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Old 03-09-2003, 01:05 AM   #1
DualCamCoupe
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Default Breaking News

ABILENE, TX--After 47 tense days, the standoff between Federal Bureau of Investigation agents and members of the Saturn Family was finally broken Monday when an FBI strike team invaded the Saturn compound and seized 23 cars with their owners inside.

Agents also captured Mark Schechter, evangelistic car dealer and self-described "Father of the Saturn Family," who offered agents good deals on trade-ins upon capture but who has yet to surrender any information on activities inside the compound.

"At Saturn, we're a different kind of car company," a handcuffed Schechter said as FBI officials led him away from the scene.

According to reports, shortly before 7:00 a.m., following a night of the FBI's blaring Three Dog Night's "Joy To The World" over loudspeakers, heavily armed agents posing as customers burst into the compound, where they met with little resistance.

"They were real nice, not pushy at all," said Kurt Harwood, one of the FBI agents. "They let me walk around and look at whatever I wanted without pressuring me or giving me the 'hard sell.' Fortunately, we were able to overcome them before they could 'answer any questions' that we had."

Saturn owners captured in the raid are being flown to Washington, DC, where they will be interrogated by FBI psychiatric profiling teams before being deprogrammed for reintroduction to mainstream society.

"They welcomed me warmly, as if I actually was a member of their family," recalled a visibly shaken young woman identified only as "Julie," one of the car owners rescued in the FBI raid. "After I bought my Saturn SL-1, there was a ceremony involving the setting of the dashboard clock, during which Mr. Schechter introduced me to the other family members and announced that it was my first new car. Everyone kept asking me if I was 'excited.'"

"Then," Julie continued, "the other owners started advancing upon me slowly, wearing happy, vacant looks. They seemed almost transfixed with joy. Mr. Schecter took a Polaroid of me. When it developed, they took it to a bulletin board full of similar photos. I recognized several of the faces as those of people around me. Then I realized--they weren't going to let me leave."

On day 11 of the standoff, Julie attempted to flee through a restroom window while she was supposed to be changing into the white linen raiment emblazoned with the Saturn logo which is used in the paperwork-signing ceremony of initiates. She was, however, caught and returned to the main showroom.

Julie's attempted escape was detected by FBI intelligence, and a rapid-response team arrived on the scene shortly afterward. But by that time the compound had been sealed off, and large orange "Closed for Inventory" signs greeted agents at the door.

It was not until Monday that the woman was finally freed. "Reliability and service are nice, but at what cost?" Julie said. "I will not trade my soul for fiberglass side panels."

Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco and Firearms raids on smaller Saturn dealerships in Idaho and Montana have produced evidence that activities similar to the ones described by Julie have been taking place across the country.

"We are pursuing several leads at this time," ATF Director John Magaw said. "But we do know for a fact that the Saturn Family has already infiltrated the fabric of our society to a startling degree. My sister owns one. My brother-in-law owns one. This thing is spreading."

Rumors currently being investigated by the ATF include accounts of ultrazealous Saturn delivery-truck drivers and sightings of a red sedan painted with mysterious occult markings driven by a man wearing a black satin Saturn jacket.

Reports of Saturnic rituals at a northern California compound, involving the burning of the Sign of Saturn into the foreheads of new owners, are also being investigated.

Saturn, a division of General Motors, has been under close FBI surveillance since the company was founded in 1990. The company frequently holds secret, dealer-sponsored barbecues at which new Saturn owners are further introduced to the mysteries of Saturn ownership, the most famous of which are held by a high-ranking Saturn Family member known as "Russ."

The company also holds annual "reunions," which are marked by mass pilgrimages of Saturn Family members from across the world. According to FBI files, some Saturn owners find the car-buying experience so satisfying that they apply for and are sometimes accepted as salespeople. Some eventually attain the honored rank of "dealer" but only after hundreds of hours of serving Saturn.

"Thank goodness for the FBI," said Andrea Aberg, another rescued Saturn owner. "Next time I'm buying a Honda."

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Old 03-09-2003, 08:44 AM   #2
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Ah yes The Onion article. Came out around the time of the Branch Davidian stand-off. Still a classic though

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Old 03-09-2003, 09:12 AM   #3
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Happy

Here is the original. Anyone who hasn't seen this should go here to see the graphics! :-)

http://www.theonion.com/onion3103/fbiraid.html

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Old 03-09-2003, 10:37 AM   #4
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hey Wbarnum, are you from Abilene?? Thats where i live, so it really threw me off to see my city's name, knowing full well this was just bs, it was still weird.
-B

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Old 03-09-2003, 01:46 PM   #5
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Quote:
Originally posted by MeaNGreeNSL2
hey Wbarnum, are you from Abilene?? Thats where i live, so it really threw me off to see my city's name, knowing full well this was just bs, it was still weird.
-B
Nope, Chicagoland. I left the article as I found it on the CarTalk web site.

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Old 03-09-2003, 04:49 PM   #6
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There was a MAD TV scit a few years back that involved welcoming a new driver to the saturn family, but I only saw it once (before I even thought about buying a saturn) and have been looking for it ever since I bought my saturn.

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Old 03-09-2003, 05:42 PM   #7
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the skit is called Saturnology. ive been looking for it for a couple of minutes but cant find it. i can find the dialouge but no the video. i would love to see it.

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Old 03-10-2003, 04:58 PM   #8
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Oh god ... that skit is such a riot .. and the dramatic music...

Ok, all kidding aside, I get that feeling sometimes. My sales associate who sold me my car kept on calling my parents house. After about two calls within a 4 hour period, I decided to call him back to see what the deal was.

He told me that after going through my "records", it has been a while since I had my vehicle serviced at that particular location. He wanted to "see how i was doing" but ultimately cut to the chase. Noting that I recently attended a Saturn Family L series launch, he told me about the various 2003 L series offers and rebates.

I suspect it will be harder to leave this cult than i imagined. Soon they are going to drag me off to spring hill and try to divert more of my income into one of their "car families".

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Old 03-10-2003, 05:15 PM   #9
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you *never* leave the cult of saturn...

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Old 03-10-2003, 05:24 PM   #10
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Quote:
Originally posted by eRic 96sc2
you *never* leave the cult of saturn...
lol thats the truth even when you dont even own one!

I remember that article it seems to come back a few times a year.

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Old 03-13-2003, 01:30 PM   #11
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Originally posted by eRic 96sc2
you *never* leave the cult of saturn...

You aren't kidding. Pete's pick-up truck is dying an ugly and expensive death, and I spent 10 minutes wondering out loud with his wife whether or not a VUE would be a suitable replacement. He needs to be able to lash his ladders on his vehicle, tote 300# of scrap metal occasionally and get materials out to houses (he installs gutters, and not just the cheap ones, we're talking copper gutters on historical homes, etc.).

Obviously a VUE wouldn't do the job, but I tried!

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Old 06-12-2003, 11:54 PM   #12
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I never saw it.

was saturnology repeated on Madtv? I tried to find the skit's dialouge (help swoker!) online but couldn't find it. All I could find was a reference to it being a skit on MadTV Episode #412 Season #4...

Anyone ever find the video? Someone still have the skit script? If you do, post it here or e-mail it to me... (probably best to post it here for all the future seekers to find-)

...
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Old 06-13-2003, 12:17 AM   #13
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If there is a variation to this (or you have the actual skit) please post it- I found this "summary" of "Saturnology"

Quote:
Saturnology:

Couple (Will Sasso, Nicole Sullivan) who purchase a Saturn discover that
Saturn is a front for a religious cult. At the end we discover its
an ad for Honda ("we don't care who you are; you just pay us and
take the car"). The couple is taken prisoner and the Saturn-ists
(Alex Borstein, Aries Spears, Phil LaMarr) start chanting "(a) different
kind of car, a different kind of people." This is making fun of the
fact that the Saturn company (actually, it's just a subsidiary of
GM) tries so hard to convince the public that they are sui generis
in the auto industry - they are the only company that treats their
workers fairly; they are the only company that you don't have to
haggle with because you just pay the sticker price and that's final
- that eventually, as is the case with so many companies that purport
to be "different" (Apple Computer is an excellent example, especially
in recent days) the company and its followers start to take on the
properties of a religious cult. (I'm still waiting to see if die-hard
Power Mac advocates start to drink cyanide-laced punch en masse.)
As such, this is an excellent parody of corporate culture and one
that is carried off well by the cast.
Just to add, i'm a die hard Apple advocate, but while I might be fully intent on being buried with my powerbook, I must protest the implication implied of Mac Advocates- we don't sing "kumbaya" sitting around a Mac Classic, and i've no intentions of drinking cyanide-laced anything! Although there was a very nice Starbucks White Choca Moca blend coffee at the last, Cult of the Holy Mac meeting... Uh-oh i've said too much- brother Steve is on to me-

Bye now!


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Old 06-13-2003, 01:14 AM   #14
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Anyone know where I can find a brand so I can have the Great Saturn Symbol (the classic rectangular one) scorched onto my flesh? Burning seems safer than a tattoo...

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Old 06-13-2003, 11:47 AM   #15
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That was good. Hadn't seen that before.

...
Step
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Old 06-13-2003, 07:46 PM   #16
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I remember back in the day when the series "Ellen" was still on ABC. There was one episode where her cousin bought a car called a "Rapture" and became a member of the Rapture family. It was an obvious play on Saturn ideals. Anyone else remember it?

Matt

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Old 06-13-2003, 09:45 PM   #17
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Was it Rapture or Raptor? I remember it being mentioned on the board before...

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Old 06-13-2003, 10:55 PM   #18
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Quote:
Originally posted by eRic 96sc2
you *never* leave the cult of saturn...

As long as we don't start passin out the cyanide flavored Kool-Aid we'll be OK

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Old 06-14-2003, 12:26 AM   #19
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Quote:
Originally posted by THX712517
Was it Rapture or Raptor? I remember it being mentioned on the board before...
I could've sworn it was Rapture...it would make more sense as well.

Matt

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Old 02-23-2004, 09:03 PM   #20
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Sorry to dredge this upf from who knows where... I just seen the skit repeated on comedy central... I was like what the H....

Comes in with a dictionary like manual, saturn guy at the door. "Have you read the book of Saturn?"

Or the wife says "It's just a car" and the woman slaps her.

LOL and the picnic! You will take a 6 day tour of the Saturn factory and reprogramming facility lol.... man where are all these cool activities now that I have a saturn???

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