Thursday, June 19, 2008

Scientology tax-exemption under scrutiny - Judges declare IRS deal unconstitutional

Full transcript, references and higher quality wmv video file available at:

Scientology's unusual deal with the IRS was won after an extraordinary campaign of lawsuits and harassment against the IRS and its officials. Now the secret agreement is under renewed scrutiny. Judges of the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals have declared that it violates the Establishment Clause of the First Amendment, because it treats Scientologists better than members of any other religious group. A former high-level Scientologist has made a sworn statement detailing Organized Scientology's underhanded activities as it attempts to strengthen its grip on our institutions.

Sunday, May 18, 2008

Scientology, "Fair Game" Mafia tactics, and Asbestos Cruise Ships

Scientology Asbestos Ship Hazard

Lloyd's List reports:
"A PANAMA-flagged cruiseship used by the Church of Scientology as its ultimate spiritual retreat remains sealed after a health scare forced refurbishment of the vessel being carried out by Curaçao Drydock Co to be suspended."

The cruise ship is MV Freewinds, the only place where Scientologists can receive OT8 (the highest level in Scientology). The ship is also the site of many other Scientology training courses, functions, and recreational activities. When the Freewinds docks at ports, local residents often attend events held on board. A crew of Scientology staff members live and work on the ship.

So it is extremely worrying that the Freewinds is extensively contaminated with blue asbestos.

A Fox6 report quotes toxicologist Dr. Chris Coggins: "This is the most dangerous type of asbestos because the fibres are smaller than the white asbestos and can penetrate the lung more easily. Once diagnosed with mesothelioma, the victim has six months to a year to live. It gradually reduces lung function until the victim is no longer able to breathe and dies."

According to a 2001 affidavit by a former Scientologist who worked as the ship's architect, Scientology leaders knew about the asbestos problem on the Freewinds since 1987, but did nothing to make the ship safe. Lawrence Woodcraft noted the hazard and reported it promptly. However, his warnings were brushed aside, apparently because senior Scientologists believed that Scientology founder L. Ron Hubbard never stated that asbestos is harmful. In fact, Hubbard actually stated that society took too long to recognize the very real danger of asbestos. In the years since 1987, it has become increasingly evident that asbestos causes cancer.

For 21 years, the Church of Scientology has exposed its own followers and others to a well-known and deadly carcinogen. It appears that this shocking negligence is the result of Scientology leaders' callous disregard for the welfare of human beings.

No apology has been forthcoming from the Church of Scientology, in fact the only comment from spokesperson Karin Pouw has been a bizarre denial which contradicts the information released by Curaçao authorities.


"Fair Game" - Scientology's Mafia-style Revenge Policy

William Smith writes:

"A church is the last thing you would associate with Mafia-style revenge tactics. Yet the Church of Scientology has developed a fearsome reputation across the media, Government agencies, and the critical community. This notoriety is a consequence of a Scientology policy known as "Fair Game" - almost a license to kill, granted to Scientologists when dealing with anyone considered 'enemies' of the church."

"ENEMY - SP Order. Fair game. 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."
- HCO Policy Letter, 18 Oct 1967 Issue IV, Penalties for Lower Conditions

Read the full article about Scientology's Mafia-style tactics at Scientology's Unfair Game

Paulette Cooper writes:

"You may not believe this, but you can write something that someone doesn’t approve of and then—with the help of the government—be bankrupted and have a quarter of your life almost ruined. And you don’t have to live in China or Russia. It can happen right here in New York. I know because it happened to me. I haven’t previously written about this from beginning to end because it’s still painful, but here goes."

Read her full story here:
Looking Over My Shoulder, The Inside Account Of The Story That Almost Killed Me

Scientology's revenge policy is still being practiced today. It is unacceptable for a supposedly religious organization to be behaving in such a barbaric manner in this day and age. "Fair Game" is a paranoid and aggressive doctrine that is incompatible with the values of lawful society.

Thursday, April 24, 2008

ABC Nightline reports: Ex-Scientology Kids Share Their Stories

The ABC News program Nightline reports on the experiences of Jenna Miscavige Hill (niece of Scientology's leader) and Astra Woodcraft, two women who grew up inside Scientology. They describe being separated from family members due to Scientology's disconnection policy, being subjected to repeated interrogation sessions including the use of a crude lie detector, and being used as child labor. Astra Woodraft explains her personal experience of the Scientology Sea Organization (Sea Org) Policy prohibiting Sea Org members from having children - with the options being abortion or expulsion from the Sea Org.

Part 1

Part 2


ABC News - Nightline - Ex-Scientology Kids Share Their Stories

Ex-Scientology Kids

Wednesday, April 16, 2008

Rest In Peace, Kaja.

I was deeply saddened to read the news from Norway.

"The daughter of a member of Norway's parliament committed suicide hours after she received what her family claims were "devastating" results from a personality test administered by the Church of Scientology. Police in France, where the young woman was studying, are investigating."

Read more at:
Police Probe Suicide Linked to Scientologists

An investigation is underway so we must wait to learn the full story.

This tragedy reminds me of another story, that of the Queen St Massacre.

"In the Queen Street massacre case, the Gunmen, Frank Vitkovic, had been tested by the Church of Scientology two months before he shot a number of people in the Queen St Massacre. [27]. [28] "Vitkovic took a personality test carried out by a Church of Scientology volunteer. The results of the test, the Scientology volunteer believed, made her suspect that he might have hit rock bottom. The voluntary worker, Ms Eleanor Simpson, who had no formal training in psychology, believed Vitkovic was extremely depressed. She could recall only one other personality test having a worse result. She did not refer Vitkovic to a psychiatrist but suggested he enrol in the Ups and Downs in Life course run by the Church."[29]. Forensic psychiatrist Dr Alan Bartholemew presented evidence at the trial concerning Scientology's testing of gunman Frank Vitkovic. Bartholemew indicated that the Scientologist's testing of gunman Frank Vitkovic, though revealing that Vitkovic was suffering a serious mental condition, was not treated effectively. Bartholomew also stated that the test itself may have contributed to Vitkovic's mental state before he shot 8 people". [30]
Source: Wikipedia

You may have seen Scientologists offering "Free Personality Tests" or "Stress Tests"
Former Scientologists explain that the tests are used as a recruitment tool. The standard procedure is for test subjects to be told they have various flaws that only Scientology can fix. High pressure sales tactics are employed to make people pay for Scientology books and courses. Psychologists consider the test to be invalid and potentially dangerous.

Read more about the test:

The Scientology Personality Test

Chris Owen's analysis of the test

click image for full size

"She laughed when I asked her to take a stress test. She cried when I found her ruin."

This disturbing image from a Scientology website reveals the manipulative and cruel sales tactics used to sell Scientology books.
Original Source:

Scientologists are trained to "cave in" potential customers to make them feel like Scientology is their only hope. They are instructed to find and exploit a person's "ruin."

Before anyone submits themselves to Scientology's procedures, they should do some research into it and read both sides of the story.

In my opinion, Scientology's practices can be extremely dangerous, particularly for anyone suffering from depression or other mental illnesses.

Rest in Peace

Kaja Bordevich Ballo

Monday, April 14, 2008

Operation Reconnect: Sydney Anons Explain Why We Protest

Scientology's Disconnection Policy Tears Families Apart

Pat Harney, spokesperson for the Church of Scientology, claims "The Church has no policy of disconnecting members from their family"

However, Rev. Gerard Renna of the Church of Scientology in Boston has a different opinion.

BostonNOW asks:
"What can you say about Anonymous' allegations that the Church of Scientology "disconnects" its members from opposing family and friends?"

Rev. Gerard Renna of the Church of Scientology in Boston responds:
"The only reaction is, you have 1,000 church members. Or say 10,000 members. Our church has an open door policy.

"We know of 2.5 percent of these individuals who will have harmful intent to others.

"They will be asked to leave, excommunicated. There is a certain percent in any organization, any religion - even an ex-employee of BostonNOW. It's just a human way of life. It's just human nature that you're going to have people that have to be destructive. They only seek to harm and impede the forward policy of Scientology. They do not want to have the ethical codes to which religion subscribes. They just don't want to be ethical. They try to tear down ethical structure. You try to bring harmony to the group and sometimes these individuals - they actually take themselves out.

"Sometimes when you help a person a lot they ... separate themselves because of the harmful acts they do. No one looks at the fact these people who are expelled, they take themselves out. With anyone like that, you have criticism that results."

Source: Boston Now - Scientology vs Anonymous, Local Battle Heats Up

In other words, the Church of Scientology considers 2.5% of Scientologists (or any group of people) to be "suppressive persons" - people who should be ignored and abandoned.

I strongly disagree with such a callous and arbitrary policy.

Scientology is hurting families with their harmful policy of Disconnection.

How You Can Stop a Dangerous Cult

Anonymous and Scientology Explained. Video By Thunderf00t