The boys are back in town with Tithing Through The Teeth, http://www.tampabay.com/news/scientology/scientology-benefits-when-miami-dentist-runs-up-patient-bills/1135436
I suggest you read the article, then read Samuel’s comment and Don’s comment below which adds info and connects some dots:
The WISE Directory for 2006 lists “Rene Piedra & Associates” as “MAKH – Model of Admin Know-How – Winner, 4 years” and as a CEO Circle Member (highest, some $ 30K per year, WISE membership status). The article already says that the c of m is about to pay 350K in a settlement to bar suits against Scientology entities (although Tommy Davis stated that the c of m has no involvement with what Piedra did – so why pay, if you are not involved?). Only thing missing is an SP Declare on Piedra to show the c of m’s “outrage” over what Piedra did and how they know nothing of the oh how so off-policy actions he has committed bla bla bla (has happened to others before – earliest case I am aware of was in Germany, IAS donors, went to jail and got declared, somewhere in the 80′s) … only, I don’t think we’ll ever see such a SP Declare – way too public and up for scrutiny!!!. Maybe a new SP category (SSP = Secret SP) or did Jeff already have a better label for them. There will come a point and hopefully soon where the c of m simply cannot buy itself out of the trouble it created with the money it defrauded from its Kool-aid drinking members . – Samuel
To the current Church members who secretly look at this blog:
This dentist, Rene Piedra, ran a business model that is NEARLY identical to your Church. Yet it failed since he, among other reasons, couldn’t hide behind the protection of religion. Here are the similarities:
1. He/His group pressured people to pay for service they, in many cases, could not afford – and didn’t care if they over extended themselves to the point of financial hardship.
2. Took money for service far in excess of his ability to deliver them. (note; back in 96 the FSO had 45 million of services that had been paid for yet undelivered. I understand that number has ballooned way past that though I do not what it is today)
3. Block and impede any attempt on refunds. I hear the church has “HANDLED” this problem by having people sign documents that give up their right to refunds.
4. Sold things to people “packages” that they were not even close to being ready for eg: Implants and whitening, when other rudimentary procedures were most pressing. (Note: I can’t tell you how many times I’ve seen people pay for Ls, IAS donations or Solo Nots packages, who didn’t even have their grades paid for! Why use limited financial resources on paying for Solo Nots when what you need is Grades?
But here are the differences between the Church’s model and that of Rene Piedra:
1. Rene was unable to stem refunds by threatening family disconnection or denial of “spiritual advancement” through declares.
2. Rene was required to deliver a product whereas the Church’s collection efforts seem today to be more geared to just straight donations (buildings,books, IAS etc) with this they are not financially accountable to any specific “donator”.
3. Rene can’t use the wide range protections afforded a church.
Your church’s business model is geard toward aquiring wealth and assets, NOT delivering a service or product with the “customer” in mind. You can dispute this if you’d like, but good luck trying to make your case.
If the Church was to use the vast amounts of money they collect (straight donation, IAS, Books, Buldings, services etc) and use it to offer auditor scholar-ships, grants or to subsidized auditing or otherwise make it as easy an affordable as possible to move people up through the levels – that would be one thing. If that were happening you could make the case that your Church’s actions were philanthropy and geared to helping people. But a fat “war chest” and extravegent buildings can not produce one division of tone arm action for anyone.
No, the ACTIONS of C of S show an operationed geared toward “wealth acquistion” with as little “exchange” as possible, maybe a Condition 1 or 2 level of exchange. In terms of money your church may be succeeding, but is doing so at the expense of the tenets and philosophy you hold dear.
Rene applied the C of S “collection model” to a service driven industry and defrauded those who trusted him. – Don