David Miscavige is very intelligent and reads a LOT of books

Student of Trinity

Silver Meritorious Patron
That's true. Evil or selfish aren't necessarily the same as stupid. The thing is, David Miscavige had a lot of luck. He grew up in a money-making cult just as the founder was going screwy and dying. He needed a certain amount of brains to take over, along with a bunch of other useful qualities; but he didn't need to be a genius.

If he had been really clever, he could have done a lot better with the cult he took over. He might even have been able to achieve the kind of soft landing that some indie Scientologists seem to imagine, quietly soft-pedaling away Hubbard's impossible promises, and watering them down into mushy New Age mumbo jumbo that lets you feel all enlightened and superior if you want that, but has no specific meaning. With no impossible promises to defend, he could have relaxed the toxic thought control. With a comfortable flock of decently happy people, he could have eased far back on the regging throttle.

Hubbard couldn't have done any of that, because Hubbard was starting from nothing, and he was getting older. Hubbard was in a hurry, and he was kind of paranoid. Toward the end he may even have started to believe his own nonsense a bit. So I think he felt he had to shoot for the moon, and offer astonishing breakthroughs that would make the world beat a path to his door. If Miscavige had been willing to be patient, though, he could have hung onto the established cult he took over, and switched over to slow, steady growth instead of keeping on chasing Hubbard's dream of explosive expansion. With really clever management, I think the steady growth could have been quite decent.

I think the main reason that pleasant scenario wasn't really possible was just that neither Miscavige nor anyone else in the center of Scientology was capable of the kind of wise and clever management that would have been required. They just didn't have what it would have taken. If they had tried to take Scientology soft like that, some competitor would have outplayed them, and whatever kinder and gentler form of Scientology (or alternative to it) might have emerged, they wouldn't have benefitted. Moreover, I think that all these Sea Org veterans knew that, at least instinctively. So they kept Hubbard's hard line well locked down. They kept every bit of the crazy and vicious and strict-letter-of-Hubbard, because all that gave them the edge they needed, to stay in charge; no brilliant spiritual entrepreneur could horn in and outmaneuver them on a Sea Org kid's home ground. And the more they did that, the more they had to do it, until they were pulling the sort of bare-faced swindles to which Hubbard never needed to stoop.

In this sense maybe the misty-eyed indies are right, that Miscavige diverted Scientology from a high road that it in principle could have taken, and then drove it steep downhill. The thing I also think, though, is that this was inevitable. Hubbard would never have allowed anyone to survive in his inner circle who had the moral and intellectual caliber needed to move his smash-and-grab cult into the spiritual suburbs.

At least, that's one scenario I can imagine. It could be false, if I've overestimated the viability of the cult as Hubbard left it, when Miscavige took over. Maybe Scientology just wasn't big enough at that point to be turning a profit without high pressure, so the soft-landing route would never have worked even if Miscavige had really been brilliant.
 
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CommunicatorIC

@IndieScieNews on Twitter
https://whyweprotest.net/community/...and-reads-a-lot-of-books.118279/#post-2450583
I was just talking about numbers. He has successfully ran scientology to the point that their net worth runs into the billions of dollars. He is smart enough to have kept that ball rolling for decades and scientology is run like a business more than a religion. It takes some intelligence and skill to do things like take down the IRS and have them rule in your favour. It takes skill to be able to manipulate government and media alike for as long as they did. There has also been a study done that it shows many CEO's of multinational corporations and high level government positions, who perform well, also exhibit sociopathic tendencies. So, there is no doubt the dwarf is intelligent.


Beyond what I wrote above something else the dwarf sucks at is adaptation. If your mind isn't pliable to new ideas, it doesn't matter how intelligent you are your failures are going to start to grow. As long as miscavage insists that only using LRH solutions, to modern problems, his hand will be the most important in the destruction of scientology.


It is possible to be both intelligent and ignorant, at the same time. Everyone doesn't know everything.


He also seems to suck at managing and delegating. It appears he likes to micro-manage everything. This to is a recipe for failure when running a large entity.


So, to me, DM's intelligence coupled with his ego is a much more destructive thing than being stupid. DM thinks everything he does or says is right. If there is a failure he blames others for it, never taking personal responsibility no matter how obvious. It is this that has been a major force to scientology failing.
 

lkwdblds

Crusader
That's true. Evil or selfish aren't necessarily the same as stupid. The thing is, David Miscavige had a lot of luck. He grew up in a money-making cult just as the founder was going screwy and dying. He needed a certain amount of brains to take over, along with a bunch of other useful qualities; but he didn't need to be a genius.

If he had been really clever, he could have done a lot better with the cult he took over. He might even have been able to achieve the kind of soft landing that some indie Scientologists seem to imagine, quietly soft-pedaling away Hubbard's impossible promises, and watering them down into mushy New Age mumbo jumbo that lets you feel all enlightened and superior if you want that, but has no specific meaning. With no impossible promises to defend, he could have relaxed the toxic thought control. With a comfortable flock of decently happy people, he could have eased far back on the regging throttle.

Hubbard couldn't have done any of that, because Hubbard was starting from nothing, and he was getting older. Hubbard was in a hurry, and he was kind of paranoid. Toward the end he may even have started to believe his own nonsense a bit. So I think he felt he had to shoot for the moon, and offer astonishing breakthroughs that would make the world beat a path to his door. If Miscavige had been willing to be patient, though, he could have hung onto the established cult he took over, and switched over to slow, steady growth instead of keeping on chasing Hubbard's dream of explosive expansion. With really clever management, I think the steady growth could have been quite decent.

I think the main reason that pleasant scenario wasn't really possible was just that neither Miscavige nor anyone else in the center of Scientology was capable of the kind of wise and clever management that would have been required. They just didn't have what it would have taken. If they had tried to take Scientology soft like that, some competitor would have outplayed them, and whatever kinder and gentler form of Scientology (or alternative to it) might have emerged, they wouldn't have benefitted. Moreover, I think that all these Sea Org veterans knew that, at least instinctively. So they kept Hubbard's hard line well locked down. They kept every bit of the crazy and vicious and strict-letter-of-Hubbard, because all that gave them the edge they needed, to stay in charge; no brilliant spiritual entrepreneur could horn in and outmaneuver them on a Sea Org kid's home ground. And the more they did that, the more they had to do it, until they were pulling the sort of bare-faced swindles to which Hubbard never needed to stoop.

In this sense maybe the misty-eyed indies are right, that Miscavige diverted Scientology from a high road that it in principle could have taken, and then drove it steep downhill. The thing I also think, though, is that this was inevitable. Hubbard would never have allowed anyone to survive in his inner circle who had the moral and intellectual caliber needed to move his smash-and-grab cult into the spiritual suburbs.

At least, that's one scenario I can imagine. It could be false, if I've overestimated the viability of the cult as Hubbard left it, when Miscavige took over. Maybe Scientology just wasn't big enough at that point to be turning a profit without high pressure, so the soft-landing route would never have worked even if Miscavige had really been brilliant.

Excellent post. Thanks for your comments, I like your look at what might have developed if a really visionary and extremely intelligent, wise and benevolent person had been able to attain power after Hubbard's death. There was some potential in Hubbard's work which might have been able to be developed by an extremely capable and wise successor. I admire Elon Musk of Tesla; also going much more old school and going with an older person, I greatly admire Lee Iacoca who did a lot as VP of Ford and then saved Chrysler. Had a practical nuts and bolts extremely sharp business executive, in the mold of Iacoca, have taken over COS or a young genius such as Musk, maybe COS could have been morphed into a positive force in society.

Such a task would have been extremely difficult but just imagine if, right off the bat, policies such as disconnection and the break up of families had been ended. Imagine if more of the income had been directed towards staff pay and staff medical. What if an announcement had been made immediately by the new leader that the RPF was being shut down. Maybe the public which liked scientology tech but didn't care for the management techniques would see that big changes were on the way and would rally to the new leaders side.

Maybe if the new leader stopped blaming psychiatry for all the ills of the world, the governments and the medical industry would have backed off on their attacks. It would have been a long shot, very difficult to achieve, and the leader to reform COS would have to be extremely wise and intelligent, perhaps one of the wisest and most able people on Earth but a reformed COS was not totally impossible though it was extremely unlikely to happen. Now, in the condition COS is in, it is an impossibility to salvage it but back in 1986 it might have still been possible.
Lakey
 

Boson Wog Stark

Patron Meritorious
It's just dumb to drop out of high school and then lead a cult which advertises that their famous educator, college flunk-out, Dr. Hubtard, holder of all the answers, created a "tech," including how to study, that is essential for people doing well in school and for learning. Of course, Hubbard probably would have made it through college had he majored in English or history instead of engineering. He was not good in math or sciences, at all. But with Miscavige, you have a dropout selling the bogus crap of a flunk-out.

I never heard anyone say that Miscavige didn't finish high school because he wasn't intelligent enough to finish. However, I've never heard that he distinguished himself as a student in any way while he was in school either.

To Rinder and Miscavige, pretending that they're saving the planet was much more important than obtaining any kind of higher education. Why? Because Dr. Hubtard said so. (And their parents believed everything Dr. Hubtard said or wrote, without question.)
 
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FlunkYou

Patron with Honors
Per what I've read Miscavige never completed high school and certainly never attended college. I presume the Koppel interview is as near to spontaneous as is available to the public. I thought he came off like a jerk in that interview. Humorless, narrow minded, fixated, and defensive. In his speeches he seems like a fast talking puppet. He uses the same hackneyed phrases appearance after appearance.

I read the only deposition he ever gave. He was cagey in it. But certainly not of outstanding intelligence. In my opinion.

Here's Mighty Midget's intelligence bubbling up in that deposition.

BY MS. PLEVIN:

Q. MR. MISCAVIGE, DO YOU HAVE A HIGH SCHOOL EDUCATION? A. I DON'T KNOW WHAT THAT QUESTION MEANS.
 

Auditor's Toad

Clear as Mud
And I have to wonder WTF would been the point in salvaging scn ?

In 60 years scn has yet to produce the promised product of a clear or an ot. so, why question is would the point of salvation of this great so-called religion to continue to bilk money out of people and still have no product with any yet demonstrated real world value ?

To mention some greats in our history who had real accomplishments and then throw in the known con man Ron as if he ranked among them is pretty funny - and shows the long lasting mind fuck a cult can have on some otherwise fine people.

Those who want to believe DM is " very intelligent"... go for it !

Those who want to believe Ron would have saved the world had it not been for the "attacks" by (Oh, pick a flavor of the week )... go for it !

The devout beliefs in the 2 sentences above re-define the word "silly".
 
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Lermanet_com

Gold Meritorious Patron
DM strikes me as not-quite-bright....

A cagey and clever lad, and a psychopath without conscience.

There is a way to tell the difference between a psychopath and a real genius.

A true psychopath cannot really do much in the real world that does not involved manipuating and taking advantage of others, they are specialists in screwing the other guy to get what they want rather than being able to build anything of worth themselves.

But DM deserves some credit. Most cults collapse when the charismatic leader keels over...(I forgot the cite) and DM has managed to keep this carnival show going for 30 years, despite the efforts of a "handful of malcontents at the fringes of the internet."

Now, how about some suitable background music for further contemplation of $cientology's future?

[video=youtube;qTYCTw4QJAg]https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=qTYCTw4QJAg[/video]
 

oneonewasaracecar

Gold Meritorious Patron
Who said anything about the Vatican? Why does acting of out self interest coincide with a lack of intelligence in your eyes? Every person must devote some portion of his/her intelligence towards acting in their own self interest in this society in order to survive!

Your closing statement aove is an understatement to say the least!! Also, denial that you are conflating benevolence and kindness with intelligence. You remarks that scientology should open up charities and that DM wants to save the scientology religion with the intent of enhancing the lives of his parishioners, etc. are all naive and assume that he has kindhearted goals about enhancing his parishioners and helping create a better world. You seem to measure intelligence by judging if various actions will achieve the goals which you believe should be achieved. The problem is that you are ascribing your goals onto DM when in actual fact, DM's goals are quite different from yours. To your credit, your goals are much more humane and less money and power oriented than DM's. Even so, determining another's intelligence by comparing his deeds to your goals is not a very effective litmus test on which to declare that someone is or is not intelligent.
Lakey

My point at the end was that you suggested that I was conflating intelligence with other humanist values.

This is not the case. I used the example of the Catholic Church creating what I consider to be the appearance of humanism as a deliberate and cynical political strategy. It is not humanist IMHO, but intelligent and adaptive.

I suggested that if DM was intelligent, he would do something similar. I think DM is a sociopath, and one is is not overly clever. I think it would be impossible for him to behave it a moral way.

He could, however, pretend to behave in a moral way as a business decision, like the Catholic Chruch. That he has not done so and for these reasons, tells me he is not intelligent.

That was my point. Going back and rereading it, I think I wasn't very clear about this.
 

oneonewasaracecar

Gold Meritorious Patron
There is a very simple way to resolve this issue once and for all:

Get DM to do the Oxford Capacity Analysis and post the results on the internet.
 

Francois Tremblay

Patron with Honors
I think Lermanet_com is right to remind us first that DM is a sociopath, and therefore doesn't have the same goals an ordinary sane person, or even a greedy-ass CEO, would have.

The question of whether DM's actions are clever or smart, or if they are grossly inadequate, really hinge around what DM's goals are, which he doesn't seem to want to reveal publicly, so it's hard to tell really.

Someone rightly pointed out that if it was just money he was after, DM could have left years ago. But having lived in Scientology all his life, would he really be so eager to leave it? Would you?

What if he just wants to be the next LRH and he learned from the master, but can't contain his inner egotist because, well, he's a sociopath?
 

lkwdblds

Crusader
My point at the end was that you suggested that I was conflating intelligence with other humanist values.

This is not the case. I used the example of the Catholic Church creating what I consider to be the appearance of humanism as a deliberate and cynical political strategy. It is not humanist IMHO, but intelligent and adaptive.

I suggested that if DM was intelligent, he would do something similar. I think DM is a sociopath, and one is is not overly clever. I think it would be impossible for him to behave it a moral way.

He could, however, pretend to behave in a moral way as a business decision, like the Catholic Chruch. That he has not done so and for these reasons, tells me he is not intelligent.

That was my point. Going back and rereading it, I think I wasn't very clear about this.

Thanks for clearing that up, I kind of figured it was something like that but didn't fully see what you were getting at. Look. we don't fully agree on this topic but you make a lot of good points and I can see your point of view quite clearly.

I believe the thread is coming to consensus which pretty much everyone is agreeing on. DM is not stupid but he is no genius either and he is lacking in formal education plus he is suffering from certain kinds of mania and things of that nature. You are a very good poster, a lot of you points are are well taken by me and others and I enjoyed taking the other side of the debate. I respect you and think you are a valuable asset for ESMB to have. Carry on with what you are doing and I hope to get into more discussions with you on different topics. Probably on a lot of topics we will be in agreement and on a few, like this last one, we might disagree quite a bit.

I'll tell you this, you don't learn anything if everybody just agrees with you but it seems that we all learn a lot when trying to make our points against a well meaning and intelligent person who sees things from a different point of view. To me, that is what makes posting here worthwhile.
Lakey
 

Lermanet_com

Gold Meritorious Patron
I think Lermanet_com is right to remind us first that DM is a sociopath, and therefore doesn't have the same goals an ordinary sane person, or even a greedy-ass CEO, would have.

The question of whether DM's actions are clever or smart, or if they are grossly inadequate, really hinge around what DM's goals are, which he doesn't seem to want to reveal publicly, so it's hard to tell really.

Someone rightly pointed out that if it was just money he was after, DM could have left years ago. But having lived in Scientology all his life, would he really be so eager to leave it? Would you?

What if he just wants to be the next LRH and he learned from the master, but can't contain his inner egotist because, well, he's a sociopath?

Those that victimize others also become a victim. And he is likewise trapped in Hubbard's house of horrors and madness. If he moved to lower bulgravia, what would he put on his resume?

"I used to be the caretaker of a greedy criminal cult founded by a madman" ?

Good luck with that.
 

David C Gibbons

Ex-Scientology Peon
Having never met the man, and having only seen him in the setting of standing up and speaking at the (for me) embarrassing overblown events I endured while I was in, I would side with the 'street smarts' school of thought.

He is apparently ruthless, and I believe he understands very well how the realities of the world and human frailty trump Hubbard's pipe dreams and lies. Thus he can freely pummel supposed 'OT's' into submission, and use vicious psychological abuse methods (The 'Hole') to keep any challengers to his rule in check, as they gut each other.

Intelligence or the lack of it is no true measure of human worth. I believe intelligence is a tool, one that can be wielded for good or evil. My problem with Miscavage and those in his regime is what they are doing with whatever amount of intelligence they have.

Miscavage's true intentions? "By their works ye shall know them". Saving the world and helping people doesn't seem to be high on Mr. Miscavage's 'To do' list. Sucking the remaining believers dry of everything they have, that looks to be important to the organizations he controls.
 

Dulloldfart

Squirrel Extraordinaire
Here's Mighty Midget's intelligence bubbling up in that deposition.

BY MS. PLEVIN:

Q. MR. MISCAVIGE, DO YOU HAVE A HIGH SCHOOL EDUCATION? A. I DON'T KNOW WHAT THAT QUESTION MEANS.

What's the big deal about that response? I don't know exactly what that sloppy question means either.

One attended some high school? One stayed at high school until the age of 18? One gained a high school diploma? One obtained a high school equivalency diploma (GED)? Something else?

Paul
 

clamicide

Gold Meritorious Patron
I guess I never really "got' Davey, but that doesn't mean he's not intelligent. He might be-- all I've read shows that folks in cults have higher intelligence, but I gotta run... opera preview starting, and that's just, uh much more intersting than Davey:biggrin:
 

whoisxenu

Patron with Honors
"BY MS. PLEVIN:

Q. MR. MISCAVIGE, DO YOU HAVE A HIGH SCHOOL EDUCATION? A. I DON'T KNOW WHAT THAT QUESTION MEANS."
\

Shouldn't someone have prompted him to word-clear it or clay demo it at that point?:yes::biggrin:
 

Mick Wenlock

Admin Emeritus (retired)
Having never met the man, and having only seen him in the setting of standing up and speaking at the (for me) embarrassing overblown events I endured while I was in, I would side with the 'street smarts' school of thought.

He is apparently ruthless, and I believe he understands very well how the realities of the world and human frailty trump Hubbard's pipe dreams and lies. Thus he can freely pummel supposed 'OT's' into submission, and use vicious psychological abuse methods (The 'Hole') to keep any challengers to his rule in check, as they gut each other.

Intelligence or the lack of it is no true measure of human worth. I believe intelligence is a tool, one that can be wielded for good or evil. My problem with Miscavage and those in his regime is what they are doing with whatever amount of intelligence they have.

Miscavage's true intentions? "By their works ye shall know them". Saving the world and helping people doesn't seem to be high on Mr. Miscavage's 'To do' list. Sucking the remaining believers dry of everything they have, that looks to be important to the organizations he controls.

Well a lot of water has passed down the toilet since I worked with him (and that was brief). I don't think that he is below average in intelligence but I also don;t think he is in any sort of gifted territory either.

In one area he does seem to have great intelligence is in manipulating the power lines and groupings of totalitarian organizations. He really did know how to work it.

But to be honest, even until now I have never figured out what he is aiming toward. I think - and this is my opinion only - he felt that he was the only one who could really see what needed to be done to keep scientology moving forward. I think that initially his ham fisted tough guy approach was probably what was needed - But after that phase passed - he really had nothing else to fall back on and he really has been winging it ever since. I suspect (without proof) that there may be an attorney or two whom he listens to - there is someone or someones whose opinions he listens to or at least he bounces his ideas off.

I don't think that his driving force is squeezing the faithful, I think he sees himself as "Ozymandias" - and I leave the reader to look up the reference.
 

Mick Wenlock

Admin Emeritus (retired)
David Miscavige is very intelligent and reads a LOT of books.

I believe the following observation by Mike Rinder is important.

http://www.mikerindersblog.org/iconic-ideal-spelling/#comment-47013
I will add my own -- "external," if you will -- observation. The overwhelming majority of religions, "new religious movements," and cults do not survive the death of their founder. The interesting thing is not that Scientology is collapsing. The interesting thing is that Scientology has survived so long.

I offer the above on the theory that it is best not to under-estimate one's enemy.

EDITED TO REMOVE ANY AMBIGUITY IN RESPONSE TO LORD XENU'S QUERY BELOW:

When I refer to the "enemy," I am referring to David Miscavige, and not Mike Rinder.

Mike definitely has a lot more personal experience with Miscavige than do I however I never saw DM read a book. I never saw him with a book. Never heard him discuss a book. Absence of proof, of course, does not mean proof of absence.

When did DM read all these books? I like to read and always have had. Yes I used to read in the SO but when would I have the time ? after going off post? Yes, maybe 15 or 20 minutes. Maybe during dinner if I was reading a real pager turner. But when did dm take his time to read his books? How come there have been no comments about what books he likes to read?

It don;t make a whole lot of sense to be honest.

AS for cults that survive their founders - well if the statement you made was true we wouldnt have christianity buddhism or islam for a start. No Mormonism, no Sikhism, no Christian Science, no ISKCON. Scientology is not a surprise - will it survive DMs demise?
What cults do you know that have disappeared after the founders died? FLDS is another which has gone on too.
 

lotus

stubborn rebel sheep!
Mike Rinder said:
Miscavige has a very large vocabulary, is an extremely fast reader and is very intelligent.
-snip-
That is not someone who is slow. He reads a LOT of books. That he has a high IQ doesn’t mean he isn’t a sociopath.

Iwoujld only comment that readings fast, and a lot of books has nothing to do with intelligence

I wouldn't have said that years ago
But look at $cientologists

I can't say I've been mor eintelligent with the reading of all $cientology books

What makes a person intelligent is an amalgam of key components and ability to resolve problems of life, surviving and relationships
which are about - problem solving - emotionnal intelligence, ability to create social network , ability to share empathy, ability to survive in one's environment, ability to adapt to changes, ability to build resiliency while facing life challenges, ability to learn, ability to differenciate reality from illusion, ability to understand
the fundamentals of natural law of life

I don't see the point of the karate kid being intelligent, though I can see the poinf of his hamsters running very much fast.
 

oneonewasaracecar

Gold Meritorious Patron
Thanks for clearing that up, I kind of figured it was something like that but didn't fully see what you were getting at. Look. we don't fully agree on this topic but you make a lot of good points and I can see your point of view quite clearly.

I believe the thread is coming to consensus which pretty much everyone is agreeing on. DM is not stupid but he is no genius either and he is lacking in formal education plus he is suffering from certain kinds of mania and things of that nature. You are a very good poster, a lot of you points are are well taken by me and others and I enjoyed taking the other side of the debate. I respect you and think you are a valuable asset for ESMB to have. Carry on with what you are doing and I hope to get into more discussions with you on different topics. Probably on a lot of topics we will be in agreement and on a few, like this last one, we might disagree quite a bit.

I'll tell you this, you don't learn anything if everybody just agrees with you but it seems that we all learn a lot when trying to make our points against a well meaning and intelligent person who sees things from a different point of view. To me, that is what makes posting here worthwhile.
Lakey

Thank you. I've learned a lot from people here as well as on WWP where people are much harsher.

Having thought about it, I have also taken a harsher position than I should have.

I consider the maneuver to take over Scientology to be similar to Bill Gates takeover of the computer industry controlled by IBM. Both had a realization to which everyone else was blind and which allowed them to attain in excess of a billion dollars.

Both are cunning in business.

Both underestimated the internet.

Both have serious detractors.

DM dropped out of school. Gates dropped out of college.

The difference of course is that Bill Gates is a philanthropists who has real technology. But otherwise they are similar.

It does take a certain kind of political cunning to do what he did. That is a certain kind of intelligence. It is not the scholarly type of intelligence that Mike suggested, which is why I took up such a harsh position against it.

My suspicion is that he is not intelligent in any academic way at all. I suspect his only intelligence involves manipulating the people around him. Outside of the management cliche, I think he is probably quite out of touch, which is why he makes such terrible decisions with ideal orgs, GATII etc (terrible for the long term survival - as you say assuming that is what he wants).

I am also doubtful that he has the capacity to take a long term view. I suspect DM was always a sociopath and discovered a system which was sociopathic, took it over and used the majority of that system to make money. I credit him with that, and that is intelligence, and he has a lot of it, but I think in other areas of intelligence he is probably sadly lacking.

I also think it was unfair of me, in retrospect, to suggest that he could enact my plan to change the method of operation of Scientology. Without the fear, people would testify. He could probably have taken over Scientology, and immediately removed fair game, disconnection and the like, but if he were to do so now, he would risk winding up in prison.

The irony about the takeover is that although it was the most intelligent move he made it also turned out to be the one that has trapped him in Hubbard's maze.

Mike definitely has a lot more personal experience with Miscavige than do I however I never saw DM read a book. I never saw him with a book. Never heard him discuss a book. Absence of proof, of course, does not mean proof of absence.

When did DM read all these books? I like to read and always have had. Yes I used to read in the SO but when would I have the time ? after going off post? Yes, maybe 15 or 20 minutes. Maybe during dinner if I was reading a real pager turner. But when did dm take his time to read his books? How come there have been no comments about what books he likes to read?

It don;t make a whole lot of sense to be honest.

AS for cults that survive their founders - well if the statement you made was true we wouldnt have christianity buddhism or islam for a start. No Mormonism, no Sikhism, no Christian Science, no ISKCON. Scientology is not a surprise - will it survive DMs demise?
What cults do you know that have disappeared after the founders died? FLDS is another which has gone on too.

Dozens of cults have survived but the vast majority have disappeared. Apparently, in the internet era, cults spring up and disappear so often that it is impossible for cult monitoring organizations to keep up.

IMHO, cults will never again attain the status and power of Scientology or the Moonies, at least in the West. The internet will make that impossible. As soon as a cult gains a large following and attracts attention, the internet will strike it down.
 
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