Narconon loses in Trout Run, Maryland

Discussion in 'Narconon' started by The Wrong Guy, Apr 3, 2015.

  1. DeathHamster Member

    Thinking back over the Reaching for the Tipping Point traffic over the last week, I wonder if it isn't Per Wickstrom who feels his knickers are in a knot?

    There was a lot on his not-so-little Narconon empire, including expansion into South Carolina:
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  2. BigBeard Member

    Possibly, but the timing makes it seem more related to the Trout Run situation.

    Especially with Jen Fifield of the Frederick News-Post being pointed at RFTTP/NNReviews when she was looking for info just a couple of days before. The collection of police reports related to narCONons around the country probably wasn't making them too happy either.

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  3. The Wrong Guy Member

    A clash over Scientology as vote looms on a proposed church-backed drug rehab near Camp David

    By Michael S. Rosenwald, The Washington Post

    A protest over a proposed Scientology-backed drug rehab center near Camp David has blown up into an intense proxy battle in the bitter culture war over the religion.

    As a key Frederick County Council vote looms Tuesday, opponents of Narconon — a drug treatment program utilizing Scientology founder L. Ron Hubbard’s writings and lengthy sauna sessions — suspect they have been watched and even followed.

    While Narconon officials deny accusations of skullduggery, those organizing against the drug treatment program are worried that their online conversations are being monitored. They say they are fending off Facebook group infiltrations from rivals. In one episode, they found themselves face-to-face with sheriff’s deputies.

    “It all begins to look like a circus after a while,” said David G. Bromley, a Virginia Commonwealth University religion professor who has researched Scientology. “Each side is convinced that the other side is the ultimate evil.”

    Narconon representatives aren’t demonizing the opponents, saying only a “very small minority” are trying to create a religious issue and that most residents are interested in another way to address the region’s soaring heroin addiction problem. But the tactics on both sides suggest the stakes are much larger.

    In April, Narconon asked graduates to fly in for testimony before the county council, describing how the program had saved them from ruin. Top Scientology officials have met with Frederick News-Post reporters, stressing that the program is secular but “supported” by the church.

    Opponents have countered by hosting two lectures from a former program patient and employee from Canada who told horror stories. They are being counseled by ex-Scientology members in how the church conducts business and what written works and tactics of Hubbard are used in treatment.

    “There is a kind of media war going on between the church and former members,” said Lawrence Wright, the author of a best-selling book about Scientology,“Going Clear,” that has been made into a blockbuster HBO documentary. “At stake is the image of Scientology and its future.”

    Yes. Also, no. While protests about Scientology and Narconon materialize just about anywhere either goes, the dispute in Frederick is not technically about religion. It’s about trout. More specifically, it’s about Trout Run, a 40-acre retreat where Herbert Hoover reportedly fished and that served as the fictional Camp David on the TV show “The West Wing.”

    Narconon wants to turn Trout Run, which a real estate company connected to Scientology bought for $4.85 million, into a rehab center, but because of zoning constraints it must win a historical designation from the county council. The council votes Tuesday on whether to grant the designation.

    The vote has been delayed twice, giving opponents an opportunity to organize into a vocal group called No Narconon at Trout Run, with more than 300 members on Facebook. The group includes many Democrats with experience fighting county development, but Republicans and political novices have come forward too.

    “Normally, we wouldn’t all play well together,” said Mark Long, a Thurmont home inspector and one of the group’s leaders.

    While Narconon officials defend the program as a fresh start for “tens of thousands” of addicts in the United States and abroad, the organization has settled lawsuits around the country, including a wrongful-death case in Georgia after a 28-year-old man overdosed. Narconon of Georgia’s license was revoked in 2013, according to state health officials.

    Members of No Narconon at Trout Run have lobbied the council about why they think the property isn’t historic, even tracking down former caretakers for testimony posted to YouTube. But the group’s very name and its Facebook links — “Going Clear” is touted with, “If you haven’t seen this compelling documentary yet, please do!” — show that it is also trying to sway the council with objections to Narconon and Scientology itself.

    That’s problematic because the county’s attorney has already told the council that the vote cannot be about anything but the historic question, particularly because of federal laws against religious discrimination. If council members use any other criteria, they and the county could face a lawsuit, according to council member Billy Shreve.

    Long conceded that the group wants the council to consider Narconon and Scientology when it votes, just not to say so out loud.

    “We want them to vote no and say nothing else,” Long said. “Period.”

    The group has been doing everything it can to generate media attention.

    Earlier this month, David Love, an avowed Scientology enemy who says he “escaped” from a Narconon facility in Canada, traveled to Frederick to give two talks about the long-term treatment program, which can cost more than $30,000. Before he arrived to speak at the Urbana Library, opponents noticed that someone had left dozens of Narconon brochures around the library.

    “A person who has not watched someone they love descend into drug abuse may think those affected by addiction are just ‘drunks, dopers, stonies or junkies,’ ” the brochure said. “A mother who has watched her beloved child lose everything to addiction knows better.”

    Standing in front of about two dozen people, Love spoke about his experiences in Narconon — and program officials took issue with just about everything he said because they insist he has an ax to grind.

    He described mandatory but mysterious stare-down sessions, with one flinch resulting in failure. He recounted patients being ordered to speak with inanimate objects, including ashtrays. He detailed what he called the church’s attempts to destroy him, alleging it had followed him and made up things about him online.

    “It’s all a deceit and a lie,” Love said.

    After the event, Love followed a No Narconon group member in his car to his home. Love and the group allege that a vehicle with Virginia license plates that had been parked outside the library during the meeting followed them through Frederick County. The group suspects it was a private investigator hired by someone connected to the project. The details are listed on the group’s Web page under the heading “Incidents.”

    Asked whether Narconon had tailed Love and the other member, Yvonne Rodgers, the program’s East Coast executive director, said: “This is the type of irresponsible rhetoric that peppers all of Mr. Love’s commentary. He is an avowed hater of anyone and anything associated with Narconon. His comments are neither fair nor objective.”

    Love’s response: “Nonsense.”

    Rodgers flagged a YouTube video of Love talking about how Narconon had saved his life. “I am appalled,” Rodgers said, “that he would use the additional years we have added to his life to attempt to foment hate and prejudice against the very people who salvaged him from ruin.”

    Love vehemently denies that Narconon got him off drugs and says the YouTube video was him talking, but “you really need to understand the mind control and brain-washing that goes on inside Narconon.”

    Scientology experts say the church has used private investigators in the past.

    “The Church of Scientology has a long history of hiring private investigators, not only for the purpose of gaining intelligence on its opponents, but also to intimidate critics,” said Wright, the author of “Going Clear.” “This practice goes back to the founder, L. Ron Hubbard, who taught that anyone who spoke against the church was a criminal and should be dealt with ruthlessly.”

    Rodgers acknowledged that Narconon officials called police about the group. That happened the day after the event at the public library, when Love and several group members visited Trout Run. The group says its members and Love stayed on public property. Narconon says Love did not. The dust-up is also listed on the group’s “Incidents” page.

    The group has also alleged that several Scientologists have tried to join the group’s Facebook page and that someone named “Pete James” was littering the group’s Web page with negative information about Love. “This tactic of using a web site to diminish a former employee or ex-Scientology [member],” the group says, “is referred to as ‘dead agenting.’ ”

    Invoking the phrase “dead agenting” in a dispute over a historic designation is emblematic of how kooky things get when Scientology or its affiliates come to town.

    Narconon officials don’t see it that way, though. They said they are focused on helping people get off drugs.

    “The Trout Run property is a beautiful, idyllic, country resort,” Rodgers said. “It is exactly the type of location that you would want to send a loved one in order to help them recover from drug addiction.”

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  4. DeathHamster Member

    Another useless fluffy statement by David Bromely.
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  5. The Wrong Guy Member

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  6. RightOn Member

    If the COS has nothing to do with Narconon, then why are people like Sylvai Stannard and others from the cult saying anything at all about this?
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  7. sallysock Member

    Any news? I can find nada.
  8. The Wrong Guy Member

    Church of Scientology's practices muddy vote on Trout Run historic designation

    By Patti Borda Mullins, The Frederick News-Post, June 2, 2015


    Today, the fate of Narconon’s proposed drug rehabilitation center at Trout Run may be decided, but the controversy about the center’s association with the Church of Scientology will not be.

    The County Council is set to vote on whether the 40-acre Trout Run campus in the forest of the Catoctin Mountains is so historically significant that it should be listed on the Frederick County Register of Historic Places. If it is, Narconon could move forward with its plan to open a substance abuse treatment center on the site.

    Opposition to Narconon’s plan has mostly focused on the program’s association with Scientology and its performance record. The property belongs to Social Betterment Properties International, the real estate arm of the Church of Scientology, but ownership and use are not supposed to factor into the council’s decision to designate the property historic or not.

    If Narconon gets permission to open the facility, it will be one of more than 100 Narconon centers in 15 countries. Marc Miller, formerly of Frederick, says Narconon programs have saved his life, and did not come between him and his Christianity.

    The Narconon program, which his parents found for him in 1999, was a gift from Jesus, Miller said in a telephone interview from his current home in Kentucky. He compared Narconon with “betterment” programs such as 12-step programs and Christian groups.

    He said a lack of understanding may lead to opposition.

    Yvonne Rodgers, Narconon’s East U.S. executive director, wrote in an email that the 40-year-old rehabilitation program has no specific religious component, although it “is based on the writings, procedures, and techniques of L. Ron Hubbard. … Mr. Hubbard discovered the effects of drugs on human beings and developed an effective means for freeing people from their harmful effects, which he made available to anyone who wished to benefit from them.”

    Scientology does not condone use of prescription drugs or psychiatry and psychology as a means of behavioral therapy.

    “Psychiatry and psychology in particular treat man as a ‘thing’ to be conditioned, not as a spiritual being who can yet find answers to life’s problems and who can improve enormously,” according to the Scientology website.

    Medical staff are on hand, and the centers have affiliations with hospitals that can take patients who need to medically withdraw from such substances as heroin or alcohol, Rodgers said.

    Miller said he knew Hubbard’s findings underpinned Narconon, but Scientology was not referenced in materials he studied in the program.

    “Narconon is grateful for the tremendous support we have received from the Church of Scientology and many Scientologists,” Rodgers wrote. “Narconon itself, however, is not part of the church.”

    The Church of Scientology is essential to the program, according to “Scientology: Theology and Practice of A Contemporary Religion,” referenced by Sylvia Stanard, deputy director of the church’s national affairs office.
    Sylvia Stanard is the wife of John Stanard, national director for Social Betterment Programs and Policy.

    The principles that Scientologists learn that form the foundation of Scientology scripture can be adapted for use in the areas of drug rehabilitation and education, and have become the “cardinal points of extensive social benefit programs of churches of Scientology and individual Scientologists,” according to the reference work. “One of the most widely known of these social benefit programs is the residential drug rehabilitation and public education program conducted under the name ‘Narconon.’”

    Miller first completed the program in 1999 in Oklahoma, and after his graduation, he had a contract for several years to be a carpenter for Narconon. Then, he moved to Kentucky and started his own carpentry business.

    The program required him to confront the aspects of his life that led him to use cocaine and other drugs and to admit the harm he had done to others and himself as an addict in Frederick for two decades, he said. He relapsed a year ago in Kentucky because he had not adequately addressed all the areas of his life he should have during his first time in the program, he said.

    Three out of four participants stay clean and sober long term, Rodgers said.

    Miller said his second time in the program, he spent five months in rehab in Louisiana, working part time at Narconon and paying $12,000 for the program.

    “Through the education and experience I have received through Narconon and from the grace and the forgiveness from God, I am able to help myself and others,” Miller wrote in a letter.

    Scientology techniques and principles used in Narconon “address causes and effects of drug addiction and help participants become contributing members of society,” according to the reference work. “These program components include helping participants learn how to communicate, cope with the pressures of life and regain higher standards of self-esteem and honesty.”

    The Church of Scientology has no set dogma concerning God. Scientology does not ask individuals to accept anything on faith alone.

    “Salvation” in Scientology “has to do with making man ‘safe’ or ‘whole’ in his present life,” according to “Scientology: Theology and Practice of a Contemporary Religion.”

    Miller, the Stanards and Rodgers said program participants do not have to become Scientologists as they complete the detoxification and behavior therapy. Miller said he was able to attend church on Sundays, and Rodgers said the center would make arrangements with Frederick area churches so participants could attend services.

    Previously, Frederick County Councilman Billy Shreve said he was ready to vote on the property’s historic designation and did not consider Narconon or Scientology.

    “It doesn’t matter what religion it is, someone’s against it,” Shreve said in a telephone interview.

    His view is that there were no data to refute the expert testimony in favor of the historic designation that would allow the treatment center to open.

    “You have to believe the experts or be sued,” Shreve said.

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  9. Quentinanon Member

    Thanks, Billy Shreve. The bottom line, according to you, is that if the scientology crime syndicate does not get it's way, they will sue Frederick County.
    Isn't that reason to keep them out of your county?
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  10. Intelligence Member

    Looks like Miscavige's 'lap-puppy' - my arch enemy and adversary, Stanard/OSA, got to a reporter for this 'Spin-Doctored' news story. Tomorrow afternoon, the Frederick Council votes and we're down to a few 'Hanging-Chads' for the vote to be NO.

    WHAT a CRAP NEWS STORY!!! ::>> I hope wee Billy ends up standing alone with his Willy in his hand after this mess is over. In my opinion, he is 'wanton-deaf' nutter who plays the 3 monkeys ... no see, no hear, and no say unless YES VOTE.
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  11. RightOn Member

    How can Scientology sue them?
    They are a RELIGION. Riigghhhht?
    And religion has nothing to do with Narconon. Rigggghhhht?

    Man! I hate this shit with every fiber of my being.

    AND These fuckers have no right to go into an area and say we want our way, or all the shit we dug up on you is coming out. That is what happened here IMO.
    The fear is unreal.
    Delauter caved immediately, I wonder what kinda shit they dug up on that 'ol boy?
    The bullies on the block are still bullying their way into forcing a town to set up yet another one of their quack facilities that will cater to out of state patients victims and it's a facility that is literally killing people. If these people are not "on the take" or they don't have stuff about themselves to hide, then there are no reasonable explanations as to why this center would open AT ALL. IMO
    When I read that other article, where it said that the vote will only be based strictly on whether it is a historical place or not, it really pissed me off. If that doesn't show fear, I don't know what does.

    Again, according to Narconon, it is not religious, so how can it be considered religious discrimination if they aren't allowed to open?
    This shit has to stop.
    /morning rant
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  12. RightOn Member

    comments are open
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  13. peterstorm Member

    There are so many lies and inaccuracies in this article I just don't know where to start...
    • Like Like x 3
  14. The Wrong Guy Member

    Frederick County considers reuse plan for ex-presidential retreat | Associated Press

    The Frederick County Council is again considering a plan to turn a former presidential fishing spot near Thurmont into a drug rehabilitation center linked to the Church of Scientology.

    The board is considering on Tuesday a request from the church's real-estate arm to designate the 40-acre Trout Run resort for historic preservation. The designation would enable Social Betterment Properties to make changes otherwise barred by land-use restrictions.

    The private resort was visited by presidents Herbert Hoover and Dwight Eisenhower.

    The board has twice delayed a decision on turning the rustic retreat into a Narconon residential treatment center.

    The program is based on methods developed by Scientology founder L. Ron Hubbard.

    A Narconon executive says the program is nonreligious and wouldn't be used for church recruitment.

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  15. RightOn Member

    "A Narconon executive says the program is nonreligious and wouldn't be used for church recruitment."

    But yet the council fears of being sued by the COS.:confused:
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  16. The Wrong Guy Member

    Here's another thorough article that was published by Envision Frederick County:

    Should Trout Run be added to the Frederick County Register of Historic Places?

    By Kai Hagen, May 30, 2015
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  17. DeathHamster Member

    Except that it's clear that most of the Presidential stories were invented by the previous owner.

    Kirby Delauter is a moron, so what's Shreve's excuse?
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  18. Random guy Member

    What bugs me is that no-one seem to question why a "historic site" is deemed suitable by law for an unregulated drug rehab. If I understand correctly, the local council recently changed the law so that no-one can oppose the cult once they've won the "historic" label. WTF?
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  19. The Wrong Guy Member

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  20. Intelligence Member

    Narconon battle in Frederick: citizens protest today at City Hall


    Channel 4 TV News arrived at protest a few minutes ago.
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  21. The Wrong Guy Member

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  22. Random guy Member

    Which means the cult at best will be able to score a Pyrrhic victory.
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  23. Intelligence Member

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  24. The Wrong Guy Member

    Sylvia Carignan ‏@SylviaCarignan 5 minutes ago
    Frederick County Council will soon address Narconon's proposal for drug rehab center at Trout Run. The meeting has begun.
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  25. BigBeard Member

    If there is a law suit, it will not be narCONon bringing it. It will be Social Betterment Properties International (SBPI), which actually owns the property. And which, for reasons that make no sense I can see, the IRS allowed to changed it's designation from "Tax Exempt - Other" to "Tax Exempt - Religious" in 2009. Which means SBPI, not narCONon, would be the ones playing the "Religious Discrimination" card if they don't get their way.

    As a side note, having SBPI own the property gives DM another way to funnel money 'up lines', by having NN pay "rent" to SBPI. I would not be surprised to see current NN's that own their property being directed to sell it to "property management" company SBPI in the near future. This, in theory, would also mean the land would not be attachable to pay any judgements if a NN had a major loss in a law suit.

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  26. The Wrong Guy Member

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  27. RightOn Member

    YES!!!!! that was exciting!
    GTFO Narconon!
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  28. Intelligence Member

    Frederick Council just Voted NO to NarCONon!!!

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  29. RightOn Member

    Somewhere DM's head is assploding!

    Thank you David and all who have contributed to educate the council and Frederick County residents on NN
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  30. Quentinanon Member

    There exist many ways to pierce a corporate veil. Scientology corporations connect through David Miscavige and his corporate authority.
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  31. Quentinanon Member

    And those federal felony DDOS attacks all for naught. OSA FAIL.
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  32. Intelligence Member

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  33. RightOn Member

    Hey Narconon!!!

    I can only stand about 30 seconds of this song, but you get the idea
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  34. RightOn Member

    We need a thread title change! YAY!!!!
    • Like Like x 4
  35. Thanks for posting about the big 'win' David! :)

    The 6 of 7 county council members who bravely voted against Social Betterment Properties Int's property application for Trout Run were not persuaded that it was historic!! This means SBPI will have to appeal. Before the vote, the county attorney informed the council on what matters and arguments would prevent an appeal from overturning their votes, if thy chose to not approve the historic register designation appliction ( needed to get the property in place so Narconon could then apply to get their 'group home' facility application in with the state ).

    Kudos to all the community members who got together as a bipartisan, non political, differences aside, to help us keep another Narconon from opening ( so far ) and out of their community. This is the 2nd community in the last year to bring their fight against Narconon to Facebook about and enlist support.

    Visit No Narconon Trout Run on Facebook

    I will post the televised video tomorrow after it's up and you can hear their valid arguments. The lone wolf who voted in favor of putting the property on the register of historic places was councilman 'Billy Shreve'
  36. RightOn Member

    Going to have a cocktail Right now!
    CHEERS Everyone!!!!!
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  37. RightOn Member

    thank you!
    Wonder what the COS has on Shreve LOL!
    • Like Like x 3
  38. The Wrong Guy Member

    Frederick Council rejects historic designation for Trout Run, a blow for a Scientology-backed drug rehab

    By Michael S. Rosenwald and Jacob Bogage, The Washington Post

    The Frederick County Council on Tuesday voted overwhelmingly against approving a historical designation for Trout Run, a retreat near Camp David, a stunning setback for a Scientology-backed drug treatment program that wants to open there.

    Narconon, which relies on saunas and the writings of Scientology founder L. Ron Hubbard to treat drug addicts, needed the designation because the 40-acre property’s zoning doesn’t allow such uses. A listing on the county historical register would.

    But the council voted 6-1 against the designation, with at least two members who had previously voiced support for the project apparently changing their minds. A large group of activists opposed to Narconon broke out into applause.

    It is not clear what Narconon will do next.

    The vote had become one of the most contentious debates in the semi-rural county in years, attracting national media attention because the of Scientology connections.

    Continued here:
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  39. DeathHamster Member

    I'm shocked! I'd figured Kirby Delauter as the sole For vote.
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  40. The Wrong Guy Member

    Frederick County Council votes against giving Trout Run historic designation | The Frederick News-Post

    The Frederick County Council voted 6-1 today against placing Trout Run on the county's historic register, all but ending plans to operate a Narconon treatment center on the 40-acre property located in the Catoctin Mountains.

    Only Councilman Billy Shreve voted in favor of the designation. Councilmen Bud Otis, M.C. Keegan-Ayer, Kirby Delauter, Tony Chmelik, Jerry Donald and Jessica Fitzwater all opposed.

    Applause broke out at Winchester Hall after the final vote was cast.

    For continuing coverage on the quest to bring a Narconon facility to Frederick County, go to

    This story will be updated.
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