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« Reply #30 on: September 13, 2011, 12:21:20 AM »

Wednesday, September 7, 2011

"Inside Scientology" by Janet Reitman

I do apologize for coming late to this.  I wanted to read this book when it first came out but I was in the middle of a couple of very large projects.  Now that they are successfully completed, I've finally had time to read this wonderful book.

If anyone has not yet read this book and, if they have any interest at all in Scientology and the Church of Scientology, I highly recommend it.

In her Introduction, Ms. Reitman says:

    It has been my goal to write the first objective modern history of the Church of Scientology.

To say that Ms. Reitman succeeded would be an understatement.  I, personally, could not have done that -- as an ex-Scientologist, I am definitely not objective about Scientology.   Most people who have been touched in any way by Scientology cannot be objective about it.  Scientology is a completely black and white belief system -- there is no grey.  You are either completely pro-Scientology or you are an Enemy.  Those who become opposed to the Church of Scientology often, in reaction to Scientology's absolutism, take an opposite, and just as absolute, negative position.  It's hard not to.

Yet, without a doubt, Ms. Reitman has produced an objective book.  Since I know she too was attacked by the Church of Scientology for her earlier piece in The Rolling Stone, my admiration for her journalistic integrity is boundless.

But don't let the term "objective" mislead you.  This is not a dry dissertation, it is not boring and it doesn't indulge in that false "journalistically neutral" rhetoric.  You will get the facts surrounding the real events -- untouched by the Church of Scientology's spin, cover-up and lies.

Scientology is, ultimately, about people and Ms. Reitman brings the story of Scientology alive by bringing alive the people who have been involved in Scientology -- from L. Ron Hubbard, struggling to find his path to fame, to those who have struggled in and out of the church, to the latest wide-eyed, ever-hopeful new Scientologist.  This is a book about how people were changed by Scientology -- and how Scientology has been changed by people.

I found it a bit disturbing to read this long history of Scientology from L. Ron Hubbard's troubled life, through the heady early days of hope and excitement and finally to the logical conclusion of Hubbard's paranoia and greed.  It was disturbing because it was true.  It stirred up memories of my own hopes -- and my own disappointments.

In case you might want to question how very thoroughly and diligently Ms. Reitman has researched and fact-checked the stories in this book, her extensive Notes section detailing the exact sources for each chapter is beyond impressive.  This section alone makes the Church of Scientology's cries of "sloppy journalism" completely laughable.

All-in-all, this book was a great read, enlightening, fascinating, informative and with the ring of truth in every page.  This book is now at the top of my list for anyone interested in Scientology and I would highly recommend this book for anyone currently in or recently out of Scientology.
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« Reply #31 on: September 20, 2011, 09:58:50 AM »

   Sunday, September 18, 2011

                    Scientology and the Amazing Psychiatric Conspiracy


My attention was drawn to Scientology's Amazing Psychiatric Conspiracy recently.   As a Scientologist, I had just accepted it.  As an ex-Scientologist, I had simply rejected it -- but I really hadn't thought about it.

Scientologists have been indoctrinated into a complete, fanatic hatred of all psychiatrists.  They have concocted a whole raft of "reasons why" they hate psychiatrists but those reasons don't really explain Scientologists' extreme, compulsive and absolute hatred.

They originally pointed to a number of reported abuses by psychiatrists and even created "Psych Busters" who would go out and dig up proof and have such psychiatrists put in prison.  I've noticed that they've quit that and it appears that, ironically, they quit it because they were cleaning up the profession and giving psychiatry a good name.

Then CCHR started rewriting history so that psychiatry was behind every evil that has ever existed on Earth.  Psychiatrists, in some mysterious way, have been behind every war, every mass murderer and every other horrible event.  Evidence was lacking -- you had to just believe.

That hasn't been persuasive except for the gullible who don't check facts.

The latest "reason" is that psychiatrists are "over-prescribing dangerous drugs for children!"

That's actually a good reason to hate those who over-prescribe dangerous drugs, but doesn't hold up as a reason for extreme hatred of all psychiatrists.  After all, medical doctors are just as guilty, the psychiatric profession itself has condemned the practice and many doctors in both professions are not guilty of that at all.

And yet, Scientologists condemn ALL psychiatrists, the guilty and the innocent, and demand that the practice of psychiatry be banned.

I've asked Scientologists, "Given that some Scientologists are guilty of crimes and abuses, should we condemn ALL Scientologists and demand the practice of Scientology be banned?"  But they don't get the point.

Why don't they get the point?  Why are they unable to think logically and rationally on this subject?

Well, as you undoubtedly know, Scientologists believe that psychiatrists are the leaders of the Great Evil Galactic Conspiracy against L. Ron Hubbard and the Loyal Officers.

We all know that and we laugh and laugh.  But think about what that actually means for Scientologists.  For such a conspiracy to be true, for all psychiatrists to be part of such a conspiracy, the following must be true:

    All psychiatrists are in on this Great Evil Galactic Conspiracy.  Every single one.  That's what Hubbard said and that's what Scientologists are required to believe.
    This means that all psychiatrists can remember their "past lives" when they were battling the Forces of Good all over the galaxy.  You can't remember your past life.  Scientologists may pretend but they can't remember their past lives either.  But all psychiatrists must be able to so they know they must grow up and become psychiatrists, right?
    In addition, obviously, no "normal" person can be allowed to become a psychiatrist.  Apparently there is a review board in every psychiatric school that checks every applicant to ensure they are a card-carrying member of the Great Evil Galactic Conspiracy.  Anyone who isn't a member is rejected and cannot become a psychiatrist.
    And finally, psychiatrists, apparently, have extremely advanced communication technology so they can discuss their Evil Plans without ever being detected.  Otherwise they would be some evidence somewhere.

Scientologists seem to believe that we have Evil Alien Beings living among us.  They have phenomenal memory and technology.  And only Scientologists stand between all these Evil Alien Beings and their conquest of Earth.

This is what Scientologists have to believe or their Evil Galactic Conspiracy led by psychiatrists doesn't stand up to the briefest of thought.

It's another fine example of Scientology Logic™ in action.


http://askthescientologist.blogspot.com/2011/09/scientology-and-amazing-psychiatric.html
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« Reply #32 on: November 14, 2011, 11:24:11 AM »

Anonymous said...

    If one was to liken the "The church of Scientology" vs it`s opponents to a war, and you were the General of the opponents....
    What would your orders be to your army ?
    What strategies would you implement to force Scientology to close its doors for business as soon as possible ?

    There is no right or wrong answer...

    Just want someone with your obvious intellect and experience to give some guidance to the masses.

    Randomx
    November 6, 2011 8:01 PM

Just Bill said...

    @Randomx

    Re: Closing the doors of Scientology

    In a very real way, we've all done that already. I understand some of their doors are still open, but they really are no longer in business.

    They are only "making money" by feeding off their most loyal (and wealthy) members. They are not expanding, they have virtually no new members, all their "thousands" of groups and missions have disappeared and even their "ideal orgs" are being foreclosed on.

    No business can survive in these self-imposed conditions.

    What is and has been done to bring the crimes, abuse, lies and fraud of the Church of Scientology to an end have been extremely effective. I'd tell anyone who cares to listen: Continue what you're doing.

    If Australia mandates fair wages for Scientology staff, if the IRS takes an honest new look at Scientology's "religious activities", if Great Britain and other countries take a look at the tax fraud scam linked to the Australian Church of Scientology... if those things come to fruition, we will see Church of Scientology doors closing quickly.

    But, even without that, the Church of Scientology is done, toast, defunct. Zombie. It's just a matter of time before David Miscavige takes all the money and escapes to a country with no extradition.

http://askthescientologist.blogspot.com/2011/10/ask-question.html#comments
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« Reply #33 on: January 06, 2012, 06:44:29 PM »

Sunday, January 1, 2012
                                                   Happy New Year 2012


It has been a considerable time since I posted any significant article.  It isn't that nothing was going on, obviously, but it was, instead, a combination of too much going on for me personally (good things) and things going incredibly well in exposing the crimes, lies, abuse and fraud of the Church of Scientology.

All I could say was "Well done!"

But, here it is, a new year and I had in mind doing a pretty ordinary look back and then make predictions.  It's fun to do.

But there is a new and significant event that just happened which changed my plans for what would probably have been a predictable and boring article.

I am, of course, referring to the Debbie Cook email.

This is significant.  While it is true that Scientologists "in good standing" have been talking with each other about some of the problems and it is true that prominent Scientologists have spoken out after leaving the church, there has never been a prominent Scientologist speaking out while still, technically, "in good standing".

This email went to a lot of well connected Scientologists who have no reason to doubt that Debbie Cook is still in good standing.

Let's take a look at what Debbie says.  She is not attacking Scientology or Hubbard in any way.  She uses the line "The truth is that as a Scientologist you are more able, more perceptive and have a higher integrity" to appeal to the Scientology ego.  While she names David Miscavige, she doesn't personally attack him (i.e. call him "suppressive").  She quotes Hubbard appropriately to make her points.  While lengthy, her email does not get bogged down in too much detail as so many other "doubt formulas" have.  She has done a good job talking to Scientologists in their terms.

I believe this will be effective.  I'm guessing that speaking freely about everything Debbie has brought up will become common within Scientology.  That is all to the good.

I read a concerned comment by someone to the effect that we don't want Scientologists to rebel and reform Scientology as Debbie urges.  We want, the commenter insists, the church to continue to abuse and defraud Scientologists in order to speed up its collapse.

I'd say that this email will greatly speed up the church's collapse.  First, Debbie urges all Scientologists to stop sending any money to the church except for donations for services -- which monies remain (mostly) local.  This cuts off Miscavige's lucrative income from all his bogus fundraising tricks.

But wait!  By pointing out all the "out-tech" now being enforced by the church, she is discouraging Scientologists from actually taking services.

And, finally, by detailing the total destruction of the upper management of the church, Debbie is making it perfectly "legal" to ignore the dictates coming from "management".

    UPDATE: I see some speculation as to why Debbie emphasized that she hasn't spoken to the media and then says "Please keep this email among us, the Scientologists. The media have no place in this" when she must know it would be quickly spread everywhere.

    I assume this has to do with her gag agreement with the Church of Scientology when she left the Sea Org.  She is, undoubtedly, forbidden from talking to the media.  By saying what she says, she is abiding by the agreement.  If others ignore her request and spread it about, it's not her fault.

If this doesn't cause a majority of the remaining churchies to disassociate from the Church of Scientology, I'll be very surprised.

They may remain True Believers, and they may then be captured by the Independent Movement, but that group is not organized and is not effective.

And remember this:  True Believers must use Scientology and only Scientology for all their endeavors.  They must use the Admin and Ethics "tech".  The built-in flaws in all of that ensure that any future Scientology organization will not succeed.

This certainly is a good way to start a New Year.

http://askthescientologist.blogspot.com/2012/01/happy-new-year-2012.html
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« Reply #34 on: January 08, 2012, 08:46:24 AM »

Saturday, January 7, 2012
Scientology's Peril Sensitive Sunglasses

    He... put on the sunglasses, annoyed to discover that the metal object had scratched one of the lenses. Nevertheless, he felt much more comfortable with them on. They were a double pair of Joo Janta 200 Super-Chromatic Peril Sensitive Sunglasses, which had been specially designed to help people develop a relaxed attitude toward danger. At the first hint of trouble they turn totally black and thus prevent you from seeing anything that might alarm you.
    From The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy, by Douglas Adams.

I must admit that I am a fan of Douglas Adams.  I find his very quirky British humor refreshing and delightful.  The above is a sample of his type of humor: Sunglasses that "help" you when danger looms by becoming completely opaque.

Ridiculous! Absurd! Hilarious!

Such an object makes no sense and would never exist.

Unless you are a Scientologist.

Danger is certainly looming for all Scientologists.  Every year, every month, heck, every day it seems like, there is more bad news for the Church of Scientology.  Secret documents are leaked; crimes are exposed in detail with lots of confirmation; lies are debunked; abuses documented.  It just doesn't stop.

It used to be somewhat obscure websites only visited by the few.  Today it is major media -- newspapers, magazines, television, radio and books by major publishers.  Scientologists are leaving the church and telling their stories.

It just doesn't stop.  Danger looms from every side.

And this is where Scientology's Peril Sensitive Sunglasses kick in.  You can't see them but every Scientologist has a trusty pair firmly clamped on their faces.  These sunglasses have been installed over many months and years of Scientology indoctrination.

When danger looms and Scientology is in peril, Scientologists' minds go opaque.  They cannot and do not read.  They cannot and do not look.  They cannot and do not think.

Then they are safe.  Totally safe.  They look, childlike, at David Miscavige, who tells them "Everything is OK!  Scientology is expanding!  Scientology is winning!"

And the Scientologists, with their Scientology Peril Sensitive Sunglasses, set to totally black, can relax.

All is OK.

http://askthescientologist.blogspot.com/2012/01/scientologys-peril-sensitive-sunglasses.html
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« Reply #35 on: February 05, 2012, 06:33:59 PM »

Saturday, February 4, 2012
                                              Laughing at Scientology

We really have entered into a new stage in the fight against the Church of Scientology's crimes, abuse and fraud.

For the most part, previous exposure of the church's evil has been brought about by outsiders -- ex-Scientologists, reporters, critics and various victims.  Marty and the Independents have been exposing carefully selected abuses (making sure that nothing is exposed that might reflect badly on L. Ron Hubbard himself) but they are, by their own statements, outsiders to the church.

With Debbie Cook's email and subsequent reactions, we have exposure of abuses coming from inside the church.  The battle is now also between the Church of Scientology leadership and people who still consider themselves members of the church.

In addition, there are, today, a number of other very serious actions going on.  There are serious books about Scientology, serious newspaper, TV and magazine exposés about Scientology and other serious court cases involving the church.

All this is good and necessary to the exposure of the Church of Scientology's crimes and eventual bringing to justice of David Miscavige and other Scientology criminals.  Pop the popcorn and pull up a chair, this show is getting very interesting.

But I don't think we should take any particular event too seriously.  No one court case is that important.  Inevitably, the church will still win some while it loses others.  It will be the mass of exposure and court losses for the church that count.  Bit by bit the crimes and abuses are being exposed and documented.  Things proven in court cannot be "unproven".

However, speaking of all this serious business reminds me: Let us not forget what was key in helping destroy the myth of the "great and powerful" Church of Scientology -- laughter!

It was, more than anything else, Anonymous and their monthly protest-parties that destroyed the Church of Scientology's mythical shield that protected them for so long.  It was Anonymous that showed us that the church had no answer to laughter, happiness and fun.

Certainly, the seriousness is important in the court and in well-researched book, newspaper or TV exposés -- but if we become too serious, we will have abandoned our best weapon against the Church of Scientology and David Miscavige.

Happily, the irrepressible Tony Ortega at the Village Voice and a few others continue the tradition of laughing at Miscavige, Hubbard and the Church of Scientology.  And, yes, some Anonymous are still protesting.  With all this seriousness going on, we shouldn't forget to also keep laughing -- it's good for the soul and bad for the church.

http://askthescientologist.blogspot.co.nz/2012/02/laughing-at-scientology.html
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« Reply #36 on: April 05, 2012, 05:16:46 PM »

Sunday, April 1, 2012
                                           Scientology in the Real World

Recently, I've just been watching.  Scientology watching has become one of my entertainments.  There's David Miscavige and the Church of Scientology, there's all the secrets, lies, crimes, abuses and fraud getting almost daily exposure and then there is the "Independent Scientology movement".

I find the Independent Scientologists to be the most fascinating.  Here we have a perfect test of Scientology's workability unfolding right before our eyes.  How can Scientology exist outside of the tightly controlled environment of the cult?

Enough time has passed for us to be able to see what Scientology is going to be like in a free and open environment.

Inside the Church of Scientology, the environment is very, very tightly controlled -- exactly as L. Ron Hubbard designed it to be.  Anything negative about Hubbard or Scientology is condemned as "entheta" and is off limits.   As a "good Scientologist", one cannot and will not talk to people who speak entheta.  One cannot read entheta articles or listen to any entheta.  That is thought control and is one of the cult's mechanisms for keeping the True Believers from straying from the approved path.

But now we have the Independent Scientology movement.  They have much, much less control.  If you talk to the "wrong people" according to one Scientology practitioner -- who then refuses to audit you (because you are a "bad person") -- why you can just go elsewhere.

The leaders of the Independent movement do not have enough control to stop a Scientologist from talking to anyone or reading anything.

And now we can see what happens to Scientology when the cultic thought control has been removed and when the standard threats have no weight.  Can Scientology survive in a free environment?

Well, what is happening?

If you've perused the various Independent Scientology blogs, you will see Scientologists desperately attempting to enforce the old thought control.  Any disagreement or entheta posted on one of their blogs gets shouted down or simply blocked.  Many posts and comments on ESMB and Censored by Marty attest to the censoring that goes on at that blog.

The people running the blogs try to keep the movement clean of such entheta but, as I said earlier, they simply don't have the power to enforce it.

Scientologists outside of the church can read and can talk without fear of any meaningful punishment.  Any normal person will absolutely hate and rebel against the kind of totalitarian thought-control as practiced by Scientology.  You can't stop people from wanting to know more, to know the truth.  And so people will look.

The more the leading voices of the Independent Scientology movement try to suppress other voices and dissenting opinions, the more people will resist.  And rebel.  And look.

That is happening more and more.

What has happened as a result of all this?  How is the Independent Scientology movement doing without the ability to control believer's thoughts, communication and actions?

As near as I can tell, back in very early 2010, Marty Rathbun and Steve Hall had this "bright idea".  They called it the "Indie 500".  The idea was to get 500 Independent Scientologists to "come out" and declare their independence from the Church of Scientology.  The website's definition of exactly who was an "Independent Scientologist" was extremely broad: "Anyone who uses any part of Scientology Tech, even if other parts are not true for you."

Now, over two years later, the list stands at a little over 300.  It is obvious to me that someone created the original few hundred entries without getting approval from the people they were listing: In reading through the list, I see a number who do not now consider themselves "Scientologists" in any way.  In addition, I know of more who's names appeared on the list and asked them to be removed.

After two years, even with those false entries, the Independent Scientology movement can't find 500 people who use "any part of Scientology Tech" who want to be associated with the movement.  Why?  Certainly many, many more than 500 people have left the Church of Scientology.

The reason that Scientology outside of the totalitarian control of the Church of Scientology cannot and will never thrive is because Scientology cannot coexist with open communication.  Scientology cannot coexist with full access to all the information.  Scientology cannot exist without its cultic thought-control.

My only question is: Can any part of Scientology exist in an open and free environment?  I certainly don't know, only time will tell.

What do you think?  If you are out of the church, what is your experience with the Independent Movement?
-
Posted by Just Bill at 1:00 PM Labels: Independent Scientology, Thought Control
22 comments:

    AnonymousApr 1, 2012 03:55 PM

    Bill, what do you think of Marty R's recent posts where he seems to agree that Hubbard lied about his past, or at least that Hubbard's storytelling does not need to be taken literally? Is this his attempt to salvage the "tech," while jettisoning the extreme dogmatism and thought control?
    Reply
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        Just BillApr 1, 2012 05:28 PM

        Everyone who leaves the Church of Scientology has to go through certain stages -- or reject the Real World entirely. This is one of the stages and a very early one. "Yes, apparently Hubbard didn't always tell the truth about his life but..."

        And following that "but ..." are all the reasons why the Scientologist is still clinging to the rest of the whole belief structure: "but it was meant as a metaphor", "but he was joking", "but his technology still works", and so on.

        It's an early step away from "Ron was perfect and created a perfect technology". There are more steps to go before the Scientologist accepts the truth of it all.

...................

http://askthescientologist.blogspot.co.nz/2012/04/scientology-in-real-world.html
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« Reply #37 on: April 19, 2012, 05:25:09 PM »

Sunday, April 15, 2012
                                                         Endings

The recent announcement from "Emma" of Ex-Scientology Message Board that, after October, she is no longer going to run the message board, has gotten me thinking about those on the front lines.

First, I think this is a very good thing for Emma to do.  God! What an incredible job she has done over the years maintaining some control over that herd of cats while under continuous attack from the Church of Scientology.  In 2010, when the church uncovered her real name, the attacks got considerably worse with bogus legal actions.  Then, as if that wasn't hard enough, recently, her mother passed away.

Emma's message board has helped thousands, probably tens of thousands, of people recover from Scientology's thought control and abuse.  Her board has been read by millions.  She is awesome.  And, while she will be greatly missed,  there comes a time when a fighter should retire -- undefeated and victorious, for sure -- but enough is enough.

At its core, the Church of Scientology is evil, degraded, abusive and destructive.  Those who help people escape from, and recover from, Scientology's abuses and thought control methods and who work to expose the crimes and abuse, are directly connected to this evil.  How much can a person take of such evil?  How much should a person put up with before they back off and someone else takes their place?

It is amazing to me that one single person can do so much against everything the insane, wealthy Church of Scientology can throw at them.  Emma is not the only such person, and they all deserve our gratitude, our thanks and our admiration.  The ability of these single individuals to defeat the Church of Scientology shows how decency, goodness and truth can defeat evil.

And don't doubt we all have defeated the Church of Scientology -- especially folks like Emma who have borne the brunt of Scientology's attacks.

Today, Scientology's secrets are all well-known.  Today, Hubbard is known in the real world for exactly what he was.  Today, Scientology has very few adherents and virtually no new recruits.  Today, every Scientology "church" is empty and struggling -- or closed.

Yes, Scientology's few remaining, hard-core believers are still fighting, lying, abusing and attacking but their teeth have been pulled.  For the most part, police and the courts recognize their lies and quickly shut down their bogus, desperate attacks.

New allies are showing up to see that Scientology's lies, abuse, crimes and fraud are exposed and the guilty are brought to justice.  The opposition to the Church of Scientology actually grows daily.

So, some of the fighters are taking a well-earned break.  Some of the blogs and message boards are quieter now, like this one, or even dormant, like Leaving Scientology.  These fighters have earned a respite from the front lines.  Don't worry, there are lots and lots of fighters on the job, and more to come.

Those fighters who are withdrawing from the front lines do so as victors and those who take over the fight are grateful and thankful.

http://askthescientologist.blogspot.co.nz/2012/04/endings.html
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« Reply #38 on: October 12, 2012, 04:13:58 PM »

Friday, October 5, 2012 


                                                     Ask a Question


I’m a bit late on a new Ask a Question.  I’ve found that some browsers don’t work too well with Blogger once the comments have gone past 200 and you have to go to another page.  On some browsers, you just can’t get to the next page.  So, here is another Ask a Question thread.

There are some really great questions and discussions in Ask a Question 1, 2, 3, 4 and the one just before this one 5.  I always enjoy going back and reading them.

You want to know something about Scientology or the Church of Scientology?  Ask here!  You have a suggestion?  Put it here.  You want to start an argument or discussion?  Here is the place.  All non-troll, non-spam comments, suggestions, arguments, corrections are greatly appreciated.

Current Scientologist's contributions are, as always, very welcome.  Trust me, I don't bite.

As always, I love to hear from you.
-
Posted by Just Bill

http://askthescientologist.blogspot.co.nz/2012/10/ask-question.html
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« Reply #39 on: October 26, 2012, 02:29:42 PM »

Sunday, October 21, 2012

                                               Scientology: It's All About Threats and Fear

As the implosion of the Church of Scientology continues, I have had more contact with newly-out Scientologists than ever before.  And I have noticed that one of the common characteristics of newly-out Scientologists is fear.

This isn't just fear of what the church will do to them because they just left, it is the reaction to living for years under the constant threats, explicit and implicit, from the Church of Scientology. After a while, it just becomes normal to live in fear.

Once Scientology has convinced a person that "Scientology has all the answers" and that "Scientology is the only road to 'Total Freedom'", the church spends the rest of the time threatening to deny the Scientologist that "only road out".  This threat hangs over the head of every Scientologist.  This is the basis of the church's power and control.

(It really is ironic that the Church of Scientology's power comes from the threat to take away that which it never had the power to give in the first place.)

As a Scientologist, you must follow all of the church's rules, requirements, demands and dictates or you will be denied Scientology services.  In the "Introduction to Scientology Ethics" book there is a list of "High Crimes" for which a Scientologist will be declared a  "Suppressive Person", and kicked out.  If you carefully review that list of High Crimes, you will quickly realize that many of these "crimes" are so very, very vague, that anyone could be found guilty of violating them.

And, indeed, many Scientologists are accused and found guilty under these High Crimes when they have done nothing that normal society would consider wrong.

Usually, a Scientologist is "declared suppressive" as a result of something Hubbard made up called a "Committee of Evidence" (or "CommEv").  A CommEv is an amazing bit of Hubbard-created injustice:

    The "Convening Authority" who calls for the CommEv is the same person who wants you found guilty.
    The Convening Authority gets to choose whoever he or she wants for the "members" of the CommEv who will sit in judgement of you.  Anyone.
    The Convening Authority writes the charges and the Scientologist is, pretty much, presumed guilty unless he or she can produce convincing evidence of innocence on every point.
    There are no rules of evidence -- anything can be used as "evidence" against the accused and it is up to the committee members to accept or reject evidence on whatever basis they choose.  No one is required to verify that the "evidence" is actually valid.
    The accused may not have a lawyer or any other assistance in defending him or herself.
    There is no stipulation that the accused can see the evidence or the accusers and challenge them.
    The accused is not required to be present during testimony against him or her and, in fact, is often deliberately excluded.  These days, the entire CommEv is often held without the accused even being present.

As you can tell from all this, if the Convening Authority wants you declared suppressive, that's pretty much exactly what's going to happen.

And the punishments for being found guilty can be severe.  If one is "declared suppressive" and kicked out, all other Scientologists are required to disconnect from the "suppressive".  This can result in divorce, total separation from family and friends, loss of one's job and more.  As Scientologists usually associate with, work with and work for other Scientologists, such disconnection can be devastating.

But there is more.  According to Hubbard, someone "declared suppressive" may be "deprived of property or injured by any means by any Scientologist without any discipline of the Scientologist. May be tricked, sued or lied to or destroyed".  The laws, morals and ethics of normal society no longer protect the declared person from all manner of attacks from other Scientologists.

If one desires to "work oneself back into good standing", the road is long and degrading and the chances of being declared again are pretty high.

Under Scientology "Ethics", all Scientologists are required to spy on all other Scientologists and report any "incorrect" behavior.  If another Scientologist they know is found to be "suppressive", it is likely that they, too, will be punished for "not reporting the crimes".  Therefore, many Scientologists do spy and do report on other Scientologists.

Even in the supposedly "confidential" auditing sessions, Scientologists are not safe from the spying eyes of the church.  Everything they say is written down and often recorded, to be reviewed by others.  At any time, the Scientologist could be ordered to a "Security Check" or "SecCheck" where everything they say will be reported to the "Ethics Officer" for evaluation and, perhaps, punishment.  There are few Scientologists who have not felt the dread upon hearing the phrase "Report to Ethics".

As you can see, if a Scientologist lives in almost constant fear, they have every reason to feel that way.

And don't doubt for an instant that the church fully understands the power that it holds over all Scientologists.  Scientologists believe that Scientology is the only way to rise to the higher levels of existence and if they are kicked out of the church, they will be doomed to horrible suffering and degradation forever.  With this threat of expulsion and disconnection, the Church of Scientology can and does demand more and more.  More money, more time, more participation, more obedience.  For those who believe the church controls their future salvation forever, there is no choice but to comply.

Luckily, the news that the Church of Scientology's power has been broken is filtering in to the believers.  The fear is easing and, with it, the church's power to force obedience is fading.  The church doesn't know what to do about it.  Without this constant fear, they no longer have the same absolute control over their Scientologists.  Oh, dear!
-

Posted by Just Bill

http://askthescientologist.blogspot.co.nz/2012/10/scientology-its-all-about-threats-and.html
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« Reply #40 on: November 21, 2012, 07:31:57 AM »

Saturday, November 17, 2012

                                                      Scientology Logic™

I have often sarcastically referred to "Scientology Logic™" when discussing various statements and arguments made by the Church of Scientology and Scientology's true believers.  It is very true that Scientology's version of "logic" is very, very strange, but what you might not know is that Scientology Logic is deliberately built into the Scientology belief system itself by L. Ron Hubbard.

Note that I am not talking here about how logical or illogical Hubbard's actual "technology" is.  I am talking about the actual "logic" mechanisms themselves that exist and are used throughout Scientology.

Note, also, that this "logic" exists inside Scientology and only rarely shows up on the outside.  This is why discussing Scientology with a Scientologist can be so weird.

Technically, Scientology Logic is made up of a number of logical fallacies which Hubbard used extensively in his lectures and writings.
Here is a partial list:

Appeal to Authority
An appeal to authority is the argument that a person judged to be an authority verifies that the statement is true -- therefore it must be true.

In Scientology's case, the authority is, of course, L. Ron Hubbard.  Scientology claims that all their "solutions" are "highly effective".  What is the basis of their claims?  "Ron said so".

When the raw facts show their "solutions" are failures, it is quickly agreed by all Scientologists involved to cover the failures up, because "Ron said his solutions were highly effective".

They won't look any further for any facts or hard evidence because "they don't need to, Ron said it, so it's true".  This is the absolute, bedrock foundation of Scientology:  If L. Ron Hubbard said it, then it is completely true.

While this theme of "Hubbard's Infallibility" crops up in Hubbard's teachings from the very beginning, it became cast in stone with his infamous "Keeping Scientology Working" (KSW) policy letter.  In that policy, Hubbard denied that anyone else had contributed anything of value to Scientology and that he, and he alone, had created this "miraculous tech" that was "100% workable".  From then on, it became a High Crime for any Scientologist to deny Hubbard's perfection.

In any disagreement between Scientologists, the one who can find the best L. Ron Hubbard quote to support their side is automatically the winner.  No logic is ever applied.

As non-church Scientologists discover how many of Ron's statements have been irrefutably debunked, they struggle to fit that into Scientology's Absolutism.  The most popular approach is to label all of Ron's lies as "allegories, not to be taken literally." This, however, puts them on very shaky ground as more and more of Scientology's "truths" become "allegories".

In an odd and completely bizarre twist to this illogic, some Scientologists will insist that, if L. Ron Hubbard didn't say something, it isn't true.  So, for instance, because Hubbard never talked about the dangers and effects of asbestos, there is no danger or bad effects from breathing asbestos.

Ad Hominem
This logical fallacy attempts to use personal attacks to discredit the source of contrary evidence.

This was, by far, Hubbard's favorite and most effective logical fallacy and has become woven throughout Scientology's belief system.

In Scientology, anyone possessing and disseminating any facts that are contrary to Hubbard's words is automatically "evil".  This is one "truth" that is hammered into Scientologists again and again throughout their studies.

Even in its press releases, the Church of Scientology carefully refers to the Scientology whistle-blowers as "apostates" -- and they do intend all the negative connotations of that word: "traitor", "heretic", "untrustworthy", etc.  The outside Scientologists aren't much better, refering to critics as "haters" and worse.

Because they are labelled "evil" by Scientology, any source of contrary information is automatically "invalid" and any statements coming from that source must be automatically and quickly discarded lest one become "contaminated" by it.

This automatic, built-in ad hominem attack is marvellous to behold.  One "bad" word and the Scientologist immediately shuts down and runs away, never to accept any data from that source again.

Genetic Fallacy
The genetic fallacy is committed when an idea is either accepted or rejected because of its source, rather than its merit.

In Scientology, this follows directly from both the ad hominem and the appeal to authority fallacies, above.

Hubbard has assured his faithful followers that anyone who dares to criticize him or Scientology is guilty of horrendous crimes "for which they could be arrested." Hubbard even instructed his secret police to dig up or manufacture evidence of crimes on every critic -- and they have done so with enthusiasm.  The church's attempts to frame their critics for crimes they did not commit are quite well documented.

Scientologists completely believe this characterization of Scientology critics.  Given the allegations of such crimes, Scientologists automatically reject all criticisms of Hubbard and Scientology from any source.  No logic required.

In a more generic form, Scientologists pretty much distrust any source that isn't L. Ron Hubbard (or, in the church, David Miscavige).

Straw Man Fallacy
A straw man argument is one that misrepresents a position in order to make it appear weaker than it actually is, refutes this misrepresentation of the position, and then concludes that the real position has been refuted

Scientologists work very hard to pervert and obfuscate the very simple and clear messages that the Scientology critics and whistle-blowers present.

Any criticism of one of Scientology's "solutions" is misrepresented by Scientology as an attempt to halt all efforts to help anyone.  You will often find Scientologists claiming that critics' messages are "No one can be helped" and "All help is bad" -- but no serious Scientology critic ever said that.

Red Herring
The fallacy gets its name from fox hunting, specifically from the practice of sabotaging a fox hunt by using smoked herrings, which are red, to distract hounds from the scent of their quarry.  It is simply an attempt to distract one from the current subject.

Hubbard famously said, regarding attacks against himself or Scientology, "Make enough threat or clamor to cause the enemy to quail. Always find or manufacture enough threat against them to cause them to sue for peace. Don't ever defend. Always attack."

Because of this policy, Scientologists work very hard to distract any discussion away from the lies, crimes and abuses of the Church of Scientology and onto anything else.  "Look over there!  Look how bad those other people are, over there!"

This is the primary motivation for the creation of many of Scientology's front groups such as CCHR, "Youth for Human Rights", etc.

As a bonus for Scientology, the general public tends to think that any organization "promoting Human Rights", for instance, is unlikely to be violating those exact same Human Rights.

Hasty Generalization Fallacy
A hasty generalisation draws a general rule from a single, perhaps atypical, case.

This is the most common response by a Scientologist when confronted with Scientology's consistent failure to deliver any of its promised results.  Scientologists will inevitably say, "I got wonderful gains from Scientology!" This ignores the primary point that none of these "wonderful gains" were what was actually promised -- or even expected.

This also ignores all the other times when Scientology didn't deliver any "gains" at all to the Scientologist.  It is very much like the compulsive gambler who remembers every time they won some money but ignores the huge amount of money they've lost.

After all that time, all that effort and all that money, instead of the promised miraculous results, the Scientologist once or twice got "wonderful gains" that are only a memory now.  From those few, fleeting moments, the Scientologist makes the very general statement that "Scientology works!"

The situation isn't necessarily that illogical people are drawn to Scientology.   The situation is that bad logic is intrinsic to the core teachings of Scientology and that not enough people are educated so as to recognize this when they run into it.  Once someone has accepted the core teachings of Scientology, they have automatically accepted all of Hubbard's illogics as well.

(Yes, such an education would help people as consumers and as voters.)

http://askthescientologist.blogspot.co.nz/2012/11/scientology-logic.html
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« Reply #41 on: December 03, 2012, 07:45:10 AM »

Sunday, November 25, 2012
                                                          We Are Moving!

I'm totally fed up with Blogger.  It seems to just get worse and worse, month by month.

People are telling me that they can't read my blog, can't post comments and sometimes can't do anything at all.  Even I'm having trouble getting things done.

So, I'm moving Ask the Scientologist over to WordPress.

Unfortunately, some silly True Believer has stolen my preferred URL for Scientology propaganda, so I have to use a different URL.

I'm in the process of moving, so it really isn't fully set up but, for now, I've mirrored all the old articles and comments over there.  You can leave comments there now.

You can still ask questions and leave comments here as well for the time being.

The new address is http://theRealAskTheScientologist.wordpress.com/.

I should have it set up the way I want in a week or so.

Thanks to everyone for their patience.

Bill

http://askthescientologist.blogspot.co.nz/2012/11/we-are-moving.html
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« Reply #42 on: January 16, 2013, 08:21:21 AM »

                                                        Happy New Year 2013

Posted on January 15, 2013 by justbill001

I thought I’d follow tradition and make a few predictions for the new year. Here are a couple of things I see happening.

We are all seeing the tremendous flood of articles, programs and books about the Church of Scientology that have come out or will be out shortly. This is quite wonderful — the truth is finally rather broadly and clearly exposed for all to see. It really seems like all the stops are off. While some timid publishing houses are caving to the church’s empty threats, the rest pay the church no mind at all. While I think it’s kind of funny how all the abuses and crimes of the Church of Scientology are now new news when so many people have been screaming about them for decades, still the attention and exposure is all good.

There will be much more coverage this year, including newspaper exposés, more books, more TV reports — and I fully expect the “Corrupt Cult of Scientology” will become a part of TV’s standard plot devices this year.

Nothing issued from the Church of Scientology is getting much coverage. Their “responses” are tired, lame and predictable — filled with all the usual false accusations, lies and disgusting, discreditable extracts from confidential confessional folders.

As a matter of fact, have you noticed that the Church of Scientology really doesn’t seem to be working very hard on their responses? They seem to be going through the rote procedures, sending their standard ton of paperwork, without putting much effort into it. I’ve noticed a trend there. Where the only time they do seem to get energetic is when David Miscavige has been personally accused of crimes and abuses. When it looks to reflect badly on Miscavige, the responses from the church are vicious and ugly. When just the church is accused, the response is more pro-forma without much effort behind it.

Interesting.

I’m sure this trend will continue. I think Miscavige has pretty much given up on “protecting the Church of Scientology”. I think all he cares about is “protecting the image of David Miscavige”. Mind you, he isn’t having much luck with that, but that does seem to be his only real concern.

On a related note, I’ve seen a trend in “Ideal Orgs”. First, that fund-raising engine has lost all its steam. Miscavige has taken just about every penny that Scientologists can beg, borrow or steal and there just ain’t no more. The Ideal Org scam has ground to a virtual halt with many of their “new buildings” sitting vacant, idle and slowly decomposing.

Now, you might think this trend will continue to grow worse and worse — but here is what I see. These abandoned and neglected “Ideal Orgs” will damage Miscavige’s image. He loves to show himself in front of these new buildings at every one of his Big Bogus Events, six times a year. Without that, what does he have to show “unprecedented expansion”?

These events will force Miscavige to open up Scientology’s bank account to prop up the failing orgs and complete some of these failed “Ideal Orgs”. That’s my prediction — probably no more orgs will close and some new Ideal Orgs will open, but only because Miscavige provides the funds from Scientology’s reserves (which he thinks of as “his” money). This will accelerate the inevitable collapse of the church, but Scientology’s façade must be propped up at all costs to protect Miscavige’s image.

While I am tempted to use the same logic to assume that Miscavige will release money to complete and then open the “Super Power building”, I really don’t see that happening. I predict it won’t open this year — or ever. Here is my reasoning: First, he can’t afford it. It will take tons and tons of money to create all that specialized equipment. In addition, just running the building for one day would bankrupt Flag. More, the insurance, permits, et.al. for all those bizarre machines would be exorbitant.

But the main reason Miscavige won’t open the Super Power Building is this: As long as it remains “under construction”, he can continue to exhort money from all the true believers to “complete the Super Power building”. However, if he opened it, that money flow will stop. But what’s worse, from his point of view, is that he’d then have to start delivering the promised services to hundreds of people who have already paid for it. This will cost Miscavige another huge fortune. Given all these negatives, why would he ever open it?

Beyond these simple predictions, I’m sure we will see more exposés, more whistle-blowers, more people leaving and, just maybe, more Scientology organizations declaring “independence” from the church.

As for the “Indie” movement, I’m already seeing that fall apart. I expect more of that in the coming year. Without the ability to “declare people suppressive” and force them out of Scientology, there is no power to enforce agreement and compliance. As time goes on, there will just be more and more disagreements.

The problem with independent Scientology is, ultimately, the same problem with the original Scientology: It doesn’t deliver what is promised — it can’t. It will continue to decline, just as the church will continue to decline.

http://therealaskthescientologist.wordpress.com/2013/01/15/happy-new-year-2013/
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« Reply #43 on: March 04, 2013, 09:52:24 PM »


                                        Scientologists: What, exactly, “works”?

Posted on February 23, 2013 by justbill001

One of the things that Scientologists do that is so very confusing, is their insistence that “Scientology works!”

Even after leaving the Church of Scientology in disgust, a few people continue to believe and insist that Scientology works.  This results in such movements as the “Independent Scientologists”, the “Freezone”, “Ron’s Orgs” and such.

Yet, if you can convince these people to talk openly about it, they must all admit that “Clear”, as promised by L. Ron Hubbard, has never been achieved.  Instead, they may redefine “Clear” from “no longer has a Reactive Mind” to “I once felt really, really good for a short time and attributed it to Scientology”.

If they are being honest, they also will admit that “OT”, as promised by Hubbard, has also never been achieved.  They may redefine “OT” from “cause over matter, energy, space and time” to “I once felt really, really good for a short time and attributed it to an ‘OT’ level”.

In other words, they know that Scientology does not deliver what was explicitly promised by Hubbard — and yet they will insist that “Scientology works!”  How can they say this?

As I see it, these people are confusing “It does something” with “It works”.  It is obvious that, for some people, Scientology processes definitely do something.  Some temporary effect has been created on them.

But that doesn’t mean “Scientology works“.

Let’s use an example outside of Scientology to see the difference between “it works” and “it does something”.  I’ve lived in a number of old houses, and there seems to always be that one light switch you can’t figure out what it does.  Let’s say the switch is labelled “backyard light”, but it doesn’t seem to have anything to do with that.  It doesn’t work.

But what if, sometimes, when you flip that switch, the kitchen faucet started to drip badly?  What if, at other times, you flip that switch and your cell phone reception in the house gets a lot better?  Well, it sure seems that the switch “does something” — but it still doesn’t work.

These are the kind of “results” that Scientology provides — mostly nothing, sometimes something nice and sometimes something not nice.  It is the “sometimes something nice” that Scientologists remember when they say “It works!”

But, what does “it works” actually mean in the real world?  It means something does what it is supposed to do when it’s supposed to.

Scientology is supposed to bring you up “levels” of greater and greater abilities and powers until you reach “OT”, the “Upper End of The Bridge”.  But it doesn’t.  Scientologists at the “Upper End of The Bridge” have no more abilities or powers than non-Scientologists.

Scientologists hate it when this is pointed out but they can’t deny it.  According to Scientology’s mythos, Scientologists will all be leaders in their fields.  The truth is that none of them are.  The irony is that some of those who may have been leaders in their field before Scientology, no longer are.

In the real world, “it works” means that it, whatever “it” is, produces the intended effect reliably, consistently and predictably.

Predictable: The expected results are known. In Scientology, Scientology’s expected results are enshrined in Hubbard’s “Grade Chart”.  It is in this document that Hubbard makes his miraculous promises for Scientology.  This is what Scientology is supposed to do, although, you’d be hard-pressed to say these promised results are expected by Scientologists today.

Consistent: The expected results happens every time it is run.  In Scientology, this doesn’t happen, ever.  The abilities promised by Hubbard simply don’t happen.  The fact that, for some people, something else happens, does not have any meaning here.  In Scientology, the expected, promised results don’t happen.

Reliable: Unwanted effects don’t happen.  While not talked about much, unwanted effects do happen in Scientology.  In Scientology, it could be said that the unexpected “nice” results and the unwanted “bad” results are equally likely to happen. But the most likely result from any Scientology process is: Nothing much.

So, when a Scientologist says “Scientology works!” they are really only saying “I had something nice happen to me once or twice in Scientology.”  Using Hubbard’s definitions, there are no “Releases”, no “Clears” and no “OTs”.  Scientology often “does something” but — it doesn’t work.

http://therealaskthescientologist.wordpress.com/2013/02/23/scientologists-what-exactly-works/
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« Reply #44 on: May 18, 2013, 08:37:46 AM »

                                    Scientology Hides in Portland

Posted on May 11, 2013   by justbill001

[Guest post from Arthur who was in Portland for the "Grand Opening".]

I dropped by the “Grand Opening” of Scientology’s latest “Ideal Org” in Portland, Oregon.  It was nothing much.  I guess that’s typical of these events.  Only a couple of hundred Scientologists showed up.

As much as it was nothing much, a few things struck me about the event and how Scientology “welcomed itself” into the community.

The overwhelming image and attitude of Scientology in that neighborhood and in that community was,  “We don’t like you, we don’t trust you.  Keep out.”  There were tons of security all over the place plus rented off-duty police.  The police were polite, the Scientologists were most definitely not.  At one point I saw one Scientology “security” person hassling a non-uniformed Scientology security person because he didn’t recognize him.  That was funny.

If you were not a known Scientologist, you were most unwelcome.  Even if you were just curious and only wanted to know what was going on — you were not welcome.

As Bill likes to say, compare Scientology with how a normal organization or a normal church would carry out their Grand Opening.  The whole community would be invited.  Everyone would be welcome.  A normal organization or church would want everyone to show up, participate and feel welcome.

Scientology demands that “All you people stay the hell out of our building.”

And that is why these “Grand Openings”, and all the empty days following them, are such failures.  If you welcome yourself “into the community” by erecting barricades, keeping the community out and harassing those who are curious, you are sending a message that the community is not welcome at the Church of Scientology.  And it’s true!  Go to any Scientology organization and see what their attitude is.   It is, “We don’t like you, we don’t trust you.  If you try hard, you might be welcome here, but we doubt it.”

It’s called a “Bunker Mentality”.  (It has nothing to do with Mark Bunker — a “bunker” is a fortified place to hide.)  That’s Scientology in a nutshell.

You could blame it all on Anonymous, making the problems of Scientology so visible — and that’s true in a superficial way.  Certainly Anonymous was there at Portland’s Grand Opening, but they were small in number and pretty polite, considering.

Anonymous was the spark, but the fuel was there in abundance.  The endless Scientology tricks and lies, the horrible abuses and the crimes were all there.  The Scientology survivors and the witnesses were all there in large numbers.  The continuing crimes, so carefully covered up, were all there.

Scientology has been creating their victims and, consequently, their enemies for over 60 years.  Thanks to Anonymous, it finally became safe to talk about it, document it and finally, finally, bring Scientology to the attention of the law and the courts.

The Church of Scientology is very, very frightened.  That was never more apparent than today, at Scientology’s small “grand” opening of their latest fortress against justice, truth and the very community they claim they want to help.

Arthur

http://therealaskthescientologist.wordpress.com/2013/05/11/375/
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