Sunday, 25 August 2013

On this day...

I-Team: Alleged Co-Conspriator had Ties to Scientology  Scientology boom // A disputed religion growth
Date: Monday, 25 August 1969
Publisher: San Francisco Chronicle (California)
Author: Donovan Bess
Main source: link (262 KiB)
Today and tonight hundreds — perhaps thousands — of Californians will sit down in pairs and stare at one another.

One of them will give the other commands such as "Tell me something you wouldn't mind forgetting."

The one who is commanded will hold two tin cans attached by wires to an E-meter, a device that measures electrical resistance in the body. The commander will watch a needle on the device's circuit board in the belief that it measures emotional charge.

These people are doing "processing" in the Church of Scientology, which has decided this is its biggest year throughout the world. Today it has twice as many members in California as it had a year ago — and it's all out to take over the whole State.

It grows in spite of peristent legal actions against it by various governments. It now has a major church here and missions in Berkeley, Pato Alto and Santa Clara.

Scientology is being investigated by the British government, which last year issued an order banning foreigners from coming to the island to study at the church's world headquarters at East Grinstead, Sussex. 

The investigators want to know if it's socially harmful.

The Australian state of Victoria has banned Scientology outright.

In the United States the momvement has been up to its hips in litigation. The Internal Revenue Service has contended it's not a church but a money-maker in the free-enterprise tradition. The courts don't agree.



The Food and Drug Administration has been upset about the E-meter, which Scientologists rely on to measure their efforts to "flatten" problems. The courts have not upheld the FDA.

The E-meter is the piece of hardware that gives the people in "training" and "processing" a dramatic feeling of being psychological engineers.

They also gather a sense of surety by following the precise drills laid out for them in writing by L. Ron Hubbard, the founder of the church and author of a book which gave the world, in 1950, a book on "Dianetics" that is the basis of the movement.



With Scientology, Hubbard has blended the "mental health" theories in Dianetics into a theology through which he is venerated as a potential world savior.

In the church's buildings, large, blown-up photographs of Hubbard are placed in commanding positions on the walls.

"Processing" takes you through seven "grades of release" during sessions with an "auditor" who gives you commands and repeatedly asks you questions. The object is to lure you into uncovering incidents repressed into your subconscious mind.

Example: a young man recently came to the San Francisco church at 414 Mason street with a history of headaches. By pounding away with commands and questions from a Hubbard manual, the auditor got the young man to remember he had once been shot in the head. A church spokesman said the headaches cleared up.



The auditor tries not to feel emotion as he processes his novitiate. He keeps a sharp eye on the E-meter needle.

If the needle jumps, you're supposed to be battling painful memories. When the needle "floats free," near the center of the circuit board, you're supposed to get a "release." So you're passed to the next grade.

In "training," you learn how to become an auditor by practicing on other church members.

When you make your first inquiry at your local Scientology church or mission, you're assured that if you head up "the whole track" toward "Clear" you'll win friends, influence people, and probably get more money.



As a Clear, you're officially beyond the personal, emotional troubles that blighted your life before you were converted.

Clear used to be the top. But Hubbard keeps inventing new levels. Now there are six grades of Operating Thetan (OT) levels above Clear. An OT has "total cause over matter, energy, space, time and thought" and "is not in a body," the Scientology Abridged Dictionary says. Hubbard has written that an OT conceives of himself as "some distance from the body."

People on the road to Clear and beyond tell how they've experimented with off-beat religions, drugs or yoga and concluded that Scientology offers just as much salvation, but does it faster.



Testimonials are passed out by your Success Director. You learn, for instance, how actor Stephen Boyd got processed to OT-6. "I guess," he has concluded, "that is about six steps above Nirvana."

These days Hubbard is cruising in the Mediterranean on the Apollo, a 5000-ton former British ferryboat recently fitted out with thick, deep-blue carpeting. It's the flagship of Scientology's mysterious "Sea Organization." On board Hubbard is doing research on two new OT levels.

This 58-year-old native of Nebraska is a likeable man who first won fame as the author of science fiction with an "Arabian Nights" flavor. Early this year he issued directives that 1969 is to be a boom year for his church. He has set up a system of assuring religious productivity that would be envied by Robert McNamara.



Hubbard's personal "missionaire," John McMaster, says the income to the world-wide church was only $10,000 a week in January, 1968, but rose to $140,000 in the succeeding six months.

The American church claims 250,000 members in California, two and a half times more than a year ago. 

And there are three churches and nine missions in Southern California.

The land headquarters of Scientology is in Saint Hill Manor House, a 30-room, baronial mansion in Sussex occupied by the Maharajah of Jaipur before Hubbard bought it.

Americans heading for Clear had to go there to get it. But with the British restrictions on foreigners. Clear and OT grades are offered at the church's Advanced Organization in Los Angeles.



Scientologists estimate the cost of getting Clear at $4000 to $5000. In the San Francisco church, you can get the first four grades of processing for a package price of $617.50 if you pay in advance.

If you want a carreer in the church you go in for training. To become a Hubbard Advanced Auditor, the package price is $1300 or $1235 if you pay in advance.

But on June 1 Hubbard put out a $500 quickie course by which you can get on the staff as an auditor in two months.

Alan Albert, director of training for the Palo Alto Scientology mission, said he made $17,500 last year as a Philco-Ford executive. He quit this job after spending 750 hours in Scientology auditing — and, he reported, he makes "about the same" salary now.

Top officials of the church in Los Angeles said, however, that's an unusually lucrative situation.

(Tomorrow: It's the True Way, say the young converts.)
[Picture / Caption: SCIENTOLOGY 'MISSIONAIRE' JOHN McMASTER // The E-meter at work, measuring emotional energy]
[Picture / Caption: A portrait of L. Ron Hubbard dominates a room in the Los Angeles Scientology headquarters]

Doubts over 'new image' // Scientologists expel 12 but... // 'I don't think it will work' says vicar
Date: Thursday, 25 August 1983
Publisher: East Grinstead Courier (UK)
Main source: link (127 KiB)

THE ANNOUNCEMENT that the Scientologists have kicked out 12 key members of their UK headquarters staff at Saint Hill Manor, East Grinstead, as part of a policy change, has received a mixed reception in the town.

East Grinstead's mayor Cr Ray Boulger said that if the Scientologists were genuinely trying to purge themselves, then it was in everyone's interests to try to promote better relations.

But the Rev Roger Brown, vicar of St Swithun's parish church, East Grinstead, said the history of the sect showed that it just shifted ground when the public seemed not favourably disposed towards it.

"I don't think the image-changing will work," he said.

The "excommunications", for misconduct, follow an internal investigation prompted by the conviction and imprisonment of senior Scientologists in the United States.

Several other staff in the Guardian's office at East Grinstead have been moved to other positions. The expulsion of the 12 was recommended by Mrs Edith Buchele, the movement's new external affairs director in Britain, after she uncovered what she describes as "a complete mess".

Charges against the 12 included misuse of funds to launch a series of libel actions, particularly against British newspapers but also against Scotland Yard and the Department of Health and Social Security.

It was also alleged that one senior member of the Guardian's office staff had falsely claimed to be a barrister.

The Scientologists say the movement, as defined by its founder, Mr Ron Hubbard, at least 20 years ago, was to use legal means only as a last resort and to maintain friendly relations with the environment and public.

The Guardian's Office, which at one point had a staff of about 40, was closed this year when the last expulsion happened. The international side of the Church of Scientology at East Grinstead had now been transferred to Los Angeles. The original "open policy" which had been taken out by the 12 has been restored, a sect spokesman claimed this week.

Mr Mike Garside, public affairs officer for the movement, said the announcement had come at the end of process which had been going on for about 2½ years. They had wanted to make sure the church and its external [rest of article missing]

[Picture / Caption: THE team that stays — Mrs Edith Buchele, the new external affairs director (centre) of the UK headquarters of the Scientology movement at Saint Hill Manor, East Grinstead, pictured with other staff at Saint Hill. On the left is Mr Mike Garside, the movement's public affairs officer, and Cathy Sproule, director official affairs. On the right is Mr Robert Springall, director of public affairs, and Barbara Bradley, public affairs assistant. In the background can be seen the "castle" complex used for counselling, administration and as a study centre]

Scientology guard released on $5,000 bond
Date: Saturday, 25 August 1984
Publisher: Clearwater Sun (Florida)
Author: George-Wayne Shelor
Main source: link (113 KiB)

A Church of Scientology security guard, charged with false imprisonment late Thursday after police said he tackled and handcuffed a 21-year-old Clearwater man, was released on $5,000 bond Friday.

Roy Rosa Rodriguez, 30, who listed his address as the sect's headquarters at 210 S. Fort Harrison Ave., was arrested after he tried unsuccessfully to spray a suspected vandal with "Paralyzer" mace and subsequently tackled him and handcuffed the man's hands behind his back, police said.

A Church of Scientology official refused Friday to comment on the incident.

According to police reports:

A small piece of cement was thrown through a 6- by 5-foot window of a sect building at 500 Cleveland Street at about 9 p.m. Thursday. Four security guards, including Rodriguez, were in the building standing from 15 to 40 feet from the window. The window, covered with a reflective film, prevents persons inside the building from seeing out at night.

After "fumbling with the door's lock for a while," the security guards rushed out onto Fort Harrison Avenue and, seeing no one, three of them ran to Laura Street where a passerby told them, "He went that way," and pointed toward the bayfront.

Shortly thereafter, police were called to the Pierce 100 building where they found three sect security guards leading another man in handcuffs. The man, James M. Williams, a 21-year-old former sect employee, denied any involvement in breaking the window. He told investigators he was walking down the road when he saw the guards running toward him, "became scared" and ran from them.

When he got to the bayfront, he fell into the water tying to elude a guard and when he got out was again chased, tackled and handcuffed by Rodriguez.

All four were taken, voluntarily, to the police station where Rodriguez was arrested after taped interviews.
Rodriguez, after being read his rights, "admitted to handcuffing Williams" stating he thought Williams had thrown the brick through the window although he acknowledged he had not seen the culprit.

Williams, whose legs were cut during the brief struggle, was released. He said another man be had seen in the area may have thrown the brick. No one had been arrested in connection with the incident late Friday.
Richard Haworth, the sect's spokesman in Clearwater, refused several times to comment on the incident. Specifically he would not say why Church of Scientology guards carry mace and handcuffs or if Rodriguez would be disciplined.

However, interviewed about the guards several weeks ago—shortly after they appeared around Clearwater sect buildings—Haworth said: "They're not guards, it's just a change of clothes for people we've always had.

"They're around and are more visible, but it's all part of what's always been here for our security force. They do what any other security force do at any other building or any other church."

A telephone survey of 12 area churches, including different denominations, showed none has guards on staff.
Scientology has uniformed guards at many of its buildings around the country, and on more than one occasion a reporter has been challenged by them while on public property.

In May, while standing on a public street, a Clearwater Sun reporter was taking pictures of the sect's Hollywood, Calif., "Cedar's Complex" when sect guards demanded his film.

Two khaki-uniformed men who said they represented "Scientology" said they thought it "strange" anyone would want to take pictures of the building—an 8½-acre, eight-story building painted sky blue. They further asked what the reporter—who acknowledged he was a member of the media from out-of-state—was doing and then, as two other guards approached, demanded that he surrender his film. The reporter refused and left the area.

Last week a Sun reporter and a reporter for the St. Petersburg Times were standing on the sidewalk on the north side of the former Fort Harrison Hotel when Haworth approached from within the sect's courtyard and asked the Sun reporter what business he had on the sidewalk.

When a uniformed security guard approached, Haworth waved him away saying "I'll handle this," and following a brief conversation, the reporters left.

Scientologists charge Sun reporter with bias
Date: Saturday, 25 August 1984
Publisher: Clearwater Sun (Florida)
Author: Howard French
Main source: link (113 KiB)

Church of Scientology public affairs director Richard Haworth has accused Clearwater Sun Managing Editor Samuel E. Fenton and staff writer George-Wayne Shelor of attempting to break into the church's Clearwater headquarters earlier this month, after attending a sect press conference.

As a result of the alleged break-in attempt and other "bizarre actions" on Shelor's part, Haworth said the reporter is banned from church property and is allowed to communicate with him only in writing.

Shelor has written a series of stories over the past eight months examining the sect's activities.
Friday, Haworth lashed out at Shelor for what he called the reporter's "criminal" connections.

"Basically, George-Wayne Shelor is working for two people," he said, "not just the Clearwater Sun but someone else. I don't know who that other person is, but it could very well be Michael Flynn—or some other criminal."

Flynn is a Boston attorney who, as a representative of former Scientologists, has filed 25 suits against the sect, and assisted Clearwater officials in drafting laws to regulate non-profit organizations, including the sect. Scientologists have accused Flynn of forging a $2 million check to discredit sect founder L. Ron Hubbard.
Haworth also called Shelor a "high school dropout who has lied to me, invaded the privacy of our parishioners and engaged in other bizarre activities." And, he said, Shelor has "brought all this (criticism) on himself."

Allegations about an attempted break-in, along with several other accusations, came in an Aug. 22 letter addressed to Clearwater Sun Publisher Richard W. Cosgrove. According to Haworth, a sect security guard purportedly noticed the alleged break-in attempt as Fenton and Shelor were leaving an Aug. 15 press conference held in the former Fort Harrison Hotel's Crystal Ballroom.

"After the press conference was concluded, Mr. Shelor and Mr. Fenton left the building ostensibly to return to the Sun's offices," the letter states. "They both were spotted a little later trying to gain unauthorized access to the Fort Harrison by yanking on a locked side door. When approached by one of our security guards and asked if he could help them, Mr. Shelor replied, 'Yes, you can tie my shoe.'"

The letter went on to accuse Shelor of consistently misquoting Haworth and other sect spokesmen, of entering the sect's bookstore without identifying himself as a reporter and of calling a radio talk show to question Scientology International President Heber Jentzsch, also without identifying himself.

In response, Fenton said he and Shelor were startled on the day of the press conference when they were confronted by the sect's security guard on the public sidewalk in front of the former hotel. Fenton said they had ducked out of the wind briefly into the shelter of the doorway to light cigarettes, and made no attempt to regain entry to the building they had emerged from only moments before.

"The allegations are absolutely false," he said. "We were not trying in any way to enter the Fort Harrison Hotel—just trying to light a cigarette on a windy day."

As for Shelor's activities at the bookstore and on the radio program, Fenton said the reporter committed no breach of conduct in either case.

"I have full confidence in Mr. Shelor's reporting abilities," he said, "and he will continue to report news of general interest about the Church of Scientology. And while I find the church's attempts to muzzle Mr. Shelor a bit childish, we will continue to present a balanced view of all news relating to the Church of Scientology."
Haworth stopped short of saying he intends to file a formal complaint with police over the incident, but said he is turning the matter over to the sect's attorneys.

But sect attorney Paul Johnson minimized the issue, saying he is sure his clients have no intention of pressing charges against the two men.

"I would never recommend such a thing," he said. "My relationship with (Shelor) is very good ... and I've found him to be very fair and to quote me accurately."

Johnson said he could understand how Haworth might "express frustration" over Shelor's "flip response" to the sect's security guard, but added he does not believe the church intends to pursue the matter further.

"Now that everyone has had his say," he said, "I hope to see both sides get along with each other."

and in reply...on this day tomorrow 26th August...

Editorials of the Sun // It's the Scientologists who are acting 'bizarre'
Date: Sunday, 26 August 1984
Publisher: Clearwater Sun (Florida)
Main source: link (76 KiB)

It's ironic that Scientology spokesman Richard Haworth has accused Clearwater Sun Staff Writer George-Wayne Shelor of "bizarre behavior."

Haworth has announced he will no longer respond to questions from the reporter. He accused Shelor of a long list of offenses, including an attempt to break into the sect's headquarters on S. Fort Harrison Avenue.

And, Haworth added, Shelor was abetted in the attempted break-in by Clearwater Sun Managing Editor Sam Fenton.

Flabbergasted by the charge, Fenton said he and Shelor were approached by a guard while trying to light a cigarette in a side doorway of the Scientology building on a windy day.

Even as Haworth's allegations were being discussed at the newspaper, a report came in from Clearwater Police that a Scientology guard had been arrested on a charge of false imprisonment. Police said the security guard, Roy Rodriguez, chased and handcuffed a former sect member who was walking near a Scientology building on Cleveland Street.

A rock had earlier been thrown through the window, police said.

It was the second incident in three months involving apparently paranoid behavior by a Scientology guard. Police said they lectured another guard for subjecting a passing bicyclist to a "sidewalk shakedown" May 3.

Earlier this year, police were summoned twice to Scientology headquarters when visiting members of the sect were forcibly prevented from leaving for the airport.

Given the police record and the evidence submitted to courts in the United States, Britain and Canada, it's the Scientologists who deserve to be called "bizarre."

They have also been described in courts of law as: paranoid, sinister, dangerous, exploitative, fraudulent, coercive, conspiratorial, lawbreaking, violent, threatening and corrupt.

Were it not our duty to provide the public with their side of the many allegations against the sect, we would be the ones refusing to speak to the Scientology leaders.

As it is, we will continue to report their statements, and if they refuse to answer Shelor's calls, we will assign a go-between.

It sounds childish, we know. But that what happens when you get mixed up with Scientologists.

No comments:

Post a Comment