[Hubbardism] has claimed to have around 10 million members worldwide. But it has struggled recently, as former high-level members of the faith described the immense sums of money required to advance within the Church hierarchy, as well as threatening actions the Church takes against dissenters. The faith’s founder aggressively recruited Hollywood celebrities to promote the faith in a successful bid to generate publicity. But despite all the glitz and glam, many celebrities once linked to Scientology have disavowed it. All signs point to a declining membership, and today the faith is independently estimated to have as few as 50,000 members worldwide.In other words, about the population of Enid. No longer capable of threatening or roasting every dissident. Later: This fits nicely into the pattern of Owning The Conversation, along with Amazon. Hubbard and Bezos mastered the art of dominating all "knowledge" about their organizations, which gives every little action and gesture HUGE leverage.
Polistra was named after the original townsite of Manhattan (the one in Kansas). When I was growing up in Manhattan, I spent a lot of time exploring by foot, bike, and car. I discovered the ruins of an old mill along Wildcat Creek, and decided (inaccurately) that it was the remains of the original site of Polistra. Accurate or not, I've always liked the name, with its echoes of Poland (an under-appreciated friend of freedom) and stars. ==== The title icon is explained here. ==== Switchover: This 2007 entry marks a sharp change in worldview from neocon to pure populist. ===== The long illustrated story of Polistra's Dream is a time-travel fable, attempting to answer the dangerous revision of New Deal history propagated by Amity Shlaes. The Dream has 8 episodes, linked in a chain from the first. This entry explains the Shlaes connection.