Excerpt from Religious cloaking - the Brennan legal declaration:
7. Based on years of work in the senior most legal bodies of organized scientology as covered above I have dealt with directly or supervised the handling of hundreds of legal matters involving the organizations of scientology which directly or indirectly had to do with using religious cloaking...
8. It was determined that the only way to handle many of the legal matters in front of us and still apply Hubbard’s policies that had to do with staff, ethics, sales of services, money, delivery of services and the like was to develop and use a religious cloaking saying scientology was a religion, its services religious, its staff members of religious orders and the like. I can state without doubt that the overwhelming main reason that organized scientology developed and pushed its religious cloaking was to avoid a myriad of real or potential legal problems that would exist by following Hubbard’s policies if it were not considered a religion. By developing this religious cloaking for organized scientology it was hoped to avoid legal requirements around the world that might otherwise have to be followed that would make it impossible to follow Hubbard’s policies. In developing the religious cloaking for organized scientology, the following were considered a few of the “benefits” so that Hubbard policies could be applied. There are countless examples but the below are listed simply as a few of them:
(i) minimum wages would not have to be paid;
(ii) staff could be sent to different parts of the world and be able to stay locally as religious workers;
(iii) standard employee rights, such as those found in laws like the Fair Labor Standards Act, could be discarded and thus Hubbard policies involving such things as ethics conditions, the Rehabilitation Project Force and the like could be applied without outside interference;
(iv) less scrutiny would be allowed on the controls of the funds of scientology and the intermingling of funds between the corporations and other legal fictions of organized scientology;
(v) it was hoped that the treatment of public scientologists and the use of their funds would be considered outside the purview of governmental bodies;
(vi) couching the demand for and flow of monies within organized scientology using “religious” terms (such as by saying that clear cut mandatory payments for services were “fixed donations” and were mandated by the scripture of “exchange”) was hoped to cut off attempts by governments and others to look into them further...
11. Two of the things that organized scientology felt were of the most importance in order to avoid compliance with many laws that were contrary to Hubbard policy were the religious cloaking as covered above and a corporate restructuring to make it very difficult if not impossible for outsiders to ever get to the main assets of organized scientology and to ensure that the real leaders of organized scientology could be insulated from legal liability by hiding their real controls behind a myriad of corporate and other legal veils. It was considered both a defensive and offensive strategy to have such cloaking (religious and corporate) in place.
Defensively it makes it very difficult for individuals or even governments to force legal compliance of the many types of laws as covered above. It also makes it almost impossible to hold those that really control organized scientology responsible legally or to get to the financial assets of organized scientology spread out around the world. Offensively, it gives organized scientology a “safe base” from which to attack critics and/or anyone it feels is its enemy. Hiding behind religious cloaking and corporate veils it can act as a victim when people point out its crimes and injustices calling them “religious bigots”...
At the lower left side in small letters, "SCIENTOLOGY PARISHIONER'S COMMITTEE."
and even scaring governments, many of whom are not supposed to get involved with “religious matters”. By calling policies by Hubbard or Miscavige that are otherwise abusive or contrary to law “religious scripture” it was hoped to avoid legal scrutiny of same.
_________L. Ron Hubbard, on "inventing facts," from an April 1955 'HCOB':
"A datum is an invention which has become agreed upon and solidified... When it is thoroughly agreed upon it becomes, then, a truth. The word 'lie' is simply 'an invention with a bad connotation'... Thus society frowns upon the invention of facts."
More from the Brennan legal declaration on Religious Cloaking - the Scholar Program:
...While organized scientology today parades out various scholars that say they are “religious”, I can tell you that this scholar program was started in the Guardian’s Office and I worked on it as early as 1974. I worked on the obtainment of such scholars opinions personally and by supervising others to do same and I used such scholars opinions to obtain recognitions that organized scientology would not otherwise have obtained.
At no point where any scholars briefed on either the real controls of organized scientology or the reasons why religious cloaking was developed. Instead they tended to be briefed using the religious cloaking materials developed and/or by speaking with pre qualified, briefed scientologists who were told what to tell the scholars. If scholars wrote less than glowing reports of scientology being religious in nature, their opinions were discarded. For those who would write glowing reports supporting scientology’s “religious nature”, those reports were kept for further use in legal and/or PR matters....
In summation, religious cloaking was constantly pushed within organized scientology by Hubbard, by its legal and PR departments, and later by Miscavige, to gain undeserved legal and PR advantages, to make more money, to use as a cover when abusing staff, public and even non scientologists, to hide behind when attacked by others and to use to discredit and attack others...
"Scientology is a business."
From Senator Nick Xenophon of Australia re. Scientology:
"What we are seeing is a worldwide pattern of abuse and criminality... On the body of evidence, this is not happening by accident; it is happening by design. Scientology is not a religious organization. It is a criminal organization that hides behind its so called religious beliefs."