Did you see him on Oprah? The man’s clearly bonkers, though it was demonstrated under entirely different circumstances on–
Oh crap. Let the cat out of the bag there. Honest, I only watched one episode of Oprah, and it was really just because Tom Cruise was flipping out on it as we channel surfed. Seriously. I don’t watch Oprah. Guys? Come on, seriously, guys!
I admit it: I watch Oprah sometimes. Well, if my wife is watching it and there’s something nutty going on, like her giving away Rhode Island to some underpaid, quadriplegic inner city teacher.
Actually, though, I can’t stand the parts where she shoves her nose up into celebritys’ nether regions, which seems to be every other episode. She’s an absolute whore in those situations --all it took to convince me was the line “I can’t wait to see Catwoman, this movie is going to be GREAT” when Halle Berry was on. So if I had seen that Tom Cruise was on, I’d have left the room or made a grab for the TiVo remote.
Cruise is simply towing the Scientology line, bemoaning standard physical therapy, recuperation, and the standard general practice of medicine for the dreamed up claptrap that L. Ron Hubbard “discovered” while convalescing in a Pacific bed during World War II, seeing how medical treatment supposedly wasn’t helping him, but his new funky mind-control Scientology sure did the trick.
Say, why shouldn’t he just sell his new therapy and help people? It’d make a lot of money. Money is good. Some thirty years and hundreds of millions of dollars later he fled US jurisdiction when his followers started to plant bombs in cars and homes of his detractors, cruising the Mediterranean for years on end with his naval-minded “Sea Org” division of the Church.
When does a Church need a Navy? Apparently when ol’ Hubbard embellished his war credentials, probably embarassed he didn’t do a damn thing while his friend Robert Heinlein got the rank and the interesting assignments. Instead Hubbard was a nobody who got stuck under the command of the guy who lost one of the most lopsided naval engagements of the entire Pacific War (Tassaforunga Point).
In the meanwhile the IRS gave up on its attempt to persecute the CoS on tax fraud/evasion and decided instead to grant it status as a religion, meaning all of that money it was huckstering from people was suddenly all nicely tax free.
And yes, people like Tom Cruise and John Travolta hock this hokey cult for all the gullible teenage girls out there.
Since you brought up mental health, I feel compelled to share a documentary I watched on the BBC recently called The Century of the Self. This was four hours of watching a projected DVD in an old SF theater, viewed from broken, dirty seats, yet it was the finest 4-hour viewing I’ve ever had with a big screen. A month or so later I was surprised to learn that forced medication is now legal in 42 States. I’m not a scientologist, nor am I representing anyone. This Mother Jones article covers the extreme implications of this issue pretty well. Then I remember the New Freedom Commission on Mental Health and their universal mental health screening program and I get pretty damn concerned…for other people of course.
But, to keep this even more on-topic, I honestly and totally agree that Tom Cruise appears to be a wanker.
I take it you’ve heard the story of a bunch of science fiction writers sitting around, shooting the bull, when L. Ron said it would be real easy to start your own religion and get rich? Harlan Ellison was supposedly a witness.
It’s time for a clambake. Not trying to P&R at all, really, I swear. Also, I doubt anyone will stick up for scientology around here. There are a lot of good reasons to be skeptical of modern psychiatry and its apparent agenda (used in this case to mean the overriding themes that keep rising from their legal and medical actions across the board rather than an active conspiracy of sorts). L. Ron Hubbard’s freak show has none of them, however…simply because you end up somewhere near a grain of truth does not mean you can ignore the fundamental crazy bullshit that led you there. XEMU in general has a good roundup on the topic. There used to be a great operation clambake site that covered L’s world in hilarious (sad funny) detail, but I can’t seem to find it on my awesome IRAQNET connection.
So if Tom and John seem a little like they’re out of their minds, like programmed robots who can almost pull off acting human in everyday life…it’s because they are. It’s always the nicest people that have been hit the hardest by the body snatchers, and by this I mean that once foxy Jenna Elfman chick. Oh well.
Oh, also, apart from all of the general crazy, Scientology’s abuse of copyright, slander, and libel law to silence open debate and criticism of its actions have been some of the quietest and most effective assaults of freedom of speech from a nongovernmental source in the last 50 years. What it does to those that join and turn on them borders on a mafia vendetta…I suppose we are fortunate (?) that they seem to prefer soft power, although I would almost welcome the confrontation that a more radicalized version would provoke. You know, between reality and it.
I caught the last half of that Access Hollywood, Tom Cruise: A Man on a Mission. I like Tom Cruise, super-big movie guy and all. There are few of his movies I have missed and even fewer I disliked. I will definitely see War of the Worlds. I wish he and others would stop their public crusades. Be happy with your beliefs and in sharing them with those around you. Proclaiming things in interviews which are most often edited and abbreviated when aired make you all look slightly nuts.
I find it a far better idea to avoid any actor’s thoughts on religion, politics, and/or medicine. I am fine making my own decisions. At best, I will agree with what they say and will not affect my viewing of them as actors in any way. At worst, they say a bunch of looney crap which does end up affecting how I watch their films/shows.
There was some choice quotes in that Tom Cruise interview that told me had seen or been told about Operation Clambake… Stuff like:
“People think that I don’t know what scientology is. I know.” (Very intense)
In response to the thing in Scientology where to get up the ladder you pay more and more money:
“Those are all just lies. Lies.”
“People just like to hate.”
This man is incredibly deluded. I got to wonder what they did to him.
And yes, apparently Harlan is the only living witness, but for very good reason, he won’t talk about that conversation. He’s a smart guy, he knows better than to fuck with a bunch of cultists. Perhaps after he dies.
( 2/15/2005 ) Some Jenna Elfman fans were startled by what the star had to say in a recent issue of Scientology’s magazine Celebrity. The former star of “Dharma and Greg” is a devotee of the controversial religion, whose members also include Tom Cruise and John Travolta. “I intend to make Scientology as accessible to as many people as I can. And that is my goal,” Elfman said. To do this, she says, it is my “duty to clear the planet.” By “clearing” she means to rid the world of “body thetans” — aliens who Scientologists believe inhabit the earth from a nuclear explosion 75 million years ago. She continued that “the more successful I became, the more suppression I bumped into … especially in the entertainment industry, which really is home to rabid suppression.” “Her comments seem to reflect an increasingly almost paranoid view of the world around her in which she appears to have cleared house of all the suppressive people,” Rick Ross, who runs Cultnews.com, tells The Scoop. “Which to Scientologists would include all the people who are critical of Scientology.”
Besides the obvious amusement and need to find that celebrities have flaws just like us regular folk, does anyone actually care what these people are like off screen? Tom Cruise is a great actor. Jenna Elfman’s hot. Not that anyone here is doing it, but I have friends who hate any work by celebrites that they find unlikeable off screen. People like Chevy Chase and Russel Crowe are both apparently giagantic jerks, but I don’t see how that could affect your enjoyment of their movies. Not that Chevy Chase has done a funny movie in like a hundred years, but you get my point.
It’s all harmless and fun until they try to convince local, national, or international lawmakers to pass pro-Scientology legislation, or worse, make movies based on the works of L. Ron Hubbard that scars people for life.