Week in Review Volume 5, Issue 37
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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Week in Review is archived at:
> Battlefield Earth
A German firm has sued the producer of Battlefield Earth, claiming they
were misled in their deal to distribute the film in Europe. From the Los
Angeles Times on December 22nd:
"German entertainment company Intertainment and flamboyant film producer
Elie Samaha's Franchise Pictures sued each other on Thursday as a
long-simmering feud among the partners spilled into the courts.
Intertainment sued Franchise in U.S. District Court in Los Angeles,
alleging it was duped by Franchise into overpaying by $75 million for the
European rights to such films as 'Battlefield Earth,' 'Get Carter' and
'The Whole Nine Yards.'
"Intertainment lawyer Scott A. Edelman said that Intertainment pays
Franchise 47% of the film budgets in exchange for the rights. But
Intertainment discovered that Franchise overcharged the company by
inflating the size of the reported budgets, he said. Franchise's lawsuit,
filed in Los Angeles Superior Court, alleges that Intertainment engaged in
'foot-dragging, delays, excuses and outright breaches.' It also alleges
that Intertainment used Franchise to prop up the value of its stock
Battlefield Earth continues to top critic's lists of worst films of the
year. From the St. Petersburg Times on December 29th:
"The undisputed worst waste of film in 2000 was Battlefield Earth --
Celebrity Scientologist John Travolta bankrolled this sci-fi epic, based
on a book by the religion's founder, L. Ron Hubbard. A simple tithe would
have sufficed. Effects weren't special, and the plot was impenetrable.
Travolta, playing an ersatz Klingon, ended each sentence with absurd
cackles in his poorest performance ever. Director Roger Christian sharply
tilted the camera for nearly every shot, appropriate for a movie
constantly zooming downhill. Boredom without end, amen."
From the Orange County Register on December 31st:
"Despite some spin doctoring from John Travolta that would be the envy of
the Gore and Bush camps, the actor's science-fiction adventure
'Battlefield Earth' was the biggest bomb of the year. Travolta has
suggested a sequel, but there will be no sequel. There will be a sequel to
'Little Nicky' before there will be a sequel to 'Battlefield Earth.'"
> Internal Documents
Andreas Heldal-Lund posted a series of internal Scientology letters and
reports this week. From a report on the Cadet Org and its penal RPF unit:
"I have several Cadets and blown Cadets who need to go to the children's
RPF. Since being back in the Cadet Org I have been pushing hard on getting
basics in and pushing hard on getting the Cadets producing. The scene is
getting better with many Cadets starting to pick up their hats and the
scene is starting to improve. However a very small percentage are
entubulative sources and are sabotaging efforts to set the scene right.
(reports are written and are I/P on the enturbulative sources) They need
to be moved off the line per Forcing In The Ideal Scene. In addition to
the Cadet Org itself getting established there are SO kids not in the SO
who need to do the Children's RPF to get them back on purpose as SO
"[name removed] recently took a razor blade and cut X's in his skin up and
down both his arms. He is psychotic in PT and needs close supervision. In
1976 when the Commodore re-established the Cadet Org, he also included the
children's RPF as a part of this. Ref Pac Estates Unscramble. In 1986-87
when myself and Yolanda Avila put back in the advices concerning the Cadet
Org, the re-instituting of the Children's RPF was very instrumental as one
of the successful actions done which 10X'd the Cadet Org at that time.
"Another factor is that there are disaffected X-SO kids who are
originating they want to come back. Today the CO PAC told me the Lipton
girls want to come back. Last week Jade Kavanarr came to see me. This is a
big reach from these kids. Our X-SO kids at Mace-Kingsley need to be
pulled back and handled. They all need the children's RPF."
Excerpts from a 1977 letter by Mark Ingber to the Melrose Org concerning
the Cadet Org.
"I have found that the issues recently put out which specify quotas of
staff required from each Org to man up the Melrose Org and which require
these quotas to be met as each new child enters the Cadet Org are
unpopular with some.
"Amost every person who was on staff at the Melrose in July 1976 has had
to be RPFed or routed out as the Org was filled with criminals. These were
the people entrusted to carry out the Commodore's intentions for the PAC
children. It was no wonder that the place was a criminal mess. Where did
these staff come from? To a great degree they were the ethics cases of
other orgs who were offloaded to the Melrose to staff it up when any
demand was put on the orgs.
"There are currently over 160 children at the Cadet Org being cared for by
just over 20 adult staff at the Melrose Ests Org. This means a scene of
constant cope and forced neglect of the children. The Ests Bu is getting
it staffed up and over half of the current Melrose staff are Ests
recruits. However there is a need for additional staff NOW and no added
time can be afforded
"By this issue a one week grace period is hereby granted on compliance to
FLWUS ED 682 during which time it is hoped that a positive workable and
terminated handling is presented by those responsible outside of Ests such
as the Parents Liaison Committee and COs Council. If at the end of that
week no alternate handling is presented that is workable I will be forced
to bring about a solution which does work in any way necessary to move the
scene closer to the ideal as laid out by the Commodore."
From a report on the rent not being paid on the East Grinstead Bookshop:
"I just handled a phone call with the landlord of the East Grinstead
Bookshop, Mr. Alan Mattey. He was extremely upset, to put it mildly,
because he has been trying to get his rent paid and for the last three
weeks has been shuffled around from one person to another with no one
taking responsibility for the cycle, telling him people aren't there etc.
He was threatening that he was going to inform the law that the rent is
not being paid and is going to kick Fdn out so the receptionist called
security and they told her to pass him on to us.
"He is owed 666.67 pounds for rent due last month and in two days is owed
another 916.67 pounds. The rent is paid in arrears so in fact the 916.67
due in two days is for the month's rent just completed. He was told three
weeks ago that a cheque for the rent was on its way which has never
"This is a definite shore flap, among other things, and is VERY not OK. We
are working very hard to handle East Grinstead. We have developed a good
relationship with the police and over our time here have forced them to
wear their hat to protect us regarding the bookshop. To now have them be
gone to by our landlord because we haven't paid the rent and he wants to
re-possess is gross and cannot occur.
"Mlv Deborah Gardner"
From a report on the taxes owed by the Los Angeles org:
"We found out that there were funds ripped out of the Reserved Payment
Account in 88 and 89. The ex Treas Sec, Martin Witt, had a sort of Bank
operation going where members of EC requested funds from the account for
FP cycles and he considered that money 'owed back to him' etc. and of
course it was never paid back. It turns out Martin Witt did fictional tax
filings in 1988 for the org, reporting bullpen figures out of his head. He
messed up the payroll records so bad that one couldn't tell at all what
people DID get paid. For instance there were weeks when pay got cut, but
payroll DVs were paid even though the pay had been cut. Where he would get
the money to pay them was from the withholding tax that he kept as cash in
the safe and didn't deposit to the IRS like he should have. Also, it was
found that this cash withholding tax was used for other things as well.
"These 1988 filings still require fixing and there are still filings from
88 not done. They never did the annual State tax filing for 88 because
they couldn't answer the questions as to why their W2's didn't match their
quarterly tax filings and they couldn't correct their quarterly tax
filings because they didn't do payroll audits.
"Tina Hall comes on as Treas Sec in Dec 88. The records dramatically
worsened when Tina went on with regards to Treasury audits. She
consistently filed all the returns late, thus accumulating more penalties
and interest. All filings under her had been inaccurate. She wrote a
cheque for just over $7,000 made out to her, signed by her as one
signatory, and forged another signatory's signature. This cheque was
cashed and supposedly used for payroll, per Tina. However, over $1,000 is
not accountable in that week's pay as it was $1,000 less than the amount
of the cheque.
"Henry Rodriquez. Came into Treasury in Jan 89 as Dir RAM. He left
Treasury in August 89 and then took a lower post in bookstocks. Henry was
never qualled to be in Treasury, nor for that matter, to be on staff. He
has a criminal history of theft. His own business was closed down by the
IRS, This was the person put in charge of payroll audits and tax filings
for LA Org. He never made one single payroll audit balance and never got
the tax filings done in time. He was being routed out a few weeks ago and
he blew the org. He is disaffected now and will not answer phone calls.
"The Sales Tax also wasn't paid for the 4th quarter and we are making the
FBO figure out the amounts owed and she is fully responsible for getting
these paid in the morning along with unpaid 4th quarter payroll taxes.
"I have requested immediate Sec checks of the EC members of NCC. Will also
liaise with SC OSA US to get RBs done on EC of the org on being put
together and to be on lines."
> Michael McDermott
The Boston Globe reported on December 30th that the case of a man who shot
seven co-workers is being publicized by Scientology, blaming the incident
on his use of Prozac.
"When Michael M. McDermott's lawyer suggested he might use a so-called
'Prozac defense' - one that would argue that side effects from
antidepressant drugs may have led his client to allegedly gun down seven
co-workers - he stepped squarely into a medical hornets' nest. As soon as
the news of McDermott's alleged rampage hit the airwaves, fax machines
began whirring at the Los Angeles headquarters of a Scientology-based
group. The group blames psychiatric drugs for crimes such as the Columbine
High School massacre, and it alerts the media whenever an alleged killer
is reported to have taken drugs, such as Ritalin or Prozac."
Wirtschaft reported in its November issue that Scientology has infiltrated
the Hungarian branch of a German publishing company.
"Heinrich Stiefel had long considered whether he should go public. His
problem: the Hungarian branch of his publishing group had been infiltrated
by Scientology. The company proprietor from Ingolstadt just barely had
time to stop the psychological terrorism which had neutralized his staff
and would presumably have meant ruin for his establishment. The
businessman from Lenting near Ingolstadt wanted to warn other companies
about Scientology - an association which officially calls itself a
'church' but actually is nothing other than a business which makes its
members psychologically dependent with the help of totalitarian methods,
and financially exploits them. 'It can happen to anyone,' Stiefel
emphasized. 'Not only mid-size companies with contacts out of the country,
but also small trade operations right in town.'
"The Hungarian business manager rapidly brought the operation from the red
into the black. But then the Hungarian fell into the clutches of
Scientology. He took seminars for communication training in which course
participants stared at each other for hours and had to smile and scream at
each other. Part of the fabric of Scientology is to at first offer these
courses for free, then gradually make them more expensive. The expenses
are born by the participants who then attempt to deduct the fees as
company business expenses. Stiefel Inc. also suffered loss that way. They
were presented with deductions of astronomical amounts. A single course
costs up to 12,800 marks per person. The amount was deducted from
different accounts and the balance was hidden in various ledger posts.
"He says Scientology is like AIDS or cancer in that 'You don't really get
informed about it until you're affected yourself.' It cost about 80,000
marks to save the operation in Budapest and get it back up and stable. On
top of that was the enormous wear and tear on nerves. He got in touch
with the well-known exit counselor and Scientology expert Jeannette
Schweitzer. He also talked the problem over with his home bank. They put
it to him short and sweet, 'If your company is infiltrated by Scientology,
you'll not receive any more public contracts. You could close down within
a short time.'
"When Stiefel explained to him that the working relationship would be
ended in the event he did not give up Scientology, the business manager
came around. He said yes, he would give Scientology notice and leave them.
Shortly after that meeting Jeannette Schweitzer sent the prepared
separation letter to Budapest. Nothing happened; the fax sit idle. 'We
were there at 8 in the morning, immediately secured the evidence and
locked up the business manager's office.' During this time the personnel
were questioned. What came to light shocked the businessman from
Ingolstadt. 'It really hurt me, what happened there.' Normally he reserves
his feelings, but in talking with the Hungarian employees tears came to
his eyes. 'It was like being slapped in the face.'
"Over the course of time the Hungarian business manager had reorganized
the entire operation. He introduced a strongly militaristic system of
operation developed by L. Ron Hubbard, the founder of Scientology. A
miserable operating climate prevailed in the 20-person operation. The
people were not allowed to speak with each other, everything was in
writing,' said Heinrich Stiefel. Every desk was cleared off and three
baskets labeled 'In,' 'In Process' and 'Out' replaced personal
conversation. Anyone caught 'gossiping' had to pay a fine. The employees
went along with it out of fear of losing their jobs. Behind every desk
hung statistics which were supposed to document each worker's performance.
'The one by the secretary, for example, told how many checks she wrote.'
As soon as the statistics went down, they were offered training. But the
worst was the so-called 'ethics folders' which were being kept on every
worker. Personal data was listed and private details were documented.
Stiefel has put the ethics folders at the disposal of Constitutional
"'Spying on your acquaintances is prohibited in all nations on earth,'
says Heinrich Stiefel. 'That is psychological terrorism.' In securing the
ethics folders, evidence has been obtained that Scientology operates using
criminal methods. The evidence also includes state maps which were
produced by the Budapest operation. Next to the company logo of the
Stiefel publishing group was printed 'Hubbard College of Administration.'
An attorney's office which specializes in Scientology has gotten involved.
The Ingolstadt businessman's quick handling of the situation paid off. His
operation in Hungary is once again running normally. Heinrich Stiefel took
on a new business manager who highly motivates his staff. He had all other
branches investigated to see whether there were connections to
"Since then he has had all his staff sign statements that they have
nothing to do with Scientology. Every new applicant also has to sign the
declaration - a measure which the 51-year-old man now recommends for other
businesses. 'The dangerous thing about Scientology is that everybody
thinks it could never happen to them.' There are clear signs, however,
which could mean that infiltration is occurring. 'The first indices are
the empty desks and the statistics on the walls.' People should start
paying attention when supervisors turn into 'Executive Directors' in
charge of their own numbered 'Divisions.' Caution is also advised when
staff return euphoric from seminars and all too openly attempt to recruit
colleagues for the same seminar."
The Kalamazoo Gazette reported on December 28th that Scientology has
purchased a hotel in Battle Creek, Michigan.
"The old Hart Hotel in downtown Battle Creek is being acquired by the
Church of Scientology, which will renovate the 1930-built structure over
the next three years. Local officials say they view the purchase as
favorable for the community in that there will be an investment in
historical and cultural assets, and perhaps an economic impact in the
area, if church members frequent nearby restaurants and hotels."
An anonymous report was posted to a.r.s this week that the Royal Oak
location of Scientology has closed.
"The Royal Oak, Michigan Scientology office has shut down. There is now a
bright shiny new ISP operating out of their former offices."
> Tom Padgett
Tom Padgett reported developments in his case to have visitation with his
children from his Scientologist ex-wife.
"Report and Recommendation was filed and entered by Domestic Relations
Commissioner Susan W. McClure finding that scientologist Laura Padgett
should be held in contempt of court for her failure to appear and deliver
the minor Padgett son to the court for an interview with the commissioner
and a court-appointed psychologist for re-evaluation at the request and
motion of the father Thomas Padgett.
"The commissioner found that Laura Padgett has failed to show just cause
why the Respondent Thomas Padgett shouldn't exercise visitation with his
minor son like other normal parent / child relationships. Though this
order was narrowed to the time frame of this Christmas Holiday vacation
period and not a final solution to prevent permanent estrangement.
Restrictions were imposed that the father and son should refrain from
discussions about the mother's religious beliefs and this civil action.
"Tom Padgett did report from the Providence, R.I. Airport that his son and
his daughter did deplaned the scheduled flight from Nashville at 1pm on
December 26th. This marks an end to the 7 year disconnection between the
Padgett minor child and scores of paternal family relatives who have not
seen him since July of 1993 due to the actions caused by his mother's
[anti-family] scientological beliefs. From Cape Cod THANK YOU DEAR GOD!"
> Protest Summary
Gregg Hagglund reported a protest against Scientology in Toronto this
"10 am to 12 pm. & 1 pm to 3 pm. Picketers: Chris Wood, Gregg Hagglund
Kaeli, Intel Observer: Zeratulcat. Flyer Count: 100
"We received numerous thumbs up, car acks and uncounted positive comments.
We handed out flyers slowly but steadily and finished the afternoon with a
flurry of about 25 in 5 minutes. Brian MacPherson and Gwen Jones put in a
hastily arranged appearance at approximately 10:45 am. As before they were
hopelessly stuck with discredited shore stories and tired attack lines at
long flattened buttons. After about a quarter of an hour the visibly
shivering Brian and SpittyKitty withdrew to the nearby coffee shop.
Occasionally an SO or two would step out of the side door for a cigarette,
but I'd chase them back in with a cry of 'No OT's Here' or 'Would you like
to hear OT3?' etc. No one came out to counter leaflet at all, or Body
> L. Ron Hubbard Day
The Tucson Citizen reported on December 27th that the mayor of Tuscon, AZ
regrets pronouncing a city observance of L. Ron Hubbard Day.
"Through the end of last month, in his first year in office, Mayor Bob
Walkup signed 138 Proclamation Day decrees. Most Tucsonans remain unaware
of these public but not publicized occasions. 'If it makes a group happy,
I'll do it,' said Walkup, who often reads the proclamations at events to
mark the occasion. 'It doesn't cost me anything.'
"Separation of church and state notwithstanding, L. Ron Hubbard, the
founder of the church of Scientology, had his own special day in Tucson on
March 13. Walkup, who turned down a request to proclaim National Bible
Week this year, said he didn't recall approving L. Ron Hubbard Day. 'If it
was just a name like that, I probably would have gone with the
recommendation of the staff.' The proclamation recognized Hubbard for his
'humanitarian' works, and not for his role in founding the church of
Scientology, which has been criticized by some as a cult that 'reprograms'
-happy new year-