After watching "Going Clear," an HBO documentary on Scientology, I am now convinced that their "religion" is not a cult, as I had thought for many years, but actually it is an organized crime operation.
It is a "religion" founded by a huckster (L. Ron Hubbard) and is currently run by a despot (David Miscavige). Their methodology for keeping people brainwashed is simple, but there is a complex system at work to build on a brand and keep cash flowing in.
Scientology does have its cult-like qualities such as its own special lingo for simple terms such as "suppressive persons" for those who doubt them and "auditor" for a person who basically acts as a psychiatrist. But you do not amass a billion-dollar empire without instilling fear, cravenly keeping secrecy at a high level and having an effective way of getting other people's money into your pockets.
To make your way along "the bridge to total freedom" toward some sort of enlightenment, those who join Scientology have to pay to learn about your own "religion."
To talk with an "auditor" and achieve the next level in the Escher-like set of steps it takes to learn about Xenu, it will cost you. One former "auditor" said some sessions can cost as much as $1,000 an hour and people have been drained of their life savings along the way.
Just like any good crime syndicate, you want to keep your business model under wraps lest someone rat you out for being the criminal you really are while you soft-peddle yourself as some kind of saint.
Scientology has perfected the practice.
Do you see advertisements for their "religion"? Are they on street corners handing out flyers? Are their announcements in the papers or online encouraging you to come on in and see for yourself if their brand of spirituality is right for you?
Of course not.
Yet they are somehow self-sufficient enough and bring in enough business that they can remain out of the public eye while they bankrupt their own members.
Bafflingly, the Scientology movement continues to grow.
Their own website does not list how many members there are in the organization, but that "10,000 Scientology churches, missions, related organizations and affiliated groups minister to millions."
That is a pretty good-sized base in which to financially and psychologically destroy your own membership while filling your own coffers.
How do you keep from letting anyone in your syndicate change their mind and go running to the cops? You do that by blackmailing them.
The "if you rat us out we have something 10 times worse to tell them about you" gambit has been around for centuries and it is a well-documented tactic used against those who have tried to get out of Scientology. Those divisive nuggets are picked up and stored by your auditor on your journey across the bridge.
If someone on the outside tries to tell you that what you are doing is mind-bogglingly stupid, the organization is right there to tell you that they will take care of you, and that those pesky "suppressive persons" don't pay your rent and put food on the table, the organization does. They tell you that without them you would be nothing and it is the outsiders who do not understand what you are searching for.
Like any good crime syndicate, they will go after their enemies for even the smallest slight against them and look to make an example of them.
That retaliatory and vengeful stance is what got them the key piece of their empire.
During the '80s and early '90s, the group as a whole and thousands of its members sued the Internal Revenue Service with the end goal of gaining the tax-exempt status every other religious organization receives. Not declaring millions to the IRS means you get to turn those millions into billions.
Dovetail those litigation tactics with a smear campaign and the promise to drown the IRS in paper for a decade, and Scientology got what it wanted.
In 1993 the government gave it the tax-exempt status that has turned it into the biggest crime syndicate in the history of mankind. Miscavige stood in front of thousands of followers in Los Angeles in his nice crisp tuxedo and declared that "we won the war." It promptly withdrew all its litigation.
The biggest difference between an actual crime syndicate who terrorizes a city or a neighborhood is that it is stealing from and brow beating others to fill its own coffers. Scientology robs, brow beats, brainwashes and isolates its own followers while depositing their checks.
This is a "religion" that is not even a half century old and based on the ramblings of a man who wrote pulp fiction books and converted it into a theology, but in that short amount of time it has accumulated BILLIONS that is now all in the hands of Miscavige. It is all done under the guise of being a religion, when it is really a criminal operation.
Scientology is not benevolent with its money. It is not out doing good deeds in the community or giving back to those who helped build it up. It builds idyllic centers for itself and keeps every dime it brings in.
Even a criminal family tries to keep up appearances by building an addition to a church or giving back to the community on bingo night, but not Miscavige.
Hubbard went broke creating his hokum "religion" in the 1950s, but rebranded it, added some new mumbo-jumbo to it and again set forth to make money. Money was his only intent then and remains so to this day, which is at the heart of every criminal organization around the world.
Thanks to Matthew Fahr.
Monday, April 13, 2015
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