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Kent Stryker, Self-Declared Liar

Several years ago I worked at (rather than "for"), a charity based company in Eagle Rock that initially claimed to accept all cars in any of the 48 contiguous American states (towards tax deductable charitable donations), raising funds for the shadey National Association for Alternative Medicine, aka NAAM, all with little or no hassle on the car owner making the charitable donation. Ironically, my being an actor "disqualified" me from being a phone sales representative (for which I was originally being interviewed). With my knowledge and experience of HTML however (and my general love of typing), charity founder Kent Stryker hired me to work on their web site/s, and submit the pages to search engines so as to maintain high rankings.
Covertly yet consistently declaring himself to be a liar as well as a thief, this is not inconsistant with Kent's being a Scientologist and all, he and the fictional religion's founder L. Ron Hubbard obviously being cut from the same cloth (Hubbard once faked his own death to evade taxes), teaching his more amoral slaves to do as he said and as he did.

Ironically, Kent's business with The Outside World seemed to be exemplary, above board and beyond reproach, while Kent In The Office continually always created (and worked hard to maintain), a substantially hostile workplace (including but certainly not limited to: sexual harassment [several female workers having quit under Kent's barrages and sexist name calling], theft of labour [withholding and threatening to withhold private-sector compensation for labour, under the false guise of such being "contingent" on the company's treasury (when the organization not only had not taken any losses since when I had been hired, but February of 2000 had surpassed the donations of February 1999)...], racial slurs and racial "jokes" as well as sexist slurs and sexist "jokes," Kent's own professed/declared religious bigotry and closed mindedness, and my favourite, giving to his CFO [who ("inadvertently"...?) gave it to me] written and hand-signed instructions that Vee was to commit the criminal and fraudulent act/s against me personally [to wit, without my consent, permission and/or consent, she was unlawfully instructed, to unlawfully alter the amount of allowances on my coerced W4 form], etc.). While this fraudulent and criminal act was stopped before it was implemented, the hand-signed conspiratorial document remained in my possession.

A few times a week Kent would grace my coworker and friend William and I (William smartly resigned a week after I was let go), with what Kent foolishly called "motivational" speeches. We had no idea why he called them so. These calmly delivered 45+ minute ramblings and ravings invariably were comprised of back-handed compliments, outright falsehoods, seemingly as well as outright incoherent babblings, numerous belittling and demeaning statements, all apparently designed to drain the mental lifeforce out of anyone even attempting to follow Kent's nonsensical streams of consciousness (for a good example of Kent's "communication skills" [particularly when asked a direct Yes/No question], one can reference Paul Winfield's character Dathan in the 5th season Star Trek: The Next Generation episode [#5.2] Darmok...).
One interesting day I was feeling particularly snarky. Kent came in, and sat with me at my desk, William's back behind right next to me as I faced Kent. Kent began one of his quiet demotivational monologues, which I very gently tore to shreds, Mystery Science Theater 3000 style. My riffs weren't regular Rifftrax style riffs, but politely posed "clarifying questions," that appeared to imply I was genuinely interested in what he was saying, but my questions were essentially almost painful puns and word-plays. This quietly delivered, gently onslaught of both parody and seeming innocence, continually derailed Kent's stream of consciousness, until after far longer than I anticipated he could tolerate, his brain was too befuddled to continue, and he tried to recover saying, "Y'know, constantly breaking someone's train of thought is almost a form of hypnosis." Meanwhile, Kent kept trudging on, with all the understanding of what I was doing of Margaret Dumont doing a scene opposite Groucho Marx,
"Is it?" I said. With such a silver-plattered straight-line, I couldn't resist quickly raising my hands and, Lugosi-like, loudly saying: "Sleeeep...!"
With nowhere to go from that, a deflated Kent departed. Once he had left, William was able to release his laughter. During my riffing session, over his computer he'd been texting to the second IT guy in the ajoining room with its open door: "Are you hearing this?" The other fellow, whose name eludes me, responded that he certainly could, and he too had to cover his mouth to keep from laughing.
The two congratulated me on a job well done but I had some personal reservations. While Kent quite deserved it, I posited, "I wonder if I may have gone too far over the line." William and the other guy were too impressed with my improv skills to worry about that. I told them that the next time Kent did one of his rants I would behave, and listen.
A day or three later, Kent came in to give one of his inane speeches. William and I faced him, quietly listening. About halfway through. Kent changed gears and said, "And I'm very concerned with you constantly interupting me, Badger. It ruins my train of thought."
I looked silently at William. William cleared his throat and said, "Uh, Kent? Badger hasn't said a word since you started talking."
Kent's comppsure melted; he realized William was absolutely right and I had crushed Kent again without saying a word...
Towards the end of my working there, Kent would ask if we/I need "any motivational speeches." I had learned simply to say no and would keep working: Kent clearly was unable to grasp that he has never once ever given to us a motivational speech (probably to anyone), nor would he understand it if pointed out to him that he has no comprehension of the true definition of such words as "motivation," "inspiring" "uplifting," etc.
I had never wanted to be fired from a job as much as from this one...
I got my wish February 25th (the day my friend's first child Holly was born).
At work I had had to leave early for an audition, about which Kent was fully aware. As I reached the elevator around the corner from the doors, I heard Kent coming out his door and heading in to where William and I worked. That evening William and I met up at the hospital to visit our friend, still in labour until the next day. William relayed that he believed Kent planned to fire me; that he and Vee had come in and found I'd already left, and that with disappointment Kent said to Vee they'd missed their chance. It sure sounded as though he was hoping to waylay me with my termination before I left for the audition, but had delayed a few minutes too long. Ironically it was mere seconds. I was already out of sight before I'd heard the doors; had I wondered enough as to what Kent may have wanted, I would have stepped into his trap.
So now I was prepared. The first thing I did in the morning was pack up every piece of personal stuff of mine I had and stowed it to bring home. After making sure no files remained on the computer that could be falsely misconstrued as personal, I proceeded to work.
Kent came in around 10am, and handed me an envelope in which was a simply written memo thanking me for my work but that "due to lack of funds," I was being let go. Also included was a check to cover the week's work to the end of that day.
Kent had a sharp mind but based on results was not entirely bright. Due to the wording of the memo, and the checking paying me to the end of that day, I thanked him and wished him luck... and proceeded to continue to work at my station. After all, I was paid to the end of that day.
Predictably, Kent's imploding mind couldn't wrap around such a reality, plus he could never handle my finding it so easy to mess with him. He stood over me, utterly baffled not only as to why I was still working for the pay I'd just received, but stymied as to what to say or do. Eventually he had to say outright he pretty much wanted me to leave Right Then.
"Oh," I said in mock innocence, causing William to stifle guffaws. "I thought I was paid to the end of today." I retrieved my stuff and left.
Later William reported to me that the following dialogue took place the instant the door closed behind me:
"Well, I guess that gives you some incentive, huh?"
"Uh... what incentive?" William replied, genuinely puzzled.
"Well, if I can fire Badger, I can fire anyone," Kent said jovially, strongly reminding him I had had less job security than I must have thought I had.
According to William, Kent soon began to imply William was to start adding my work duties to his work load and job description. "I... can't do that, Kent," William said politely.
Kent was surprised, and asked why not, to which William gently and politely reminded him that he and Kent had only just reached their mutually agreed, written, contractual agreement for William's pay amount being only for the substantial of work that William was already doing. If Kent wanted William to add my job duties to the work William was already doing, he and Kent would have to work out another pay raise to compensate for the new amount of work. William let it hang in the air that for William to do any of my work, Kent would have to add to William's pay the full amount Kent had been paying me... Characteristically, Kent realized too late what a mistake he had made letting me go.

One of the most baffling aspects while I worked there, was of Kent's sincere, frequent and deliberate challenges to me that I sue him. This was no joke on his part; in front of witnesses he had insisted I "give it [my] best shot" (usually after he had learned I was aware of some of his more unlawful doings, or asking a clarifying question that demonstrated Kent had been caught in yet another lie). Considering a local Attorney General openly hated Kent, but at the time could not "get anything" on Kent (as the businesses with The Outside World all seemed legal and above board), I began to ponder whether said Attorney General would want to get Kent on a more personal level of unlawfullness, such as violating numerous and various state and/or federal labour laws...

One of Kent's last stunts (while I worked there), was to threaten his workers with criminally unlawful theft of labour [via an unsigned] memo, declaring he might Simply Not Pay Us our compensation for current labour: that we might be paid "contingent upon the availability of funds in the association's treasury." The memo (the content of which I'm certain violated numerous Labour Laws), went on through implication to threaten the probable closure of the currently thieving [yet at the time simultaniously being a] substantially profitable charity and that workers for Kent Stryker/NAAM should "seek more stable employment."

It is ironic that Kent had the nerve to be surprised when William did exactly as the memo suggested, and found himself a far better job, both in atmosphere and compensation for his labour.

Knowing Kent, he could easily have chosen to falsely file for "bankrupty protection," in an unlawful effort not to pay his workers before paying (or pretending to pay), other creditors.
When it was politely pointed out to Kent that he had neglected to sign the memo, he calmly tore it up in my face (thankfully, apart from retaining the torn version, I'd already made a photocopy, "for future reference"...).

The most amusing was the final act: with William having found his better position, he waited until two or three days before his final day there to notify Kent that his last day would be Friday. Kent freaked out and became all blustery.
"What what what...?" he stammered. "But, you're giving me no notice!"
Without a trace of guilt at getting to say it, William replied, "I'm giving you far more notice than you gave Badger..."

Don't just take my word for it; check out some of these independent sites:

  • Cheating The Charities [from About.Com]: Diane Sawyer and Arnold Diaz reported on a possible scam that has targeted charitable contributions on the 20/20 television program on September 27, 1998. The report focused on Kent Stryker who has launched 200 or so charities with names "strykingly" similar to the names of the major, well-known, legitimate charities. The alleged, questionable intention of Stryker was to cash in on the name confusion. More...
  • Alt.religion.scientology Week in Review, Volume 3, Issue 26 (10/04/98), by Rod Keller copyright 1998: Scientologist Kent Stryker was the subject of a TV investigative report exposing "look-alike" charities this week as well as an article in the Detroit Free Press... More...
  • ABC's 20/20 Features Scientology Crook Kent Stryker, a scathing report by a Hud Nordin (28 Sep 1998), who seems to know more about Kent than even I thought I knew...
  • On Xenu - Scientology's Deepest Core Mystery : previous webpage information regarding the "final secret" that Scientology victims is gone; the link here now is to its Wikipedia entry thereof (once their funds are nearly completely obliterated), learn is the core of Scientology dogma. This was from an informational flyer for communities in which Scientology may be trying to gain a foothold.
  • Update
    Wednesday, March 23, 2005 Kent karma

    I received an email from Tilman Hausherr, notifying me of the URL for an informative Press Release regarding Kent Styker having been convicted of twelve counts of mail fraud and had received a jail-term sentence of 51 months (and a ten thousand dollar fine). The press release goes into more detail on the case, the trial, et al.


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