Wednesday, July 04, 2007

Scientology 4: Cruise and the Germans

Readers will be familiar with my ongoing consideration of the merits of Scientology and the approach made to me by one Linda Sarkovich. In furtherance of my earnest inquiries, I have been studying this story about Tom Cruise and the filming of Valkyrie in Germany.  Cruise and his crew(s) have been banned from filming at a memorial at the site of the execution of Claus von Stauffenberg, the man who narrowly failed to kill Hitler. The reason is, according to a German journalist, that Stauffenberg 'is like Jefferson and Lincoln, motherhood, and apple pie all rolled into one... Germany is a country of established churches, and so Scientology is viewed as a cult and, worse, totalitarian and exploitative. A professing Scientologist in the role of Stauffenberg is like casting Judas as Jesus. It is secular blasphemy.'  (Sorry about the excess of commas, this is the New York Times.) Ursula Caberta, head of an anti-Scientology government task force, adds, 'Tom Cruise is not just an actor who is a Scientologist. He is an ambassador for Scientology. All totalitarian systems have their celebrities to open doors for them.' I don't pretend fully to understand Germany's loathing of this particular cult - weird and oppressive though it seems to be - but I am intrigued by this idea of secular blasphemy. Can there really be such a thing? And, if actors are going to have their opportunities limited by the oddity of their world views, then I can't think of any actor I have met who would ever again find work.

29 comments:

  1. Stauffenberg was a very tall colonel, with one eye and one (damaged) hand, so maybe Tiny Tom should be disqualified on those grounds alone. Is that 'heightism'? While it is understandable why Germans have problems with cults (!), Stauffenberg himself was a product of the highly mystical cultic circle around the (semi-fascist) poet Stefan Georg, doubtless a detail that the myth makers of the CDU/CSU like to forget each 20th July. The two chaps who sued Dan Browne wrote a rarther good earlier book on that subject, although Peter Hoffmann is better5 on Stauffenberg himself.

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  2. Old Man StreamJuly 04, 2007 7:49 pm

    Oddity of their world views? Well there was nothing odd about DeForest Kelly.

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  3. bad enough actors, what can we do about Ruth kelly?

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  4. Poor old von Stauffenberg, what he must think of being played by Tom Cruise. You might as well cast Bruce Willis as Queen Victoria. I wonder what the German for "It's hammer time!" is. Scientology sounds a very minor detail of this story.

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  5. I'm worried about your views on commas.

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  6. There you go again, Bryan! Mentioning Scientology or Tiny Tom in less than glowing terms can be dangerous to your health, your pocketbook, and your freedom.

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  7. It's surely flattering to have TC play VS. And I am sure there is a way round the height problem. At last a film about a 'Good German' - who sadly failed, and was treated even after the war as a traitor. The Germans have a completely irrational obsession with Scientology: why is this any more of a cult with lunatic ideas than Protestant Christianity? Is Sci Fi religion any less believable than the virgin birth and what not?

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  8. Johnny Depp, would have provided a bit more credence. Might be, that the Germans are showing a level of artistic criticism. It would be equally hard to see TC as Wellington.

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  9. maybe Tom C could play Napoleon?

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  10. I'd suggest the Germans have a very good idea about the reality of Scientology, Chris.

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  11. But not the 'reality' of religion: see the current Spiegel which has a glowing peaen of praise to a German Mormon: and that is not a slip of the pen. Read and believe. If Tom had only chosen another barking mad faith!

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  12. The Mormons have a very strange background also. Their founder up there with L Ron Hubbard as people you don't really want to be following

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  13. only if you concede, first there was man, then followed god. blasphemy against a thing which man reveres, so yes, I would say there is secular blasphemy. not that I worry about it myself - a bit like Himself, I suppose.

    hey, wasn't judas cast in that role by the director, god? you think the devil put up the big money and Judas got the part because they were related?!

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  14. "Scientology is viewed as a cult and, worse, totalitarian and exploitative"

    Unlike those other religions like Catholicism and Islam.

    As far as Claus von Stauffenberg, the Germans should find a better role model. It wasn't the militarism or even the execution of Jews that offended him but rather the military incompetence of Hitler. If German troops had marched through the gates of Moscow with Stalin's head on a pike, we can be sure that von Stauffenberg would have been carrying Hitler on his shoulders.

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  15. But someone could argue that Islam & Christinaity, whatever about Catholicism, are not explitative in their true form. Historically they provided very deep and necessary responses to very difficult circumstances, Chrsitainity perhaps in an especially philosophical sense, & Islam from an extremely self-destructive violent social situation. Scientology, however, would seem to be expoitative in its natural form.

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  16. True form? I love that. Someone could argue that any religion that makes you happy and doesn't harm others is completely rational. I'm not sure exactly how Tom Cruise is being exploited by Scientology but I wish I could have a piece of his being exploited. Traveling around the world, staying in the best hotels, living in a mansion sounds like a very nice way to be exploited.

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  17. I'm delighted you love it, Tom. Just look up things like the disconnection policy of Scientology where a member of this society( formed by a paranoid con-man) is ordered never to meet anotehr person again, the other person typically being a family member. I'm afraid Scientology most certainly harms others very quickly in its practical form.

    Yesterday the National Coalition of Human Rights Activists held a press conference in Santa Barbara, California, to award the Scientology Corporation the first annual NCHRA Human Rights Counter-Achievement Award ("The Herka"). The Herka was voted on by NCHRA membership on August 30th and the winner was announced on September 10th.

    "NCHRA membership examined ten private United States businesses and organizations that have the worse reputation for human rights abuses, and voted on fifteen criteria regarding the worse offender for each criterion," said the NCHRA media liaison for California, Dr. Jessica Wells. "The result was a surprise for some members but not for others" Dr. Wells added.

    The ten businesses and organizations included the Mafia, four White Supremacist groups, one Black Supremacist group, three churches, and the Scientology corporation. United States Governmental agencies were not examined, though the NCHRA recognizes the systemic human rights abuses within the USA government.
    http://scientology-facts.blogspot.com/2005/11/scientology-wins-human-rights-abuse.html

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  18. Susan B., Bill Nighy fan,July 05, 2007 4:18 pm

    I want this film to be made because Bill Nighy has been cast in it! (He got his start playing a Nazi many years ago and looks very hot in an S.S. uniform.) Tom Wilkinson, another fave, was also cast. Ditto Kenneth Branagh (who could probably play Hitler with a good make-up artist working him over.)

    I'll bet the German film council is going crazy at the thought of the billions of bucks their economy is going to lose if Cruise and his movie are ousted.

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  19. This comment has been removed by the author.

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  20. Regarding secular blasphemy, burning the nation's flag would perhaps be seen by some as something matching that description. Shostakovich's Ninth Symphony seems to have been received as something like secular blasphemy, failing to be the heroic paean to glorious victory in war that was expected by the party, and I htink it became a banned work.
    It would seem secular blasphemy is certainly more than possible. Any member of the Communist Party in one of the great totalitarian regimes suddenly announcing that Marx & Lenin were up their proverbial arses would be committing an act of secular blasphemy. HG Wells was appalled by Huxley's Brave New World, believing it to be a dreadful betrayal of the wonderful, scientifically engendered future...Huxley has of course been proven right in this era of gross inanity. There, that for many is a statement of secular blasphemy. Or another one, we still live in an era of msters & slaves, & when people crawl to work in blocked up traffic, work in dreadful factories, watch & read the idiot versions of reality served up to them- then we have slave populations under the thumbs of ruling masters.
    So an interesting thought to have while watching the news,reality tv programme etc, would be "I, a slave in a master-slave relationship, am being told what to think by my masters."
    That statement of truth would probably be counted as something like secular blasphemy.

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  21. Susan B., frustratedJuly 06, 2007 2:39 am

    Andrew, you always do this to me! I want to make an amusing little remark, but before anyone can play off it, you come in with the nuclear ideology attacks! Aargh!

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  22. Ah but my nuclear ideology remarks, Susan, are actually the absence of an ideology or intellectual formula, but instead simply an interest in reality as an absolute in itself. These various ideological espousers would probably, up to and above their eyes in delusions as they are, claim something similar but this merely because they've lost all sense of reality, due to said being up to and above their eyes in delusions. "The truth will set you free," after all & the truth is no ideology.

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  23. "Just look up things like the disconnection policy of Scientology where a member of this society( formed by a paranoid con-man) is ordered never to meet anotehr person again, the other person typically being a family member."

    Now you have made me want to join! Are you allowed to reject multiple family members if you wish because I can think of more than one family member who would improve my life by no longer being part of it.

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  24. IT IS TIME TO ELIMINATE ISLAM
    by Joel Phillips
    publisher: www.religiousfreedomwatch.org
    owner: American Coast Title www.actfortitle.com

    Just watching the news from London is a reminder that we’re living in an age of terrorism. And, sad to say, almost all terrorism has something to do with Islam and Muslims, you just won’t find much of it that is not in some way connected.

    Just look at a few:

    First World Trade Center Attack: a blind Egyptian guy was behind it. No one contests it.

    Oklahoma City: don’t forget that McVeigh served in the first Gulf War. There is good reason to think he was recruited by jihadists in Iraq who were active at the time.

    9/11: Islamic suicide extremists, forget the other theories. They were Taliban zealots hoping for 172 virgins and palaces in Islamic heaven.

    Spanish train bombs: more Jihad extremists, basically the same bunch as the 9/11.

    London train bombs: not the same 9/11 and Spain guys, but more British Muslims from Pakistan.

    Virginia Tech: This one is so sad. Psychiatry started Cho out. Then Islamic recruiters told Cho he would get infinite sex in Muslim heaven from the 172 virgins so he converted. By trying to destroy Virginia Tech he thought he was attacking Bush’s aggression in Afghanistan.

    London night club bombs: Good for the Brit cops, they have caught some of the guys and it is more of these Pakistan guys and doctors at that, some of them were even psychiatrists. Maybe it is time to have a serious think about what to do about Pakistan. Mixing up Islam, Muslims, psychiatry and Pakistan is a recipe for mass murder and terrorism. Trust me on this one.

    It is no accident or coincidence the bigots who oppose religious freedom are inspired by Islamic thought.

    Just look at some of the fine people on www.religiousfreedomwatch.org. EVERY SINGLE PERSON on there is a zealot, bigot or extremist and you will find that most of them have extensive criminal records. Take a look at these criminal records and you will find the influence of Islam.

    Charlotte Kates: this young woman is a card-carrying member of the Palestinian Liberation Organization. They are kind of the poster child for Muslim terrorists and an inspiration to Islamic murderers all over the world. What is her problem?

    Peter Alexander: this man makes hate films. He is also building some kind of an amusement park in the Arab Gulf. Is is clearly doing the bidding of Islamist extremist jihad promoting masters all the way around.

    Patricia Greenway: this woman is Alexander’s business partner and lover. She likes to live the high life and Arab money helps out there. Word in Ybor City is that she has her eye on an Enzo.

    Kristi Wachter: she puts out a daily hate newsletter. She has paid for the theft of materials from churches. She says she used to run a record company but how much money could it make? It seems to me she is getting her money from bin Laden and his friends.

    David Touretzky: don’t be fooled. This man is not a mouse brain researcher, he is a bomb expert. Who is really paying for his research? Could it be the same bomb makers loose in Iraq?

    Keith Henson: first, don’t forget that but for www.religiousfreedomwatch.org this man would still be on the loose. He’s not just a bomb expert but a proved bomb maker. And who wants to pay for bombs? Jihad extremists! Who is paying for him to be able to buy toothpaste in jail? Could it be a guy called Osama?

    Tory Bezazian: she walked away from her husband of many years to engage in hate activities. Where does she get money? The answer is Islam. She is a directly funded agent of the Los Angeles Koranic Council.

    Andreas Heldal-Lund: the man is proud to support Lars Gule who was behind bombings in the Middle East. That sort of speaks for itself now doesn’t it?

    As to the site, www.religiousfreedomwatch.org, it is paid for 100% by my company, American Coast Title. I am one of the owners. The other two owners, Frank Berriz and Linda Blood are 100% behind what I am doing as is our parent underwriter Stewart Title. We also get pretty good support from our employees although it would be illegal of me to impose my political beliefs on them.

    Does it surprise you that I am being attacked by Indonesians? Not a coincidence that Indonesia is an Islamic country. The company is willing to pay a nice reward to the person who will stand up and help me stop them. Please look at my site for details.

    Props to George Ramirez. These guys came around to poke fun at the company. He stood up like a real man and sent them on there way. Can’t say for a fact that they were Islamic jihadists but the truth always comes out!

    Expect without doubt a lot of trouble in Glendale. That’s where American Coast Title is located as well as a dense population of Armenians. The Armenians don’t like Arab Muslims so the area is getting very tense as the clock ticks down for Islamic terrorism.

    So I am calling for the total elimination of Islam. Many other religious choices are available to those currently in Islam. Islam must go and no Muslim can be allowed to remain anywhere in the world.

    All Mosques must either be destroyed or made into something else. The other day we did a title for one that was converted into a shopping center, now that’s a good use for one!

    All copies of the Koran must be rounded up and burned or otherwise destroyed. If libraries insist on keeping them for historical reasons they have to be under lock and key and they have to post a guard to make sure no one copies them.

    Conversion to another validated religion or acceptance of atheism are the only options I see. No other religion is associated with state sponsored terror as documented by the US State Department Report on Terrorism.

    One thing that has to happen after is that women have to wear normal clothes. No more of these Islamic things. I mean local clothes are fine and kind of cute but no symbol of Islam can remain as it will just get cause restimulation of what started out as the worship of a giant magnetic stone by savage nomads. So get rid of all those crescent moons and so on!

    This is a strong statement but it is time to end these attacks with bombs full of nails and gas. No other group does this. It is all and always back to Islam, Muslims, the Koran and groups like the Taliban and various sleeper cells.

    Stand up with me on this one. Stand tall with me against Muslims who kill in the name of jihad and Islam and the false words of the Koran hoping for 172 virgins in a palace. Stand shoulder to shoulder with me to stop the next bunch of suicidal bigots and zealots from burning down your city.

    Proud to be an American and a Scientologist

    Joel Phillips

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  25. Imagine that.

    (I did, actually, somewhere upthread.)

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  26. Keep that master-slave relationship with reality going there, Joel. It's heartwarming when the slaves are under the impression their masers are feeding them the truth.

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  27. The crazy thing is that our government will grant subsidies worth $6.5 million to this Tom Cruise movie.

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  28. Africa is rich in resources, why is it poor?

    Because it lacks infrastructure.

    London businessman Saifee Durbar wants to change that.

    He plans to link Africa’s coasts by building a railway from Cameroon to Sudan, via the Central African Republic.

    Updates on the project can be found at:

    http://saifdurbar.wordpress.com

    http://saifeedurbar.wordpress.com

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