Jeff Hawkins

  • Blogs

    February 12, 2012

    Scientology Sunday Funnies: Fresh Meat in the Windy City!

    Scientologists don't really have a Sunday service. They like to say that they do, because they crave mainstream acceptance. But unless Xenu rested after six days and L. Ron Hubbard just forgot to mention it, there's no reason for Scientologists to treat Sunday any differently than every other day of ... More >>

  • Blogs

    February 11, 2012

    VIDEO: The Debbie Cook Interview

    ​ We can't remember a time when the attorneys of the Church of Scientology gave up on a case like they did today when they withdrew their request for a temporary injunction that would keep Debbie Cook and Wayne Baumgarten under a gag order until the church's lawsuit against them could come to ... More >>

  • Blogs

    February 10, 2012

    Scientology vs Debbie Cook, Day 2: More Live-Blogging by the Voice

    We're heading down to the courthouse now to begin talking to folks before the action heats up again. Yesterday afternoon, Bexar County district judge Martha Tanner said that she'd begin day 2 of the temporary injunction hearing at 9:30 am, CST. If you're just joining us, the Church of Scientology ... More >>

  • Blogs

    February 10, 2012

    Scientology Waves the White Flag in Texas: The Debbie Cook Interview

    ​I'm sitting in a remarkable conference happening right now with Debbie Cook, her husband Wayne Baumgarten (pictured above), their attorney, Ray Jeffrey, and several other journalists. It's just a few hours after the Church of Scientology surprisingly waved the white flag and dropped its atte ... More >>

  • Blogs

    February 9, 2012

    Scientology, Deep in the Heart of Texas: The Voice at the Debbie Cook Hearing

    Update: For a wrap-up of today's hearing and some analysis of the day's performances, we now have this new piece. Today, former Scientology executive Debbie Cook will try to convince a Bexar County, Texas district judge to lift the strict terms of a temporary injunction as she defends herself again ... More >>

  • Blogs

    February 7, 2012

    Scientology Headaches: Another Felony Count for Exec; Anonymous Anniversary Saturday

    There's so much happening in the world of Scientology watching right now, we can hardly keep up with it all. Most of our attention is being taken up with the Debbie Cook lawsuit and its big hearing on Thursday -- we're going to have more on that tomorrow morning. But for now, more big developments h ... More >>

  • Blogs

    February 3, 2012

    Debbie Cook's Motion Denied: Scientology's Restraining Order Remains in Place Until Thursday Hearing

    As we reported yesterday, Debbie Cook, who is being sued by the Church of Scientology for speaking out to her fellow church members in a New Year's Eve e-mail, filed a motion to dissolve a temporary restraining order so broad, it prevented her from hiring an attorney (she hired one anyway) or talkin ... More >>

  • Blogs

    February 2, 2012

    Scientology in France: Still Guilty of Fraud

    Big news this morning out of a French appeals court, where a decision was handed down regarding Scientology's 2009 conviction for fraud. Scientology watchers around the world have been keeping an eye on the proceedings, which were wild and woolly: in November, Scientology's entire contingent of att ... More >>

  • Blogs

    February 2, 2012

    Debbie Cook Files to Dissolve Scientology's Temporary Restraining Order: We Talk To Her Attorney, Ray Jeffrey

    Yesterday, Debbie Cook began her defense against Scientology's lawsuit which seeks $300,000 in damages because she dared to speak out to her fellow church members in an e-mail sent on New Year's Eve. Cook, through her newly hired San Antonio attorney, Ray B. Jeffrey, filed to dissolve the temporary ... More >>

  • Blogs

    January 31, 2012

    Scientology Sues Debbie Cook Over Her New Year's Eve E-Mail

    Monday evening, the Tampa Bay Times reported that the Church of Scientology filed a lawsuit Friday in San Antonio against Debbie Cook and her husband Wayne Baumgarten. The lawsuit, which accuses Cook of violating the terms of a non-disclosure agreement when she dared to criticize the leadership of h ... More >>

  • Blogs

    January 26, 2012

    The Decline and Fall of Scientology? Skeptic Magazine Makes the Case

    A colleague of mine once explained to me why he keeps away from Scientology stories at his publication (which will remain nameless). He wasn't concerned about the church's reputation for litigiousness, and he wasn't worried that a story about Scientology's most recent controversies and excesses wou ... More >>

  • Blogs

    January 18, 2012

    Scientology's Goons: Intimidating a 71-Year-Old Missouri Grandmother

    On December 29, the Church of Scientology-Missouri's media relations officer, Ellen Maher-Forney, and another executive, Jill James, drove the 40 minutes it takes to go from the church on Delmar Boulevard in St. Louis to the home of Jim and Meshell Little in Saint Peters, Missouri. When the two wom ... More >>

  • Blogs

    January 16, 2012

    Did You See a Scientology Ad This Weekend?

    Update: After the jump, we'll show you the church e-mail that confirms just about everything we were told by Jefferson Hawkins about this sudden ad campaign. The Church of Scientology bought network TV ad time in a big way this weekend. On Saturday, we started noticing Twitter users complaining tha ... More >>

  • Blogs

    January 11, 2012

    Scientology's "Super Power Rundown:" What is it, Anyway?

    Prepare to unleash your super self! Secrets ahead!​On Monday and Tuesday, we released previously unseen renderings and architectural drawings of what Scientology's $100 million "Flag Mecca" -- also known as the "Super Power Building" -- is going to look like when it finally opens. (The buildin ... More >>

  • Blogs

    January 6, 2012

    Scientology in Turmoil: Debbie Cook's E-Mail, Annotated

    Since news broke Sunday of Debbie Cook's stunning e-mail, sent to thousands of her fellow Scientologists, word of a serious rift inside the church has been appearing in many news outlets, particularly in Europe. In the meantime, we provided additional depth and context about Debbie Cook, her career, ... More >>

  • Blogs

    January 5, 2012

    All Scientologists Look Alike, Right? -- And More in our Weekly Stats Roundup!

    Is that a famous Scientologist we spy?​Every Thursday at 2 pm, Scientology staff members race to turn in their weekly statistics. We like to do the same by rounding up the week's Scientology news from around the world and weigh how the church is doing. We're going to start this week with a ni ... More >>

  • Blogs

    January 4, 2012

    Scientology in Crisis: Debbie Cook's Transformation from Enforcer to Whistleblower

    Debbie Cook and her husband Wayne Baumgarten, Christmas 2010​Most of the press reporting on Debbie Cook so far has focused on her past as a high-ranking executive in the Church of Scientology and her sudden transformation this week into a whistleblower trying to rally her fellow church members ... More >>

  • Blogs

    January 1, 2012

    Scientology Rocked By Allegations of Greed in E-mail to 12,000 Church Members

    Debbie Cook: Cooked after this broadside against church management?​UPDATE: Debbie Cook has asked me to take down her e-mail, and I am complying. See note below. Very shortly after midnight last night, after the ball had dropped in Times Square to welcome in 2012, we started to receive fevere ... More >>

  • Blogs

    December 29, 2011

    Scientology Goes Upstat for the Final News Roundup of the Year (And Why We're Grateful)

    Feeling upstat, feeling sexy!​On Thursdays, we like to put together a rundown of stories related to Scientology watching from around the world. We do this on Thursdays, because it's that day when Scientologists rush to turn in their weekly stats. Most of the time, those stories are embarrassi ... More >>

  • Blogs

    December 28, 2011

    Scientology Story of the Year -- The Vote Is In!

    ​As we continue our year-end celebrations, we've come to a big moment. We asked voters to decide which story had the most impact on Scientology watching this year. We chose five finalists that we think had lasting importance as well as immediate punch. There were many other stories worth cove ... More >>

  • Blogs

    December 26, 2011

    Scientology Video of the Year: The Vote Is In!

    We're going to start off our end-of-year celebrations this week by revealing which video you selected as the best of 2011. My thanks to our readers who participated in the poll. We had many interesting videos to choose from this year; some were new, others were rediscovered, and every one made an i ... More >>

  • Blogs

    December 25, 2011

    Scientology Sunday Funnies: Merry Christmas 2011!

    "Santa, were you an implant too?"​Scientology doesn't really have a Sunday service. They like to say that they do, because they crave mainstream acceptance. But unless Xenu rested after six days and L. Ron Hubbard just forgot to mention it, there's no reason for Scientologists to treat Sunday ... More >>

  • Blogs

    December 24, 2011

    Scientology Succession: Commenters of the Week!

    [Image blatantly stolen from shoopers at WWP]"Finally, a country that treats its people right!"​We had a feeling that this week leading up to Christmas would be pretty quiet around the underground bunker. And boy, were we wrong! What a crazy week, and it all started Sunday morning with our usu ... More >>

  • Blogs

    December 21, 2011

    Scientology Scuffle Over Xenu: When a Protester is Attacked!

    Getting a face full of unhappy Scientologist​Tommy Gorman has a pretty in-your-face way of protesting the Church of Scientology. He positions himself outside the entrance to San Francisco's Scientology "org" holding a video camera and another device that plays an audio recording. As workers a ... More >>

  • Blogs

    December 20, 2011

    Scientology Kids: Fully Indoctrinated by 18

    ​On Sunday, we published a disturbing new document which was produced by Scientology recruiters in Australia. It purports to be the testimony of an 18-year-old named Denny Chang, who extols the virtues of Scientology's most hardcore contingent, the Sea Org, and urges other young church members ... More >>

  • Blogs

    December 19, 2011

    Scientology's Scourge, Paulette Cooper, Visits with the Voice

    Paulette Cooper, still keeping tabs on Scientology​Our regular readers can probably imagine why we were pretty thrilled this morning to finally meet the original badass of Scientology watchers, none other than Paulette Cooper. She was in town to visit her sister and found time to have breakf ... More >>

  • Blogs

    December 18, 2011

    Scientology Sunday Funnies: In the Sea Org at 18 and on Top of the World!

    ​Scientology doesn't really have a Sunday service. They like to say that they do, because they crave mainstream acceptance. But unless Xenu rested after six days and L. Ron Hubbard just forgot to mention it, there's no reason for Scientologists to treat Sunday any differently than every other ... More >>

  • Blogs

    December 17, 2011

    Scientology Infusion: Commenters of the Week!

    "This Will guy is so cool! I can't wait to tell Dave."​We're still taking your votes for Scientology Story of the Year, and in general, things here in the underground bunker are frenetic as we prepare for year-end festivities. We also managed to keep the beat going this week with some interest ... More >>

  • Blogs

    December 15, 2011

    Martin Bashir Compares Newt Gingrich to Scientology Founder L. Ron Hubbard, and more in our Thursday Stats Roundup!

    It's that time of the week, when Scientology workers scramble to get their statistics turned in. And with the Thursday 2pm deadline looming, we like to do the same, rounding up the church's stats for the past week. First up, a little political humor... Yesterday, Martin Bashir did a bit of editor ... More >>

  • Blogs

    December 15, 2011

    Jason Lee, Twitter Newbie, Goes After Dude with 6 Followers For Asking About Scientology

    ​ A day after joining Twitter, actor Jason Lee didn't take kindly to a fan, Sean Coleman, griping about his being a member of the Church of Scientology. So Jason took a swipe at Coleman, who has all of 6 followers.

  • Blogs

    December 9, 2011

    SMERSH, Scientology Breakthroughs, and a Funeral: Sailing on the Apollo, Dec 4 - 10

    ​On November 18, we started a new feature here on Fridays: the Voice has obtained hundreds of copies of L. Ron Hubbard's previously unpublished "Orders of the Day," which he gave to crew members as he sailed the Mediterranean. Our documents cover the period from 1968 to 1971, and this time we' ... More >>

  • Blogs

    December 5, 2011

    Scientology's Shame: Lisa McPherson, 16 Years After Her Death

    ​On December 5, 1995, a 36-year-old woman perished while several people were taking her to a hospital in Florida. Within a few years, the mysterious and strange circumstances around the death of Lisa McPherson -- who had been a Scientologist since the age of 18 -- had the Church of Scientolog ... More >>

  • Blogs

    December 4, 2011

    Scientology Sunday Funnies: Your Tax Dollars at Work

    Scientology doesn't really have a Sunday service. They like to say that they do, because they crave mainstream acceptance. But unless Xenu rested after six days and L. Ron Hubbard just forgot to mention it, there's no reason for Scientologists to treat Sunday any differently than every other day of ... More >>

  • Blogs

    December 3, 2011

    Scientology Capsize: Commenters of the Week!

    The scene here in the underground bunker is like the quiet after a major storm. A hurricane blew up out of the Caribbean this week and hit us square on. The place is a mess. The cats are skittish. But the excitement has finally died down a bit, the lights are low, the empty bottles have been cleared ... More >>

  • Blogs

    December 2, 2011

    L. Ron Hubbard Schools Richard Nixon: Sailing on the Apollo Nov 27 - Dec 3

    On November 18, we started a new feature here on Fridays: the Voice has obtained hundreds of copies of L. Ron Hubbard's previously unpublished "Orders of the Day," which he gave to crew members as he sailed the Mediterranean. Our documents cover the period from 1968 to 1971, and this time we're look ... More >>

  • Blogs

    December 1, 2011

    Scientology Celebrities Who Partied on the Freewinds While Valeska Paris Was Held on the Ship Against Her Will

    We've been reporting all week on the stunning story of Valeska Paris, the Swiss-born woman who now lives in Australia and who says that from 1996 to 2007, beginning when she was only 18 years old, she was held on Scientology's private cruise ship, the Freewinds, as a virtual prisoner. Valeska alleg ... More >>

  • Blogs

    November 28, 2011

    Scientology Held Woman Aboard the Freewinds for 12 Years Against Her Will: Aussie TV

    NEW: See our lengthy interview with Valeska Paris, with much more information about her background, her time aboard the Freewinds, and her memories of Tom Cruise's infamous 2004 birthday aboard the ship. Australian journalist Steve Cannane of the ABC program Lateline e-mailed us early this morning ... More >>

  • Blogs

    November 27, 2011

    Scientology Sunday Service: Mind Control and Your Open Thread

    It's time for another set of Sunday Funnies here at the underground bunker! We hope you enjoy the set of wacky Scientology mailers we've put together this week. The idea is to inspire you to write about whatever you feel like in our open thread. To get you thinking, we've assembled a very disparate ... More >>

  • Blogs

    November 24, 2011

    Paulette Cooper, Scientology's Original and Worst Nightmare: A Thanksgiving Tribute by the Village Voice

    [UPDATE: Think Scientology spying and harassment is a thing of the past? Check out our new story about how the church even spies on its most prominent member, Tom Cruise.] I couldn't think of a better way to give thanks this year than to pay homage to the woman who was there first, paid the highest ... More >>

  • Blogs

    November 21, 2011

    Desperate Scientology Fundraising Caught on Video (UPDATED with more Video)

    For the last week, the excellent journalists over at the St. Petersburg Times have outdone themselves with their best series on Scientology ever -- a look at the desperate fundraising by the church, which runs employees ragged and puts intense pressure on ordinary church members. Naturally, the chu ... More >>

  • Blogs

    November 19, 2011

    Scientology Chillaxin': Commenters of the Week!

    This disturbing image blatantly ripped off from​Was this a week for Scientology watchers, or what? Things started off just after midnight on Sunday morning as we scrambled to alert our readers that what we've been waiting for had finally arrived: the launch of the new investi ... More >>

  • Blogs

    November 12, 2011

    Scientology Seasickness: Commenters of the Week!

    I'm OT VIII, I'm king of the world!​It's been a light posting week, but our commenters did not let us down. We've had so much fun with singing on the Scientology ship Freewinds and other madcap adventures, even as we ventured outside the underground bunker. We started things off this week wit ... More >>

  • Blogs

    November 5, 2011

    Scientology Dyspepsia: Commenters of the Week!​We're feeling a bit woozy after this week of Scientology watching here in the underground bunker. Not sure if it was something we ate, or just the thought of Tom Cruise hurling at Gold Base that has us a bit dizzy. Anyway, Mr. Cruise was very much on our minds this week, as h ... More >>

  • Blogs

    October 22, 2011

    Scientology Transfusion: Commenters of the Week!

    Eternal soul? Works all night? Exteriorizes? Hmmm.​It was a frantic week here at the underground bunker, where we keep an eye on all things Scientology-related. While we gathered material for some big stories, we managed to post several quick observations, some of which featured a medical the ... More >>

  • Blogs

    October 21, 2011

    Scientology and Forced Abortions: Testimony of an Enforcer

    Filmmaker Mark Bunker has released another preview from his upcoming documentary, Knowledge Report. In this segment, Gary Morehead talks about his role as a security officer at Scientology's secretive California desert headquarters, Int Base, where he oversaw the operation that persuaded pregnant ... More >>

  • Blogs

    October 18, 2011

    Scientology Mocked at the South Pole: Now That's Cold

    ​ We continue to work very hard on some upcoming stories; in the meantime, we have this interesting image from the bottom of the world. I found it here. I have no information on it -- it might be months or years old, for all I know. I only know this: I want to hear from this person, so that ... More >>

  • Blogs

    October 13, 2011

    Scientology Officially Probing the Village Voice!

    ​We've just received confirmation that ace reporter Jim Lynch has been handed a new assignment, and that assignment is us! Today, he called a PR firm in San Francisco that we used to work with, asking about "the finances of the Village Voice." The finances of the Voice? Hey, Jim, when you fi ... More >>

  • Blogs

    October 11, 2011

    Scientology and Disconnection: "No One's Going to Take My Eternity Away"

    Lori Hodgson keeps telling me she's going to give me the entire story of her time in Scientology. Well, I'm still waiting. In the meantime, she talked to Mark Bunker for his upcoming movie Knowledge Report, and this morning he released a segment of that interview. For those of you still confused ... More >>

  • Blogs

    October 8, 2011

    Scientology Symposium: Commenters of the Week!

    It was an unusual week here for us at our Scientology watching operation. We left the underground bunker for a trip to Southern California, but still managed to put together a few stories while on the road. And our commenters did not let us down, with some of them carrying over debates they were hav ... More >>

  • Blogs

    June 23, 2011

    Scientology's Enemies List: Are You On It?

    ​Another intriguing Scientology document was leaked today by Marty Rathbun, the former high-ranking official who left the church in 2004. At his blog, Rathbun provided a .pdf of what he says is an internal document of the Office of Special Affairs, Scientology's covert-operations wing. In t ... More >>

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