Alt.religion.scientology Week in Review
Volume 4, Issue 3
by Rod Keller
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, just email me at
MSNBC reported on April 13th on Scientologist John Coale's relationship
with the U.S. President.
"John Coale, the high-profile Washington lawyer who has been behind several big anti-tobacco cases, continues to solidify his White House ties. Coale, and his high-profile wife, CNN commentator Greta van Susteren, are high-level Scientologists. Some say Coale is taking on certain cases to get closer to Clinton in his anti-tobacco cases and to further Scientology's various causes. 'No one ever accused John Coale of being dumb,' says a source who has dealt with him often as an adversary. 'His and Greta's ties with the Clintons certainly don't hurt them.'"
Hamburger Morgenpost reported on April 14th that Scientology is hosting an
exhibition at a Hamburg hotel to promote membership.
"The controversial Scientology organization will try to gain new customers with an exhibition in the 'Alte Wache' Hotel in St. Georg. Starting tomorrow, for six days, display boards will be set up to advertise the ideology of the business-minded psycho-sect. Other actions to concurrently advertise for the association plagued by dwindling membership include a double-decker billboard bus. Hotel chief Hans-Juergen Boesch stated, 'That is a reservation just like any other. I don't pass judgment over the participants. We do not identify with the goals of our guests.' The Scientology show will be an isolated incident: 'We do not intend on having other Scientology events.'"
Die Welt published an article on April 15th on the demolition of the Hamburg org building.
"Hamburg's Scientology commissioner, Ursula Caberta, sees no reason to celebrate the fact that the organization's center at 63 Steindamm is due to be demolished. 'It's not the center which is dangerous,' said Ursula Caberta, 'what is dangerous are the sect adherents who occupy central positions in commerce and industry.' She assumes that the sect is already looking around for a new building even though the exact demolition date has not yet been set.
"Claudia Eggert stated that 'all the legal possibilities are being tested' at this time to see if Scientology can be kept from renting on the streets near the main train station. A suitable solution has not yet been found, said the spokeswoman, since the property is under private ownership."
Grady Ward posted an update to his appeal of his copyright infringement
"The criminal cult of scientology's *third* motion to strip me of my in forma pauperis status or in the alternative to have my appeal dismissed was DENIED in an order filed April 12, 1999 by Appellate Commissioner Peter L. Shaw for the United States Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit. The U.S.C.A. didn't even think this motion worthy of an actual judicial panel and had the person who handles minor motions summarily take care of it. The appeal is now ready for calendaring whether the criminal cult of scientology likes it or not."
The April 27th issue of The Enquirer reports that Scientology celebrity
Kirstie Alley's wedding plans are on hold because of Scientology.
"Here's the inside scoop on why Kirstie Alley STILL hasn't wed beau James Wilder even though they got engaged way back in 1997: He's not ready yet - Scientologically. Although Wilder has become a Scientologist like the 'Veronica's Closet' star, he hasn't become 'Clear' yet - a church term for reaching a certain high level. As soon as he gets there, Kirstie will 'clear' him for a walk down the aisle."
The Los Angeles Times reported that Glendale Scientologists held a
fundraiser for charity.
"Charming porcelain clowns and festive balloons played the part of centerpieces at the first benefit of the Women's Auxiliary of the Church of Scientology held at the La Canada Country Club. Over the years, the church members have supported drug and criminal rehabilitation, drug education lectures in schools, community tutoring programs, as well as the training of volunteer ministers, who work with the Red Cross and other civic groups. This recent event brought together 165 guests who enjoy dinner with live and silent auctions. Auxiliary Chairwoman is Lisa Malm."
A proposal to allow Scientology's Narconon program to operate in Pinellas
county, Florida has been denied. From the St. Petersburg Times, on April
"The program is a product of Narconon International, a drug rehabilitation and education organization based in Los Angeles. Despite the reliance on Hubbard's principles, Narconon officials say it is a secular group that is separate from the Church of Scientology. A Clearwater couple, Larry and Jessica Byrnes, mailed letters to several elementary schools in January and February, asking permission to speak to students, district officials said. The Byrnes, who are Scientologists, moved to Clearwater in October from New Hampshire, where they said they made Narconon presentations to thousands of public and private school students during a five-year period. New Hampshire school officials could not be reached Monday.
"In a church publication titled 'What is Scientology?,' Narconon International is described as a 'social betterment organization ... dedicated to restoring drug-free lives to drug-dependent people.' 'Scientologists and the church support Narconon and its successful drug rehabilitation programs all over the world,' said Michael Rinder, a top Scientology official. But, Rinder said, 'they are not church programs.'
"On March 10, the Byrnes and six teenagers delivered a 25-minute presentation based on the 'tone scale,' said Linda Smock, a district supervisor who facilitates the committee. The tone scale is a set of 12 'emotions' that range from 'apathy,' at the bottom, to 'enthusiasm' at the top, Smock said. In between are 'grief,' 'covert hostility,', 'conservatism' and 'cheerful,' among others. The teens gave examples of each emotion, and the Byrnes asked committee members if they understood. Smock said it was unclear how the tone scale tied into an anti-drug message.
"At the end of the teens' presentation to the committee in March, the teens thanked Hubbard for conceiving the principles on which Narconon is based. A committee member who is a guidance counselor at Perkins Elementary School asked the students if they could make the presentation without acknowledging Hubbard. 'They answered immediately 'No,' that it was an integral part of the program,' Smock said.
"Smock, however, said that the committee did not reject the group because of its tie to Hubbard. Rather, they rejected it because the 'tone scale' was not aligned with school district and federal guidelines governing drug education and was not suited for elementary students."
Protest / Revenge Summary
The Atlanta org was the site of three protests this week. Last week's
illegal revenge picket was dispersed by Atlanta police, leaving
Scientology to resort to drive-by leafleting. From "Wynot":
"At a quarter to seven, Ethercat, Joker, Stacy Brooks, and I began picketing the Atlanta org. Joker operated the video camera while the rest of us carried signs - Stacy had 'Scientology Banned in Greece' backed with 'Scientology Convicted in Canada'. Ethercat had 'Co$ Stole My Friend' backed with 'Scientology Suppresses Free Speech and Free Thought'. I had 'Scientology is a Scam' and Scientology: Tax Exempt UFO Cult'. As usual, we got a steady stream of honks and waves and thumbs-up. After about 15 minutes Bubbles came out to take pictures of the picketers. Then Linda, the OT6 showed up, asking where Mad_Cow was. We talked for a while; she asked me what I had against her beliefs, and I pointed out that I did not speak against the free-zoners. She asked who they were, so I told her about Scientologists who did not have to spend every penny they made on auditing. She said they were probably changing the tech, and I said no, that was what RTC was doing when they put out Hubbard's books and changed the text from what was in the originals. She quit talking to me."
"We were all handled at one time or another by Linda and Susan, even Joker, who was just filming and not actually walking with a sign. One of the two men stood behind Joker with a clipboard for a short time, till Joker turned around and said hello to him, then he left soon afterwards.
"We had planned to leave at 8:00, since it would be getting dark, and we, unlike our Atlanta scienos, don't like to picket in the dark, but about 5 till 8, a police pulls into the org. Susan talks to him till 8, I guess it takes a long time to make her understand that as long as we're protesting peacefully and not blocking anyone's path or going on their property, there's nothing he can do about us. So 8 comes, and Susan's still talking to him, so we leave. Once we got to the lot where we had parked, a car pulls in, and behind it, the police. The car has two women, elementary school teachers, who want to know more about scientology. One's boyfriend is familiar with co$ and had told her a little bit about it. They have internet access, so I gave them one of MadCow's business cards with all the official ARSCC URLs on it, and wynot (or Stacy) gave them a flyer."
"After the policeman and the teachers left, and we're about to get in our cars, a man who had been hanging around approaches us and asks us why we're picketing. The next question gives him away as a scieno, he asks 'Who organizes you?' I announced to him that no one organizes us, we just call each other up and say, 'Hey, you wanna go picket today?' Of course he doesn't believe me.
"Later that night, I noticing lots of white things, about every 10-15 feet apart, in the street. I pulled over, and got out to investigate. 3 varieties of harassment flyers, folded into paper airplanes, and looking like they had been flown out of a passing car! I picked up 18 in just one block. 2 varieties were the same as what they had passed out Saturday, the day they picketed us, but they had made a new one just for the occasion: Robert Minton & Stacy Brooks Young Truth Behind the Lies. This one has some dead agent material about Stacy and Bob, and at the bottom, 'Please deliver to <our real names> at <our address>. It claims to be from the 'Free Speech & Religious Freedom Committee', and refers only to the 'Church'."
"Date: April 15, 1999. Time: 7pm - 7:30pm. People present: Wynot and S. with signs; Susan, our local DSA PR; a 27-year co$ veteran who said his name was John; an observer, who, I later found out from Wynot and MadCow, is a regular on IRC; and me with the videocam. New sign: Scientology the Phoney Church Gained Tax Exemption Via IRS Harassment.
"Susan latched onto wynot immediately, and John attached himself to S. I think perhaps John was there in case Stacy came with us again, but alas, they were disappointed tonight. Almost the entire time, these two were walking back and forth with S. and wynot, which in effect, doubled the number of picketers. During the picket, we were informed that we were being directed by Stacy, that we were working for criminals, that Susan helps 40,000 children in Atlanta stay off drugs, and that John had ordered the picket at our house the other night, and that thought it was legal."
Keith Henson protested in San Jose and Campbell, California:
"I put in two short pickets at San Jose and Campbell. 20 minutes at SJ after 1:10 to 1:30 and 15 minutes at the location on Bascom starting about 15 minutes after I left the first org. No reaction. A few flyers to rare passers by. The Campbell location has the office workers looking right at the signs, and you can see them react. They reacted by sending out a guy to get photos of me. About a dozen flyers given out."
Dave Bird reported on an April 17th protest in Birmingham, England.
"Hartley was already at the site, and Jens shortly after; no Martin, or Roland. A woman turned up who had relatives in the cult, and later on a couple who know Bonnie and Richard. Soon we had our banner up: $CIENTOLOGY SAYS YOU'RE FULL OF DEAD SPACE ALIENS, the boom-box going, and Duke the Dog parked opposite the Org. We were quite enthusiastic so carried on until about 12:30 or 40.
"Most of the demo was on the 'wedge' by the round flower bed, with Hartley over the road from us on the narrow walkway. Later we saw body routers go up into the alley end of new meeting street and sent two people to counter them. Later in the afternoon, leafleters were out: we got a lot more leaflets accepted by the public, theirs were all over the floor."
>From Jens Tingleff:
"Lots and lots of clams at the org (20-30 students). During their breaks they would come out and listen to us (huddling in the doorway as they grabbed a smoke out of the rain). John did his usual unassisted shouting and Dave kept up a running commentary and sing-along on the sound system. We played the tape of Hubbard's rantings again and again.
"The students came over to banter. They seemed frankly surprised at the 'space alien' thing. 'Why *dead* space Aliens??' they asked, sweetly. I said the banner wasn't completely correct, in that it was actually the *ghosts* of space aliens, but this still didn't sound reasonable to them. They asked where we had seen that, and we told them (truthfully) that we had seen the OTIII texts in Hubbard's own handwriting. 'You *yourself* saw this??' - 'Yep!'
"The leaflet handed out by the clams was actually a counter-picket leaflet. Anyway, the front page says 'Luckily not everyone listens to the cautionary, carping criticism of those who fear competition.' The inside is mainly a plug for some book by the Fat Fraud titled 'Scientology : The Fundamentals of Thought'. It has what we hope is *not* a unique selling point: 'It contains the basics of Scientology. Real answers that you can use right now. No mumbo jumbo, no human sacrifice, no initiation. Just pure truth about the basic laws of life.'"
"Wulfen" reported on a protest in Toronto this week.
"Enthetans: Android Cat, Artemis, Deep Wog, Wulfen (4 picketers and one anonymous doughnut supplier) Leaflets: Around 700, maybe 750. My activity over the past week has caused some enturbulation, there are 10-15 Scientologists there. Far, far more than you'll see around the Org most other days. They are rather surprised to see our number. 'There's only two of them!?' remarked one rather surprised lady Scientologist.
"Artemis set up a small 'point' position near the Hubbard Dianetics Foundation. Naturally, the camera guy set up and started taping Artemis passing out leaflets. Artemis moved down to the other end of the Org. After a short while, the camera guy moved down, and started taping from inside the Org's main entrance. Artemis moved back. The camera guy didn't follow. There were two women with cameras, one in the morning and the other in the afternoon.
"After lunch we wandered back, and as we didn't see the police officer, we just started picketing. Well, you'd think we were stripping on the sidewalk. Scientologists bearing leaflets started boiling out of that Org like ants out of a stirred up nest. Within minutes, we had all our theta handlers back. Quite soon after, Deep Wog and Android Cat showed up, in that order. We got a DA leaflet. 'WHAT would you do if these people took your child's picture and put it up on the internet?'"
>From Ron Sharp:
"Alan moved a lot of flyers: 'Get your green flyers, they're green!' Not even running out of green flyers slowed him down: 'Get your yellow flyers. Both sides, they're yellow.' The staff seemed boggled about this--but I didn't notice them having any fun shifting their stuff--which included a small thing on 'religious bigots' that only a Co$ junkie would find believable.
"Co$ now has blinds up on the second floor ops room. Hard to hide the window which was cracked, but is now gone and is boarded up. Some of those windows have needed fixing for over two years."
Ted Mayett protested in Las Vegas.
"Big org, 4:07-4:25pm, vehicles 14, uneventful. Little org, 4:30-5:05pm, vehicles 4, uneventful. It does not seem they did a counter-picket. Actually I was surprised at the big org, I expected something from them. But there was nothing, absolutely nothing."
Lisa Marie Preslery
Star magazine reported on April 27th that Lisa Marie Presley has plans to
use Elvis Presley to promote Scientology.
"Lisa Marie Presley has big plans to combine two important parts of her life--Scientology and Elvis! She credits the group for helping her beat drugs and straighten out her life. She also believes they could have helped her father beat his addictions and she wants to use his popularity to enhance their reputation. A digitally enhanced Elvis singing the praises of Scientology would certainly increase membership! Lisa's mom Priscilla, also a devout Scientologist, likes the idea but some of Elvis' Memphis cronies are appalled."
Entertainment Tonight reports that John Travolta is putting a musical
movie project on hold for the sake of Battlefield Earth, based on a book
by L. Ron Hubbard.
"It's Scientology first, singing second for John Travolta. The Sweat Hog-turned-superstar was all set to croon anew on screen--the first time since he 'shamma-lamma'd' as Grease's Danny Zuko in 1978--for a movie called Standing Room Only. But the singin' Scientologist has put that project on hold so he can get started on Battlefield Earth, an effects-heavy sci-fi epic based on a book by pulp novelist/Scientology founder L. Ron Hubbard."
>From Hollywood Reporter, on April 13th:
"In what seems to be the latest in a string of misfortunes that have befallen John Travolta musical 'Standing Room Only,' the film's producers have called off its May 3 start date. Although producer Jonathan Krane said 'Standing' is 'tentatively rescheduled' to shoot following the wrap of Travolta's 'Battlefield Earth', which begins production July 15 in Montreal, no firm start date has been determined. Krane blamed the delay on extended preproduction needs dictated by 'the numerous musical numbers being arranged by Marvin Hamlisch and elaborate staging required for the musical scenes.'"
Scientology's Field Staff Members were informed of an upcoming event to
celebrate the anniversary of the book Dianetics.
"With what will be released and launched at this event, we are about to take a giant leap forward toward a cleared planet. Consider the Book One boom of 1950. Now imagine that kind of boom multiplying out across the planet. As an understatement, this event marks the start of our largest planetary assault on the Reactive Mind since Dianetics inception.
"There will also be a release of a new LRH Technical Film, outstanding Dianetics expansion news from across the world and awards to the top Dianetics disseminators of the world. So make sure you contact your org to reserve a seat and find out the exact time and location for the event in your org.
FSM On-line Promo I/C"