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A.r.s Week in Review - 2/3/2002

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  • Rod Keller
    Alt.religion.scientology Week in Review Volume 6, Issue 41 2/3/2002 by Rod Keller [rkeller@voicenet.com] copyright 2002 Alt.religion.scientology Week in Review
    Message 1 of 1 , Feb 3, 2002
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      Alt.religion.scientology
      Week in Review Volume 6, Issue 41
      2/3/2002 by Rod Keller [rkeller@...]
      copyright 2002

      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.

      Free A.r.s Week in Review subscriptions are available. Subscriptions are
      also available on Yahoo. Email weekinreview-subscribe@yahoogroups.com or
      see http://groups.yahoo.com/group/weekinreview. PDA channel available at
      http://avantgo.com/channels/_add_channel.pl?cha_id=2900

      Week in Review is archived at:
      http://www.xenu.net/archive/WIR/
      http://wpxx02.toxi.uni-wuerzburg.de/~krasel/CoS/ars-summary.html
      http://www.uni-bonn.de/~uzs1dc/scientology/wir.html
      http://www.religio.de/publik/arsfaq.html

      #####

      > Clearwater

      From the letters to the editor of the St. Petersburg Times on January 30th
      on the history of Clearwater, Florida:

      "Scientology evidently is taking over the city of Clearwater, slowly,
      slowly oozing into the power structure, such as it is, and becoming
      'normalized.' If the truth about the basis and ongoing operation of this
      cult is of any interest to you there are two books that you might read.
      The first is Barefaced Messiah by Russell Miller, which is an almost
      day-by-day biography of the cult's founder from birth to establishment of
      the cult. Those who are regaled with the life and accomplishments of L.R.
      Hubbard according to his minions will find almost every claim refuted in
      this well-researched biography.

      "The second is A Piece of Blue Sky by Jon Atak, which describes the
      operational methods of Scientology from its earliest days until 1989.
      Anyone who has not read at least some of these two books cannot claim to
      know about Scientology, a growing influence in our lives. - Bud
      Tritschler, Clearwater"

      An internal Scientology email announcing an upcoming awards event was
      posted to a.r.s this week.

      "FROM: AMaren@...
      DATE: Thu, 31 Jan 2002

      "In coordination with the LRH Personal Public Relations Office in
      Clearwater, Friends of Ron is presenting Socrates Charos with an award for
      the artistic and cultural upgrade of the Royalty Theater in downtown
      Clearwater. The purpose of the event is to create positive PR for LRH, to
      have OL's visiting the FH and attending the ceremony and acknowledging an
      ally of the C of S and Flag. The award will be presented by Cass Warner,
      the grand-daughter of the Warner family who were pioneers of the movie
      industry. We have confirmed the evening of Monday, Feb. 11th, 2002, from
      7:30-9pm at The Fort Harrison Hotel."

      The St. Petersburg Times published an interview with Clearwater mayor
      Brian Aungst on February 3rd.

      "Q: The Church of Scientology has clearly gained greater acceptance in
      recent years, and you have participated in that process. Just recently a
      lot of this city's bigwigs attended the gala at the Fort Harrison. And
      from what I understand, you gave a speech there that night. From your
      viewpoint as mayor, how widespread is acceptance of the church today in
      Clearwater?

      "A: I think the church is making strides. They're working hard themselves
      in the community to change their previous image. They certainly had some
      obstacles to overcome. I think everyone is working together in the
      community right now to effectuate positive change to make this a better
      city. One positive thing that came out of the open communication I have
      with church leaders was helping Lee Arnold close his deal on their
      property. They actually sold him a prime piece of property allowing him to
      develop a hotel and condo and 20,000 square feet of retail and
      restaurants. I think without being able to pick up the phone, which I may
      do once or twice a year, and just say, 'Hey, you know, we need your help
      on this,' that may not have happened.

      "Q: How would you characterize the influence of the Church of Scientology
      in the city now?

      "A: I don't think the church has any more influence than anyone else. I
      think they're just like every other citizen.

      "Q: What parts of the community remain suspicious or unaccepting of the
      church?

      "A: I certainly think some of the people who have been here for a long
      time probably are. Some of the younger people are willing to have an open
      mind about things. I'm not real sure, but I think it (suspicion about the
      church) maybe trends to people who have been here a little longer, who
      were part of some of the things that happened initially that were not
      good."

      The Tampa Tribune reported on February 3rd on the opening of parts of the
      Fort Harrison Hotel to the public.

      "The pool at the Fort Harrison Hotel holds some of Liz Roche's fondest
      childhood memories. She recalls fun family afternoons at the hotel in the
      1950s and '60s - before the Church of Scientology bought the landmark
      hotel and closed most of the property to the public. This week the church
      has opened its doors, offering a rare glimpse into the world of
      Scientology and giving people like Roche a chance to relive childhood
      memories. 'It hasn't changed as much as I thought it would,' Roche said
      of the restored hotel, now an international Scientology retreat. 'It still
      has that grand hotel feeling.' Roche said she's not a Scientologist and
      wants nothing to do with the church except to tour the hotel, but she said
      she was pleasantly surprised there were no attempts by Scientologist tour
      guides to convert her to the religion.

      "Church officials say conversion and secrecy are not what the tours are
      about. 'It's definitely a way to communicate who we are, what we do and
      answer people's questions,' said Pat Harney, the church's public affairs
      director. The church recently announced plans to open the Fort Harrison
      to the public permanently, once the 380,000-square-foot training and
      counseling center is complete in late 2003. 'If people understand a
      little bit of what goes on, it makes it easier,' said Lisa Valverde, the
      church's downtown relations director.

      "As the church expands its influence in Clearwater, the once contentious
      relationship that existed between the Scientologists and the city is
      moving toward mutual acceptance. A black-tie, invitation-only gala to
      celebrate the hotel's 75th anniversary was attended by a number of city
      officials and community leaders - proof both sides are learning to
      coexist. Mayor Brian Aungst attended the gala, as did city commissioners
      Hamilton Hoyt and Gray Whitney and their wives. Of the seven county
      commissioners, only Susan Latvala and her husband, State Sen. Jack
      Latvala, R-Palm Harbor, attended.

      "City Commissioner Bill Jonson said he couldn't attend the gala because of
      a scheduling conflict, not out of animosity toward the church. He said he
      didn't recall the church as the subject of much controversy 'in many, many
      years.' But lawsuits and countersuits are pending in the 1995 death of
      Lisa McPherson while in the care of Scientologists at the old hotel.

      "Sheriff Everett Rice attended the gala. Veteran Clearwater Police Chief
      Sid Klein did not. On Dec. 18, the police department ended off-duty
      officers' around-the-clock patrols of church properties, at Scientology's
      request, after the anti-Scientology Lisa McPherson Trust packed its bags,
      closed its nearby offices and left town.

      "Boxes of documents, seized during FBI raids of Scientology offices in Los
      Angeles and Washington two years after the church arrived in Clearwater,
      detailed plans to use infiltration, theft and smear campaigns to obtain a
      foothold in the city. Scientology officials subsequently have said those
      who crafted the plans violated church policy and have been dismissed from
      the church.

      "'I think there's a lot of fence-mending that they still need to do in the
      community,' Aungst said. 'But we're happy the hotel will be going back on
      the tax rolls.' 'People shouldn't be scared of us,' Scientologist Diana
      Rajdl said. 'We are church people, too. We really, really care about the
      world. 'We should join together to fight against the psychiatrists,
      disease, war, criminality and drug-dealing, not against each other.'"

      Message-ID: <a399nk$5rr@...>
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      #####

      > Tom Cruise

      BBC News reported on January 30th that Tom Cruise took time from promoting
      his latest movie to lobby the American ambassador to Germany on behalf of
      Scientology.

      "He met with US ambassador Dan Coats while in the country promoting his
      new movie Vanilla Sky with co-star and girlfriend Penelope Cruz. Germany
      refuses to recognise Scientology as a legitimate church, claiming it is a
      fake religion based on making money from its followers. Scientology was
      put under official scrutiny in Germany in 1997, followed by France which
      outlawed it as a cult.

      "Following Cruise's hour-long meeting with Mr. Coats the star signed
      autographs and chatted to embassy staff, who remarked on how friendly and
      patient he was. Mr. Coats later attended the German premiere of Vanilla
      Sky, but would not comment on the meeting."

      Internet reporter Matt Drudge received a call on his radio show to protest
      reporting the Tom Cruise story on his popular web site.

      "A Scientologist called in and began demanding that Matt apologize for
      criticizing John Travolta, L. Ron Hubbard and Battlefield Earth. Matt
      asked if 'he (Drudge) is allowed to criticize pop culture.' Then Matt
      asked 'What are you going to do about it sir?' and the clam replied 'We
      (meaning Scientology) have plenty of information on you' and hung up. Matt
      told him to take his best shot."

      MSNBC reported on January 31st that Cruise has been lobbying other U.S.
      officials for Scientology.

      "Tom Cruise has been working overtime on behalf of the Church of
      Scientology. On Wednesday, it made headlines overseas that the 'Vanilla
      Sky' actor, a devout Scientologist, had met with Dan Coats, the U.S.
      ambassador to Germany, to lobby the case for the rights of the church in
      Germany. A top church official, however, tells The Scoop that Cruise has
      been privately meeting with top politicians on behalf of the church for
      the last few years.

      "Kurt Weiland, a director of the church, says that among the U.S.
      officials who have met with Cruise to discuss the Church of Scientology's
      plight are Attorney General John Ashcroft and Sen. Jesse Helms, the
      Republican from North Carolina who is also senior member of Foreign
      Relations Committee. Weiland says that there were 'private meetings and
      correspondence' between Cruise and both Helms and Ashcroft 'a few years
      ago.' When asked if those meetings and letters resulted in anything,
      Weiland said, 'Yes. Efforts were made by them to let the German government
      know that they were missing the mark.'"

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      #####

      > Isaac Hayes

      The Memphis Flyer interviewed Scientology celebrity Isaac Hayes in its
      December 27th issue.

      "How do you manage to juggle so many activities?

      "It's difficult, but thanks to my involvement in Scientology, there is a
      technology that can help you do that, an administrative technology. It can
      help you do it all.

      "Is the church here another part of the package bringing you back?

      "Lisa Marie Presley and myself put that together. We brought it to Memphis
      because we wanted to share it with our city. So the fact that I'm back
      helps me be more involved with my own mission. I need to get more people
      in there and familiarize more people with the principles, goals, and aims
      of Scientology and how good it is for everybody. It's one of the greatest
      things that's ever happened to me. I've been in it eight years and it's
      really given me tools to improve myself. When you find something good, you
      want to share it with people."

      Message-ID: <cjnq5ucrqv66g647v1eur5n8684bb1le7p@...>

      #####

      > Jamie Kennedy

      Jamie Kennedy, great-grandson of L. Ron Hubbard, reported in his
      newsletter on January 30th how Scientology has reacted to a recent article
      in the East Bay Express, in which he was critical of Scientology.

      "This was from a letter to the East Bay Express after the article by Katy
      St. Clair came out. Katy suspects the writer is a Scientologist, which
      would come as no surprise, but I've gotten no response from him when I
      attempted to contact him to give him a free lifetime pass to Tourettes
      Without Regrets. So here it is:

      "'Jamie Kennedy seems like he wants to get his 15 minutes of fame by
      dissing all of poetry, and while he's at it, slamming practically all
      music with words in it - technically all those songs are poetry. At least
      he admits he's all fucked up. He says he hates his great grand-daddy so
      much, but he seems to be milking that connection for everything he can
      suck out of it. If I ever get a burning urge to take a dump on stage, I
      will have to check out one of his shows, and express myself.' - Writer
      didn't leave name

      "Unfortunately Scientologists are such venomous vipers that I can't milk
      my connection without having to have those fuckers on my jock like crab
      lice. Believe me, I'd love to get rich off shit talking and revealing all
      the nasty secrets about my meglomaniacal psychotic cuckoo for cocoa puffs
      great grandfather but I already have to deal with in-fighting
      circle-jerking National Poetry Slam fuck-o's, a baby momma and bills and
      don't have the time to piss in the blind eyes of brain washed robo-clones.
      Also, you can shit on my stage anytime you want. You're free anytime."

      Message-ID: <3C576ECD.9010109@...>

      #####

      > Protest Summary

      Dave Bird and Jens Tingleff reported on a protest at the Birmingham,
      England org on February 2nd.

      "John, Hartley, Andy, and later Diane (not on Internet) were demonstrating
      away. Soon Jens arrived, and set up the sound gear with John on the mic; I
      did some unamplified slogan-shouting too. The little leather jacketed
      creep, a sport of down-market version of Graeme Wilson was feeding the
      cops a load of lies. Apparently we were harassing his poor parishioners
      trying to get to the building. 'Well, this is a public thoroughfare.'
      Exactly. We have a right to protest in public thoroughfares. They have a
      right to move freely through public thoroughfares to their building. There
      is a perfectly good shopping street leading to the far side of the
      building (the block is surrounded by streets, with shops on the ground
      floor on every side). If people wish to enter the building and take
      services I will not pursue them and, if they wish to avoid contact with
      me, then they need only go round the other side. 'Right, we understand
      each other' said the cop."

      "Four Internet kind of persons and two parent type of persons braved the
      wind and the slight rain and handed out some leaflets. We also made
      contact with the locals who were overwhelmingly supportive. A passer-by
      said that the Co$ had taken her for a small amount for a course which had
      been absolutely no use and now she couldn't get the money back. It was a
      small amount, and she had learned a valuable lesson (when a Scientologist
      tells you something, that something is usually an outright lie or a
      useless generality). Actual quote: 'The always say you have got a problem
      when you haven't got a problem and they invent that problem for you.'"

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      #####

      > Roger Gonnet

      French Scientology critic Roger Gonnet reported that a case in which a
      Scientologist complained about having his name on Roger's web site was
      dismissed for lack of appearance.

      "I was yesterday before the Court for the trial from a Scientologist named
      Laurent Q., who had complained that his name was to be found onto my
      website. Laurent Q. had been in appeal court for the Lyon suit against
      Scientology (homicide, fraud and extortion), was named on the appeal
      decision, where he was said to have been released from fraud charges.

      "Since neither the plaintiff neither his attorney went to the Court
      yesterday in Villefranche sur Saone, they have lost immediately."

      Message-ID: <a37qot$9s0$1@...>

      #####

      > School Tuition

      The Associated Press reported on January 29th that a Jewish couple cannot
      deduct their tuition payments to a Jewish school similarly to the tax
      break given to Scientologist parents, according to an appeals court
      ruling.

      "The three-member panel of the 9th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals upheld a
      federal tax court's ruling that Michael and Marla Sklar of Los Angeles are
      not eligible to deduct 55 percent of the tuition they paid for their four
      children to attend two Jewish schools. The couple based their argument on
      tax deduction allowances made by the IRS for members of the Church of
      Scientology.

      "Details of the Church of Scientology's tax deduction were not discussed
      in the opinion because they were not made available to the court. After a
      long tax dispute with the Church of Scientology, the IRS apparently
      compromised in 1993 by allowing the church a deduction for 'auditing,'
      'training' and other qualified religious services, the opinion said. The
      IRS said it could not release the specifics of the agreement at the risk
      of disclosing confidential returns and return information.

      "In the opinion, Judge Stephen Reinhardt wrote that the Scientology case
      does not enhance the Sklars' appeal because 'religious education for
      elementary or secondary school children does not appear to be similar to
      the 'auditing' and 'training' conducted by the Church of Scientology.
      While we have no doubt that certain taxpayers who belong to religions
      other than the Church of Scientology would be similarly situated to such
      members, we think it unlikely that the Sklars are,' Reinhardt wrote."

      From the Los Angeles Times on January 30th:

      "The leading precedent, the judges said, is a 1989 high court decision
      holding that payments Scientologists made for 'auditing' did not
      constitute charitable contributions. That decision, Hernandez vs.
      Commissioner, was based on a section of the Internal Revenue Code that
      states that quid pro quo donations, for which a taxpayer receives
      something in return - such as education - are not deductible. The
      Hernandez decision held that the section applies to religious quid pro
      donations.

      "In Tuesday's decision, the appellate court criticized the IRS for
      refusing to disclose the terms of a 1993 settlement with the Church of
      Scientology. That agreement, among other things, permits Scientologists to
      get deductions in conflict with the 1989 Supreme Court decision, according
      to the 9th Circuit.

      "In support of their claim, the Sklars presented a 1997 Wall Street
      Journal article that provided details of the settlement. The 9th Circuit
      said that since the IRS failed to present any contradictory evidence on
      the nature of the settlement, the court was obliged to accept the Sklar's
      representations. Although it was not directly at issue in the case, the
      9th Circuit panel said that 'it appears to be true that the IRS' had given
      Scientology a 'preference in the interest of settling a long and litigious
      tax dispute.' In his majority opinion, Judge Stephen Reinhardt suggested
      that the preference represented unconstitutional favoritism toward a
      religious organization. Judges Harry Pregerson and Barry G. Silverman
      joined in the ruling.

      "In a highly unusual move, Silverman invited people who are troubled by
      the IRS settlement with Scientology to file a lawsuit to unravel the deal.
      'If the IRS does, in fact, give preferential treatment to members of the
      Church of Scientology - allowing them a special right to claim deductions
      that are contrary to law and disallowed to everybody else - then the
      proper course of action is a lawsuit to put a stop to that policy.'

      "Jesse Choper, a constitutional law professor at UC Berkeley's Boalt Hall
      School of Law, said that he believed taxpayers would have standing to
      bring a suit challenging the IRS settlement with Scientology under a 1968
      Supreme Court decision, Flast vs. Cohen. In that case, the high court
      upheld a taxpayer's standing to challenge federal subsidies to parochial
      schools as violating the 1st Amendment's prohibition against government
      establishment of religion."

      From the text of the court's decision:

      "The IRS insists that the closing agreement in this case cannot be
      disclosed as it contains return information which the IRS is required to
      keep confidential. We conclude that there are several reasons why the
      closing agreement in the case before us likely is subject to disclosure,
      at least in substantial part. First the closing agreement would appear to
      constitute documentation in support of the exemption application which
      must be publicly disclosed. Second, public disclosure of agreements that
      affect not just one taxpayer or a discrete group of taxpayers, but a broad
      and indeterminate class of taxpayers with a large and constantly changing
      membership, is also necessary as a practical matter. Third, where a
      closing agreement sets out a new policy and contains rules of general
      applicability to a class of taxpayers, disclosure of at least the relevant
      part of that agreement is required in the interest of public policy. The
      IRS is simply not free to enter into closing agreements with religious or
      other tax-exempt organizations governing the deductions that will be
      available to their members and to keep such provisions secret from the
      courts, the Congress, and the public.

      "The Supreme Court has developed a framework for determining whether a
      statute grants an unconstitutional denominational preference. The initial
      inquiry must be whether the policy facially discriminates amongst
      religions. Clearly it does, as this tax deduction is available only to
      members of the Church of Scientology. The second inquiry is whether or not
      the facially discriminatory policy is justified by a compelling
      governmental interest. Although it appears to be true that the IRS has
      engaged in this particular preference in the interest of settling a long
      and litigious tax dispute with the Church of Scientology, the benefits of
      settling a controversy with one religious organization can hardly outweigh
      the costs of engaging in a religious preference.

      "The Church of Scientology's closing agreement is irrelevant, not because
      the Sklars are not 'similarly situated' to Scientologists, but because the
      closing agreement does not enter into the equation by which the
      deductibility of the Sklars' payments is determined. An IRS closing
      agreement cannot overrule Congress and the Supreme Court. If the IRS does,
      in fact, give preferential treatment to members of the Church of
      Scientology then the proper course of action is a lawsuit to put a stop to
      that policy. The remedy is not to require the IRS to let others claim the
      improper deduction, too."

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      #####

      > Reed Slatkin

      The Mail Tribune from Medford, Oregon published a two-part series on
      January 27th and 28th on how the scandal of Scientology minister Reed
      Slatkin's investment club has affected businesses he invested in.

      "Reed Slatkin's name doesn't readily spill off tongues in the Rogue
      Valley. More likely it would produce blank stares. But among the
      investment community and those who follow Wall Street activity, the name
      Slatkin has become synonymous with scam and fraud in what investigators
      call one of the biggest Ponzi schemes in history. What he did with $593
      million given to him by 800 investors over a 15-year period has been the
      subject of federal and private investigations. The mix of business
      associates, investors and victims includes Hollywood producers, directors
      and actors - many of whom were fellow members with Slatkin in the Church
      of Scientology.

      "It also includes Doug Neuman, an Ashland developer known for projects
      such as the Ashland Springs Hotel and the Lake of the Woods Resort.
      Bankruptcy records show that Slatkin invested $11.5 million in those and
      other Southern Oregon projects or properties, virtually all managed by
      Neuman, and all currently under the jurisdiction of the bankruptcy court.

      "Slatkin, now 53, met Neuman while taking Scientology instruction at the
      Dianetics Center in Los Angeles in 1975. Neuman purchased the financially
      troubled Mark Antony Hotel in Ashland, poured millions into it and
      reopened it as the Ashland Springs Hotel in 2000. At about the same time,
      he purchased the Lake of the Woods Resort and again embarked on a lavish
      renovation. The bankruptcy documents reveal he was financially able to do
      that because Slatkin was providing the bulk of the money - up to 95
      percent - for the Neuman-run company that purchased and managed the
      properties.

      "Nothing among the 2 million pieces of paper and thousands of gigabytes of
      computer documents pored over by investigators suggests that Neuman was
      part of any illegal activity, said John Reitman, an attorney for Los
      Angeles bankruptcy trustee R. Todd Neilson. Neuman's apparently clean
      slate has set him up for a remarkable recovery in the midst of the
      scandal: Barring any late changes, he will buy the 20 Oregon properties
      from the bankruptcy trustee for about 45 cents on the dollar.

      "Slatkin threw money in many directions, often without thorough research,
      according to investigators. His involvement in the renovation of the Mark
      Antony Hotel exemplified that, producing, in the trustee's estimation, a
      loss of up to $6 million.

      "Neuman still is somewhat shell-shocked at his partner's financial demise.
      'When I found out about his bankruptcy and found out about all of these
      things, it was kind of surreal,' he said. 'I can't pass judgment, because
      I really don't know what happened. I'm sure some day I will.' Before the
      scandal bubbled to the surface, Neuman talked on the phone to Slatkin from
      time to time. Then things changed. 'Before, when I talked to him, he just
      said, there are some really difficult situations,' Neuman recalled. '
      'Doug, I can't talk to you, I'm just in the middle of an investigation,'
      and all of that.'

      "Two copies of a 1988 hand-written note were among the millions of pages
      scoured by investigators. The note, known to Church of Scientology members
      as a 'knowledge report' where Scientologists report ethical violations to
      their church, admitted: 'Instead of working on stocks, I was working on
      fabricating statements.'"

      "Neuman was born in New York, raised in the San Francisco Bay area and
      moved to Los Angeles after a brief stint at San Jose State University. In
      1975, he met Slatkin when the young Church of Scientology members were
      taking courses at the Dianetics Center in Los Angeles. They shared a
      passion for tennis and became friends on and off the tennis court. Neuman
      and Slatkin began studying investing techniques under Scientologist Robert
      F. Duggan in 1981. Before long, Neuman, Slatkin, Duggan and their families
      all lived in Santa Barbara.

      "During a 15-year period, Neuman said, he invested somewhere in the
      vicinity of $1 million in the investment club Slatkin operated. Based on
      the statements from Slatkin, he thought it was a lucrative investment. 'I
      paid taxes all these years, based on these gains, and I can only amend
      three years back. That's brutal.'

      "Developer Chris Galpin, perhaps best known as owner of the Eagle Point
      Golf Course, worked with Neuman on the Pheasant Meadows subdivision and a
      smaller project off B Street in Ashland. He theorizes that Neuman's
      trusting nature worked against him in Slatkin's case. 'Doug is as straight
      of a shooter as you're going to find,' Galpin said 'If you're honest, you
      have a tendency to believe people and to trust people. 'The guy (Slatkin)
      looked like Class A-1, but a lot of people thought that of Enron, too.'

      "By 1997, Slatkin's Earthlink investment had turned to gold and he
      repeated his earlier interest in investing in Southern Oregon 'He said,
      'Doug, like I said before, if there are some good projects I want to be
      involved,' Neuman recalled. Neuman had one in mind - Ashland's tallest
      building, built in 1925 and opened in 1927. 'I kept looking at it and I
      just felt that this was a real important project. It wasn't just about the
      money, it was about saving part of the community - trying to restore
      something. I just had a vision for this place and I felt that I could do
      it. I had a fear that they were going to turn this into maybe a low-end
      retirement home. It just didn't seem appropriate for right in the middle
      of town.'

      "At that point, Slatkin was at the apex of his financial career and money
      was no object. Neuman phoned Slatkin, who had seen the hotel in previous
      visits to Ashland. 'I talked to Reed and said, 'Are you willing to help me
      in this project?' and he said he would.' On July 13, 1998, Neuman's $1.6
      million cash offer for the nine-story hotel was accepted by U.S.
      Bankruptcy Court Judge Albert Radcliffe after a previous auction winner
      had failed to make ends meet. The Slatkin trustee's Dec. 17, 2001, report
      showed that remodeling cost an average of $140,000 per room. 'Based on the
      professional input of hotel specialists engaged by the Trustee, the value
      of the Hotel may not even exceed its existing $3,855,000 debt, let alone
      its $9.8 million cost. Thus, (Slatkin's) Estate will lose approximately $6
      million due to Slatkin's lack of investment foresight.'"

      The Rocky Mountain News reported on February 1st that Colorado investor
      Kenneth Tuchman was among the victims of the Slatkin Ponzi scheme.

      "TeleTech founder Kenneth Tuchman counts himself among a group of
      unwitting investors that federal securities regulators say were swindled
      out of millions of dollars by a California celebrity investment guru.
      Tuchman is suing his investment advisory firm over the $2 million he lost
      in the Reed Slatkin Investment Club. The investment club's bankrupt
      founder, Reed Slatkin, is under criminal investigation for running an
      alleged $600 million Ponzi scheme.

      "A bankruptcy trustee's report lists Tuchman, chairman and chief executive
      of the Denver customer calling-center giant Teletech Holdings Inc., as one
      of more than 800 investors with claims against Slatkin's estate.

      "In the Colorado lawsuit, Tuchman claims he invested 'substantial monies'
      with Slatkin in early 2001, after assuming that Pell Rudman had acted on
      his instructions to check out Slatkin. 'Unbeknownst to Tuchman at the
      time, Pell called no references about Slatkin, conducted virtually no due
      diligence, and exercised no independent judgment regarding the
      advisability of investing with Slatkin,' the complaint said. Pell Rudman
      has yet to file a court answer to the complaint. But Holly Stein Sollod,
      the Holland & Hart attorney representing Pell Rudman, said her client 'had
      no role in choosing the investment or duty to investigate the
      investment.'"

      Message-ID: <a33u6v$r35@...>
      Message-ID: <a34kso$lr2@...>
      Message-ID: <a3fq12$nsq@...>

      #####

      > Tom Padgett

      Ex-Scientologist Tom Padgett reported that a report in his case recommends
      he be allowed to continue to see his children over the objections of his
      ex-wife, who is still a Scientologist.

      "On January 28, 2002, a Report and Recommendation was entered into the
      Court records in Kentucky by the Domestic Relations Commissioner
      permanently unrestricting visitation between Tom and Laura Padgett's minor
      son and his father.

      "The ten page report noted that Laura Padgett and her lawyer failed to
      prove that Tom is in any way harmful to his son, thereby making Laura's
      claims of him being 'unpredictable and unstable' as unfounded and
      erroneous. Commissioner Susan McClure supported her decision with the
      testimony from the son who begged the Court for a normal relationship with
      his dad, and the testimony of Rev. Robert T. Pardon, Director of the New
      England Institute of Religious Research. Pardon's testimony included the
      behavioral issues present from Scientologist's use of 'disconnection' as
      an 'informational control' vehicle used by many cults, not just
      Scientology. This was also supported by the testimony of Dr. Stephen Kent
      in the case last summer.

      "It was specified that the child shall be able to have normal
      communication with his father on a daily and weekly basis by phone and by
      e-mail. She recommended that their son be required to attended some
      counseling (psychological not dianetic) to help him sort though years of
      having to endure his parents' vast secular differences."

      Message-ID: <af7713bf.0202031121.5195765e@...>

      -end-
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