"State Superintendent Jack O'Connell urged all California schools on Tuesday to drop the Narconon antidrug education program after a new state evaluation concluded that its curriculum offers inaccurate and unscientific information.
'We'll get a letter out to every school district today, saying this program is filled with inaccuracies and does not reflect widespread medical and factual evidence,' O'Connell said of Narconon Drug Prevention & Education, a free program with ties to the Church of Scientology.
O'Connell requested the independent evaluation in July after The Chronicle reported in June that Narconon introduced students to some beliefs and methods of Scientology without their knowledge. The stories reported that Narconon's instruction rests, in part, on church beliefs that drug residues remain indefinitely in body fat, causing people to experience repeated drug flashbacks and cravings. Some teachers also reported that Narconon instructors taught their students that drug residues can be sweated out in saunas and that colored ooze is produced when drugs exit the body.
Scientology correspondence obtained by The Chronicle said Narconon's instruction is delivered in language purged of most church parlance, but includes 'all the Scientology and Dianetics Handbook basics.'
'I was impressed by their ability to hold a passel of teenagers' attention,' Sninsky said Tuesday, adding that he just assumed what Narconon presenters said was accurate.
Deborah Wood, executive director of the California Healthy Kids Resource Center, said inaccurate programs should not be permitted in classrooms even if they are free to cash-strapped schools and entertaining to glazed-eyed students. 'Ask instead if that would be appropriate for a math or science class,' Wood suggested. 'The standards need to be the same when we're talking about valuable instructional time.'
In his letter advising district superintendents not to allow Narconon in their classrooms, O'Connell wrote: 'Fortunately, many programs are available to schools that have evidence of efficacy in preventing violence or drug use.'
The new state report will be available on the Web at www.cde.ca.gov/ls/he/at/research.asp."
"Barb set up a meeting with a group in San Diego and asked me to speak with her. I agreed, and today was the day. Driving down to San Diego, knowing of the oncoming rain was a bit of a concern, but I decided to go anyways, esp. as it was dry in the morning when I left.
The plan was to meet at this Chinese Restaurant where this group usually meets. (I will let barb give you their full name). Mark Bunker and I had agreed he would meet us also, and he suggested he might film it, which he ended up doing. A bunch of us met for lunch, and enjoyed talking with each other (Critics).
Then the group arrived around 2, as well as 4-5 Scientologists. Two of them had the bright yellow 'Church of Scientology Volunteer Ministers' Jackets on, so you couldn't miss them. We went over and introduced ourselves, and typical of Scios in a public situation (where people are going to hear both sides)... They were extremely polite and friendly. Now I know how all of them have treated me in the last 4 years, know this is simply for 'Good PR'.
Barb had brought some excellent pieces of information to give out to the group, including the Scientology Creed, the Network of C of S, Int. and how it really works, etc. She began speaking, and we rolled for about an hour. Mark has it all on tape, and said he plans to put at least the sound up on www.xenutv.com soon. Basically, we covered various different areas: The organization, the front groups, personal stories (mine) of being in the cult, the medical malpractice, anti-psychs, Hubbard, and Clear and OT, which Barb brought up. As we went over various things, the Scios would begin to protest, and were told they could have their turn, during the Q & A. (I didn't know the humanoids had actually invited them).
Ok, so after our talk on Scientology, the Scientologists began to talk. Right away they began with the black Pr of 'Tory broke her promise to never disclose the confidential materials...so how can you trust her with anything?'
First off, I never did break any promise while I was a Scientologist. Once I left, I have no agreements with them or their BS promises and secrets, although you can hear the OT 8 speaking who says this, and he certainly believes it's true.No one else there seemed to agree, as one could see eyeballs rolling.
Their pitch was mostly done by an OT 5 named Louis, who claimed 'I'm not a PR', although he'd admitted he was an insurance salesman, so let's face it, he has the PR tools :) He and the OT 8 would go back and forth, putting down barb and I, and then the 'Huge wins of Scientology'. He claimed, 'We're winning!' 'We're free thinkers' (Like all of us were not). The OT 8 told a story of Criminon and how it had 'helped so many people'. Now when I told stories which were true, factual stories of things that occurred, they just brushed them off as 'anecdotal'. However, when THEY told their stories...they were 'important'. Barb and I were not allowed to interrupt, and when they told flat out lies, we couldn't give our side, and I found that to be not an ideal way for things to be run. With every talk one learns things, and that was one key thing I learned today.Also, Mark did a great job of asking them specific questions, and these you'll hear on his tape. He was happy to be able to ask them some things, and get their answers on film.
One Scientology lady there had obviously not been 'Hatted' too well, as she spoke of 'Linda McPherson' and how the courts had let Scientology off. Also, how the FBI raid, 'Proved to be false' They also spoke of how grateful Clearwater was that Scientology was there. Now this is spoken to a person (me) who was working with the Guardian's office (now OSA)...helping C of S get rid of Richard Tinny, who wanted Scientology OUT. That was back in 1979. In 2000 I also interviewed their neighbors [...]. I was shocked at how much they disliked Scientology. Of course not all, but many.
They went on for about one hour, and finally I said I had to go, as I knew I had a long drive and the news had predicted big rains towards the evening. Before going, I wanted to point out one of Hubbard's key things was 'Never defend always attack', and I said as you can see, these people have been using this since they began speaking about Barb and I.
Also, I had read from their Creed, 'Man has the inalienable right to free speech', etc. Yet when I pointed out their 'Church' hardly applies that, they flipped that off to as 'anecdotal' -- despite my example of their hate page: RFW, disconnection, and declaring people 'SP'...all which are geared to stop free speech.
To this, Barb added:
"When the Scientologists were given the floor, they did exactly what I'd hoped they'd do. They attacked us, very subtle. Said one, 'I'd like to know what these two ladies do to help people.' Well, we don't go to disasters to poke people and hand out TWTH booklets.
After discussing Dianetics basics up to the state of Clear, I paused before going on to the OT levels. I said, 'I'm sorry, I can't discuss this with these Scientologists here.' Magoo asked their levels, they were all past OTVIII. For whatever reason, they decided to stay and listen when I discussed body thetans. Otherwise, I would have asked them to leave the room momentarily.
Basically, what they did was offer the usual testimonials about Scientology, exactly what I hoped.
I handed out two pieces with that in mind; the Code of a Scientologist, and the Creed. Together with the list of suggested reading, this combo will be deadly. I told the Humanist Association to read with these things in mind.
The guy in the OT jacket finally admitted that the Scientology cross was not a Christian symbol at all.
Next time we do this, the format is going to be run by Magoo and I. We were unable to address the inaccuracies put forth by the Scientologists.
They refused to address any of the harassment or abuses Tory and I have experienced, dismissing them as 'anecdotal.' First hand experience will stand up in court.
However, my plan was that this roomfull of skeptics and secular humanists would be interested enough to do some followup research. When Tory told them to look at both sides before deciding, the Scientologists supported that suggestion.
They were in their 'nice, fair weather' valence. I figured they would, what with the meeting and all. But I think that we got our point across."
"District chief of an Amur regional district accused of embezzling funds for Hubbard teachings.
Boris Shalimov, a district administration chief in the Amur region, who had been free on bail, has been placed under arrest. As the Regnum information agency was told in the Amur region's prosecutor's office, he was accused of embezzling over 700,000 rubles from the district budget - 150,000 rubles for personal use and 600,00 to train district administration staff in Scientology distribution centers. It was Hubbard's teachings, by the way, that prompted Shalimov to set off for Saint Petersburg, where he was also detained. The accused was delivered by official transport to the city of Blagoveshchensk, where he was put under lock and key. [...]"
"Looks like this public relations agency could use a public relations agency. Some execs at Hill & Knowlton, the world-renowned PR firm with such prestigious clients as Kodak, Pepsico International and Proctor & Gamble, fired off an internal memo last week announcing they're dropping their Church of Scientology account. The memo, we hear, was the result of an unflattering Time article about Scientology and the resulting flak Hill & Knowlton received because of it. 'We are in the process of winding down on that program,' a spokesman told us. 'We have indeed advised [the Church of Scientology) that we are resigning.' And did the pressure to resign that account come from inside the firm -- or, as we were told, from some of its big clients? 'We're not going to comment on client programs,' the spokesman said. Oh, yes, just as we predicted, we are getting annoying crank letters from Scientologists calling us horrid names for saying they'd send us crank letters after we said they'd! send us crank letters."
A.r.s. Week in Review is put together for your benefit.
This collection is organised for WWW by Andreas Heldal-Lund.
Only edits done by me is replacing word encapsuled in * or _ with bold and underscore, and made links into HTML.