Mark Rathbun: Earle Cooley was bigger than life… (May 28, 2013)

Earle Cooley was bigger than life. He was a big, red-haired knock-off of L. Ron Hubbard himself. His gravelly voice was commanding. His wit was sharp. He was perennially listed in The Best Trial Lawyers in America. He could spin a yarn that charmed judges and juries and took  easy, great pleasure in viciously destroying witnesses on cross examination. After I had  interviewed Earle and reported to Miscavige, I arranged for us to watch Earle in action.  Miscavige and I flew out to Boston to see Earle perform in a high-profile art theft trial. We saw  him decimate a seasoned criminal government informant so thoroughly on cross examination  that the fellow, in a trademark Cooley expression, “didn’t know whether to shit or wind his watch.” Earle’s client — whom the government had dead to rights, and who was as unsympathetic a defendant as could be — was acquitted by the jury. We had found the horse for the course.

Earle was like a breath of fresh air to Miscavige. He took a similar black-and-white view of matters — we are right and good, the enemy is wrong and bad. Miscavige had long since lost his patience and his tolerance for our teams of civil lawyers and the civil-rights-experienced opinion leaders among them. He referred to them as the “pointy heads,” short for “pointy-headed intellectuals.” To him, our only problem was our counsels’ timid, second-guessing, defensive frames of mind. And Earle reinforced that view. Cooley attended a few civil litigation conferences with our other counsel. He ruffled their feathers by readily agreeing with Miscavige’s simplistic sum-up of what was wrong and the solution to it, aggression. The existing lawyers’ nervous objections and eye-rolling reactions to Earle’s sermons only reinforced Miscavige’s view. “They are nothing but a pack of pussies,” he regularly groused to me; “what we need is for Earle to sink his teeth into those Flynn witnesses and that’ll be the end of this nonsense.”

Rathbun, Mark (2013-05-28). Memoirs of a Scientology Warrior (p. 262-3).

Notes