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Internet Group Declares War on Scientology 891

Posted by Zonk
from the so-long-and-thanks-for-all-the-fish dept.
Darkman, Walkin Dude writes "An internet group calling itself Anonymous has declared war on the Church of Scientology, in the form of an ominous posting to the YouTube site. 'In the statement, the group explained their goal as safeguarding the right to freedom of speech. "A spokesperson said that the group's goals include bringing an end to the financial exploitation of Church members and protecting the right to free speech, a right which they claim was consistently violated by the Church of Scientology in pursuit of its opponents." The press release also claimed that the Church of Scientology misused copyright and trademark law in order to remove criticism from websites including Digg and YouTube. The statement goes on to assert that the attacks from the group "will continue until the Church of Scientology reacts, at which point they will change strategy".' It should be noted that Slashdot users have had interactions with Scientology in the past as well."
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Internet Group Declares War on Scientology

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  • RIAA (Score:5, Funny)

    by paganizer (566360) <.moc.liamtoh. .ta. .1evorgeht.> on Thursday January 24, 2008 @11:05AM (#22167004) Homepage Journal
    Hopefully the RIAA will be next. Sure they seem to be shooting themselves in the foot a lot lately, but they still need to be wiped out.
    • Re:RIAA (Score:5, Funny)

      by MrNemesis (587188) on Thursday January 24, 2008 @11:11AM (#22167124) Homepage Journal
      Even better; tell the RIAA that the Church of Scientology is a massive front for copying CD's. Simultaneously, tell the scientologists that the RIAA are planning to clone Xenu from some evil thetans that were surgically extracted from Britney.

      Unstoppable force, meet immovable object. Space DC-10's dropping atom bombs on volcanoes will be nothing compared to those fireworks :)
      • Re:RIAA (Score:5, Funny)

        by cashman73 (855518) on Thursday January 24, 2008 @11:18AM (#22167286) Journal
        Even better; tell the RIAA that the Church of Scientology is a massive front for copying CD's. Simultaneously, tell the scientologists that the RIAA are planning to clone Xenu from some evil thetans that were surgically extracted from Britney.

        Where can I buy tickets to that event? I want front row seats!

      • Re:RIAA (Score:5, Insightful)

        by sm62704 (957197) on Thursday January 24, 2008 @12:21PM (#22168344) Journal
        tell the scientologists that the RIAA are planning to clone Xenu from some evil thetans that were surgically extracted from Britney.

        That might work if the people who ran Scientology actually believed in their own garbage. I don't believe they do. I believe the whole organization is a money making scam.

        -mcgrew

        PS- yes I got the joke, I'm just in a bad mood today.
        • by James McGuigan (852772) on Thursday January 24, 2008 @08:30PM (#22175840) Homepage

          Within the Church of Scientology, you are taught that Scientology is the one and only solution to all mankind's problems, and during this narrow window of opportunity in mankind's history it is possible to "clear the planet" (ie give everybody auditing) and save humanity from itself. Most other goals pale in comparison and anything that detracts from Scientology, or its expansion is in essence a mortal sin against humanity. This belief is strong enough to get people sign up the Sea Organization [wikipedia.org] (LRH's private navy) on a billion year contract (ie you are in for the long haul... and not just this lifetime)

          Anyone who attacks the church is either a suppressive person (2.5% of the population who are evil - think Hitler), PTS due to a connection to an SP (Potential Trouble Source - 20% of the population), or has committed various other overts and withholds (ie sins and secrets) and it trying to justify their own actions by making the Scientology seem less (because if you admitted to yourself that Scientology was the "one and only solution" then your otherwise small crime would have to weigh fairly heavily on your conscience). Anyone who commits various sins and suppressive acts, will be subconsciously aware of this, and slowly do themselves in (ie get sick, have an accident) to prevent themselves from committing more crimes.

          It is also taught that if someone encounters the OT3 materials before being ready for them, then as part of the psychological conditioning to create "prison-planet" earth, the person may get sick and die and this is the reason it is considered "confidential" and heavily protected, and only available to members of the church past a certain level. In the south park episode "trapped in the closet" [comedycentral.com], they did a cartoon version of the OT3 materials labeled "This Is what Scientologists Actually Believe", if Matt and Trey has been members of the church, they would have been ex-communicated very quickly. The church would have almost definitely told Issac Hayes to "dissconnect" from them or otherwise become ineligible for any future Scientology services or auditing.

          This "truth" or "reality tunnel" is slowly conditioned into you until you internalise it. There is a huge taboo against reading or discussing anything potentially negative or "entheta" against Scientology or the church, often the taboo will extend down to the point that you feel it is wrong to "think" about potentially negative things regarding Scientology. To do so would potentially detract from Scientology and is thus a mortal sin against humanity, or you might wind up making yourself sick. I know this, because I was brought up within the church, and through the process of leaving the church and the Scientology "reality tunnel", it took me around two years to fully confront this internal taboo to the point I could openly think and speak on the subject.

          Part of the process for getting people into this state of mind, is that during Scientology auditing, if you have any undisclosed overts or withholds, or you have your attention stuck on something, the e-meter will pick up on this (that you have your attention stuck on something after you where asked a question - its the same principal behind the polygraph), Thus the auditor will be trained to uncover these issues, by continually asking questions on the subject, with the help of the e-meter, which may include turning part of the auditing session into a confessional. Auditing is essentially about being completely open and honest with yourself and your mind, and fully confronting (with the help of the auditor) any issues that where previously painful or unconscious about (this is actually the good bit about Scientology). Having out-ethics or keeping secrets is considered to be a barrier to your own spiritual growth.

          • by just_forget_it (947275) on Friday January 25, 2008 @11:17AM (#22181602)
            Your post reminds me a lot of my experience as a Jehovah's Witness. I was raised in the church, and a lot of these elements of scientology are present in the JW religion as well.

            "Within the Church of Scientology, you are taught that Scientology is the one and only solution to all mankind's problems, and during this narrow window of opportunity in mankind's history it is possible to "clear the planet" (ie give everybody auditing) and save humanity from itself. Most other goals pale in comparison and anything that detracts from Scientology, or its expansion is in essence a mortal sin against humanity. This belief is strong enough to get people sign up the Sea Organization (LRH's private navy) on a billion year contract (ie you are in for the long haul... and not just this lifetime)"

            It's the same thing with Jehovah's Witnesses. As a witness, you are taught that the Watchtower society is the "faithful and discreet slave" (otherwise known as the "faithful and wise servant" in most Bibles), meaning that they are the sole channel to God. Any kind of salvation and favor with God are impossible without following the doctrinal interpretations of the society. They also teach that the only goal a Witness of Jehovah should have is to preach the message to others as much as possible. All other ambitions in life come secondary. This is why there are no Jehovah's Witness charities, scholarships, or homeless shelters. They believe the earth will all be destroyed and that the only thing that needs to be done is get people into the Watchtower fold so they can survive Armageddon.

            "Anyone who attacks the church is either a suppressive person..."

            Anyone who disagrees, even if only privately, to the most specific tenets of the Jehovah's Witness faith (including the weird bits like the 1914 eschatology) is labeled an apostate and under direct control of Satan and the demons. People who publicly attack the church are often viewed as sinning against the holy spirit, the Bible's only unforgivable sin.

            "There is a huge taboo against reading or discussing anything potentially negative or "entheta" against Scientology or the church, often the taboo will extend down to the point that you feel it is wrong to "think" about potentially negative things regarding Scientology.

            Right in line with Watchtower teachings. Books and authors that disagree with the society's conclusions are labeled as "worldly," meaning that they are a product of a world ruled by Satan. Essentially, anything that doesn't agree with doctrine is wholly Satanic, automatically, no questions asked. Witnesses are constantly told to stay away from the internet and from "apostate" reading material, because reading such things will corrupt the mind of even the most faithful Jehovah's Witness.

            "it drills into you the fact that Scientology "works" and "gets results" and that the only reason it doesn't work is due to incorrect understood, applied or "squirreled"

            Everything that is taught by the society is "the truth." If wonderful things don't happen to you as a result of being "in the truth," then it is always your fault. You might not be praying enough, or you might need to be going out door-knocking more often. If you're not happy, you're not doing enough, period. Until recently and even currently on some occasions, those with depression were/are told that the reason for their depression is that something is keeping them from God. The solutions are to pray and read the Bible more.

            "he did a purge of anyone within the church who he considered was not 100% loyal to him by declaring them suppressive and excommunicating them (members of the church are required to "dis-connect" and never again speak to someone who has been excommunicated)."

            The same thing happened with Joseph F. Rutherford took over the presidency of the Watchtower society from its founder, Charles T. Russel, in 1917. He instituted the doctrine of "disfellowshipping." Those who are disfellowshipped are shunned by everyo
      • Re: (Score:3, Informative)

        by NormalVisual (565491)
        Space DC-10's dropping atom bombs on volcanoes will be nothing compared to those fireworks :)

        DC-8s, you mean. DC-10s existed only on paper when Hubbard wrote the tripe revered by the Scientologists as OT III. :-)
      • Re:RIAA (Score:5, Funny)

        by MrNemesis (587188) on Thursday January 24, 2008 @12:56PM (#22168974) Homepage Journal
        I know it's terrible form to reply to oneself, but I've just realised* that "The Church of Scientology" is an anagram of "Tech go filch tunes, cry ooh!" - if that isn't enough evidence for an RIAA lawsuit of titanic proportions I don't know what is.

        * i.e. put it into the anagram finder at wordsmith.org
      • by davidsyes (765062) * on Thursday January 24, 2008 @02:48PM (#22170838) Homepage Journal
        The City ought to revive the idea of charging fast-food restaurants for their garbage strewn all over the streets and apply it to those passing out the pink-paper "Are you bi-curious..." umm, I mean "Are you curious about yourself" tri-fold flyers. On any given day in Powell area, one can find locals and tourists just dropping the damned things once they realized what they've been proffered.

        It's one thing to find chewing gum wrappers and fast-food containers and such on the streets, but ideas peddled and then rejected are a CLEAR sign that some one or some organization is going beyond free-speech guarantees. With TV, one can change channels or turn off the TV, and there is no immediate or sighted pollution. Even the ad sponsors can't (without digital connections) determine who is switching off their ads or just ignoring them and instead multi-tasking during commercial breaks or going to the bathroom between programs.

        What that coarse-throat preacher and his megaphone gets up on his Powell Street pulpit condemning gays, heretics, non-Christians and so on, he's blabbing and making noise (apparently, he's within ordinance as SFPD never takes him down, since his Mr. Megaphone is not amplified via a generator or exceeding some decibel level, I guess...), he is making noise pollution, but at least one can walk away.

        Flyers dropped or abandoned mean the message contained is simply not wanted. The content doesn't matter, unless it's pron, I guess, in which case we generally DON'T want the stuff face-up for kids and sensitive/easily-offended types to see. I guess I'm just sick and tired of seeing religious/belief paraphernalia on the street because its CONTENT is utterly rejected by 90% of those into whose hands it was stuck or taken out of sympathy for the pushers of it.
    • Re:RIAA (Score:5, Funny)

      by Dr. Cody (554864) on Thursday January 24, 2008 @11:16AM (#22167228)
      Maybe not wiped out, but their pool might get closed.
  • Anonymous? (Score:5, Funny)

    by Anonymous Coward on Thursday January 24, 2008 @11:05AM (#22167010)
    Cowards.
  • It's not a church (Score:5, Insightful)

    by andyh3930 (605873) * on Thursday January 24, 2008 @11:06AM (#22167030)
    Any "Church" that charges for its teachings and also has them copyrighted to prevent free distribution is not a church it's a scam at best and a dangerous cult at worst.

    I had dealings with them about 10 years ago. I ended up paying GBP30 for a course just to get out of the hard sell and even though I never did the course the often phoned and wrote letters of about 5 years after.

    See the Operation Clambake pages for more details to their activities. http://www.xenu.net/ [xenu.net]

    • by grub (11606) <slashdot@grub.net> on Thursday January 24, 2008 @11:11AM (#22167128) Homepage Journal

      Any "Church" that charges for its teachings and also has them copyrighted to prevent free distribution is not a church it's a scam at best and a dangerous cult at worst

      cult (n): A small, unpopular religion.
      religion (n): a large, popular cult.

      • Re:It's not a church (Score:5, Interesting)

        by Catbeller (118204) on Thursday January 24, 2008 @11:25AM (#22167410) Homepage
        Cult: organization pretending to be a religion. Keeps true beliefs secret from recruits, one would think because they would have no recruits if beliefs were known. Viciously attacks any and all who expose secret beliefs. Has tendency to lock people up, either through social pressure or actual locked doors. Uses any means possible to intimidate press, infiltrate government, and co-opt police forces. See: Moonies, Scientology, any number of local Jesus franchises in USA, and yes, even the Mormons, tho they succeeded in all points listed above so long ago that no one remembers they are a cult. Hell. the Salvation Army is a cult, but people rarely look at its belief system. A uniformed army, eh? But I digress.
        • Re:It's not a church (Score:5, Interesting)

          by value_added (719364) on Thursday January 24, 2008 @11:46AM (#22167772)
          See: Moonies, Scientology, any number of local Jesus franchises in USA, and yes, even the Mormons, tho they succeeded in all points listed above so long ago that no one remembers they are a cult.

          Agreed, but have you have noticed that Mormons tend to be really nice people? I'm serious. It's like Romney -- no one can really find fault with him except to say his hair is too perfect, that he's just a successful businessman, or that he's Mormon.

          I have zero patience for the Protestant evangelical crowd and less for members of any cult, but Mormons, at least in my experience, tend to be shiny happy people that don't really bother anyone. Even the ex-Mormons I've met seem to have few bad things to say and if they do, you can't help but notice there's a certain lingering nostalgia in their eyes. That's not to say their beliefs aren't loony, but if members of cults were as benign as the typical Mormon, I wonder if anyone would notice, or care.

          But I digress.

          Back at you.
          • by Maxo-Texas (864189) on Thursday January 24, 2008 @12:02PM (#22168040)
            Well... except the ones that marry 13 year olds and follow discredited mormon beliefs.

            The mainstream mormons are no more loony that your average catholic these days tho.
          • by weston (16146) <westonsd@@@canncentral...org> on Thursday January 24, 2008 @02:52PM (#22170924) Homepage
            Agreed, but have you have noticed that Mormons tend to be really nice people? I'm serious. It's like Romney -- no one can really find fault with him except to say his hair is too perfect, that he's just a successful businessman, or that he's Mormon.

            I'm a Mormon, and while I appreciate the kind generalization, I definitely find him lacking on a number of fronts, including his ability to say anything inspiring during faith-related discussion or respond coherently to attacks on that front. There's also the fact that his about-face on several issues seem so conveniently timed it seems likely he's being phony... plus there's his endorsement of (and being endorsed in return by) Ann Coulter, plus the "double guantanamo" statement he made that, and in general a willingness to engage in a kind of republican political rhetoric that was never really high to begin with but is really, really starting to show its wear. Then there's the point that we've already elected a single-term governor from a family dynasty with political connections who has experience in business and managing a sports franchise, and that didn't really didn't work out so well, now, did it? All in all, I'd have to be pretty desperate to vote for him.

            He does seem like he's probably a good Mormon, though. :) But see, that's the thing. As a Mormon, I know lots of good Mormons who really, really shouldn't be president.

            Mormons, at least in my experience, tend to be shiny happy people that don't really bother anyone. Even the ex-Mormons I've met seem to have few bad things to say and if they do, you can't help but notice there's a certain lingering nostalgia in their eyes. That's not to say their beliefs aren't loony, but if members of cults were as benign as the typical Mormon, I wonder if anyone would notice, or care.

            There's two things that I think make Mormons like this. One is that the religion itself is seen very much by its members as a serious spiritual practice as much as anything else -- its cosmological aspects are tied up in that, and it has sociopolitical implications, but it's not a cosmology or sociopolitical blueprint first (there are times in its history when that has been less true, especially the first 60 years, but that's another point). My experience suggests to me that people who have a faith that they take seriously as a spiritual practice tend to also be as you describe -- nice, happy shiny people. This isn't to say I don't think Mormonism has anything particular to distinguish itself, but I think this is the most important element. Having a serious spiritual practice of some kind is grounding and can inspire a real tranquility knowing you have a strong idea about your place in the world and working to play that part as well as you can. Combine it with basic rules of common decency and you get good people.

            The other thing -- Mormons have long been different enough (and indeed, for some portion of their history, genuinely persecuted and hated) that they really, really want to be accepted and legitimized by mainstream society. There's also a religious desire to be a "light of the world", "city on a hill" (Matthew 5:14-16) in their communities. It adds up to a desire to excel and succeed that's probably a tad beyond the protestant work ethic, and I think when that combines with the basic decency and spiritual grounding, it does produce people that are respected in their communities.

            This is, however, a generalization, and as an insider, I see this community of mine as far from perfect. In particular, I've seen a lot of that desire to be legitimized and excel turn to elitism, materialism, and a misplaced sense of destiny that can border on a naive entitlement (interesting considering there are specific and serious warnings about this hazard in Mormon canon). And the collapsed quasi-Mormon cosmology that passes for political philosophy in staunch Republican Utah can be really, seriously crazy. I say all this partly to acknowledge it's not all shiny happy people
          • Re:It's not a church (Score:4, Informative)

            by adpowers (153922) on Thursday January 24, 2008 @07:26PM (#22175072)
            Unless you are gay. An old friend was kicked out of BYU for that and they withheld his transcript so he couldn't transfer credits. Yeah, real nice folks.
        • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

          by Aladrin (926209)
          So you get to make up your own definition now, eh?

          http://dictionary.reference.com/browse/cult [reference.com]

          A cult -is- a religion, even the dictionary says so. It's on the 'connotations' that people have that make it any different than religion, and those vary according to who you talk to.

          Also, you've neglected to mention the time when Christianity was also a 'cult' by your own definition. They read the bible in church in the original language, despite the fact that none of the lower members understood it. They defini
          • Re:It's not a church (Score:4, Informative)

            by geekoid (135745) <dadinportlandNO@SPAMyahoo.com> on Thursday January 24, 2008 @12:50PM (#22168866) Homepage Journal
            Yes it was a cult, but we can't exatly punish it for what someone did well before this was even a country now, can we?

            We can only look at their behavior recently.

            I am in no way defending Christianity.

            Here are some great Cult clues:
            Do they want to separate you from your friends and family?
            Do the harass?
            Do they use 'deprivation' techniques ion recruits and/or memebers?
            Is it personality based?
            Do they punish people for questioning doctrine?
            Do they dictate diet or eating schedule?
            Do they believe they are above the law?
            Do they believe they are a cure all?
            Do they cost money or goods?
            Do the 'sequester' people?

            Just a few indicators, generally based on to degree. Example:
            One could say the catholics dictate you eating schedule by dictating a wafer during mass and fish on Fridays.
            I would say yes, that is an indicator but it's different then someone who tells you when to eat everyday and severely punished you if you slip.

            I am an Atheist,and I recognize the difference between Cult and religion.

        • Re: (Score:3, Informative)

          by wile_e_wonka (934864)
          That's an interesting definition for "cult." Do a Google definition search for cult("define:cult") to see how varied the supposed definitions for cult are. My favorite was "A religious group which denies the essential doctrines of Christianity." I enjoyed it because it presupposes that there are some doctrines that Christian religions across the board beleive are "the essential doctrines of Christianity." Note also that this definition makes Judaism a cult. Heck--even atheism falls within this definiti
      • Definition of cult (Score:3, Insightful)

        by Nathan Cassano (3234)
        The definition of a cult is quite simple. A cult hides it's core beliefs from it's members a religion does not.
    • by JCSoRocks (1142053) on Thursday January 24, 2008 @11:36AM (#22167620)
      Ron Hubbard - the founder of Scientology - has been quoted as saying that if you want to get rich, you start a religion. ( http://www.faqs.org/faqs/scientology/skeptic/start-a-religion-faq/ [faqs.org] ) Well, that's what he did. You have to pay just to learn about it and the deeper you go, the more you spend. It's designed to dupe people into giving the Church of Scientology gobs of money. I truly feel sorry for anyone that's been sucked in by it. It's like believing that Star Wars is real (the movie, not the missile defense system...).
      • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

        by lymond01 (314120)
        I don't really know, but I sort of assume that with all the big names and big money in Scientology, that's at times it's less of a crazy cult and more of an exclusive club. While anyone with money can seemingly join, the key seems to be money. I doubt your $15,000 entry fee is only getting you classes in "feeling good". You're likely invited to hobnob at parties with the Cruises and Travoltas of the world, play golf on well-watered lawns, get cheap tickets to UFC, etc etc.

        Again, not sure at all if that's
    • by SanityInAnarchy (655584) <ninja@slaphack.com> on Thursday January 24, 2008 @12:16PM (#22168272) Journal
      I don't care how hard their sell was.

      Either you can simply ignore them, or they're actually doing something illegal, and you can stop them.

      I don't see why you felt the need to fund them.
    • Re:It's not a church (Score:4, Interesting)

      by Anonymous Coward on Thursday January 24, 2008 @12:28PM (#22168496)
      There is some similarity with the Mormons. They will allow you to read the Book of Mormon before joining their church, but that is not all of their doctrine. You have to pay to get the final "secrets," and be let in on their Freemason-style rituals. This is the same as having to pay to take the Scientology cruise where they reveal the secret plans of Xenu. The Mormon equivalent of the Scientology cruise ship (Freewinds) is the Mormon temple. BTW, early Mormons threatened their followers with violence if they revealed the details of the their secret rituals. The "violence" was particularly nasty: an angel would slit their throat, or disembowel them. Ouch! With Scientology, I guess, if you don't accept Xenu, they just might throw you overboard. Conveniently, they are in international waters and there will be no witnesses.

      Today, the Mormon church controls a vast World wide financial empire built on the backs of their lay members. Their most visible member is currently waffling presidential candidate, Mitt Romney. Scientology also has a vast financial and real estate empire in Florida and in California. Their most visible member is Hollywood movie star, Tom Cruise. Give Scientology another 20-50 years, and maybe the two empires will be of equal size.

      The Cruise award video may win "Sundance Audience Favorite" award, even though it was not even entered. Everyone there seemed to really enjoy it.
    • Re:It's not a church (Score:5, Interesting)

      by insertwackynamehere (891357) on Thursday January 24, 2008 @12:31PM (#22168552) Journal
      This post just gave me an idea out of the blue. Why not make religious texts non-copyrightable? Therefore scientology has to choose between religion and copyright. If it chooses a business, then fine. They can be a business and investigated as such and lose tax deductibale status. If they choose religion they're texts will become free and no one will have to pay them. I can't really see any issues with public domaining religious texts for legit religions.
    • by Z00L00K (682162) on Thursday January 24, 2008 @01:53PM (#22169904) Homepage

      Any "Church" that charges for its teachings and also has them copyrighted to prevent free distribution is not a church it's a scam at best and a dangerous cult at worst.
      The best solution would be to have a law that says that you can either have copyright protection or you can have protection and benefits of a religion but NEVER ever both. (but you may select to have none, that's YOUR problem not anybody elses...)

      Germany [snafu.de] has stated that "...the chief purpose of Scientology is not religious, but economical in nature...", which is probably the closest thing to consider. And don't forget that both Tom Cruise [scientology-lies.com] and John Travolta [scientology-lies.com] are members of that outfit. (I wouldn't even call it Cult...)

      And the myth as it seems that there was a wager [everything2.com] between Heinlein [nitrosyncretic.com] and Hubbard [wikipedia.org] about starting a religion, it seems to be half-true. But I don't think that Heinlein ever planned on catching up on starting a religion... He would probably gotten himself into FSF [fsf.org] or some other outfit instead with his statement of "Pay it forward" [heinleinsociety.org] if he had been born at a later date. (Today it's more than 100 years since Heinlein was born, he was born 7 July 1907!)

      Especially the "Pay it forward" approach is important. Even if you do someone a service and that person isn't able to return the favor you can always set the "pay it forward" approach to the problem.

  • by Anonymous Coward on Thursday January 24, 2008 @11:06AM (#22167042)
    Scientology and all its offshoot cults like The Landmark Forum [rickross.com] are brainwashing users of people. Money money money.
  • Anonymous? Really? (Score:4, Informative)

    by jandrese (485) <kensama@vt.edu> on Thursday January 24, 2008 @11:10AM (#22167116) Homepage Journal
    Is this the same Anonymous that Joe Blow knows about thanks to Fox News [youtube.com]? When asked to choose between a church and terrorists who want to blow up your van, which one do you think the public is going to go for?
  • Followed by (Score:5, Funny)

    by Bobfrankly1 (1043848) on Thursday January 24, 2008 @11:11AM (#22167122)
    Tom Cruise declares war on the internet.
    -
    He's gotta do something until the mothership arrives...
  • by gardyloo (512791) on Thursday January 24, 2008 @11:12AM (#22167138)
    From Wikinews: The "Message to Scientology" video was highlighted as the "YouTube Video of the Week" by The Michigan Daily. Commenting on the video, the piece states "if this video is any indication, it seems like the assailants mean business". Hehe. If that were a credible metric of "business", we'd have an emo President by now.
    • Re: (Score:3, Funny)

      by sm62704 (957197)
      Hehe. If that were a credible metric of "business", we'd have an emo President by now.

      I take it you're too young to remember Jimmy Carter.
  • by JulianConrad (1223926) on Thursday January 24, 2008 @11:15AM (#22167206)
    LRH's scam shows how easy it is to start a new religion that survives and gains passionate adherents after the death of its founders. Most people couldn't do it, but a few individuals have the kind of personality that can pull it off in the right social environment. In fact, we have enough recent historical data on cults that turn into competitive new religions (for example Mormonism and Baha'i, both founded in the 19th Century) that I don't think it's even all that mysterious how older religions like Christianity & Islam could have originated through normal social processes. (We don't have to postulate "supernatural" causes to explain their existence, in other words.)
  • by sykopomp (1133507) on Thursday January 24, 2008 @11:15AM (#22167218)
    ...a group composed of members of several -chan sites (4chan, 7chan, 711chan), as well as several other related communities like YTMND and Ebaum's.

    Really, this is a joke. Channers will raid/invade just about anything, and Scientology is just their latest target. This is the exact same group behind the 'hackers on steroids' thing that Fox News reported on. Any claims they have about righteousness are just a way to justify their 'lulz'.
    • Re: (Score:3, Interesting)

      by Anonymous Coward
      Actually, this raid has attracted people who only normally would masturbate to jailbait and laugh at silly pictures.

      So no, it's not the same "RAID RAID RAID" cancer as before - and heck, it gives those kids something useful to do.
    • Re: (Score:3, Interesting)

      by Parag2k3 (1136791)
      Well thats mostly correctly (besides Ebaums. They hate ebaums for stealing web content from other sites and blame them for any raids they do)

      They raid almost anything and unlike normal hackers/crackers, they use pure brute force methods on their targets. Also they don't pick their targets based on any real reason. They prank call Tom Green for the hell of it, and phished tons of myspace accounts. They usually attack things that they won't get into serious trouble for. If you attack things people dislike, mo
    • Re: (Score:3, Informative)

      by TheSpoom (715771) *
      You can get more information about Anon from Encyclopedia Dramatica [encycloped...matica.com]. I wouldn't try Wikipedia, they kind of delete everything to do with them.
    • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

      by elrous0 (869638) *
      In this case, they've picked a target that richly deserves it.
  • Trolls (Score:5, Funny)

    by TI-8477 (1105165) on Thursday January 24, 2008 @11:17AM (#22167248)
    You do realize that the people who are leading this war are the same people who consider trolling Slashdot a professional sport?
  • by mgkimsal2 (200677) on Thursday January 24, 2008 @11:19AM (#22167294) Homepage
    Why single out one specific 'religion'? I saw the Tom Cruise interview video last week - it really didn't seem all that fundamentally different from listening to an evangelical Christian. Different terms were used, but the mindset was mostly the same. Watch Jesus Camp if you haven't already. Not much difference between the main camp director's mindset and Tom Cruise's.
  • by Phoenix666 (184391) on Thursday January 24, 2008 @11:23AM (#22167376)
    Especially when you consider its offshoot, the Landmark Forum (formerly "EST"). They are scary, for-profit cults that employ techniques like fatigue, hunger, group compulsion, and newspeak. You would be surprised how many people from all walks of life have gotten pulled into them.

    I wish Anonymous well, but Scientologists and their cousins in the Landmark Forum are beyond reason. And fighting cults rarely works unless they're small and focused around a single charismatic leader. Both Scientology and Landmark are too big and widespread for that, and fighting them will probably only make them stronger.
    • Re: (Score:3, Informative)

      by Dirtside (91468)
      Funnily enough, I'd known how evil Scientology was for years, and then I happened across the Skeptic's Dictionary [skepdic.com] which has entries on est [skepdic.com] and the Landmark Forum [skepdic.com]. I'd read them in about 1999, and a couple of years later a friend of mine invited me to audit (heh) a Landmark Forum workshop. I'd forgotten about what I'd read, so I checked it out, and it seemed vaguely interesting... and familiar. Then I realized that I knew where I'd heard of it before, and I sent the SkepDic links to my friend.

      He stopped p
  • by AndGodSed (968378) on Thursday January 24, 2008 @11:31AM (#22167544) Homepage Journal
    Ned:"Heya Ed, watcha doin?"
    Ed: "See that cave full of bears? I am pokin' em with a stick!"
    Ned:"OMG Ed, that's crazy!"
    Ed: "No worries! See I build a remote poking robot device that I am controlling via wires attached to this here laptop computer."
    Ned:"Uh Ed?"
    Ed: "Yeah?"
    Ned:"Can't they just follow the wire to where you are hiding?"
  • by CheeseburgerBrown (553703) on Thursday January 24, 2008 @11:50AM (#22167832) Homepage Journal
    Granted, this e-hissy from Anonymous is unlikely to take down the cult or even deal it serious damage, but it does serve to highlight how the traditional big media outlets have been legally hogtied.

    Our usual media sources can't report on allegations of abuse because they've been very effectively muzzled by CSI hyper-litigation. They try to keep this fact close to the vest, but Anonymous' efforts are making it plain for all to see. This is a valuable service.

    Also, any organization that exploits copyright law in order to silence critics should get a kick in the shins, even if that's all it amounts to. It's still a potent message: "We don't condone gag orders, and we'll fight back however we can, even if it is a David versus Goliath situation."

    Glib as it may sound, raising awareness is key here. And an end unto itself.

    Yours,
    Cheeseburger Brown
    Suppressive and Proud

  • by jameskojiro (705701) on Thursday January 24, 2008 @11:59AM (#22167992) Journal
    If to get about a million people to join all at once and then when the muckey mucks are not around you really mess up the place. I could see at a Scientology meeting you have 300 people 2/3 who are plants, when the rest want to do somethign evil like harass someone, you would then have 2/3rds stand up and say, HELL NO WE AINT GONNA BE ASSHOLES! You can join without paying just tell them that the other churches don't require you paty and demand that they let you into their churches because if you are dressed nicely I have yet to see a church kick you out if you go in, sit down and behave civily. Plus regular churches don't charge you for services, yes they pass around the collections plate but you don't have to put anything on it.

    Basically, just kill their silly little cult with a nationwide flash mob of epic proportions.

  • by pyrr (1170465) on Thursday January 24, 2008 @12:15PM (#22168260)

    The Co$ gives me one more compelling reason to use "$" in a mocking fashion!

    I also like to think of $cientology as a good example that illustrates the origins of religions. Whether you're talking about Christianity or Star Trek, it's just another example of a charismatic individual using his fantastic imagination to come up with an utterly baseless and bizarre explanation for the way things are. And then convincing the masses that he somehow knows what he's talking about, and deserves their money and allegiance for sharing the knowledge with them. All it takes is to follow the money to see what the real game is.

  • by night_flyer (453866) on Thursday January 24, 2008 @01:03PM (#22169100) Homepage
    You don't get rich writing science fiction. If you want to get rich, you start a religion. (1948)

    THE ONLY WAY YOU CAN CONTROL PEOPLE IS TO LIE TO THEM. (1952)
  • Movie Stars (Score:4, Interesting)

    by Devir (671031) on Thursday January 24, 2008 @02:30PM (#22170526) Homepage
    I used to have a high level of respect for John Travolta and Tom Cruise. Then they joined the Cult of Scientology and became wack jobs. Worse is that they use their "Star Power" to sway more members to the cult movement.

  • Hoax or Real? (Score:5, Interesting)

    by CristalShandaLear (762536) on Thursday January 24, 2008 @02:51PM (#22170916) Homepage Journal
    From the video:
    We are cognizant of the many who may decry our methods as parallel to the Church of Scientology. Those who espouse the obvious truth that your organization will use the actions of Anonymous as an example of the persecution of which you have for so long forewarned your followers. This is acceptable to Anonymous. In fact,it is encouraged.


    Damn. Kind of wraps the Borg's "Resistance is Futile" and Bush Jr.'s "Bring It On" in an ominious, yet tidy little anti-scientology message doesn't it?

    I've had a couple of friends who "converted" to scientology and they completely shun anyone and everyone they were ever associated with including their parents now. It's very sad to see how isolated and fearful they've become.

    I for one hope that this isn't a hoax. I'd never participate in something like this, but when I think of what my friends used to be and what they are now - and how Scientology seems to be this insidious organization that has used and abused so many - I can't help but hope that Anonymous, if serious, will succeed.
  • One man's words... (Score:5, Interesting)

    by Teflon_Jeff (1221290) on Thursday January 24, 2008 @03:50PM (#22171804)
    I have but one thing to say about Scientology

    "The only way you can control people is to lie to them."
    -L. Ron Hubbard, .Off the Time Track,. lecture of June 1952, excerpted in JOURNAL OF SCIENTOLOGY, issue 18-G, reprinted in TECHNICAL VOLUMES OF DIANETICS & SCIENTOLOGY, vol. 1, p. 418.

"Irrationality is the square root of all evil" -- Douglas Hofstadter

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