(In reading the following, you may believe I have something personally against Marty Rathbun, I don’t. I don’t know him personally. I do strongly disagree with him on some important issues. And from what I see, I appear to be one of the only people in the Field who’s willing to say that I don’t think he’s the smartest guy in the room. I also think he needs to handle some issues he has with David Miscavige and the Church, so that he can approach them in a more rational way. But I do keep up with his blog and I have repeatedly stated that I appreciate the strategic and repair work he’s doing in the Field. I wish for him and his family nothing but the best.)
On 24 October 2012, Marty Rathbun posted a new entry to his blog: Licking Bathroom Floors. It detailed some testimony from Debbie Cook about some of the abuse she and others endured at the Int Base, encouraged and/or initiated by David Miscavige.
One of the subsequent commenters to this post was someone going by the alias LTC Forever, a relatively frequent contributor of comments to Marty’s blog. He/She said:
Marty, I have been following your blog for quite some time now, and I have to say that it is getting quite old. Do you have anything positive to say? Have you addressed suppressive alteration of Scientology materials in your new book? I think this is the most important issue that every Scientologist needs to be aware of, and this is something that can be verified. Abuse is not as easily verified or even believed except for those eye witnesses that were
actually there to observe it, and in the end – really – who cares who slapped who? Are we going to have true Scientology available for future generations or not? That’s what I want to know. How can we put original works by Ron Hubbard back into print so that peoples of this world can know what Scientology really is?
LTC makes some good points here. First, Marty’s blog is full of eyewitness accounts of the abuses which took place at the Int Base. Every few days or weeks, the story is recycled from a different person or a different perspective. But it’s the same story. David Miscavige abuses people or encourages/forces others to abuse people. As much as this has been bemoaned in the blogs of the Independent Field, if you haven’t heard it a hundred times by now, you simply haven’t been listening. Is there some point to continuing to repeat the same refrain?
Second, LTC makes the point that the eyewitnesses to this kind of behavior are actually very few. The vast majority of Scientologists have no way of knowing this conduct actually took place or verifying the facts. This kind of conduct is hard to imagine, let alone believe from the senior executives of Scientology. Personally, I believe it did occur. But certainly not because I witnessed it. And I spent a long time doubting the claims before I finally decided they must be true. I suspect any Scientologist would react as I did.
Third, LTC makes an extremely important point about the future availability of the unadulterated materials of Scientology going forward. I can’t really even add to what he or she’s said. These materials are paramount to the continued practice of Standard Technology and the preservation of our history and technology.
So LTC Forever made some good points. What’s interesting is the response. There was an instant dog pile on LTC. Marty’s response was a toss-off:
Miscavige can help you out with all that. Good luck.
Mike Rinder’s response was more scathing:
I suggest you stop “following the blog.”
And do you have anything positive to say?
Clearly, you didnt even READ Marty’s first book, and though you may “follow” this blog apparently you don’t read it either. I will tell you who cares who slapped who — anyone that has a genuine concern about human rights… I take it you think people should be abused and that this should be ignored because exposing it and talking about it “isn’t positive.”
You are either a troll or hopelessly theetie-weetie. Or both.
And it goes downhill from there. Apparently, the key phrase which was focused on by subsequent dog pilers was “who cares who slapped who?” That really set people off. Apparently to such a degree that no one even bothered to acknowledge, discuss or analyze the real major points that LTC was making. Instead, they just attacked.
Let me stop here and say that I have no brief for or against LTC Forever. I don’t know the person. I only know they comment frequently on Marty’s blog. Otherwise, I have no reason to defend him/her. But apparently, I was one of the only ones who read his/her comment dispassionately and with a smidgen of objectivity and pan-determinism about it.
I think the whole affair is instructive for several reasons.
First, David Miscavige is Marty Rathbun’s Moby Dick. Herman Melville’s novel Moby Dick details the eternal bitter struggle by whaling ship Pequod’s Captain Ahab to exact revenge on the sperm whale Moby Dick for previously destroying his ship and taking his leg. Ahab will never give up until he has found and killed the evil Moby Dick (who, after all, is simply an animal, a sperm whale). In our little drama, Marty is Ahab and Miscavige is the whale Moby Dick. Both are forever locked in a battle to see the other obliterated from the Earth.
Read all of Marty’s blog entries (I have). Look for natter, HE&R, and service-facsimile-type attitudes, which you will find in abundance. Marty appears to be neither objective, dispassionate nor pan-determined when it comes to Miscavige
or the Church. I wouldn’t be surprised to find Marty and Miscavige still locked in mortal combat a thousand years from now. (Or married to each other, which would be the ultimate cosmic joke.)
I’m not making excuses for David Miscavige here. I believe he is a genuine 2-1/2 percenter, a suppressive person. He’s sealed his own fate for lifetimes ahead. If anyone ever deserved the label “Fair Game”, it’s that guy. But again, it doesn’t matter what we do to him; his fate is sealed. Nor am I saying that Miscavige’s pursuit of Marty is imagined. It isn’t. The house across the way and the cameras in it, trained on Marty, bear ample witness to Miscavige’s continued insanity.
My point is that Marty’s blog always has and may always reflect the oppterming relationship he has with David Miscavige. Arguing with Marty about his continuing obsession is simply spitting in the wind; there’s really no point.
Second, the majority of commenters on Marty’s blog appear to be fairly sycophantic. Actually read the comments on any given post of Marty’s. No matter how bizarre the point he makes, the commenters appear to agree 95% of the time, and congratulate Marty on his wisdom and insight. They appear to believe that Marty is the “smartest guy in the room”. So if you’re going to comment on Marty’s blog, realize who is also reading your comment. Disagree and they may treat you as savagely as they did LTC Forever. Also be aware that Marty will ban you from commenting if you are sufficiently disagreeable. I know this from personal experience. But it’s Marty’s blog, and he’s free to conduct it in any way he sees fit.
My point here is that if you comment on Marty’s blog, consider your content carefully and then be prepared for what happens as a result. Disagree with Marty on his blog at your own risk.
Third, the Field is likewise obsessed, though to a lesser extent, with David Miscavige and the state of the Church. It is characteristically introverted on its own membership and fixated on the crimes of Miscavige. While these things are important, they are not near as important as where we go from here. This is the most important point that LTC Forever made which was overlooked.
Yes, David Miscavige has committed numerous crimes, the magnitude of which would daunt even the sanest of persons. Yes, the Church is on a rocket ride straight down, bankrupting its own public and soon to be unable to service the dwindling number of new people reaching for Scientology. While these things are true, they aren’t the most important things we ought to be concentrating on.
At some point, most or all of us had this idea about clearing the planet. The destruction of the Church of Scientology and the crimes of David Miscavige have made the Field the only entity capable of making it happen. But as long as we pursue our introversion and obsessions, that goal remains ever more distant. We need to renew our dedication to that goal and work out as a group how we are going to achieve it. Otherwise, this whole experiment in salvaging a prison planet was a waste, and we have failed. And for anyone who still cares, we’ve failed Ron as well. He left this planet in our hands to handle.
If someone like Marty wants to continue pursuing David Miscavige, let him or her do so. I suppose someone has to fill that role. If some people want to sit around and bemoan what’s happened to the Church of Scientology, well, okay, I suppose. But I really wouldn’t spend a lot of time or energy on it at this point. It’s kind of moot. But the rest of us ought to be getting together and figuring out how we’re going to salvage and preserve our Tech, deliver it to a world which sorely needs it, and get on with the show. I suspect that’s what Ron would be doing right about now, if he were here. And I think it’s the least we could do under the circumstances.
(Yes, I am aware of the efforts of Life Enhancement Center of Coeur d’Alene, The Courseroom, The Dror Center in Israel (site in Hebrew) and others like them. VWD to these dedicated Scientologists and a sincere half-ack. May they Flourish and Prosper. And may others step up to make similar stellar efforts.)