual Scientologists. However, because they have the power to banish anyone from Scientology for any reason, their powers in that area are absolute. When they give orders to the average Scientologist, you can bet they are complied with, or else!
Unfortunately, so far, the Church of Scientology is still matching the definition for fascistic.

How about the suppression of the opposition through terror and censorship?
It is well known that the Church of Scientology is the most litigious church in the history of the world.

Critics of the Church of Scientology are inevitably declared "ENEMY" by the church. All critics:
"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."
Under this policy and many others of similar ilk, the Church of Scientology carries out a systematic plan to silence and, ultimately, destroy its critics.

It is well documented that the Church of Scientology even tries to frame its critics for crimes they did not commit!

In addition, the Church of Scientology commonly prints libelous handouts about its critics and passes them out in the critic's neighborhood, and has even used such libel to cause some critics to lose their jobs!

Following Hubbard's specific instructions, the church works quite hard to sue any and all critics to bankruptcy, if possible. The church's biggest expenditure, by far, is for lawyers and private investigators--who are assigned the job of tracking down and silencing critics.

While there is no hard evidence that the church uses "terror" to silence critics, the church does rely on intense fear as much as it can.

It is very, very true that many critics of the Church of Scientology have ceased speaking out, not because the problems were resolved, but because the critics simply became fearful for their lives and livelihood.
Further, it is the aim of the Church of Scientology to see that the whole world becomes a "Scientology World", a "Cleared Planet". They want all businesses to run using "Hubbard Tech". They want all justice to be "Scientology Justice". They want all peoples to "enjoy" the benefits of Scientology.

Finally, you need to know that Germany is looking at banning Scientology because it perceives that Church of Scientology has too many characteristics of the kinds of fascistic groups that Germany has vowed will never again gain power in Germany.

I'm sorry, but this is really quite disturbing. I don't like this at all. I refuse to call the Church of Scientology a Nazi organization. I refuse to call the Church of Scientology a fascistic organization.

But I will point out that, if the Church of Scientology continues to shout "Nazi! Nazi! Nazi!" in an unethical and poisonous attempt to libel their critics and warp public opinion, such a comparison as I have just made will, inevitably, be made by others. And, in any such comparison, the Church of Scientology will not come out looking good.

The Church of Scientology would be well advised to temper their behavior before this unfortunate comparison takes place by someone less courteous than I.

Monday, June 9, 2008

Scientologists: What Is True?

He who controls the information, controls the thought.

What is true is what is true for you.
-L. Ron Hubbard

Men occasionally stumble over the truth, but most of them pick themselves up and hurry off as if nothing ever happened.
-Sir Winston Churchill

During times of universal deceit, telling the truth becomes a revolutionary act.
-George Orwell
L. Ron Hubbard has said that one of the reprehensible control techniques of a Suppressive Person was to tell you "it's all bad over there!" to get you to stop looking outside of their control. That message: "Bad, dangerous, evil!" stops your reach and keeps you from confronting and perceiving. If you hear that message, recognize that someone is trying to control you.

Unfortunately, that is the message the Church of Scientology enforces on its members. "Newspapers, magazines and other media are under the control of Suppressives!" "Reporters are bad." "The Internet is bad and very dangerous."

And what are the only "safe" information channels for Scientologists, according to the church?
  • Church of Scientology briefings,
  • Church of Scientology web sites,
  • Church of Scientology publications and
  • Church of Scientology events.
That's it.

So what excuse does the Church of Scientology give for being so restrictive on what Scientologists can see and read?

First, Scientologists are told that reading or viewing anything from outside the Scientology bubble will upset them. They are told that if a Scientologist gets upset, they would lose all their gains from Scientology and would get sick.

So, according to the church, Scientology makes people weaker! Non-Scientologists learn to handle the upsets and confusion of life, and get on living, but (the church wants you to believe) a Scientologist's gains can be undone at any time, with just a bit of "bad news". Do you buy that one?

Secondly, and more importantly, Scientologists are told that certain words will harm them. Scientologists are told that the Scientology confidential materials will cause you harm, and could even kill you. And, what is really scary is that the confidential materials have been disclosed. Confidential information is "all over the Internet".

And yet...

No one has died. No one has even reported any ill effects from reading these materials. The materials have now been read by millions, and nothing bad has happened to anyone as a result.

Which is true? Will the confidential materials kill anyone who reads them, or are they harmless? On the one hand, Ron, who worked out these high levels claimed they were deadly, and had almost killed him. On the other hand, millions of readers are unharmed. Which is most likely true?

It may be hard for Scientologists to come to terms with this, but the confidential materials are proven, in the real world, to be completely harmless.
[I]f anything I tell you, or have ever told you, is discovered to differ from the individual observation...then it isn't true! It doesn't matter whether I said it was true or not!
-L. Ron Hubbard Scientology & Effective Knowledge.
The Internet, therefore, is not deadly-dangerous to Scientologists, or anyone else. Scientologists can, safely, look around. Likewise, newspapers, magazines and other media are also not deadly-dangerous to Scientologists.

Scientologists: It is OK to look around. Really.

But why would a Scientologist want to look outside the safe, Scientology bubble? After all, it's all bad news, lies and attacks, isn't it?

First, the answer is: No, it isn't all bad news, lies and attacks. But that isn't the reason to look.

The reason why is simply: You need to know.

When you're talking with friends, family, acquaintances, co-workers, you need to know.

When you're sending money to the Church of Scientology, or volunteering your time, or disseminating Scientology, you need to know.

When you're evaluating what you hear, what you observe, what you decide, you need to know.

You can't stick your head in the sand and hope that someone, somewhere is watching out for you and everything you care about. You need to know.

And it is safe to look.

Yes, you may discover things that upset you. So? Would you rather know the truth, or would you prefer to continue "happily" living a lie? Besides, if you know the truth, you can handle any problems. That's the way to handle an upset.

But where can a Scientologist turn for more information? I would like to suggest a place you can find a lot of information and verify it for yourself.

My recommendation for Scientologists who want to start finding out the truth is to go to Wikipedia:Scientology.

There is a good reason I think that this is a great starting point. First, it has been fought over for a long time. The Church of Scientology, and the critics of Scientology have been back and forth on all the Scientology-related items. Finally, these pages were locked down. Additions and changes need to be discussed and worked out. No one is allowed to just put down opinion, rumor or false information. Citations are required.

The result is quite readable for a Scientologist. Since just about every statement is backed up with some pretty reliable citations, it is easy to go to and check the source material. You may stay within Wikipedia and peruse many Scientology-related subjects, or use links referenced by Wikipedia to explore other sites.

For in-depth investigation, you will undoubtedly want to explore other sites, but, like I said, the Wikipedia coverage of Scientology is a fairly well-balanced starting point.

That's my advice. You do need to know what the truth really is. You need to look. It's ultimately up to you to determine for yourself what is true.

Sunday, June 8, 2008

Scientologists: How Would You Know?

Dear Scientologists,

Let's pretend. Just so we can take a look at something, let's pretend that something that you are sure is impossible, actually happened.

Let's pretend that a Suppressive Person took control of the Church of Scientology. Of course you know that's impossible, but just pretend, OK?

How would you tell?

Upper management of the Church of Scientology is hidden away. Oh, everyone knows the Hemet location, the Hollywood building, the buildings in Clearwater, but, really, the activities and personnel of International Management are pretty well hidden. It's hard for the regular Scientologist to see what's going on.

So what would you be able to see if an SP was running things?

Sure, we'd expect reports of problems, crimes, beatings, abuses, lies to leak out from the Int. Base, but those reports wouldn't be visible to Scientologists. Those reports would just be rejected as "entheta", "hate-crimes" and "attacks". Scientologists wouldn't be allowed to see those.

Another obvious one would be that Scientology statistics would tank. But, then again, those are not displayed anywhere for Scientologists to see. Scientologists get that kind of information from the big events, and those statistics aren't complete. You see a graph, but no scale. You see the scale, but the time range is missing. You just see "3X" but with no data on "three times what?" No, you can't tell anything from those flashy displays, and the real statistics are hidden.

Another sign would be that all those who personally worked with Ron, especially those in top management, would be removed. You wouldn't hear of them, you wouldn't see them. But, since top management is hidden, that would be hard to see as well.

So how would you know? How would you be able to tell?

Understand, of course, that we're just pretending here.

Well, you know, there would be signs.

The first sign that might be visible is a change in emphasis. Originally, the Church of Scientology was all about selling books, creating auditors and getting people "up the Bridge". That's what was always pushed. "Come in for service!" "Get trained!"

With a Suppressive in charge, you'd see the emphasis change to money. Prices would increase. Instead of selling books and services, the church would simply ask for money. Pure donations, where nothing was given in exchange, would creep in, and then would be pushed, harder and harder.

Another sign would be in the general population of Scientologists. More Scientologists would be "in trouble". More Scientologists would have to jump through more hoops just to stay on the Bridge. More Scientologists would just back off, give up, move away, become "inactive".

This would lead to nearly empty orgs, empty course rooms, sparse staff and orgs struggling. While the big events would still tell tall tales of "booming orgs", your local org would not be doing well at all. Groups in the field, if any, would close. You'd see nearby orgs "combining", for instance, a Class V Org with its nearby Celebrity Centre.

Another sign would, inevitably, be Hubbard's technology. In the name of "improving" the technology, the Suppressive would make alterations, large and small. Probably the SP would claim that "lost tech" had been recovered, but the so-called "source material" would not be displayed. Training would be changed, and changed again. Most Scientologists, being trained on this "improved" version of the tech would drop out, unable to actually apply the tech any more. Again, course rooms would empty and completions would crash.

Then, the next sign would be Ron's lectures and books. The SP would "discover" that these were somehow "wrong" and needed to be heavily edited to "make them right". No one would be allowed to own the original, "wrong", versions. Only the SP's versions would be allowed.

Of course, this could never happen, we are only talking hypothetically, here.

In this pretend world, where an SP took control of the Church of Scientology, there would be many other signs, but they would be carefully hidden from all Scientologists.

However, because of all the hidden crimes, lies, abuses; because of the excessive demand for money; because of the failure to actually deliver; because of mistakes and corruption, there would be attacks against Scientology, and these would grow and grow. The SP would, of course, point the finger here and there and would, undoubtedly, use the attacks as an excuse to exhort even more pure donations from all Scientologists.

And, always, things would just keep getting worse for the church.

Of course, you know that this could never happen. Not in a million years. No Suppressive Person could ever take control of the Church of Scientology. Nope. It's impossible!

So, tell me, since you're so sure, exactly what safeguards are in place that make this impossible? The survival of the Church of Scientology depends on specific and powerful safeguards against something like this happening. Do you know of any?

I'm not pretending anymore.

Friday, June 6, 2008

A Look at "Exchange"

This is a hot item with the Church of Scientology: Exchange.

The Church of Scientology claims that the concept of exchange is the reason for the church's "fixed donations" for all services. It's just not right to get something for nothing.

OK. Fair enough. Let's take a look at the Church of Scientology and exchange.

So what did Ron mean when he considered exchange in relation to Scientology services?

He arranged it so that, if you wanted a Scientology service, you needed to pay for it. If you wanted free auditing, you could volunteer to be a guinea pig for student auditing. That's pretty straightforward.

Hubbard never said he wanted anything more from people in exchange for his work. That was the way he set things up. That's the way he ran things. There's no reason to believe he wanted anything else.

What did Hubbard say about "contributing more"? In "An Open Letter to All Clears", he said:
If you wish to help, your first duty is to protect the repute of the state of Clear by exemplary conduct. Your second duty is to attain OT as soon as possible. Your third, if you wish to help, is to become part of the endeavour to clean up this sector of the universe and make it safe not only for ourselves but the billions of others who have been harmed.
In other words, if you thought you should do more, then join staff or otherwise work on various Scientology projects as needed. He never said anything to Scientologists about "give me more money". He never indicated to Scientologists that he thought they owed him more than they'd already paid.

But then L. Ron Hubbard died. And with him died that concept of exchange.

Now how are things run?

Yes, all Scientologists still must pay for any and all Church of Scientology services. The basic idea of "fixed donations" is still with us, although those prices have increased substantially. But that is only the beginning.

After Ron died, David Miscavige took over the church and made significant changes. One of the first changes was bringing in "pure donations". The idea was that Scientologists now had the obligation to give the Church of Scientology lots of money, for no exchange at all. This first fund was the International Association of Scientologists (IAS). But it wasn't long before this was expanded. There soon were many other Scientology "causes" that required Scientologists' pure donations: Super Power, the new buildings, CCHR and on and on. Now we had pressure to give and give with no exchange back to Scientologists.

It soon developed, in Miscavige's church, that Scientologists were considered "out-ethics" if they didn't contribute heavily to all these causes. Eventually, this became so bad that a person would be denied their next service if they hadn't "voluntarily" contributed enough to these funds.

And what about exchange? What about the all-holy concept of exchange?

Well, the party line from Miscavige is, if you're a Scientologist, you owe Hubbard big time. You owe Hubbard more than you can ever pay, for the wonderfulness of Scientology.

But wait! There are just a few problems with that:
  1. Hubbard never asked for that kind of donation. He set things up exactly as he wanted to. He defined what exchange he thought was correct and that's how it was while he was alive. He never, ever put that kind of it's-never-enough obligation on Scientologists.
  2. At one time, someone suggested the idea of pure donations to Ron. He immediately rejected the idea and, further, wrote specific directions forbidding the practice.
  3. Even more to the point, Hubbard isn't around. That money goes to Miscavige. Now, Miscavige did not create Scientology, so why should Scientologists pay millions to Miscavige for something Miscavige says is owed to Ron?
Exchange is seriously out. Scientologists are being forced to pay millions and they get nothing in return. They pay millions to Miscavige who did nothing to earn it. This violates this supposedly-key Scientology concept of exchange.

In fact, Miscavige is paid somewhere around $150,000.00 per year to run Scientology, where is his exchange? He pays nothing for his staff, his clothing, his food, his cars and motorcycles, his vacations, his many houses, his cigarettes, his whiskey ... he has no expenses. And, he controls millions and millions of dollars with very little accounting.

His job is to run the Church of Scientology correctly and well. It's his job to keep the church out of trouble. It's his job to boom Scientology. It's his job to run the church so it makes enough money selling its regular services that it doesn't have to come, hat in hand, to every Scientologist, begging for money!

If the church needs more money, it is Miscavige's job to boom the church and make that money. Hubbard made many disparaging remarks about "having to have before you can do," but that's Miscavige's story: Scientologists have to pay millions and millions to Miscavige before he can do his job! But, even when he has all that money, Miscavige fails.
  • Under Miscavige's leadership, independent religious surveys have seen the church go from a very minor religion to virtually non-existent--too small to count.
  • Under Miscavige's leadership, mistakes by the church have triggered the largest protests against Scientology in its entire history.
  • Under Miscavige's leadership, the entire executive structure of the church has been destroyed. Previous leaders of the church have left or are now locked up.
  • Under Miscavige's leadership, the image of the Church of Scientology has gone from "somewhat acceptable" to "really kooky cult".
  • Under Miscavige's leadership, membership numbers have crashed. Existing members are leaving in largest-ever numbers and new recruits are virtually non-existent.
  • Under Miscavige's leadership, reports of crimes and abuse by the church have gone up several orders of magnitude.
The only things that Miscavige does do well are those fancy (and fanciful) event presentations. But don't look for any outside evidence for anything Miscavige says, don't go check for yourself. Those wonderful bits of Scientology news exist only in his big event presentations. If those events told the truth, there would be nothing to applaud. Miscavige has failed miserably.

Exchange? David Miscavige is badly "out-exchange" with all current and former Scientologists, and with society.

Wednesday, June 4, 2008

Scientology: Hate Crimes

From a Church of Scientology press release:
Church of Scientology Celebrity Centre International hosted hate crimes conference

Over 100 law enforcement and government officials, clergy and educators attended an interfaith conference in May at the Church of Scientology Celebrity Centre International in Hollywood to address the growing problem of Internet hate crime and to see how they can work together to improve Internet safety and security.
Hmmm. Methinks they have a bit of an ulterior motive in this, eh?

May I suggest a few, appropriate seminars? I think the Church of Scientology should include a number of seminars, just to pass on the church's expertise in handling, um, "hate crimes".

It would look something like this:
You are invited to these informative Church of Scientology seminars:
Suppressing Free Speech
How to re-label legitimate criticism as "hate-speech" to covertly suppress people's right to free speech. How to effectively ignore and suppress any criticism by redefining terms. Learn how to get away with victimizing thousands of people by pretending that you are the real victim here.
Getting Away with Hate-Speech
Learn the correct words to use to get away with hateful generalizations and discrimination. Learn to use terms such as "cyber-terrorists" and "hackers" to libel a whole group of people, and get away with it!
Fake Concern
Learn how to pretend to support "human rights" and "free speech" with various press releases and brochures but without actually doing anything effective! Learn how to fool people into thinking you actually give a damn.

"Lead" While Doing Nothing
Find out how to "host" various conferences, so you can appear to be more important than you actually are. Learn how "hosting" a conference can give you unearned credibility. Learn how to steal the credit from those who are really doing the work.

Faking Evidence
Learn how to create your own bomb-threats, mail white powder and other tricks! Find out how to create "evidence" to get others in trouble. Learn effective techniques for hiding the fact that much of the "Internet hate-speech" directed at you actually came from you. Includes important information on deniability and acting dumb.

Effective Bafflegab
Learn how to get people on your side without having to actually use truth or logic. Learn how to say nothing in 1,000 words or more. Learn to overwhelm with pure volume of words. Learn the effective use of 1984-style redefinitions so that regular words mean something entirely different when you use them. Learn persuasive lying.
Yes, I think the Church of Scientology could have contributed quite a bit to that conference, don't you?

Tuesday, June 3, 2008

Scientology Irony

Scientology promises "Total Freedom", but what you get as you get more and more deeply involved is less freedom.

As you invest more of your money, more of your time in Scientology services, the church dictates more and more what you can and can't do; who you can and can't talk to; what you can and cannot read, listen to, watch; what you can and can't think.

If you step one tiny bit out of the strict controls imposed by the church, they will punish you.

There is no evidence that, at some high level of Scientology, this ever changes. The OT VIIIs I've met are just as controlled, just as dictated to, just as hemmed in by all the endless rules and orders and demands--maybe even more than anyone else. Just where does this "Total Freedom" start?

So far, in the Church of Scientology, "Freedom" is just an ironic sales pitch.
Scientologists are supposedly taught to "confront" on their TRs courses. Their auditing, too, is supposed to increase their ability to confront.

Based on that, if you were going to talk to a Scientologist, you'd expect that they'd have a "higher confront than anyone else in the whole world".

But you can't talk to them, because they can't confront you if you don't agree with the Scientology version of things. They can't confront you if you talk about anything negative about their church. There's a protest in front of their church and they block the windows and hide. Confront? No evidence of it. I call that ironic!
Like confront, one of the Big Things in Scientology is moving people up to Cause! That's supposed to be happening at each step a Scientologist takes. The church itself should be more at cause than anything.

But that just isn't so. Scientologists are told what to do, where to go, how much to pay, what to think, what to read, what to say. They are the effect of whatever the church wants. The deeper they get into Scientology, the more orders and requirements are forced on them.

And the Church of Scientology is worse. The church reacts to everything. Things happen, information is released on the Internet, protests happen, people start up new websites with important information (that the church would desperately like to suppress) and the church reacts, late and ineffectually.

Time and again the actions that the church takes just don't work. But the church is unable to change their tactics. They keep executing the same old, stale, unworkable plans, with the inevitable failure. They cannot initiate anything new.

Even when the church seems to be starting something, you look closely and you see the whole project is a PR caper in reaction to negative press. It is incredibly ironic that nothing is being initiated, everything the church does is effect-reaction!
Responsibility is supposedly very big in Scientology. Scientologists are supposed to be the most responsible people, ever. Wherever they are and whatever they are doing, their supposed to set a good example, and be responsible for the success of their area.

The Church of Scientology, also, is supposed to be very, very responsible. The most responsible organization in the world.

And yet, when problems have occurred, when there have been accusations of abuse, crimes, fraud, when the church has, apparently, done wrong, you will not see any signs of responsibility from the church.

The church denies all responsibility. Victims must just shut up. Reporters are lied to. Critics are harassed and hounded. A responsible organization would open its doors and would ensure that all accusations were cleared up, all wrongdoing by the church rooted out and made right. A responsible organization acts completely differently than the Church of Scientology. The Church of Scientology hides things, covers up things, blusters and lies. That is the opposite of responsibility.

It is so ironic that the church talks about "responsibility"!
Overt/Motivator (Karma)
Hubbard had this mechanism he called the "Overt-Motivator-Sequence". The idea was that a person did something bad to someone else (the "overt") and would then "pull in" a "motivator" (something bad to himself) to justify it.

This is pretty much like the idea of "karma", but with Hubbard's unique names and descriptions.

If something bad happens to someone, it is standard for a Scientologist to say that they "pulled it in". The idea is that nothing bad happens to you until you "pull it in" as a motivator. This is, they say, true for anyone and everyone. Something bad happens, well, you pulled it in.

However, when something bad happens to the Church of Scientology, Hubbard threw that whole concept out the window! No, the Church of Scientology never pulls anything in. Hubbard created a special law, just for himself and his church that made them free of the Overt-Motivator-Sequence. The special law says, "If something bad happens to the church, it's because the church was doing good!"

Get it? Um ... neither do I.
So these are a few of the things I find really ironic about Scientology. Things that are, supposedly, key to Hubbard's teachings, but that turn out to be the opposite in Hubbard's church.

These ironies should be obvious to everyone, including Scientologists. They hear "freedom" and are given "slavery". They hear "more confront" but are then told "don't look!" They hear "more cause" and then are given their orders and nothing but orders. They hear "responsibility" while the church ducks and hides. They're told about "overt-motivators" and then, somehow, can't see what's happening with their own church.

It isn't that the facts are hidden. The facts are obvious. Scientologists are just very, very careful not to think about it. It's a skill. One of the basic Scientology skills.

Sunday, June 1, 2008

Scientology Fakes

It is well known that the Church of Scientology loves to lie. It seems like they lie even when they don't need to, just "because".

Back when Hubbard was running around in ships, his crew was always taught a "shore story". This was the official lie about his ships that was to be told when ashore. It was always an "acceptable truth", or in plain English, a lie.

Scientology churches, missions, groups, and front groups always have official "shore stories" that they tell to outsiders. Scientologists are taught the correct "acceptable truths" to tell. Nothing is as it seems. That's the Scientology way.

Unlike other churches, the Church of Scientology actually has people assigned to the job of making up lies, in the Office of Special Affairs. Isn't that nice?

A subset of Scientology lies is the Scientology Fakes. This is where the church manufactures evidence. When the real world doesn't agree with Planet Scientology, the church will just create the necessary "evidence" to support their lies.

One of the most famous examples of this was "Operation Freakout". Operation Freakout was the name given by the Church of Scientology to a covert plan intended to have author and journalist Paulette Cooper (author of the critical book The Scandal of Scientology) imprisoned or committed to a mental institution. The complex plan included stealing stationery (with her fingerprints) from her apartment and writing bomb threats. The plot almost succeeded, but the Federal Bureau of Investigation discovered documentary evidence of the plot during an investigation into the Church of Scientology in 1977.

Fake evidence. Fake threats against themselves.
Aside: Understand that, on Planet Scientology, it is perfectly OK for someone to be sent to jail for a crime they did not commit. That's Scientology!
Framing people is standard Scientology tech. Another example is the attempt, in 1976, to stage a fake hit-and-run accident and frame then-Clearwater Mayor Gabriel "Gabe" Cazares. Mayor Cazares had spoken out against the Church of Scientology after it had used big lies and tricks to sneak into his city of Clearwater. How dare anyone object to that?
Aside: You see, it isn't yet a crime to speak out against Scientology, so the church thinks it's OK to frame someone so that they are appropriately punished for actions that, on their planet, should be crimes. Get it?
Of course, the church will claim that these are old crimes, and they've reformed. Really they have. They don't do that sort of thing anymore. Nosiree!

In 2008, the Church of Scientology was faced with another horrible enemy. A new enemy dared to speak out against the church. Anonymous started speaking up about the crimes, abuses and fraud of the church. Since speaking out against the Church of Scientology still was not the crime the church thinks it should be, the church was, once again, forced to frame people for crimes they did not commit. After all, how else would the church get them properly punished?

The Church of Scientology produced a video containing much nastiness, including vicious bomb threats against itself. The church produced this nasty video, and then tried to convince everyone that Anonymous had actually made the video and the threats. Unfortunately for the church, the whole thing was debunked.

But you see, things have not changed one little bit. The Church of Scientology hasn't reformed. They continue to try to frame critics with fake evidence. And they still think it's right!

There are many other examples and stories about Scientology Fakes, including one whole taped message purporting to be from Hubbard in 1984 called "Ron's Journal 38, Today and Tomorrow: THE PROOF" which was scientifically proven to be not from Hubbard at all.

However, the most recent faked evidence includes, ironically, one of the oldest pieces of Scientology Fakes: The "Brainwashing Manual".

There was a recent, "confidential briefing" for Scientologists, to "fully" brief them on the current attacks on the church. The briefing was an amazing collection of lies (excuse me, acceptable truths) about the current situation. One of the "facts" was that the current enemies of the church were operating out of an old booklet "BRAIN-WASHING Synthesis of the Russian Textbook on Psychopolitics".

Now this is exceptionally funny because this booklet was one of the earliest Scientology Fakes and was actually written by Hubbard himself.

Here is the story from John Sanborn, who had been the editor of Hubbard’s books since the early fifties. He was there in 1955 at the manual’s inception :
I suggested it. Just kidding around on his front porch. Slygo Avenue in Silver Springs, Maryland. Talking about how are we going to get these psychiatrists.

I said, “What we need to do is take over their subject. What we need to put out is a manual of psych-military something or other ... as coming from the communists and then put a lot of psychiatry in it.”

And we’re sitting there, with our chairs tipped back on the front porch, tipped against the house, with our feet up on the railing, and all of a sudden he came down on his chair and he grabs me. And I thought, “I’ve had it !” And he said, “That’s it !”

Then he disappeared into the little front room which was sort of a bedroom and study, and you could hear him in there dictating this book.
Hubbard tried to present the FBI with a copy, but the Bureau expressed skepticism about the document's authenticity. The book is an obvious fake, it has Beria (an early chief of the USSR security and secret police apparatus) using Hubbardisms such as "beingness", "thinkingness" and "pain-drug-hypnosis".

Eventually, Hubbard gave up his attempts to "plant" the booklet somewhere and just had the book published by the Church of Scientology "as a public service".

But see here, they finally found a use for it! No Scientology Fakes are going to waste! Here we have fake evidence, long discredited, pulled out of mothballs in an attempt to smear Anonymous and other critics of Scientology. Not surprisingly, many Scientologists believe these lies.

But the bottom line is that the Church of Scientology thinks it is above the law. The Church of Scientology thinks it has the right to frame people so that those people get appropriately punished for speaking out against the church. They absolutely, sincerely believe they have the right to do these things!

This is yet another example of how anti-social and dangerously insane the Church of Scientology is.