Wednesday, 7 May 2014

PBCC on the defensive

Following the TV exposure; http://aca.ninemsn.com.au/article/8840617/exclusive-brethrens-tax-free-millions-revealed the PBCC spin team produce this rather watery document on their own website; http://www.plymouthbrethrenchristianchurch.org/wp-content/uploads/2013/01/PBCC-Statment-Re.-Tonights-ACA-Story-06.05.14.pdf


  1. So they have a public space where they can say:
    "A report aired on the Nine Network’s A Current Affair program this evening made a number of baseless and defamatory claims about the Plymouth Brethren Christian Church with no evidence whatsoever to back them up."

    And I can say:
    "A letter posted on the PBCC website makes a number of baseless and defamatory claims about the research carried out by Professor Rod Dubrow-Marshall and myself with no evidence whatsoever to back them up".

    Thank you Laurie for providing me with the public space to say that.

  2. The Questioner7 May 2014 at 07:11

    You'd think that by now they'd come up with something better than 'disaffected former members'.

  3. The Questioner7 May 2014 at 08:04

    The EB/PBCC could, for example, refute the allegations that were made if they had contrary evidence. They could perhaps prove that Bruce Hales did not 10 years ago condemn computers which he now sells. Or they could prove that they do not break up families and that even today people do not need to ask permission from church elders to see their children/grandchildren. They could come up with other numbers regarding government contribution to their education if what the programme says is wrong. Or they could present some recent university graduates.

    Where are you Mr LJO when we need you?

    1. The PBCC has a problem, Questioner, because the only university graduates they could present would be a few elderly people in their late 70s and 80s.

    2. Doh! Of course the PBCC has a problem with providing ALL the 'contrary evidence' Questioner suggests - that's his/her point.

      BDH DID condemn computers but now sells them (called by his special pet name & with UBT controls & monitoring all over them).
      The Brethren still break up families - they just take longer to do it these days cos they know it's considered disgustingly unChristian when viewed with 'outside' eyes.
      Members still have to seek permission to see their non or exEB relatives.
      I have no idea what the Oz educ spending figures are, but I can't imagine ACA would make a mistake on this.

    3. "Where are you Mr LJO when we need you?"

      Is it possible Leonardo is actually Bruce's 'handle' when Bruce has time to post his ministry here? But his being rather busy at the moment would explain while he has been absent?

  4. They say: "A Current Affair claimed it had contacted the church seeking an interview. No such request was ever received despite at least three phone calls to reporter Ben McCormack in the past week, which were not returned."

    So, if they had not been contacted by the programme, why oh why were they attempting to contact them? Maybe they've slid so far off the Christian spectrum, they're now using crystal balls?

  5. If the Current Affair report was "highly damaging to the church" as the PBCC/HEB say, then perhaps the Brethren need to have a bit of a think about why people in the outside world find their activities so repulsive. If they alter their behaviour and become a Christian church that acts in a way that Jesus would find acceptable and true, then another report could be run for them that would NOT be damaging. If you inflict damage on taxpayers, members and ex-members, then you're gonna have a *damaging* report made about you if it's speaking the truth! That's just simple logic.

    I highly doubt that A Current Affair would say they had contacted someone for an interview if they hadn't. The PBCC is riddled with dishonesty these days, and now they have it infecting their PR agent it seems. Pretty poor practice.

  6. The other problem of presenting one of the Brethren for an interview is that could be just as big a disaster as previous interviews. It might damage the Brethren’s reputation and credibility even more than just opting out. If he can only defend his patch by going into automatic denial mode and telling a whole load of lies, as has happened in the past, it would make them look even worse than they already do.

    1. Ian7 May 2014 10:21

      Yes.There is a need to fabricate an answer.That takes strategic thought.Because their side of the debate is not about telling the simple truth, they cannot participate in these discussions.That is why they prefer to provide a written rebuttal, after the program has been aired..

  7. The letter from Ben Haslem is very weak indeed. For a supposed hotshot PR person to release that statement is embarrassing.

    Its clear the PBCC Exclusive Brethren don’t know how to respond, the program on ACA on Tuesday 6th May must have left them stunned. Amongst other things the program exposed the following -

    - The name change from Exclusive brethren to Plymouth Brethren Christian Church

    - The link between the Exclusive Brethren PBCC and the RRT

    - The sudden rush to attempt to be Charitable, which they haven’t done before

    - The breakup of families, which is still going on

    - The change from banning computers to now owning and selling them

    - The Big Brother nature of the monitoring

    - The money making schemes of working the tax and benefit systems, structure of trusts etc

    - The property owned by Hales (Meeting rooms, Schools)

    - The sponging off the government for school funding

    - Attendance at University being forbidden

    - The envelopes of cash going to Hales and Co disguised as monthly gifts

    - The inability to present someone to respond to the program in the tv studio unless pre prepared questions and answers were allowed

    There are possibly more highlights but others can add to the list

    1. Rev - A few questions for you.
      We will understand if no genuine answer is forthcoming.

      Have you seen the cash?
      How much cash?
      Where did you see the cash?
      Where did you see the envelopes?
      How many envelopes?
      Where did you see the envelopes?
      What colour were the envelopes?
      Did you see any cash being put into envelopes?
      How much cash did you see being put into envelopes?
      Did you see the name Hales and Co written on the envelopes?

      Has the government made any accusations about sponging?
      How much sponging exactly?
      On what dates did the so called sponging take place?

      How do you know the brethren avoid tax and if so where is your evidence?
      How much tax? Do you have the figures all in your head?
      Do you have any valid documents regarding unpaid tax?
      Do you get satisfaction from making this all up?

      See - Just a sample of your baseless accusations thrown out.
      Devious and bitter people like you are not in a position to make such false claims.

      Leonardo J Octavianus

    2. Mr Leonardo,

      You make a long list of questions and comments aimed at me, which bear no relation to the context of my original post, but then that is a familiar method of the Exclusive Brethren, PBCC.

      You Say – “See - Just a sample of your baseless accusations thrown out.”

      Mr LJO, my post at 7 May 2014 10:28 was a list of some of the items aired & exposed in the ACA program. I did not make the program. I did not expose the details stated in my post of 7 May 2014 10:28 the ACA program did that !

      All I did was list some of the key items exposed in the program !

    3. Mr Leonardo
      One question for you.
      Brother Rev answers questions put to him in a reasoned and articulate manner. Why do you not do the same?

    4. Leonardo J Octavianus 8 May 2014 07:54

      Non sequitur http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Non_sequitur_(logic)

      Denying the antecedent

      Example :

      1.If Rev saw the cash himself.Then the cash existed
      2.Rev never saw the cash himself
      3.Therefore the cash never existed

    5. Nothing was exposed Rev because there was nothing to be exposed..
      Now run along and be a good boy.


    6. Way past your bedtime, John!

    7. LJO
      As you say 'We will understand if no genuine answer is forthcoming'
      Yes we will think of MONEY LAUNDERING

      If the EB in London allocated £500 to BDH in the May care meeting as a gift, it would be collected as pound notes on the Sunday 6am collection. What would then happen to the £500 cash?
      Please tell us as the locals are anxious to know that their money got to the boss and wasn't pocketed by GAC for repair work on the hidden way

    8. In 1963 in Birmingham and Banbury Mr Taylor said gifts should be sent as cash, not cheques, even when sent by post. See Ministry of J.T.Jr. Vol. 23 pages 68-69, and pages 162-163. “We get it in cash and we give cash.” His reasons for insisting on cash seemed to include the avoidance of book-keeping and also secrecy, or in his own words, “We keep ourselves out of sight as much as we can,” and “administrative matters are apt to get out in the public because somebody is not true. Things get out to the world, they may get out from persons who have come under discipline.”

      Why would he avoid book-keeping, and why did he want secrecy? And why not cheques?

    9. LJO aka John Handel aka Frank Carson aka PBCC Enforcement Ltd.

      It is a little unreasonable to expect answers to questions when you have a strange inability to answer any put to you. However, your carefully thought through defence and rebuttals, with contra evidence, is so clever that you might be missing your vocation in the legal profession. It is a pity membership of the PBCC Ltd limits your horizons in that direction.

      I understand the envelopes could have been pink and may have been supplied by Blakes' Envelopes of Yeovil, UK. (Incidentally, if you have a special job, they will supply to your specific requirements. All profits go back into the business, or to charity).

      I saw some cash the other day, but I couldn't honestly say it was the cash in question as I think it was circulating a bit.

      I hope this helps..

    10. Thank you for the timely statement Anon 18: 05 -
      Indeed - Trust it does help Rev to not make daft and untruthful statements. So far, not a shred of evidence presented to back-up his wild claims. Back to the drawing board for our not so happy chappy?

      Awfully sorry - I haven't seen any envelopes or cash either, so I can safely say our not so happy chappy is having a prolonged of waffle.
      So come on Rev - Give us a whirl and present some real facts for a change. All beginning to sound all so repetitive.

      My own question to you Rev -
      Do you think the pocket money we give our kids should be taxed?
      Awaiting your ramble -


    11. There is not much point in trying to argue about whether Brethren leaders have been paid in cash, because we know they have. There are plenty of eyewitnesses who have described it, including leaders themselves. Sometimes they have described illegally large sums being carried across national borders, and persons who were asked to do it illegally have confessed, one of them while being interviewed on TV. Sometimes the envelopes would just be laid on the seat reserved for the leader. We have published evidence from his own mouth that Jim Taylor liked to be paid in cash, not cheques, so as to ensure secrecy, and he did not want to bother keeping records of it. We have eyewitness reports of Jim Symington hoarding banknotes in glass jars in his basement, and credible reports of his buying land and agricultural machinery with cash. We have his circulated instructions to vary the monthly amounts to prevent the tax authorities from being suspicious.

      I have my own personal recollection of the question being discussed in a meeting, and the Brethren deciding the “gifts” should not be declared for tax purposes, arguing that it came from earned income so tax had already been paid on it. That spurious argument, of course, could equally have been used by a shopkeeper to justify concealing his revenue. That mostly comes from the taxed income of his customers too.

      A. J. Gardiner would not have approved. The only thing that puzzles me is that he did not challenge it or report it. Perhaps he just assumed all the other Brethren leaders were declaring their income.

      So it is immaterial whether or not Rev has seen the cash or the envelopes with his own eyes. There is plenty of evidence without his eyes.

    12. Would like to come in here, again, Mr John? Any evidence links you could let us have to show that none of the above is true...?

    13. John 9 May 2014 10:47 "Do you think the pocket money we give our kids should be taxed?"

      Once again, we see how exclusive brethren spokesmen,like John,show their inability to discuss and debate issues, without need of reverting to use of a logical fallacy

      John seems to conclude that small amounts of pocket money issued to children,can really be compared, as being the same thing, as large amounts of un-taxed cash,being passed back and forth between adults

      Is this perhaps what tends to happen with all people whom have remained within these cults and closed groups?.That they will lack ability to use analytic thought, so as to be able to provide objective conclusions.Its very sad to see. And must surely be rather embarrassing too, for these people, whom are obviously also very afraid to even dare venture into any personal participation, in current affair programs, that are regularly being aired on public media.

      And little wonder too.When we see how they revert to use of logical fallacy so consistently

  8. I am sure HMRC in the United Kingdom will take note of the manner in which EB/PBCC operate their tax arrangements in Australia. Are similar tax avoidance (tax evasion?) schemes being used by EB businesses in the UK to fund schools and minimise tax liability? As a UK taxpayer I have a right to know. Perhaps Peter Bone could ask a Parliamentary Question.

  9. The Questioner8 May 2014 at 08:38

    We now how the detailed rebuttal: http://www.plymouthbrethrenchristianchurch.org/media/press-releases/exclusive-brethren-a-current-affair-plymouth-brethren-response/

    There is a PDF - perhaps Laurie could upload it

  10. Do Benjamin Haslem and Michael Bachelard know each other - they both worked for the "The Australian'" at the same time?

  11. The EB kid themselves that the mog has direct telepathy or plumbing to Divine Wisdom, phrases like 'I only say what The Lord tells me'
    and 'the mog can't be wrong'
    So why do the EB not issue their own response without earthly PR advice
    Surely it would be more convincing and truthful, and not the mind of man