The Scandal of Scientology, by Paulette Cooper | Next | Prev | Index


The Scientologist's Story

In January, 1971, I wrote to David Gaiman, Public Relations Director of Scientology in England, with whom I had had some earlier correspondence, informing him that this book was to be published and offering him a chance to give the Scientologists' side of the story in brief. I also requested information on some of Scientology's rehabilitation programs -- their Human Rights Commission and Narconon, their program in India -- so that some of this could also be included.

Unfortunately, instead of a response to my letters, my publisher received three telegrams from the Church of Scientology of Hawaii, California, and Washington threatening a lawsuit if the book was published.

Around the same time, I received a telegram from David Gaiman stating that he would write me that afternoon. But there was a British mail strike, and his response did not reach me till March 7, when the galleys were already completed. The information he gave me, therefore, could not be incorporated into the text proper. All I can do now is reprint his letter which replies to a number of questions I asked. His covering letter was as follows:

Dear Paulette,

I did receive your letter and replied by telex.

It was the American Ambassador in London who said, "A man's nomenclature is very important to him." While I do not agree with the Ambassador, I do notice that your opening sentence misduplicates my name[*] and the rest of the contents maintain a consistently high standard.

Old-fashioned is a phrase which has a multitude of constructions; "old-fashioned girl" is often a compliment; old-fashioned jewelry is much admired; I think I've heard of an old-fashioned cocktail, on which I cannot comment, but was, if I do not misremember, very much in vogue when I was a child. Old-fashioned could apply to the great master of the arts, the literary classics. Perhaps you agree that there is a certain quality which ignores or improves with the passage of time which makes "old-fashioned" a complimentary expression.

Then on the other side, the Edsell motor car, Community and involuntary psychiatry, English stage musicals of the fifties, the Inquisition, gunboat diplomacy, Colonel Blimp, and the 3rd Reich, (make your own list). They are old-fashioned too. The old hack `let's smear the Scientologists' routine was old when Martin Gardner[**] was hired by the A.P.A. or morticians union or whatever it was.

You really can do better than the manuscript I corrected [***] and I do hope that the forthcoming piece is less archaic that the tired old piece in Queen.[****]

The mail strike is in full bloom in the U.K., and I have no guarantee of when this will reach you.

However, best regards,
David B. Gaiman

[*] Footnote:
I probably spelled it "Gaimen" instead of "Gaiman."
[**] Footnote:
Gardner wrote an article a long time ago against Dianetics in Fads and Fallacies in the Name of Science.
[***] Footnote:
A harassing letter I had received from David Gaiman stated that he had gotten hold of several chapters of my book-to-be and that there were a number of inaccuracies. I wrote him back and stated that if this was true, to please tell me the full story and send me all documentation immediately so that I could make some changes in my book. I never heard from him again until the letter above, and I assume he's referring to that manuscript.
[****] Footnote:
I wrote an article on Scientology for Queen magazine which the Scientologists didn't like.

The following is a list of questions (in boldface) that I presented to Gaiman and his replies (in standard print).

  1. Please tell me something about Scientology clearing programs in prisons.

    There is no such program, there is a rehabilitation self help program called Narconon which uses Scientology technology in Prisons and other places. Designed by its founder, a rehabilitated drug addict, for drug addicts, it is producing rehabilitation in over 70% of its graduates, over a five year period. For further information write to A. Maren, Narconon Co-Ordinator, 2005 West 9th Street, Los Angeles, California 90006, or A. Graham, Burnt House Farm, Forest Row, Sussex, or David Bath, 16-18, View Road, Mount Eden, Auckland 3, New Zealand. It is the only program of its kind which is national in the U.S. and international in the sense pilot projects exist in the U.K. and soon in New Zealand. It operates without any Government or state subsidy at this time.

  2. The News of the World reported a story about Linda Hicks, who married a Scientologist and disappeared aboard the Sea Org. The paper said that the Scientologists claimed that she was pressured by her parents to marry someone else and that they were using Scientology as an excuse to break up the marriage and that she fled because she feared her parents would kidnap them. Is this true?

    Linda Hicks' case was investigated by the Member of Parliament for Brighton, d. Hobden M.P., and he found the facts as related by Mrs. V. Standen true. The Linda Hicks affair is now an old one, but fairly typical of the technique known as targeting a person or group by means of media. You are no doubt familiar with the technique. Simply stated, Linda Hicks married a Scientologist and she left him as a result of family pressure after living with her husband in S. Africa. Her M.P. looked into the case (Mr. Hobden) and found it was a storm in a teacup. Another interesting factor is that even the media, which was well used by the WFMH and NAMH and other psychiatric front groups, no longer want these Scientology stories, which were put-up jobs, and are looking into the mental health racket -- involuntary committal and treatment which are infinitely more sensational and gory than any of the stuff about us. Murder, rape, euthanasia -- the psychiatrist is a very naughty boy.

  3. Vic Filson claimed he was hired as a detective to investigate Scientology's enemies and to prepare dossiers on psychiatrists in England, etc. What is the story?

    Vic Filson. Yes he was hired to document psychiatric horror stories and went straight to a newspaper. Nowadays we get the facts by means of our Human Rights Commissions -- all documented and as bad as Belsen.

  4. The Observer reported a story about James Stewart, a man who was suspended from Scientology and then died. Why was he suspended? Do you know why he jumped or fell out of the window? Do you think it was a suicide? (The paper said it wasn't.)

    The Coroner's inquest was fully reported. He was suspended from a course for medical examination for a suspected physical condition.

  5. What requirements are necessary for becoming a minister or reverend in the Church of Scientology?

    Minister's requirements: 1 Vocation. 2) Training to HPA or above. 3) One year's probation as provisional. 4) Minister's checksheet including study of World religions + the bible. [sic] 5) Examination thereon. 6) Thesis on the religion and philosophy of Scientology. 7) Familiarity and examination with Scientology form of Service and observance.

  6. The Times and other prestigious British papers reported that a girl ran off the Sea Org ship screaming, and was dragged in by other Scientologists from the ship. Why did she try to leave? Why was she stopped?

    No such story in the Times (of London) ever. You mean that Alex Mitchell from the Sunday Times who paid dear and lost his job for that and other inaccuracies. (They call it targeting you know.)

  7. Why was Hubbard barred from Rhodesia?

    Factually he was not barred. His residential permit was not renewed and he left before it ran out. We do know that there was no information in the hands of the Rhodesian authorities to Hubbard's detriment. See South African Inquiry evidence by Rhodesian police Dept. on affidavit (Targeting you know).

  8. In what countries is Scientology expanding right now?

    U.K., U.S., Australia, New Zealand, France, Belgium, Holland, Germany, Denmark, Sweden, Israel, South Africa, Rhodesia, Mexico, Korea, Japan, India, Pakistan.

  9. The Rand Daily Mail reprinted a portion of the testimony being given at the South African Inquiry. The witness stated that Mr. Parkhouse had been told by Hubbard to arm 5,000 Africans to seize control of South Africa. Do you think the witness was wrong? Do you think perhaps Mr. Parkhouse was fantasizing (or lying) about what his instructions were? What is the story here?

    Re Rand Daily Mail report. The nameless witness who told the story of Parkhouse and the 5,000 spear brandishing Bantu. Parkhouse didn't lie or fantasize. The anonymous witness did. Paulette my dear, have you seen the S. African internal security forces? The thought of 5,000 Bantu taking over the country is analogous to 500 Arabs taking over Israel. Good headlines but terrible odds. (Documents enclosed.) [Mr. Parkhouse's testimony on the situation was as follows: "... Hubbard jokingly remarked that should South Africa ever be attacked by black hordes from the North, he would require me to organise an Impi of Zulus and personally lead them, spear in hand, against the enemies of South Africa, across the Limpopo. And I at that time, also jokingly pleaded with him to rather let me be a general who planned things from a desk. The joke in this matter was not in connection with Hubbard's desire to help South Africa in any way he could. The joke was in connection with what was well-known among my acquaintances, of my reluctance to engage in any physical exertion whatsoever. And the idea of me charging in front of a crowd of Africans against the enemies of the State was so out of character for me as to be extremely amusing...."]

  10. In the case of Karen Henslow, did the Scientologists know she had had nervous breakdowns or did only Murray Youdell know? Why do you think she got sick again?

    The Henslow affair has finally been blown. We now have documentation which clearly shows that a) Karen was driven frantic by her mother on that fateful night, b) Her mother was prepared to commit her daughter for a year to prevent her from marrying Youdell, c) There is no evidence, according to the Ministry of Health, to show her breakdown physical or mental was caused by her contact with Scientology. When her mental history was discovered, Karen was not permitted to work or study at St. Hill, a month before her committal. Youdell did apparently know her history.

  11. In your last letter to me, you mentioned something about a Scientology charity program in India. Would you tell me a little bit more about that, and also about any other charity programs you have right now.

    Re Charity works: See a) India enclosure b) Apartments in Parkland c) Citizens Commission for Human Rights. [As for these documents a) There was no India enclosure. b) An enclosure from the East Grinstead Observer stated that the Scientologists hoped to build and probably finance (at a cost of $10 million dollars) an estate there for the benefit of the local people which would not necessarily be restricted to Scientologists, in the hopes of solving the local housing problem and as "a gesture of community spirit.") c) There was a pamphlet included on the Victor Gyory story, a Hungarian refugee who was brought to a mental hospital in Philadelphia after slashing his wrists. After other forms of treatment failed, he was given shock treatment, and one of the hospital aides, a Scientologist, reported it to their Citizens Commission on Human Rights. The patient was discharged (under rather strange circumstances) through the help of the Scientology commission and their attorneys.]

  12. How much money does Scientology gross weekly? George Malko wrote $1.4 million in America weekly but I thought this figure might be too high.

    No way of obtaining figures as Orgs are autonomous, and missions self-funding in their National or Continental areas. We have never been accused of poverty.

  13. What is the youngest age of a person who has achieved the state of auditor?

    The youngest trained Auditor (Dianetic) I know of was 15 years.

  14. What is the oldest?

    82 years.

  15. What is the shortest amount of time it has taken someone to learn to become an auditor? What is the longest?

    Depends entirely on level of training. Someone could be trained to listen at Zero level, under supervision, in six weeks. Training to class Eight would take from three-four years, including two internships of six months each at Class Seven and Class Eight. I'm still learning after fourteen years.

  16. How many years have our thetans been in existence?

    Your question is one of metaphysics. How old is a soul? Answer -- God knows.

  17. Do preclears still run the Boo-Hoo?

    PCs never did run the Boo-Hoo. It was a research line on the genetic history of homo sapiens. Reported in History of Man, and quoted ever since by Phelan and Anderson as representative of Scientology technology.

  18. How many people are on the Sea Org?

    I don't know, probably less than a couple of thousand.

  19. Do the Sea Org people sign a billion year contract?

    Never make an allegorical joke near literal minded, humourless reporters.

  20. Is the contract to help Hubbard help the world? ... to clear the planet? ... Does "clear the planet" mean we should all become Scientologists?

    No. Scientology is about Freedom, including the freedom to accept or reject any philosophy, including Scientology.

  21. How much does it cost (in courses) to live on the Sea Org?

    I'm not sure I understand the question, but the chaps who work in the Sea Org get paid and "all found"; they do not pay.

  22. How does one qualify to get on the ship?

    Do you mean as a crew or a visitor? Crew generally are Scientologists who like that sort of active life. Visitors are generally social, by invitation, or professionals interested in organisational and management studies.

  23. When was Hubbard barred from returning to England?

    August '68 his residential visa was withdrawn.

  24. Is it true that the ban has been lifted on him so he could come back for the British Inquiry?

    So far there has been no statement to this effect, but the Home Office have indicated that Mr. Hubbard and his family may apply for visas when they wish to visit the U.K.

  25. Does he plan to return and testify?

    The terms of reference are into the practice and effects of Scientology. Sir J. Foster has not invited Mr. Hubbard to give evidence.

  26. Did Anderson alone play the role of judge, jury, and executioner in Australia?

    No, in Victoria he presided over a farce for which he is now under suit. See enclosure.[*] Scientology is established and growing rapidly in all major Australian centres, including Melbourne.

    [*] Footnote:
    There was no enclosure.

  27. Which of these are Scientologists: (check if they are) Tennessee Williams, Leonard Cohen, Jim Morrison, the Beatles. Are there any other celebrities (besides Boyd, Burroughs and Mama Cass Elliot who I know are Scientologists?)

    A person's religious beliefs are not sequitur to how well-known or not they are. Scientologists are only named if they want to be. I can't confirm any of these names.

  28. Is Scientology a form of pastoral counseling?

    Scientology is a religious philosophy -- auditing is a form of counseling deriving in technology from the philosophy. Thus auditing is pastoral counseling.

  29. How high up did Charles Manson go in Scientology?[*]
    [*] Footnote:
    After I wrote this book I became friendly with an advanced Scientologist who had gotten his "grades" in Los Angeles allegedly at the time that Manson may have been there. He claimed to have frequently seen Manson at the Org and he also claimed that Manson had reached the level of PC IV in Scientology (a high level but not yet clear). I don't know if this information is at all accurate because some people phantasize about the relationship of (and their relationships with) the infamous as much as others do of the famous.

    Not that old one again!

  30. Was he declared a suppressive?

    No, he never joined.

  31. Do you think Manson was a member of the "Process" at the time of the alleged murder?

    I've no idea! Do you?

  32. Of the three Scientologists killed in Los Angeles, do you think they were killed by a) people who hate Scientology (like the Process), or b) people who hated them?

    I think not a or b but C. As far as I know only two members of the Church of Scientology were murdered in L.A. A senseless brutal killing, still under investigation by the police.

  33. How much did the Scientologists have to pay to the NAMH when the Scientologists lost their case?[*]
    [*] Footnote:
    NAMH -- National Association of Mental Health. This case had its roots in the Scientologists' attempt to stop the annual meeting of the NAMH.

    Nothing. We've not lost the case, only the injunction hearing, the trial is due in 1971.

  34. Does the thetan have electrical voltage?

    No, it does have energy potential. Read the Axioms of Scientology.

  35. Ten years from now, what percentage of the world will be Scientologists?

    There is no doubt Scientology grows and grows. We are dealing in a philosophy not Volkswagens. If people continue to talk to each other, read books, and think for themselves, then we shall continue to do our jobs. Percentages mean nothing in that context.

Two other enclosures in the letter I received also bear mentioning:

A) letter from Gaiman to the London Sunday Times re their supposed prison in Scotland:

The last time that I had cause to complain on an article by Mr. Mitchell it was given the headline "The Dungeon in Queen Street." There was no dungeon in Queen Street, and we held a press conference after that edition of your journal was published and invited most of the press available in Scotland to inspect the premises.

B) The Scientologists' statement concerning Hubbards' supposedly practicing black magic (reprinted in the London Times):

Hubbard broke up black magic in America: Dr. Jack Parsons of Pasadena, California, was America's number one solid fuel rocket expert, he was involved with the infamous English black magician Aleister Crowley ... [whose organization] ... had savage and bestial rites. Dr. Parsons was head of the American branch ... which had paying guests who were the USA nuclear physicists working at Cal Tech. Certain agencies objected to nuclear physicists being housed under the same roof.

L. Ron Hubbard was ... sent in to handle the situation. He went to live at the house and investigated the black magic rites and the general situation and found them very bad.

Parsons wrote to Crowley in England about Hubbard. Crowley, "The Beast 666," evidently detected an enemy and warned Parsons. This is all proven by the correspondence unearthed by the Sunday Times. Hubbard's mission was successful far beyond anyone's expectations. The house was torn down. Hubbard rescued a girl they were using. The black magic group was dispersed and destroyed and has never recovered.

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