There’s a YouTube account for an organization called Freedom Media & Ethics, and while that may sound like a credible media watchdog group, it’s actually an organization created by the Church of Scientology to dispute claims made in Alex Gibney’s HBO documentary, Going Clear. If you’re a fan of mudslinging, it’s awfully fun to see Scientology attempt to preemptively destroy Going Clear: Scientology and the Prison of Belief before it airs.
To me, it just looks like a desperate act on the part of the Church to plug holes in the dam before it burst when Going Clear premieres on HBO this March 29th.
Here’s the first attack from Freedom Media & Ethics. The video claims that Going Clear is one-sided and that Alex Gibney’s father was a covert CIA operative. The Church also attempts to discredit Gibney’s “prized source,” a former high-level Scientologist who quit the church a decade ago. They also associate Going Clear with a Nazi propaganda film; and they take a couple of shots against HBO’s head of programming.
In another video, Kathy Haggis — the sister of Paul Haggis (the director of Crash who quit the Church and proceeded to badmouth it in a New Yorker piece and also provided intel for Gibney’s doc) — goes on the offensive against her own brother, calling him a “con man,” a “liar,” and a “hypocrite.” She claims that Paul was “never a Scientologist” but just hung around on the outskirts of the Church and used Scientology to build his career. She basically says that he built his career on the backs of other Scientologists and only sold them out after his movie career began to falter.
“He had two films that did well. Accidentally. But after those two films were made, he couldn’t follow it up with anything on his own … everything he did on his own failed. And continued to fail … his last film was declared one of the worst films of the year.”
Kathy also talked with a former teacher of theirs, a nun, who she said called Paul a “chronic liar,” which sounds like something a nun would say to a representative of the Church of Scientology.
“Paul has destroyed our family,” she continued. “He destroyed our family many years ago, because he used every opportunity he could to malign the reputations of people getting in his way as Paul’s career became more and more important to him. He was willing to sacrifice each and every one of us, and did, in order to line his own pockets … it is NOT OK to destroy the reputations of good and decent people on the altar of his ambitions! (*weep* *weep*)
This is getting straight-up nasty!
FYI: They also get both the brother and the daughter of another Going Clear source, Mike Rinder, to completely trash him, as well.