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Re:  No Xenus is Good Xenus
by Jason Gracey

I had someone close to me call up and say very seriously that Jason Gracey's article was a different piece of work.  Editor Rebecca Finch says the article "exposes the underside of Scientology in a way few have heard of before" and I'd say right. Now a few more will hear of Scientology's underside and its exposure in that way.  Gracey arrived in the nascence of a renaissance in Scientology Cultlit. South Park paves the way and other wog wags walk hallowed halls.

"Scientology's Quest for Intelligence" is a brave new subtitle, true and ironic for both the term's meanings and fields. And "No Xenus is Good Xenus" is a pretty good title for something or other to be a subtitle to. One of Scientology's most successful lures is the claim it raises IQ about a point per hour of processing, the cult's sold-by-the-hour hypnotically controlled mental exercises it calls "auditing."
All Scientologists are on a quest for the intelligence quotient that will prove that Scientology is right, that it really can and does deliver on its IQ promises, and that the wogs are wrong.  

More importantly for me, all Scientology is also on a quest for intelligence of the espionage kind. From the few hurried minutes we talked by phone, and some Internet reading, Gracey picked up on and has now scratched the surface of Scientology's underside, its intelligence agency structure and activities.  "Pseudo-CIA" is not a bad neologism.  For further reading, I'd suggest a speech "Scientology, the Cult of Total Espionage" I gave in Novosibirsk, Russia in November 2004.

For me, my Scientology experience is thirty-eight unbroken years long, so it's a bit fascinating to see what moments, details or conclusions a writer uses if my story is used at all.  In two thousand or so words, Gracey got in a lot of facts and produced a picture that Scientology's leaders can only pretend to ignore. I have just one point or detail that isn't correct enough to leave uncorrected: that "speech [in the RPF] was confined only to answering the auditor's questions."  It's quite easy really to see how Gracey could have made the error.

The applicable RPF rule was that inmates could not speak to regular non-RPF Sea Organization crew unless spoken to.  A wog prison equivalent would be prohibiting all prisoners from speaking to the guards unless spoken to; which would never happen because such a condition would be viewed as socially and psychologically repressive and repugnant. Speaking, or originating a communication, was an RPF offense that rarely occurred, but was punished with laps of some enclosure or route if it did, or even punished with the RPF's RPF, the "more arduous detention system within the RPF" that Gracey mentions, if the offense reoccurred.

During RPF members' months or years in this Scientology gulag, they are subjected to hundreds of hours of an auditing procedure called "security checking" or "sec checking," an invasive interrogation using the cult's electropsychometer or E-meter to detect crimes and lies. People being sec checked must divulge their crimes, critical thoughts, anything embarrassing or incriminating, their complete sexual histories, their secrets and their families' and friends' secrets.  All the details of these "confessions" are recorded and made available to Scientology's leaders and security and intelligence personnel.  Although the IQs of people don't go up a point per hour, and the salutary or therapeutic effect of confessing to their crimes is debatable, there is no denying the effectiveness of sec checking and the recording of the crimes confessed in keeping Scientologists working, being good Scientologists, and not complaining or filing fraud claims over how stupid they still are.

Gerry Armstrong

Original Article: No Xenus is Good Xenus


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