Alt.religion.scientology Week in Review Volume 2, Issue 1 04/13/97 by Rod Keller [firstname.lastname@example.org] copyright 1997
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 informtion. 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, just email me at email@example.com It is archived at: http://wpxx02.toxi.uni-wuerzburg.de/~krasel/CoS/ars-summary.html http://user1.i1.net/~mallen/scn/arswr/ars-summary.html http://users.aimnet.com/~jdiver/scieno.htm http://www.thur.de/religio/publik/arsfaq.html #####
Note: This issue begins Volume 2 of A.r.s Week in Review, which was begun in Hubbard's tradition with Volume 0. If I thought I was going to be at it for this long, I might not have numbered that way. I apologize for any confusion this may bring. A.r.s Week in Review - Summarizing for over a fiftieth of a century.
Neil Muspratt and other critics picketed the Brisbane org this week.
"Five critics (including yours truly) and one observer gathered outside the Brisbane org this afternoon from 13:00 - 14:00 for an unannounced and fairly uneventful lunchtime picket. As usual, supportive comments were expressed by a number of the general public walking past. Several dozen leaflets were handed out. We were slightly outnumbered by the eventual Co$ response."
Former members of the Cult Awareness Network have announced a new
organization in Texas.
"North Texans seeking cult awareness education and information from volunteers formerly working for the Cult Awareness Network (CAN) should now call Free Minds of North Texas. In a bizarre turn of events in the Federal Bankruptcy Court in Illinois, the CAN name, logo, P.O. Box, and telephone number were sold to a Los Angeles attorney who says he is a Scientologist.
"'Cult awareness education will continue in North Texas,' said Free Minds of North Texas president Hope Evans. 'We don't know the policies of the new owner of CAN in Chicago, but Free Minds will continue with a policy of confidentiality for those seeking help.'
"Free Minds was formed by former CAN members who provide non-doctrinal information. It exists as a resource for individuals, families, churches, schools and law enforcement agencies, and condones only legal means of exit counseling. Further information is available by writing P.O. Box 814522, Dallas, Texas 75381-4552 or calling (972)-241-4944."
Atlanta radio station WABE interviewed Scientologist Bob Lippmann, now a
spokesman for the new Cult Awareness Network. The interview took place
on-air, and afterwards on the web. Several a.r.s participants questioned
Lippmann in a moderated chat room.
"Bob Lippmann @ ppp-206-170-69-24.irvn11.pacbe The controversy concerning CAN began about 20 years ago when the group began kidnapping and deprogramming people in groups they called cults
"CAN drove themselves to bankruptcy first through morally bankrupt practices and then financially
"moderator @ soundprint2.brandywine.america Marti Chitwood: Bob, are you a scientologist?
"Deana Holmes @ slc59a.modem.xmission.com According to the Wall Street Journal on 4/1/97, 'Cult Awareness Network, which has since gone into bankruptcy and whose trade name has been taken over by Scientology-related investors.'
"Bob Lippmann @ ppp-206-170-69-24.irvn11.pacbe The current incarnation of CAN has a multi faced board of directors; Scientologists as well as Christians, Buddhists, Jews and other are proud to be aboard.
"moderator @ soundprint2.brandywine.america Marti Chitwood, host: Does anyone here believe that scientology is a cult?
"Bob Lippmann @ ppp-206-170-69-24.irvn11.pacbe Dear Marti, the term Cult although Webster defines it as a religious group has been use pejoratively for years by hate groups like CAN; CAN we get back on the subject of CAN and criminal deprogrammings?
"firstname.lastname@example.org @ storm03p21.storm.ca bob, I'd like to know what advice you would give to a parent who is worried that a child may have been recruited by a dangerous cult.
"Bob Lippmann @ ppp-206-170-69-24.irvn11.pacbe talllah, CAN recommends: 1. stay in communication with the child, 2. get the actual facts you can get on our web site for the names of real experts. 3. Never pay any kidnapper for hire money to 'help' you. Real experts offer their services for free
"Scott Goehring @ xyplex3-4-18.ucs.indiana.edu Marti, yes, pretty much every religion (arguably every religion) started out as a 'cult'. Some of them (like the Latter Day Saints and the Seventh Day Adventists) grow through the cult stage into what Roy Wallis calls a 'denomination'. Others fall apart, either quietly or spectacularly (like the Heaven Source cult).
"Bob Lippmann @ ppp-206-170-69-24.irvn11.pacbe Scott, are the judge the judge and jury of who's right who's wrong and who's abusing who? You're beginning to sound like a totalitarian
"Scott Goehring @ xyplex3-4-18.ucs.indiana.edu Hindsight is 20/20 vision; unfortunately, by the time one is deep enough into a typical destructive cult to tell that it is one, you're already snared. That's why we need _real_ cult awareness groups. Unfortunately, it appears that CAN is not living up to that function.
"Bob Lippmann @ ppp-206-170-69-24.irvn11.pacbe I personally am suspicious of people who try to make the environment of religion or other environments look a lot more dangerous than they are; do I detect any merchants of fear in this audience?"
Dennis Erlich reported that Scientology is now required to produce, among
other things, some of the documents concerning the transfer of advanced
materials from L. Ron Hubbard to Scientology, witnessed by Notary Public
"On April 1 Magistrate Infante issued the following order granting my expedited motion to compel the scienos compliance (within 5 days) with his (Infante's) prior order to produce a number of documents: poodleboy's notary log book; income statements relating to sakrid droppings; every folder relating to me.
"In addition, the court finds that Plaintiffs' failure to comply with this court's previous order was without substantial justification. Therefore, on its own motion, the court orders RTC and BPI to reimburse counsel for Defendant Erlich for reasonable attorneys' fees and costs incurred in bringing this motion. Based on the moving papers filed, the court determines that reasonable fees and costs are $850, which amount RTC and BPI collectively shall pay to counsel for Defendant Erlich within 7 days of the date of this order."
A translation of a Nederland 3 Dutch TV show on Scientology was made by
Rasta Robert this week. The piece aired on April 12th.
"Dianetics - the doctrine of L Ron Hubbard. Pleun Snoek didn't really get better from it. Two years ago she joined scn, she lost everything. All her money is gone, friends an family don't won't have anything to do with her anymore, and she's one illusion poorer. Pleun Snoek thought she would find happiness within scn, but as she went along, the shells fell off her eyes.
"PS: 'You think, and that's what's being said, that you.. that heaven comes on earth, that's what's being suggested, that through scientology, heaven will come on earth. All people will be liberated and free, all people be in a state of enlightenment. Many are not ready for that yet.'
"'I was so high, that I, yes, I was in a couple of days time... I said, guys, even if you would take all my money, it works so great, it's fantastic. Yes, I gave them 100.000 guilders at once, I thought: you can have everything. This is so fantastic, I feel so fantastic, this is paradise on earth, that's how I felt.'
"Pleun Snoek may have quit scn, she still has to suffer the consequences of her joviality. She had unpaid taxes, and now she doesn't have the money to pay. In two weeks time all her possessions will be sold by auction.'
"Julia Rijnvis: 'The question that comes up in me, the situation with the taxes, does that really have to do with her donation to the International Association of Scientologists, or is it based on all the other 100.000's of guilders that she perhaps spent and that she would have better done something else with, maybe?'"
Hamburger Abendblatt published a report that the European Union has
decided not to hear Scientology's appeal on human rights violations.
"The Human Rights Commission gave no comment on the complaint regarding its contents. The complaint was unanimously ruled out by the 31 members of the Commission, because the course of law in Germany isn't fully exhausted without a judgment of the Federal Constitutional Court. The argument that a constitutional complaint in Germany would be hopeless from the beginning, was disputed by the commission. The keepers of human rights in Strassburg stated that there are no indications for this.
"The finding means that the complaint hasn't been examined as to its contents and won't come before the European Court for Human Rights. Last year in march, the German Federal Industrial Court had found that Scientology was not a church but a profiteering busyness enterprise."
Grady Ward reported a victory this week during the discovery period of the
Scamizdat trial, in which Scientology accuses Grady of copyright
violations. Grady accuses Scientology of illegal investigation of his
family and private affairs.
"In an order filed April 8, 1997, Magistrate Judge Edward A. Infante has ordered the criminal cult of scientology to disgorge the following documents to Grady Ward within 5 days of the date of the order.
"Notwithstanding the protective order on file in this action, RTC shall send copies of all non-privileged, *confidential* documents, as well as non-confidential documents, responsive to Set No. 5.
"All documents concerning the incident in which an investigator 'obtained the account information and recent activity in the bank account of Ward's wife at the Humboldt Bank.
"All documents concerning the incident in which an investigator 'made telephone inquiries of Austin Code Works.
"All documents concerning the incident in which an investigator 'investigator also interviewed Ward's mother about one year prior to the institution of this case for the same reason, pretending to be a friend of Ward's.' And thereby obtained photographs from her.
"All documents relating to the identity of investigators employed or contracted by RTC or its attorneys used in investigations of Grady Ward or any member of his family;
"All documents relating to the identity of attorneys employ[ed by] or participating with RTC in any investigation involving Grady Ward or any member of his family;
"All documents concerning 'Vorlon' and any investigation or meeting with 'Vorlon' or Johan Wevers of the Netherlands.
Deana Holmes refused to attend a deposition this week, citing a fatally defective subpoena prepared by Scientology attorney Tom Hogan. Hogan and attorney Helena Kobrin were attempting to obtain records for use against Grady Ward.
"I have been informed that Helena Kobrin, Esquire, was sent to Salt Lake City to take my deposition. On the one hand, I'm sorry that she had to come out here for a doomed deposition and document production as her co-counsel Thomas R. Hogan didn't have me properly served.
"It is my understanding that according to F.R.C.P. 45 (b)(1), a subpoena to a non-party witness must be accompanied by the payment of the statutorily-mandated witness fee at the time of the service of the subpoena. The subpoena served upon me was entirely defective in this respect, as the constable who served the subpoena presented me with five sheets of paper that had apparently been received via facsimile from the offices of plaintiff's counsel, but he did not present me with the required witness fee. As I did not receive this fee, I believe the service of the subpoena upon me was fatally defective and I shall not be appearing for the deposition on Thursday, April 11, 1997.
"[T]he document production is unduly burdensome. Plaintiff wants me to go through at least 700 megabytes (approximately 280,000 pages of printed text) in several hundred archived computer files looking for Usenet postings relating to defendant Grady Ward, 'Scamizdat,' and 'Vorlon,' to be presented to plaintiff at the deposition. This request is excessively burdensome. Compiling this information would take far longer than the ten days that was allotted to me by plaintiff for preparation."
Keith Henson presented evidence to the court that the materials in his
copyright violation case, the NOTS materials, may not be under the control
of the plaintiff RTC. The argument rests on a recently discovered decision
by the Special Master in Lawrence Wollersheim's case, who ruled that David
Mayo, not L. Ron Hubbard, is the author of the materials.
"Defendant brought some of the irregularities which may have left most of the 'AT' material to the attention of the court in the previous reply to a protective order motion. These include no copyright notice on the original material, waiting beyond the permitted 5 years to put such notice on the material, and copyrighting material in Hubbard's name when it was in fact produce by other people such as David Mayo. These irregularities are backed up by affidavits filed in other cases which the defendant is expecting to be able to file shortly.
"These and other problems with RTC's 'ownership' of the quite possibly public domain materials in question are discussed in detail in current filings in the F.A.C.T.NET case before Judge Kane.
"Judge Kolts' ruling is newly discovered evidence to defendant, and was not properly disclosed to defendant by plaintiff being found in two boxes of papers supplied to Ward in that case. This ruling was not readily discoverable since it was the decision of a Special Master within a much larger mass of litigation and was not reported to the public. The subject of that filing relates to the standing of the plaintiff in this case.
"Finally, the subject matter of the filing in question raises the issue of fraud upon this Court. Defendant is not intimately familiar with the procedures of the courts, but cannot imagine this is an issue which the Court would like to 'sweep under the rug."
Steve Whitlach reported on the hearing in which Judge Whyte considered this new challenge to RTC's standing.
"Whyte acted surprised, very. In fact, he appeared to not believe it at all, and when confronted with no possibility to disallow the new information he sought ways to demean its authority (just a Special Master, 'Oh, a retired judge?') But when Whyte questioned Milgrim, Whyte saw that it was true, that the scienos were perfectly aware of it, that the scienos weren't a bit surprised, that the scienos had absolutely no explanation for their deception, and that he, Whyte, had been made a fool.
"Whyte, seeing that the scieno team was well aware of the Kolt decision, and seeing that the scienos had no evidence to show that the copyrights had been transferred to the RTC, saw that the scienos most likely could not prove standing. It is my belief that at that point, Whyte did a 180 degree reversal. Whyte asked for documents showing the copyright transfer, expecting them to be readily at hand. Milgrim actually turned around and looked about the floor, arms outstretched with palms facing up, and then stated something like 'We'll find them.'"
Los Angeles' Berendo St. was officially renamed L. Ron Hubbard Way this
week, and a.r.s poster "Roger" provided a first hand account of the event.
"My guess would be that the crowd was easily 5000 people. I was very surprised by the strong support of Hubbard and Scientology demonstrated by the political types who spoke. (head of the LA City council, someone from public works, and reps of the Governor and Mayor). After the ribbon cutting and the speeches, the politicians, the President of Scientology, Travolta, Kirstie Alley and David Miscavige linked arms and walked the length of the street as the band played on. I'm not particularly a 'star-struck' type, but it was a kick to see Travolta and Kirstie close-up. (could have reached out and touched them) The power of celebrity is very real."
>From the Scientology press release:
"L. Ron Hubbard Way, named in honor of the late author, humanitarian and founder of the Scientology religion, was formally dedicated as Los Angeles' newest street today with festivities climaxed by a ribbon cutting ceremony that included Mayor Richard Riordan's Hollywood representative Chelsea Cochrane, City Councilman John Ferraro, George Grays of the California Governor's office, and Hollywood Stars John Travolta and Kirstie Alley.
"Councilman Ferraro hailed the new street as a model of community spirit and street beautification for all communities in Los Angeles and for cities throughout the country. 'The work on this street and its beauty have been inspired by the Church's founder, author and humanitarian L. Ron Hubbard. His humanitarian works are contributing greatly to helping eradicate illiteracy, drug abuse and criminality in the City of Los Angeles.
"Chelsea Cochrane of Mayor Riordan's office congratulated the street opening on behalf of the Mayor. 'L. Ron Hubbard might truly be called a 'citizen of the world, I and our city can be counted as one of his homes, as he spent time here always doing good works and helping others.'"
David Gerard and Keith Bennett began separate campaigns to post the NOTS
levels to a.r.s this week. Both have received attention from Scientology's
legal departments, Gerard in Australia, and Bennett in California. First
from David Gerard:
"The local CoS is trying to harass me off the net again by harassing world.net and suburbia.net - I think their real target is the Web page. I have appraised world.net and suburbia.net of what's going on and what the bug up the CoS's arse is, and have asked permission to repost the world.net guy's letter to me and suburbia over the matter. I have yet to go through today's postings in control to find more cancels."
And from Keith Bennett:
"I live even closer to Whyte's courthouse than Erlich, Ward, or Henson. I have no money and no property and no job. And, based on the Lerma case, even if I lose, I should only be fined $500. I will not only make this web page publicly available, but will start posting the things one at a time, with commentary."
"I contend that they are in the public domain. The full series of
Hubbard's insane gibberish can be found at
even more can be found at
Zenon Panoussis is the subject of special issue of Scientology's Freedom
magazine, to be distributed in Sweden. Zenon provided Scientology's secret
documents to the Swedish Parliament, where they are available to anybody
for the cost of copying.
"Editorial and a report from the gathering in Stockholm of those second rate scholars last November. Both discuss copyright, freedom of speech and what is wrong with the Swedish constitution. Both are written in the well-known propaganda up-tone of the scienos.
"'Friends of Disorder', a totally confused article mixing together the CAN, Barbro Westerholm - an MP the scienos don't like much - psychiatrists, the bad press, Tom Thyblad - the head of the office of the chamber of the parliament - a couple of critical ex-scienos, the famous Dr. Wilson (yes, Oxford etc) and of course yours truly. Don't ask about the context; there isn't any. The title could just as well be 'A paranoid's view on persecution'.
"'The criminal background', a story about Scott and Lawley and the Swedish copyright terrorist Panoussis.
"'Madness in Stuttgart', meaning that the scienos are no longer allowed to mask their proselytism as philanthropy and 'The American State Department gives a thrashing to Germany', a fine article aimed at improving the European understanding and acceptance of the USA.
"It's sole purpose seems to be to attack me and my doings with the scienos' Sekrit Skreeptures; some general sauce is added in the end, in a vain effort to make it look as a normal magazine. Freedom has appeared with two issues in Sweden - ever - and both are aimed at me. Freedom Sweden wouldn't exist, had it not been for me."
Former Scientologist and OSA staff member Garry Scarff is now being
represented by attorney Graham Berry. Berry explained the need for Garry
to seek counsel.
"It would be a gross understatement to say that Scientology is displeased with Garry's participation with the recent German TV documentary. This organization has taken its usual steps to express its displeasure. Its three prime objectives are power, punish and purge. The power to expand Scientology to the point where it controls the world; to punish with Fair Game anybody who opposes them; to continue the Snow White program to purge any negative information, including this documentary.
"This organization has a history of trying to silence its critics with restrictive agreements and to turn critics against each other. The Aznaran settlement is a classic example of this. They were bought off and signed declarations that could be used against other critics. That's the environment Scientology is trying to push Garry into, and that is why he now needs counsel."