You think that, if you call imprisonment true freedom, people will be attracted to the prison. And the worst of it is you're quite right.
- ALDOUS HUXLEY, Eyeless in Gaza
At the end of May 1989, Scientology's New Era Publications filed suit against the publishers of this book, alleging infringement of copyright. Even the Scientologists could find no precedent in U.S. law for their demand to see the manuscript prior to publication. As Mel Wulf, the defending attorney, expressed the situation, "Such an order would... have the inevitable effect of casting a chill upon freedom of speech and of the press." His argument was in vain; in an opinion issued at the end of July, Judge Louis L. Stanton ordered delivery of the final manuscript to the Scientologists.
In January 1990, Judge Stanton prohibited publication of A Piece of Blue Sky on grounds of copyright violation. However, the appeal was successful, and the three judges ruled unanimously that the book could retain all 121 passages complained of by New Era.
In April, the residents of Newkirk, Oklahoma, were alarmed to discover that the drug rehabilitation program which had acquired the lease to the nearby Indian School complex at Chilocco was a Scientology front group. Narconon intended to create a 1,000 bed facility at the eighty-building complex. The Association for Better Living and Education (ABLE) announced the donation of $200,000 to Narconon Chilocco, citing Narconon's remarkable success in treating addicts. Nothing in the announcement suggested any corporate connection between the two organizations. In fact, Narconon is a subsidiary of ABLE.
The Church of Scientology has recovered from the schism of the early 1980s, and significantly increased its membership. While the Church's claims of seven million is ridiculous, international membership is probably close to 100,000 by now. One of the world's top Public Relations companies has been helping with the recruiting drive for several years, designing slick commercials, and preparing for a weekly half-hour national television broadcast in the U.S.
The Church is a very rich and a very dangerous organization. There is no indication that it will change its ways. Hubbard's policy is now considered "scripture," and according to Scientology Policy Directive 19, of 7 July 1982, Hubbard alone can alter these "scriptures." Unless Hubbard's ghost communicates from one of the distant planets it is supposedly reconnoitering, there is no possibility of change. While promising freedom and claiming honesty, Scientology will continue to practice deception and generate tragedy.
The massive campaign to hype Hubbard's books onto bestseller lists was exposed in the 15 April 1990 edition of the San Diego Union. The first volume of Hubbard's last, and supposedly bestselling, science fiction work, Mission Earth, received this review in The New York Times:
A paralyzingly slow-moving adventure enlivened by interludes of kinky sex, sendups of effeminate homosexuals and a disregard of conventional grammar so global as to suggest a satire on the possibility of communication through language.
Between June 24 and 29, 1990, The Los Angeles Times ran an excellent series of articles on Scientology. The coverage of Scientology related groups, particularly Sterling Management, Singer Consultants, Health Med, the Foundation for Advancements in Science and Education and the National Coalition of IRS Whistleblowers, is particularly enlightening.
In July, several senior officers of the French Church, including its president, were arrested in France. Newspapers reported that charges would concern fraud, financial irregularities and practicing medicine without a license (with regard to the potentially dangerous Purification Rundown).
In 1938 Hubbard's single goal was to achieve immortality in name. In his last few years money was siphoned from the Church to Hubbard. The IRS criminal investigators came on the scene too late. With Hubbard's death the investigation was abandoned, but money continued to gush into Author Services Inc., and from thence to the Church of Spiritual Technology (CST). This Church has as its sole function the perpetuation not of Scientology, but of the name L. Ron Hubbard. CST records presented in a tax case in Washington, DC, show that CST has assets of over $500 million. On 28 January 1990, The New Mexican reported that CST had dug a 350-foot tunnel into a mesa to store Hubbard's writings, which are being preserved at enormous expense using state of the art techniques. CST intend this storage facility to survive even nuclear war. There are also storage facilities near Los Angeles and in northern California.