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The Fundamentalist Left Invades Hollywood Sets

Steven Spielberg has no problem inviting volunteer Scientology ministers onto the set of his "War Of The Worlds" remake, starring Tom Cruise, to tend to the quasi-religious needs of the crew and extras. Of course it's merely a coincidence that Cruise is one of the most outspoken and recognizable Scientologists. This and other details are available in this Spiegel interview with Cruise and Spielberg. Cruise proves that he drinks the church's Kool-Aid a little too frequently in this exchange:

Cruise: I'm a helper. For instance, I myself have helped hundreds of people get off drugs. In Scientology, we have the only successful drug rehabilitation program in the world. It's called Narconon.

SPIEGEL: That's not correct. Yours is never mentioned among the recognized detox programs. Independent experts warn against it because it is rooted in pseudo science.

Cruise: You don't understand what I am saying. It's a statistically proven fact that there is only one successful drug rehabilitation program in the world. Period.

SPIEGEL: With all due respect, we doubt that. Mr. Cruise, you made studio executives, for example from Paramount, tour Scientology's "Celebrity Center" in Hollywood. Are you trying to extend Scientology's influence in Hollywood?

Cruise: I just want to help people. I want everyone to do well.

This whole "values" meme is now completely out of hand when Hollywood stars get into the act - bringing their own uniquely myopic spin to the party. I wonder if Scientology has some L. Ron Hubbard-inspired cure for herpetic sores that have suddenly appeared on the face of Cruise's new 'girlfriend,' Katie Holmes...


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Comments (64)

Even the powers of galactic... (Below threshold)
Alan Dessy:

Even the powers of galactic ruler Xenu are no help against the dreaded herpes. Katie needs to get herself some Herpecin. Quick.

I thought we had a separati... (Below threshold)
Jill:

I thought we had a separation of church & Hollywood in this country.

Wow, what a smackfest!... (Below threshold)

Wow, what a smackfest!

Kevin,

You missed the return barb by Spielberg to Spiegel:

"Spielberg: I often get asked similar questions about my Shoa Foundation. I get asked why I am trying to disseminate my deep belief in creating more tolerance through my foundation's teaching the history of the Holocaust in public schools. I believe that you shouldn't be allowed to attend college without having taken a course in tolerance education. That should be an important part of the social studies curriculum."

In other words, "We remember who's the pushy nazi bastards around here---back off my wackadoo, Fritz!"

I don't think that's Holmes... (Below threshold)
JimK:

I don't think that's Holmes. A lot of places are calling it a look-a-like, and I think I agree.

However, Cruise is still an asshat. ;)

<a href="http://suzyrice.co... (Below threshold)
-S-:

Last week...I was musing about this...to be kind here.


Cruise USED to have a steadfast publicist who kept him somewhat reigned in about his statements about CoS but he fired her and now we have this.

I found that interview in Der SPIEGEL to be very unsettling. The interviewer was remaining academic while Cruise was remaining 'focused' as he's been instructed to do, and they missed one another entirely. Just entirely. And, Spielberg seems to have just sat through it, although present.

I actually had a bad dream about it later.

The CoS table and tours (Cruise provides tours to studio execs of the Celebrity Center for those engaging in projects that he's involved with, says the tours are optional but that's like saying to studio execs that their healthcare plan is optional)...anyway, I was wondering what would happen if I built a shrine to the Sacred Heart of Jesus on one of the studio lots and had a number of Catholic priests standing by for to counsel whoever might want it.

Not that that'd be a bad thing, in my view. Just that no one -- nearly, not one person -- in Hollywood would ever tolerate such a thing.

When I worked at Lucasfilm many years ago, my dad came to visit me from Texas (drove straight through because he was concerned about me) and showed up at the office. He was at that time a Catholic Priest and was dressed accordingly and you'd have thought I'd had sent a lightning bolt into my supervisor's trailer because I got a call as soon as my dad drove away, and heard gossip about A CATHOLIC PRIEST AT THE OFFICE for years after that. Oh, the horror!

I explained he was my dad, my actual biological father (married to my mother, was an Episcopalian minister when I was born, later divorced from my mother, converted to Catholicism and became a Catholic Priest), but, it was entirely unacceptable to a certain few there, the very idea of a Catholic Priest visiting for an hour...I even took him on the Universal lot and it caused a real series of upset head turns.

Amazing...because, just look, by comparison...

I was amazed at how sharp t... (Below threshold)

I was amazed at how sharp the questions were from the Spiegel reporter. What a welcome change from suck-up American celebrity journalism.

Can't really fault a person... (Below threshold)
Darby:

Can't really fault a person for having Herpes Simplex-A(I believe that's what it is called.

I mean, if you're old enough to kiss, even just in friendship. You're old enough to have it.

I don't know what the statistics are, but I'm willing to bet a very high percentage of people get cold-sores. Usually when you start to get sick, or just after you get sick.

So don't go slamming people with cold sores, all you need to do to catch it is just drink from a coffee cup of someone who has an out-break.

If you don't have it, great for you. I'm willing to bet before you die you'll catch it though.

I agree about the interview... (Below threshold)
-S-:

I agree about the interviewer in Der SPIEGEL...he was startling in clarity and question. The comparisons to our "entertainment" media were truly tragic.

Interesting comment about y... (Below threshold)

Interesting comment about your father -S-

My boss is a Scientologist and will be implementing Hubbard Management in the office soon. She also wants to use ABLE programs (we're a nonprofit). ABLE kind of manages Narconon, Criminon, etc... I tried to explain to her that it isn't that I can't see her point of view that this stuff is secular (even if the CoS considers all of Elron's work to be religious scripture while it's technically not legally connected subsidiaries call it secular), but that people would throw a freakin' fit if we did anything that could so much as be confused as being Christian. Boundaries aren't something she understands, which might explain why she hands out Scientology books to people who then consider that she's telling them to read them.

The funny thing about Hubbard management is that it's all so arbitrarty and inhuman in addition to being a covert way to gain converts.

My goodness the EEOC could have a field day here (and my goodness I wish our board wasn't so spineless). Thank God I'm leaving soon.

Good luck Nathan. Your next... (Below threshold)
no way:

Good luck Nathan. Your next-to-last paragraph says it all. S-- is a mishmash of eastern philosophy, science fiction, and whatever else LRH wanted to peddle. The funniest thing is there is absolutely no science behind any of it, despite the name of the group.

I find Spielberg's reply both good and lacking. Anybody that did everything but fellate Fidel is applying a little too much tolerance. Maybe he doesn't realize that the guy from Speigel does know his history.

My father-in-law is deep in the S-- organization and helps quite a bit with Narconon. I've seen people turn their lives around because of it but don't know enough about the program to comment any more on it. Anything that S-- touches is obviously going to be deep in the program, though. While worrying about methods employed, it is good to see people kick their habits and start new lives. I'll have to find out more...

My real big beef with Narco... (Below threshold)

My real big beef with Narconon is its aversion to scientific analysis. The purification rundown (which is a secular drug treatment dealy in Narconon and a semi-holy ritual in Co$) is not just junk science but dangerous. When my boss did it, I told her that maybe she felt naseous because she was hardly eating and sitting in a sauna for hours...

The point I try to get across with her is that she can say Scientology stuff works but that doesn't make it the one true path that must be followed (especially in an organization with some obligation to serve the public). I've seen evangelical Christianity work really well for people too, after all... Doesn't mean a boss should be making it a critical element of one's job though.

"I myself have helped hundr... (Below threshold)
jumbo:

"I myself have helped hundreds of people get off drugs." T. Cruise


Pray, tell, with so much Scientilogical do-goodery, when does Mr. Cruise find time to arrange public appearances with all the women he has , er, persuaded to act as beards for him?

The funnist joke I everhear... (Below threshold)
Clash City Rocker:

The funnist joke I everheard Tina Faye utter.

While Tom Cruise and Nicole Kiddman settle their divorce, the children will be returned to the prop departmet of Parmaont Pictures.

Scientific (not Scientology... (Below threshold)

Scientific (not Scientology) info on Herpes Simplex Virus:

There are several members of the Herpeviridae family, and about 90% of the population have antibodies to at least 4 of them: Epstein-Barr (mononucleosis) Cytomegalovirus (a mononucleosis-type syndrome) Varicella-Zoster (chickenpox) and Herpes Simplex 1 (oral herpes).

Most Herpesvirus infections occur in childhood, and most are unremarkable, usually mistaken for a cold or the flu (excepting chickenpox).

However, about 1/3 of persons who have been infected with HSV-1 will have recurrent viral lesions around the mouth and lips (cold sores), even though they still have antibodies in their blood. The virus goes into a latent phase in the nerve tissue around the mouth, starting the new infections whenever there is a depression in immune system surveillance (menstruation, sunburns, stress).

HSV-1 can also be transmitted through oral-genital contact, so Tom should be careful when she has active lesions, if you know what I mean.

Herpes Simplex 2 is primarily a sexually-transmitted disease, and it usually is alot more severe than HSV-1. It is more likely to cause recurrent genital sores than HSV-1. This is the disease that has afflicted many famous athletes and if rumors are true, one former president.

Incidentally, HSV isn't the only virus to produce latent infections. Chickenpox will produce shingles, usually in older persons, and Epstein-Barr has been implicated in Chronic Fatigue Syndrome.

/geek mode

Interesting how this board ... (Below threshold)

Interesting how this board is just degrading lower and lower into smashing some guy for... for what? For having his own beliefs? Whatever. It's pretty disgusting.

I can totally understand why Cruise gets pissed off at remarks about his sexuality. It has nothing to do with being gay or straight, there are many gay Scientologists (link), that's not the point - the point is that Cruise is an in-your-face, honest kind of person. If he was gay, he'd have pulled a Rosie or an Ellen a long time ago. That's what pisses him off, not the insinuation that he might be gay, but the smearing of his courage and character.

It's funny how one needs to only start a rumor and then everyone feeds off of it. (By the way, folks, Microsoft is NOT giving away free money.)

To Nathan:
Ok, if you don't like your boss using a Hubbard-based management approach, you simply can leave. Your choice. Nobody forces a job down your throat. And it's the freedom of any employer to administer their company like they want to.

And why do we Scientologists insist that this stuff is secular? Duh, because it is! Look, Noah Webster was a passionate Christian. That does not make the dictionary a religious work.

What if Martin Luther had invented a better plow? Would we avoid using it because it's a "protestant plow"?

Nathan, I'd urge you to at least find out a little bit about Hubbard management principles to see whether you need to get your feathers ruffled or not. Nobody is pushing Scientology down your throat, nobody is asking you to get Scientology religious counseling. If you get sick and they send you to Jewish Memorial, would you get all pissed off because they're trying to make you a Jew? Relax, man.

to all others praising Der Spiegel for badgering two american moviemakers: Maybe you should not be so quick to kiss their ass. Der Spiegel has been a vehicle of government propaganda in Germany for all of its history. It was notoriously anti-Jew in the 30s, majorly pro-Nazi as well. And it's THE main promoter of scientolophobe hysteria in Germany. So pause and think for a sec.

If you want to see how Germany treated Jews in the early 30s and how it treats Scientologists today, see this. (I am not talking about what happened in 39-45, but the discrimination that went on for a decade before.)

BTW, did you guys know that Germany banned Windows 2000 because some of the people who worked on it were american Scientologists?

Last but not least:

When does Cruise find the time for all the do-gooding? Honestly, beats me. But if you check out his MANY projects (NYDETOX) (APPLIED SCHOLASTICS) (HELPLEARN) and his record, you will see the man really does put his money (and his time) where his mouth is.

Alright, bash away now. I've said my piece.

Greg Churilov
www.liveandgrow.org

There are absolutely no stu... (Below threshold)
Alanzo:

There are absolutely no studies which show Narconon's effectiveness, despite what Mr Cruise says. If anyone fails the program and reverts to drugs, it's because they were "Suppressive People" who were always too evil to be helped anyway. So, as such, they are not counted among all the "successes". They are simply not counted at all.

Oh, and by the way, the best cold sore treatment is Viroxyn.

Here's the deal. Scientolog... (Below threshold)
Rufus T Firefly:

Here's the deal. Scientology members have to do the 'purification program' as they work there way through the hypnotic 'bridge to total" freedom. (Later they learn that they are infested with space aliens too.) The purification program is supposed to rid the body of toxins. L Ron Hubbard claims it removes agent orange and radiation amongst other things. The toxins change with the current maladies or disaster scene. In the teachings Narconon/Scientology uses the scientific notion that sweating out drugs happens by excessively using the sauna while taking massive amounts of the Cal-Mag drink. The sweating part is totally nonscientific.

Scientology is a money making enterprise, and they have a planet to clear, and that includes selling the products. They are attempting to sell this program secularly.

The purification is sold under several names. In other words, the purification program is sold for different purposes, but it is the same Scientology writings and same Scientology sauna and detox as in the purification program.

the Second Chance Program is for prison inmates. It is the same purification program, again with sauna detox and Scientology teachings. The spokespeople for this program were Scientologists who became members of the National Foundation for Women Legislators (NFWL) in order to run their anti-psychiatry campaign using different women legislators. After that they took the women to a prison and that program is now pictured on the website.

Tom Cruise is the spokesman for the Firefighter's and/or or Emergency Workers Detoxification in New York. Which hat today? The scurilous claims of this program are that it helps rid the toxins for emergency workers post 9-11. The firefighter union cut off funding to the facility that was home to the program. They thought the claims of colored ooze on towels was not significant evidence, along with no real scientific evidence, well you get the picture. The same purif was strangely proposed in NY as the Erie County Second Chance program, for prison inmates. It was proposed by a women member of the NFWL strangely enough. They know how to work the area. The program is being funded however unfortunate by NY councilwoman Margarita Lopez (discretionary funds) who happened to be seen hobknobbing with Tom Cruise. (She fights for gay rights:-) ) Guess it depends on how important a celebrities rapport is, to have even politicians overlook common medical sense.

Criminon is another prison inmate program that uses the same Scientology teachings and same sauna and detox which has been rejected in several government settings. Why do you need two names for the same prison inmate program? Oh yeah Criminon has been rejected so many times, you need a NEW program name, so people who read the internet can't see that it is quackery!

If that's not strange enough there is a federal act pending approval, the 'Second Chance Act' of 2004, which will allow fed money to go into US states for prison substance abuse rehabs. Crimimon signed on the letter advocating the program on the HRW website, yet who knows if those NFWL ladies and Scientology members there will attempt to procure funds from the Second Chance Act or will Criminon step up backed by another celebrity? Maybe they will both attempt funding under two names for the same one damn program! And what are the odds of Scientology naming a program that would coincidentally the name of Federal Act? Find out tomorrow, in the Days of our Front Groups.

Scientology's own Celebrity Center offers the purification program to the unsuspecting wannabe and uses the sauna detoxification, same as in the other programs. Like in the prison. Here's where they spawn Tom Cruises that shill for Scientology programs. This is where you will see the Dianetics book of Scientology, or the Clear Body Clear Mind to sell you on every reason why you need to detox your body. (Later its purging aliens, get ready folks!) If you won't be convinced after two pages that L Ron Hubbard is freaking nuts, you will no doubt submit your brain to the equivalent of being cooked well done, or softened up enough to buy another course. Pithy on you...

It's just another name for the same thing... Why?

What's amazing is that the unscientific ideas in this program were being taught to school children in California under the auspices of 'drug prevention.' The State Dept. of Education recently concluded that the program should be banned from all of the public schools, and the California Medical Assoc just backed them on that. What has been evaluated as unscientific is actually being applied in the Narconon and any of the above-described floor wax and dessert toppings.

The icing on the cake, and I haven't placed any references here, (it's all on the web) is that some of Narconon's white papers were totally false, they actually made up a report stating an approval from an agency) and they made up a testimonial online by a woman that was on countless Narconon websites, who was furious to find out they were using her name.

What kind of tolerance are we supposed to have for con games?

Kev, you really oughta let ... (Below threshold)

Kev, you really oughta let me get my two cents in. It's pretty rotten to only allow scientolophobes to post.

Interesting how this board ... (Below threshold)

Interesting how this board is just degrading lower and lower into smashing some guy for... for what? For having his own beliefs? Whatever. It's pretty disgusting.

I can totally understand why Cruise gets pissed off at remarks about his sexuality. It has nothing to do with being gay or straight, there are many gay Scientologists (link), that's not the point - the point is that Cruise is an in-your-face, honest kind of person. If he was gay, he'd have pulled a Rosie or an Ellen a long time ago. That's what pisses him off, not the insinuation that he might be gay, but the smearing of his courage and character.

It's funny how one needs to only start a rumor and then everyone feeds off of it. (By the way, folks, Microsoft is NOT giving away free money.)

To Nathan:Ok, if you... (Below threshold)

To Nathan:
Ok, if you don't like your boss using a Hubbard-based management approach, you simply can leave. Your choice. Nobody forces a job down your throat. And it's the freedom of any employer to administer their company like they want to.

And why do we Scientologists insist that this stuff is secular? Duh, because it is! Look, Noah Webster was a passionate Christian. That does not make the dictionary a religious work.

What if Martin Luther had invented a better plow? Would we avoid using it because it's a "protestant plow"?

Nathan, I'd urge you to at least find out a little bit about Hubbard management principles to see whether you need to get your feathers ruffled or not. Nobody is pushing Scientology down your throat, nobody is asking you to get Scientology religious counseling. If you get sick and they send you to Jewish Memorial, would you get all pissed off because they're trying to make you a Jew? Relax, man.

To all others praising Der ... (Below threshold)

To all others praising Der Spiegel for badgering two american moviemakers: Maybe you should not be so quick to kiss their ass. Der Spiegel has been a vehicle of government propaganda in Germany for all of its history. It was notoriously anti-Jew in the 30s, majorly pro-Nazi as well. And it's THE main promoter of scientolophobe hysteria in Germany. So pause and think for a sec.

If you want to see how Germany treated Jews in the early 30s and how it treats Scientologists today, see this. (I am not talking about what happened in 39-45, but the discrimination that went on for a decade before.)

BTW, did you guys know that Germany banned Windows 2000 because some of the people who worked on it were american Scientologists?

Last but not least:<p... (Below threshold)

Last but not least:

When does Cruise find the time for all the do-gooding? Honestly, beats me. But if you check out his MANY projects (NYDETOX) (APPLIED SCHOLASTICS) (HELPLEARN) and his record, you will see the man really does put his money (and his time) where his mouth is.

Alright, bash away now. I've said my piece.

Greg Churilov
www.liveandgrow.org

I'm confused by the headlin... (Below threshold)
Ron Newman:

I'm confused by the headline. What does Scientology have to do with the "Left", fundamentalist or otherwise?

For the truth about Scientology, visit http://www.xenu.net .

Nathan: good luck to you a... (Below threshold)
-S-:

Nathan: good luck to you and best wishes, sincerely. It's best to exercise one's own freedom of choice and find another job, even industry, when you're feeling that sort of coercion (and what you describe is coercion).

There's a vast difference between someone, anyone, sharing their views, and religious views, too, and someone being required in enterprises to participate in those views to any concentrated point (unless you've joined in as an employee with some effort that is based in those efforts, dedicated in principle upon whatever belief system that is attempted to be joined).

I've worked with a lot of people in the film industry who are CoS and always got my work done with and without them and never had incidents of upset or aggression or whatever so am quite tolerant in my professional area with allowing a certain space for anyone to believe whatever they believe and all that. As in, it isn't something that upsets or threatens MY beliefs, but, in the film industry, particularly, there is intolerance and shock if you are Christian and are conservative (particularly if you are Republican).

The shock is something I've learned to stop responding to, however, and just persevere in the projects. But, there is great intolerance among the left in the entertainment industry about anything other than liberalism, given that so many are liberals and the projects are, by result.

They do tolerate the CoS to a greater degree, however, which is interesting. I do, to a degree, as I've written, but only because I've known relatively well a few people involved in CoS and haven't (to my knowledge) ever undergone any adverse pressure otherwise. I know a few who literally stopped communicating with me (a tactic instructed to a point in CoS and displayed impulsively by others otherwise) once I made my Catholicism known, but that's their loss, not mine.

I don't know that the entir... (Below threshold)
-S-:

I don't know that the entire push to denigrate Scientology is as worthwile as it is the need to enlighten people about intolerance.

That is, once we begin to denigrate a person's understanding of what they declare and determine to be religious, we open up a bad process.

Seems more important to emphasise the Freedom of Religion and then allow individuals to learn and establish.

I just think that the Cruise statements in that SPIEGEL interview were, in all due respect, nearly irrational to the format, venue, and even questions raised.

Greg Churilov...obviously, ... (Below threshold)
-S-:

Greg Churilov...obviously, it is you who is bashing here, not anyone else.

So far, I read a conversatioin that's calm and collected and referring to many points (that could later be discussed in worthwhile fasion, also), then your bash appears and interjects negativity, intolerance and hostility into the place.

Take a breath, work your own case first and come back when you can make a humane contribution beyond running everyone down based upon what you're assuming is being done, when it isn't. I think what you're expressing is a high degree of your own projection upon others: intolerance inward reads intolerance outwardly and everywhere.

From what I understand, Spi... (Below threshold)
-S-:

From what I understand, Spielberg's sister is a member of CoS, which may influence his concepts about what is tolerant and what isn't.

About Germany and their actions taken to ban CoS there, I can understand why they did, BUT, I also now find the Left worldwide, by being previously denied a real education about certain horrors in our world's past (German Socialism, to be exact), that the Left has now sprouted into another permutation OF that horror (in practice and application) while misapplying their various pejoratives otherwise (labelling non socialists as "nazis" and such while it is the Left who is displaying actual extreme socialism, just as did earlier Germany leading up to and culminating in the rise of Hitler representing their rabid form of socialism).

What I mean is, by censoring exposure to certain "bad things" and suspicious elements, it can and does enable a reocurrence later of the very abhorrent things by sheer force of human group gullibility. Even those later renouncing German Socialism have and do explain how they were coerced into participating, or otherwise brought into the movement by social influence and/or demand and most of that by educational insistence and the like under the influence of the movement itself...all typical of today's Left, all too sadly.

They overlook, as do many among liberals today, that German Socialism that created the Nazis was a socialist movement. It was also greatly influenced by a few who were active in homosexual "rights" and the arts in Germany...

Spielberg is a liberal, has visited Cuba, met with Castro and more...pal to Bill Clinton, contributor to the DNC...I dare say that the interview is a scary thing because in that format, it is the German interviewer who is making sense and Cruise and Spielberg appear more lost in space than I am comfortable reading about.

I thought they were supposed to be promoting a film. I guess not. Or, elsewise, seems that the point of their "film" is to promote something else entirely. I can't decide which is what based upon how both of them behaved in that interview.

And, to respond to something earlier raised here, the issue of CoS has been brought into discussion here BECAUSE Cruise so non-thematically insisted on the issue in that interview...supposedly for purposes of discussing a film.

"the point is that Cruise i... (Below threshold)
jumbo:

"the point is that Cruise is an in-your-face, honest kind of person"

I read this, and I immediately went in my mind to the scene in the general's air-conditioned trailer in "Apocalypse Now", when the General said that Col. Kurtz had "gone quite obviously insane". But then it became apparent the post was written by a Scientologist. Same-same, I guess.

Greg Churilov....you write ... (Below threshold)
-S-:

Greg Churilov....you write that "Der Spiegel...badger(ed)" these two?

See, more of that projection of yours, your own inner dialogue projected onto the big world around you.

Because, there was no "badgering" involved in that interview, to my read, beyond the fact that Cruise made little sense to the questions he was asked (responded with off topic answers, even consistently lead the questioner into other territory that the questioner did not pose), and that Spielberg seems oddly complicit by way of also avoiding the questioner's points.

I know that Q&As can be very difficult but these two appear to have badgered the interviewer, not the contrary. I'm surprised the interviewer remained as intellectual as he did.

About Cruise "putting his money where his mouth is..." (earlier also raised, here, this thread), Cruise makes donations in the name of others to CoS and then lets them know that he has, such that thier names are included in the CoS database of donators. Just seems entirely presumptuous, to my view.

Fine, make donations to wherever you find the money best applied (I do) but the practice used by Cruise is also then misused about others...placing them among a group that they haven't otherwise initiated, or willfully decided to join, but are joined with anyway.

Seems like, well, a fascist act.

Because, reasonably, send someone a card and ask them to donate or not, to give permission for a donation "in their names" or not, but to take these measures, and with an enterprise (CoS) that compiles names for a concerted purpose without permission, seems quite wrong to my view.

About the "in your face" ch... (Below threshold)
-S-:

About the "in your face" characteristic, and more...


Farrell, Mike (Actor):
"To this day, people who tangle with Scientology find themselves subject to aggressive efforts at intimidation. Mike Farrell, who played B.J. on the television series M*A*S*H, crossed paths with the church when he contacted the Cult Awareness Network for information on a film project about child abuse. After gaining great respect for their work, he attended a fund-raising event at a private home in Beverly Hills, where he was confronted by angry picketers. 'There were people taking photographs, being very obvious, getting video footage of the guests as they went in and out - obvious harassment,' he says. Farrell says he asked one of the pickets if he was a Scientologist, and the man said yes. In an effort to be fair, Farrell had lunch with Reverend Heber Jentzsch, president of the Church of Scientology International, and investigated Scientology's charges against CAN. The actor says he found them to be based on 'sham, invective, and distortion.' Later, at a CAN convention near the L.A. airport, Farrell encountered more angry Scientologists. 'Not only did they picket, but they sort of get in your face and give you this loud and incessant spiel that doesn't allow for dialogue - it's just a kind of attempt to intimidate.' In the last few months Farrell has gotten numerous strange phone calls, one telling him (falsely, as it turned out) that an old friend had died. There have been so many that now when he gets calls after midnight at his home, he answers, 'Hubbard was crazy.' Sometimes, he says, there's a long silence before the caller hangs up." - Premiere, Sept. 1993, "Catch a rising star".

And, an opinion (others available)...

Clarke, Arthur C (Author):
"I'm afraid he went crazy and turned a lot of other people crazy." [Arthur C. Clarke talking about L Ron Hubbard, KFYI radio, Phoenix Arizona 8-9pm show 1/24/04]


People try to be tolerant, but sometimes you just have to hang up your phone, close your door, and/or say, "No, thank you." Unfortunately, sometimes, some people won't abide by the declination.

As someone who has had a fa... (Below threshold)
LL:

As someone who has had a family member go through rehab to escape from Scientology (after they talked him out of several hundred thousand dollars) I have elected to avoid all film, TV and entertainment features involving Scientologists. I am sure I missed some good things involving Travolta, Cruise, Kirstie Alley (well, maybe not), Beck, DiRibisi and others but I try to avoid any of my money going to this cult. My Uncle has had to move to another country that sees this group for what it really is and treats it accordingly.

Yes, I am missing a lot of famous names, I am half asleep!

About Der Spiegel, <a href=... (Below threshold)
-S-:

About Der Spiegel, this article/interview doesn't even remotely suggest that they exercise an apologist editorial perspective (I think Scientologists would apply the term, "suppressive" editiorial policy in that accusation made earlier, this thread, by Greg Churilov):

Article...

I can see the parallels there (contents discussed in the article) to other socialist, group efforts, that employ a charismatic human figure, since arisen elsewhere. Enough to understand a sense of caution, at least.

About Der Spiegel, <a href=... (Below threshold)
-S-:

About Der Spiegel, this article/interview doesn't even remotely suggest that they exercise an apologist editorial perspective (I think Scientologists would apply the term, "suppressive" editiorial policy in that accusation made earlier, this thread, by Greg Churilov):

Article...

I can see the parallels there (contents discussed in the article) to other socialist, group efforts, that employ a charismatic human figure, since arisen elsewhere. Enough to understand a sense of caution, at least.

didn't we have this convers... (Below threshold)
chad...:

didn't we have this conversation a few weeks ago about mormanism. It would make life much simpler if someone would provide a list of what religions are not a moonbat cult or asshat cult or whatever you want to call them. I personally don't subscribe to scientology, but tom cruise is very successfull in his field and he he feels that he owes at least part of his success to scientology. who am i to argue with him and how could i prove him wrong anyway? especially since the concensus seems to be that he has no talent (although i suggest you watch colltateral to counteract that) so something must explain it.

Hi -S-,I've enjoye... (Below threshold)

Hi -S-,

I've enjoyed most of your posts.
But I am not in agreement that this has been a pleasant, polite conversation and I am the only one who is raising his tone. So far, Tom Cruise has been called names, Katie Holmes has been ridiculed in several different ways for no reason, Narconon has been mercilessly bashed, links to fiercely scientolophobe websites have been put up as "the truth" about us. I don't call that polite banter.

In regards to all the "that's not scientific" posts - every time the issue of the Purification Rundown comes up, our organizations present MDs and PHDs who back up Hubbard's theories. The opposition presents their own scientists who attack Hubbard's theories. It's a political game, and a similar game is played with many alternative treatments.

Meanwhile, drugs like Prozac, Xanax, etc. - with a documented record of suicides and violent murders as a result, in at least 4% of the cases, - get approved by the FDA and people pop them like they're candy.

-S-, I totally fail to see how sending a donation on someone else's behalf is a "fascist act". It's mischievous, humorous, in-your-face and an utterly freedom-of-speech thing to do.

I personally wouldn't have done it, I can totally see how he pissed some people off. But I think he INTENDED to piss some people off. :-)

In regards to Mike Farrell, he got involved with CAN, a group of "deprogrammers" who eventually got sued out of existence because of illicit practices (they tried to deprogram a Catholic Nun, for example).

"Deprogramming" is forceful kidnapping, holding someone against their will and basically "breaking their will" in order for them to give up their beliefs. It is a hateful practice and illegal in the US. It is similar to "aversion therapy", which the shrinks used to do to gays to stop them from being gay. It is a disgusting, inhumane practice. Fuck Farrell.

"Yesssss Maaaaassterrrrr, I... (Below threshold)
jumbo:

"Yesssss Maaaaassterrrrr, I will defeeeeeeeend Tom Cruuuuuuuuuise..."


"The Living Dead - Volume CoS"

"...and if I am successful ... (Below threshold)
jumbo:

"...and if I am successful Maaaaassterrr, will I finally beeeee cleeeeeeeeeearrrrr?"

To -S-, I like your posting... (Below threshold)
Rufus T Firefly:

To -S-, I like your postings and insights. The comparison of Hitler and socialism as to the influences and actions here is very perceptive. I hadn't thought of it as a right or left issue. Fundamentally and speaking of the right, Scientology has found a common bond with Christians who do not want evolution (science)taught at schools, to the point where they ally in lobbies to cut mental health appropriations and related programs in those schools and in other venues. All of this without knowing that Ron Hubbard declared himself the anti-Christ. Scientology has a group called the CCHR, that calls psychiatrists nazis. The CCHR is a hate group.

Consider some teachings also, that would cross any partyline, and shape the National Socialists and Hitler:

"The nationalist socialists derived power from one source: ...a fanatical autohypnosis which convinced disciples, succumbing to the totalitarian discipline in the promise of reaching transcendent reality, that they were the new men the age was waiting for.. ..that they were endowed with a secret energy which would enable them to take over germany and the world. If they were properly prepared, mysteries would be revealed to them which would give them Satanic powers...

These cults, from those connected with George Ivanovitch, Gurdjieff, Madame Helena Petrovna Blavatsky, and Rudolf Steiner to their present reincarnations, shared certain features: an authoritarian obedience to a charismatic and Messianic leader; secrecy; loyalty to the group above all other ties, a belief in supernatural possibilities open to members only, a belief in reincarnation; initiation into superhuman sources of power; literal acceptance of the myth of ancient " "giants" or supermen who handed down an oral tradition to a chosen people and who were guiding us now; and, in uncommon cases, Satanic practices." "The Nazi's and the Occult 1977, by Dusty Sklar"

To Mr. Churilov,,,<... (Below threshold)
Rufus T Firefly:


To Mr. Churilov,,,

When you joined Scientology, did you ever think that you would have to forget about yourself? Did you learn to think for yourself, and look for yourself? Please read this with an open mind and heart...

I was in the cult and on staff for 10 years... here are the stages I have seen... as one exits the 'Hubbardian' mind control program....

1) There is something wrong here, if this is so great,

then why is (______) going on?

[insert whatever atrocity you have recently witnessed]

2) The guys at the top must be crazy

3) Miscavige and crew are evil demons from another dimension [or something similar ]

4) Hubbard went crazy at the end....

5) Hubbard went crazy in 1966

6) Hubbard was mad from the start.

7) This whole thing is a complete fraud

8) my god, its a criminal organization... with criminal convictions all over the world... and it was only about money

9) realization that THERE ARE NO OT's HERE!

10) realizing, after leaving Scientology, this makes one an ex-nazi and wanting to do something about it

-----------------

Now there is an elaborate bridge INTO Scientology... hence, there is also a conceptual bridge out of it... What is outlines above was my path, there are other paths out of scientology. But when a person leaves Scientology and starts waking up again to what really happened to him, he will pass through most of the phases above.

If you find a person, who seems sincere, but is stuck somewhere on that bridge out of scientology, at best, they are incapable of helping...
being sticks in the mud themselves, at worst they have been posted by Scientology or manipulated by scientology into taking stands at various places on that bridge out and saying in effect DONT GO ANY FURTHER... DONT LISTEN TO THEM... GO BACK... ITS NOT SO BAD......

Some of those nicks sound like they were chosen using Hubbard's "Survey" (button finding) "tech"

People leaving Scientology go through AMAZING changes in a short space of time...I know this to be true.

Scientology appears to have created, synthetic personalities, who have been positioned at many of these steps (outlined above) out of Scientology.

The commonality you will find are:

A) make less of the whomever is a threat to Scientology

B) Belittle, denigrate, or start flame wars,

C) Re-Focus on triviality

D) while offering NO links and NO information of any real worth, and being NO help to actually getting anyone out of scientology, all the while

E) damaging, and discouraging the repute of, those who are doing this or trying to explain how to others

Take any poster, whose countenance makes you feel 'bad'.. whose conduct makes you want to read something else.. or go somewhere else.... or give up the good fight to expose this evil...who makes less of those who are explaining how things work, whose demeanor is nothing more that an online reflection of the back of the room rabble rouser, the cat caller, the nazi-style meeting disrupter, sent by Scientology to disrupt a lecture that then Mayor Gabe Cazares gave at his local VFW - Veterans of Foreign Wars - meeting hall. At that time, it was Sea Org Member Gary Weber, who had been sent to disrupt that meeting - why? so that critical information about Scientology COULD NOT BE DISCUSSED.

You can read Gary Weber's apology for that and other acts committed in the name of Scientology's fuhrer HERE.

Sincerely

Arnie Lerma

Damn Greg, they give you gu... (Below threshold)

Damn Greg, they give you guys a script or something? Because you sound like a less sinister version of the management consultant. One of the reasons people are so wary about Scientologists is that you guys preach and encourage separation from those who voice a different point of view. It's chilling.

I understand the system perfectly, but since WISE is incorporated as a religious nonprofit and licenses consultants (who are told Hubbard Management is a good way to get people on the bridge), and because the CoS considers all of Hubbard's writings scriptures, the stuff is religion. I understand why you say it's secular, but (even if you protest otherwise) I doubt you'd say the same about some arbitrarily defined course calling itself's Jesus Christ Management Technology. Noah Webster didn't claim to be a prophet and neither did Martin Luther. You fought for the religious classification, so live with it.

And to me, it seems nothing more than an expensive way for managers without planning skills to pay someone claiming to have a one size fits all strategy bags and bags of money to sit down and figure out the unique goals of the business and what steps are needed to accomplish them. If it's a solution, then it should solve the problem pretty much out of the box. It shouldn't require a dehumanizing "stats-management" system, the chasing out of those who think things should be done differently (we suppressives are such a problem, aren't we Greg?), and a very long process to figure out how to organize the place. Because, at the end of the day, a company is made up of individuals, not simply functions.

Greg, honestly, I think this plan and using ABLE stuff in our work (we're a nonprofit, remember?) will destroy the company. I was already leaving for other reasons this summer, but I would leave over this. I'm not alone. We're facing losing a good chunk of our staff over this, some of whom have some serious cred in the industry in this city. And if the public became aware of a working relationship between Scientology front groups and our organization, our public support would absolutely evaporate.

To Mr. Churilov,,,<... (Below threshold)
Rufis T Firefly:


To Mr. Churilov,,,

When you joined Scientology, did you ever think that you would have to forget about yourself? Did you learn to think for yourself, and look for yourself? Please read this with an open mind and heart...

I was in the cult and on staff for 10 years... here are the stages I have seen... as one exits the 'Hubbardian' mind control program....

1) There is something wrong here, if this is so great,

then why is (______) going on?

[insert whatever atrocity you have recently witnessed]

2) The guys at the top must be crazy

3) Miscavige and crew are evil demons from another dimension [or something similar ]

4) Hubbard went crazy at the end....

5) Hubbard went crazy in 1966

6) Hubbard was mad from the start.

7) This whole thing is a complete fraud

8) my god, its a criminal organization... with criminal convictions all over the world... and it was only about money

9) realization that THERE ARE NO OT's HERE!

10) realizing, after leaving Scientology, this makes one an ex-nazi and wanting to do something about it

-----------------

Now there is an elaborate bridge INTO Scientology... hence, there is also a conceptual bridge out of it... What is outlines above was my path, there are other paths out of scientology. But when a person leaves Scientology and starts waking up again to what really happened to him, he will pass through most of the phases above.

If you find a person, who seems sincere, but is stuck somewhere on that bridge out of scientology, at best, they are incapable of helping...
being sticks in the mud themselves, at worst they have been posted by Scientology or manipulated by scientology into taking stands at various places on that bridge out and saying in effect DONT GO ANY FURTHER... DONT LISTEN TO THEM... GO BACK... ITS NOT SO BAD......

Some of those nicks sound like they were chosen using Hubbard's "Survey" (button finding) "tech"

People leaving Scientology go through AMAZING changes in a short space of time...I know this to be true.

Scientology appears to have created, synthetic personalities, who have been positioned at many of these steps (outlined above) out of Scientology.

The commonality you will find are:

A) make less of the whomever is a threat to Scientology

B) Belittle, denigrate, or start flame wars,

C) Re-Focus on triviality

D) while offering NO links and NO information of any real worth, and being NO help to actually getting anyone out of scientology, all the while

E) damaging, and discouraging the repute of, those who are doing this or trying to explain how to others

Take any poster, whose countenance makes you feel 'bad'.. whose conduct makes you want to read something else.. or go somewhere else.... or give up the good fight to expose this evil...who makes less of those who are explaining how things work, whose demeanor is nothing more that an online reflection of the back of the room rabble rouser, the cat caller, the nazi-style meeting disrupter, sent by Scientology to disrupt a lecture that then Mayor Gabe Cazares gave at his local VFW - Veterans of Foreign Wars - meeting hall. At that time, it was Sea Org Member Gary Weber, who had been sent to disrupt that meeting - why? so that critical information about Scientology COULD NOT BE DISCUSSED.

You can read Gary Weber's apology for that and other acts committed in the name of Scientology's fuhrer HERE.

Sincerely

Arnie Lerma

I don't think Greg Churilov... (Below threshold)

I don't think Greg Churilov is your average joe scientologist, despite how he portrays himself. He also commented on my blog post about Cruise and another blog that I linked to. I found it odd that he would be lurking around, almost looking for posts on Scientology.

If you want some fun, try googling his name. The guy is all over the internet: in the blogosphere, in forums, writing letters to editors, etc. (even on Spanish and Russian sites?), and all for the purpose of defending the "good" name of Scientology. CoS apologetics seems to be his part time occupation. His website is also a fairly detailed CoS clearinghouse. Although it's registered to a Cisco Danconia and I don't know what his relation to Greg is.

Since I expect Greg back here at some point to call everybody scientolophobes (a delightfully amusing, if wholly inaccurate, term I'll accept), here's a question: Is Scientology a religion or is it secular? If the former, latter, or even both, on what basis do you say this?

-Dangerous Dan

Hi Dan;I am amused a... (Below threshold)

Hi Dan;
I am amused and delighted that you don't think I'm an average joe. Thanks for the compliment! And I agree. I never considered myself average :-)

Sure, I posted on your blog. Thanks for noticing. Wizbang was kind enough to offer the link to it.
I believe my comment on your blog was decent and on-topic, so why the long face?

It's not "almost" like I look for posts on Scientology. It's called Google, my friend.

And again, thanks for your compliment about me being "all over the Net"! Loved it.

People like Arnie Lerma make it their hobby to trash my religion. I make it my hobby to defend it. (Beats playing video games.) I have other hobbies, I enjoy spending time with my kids, and tonight I was busy on a date with my wife watching "Hitch" (great movie, BTW.) But, when I get the chance, I pipe in about my religion. Why? Because I've had twenty years of positive and growth-provoking contact with this movement, and I believe in what Jon Mellencamp said, "you gotta stand up for something or you're gonna fall for anything."

And yes, my site Live And Grow IS pretty extensive and all-encompassing. Can I quote you on that? :-)

Now Dan, I'm not gonna debate you, it's clear that your views and mine are diametrically opposite and I have no illusions of changing you mind about anything. But to answer your question: Scientology is a religious philosophy. The Church of Scientology is a religion.

There are also several secular, non-religious organizations that employ Hubbard's principles simply because they're good, workable principles. Narconon, for example - which incidentally was not started by Hubbard nor by Scientologists, but by a rehabilitated drug addict called William Benitez, back in the 70s.

For people that are only familiar with theo-centric, deistic religions like the Babylonian line (Jewish, Christian, Muslim), and who are not familiar with the principles of philosophic religions like Tao, Buddhism, Confucianism or the Vedas, the concept of a non-denominational religion that does not intrude on aspects of Faith is something hard to understand. But nevertheless, Scientology is what it is.

Now, my intention was to balance all the smearing with a little bit of the pro-Scientology point of view. To whomever is reading this, I hope you can understand my motivation in defending something that has helped me so much in my life and something that I see helping people daily.

I have little to say to the posters like Lerma, who make it their FULLTIME occupation to attack Scientology in the media, and whose every breath is filled with loathing for my religion. Go ahead, google Lerma. Is this guy a credible source? It's like asking a Syrian arab what he thinks about Israel. You don't get an objective viewpoint.

Every religion has its anti's. There are people against Vatican II, there are people against Mormonism, there are people against the Amish, for pete's sake.

Anyway, to all a good night. Anyone who wants to learn more about Scientology, go to the library and pick up an actual Scientology book. Hate websites and obsessed apostates are not the most credible source on any subject.

Peace out.

How strange, a bunch of dru... (Below threshold)
Rufus T Firefly:

How strange, a bunch of drug rehab ads on the left of
this blog, including one for Narconon.

How do they do that?

Narconon's fraudulent endorsement and
disappearing advisory board

Greg Churilov: people alre... (Below threshold)
-S-:

Greg Churilov: people already have your site link via your user i.d., and they can find all the assists they may want from there. I don't see the point of insisting on reiterating all the site content on a public thread, someone else's blog...but you are proving that point of someone not being accepting of someone else declining interest. That was my only point as with others here. You do make a great case as to why many people object to CoS, by your onslaught here.

IF your message is meaningful, provide a link. IF people are interested, they'll investigate. Otherwise, it's a bad day for CoS based upon your performance here.

And, provide the link once.... (Below threshold)
-S-:

And, provide the link once. There's a huge difference between redundancy and demand and the motivations that are apparent by both.

Rufus...interesting links/i... (Below threshold)
-S-:

Rufus...interesting links/information.

From <a href="http://www.le... (Below threshold)
-S-:

From this link...

There's this,

about which, I never knew. Grim.

Sets a new tone, no doubt, for the presumption of "ethics" instructed.

Welllll...<a href=... (Below threshold)
-S-:

Welllll...

Scientology and the Occult

L. Ron Hubbard plagiarized his theories (and his past, read through the links)...


-----------------

About that interview in Der SPIEGEL (returning to the thread issue), I'm now even more amazed that Speilberg would be so silent about "the church" that Cruise is promoting...and in an interview in Der SPIEGEL, of all places.

And even now moreso admiring of the interviewer from Der SPIEGEL, that interview.

Dear -S-,It is cle... (Below threshold)

Dear -S-,

It is clear from your latest posts that you will criticize any post of mine, while actually praising posts from "Rufus" (aka Arnie Lerma, known scientolophobe, former scientologist, thrown out of the Church for unethical conduct and smearing garbage ever since).

Therefore, it's useless for me to try to debate you. This debate is not being conducted on an even ground.

For the record, I think it stinks that Hollywood would react poorly to a Catholic priest's presence. Just like I think it stinks that people here feel a need to trash another religion.

Gee, Greg, resorting to "sh... (Below threshold)
Jay Tea:

Gee, Greg, resorting to "shooting the messenger?"

I guess it's easier to discredit the critic than the criticism...

So, how high on the Enemies of Scientology List is Rufus, anyway? How thick is the "Church's" dossier on him? And has the "Church" copyrighted "scientolophobe," like they have their most secret texts, to keep the "unworthy" from knowing the truth?

I'll say this for the scam that is Scientology: you asshats got some GREAT lawyers. Between the rampant abuse of copyright/trademark laws and ruthless exploitation of the "church" status, you've managed to silence a LOT of critics.

J.

It is no... (Below threshold)
Rufus T Firefly:



It is not surprising to see Mr. Churilov citing no information that comes from his heart except for win stories, happy times or gossip about activists, merely passed along Scientology lines to prevent him from looking at opinion. More than defending his religion, he is treading in so-called Scientology enemy territory, and it's a matter of habit to reinforce his OWN loyalty. He is a good little Scientology vessel, blowing steam as he has been taught.

This is a very insidious thing that Scientology teaches and reinforces members to do - not look. They must constantly read this and cite these empty pages but won't discuss any feelings at all, except as they pertain to Scientolgy helping them. The empty pages are all they have, a sure sign of Hubbard's empty verbosity. Like a talking billboard.

I encourage Mr Churilov to take a good look in the mirror and ask himself what he looks and sound like.
He forgets that there was once somebody home.

When people become members, whatever they perceive as making them feel better gets attached on an emotional level to Scientology. They begin speaking from the Scientology first person, which attaches and gives the person and others a positive emotional reinforcement to Scientology.

What happens to negative emotions? Scientology teaches intolerance very well, to let members know how to identify and deal with suppressive people. Learning this puts members in that first person position again, a place where harsh judgement will befall the individual for even thinking of crossing Scientology. But it's also the way they approach anyone and everyone with other opinions or criticism of Scientology. "Those people are bad" and our religion and programs are superior.

So you can see a duality that alters the members view of who they are, and who they are really talking about. When you see Mr Cruise and Mr Churilov both talking about intolerance, you can see that they are coming from the same mold. There can be uttlerly no doubt in those minds that all of the programs work, and any questions are diverted to a form of first person, emotional anger projected outward, and the cause for Scientology not succeeding is because of other, suppressive people. Intolerance is a loaded word here, that will gather a concensus with other well-intentioned people.

Hitler and Hubbard were both sociopaths. They had little or no emotion, except for the fervor of forwarding their own goals. They had hatred for enemies and had access to many ritualistic teachings they used to influence the masses into compliance. A very serious matter.

You can see why Germany has serious issues with Scientology, as the familiarity of anti-Democratic goals is very seriously and strikingly familiar.

"Scientologists believe that most human problems can be traced to lingering spirits of an extraterrestrial people massacred by their ruler, Xenu, over 75 million years ago. These spirits attach themselves by "clusters" to individuals in the contemporary world, causing spiritual harm and negatively influencing the lives of their hosts.
"USDJ Judge Leonie Brinkema 4 Oct 96 Memorandum Opinion, RTC vs Lerma



Scientology members were on... (Below threshold)
Rufus T Firefly:

Scientology members were once informed to handle the internet, here is how suppressive people have to be handled:

"We want to make these messages "high ground". In other words, don't get tempted into a two way comm with some l.1 jerk on the Internet. Ack him and continue to post POSITIVE and HIGH TONED messages that really explain what Scientology IS doing, how it helped you or a friend, community activities of the Church, Church expansion. It is easy to get into an opp term situation with the detractors over this system, but this doesn't necessarily communicate very well to the broad public who may read this.

There is an excellent issue by LRH which is PR Series 27, THE ENEMY LINE. In here, LRH says that you never forward an enemy line, nor do you get into just attacking. YOU COME UP WITH A BETTER CAMPAIGN OF YOUR OWN"

Ex-member Tory Christman also talks about how she was instructed to open up internet accounts to spam the internet. She also explains how it could possibly be, that Mr. Churilov (WHO IS THE REAL MIKE SMITH?) may in fact be many other people who use the same internet "handle" name.

Scientology members were o... (Below threshold)
Rufus T Firefly:

Scientology members were once informed to handle the internet, here is how suppressive people have to be handled:

"We want to make these messages "high ground". In other words, don't get tempted into a two way comm with some l.1 jerk on the Internet. Ack him and continue to post POSITIVE and HIGH TONED messages that really explain what Scientology IS doing, how it helped you or a friend, community activities of the Church, Church expansion. It is easy to get into an opp term situation with the detractors over this system, but this doesn't necessarily communicate very well to the broad public who may read this.

There is an excellent issue by LRH which is PR Series 27, THE ENEMY LINE. In here, LRH says that you never forward an enemy line, nor do you get into just attacking. YOU COME UP WITH A BETTER CAMPAIGN OF YOUR OWN"

Ex-member Tory Christman also talks about how she was instructed to open up internet accounts to spam the internet. She also explains how it could possibly be, that Mr. Churilov (WHO IS THE REAL MIKE SMITH?) may in fact be many other people who use the same internet "handle" name.

I am sorry for the double p... (Below threshold)
Rufus T Firefly:

I am sorry for the double posts. I got an error message when posting, and thought it did not go through.

RTF

Greg,You only half a... (Below threshold)

Greg,
You only half answered my question. I asked whether Scientology was a religion, secular, or both. You replied that Scientology is a religious philosophy while CoS is a religion. I find this distinction to be fairly meaningless. It's a bit like saying Christianity is a religious philosophy while Catholicism is a religion. Of course, Christianity is a religion but is also composed of a religious philosophy. That scientology isn't theistically-based is irrelevant. Why do you make the distinction?

The second part of the question that you haven't yet answered is on what basis do you say it's a religion? A religion is something more than just being a guiding philosophy or a collection of scientific and psychological (I would honestly put 'pseduo-' before those in the case of Scientology, but will grant you the terms and omit it for the sake of argument) principles. A religion typically has an important metaphysical story to tell, often with supernatural and mystical experiences. Even the "philosophic relgions" you mentioned have this. What is it about scientology (or CoS, if you prefer) that qualifies it as a religion?

-Dangerous Dan

Hi Dan;My primary ... (Below threshold)

Hi Dan;

My primary point, which seems to have been missed, is that there is a religion, and there are organizations which are secular in nature that use Hubbard's principles separately from the religion.

I expect a more accurate response would come from the U.S. Supreme Court, which ruled years ago that Scientology is a bonafide religion.

But my own understanding is that a religion is a path by which Man can improve himself spiritually, a way to better understand the Universe and one's role in it, and a way to come to be in better harmony with one's surroundings and fellow beings. I have found in my personal experience this is the case for Scientology.

Dan, I hope that you will have the grace to grant me that I am fairly outnumbered in this debate. And we have been graced with the presence of Arnie Lerma, aka Rufus whatever, who has spent about a decade attacking Scientology in the media. This makes it difficult to carry a sensible debate.

Given the choice of continuing this fairly unpleasant conversation or playing with my kid, I 'm choosing the latter. Make of that what you will.

To Jay: Arnie Lerma was a Church executive at one time. He did unethical things and got thrown out. Then he started telling his sad, sad story all over the Internet. He's been trying to harm Scientology's image for about 10 years or so. A sad waste of someone's life on this Earth! I wouldn't call him anyone's enemy - he's just another loudmouth dedicating his life at barking at a fire engine.

Greg,Well, continue ... (Below threshold)

Greg,
Well, continue if you would, I find this interesting.

I did some googling and I am unable to find a case in which the U.S. Supreme Court approved of Scientology as a religion. Which case is this? Regardless, even if they did, a legal definition is not necessarily a correct, philosophical definition.

I think your description of religion is incomplete. What you've said can encompass Kantian deontology, utilitarianism, communism, hippie environmentalism, or any number of other guiding philosophies. A religion has a special aspect to it that involves, like I said, a metaphysical story with supernatural elements and mystical experiences. There's something beyond normal empirical experience. What is it about scientology that makes it a religion and not just a guiding philosophy?

One last point: ad hominem attacks on Lerma or anybody else carry no weight. Even people with axes to grind may be telling the truth, it's just that they're especially motivated to tell it. If you think he's lying, then it's incumbant upon you to attack his arguments, not his person.

-Dangerous Dan

So, Greg, let me see if I c... (Below threshold)
Jay Tea:

So, Greg, let me see if I can recap this properly:

1) "Rufus" says some bad things about Scientology.
2) You attack Rufus.
3) I ask you why you don't address his points, instead preferring to throw mud at him personally.
4) You throw more mud at Rufus.

Seems to me you're trying to make the argument about Rufus, and in the process evade whether or not there is any substance to his comments. To me, and a lot of others, that's usually a hefty indicator that there is, indeed, something to the allegations, if all your energy is being focused on discrediting the messenger.

I'd challenge you to present evidence that "Rufus" is indeed Mr. Lerma and to substantiate your allegations, but I won't for two simple reasons:
1) It plays into your game of making the argument about him, not his statements, and 2) the "Church" has a history of assembling extensive dossiers on its members, and it's my understanding that once people leave the "Church" those are plumbed for embarassing information and distributed to those who defend the "Church.

Now, if you'd like to start slinging around the dirt on me, I'll give you a head start: I have at least one unpaid parking ticket from Massachusetts and I cheated on a Latin test in high school. Oh, and I have visited strip clubs.

Oh, the eternal shame...

J.

Hi Dan;Well, followi... (Below threshold)

Hi Dan;
Well, following your definition, then, Scientology is simply a guiding philosophy. (So would be Buddhism, though, I think.)

I have to admit you're right on the Ad Hominem on Lerma. What can I say. My emotions got the best of me. But if we're going to pick on fallacies, then I believe it's only fair to point out that many - Rufus/Lerma especially - have engaged in a number of them on this board, such as burden of proof, appeal to belief, appeal to ridicule and appeal to authority and widespread use of hasty generalization, to name a few.

-S-, it's a real shame that you choose to accept the information Rufus/Lerma is providing you as Gospel Truth. Just like anything I say/link on this board is questionable due to motive, anything he posts is obviously questionable for the same reasons.

If Scientology was one-tenth as sinister and evil as these people portray it, then it would have been closed down decades ago. The IRS engaged in a 3-yr investigation of Scientology, the longest investigation in its history, and found NO WRONGDOING whatsoever. Seven years of government surveillance in Germany yielded NO WRONGDOING. 12 years of scrutiny in Spain were eventually dismissed by the Court as a frivolous lawsuit due to NO PROOF OF WRONGDOING. (Neither the defendants individually, nor collectively, nor through the Church of Scientology, nor through Narconon [drug rehabilitation program] ... have committed any type of illicit act, and therefore they are acquitted of all charges brought by the public prosecutor.” )

Here is some unbiased, objective information on Scientology:
http://www.cesnur.org/testi/se_scientology.htm

Scientology and Anti-Scientology, by an ex-member

Is Scientology a religion? - University of Calgary

Here is a report on some of the discrimination we've been subjected to:

Discrimination in Germany - Americans targeted

I couldn't find the proof of the U.S. Supreme Court decision on Scientology, but if we're going to play the fallacies game, the burden of proof is on you to disprove it. I know for a fact that in 1993 the U.S. Supreme Court found Scientology "a bonafide religion, to be treated as any other religion, Jewish, Catholic or other".

Scientology is also accepted as a bonafide religion by the Supreme Court of Australia, Italy, South Africa, Sweden and many other countries.

---

... and, Jay, I could give a rat's ass that you've been to strip clubs (TMI, dude!) A bit off-topic, don't you think?

Greg,Buddhism is ind... (Below threshold)

Greg,
Buddhism is indeed a guiding philosophy, but it is also a religion with a metaphysical story and mystical experiences.

If you agree with me that Scientology is a guiding philosopy and not a religion, then why call it a religion, why demand it have a standing equal to that of religions, and why think it should be recognized as a religion?

Now I doubt you'll surrender the point to me so easily that Scientology is not a religion. Perhaps you don't like my religion qualifications. If that's the case, though, you need to tell me what conditions something must meet to be a religion and how these qualifications differentiate religions from mere guiding philosophies. Next, you'll need to tell me how Scientology qualifies as a religion under these qualifications. Given my definition, though, which I think is correct, Scientology would not be a religion. That is unless you think there's something about it that would qualify as a religion under the definition. Otherwise, I reiterate the beginning questions about why call it a religion, etc., if it's not?

The others may have engaged in unfair argumentation, e.g. ad hominem, but that's their matter, not mine. If you think somebody engages in such things, my advice would be to either ignore it or demand they debate on the merits, which, of course, means that you must do the same.

Regarding the Supreme Court case, the burden of proof is in no way mine and it is entirely yours. I'm not trying to be confrontational, but it doesn't make much sense to say that the burden is on me to disprove something you're asserting but for which you have provided no proof or evidence. It would be like me asserting there's an elephant in the room and demanding you disprove it. If you say that the Supreme Court has indeed ruled that Scientology is a religion, it's up to you to provide more evidence of it than your good word. I would imagine that with the amount of info you've already provided that you should be able to identify the case.

-Dangerous Dan

Well, I'm a Scientologist- ... (Below threshold)
Ball of Fluff:

Well, I'm a Scientologist- albeit an ex member of CofS and I do think that some of the employers who are church members do not understand boundaries at all, as Nathan said. I don't see that Scn could be construed as Christian- but point is, it isn't secular, either.

Most church members are evangelistic. They like to make converts. That particular bug never bit me, but it's bitten at least two thirds of the church members I've known. And if it doesn't, then the person has CofS staff asking them why they aren't doing it or it comes up in a televised Flag event. I saw one with Miscavige's father where he was telling people to go out and disseminate. (proselytize).

Back to the employment thing- I see nothing wrong in using certain ideas and methods in that company, but when you've got links to Narconon, Criminon, other Able groups- that's different. Those are CofS groups. CofS is not secular. I think that's problematic.

Of course Scientology isn't... (Below threshold)
Ball of Fluff:

Of course Scientology isn't scientific. But Hubbard excelled at trying to have things both ways. It's a religion, it's scientific, it's pan denominational but we don't allow other practices...

Eventually I just said faggedabouddit and just started treating it as ideas, etc, rather than going around telling people it's scientific. That cannot be proven and it should not be claimed.

Quote : "Der Sp... (Below threshold)
Duh:

Quote :

"Der Spiegel has been a vehicle of government propaganda in Germany for all of its history. It was notoriously anti-Jew in the 30s, majorly pro-Nazi as well."

Unquote

Actually Der Spiegel was fonded in 1946. Check you facts.

see http://library.nyu.edu/research/westeurope/ unionlist/titleindex/spiegel.htm




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