Lawmakers and Federal Official Gather To Praise Hubbard And Scientology

Three U.S. congressmen and a high-ranking government official gathered this week to praise a man heralded for his morals and leadership. That man is L. Ron Hubbard and Texas Democratic Rep. Sheila Jackson Lee, Indiana Republican Rep. Dan Burton, Illinois Democratic Rep. Danny Davis and Liz Gibson, Senior Program Manager at the Federal Emergency Management Agency, gathered to celebrate his legacy.

While European countries have either banned or prosecuted Scientology as a criminal enterprise and Hubbard was pursued by various criminal investigations and civil litigants, the VIPs joined in the opening of the new D.C. office (for full disclosure, I was invited to visit the opening of the headquarters but declined).

Jackson Lee declared “I want to thank L. Ron Hubbard for recognizing that courage is not rewarded but it is valued. And to be able to have the wonderment of people coming together and ensuring that people come together for peace. That’s what I see in the Church, that you have come together for peace. I welcome and support that,” she said.

Notably, both Burton and Davis praised the church’s campaign on child medication even though critics charge that this is an outgrowth of Hubbard’s hatred for psychiatry and psychology.

Many are likely to view this high-level support as problematic. Yet, even mainstream churches like the Catholic Church have been the subject of criminal and civil claims. Should these members be criticized for support of the Scientology record while others appear at other religious sites, including the support for faith-based politics and programs by the last four presidents?

Source: Daily Caller

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    The Atlantic Apologizes for Scientology Ad

    The Atlantic on Tuesday issued a simple three-word apology for publishing an advertisement by the Church of Scientology that resembled a normal article from the acclaimed magazine: “We screwed up.”

    The Web page, published around lunchtime on Monday, was labeled as “sponsor content,” but otherwise looked like a sunny blog post about the church’s expansion. The page was titled “David Miscavige Leads Scientology to Milestone Year.” It was noticed by reporters at other news organizations on Monday evening and was stripped from The Atlantic’s site by midnight.

    “It shouldn’t have taken a wave of constructive criticism — but it has — to alert us that we’ve made a mistake, possibly several mistakes,” The Atlantic said in a statement. “We now realize that as we explored new forms of digital advertising, we failed to update the policies that must govern the decisions we make along the way.”

    In other words: The Web site published Scientology’s ad without considering all the consequences.

    The Atlantic is far from the only digital publisher pitching advertisers on what is known as sponsored content. Gawker and BuzzFeed are among the other Web sites that have gained attention for the practice, which places an advertiser’s words and visuals (the content) within the frame of the site. The Huffington Post has a whole section front for sponsored content.

    But no instance of sponsored content has come under as much criticism as this one. Gawker called the sponsored Web page “bizarre, blatant propaganda for Scientology.” Others raised questions about why all the comments on the page were supportive of the church, indicating that critical comments were being deleted. A spokeswoman for The Atlantic said that the comments were moderated by its marketing team, not by the editorial team that moderates comments on normal articles.

    At the same time, others defended the arrangement as a smart business move. The church’s ad buy comes at a time when it is trying to blunt the impact of a new book about the secretive religion by Lawrence Wright, “Going Clear: Scientology, Hollywood and the Prison of Belief.” The book will be published on Thursday. ….continues

  2. “Losing faith? Belgium to charge Church of Scientology with fraud and extortion – reports

    Published: 29 December, 2012, 01:40

    “After a long lasting legal battle Belgium prosecutors demand to label the Church of Scientology as a criminal organization and charge it and its leaders with extortion, fraud, privacy breaches, and the illegal practice of medicine.

    The subpoenas have been sent to the scientologists, the local financial newspaper De Tijd reported.

    The charges against the Church of Scientology stem from employment contracts issued to recruit volunteers and members allegedly breaching the country’s strict employment laws. In Belgium as in some other countries Scientology is not recognized as a faith.

    In 2008 the Belgium Labor Mediation Service complained about number of labor contracts, prompting an investigation.

    A judge then ordered raids on Scientology premises where police allegedly “managed to seize a wealth of evidence,” that the organization had spied on and extorted money from its members, the Flanders News reported.

    Belgian authorities have been legally battling Scientologists since 2007, when the country tried to label the movement as a cult. Around the same time Belgian prosecutors ruled that the Belgian Church of Scientology, plus Scientology’s Office of Human Rights and their 12 members, should be charged with extortion, fraud, organized crime, illegal medical practice.” …

  3. OS,

    Sifting through this thread I saw your post…. Time really does heal all….. It’s hard to explain….. But the light does appear at the end of the tunnel…… And you just have to know that there’s not always a train coming back at you…..

  4. Otteray Scribe:

    I wish there were words I could offer that might ease this loss and the reminder of such the year later. Anniversaries are never easy.

    In trying to gain a sense of empathy I read the links you have given for your lovely wife. 55 years, you are very fortunate. I am sure that if in reading some of your insights here, and the remarkable wit and benefit you have provided us and others fortunate enough to have known you in person, I could only believe that a good amount of the person you are resulted from having the blessing of the love and companionship she so devotedly shared with you.

    That you Honor her memory as you surely have, will certainly help her in her awaiting of your return to her embrace. She will hold comfort in knowing that you will be there for your loved ones and for hers as well, to convey to them her love as through your sharing of your memories of her and your life here together.

    In going through your future here, know that she will be awaiting that time of reunion, but if I may, I believe she will have patience. For what is many years, among a later eternity? Then you will bring with you all the future joys of this life, for which she was not able to experience to her; when that time has come.

    Things do get better, but it often takes a little time.

  5. My Ericsson K750 does most smart function, but its small screen rules out effective surfing. Inherited it from Kerstin so she is with me, thus hard to part with.

    Reviewer of Iphone 5 says it can not hold a telephone

    contact and allow doing other stuff in parallel.
    Mine can. He must be wrong. Obvious one needs to do so.

    The reported prices are minuscule compared to here. Are they getting it back on the monthly charges during the two yars. Said that a Iphone 4 for zero dollars and 2 year subxcription. Living with old tech is not a bad choice.

    NB Common tactic to hold customers to a site. Diversify the functions, features, procedures, and presentation such that one has to devote much time to keeping up so as to use even the basic functions which are hidden behind the new HUI interface. YouTube for example.

    Re Facebook. Can’t you just open a email account somewhere and create a puppet for registration on Facebook?

    Gotta go get my courmarin test.

    Talking with nobody here is a drag. Bye.

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