Letter from the Office of Aussie Senator Chris Evans

Discussion in 'Senator Xenophon And Scientology' started by pooks, Dec 4, 2009.

  1. pooks Member

    Letter from the Office of Aussie Senator Chris Evans

    From: mario cardile []
    Sent: Thursday, 3 December 2009 7:35 PM

    Dear friends,

    Another sensible reply.



    Date: Thu, 3 Dec 2009 16:37:59 +1100

    Dear Mario

    Thank you for your email to Senator Chris Evans regarding the proposed inquiry into the Church of Scientology. The Minister has asked me to respond to you on his behalf.

    The inquiry by the Senate into the Church of Scientology as proposed by Senator Xenophon is not be supported by the Rudd Government. However, given the seriousness of the allegations raised by Senator Xenophon, the Rudd Government believes that they should more properly be dealt with by the appropriate authorities.

    Taxation issues are more properly dealt with by the Australian Commissioner of Taxation, and criminal activities should be thoroughly investigated by the relevant police authorities. It is understood that the Senator has forwarded copies of his allegations, with the associated papers, to the NSW Police.

    It is not the role of the Parliament to inquire into the tax status of a particular organisation or individual, or to investigate criminal matters. Our Constitution provides for the separation of powers, that is the separation of the Executive, the Legislature and the Judiciary.

    In the history of the Senate there is no precedent for a Senate committee to conduct a targeted inquiry into a particular body, particularly of a religious body. The Church of Scientology was confirmed by the High Court in 1983 to be a religion.

    The role of the Senate is to inquire into issues of public policy and public administration. From time to time the Senate has questioned the roles of various organisations through such inquiries into child migrants, children in care and the stolen generation. The Rudd Government believes this was an appropriate public policy issue because it investigated the administration of organisations providing care, often on behalf of government.

    The Rudd Government’s view is that a Senate inquiry into the Church of Scientology is not justified on the basis of our view of the Parliament’s function. It is inappropriate to conduct an inquiry into a private and, in this case, religious organisation.

    Thank you again for writing to Senator Evans about this important issue.

    Yours sincerely,

    Hayden Falconer
    Office of Senator Chris Evans
    Leader of the Government in the Senate
    Minister for Immigration and Citizenship
    Labor Senator for Western Australia
    Ph: 08 9481 4844
    Fax: 08 9481 4244

    From: mario cardile []
    Sent: Saturday, 21 November 2009 11:15 PM
    To: Evans, Chris (Senator)



    Date: Sat, 21 Nov 2009 20:08:26 +1100

    Dear Senator Evans,

    I'm writing to you about something of great importance to me and of fundamental importance to the efficiency, humanity and integrity of our Australian society.

    Ours is a society that we can rightly be proud of as it is, though not perfect of course, one that effectively functions through and within applied democratic principles and the rule of law. These serve to enable stability and prosperity, and something very important and dear to our hearts: fairness. This is a term that might be overused by some as a trendy and expedient catchword, but I assure you it is not being used that way here and now.

    As an Australian citizen and a Scientologist I was shocked and appalled by Senator Xenaphon's tirade against Scientology in Parliament recently. No individual, group or organization should be attacked, much less in such a total and ferocious manner, prior to any verification of the accusations made in that very attack. The sequence is logically and morally irregular, it's dangerously incorrect. That it occurred, and the way it occurred, is a threat to the tolerance and firm equitability that the principle of fairness stands for.

    Senator Xenaphon was actually invited to civilly discuss these matters with the Church of Scientology prior to the senator's denunciations. This fact is a very important factor when considering the fairness, or lack thereof, exercised in this event.

    I am not going to go into surmises, guesses, hypotheses and rumours on why Senator Xenaphon did what he did. I will, however, definitely point out that an induced, emotionally charged climate, resting on untested accusations, is not conducive to fair treatment.

    As it's directly relevant, I would like to take this opportunity to let you know some of the benefits I've gained through Scientology, and my view that it should be helped as it is of real benefit to individuals and society.

    In the thirty years I've been in the Scientology religion I have been invaluably helped by the knowledge and application of the principles and spiritual philosophy and spiritual technology it has provided me. Incidentally, an unequivocal principle of Scientology is to obey the laws of the land.

    Since being in Scientology my happiness, productivity, ethical level and personal integrity have considerably risen. My relationship with my family, immediate and extended, and my community, improved and retains a very good level. One telling example is how after my mother suffered a debilitating stroke, I resigned from my work to become my mother's carer at her home. This meant so much to me because it meant so much to her to be cared for at home and not in a nursing home. My whole extended family was right behind me in this, and my mother was able to live out her last period in the warmth and care of her family home. I will add that there was some valuable and appreciated assistance from the government-backed nurses who aid the carer and cared.

    What I've learned, and learned to apply, in Scientology has enabled me to very effectively tutor several nephews who were having difficulty with their literacy. If you're familiar with the obstacles and despair that illiteracy locks a child or adult into you'll appreciate that this is a most worthwhile achievement.

    I've also substantially contributed to excellent and practical campaigns for drug education and effective drug rehabilitation. Personally, prior to Scientology, though not exactly a drunkard or drug addict, I did drink excessively at times and, not surprisingly when considering I was a university student in the 70s, indulged in drugs. I now only rarely drink, and only moderately so when I do, and take no drugs nor have the urge to.

    Since becoming a Scientologist, which by the way doesn't preclude me from retaining any faith I was into or was born into (please understand that this is not as unusual as it may seem, as Buddhism is similarly inclusive), my interest in and respect for other religions and religion in general has greatly risen. And with this has risen my ability to discern real religiosity and religious principles and practices from the political or egotistical purposes these are perversevely twisted into by the despicable, misguided and misguiding few. I have since done a university course (through Deakin University) that was an overview of the major religious traditions,as well as aboriginal spirituality. This familiarity with their tenets, practices and history has led to a deeper understanding: the practical outcome of which is a respectful, and not merely indifferent, tolerance.

    On the 5th of October of this year, for example, I attended an excellent Interfaith Seminar held at the University of Western Sydney, Parramatta Campus. Presenting at this inspiring event were many acclaimed and accomplished luminaries such as Professor Samaullah Kirmani of the Goucher college, Tawson University, MD, USA - a member of the International Scholars Annual Trialogue; Jeremy Jones AM, who was awarded the 2007 Australian Human Rights Medal for building interfaith and inter-community understanding in Australia and internationally; Reverend Dr Patrick J. McInersey LSAI, Theol M, Phd, an active and respected member of the Australian Catholic Council for Ecumenism and Interreligions Dialogue; Dr Herram Roborgh SJ, an erudite and effective expert in Christian-Muslim relations. The sheer sanity and sense, and genuine good-will exhibited on the podium, and then amongst all the attendees during the breaks and lunch was so delightfully pleasant and, if only the word wasn't so over-used, I would say: "awesome". It certainly was awe-inspiring to see such genuine, mutual respect in action and not mere theory. It was the sort of event that proves that inter-faith tolerance and respect are eminently possible. Knowledge and understanding are the factors that underpin such successful co-existence.

    What I've outlined above is not to try to paint myself as some king of Mother Teresa, Mahatma Gandhi, or Martin Luther King: that would be absurd. I am merely one who is trying to do his best, and to some satisfying degree succeeding, in improving my life and the life around me with what I know and aspire to. Religion has enabled so many through the ages in doing this. My religion of Scientology is simply enabling me in a like manner. I've simply tried to let you know some facts about Scientology and Scientologists by trying to convey what it has meant to me, and give some concrete examples.

    I would have liked to extend this letter with further examples and details of how my Scientology religion has helped me to help myself and help others. But this would lengthen it to such an extent that it would probably not be read. And I truly want you to read it and have an opportunity to directly hear from a Scientologist.

    It's not special treatment for Scientology that is asked for here. It's only the fair and just treatment that should be accorded to any religion that should be extended to Scientology now. A few decades ago the High Court of Australia accorded religious recognition to Scientology. This was no idle decision, but one based on extensively examined facts.

    Scientology is a religion that, like other religions, actively aspires to improve the lot of the individual and the society he or she lives in. I'm a Scientologist and have greatly benefited from my religion, which has helped be a better person, a better family member, and a better member of society.

    Our parliament is the living repository of our Australian traditions of democratic principles and the fair rule of law. Let these principles come to the fore at this juncture: simply treat Scientology with the sober reason and fairness that all individuals and groups in Australia deserve and, thankfully, usually get.

    Strident repetitions of rumours is no substitute for tested evidence. The paucity of the latter and the tumultuous hype instigated by the formere means that a senate enquiry would be as unwarranted as it would be unjust.

    These are my views. I've stated them in total honesty and good faith.

    I thank you for your time.


    Mario Cardile

    150 Fourteenth Avenue, Austral NSW 2179

    0408 490 776
    02 9606 0516
  2. randomanon Member

    Re: Letter from the Office of Aussie Senator Chris Evans

  3. _You_ Member

    Re: Letter from the Office of Aussie Senator Chris Evans

    That's as good a response as we can hope for from an opponent of the inquiry to a $cilon. He said the senator doesn't support the inquiry, BUT the authorities should investigate, and while he pointed out that the high court says they are a religion, he didn't seem to buy into the religios persecution argument.
  4. SwordSworn Member

    Re: Letter from the Office of Aussie Senator Chris Evans

  5. _You_ Member

    Re: Letter from the Office of Aussie Senator Chris Evans

    maybe mario should spellcheck his emails
  6. JMBrandon Member

    Re: Letter from the Office of Aussie Senator Chris Evans

    Why spellcheck when he can simply ALTER HIS REALITY so that his incorrect spelling is correct?

  7. _You_ Member

    Re: Letter from the Office of Aussie Senator Chris Evans

    This issue about crimes being investigated by the police, tax by Commissioner for Taxation, and so forth are powerful arguments.

    I really think that we're making a serious mistake if we ONLY focus on the crimes.

    We're not going to overturn Scientology's status as a religion with a pamphlet (not when the decision was made by the High Court), so acknowledging the validity of that ruling is is important. However their systematic abuse of the privileges granted to religious groups to enable criminal activity IS something that ONLY a Senate Inquiry can address.

    I hope that this gets more discussion, because if we ignore that aspect then I'm convinced that we will not see an Inquiry take place.
  8. _You_ Member

    Re: Letter from the Office of Aussie Senator Chris Evans

    ^^^and a Senate Inquiry is both needed and fully justified.

    It's also well within our grasp.
  9. _You_ Member

    Re: Letter from the Office of Aussie Senator Chris Evans

    Senator X took it to the po po, now we needs to take a parallel swing to put the issues in front of the Tax Commission.

    Gentlemen, we have a new target. applicable sectors should reposition some muster accordingly.
  10. _You_ Member

    Re: Letter from the Office of Aussie Senator Chris Evans

    Individual crimes are appropriately handled by the police. But where there is evidence of organized crime, a federal effort is necessary so all investigations can be centrally coordinated.

    Evidence of organized crime that might prompt a federal inquiry (although not necessarily a congressional investigation):

    - Moving evidence from one branch of the CoS to another, and then to an overseas branch.
    - A pattern of fraudulent business practices involving many high ranking church members (e.g., Earthlink, Digital Lightwave in the US).
    - Systematic abuses against members and "enemies."
    - Illegal wiretaps or intrusions into computer systems.
    - Hiring private investigators in one state to spy on people in another state.

    The fact that Scientology is both a religion and a set of "secular" organizations and businesses complicates an investigation somewhat. That complexity might justify a congressional mandate to investigate.

    If it can be proven that CoS has both political objectives and oppressive policies toward certain persons or groups, that might warrant a congressional investigation. Democratic societies that tolerate power-hungry anti-democratic groups won't remain democratic for long.

    Two pronged arguments are tricky because you can only talk about one prong at a time and one prong isn't enough. If your audience is retarded they'll answer, "but group X has prong A and that's ok." When you point out prong B, they'll say, "but group Y has prong B..." Rinse, repeat.

    We tolerate groups with political agendas. We tolerate groups that promote some socially kinky notions. Recognizing a group that's got both isn't easy.

    I guess I would ask Australians to imagine what life would be like under a government run by Scientologists, where

    1. criticism = evidence of criminality
    2. mental disorders result from thetan possession
    3. unproven medical claims are accepted as fact
    4. social status is a caste system of "levels" based upon "donations"
    5. psychologists and psychiatrists are seen as a threat to the survival of humankind.

    Then I'd ask at what point along the spectrum from "goofy sect" to "widespread political influence" should one start to worry.

    IANAL or an Australian. Just trying to think through good arguments in favor of a congressional investigation.
  11. Sponge Member

    Re: Letter from the Office of Aussie Senator Chris Evans

    This is a classic example of why it was always important for Hubbard to declare scientology a religion. You can tell in the tone and some specfics of the reply that there is a lot of uncomfortable political bum-shuffling going on when people stand up and call for the government to look into the activities of a "religious" organisation. Scientology enjoys this natural shield.
  12. _You_ Member

    Re: Letter from the Office of Aussie Senator Chris Evans

  13. _You_ Member

    Re: Letter from the Office of Aussie Senator Chris Evans

    Yeah, Mario...some people call that GROWING UP.

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