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Goodbye to all that....

I've backdated this entry as I want to put this behind me.

I didn't really want to make this public. But the more I thought about it and the more I was questioned and love bombed, the more I realized I had kept some opinions/thoughts to myself for too long and I didn't need to do that anymore. Mostly though, it's because I've been continual questioned as to when I'm returning to the bunker and the inability of some to understand that "I'm done" means just that. This is the only time I am writing about this. All the love bombing of the past few days and questioning has got my TMJ flared up again. Just leave me alone please. You'll see there is no 'handling' that can be done for me. I'm posting this and then the door will be shut, locked, and bricked over. I'm done.

I'll say this again below, but I want to say this upfront (though why I have no idea, I know my words will be taken out of context and be misconstrued): There are good people in the bunker. Good, caring individuals who end up doing/saying things they probably wouldn't normally do (just like Scientologists) because of the group think/hive mentality. I want to stress there's good people there. Their actions are more than likely not something they'd normally do--with. of course, a few exceptions. :)

If I were to pinpoint exactly when my disillusionment began with Scientology watching, I'd have to say the seed was planted with the Going Clear premiere. Yeah, really. I sat here and watched it and whereas yes, I'm aware he couldn't cover everything in the book; the editing was good; the pace was good; etc I just felt something was missing. I read all the superlative comments how it was awesome, amazing, etc and was like, really? Seemed like hyperbole. This isn't a documentary review though. But the group cheer leading with no criticism planted a seed that stayed dormant for awhile.

The seed started to get germinated at the Parma event in September. At the after event, Tony asked the group if one of us would start a fight with Media_Lush so he had an excuse to ban him. Someone asked him why and he said, basically, it was because of the blind gossip items he kept posting and how they were wrong but ML persisted they were right. What kind of behavior is that? To request someone to start a fight with someone else so they'd be banned?

The seed went dormant again until, I'd say, probably March. That's when the undue stress and strain caused by an individual regarding HowdyCon started. I decided to take a big step back from the comments and not participate as much but just watch in a detached manner. I did not like what I saw. Hypocrisy, vitriol, manipulation, hero worship, group think, group paranoia, and I identified each of those as having been something I had fully participated in and I was appalled at myself. The more I thought about it, the more I realized the parallels between the bunker and Scientology in some ways. Again, I was appalled at myself. On the other hand though, it serves as a reminder that ANYONE can become involved in a toxic cult like group that fronts as trying to help others, just like Scientology.

Some people screen grab every single comment in the bunker, as does OSA. OSA is derided and mocked for that; but the bunkerites who do it aren't. What's the difference? To both groups I'd ask 'why do that?' I know the answer a few bunkerites would give. They'd say it was done in an attempt to suss out 'socks'. Who cares if there's sock accounts though? Some people see '26' in every new poster. For a bit after 26, I admit I took part in some sock hunting but I quit shortly after I started because it just seemed wrong to be analyzing certain posters, what they said, trying to verify those things, etc. Though I once again partook with Rick in Indy. I shouldn't have done that, that was wrong.

Media_Lush ended up being banned, without warning, because he posted a fat shaming photo of Kirstie Alley. Never mind that Kirstie should be 'fair game' for fat shaming because of her endless public announcements of dissatisfaction with her weight, her weight loss business forays, and deal with Jenny Craig. All the while, publicly showing that Scientology can't fix the weight problems she feels she has. Tony posted about ML being banned in such a way that of course everyone fell in line and agreed with him about it.

The last time I was in the bunker, Mark had posted a fat shaming photo of John Sugg. I commented asking why it was okay for some people to be able to fat shame; but not others, wasn't that hypocrisy? Or did it depend on the who was in the 'in crowd'. It was more of a rhetorical statement/question. But Mark twisted the situation to make it seem like I was personally attacking HIS size and others fell in place. I said/did no such thing. Then Baby was sent to 'handle' me saying I should have commented to Mark on an older post and that it wasn't like me to comment like that. Well, one, why would/should I comment on a back post? Fuck that. Two, that IS me. I question unfairness, hypocrisy, double standards, however you wish to put it. John Sugg, unlike Kirstie, as far as I know, has not made any public declarations about having issues with his weight and/or publicly gone on weight loss plans. Oh wait, he writes revolting things about others, so therefore he's 'fair game'. I concur he writes revolting things; but it doesn't mean he should be fat shamed when others can't do it. But Mark is in the 'in crowd' so it's okay I guess.

Alanzo was banned for an email he sent. Ah, judged for what you do outside the confines of the bunker. Huh, reminds me of some religion. Tony portrayed it as that Alanzo had threatened that therapist so of course people rallied behind him as a champion of women, a chivalrous man, and isn't he just great? Now, I am not privy to the email Alanzo sent; but, I have seen the comments he posted in the bunker about that therapist. They were not threatening, he was cordially pointing out where he felt she was violating the state's ethic code with her comments on Cathy Tweed. He also praised her work with former Scientologists. Alanzo made excellent points in his posts and I'm sure he did in his email too. Is it a threat to point out that you might be violating your code of ethics? I don't think so.

Epsi was banned for questioning a poster he felt could be a sock. Yet, people are encouraged to police the comments themselves. Shortly prior to Epsi being banned, both he and Howdy were warned they'd be banned. Can you imagine had Howdy been banned? Though I have no doubt people would have fell in line and agreed with it.

Back to the mention of Cathy Tweed. Here's where chivalry is dead. That article was sickening. Posting a dead young woman's deleted Facebook comments? Having that therapist analyze and criticize her mother, Cathy Tweed, who is a private individual, not someone who is in the public eye. Where were all the alleged champions of mental health on that post decrying that it was wrong? Crickets. Shamefully I didn't speak out either; but if others felt as I did, they might have felt like me: too frightened to say something. One cannot go against the grain in a major way. People were vilifying Cathy in the comments though. Even some Ex-Scientologists were too. You'd have thunk they would have had a better understanding of how/why Cathy was handling the death as she was, as they had once had those same beliefs. Instead, no, she's a Scientologist and it's fair game to crucify her publicly, though she's a private person and not public. That was one of the most sickening displays I'd ever seen on the bunker.

Speaking of vilification, Marty Rathbun. Do I really need to say anything on this? Sure, of course I do. How/why Tony dislikes him is something only known to him. His opinion of Marty comes through in his writing though (more on that in a bit). When the Rathbuns fired their attorneys and dropped the lawsuit, Tony said for people not to speculate. What did he do? Speculate with Texas Lawyer. Including tossing out the idea that they had walked away from millions of dollars. That's some major $peculation right there. The disdain and contempt Tony holds for Marty is palpable. He further allows the vilification of him in the comments. Such horrible comments about Marty by the bunker. Why people dislike him so much I have never understood nor will understand. In some ways, it seems he's disliked more than David Miscavige. The level of vitriol towards him is horrible. I'll never 'get' that. The Rathbuns owed no one, especially not the bunker or Tony, an explanation as to why they fired their attorneys or dropped the suit. I do think, as his opinion of Marty was woven into the story, that Tony was, in a way, fair gaming them. I understand where Marty is coming from in his statements. When I left the bunker for good I sent him an apology for making the 'rue the day' memes and he graciously accepted it and recommended a book for me to read. It was an excellent book choice, exactly what I needed then and I can't thank him enough for that. (Ah, yes, I was consorting with a bunker enemy, that's high treason isn't it?)

Someone else whom apparently Tony doesn't like is Carmen LLywelyn and again, chivalry is quite dead. As she has on her blog, he posted a comment claiming he had interviewed her extensively and never did anything with it, so make of that what you will. The implication being she was not credible enough for him. She says she only had a 10 minute conversation with him, he did most of the talking, and they agreed to meet up so he COULD interview her. She tried to arrange that; but he never got back to her. I believe her.

Since he had posted that comment about her, that made her 'fair game'. One of the last days I was in the bunker there was a conversation going on about Carmen. I left in the midst of it, as it was disgusting. They were trying to psychoanalyze her. Then someone commented that they knew her personally and she was crazy. No one questioned that person, they accepted it as fact. Another individual put forth a conspiracy theory that Scientologists might have gotten to her and to Marty because both were posting denouncing Tony and the bunker around the same time. Uh huh, cuz you'd have to be crazy to have an issue with Tony or the bunker? And/or Scientologists would have had to have paid you off to do that? SMDH It's called seeing things how they really are. Both Carmen and Marty are victims of Tony and the bunker. They have every right to be angry, hurt, and upset.

Some Ex-Scientologists are viewed as heroes by Tony and the bunker. Others are viewed with scorn and contempt. How these views are determined I don't know. I can only make guesses, assumptions, and speculations. I'd prefer not to do that.

As aforementioned, opinions of individuals comes through in many posts. Such as Marty, and most certainly Cathy Tweed. I could list others, but those are the two best current examples I can think of. I also prefer not to ruminate on the bunker. Opinion woven into a 'news story' leads readers, usually always unknowingly, to agree with the author. It's like most current 'news' articles today with a political bent--towards either side. Aren't the Rathbuns' attorneys selfless heroes who were shafted out of money? You'd have to be crazy to fire these brilliant legal eagles, right? Let's have Texas Lawyer give an opinion that meshes with ours, that'll shape how people think to ensure they agree with us. Isn't it horrible how Cathy Tweed is handling her daughter's suicide? Let's have a counselor give an opinion that meshes with ours, that'll shape how people think to ensure they agree with us. And what was up with the title of the 'Lisa Marie Defection' article? Purely misleading as she had already defected Scientology.

Now, I don't wish to denounce Tony's work as a whole. It might seem that way; but no. He does provide a valuable service. But when he starts letting his personal opinion of others soak into articles, leads a group into agreeing with him, and tries to intervene in things behind the scenes (there are things told to me in confidence and it's not for me to disclose those things, I'm sure in time the individuals involved will disclose them), that's not ethical journalism. It's not even ethical as a human being. He tries to portray himself as humble; but it seems more and more it's just a veneer. Does he know he's surrounded by sycophants? Do the sycophants know they're sycophants? I know I was unaware I was one until a few months ago.

It's claimed people can have different opinions in the bunker. Well yes and no. Yes, you can differ on say, the kind of music you like, food, etc; but you cannot differ on whom is 'in' or 'out'. Those 'in' or 'out' include those in the bunker; Ex-Scientologists, as some are alleged good, others bad; reporters/websites; and the consensus that Scientology, wholly, is horrible and should be eradicated. Those who've mentioned, exes, that they still audit, or read some LRH works, are put on the 'handling' list. You know what I realized? If doing some of that helps them, why shouldn't they? What's wrong with that? They aren't hurting anyone. It'd be like a former Catholic who still takes comfort in praying the rosary. There's too much judgment and attempts to control others. Like some religion I know of.

Of course, some exes CAN do Scientology auditing and/or reading and it's okay. Others cannot. It all depends on who is 'in' or 'out'. The unwritten rules don't count for some. Isn't there a religion that has rules that only apply to some not all? Huh.

If your opinion differs on one of the things on the unwritten list of 'you need to get in line and think like all us'; then there's attempts to 'handle' you. Comments to try to get you to change your opinion, the email brigade will kick in, and you either just concede or shut up about it because you don't want to end up with what would happen next: disconnection. Yeah, just like some religion, if you persist in a differing opinion, refuse to be handled, then your exclusion begins. You don't want to be on the 'outs' do you? No, of course not. Do you know how many times I kept my opinion to myself because I knew what would happen? Shamefully far more than I can count. I didn't want to be on the 'outs'. I was unaware at the time, but that suppression of myself was chipping away at my soul. Why would I do this? I SPEAK OUT! Cuz I was fearful. Fearful of what? Well what happens when you're excluded. Don't we all seek a sense of belonging? Just like some religion I know of.

Once you're excluded, fair gaming can/will begin. Every comment you ever made is analyzed, because of course they have screen shots of every single comment. You're followed around the internet and your activities there are screen grabbed and analyzed. Sometimes you'll be attacked on other sites when you're not even posting about Scientology. You know this has happened. In one instance I took part a few years ago. I'm going to send them an apology today. They deserve it. It was wrong, I was wrong, and I need to apologize.

There's fair game and black PR as you're analyzed, diagnosed, dissected, turned into a joke, a meme, and Tony allows this in the comments as people are destroyed. Perhaps it's difficult to realize online but there are real human beings with feelings and emotions behind the computer. That doesn't matter in the midst of a bunker feeding frenzy. The same people who will show such kindness and consideration for others, will turn and destroy those that are deemed 'not worthy'. I don't believe for a second they're consciously aware of what they're doing. As I said, I did it too. Until I viewed things in a detached manner, I wasn't aware of those things about myself. I'm ashamed and disgusted with myself. It goes to show though, that anyone can fall into a group think/hive mentality. Those that judge people who got into Scientology need to give pause for thought about how/why they've gotten into the Bunker group think/hive mentality. What's the difference? Sure, the human rights abuse, physical abuse, etc but the GROUP THINK HIVE MENTALITY is there. Once you're in that, you can/will do things you wouldn't normally do.

Hypocrisy does rule the day in the bunker.

There are good people in the bunker (just like in Scientology). They do things they normally wouldn't as they're under the power of group think (just like in Scientology). They think what they're doing is for the greater good (just like in Scientology). There's a snitching culture, there's a form of ethics, and if people would detach and look objectively, they'd see what they'd become. I'm not proud of it. It's made me physically sick (In addition to the 'fun' with HowdyCon that exacerbated my health problems--thanks Spike!) and I'm leaving this behind.

Due to my severe PTSD I try to avoid conflict/confrontation at all cost. I didn't really want to write this; but I kept getting pushed and pushed with the emails; love bombing---I mean really? emails from people I never talked to to begin with, you didn't think I'd see through that?; and the apparent group think that I'd return. I said I was done. I meant it. I deleted my disqus. That was it, done. Now you know why and y'all can spend a few days dissecting me, analyzing me, villainizing me, etc. I don't care. I've already done it to myself. I'm done with Scientology Watching. I don't even read the news anymore nor even dlisted. I'm done with all that. This is not open for discussion.

In a way it's a shame I couldn't have just been allowed to quietly go away, as I would have preferred; yet in another way, it's good to get this out. Good bye, good luck, I wish you all the best.

Comments

( 46 Peaces spoken — Speak your peace )
blue_aardvark
Jun. 7th, 2016 04:18 pm (UTC)
I think you're right to leave. The group appears to be becoming what it hates; as the Nietzsche says: "He who fights with monsters should look to it that he himself does not become a monster. And if you gaze long into an abyss, the abyss also gazes into you."

You're more of a lone wolf than a nervous sheep anyway. It doesn't suit your temperament.
misstia
Jun. 7th, 2016 04:20 pm (UTC)
THANK YOU!!!
That's an excellent quote and your comment is something I needed to hear right now! ♥
missTia - Aint MizBahavin - Jul. 4th, 2016 01:51 am (UTC) - Expand
Re: missTia - misstia - Jul. 4th, 2016 02:05 am (UTC) - Expand
Re: Media_Lush - Aint MizBahavin - Jul. 4th, 2016 02:09 am (UTC) - Expand
Re: Media_Lush - misstia - Jul. 4th, 2016 12:59 pm (UTC) - Expand
Re: missTia - Aint MizBahavin - Jul. 6th, 2016 02:08 am (UTC) - Expand
Re: missTia - misstia - Jul. 6th, 2016 02:12 am (UTC) - Expand
medialush
Jun. 7th, 2016 07:39 pm (UTC)
WOW! …

Alanzo, Espi, almost Howdycon, Nottrue [self-exiled]… I’m in some good company!

This took a lot of courage so good for you!


FTR - the thing that somewhat amused me was that the Bunker couldn't see through my Cruise and/or gossip/blind item postings. To this day commentators take my old posts as gospel and deride them for being wrong... "prompted" as you so eloquently explain above. A big part of why I set up my original blog and chose my Avatar was because I was genuinely pissed off at all the bogus PR bollocks Cruise's management were putting out so I thought I would fight fire with fire; surprised so called journalists couldn't understand this. I would like to think I've done a pretty good job of nullifying Cruise PR out there.

Obviously I have an awful lot more I could say but we'll see how this progresses.

In the mean time rock on Miss Tia! 😎😎😎
misstia
Jun. 7th, 2016 09:53 pm (UTC)
THANK YOU medialush!!
I JUST read your blog a little bit ago from last night and saw that about Nottrue. Damn. And I wrote this this morning without knowing about that. The behind the scenes puppet mastery is going full steam ahead I see. WAY TO GO NOTTRUE!! For those who said it was a private email, uh huh, BUT it was someone trying to control someone else. I can hear it now--but it's Tony's site. Right, hypocrisy and censorship reigns! Those people, most of whom are good people at heart, don't realize they're in a cultlike situation (yet). They 'champion' him as a defender of free speech, yet gosh, behind the scenes he tries to stifle it. LOVED the screen grabs capturing the "handling". Baby used those same words with me "shake it off".

I've think you've done a good job too ML! You know I felt bad I didn't tell you about that attempt at trying to get you banned until a few months ago, but I want to make a public apology to you for that. I'm sorry and I should have told you right away. That was wrong of me. I do know you understand; but I still feel bad about that.

Rock on Nottrue!! Rock on Media_Lush! :)
RE: THANK YOU medialush!! - (Anonymous) - Jun. 8th, 2016 11:12 pm (UTC) - Expand
Re: THANK YOU medialush!! - misstia - Jun. 9th, 2016 12:02 am (UTC) - Expand
TC 'Gossip' Items From Media_lush - Ze Moo - Jun. 8th, 2016 10:49 pm (UTC) - Expand
Re: TC 'Gossip' Items From Media_lush - misstia - Jun. 9th, 2016 12:01 am (UTC) - Expand
(Anonymous)
Jun. 8th, 2016 03:13 pm (UTC)
Boom, Click!
The sounds of Tia closing that door and walking away.
Walk away from the bullshit and stress. It's not healthy.
misstia
Jun. 8th, 2016 03:17 pm (UTC)
VERY unhealthy!! Yep, buh bye!!
(Anonymous)
Jun. 8th, 2016 05:44 pm (UTC)
Tia I'm blown away by your authenticity. Thank you for putting yourself out there like this, I know it isn't easy. I agree with you & I think your observations are totally valid. Why ban someone for insulting a celebrity weight spokesperson but not continue the same course of action when it's done by another? I'm personally affected by your experience Miss Tia because as you know I've had my own similar problems which you've mentioned here. It takes a lot of strength to say what you know doesn't want to be heard but needs to be said. I also think it's great that you're asserting your right to take time away for yourself. Put your health first, always. Thank you for being you Miss Tia.
Carmen
misstia
Jun. 8th, 2016 08:52 pm (UTC)
THANK YOU!!! Carmen!!
It took me a few months, as you know, to finally take my thoughts, feelings, and experience public. I guess the seed that was planted was ready to bloom until yesterday!

You've shown a lot of strength and courage speaking out yourself. And in dealing with the attempts to undermine your credibility. That still just leaves a bad taste in my mouth, for an alleged journalist to do that. Then for those horrible comments about you to be made, and I'm sure still there. He fosters such an atmosphere. You've handled it with a lot of class and grace. I'm so glad I reached out how to you awhile back!!

Putting myself--including my health---first is something I've never been good at doing. I always put others first. But, I think this experience, as my doctor said, might finally help me get the idea that it's not selfish to put myself and/or my health first before everything and everyone else! It's never too late to learn something new, to improve yourself, to make amends for something you've done--or been a part of, you can always move FORWARD in life, if you choose to take that path. I am choosing FORWARD! :)

Thank you again Carmen! ♥
wayne_borean
Jun. 8th, 2016 09:46 pm (UTC)
Wondered where you went

Most popular forums/groups tend to become polarized. It's part of being human, we are tribal in nature. It doesn't affect me, but I'm a psychopath and don't do emotions. I just sit on the outside and watch.
misstia
Jun. 8th, 2016 09:52 pm (UTC)
Re: Wondered where you went
Now now, you're not a psychopath! It's good to sit outside groups and watch though!! Mentioning tribal in nature is what the NYT's piece Marty linked to was talking about in the discussion of FB and like mindedness within internet groups/pages. I concur, most groups/forums tend to become polarized.
(Anonymous)
Jun. 9th, 2016 09:46 am (UTC)
Mmmmm - most interesting!
I have only fairly recently subscribed to the Bunker, as I liked the look of the articles. I very occasionally commented (very mildly) & usually found that someone would quickly respond with a kind of a smart arse comment, so I stopped going to the comments. As I am an ex-cult person (not Scientology, but a Scientology influenced group)..this made me feel a little sensitive. I did get the feeling that it wasn't an especially safe forum (well, it is the internet after all!). I hardly know most of the people you mention Miss Tia...I do remember reading a few comments by you & Baby & realising that this was a very established forum, with people that knew each other & were very used to each other. I decided that I should share some of my experiences & name the group that I was in, as I really wanted to get the info out there, that there were Scientology tie-ins in the belief system, with my former cult. You never know who you might help after all! So I screwed up my courage & did that - there were a few comments & I felt it was generally appreciated that I opened up. Since then, I've noticed that I don't get the little digs I used to. I will say that I have noticed, since I left my former cult, that cult-like situations can form quite easily & in surprising areas, that can go unnoticed. I have a very good radar for this now & usually stay pretty detached if I sense it. It feels to me like you have finished with this phase & thank you for airing your true feelings, as this nearly always helps others. I am taking what you have said on board, & will endeavour to balance this with the knowledge of what being in a destructive cult is actually like & what it sometimes takes to stand up to them & all that that entails....& the type of people that do that, etc, etc. It's a tricky area!! I suspect I would like you in person & wish you benevolence on your continuing journey :)
misstia
Jun. 10th, 2016 02:32 am (UTC)
Re: Mmmmm - most interesting!
It can be very intimidating to start commenting. I felt the same way at first. You're right those situations can form quite easily and where you least expect it. I was totally unaware until I detached. I had had those questions/seeds of doubt but I kept suppressing them, until I finally detached and mostly read and observed. That's when it really hit me. And of course how the human mind works I kept trying to rationalize things; but it was just an overpowering bright flashing neon light I couldn't turn off. I do hope this helps others and perhaps plant a seed at least. People have to come to their conclusions based on their own experience(s). I've definitely finished this phase. Continuing down the path is where I'm headed. :) Thank you for your kind words, it's much appreciated.
RE: Re: Mmmmm - most interesting! - (Anonymous) - Jul. 23rd, 2016 03:34 am (UTC) - Expand
Re: Mmmmm - most interesting! - misstia - Jul. 23rd, 2016 07:19 pm (UTC) - Expand
(Anonymous)
Jun. 10th, 2016 02:00 am (UTC)
Hi Tia, I blew the Bunker a few weeks ahead of you for my own singular reasons. Still, my thoughts are a good fit with your words. I have long enjoyed your posts, and of others, and will miss them. As I see it, when the conditions become too toxic, and it can't be fixed, then it is best to leave. So I have. I am astonished to peek back today and to learn at the departure of other long-standing and well-regarded contributors, including you.

You are really special, Tia.. Wishing you happy trails. Walk outside. See the beauty. Enjoy the perfumed air.

daytoncapri
misstia
Jun. 10th, 2016 02:20 am (UTC)
Thank you so much daytoncapri! We're ALL really special! I think the toxicity is perhaps getting to people; but I can only speak for myself and my experience. Others who have left have their own reasons and I wouldn't expect anyone to write about their experience, like I did, or even tell someone. I felt I had to write something, though I'd have preferred to have left quietly. Going quietly, I guess, isn't my style!

Happy trails to you too! The air was VERY perfumed today with the honeysuckle, wild roses and wisteria blooming! BLISS!! There truly is beauty and joy in the simplest things.Take care! ♥
Bunker Bumped - (Anonymous) - Jun. 11th, 2016 02:49 pm (UTC) - Expand
Re: Bunker Bumped - misstia - Jun. 11th, 2016 04:30 pm (UTC) - Expand
Re: Bunker Bumped - (Anonymous) - Jun. 11th, 2016 05:35 pm (UTC) - Expand
Re: Bunker Bumped - misstia - Jun. 12th, 2016 12:43 am (UTC) - Expand
(Anonymous)
Jun. 15th, 2016 12:53 pm (UTC)
Never-in agrees
Miss Tia,
Your thoughts mirror my observations about the Bunker comments section. I am a never-in Clearwater resident, and have been reading the Bunker and following all coverage of Scientology for 15+ years. While I used to spend time each day scanning the Bunker comments and learning from the open confessions and supportive comments from ex-Scientologists, I, too, have grown weary of the group think/gang up/shaming from the top commenters. Detached from emotional connection to Scientology, I see the site has evolved into "mean girl" behavior - organizations with a leader, and sycophants that check the ideas and intentions of the leader, boot lick, then aggressively enforce like-think, or expel and shame. I had recently told my husband that the ex-scientologists controlling the comments on the Bunker site exhibit the same characteristics they complained about inside the cult. BTW- Many comments sections on political blogs devolve like this too, if the moderators or blogger doesn't check. The community then starts to shrink. NOT unique to the Bunker.

Here's to you for being brave and speaking out. I'm sure it has been a loss to leave this community, too. Best of luck and love to you.
misstia
Jun. 15th, 2016 01:18 pm (UTC)
Re: Never-in agrees
Thank you 'NIA'! I have to say though, it's not just the ex-scientologists controlling the comments. I think some of the more aggressive enforcement I saw was from people who had never been a scientologist. You are correct, many sections on political blogs---and actually any kind of blog where there is a 'core group' of commenters--can devolve into such a situation. When there's no guidance or guidelines by a moderator or site owner to keep such things in check, again you're correct, the community will shrink. Though those that leave will be replaced by NEW fodder, and the cycle repeats until more and more realize what's going on.

It was a loss to leave the community, though from what I wrote it might not seem like it. It was. There are truly good people there who, the majority of, are acting in ways I am firmly convinced they would never normally do. When I detached I realized I had been acting in ways I wouldn't normally do. Of course there are a few who people who do act like that normally---as in society---and such a situation is online heaven for them! Agitate, rinse, wash, repeat. I know it was best to say 'goodbye to all that' entirely, as such is the situation there, that people are unable to not separate themselves from the bunker and I was constantly hearing about it. It takes over more of your life than you really are consciously aware of.

Thank you for your comment and it's nice to know I wasn't the only one to notice these things!!
(Anonymous)
Jun. 20th, 2016 04:30 am (UTC)
I have only just learned that you have left "the bunker" from Marty Rathbun's site. While I check (notice I didn't write read) the bunker articles every day I have stopped reading the comments. I had lurked for many, many years and had only recently started posting. The tone of the comments had become concerning to me and I have stopped posting there. I think I posted like 40 times so no big bunker loss. It seems to me that for some time now Tony has been becoming increasingly self serving and arrogant in his tone and that the comments have followed suit. (Tony's the best, smartest, most handsome etc...) I think that this became more evident leading up to his book release and subsequent "tour". (Watch or listen to an interview of his from a few years ago and compare it to a recent one.) There are several people whose comments/thoughts I will miss but not enough to make me stay. I watched a brief video on periscope of HowdyCon and frankly the level of Tony adoration was somewhat disturbing. So glad that by the time it was planned I had absolutely no desire to go. Thanks for saying what I think a lot of us have been thinking/feeling for sometime.
misstia
Jun. 23rd, 2016 09:06 pm (UTC)
I apologize for not replying as soon as I unscreened your comment, but I wanted to unscreen it right away, then had some things to do, and have finally gotten to replying now! Sorry!!

You raise a really good point about how it seems Tony "has been becom[e] increasingly self serving and arrogant in his tone and that the comments have followed suit." I would agree with that. He sets the tone in the writing, like when he tries to get an opinion across about someone/something and then the commenters fall in line.

I would also agree re: the interviews too; but, I would add that that happens to a lot of people who suddenly get a lot more media coverage. That, in my opinion, would be something most people would struggle with--having it not go to your head, trying to stay 'yourself'. Or perhaps what's shown now IS himself and he just masked that? I don't know.

Though one particular person put me thru hell re: HowdyCon (it was not Tony) and I'm still dealing with the health issues that stress caused me, I am overall RELIEVED I wasn't there. I had a very nice relaxing weekend at home, in the sun, reading a book! :)

I'm also relieved, and have been pleasantly surprised, at how many how commented and also privately contacted me to tell me they agreed with me. I thought I was probably the only one who thought these things, who had observed these things, and nope, not at all!
(Anonymous)
Jun. 22nd, 2016 10:34 pm (UTC)
Farewell and thanks for all the fish
Quite true Tia. I don't usually read the comments at the Bunker. It's similar at ESMB. Where once ex-CO$ but still interested in Scn or an offshoot could participate without being cut to pieces.
misstia
Jun. 23rd, 2016 09:14 pm (UTC)
Re: Farewell and thanks for all the fish
"cut to pieces" is a very apt way to describe it! Though you use that for ESMB, I'd say that would apply to the bunker if you disagreed or tried to defend someone whom was not 'in'. You're cut to pieces cuz how DARE YOU?! Yeah, how DARE you have your own opinion, thoughts, and feelings.

When you are able to discuss differences in a respectful way you have the opportunity to 1) learn the strength of your own opinion when you have to defend it 2) have the opportunity to hear someone supporting an opposing side and be able to question them and ultimately 3) learn from each other and find common ground. It's really sad that in so many instances, especially politics, people are unable to discuss things. Even if you don't want to discuss it, why aren't some people capable of just accepting that others have different opinions, beliefs, thoughts, feelings, etc than them and it's OKAY?!

I never got the judgment people who had left scientology officially but say, still audited, got. So what? If someone wants to do that, let 'em!! Has no bearing upon anyone else. It's like there was some kind of secret code and/or oath you had to take to join the bunker or something and there were all these unwritten rules you were suppose to pick up telepathically or via carrier pigeon. I'm still appalled and disgusted with myself for participating for so long.

Re: Farewell and thanks for all the fish - (Anonymous) - Jun. 24th, 2016 12:23 pm (UTC) - Expand
Re: Farewell and thanks for all the fish - misstia - Jun. 24th, 2016 12:27 pm (UTC) - Expand
Re: Farewell and thanks for all the fish - (Anonymous) - Jun. 24th, 2016 12:32 pm (UTC) - Expand
Re: Farewell and thanks for all the fish - misstia - Jun. 24th, 2016 12:33 pm (UTC) - Expand
(Anonymous)
Jul. 2nd, 2016 11:10 pm (UTC)
Here you are!
I've been wondering what happened to you! I don't always read all the comments at the Bunker, just enough to know that something happened and you had disappeared. While I do comment sometimes, I don't really get into all the drama. It seems I'm always on the sidelines, both in life and online. But I miss you, as well as Media Lush, Espi and the others. I miss your pictures and wildlife reports! I hope you'll keep posting them here :-).
misstia
Jul. 3rd, 2016 12:12 am (UTC)
Re: Here you are!
Yep, here I am! :) I think being on the sidelines is a good thing!! I should have done that; but now I've removed myself from the arena! :D I haven't updated the blog in a few days as my right arm/shoulder is aching from excessive macheting and branch cutting but it's getting better after a couple days rest.

I have to empty my memory card probably tomorrow, so look for a MEGA post of photos in a day or too!! :) I have a couple months of photos to post here.

I thought Epsi and Media Lush were treated unfairly, especialy Media Lush. ML has his own blog if you didn't know. https://www.scientologybollocks.com/
(Anonymous)
Jul. 3rd, 2016 06:06 am (UTC)
Another one who slipped away...
I also slipped away from reading and taking part in the comments section quite a while ago. I have been a Scientology watcher for nearly 2 decades and did a little here and there when I could. At first the Bunker seemed like a place of kindred spirits and I didn't at all understand the vitriol that was bubbling about Tony.

Sadly, it took me being on the other side of his mocking to make me understand what others were saying. He kept interjecting his opinion on "crazy anti-vaxxers" into stories that would have stood just fine without it. As a mom of a vaccine injured child and friend of many others who believed vaccines were safe until it was too late...well, it stabbed me in the heart. (For the record, most of us are not anti-vax, we are pro-safe vaccines and pro-personal medical freedom.) He could vilify me without a care, so how can I ever see him as objective?

I backed off the Tony wagon and could finally understand why someone like Marty could be so angry. I do still read his stories, but I am much more aware of his biases and how much of his personal opinion and agenda are in everything he writes. I'm disappointed in myself that I didn't see it until it hurt me personally.

I hope you are feeling better <3
misstia
Jul. 3rd, 2016 11:52 am (UTC)
Re: Another one who slipped away...
You phrase that quite aptly "...the Bunker seemed like a place of kindred spirits..." I felt the same way!

I do recall seeing him say that in some stories, and you're right, there was no need for that. I also recall a few times seeing VERY heated discussions in the comments about vaccines and if you were not 100% PRO vaccine then you were a "crazy anti-vaxxer". That was another instance where I did not speak up and remained silent. If you were participating in that, then I apologize for not speaking up. I'm an anti-vaxxer; but I believe people/parents should have a choice and that the vaccines that include potentially harmful preservatives/inert ingredients should be changed. Not to mention that parents should have a say on when their children are vaccinated. I've read where infants are given quite a few in one day and that's just ridiculous.

It's definitely not objective to make a statement like that in a story. He's made some political statements too in stories where it wasn't called for and why do that? Just like his disdain for Marty.

I was, and still to some extent, disappointed in myself that I didn't see it earlier. I know I shouldn't be, and you shouldn't be either!!! We're both human, we both entered a situation we thought was 'good', and it was not what it seemed. The positive is that we finally realized that!! It might have taken a few years; but we 'woke up' so to speak.

Yes, I am feeling better! Thank you! :)
(Anonymous)
Jul. 6th, 2016 12:03 pm (UTC)
A never in, but someone who is fascinated with the cult of scientology's pull, I innocently posted support for the survivors on Tony Ortega's blog for a story i dont recall. I immediately received an unwelcome mat. A few people questioned who i was, and questioned my motives for daring to share an opinion. A moderator slapped my hand per se for liking my own comment. I was a Disquis newbee, just opened tge account for the 1st time ever - had no clue about ettiquette. Oops sorry. Being a disquis newbe was also met with suspicion. I gave up commenting. The bunker was not a welcoming place for me. I think Scientology's toxicity has made some ex's paranoid. I see the point that the blog engages in group think mentality, mean girl\guy syndrome - at times. For one's own health and well-being, i see the value in not engaging there. Cheers!
misstia
Jul. 6th, 2016 12:13 pm (UTC)
I'm so sorry that happened to you. I do like the phrase "unwelcome mat" though! Unfortunately your experience is what many newbies experienced and my rhetorical question would be "WHY?! Why do that to people?" You shared an opinion, one that you'd think most there would agree with! Instead you were met with suspicion.

I'd seen people new to disqus be given lessons on it---in a friendly helpful manner. Your experience is an example of how some people are treated differently than others in the same type of situation. I would garner a guess that it was probably more non-scientologists than exes who questioned you too.

I do understand how/why exes are/can be paranoid. But the overall level of paranoia in the group is at sky high levels. And yes, mean people syndrome. Definitely more healthy to not engage! Cheers to you too! :)
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