hi <br><br><div><span class="gmail_quote">On 23 Oct 2007 16:07:16 -0400, <b class="gmail_sendername">Blake Haggerty</b> <<a href="mailto:Blake.Haggerty@sapphire.com">Blake.Haggerty@sapphire.com</a>> wrote:</span><blockquote class="gmail_quote" style="border-left: 1px solid rgb(204, 204, 204); margin: 0pt 0pt 0pt 0.8ex; padding-left: 1ex;">
<div style="font-size: 10pt; color: rgb(0, 0, 0); font-family: Geneva,Arial,Sans-serif;">Is it Larry Flynt???</div>
<div style="font-size: 10pt; color: rgb(0, 0, 0); font-family: Geneva,Arial,Sans-serif;"> </div></div></blockquote></div><br>No, the guy is Lawrence Wollersheim. He is the only person to successfully sue Scientology and win a money judgment.
<br><br><a href="http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Lawrence_Wollersheim">http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Lawrence_Wollersheim</a><br><br>They are still fighting him, though, and that is why I didn't want to mention his name until we got him squared away. We now have installed Gutsy on a notebook with 768 MB ram and
2.6 ghz chip and a 60 GB hd. We are now just going to be installing Kino and Cinelerra and a few other video things, including our very own DTP Jonathan's Video Glue, which are bash scripts for automating the capture, compression and exporting of video.
<br><br>This guy is really really brave. He got suckered into joining this cult, and then realized how bad the situation was, and tried to extract himself. When they saw what he was doing, they kidnapped him, took him onto a boat, isolated him and starved him, and they drove off all of his customers from his photography business, and drove off his wife.
<br><br>He then sued them and won in the trial court and through countless appeals which continues to this very day, despite the fact that he sued them in 1980!!!!!<br><br>In the course of their appeals, they alleged that they had the right to do the things that they did to him because it was all part of their "religion" and they thus had a First Amendment right (freedom of religion) not to be sued for what they did!! The California Supreme Court said nonsense to that, and that ruling stands today as a beacon that prevents Scientology from doing the same shit to others. The really amazing thing is that I read about this guy's case when I was in law school, because he has changed US Constitutional history (First Amendment).
<br><br>The really incredible thing is that I met the guy through a mutual acquaintance at the public middle school project that our this LUG community is supporting with FOSS. This has always been my personal goal for our work at the school --> to achieve a mini digital tipping point here locally in our community. So we have given FOSS boxes to students and janitors and neighbors near the school, and now we are working with this guy and supporting him in his battle with Scientology. He is going to be using the notebook to edit video that I shot of him talking about how to fight Scientology, and he is going to post it to the Internet in several places. So this is certainly a rewarding bonus to our work to bring Free Software to the world -- busting secretive cults like Scientology.
<br><br>Scientology thrives only in the dark. They are first and foremost a business. Their method is to get either free labor or free money from their victims. They have something like a 95% turnover in their membership every three years. These victims donate thousands of hours of free labor of the course of that 3 year period, and hundreds or thousands of dollars per person. If people realize that they have the right to fight back against Scientology, and that they are not alone, they are more likely to exercise their rights.
<br><br>Lawrence has basically said that the goal is not to eliminate Scientology, because you can't do that. But if his group can bring enough attention to Scientology's negative work, it will mean that they do less and less of the really negative stuff.
<br><br>And since this guy works with lots and lots of other people, he will be in a position to contribute positive word of mouth for FOSS, thereby supporting our efforts to spread FOSS. <br>