Archive for May 2009

Meet Scientologist Pat Harney

May 30, 2009

I’ve been posting a bunch of Pat Harney videos lately.   Here’s an intro piece from TomVallar.

Norway Considers Ban

May 30, 2009

Norway is looking into Scientology’s abuses.

Fact vs. Religion

May 29, 2009

That’s the nick of the young woman who interviewed Pat Harney and the former Sea Org Member.  Here are a couple extra videos from her.

And in this one she says this is the moment in the interview with Pat Harney where she just gave up on trying to get anything resembling anything remotely approaching a logical explanation.

Wikipedia Bans Scientology

May 28, 2009

Perhaps giving a suggestion to the government of France, Wikipedia has decided to ban all IP addresses associated with organized Scientology.  No more self-serving edits, according to the UK’s Register.

Exclusive In an unprecedented effort to crack down on self-serving edits, the Wikipedia supreme court has banned contributions from all IP addresses owned or operated by the Church of Scientology and its associates.

Closing out the longest-running court case in Wikiland history, the site’s Arbitration Committee voted 10 to 0 (with one abstention) in favor of the move, which takes effect immediately.

The eighth most popular site on the web, Wikipedia bills itself as “the free encyclopedia anyone can edit.” Administrators frequently ban individual Wikifiddlers for their individual Wikisins. And the site’s UK press officer/resident goth once silenced an entire Utah mountain in a bizarre attempt to protect a sockpuppeting ex-BusinessWeek reporter. But according to multiple administrators speaking with The Reg, the muzzling of Scientology IPs marks the first time Wikipedia has officially barred edits from such a high-profile organization for allegedly pushing its own agenda on the site.

The Church of Scientology has not responded to our request for comment.

Personally, I’m not for bans but I can see how Scientology’s actions would make you want to shut them down.  And if France decides to go the same route, well, who am I to argue?

Interview with Former Sea Org Member

May 28, 2009

The young gal who interviewed Pat Harney next spoke with “Invisible Girl.”

Interview with Pat Harney

May 28, 2009

A young woman interviews Scientology PR rep Pat Harney over the phone.  I haven’t watched this interview yet but it looks like it could be good.  You know if Pat is speaking for an hour, she has plenty of time to tell some whoppers.

French Trial

May 28, 2009

Scientologist Kevin Owen responded in my earlier thread about the trial in France.  He reminded me that I have not put up any coverage of the trial.  He also said every time Scientology is attacked it expands.  Well, get ready for more expansion, Kevin.

Kevin also wants to remind you all that the evil psychs are behind all the attacks on Scientology.

Greta’s Sister an Evil Psych

May 28, 2009

Gawker has a good article about Greta Van Susteran’s sister Lise, the psychiatrist.

Lise van Susteren lives in Bethesda, Md. That’s her, with Greta, in 2005. She is an assistant professor of psychiatry at Georgetown University and completed her residency at St. Elizabeth’s Hospital, a mental institution in Washington, D.C. She’s a board-certified forensic psychiatrist and has served on the staff of mental health centers in Alexandria and Fairfax, Va. She was a consultant to the CIA, where she developed psychological profiles of world leaders. In 2006, she launched a failed Senate bid in Maryland.

Scientology 0n Trial in France

May 25, 2009

From the Independent:

The Church of Scientology in France went on trial today on charges of organised fraud.

Registered as a religion in the United States, with celebrity members such as actors Tom Cruise and John Travolta, Scientology enjoys no such legal protection in France and has faced repeated accusations of being a money-making cult.

The group’s Paris headquarters and bookshop are defendants in the case. If found guilty, they could be fined €5 million ($7 million) and ordered to halt their activities in France.

Seven leading French Scientology members are also in the dock. Some are charged with illegally practising as pharmacists and face up to 10 years in prison and hefty fines.

The case centres on a complaint made in 1998 by a woman who said she was enrolled into Scientology after members approached her in the street and persuaded her to do a personality test.

In the following months, she paid more than €21,000 for books, “purification packs” of vitamins, sauna sessions and an “e-meter” to measure her spiritual progress, she said.

Other complaints then surfaced. The five original plaintiffs – three of whom withdrew after reaching a financial settlement with the Church of Scientology – said they spent up to hundreds of thousands of euros on similar tests and cures.

They told investigators that Scientology members harassed them with phone calls and nightly visits to cajole them into paying their bills or taking out bank loans. The plaintiffs were described as “vulnerable” by psychological experts in the case.

Scientology, founded in 1954 by science fiction writer L Ron Hubbard, describes the “e-meter” as a religious artefact that helps the user and supervisor locate spiritual distress.

Investigators have described the machine as useless and said vitamin cures handed out by Church members were medication that should not have been freely sold.

Judge Jean-Christophe Hullin ruled last year that the offices and members, including the group’s 60-year-old French head, Alain Rosenberg, should be tried. The public prosecutor had recommended the case be shelved.

In a trial that has revived a debate about religious freedom in secular France, the defence is expected to argue the court should not intervene in religious affairs.

Scientology has faced numerous setbacks in France, with members convicted of fraud in Lyon in 1997 and Marseille in 1999. In 2002, a court fined it for violating privacy laws and said it could be dissolved if involved in similar cases.

The headquarters and bookshop account for most of the group’s activities in France and a guilty verdict would in practice mean its dissolution, although it is unclear whether it could still open other branches in the future.

Gold Chat

May 25, 2009

I went to Gold with Andreas Heldal-Lund, Tory and a few others yesterday and made a quick little video.