Presenting Rod Keller's
Alt.religion.scientology Week in Review

Volume 7, Issue 10 - June 9 2002


The newspaper of the University of California at Los Angeles printed two letters to the editor on May 23rd and May 28th in response to an insert in the paper by Scientology. "Is the Daily Bruin getting so hard up for ad revenue that now even crassly infamous cult groups are allowed to insert their flyers? L. Ron Hubbard was basically a fraud. The Scientology organization, which over the past decades has paid out tens of millions of dollars in damage awards to victims they have harmed, is little more than a coercive, mean-spirited, money-making machine that never hesitates to prey upon the weak and confused. "I had many occasions to interact with the Scientologists living in the area and I can never forget how manipulative and heavy-handed their 'recruiting' tactics were. I was variously told by organization members how much better off I would be if I joined up, and how useful it would be to turn over essentially all of my personal assets in return for Scientology's loony and disingenuously dangled carrot of 'clear' enlightenment. "While I totally support our precious First Amendment right to express and publish religious and philosophical views, I can only hope that the sharp minds of our students will see the insert for what it is: something to be tossed into the trash can of exploitative, irrelevant beliefs. Science is a wonderful system of enquiry. Seeing it in the same sentence with the words Dianetics and Scientology will always be a disconnection from reality in my opinion. "Solomon Matsas Student Affairs Staff Coordinator Office of the Vice Chancellor" "In response to Soloman Matsas' letter about the Wednesday insert in the Daily Bruin titled 'Dianetics: The Evolution of a Science,' I would like to say to students: find out for yourself. "Dianetics and Scientology, like other fields of knowledge, are concerned only with results - improvement of mental ability and intelligence. There are 8 million people worldwide who have used L. Ron Hubbard's works in these fields to produce such positive results as improving their intelligence and reducing stress in their lives. Tens of thousands of those people are right here in Los Angeles, each with their own story. "So if you're not one to believe everything you hear about others' religious beliefs or actions, then find out for yourself about this revolutionary technology of the human mind. "Austin Mattison President, Student Scientologists in Action" Message-ID:

Tom Cruise

"Cerridwen" reported that at a recent Scientology event it was announced that actor Tom Cruise has reached the level of OT5. "Tom Cruise attested to OT 5 last week at the AOLA. He gave a talk to the crowd that assembled in the Atrium to hear his win. Tom said that completing OT 5 was the most important thing he had ever done in his life. It was more important that anything in his career. "Tom gave a big acknowledgment to LRH and the crowd went nuts. Tom also told the crowd that he was going to be starting on OT 6 and 7 right away. I am surprised that Tom did OT V at AOLA. Most of the Scn Rich and Famous go to Flag for services. AOLA is like sitting in the cheap seats." Message-ID:

Evolution of a Science

A 30 minute Scientology infomercial for the book Dianetics: Evolution of a Science aired on the cable station CNBC on June 2nd. "At a football game one of the players gets hit and sustains a serious spinal injury. At Westside Memorial Hospital Jerry is getting bad news from his doctors, who agree that the situation is hopeless and talk of 'no cure' while huddled away in a corner of the room. Jerry's problem lies in his cerebral cortex, apparently. Doctor Number One registers his grim verdict: 'I recommend psychosurgery. Open him up and probe around. He would make an interesting research subject.' Doctor Number Two agrees completely. "Jerry's cheerleader girlfriend is there, holding him. Before the nurse kicks her out because visiting hours are over, she mentions that 'one of your friends gave me something for you to read.' Jerry dozes off again while the camera pans over to Dianetics: The Evolution of a Science. He reads aloud: 'Dianetics is an organized science of thought. Dianetics offers a therapeutic technique with which we can treat any and all organic and psychosomatic ills. Dianetics shows that all memories are recorded fully and retained. Dianetics demonstrates that abberative memories lie only in areas of unconsciousness that only unconscious memories are capable of abberating.' "Flashback to the football game. 'What happens when a man gets knocked out? He isn't there. But all the memory recordings during the period are. You relieve the pain in the unconsciousness, and the pain goes away.' Jerry is really concentrating on the accident now. He winces. But Jerry is focused now. He throws his covers off and stares at his feet. He can move them! He gets out of bed and gingerly puts his feet on the floor. He can walk! Jerry laughs maniacally while running about the room and jumping up and down on his bed. "The evil psychs are not at all happy to see Jerry fully dressed and on his way out. Jerry smiles knowingly, 'This book. I read it. And I'm well.' He marches out while the doctors amble about in a confused panic. Adler screams down the hallway, 'Wait! Wait!' but Jerry is gone. Brown thumbs through the book while Adler stews by the window. He points a crooked finger at Brown while spewing his disgust, 'That book! That book is dangerous. It could put us out of business!' "A narrator speaks to us directly. 'Can a bed-ridden man really read a book, apply its concepts, and walk himself out of the hospital? The film you just saw was based on a true story.' Message-ID:

Lisa McPherson

Berliner Zeitung published an article on May 30th on hearings in the Lisa McPherson civil case and the testimony of Bob Minton regarding lies he says he told in depositions. "Horror would be too weak a work, said Graham Berry. 'It's a shock. A disaster.' The Los Angeles lawyer loses a little of his composure as he talks about an 'unbelievable coup by the Scientologists.' Berry has just returned from Leipzig, Germany, where an award ceremony had been held, with a prize going to opponents of the sect. "Minton was the sect opponents' major bank roller in the US, and he talked with politicians and secret services. Now he is supplying the sect, which is being monitored by the intelligence service in Germany, with material against those people who used to be his allies. "Minton said that he had invested ten million dollars in this crusade. The opportunity to strike a serious blow against the sect came with the case of Lisa McPherson. In 1995 the 36-year-old Scientologist suffered an accident in Clearwater, Florida, a Scientology stronghold, and was taken to hospital where she was diagnosed as having a 'psychiatric problem.' Since Scientology fights against anything to do with psychiatry, Scientologists took Lisa to Fort Harrison, a former first-class hotel, where the sect now runs courses. Seventeen days later Lisa McPherson was again taken to a hospital. She died on the way there. The forensic doctor found 'severe dehydration,' but retracted her findings when it came to the criminal case against Scientology. "So far Robert Minton has provided a total of two million dollars to support the family's lawsuit. In addition he set up a company called the Lisa McPherson Trust in 1999, with the aim of looking after the victims of Scientology and of gathering information about the sect. For the eight employees and their visitors, life in Clearwater meant running the gauntlet. There were demonstrations and counter-demonstrations almost on a daily basis, with charges and countercharges being brought. 'Private detectives appeared at the offices and homes of Minton's business partners and relatives, Scientologists distributed flyers against him, details from his medical files were posted on the Internet,' said Graham Berry. Scientologists also accused Minton of having laundered money for the Nigerian government on a grand scale. "In November 2001 Minton was forced to close the Lisa McPherson Trust. 'But that does not mean that we are giving up,' he said, 'I don't feel defeated.' But things were to turn out quite differently. The McPherson family's suit for damages was delayed for five years. Scientology in turn brought an action against the family and against Minton. They alleged that the banker, rather than the family of deceased, was directing the lawsuit - and that was illegal. It is a lawsuit against the lawsuit. "A dramatic turnaround took place on April 9 of this year. On that day Minton appeared before the court and suddenly accused the attorney acting on behalf of the McPherson family, Kenneth Dandar, that he had induced him to say 'the worst possible things' about Scientology and to lie to the court. Minton said he himself had been lying when he testified that he was not directing the McPherson lawsuit. 'Mister Dandar is a lying thief,' Minton shouted, thumping his fist on the table. 'I am now convinced that he is only sitting here for the money.' Dandar's key consultant on Scientology issues, former Scientologist and Minton's friend, Stacy Brooks, suddenly also accused her attorneys of being liars. Scientology opponents in the court could not believe their ears. One of them said: 'Bob, you've become a Scientologist.' Even the judge checked that he had heard correctly. 'What has prompted you to make this statement, Mr. Minton?' he asked. Minton replied: 'I could not bear the lies any longer.' "Minton and Brooks are currently being cross-examined and are turning ever more vehemently against their former allies. Attorney Dandar suspects that Minton's mysterious behavior is due to a typical maneuver used by Scientology to eliminate an opponent. Dandar believes that Minton is being blackmailed by Scientology with the aim of throttling the action for damages due to be heard in July. 'He sacrificed six years of his life and ten million dollars for the battle against Scientology and then he suddenly changes sides? You just need to use your common sense to understand what's going on here.' "Minton and Brooks have admitted to having had secret meetings with the head of the Scientology secret service and with the sect's attorneys. In the US, and in Europe as well, opponents of the sect are now afraid of serious repercussions. 'Minton knows a lot', said Graham Berry. He knows the strategies, structures and private details relating to opponents and politicians committed to fight against the sect." Message-ID:

South Africa

The Teacher, a South African magazine, reported on June 3rd that officials developed a policy to deal with drug use in schools, and have rejected Scientology's Narconon program as a participant. Due to be released this month, the Department of Education (DoE) has developed a policy for dealing with drugs in schools. These guidelines are meant to help schools effectively prevent, manage and treat learners who abuse or are dependent on drugs. 'In the past, individual schools had their own codes of conduct regarding drugs,' says the co-ordinator of Safe Schools in the Western Cape, Brian Jeftha. 'We're now aiming for a more integrated approach.' "But without proper departmental co-ordination, the danger exists that get-rich-quick schemers will hop on the bandwagon. For example, an organisation calling itself Narconon recently submitted a proposal to Safe Schools. It has since been exposed as a front for the Church of Scientology. Narconon is not connected to accredited drug treatment programmes such as Narcotics Anonymous - which sometimes goes by the name Narcanon." Message-ID: hgJK8.1458$

Occidental College

Tory Christman and Stephen Kent participated in a meeting with Los Angeles area ministers at Occidental College on June 3rd. "About 25 Ministers came. One was a Scientologist named Gayle Carrol. I'd known Gayle from when I was in. She's an OT who used to own a Mission in Pasadena. Scientology had called, e-mailed, went to the Bishop, etc. trying to stop this meeting. The college had done other Cult Meetings there, and was familiar with needed security. They had security alerted on foot, and in cars. "The ministers had submitted what they wanted to hear. They didn't want us to go into Scientology's Religious aspects, which we tried not to. They were very interested in WISE, and any other front groups. They also wanted to know how Scientology infiltrates communities, and where does all the money go? They asked about 'SP' and what that entails. They wanted to know about their recruiting tactics, and numerous other things. It went from 3-5:00 and on. "Stephen began, speaking about how he had been Fair Gamed years ago. I added my story of Fair Game with the Red Santa's Chair. He had brought a number of policies he showed on an overhead, And as he would explain the academic view, I would add the personal story of how it affected me, or how it might affect their community. "At the end, Gayle Carrol got up and said, 'We just want to work Together.' I interjected, 'Well then please make sure YOUR group doesn't harm or badger either Stephen or I for starters.' She said 'fine' and went on with what she wanted. Many of the ministers came up to thank both of us. They all agreed they had learned a great deal about Scientology. "What does OSA do? The morons have people posted at every exit handing out a flyer about 'STEPHEN KENT' with their Black PR on him, in it. These ministers were amazed at my stories and Steve's information, which is Scientology's Policies. But hearing it and seeing it are two totally different things! Now THEY were mad!" Message-ID:

Tom Padgett

Tom Padgett reported this week that his legal troubles in Kentucky continued this week with a bench warrant issued for failure to appear. "On Monday, June 3rd, a bench warrant was issued for the arrest of Thomas C. Padgett of Massachusetts by Hopkins Circuit Court Judge Charles W. Boteler, Jr. at the request of local Western Kentucky Prosecutor, David Massamore, a known close neighbor of Scientologist Laura Vannoy Padgett. The grounds for the arrest warrant was 'failure to appear.' Public Defender James M. Ruschell was shocked by this ruling, 'This case seems to have a life of it's own.' "This new arrest warrant tossed my way, is approximately the 20th now in the both civil and criminal proceedings in the past 9 years." Message-ID: Message-ID:

The San Jose Mercury News published a letter from Scientology official Janet Weiland on June 2nd, in which she defended actions taken to remove from the Google search engine. "The issue is not copyright protection vs. free speech. It is, purely and simply, an issue of copyright ownership vs. copyright piracy. No matter how loudly and disingenuously those who intentionally commit copyright violations posture their actions as 'free speech,' the unlawful use of protected works is a crime. If an individual walked into a book store and stole volumes of an author's writings and sold them, or gave them away, would any rational person defend this act of theft as 'free speech?' Of course not. They would call the police. "The Church sending a letter to Google to remove links to specific pages containing substantial copyright infringements is about as brash as a Des Moines tea party. The Mercury News editorial calling this a 'brash tactic' is almost laughable. Millions of such letters are sent by copyright owners every year, including the handful from Scientology churches on which so much attention has been focused. "For 50 years, Scientologists have championed all forms of free expression, including uncovering atrocities of suppressive regimes, providing a platform for voiceless minorities and giving teeth to the Freedom of Information Act that has served media and others seeking access to government files. We will continue to do so." Message-ID: VaJK8.1457$

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A.r.s. Week in Review is put together by Rod Keller © 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.

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