Probably the biggest news today is the Lori Hodgson interview on Inside Edition, a US news magazine show, where she traveled to her son’s workplace in Austin, Texas and paid him a surprise visit which was recorded.
But the best performance clearly goes to Mark Bunker’s three-minute appearance in front of the Clearwater City Council on the anniversary of Lisa McPherson’s death, where he eloquently pointed out the absurdity of trying to make peace with the cult given how they’ve treated the citizens of the Clearwater area for the last forty years.
Tony Ortega’s Blog
Tony covers the Inside Edition segment on ex-Scientologist Lori Hodgson paying another surprise visit to her son, who disconnected from her, at his work place in Austin, Texas. Tony has written several times before on the heartbreaking treatment that Lori Hodgson has received at the hands of the cult and the painful way her kids have chosen Scientology over their relationship with her.
Also, there’s a video of Mark (“Wise Beard Man”) Bunker speaking to the city council in his new home town of Clearwater about the death of Lisa McPherson on the anniversary of her death. Money quote: “I understand that the city is thinking about finding a better way to work with Scientology, sitting down and mending fences with David Miscavige. I’d ask you to remember that when Scientology was criminally charged in Lisa’s case, Scientology didn’t bat an eye before destroying key evidence in the case and whisking people out of the country before they could be questioned by the police.” He then goes on to talk about the harassment of Marty Rathbun, about disconnection, about forced disconnection. Perhaps he can add an Emmy for performance in front of the camera for this video to the Emmy he received for his work behind the camera a few years ago.
- Lori Hodgson herself comments on Tony’s story.
- Samantha Domingo talks about how her ex was ordered to spy on her as part of his “A-E steps” and how some friends actually complied with the cult’s orders to do the same.
- “Galactic Patrol,” a relatively new commenter, kicks off an observation about what life is like outside the cult aimed at people still in, with this comment. You can follow his other related comments via his Disqus profile. Of particular interest are his thoughts on the state of mind of people still in the cult and how to approach them.
- Skip Press summarizes the A-E steps Lori Hodgson’s son wants her to complete relatively elegantly. He goes on to point out the absurdity of the “Doubt Formula.”
- Sam Domingo points out that Lori Hodgson told her that she broke her toe hours before flying to Austin to tape the Inside Edition segment. I’ve broken a toe and don’t recommend it; that was the single injury in my life with the most disproportionate ratio of pain to actual medical seriousness of anything I’ve ever experienced. Lori Hodgson should go in the Mother Lioness hall of fame, up there with Karen De La Carriere. And Miscavige should be very afraid.
Mike Rinder’s Blog
- Today’s post spotlights a couple who used to be field auditors, but who now go for the big bucks traveling around and “regging” people. He points out the lulz in some of their statements gushing about the Super Power rundown and a few other choice topics.
- Yesterday’s post contains Mike’s thoughts on the “Cause Resurgence Rundown” (a.k.a., the “running program”), which is now held on an entire floor of the new Sooper Powerz building. Mike recalls being forced to do it at Int Base back when it was a staff punishment. He thinks it might be an even bigger bust for $2,500 than Super Power.
Forum Sites (ESMB, WWP, OCMB)
- The Narconon master list apparently has been updated with a new facility in the southern Mexican state of Quintana Roo.
- WWP user Fényképezőgép (a name which, if we remember our Hungarian, obviously translates as “camera”) thinks there is a function in the installer for the Mark VIII e-meter to “brick” the device (i.e., melt it down so it’s no longer usable) if it has not been authorized for use.
- Apparently, Scientology audio books are categorized in the “Science” section of the iTunes store. Not sure if this a bigger screw-up than the recent classification of the Bible in the “fiction” area of Costco.
- Some on ESMB are trying to dream up the next great killer title for whoever writes the next tell-all on their time in the cult.
- Update on dates and cast of characters for the Rathbun vs. Miscavige case and a consolidation of links to similar threads by JBWriter.
- And finally, JBWriter updates his courtroom calendar.
- The celebrity press is all over the “chick fight” where Kirstie Alley has taken her usual high road in responding to Leah Remini’s recent comments about disconnection and other problems with the cult. There are lots of articles in different media including some pretty repulsive fawning from Perez Hilton. TV Guide weighs in, as does Huffington Post. Leah stays classy and positive throughout, but Kirstie stays true to form, living proof that the cult makes the able more able, and the asshole more asshole.
- The National Enquirer is reporting that Leah Remini is trying to get back in the good graces of Katie Holmes in order to get Katie to become involved with Leah’s anti-Scientology book project. The Enquirer claims that Leah could command an advance as high as $5 million but the story claims that publishers want to get Katie Holmes involved as well to ensure the book’s popularity. I’ve only seen this in the Enquirer, so I don’t know how conjectural the piece is, though the Enquirer is relatively careful with stories to avoid getting sued. After all, Bert Fields never followed up with that threatened suit against the Enquirer over the TomKat divorce.