As recounted in the Haggis piece, in September 2010 the church sent two flacks and four lawyers to the New Yorker offices at 4 Times Square in a grand effort to respond to those questions and to see if they couldn’t dissuade the editors from publishing the piece.
The meeting lasted about eight hours. The Scientology team, outfitted in sharp suits, frequently giggled as Mr. Wright defended his sources. The church representatives presented charts that detailed everything they perceived to be wrong with the story, based on what they knew about it from the fact-checking questions. Tommy Davis, the church’s lead spokesman at the time, would often interrupt Mr. Wright’s references to the church leader, saying, “you mean Mr. Miscavige, Larry, Mr. Miscavige.”
“He had a pie chart of the 971 questions we’d sent him,” Mr. Wright said, recalling the meeting during a recent interview at the Random House offices. “The pie chart showed that 59 percent of them were false.” He let that sink in. “They’re questions! How do they fall into the true-false category? It was bizarre to me.”
At that meeting, the church presented Wright with 48 binders of information that Wright later used to expand his New Yorker piece into a book on Scientology.
The article is a good contrast to the Atlantic’s latest brush with Scientology.