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

Volume 6, Issue 3 - May 6 2001


Music365 reported on May 1st that Beck Hansen has denied reports that he has become a Scientologist. "Beck is said to have dismissed reports that he recently joined the Scientology religious cult which counts Hollywood celebrities John Travolta and Tom Cruise among others as devout followers. Beck's bass player Justin Johnson alleged that the groovesome musical maverick had become an adherent to Scientology, even going so far as to end a romantic relationship with US actress Winona Ryder because of her non-membership of the cult. "However, Beck's US spokesman Dennis Dennehy sheds little light on the 'Beck is religious nut' allegations, commenting: 'The personal and spiritual lives of my clients are none of my business. I don't ask and they don't tell.'" Message-ID: 9cm7el$

Faith-based Groups

The Calgary Herald published a column by Catherine Ford on May 5th on the U.S proposal to fund religious charities. "In making the announcement earlier this year, Bush said a White House office would be set up to distribute billions of dollars to people who had 'heard the universal call to love a neighbour like they'd like to be loved themselves, who exist and work hard, not out of love of money, but out of the love of their fellow human beings.' This is what Canadians expect of government, for which they are willing to pay. Services provided by religious organizations exist beyond that mandate. "No one need be religious to receive relief, although one is presumably expected to respect a church's right to pray over you and for you in exchange for charitable works. In a nation that rigorously separates church and state to the point of having its Supreme Court rule against prayers in public schools, it is passing strange the White House would be willing to disregard admonitions built into the country's constitutional fibre. "A survey by The Pew Forum on Religion and Public Life and The Pew Research Center for People and the Press showed 75 per cent of Americans approve funding religious groups to provide social services. Yet an identical 52 per cent believe giving the same funding to the Church of Scientology is a bad idea. "This isn't about religion, it's about social services unencumbered by the divisive nature of most religions. It's about what a diverse people have a right to expect from their government for their tax dollars. What they don't expect is the government to approve salvation in the soup line." Message-ID: 9d3qo1$

Weird Worlds

The Learning Channel aired a program this week entitled Weird Worlds, which included a description of Scientology by Steven Hassan. "Steve Hassan recited the entire OTIII story to an audience of millions." "Weird Worlds, and narrated by Dweezil Zappa." "They gave the most accurate portrayal of a session that I've ever seen outside the church (was demonstrated by an ex-auditor & pc.) After that this guy practically read OTIII (xenu) verbatim and then discussed how 'body thetans' then were the next step to be handled." Message-ID: Message-ID: Message-ID: yi6J6.8487$


A St. Petersburg Times editorial on April 30th praised the Citizens for a Better Clearwater group for reconsidering its decision to reject memorial bricks from Scientology critics. "Citizens for a Better Clearwater had exposed itself and the city government to charges of censorship and possible lawsuits by refusing to accept orders for the three bricks from members of a Scientology opposition group, the Lisa McPherson Trust. The citizens group had not considered that the clash might carry over to the brick sale it was using to raise funds to transform an ugly downtown alley into a mini-park. The group encouraged individuals, businesses and organizations to buy bricks and have them imprinted with special messages. "Everything was going swimmingly until members of the Trust sent in an order. They wanted a brick to memorialize McPherson with the words, 'Remember Lisa McPherson 1959-1995.' A secret committee of the Citizens rejected the order and shut down the fundraiser, saying the messages would not contribute to 'community harmony' and were ordered merely to create dissension, particularly since the alley borders a Scientology building. Trust members argued that their constitutional right to free speech in the public project had been denied - it had - and soon lawyers were involved on both sides. "Cooler heads now have prevailed, fortunately. Clearwater didn't need another thing to squabble over downtown." Message-ID: 9cjj0l$

Dianetics Day

Christopher Wood posted an email sent to him promoting Dianetics Day, the anniversary of the 1950 book by L. Ron Hubbard. "The Hubbard Dianetics Foundation is inviting you to attend the 51st Anniversary of Dianetics, which will be celebrated on May 12th around the world. You will see and learn for yourself how Dianetics has impacted on the lives of millions, how L. Ron Hubbard's breakthrough discovery has lead to greater happiness, self-confidence and what it is exactly that is stopping this in your life. The Dianetics Foundation staff will be on hand to answer questions and direct you as to how, through Dianetics, you can achieve the happiness, trust and confidence you've always wanted. "Maud Goodwin" On May 5th the Anchorage Daily News reported the Mission of Anchorage's plans to observe the anniversary. "The Church of Scientology's Mission of Anchorage plans to observe the 51st anniversary of the publication of 'Dianetics, the Modern Science of Mental Health,' a book that some in the faith believe to be the first to explain the workings of the human mind. The event is at 6 p.m. May 19 at 1300 E. 68th Ave., Suite 112." Message-ID: Message-ID: 9d3r7v$

Reed Slatkin

The Los Angeles Times reported on May 2nd that Scientologist and Earthlink board member Reed Slatkin has been accused of operating a Ponzi scheme to bilk investors, including many fellow Scientologists, out of $35 million. "Slatkin - a Santa Barbara socialite and venture capitalist - also is under investigation by the Securities and Exchange Commission for his financial activities, which allegedly included a day-trading operation that promised annual returns of up to 60%. "Investors have filed at least three lawsuits accusing Slatkin of defrauding them of more than $35 million, and the size of the potential losses could grow. Attorneys say Slatkin invested more than $300 million for a nationwide network of more than 100 friends, business partners and members of the Church of Scientology, to which Slatkin belongs. "Slatkin resigned from EarthLink's board of directors Thursday, the day a meeting of Slatkin's East Coast creditors was held in Washington, lawyers for the investors said. More than 80 investors attended a second creditors' meeting Monday at the Santa Monica offices of Slatkin's securities lawyer, Gerald E. Boltz. The meeting included representatives of a group of Scientologists who had invested more than $250 million with Slatkin, attorneys said. "A lawyer for the Scientology investors, Michael A. Sherman, said Tuesday that he had no comment about the case or whether his clients would sue Slatkin. Boltz confirmed that Slatkin was a member of the Church of Scientology, a religion founded by science fiction writer L. Ron Hubbard and adhered to by a number of Hollywood celebrities. "The plaintiff in the Santa Barbara suit, retired venture capitalist John K. Poitras, said he invested most of his life's savings with Slatkin. Poitras is not a Scientologist and lives in the Northern California community of Woodside. In December 2000, Poitras said, Slatkin told him about a computerized day-trading program he had developed that could generate 50% to 60% annual returns. According to the lawsuit, Poitras invested $5 million with Slatkin, then an additional $10 million in February, which was to be invested in an account that Poitras was supposed to be able to tap with 48 hours' notice. When Poitras changed his mind about the second investment, however, Slatkin didn't return the money, the lawsuit alleges. Poitras' attorney, Richard S. Conn, said it appeared Slatkin was using money collected from recent investors to pay returns to earlier investors - an investment fraud commonly known as a Ponzi scheme." From the Associated Press on May 2nd: "Slatkin will file for Chapter 11 financial reorganization this week, said one of his attorneys, bankruptcy specialist Richard M. Pachulski. Brian A. Sun, a Santa Monica criminal lawyer representing Slatkin, said his client will cooperate with SEC investigators. 'It is our intention ... to cooperate with the investors and authorities in trying to locate and maximize the assets or the funds that are out there,' Sun said. SEC officials declined to comment on their investigation." From Agence France Presse on May 3rd: "One of the founders of EarthLink, a leading US Internet service provider, is being probed by regulators for running an alleged multimillion dollar illegal investing scam. Atlanta-based EarthLink's spokesman Dan Greenfield confirmed reports that a founding board member and investor, Reed Slatkin, is under federal investigation for defrauding investors. According to the reports, Slatkin is suspected of running a multimillion dollar 'Ponzi' scheme, in which investors are paid returns from the money lent by earlier investors." From on May 3rd: "A co-founder of EarthLink has been tied to a bizarre Ponzi scheme involving day-trading and Scientology. The Los Angeles Times broke the story that Reed Slatkin, venture capitalist co-founder of the ISP EarthLink, is accused of bilking investors of more than $35 million. Slatkin is not registered with the SEC as an investment advisor, but he still persuaded more than 100 people to invest more than $300 million in a day-trading operation promising annual returns of up to 60 percent. It seems he used money from earlier investors to pay later investors - the same theory behind those chain letters that promise to make you rich if you send five people a dollar. Slatkin, a Scientologist, is also accused of ripping off a group of fellow church members to the tune of $250 million." From the Los Angeles Times on May 4th: "EarthLink Inc. co-founder Reed E. Slatkin told some of his clients in January 2000 that he was getting out of the money-management business, but instead continued to accept new investments until early this year. Slatkin told the investors in a Jan. 7, 2000, letter that 'a question again has been raised by the [Securities and Exchange Commission] whether I should be registered as an investment advisor' - normally a requirement for anyone investing large sums on behalf of others. As a result, Slatkin said, he had decided 'to end this endeavor' and would give investors back their money. "According to lawsuits filed by investors, Slatkin was still actively soliciting funds from new investors in December, and was accepting new investments as recently as this February. "Slatkin filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection Tuesday, listing debts of more than $100 million. "According to court filings and investor interviews, Slatkin told investors he was managing their money 'as a friend,' but he accepted - and expected - fees for his services. Federal securities law requires money managers who accept compensation to register as an investment advisor, which Slatkin never did, according to SEC officials." From the Atlanta Journal-Constitution on May 4th: "Several of EarthLink's top executives were also investors with Reed Slatkin, one of the company's founders who has been accused in lawsuits of bilking investors out of millions of dollars. Sky Dayton, chairman of the Atlanta-based Internet service provider, and Chief Executive Garry Betty were among investors with Slatkin, said EarthLink spokesman Dan Greenfield. "Slatkin himself is referred to as a co-founder of the company. Slatkin and a partner contributed $100,000 to the formation of EarthLink in 1994. Slatkin, who was a board member, never had any say in the day-to-day running of the company, Greenfield said." Message-ID: 9cp390$ Message-ID: 9cq0po$ Message-ID: Message-ID: 9cud4s$ Message-ID: 9cudmr$ Message-ID: 9d11d4$

Fighting Suppression

An article in Scientology's Freewinds magazine describes efforts against the Lisa McPherson Trust. "I announced my new intentions to create a safe environment to disseminate into, but found that my home town had a little clan of SPs. I began to attack them. My attack turned into the Foundation for Religious Tolerance which I founded. This Foundation confronts any critics of Scientology and exposes them for what they really are - hate groups. "Since I founded the Foundation for Religious Tolerance I've done TV shows, radio shows, and many other activities exposing the SPs. The Foundation was even quoted in a local newspaper announcing that the SPs in my town were nothing more than a hate group. "With all the activities against them from my Foundation, these SPs are going wild! They now believe that the Foundation for Religious Tolerance is a worldwide organization attacking them from many sides and from many countries.' Just to give you an idea of the power of OT Hatting, would you like to know how many people comprise this vast worldwide organization that has the SPs running scared? Just one, me! -- M.D." Message-ID: 9cra7a$er7$


Sueddeutsche Zeitung reported on May 3rd that Scientology planned a What is Scientology exhibit in Munich. "The expenses for the campaign are enormous: with its own exhibition entitled 'What is Scientology?' the controversial organization is recruiting for its goals and, as a focus point, for its path to combating drugs. 25 tons of material were trucked in for the show, which Hollywood actress Anne Archer will open tomorrow at 1:30 p.m. on 800 square meters in an auction building on 11 Reichenbachplatz in Beiseln. Up to May 18 the exhibition will stay in Munich, before then it was in Stuttgart where according to Scientology statements they are said to have had 12,000 visitors. "There was some fuss over the English 'Jive Aces' band who accompanied the campaign through Europe and who will also play in the exhibition opening in Munich. For the next two weeks the band has booked seven other appearances - to be sure most of the club operators did not know who they were to have on stage, as 'Jazzbar Vogler' host Thomas Vogler complained. While the 'Jive Aces' openly advertise for the so-called 'Church of Scientology International' on their home page, there was nothing about that on the applications for the club operators." Muenstersche Zeitung reported on March 21st that a youth group held a seminar to expose the dangers of Scientology. "Twenty-five members of the Rural Youth met in the Youth building on Monday in order to receive information on the dangers inherent in Scientology. To start off with the members of the audience were asked by the speaker, not named for security reasons, to write down on cards the two goals in life most important to them and to tack the cards up on the wall. The next stretch was about naming character traits which would cause the achievement of these goals to fail. It was made absolutely clear that every person has weaknesses. The Scientology movement was said to operate on these weak points to attract members into its spell. "The classical bait is the free personality test which is supposed to give a person insight into his 'ruin.' Once the alleged faults are revealed, the evaluating Scientology member puts everything into cleverly blowing the problem out of proportion and, simultaneously, offering a solution. Naturally that consists of buying a reasonably priced Communication course from the organization. Yet in the introductory course, which is as good as harmless, an intense, systematic indoctrination is already taking place unnoticed. This increases over the course of the person's 'cult career' to complete consciousness control and leads to debilitative modifications to personality. "'Knowing the methods and how they work offer the best protection against slipping into the clutches of this type of organization,' said the speaker." Message-ID: Pine.LNX.3.96.1010504165314.177A-100000@darkstar.zippy Message-ID: Pine.LNX.3.96.1010501174131.129A-100000@darkstar.zippy

Jesse Prince

Two private investigators hired by Scientology in the Jesse Prince marijuana trial will be compelled to testify as to their role in the case. "Both of the private investigators involved in this case were hired by a third party not necessarily known at this time. The state and defense agree that a witness, who is one of the investigators and believed by the defense to be the confidential informant was specifically instructed to find unethical or illegal activities the defendant was involved in. That information would be relevant, that is, the information would tend to prove or disprove a fact of consequence to the outcome of the case. "Mr. Barry Gaston attempts to clarify his position regarding references to religious beliefs, practices and doctrines of the Church of Scientology. He states, 'should this Court entertain whether or not the Defendant's allegations regarding the existence and interpretation of the 'fair game' policy (despite the Church's assertions to the contrary) could form a legal defense then this Court would, in fact, be interpreting Church beliefs, practices and doctrines.' Mr. Gaston is a witness in this case and therefore not a party thereto. While he has standing to challenge the abrogation of the private investigator privilege, he has no standing to object to potential defenses to be raised or what discovery methods can be used to raise them. If the state chooses, prior to trial, to move this court to exclude references to the so-called 'fair game' policy then the court will entertain such a motion. "This court again finds no merit in the assertion of Mr. Gaston that allowing the defendant to investigate and possibly assert any particular, defense in any way amounts to the court 'interpreting' Church practices, beliefs or doctrines." Message-ID:

Keith Henson

Keith Henson posted an update to his bankruptcy case, in which Scientology is trying to disqualify the judge. "At the last hearing he expressed dismay at the cult wanting 15 days for trial, with four law firms and a daily cost of at least $10,000, not to mention the expense to the court and all the other court business which would have to be pushed back. Rosen objected at a near violence level. So the cult filed a motion to recuse the judge. The exhibits, an inch thick, were almost 'Henson's greatest hits.' "The exhibits include Hogan's unsupported accusation that I was taking about bombs at an airline counter. The motion is 24 pages of DA against me." From the response to the motion to remove the judge: "It is undisputed that the only asset of any consequence in this case is Debtor's residence, which, when this case was filed three years ago, was allegedly fully protected by an allowed homestead exemption. There is no issue in this case of hidden assets. RTC may argue that it uncovered an unscheduled life insurance policy having a cash value that would be exemptable; and it may contend that three unremarkable paintings having a value less than $10,000 belong to Debtor or his wife, rather than Debtor's daughter, as the former two contend. After a scorched earth campaign of discovery, RTC has little to show for its efforts except a mountain of trivial documents. "RTC is not really interested in the legal issues at stake here; rather, they are simply a means to the end of crushing the Debtor. Vexing an RTC dissenter with excessive and burdensome if not frivolous litigation is part of the RTC agenda. It's known as 'fair game' and is described in Church of Scientology vs Wollersheim. 'The cult, according to written policy, will use any means legal or illegal to subvert and frustrate judicial process against them, and will willingly and knowingly abuse judicial process in order to attack perceived enemies.' "RTC was also guilty of trying to present evidence and actually presenting some evidence at trial without objection that had little to do with the issues but was apparently designed to try and make Henson look like a crackpot. "Judge March of the Central District was given a taste of this case when RTC traipsed down there to depose Debtor's daughter, Amber, regarding her college expenses and the ownership of the three paintings mentioned above. 'I don't think I've even seen a Chapter 13 docket that ran 34 pages in this district. I don't think I've ever seen a Chapter 13 case where so many people have had either 2004 exams or depositions taken. It's absolutely amazing.'" Message-ID:

Protest Summary

Critics protested Scientology orgs on March 5th to mark Dianetics Day. Jeff Jacobsen reported a protest in Clearwater. "I started picketing across the street from the Ft. Harrison Hotel at 10am. Almost immediately the blonde PI was watching me through a window. A security guy came out and started videotaping me. The blonde PI and the Italian PI came out and videotaped me too. So there were 3 people videotaping this lone picketer, PLUS the 2 permanent cameras no doubt. "About 10:30 2 more picketers arrived. About 10:45 another, and about 11 another. So 5 picketers in all. We picketed across from the Ft. Harrison Hotel until 1pm when we went over to the Coachman building at Ft. Harrison Ave. and Cleveland St." "Wynot" and "Ethercat" protested in Atlanta. "Mad_Kow joined us soon, and we began picketing in earnest, sharing our message with the traffic. There was a small amount of traffic out of the org, including two uniformed Sea Ogres. I later saw another SOer come out and stand in the parking lot glaring at us. "A bit after noon Susan came out toting a camera with a longish telephoto lens to take pictures of us. She then asked me if I still worked on a particular street. I said she should follow me around and find out. Susan responded by acting a little huffy, and saying SHE had a life, and three children, and a husband! I asked her how her new kid was doing. She responded in a fashion befitting a doting mother, and I told her I was happy for her. "We stayed 'til 1:00, then retired to a pleasant lunch. Mad_Kow picketed solo for a few minutes while EC and I were putting up our signs. In two hours we had received 122 acks, and Kow told us he had 5 more while soloing." "Susan appeared to want to distract Mad Kow and I with her conversation and photo-taking, but was unsuccessful with us, since Wynot was the designated talker for the day. We saw John (famous from the 'crimes picket') arrive, but he was in better control of his reactive mind today, and just went into the org. A friendly Dekalb county police officer drove by at one point, waving at us, and saying to just call if we needed them. "The literature box by the sidewalk which previously has contained 'What is Scientology?' booklets held information on the dangerous Purification today. Though they're for the public to take and read, we didn't take one, as likely that would be used as an excuse to accuse us of stealing. The little garden areas, which Linda had planted in 1999, and which also had flowers last year, appeared neglected this year." Gregg Hagglund protested in Toronto. "Picketers: Slippery Jim, Mike Argue, Ron Sharp, Kaeli, Gregg. Observer/photographer: Zeratul. Picket Count; 250 Xenu Specials. Picket Duration: 2 hours. 1PM to 3PM. "Scientology only fielded three women and Tom Schuck eventually on video camera. One of the women was Jacky Matz. I had lots of fun pointing out her criminality to passersby, as well as the Toronto Org conviction. It was also the main topic on the reverse of our Roland Xenu Specials. "They gave out their fliers and called us criminals and perverts and we gave out our fliers which revealed Xenu and showed the criminality of the Co$. We traded quips and generally kept things polite. The OSA Volunteer Goon Squad made no appearance. Early in the picket Slippery Jim and I were able to have some comm with the handful of students on course. We made sure they understood it was the Body Thetans and Clusters they needed to worry about. And the Flying Saucers and evil Aliens as well as the Revenge of Xenu. "New Picket Signs: 'Free Speech Interferes with Scientology', 'Science Fiction, Science Fantasy, Science Fraud, Scientology', 'Fraud, Fakery, Greed, Flying Saucers: Scientology', 'Criminal Cult of Scientology Convicted In Canada.'" Tory Bezazian reported on a protest in Los Angeles. "As we started to walk, out came a XENU.NET sign, held by a gentleman named Chris from up North. He had brought XENU.NET hats for both John and I. Chris announced this was his 'virgin picket', and we all greeted each other. We walked around the Complex once and all three were amazed at how totally empty it was. We didn't see anyone except one security officer in the entire Complex at the start, at 10:30. This is a dramatic change from years ago when the Complex was bustling with people all over the place, from every org. "After one time around the Complex, the SPL (Scientology Parishioners League that I was the ED of prior to leaving last July) arrived. They had giant signs against Psychiatry and black balloons. The funny thing is all that did was add to our picket! Now we looked considerably larger! We would walk down L RON HUBBARD WAY, and the SPL would follow along, trying to block our signs. As we would turn the corners off of LRH way, the SPL would stop each time. I guess they now don't care if the world sees 'XENU.NET', they just don't want the staff to see it!" Arnie Lerma protested in Washington, DC. "Very quiet picket in DC. Wes Fager (ex-real-CAN), myself and Mr T. Thierry OSA Duchanac came out to take pictures Sylvia OSA Stanard came out to ask about my girlfriend? I replied why don't you ask your OTs? Oh, but there are NO OTS IN Scientology. "Slogans used: 'NO OTS THERE, No OTs There, Just a dwarf' "They didn't send out any 'body routers'. My sign said: 'Warning - Entering Greedy Cult Zone RED ARROW - Scientology LIES." Kristi Wachter and Phil Scott protested in San Francisco. "Picketers: Peaches, Phil Scott, Keith Henson, Arel Lucas, Phr, Kristi. Handlers: Jeff, Craig, Robin, No-Longer-(As)-Nasty Mark Number of Handouts given away: well over 250. "Shortly after we arrived, No-Longer-(As)-Nasty Mark came over to me for a chat. All he wanted to talk about, though, was psychiatry, which I have declined to talk about at pickets, as I consider it a distraction. I told him I didn't want to discuss that, and he responded by talking about only that, with no response from me, for about 15 minutes. After a while, he tried talking to Peaches, who told him loudly and unmistakably that she didn't want to talk to him at all about anything. He persisted, so she said at the top of her lungs, 'Get away from me! This Scientologist is harassing me! He won't leave me alone!' - which pretty much put a stop to his hassling her. "I told him I thought it was rude to keep trying to talk to someone who'd said she didn't want to talk to him, and he said 'Oh, you think you're polite, bitch?' - so alas, I can't honestly call him No-Longer-Nasty Mark. A bit later he went inside and re-emerged, wearing a Psychiatry Kills t-shirt, and he and 3-4 other Scientologists picketed the org with big Psychiatry Kills and Psychiatry Destroys Lives signs. Peaches and I figured we'd let them have the picket to themselves for a bit, so we took a half-hour break (12:20-12:50), sitting on the curb, chatting, taking video, and handing out occasional fliers. Jeff came over at one point and asked what the strategy was, us sitting around, and I said 'We thought we'd let you guys do the picket.' "Phil Scott showed up around then and hung out with us, chatting up the Scientologists. Shortly thereafter, Keith Henson and Arel Lucas appeared. The two of them joined us, and each had conversations with their Scientology handlers. Arel's conversation with Craig was rather heated, as he kept goading her about hating him and she kept saying she didn't hate him or any Scientologist, she hated the organization they belong to. "I did have an excellent, brief conversation with a young Sea Org gentleman, Jamie. He asked what I had read that made me think Scientology was breaking the law, and I said 'A lot of things, but mostly my own reading of Scientology's own policies and my own reading of the law.' He asked what laws, and I explained how I believe presenting the OCA test and its evaluation as scientific was fraudulent. I gave him a flier with my e-mail address on it so he could e-mail me and I could point him to the studies on the net. He excused himself and showed the flier to Jeff Quiros, who slowly and gently got it away from him. I called over to Jamie that if he 'lost' my e-mail address he could always write me at" "The cult members were out with very large placards 'Psychiatry Kills' etc. and one had a photo of a guy getting a pre frontal lobotomy, that would cure a person of ever wanting that done. I arrived with 200 bright red fliers with the totally vicious Rev Bagleys killer letter on it. I handed out about 100 of those and gave the rest to Peach and Kristi for later. "Arel was being ruthlessly harassed by the tall black guy with the video cam. The guy was taunting her, and kept taunting me too at every opportunity apparently trying to provoke a remark that he could capture on video and edit for use in court later. They were trying to get shots of all us critics with Keith so I obliged and they got about 90 pics as Keith and I discussed the frame up job they did on him in Hemet. "'Nasty' Mark spent quite a bit of time trying to convince me that Reed Slatkin just got caught in a down market, when that failed he argued that a ponzi scheme could happen to anyone on a bad day and that blaming the cult for it was unfair." Tim Walker protested the Tampa org. "Saturday from about 11 to 12, Me and my friend picketed in front of the Tampa Org. From what I've been told, that was the first time anybody ever demonstrated in front of the Tampa location. We had signs with messages that were directed more towards traffic than towards Scientologist. Nobody came out to talk to us, but some dude stopped his car and wanted to know why we were picketing. I gave him a couple of articles (Lopez article) to read. He said he wasn't a Scientologist, but I believe he was an investigator. "After we finished we talked to a nearby business owner and another person that seemed fairly familiar with Scientology. They don't like the cult very much. It was fairly uneventful, we saw about 7 different people in the lobby or going in or out of the place." Message-ID: Message-ID: Message-ID: Message-ID: Message-ID: Message-ID: Message-ID: Message-ID: Message-ID: 3af4a865$


Reuters reported on April 27th that a lawsuit led by a Scientologist against psychiatrists and the manufacturer for promoting the drug Ritalin has been dismissed. "A federal judge in San Diego this week dismissed a lawsuit claiming that psychiatrists conspired with the maker of the drug Ritalin and others to promote its use for treating children with attention deficit/hyperactivity disorder. The judge also ruled that the plaintiffs must pay the legal fees of the defendants, including Ritalin manufacturer Novartis Pharmaceuticals Corp., a patient support group called Children and Adults with Attention Deficit/Hyperactivity Disorder and the American Psychiatric Association, the association said on Friday. "U.S. District Judge Rudi Brewster dismissed the case with prejudice, which prohibits it from being refiled, saying the complaint was without legal basis, and activities by defendants to advance medical understanding and treatment of the disorder were free speech protected under a special California statute, the defendants said. Attorneys for the plaintiffs, which include the Washington D.C. firm of Coale Cooley Lietz McInerny, were not available for comment. "The Psychiatric Association said the San Diego ruling throws into question whether similar lawsuits filed in Texas, Florida, New Jersey and Puerto Rico, will go forward." Message-ID:


A conference was held in Nizhny Novgorod, Russia on April 23-25 to discuss totalitarian cults, including Scientology. From the statement made by the conference: "We, participants of International Conference 'Totalitarian Cults - Threat of Twenty-First Century', are extremely anxious about uncontrolled activities of totalitarian sects (destructive cults), which has the character of an unmasked expansion, bearing an irretrievable loss to human health, violating fundamental human rights, threatening to family, society and state. "We believe that the state must be interested in unhindered activity and flourishing of traditional, culture-founding religions, professed by the majority of population, and in giving a support and help to them. "A totalitarian cult could be defined as an authoritarian organization, whose leaders seeking power over their adepts and their exploitation, hide their intentions behind religious, politico-religious, psychotherapeutic, health care, educational, pseudo-scientific, culturological and other masks. "Totalitarian sects practice fraud, hiding their intentions and obtrusive propaganda to attract new adepts. They censor the information coming to their members, and use other unethical methods of control over personality, psychological pressure, threatening and other means in order to keep the adepts in the organization. Thus the totalitarian sects violate the human right for a free informative choice of ideology and way of life. "Currently, totalitarian sects (destructive cults) are infiltrating actively in educational institutions, health care system, state authorities, industrial and commercial structures. They often change their names and disguise themselves, acting in confessional anonymity or under pseudonyms, under cover of specially created fictitious organizations, whose relation to the cult is not advertised or even concealed. "We would like to appeal to mass media to warn all the people about the danger of destructive cults. In our opinion those, who work in secondary and higher educational systems, should inform pupils and students about existence and activities of totalitarian sects. Adopted on April, 25, 2001 unanimously by 201 participant of the Conference, representing 7 countries of the world (Canada, China, Cyprus, Denmark, France, Germany, Russia) and 22 dioceses of the Russian Orthodox Church." Gerry Armstrong participated in the conference. "I participated in a 3 day conference in Nizhny Novgorod, which at least 250 people attended, and which I believe was very successful. I also gave 3 television interviews, one of which aired while I was in Russia and the other two will be in the next couple of weeks. In addition to the conference, I gave two other talks to university classes and a talk to the parishioners of an Orthodox Church in Moscow." Message-ID: 9cp2kn$ Message-ID:


The Financial Times reported on May 1st that U.S. Senator Gordon Smith warned of retaliation against Western European countries for alleged discrimination against minority religions and cults. "Members of the US Senate's influential foreign relations committee are considering retaliatory visa restrictions for some European visitors if their governments do not ease restrictions on US citizens involved in minority religions, such as the Mormon Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints and the Church of Scientology. "Senator Gordon Smith on Tuesday warned about what he said was increased hostility toward smaller and newer religious movements in France, Belgium, Germany and Austria. At a hearing he chaired on the issue, he suggested imposing retaliatory sanctions, saying the US could choose to decline visas to European church groups and journalists. "The hearing focused particularly on France, which on Thursday is expected to consider legislation which the US State Department views as a potentially dangerous affront to religious freedom. The legislation, which is aimed at sects, would criminalise 'mental manipulation' and dissolve religious groups if one or more of its leaders committed serious crimes, said Elizabeth Clark, associate director of international law and religious studies at Brigham Young, a Mormon university in Utah, in her testimony on Tuesday." Message-ID: 9cp47j$


The Washington Post reported on May 2nd that a probable replacement for Robert Seipel, ambassador at large for religious liberty will be named. Seipel testified before a House of Representatives committee on behalf of Scientology. "The likely pick to be the first person to occupy the post? John Hanford, a congressional fellow who for more than a decade has worked doggedly on religious persecution cases worldwide, using the office of Sen. Richard Lugar (R-Ind.) as a base. "Some on the religious right are grumbling about opposing Hanford. They would prefer a well-known, pyrotechnic type -- say, an Elliott Abrams, chairman of the U.S. Commission on International Religious Freedom." Message-ID: 9co9fr$

John Mappin

The Observer reported on May 6th that a Scientologist is being sued by a news investigator for fraud in a deal to make a film about his life. "He is best known for rummaging through the dustbins of the rich and famous. But Benjamin Pell has betrayed an appetite for Hollywood glory in a bizarre legal action launched against John Mappin, an heir to the Mappin and Webb jewelry empire. Pell is accusing Mappin of hoodwinking him out of nearly 80,000 pounds with empty promises to turn his story into 'the biggest movie of all time'. "He says he handed the money over to pay the travel costs and expenses of an American 'filmmaker' introduced to him by Mappin. He claims the man, allegedly described by Mappin as 'the most powerful person in Hollywood', turned out to be a hairdresser whom Mappin met at a Scientology meeting. Pell says nothing came of the movie. He wants his money back and is accusing Mappin of fraudulent misrepresentation. Mappin denies the allegations and says he is going to file a counterclaim against Pell. "Mappin allegedly said the movie would be based on Pell's life story and would be 'a $10 million blockbuster', but that it could only be made properly by one man - William Iain Jones. Mappin allegedly said Jones had introduced John Travolta to Quentin Tarantino 'and secured him the part in Pulp Fiction'. Pell claims that Mappin offered to introduce him to Jones. But he says he was told he would have to pay the US producer 10,000 pounds. Pell handed over a further 3,375 pounds to cover accommodation costs. Pell claims he first met Jones a few weeks later at London's Four Seasons Hotel. At that point, he says, an agreement was struck and Jones filmed him at work as a prelude to the movie project. "According to Pell's statement of claim, Mappin later persuaded him to pay additional sums totaling more than 53,000 pounds to cover Jones's expenses. Meanwhile, he says, Mappin assured him that Jones was busy at work on the project in California. By March 2000, Pell says he was becoming suspicious. When Mappin allegedly asked him for a further 40,000 pounds, he refused. He accuses Mappin of 'creating a sham appearance that a bona fide film was being made' to get as much of his money as possible. "Pell also says Jones 'was neither well-known nor well-connected nor highly influential nor trustworthy nor experienced' as a producer. 'In fact, Mr Jones was not a qualified film producer at all; rather, he was a hairdresser.'" Message-ID: 9d3qi4$

Panda Software

The Register published an article on Panda Software's connections to Scientology on May 3rd. "Antivirus software firm Panda Software has been linked to the Church of Scientology. A French national newspaper has reported its founder has made donations to an organisation closely linked to the cult. Mikel Urizarbarrena is said to have made donations to the World Institute of Scientology Enterprises (WISE), an US-based association of 2,500 companies directed or controlled by Scientologists. "Panda's French head is also a member of the sect. The issue has caused a wave of controversy among French organisations who fear they have bought security software that might be spyware. The French are scandalised by the idea that an estimated six to nine per cent of the revenues paid by its police ministry for Panda's Global Virus Insurance might have gone into the coffers of the Church, which was founded by L Ron Hubbard." From a letter to The Register by Eugene Andres. "Completely apart from the possible religious affiliations of the various people mentioned in the article, the fact is that Scientology is fully recognized as a bona-fide religion in the U.S. - not-for-profit, tax-exempt and on the same level as e.g. the Catholic Church or the Church of England. It's also been fully recognized in other countries, and as far as I know, it's already pretty much on its way towards complete religious recognition in the U.K. Neither these facts, and not even the web address of the Church are mentioned in the article. There isn't even a pretense of being unbiased - just pure, undistilled anti-religious bigotry. "Both the German and then the French governments have been repeatedly accused of violating religious freedom in reports from prestigious entities, like the U.S. Department of State, the European Council, etc. and it seems when anti-religious bigots can't find anything wrong with someone they hate, the next step for them is to spread a smear campaign. Curiously enough, some of the politicians most active in these black propaganda campaigns HAVE been indicted in the past for various corruption charges and/or are under investigation for them right now." Message-ID: 9cue2v$ Message-ID: 9d3tfd$

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