This is a post sent to me by another very smart commenter on the Post-Scientology Internet named “StatPush”. I think it provides a viewpoint on David Miscavige and the Church of Scientology that you don’t hear very often, and one that is valuable to consider. – Alanzo
Note: “This article originally started out as a response to a recent posting on Mike Rinder’s blog, however, as it grew it became much too large for a comment posting. – Statpush
You can think what you will of David Miscavige, that he is an SP, squirrel, etc. For better or worse, after LRH died, Scn ended up with him. Personally, I would not want to have traded places with him. Why? Because I think he inherited an unsustainable mess of an organization.
Forget for a moment that this is a “religion”, and view it as a business. Imagine inheriting the post of CEO of a company whose products cannot be altered in anyway, nor can you “invent” new products or services. Not only that, but the products and services you DO have, have never successfully delivered on their promoted promises, namely the State of Clear (as defined in Book One) and the State of OT.
In the 50s and 60s you could keep the game going for quite some time, but in the Information Age, and certainly the Digital Age, this information gets propagated instantaneously – and you cannot stop it. Nowadays, word of the latest email scam or virus spreads across the digital world like wildfire. Why should Scn be immune to this? Well, it’s not, nor should it be. Today we find story after story of personal narratives of the abuse meted out by Scn organizations.
Scn pretends to embrace the internet. Scn pretends to support free speech. Just like it pretends to make Clears and OTs. In fact, if you had to pick one word to describe the whole of Scn it would be pretension. Scn supports free speech and the internet provided it does not endanger or threaten the pretence. In other words, any information, whether true or false, that seeks to expose Scn for what it is, is vehemently attacked. A pretence is only effective if people believe it to be true. No longer does the world-at-large believe Scn’s lies. Therefore the pretence is maintained solely for Scnists, the church’s customer base.
So now you have an almost impossible situation:
- 1) No new products
2) The products you do have don’t work (as stated on the tin)
3) The general public know about your deception, so very few new customers
4) All you have is your existing loyal customers, but they’re getting old and dying off
What a horrible situation to be faced with. How many executives or CEOs can you think of who would even consider taking this on? Yet, Miscavige stepped up to the plate – that takes balls.
From what I have read and people I know, Miscavige is no dummy. I think he assessed the situation and realized the game was nearly over. You’re either going to close up shop or devise a way to keep the pretense alive. How do you keep the pretense alive?
Miscavige had a few unreleased products, namely KTL and LOC, as well as Super Power (I won’t count the urban legend of OT IX and X). The packaging and release of these products signaled the end of product development authored by the Founder. Additionally he was sitting on a mountain of unreleased audio lectures given by Hubbard.
All the while you keep the plebs all jazzed about going up the Bridge and tell them about all the exciting things on the horizon. Then you take your time releasing the last new products you will ever produce.
On the public front, you simply tell the press that you are the fastest growing religion on the planet and fabricate some big numbers that cannot be verified, talk about all the good things Scn does for the community and if anyone complains you play the religion card and attack the attacker.
You somehow negotiate a settlement with the IRS, thereby legitimizing your organization as a real church (big boost to the pretence), which removes a huge tax burden and offers some protection from outside agencies.
Next I think DM looked at what he DID have to sell. I think he admitted that much of Hubbard’s writings were a fucking mess. He probably was right; from what I’ve heard of LRH’s “research” practices it’s no wonder. Well, here’s an opportunity; let’s clean this up and organize it and slap a “New and Improved” label on it, hence The Golden Age of Tech and The Basics. Then GAT II, rinse, repeat.
Miscavige is awesome.
Now before anyone accuses me of being a Miscavige sympathizer, I do not claim the man did all this with clean hands, quite the contrary. I think he resorted to tactics and techniques he found successful in the past, namely the use of force, domination and intimidation. A thug in a three piece suit.
No man of reason could have kept the game going as long as he has. In short, David Miscavige has pulled off the impossible. The pretence within the church is alive and well, and maybe stronger than ever. No small feat.
This is probably sacrilegious to say, but, I don’t know if Hubbard could have pulled it off any better. While LRH certainly had his talents and quirky charm, which were effective in the 50s and 60s, an age where swagger and bravado had some currency. Today he would be met with a severe reality adjustment.
David Miscavige, on the other hand, has managed to rule the Scn world longer than Hub himself, albeit with an iron fist reminiscent of a banana republic dictator. It is pointless to compare their success. Hubbard, the originator of all things Scn, had achieved demi-god status. Miscavige will likely be remembered (in addition to his Rat Pack, bouffant hairdo) as The Reformer, responsible for The Great Purge, including the most intelligent, free-thinking members.
But, you have to ask – could anyone have done any better?
Personally, I will be eternally grateful to David Miscavige, for without his Command Intention and insistence on complete obedience, I would probably be happily clapping along with the other proud Scnists, in awe at the tremendous impact Scn is having on the world, and knowing my hard earned dollars contributed to the salvation of this sector of the universe.