Monday, 26 September 2011

Brainwashing in Scientology's Gulags.

A. Excessive Exercise--The Running Program

Forced running was a universal aspect in the RPF, but
leaders also used it as a specific punishment. According to a
person who was on the Apollo, Hubbard devised the "running
program" as a punishment against a member whom he thought "needed
some discipline."  He ordered the member "to do fifty laps around
the prom[enade] deck. [The member] did about twenty and declared
[that] he had done fifty. I remember distinctly, and he got away
with it" (Kent Interview with Ernesto, 1997: 5). With the advent
of the RPF, running quickly became a standard punishment.
     The location of the running punishment, of course, varied
according to the location of the RPF program. Monica Pignotti,
who was in the RPF on the Apollo, wrote a particularly clear
description of the running punishment that she experienced in the
early months of 1975:
     We had to scrub down the entire bathroom, including all the
     bulkheads (walls) and ceilings. After we cleaned an area, it
     had to pass a white glove inspection. If the glove came up
     dirty, the person who cleaned the area had to run laps from
     bow to stern of the ship (about 1/5 of a mile each). One
     time, when my senior wasn't satisfied with the way I cleaned
     a bathroom, she ordered me to 'take a lap.' I protested
     because I thought she was being unfair and her reply was,
     'Don't Q&A with me. Take two laps.' I objected again and she
     said, 'Take four laps.' This went on until I was up to about
     10 laps, which I eventually had to do (Pignotti, 1989: 23).
Using the "technical" language of Scientology, Pignotti had been
put on "rocks and shoals"--penalties for Sea Org members
(Hubbard, 1976b: 449). 
     From her Fort Harrison RPF experience, Anne Rosenblum
indicated that the "rocks and shoals" punishments often included
sit-ups and push-ups in addition to running laps "up and down the
garage ramp" (Rosenblum, n. d.: 2). Dennis Erlich also reported
"having to run up and down the parking structure..." (Kent
Interview with Erlich, 1997: 16). In the Cedars complex in Los
Angeles, rocks and shoals involved "running the stairwells" or
taking "laps around the entire complex" (Kent Interview with Pat,
1997: 27). The most difficult running punishments apparently took
place at either the Gilman Hot Springs or Happy Valley RPF
programs, where formerly high ranking Sea Org members had to run
around either a tree or a pole for twelve hours a day.  Julie
Mayo indicated that she "was put on a running program for 12
hours a day, 7 days a week, and made to run around a tree in all
types of extreme desert conditions" (J. Mayo, 1996: 7). Her
husband, David, reported that he "was forced to run around a tree
in the desert in temperatures of up to 110 degrees for 12 hours a
day, 7 days a week for 3 months..." (D. Mayo, 1994: 3). Vicki
Aznaran made a similar claim about having "to run around an
orange telephone pole from 7:00 a.m. until 9:30 p.m. in the
evening, with 10 minute rests every one-half hour, and 30 minute
breaks for lunch and dinner" (Aznaran and Aznaran, 1988: 9).
Taken approximately two years ago from this video
Many Thanks to Weiber on OCMB for this still photo.

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