WTF? Scientology gets Yuma TV anchor fired for piece about Lisa Marie Presley

TODAY AT SUBSTACK: If you’ve signed up for free emails at Substack, you will receive today’s feature story at your inbox: If a news station in Yuma, of all places, put on something that Scientology didn’t like, would the church throw a conniption fit like it does for stuff in the LA Times? Apparently so. [What is this Substack thing, anyway?]


Technology Cocktail


“Probably the greatest discovery of Scientology and its most forceful contribution to the knowledge of mankind has been the isolation, description and handling of the human spirit. Accomplished in 1951 in the month of July, in Phoenix, Arizona, it was established along scientific rather than religious or humanitarian lines that that thing which is the person, the personality, is separable from the body and the mind at will and without causing bodily death or mental derangement.” — L. Ron Hubbard, 1956



We first broke the news of the LAPD’s investigation of Scientology celebrity Danny Masterson on rape allegations in 2017, and we’ve been covering the story every step of the way since then. At this page we’ve collected our most important links as Danny faces a potential sentence of 45 years to life in prison. NOW WITH TRIAL INDEX.


THE PODCAST: How many have you heard?

— The Underground Bunker Podcast

[1] Marc Headley [2] Claire Headley [3] Jeffrey Augustine [4] Bruce Hines [5] Sunny Pereira [6] Pete Griffiths [7] Geoff Levin [8] Patty Moher [9] Marc Headley [10] Jefferson Hawkins [11] Michelle ‘Emma’ Ryan [12] Paulette Cooper [13] Jesse Prince [14] Mark Bunker [15] Jon Atack [16] Mirriam Francis [17] Bruce Hines on MSH

— SPECIAL: The best TV show on Scientology you never got to see

[1] Phil Jones [2] Derek Bloch [3] Carol Nyburg [4] Katrina Reyes [5] Jamie DeWolf

— SPECIAL: Your Proprietor’s updates on the Danny Masterson trial


[1] Sep 21 [2] Sep 28 [3] Oct 4 [4] Oct 10 [5] Oct 11: Day One [6] Oct 12: Day Two [7] Oct 13: Day Three [8] Oct 17: Day Four [9] Oct 18: Day Five [10] Oct 19: Day Six [11] Special interview with Chris Shelton, Oct 19 [12] Oct 20: Day Seven [13] Oct 21: Day Eight [14] First week in review, with Jeffrey Augustine [15] Oct 24: Day Nine [16] Oct 25: Day Ten [17] Oct 27: Day Eleven [18] Oct 28: Day Twelve [19] Second week in review, with Jeffrey Augustine [20] Halloween special [21] Nov 2: Day Thirteen [22] Nov 3: Day Fourteen [23] Nov 4: Day Fifteen [24] Third week in review [25] Nov 5, Saturday special [26] Nov 6, Sunday special [27] Nov 7, Day Sixteen [28] Lisa Marie Presley breaking news [29] Nov 8, Day Seventeen [30] Nov 9, Day Eighteen [31] Nov 10, Day Nineteen


Source Code

“Nineteen fifty-one, I rolled up my sleeves and started to investigate the Whole Track. Because in late 1950 it had started to raise its ugly and unseemly head. And auditors who would run into it and try to audit it and pcs who dare bring it up, of course, ran into a considerable social ostracism of one character or another. That was not done. The first Foundation board tried to pass a regulation, a board ruling to the effect that nobody would ever look at, believe in or investigate past lives, and so forth. And yet auditors in auditing them kept running into them, you see? So that probably was the basic split-up of the first Foundation. The first Foundation wanted to sit there comfortably and just grind on and on in present-life engrams and consider that we had it all made and they wanted no further research or investigation of any kind whatsoever. Well, that wouldn’t go and that was that, because auditors were not turning out the results they should have turned out if one had only lived one life. So in 1951 this — I didn’t fly in the teeth of this. I would have investigated anything. I mean, there’s no real resistance on my part. You show me something, tell me I can’t investigate it, I’m liable to investigate it. You show me something and tell me I can investigate it, I’m liable to investigate it. I mean, there is no influence in that line. I, just down through the trillennia, I have not paid attention to and/or paid no attention to people who have told me not to look. I just have not paid any attention to this one way or the other. This, of course, adds up to a total neglect of the ‘finer sensibilities,’ I think they’re called, of other people. The finer sensibilities, I think, is another way of expressing the idea ‘he’s too yellow to look.’” — L. Ron Hubbard, January 25, 1962


Avast, Ye Mateys

“If you can tolerate running your legs off, getting grey hairs, bags under your eyes, streteched wits in the course of a day’s work amongst the living lightning, these could be a place for you in the Office of the LRH Comm Flagship. You’ve no idea what it takes at times to get an order duplicated, activated, executed and completed! Cats with some lives left who want it hot and dangerous can volunteer for the hottest spot aboard. Drop me a line — today — saying WHY you want a job with LRH Comm Flagship and I’ll look it over.” — LRH Comm Flagship, January 25, 1971


Overheard in the FreeZone

“Recently a friend of mine had a crash, he told his mother and his mother fell to the ground an hour later, injuring herself. She had an accident, which is a PTS condition according to Scientology theory. There must also be an SP, according to the same theory, but, who’s suppressing her in that case? See? She had an accident, which links to a PTS condition, but the triggering was to be told bad news, to be told by his son that he had just crashed. Yes, she might also be connected to antagonistic terminals in present time as well as in the Whole Track, but the trigger at that incident was to learn about the crash. You can examine your own life and see if that’s true for you.”




Past is Prologue

1997: Jeff Jacobsen reported having lunch with two Scientologists this week, who tried to persuade him to take down the Lisa McPherson web page and to stop the upcoming picket in Clearwater to protest her death. “To sum up, it seemed that they basically wanted a few things from me; 1) don’t mention the OT stuff next time I’m interviewed, 2) tone down my web page, 3) dump the Lisa McPherson page, and 4) stop organizing pickets of the church. #4 was the most interesting to me. They tried to imply that my calls to picket are dangerous because unstable people might join the picket and shoot someone or do something harmful. Their proof of this theory was a big stack of a.r.s. posts from names I don’t recall saying things like ‘bring a gun to your local picket and shoot up the place’, and ‘henri’s’ post stating ‘bomb your local Church of Scientology.’ I protested that there could be nuts on both sides and that us picketers are in just as much danger from crazy people as the Scientologists. I also reminded them that my demonstration page ( has *always* promoted a peaceful, non-violent picket,and I even quote Gandhi and Vaclav Havel. But they didn’t seem moved by these arguments. The worst part of the lunch was at the end, when the LA person began to apparently run the security check drill on me. She had previously accused me of being a liar, and now she asked me if I’d ever bombed a building. I said no. She asked if I had ever murdered someone. I grabbed my notebook and left. She followed me out trying to engage me in more conversation, which I refused to do.”


Random Howdy

“People say to me, ‘So, have you met a Scientologist?’ And I laugh and think to myself, ‘What a beautiful thing,’ because maybe one day it will be like that, you know? You know what I’m saying. Maybe one day it will be that ‘Wow, Scientologists, they just read about those in the history books.’ You know?”


Full Court Press: What we’re watching at the Underground Bunker

Criminal prosecutions:
— Danny Masterson charged for raping three women: Mistrial declared November 30. Retrial scheduled, jury selection begins March 29.
— ‘Lafayette Ronald Hubbard’ (a/k/a Justin Craig), aggravated assault, plus drug charges: Grand jury indictments include charges from an assault while in custody. Plea deadline scheduled for December 16.
— Jay and Jeff Spina, Medicare fraud: Jay sentenced to 9 years in prison. Jeff scheduled to time served with three years supervised release, restitution of $9.7 million.


— Rizza Islam, Medi-Cal fraud: Trial scheduled for March 1 in Los Angeles
— David Gentile, GPB Capital, fraud: Next pretrial hearing December 9.
— Yanti Mike Greene, Scientology private eye accused of contempt of court: Found guilty of criminal and civil contempt.

Civil litigation:
— Baxter, Baxter, and Paris v. Scientology, alleging labor trafficking: Complaint filed April 28 in Tampa federal court, Scientology moving to compel arbitration. Plaintiffs filed amended complaint on August 2. Hearing November 17 to argue the arbitration motions, awaiting ruling.
— Valerie Haney v. Scientology: Forced to ‘religious arbitration.’ Selection of arbitrators underway. Next court hearing: February 2, 2023.
— Chrissie Bixler et al. v. Scientology and Danny Masterson: Appellate court removes requirement of arbitration on January 19, case remanded back to Superior Court. Stay in place at least through February 7.
— Brian Statler Sr v. City of Inglewood: Case settled ahead of scheduled Dec 6 trial.
— Author Steve Cannane defamation trial: New trial ordered after appeals court overturned prior ruling.
— Chiropractors Steve Peyroux and Brent Detelich, stem cell fraud: Lawsuit filed by the FTC and state of Georgia in August, now in discovery phase.



After the success of their double-Emmy-winning, three-season A&E series ‘Scientology and the Aftermath,’ Leah Remini and Mike Rinder continue the conversation on their podcast, ‘Scientology: Fair Game.’ We’ve created a landing page where you can hear all of the episodes so far.


An episode-by-episode guide to Leah Remini’s three-season, double-Emmy winning series that changed everything for Scientology watching. Originally aired from 2016 to 2019 on the A&E network, and now on Netflix.


Find your favorite Hubbardite celeb at this index page — or suggest someone to add to the list!

Other links: SCIENTOLOGY BLACK OPS: Tom Cruise and dirty tricks. Scientology’s Ideal Orgs, from one end of the planet to the other. Scientology’s sneaky front groups, spreading the good news about L. Ron Hubbard while pretending to benefit society. Scientology Lit: Books reviewed or excerpted in a weekly series. How many have you read?


[ONE year ago] Danny Masterson gets boost from Mom & brother Chris, who secure his $3.3 million bail
[TWO years ago] Scientology in Russia: Historian Chris Owen does the deep dive we’ve been waiting for
[THREE years ago] My mom is the auditor in the ‘Reckless Ben’ Scientology infiltration videos
[FOUR years ago] Scientology’s ‘grass roots’ social media effort is actually led by its most mediocre spokesman
[FIVE years ago] The Battle of Portland, part 2: Pressuring a court by surrounding it with Scientologists and celebs
[SIX years ago] Brandon Reisdorf: Scientology complained to probation dept. over ‘Leah Remini’ appearance
[SEVEN years ago] For a class-action lawsuit against Scientology’s rehab network, a setback in California
[EIGHT years ago] ‘Going Clear’ premieres at Sundance, and we watched in awe with the celebs
[NINE years ago] Jon Atack: Do Scientology’s training routines turn you into a sociopath?
[TEN years ago] Newsweek Confirms It: L. Ron Hubbard Was a Blowhard
[ELEVEN years ago] The Strange Death of Flo Barnett, Mother-in-Law to Scientology Leader David Miscavige


Scientology disconnection, a reminder

Bernie Headley (1952-2019) did not see his daughter Stephanie in his final 5,667 days.
Valerie Haney has not seen her mother Lynne in 2,920 days.
Katrina Reyes has not seen her mother Yelena in 3,425 days
Sylvia Wagner DeWall has not seen her brother Randy in 2,975 days.
Brian Sheen has not seen his grandson Leo in 1,965 days.
Geoff Levin has not seen his son Collin and daughter Savannah in 1,856 days.
Christie Collbran has not seen her mother Liz King in 5,160 days.
Clarissa Adams has not seen her parents Walter and Irmin Huber in 3,031 days.
Doug Kramer has not seen his parents Linda and Norm in 2,136 days.
Jamie Sorrentini Lugli has not seen her father Irving in 4,609 days.
Quailynn McDaniel has not seen her brother Sean in 3,925 days.
Dylan Gill has not seen his father Russell in 12,491 days.
Melissa Paris has not seen her father Jean-Francois in 8,410 days.
Valeska Paris has not seen her brother Raphael in 4,578 days.
Mirriam Francis has not seen her brother Ben in 4,159 days.
Claudio and Renata Lugli have not seen their son Flavio in 4,420 days.
Sara Goldberg has not seen her daughter Ashley in 3,457 days.
Lori Hodgson has not seen her son Jeremy and daughter Jessica in 3,172 days.
Marie Bilheimer has not seen her mother June in 2,736 days.
Julian Wain has not seen his brother Joseph or mother Susan in 1,051 days.
Charley Updegrove has not seen his son Toby in 2,226 days.
Joe Reaiche has not seen his daughter Alanna Masterson in 6,777 days
Derek Bloch has not seen his father Darren in 3,908 days.
Cindy Plahuta has not seen her daughter Kara in 4,246 days.
Roger Weller has not seen his daughter Alyssa in 9,101 days.
Claire Headley has not seen her mother Gen in 4,220 days.
Ramana Dienes-Browning has not seen her mother Jancis in 2,576 days.
Mike Rinder has not seen his son Benjamin and daughter Taryn in 6,879 days.
Brian Sheen has not seen his daughter Spring in 2,985 days.
Skip Young has not seen his daughters Megan and Alexis in 3,383 days.
Mary Kahn has not seen her son Sammy in 3,259 days.
Lois Reisdorf has not seen her son Craig in 2,842 days.
Phil and Willie Jones have not seen their son Mike and daughter Emily in 3,337 days.
Mary Jane Barry has not seen her daughter Samantha in 3,591 days.
Kate Bornstein has not seen her daughter Jessica in 14,700 days.


Posted by Tony Ortega on January 25, 2023 at 07:00

E-mail tips to tonyo94 AT gmail DOT com or follow us on Twitter. We also post updates at our Facebook author page. After every new story we send out an alert to our e-mail list and our FB page.

Our new book with Paulette Cooper, Battlefield Scientology: Exposing L. Ron Hubbard’s dangerous ‘religion’ is now on sale at Amazon in paperback and Kindle formats. Our book about Paulette, The Unbreakable Miss Lovely: How the Church of Scientology tried to destroy Paulette Cooper, is on sale at Amazon in paperback, Kindle, and audiobook versions. We’ve posted photographs of Paulette and scenes from her life at a separate location. Reader Sookie put together a complete index. More information can also be found at the book’s dedicated page.

The Best of the Underground Bunker, 1995-2021 Just starting out here? We’ve picked out the most important stories we’ve covered here at the Underground Bunker (2012-2021), The Village Voice (2008-2012), New Times Los Angeles (1999-2002) and the Phoenix New Times (1995-1999)

Other links: BLOGGING DIANETICS: Reading Scientology’s founding text cover to cover | UP THE BRIDGE: Claire Headley and Bruce Hines train us as Scientologists | GETTING OUR ETHICS IN: Jefferson Hawkins explains Scientology’s system of justice | SCIENTOLOGY MYTHBUSTING: Historian Jon Atack discusses key Scientology concepts | Shelly Miscavige, 15 years gone | The Lisa McPherson story told in real time | The Cathriona White stories | The Leah Remini ‘Knowledge Reports’ | Hear audio of a Scientology excommunication | Scientology’s little day care of horrors | Whatever happened to Steve Fishman? | Felony charges for Scientology’s drug rehab scam | Why Scientology digs bomb-proof vaults in the desert | PZ Myers reads L. Ron Hubbard’s “A History of Man” | Scientology’s Master Spies | The mystery of the richest Scientologist and his wayward sons | Scientology’s shocking mistreatment of the mentally ill | The Underground Bunker’s Official Theme Song | The Underground Bunker FAQ

Watch our short videos that explain Scientology’s controversies in three minutes or less…

Check your whale level at our dedicated page for status updates, or join us at the Underground Bunker’s Facebook discussion group for more frivolity.

Our non-Scientology stories: Robert Burnham Jr., the man who inscribed the universe | Notorious alt-right inspiration Kevin MacDonald and his theories about Jewish DNA | The selling of the “Phoenix Lights” | Astronomer Harlow Shapley‘s FBI file | Sex, spies, and local TV news | Battling Babe-Hounds: Ross Jeffries v. R. Don Steele


Tony Ortega at The Daily Beast


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