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Attacking Scientology – Turning the Tables

The internet is abuzz with the tales of Anon/Anonymous, a group of hackers who promise to drive Scientology from the internet. They’ve been going after Xenu’s sites with Denial of Service (DoS) attacks, and in the process managed to take a site belonging to a Dutch school.

There’s a lot of conversation in lots of forums debating the morality of their approach. Most discussions include tiresome dictionary arguments about whether Scientology is a cult or not.

Let me answer the last question first. It is. If you don’t think so, then you’re too damn stupid to appreciate this blog, so go away.

Is it right or wrong for some to fight the science fiction religion with illegal, underhanded, sneaky, vigilante-style attacks? I’ve thought about this quite a bit. I pondered it for at least ten minutes (well, maybe eight) before forming my opinion. A few points I considered:

The government has had a very long time to deal with Scientology, and has failed miserably, mostly because they’ve ignored the problem. Given Scientology’s published polices and their history of using civil litigation for the sole purpose of harassment, they should have been ruled as Vexatious Litigants decades ago, and bared from bringing lawsuits without special permission. When the government refuses to hand out justice the job falls to the citizens.

The best way to deal with a bully, the only way to deal with a bully, is to fight back. For the best results, beat the shit out of him. If that’s not possible, just fighting back will usually do the trick.

In the game “The Prisoner’s Dilemma” the best strategy is tit for tat: Do unto others what they did unto you the last time. It doesn’t matter if your opponent is aggressive, passive, friendly, nasty or random – over time tit for tat always gets the most favorable results.

I disagree with Voltaire. I may not believe what you way, but will defend to the death your right to say it, unless you are trying to silence me. In that case I’ll sit back and smile while you get what you deserve.

Considering the violent and filthy history of these evil people, they deserve not only be driven from the internet, but destroyed in the real world as well. They deserve to be harassed and spit at and derided and attacked, but for phase one, driving them from the internet would be a good start.

But if these vigilantes really want to have an effect, they’ve got to do more than flood their web sites with DoS attacks. That will annoy them and piss them off, but it won’t cripple them. Anon needs to do some real damage. They need to hit them where it matters – in their wallets. Shutting down their web sites is briefly satisfying and somewhat entertaining. Emptying their bank accounts would be a real accomplishment.

A good start would be to hack their servers and gather all their financial information. Then they should remove all the money they can find in every one of their bank accounts. Let the Xenu lovers suffer the bankruptcy they’ve visited on so many of their followers.

The next step would be to extend this courtesy to anyone promoting them. “Sorry, Mr. Cruse, your credit card has been declined.” “Sorry Miss Alley, you’ll have to pay cash.” “Mr. Hayes, management has requested that I your money before serving your dinner.” I’d leave Travolta alone, at first, became I haven’t seen him shilling for them except for a blurb on their site. But the moment he says anything about them that could be construed as a plug, bankrupt him. Imagine the headlines. Imagine the sense of accomplishment.

L. Ron Hubbard said, “The purpose of [a lawsuit] is to harass and discourage rather than to win. The law can be used very easily to harass, and enough harassment on somebody who is simply on the thin edge anyway, well knowing that he is not authorized, will generally be sufficient to cause his professional decease. If possible, of course, ruin him utterly.”

His organization deserves no better. Best wishes, Anonymous, whoever you are. I very much doubt you’ll succeed, (at the moment, Scientology’s primary site is up and operating fine) but I applaud your noble cause.

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13 Comment(s)

  1. Your writings on the anti smoking movement and many of the follies of government are truly excellent and intelligent. You appear to have ignored all the noise from whatever source and actually looked for yourself and come to your conclusions based on sincere observation. If you did the same regarding Scientology you would find a similar story of vested interests. I don’t care what conclusions you would come to but I don’t believe for a moment you have studied the issue with 2% of the care you gave to smoking.

    It seems you are being a sucker for b/s. Read the actual Hubbard writings. Find out what he really said and where he was really coming from. Don’t just look at conveniently edited bullshit.

    Me | Jan 28, 2008 | Reply

  2. Dave – I sincerely hope that you’re just venting here and that you’re not really serious. If you seriously think that it’s EVER right to violate other people’s rights and property simply because you don’t agree with them, then I’m going to have to strongly disagree with you.

    Parrot | Jan 28, 2008 | Reply

  3. Me: I’ve got one of his quotes up there, and the sums up his attitude and approach very nicely. But even if his writings were wonderful, insightful, and preached peace and joy and bacon, lettuce and tomato sandwiches for all mankind, the only thing that really matters is *actions.* If someone’s holy book preaches peace and they’re out there blowing up school busses, it doesn’t matter what their book says. Likewise, it doesn’t matter what RLH wrote. All that matters is what his worshipers *do*.

    Scientology’s actions are very well documented, and I’ve also spoken directly to people who have escaped their clutches. They are evil. They are *vile.*

    Parrot: It has noting to do with me disagreeing with them. I disagree with most religions, but am not supporting their destruction (except via dialogue and ideas), not even the many religions that are life destroying cults. What makes this one different is the way they deal with both critics and those who leave their cult.

    While it isn’t right to initiate force, it is perfectly appropriate to retaliate with it. We usually rely on the government for that, but they can’t/won’t deal with these dirtbags, so the only way any kind of justice will be handed out will be through vigilantes. Scientology has gone out of their way to destroy anyone who disagrees with them, to silence them, to drive them to suicide, to “ruin them utterly.” For decades they have refused to play by the rule of law, the rules of civilized society, the rules of fair play, or any rules other than their own. Their refusal to play by the rules releases us from any obligation to do the same. They deserve exactly what they prescribe for anyone speaking out against them – to be utterly destroyed.

    Hittman | Jan 29, 2008 | Reply

  4. “Their refusal to play by the rules releases us from any obligation to do the same.”

    I’m surprised at you Dave – I figured you would realize that this is the same BS reason that the current US government gives for their extreme actions against “enemy combatants”

    You can’t uphold your principles by violating them! And you can’t uphold the law by breaking it!

    I don’t doubt that that Scientology has done some terrible things, but as far as I know nothing has yet been proven in a court of law. Due process is not just an abstract concept that we can ignore whenever it’s most convenient – it’s the way things have to be done if we want to live in a free society!

    Parrot | Jan 29, 2008 | Reply

  5. I can understand where Dave is coming from. I’m disgusted by people who misuse the legal system to silence and intimidate critics and to force opponents to do your bidding.

    Not saying it is something that should be fought by the same means (it’s another form of tearing down your house to fight your neighbor), but there is a form of poetic justice to it. I know that if a bunch of people started suing John Banzhaf with the intent of forcing the little troll from backing off of the anti-smoking movement, I would be joyous and laugh at his misery. I would disagree with it from an intellectual viewpoint, but I would savor his legal problems.

    Harley | Feb 2, 2008 | Reply

  6. You’ve pegged it, Harley.

    The alleged homosexual Fred Phelps, along with his moronic minions, shows up at solders funerals and celebrates their death with “god hates fags” signs. It’s surprising he hasn’t been severely beaten by the friends and family of those who made the ultimate sacrifice.

    If that were to happen, and I were to be witness to it, I wouldn’t participate. But I’d watch it with an approving smile on my face.

    Dave Hitt | Feb 3, 2008 | Reply

  7. I’ll give you that point. Being happy that somebody got their comeuppance does not necessarily mean that you endorse the methods used to that end.

    My only objection was that you seemed to be endorsing the methods used. I’m completely with you in being happy to see Scientology suffer.

    Parrot | Feb 3, 2008 | Reply

  8. I’m a big fan of both Scientology and Fred Phelps, at least as a spectator. People like these practically mock themselves. Fred Phelps knows how to exploit the status of being a victim and just about everything he does is done to some extent to invoke a harsh response. He *loves* it when people counter-picket his protest. He *loves* it when people respond violently, probably even when his church gets bombed (at least a little). I would hate to turn Scientology into the same kind of machine. I think the most damaging way to “attack” groups like WBC and Scientology is to give out as much info as possible about their beliefs. Seriously, they practically mock themselves. If the public at large knew all about thetans, Xenu, etc from the start, Scientology would practically vanish from the Earth (and sea).

    Dan Pearson | Feb 4, 2008 | Reply

  9. Dan,

    The problem is the Scientology often sues the people who do try to inform the public about their practices and beliefs. Many critics have even received death threats from people connected to the church or have found their pets killed.

    Scientology isn’t just a kooky group that takes a bit of money from a few followers. It is an aggressive cult that bleeds its members dry after having con artists slowly draw them into an insane worldview and discards them when they run out of cash. If anyone tries to point out what Scientologists actually believe or warns the public about how the top members of Scientology are a bunch of cynical bloodsuckers who have studied cults and scams for years to find out the best way to sucker people, can expect multiple lawsuits and a poisoned dog.

    Most New Age religions are kooky and pretty much harmless. Some stupid pap about being a “starchild” or wasting your money on a few crystals. Scientology saps its members money and independence and abuses the legal system to silence its critics and ex-members, along with mailing it critics photos of their children or stomping their cats to dead and hanging them on the door knob.

    Fuck’em.

    Harley | Feb 5, 2008 | Reply

  10. I agree that Scientologists are more dangerous than most when it comes to exposing their “theology.” Still, their teeth aren’t as sharp as they used to be and the more people publicize the underlying Scientology beliefs the harder it will be for them to sue everybody.
    On a separate note, I left the the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints off the list of groups who can only be hurt by having their theology publicized. If anybody’s read Card’s Ender series, its striking how closely the “Aiua” parallels Mormon metaphysics of the soul, and seems only slightly less out-of-place in a far-future sci-fi novel than in 19th-century LDS tracts.

    Dan Pearson | Feb 6, 2008 | Reply

  11. But there is a big difference between Scientologists and most other cults.

    One of the most common characteristics of cults is they shun anyone who leaves. It doesn’t matter if it’s your parents, children, best friend, or in some cases, spouse – you are not allowed to have anything to do with the shunned person. They are dead to you.

    It’s a very effective tool. First, get the inductee to give up all their friends in the outside world while building up a network inside the cult. Then threaten to leave them completely and utterly alone if they leave. This also protects existing cult members from the influence of an ex-member.

    Scientologists take it a step further, and endlessly harass those who leave, Their goal, it appears, is to drive them to suicide, and they have succeeded many times.

    So I think, *in this rare instance,* any ends justifies the means of destroying the organization and anyone who promotes it. However, the clowns who made the threats haven’t even been able to keep the sites down – they’re working, and responding quickly.

    Dave Hitt | Feb 10, 2008 | Reply

  12. What do you mean other cults don’t harass people who leave? That’s just not true. Some cults have even gone as far as to kill the people who leave.

    Parrot | Feb 10, 2008 | Reply

  13. I didn’t say this was unique to Scientology, but that *most* other cults don’t do it. Some do, most notably fundamentalist Islam.

    Dave Hitt | Feb 14, 2008 | Reply

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