From: Keith Henson (firstname.lastname@example.org)
Date: Thu 13 Feb 2003 - 15:26:47 GMT
On Thu, 13 Feb 2003 11:10:53 +0000 (UTC), "Rev. Norle Enturbulata"
>If Hubbard wasn't such a batshit nutcase in the first place, none of us
>would have to spend our time contending with $cientology or its
You are right, of course. And if Hitler had been a success at painting, we
would not have had all that came out of his organization.
(Though we might have had as much trouble from *another* group coming out of the same social ferment--consider how many the communist leaders killed in Russia, China and Cambodia.)
But in both cases, the root of the problem is not so much nuts like these,
but the fact that humans are not selective enough in the kinds of
organizations they bond into--such decisions are made at an emotional
(chemical) level rather than a rational level. Much like becoming addicted.
My wife has been working on a piece about being careful what you wish
for. She always wondered how the German people let such evil
flourish. Well, now she knows. Hubbard's followers are a much smaller
threat than Hitler's, but in a lot of people scientology generates the same
paralyzing fear that kept all but a few Germans from speaking out.
Once people understand scientology is as bad as it is, some are afraid to
even go to a web site for fear their visit will be tracked and they will be
stalked. Others are indignant and will provide private support to critics
they know as friends but take no actions. A few will stand up and be
counted, especially when they understand that scientology (bad as it is) is
not *that* powerful and simply can't go after more than a few people at a
time. Nor can scientology simply kill critics. (They do try to kill or
jail them indirectly by using governments.)
I have been thinking about models of how social movements get out of
control. You get Hitler's Germany (and a number of other examples) when
fear-suppression rises faster than opposition to some really abusive
"social movement." Catastrophe models indicate the mathematical connection in individuals between fear and anger. There is a good case for a similar group dynamic where fear can snap into anger. As an example consider the history of the Aum cult in Japan. Even prior to the subway gassing, the dominate mood had switched from fear to anger.
David Miscavige knows he walks a fine line. He (and Hubbard before him)
wanted scientology to be feared. And people do fear it with good
cause. But even where they are strongest, going too far may cause public
fear to snap into anger.
Of course, these models have a much wider application. :-)
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