Alt.religion.scientology Week in Review
Volume 3, Issue 42
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
Celebrity Center Burbank
The Los Angeles Times reported this week that Scientology is looking for a
location to open a Celebrity Center in Burbank.
"Cory Brennan, spokeswoman for the Church of Scientology of the Valley, said church planners are primarily looking at potential locations in the Burbank Village. Brennan could not say when a location might be found. The facility, to be called the Church of Scientology Mission of the Arts, is being founded by North Hollywood residents Mitch and Dori Talevi. The Talevis are temporarily holding events at the Celebrity Centre.
"'We will be hosting programs similar to the Celebrity Centre like having artists paint murals at local schools and volunteer ministers participating in the community,' said Dori Talevi. Burbank was chosen for the new facility because of its large community of artists, musicians and actors, Brennan said."
The St. Petersburg Times carried a letter to the editor from Alan Zimmet,
lawyer for the PSTA, the agency which pulled advertisements from
Clearwater city buses during the Lisa McPherson memorial protests in
December. The letter criticized Robyn Blumner for taking a position that
the move violated first amendment rights.
"She based her article on the belief that the U.S. Supreme Court has never addressed this issue. However, the Supreme Court has determined that a policy prohibiting political ads on the inside of buses was constitutional. The court ruled that the inside of buses was not a public forum because the transit system's intent was to make money by renting the advertisement space, it did not accept any political ads and its policy was reasonably based on a desire to avoid doubts about favoritism.
"PSTA has long had and enforced a policy that prohibits political ads. Under the Supreme Court and Phoenix cases, a court would likely determine that PSTA's buses are not a public forum and that PSTA's policy is reasonable in light of PSTA's stated desire of neutrality on political issues. PSTA is not obliged to accept all types of signs on its buses. Blumner also easily turns aside PSTA's concern about compliance with a state law. The signs on PSTA's buses arguably violated that law. It is easy for Blumner to say that a public official should ignore a criminal statute that has never been found unconstitutional and that has not been repealed by the state Legislature. What would Blumner's article have said if PSTA executive director Roger Sweeney had been arrested for violating that statute?"
The issue of bus ads was on the agenda of a meeting of the board of the PSTA.
"In the red corner, Mary Story, Ben Shaw, Brian Anderson, Paul Johnson. And in the blue corner, Ken Dandar, Frank Oliver, Brian Haney, D.W. Pierce. The cult counselors took some wild swings, claiming that FSSO's ads would quickly and inevitably lead to PSTA buses covered in swastikas and dead babies. Oliver delivered a quick right jab by offering to put full contact information for the FSSO on the ads, and demanded that they be replaced on the buses. Dandar landed the heaviest hits of the day, taking them by surprise with a right cross, mentioning that this situation could very well lead to a lawsuit by Frank Oliver against the PSTA (surprisingly, they hadn't seen that one coming). He also sucker-punched the PSTA attorney by pointing out a few errors in his position, including a case precedent that actually supports Oliver, rather than PSTA."
>From the St. Petersburg Times:
"A vigorous complaint last month from the Church of Scientology has prompted Pinellas transit officials to consider a blanket policy against certain bus advertisements. Church representatives called public officials at home on Saturday, Dec. 5, to protest the anti-Scientology messages that began appearing that morning on 10 buses rolling through the streets of Clearwater. The ads were bought by a group of Scientology critics in town that weekend for a protest against the church. The next day, Roger Sweeney, executive director of the Pinellas Suncoast Transit Authority, responded by pulling the 10 buses off the road. In addition, the New Jersey-based company that placed the ads for the PSTA had them stripped off the buses.
"On Wednesday, at the PSTA's first meeting since the episode, the critics' attorney, Ken Dandar, hinted they would sue if necessary. Dandar also asked the transit agency to honor the rest of its three-day contract and allow the ads to run again this December, when another protest is planned. Instead, board members agreed to work on a new policy that would ban such ads in the future. Board member Bob Clark, also a Clearwater city commissioner, said it should be modeled after a Phoenix policy that confines bus ads to 'speech which proposes a commercial transaction.'
"Sweeney said he pulled the buses out of service after he was contacted by Scientology attorney Paul B. Johnson, a former prosecutor who said the ads violated a 1945 state law regarding published material that 'tends to expose any individual or any religious group to hatred, contempt, ridicule or (abusive language).' The law says such material must contain the name and post office address of the corporation or person responsible for publishing them. The anti-Scientology bus ads contained only an Internet address. Since then, the Scientology critics have said they would happily add their name and address so the ads can run again.
"Dandar argued that the buses are public forums and no policy prevented the ads when they were bought. He said the group of Scientology critics was expressing a viewpoint. 'There's no hatred, no malice,' Dandar said. 'You have violated its civil rights.'"
The text of the bus ads was posted to a.r.s this week.
"Are you REALLY Happy in the Sea Org? for information go to www.factnet.org
"Being in the S.O. is NOT What You Thought it Would be, Is it? for information go to www.factnet.org
"Do you Dread 2:00pm on Thursdays? QUIT $cientology; for information go to www.factnet.org
"How Does Knowing About Xenu Affect Your Case? for information go to www.xenu.net;
"Think For Yourself; Why isn't LOVE on the Tone Scale? for information go to www.factnet.org
"Find Out Why So Many People Oppose Dianetics & Scientology; for information go to www.factnet.org
"Does Your Church Have Private Investigators? for information go to www.factnet.org
"Don't Walk, RUN! Quit $cientology; for information go to www.factnet.org
"Recall a time when you were Happy; Quit $cientology; for information go to www.factnet.org
"From Where Could You Communicate to an SP? for information go to www.factnet.org
"Doubt is NOT a Crime; for information go to www.factnet.org
"Think for Yourself... QUIT $CIENTOLOGY; for information go to www.factnet.org
"Who 'Really' Reads Your Confidential P.C. Folders? for information go to www.factnet.org
"Why Does $cientology LIE to its Own Members? for information go to www.factnet.org
"What TRUTHS Does OSA keep from its Own Members? for information go to www.factnet.org
"What Could You Not-Know About OSA? for information go to www.factnet.org
"$cientology is 'NOT' a Religion; for information go to www.factnet.org"
Catarina Pamnell reported a death threat on her swedish web page this
"On my swedish web page, I have a form mail function for readers to respond. I got thirteen of these messages (all identical):
"S1: du snakar ju skit jag ska doda dig om du inte lagger ner hemmsida Rough translation: 'you're talking bullshit I'll kill you if you don't take the homepage down.' The IP address belongs to Telia."
Scientology recently applied to the Swedish government to allow Scientology wedding ceremonies.
"The Church of Scientology in Sweden hereby applies for the right to carry out weddings in accordance with the law, rights to carry out weddings within other religious communions than The Swedish Church. The Church of Scientology has once earlier, 7th October 1975, applied for authority to the ministers of the communion to execute weddings. This application was denied by the Department of Justice in a decision of the 27th of January 1977. (Dnr. 2633-75). The Department of Justice based their decision to deny the application on the ground that the Church of Scientology had no such durability and stability that was considered necessary to be given the authority to carry out weddings according to at the time the valid rule in the 3rd chapter 3rd paragraph of the Marital Section Law.
"More than 20 years have passed since the first application was filed. The Church of Scientology has since 1975 become more established in Sweden. It now has a permanent place among other religious communions. The numbers of active members have increased by thousands. With the great number of adherents that the Church of Scientology has in Sweden and that all agree to that wedding is a holy alliance it is natural that a wedding within the own church can be legally valid in accordance to the 3rd paragraph 4th chapter of the Marital Section Law. It is important that the adherents of the Church of Scientology must not compromise their beliefs in order to have weddings within the own church which also is legally valid in the society. With this background the association has again decided to apply for executing legal wedding ceremonies."
Arbetet Nyheterna reported that the Gothenburg org faces bankruptcy.
"The local org has heavy financial problems, was on the brink of bankrupcy during the last week, but managed to produce some money at the last moment and make a payment plan. They owe about 178,000 SEK ($22,250) back rent."
The Arizona Daily Star published an article on electoshock therapy this
"After just four electroshock treatments, Daniel Sutton said his whole life changed. He holds a degree in computer programming, but his memory and skills were wiped out, he said. Four years after the treatments, he still gets splitting headaches that he can't control with medication. And he carries a daybook with him because he forgets appointments.
"Sutton will be among others who tell their stories to a legislative panel today as lawmakers get set to debate a bill requiring stricter regulation of electroshock treatments. The three-pronged bill would ban treatments on children under age 16, order providers to tell patients about any potential side effects and require mental health providers to report the treatments to the state.
"'Shock treatment is back and it's back in a big way,' said Les Koel, president of the Arizona Citizens Commission on Human Rights, a group established in part by the Church of Scientology that focuses on psychiatric violations. Koel said he believes the elderly are targeted for their Medicaid benefits, especially since that's how most of the Texas cases are paid for. Psychiatrists counter that women after menopause are twice as likely as men to suffer severe depression.
"Although some psychiatrists privately noted that the Scientology church in general is critical of psychiatry, Chavin said the opposition to electroshock and psychiatry has nothing to do with a religious agenda. 'As psychiatry gets a greater influence in society and takes a greater hold, things in society get worse,' he contends. 'If a religious body, whether it's Christians or Episcopalians or Hindus, says something is bad and can back it up objectively, it is nothing but obfuscation to bring religion into it.'
"Dr. Aimee Schwartz, medical director for the state Division of Behavioral Health Services, said the Arizona State Hospital provides electroshock treatment annually to about six patients out of the 60,000 it serves. 'People have this vision of 'One Flew Over the Cuckoo's Nest,' and in the old days, it was used indiscriminately and on everybody,' Schwartz said. People broke bones and injured themselves before muscle relaxants made the procedure safer. No one knew then how often treatments should occur whereas now, patients get about three treatments a week for three weeks, she said.
"Deborah Doherty, director of nursing for Tucson's Palo Verde Psychiatric Hospital, said patients are fully informed of potential side effects, such as temporary short-term memory loss or headaches, before undergoing the treatment. And, she said, it is only used as a last resort when medications fail."
The Jazz Report carried an interview on Scientology celebrity Chick Corea
"I know that some of the things that changed were the result of the studies that I got involved in back in 1968--the study of L. Ron Hubbard's philosophies, Scientology and Dianetics. I've been into that ever since. In addition to any other musical study that I've ever done, Hubbard's work has helped me shape my own view of the world. It has mainly helped me get a larger perspective on life and how individuals interact with each other and what place the arts have in general in our lives."
Sueddeutsche Zeitung published an article critical of a recent concert by
"The world-renowned artist, who formerly played with Miles Davis and Stan Getz before he turned into the grandfather of jazz-rock in the 1970's with his 'Return to Forever,' had come to Berlin as ambassador of Scientology. Corea is one of the most prominent members of Scientology ever since he advertised for the sect in a whole-page advertisement in the International Herald Tribune and thanked its founder, L. Ron Hubbard, for his 'spiritual direction.' In interviews, as well as on the cover of his CD's, Corea has thanked the former science fiction author Hubbard as the 'ultimate friend of mankind' without whom he 'never would have made it so far.'
"If there was any doubt that there was more going on than just jazz music in Berlin, this was dispelled by the concert's theme 'A Tribute to Freedom.' 'Corea and his Friends' are all members of Scientology. They were accompanied on their tour by a lady from the Scientology center in Los Angeles who called herself 'Director for Human Rights' - as though Scientology had to see to human rights in Germany and defend its members from attacks.
"Surprisingly, the small festival was financed by the American Embassy, who had invited selected correspondents and topped off the Berlin concert with a small reception and hors doeuvres. It was revealed in diplomatic circles, many good reasons to send Chick Corea to Germany.
"The US Embassy in Berlin will have a difficult time getting Corea back in Germany. An offer was made to the Berlin Jazz-Fest for the keyboard player to play - for free. Nevertheless the organizers refused. Finally, the 'Traenenpalast,' which is in financial need, agreed to letting the artist on stage - on the condition that the subject of Scientology not be brought up. The artist did not keep up his end of the bargain in that he stated to the TVB broadcast company that he had come to Berlin for Scientology. Neither did Corea leave any room for doubt as to his particular motivation for this concert in his interview.
"The question remains of why the Scientology 'problem' is now being played up again from the American side: is an actual change hoped for in the new Schoeder administration? Should newspaper entertainment departments be mobilized here in order to protest against Corea's 'performance ban'? The Berlin coup has more likely backfired. Concert arrangers are talking about 'impudence'; the gestures by the US Embassy are seen as an intrusion into the independent music scene. Among those who experienced Corea live, some share incredulous surprise in the embarrassment which was offered there. The one-time world class artist is openly seeking sect membership instead of musical quality."
Stuttgarter Zeitung reported this week that the Stuttgart org will hold a celebration on its 40th anniversary.
"On February 17, the controversial Scientology Church will celebrate its '40 years of existence in Europe.' The anniversary will be held on municipal property: the sect has rented the Cannstatt Community Center for an 'information presentation' for three days.
"Alfons Schwedler, senior attorney at city hall, justified the letting of the rooms: the Scientologists are recognized neither as unconstitutional nor as banned, therefore the city had no other choice but to rent them the hall. One official joked, 'We could only get rid of them if we called in the painters.'
"It is a different story in the legal situation as to the public appearances of the Scientologists: advertisement by the sect on streets and squares has been forbidden by the city for years; no flyers may be distributed in the pedestrian zones."
Keith Henson reported on a hearing in Dennis Erlich's copyright
"He ruled that CoS could drop the statutory damages part of their claims, indicating he had no choice. He denied an advisitory jury on the copyright case. And on expert witnesses he cut one and left two, though he said that Brad Tempelton's testimony was of limited application to the copyright case. Rosen manage to argue for a long time on the subject of limiting the damages from the raid, something which I got the distinct impression Judge Whyte did not want to hear about.
"Harold McElhinny of MoFo got up and did a really remarkable job of showing that unless the clams filed more papers, the trade secret issue and that of 'willfulness' absolutely required a jury. He also made the point on some issues he had reintroduced that even if Judge Whyte thought the points invalid, he had to get them on the record for the appeal court. I have heard that Judge Whyte is the most overruled Judge in the Northern District so it is easy to understand the need to make these points. Mr. McElhinny's arguments right before a recess about how scientology policy interacted with copyright and what Dennis need to demonstrate at trial were masterful. The argument he made was that, you have to show a considerable amount of scn material to make a point, because the stuff does not lend itself to being extracted since anything but the *exact* words of LRH are considered 'verbal tech' and scns are conditioned to ignore anything but pure LRH. McElhinny pulled out the stops on describing scientology and what it does to hurt people in terms which would be about standard for a.r.s, but are seldom heard on a court."
Dennis Erlich also commented on the rulings.
"Whyte apparently intends to rule against the scienos' motion to limit my damage claims to the $25 k bond they had to put up to get him to allow the ransacking of my home by armed scienos 4 years ago. I believe the bifurcation (splitting into two) of the case into separate trials; one to take place in front of Whyte for the scienos' to get a permanent injunction, and one before a jury, to hear my counter claims of trespass, invasion of privacy, conversion of property and denial of civil rights under color of authority, is a done deal. I believe this is just another issue that we will appeal after Whyte is finished slapping me around."
The Providence Journal continued coverage of a trial in which a former
receptionist claims her employer, a dentist, fired her because she would
not take Scientology management courses.
"Dentist Roger N. Carlsten took the stand in his own defense yesterday and reiterated that he never made the Hubbard Administrative Technology courses a contingency for receptionist Susan E. Morgan's promotion. In fact, he said, he never even offered to promote her at all.
"Yesterday, when Carlsten was asked by his lawyer, Sandra A. Lanni, 'once you knew [Morgan] objected on religious grounds,' to taking the Hubbard courses, 'why did you persist?' 'Because I knew intellectually and in my heart' that the courses were not religious in nature and 'so I was at a loss to think why' Morgan believed they were, Carlsten replied.
"Under direct questioning, Carlsten yesterday defined terms including 'developed traffic,' 'up statistics' and 'down statistics' he learned as part of a 'Management by Statistics' course in Hubbard technology, with Sterling Management Co., in California. He cited the principles as among those he tried to put into practice in his Lloyd Avenue office after returning from California. In explaining 'developed traffic,' Carlsten said: 'It's not like I wanted to be a drill sergeant in the office -- you ask nicely, direct, you ask that person to do something. You don't allow the person to chat in the hallways -- just do it.'
"Carlsten hired Precision Management, of New Hampshire, as consultants for his dental practice, he said, because 'they used the same Hubbard Management Technology, the same courses I thought were so great' in California. Though both Precision Management and Sterling Management are licensed by WISE, or 'World Institute of Scientology Enterprises,' they are both 'tax-paying businesses,' and neither company has anything to do with religion, Carlsten testified. They share only 'a business connection,' he said."
The case was decided in favor of Roger Carlsten.
"The civil suit, brought by Susan E. Morgan, alleged that Carlsten fired her because she refused to take a Hubbard Administrative Technology course that Morgan asserted was 'thinly veiled Scientology.' Morgan had sought $12,063 in lost wages, medical benefits and costs. Her lawyer, Renee J. Bushey, said she would appeal, based on several rulings by Judge Alice B. Gibney that she said caused the trial to be 'really unfair.'
"Both Judge Gibney and defense lawyer Sandra A. Lanni cautioned jurors that they should avoid penalizing Carlsten for a religion -- Scientology -- that they might find unusual or, as Lanni put it, even 'distasteful.' When jurors returned their verdict at 3:20 p.m., Carlsten turned to his companion, Julia Stearns of Providence, and kissed her. Then he embraced Lanni and two of his office staff, one of whom had testified in his behalf.
"The verdict was based on one question alone -- the first, and as it turned out the last, in a sequence that Gibney instructed the jury to consider. The question: 'Do you find that the courses were religious in nature and violated her religious beliefs?' The six jurors replied 'No.' They then heeded Gibney's instruction that 'If the answer to Number One is no, go no further.'
"Bushey said she would base her appeal in part on what she called 'errors of law from the beginning, when the judge would not allow specific evidence of beliefs of Scientology to come into the case.' That ruling was on a motion by Lanni, who argued that substantive discussion of Scientology would be likely to 'inflame the jury into 'punishing' Carlsten' for his 'unusual religion.'
"In her closing statement to jurors, Lanni argued that Morgan was using Scientology as 'a distraction' from the real reason Carlsten fired her -- incompetence. 'This case is about Susan Morgan's prejudice about Scientology. She clearly found it distasteful,' Lanni said, and 'this case is an attempt to prejudice you about Scientology.'
"Bushey called it 'a little suspect from the start' that the only people licensed to teach the Hubbard Administrative Technology courses 'are from the World Institute of Scientology Enterprises,' one reason her client 'was afraid' from the outset that Scientologists might attempt to recruit her to the Church of Scientology. 'Let's see,' said Bushey. 'The courses are promoted by a Scientologist, written by L. Ron Hubbard' (the founder of Scientology), and employed terms and principles it shared with Scientology such as 'the God dynamic, 'dev-T' and 'MEST' (matter, energy, space and time). Asked Bushey, 'Does this sound like a standard business course to you?' Reminding jurors that 'this country was founded on religious freedom,' and that 'the government can't make you follow any gods,' Bushey said, 'I implore you. Don't let employers.'"
Keith Henson posted declarations from Cheryl Nelson, formerly a legal
secretary at a Scientology lawyer's office.
"I was employed as a legal secretary by the law firm of Paul, Hastings, Janofsky & Walker, LLP ('Paul, Hastings'), between April 27, 1998 and October 16, 1998.
"Near the end of my tenure with Paul, Hastings, I observed a conversation between attorneys Samuel Rosen and Barbara Reeves, both partners of Paul, Hastings. Mr. Rosen was passing my desk when he stopped and turned around on an afterthought. He called down the hall to Ms. Reeves and said something to the effect of.. 'And remember, your client is REVEREND Glenn Barton' (with emphasis on the Reverend title). Ms. Reeves rolled her eyes and shook her head in disgust, and said something like 'yeah, right', then they both laughed. The impression generated from this display of unprofessional conduct was that they did not take their client's religious title seriously since it appeared that Mr. Rosen was mocking their client under the guise of chiding Ms. Reeves about her apparent deficiency in using that title,
"During the course of my employment as a legal secretary with Paul, Hastings I had contact with many levels of personnel. One in particular was Mike Fort, court services specialist. Mr. Fort informed me, sometime during the Summer of 1998, that certain attorneys at Paul, Hastings had a practice of instructing him to persuade the court clerks to backdate Paul, Hastings documents that were given to him untimely to file, so that the documents would appear timely filed. He did not name which attorneys participated in this practice.
"Mr. Fort further told me that he did not like this practice and that in an effort to discourage the practice (without losing his job), he told the relevant attorneys that it would cost $300 each time for him to accomplish this. However, his tactic backfired when the involved attorneys willingly paid the money."
Jesse Prince posted his memories of actress Juliette Lewis while she was a
"I remember Juliette and one of her step mothers from the mid seventies. Scientology needed slaves to do the renovations work on what is now known as the 'Complex' in LA. They created an RPF of over 180 people and kept them working for 21 hours a day for a time. The basement is where I met one of Juliette's step mothers. Her name was Tracy Lewis and she had been on staff at Celebrity Center.
"As an infant Juliette spent time in the pre 'Cadet Org' which was located on Melrose St in LA. This place was filthy and roach infested. The infants were often looked hungry and cried a lot. El Ron's law was to feed the infants barley water and lock them up alone in room if they cried to much.
"There came a time when Tracy was about to have a psychotic episode and demanded to see her infant child. I was in the Scientology slave labor camp at the time as well and I ended up with the job of driving infants and other children in a Van with no seats but the driver seat from the Melrose building to the Complex. I carried Juliette as well as other children to the basement of the complex to see their imprisoned parents."
David Alexander reported on a protest at the Dallas org this week.
"Arrived at noon, stayed till 1:30. The large, upstat, blue sign with gold letters, 'Now Hiring. Church of Scientology', is still down and it's down permanently. In it's place is a small, less conspicuous white sign with red letters, in a less observable place, 'Now Hiring. Suite 260'. No mention of the 'S' word. Aaron O'Roark came out and stood on the porch to feign a good confront. But he was so unnoticed by the traffic. I don't see too many familiar faces there. It speaks more for the attrition that replaces old members with new."
Bruce Pettycrew protested at the Mesa, Arizona org.
"Kathy and I picketed the sole Arizona org today, 8 to 9 AM. When the believers arrived at about 8:45, one of them commented that Kathy's sign, 'Hubbard was a Fraud', was ungrammatical: he said that it should read 'Hubbard _is_ a Fraud', presumably since he believes that El Flubbard is still alive in some sense."
The Los Angeles Times published an article this week on Renaissance
Academy, which uses Scientology methods of education.
"Loweree, a high school teacher at Renaissance Academy in La Canada Flintridge, was on trial Friday for not keeping her promise to take her students to the movies. If convicted, she faced a pie in the face. Renaissance Academy is a nondenominational private school with 112 students kindergarten through 12th grade in La Canada Flintridge. Students must follow 'The Way to Happiness,' a nonreligious moral code. The school learns from study methods developed by L. Ron Hubbard.
"Loweree, who teaches 42 students grades seven through 12, was prosecuted by a student team of three who attempted to prove she lied when she told them she would take them to the movies for grades earned, then did not follow through. Presiding Judge Laura Lewis, whose day job is principal of the school, said Loweree was trying to teach the children about another, arguably more important impeachment proceeding in Washington, D.C.
"Both sides made impassioned pleas to the jury during closing arguments, both referring to 'The Way to Happiness,' the school's code of conduct. Jake Moreno, a senior at the school, began for the prosecution. 'The truth is not something that can be manipulated for one's own benefit,' he said. 'This is not a personal vendetta but a search for truth. The way to happiness lies along the road to truth.' Naomi August, a 10th-grade defense attorney, pleaded her teacher's innocence. 'One of the ways to happiness is a precept that says 'do not harm a person of goodwill,' she said.
"After 10 minutes of deliberation in the science lab next door, the seven-boy, five-girl jury delivered the verdict: innocent."
Swedish technical magazine Ny Teknik included Scientology's U-Man
recruitment test in a recent review article.
"Two final-year engineering students were sent to try out 'two widely used test systems', one of them by the Scientologist-run company U-man.
"In beautiful rooms with a view of the Sodertalje canal, the U-man company performs its services. Close to a swimming pool, there's a room with table and chairs for those being tested. Besides stands a bust of the man who initiated the U-test; L. Ron Hubbard, also the founder of the Church of Scientology.' The testing took almost 6 hours. Aptitude test, stress test, personality test ('U-test') and production analysis. Cost for the U-test [a.k.a. the OCA] is listed as 2800-4000 SEK [$350 - 500] The students were reasonably satisfied with the test, one of them especially with the verbal advice he got from U-man ED Marten Runow.
"It concludes with an interview with Christer Sandahl, a psychologist who works with recruitment, who says many tests on the market are not serious or adapted for the local market, and that you should question where the test information ends up."
Tages-Anzeiger reported this week that the Zurich Switzerland org will be
moving to smaller quarters.
"The main reason for the surprising move by the Scientologists may lie in their financial situation. When the organization moved in, in 1992, it paid annual rent of about two million franks for the huge building, which encompasses 7,000 square meters in six stories. At the time, the Zurich seat was the largest individual center in Europe. The pseudo-church, which is categorized as a sect, wanted to sub-let the two upper stories, but did not find any external, long-term renters. There are many indications that the organization has been stagnating for some years, and that the income is not near as high as it was at the begin of the decade.
"Juerg Stettler, spokesman for Scientology, does not want to reveal the reasons for the move. 'We want to be present in various places with services,' he stated. This has the strategic advantage that the Scientologists will be able to distribute their little contracts and personality tests in more districts. The Scientology missionaries often invite pedestrians on the street in to take a test or have a trial session, or to watch a video about Scientology and its founder, L. Ron Hubbard. Therefore, the danger exists in the future that neighbors and shop owners of even more districts will be confronted with the missionary practices of the Scientologists. They are on the streets at all times of the day and night.
"At the time, up to 150 full time staff work at 141 Badener Street. The wage is dependent upon their work, which is often 60 or more hours per week for which they receive about 150 franks. The Scientology employees mainly ply courses and take care of the administration."
Time Magazine published an article on John Travolta's movie project
Battlefield Earth, based on an L. Ron Hubbard novel.
"JONATHAN KRANE says the new deal calls for small indie Franchise Pictures, run by L.A. club owner and actress Tia Carrere's husband Elie Samaha, to finance the production. Travolta, a Scientology adherent, will produce and star as a space villain named Terl. Hollywood insiders had gossiped that major studios shied away from the project because of the connection to Hubbard, but Krane insists the production is completely unrelated to the group. 'I've never even dealt with or talked to the church on this,' says Krane, who is not a member. 'This is an action-adventure, science-fiction story. Period. The movie has nothing to do with Scientology.'"