29 May 2002
I have to share some details about the visits.

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NarCONon is Scientology! Forward: For a systematic, detailed, professional exposure of Scientology's "Narconon" front group, visit the Narconon Exposed web site.

29 May 2002

jpilkonis1@aol.com (JPilkonis1)

Hey, guys, sorry I got you all worked up and never managed to post my opinion piece. Truth is that after talking the matter over with my editor, we decided that running the recounting of my encounter with Susan Web would be much more effective after the current moratorium runs out. But I have to share some details about the visits.

This is an excerpt from an e-mail I wrote on the subject to Mr. Rice:

Since it looks as though I won't be running an account of my encounter with Mrs. Web this week - Sue, my editor, feels that it would be much more effective to bring it out when the moratorium is drawing near, and I agree - I thought I'd fill you in on some of the more amusing minutae of her visits. ("Visits" because we had another today.)

I wanted especially to share the lie which ended that first interview. Sue was grilling her - "grilling" is the word - as to what specifically in my front page stories on Narconon had I gotten wrong. Amazingly, Mrs. Web had to admit that she had no idea that those stories EXISTED. She had only read my opinion column, and was basing her opinions strictly upon that!

Sue pretty much gave up on the interview at that point, because if all she was here for was my opinion, it pretty much didn't matter from an editorial standpoint.

But this made me curious. I asked her how she even knew about my column. She said she had gotten it from the internet. I asked her how she found it. Now, you have to understand that the ONLY publicity the Star News website has gotten is from a.r.s. Even our readers don't know about it yet. And since I'm designing the site myself, I know for a fact that there are no meta-tags yet, nor have I submitted to any search engines.

Mrs. Web said she found it on a search engine. That's when I knew I had her. I pointed out that what she was telling me was absolutely impossible, and she panicked but stuck to her story. That was when I pulled a Mike Wallace and said, "I'm not going to continue if you're going to keep lying. This interview is over..."

She was visibly stunned. Sue, playing along, shook her hand and said, "Thank you, bye..." and that was it. She was dismissed.

But then...

Later on that day, I got a phone call from Mrs. Web. She couldn't have been nicer, apoligizing for the "misunderstanding" and explaining that she hated for meetings to end that way. She hoped I would come to her if I had any further questions on the church. And THEN she said, "Oh, and I didn't get your column on the website after all. I drove to Carrollton and picked up a copy."

I couldn't believe what I was hearing, because, a) We're only at select locations in Carrollton, and you really have to know where to look to find us, and b) SHE HAD CALLED TWICE THAT AFTERNOON TO GET DIRECTIONS FROM ME. She didn't even know what exit to take off the interstate!

Really, what's sad is how incredibly inept she is as a liar, and she never really HAD to lie about any of this stuff. If she'd have told me she found out about what I'd written from the newsgroup, or even someone who told her about the newsgroup, I would have said, "Okay" and moved on to the next question. And then to embellish the lie in order to cover up her tracks. It's unbelievable.

As an end note, I'll mention that she "stopped by" the office today to pick up copies of the current issue, in which we published the letter she'd written to us, and the back issues with my font page stories in them. ("Stopped by" means driving about 45 miles from Marietta in horrific Atlanta traffic).

You might be interested to note that after the letter, Sue inserted a message pointing out that, while Mrs. Web's letter accused me of not coming to her for "accurate" information on the church and Narconon, she did all of her work based on an opinion column and didn't even KNOW my front page articles existed.

If Mrs. Web is the best the church can do, I almost feel sorry for them.

As always, I'll keep you guys posted....

JP

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