With the Guardians Office out of the picture, the missions were ripe for the picking. But they couldn't be taken over by walking in and demanding the mission holder give up his mission.
A mission somewhere in the northwestern part of the US was sued by one of the parishioners. The case got lots of press coverage. CofS management began creating fear in the mission holders by telling them that SPs were going after missions. The mission holders were also told that by being incorporated individually as they were, the missions were not strong enough on their own to survive these attacks. However, management proposed a solution: To re-incorporate all the missions under one corporation called Scientology Missions International. This would provide a legal umbrella for every mission. If the SPs came after one they would have to fight the entire corporation. It's interesting to note where the idea for Scientology Missions International, SMI, originated. When Hubbard was still active on the lines, he had noticed that there were a lot of wealthy Scientologists who had already been regged for all the services that the CofS had to offer them. Since these wealthy people still had lots of money, Hubbard devised a way of getting more out of them.
His idea was to form a corporation called Scientology Missions International. The CofS regs the wealthy Scientologists to purchase a new mission for a huge sum of money. What they would be purchasing is the right to open a mission and a starter package of books, tapes, promo, etc. It would be an easy sale as the buyer would be contributing to the expansion of Scientology and could even use the purchase as a tax write-off. The CofS then finds someone who wants to run a mission and couples him with the wealthy person. The financier would be the mission holder and the other person would be the ED (Executive Director).
In Hubbard's program, SMI was not to affect existing missions or existing mission holders who wanted to open new missions on their own. The sole purpose was to get money out of wealthy Scientologists. Hubbard explained this program in a taped conference with one of his staff. He went on to explain that if the mission failed, they still had the money. If it succeeded, then that was an added bonus.
Several of the scams perpetrated by the New Regime were an alteration of some earlier program of Hubbard's. As I mentioned in Part 5 of this series, either Miscavige or Broeker's influence was clear on certain activities of the New Regime, as one of them had been witness to the initiation of a similar program of Hubbard's. The origination of SMI was described in a Hubbard taped conference. SMI was later used as an umbrella corporation for all the missions. The staff member that Hubbard had been briefing in his taped conference was David Miscavige.
Through fear and pressure, mission holders put their missions under SMI. (As there were no more serious attacks, I suspected the incident in the northwestern US mission to be a set-up.) Now the missions were legally under the control of the CofS (now the New Regime, known as the RTC). Once the change occurred, they implemented heavy-handed tactics with the missions.
Missions were told that they were dilettantes, that they were off-purpose and off-policy. A new arm of the RTC called the Finance Police, headed by a Finance Dictator, was set up to deal with mission "offences". The origination of the post of dictator can also be traced back to Hubbard.
In 1973 on the Flagship, Hubbard did an evaluation and created a program to address a diminishing money flow to Flag and Sea Org reserves. His plan for this emergency was to design a temporary post of FBO (Flag Banking Officer) Dictator and appointed me to the position. I was given full authority in finance matters, worldwide, until the emergency was resolved. I resolved it and the post was disbanded. One of the people working under me at the time was Pat Broeker.
In 1982 the RTC created a new dictator with finance police to do his bidding. Dressed in black uniforms, these finance police were sent to missions to find and handle offences (as defined, of course, by the RTC). There were plenty offences found in the missions and the missions were billed at an exorbitant rate. The fat bank accounts of the missions were quickly drained and the money was added to the RTC coffers.
The final blow to the missions was delivered at the mission holder's conference in LA. This conference was very different from the one previously held on Flag. This time there was no interest in mission holders' grievances. Mission holders either fully went along with the RTC demands or were immediately expelled. If a mission holder complained, he was declared on the spot.
The Scientology missions were finally under the control of the New Regime.