Martin Hunt ([email protected]) wrote:
: >John, we first met at the Anaheim Convention Center in 1982. You weren't
: >fully on lines with us then. But we found a gathering you were attending
: >and I crashed the function to give you a copy of "Battlefield Earth" that
: >was (you were told) autographed to you by LRH. You were clearly puzzled at
: >someone appearing at that function with a "message from L. Ron Hubbard"
: >but I suspect you will remember that and the inscription.
: Interesting example of the effort to recruit celebs, Robert. Were
: many of them targetted like this with a deliberate effort to get
: them in, more than would be applied to Joe Bloggs on the street?
Of course! Back as early as 1955, if I recall right, there was an issue of a Scientology newsletter (Tilman may have this - if not, he should) that gives the real origins of this campaign. In it, Hubbard had listed out perhaps 50-60 top names in the US that he wanted recruited into Scientology. They ranged from top media of the time (Edward R. Murrow) to Hollywood stars of the era. And he explained why, that they could reach more people. Hubbard said that Scientologists should write in and say which celebrity they want to "hunt down" (or a phrase close to that) and Hubbard will assign them to the task. If one of these top celebs would join, Hubbard (generous to the end) would award a small plaque to the person.
That piece should be found for it gives the actual origin of Hubbard's mania to collect big names. He later wrote the "Opinion Leader" policy letter which really spells it out.
Part of Hubbard's mania for OLs (opinion leaders) can be found in his pre-Scientology days. He loved to rub elbows with the rich and famous and pretend that he was one. In certain circles, he was a name, of course, namely as a pulp fiction writer. But it wasn't enough for him. There is hardly a lecture he gave that he didn't name drop. He did it to the point of embarassment. That was why he wanted plaques and awards, to prove that he was important, that he was an OL. It became a megalomania but the irony is that he died completely alone, in hiding, terrified of being discovered, dead in the back of an RV, on a psychiatric tranquilizer. So much for being OT, let alone an OL.
: Paulette Cooper mentions this effort by Hubbard to get celebs into
: the cult to use as promotional tools. It's certainly no coincidence
: that so many celebs are in the cult: it's a plan. Now, of course,
: celebs get celebs in.
That's why there's a "Celebrity Center". Hubbard like to say how it was there to promote the arts but all it is is a place to recruit celebs. Granted the Tom Cruises of the world don't go there (they go to Gilman and get a private villa and staff and work out with DM) but what it does is collect many lower rank workers, such as people who work in the industry, e.g., those who work the sets, lights, scripts, locations, etc. There's a lot that goes into a movie or a TV show or radio etc. These people can then reach the celebs.
Of course the latest move is for celebs to open missions, which, I have to hand to them, is a brilliant idea. Scientology goes Planet Hollywood. I don't know what it will do for their mainline image to have celeb-driven religious organizations like celebs have restaurants. It's corny but its clever, especially given how badly the movement is doing and how much money they are losing. But there is a question how far these celebs can take it. They are being pushed out further than ever before and most of them are very insulated. They don't know about people going crazy in auditing or upset parents or suicides and the police and the media. They live in glitz and maybe they will simply put up the money, do an event to kick it off and get out of there but if their name is on the door or on the founding papers, anyone who sues that mission will be naming them and the celebs will discover there is a side of Scientology that David Miscavige didn't tell them about.
: I imagine there's a good effort on the part
: of the shills to recruit everyone the co-star with in their movies.
There's a lot more than costars in a film. Watch the credits closely. Plus Hollywood works on schmoozing, where you rub elbows, make friends (that you really hate) and make deals. It is pure Hollywood. In the end, Scientology wants the names. They want them for two reasons. The first is to promote Scientology, which is the one you are driving at and others drive at. But that is only half of it. The other half is protection. Look at what Travolta is doing re Germany.
We (at least in the US) are still a star-driven culture. And the recent Princess Diana craze shows it. Hubbard was not the first to know it or use it. The difference is that the stars inScientology don't really know what it is they are promoting. They think they are promoting this "high" they get off the auditing. They don't know about the gulags, the beatings, the abortions, the deaths. This is the danger, that if these celebs go more onto the front lines, they will run into the information and the questions that Miscavige and the RTC/OSA have been able to keep away from them.
And that is where it will finally end up, is my prediction. These celebs can move Scientology into some high circles and get them some good promotion and good protection but sooner or later, something will break. One of them will learn about something that they don't like, that has been kept hidden from them and they will go bad and speak out. Can you imagine what will happen, for in the same way that a celeb can give them a lift, a celeb can drag them down.
Right now, Scientology is NOT well liked in Hollywood. Celebrity Center is still called "pod palace." Many movers and shakes are sick of the "pods" such as Tom Cruise. (And if you don't know what that means, go see "Invasion of the Body Snatchers.") And some speak out, such as Jim Carrey and his good friend Nicholas Cage, with some crazy stunts. One time Carrey delighted in calling CC one day and getting them all in a tizzy at a big name calling them to ask about Scientology. Except Carrey wanted to sign up for the OT3 course. He had all these "things" on his body, he said, and he wanted to get rid of them. The execs freaked a bit, saying that he had to do other things first. No, no, Carrey said, I'll pay for all those. Get me on that body thetan course, that's the one for me! (I mean, can't you just imagine a Jim Carrey routine on body thetans?)
: Dustin Hoffman would be an example; he didn't get into the cult, but
: he was "turned" to be more sympathetic. On the non-celeb side, there's
: been a few "turnings" here on ars. Really, it's very fascinating;
: please tell us more about this aspect, if you can, and keep up the
: great posts. They really are some of the best original material I've
: seen here in the past year (which is why I'm webbing them all at
Thanks. Is there any change we can get some "special editions" of these? You know, leather bound, boxed, autographed, limited editions like we did for Hubbard? Or maybe titanium capsules?