What are the worst things Scientology has done? This self-described, IRS-approved religion has some very dirty deeds in its closet. Read on to learn about 13 of the scariest Scientology conspiracies and conspiracy theories out there.
Operation Snow White: Scientology Infiltrates the U.S. Government
Scientology fights back hard against anyone and anything it perceives as an enemy. But Operation Snow White was Scientology going above and beyond to defend itself against perceived threats from the U.S. government. In the 1970s, Scientology was being investigated by the FBI and its tax-exempt status was being questioned by the IRS. In response, Scientologists around the world took government jobs, at every level, in order to whitewash information about Scientology.
Operation Snow White isn't just a theory: L. Ron Hubbard's wife, and many other Scientologists, went to prison for their roles in infiltrating the U.S. government and illegally copying and passing along information. And though Operation Snow White was a worldwide effort, the focus was on the U.S. and its government agencies. With 5,000 undercover agents, Scientology carried out the largest infiltration of the U.S. government in history. And that's pretty f*cking scary.
The IRS is Scientology's Bitch
After Operation Snow White, you'd think the government would be wary of Scientology. But despite being bugged and robbed by Scientologists during Operation Snow White, in 1993 the IRS abruptly went along with Scientology's demand to be acknowledged as a tax-exempt religion, possibly just to stop the deluge of Scientologist lawsuits it was suffering from.
Yes, taxes are boring. But Scientology, despite the claims of abuse and despite infiltrating the U.S. government, doesn't have to pay any. In its 1993 agreement, Scientology agreed to pay a measly $12.5 million in back taxes and then breezed out the door. No other organization has gotten away with similar demands.
David Miscavige's Missing Wife
David Miscavige is the current head of Scientology, having taken over for L. Ron Hubbard. BFFs with Tom Cruise, Miscavige's word is law in Scientology. Anyone who goes against him pays a price and his list of victims may include his own wife. In 2006, Shelly Miscavige filled several job vacancies without Miscavige's permission. She hasn't been seen in public since.
Scientology spokespeople all deny Shelly Miscavige is missing. However, the easiest way to prove Shelly is fine would be to have her appear in public or to meet her family and friends. This hasn't happened. Shelly could be alive but held against her will. Or her fate could be even worse. What we do know is that Miscavige is powerful enough to get an entire organization to cover for him for years. Repeat, Miscavige is in charge of Scientology. The decisions about whatever agenda Scientology follows come from him. If this guy is willing to turn on his own wife, imagine what else he's been up to.
Auditioned Bride for Tom Cruise: The Katie Holmes Story
Twice-divorced yet still desperate to find true love, Scientology helped a needy Tom Cruise audition young actresses to play the part, ahem, to be his third wife. Although Scarlett Johansson, Erika Christensen, and Sofia Vergara were considered for the role, in the end Katie Holmes nailed her audition and got to marry Cruise. Her compensation was rumored to include $3 million per year of marriage plus a bonus for producing Suri.
Although it's understandable Cruise can't fill out an application on eHarmony, it's still creepy that Scientology had to step in and basically pimp starlets to him. And it's terrifying to think of which young girl might be getting groomed right now to step into the role of Mrs. Tom Cruise. Rumor has it that Scientology wants Tom's next hook-up to be someone "beautiful and steeped in Scientology."