A.r.s Week in Review - 6/11/2000
Week in Review Volume 5, Issue 9
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.
Free A.r.s Week in Review subscriptions are available.
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> BrightonThe Evening Argus published an article on former Scientologists in
Brighton, UK on June 8th.
"Richard Ford stepped out of the taxi and walked through the entrance of
Saint Hill Manor, the Church of Scientology's UK headquarters. Richard had
been a cult member before but had been expelled. Now he had been asked to
rejoin and he looked on the day as a fresh start and an opportunity to
prove himself. About seven months later he walked down the same drive a
broken man. During his time with the Church of Scientology, Richard lost
his possessions, had become so ill he had suffered premature hair loss and
was so depressed he considered suicide.
"Auditing is the process where Scientologists are put into a trance-like
state and relive past traumas, repeatedly going over the events until they
feel cheerful about them. Richard said: 'I went out walking on air,
feeling wonderful and thought I would like to learn to help other people
feel like this.' 'They separate you from all outside influence and blast
you with auditing and get a commitment from you and get you to sign a
"'I was invited into the London group and that continued for slightly less
than a year. During that time my health was going down quite badly because
I wasn't eating properly because of no money. 'I had to move address a
couple of times in the middle of the night for not paying my rent. I was
working and not sleeping very much.
"In the mid-Nineties, the British arm of the Church of Scientology was
plunged into crisis due to a decline in membership and a lack of people
successfully completing their courses. Richard said: 'There was a
condition of danger declared. It means if the statistics of any
Scientology group are declining rapidly enough, a senior body can declare
a condition of danger and can directly intervene in affairs and carry out
a purge. Richard was told to spend four months away from the cult. During
this time he experienced a mixture of relief and a sense of failure at his
"Richard, now 37, is philosophical about his time spent with the cult:
'When I left I had nothing, I had debts of about 2,000 pounds. I felt 'how
come an intelligent person like me fell for something so stupid?' 'Why did
I believe all those things so contrary to common sense? I'm still coming
to terms with it.' Richard has set up a helpline called Leaving
Scientology to help other people who have left or are considering leaving
the cult. He can be called in confidence on 01375 384378."
> Placido DomingoThe Sunday Times reported on June 28th that the family of opera singer
Placido Domingo, including involvement in Scientology.
"The lost family of the celebrated tenor Placido Domingo has come back to
haunt him: a granddaughter has posed naked in Playboy and accused him of
neglect. Ivonne Armant, 26, appears in this month's edition of the
"Armant, who is hoping to produce her first album this summer after
signing up to a Los Angeles disco music label, is not the only member of
the family to have caused the singer unease. He is also said to have been
concerned at his first son's involvement in the Church of Scientology.
Jose works on the organisation's anti-drug campaign in prisons in northern
Mexico and southern California. Sources close to Domingo claim he once
considered using a 'de-programmer' to persuade his son to withdraw from
"Placido Jr, one of Domingo's sons from his second marriage and now a
successful businessman, accused Armant of bringing disgrace on the old
Spanish family by posing naked. 'She is a grown woman: if she wants to
take her clothes off in public, or if Jose wants to join the
Scientologists, there is little he can do.'"
> FranceLiberation reported on June 1st that officials in France raided the
"Policemen of the Sefti came without having been announced. Part of its
internal documentation will be seized. According to our information, two
computers have been seized, as well as two servers. An ex-adept protests
against scientology. He's tired of receiving lots of cultic publications,
despite his departure, and had asked to be erased from its files. Nothing
works. The man keeps on receiving them. The man complains for 'privacy
violations' through computerized files being kept, for 'lying
advertisements' and 'fraud'. Some weeks later, a second member does the
same. Complaints come on the bureau of a first judge, then go to the Judge
Renaud Van Ruymbeke.
"Marc Walter, president of the spiritual association of scientology Ile de
France, is arrested, detained for some time, and released later. Besides
of his role, justice is interested by the CCDH, the commission of Citizens
for Human Rights. The CCDH aims, since some thirty years, remains the
same: attacking psychiatry, Scientology's enemy number one."
From Agence France Presse on June 1st:
"Scientology spokesmen were playing down the affair Thursday, describing
it as a minor matter that had sprung from a simple administrative error.
Officers from the fraud and computer crime squad SEFTI carried out the
raid on May 16, seizing computer materials from the movement's offices at
rue Jules Cesar, in Paris' 12th arrondissement. Scientology spokesman Jean
Dupuis played down the significance of the incident. 'This is a completely
banal matter of common law ... a classic procedure used every time a
complaint is made to an investigating magistrate,' he said.
"Police had returned the material they seized -- two computers, two
servers and three diskettes -- three days after the raid, he added. The
files, which contained the names and addresses of about 20,000 people who
had been in touch with Scientology, were updated on a daily basis, said
> GermanyDpa reported on June 7th that a member of the Hamburg government believes
Scientology deserves to be monitored as a possible threat to the German
"From the view of Hamburg Interior Senator Hartmuth Wrocklage (SPD), the
Scientology Organization still does not present a danger for the
Constitution. 'Thank God it is not that bad yet,' said the Senator on
Wednesday in Hamburg. He said German institutions have not yet been
infiltrated by Scientology. Wrocklage stressed, however, that there was
considerable threat 'in an organization which operated using totalitarian
elements' in the long run. For that reason, Scientology will continue to
be kept under surveillance by Constitutional Security.
"On Wednesday the Hamburg Interior Agency ended the 'Federal-State
discussion group on so-called sects and psychogroups,' a two-day
conference. Leading French sect commissioner Alain Vivien appeared as a
guest speaker to inform the German agencies about the the fight against
the organization in France. According to Vivien, Scientology deals with
'predominance over a humanity consisting of happy slaves.' According to
statements by the Director of the Hamburg Interior Agency's Work Group on
Scientology, Ursula Caberta, Scientology has not been able to extend its
influence in past months despite great financial endeavors. That, she
said, was no reason to call off the alert. 'Surrender by Scientology in
its attempt at world domination is not predicted,' Caberta believes. She
said the greatest need for counseling from her work group lies in
business, where corporations intend to safeguard themselves from outside
influence from Scientology."
Reuters reported on June 7th that French and German officials announced
plans at the conference to coordinate efforts on Scientology
"Germany and France intend to cooperate on an international level in the
surveillance of the Scientology Organization. 'A resolution of the sect
phenomenon must be found on a European level,' said France's national sect
commissioner, Alain Vivien. France issued invitation for a European
conference in the beginning of 2001 so that future operations can be
"Hamburg's Interior Senator Hartmut Wrocklage (SPD) said, 'The battle
against Scientology can only be won internationally.' Vivien said that
Scientology was an international matter, because, not least of all, its
goal was worldwide domination. He warned that Scientology could
'infiltrate' international organizations like the United Nations (UNO)."
From Hamburger Abendblatt on June 8th:
"Now, as before, Scientology poses 'a considerable risk to the welfare of
our citizens.' That was stated by Interior Senator Hartmuth Wrocklage
(SPD) after a federal-state conference on the theme of 'so-called sects
and psychogroups' in the Hanseatic City [of Hamburg], which also included
the leading sect commissioner of France, Alain Vivien. The line which must
be pursued is 'information, information and information,' said the
Senator. Citizens must be in the position, for example, to recognize the
Scientology jargon. The same words mean something completely different
than in normal speech usage.
"Wrocklage gave Ursula Caberta, Director of the Work Group on Scientology
'full support in the battle against the Scientology psycho-concern.' In
response to the numerous attacks and defamations by the organization
against Caberta, he said, 'She is an upright woman who does not whine when
under heavy fire; she does her job.'"
Sueddeutsche Zeitung reported on June 5th that a Scientology event in
Pliening was halted due to lack of parking.
"A Scientology event planned for Pliening fizzled on Saturday morning.
After business people refused to give the group of Scientologists parking
places, they then tried to retreat to the front of city hall. But that was
refused by Mayor Roman Radke. The sect members then restricted themselves
to distributing books. The community had previously refused to agree to
having the event in the open air."
Westfaelische Rundschau reported on June 6th that a tax court in Muenster
has verified that Scientology is a commercial organization.
"Income from seminar fees, sale of printed material and of the
'electrometer,' a type of lie detectors, are subject to sales tax. This
legal opinion of the revenue court in Muenster can now be applied in
practice in a real case. A Scientology group from Westfalen-Lippe, to the
surprise of the revenue court, recently withdrew from renewed legal
proceedings against a tax sales decision. As a result, the tax decision,
initiated by the revenue agency, becomes legally effective.
"The Revenue Agency will now react to the result of the proceedings and
treat the Scientology as a commercial enterprise with regards to tax. That
means the Scientology organization is legally obligated to submit tax
statements, to reveal their income and to keep official accounts books."
Der Spiegel reported on June 7th that Catholic agencies in Germany are
distrustful of Windows 2000 because of its Scientology connection.
"Limburg diocese as well as the Berlin diocese are advising their parishes
against installation. 'That is a preventive measure because of a program
component developed from a company whose business manager is a professed
Scientologist,' said Limburg Diocese spokesman Michael Wittekind on
Wednesday. The Federal Office for Security in Information Technology (BSI)
in Bonn is currently checking to see if user data is secure under
implementation of Windows 2000.
"Government agencies, including those of the Free State of Bavaria, intend
to wait for the review by the federal office before implementing the
software. As a BSI spokesman said on Wednesday, an agreement between the
federal office and Microsoft in June will be taken into account in the
review. Microsoft purchased the program with the name of 'Diskeeper' from
the California Executive Software company, whose boss, Craig Jensen,
openly acknowledges his membership in Scientology.
"'We do not trust the Scientologist on their own,' said Wittekind. The
diocese has considerable objections because Scientology has supposedly
openly stated that it intends to gain a toehold in German business."
From dpa on June 7th:
"The Federal Office for Security in Information Technology (BSI) is
reviewing a controversial component of the new Microsoft Windows 2000
operating system for possible risks to data security. There is still an
agreement with the American software firm to be worked out in June, said
BSI spokesman Michael Dickopf. Microsoft has stated that a certain
program which performs maintenance on the hard disk, the 'Diskeeper'
program, is from a U.S. corporation whose boss is a professed Scientology
"The main thing to be checked out by the BSI experts is whether user data
on the hard disk could be forwarded, unnoticed, to a third party, Dickopf
stressed. That is a method by which users could be put under
Taz reported on June 8th that Scientologists continue their review of
"After months of delay, the Scientologists will be able to look into the
records concerning them in all the Brandenburg Ministries and their
subordinate departments for the first time. The required information will
shortly follow. The application for file access had been submitted back in
October 1999 by Munich Scientologist and Director of the Human Rights
Office of Scientology Germany, Ingo Lehman. State representatives from the
SPD and CDU viewed that as a misuse of the Brandenburg freedom of
information law of 1998 and intended to prevent access from Parliament.
They could not get it through."
> Newport BeachThe Los Angeles Times published an article on June 8th, describing strange
proclamations by the city of Newport Beach.
"One year, the city declared itself a safe haven for victims of
pornography. The next, it embraced clean air. And then there was the time
Newport celebrated women real estate agents. Proclamations are not legally
binding and, for the most part, are simply for recognition. However,
mayors are annually deluged with requests for proclamations honoring
various causes deemed of citywide importance by their promoters.
"Perhaps the most interesting requests for proclamations, however, appear
in the 'rejected' folder. International Forgiveness Day, World Populations
Awareness Week and Day of the African Child all made it into that pile.
The Church of Scientology makes an annual request -- and is annually
turned down -- to honor L. Ron Hubbard."
> NigeriaNigeria Today reported on June 5th that Bob Minton will have a chance to
address Nigerian football star John Fashanu's charges of illegal financing
at a forum at Howard University in Washington, DC.
"A public debate that would attract the key figures in the March 1988 to
March 1993 Nigerian debt buyback scheme controversy is being planned in
the U.S. by the Nigerian Democratic Movement. It has been tentatively
scheduled for June 11, from 4:00 - 7:00 pm at Howard University. Leader of
the NDM, Professor Bolaji Aluko said the forum would enable ex football
star John Fashanu and his investigators to square up with U.S. businessman
Robert Minton. Fashanu has accused Minton of financial impropriety in the
deal but Minton has denied the allegations saying he is being persecuted
by Scientology officials. 'If necessary, I will go to Nigeria myself and
educate the Nigerian Government and press as to the reality of the entire
buyback operation. Until the Nigerian Government repudiates the lies of
Scientology and Fashanu, I will release factual information as to the
buyback operation. I have nothing to hide and I am prepared to address
Fashanu's sponsored allegations in public anywhere. I hope the Nigerian
people and media would attend this public forum so that the outcome of the
debate would be well reported afterwards.' In a telephone Fashanu said he
would take part in the public forum. 'This is a good idea and I shall take
part in the debate, whether it takes place in London or Washington DC.'
> Alternative Charlemagne AwardBob Minton was awarded the Alternate Charlemagne award on June 3rd for his
efforts against Scientology's abuse of human rights. The award was given
by a committee of Europeans and Americans. Excerpts from the acceptance
"I would like to thank you from the bottom of my heart for the Alternative
Charlemagne Award. It is very moving to receive this award in Leipzig,
where freedom was reborn in the former East Germany. Today in Leipzig, we
are in the shadows of the famous St. Nikolai Church, where the cry for
freedom in East Germany began with a handful of people that grew to
hundreds and then hundreds of thousands shouting for freedom in the
streets surrounding this very building where we are now gathered. The
State no longer makes life's major decisions for the citizens in the old
Eastern Europe who must now utilize their new freedoms to become
self-sufficient and self-determined individuals. It is no accident that in
such a vacuum, those individuals who have never been willing to accept the
responsibility that freedom brings have allowed themselves to be recruited
into organizations like Scientology. Scientology offers a replacement for
the former Communist regimes that promises real freedom while in actuality
creating an apparatus of coercion that dominates and terrorizes humans
"Throughout America's short history, there has never been any time in
which groups or even the government itself hasn't tried to expand their
authority and control at the expense of individual rights and liberties.
Scientology is just such an extremist group which adamantly refuses to
accept the basic principles underlying the Bill of Rights. Their outright
attacks on our most fundamental liberties threatens to do permanent damage
to the Bill of Rights which is the bedrock of America's traditions of
fairness, equality, decency and ultimately justice.
"The Lisa McPherson Trust opened our Clearwater office in January of this
year, and in the nearly six months since we have been there it have become
clear just how vital it is to have such an organization in the United
States opposing Scientology. We have found that there is a tremendous
need amongst Scientology victims and their families for our services. We
have also seen that it is vitally important for us to counter the efforts
of Scientology in Washington, D.C., and because of this we plan to open
another office of the Lisa McPherson Trust in Washington within the next
year. The purpose of our D.C. office will be to educate our government
about Scientology and get our government working with the governments of
Germany, France, and other countries who recognize the danger of
Scientology. In order to better coordinate this worldwide effort within
the United States, we plan to open offices of the Lisa McPherson Trust in
Germany, France, and perhaps one or two other countries within the next
"This Bible was given to me last night by a friend and I would like to
read a special passage which my friend selected. It is Psalms 71 verse 13.
It reads 'May my accusers perish in shame. Let those who want to harm me
be covered with scorn and disgrace.' But, God is compassionate; and the
people at the top of Scientology who perpetrate this evil are people that
all of us would welcome when they leave this organization. I would be
happy to help them too."
From Hamburg Abendblatt on June 2nd:
"What's good for Clinton is not good for Minton. Both have received a
Charlemagne Award. Bill the President received the international award
and Bob the Banker received the alternative award. The former from the
hands of Aachen Mayor Juergen Linden, the latter one day later in Leipzig
from Ursula Caberta. From his perspective, Scientology's being a
'totalitarian movement,' thereby 'working against democracy,' appears to
be less momentous than the fact that he has to carry on his battle against
Scientology in the USA himself.
"He said that Scientology was anything but a church, was cynical and would
destroy anyone who got in its way. After Minton said that, it rained
Scientology press releases and a flood of open letters was directed at the
Interior Agency. All with one goal: to discredit Minton and Caberta with
him. For instance, Minton was accused of being an 'unscrupulous
money-grubber' who 'personally lined his pockets with several tens of
millions of dollars under the regime of the former military dictatorship
in Nigeria - while the population starved.' Minton does not dispute having
discretely and for a profit bought back, with a partner, $4.5 billion of
foreign debt on commission of the Nigerian administration. Nor that they
made a profit with a nominal value of 1 percent ($45 million). What he
does not agree with are: the numbers being cited far in excess of that,
assertions that anything was fraudulent, that he is being investigated in
any way, that bank accounts have been closed or that he profited from oil
prices which rose during the Gulf War. He will do in Germany what he has
already done in France - sue Scientology for slander.
"All that, however, is only coincidental to the members and supporters of
the Alternative Charlemagne Award committee. For them, only one thing
counts: Bob Minton is better suited than Bill Clinton for being publicly
recognized for supporting freedom of opinion and a democratic life-style."
From Frankfurter Rundschau on June 3rd:
"The US American banker will be distinguished this Saturday with the
'Alternative Charlemagne Award 2000'. Minton is receiving the
unremunerated award for his struggle against the Scientology organization,
stated the 'European-American Citizens Committee for Human Rights and
Religious Freedom in the USA' in Berlin. Minton is said to have provided
Scientology victims with financial and legal assistance. The award was a
reaction to the presentation of the Aachen Charlemagne Award to U.S.
President Clinton, who allegedly openly supports the Scientology
From Der Tagesspiegel on June 3rd:
"'By holding this ceremony, we intended to give a sign that, in spite of
the Clinton administration, there are people in America who think
differently and who do not swim with the Scientology tide,' said Thomas
Gandow, Sect Commissioner of the Evangelical Church in Berlin-Brandenburg
and member of the citizens committee.
"He said the 'Lisa McPherson Trust,' of which Minton is the chairman,
helps victims of Scientology make their claims in court. He also said that
Scientology has been using its accusations for years in a campaign of
slander against Minton."
From IDEA on May 31st:
"The American Scientology organization is apparently ready to carry out a
hate campaign against the award winner of this year's Alternative
Charlemagne Award, Scientology critic and U.S. millionaire Bob Minton.
That was said by the Sects and Weltanschauung Commissioner of the
Evangelical Church in Berlin-Brandenburg, Reverend Thomas Gandow. 'With
incriminating accusations associated with business dealings, the
Scientologists are trying to make an anti-Minton campaign out of an
anti-Scientology gathering ' said Gandow, who is a member of the Award
Committee. Minton, who openly opposes the Scientology Organization, is
being placed in counter-point to U.S. President Bill Clinton, who receives
the 'real' Charlemagne Award in Aachen. Minton, who receives the
Alternative Charlemagne Award on June 3 in Leipzig, founded the 'Lisa
McPherson Trust,' an organization which opposes Scientology."
From Neue Bildpost on June 1st:
"'It's OK to have a different opinion in regards to Clinton's political
accomplishments or his personal conduct,' said Reverend Thomas Gandow,
Sect Commissioner of the Evangelical Church for Berlin-Brandenburg. As
concerns his attitude towards Scientology, however, there is no doubt:
'Never before has a government done so much lobbying for Scientology,'
"It is not just that the organization received tax exemption in the first
year of Clinton's term; Clinton's State Department continually blames
Germany and other European states for dealing with Scientology in a
critical manner. As a reaction to the presentation of the Charlemagne
Award, the European-American Citizens Committee for Human Rights and
Religious Freedom will be giving out an Alternative Charlemagne Award:
banker Robert Minton, who supports Scientology victims in legal
proceedings against the organization, will receive it."
From Zeitung Dresden on June 2nd:
"Top German sect members sent an open letter on May 29 to the bishops of
the Evangelical State Churches in Berlin-Brandenburg and Saxony. It was
demanded of Berlin Bishop Wolfgang Huber that Sect Commissioner Gandow be
immediately dismissed. He amounts to the 'spiritus rector' of the Leipzig
arrangement. The letter said that the Saxon state church should 'distance
itself from the procedure' and not take part in the award. The sect called
Minton 'an international con man who caused massive harm in Nigeria.' It
was said that the American became rich when he was deeply involved in the
restructuring of debt in developing countries.
"The sect has been rather busy trying to obstruct the gathering.
Scientology spokesman Georg Stoffel from Munich verified that it had been
explained what was planned there for the people responsible for the Old
Stock Exchange [site of the award] and for the Auerbachs Keller [site of
the reception]. He did not rule out a morning demonstration on Saturday."
From Berliner Zeitung on June 5th:
"The European-American Citizens Committee for Human Rights and Religious
Freedom in the USA, by doing this, intended to publicly appreciate
Minton's involvement on behalf of the victims of the Scientology
Organization. Minton did not want to accept that it was possible for this
organization to silence all its critics and victims in his home country of
the USA. He recognized what dangers could arise for people and liberal
democracy from Scientology, said Ursula Caberta, Director of the Hamburg
Work Group on Scientology in her 'Laudatio.' The Committee intended that
the unremunerated human rights award be an alternative to the presentation
of the Aachen Charlemagne Award to U.S. Bill Clinton. The award is to be
presented year from now on."
> NarcononThe Oklahoman published an article on June 10th on the controversy over
Scientology's new Narconon facility in Canadian, Oklahoma.
"Property owners who don't want Arrowhead Lodge turned into a Narconon
drug rehabilitation center have taken their fight to the state Health
Department. Claiming they represent more than 1,300 property owners,
Arrowhead Estates trustees have asked interim Health Commissioner Jerry
Regier to reconsider a certificate of need granted to Narconon. The
75-bed Narconon Chilocco New Life Center in Newkirk plans to move and
expand to as many as 300 beds at Arrowhead Lodge, near Canadian in
Pittsburg County. The center's executive director, Gary Smith, said many
Arrowhead Estates residents don't support the trustees' letter. 'Members
of my staff have spoken with several homeowners and have been informed
that the letter submitted to your office was not approved by the
membership of the homeowners association,' Smith wrote to Regier.
"An international group with ties to the Church of Scientology bought the
256-acre resort property May 17 and plans to lease it to Narconon as a
drug and alcohol abuse treatment center. The nonprofit Association for
Better Living and Education paid the Choctaw Nation about $1.9 million for
the resort, Smith said. The Choctaw Nation bought Arrowhead from the
federal government in 1985, after the state failed to pay back a loan used
to build the Lake Eufaula resort in 1965.
"Smith said Narconon intends to have a full-time security force, 'not only
to ensure our clients remain at the facility but also to ensure that
outside people do not cause harm to our clients. 'Trustees also claim the
purchase price is ridiculous, given that 50 of the lodge cabins are
lake-front property and 'could be sold for $50,000 each minimum.' 'It
doesn't take a mental giant to figure out something is being sold way
under book value,' the trustees wrote. 'Why?' Separate appraisals
commissioned by the seller and buyer put the property's value at between
$1.9 million and $2 million, Smith responded."
> Protest SummaryJeff Jacobsen announced the annual memorial protests for Lisa McPherson,
planned for Clearwater, Florida.
"The Clearwater 2000 picket and events will be on December 2 and 3 this
year. The Scientology sidewalks are all back but the 'tunnel' across the
street from the Ft. Harrison hotel is still there. One can only guess what
Scientology will do this year to try to stop our free speech. See
http://www.primenet.com/~cultxpt/demo.htm for links to previous pickets
and information on our picketing philosophy and goals."
Keith Henson protested this week at Gold Base near Hemet, California.
"Tue morning bright and early I drove by the little roadside memorial to
Ashlee Shaner and through their compound. I figured they had some warning
because the sprinklers were on again--and some had been turned so they
sprayed into the roadway. A bunch of construction workers were jumping
into their trucks and leaving. One asked me what I was doing before I
started walking toward the center of the compound and I told him about the
cult and the reason I was out picketing.
"Only visible scientologists were the two in the guard shack. Normally
the place swarms with them, walking under the road in two underpasses and
all over. About two hours into the picket, Ida C. came by with a friend.
The run-off from the sprinklers was amazing, perhaps 1-200 gpm going down
a storm drain. The sprinklers were nice because as it warmed up during the
day I was able to walk through them to keep cool. Four and a half hours
into the picket, at 11:30, I left and went over to visit Ida."
Keith also protested three orgs in the San Jose area.
"Yesterday an interviewer and her taping tech spent a few hours with me.
She wanted to see the orgs in action, so we made a date to picket an org
today. We managed to connect not far from the San Jose org at 11 am. They
got a 10-15 minute picket. Not much action but the guy I refer to as blue
shirt came out and cursed a blue streak at me.
"Then we went off to the new org in Mt. View. We started picketing them
and *instant* heavy enturbulation. The new org has floor to ceiling
windows facing the street, and there was no way to block our picketing
from the people inside. Nice Mark and some other dude who has picketed my
house in the past came out and made an attempt for about an hour to handle
us--walking with us and trying to introvert us. It was complete bust. They
also called the cops, who told them the sad news that there was nothing
they could do about peaceful protest, even if they were claiming to be a
"I stopped and gave the old Mt. View location a short picket. They saw me
and one guy had me turn my picket signs so he could read all 4 surfaces,
but they mostly ignored me."
Bruce Pettycrew also protested Gold Base this week.
"Kathy and I arrived at Gold at 10:00 AM and parked about a block away
from the 'castle' soundstage building, one of the ugliest architectural
monstrosities I have ever seen. We unpacked our signs, video camera,
water, etc., and proceeded up the hill towards the Golden Era Studios
gate. I had my jumbo sign with the '$cientology Lies' and $cientology
Hurts People' messages, while Kathy used one displaying 'Hubbard was a
Fraud' and 'Just Another UFO Cult' .
"As we approached, a work group of four or five probable RPFers quickly
scattered and disappeared behind one of the many iron gates that blocked
all the driveway entrances into the compound. The group was working on a
stone fence with an electric wire running across the top. They had been
mixing concrete in two wheelbarrows, and left one of them full of wet mix
that hardened into a solid mass while we picketed- UNBELIEVABLE! One of
them even left her purse behind.
"We continued up the road past the chapel. A woman took our pictures from
behind one of the windows as we approached, but disappeared as soon as I
waved at her. As we passed the guard house at the Golden Era Studios
entrance, we were treated to the sight of 5 or 6 brown-shirted guards
squeezed into the tiny post, with more arriving on the ubiquitous
blue-painted motor scooters that they used to get around the compound.
We made another circuit of the buildings, and passed the spot where the
teenage girl was killed in a traffic accident with front-loader working on
the site. We continued picketing until about 1:30."
"Realpch" reported a protest in San Francisco.
"Jour had a strained ankle, and spent the entire picket in a chair under
some trees a bit away from the front of Org. So I actually handed out
flyers. I went through a stack of them and came to the conclusion that
saying 'Would you like some info?' is much more effective than 'Would you
care for a flyer?'
"I also had more than my usual share of conversations with passersby. A
number of people thanked us for being out there providing information.
Jeff Quiros came out and took the obligatory photos of us, and there
wasn't any other 'handling' from the Org."
"Zeratulcat" and "Kaeli" reported a protest this week in Toronto.
"The morning crew was; Kaeli, Slippery Jim, Mike Argue, Alan Barclay, Ron
Sharp, Greg Hagglund, ZeratulCat. Besides Dan walking around with a clip
board, trying to show some of the group personal information of Greg's,
which was being used like a politician would to discredit Greg, and Co$
continually video taping Greg, even when he crossed the street to make a
phone call and Mr. Hill trying to talk to me and find out what my problem
with 'his church is', not much happened in the morning."
"Dan approached me and began showing me Gregg's supposed past bad history,
all his bankruptcies, etc, etc. I ignored him as much as I could and
continued passing out flyers. The morning was quiet (10 AM to 12PM) for
the most part. I called Gregg over to help a person who had no internet
access to access the critical CoS information. He told the gentleman to go
to the public library and look up 'A Piece of Blue Sky' by Jon Atack."
Tony Williams reported a protest in Atlanta this week.
"We had two new signs - I had one that said 'Scientology Lies -
www.scientology-lies.com' on one side, and 'Who is Xenu? find out at
www.xenu.net', while ethercat carried 'What is Scientology? Its a Bait and
Switch Scam', backed with 'Scientology - They sell you a Bridge, and their
logo is a Double-Cross!'. We brought some Flyer-Paks(R) with us; we were
able to hand out 3 of them! We picketed from a little before 11:00 until a
little past noon, as we had planned. A bit before noon Linda the OTVII
showed up to water the poor dying marigolds and petunias planted in the
obviously un-prepared ground next to the sidewalk.
"At a previous picket Ethercat had promised to bring some information to
Linda concerning Hubbo's hatred of Gays, and the last time we saw her she
had berated us for not bringing it. Well, we had it today, but Linda
refused to accept it."
> South AfricaAndreas Heldal-Lund reported on a controversy over a school Scientology is
trying to buy in Sandton, South Africa.
"The Church of Scientology is one of the bidders for the old Woodmead
school in Sandton, and has plans to establish a management and training
centre there. The Scripture Union has also bid R3-million for the property
and buildings and intends to establish a training college for young
Christians. The Scientologists are prepared to pay R3.4-million, and would
establish an ecclesiastical management and training centre, responsible
for the establishment and care of all Scientology churches and
missionaries throughout Africa. The Woodmead school is one of several
properties the church is looking at for this purpose.
"Bob Glenister, a shareholder on the board that administers the property,
said the school, which was struggling financially was closed in 1999. He
said he opposed the sale of the 35-hectare property and buildings to the
Church of Scientology."
> John TravoltaCanoe newspaper service reported that John Travolta dislikes questions
"While on a press junket in Barcelona Spain to promote his latest film
'Battlefield Earth' which is based on the book by L. Ron Hubbard who
founded the church, Travolta had a confrontation with a French journalist.
The journalist asked Travolta why the religion wasn't mentioned in
'Battlefield's' press kit and then asked about funding for the Church of
Scientology. Travolta was apparently unhappy with the line of questioning
and claimed he was being 'trapped' by the interviewer who in turn had his
video tapes confiscated for 'verification'. When the tapes were returned,
they were blank."
From the London Observer, on June 7th:
"There's no doubt that this year that film is the $70 million Battlefield
Earth. The reviews were beyond brutal ('Battlefield Earth may well turn
out to be the worst movie of this century,' suggested the New York Times),
and statistics showed that the audience crumbled between its first
Saturday on release and the following Sunday. In other words, people were
calling their friends and strongly advising them not to see this film.
But that's barely the start of the 'Battlefield Earth' catastrophe. This
is the film John Travolta has been struggling to make for at least a
decade, his true labor of love. Originally, Travolta was going to play the
hero of Battlefield Earth,' Johnny Goodboy Tyler. But the years drifted
by and he grew too old for the part, and had to settle instead for playing
the 10-foot, dreadlocked alien leader with the bizarre accent.
"The novel Battlefield Earth was written by L. Ron Hubbard, who, apart
from being a master of immense, turgid sci-fi epics, was the founder of
the Church of Scientology. And Travolta is one of Hollywood's many devoted
followers of Hubbard's weird self-help creed. Film stars' long-nurtured
pet projects usually have an element of tragic over-ambition to them, a
yearning to do something that's either more personal or breaks them out of
the restrictions of their star persona."