Doug's Interest in Scientology
Doug is a lawyer, and as such is extremely
interested in the social conventions by which we order our lives.
On May 19, 1995, a large corporation held a raid in Miami on a
private citizen's home, assisted by the United States Marshals
Service. This citizen was accused of no crime. But, under our
copyright law, said citizen is apparently denied the protection
to his home and hearth guaranteed by the United States
Constitution's Fourth Amendment. The heinous act that abrogated
this person's constitutional rights was that the corporation
*said* that he violated their copyright. Without giving him even
a chance to respond, the court authorized the corporation, its
computer experts, its lawyers, and other as yet unidentified
persons to enter his home over his objection and virtually run
rampant throughout his house, seizing his property, seizing and
reading his private correspondence with his lawyer, and sifting
through his wife's underwear drawer, where they made annoying,
inappropriate and embarrassing remarks about her choice of
undergarments. During this entire fiasco, the homeowner, his
wife, and a houseguest were held under arrest by the U.S.
Marshals, subjected to the embarrassment but unable to do
anything about it, restrained by the awesome authority of the
United States Government.
What, you ask, does this have to do with Scientology? When I was
asked to help this person in December of 1995, he had been
bankrupted by his legal expenses and by the corporation using his
private files to run him out of business. I was repulsed by the
blatant misconduct (the foregoing is my analysis and opinion
only, libel lawyers) and started to research the issue. Imagine
my surprise when I found that almost all the relevant cases
involved the "Church of Scientology." The Scientologists invaded
Dennis Erlich, a former high-ranking member in the church, in
Southern Californa. They invaded Arnie Lerma in Virgina. They
invaded Grady Ward, a computer expert only tangentially involved
with the church and never a member, in northern California. The
case files were replete with Church of Scientology cases alleging
copyright and trade secret violations. Now curious, I ran "church
of scientology" in lexis and got over a thousand hits. This has
to be the most litigious group in the history of mankind.
What were they doing? Apparently the founder of Scientology,
Lafayette Ron Hubbard, said that the purpose of courts is to
harass, and the purpose of a lawsuit is to silence and destroy
critics. Erlich, Lerma, and Grady Ward were guilty of posting
excerpts from some of the most ridiculous religious dogma of all
time to the internet. Dogma which the church claims is
copyrighted and protected by trade secret status, and which the
critics claim is so ridiculous that if people (Raw
Meat in Scientologist language) find out about it,
the church will never get any converts. So the church filed for
temporary restraining orders to keep *you* from finding out their
dogma. If the Scientologists have their way, Hubbard's
incoherent ravings will remain their secrets until you pay the
approximately $325,000 that they charge their converts for it.
All of this litigation is not without its consequence. Some
critics are intimidated and afraid to speak, but in attacking the
internet, the Scientologists have found a beast like the hydra.
As they silence one head, twenty spring forth.
Welcome to one
of those heads.
Lisa McPherson did
not survive Scientology.
She has a number of
the web, and there will be a candlelight vigil and protest march for her in
Clearwater, Florida on December 5 and 6th. Scientologists are
attempting to use their magazine, laughingly named "FREEDOM" magazine, to discredit the cops
investigating Lisa's death. Watch this site for a report of the
picket and vigil, and more information on the Scientologists' war
with the Clearwater
One of the most impressive heads on the hydra is a professor
at Carnegie Mellon named
David Touretzky. He has eclectic tastes also, and this link
points to his home page which has numerous links and information
about scientology (Look toward the bottom of the page). If you
are interested in going straight to something about
Scientology, try this
one. This site addresses an aspect of scientology called OT-
III, a fascinating piece of space opera that the scientologists
claim as religious dogma. It is so ridiculous and fantastic that
I would not have believed it, had I not seen it in Lafayette
Ronald Hubbard's own handwriting.
A little aside about the wonders of doing research on the
internet. All previous analyses of this writing have rendered
the word about two thirds of the way down the page as "loyal."
Having gained access to an image of the original handwritten text
courtesy of the internet, I am inclined to render it as "royal."
While royal does not fit into the text quite as aptly or easily
as loyal, apt and ease are not the objects of historical
research. Accuracy is. What exactly did Hubbard mean? It is hard to tell; he apparently founded a religion on the hallucinations he underwent in the delirium tremens caused by his long term abuse of alcohol and "pinks and greys" .
Your humble servant in intellectual curiosity-doug johnson