Archive - 08/13/2012

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THE ART OF BULLSHIT

THE ART OF BULLSHIT

Please note: I’m not going to discuss the superhuman founder of Scientology, the late, great L Ron Hubbard, at this time. Detailing his life and exploits would take at least three Internets to compose, and most people’s attention spans aren’t nearly that vast. That being said, if you’d like a brief overview of just a few of his varied and insane accomplishments, click here. Make sure to disregard any section that relies on facts.

Scientology is the quintessential modern religion. Everything about it is just so cutting edge and risqué, especially its take on human origins. If you were expecting some far–fetched creation story chock full of ridiculous plot twists and cookie cutter dialogue, you’ll really be disappointed. It’s not a creation story. It’s a space opera. It’s the Star Trek of religious narratives, but better than Star Trek because it doesn’t need to meet any standard of believability whatsoever. Take “time”, for instance. Sure, recognizing that our universe is about 13 billion–years–old may be more scientifically accurate than the 40.7 trillion trillion trillion trillion year–old universe Scientology describes, but it’s also tremendously unimaginative. Star Trek is also androcentric: it just assumes that Earth would naturally be the epicenter of the United Federation of Planets. Scientology, on the other hand, reminds us that although we are indeed a part of the Galactic Federation, our influence is at best marginal. We’re like the crematorium of the galactic community: a convenient location for incinerating humans beings quickly and easily. Just ask Xenu, the galactic dictator of the Federation. About a hundred million years ago, Xenu traveled to Earth to dispose of his vast collection of frozen humans. Pressed for time, Xenu bucked the traditional “stack–your–humans–around–volcanoes–and–wait” approach by using a slew of hydrogen bombs to really get those volcanoes cooking. Now, you might think genocide by radioactive lava is a tad bit excessive, but I’m sure Xenu had his reasons, and it’ll only cost you around $100,000 to find out. They’ll also accept American Express, unwashed children, and your soul.

A lot of you might criticize Scientology for looking and acting more like a business than a religion. What you might not realize is that all religions are really just big businesses, and that turning a profit is a universally accepted sign of God’s approval. Scientologists don’t try to disguise their motives behind collection baskets and novena candles. That’s like bribing God. And since Scientology has no god, they just straight out tell you they want your money. Look, salvation isn’t free, and nor should it be. If everyone could afford to go to heaven, those pearly gates you’ve all heard about would be covered in graffiti and beer vomit. It would look more like the inner city than the flawless, well–manicured gated community we’ve all come to expect from a conventional yuppy afterlife. Scientology’s no–nonsense “pay up or shut up” approach to eternal redemption ensures that the heavens have perfect lawns, matching curtains, and an A–list celebrity on every street corner instead of two skanky hookers and an emaciated meth dealer named Cujo.

If you’ve grown tired of the anonymous and repetitive nature of a Christian confession, I’d recommend confessing your sins to Scientology. If you do, you’ll meet not with a priest but with an “auditor”: a title chosen to keep you honest and make sure you feel extra comfortable. An auditor’s job is to meticulously record all of your faults, fears, and most embarrassing moments in a case file of your very own. You don’t get to keep it, your auditor does. But don’t worry, confidentiality is guaranteed, unless of course you decide to leave the church or say anything bad about it—ever. If you do discover that your personal information has been leaked or in any way used to blackmail the crap out of you, then I’m sure you deserved it. Just think of it as penance.

The Hubbard Electropsychometer. Taste the awesome.

An auditor acts more like a shrink than a priest. In a typical session, he or she will ask you a series of important questions (see below for some totally relevant examples). Your answers are recorded and analyzed with the help of a truly magical device: the Hubbard Electropsychometer, or E–Meter for short.  This marvel of engineering is used to accurately measure the amount of electrical resistance you give off in your answers, which can then be used to find and eliminate the experiences and memories responsible for it. It’s kind of like a polygraph test, but way more sensitive: it can actually detect the screams of vegetables as they’re being sliced! [1] I refer any doubters out there to the ringing endorsement it received in a landmark FDA ruling:

“The E–Meter is not medically or scientifically useful for the diagnosis, treatment or prevention of any disease. It is not medically or scientifically capable of improving the health or bodily functions of anyone.” [2]

I’m sold. I haven’t actually been audited yet, but only because I can’t afford it. Thankfully, our friends over at Wikileaks have made available the full list of questions asked during a typical auditing session (click here for the PDF). I thought maybe I’d post a few of them below, with my answers, and then tweet it to Scientology. Who knows? Maybe they have some kind of discount plan for people who enjoy the art of bullshit as much as they do.

From the HUBBARD COMMUNICATIONS OFFICE (HCO) BULLETIN:

1/ Did you come to Earth for evil purposes? 

I did indeed. But when I got here I realized how much competition I had, and I’m not very ambitious. So now I have zero purpose.

2/ Have you ever smothered a baby? 

Unfortunately, yes. But that’s just how they do things in China.

3/ Have you ever destroyed a culture? 

I’m working on that right now! I just tweeted about how awesome it would be if Lil’Wayne starred opposite Chris Brown in the next Roland Emmerich vehicle about two no–talent assholes who inexplicably make it big in the music industry. Rihanna makes a cameo as a punching bag.

4/ Have you ever implanted someone? 

Oh all the time. Sometimes I implant two or more in a single session. Sometimes I even pay to do it.

5/ Have you ever deprived people of hope? 

Of course not. I believe hope is the most important step on the road to total disappointment, and I’d never think of depriving anyone of the thrill of a good mind–crushing let–down.

6/ Have you ever blanketed bodies for the sensation kick? 

Yes. Wait, what?

7/ Have you ever destroyed artistic productions, or creations? 

Yes. I’ve cannibalized wedding cakes and shredded Christmas presents, and once I even bulldozed some nerd’s house of cards because libraries are for learning and not petty fucking games.

8/ Have you ever debased a nation’s currency? 

Does smoking spliffs rolled out of $100 bills count?

9/ Have you ever despoiled a planet of its natural resources? 

If you’re asking me if I’m fat the answer is no.

10/ Have you ever deliberately mutilated objects? 

When I was a kid I melted G.I. Joe action figures, but only annoying ones like Wetsuit and Crystal Ball, and I always gave them a decent burial. Except Wetsuit. I really don’t like Wetsuit.

11/ Have you ever destroyed a doll body? 

See question 10.

12/ Is there any question on this check I had better not ask you again? 

See question 10.

13/ Have you ever given God a bad name? 

Only when I’m getting owned by 10 year–olds on Call of Duty. Or when I lose my lighter thirteen times in ten minutes even though it’s banana yellow and I keep putting it on the table so where the fuck else could it be. Or when I don’t get the right pieces on my promotional Monopoly gameboard. Or when I can’t stream high–definition movies for free whenever the fuck I feel like it. Or when someone calls me “brah” or “duder”. Or when I’m drunk. Or when I wake up late. Or when I wake up at all. Or whenever I’m forced to watch those goddamn Dragon Dictation commercials because the remote isn’t in bed with me only to then realize how useful it would be to actually have Dragon Dictation for changing television stations without needing to move. Or when I drink malt liquor and feel dead inside. Or when I eat atomic wings and spend the next few hours shitting fire and brimstone. Or when I just need someone to blame other than myself.

14/ Have you ever broken someone’s body on a wheel? 

I ran over a squirrel once. Once.

15/ Is there any place you’d better not return to? 

Any place beginning with tequila and ending in pregnancy.

16/ Have you ever given robots a bad name? 

If by “name” you mean “disease” I had no idea that was even possible.

17/ Is anybody looking for you? 

Yes, Visa, Tim Burton, the fire marshal of Tonga, and probably Scientology after they read this.

Here’s a few candid shots I took the last time I made my pilgrimage to Scientology’s Hollywood headquarters:

Scientology Headquarters

 

Scientology Headquarters, from a different angle.

 

This is one of a series of commemorative murals found inside the main lobby. That’s Xenu there, on the right; and another happy customer on the left, being dangled in outer space by the Almighty Hand of L. Ron Hubbard himself. So powerful.

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