Monthly Archives: February 2012

Taking Liberties with Religion

When Mike Rinder and I first read accounts of the absurd statement David Miscavige’s local San Antonio counsel George Spencer read to the court on Friday 10 February during Miscavige’s Santa Annaian surrender, we both independently noted tell-tale signs that it was authored by David Miscavige himself.

Now that the transcript from that day of proceedings is in, those suspicions are pretty much confirmed.

One of the indications that the words came right from the pen of Miscavige is the back handed slander and libel of L Ron Hubbard and Scientology it invokes.

More than two years ago I noted on this blog – perhaps in the comments section – that Miscavige’s defense to the statements of me, Amy, Tom, and Mike about the Hole at Miscavige’s Scientology Inc heaquarters was out and out blaming his crimes on L Ron Hubbard policy.  The following are the Miscavige orchastrated responses to the original Tampa Times Truth Rundown series testimony to Miscavige’s wholesale aggravated assault & battery, false imprisonment and the psychological torture on par with Abu Ghraib prison:

Church spokesmen confirm that managers are ordered into pools and assembled for group confessions. It’s part of the “ecclesiastical justice” system the church imposes on poor performers.

The Sea Org is a “crew of tough sons of bitches,” said church spokesman Tommy Davis, an 18-year veteran of the group.

“The Sea Org is not a democracy. The members of it agree with a man named L. Ron Hubbard. They abide by his policies . . . and we follow it to the T, to the letter, to the punctuation marks. And if you disagree with that and you don’t like it, you don’t belong. Then you leave.”

And please hear Tommy’s channeling of Miscavige here, Tommy Davis Audio, pull up “a disciplined religious order” segment.

Well, February 10 2012 demonstrated that Miscavige has not changed his spots, and has made no ethics change – nay, he’s getting worse.  Same old same, only more submerged and covert.  Please read the following segment from the 10 Feb David Miscavige Surrender Hearing:

We’re very concerned that the defendants have used the Court proceedings to entangle this Court in fundamental ecclesiastical matters that need to be avoided under the First Amendment. Over a century ago our United States Supreme Court made it clear that courts must abstain from examining matters which concern church discipline. In fact, just last month, in a unanimous decision, the Supreme Court reaffirmed the prohibition of judicial interference with religious liberties and the power to determine matters of discipline, faith, and internal organization in the Hosanna-Tabor Evangelical Lutheran Church and School versus EEOC. That was January 12th of this year. And the proceedings of yesterday were in violation of that. 

That is how David Miscavige characterizes a day of Debbie Cook’s testimony in which she described false imprisonment, aggravated assault and battery, torture, and kidnapping all carried out at the direction of David Miscavige.

 “Fundamental ecclesiastical matters”, “Church discipline”, “discipline, faith, and internal organization”, and – sit down if you are not already sitting – “religious liberties.”   In order to invoke the law Miscavige’s counsel has cited, the church must claim the conduct Debbie has testified to is mandated by scriptures of Scientology (legally defined as the written and recorded-spoken words of L Ron Hubbard concerning Scientology).

Never mind that Miscavige, not Debbie Cook, dragged the dispute (and thus the conduct he says doesn’t belong in court) into court.  Never mind that his factual nexus between L Ron Hubbard scripture and his unconscionable conduct can’t be made. Never mind that even if he could, the supreme court case cited couldn’t possibly shield the activity Debbie has testified to.  Do mind, however, what this sociopath is doing.

David Miscavige is having to spend a bundle of parishioner donations to get a guy with the reputation of Spencer to tell a court with a straight face that TORTURE, KIDNAPPING, FALSE IMPRISONMENT, STALKING, AND AGGRAVATED ASSAULT AND BATTERY are STANDARD L RON HUBBARD SCIENTOLOGY RELIGIOUS PRACTICES and thus off limits for the court to even hear, let alone consider.

Miscavige wants to spend the religious recognition capital we struggled decades for to protect his heinous, serial felonies from scrutiny.  More fundamentally, Miscavige – once again – wants to heave L Ron Hubbard under the bus.

Line in the sand, indeed.

An Open Letter To My Friends by Debbie Cook

Dear Friends,

On 31 Dec 2011 I sent an email that I hoped would help Scientologists around the world to involve themselves in the direction of the Scientology Religion and also to remind them that LRH empowered all Scientologists to do all they can to keep things strictly to LRH tech and policy.

I never spoke to the press and asked that it be kept from them. I also made it clearly known to the Office of Special Affairs that I had no plans for any further action and asking that our family, friends and business associates not be pressured to “disconnect” from us.

In response I received no communication from the Church at all, but rather every one of my Scientology clients was instructed to disconnect from me and my company was tanked. Further, my Scientology friends and family were contacted and ordered to disconnect.

Further still the Church of Scientology filed suit against me, demanding a legal injunction requiring complete silence on the subject of Scientology and $300,000 in damages.

The first part of that legal action occurred on 9 Feb, where the Church’s legal counsel asked of the Texas courts to legally silence me. They withdrew that filing the very next day after the court heard a very small sample of the physical abuse committed behind the closed doors of the International Scientology Base. But that was thanks to the 100% support of Marty and Mike and a few others very dear friends who were there to help guide us through this. It was especially due to an attorney and his team who came from the very heavens.

I have since done some press interviews, only with the intention of making it clear that these issues of duress and confinement are not based on the scriptures of the Scientology religion or the works of L. Ron Hubbard. They are the doings of an individual or a few individuals. And that Scientology and L. Ron Hubbard are kind and caring and good.

Before me now is the damages case, where DM will demand millions of dollars in damages from me.

But for now, the first battle was won.

And for this, I want to thank from the bottom of my heart each and every one of you who supported me through this time, my true friends. From the well over one thousand people who sent emails and letters of support to the hundreds of people who donated to my legal defense, thank you!

In my moment of need, many stepped forward. People I knew and people I didn’t. Scientologists in “good standing” and those who aren’t. And Scientologists with some real heart-wrenching stories to tell. And not just Scientologists, but people from all faiths and all walks of life who saw that a great injustice was afoot and stepped forward to help prevent it. And together in this first round, we prevailed.

However, this fight is far from over and if truth is to prevail, your positive support and help will make all the difference.

Please know who I am. I support L Ron Hubbard. I have seen L Ron Hubbard’s technology create many miracles. There is no question in my mind that Scientology books and lectures as written by L Ron Hubbard hold tremendous benefit for anyone who just takes the writings as they are and applies them. I have seen the lame walk. I have seen emotionally broken people renewed. I have seen relationships healed. And I have seen these things over and over and over again. Nothing could ever shake my belief in the value of L Ron Hubbard’s philosophical writings.

I will do whatever is needed to ensure that the Scientology religion moves forward into the 21st Century in the spirit of love, compassion and kindness.

So that is who I am.

At this time, I have more friends than I had before I made this stand, far more. And we have our integrity. And it feels damn good.

From the bottom of my heart, thank you.

Debbie Cook

United Kingdom re Debbie Cook

The Daily Mail online

The Sun

The Times of London

Stateside:

Radar Online

 

Prisoner of War and Miscavige Hole Inmate

Please compare the video posted at KABC TV of Debbie Cook signing her walking papers from Misavige’s Hole with the video of an American POW in a North Vietnamese prison camp.  See any parallels?

Where’s the Love?

Tony Ortega’s Open Letter to Tom Cruise

San Antonio Current: Scn Inc v Cook

Village Voice: Shane Kelsey case

Battle of San Antonio: A Review

On day one of Scientology Inc v Debbie Cook, after witnessing the opening statements of Ray Jeffrey and George Spencer, after Debbie Cook was called as first witness of the plaintiff, and after being dismissed from the courtroom as announced witnesses, Mike Rinder and I took a leisurely stroll at the Riverwalk in downtown San Antonio.  We could relax for a moment since by then we were assured that  we owned David Miscavige.

We talked about the state of David Miscavige’s mind as reflected in his handling of the Battle of San Antonio. Our walk was relaxed because we knew that Miscavige’s  arrogant, ill-advised first move would be his last – calling Debbie Cook to the stand.  I said to Mike, “these days, watching Scientology Inc Legal is like watching a Tommy Davis PR performance.”  Mike mused about how predictable it was that Miscavige would react as we figured he would to our message from the Alamo.

We reflected on how after our announcing to the world that Miscavige was following right in the footsteps of infamous general and despot Santa Anna, he had ignored the well-known aphorism of philosopher George Santayana:

“Those who cannot learn from history are doomed to repeat it.”

That is not say that all was sea shells and balloons on the front lines – but we knew at that point there was no reversing the fact that the Scientology Inc locomotive was headed straight into the train wreck of the century.

Even then though, we did not suspect that within 24 hours Miscavige would channel Santa Anna right on down to waving the white flag, and fleeing across the Texas plains in his underwear.

A Scientology Inc outright surrender is unprecedented in circumstances such as these.

Yes, Scientology Inc has paid huge sums of money at the courthouse steps in exchange for silencing Public Relations and Legal nightmares.

But, never has Scientology Inc surrendered after the damage was already done, and never in such a pathetic, thoroughly embarrassing fashion.

On my way out of San Antonio, I had a visit with Village Voice Editor In Chief Tony Ortega.  Tony asked me why the Surrender at San Antonio was so epic.

I told Tony that in order to fully appreciate the answer he needed a little history lesson, as follows.

The Temporary Restraining Order(TRO)/Preliminary Injunction (PI) procedure is relatively standard in most states in America.  Since 1981 Mike and I had helped Scientology Inc capitalize on it to crush, punish and silence many people.  Generally, one can get the TRO with no notice to the defendant, and then the defendant has but ten days to put together a complete defense in a hearing for a PI.  That means scrambling together for bread and trying to hire someone competent to enter a thoroughly unremunerative and unrewarding battle field and get him prepared for the unpreparable.  Very few that Mike and I could recall had ever been able to get it together in that time frame.  So, dozens of times we had used the weapon successfully to muzzle a defendant from the outset and for the remaining two to five year period the case would take to get to ultimate trial.  It was like shackling the defendant to the whipping post, then using the two to five years of litigation process to bury, punish, and bankrupt him or her with harassing discovery and motion work.  And while ultimately the defendant might prevail at trial (e.g. Gerry Armstrong, Joe Yanny), in many ways the person was ruined and enervated by that time.

Mike and I knew that it was no coincidence that from January 1, 2012 to this day Office of Special Affairs (OSA, dirty tricks and propaganda arm of Scientology Inc) had every available operative in the field pushing one message and one message alone toward Debbie Cook and Wayne Baumgarten:  whatever you do, stay away from Marty.   We read that like a telegram authored by Miscavige: we’re isolating Debbie for the whipping post treatment.

As one can read at exhibit B to Defendants’ Original Answer filed in the Bexar county courthouse, as late as January 15 (12 days prior to the Temporary Restraining Order), the OSA line had some effect.  Debbie pled with OSA to leave her alone with this distancing claim:  “I am also certain at this point that it was Marty and the Independents that worked so hard to get that comm into the press.”  That was claimed despite the fact the “press” had her email before I even did, and I’ve never worked, let alone “worked so hard”, to get anything into the press, and notwithstanding the fact I had already informed Debbie through a mutual friend of the identities of two confirmed OSA agents whom she and Wayne had already befriended and trusted since 1 January.  Regardless of Debbie’s mistrust, Mike and I still noted in my blog that it would not take long for Miscavige to force Debbie toward her only hope of a decent defense.  And so we proceeded to raise funds for that purpose.

It was not until Debbie and Wayne were served with a Temporary Restraining Order that I received a call that she wanted help.

Here is where the formidable Independent network really came into play.  First, mutual friends Yvonne and Ken Schick arranged a meeting at a secluded several acre residence where no OSA interference was possible.  Another Independent paid the airfare to get Mike Rinder out to Texas immediately. Another Independent (Action Jackson Morehead) stood in for Mike in Florida to complete the move that he and Christie were in the middle of when the call for help arose.  Probably the most crucial clutch play of the game also came from a Texas Independent.  His many years of ethical business practice and consequent connections lead us to the biggest star of the entire battle, Sugar Ray Jeffrey.

Mike and I have worked with some of the most expensive and accomplished lawyers in countries across the world for several decades; and both of us recognized the day we met him that Ray was the only horse that could run the course before us in the time allotted to prepare.  Normally, an attorney of his capability (with the level of competence and dedication of his partner and associate) would cost far more than we could afford.  But, because Ray and his team were quick to understand the facts, and were moved by the principles and equities involved, we were able to retain him through the hearing of this week for just about the amount of money that Independents (for the most part) contributed – almost to the penny.

With precious little time to work, it seemed that every resource we needed at every step of the way magically appeared compliments of one Independent or another.

I told Tony that had it not been for a lot of good folks living right and supporting one another and being there for one another and ready to drop everything to answer when the call came, Debbie Cook and Wayne Baumgarten would have been Texas road kill by now.

Had it not been for David Miscavige’s insane paranoia – which was as predictable as the morning sunrise – Debbie Cook’s testimony as to Miscavige’s crimes would never have seen the light of day.

Until David Miscavige sued Debbie Cook she made her intentions to him clear in writing as follows:

a)       She did not intend to disclose publicly the crimes of David Miscavige and Scientology Inc.

b)       She considered the intentions and interests of “Marty and the Independents” something not necessarily parallel to her own.

However, the very crimes Miscavige was trying to cover up with the Temporary Restraining order, and keep covered up with the sought for Preliminary Injunction, were the very crimes that invalidated the “agreement” that he wanted enforced.  It didn’t take a legal genius to understand that; Mike and I saw it before we even saw Miscavige’s stupid lawsuit and secretly obtained Temporary Restraining Order.

David Miscavige literally forced Debbie Cook to disclose his crimes in the only forum, under his own interpretation of the law, she could possibly do so without legal repercussions to herself. To wit, in the witness box in defense of an application for a Preliminary Injunction worded in the fashion Miscavige worded his would-be one against Debbie.

Miscavige got what he postulated; and he paid dearly with Scientology parishioner  donation war chest funds to make his postulate stick.

Some have wondered about the merits of Miscavige’s claim that he has now attained the goods to win the case on Summary Judgment.  There are no merits to it.  It is simply a typical Miscavige “PR” maneuver – the bully getting the tar whipped out of him, and claiming as he retreats “I am gonna kick your ass later.”

And as is typical of Miscavige, the rest of his statement was bogus too.  He didn’t surrender because Debbie was going to continue to use the witness stand to trumpet his crimes.  She was done with that phase of her testimony – the rest of it was rather mundane by comparison.  What he was hoping to avoid was the rest of the defense case (Mike and I establishing that the precise duress Debbie described being applied to force her to sign the “agreement” was standard operating procedure designed and engineered by Miscavige) and the inevitable court ruling that Scientology Inc gag orders are unenforceable, whether backed by fifty grand in “consideration” or not.

You see, Debbie is just the tip of the iceberg.  And Miscavige is acutely aware of that.  Others have left the Int Base torture chamber called “The Hole” since Debbie departed in 2007.   Among them are former WDC member Greg Hughes, former Int Management Exec Committee member Debbie Hughes, and former COB Project Ops (and Hole Torture In Charge) Angie Blankenship.  They too were bought off and signed agreements identical to Debbie’s. The facts they can testify to about the conduct of David Miscavige are still within the criminal statute of limitations for aggravated assault and battery, false imprisonment, and human trafficking.

While Miscavige’s unprecedented surrender is indicative of a meltdown of magnitude, there is still a method behind the tyrant’s madness.

But, Greg Hughes, Debbie Hughes, Angie Blankenship, and others similarly situated cannot take solace in the lack of official precedent invalidating their agreements.  I know they would love to do so as some kind of synthetic balm for their aching consciences.   Fact of the matter is, despite the lack of written judicial decision, the precedent has been set and it is clear as a bell to any literate individual aware of the Battle of San Antonio. David Miscavige has not nor can he use the courts to enforce his unlawful, unconscionable cover-up contracts.  We have proven that when push comes to shove those “agreements” are as worthless as the paper they were written on.   Further, we have established that when Miscavige attempts to isolate and tie anyone to the whipping post, there is a formidable movement out here that will protect them and lead them safely to the promised land; whether they agree with and support our aims or not.

All who contributed please take a huge win.  You got us to exactly where I predicted you could take us with your contributions.  The product was better than any of us could have expected.  Some of the lessons I take with me:

Don’t mess with Texas.

Don’t mess with Independents.

Don’t mess with the Truth.

update:  Village Voice Cook Interview, Ortega’s Intro video now works.

Miscavige Surrenders at the Alamo

Latest from Tampa Bay Times: Video of Miscavige Surrender, attorney Ray Jeffrey and Debbie Cook. 

More coverage:

Tampa Bay Times Article and Video of Debbie’s testimony yesterday

Village Voice updates from inside the courtroom

MikeBoard1200 Twitter feed from inside the courtroom

Scientology Inc.’s explains decision to withdraw injunction

Tampa Bay Times wrap up of events today

San Antonio Express wrap up of events today

Village Voice: Debbie and Wayne speak to the press

Telephone interview of Ray Jeffrey on WOAI

International Business Times article

I will be adding links to the post as they become available. -Mosey