While rain falls in south Texas, things were dry and cozy this week in the underground bunker where we keep an eye on all things Scientology.
We started out another eventful week with a look at church attorney Kendrick Moxon, who came in at #21 in our countdown of The Top 25 People Crippling Scientology.
On Tuesday, we looked at Ed Bryan, and how he’s using his OT VIII powers as the ultimate example of superhuman Scientology power!
Wednesday brought #20 in the countdown, a tribute to South Park creators Trey Parker and Matt Stone (and other media figures who have poked fun at Scientology over the years).
On Thursday, we noted that, after a long time away, we would be attending an Anonymous protest. Here’s hoping this afternoon’s “beach party” is worth leaving the bunker for!
And yesterday, we revealed #19 on our list to be the Squirrel Busters — and then added the bizarre sight of Scientology’s dimwitted warriors wearing ponchos and standing under a deluge of sprinklers as Marty Rathbun’s neighbors battle back against the goon squad.
Still shaking my head over that one.
Anyway, on to the awards…
We asked readers to share their encounters with church attorney Kendrick Moxon, and appreciated this response by Patricia Curtis:
As one who has been deposed by Mr. Moxon (and who is also on the official West Coast “enemies” list), I can vouch for how uncomfortable he tries to make things. But his needling and smarminess were no match to my cheery temperament and big cheesy grin, and he lost the game. I can honestly say the disposition was not nearly as unpleasant as he had hoped. You know, Moxon, by his own actions, is an easy target. He has done some really, really bad things to people. What he has done/is doing to Graham Berry is purely monstrous. But I think that if he would leave Scientology and get away from cult leader David Miscavige, there might be hope for him. I point to Mike Rinder as the perfect argument for my case.
As to Ed Bryan, the superannuated OT VIII superman, we got a chuckle out of this comment by regular reader Scott Pilutik, otherwise known as “t1kk”:
Before Scientology, 71 year old meat bodies rarely if ever were afforded the opportunity to crawl around inside dumpsters in order to facilitate their misdemeanors. Religious liberty is foraging into brave new worlds.
After we reminded readers about South Park‘s spectacular 2005 episode, “Trapped in the Closet,” which introduced Scientology’s more bizarre beliefs to a vast new audience, Hartley Patterson provided this excellent corrective:
Google Trends and website stats actually suggested it was South Park’s follow up to “Trapped in the Closet” that did the most damage. Isaac Hayes, a long time Scientologist who voiced Chef in the series, initially took the satire of his religion as it was meant — South Park is after all rude about everything. After dithering for four months however Miscavige ordered him to leave the show in an obviously dictated statement, and South Park responded by killing off his character in “The Return of Chef” in which Chef is brainwashed by a fictional cult. In my opinion it was this latter episode that finally made Scientology ‘fair game’ for comedians, celebrity gossip magazines, indeed just about everyone to cite as the examplar of a nutty self important cult.
Thank you, Hartley, for helping us recall how that all went down.
On Thursday, after we noted an upcoming Anonymous event — with a bit of cheeky sarcasm, or so we thought — we were slapped down by pro-church commenter KeeponLearning:
We can always depend on Ortega and VV to endorse and even promote any form of public harassment and rabble-rousing that will induce family upsets and job discrimination against Scientologists. Well, since the Voice is quieting its ads for child prostitution, I guess it has to pump up revenue from somewhere.
Yee-ouch. Well, KOL’s comment only highlighted for us that it was an awfully quiet week from the pro-church side, which is always disappointing. We can only hope that Mark Miglio, KOL, and our other pro-Scientology friends show up in greater numbers in the coming days. It’s more fun that way. (Oh, and as for that jab about our adult ads, there was some interesting news on that front this week.)
And finally, when we named the Squirrel Busters to our countdown, there was plenty of mirth aimed in their direction. We were partial to this salvo by VJDooley:
Anyone who ever wondered whether horses asses outnumber horses need look no further than these clowns. Who is their message designed to reach? To those unfamiliar with the principles of scientology, their message is complete gibberish and non-sensical. Do they honestly believe that a raw meat wog, will embrace their religion after seeing and hearing this nonsense? Can they honestly expect loyal church members to view this without being either repulsed by this conduct or, at a minimum, curious as to Mr. Rathbun’s message? It is quite clear that these deluded souls have no message other than hate and, unfortunately, way too much time on their hands.
Keep those clever comments coming! We’ll have numbers 18 (Monday), 17, (Wednesday) and 16 (Friday) on the countdown this week, and who knows what kind of news will break from south Texas, Australia, or right here in New York City. Oh, and look for an update on Janet Reitman and her wonderful book, Inside Scientology. If you haven’t already read her masterful history of the church, what are you waiting for?
The Top 25 People Crippling Scientology
#19: The Squirrel Busters (and the church’s other thugs and goons)
#20: Trey Parker and Matt Stone (and other media figures)
#21: Kendrick Moxon, attorney for the church
#22: Jamie DeWolf (and other L. Ron Hubbard family members)
#23: Ken Dandar (and other attorneys who litigate against the church)
#24: David Touretzky (and other academics)
#25: Xenu, galactic overlord
See all of our recent Scientology coverage at the Voice
Tony Ortega is the editor-in-chief of The Village Voice. Since 1995, he’s been writing about Scientology at several publications. Among his other stories about L. Ron Hubbard’s organization:
The Larry Wollersheim Saga — Scientology Finally Pays For Its Fraud
The Tory Bezazian (Christman) Story — How the Internet Saved A Scientologist From Herself
The Jason Beghe Defection — A Scientology Celebrity Goes Rogue
The Paul Haggis Ultimatum — The ‘Crash’ Director Tells Scientology to Shove It
The Marc Headley Escape — ‘Tom Cruise Told Me to Talk to a Bottle’
The Jefferson Hawkins Stipulation — Scientology’s former PR genius comes clean
The Daniel Montalvo Double-Cross — Scientology lures a young defector into a trap
A Church Myth Debunked — Scientology and Proposition 8
Daniel Montalvo Strikes Back — Scientology Hit with Stunning Child-Labor Lawsuits
When Scientologists Attack — The Marty Rathbun Intimidation
A Scientologist Excommunicated — The Michael Fairman SP Declaration
The Richard Leiby Operation — Investigating a reporter’s divorce to shut him up
The Hugh Urban Investigation — An academic takes a harsh look at Scientology’s past
Giovanni Ribisi as David Koresh — A precedent for a Scientology-Branch Davidian link
Janet Reitman’s Inside Scientology — A masterful telling of Scientology’s history
The Western Spy Network Revealed? — Marty Rathbun ups the ante on David Miscavige
Scientology’s Enemies List — Are You On It?
Inside Inside Scientology — An interview with author Janet Reitman
Scientology and the Nation of Islam — Holy Doctrinal Mashup, Batman!
Scientologists — How Many of Them Are There, Anyway?
Roger Weller’s Wild Ride — Scientology When it was Hip
The Marc Headley Infiltration — A Scientology Spying Operation Revealed
Placido Domingo Jr: Scientology’s Retaliation is “Scary and Pathetic”
An Interview with Nancy Many, Former Scientology Spy
The Paulien Lombard Confession — A Scientology Spy Comes Clean
The Deputy Benjamin Ring Hard Sell — Scientology wants your 401K
The Top 25 People Crippling Scientology — the whole series!
The Squirrel Busters Busted — Unmasking the Scientology PI in Charge
This article from the Village Voice Archive was posted on August 20, 2011