Governor Martin O'Malley has appointed John P. Coale to the Board of the University of Maryland Medical System. Coale is a high-ranking Scientologist, husband of Fox News commentator Greta Van Susteren, and a class-action trial lawyer who become quite wealthy from "The Tobacco Wars". He also participated in Scientology's lawsuit warfare against Ritalin. Michael Pattinson is a notable Scientology critic who was defrauded of half a million dollars by organized Scientology's psycho-therapeutic malpractice. He knew Coale personally and has graciously agreed to be interviewed by For Great Justice.
FGJ: Thank you, Michael Pattinson, for allowing For Great Justice to interview you regarding Governor Martin O'Malley's appointment of trial lawyer John P. Coale to the Board of the University of Maryland Medical System.
You entered Scientology seeking its promise of psychological healing, personal empowerment, and total spiritual liberation. You left twenty years later, $500,000 poorer, and aware that Scientology's Bridge to Total Freedom is, in fact, a Bridge to Nowhere. In your time as a Scientologist you were John Coale's study partner. Tell us about what he is like as a person and what your experience of him was.
MP: My main experience with John Coale was in 1990 when we were study partners on Scientology's highest training level (technically called New OT8). I observed that John was very purposeful in getting what he wanted from the course and its promised super-human powers. From my experience I believe that John Coale is a deeply devoted and committed Scientologist. His attainment of New OT8 places him at the top of the Scientology pyramid.
FGJ: In her excellent article Scientology's War on Psychiatry Katharine Mieszkowski of Salon has pointed out that David Miscavige, head of the Church of Scientology, has stated that the Church's goals for the millennium are: 1. Eliminate psychiatry in all its forms and 2. Place Scientology at the absolute center of society. How deeply ingrained does this enmity towards psychiatry become in the Scientology indoctrination process? How motivated are most Scientologists to actively work for the obliteration of the mental health professions?
MP: From the time I joined Scientology, and until I left in 1997 I was very familiar with the extensive indoctrination that L.Ron Hubbard (the founder and guru of Scientology) enforced on all loyal Scientologists concerning psychiatry and psychology, as well as the pharmaceutical industry.
In essence, Hubbard hated all these professions with a vengeance and with vitriol. It is a very basic tenet of Scientology that psychiatry and psychology must be utterly destroyed and that Scientology itself must take over ALL of mental health, as well as any government grants that these professions enjoy at present. This is not a peripheral agenda but a basic purpose of the cult. Witnessing their "Psychiatry Industry of Death" museum in Los Angeles is but the tip of the iceberg of this covert Scientology agenda that all Scientologists are expected to fulfill and contribute to. It is a prerequisite for being allowed onto new or higher Scientology levels for every Scientologist to prove active contribution to Scientology's goals. John Coale would certainly be subject to those eligibility requirements.
FGJ: Knowing both Scientology's virulent opposition to the mental health professions and John Coale from personal experience under what circumstances would it be possible for John Coale to function as a Board member?
MP: There would be, in my considered opinion, a fundamental and toxic discrepancy put into play between Mr. Coale's beliefs and active commitments as a loyal Scientologist and the role of the Board which endorses, supports and expands the uses of psychiatry, psychology and pharmaceuticals.
FGJ: If you had one thing to say to the students, staff, professors and physicians at the University of Maryland Medical System, what would it be?
MP: I would say that the UMMS staff, for their own protection, should do whatever is necessary to bring to the attention of the Board the dangerous potential of a top level Scientologist infiltrating the Center's administration with its hidden and destructive agendas.
FGJ: Thank you, Michael Pattinson.
Michael Pattinson's account of his time in Scientology may be found here.