«The [Church of
Scientology] abuses its right to
intellectual property in order to be able to violate others'
right to their material property. In short, the CoS uses such
institutions of democracy as law and law enforcement bodies in
order to undermine central values of democracy and democracy
, August 1996.
After three years of repeated requests and
demands by Scientology to remove the
documents from the
public record, in the year
Parliament finally enacted a clause of Swedish secrecy law to
order the NOTs documents sealed away from public view. This move
provoked a number of legal scholars in Sweden to issue protests,
noting that the move effectively meant that copyright law
overruled the Constitution of Sweden. Debate on the matter has
not ended as of
Unbiased columnism, day 0: Poor guy versus multinational cult
Scientology had claimed almost two million
dollars in legal fees, a ridiculously high amount for Swedish
standards, but even this 150,000 dollars was unprecedented.
Hardly surprising, Zenon couldn't pay that money, and
Scientology confiscated most of his salary in The Netherlands.
For more than two years he has been living under the level of
minimum subsistence; and yet, what Scientology confiscates every
month doesn't even cover the legal interest on the main sum. The
most cynical aspect of all this is that afterwards,
in my case the Dutch court ruled
that the OTs should be
regarded as having been legally published, a ruling that was to
a great extent based on testimonies delivered - guess - in
Zenon's court case.
Zenon vs the Church of Scientology
Zenon Panoussis has been sued by the Church of
Scientology because he posted the secret writs of Hubbard, the
so called OTs (from the
), and the even more secret NOTs, on the
The OT documents, until recently only available to the most
trusted members of scientology, tells
the story of the evil galactic emperor Xenu, and the
NOTs contain detailed instructions on how to get rid of all the
dead alien spirits scientologists call body thetans.
On the surface, this seems like a case of
genuine enforcement of the copyright laws. Unlike the affair
over the OT levels, it seemed at first as if Scientology was
genuinely protecting its copyrighted "trade secrets" this time.
However, this case may not be as cut-and-dried as it seems. It
appears that Scientology's hasty actions may have resulted in an
illegal search and seizure of Zenon's property. Here is
explaining the possible illegality of the raid.
Posting the NOTs
The right of expression is another basic
right that I believe in and that is generally accepted. The
right of expression is not a democratic right, in the sense
that it doesn't need democracy to exist. On the contrary,
democracy needs the right of expression for its own
existence. The right of expression is a right that is not
given, but taken, by force if necessary, more or less as the
right to life.
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