While Narconon was born into the cult of Scientology when it first opened, Synanon was a drug rehab that became a violent cult. Both are amazingly similar in practices, and have long rap sheets for human rights abuses, disconnection, boasting 80 plus percent success rates, and despise criticism.
In 1978, members of Synanon didn’t take kindly to the criticism. The group lashed out at anyone who dared question their organization; after an expose by NBC in 1978, members sent hundreds of ominous letters to NBC executives, threatening physical harm. Sound familiar?
On August 17, 2012, Scientology members received an email “requesting that, “We got instructions from up the line to have everyone call in [To NBC Rock Center] and complain about this one-sided, biased show and say that they personally know people whose lives have been saved by NN (Narconon).”
In the email, a high-ranking member of Scientology states:
“Narconon is about to get a big attack on NBC news tonight. Same old crap, we¹ve survived it before and will again but your help is needed.”
And the ‘Foot in Mouth’ Scientologist’s statement stands out bold – tying Narconon to Scientology: “This is of course a Scientology attack as well.”
The difference between Narconon and Synanon is that Narconon was/is a cult that scams unwary addicts and loved ones, and Synanon was a famous drug rehab center that became a dangerous cult.
The similarities are incredible:
Synanon: The GAME was the most important method of treatment at Synanon. When it came to getting addicts clean, the program rejected any form of pharmaceuticals or tapering of drugs.
Scientology-Narconon: Life can best be understood by likening it to a ‘detached eye’ like GAME. – L. Ron Hubbard. No pharmaceuticals or tapering of drugs are permitted at Narconon.
Synanon: The confrontational approach was a way to hash out everything that bothered you about others in your group. It was supposed to help you learn about yourself as well. While playing the Game, your frustrations didn’t even need to be true. Lying was just one of many strategies in The Game, which could last anywhere from one to 48 hours.”
Narconon: “Patients used this same confront approach, teasing and yelling at each other in ‘Bull-Baiting’ Scientology Training Routines (TRs) – yelling at ashtrays to stand up on their own, and even lying.”
“Like Scientology, Synanon attracted Hollywood. In the early 1960s, the Synanon house became quite the fashionable hang-out for Hollywood’s more cerebral celebrities. Guest speakers in 1963 alone included Twilight Zone creator Rod Serling, legendary sci-fi author Ray Bradbury, and the original host of the Tonight Show, Steve Allen. Other visitors included Leonard Nimoy, Jane Fonda, Charlton Heston, and Milton Berle, among dozens of other curious stars. Synanon had some pretty cool parties, thanks to the fact that so many jazz musicians were around trying to kick their habit.”
Scientology-Narconon has John Travolta, Tom Cruise, Kistie Alley, and many others who help fill David Miscavige’s coffers with millions.
The ‘Success Rate’ FRAUD:
Charles Dederich’s Synanon organization insisted recovery rates were anywhere from 80 to 100 percent, though those figures were never confirmed by outside sources for obvious reasons.
Narconon has boasted from 70% and even as high as 100% success rate by ABLE Canada spokesperson, Brad Melnychuk, in a Canada 37th PARLIAMENT session on non-medical use of drugs. “…our Narconons are improving, and some of them are very close to a 100% success rate,” stated Melnychuk.
As in Scientology’ Sea ORG, Synanon restricted access to their children – “adult members might only see their kids once a week, even if they wanted to see them more often.
No kids allowed – By Joe Childs and Thomas C. Tobin:
“More than a dozen women said the culture in the Sea Org pushed them or women they knew to have abortions, in many cases, abortions they did not want.”
By January of 1977, Dederich’s distaste for children turned into an official policy. Men were pressured to get vasectomies, and women were shamed into getting abortions. These policies instigated another wave of defections, though Dederich’s increasingly inward focus caused him not to care – telling many members that if they wanted to have kids they probably shouldn’t be a part of Synanon.
Another uncanny note is Tax Exemption: “In 1974, Synanon moved to become recognized as a religion. The organization was running up against troubles with the IRS and had realized much like other self-help cults of the 20th century that being recognized as a religion could help it maintain tax-exempt status.
Cult Dictators and Real Estate Holdings:
Starting in 1965, Synanon started buying up land in Marin County, California. It would eventually have three sites in the county, comprising just over 3,300 acres in total, making it the largest private property owner in the county.
In 1967, Synanon also purchased a palatial new building in Santa Monica called Club Casa del Mar. First built as a hotel in 1926 and then used by the US Army during World War II, the building sat on a gorgeous spot on the beach.
Dederich himself abandoned Santa Monica, moving north to his Tomales Bay site. By the mid-1970s, his organization had acquired over 2,000 acres in Tulare County.
And last but not least, the Scientology and Synanon cult leader’s fascination with the use of drugs.
Synanon was a completely drug-free environment, save for aspirin, caffeine and nicotine. But there was another drug that Dederich didn’t consider harmful. In fact, he credited this drug with expanding his mind and allowing him to create the Synanon program in the first place. That drug was LSD.
L. Ron Hubbard is quoted as saying, “Benzedrine often helps a case run.” And in a 1967 letter to his wife, Hubbard writes, “”I’m drinking lots of rum and popping pinks and greys.” L. Ron Hubbard was the author of the Narconon program. L. Ron Hubbard died with a large quantity of Vistaril in his system. Vistaril is a powerful anti-psychotic drug. There have been accusations over the years that Hubbard was, indeed, psychotic.
We see increasing today in the drug rehab world several very ugly fruits of greed – an industry that preys on the very character of weak, ill, and desperate people. And where you see great sums of money, you often see high levels of corruption, fraud, and scams upon the vulnerable and weak.
These ugly trends continue to get uglier—all because of greed, corruption, and the mastermind’s addiction to power in the corporate world.