It’s always a joy to be able to link apparently unrelated subjects in the title to an article. This title is a real winner. Scientology was developed by a science fiction writer and has attracted some notoriety of late as various Hollywood figures have complained about its strange beliefs and homophobic practices. The idea of being able to relate dieting and weight loss to the pronouncements of the Thetans is wonderful but, unfortunately, not possible in this instance. No matter how interested the extraterrestrials may be in weight loss, they have neglected to include it in their religion. However, you will be pleased to know that it all does tie together. Kirstie Alley may be better known as an actress, but she is also a high-ranking Scientologist. Some years ago, she had a serious cocaine addiction and has credited the Church with her “cure”. She is now the celebrity ambassador for the Scientology movement’s drug treatment program and, probably by virtue of the size of her financial contributions to the Church, she is now a level 7 Thetan.
Those of you who follow gossip cannot fail to have noticed the constant stories about Ms Alley’s fluctuating weight. As the young star of Cheers, she was relatively slim. Sadly, as the years advanced, so did signs of her spreading hips. By 2005, she had expanded to more than 200 pounds but, by virtue of an aggressive diet and exercise program, she lost 75 pounds in a year and appeared on The Oprah Winfrey Show in a revealing bathing costume. With this public celebration of her weight loss success behind her, she returned to eating and put most of the weight back on again. Now she has launched a new project. Going under the name Organic Liaison LLC, it sells a diet regime based on a new organic product with USDA approval. People who sign up, pay between $10 and $149 every month. In return, they receive a diet regime also including vitamins and supplements. So far, many of the members have reported some success. Ms Alley herself has lost 20 pounds.
The reason for the controversy is that all the income generated by this company seems to be channelled straight into the Church’s bank account. While there is nothing in law to prevent any private company from donating some or all of its net profit to charitable, religious or other comparable purposes, many who signed up for the weight loss program have been shocked to discover most, if not all, their money is funding the Church of Scientology. While most view the Church as harmless, there is a difference between passively ignoring it and discovering you are actively supporting it with your own money. No matter whether the company’s organic product is effective or the diet regime is nutritionally sound, there is a serious issue at stake here. We give to charities when we sympathize with their aims. Failing to disclose that Organic Liaison is effectively a front for collecting funds for the Church seems almost dishonest. How much easier it is when it comes to phentermine. Here we have an FDA approved drug with decades of track record in safely helping people to lose weight. There is no question of any part of the purchase price being diverted for non-commercial purposes. Phentermine is a capitalist’s dream – a safe and effective drug that can command a good price because there is no real competition in the market. It’s a shame Ms Alley is not a red-blooded capitalist.