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AU Senator Calls Scientology a "Criminal Organization"

kdawson posted more than 4 years ago | from the can't-do-that-here-either dept.

Censorship 511

An anonymous reader passes along news that an Australian senator, Nick Xenophon, has denounced the Church of Scientology as "a criminal organization" from the floor of Parliament. "Senator Xenophon used a speech in Parliament last night to raise allegations of widespread criminal conduct within the church, saying he had received letters from former followers detailing claims of abuse, false imprisonment, and forced abortion. He says he has passed on the letters to the police and is calling for a Senate inquiry into the religion and its tax-exempt status." It wasn't that long ago that the CoS was calling for Net censorship in Australia; a month later the organization was convicted of fraud in France.

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Interesting name. (5, Funny)

palegray.net (1195047) | more than 4 years ago | (#30139838)

Senator Xenophon? He must be in the clutches of Xenu! Someone get me an e-meter, quick!

Re:Interesting name. (3, Funny)

Mikkeles (698461) | more than 4 years ago | (#30139898)

Nah, he just rode in with his 10,000 followers and is trying to crush the opposition ;^)

Re:Interesting name. (5, Funny)

ChromeAeonium (1026952) | more than 4 years ago | (#30140030)

Here's one! [amazon.com]

Vibes add value (1)

electrons_are_brave (1344423) | more than 4 years ago | (#30140152)

The new ones cost less that the used one ...

Re:Interesting name. (0)

palegray.net (1195047) | more than 4 years ago | (#30140254)

That product really has me amped up!

Re:Interesting name. (3, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#30140054)

"Someone get me an e-meter, quick!"

I'm afraid sir you'll have to buy your own. This is a religion not a charity.

Re:Interesting name. (1, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#30140104)

Looks like somebody is definitely Fair Game [wikipedia.org] now!

Re:Interesting name. (2, Informative)

ChromeAeonium (1026952) | more than 4 years ago | (#30140242)

Nah, it's cool. If he knows about Xenu without being properly audited his R6 implant is exploding his head at this very moment.

Re:Interesting name. (2, Funny)

CodeBuster (516420) | more than 4 years ago | (#30140318)

Only Tom Cruise, with his awesome mental powers, can free Senator Xenophon from the clutches of the evil psychiatrists and their terrible leader, Lord Xenu himself! (To hear the exiting conclusion of Incident II: suggested donation of $23,148,855,308,184,500.00)

Re:Interesting name. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#30140620)

"Suggested"? What do you think this is, a religion?

Xenophon? Sounds Foreign (5, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#30140354)

Xenophon? Sounds Foreign

Re:Xenophon? Sounds Foreign (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#30140444)

Xenophon? Sounds Foreign

Sadly not too many moderators know their greek roots.

Re:Xenophon? Sounds Foreign (2, Informative)

Caity (140482) | more than 4 years ago | (#30140492)

Maybe you should have gone with "sounds alien" - might have clicked a few more gears into place for some.

Anonymous (1, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#30139840)

Anonymous should now use Nick Xenophon masks for all of their events.

Senator Xenophon? (1)

GodfatherofSoul (174979) | more than 4 years ago | (#30139850)

Something tells me he's a CoS plant, hmmmmm...

Re:Senator Xenophon? (2, Informative)

sortius_nod (1080919) | more than 4 years ago | (#30140334)

nope, just an evangelical.

Good (2, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#30139856)

Good

These intergalactic terrorists are crimals... (1)

lessthanpi (1333061) | more than 4 years ago | (#30139860)

Xenu and his Dc-8 like spacecraft will pay for what's been done!!!

tax shelter (4, Interesting)

wizardforce (1005805) | more than 4 years ago | (#30139870)

I can't help but wonder if the COS would even exist without its tax exempt status. Sure the people up top would be doing well like any pyramid scheme but would there be such an incentive for new members to join without the tax exemption?

Re:tax shelter (1, Flamebait)

aztektum (170569) | more than 4 years ago | (#30140002)

Never underestimate the stupidity of rich 'n greedy white people!

Re:tax shelter (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#30140092)

Fucking mods. Now it's insightful to wonder something?

Re:tax shelter (2, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#30140258)

What part of what the parent said is untrue? The COS is a known tax shelter and exists for the purpose of enriching the few individuals at the top.
L. Hubbard himself essentially said that religion was a great way to make money.

Re:tax shelter (5, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#30140618)

Not just essentially, that's exactly what L. Ron Hubbard did say [youtube.com]

Re:tax shelter (1, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#30140498)

With the tax exemption, new members only have to pay x% of their salaries to the church instead of y%. Since x is still a positive number I wouldn't call it an incentive to join, just a reduced burden.

Makes me sick (1, Insightful)

MichaelSmith (789609) | more than 4 years ago | (#30139874)

If you think a person has broken the law then call the cops. Don't just splash allegations around under parliamentary privilege. If people in the CoS have broken laws then that says nothing about other people who associate with that organization.

In the absense of facts the senators statement in the summary could be applied to pretty much any set of people.

I don't like Scientology either but I value my freedom to associate.

Re:Makes me sick (2, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#30139928)

Did you read what he said? Oh that's right, this is /.

All he is saying is that we should question the tax free status of Scientology. He then gave some examples of what the cult does.

Should they get off tax-free? (4, Insightful)

Valdrax (32670) | more than 4 years ago | (#30139998)

I don't like Scientology either but I value my freedom to associate.

Should all associations be given tax-free status? If not, then what conditions deserve tax-free status, and should that status be irrevocable once obtained?

Re:Should they get off tax-free? (1, Interesting)

shentino (1139071) | more than 4 years ago | (#30140112)

My opinion is that tax or no tax should be determined for churches the same way it is for everything else.

Profit? Tax it
Non-profit? Don't tax it.

Re:Should they get off tax-free? (5, Insightful)

Hal_Porter (817932) | more than 4 years ago | (#30140166)

It would be easy to test too. Religions that are not willing to publish their teachings on the web and give away free books are non profit, ones that sue people to take those teachings down are for profit and get to pay tax [wikipedia.org] . Actually religions that try to stop other people talking about them should at the very least lose their tax free status and should probably be sued too.

Re:Should they get off tax-free? (1)

wisty (1335733) | more than 4 years ago | (#30140296)

How about opening a New Church of Scientology, and seeing it?

Re:Should they get off tax-free? (4, Interesting)

electrons_are_brave (1344423) | more than 4 years ago | (#30140138)

It's opened up a good debate in Australia - should any religion be tax exempt? People here are mentioning other religions which are corrupt (Catholoic Priests and child abuse is never our of the media) or which operate commercial activities but get an unfair competitive advantage because they don't pay tax (Hill Song and the Seventh Day Adventists are being mentioned).

Lionel Murphy (A High Court Judge) was responsible for campaigning to get Scientology recognised as a religion in Australia. He said it wasn't government's job to determine which religious beliefs are worthy of recognition and which are not.

Overall, religions should have to pay their own way.

Re:Should they get off tax-free? (5, Informative)

asamad (658115) | more than 4 years ago | (#30140234)

for example weet-bix, produce by sanitarium.

Run by seventh day Adventist, given tax free status..... bet you didn't know that! How to other business compete with tax free status - it very hard.

Re:Should they get off tax-free? (1)

electrons_are_brave (1344423) | more than 4 years ago | (#30140302)

I grew up near the weet bix factory. You could smell it everytime the wind blew our way. I could never eat those things after breathing in the smell so often.

Re:Should they get off tax-free? (5, Informative)

Capsaicin (412918) | more than 4 years ago | (#30140326)

Lionel Murphy (A High Court Judge) was responsible for campaigning to get Scientology recognised as a religion in Australia.

Campaigning?! I'm calling bullshit on that one mate. (Though I'm open to change my mind if you can provide some evidence to back that claim up.) True he sat on the court that decided the "Scientology Case" [austlii.edu.au] but his wasn't even the leading judgment. I think a little quote from his Honour will serve to enlighten as to his attitude towards religion and towards its tax exempt status. Responding to the argument that the "commercial nature" of Scientology showed it wasn't "religious" in nature, he wrote:

Most organized religions have been riddled with commercialism, this being an integral part of the drive by their leaders for social authority and power (in conformity with the "iron law of oligarchy"). The amassing of wealth by organized religions often means that the leaders live richly (sometimes in palaces) even though many of the believers live in poverty. Many religions have been notorious for corrupt trafficking in relics, other sacred objects, and religious offices, as well as for condoning "sin" even in advance, for money. The great organized religions are big business. They engage in large scale real estate investment, money-dealing and other commercial ventures. In country after country, religious tax exemption has led to enormous wealth for religious bodies, presenting severe social problems. ... Commercialism is so characteristic of organized religion that it is absurd to regard it as disqualifying.

If anything Murphy J was "campaigning" to get rid of the tax exempt status for religions.

Re:Should they get off tax-free? (1)

socceroos (1374367) | more than 4 years ago | (#30140344)

I'm going to go out on a limb here and suggest that instead of making a sweeping law that states that all Christian churches pay tax, instead it would be better to treat these things on a case by case basis.

For example, hillsong and COS should be taxed into the dirt and then some - they're just commercial entities. But, the church down the road from me is completely different, they make no money to speak of (enough to give to charities and cover liability costs on public worship - and perhaps support a minister).

Too often society swings from one extreme to the other.

Re:Should they get off tax-free? (4, Insightful)

Caity (140482) | more than 4 years ago | (#30140480)

If they make no money to speak of and give most of that to (tax deductable) charities then spend the rest on (tax deductable) running costs then I doubt that their tax bill is going to be very high. The admin for it would increase running costs though (tax deductably). If they have an accountant in their flock they should be able to get it gratis, surely :)

Re:Should they get off tax-free? (4, Insightful)

BluBrick (1924) | more than 4 years ago | (#30140530)

So what's the problem with taxing all religions as if they were businesses? Tax them a certain proportion of their profits - no profits, no tax. I'd expect that the Cult of Scientology would be among the first to get wholly reamed via the new taxation regimen.

Re:Should they get off tax-free? (2, Insightful)

camperdave (969942) | more than 4 years ago | (#30140362)

He said it wasn't government's job to determine which religious beliefs are worthy of recognition and which are not.

Of course it is. The government is responsible for levying taxes. They are the ones who decide who gets taxed and who doesn't. It's certainly not the religion's job to determine if it should be recognized.

Re:Should they get off tax-free? (1)

dbIII (701233) | more than 4 years ago | (#30140594)

Not really, the tax status of religion is irrelevant to this discussion even if some loony for hire like Senator Feilding brings it up.
Lionel Murphy's statement fails the standard of the bloody obvious even if he made it to prevent his name being on a precendent that may hurt a real religious group in the future. Scientology is no more a religeon than "Jedi" with the same defence against this stupidity that we've seen it come out as fiction within living memory.
There is a vast pile of evidence that is is a scam so there is no point pretending that it is a religion just so we don't offend those liars that say it is.

Re:Should they get off tax-free? (1, Insightful)

EdIII (1114411) | more than 4 years ago | (#30140314)

Should all associations be given tax-free status? If not, then what conditions deserve tax-free status, and should that status be irrevocable once obtained?

I don't think *any* organization, association, or person should ever have tax-free status period.

The way taxes are done now is an invasive active system that is just abused as an information tool for intelligence agencies, and a barcode for every citizen to be forcible tattooed with at birth. Guilty before proven innocent and basically no real way to fight them even when they are wrong. Prove they are wrong and they don't even have to pay interest on your money that they stole due to an incompetent power mad government employee.

I know it's a big argument but I wholly support a passive (as far as the citizen is concerned) tax system that is entirely based on consumption. Whether it is you or that non-profit that goes to buy the hammer is irrelevant. You pay taxes the moment you buy the hammer. The government gets its taxes but has no way of knowing who bought the hammer and why. Additionally, the government has NO EXCUSE to pry into people's private finances anymore. I would like to see it go back to a court order to get a single bank record instead of them just using the IRS as a tool to collect information. Information, that goes far beyond just income, but also to expenditures.

Non-profits would pay taxes just like everyone else for their purchases and I don't see a reason for them to not pay taxes this way. Cost of doing business, plain and simple. They need more money, then people have to donate more money to them. I would think the administrative costs of just keeping the books for the government disappearing would mitigate that significantly.

Tax exempt just bugs me. Especially when it is delivered to people who believe in some magic man in the sky. Form an organization of people around that idea, and you don't get to pay taxes?? really?

Re:Should they get off tax-free? (1)

Tacticus.v1 (1102137) | more than 4 years ago | (#30140388)

Taxes on consumption are regressive taxes
Why do you wish to tax the poorest people more than the richest?

Re:Should they get off tax-free? (1)

XanC (644172) | more than 4 years ago | (#30140430)

The currently proposed FairTax taxes necessities, as defined based on the poverty line, at 0% via a rebate. It is the most poor-friendly tax ever. Bleeding hearts should be eating it up.

After necessities, why should the poor pay a lower percentage of tax on the items they buy than anyone else?

Re:Should they get off tax-free? (1)

wizardforce (1005805) | more than 4 years ago | (#30140340)

The problem with tax exemption of religion is that ultimately the government decides whether or not it's a religion. It's entirely within their power to revoke that status at their whims. To me it looks like a system that can be abused easily by entities like the COS and within the government its self. People should be free to associate with no advantage given to any association through law.

Re:Makes me sick (5, Insightful)

Onetus (23797) | more than 4 years ago | (#30140062)

For those unfamiliar with the australian parliment - the definition of what "Parliamentary Privilege" is: http://www.aph.gov.au/senate/pubs/briefs/brief11.htm#1 [aph.gov.au]

I think you miss understand the purpose of "parliamentary privilege", my fellow australian. Our elected representitives can discuss such issues as the authenticity of Scientology, without fear of slander/libel suits or gag orders or general legal hoop-la to silence their criticisms. It is their role to raise issues of their consitutents in such as manner, so that members of the public can come forth/organise/e.t.c to provide the necessary PROOF that the laws are being broken. Then the appropriate law enforcement agency can be engaged.

Sorry mate - I don't want to live in your world where if no-one talks about a problem it doesn't exist - that's just plain foolish.

But regardless, by READING THE FIRETRUCKING ARTICLE, you would have encountered the first two paragraphs stating:
"Senator Xenophon used a speech in Parliament last night to raise allegations of widespread criminal conduct within the church, saying he had received letters from former followers detailing claims of abuse, false imprisonment and forced abortion.
He says he has passed on the letters to the police and is calling for a Senate inquiry into the religion and its tax-exempt status."

First sentence of your post: "If you think a person has broken the law then call the cops" ... Check - he's passed on the letters to the police.
As for the rest - I can't believe you're trying to align criticism of Scientology with an attack on your freedom to associate ... Unless you're a scientologist too...

Addendum: For those in America - Australia doesn't have a "Bill of Rights". We work on the principle you have a right to everything, unless prohibited by law. There's no explicit listing of rights that you guys have ... YFMV? (Your Freedom May Vary)

Re:Makes me sick (1, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#30140286)

Addendum: For those in America - Australia doesn't have a "Bill of Rights". We work on the principle you have a right to everything, unless prohibited by law. There's no explicit listing of rights that you guys have ... YFMV? (Your Freedom May Vary)

Just a nitpick - the USA is the same way. The Bill of Rights goes one step further in some cases and stipulates that some rights cannot be prohibited by law unless the Constitution is modified first. "Congress shall establish no law..."

Re:Makes me sick (1)

Asclepius99 (1527727) | more than 4 years ago | (#30140462)

It really goes even further. The Bill of Rights was added to the Constitution because some of the founding fathers didn't think the Constitution did a good enough job of saying that you have all rights not directly prohibited and that any governmental rights not given directly to the federal government went to the state governments.

However, I'd argue that this day and age it's more of a question about whether or not you have the right to do things that aren't spelled out either way.

Makes me GLAD (2, Interesting)

MoeDumb (1108389) | more than 4 years ago | (#30140400)

... glad for Austrailians. Personally I wish we had a stand up politician like him in America.

Re:Makes me GLAD (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#30140434)

... glad for Austrailians. Personally I wish we had a stand up politician like him in America.

we do. his name is Ron Paul. but he isn't exactly mainstream... in fact he tends to get marginalized and ignored compared to the politicians who are willing to "play ball" so to speak... but he's real and he's pro-freedom and he's in Congress and we badly, desperately need more like him.

Re:Makes me sick (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#30140446)

Pardon me but I'm Mr Ignorant, not Miss Understand.

Re:Makes me sick (1)

lymond01 (314120) | more than 4 years ago | (#30140466)

We are big on precedents here. The Bill of Rights is a long list of precedents we can point to when someone tries to:

- sue someone else for speaking out
- take away their guns
- make them talk about a crime they may have committed
- etc

Without that list, we really are too
divided a country to not have a few of those rights removed. If Australia is better in that regard, kudos to you and yours.

Re:Makes me sick (1, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#30140094)

If you think a person has broken the law then call the cops. Don't just splash allegations around under parliamentary privilege. If people in the Outlaws Motorcycle Club have broken laws then that says nothing about other people who associate with that organization.

In the absense of facts the senators statement in the summary could be applied to pretty much any set of people.

I don't like the Outlaws Motorcyle Club either but I value my freedom to associate.

There fixed that for you. In America they should be tried under RICO just like the Outlaws were.

Read The Full Article (4, Informative)

Max Littlemore (1001285) | more than 4 years ago | (#30140174)

Following on from the informative comment [slashdot.org] from Onetus, The Age also has a full transcript [theage.com.au] of Xenophons speech to the Senate. He makes it clear that he is tabling letters in the Senate with names removed to protect informants and innocents and has left the names in the copies sent to the Australian Federal Police.

The point of his speech is to open dialogue in the Senate with a view to holding an inquiry into the CoS tax exemption. The purpose of sending the letters to the police with original names is for the police to investigate any criminality. Kind of a pincer movement really, good on him.

From the speech:

These allegations are serious, and many names have been removed from the letters I have tabled in the Senate tonight, but those names have not been removed from copies I am providing to the police. This organisation must be investigated. These victims of Scientology have spoken out at considerable personal risk, and I commend them for that. And I would encourage other victims of Scientology to come forward, contact the police or contact my office -- but, most importantly, speak out.

Re:Makes me sick (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#30140412)

All religions are criminal then.

Re:Makes me sick (1)

dbIII (701233) | more than 4 years ago | (#30140536)

There are currently investigations into organised crime in motorcycle gangs, but just the same it does not mean that every member is a criminal even if those leading the organisations are. It is a very similar situation here and organised crime and fraud should be dealt with by law enforcement no matter what front is put up by the organisation.

In before... (1, Redundant)

Laser_iCE (1125271) | more than 4 years ago | (#30139878)

In before Xenophon/Xenu jok-... -sigh- too late.

Re:In before... (0, Offtopic)

lessthanpi (1333061) | more than 4 years ago | (#30139894)

Then mod me up
I need this

srsly...

Hmm (5, Insightful)

ZDRuX (1010435) | more than 4 years ago | (#30139886)

To me, all religions are a scam. Some have been around longer than others and thus emanate a sense of legitimacy but they're mostly cults with a God that we offer our prayers and money to in return for a hope of a better life.

Religions come and go, their Gods are offered gold, placed upon altars and have great building and churches erected in their names - and yet, people die of violence, starvation, and famine. Their Gods grow weak and frail, their subjects grow old and a new religion eventually emerges and takes its place as the new "true" religion. A sad cycle indeed.

Re:Hmm (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#30139970)

http://dictionary.reference.com/browse/Scam
1. a confidence game or other fraudulent scheme, esp. for making a quick profit; swindle.
2. to cheat or defraud with a scam.

God that we offer our prayers and money to

Damn you Catholicism for requiring me to pay no money and stealing my prayers. I need those prayers for myself because it's not like they're infinite and inherently worthless.

Frankly, I believe in God since I feel that there's a good possibility of God or a God-like being. This doesn't mean I should run around declaring people are evil or demanding that science stop. Science is just a way of better understanding what God's created. After all, when I play a video game I don't run around screaming at people saying that we should stop figuring out exactly how the game physics works to enjoy it more. It's hardly disrespectful to the programmers to understand and enjoy all that they've created.

As for evil, hey. Golden rule, baby. Love as you wish to be loved, treat others as you wish to be treated, love your neighbor as yourself.

Re:Hmm (1)

SanguineV (1197225) | more than 4 years ago | (#30140070)

You don't need to be forced to pay for it to be a scam. Having the same philosophy as a scam doesn't make the scam legitimate.

Re:Hmm (5, Insightful)

keeperofdakeys (1596273) | more than 4 years ago | (#30139996)

Religions give followers a sense of belonging and an answer to questions like who made the universe and what happens when I die. They also give a group of people a sense of belonging.
It's just a pity when religions get in the way of our society (abortion, contraceptives and gay rights are good things) and when people take them too far (terrorism). Also when they exist solely for monetary gain.

Re:Hmm (4, Interesting)

ZDRuX (1010435) | more than 4 years ago | (#30140042)

I agree 100% with you. My mother is highly religious - but I wouldn't dare try and convince her of my views. My father recently died of cancer just a year ago, and she seems to find peace and some sort of comfort and hope when she goes to church and has a personal relationship with God - and if that makes her life easier to live in this tough time, I don't care if she prays to a rock.

I understand the role that religion plays in some people's lives, and being agnostic or an atheist is not for everyone. It's just religion is usually imposed upon people at a young age where they don't have a choice or can't mount a logical defense against what they're being told so they take it as truth. I wish people were baptized at the age of 20 or so, and I bet we'd have a lot less followers.

Re:Hmm (4, Interesting)

wizardforce (1005805) | more than 4 years ago | (#30140280)

Most religions don't copyright their message and charge large sums to move up the hierarchy. Most religions attempt to spead their message to as many as possible. The COS has gone as far to copyright the message and sue those who infringe. The most famous case of this happened right here on Slashdot.

Re:Hmm (1)

stillpixel (1575443) | more than 4 years ago | (#30140366)

Are you somehow saying the Church of the Flying Spaghetti Monster is a scam??? Blaspheme!

L Ron was a failed entreprenuer? Not anymore... (2, Interesting)

columbiatch (853270) | more than 4 years ago | (#30139906)

Anyone else shocked that a failed entrepreneur discovers a religion that requires significant capital outlay from it's followers? Hm....me either. Just google "e-meter"

Re:L Ron was a failed entreprenuer? Not anymore... (3, Informative)

daveime (1253762) | more than 4 years ago | (#30140342)

I'm amazed that this pyramid scheme has been allowed to continue unabated (and with tax-free status) for nigh on 40 years !

It's no more a religion than Amway, Avon or Tupperware is ... although you'd need a firemans vice to separate my mother-in-law from her overpriced plastic boxes.

Re:L Ron was a failed entreprenuer? Not anymore... (5, Interesting)

ThePengwin (934031) | more than 4 years ago | (#30140398)

You don't get rich writing science fiction. If you want to get rich, you start a religion. - L. Ron Hubbard, 1948

Cause and effect? (3, Funny)

T Murphy (1054674) | more than 4 years ago | (#30139942)

It wasn't that long ago that the CoS was calling for Net censorship in Australia; a month later the organization was convicted of fraud in France.

So does the CoS have to call for Net censorship in Belgium before Australia can convict them of fraud?

Re:Cause and effect? (1, Informative)

Max Littlemore (1001285) | more than 4 years ago | (#30140210)

No, but if you eat kippers on Tuesday it will not rain.

You misspelled Co$ (-1, Flamebait)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#30139948)

Sincerely,

Your friendly neighborhood spell-checker

A grasp of the obvious? (4, Insightful)

jcr (53032) | more than 4 years ago | (#30139988)

That's fairly rare among politicians. Congratuations, Austraila!

-jcr

Related? (5, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#30139990)

Nick Xenophon is the only independenr of the Australian Senate. I wonder if that is related, as he doesnt have to please his party?

Re:Related? (-1, Troll)

MichaelSmith (789609) | more than 4 years ago | (#30140068)

He doesn't have a party to pay for his reelection campaign so he needs to drum up controversy as a way to get free publicity. Picking a minority and calling them a Criminal Organization is a good way to get your face on TV.

Re:Related? (4, Informative)

keeperofdakeys (1596273) | more than 4 years ago | (#30140074)

He seems to support topics of this kind, like anti-gambling. Things that a lot of people in the community would want, but big guys - like corporations - wouldn't.

So ... (2, Funny)

msp0 (551914) | more than 4 years ago | (#30139994)

Would that make Xenophon a Xenuphobe? ... to be fair, I got that line from Dominic Knight's Twitter feed :)

So - how's he gonna end up? (3, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#30140000)

We all know how Scientology works. If you don't, look it up.

What method of assassination will Scientology take?

1) Physical Assassination
2) Assassination of Character and Reputation
3) Assassination of Assets
4) Assassination of Family Members
5) Something Else
6) All of the Above

Really, don't expect this guy to be around much longer.

Re:So - how's he gonna end up? (1)

jonwil (467024) | more than 4 years ago | (#30140570)

Although I dont support Murder, Assassination of people or other criminal acts and I dont support the Church of Scientology, if the CoS were to do something that got Xenophon out of the Parliament, I wouldn't shed a tear (with any luck his replacement would be less likely to be pushing for all the evangelical conservative christian crap like net censorship and making support for that a condition of passing all sorts of bills the government wants passed)

Scat-entology - A free replacement (1, Funny)

xC0000005 (715810) | more than 4 years ago | (#30140018)

Have friends who are into scientology? Get them hooked on Scat-entology [kuro5hin.org] instead. I formed it from the words "Shit" and "To sell as a religion". The difference is I accidentally set the buy it now price at $0 and so it's free. I'll get it right next time.

Xenophon and Socrates (3, Insightful)

MosesJones (55544) | more than 4 years ago | (#30140026)

Pretty OT here but with people making Xenu gags because of the name its worth point out that Xenophon's Conversations with Socrates [amazon.com] is one of the few sources for views of the great Greek philosopher and orator.

CoS are of course a shill, its not even a very clever shill, their "e-meters" are almost as dumb as the bullet proof pants that the Mormons try and pedal.

Why should any religion get tax status? They aren't a charity, the money is primarily there to support their own organisation. They are selling a product called "salvation" and people are paying money in the belief they are getting something back.

Socrates wasn't the biggest fan of religion either... question everything.

Re:Xenophon and Socrates (1)

novium (1680776) | more than 4 years ago | (#30140114)

Why should any religion get tax status? They aren't a charity, the money is primarily there to support their own organisation. They are selling a product called "salvation" and people are paying money in the belief they are getting something back.

Socrates wasn't the biggest fan of religion either... question everything.

It depends on the organization, but I imagine you'll find that that is true for any non-profit organization, more or less. In any case, you can step away from the religious argument entirely and make a pretty good case that scientology's status as a nonprofit is suspect.

Re:Xenophon and Socrates (1)

electrons_are_brave (1344423) | more than 4 years ago | (#30140284)

There's pretty good reasons for not taxing charities.

Re:Xenophon and Socrates (4, Informative)

palegray.net (1195047) | more than 4 years ago | (#30140262)

Pretty OT here

No, you've got it all wrong. This is OT [anti-scientologie.ch] .

Re:Xenophon and Socrates (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#30140442)

Nope. This is OT. [wikipedia.org] Or . Take your pick.

we are anonymous (2, Funny)

TakeoffZebra (1651327) | more than 4 years ago | (#30140038)

An "anonymous" reader. Hm, ironic?

A word on Xenophon (5, Informative)

RichPowers (998637) | more than 4 years ago | (#30140146)

Xenophon, for those unfamiliar, was an ancient Greek general best known for writing The Anabasis -- an account of the trials and adventures of The Ten Thousand, a group of Greek mercenaries hired by Cyrus the Younger. After he's killed in battle, the Greeks have to march back to Greece from deep within enemy territory. It's quite a thrilling tale with plenty of action and treachery. Surprised they haven't made a movie out of it a la 300.

If I was Mr. Xenophon, I'd rather go up against the Persians than the Scientologists :D In any event, he has an awesome last name.

Re:A word on Xenophon (4, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#30140390)

"Cyrus the younger" you say. This morning the spokesman and vice president of COS Australia was defending his religious organisation on the radio and other media. His name was... Cyrus, Cyrus Brooks. One day Senator Xenophon may give an account of the "trials and adventures of The Ten Thousand"s of scientologists in Australia. :)

Re:A word on Xenophon (1)

Phrogman (80473) | more than 4 years ago | (#30140420)

Well they did make a movie, kinda. Its called "The Warriors" and its based on the comic, which was based on the original story of the 10000. I admits its not the same thing of course.

You can expect it will get produced at some point - and be about as historically accurate as that piece of shit 300. No one has any interest in producing actually historical films these days, I presume because the audience is too stupid and or ignorant to be thrilled at seeing a famous event and famous people portrayed. Plus of course Hollywood doesn't want to risk not getting the audience with the right special effects. I wonder how many current fans of 300 there would be if they realized the Spartans evidently encouraged their men to be homosexual? Not that theres anything wrong with that if it suits your tastes, but I bet many are ignorant of that.

Sorry you pushed my 300 button :) I really despise that piece of utter shit.

Re:A word on Xenophon (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#30140574)

300 was based on a comic book...

Re:A word on Xenophon (1)

giorgist (1208992) | more than 4 years ago | (#30140454)

Well then his first name is also Greek and it is short for Nickolas in English or Nickolaos in Greek.

It is a compund of "Nike" as in victory and "laos" as people.

In other words ... for the victory of the people

G

Celebrity backlash, awesome! (5, Funny)

Lord_of_the_nerf (895604) | more than 4 years ago | (#30140224)

I can only hope this means no more promotional tours from John Travolta and Tom Cruise. That's a protest I can live with and love. Also, Jenna Elfman.

legal precedent? (1, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#30140240)

Can we use this as a precedent to get rid of other religious organizations too? ;P

Falun gong is even worse (1)

weiqj (870224) | more than 4 years ago | (#30140248)

Sooner or later the westerns will suffer from it.

On wikipedia right now... (5, Funny)

Zarniwoop (25791) | more than 4 years ago | (#30140260)

"In November 2009, Xenophon labelled the Church of Scientology as a criminal organisation in a speech to the Senate. [42] This is clear evidence that he has very large testicles."

I'm not in favor of vandalism, but LOL!

Fair Game (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#30140382)

I suppose that should be enough to have Senator Xenophon (he's got a cool last name, any way you look at it) declared as a suppressive person [wikipedia.org] by the Church, and hence becomes fair game [wikipedia.org] . He'd better watch his back.

Xenu vs Xeno (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#30140424)

This is gonna be a good fight. Get the popcorn!

I used to be a Scientologist (5, Interesting)

leereyno (32197) | more than 4 years ago | (#30140460)

.....and I can tell you from personal experience that it really is pure concentrated evil.

Scientology has gotten away with innumerable crimes over the years in part because the average person is incapable of imagining that anything can be so completely malign in its goals. The organization is completely sociopathic.

They kicked me out because I wouldn't drink the koolaide.

If you want to know more, I recommend you check out operation clambake (www.xenu.net)

What a difference 2000 years makes! (0, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#30140524)

From an outsiders perspective (atheist), scientology isn't any more corrupt or evil than any other organized religion in the world. It always amuses me when people of other faiths unload on scientology, while ignoring the crap their own religions promote.

Give it a couple of thousand years, and they'll be able to join the club of Established Religion.

Scary thought? Not really. It's no different than the bronze age fairy tales that millions of people believe in today...

Re:What a difference 2000 years makes! (0, Redundant)

Beelzebud (1361137) | more than 4 years ago | (#30140552)

I'm not sure how I clicked the Anon button, but I guess I did.

Mr X (1, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#30140564)

South Australia Premier Mike Rann hates Senator Nick Xenophon because he could upstage him in state politics with clever and cheeky media stunts and is more popular.

South Australia Deputy Premier and Treasurer Kevin Foley doesn't like him either, as evidenced by Nick calling him a fucking cunt. (Which he is.)

Consequently, the Labor party hates Nick Xenophon.

Don't always agree with Nick, but he definitely isn't afraid to call out bullshit when he sees it and you have to respect that. Apparently a huge number of fellow South Australians also think the same, which is why he polled enough primary votes to win 1 of 6 senate seats in the last federal election.

The world would be a better place with more people like Nick Xenophon in parliament.

What a difference 2000 years makes! (2, Insightful)

Beelzebud (1361137) | more than 4 years ago | (#30140592)

From an outsiders perspective (atheist), scientology isn't any more corrupt or evil than any other organized religion in the world. It always amuses me when people of other faiths unload on scientology, while ignoring the crap their own religions promote.

Give it a couple of thousand years, and they'll be able to join the club of Established Religion.

Scary thought? Not really. It's no different than the bronze age fairy tales that millions of people believe in today...
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