Week in Review Volume 7, Issue 9
6/2/2002 by Rod Keller [rkeller@...
Alt.religion.scientology Week in Review summarizes the most significant
postings from the Usenet group Alt.religion.scientology for the preceding
week for the benefit of those who can't follow the group as closely as
they'd like. Out of thousands of postings, I attempt to include news of
significant events, new affidavits, court rulings, new contributors,
whatever. I hope you find it useful. Like many readers of a.r.s, I have a
kill file. So please take into consideration that I may not have seen some
of the most significant postings.
The articles in A.r.s Week in Review are brief summaries of articles
posted to the newsgroup. They include message IDs for the original
articles, and many have a URL to get more information. You may be able to
find the original article, depending on how long your site stores articles
in the newsgroup before expiring them.
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Magill magazine published a story in its June issue about the use of
Scientology training methods at Dell in Ireland.
"Since February of this year, Dell's Limerick plant has been availing of
the services of Effective Training Solutions and its '100% Proficiency
Training' programme. The programme helps employees to train better, and
thus become more efficient in their work. ETS trained a number of Dell's
own in-house trainers, who then rolled it out to employees. 'You will
learn about and become skilled in the use of some vital training tools
that very few people are trained in,' explains the introduction to the
programme's '100% Proficiency Training Workshop' manual, which forms one
part of the overall programme. 'Your power and ability to influence your
own training and education (and others' should you help other people) will
be greatly increased.' Since February, Dell's in-house trainers have
rolled out the programme to approximately 200 Dell employees who are
engaged in production work at the plant. Dell says the reaction from
employees to the course has been extremely positive. But not every
employee who underwent the course was happy after realising where the
course originated from. The 100% Proficiency Training Workshop is, the
manual explains on its last page, 'derived from the copyrighted writings
of L Ron Hubbard on the subjects of training, education and management,
and used with permission.' Nowhere does the manual state that Hubbard was
the founder of Scientology. A spokesperson for ETS stressed that those who
chose to undergo the training course at Dell did so voluntarily.
"ETS was formerly known as Applied Scholastics of Fremont, California -
part of the wider Applied Scholastics International movement which is seen
by many as an educational arm of Scientology, although Applied Scholastics
disputes this, saying it is a secular charitable organisation independent
of Scientology. In 1992, a Californian company, Applied Materials,
settled out of court for an estimated $600,000 with three former employees
who claimed they were forced out of the company after complaining about
work-place training given by Applied Scholastics of Fremont. Applied
Materials admitted that it had 'lacked sensitivity with regard to the
controversial nature of L Ron Hubbard' when employing the Applied
Scholastics training. The training involved communication courses. An
attorney representing the three workers claimed before the case was
settled that some of the training given was identical to material in
"Hubbard's ability to break down barriers not recognised by other
educators is news to some. Professor of Education and Vice President of
University College Cork, Aine Hyland, is one of this country's leading
authorities on the history of education. She is unaware of any
breakthrough contribution made by Hubbard to the field. 'In my research
into education in the 1960s in scholarly educational journals, I have not
come across any reference to any major or significant contribution made by
L Ron Hubbard to educational philosophy, nor am I aware that scholars in
the area since then would regard any of Hubbard's writings as of major
significance in the history of education.'
"Dr. Finian Buckley of Dublin City University's Business School,
meanwhile, doesn't agree that Hubbard has made significant contributions
to business, management or training. 'Hubbard wouldn't be regarded as
having contributed to any cutting-edge research in these fields,' he says.
Hubbard's writings, he believes, are more in line with the type of books
available in bookstores that promise to reveal the previously-secret steps
to sensational business success. 'Most of those serious professional
trainers wouldn't touch,' he adds.
"The company said that the results of the programme 'led to significant
quality improvements on the Dell production floor. The reaction from Dell
employees to this particular training course has been extremely positive.'
A host of major international companies other than Dell who have used the
course say likewise: DuPont, Bayer, National Semiconductor, Chevron and
Cisco among others. Yet it is not the course materials as such that bother
the Dell employees who spoke to Magill, but rather the fact that L Ron
Hubbard was, in part, responsible for it. The manual states that if the
participant is interested in learning more about Hubbard or his lecture
series, or ETS itself, they should mention this to their trainer.
"In other countries, courses using Hubbard material have been accused of
trying to introduce participants to Scientology. ETS states categorically
that while its 100% Proficiency Training Course is derived from Hubbard's
writings, it does not address religious issues. Nor does it make mention
of Scientology. Nor does it attempt to introduce participants to
Scientology. Dell stressed in its statement that it 'supports diversity
in the workplace and does not in any way promote any particular religious
group or religious ethic. ETS has also confirmed to us that they have no
links - financial or otherwise - to the Church of Scientology.'
"Many Scientology websites have sections on Applied Scholastics. One site
mentions Applied Scholastics as one of its 'related programmes,' and the
information printed is copyrighted to the Church of Scientology. America's
Internal Revenue Service (IRS), however, apparently made little of the
disclaimer when it reached a confidential settlement with the Church of
Scientology in 1993 after a long-standing tax dispute between the two.
Applied Scholastics was included in the settlement as a
"Dell since announced it is to cut 150 jobs at its Limerick plant. The
jobs being cut will come from the administrative and middle-management
staff, and will be decided on a voluntary redundancy basis. The company's
future looks bright nonetheless, and it will continue to contribute
significantly to the Irish economy. ETS's Gudenas says 'the real story in
our business world is the exodus of jobs and companies to south-east Asia
and China. The only way to stay competitive is through efficiency, quality
and proficiency of the Irish workforce, and that's what our programme
provides,' she says. 'Your article could help us keep more jobs in Ireland
as you are in a key role to get the politicians and the government to
support training - for example, in the USA, the states refund companies a
portion of their training costs. You could push the politicians to do
this; why aren't they thinking about the future and the threat of China
and supporting training? That's the real story regarding the economic
future for Irish people,' she says, before adding: 'In this enlightened
age, when your house is on fire, do you stop to ask the religious
affiliations of the firemen before you accept their help? I think not.'"
> Gerald Armstrong
A lawsuit against Gerald Armstrong, Bob Minton and the Lisa McPherson
Trust was posted to a.r.s this week. Scientology is seeking compensation
for breach of contract.
"Beginning in late 1989, Armstrong systematically began breaching
virtually every material covenant to which he had agreed by entering into
the Settlement Agreement. In 1992, CSI instituted suit against Armstrong
seeking damages for his repeated breaches and provisional and permanent
injunctive relief against future breaches. CSI obtained a monetary
judgment and a permanent injunction. Armstrong, who characterizes this
Court's Injunction as 'illegal' and 'unconstitutional,' and 'a great
stupidity,' began almost immediately to violate the terms of the
Injunction. As a result, Armstrong has been found by this Court to be in
contempt on two separate occasions, citing 14 separate violations, and is
the subject of two outstanding bench warrants. On July 13, 2001, Armstrong
was again fount to be in contempt of the Injunction on no less than 131
additional occasions. Armstrong has evaded both the fines and the
imprisonment to which he has been sentenced by fleeing the jurisdiction
and relocating to British Columbia, Canada.
"CSI asserts claims for breach of contract against Armstrong, as the
contracting party, claims for intentional interference with contractual
relations against Defendants Robert Minton and the Lisa McPherson Trust
whose financial resources were intended to, and specifically enabled them
to act in concert and conspiracy with Armstrong to perpetuate his ongoing
contempt of this Court and to violate virtually a daily bases CSI's
"Despite its deceptive and misleading name, Defendant Lisa McPherson Trust
is neither a trust nor any other sort of nonprofit enterprise. LMT, at all
times until its dissolution in December 2001, was a for-profit
corporation, organized and existing under the laws of the State of
Florida, with its principal place of business in Clearwater, Florida.
Minton is the founder, sole incorporator, and is the source of the
financing of LMT.
"Armstrong on the one hand and Minton and LMT on the other hand combined,
conspired, and agreed to perform the unlawful acts which are the subject
of this Complaint and to conceal from discovery both the unlawful acts and
the unlawful, conspiratorial participation of Minton and LMT therein.
"On December 6, 1986, CSI and Armstrong entered into the Settlement
Agreement, designed to end bitter litigation, including several separate
cases then pending. In consideration for a payment of $800,000, Armstrong
and CSI exchanged mutual, general releases. Armstrong made various
covenants, including the following: 'Plaintiff agrees never to create or
publish, or attempt to publish, and/or assist another to create for
publication by means of magazine, article, book or other similar form, any
writing or broadcast or to assist another to create write, film, or video
tape or audio tape any show, program or movie, or to grant interviews or
discuss with others, concerning their experiences with the Church of
Scientology, or concerning their personal or indirectly acquired knowledge
or information concerning the Church of Scientology or L. Ron Hubbard.
Plaintiff further agrees that he will maintain strict confidentiality and
silence with respect to his experiences with the Church of Scientology and
any knowledge or information he may have concerning the Church of
Scientology or L. Ron Hubbard. Plaintiff agrees that if the terms of this
paragraph are breached by him, that CSI and the other Releasees would be
entitled to liquidated damages in the amount of $50,000 for each such
"Beginning in late 1989, Armstrong began breaching his obligations under
the Settlement Agreement. Armstrong, having fled the jurisdiction,
continued his contumacious conduct virtually unabated. Since the February
1998 contempt order, Armstrong mad oral statements and statements created
and transmitted vial e-mail and by 'posting' to the Internet newsgroup
alt.religion.scientology thus committing more than 200 separate breaches.
"In December 1999, Armstrong traveled to Clearwater, Florida at the
invitation of Minton and LMT, who paid for the expenses of Armstrong's
visit, with the purpose and intent of enabling Armstrong to violate the
Agreement including media and other public appearances as part of LMT's
anti-Scientology campaign. While in Clearwater, Armstrong appeared at and
addressed a gathering assembled and sponsored by LMT, which also produced
a videotape of Armstrong's remarks. So brazen was Armstrong that he began
his videotaped remarks by acknowledging that his address was prohibited by
"On December 10, 1999, while still in Florida at the request and expense
of Minton and LMT, Armstrong appeared on Radio Station WMNF-AM in Tampa,
Florida and gave an interview on that station. In June 2000, Armstrong
traveled to Germany to attend a public ceremony where Minton was presented
with an award for his anti-Scientology activities by a small group of
like-minded extremists. During this trip, Armstrong met with media
representatives and engaged in further breaches of the Settlement
Agreement. On information and belief, these travels and actions were
financed and supported by Minton, individually or through his alter ego,
the LMT, with the knowledge that Armstrong would use this opportunity to
further violate the Settlement Agreement.
"From May through July of 2001, Armstrong traveled to Russia, Germany,
Denmark, the United Kingdom, and other countries where he met with media
personnel and made numerous public statements in violation of the
Settlement Agreement. On information and belief, these travels and actions
were financed and supported by Minton, individually or through his alter
ego, the LMT, with the knowledge that Armstrong would use this opportunity
to further violate the Settlement Agreement by making numerous public
appearances where those violations occurred, including in Leipzig, Germany
where Armstrong publicly appeared with Minton, Brooks, and other LMT
employees. Minton encouraged Armstrong in the above violations.
"Armstrong has committed 201 separate and distinct breaches of the
Settlement Agreement, as a result of which CSI is entitled to liquidated
damages of $50,000 for each such breach, totaling $10,050,000. Minton and
LMT have knowledge and notice of both the Settlement Agreement and the
Injunction and nonetheless wilfully, deliberately, and maliciously aided
and financially rewarded and enabled Armstrong to breach his contractual
> Milwaukee Mission
The Milwaukee Journal Sentinel reported on June 1st that the Milwaukee
Scientology mission has moved to larger offices.
"After about 15 years at 710 E. Silver Spring Drive in Whitefish Bay, the
Church of Scientology-Milwaukee Dianetics Mission recently moved to larger
quarters in Milwaukee at 6806 W. Wedgewood Drive. The mission is open from
6 to 10 p.m. Tuesday through Thursday and from 9 a.m. to 6 p.m. Saturday
and Sunday. Sunday service begins at 10:30 a.m. and is open to the
> Protest Summary
Graham Berry reported protesting Scientology's Gold Base in Hemet,
"Sunday May 26 I was driving into the town of Hemet and the nearby Gilman
Hot Springs. I decided upon an impromptu 'Justice For Keith Henson Solo
Picket.' I parked my borrowed car in front of the Ashley Shaner Memorial
and its adjacent Scientology surveillance camera. I only had one picket
sign available. One side read 'Scientology: Church of Fair Game.' The
other side read 'LRH DIED ON PYSCH DRUGS.'
"I crossed Highway 79 at the bottom gates into the Golden Era film studio
facilities. There did not seem to be anyone out and about. As I slowly
strolled up towards the main gates holding my picket sign aloft I noticed
bicycles and mopeds haphazardly parked and strewn along the sides of the
paths and roads of the Base on both sides of Highway 79. The Guard House
had two guards on duty. Because of my presence with a picket sign, the
gates had to be closed, and two white passenger vans turned around and
driven back into the base. The old black scientology security SUV was
driving up and down. It parked behind my borrowed vehicle as if to
intimidate and threaten me. I continued sauntering down the highway and
to take photographs."
Keith Henson reported protests at the Toronto org.
"Two pickets, one May 20, Victoria day and one today, June 1. Last time
was Chris Wood, a new guy, Ron Sharp, Gregg and me. We did 3 hours of
picket and gave out about 400 xenu and other flyers. This was the last
time the 'making the able more able' sign was up at the org. Two of the
goon squad showed up but they just watched. We took a break when the
Victoria Day parade went down Yonge St. The org has gone to blue tarp
tech, only in this case it was black foam boards in the Dianetics windows
on Yonge St.
"Today it was just David Palter, Gregg and me for an hour and a half. We
gave away 125 flyers on each side of Yonge St. The new sign blocking the
window is false advertising saying that Dianetics is a 'science of the
mind.' First thing that happened to me when I started was a tall woman
with brown hair came by and said she was a Scientologist and that this
Xenu stuff was crap. I mentioned that I had seen it in Hubbard's own
handwriting. She said it was still crap even if LRH wrote it. I said she
was going to have to do a knowledge report about having talked to me and
she left going down the street freaking out. I watched and she never
crossed the street to the org.
"There was one funny sequence where this guy who is either involved or has
a relative in carefully checks out that nobody is watching him from the
org, takes a flyer from Gregg and stuff it into his pants."
Slovak news agency reported on May 29th that the Slovak Intelligence
Service is monitoring Scientology and other cults as possible security
"Presenting the report to parliament on Wednesday [29 May], SIS
Director-General Vladimir Mitro said crime groups focused on drug
trafficking, but also on public procurement tenders, privatization tenders
and other state orders. The SIS also monitored activities of the sects
Church of Scientology and Moonies in Slovakia. Scientologists have
official centres in Martin and Bratislava, and secret civic associations,
language schools and private companies."
> Digital Lightwave
The St. Petersburg Times published a story on June 2nd on Digital
Lightwave and the effects Scientology has had on the company.
"It was New Year's Eve 1997 when Digital Lightwave's chief, Bryan Zwan,
made his biggest deal: a $9-million contract for his signature product, a
10-pound device that tests telephone lines. But his overtaxed workers -
they had put in 100-hour weeks during the holidays - didn't have enough
time or materials. As the night wore on, the crew sent incomplete and
unassembled units to a shipping warehouse, giving the impression the order
was filled. Digital had done this before. The company even had shipped
units to salesmen's homes for storage and booked them as sales. A
manufacturing manager named Chuck Anderson became fed up. Most company
whistleblowers typically alert the Securities and Exchange Commission to
possible wrongdoing. But Anderson reported the trouble to his own higher
authority: the Church of Scientology.
"He wrote a 'knowledge report,' addressed to church leaders, warning that
the New Year's Eve shipments were the latest in a troubling pattern in
Digital that could create a 'huge potential flap' for Scientology. 'What
happens if someone goes to the newspapers, the investors, the SEC?'
Anderson, a Scientologist, wrote in his report. 'Not to mention putting
Scientology and Scientologists at risk.'
Zwan, a longtime Scientologist, has long insisted that Digital has no
connection to the controversial church. Zwan said he never hired people
because they are Scientologists and never sought church advice on company
matters. 'We are a public company,' Zwan said. 'We have nothing to do with
the Church of Scientology. It has no role in this company.'
"A Scientologist helped Zwan develop Digital's fiber-optic technology.
Scientology facilities, including the landmark Fort Harrison Hotel in
Clearwater, were backdrops for important company negotiations. Zwan tapped
Scientologists for his early management team. And fellow Scientologists
were Zwan's early backers, many reaping riches from Digital's run on Wall
Street. Zwan hired as one of his top executives Denise Licciardi, the
sister of Scientology's worldwide leader, David Miscavige. Quickly
promoted and given a six-figure salary, Licciardi was widely regarded as
Zwan's right hand at Digital. She urged him to run day-to-day operations
by following Scientology founder L. Ron Hubbard's business practices known
as 'LRH Tech.' Digital could 'become a showcase of LRH Tech,' Licciardi
wrote in one memo to Zwan. 'This was what you communicated to each of us
was your dream.'
"In 1993, Zwan needed investors to take Digital Lightwave out of the
incubator. He found a wealthy business partner while visiting
Scientology's international spiritual retreat, the Fort Harrison Hotel in
Clearwater. One day over lunch in the hotel's Hibiscus room, a Scientology
staff member introduced Zwan to Brian Haney, a fellow entrepreneur
visiting from Columbus, Ohio. Haney had become a millionaire in his 20s
selling toys through his Great American Fun Corp.
"Zwan traveled to Columbus to discuss a deal, meeting Haney at the
Scientology facility there. First on the agenda was Scientology. The
church wanted $100,000 for its planned Super Power building in Clearwater,
a massive, $50-million complex now under construction. Haney balked. He
had already given the project $200,000. But Zwan and the church staffer
kept asking. Eventually, Haney wrote the check. The businessmen then
turned to Digital Lightwave. The two Scientologists discussed using
Hubbard's teachings to run the company. They had an unspoken
understanding, Haney said: No one would mention Scientology and Digital in
the same breath. 'It was known people would frown upon it,' Haney said.
Investors and potential customers might be leery of a company with ties to
a controversial church.
"'We were going to be two Scientologists who ran a Scientology company
that would bring in a ton of money that would get donated to Scientology
so Scientology could put up Super Power buildings all over the globe,'
said Haney, now 43. The entrepreneurs made a pact. For $5-million, Haney
said, he wound up with 49 percent of the company and left daily operations
to Zwan. Haney and his wife, Linda, had grown disillusioned with
Scientology and left the church. The church labeled Mrs. Haney a
'suppressive person,' a name given to people the church believes are
working against it. Church members are not to associate with a suppressive
person. Haney said Zwan summoned him to a meeting at the Fort Harrison
with church staff member Mary Voegeding Shaw, now president of FLAG,
Scientology's spiritual retreat in Clearwater. 'Mary Voegeding says to me
because my wife is a declared (suppressive) person I cannot be a partner
in business with Bryan Zwan and that I only have two choices: I have to
either divorce my wife or stop being Bryan Zwan's partner.'
"Zwan decided to sell stock to the public, a bold move to generate cash so
his young company could grow faster. To help navigate the expansion, Zwan
recruited Seth Joseph, a 41-year-old securities lawyer from Miami. One of
the few non-Scientologists in Digital management, Joseph was given a
$250,000 salary and up to 656,666 stock options, potentially worth
millions. Another executive came aboard then, too: Denise Licciardi, a
36-year-old Scientologist and sister of the church's leader, Miscavige.
Zwan soon promoted Licciardi to vice president of administration, paid her
a $123,000 salary and gave her 60,000 stock options. Her authority
bothered Joseph, who questioned her qualifications. 'She was very, very
close to Bryan beyond what her skills would warrant,' he said. 'It was
because of her relationship with Bryan in Scientology.'
"On Feb. 6, 1997, Digital Lightwave staged a successful initial public
offering, trading at $12 a share. For Zwan, that meant his 20-million Left
out of the millionaire's jubilee was Haney, the early investor who had
left Scientology. Saying he had been tricked into selling back his shares,
Haney later sued Zwan, claiming his stock would eventually have been worth
"Just months after coming aboard, a frustrated Licciardi wanted more of
Hubbard's 'Admin tech' in the workplace. She wrote Zwan a nine-page memo
reminding him that in recruiting her and other Scientologists, he had
promised to use the Scientology methods. 'We left our lives behind for a
reasonable salary (and) a small amount of stock to help you attain your
goal,' she wrote. 'Here all we are trying to do is get to be a
billion-dollar company in the telecom industry. Why don't we just apply
"Nearly half the sales Digital reported in the second quarter of 1997
involved deals that either never happened or were not closed. A stunning
79 percent of third quarter sales were wiped off the books. The
restatement triggered SEC and Nasdaq investigations, and more than 20
shareholder lawsuits. And as the company was reeling from the bad
publicity, it was facing another crisis internally. Licciardi told
higherups that on New Year's Eve she had shipped out a couple of dozen
partly filled boxes to be counted as sales. 'It was clear she had to go,'
said Joseph, the lawyer who served as Zwan's No. 2. 'She had committed
criminal conduct. She admitted to it. It was devastating.'
"Scientologists and non-Scientologists turned on each other as the
company's top two financial officers, Joseph and Steve Grant, called for
Zwan to fire Licciardi. A group of Scientologists in the company went to
Zwan to rally support for Licciardi. That morning, some said they saw
Scientologists in distinctive naval uniforms in the corridors. Others said
it was hired security.
"Three days later, it was non-Scientologist Joseph who was forced out.
Zwan said Joseph's firing was part of a companywide restructuring. Joseph
cried foul, filing an arbitration complaint to recoup thousands of stock
options. An arbitrator later sided with Joseph, ordering Digital to pay
"But Licciardi didn't survive either. In two weeks, she was gone too. Yet
her departure was largely on her own financial terms, which she spelled
out in an e-mail to Zwan titled 'Ending Cycle,' a Scientology term. She
told Zwan she was 'without a doubt guilty of executing on orders without
question.' Licciardi wrote she applied 'Simon Bolivar to a 'T,' ' a
Scientology phrase referring to loyalty.
"Today, Digital still is a big player in fiber-optic testing, with a 36
percent market share in the United States and specific strategies to push
its international sales. It has 110 employees, and this year contracted
with Jabil Circuit of St. Petersburg to manufacture all its units.
Digital's stock price closed Friday at $3.10. The company ranks 25th on
this year's Times list of top-performing public companies. Digital also
has put in place new accounting practices that, Zwan says, will prevent
past problems from recurring.
"As for the turbulent last four years: The SEC imposed a $10,000 fine on
Zwan in settling its case last fall. There was no admission of wrongdoing.
The SEC had hoped to develop Licciardi as a witness against Zwan. The
agency interviewed her in 1999 but could not find her as it prepared for
trial. The Times likewise could not find Licciardi. A Times reporter
visited several times a residence listed on Licciardi's driver's license,
mailed her letters and sought interviews through her mother and Gerald
Gentile, whom she married after leaving Digital. Reporters also left an
interview request at a Scientology Mission in Belleair Bluffs, where she
is said to work.
"Joseph works at a Miami law firm. Digital has not paid him the
$3.8-million award, and is appealing. His case, though, resulted in a
strong rebuke from Miami lawyer Stanley Beiley, the arbitrator who heard
Joseph's complaint. Digital shareholders should have been told, Beiley
wrote, that 'senior management knew that Denise Licciardi admitted to
significant inventory falsifications and yet rewarded her by permitting
her to resign, rather than firing her.'
"Brian Haney sold his toy company and is a venture capitalist. He also
runs a Christian charity organization out of his home in Columbus. Haney
and Zwan settled their suit in 2000. Terms are confidential.
"Zwan, now Digital's chairman, CEO and president, recently upped his stake
in the company to 60 percent. He insists Scientology plays no part of
Digital's operations. He says no more than three Scientologists work there