Thursday, May 23, 2019

Travis Walton Saw a Giant Black Triangle UFO, but Apparently Forgot to Mention it.

On May 22, 2019, Tucker Carlson's program on Fox News carried a cute little puff piece about a UFO Festival being held in Pine Bush, New York.

One of the people at the UFO festival was Travis Walton, the famous "UFO abductee" who was allegedly held by the aliens for five days in 1975. When asked by the reporter if he had seen anything since then, Walton replied,
It was February 19, 2014. A giant black triangle came over, stopped right over the top of us. Rotated 90 degrees, and shot off toward the ocean. It was quite amazing because I didn't believe anything that big could actually fly.
Walton does not say where this alleged sighting occurred, or who else was with him. Walton has been on numerous UFO programs and panels since 2014, but has somehow forgotten to mention this sensational,  dramatic sighting.

Travis Walton describes seeing a giant black flying triangle in 2014.

I posted this information in the Facebook group UFO Updates, which contains some of the most knowledgeable and active current UFO researchers. Everyone else seemed to be as surprised to hear this as I was.

Tucker Carlson's commentary stated, "Big news tonight! Finally, after many decades, the Pentagon has officially confirmed what has long been obvious: they are in fact, and have long been in fact, investigating UFO sightings." This represents To The Stars' "spin" on the Pentagon UFO matter, and is a gross exaggeration of the facts, as I explained in the previous entry

Tucker Carlson recyclesa long-debunked photo of a contrail that was supposedly a UFO.
Carlson's commentary was illustrated by the long-debunked photo of a black contrail that is supposed to represent a 'genuine UFO.' Tucker Carlson needs to be more skeptical about claims made by UFOlogists. Nick Pope and other UFO proponents have appeared on his show several times, but he has never interviewed a UFO skeptic.

Wednesday, May 1, 2019

Did the Navy Just Admit that UFOs are Real?

Well, Tom DeLonge says that they did!

In the past few days there has been quite a storm over the Navy's announced "new guidelines" for reporting unidentified objects. A story by Bryan Bender in Politico on April 23 says,
The U.S. Navy is drafting new guidelines for pilots and other personnel to report encounters with "unidentified aircraft," a significant new step in creating a formal process to collect and analyze the unexplained sightings — and destigmatize them.

The previously unreported move is in response to a series of sightings of unknown, highly advanced aircraft intruding on Navy strike groups and other sensitive military formations and facilities.

Analysis of "Go Fast" IR video from To The Stars Academy
 And our old friend Tom DeLonge is giving full credit for this change to lobbying by his To The Stars Academy. He wrote on his Facebook page on April 23,
This is a DIRECT RESULT of @tothestarsacademy’s quiet efforts coordinating briefings to the Legislative and Executive Branch, working with the Navy and others at the highest levels to help create an architecture for dealing with the reality of UFOs. Chris Mellon, Chairman of the TTSA ADVISORY BOARD, worked for the greater part of the year on this breakthrough National Security Policy—- And yes, this is an admission that these Unidentified Aerial Vehicles are real, and @tothestarsacademy organized this entire effort. Thank you to everyone for believing in us... But, there is much more to come.
And there were many breathless stories gushing on about the supposed significance of this. In one, Thomas Gnau asked in the Dayton Daily News (for which the Air Force's Project Blue Book was a local story),
The U.S. Navy is updating guidelines for pilots who encounter unexplained aerial phenomena or unidentified flying objects — known everywhere as “UFOs.” Can the U.S. Air Force be far behind?
But not everyone was swept up by the excitement. John Greenewald asks in the Black Vault, "What Does That Mean?". He notes that Navy and CIA documents seem to be concerned with "unidentified aircraft," rather than "flying saucers" or UFOs. Greenewald has been scrutinizing statements made by Luis Elizondo and other TTSA officials, and has found them to be hopelessly confused and inconsistent. His candor has apparently made him quite unpopular in certain UFO circles. Of course, those are the people who aren't interested in facts, they want to defend certain irrational beliefs.

We have a sober analysis of the question from Mick West over on the excellent Metabunk:

there's a rush of media stories about this. The problem is they all seem to be conflating two things:

A) The statement from the Navy
B) The spin from TTSA

And then presenting B (the spin) as if it's something official. It's not. All we have that is official is a very reasonable statement about

1) Planned (but undescribed) new guidelines for reporting unauthorized and/or unidentified airspace incursions.
2) Some briefings on the dangers of these incursions by the Navy to some congressmen and/or their staff.

Note the first thing there: "unauthorized airspace incursions." That basically means a plane flies into a region that it should not be in. The Navy Document OPNAVINST 3770.2L calls it a "spill-in". Note in this new press release they say: "the Navy and the USAF take these reports very seriously and investigate each and every report." So clearly the reports they talk about are not considered "career enders" (as some have suggested). These are reports that are already being made, and are being taken seriously, and investigated. All that seems to be happening now is an improvement to the way in which such incursions can be reported.

For better or for worse, we will be hearing a lot more about Tom DeLonge and TTSA in the months to come. The "History" Channel recently announced,

Former Government Officials disclose new information in an effort to change Government Policy about the potential threats UFOs pose to U.S. National Security
We find this information on the TTSA website:
 Now, as a part of HISTORY’s groundbreaking new six-part, one-hour limited series “Unidentified: Inside America’s UFO Investigation™,” Elizondo is speaking out for the first time with Tom DeLonge, co-founder and President of To The Stars Academy of Arts & Science and Chris Mellon, former Deputy Assistant Secretary of Defense and Intelligence, to expose a series of startling encounters and embark on fascinating new investigations that will urge the public to ask questions and look for answers. From A+E Originals, DeLonge serves as executive producer.

Says DeLonge, “With this show, the real conversation can finally begin. I’m thankful to HISTORY for giving the To The Stars Academy team of world-class scientists, engineers and intelligence experts the opportunity to tell the story in a comprehensive and compelling way.  I think everyone that watches the show will walk away with questions answered and a feeling of, “wow, I get it now.”’
 The first episode is set to run on May 31. Expect to hear nonsense piled high and deep when that happens.

Thursday, March 21, 2019

The Anti-Gravity Lawsuit

Robert Kiviat was the producer of the famous Alien Autopsy TV program and many other far-out programs. First, he profited from the extremely high ratings of the Alien Autopsy program, then he produced a program debunking his original alien autopsy, which also got high ratings. He also produced programs on prophecies, ghosts, and "Aliens on the Moon." Kiviat now is suing certain individuals and organizations for money that he says they owe him for his work on anti-gravity systems.

The first person named in the suit is Joseph Firmage, a onetime Silicon Valley multi-millionaire (now apparently former multi-millionaire) who might be said to have founded the first "To The Stars" venture with his International Space Sciences Organization (ISSO) in 1999, which lasted only eighteen months. According to American Antigravity,
In 2001, a California defense contractor built a small replication of the Nazi Bell device, and it produced effects just as Igor Witkowski and Nick Cook had reported on the original project. The Nazi Bell replication was built by SARA under funding from Joe Firmage’s ISSO startup, and developed around an applied engineering model of Einstein’s Unified Field Theory. In short, it was a modern attempt at a scale replication of the original Nazi Bell experiment, based largely on their interpretation of the original Bell design. The Nazi Bell replication is important because it offers validation for the research of Igor Witkowski and Nick Cook, but also because it demonstrates the application of theories proposed by Dr. James Corum and John Dering that offer explanations for not only the Nazi Bell experiment, but for the Philadelphia Experiment and the Hutchison Effect as well. In short, these are Unified Field Theory effects, which explains their strange side effects and unpredictable nature.

The Nazi Bell replication that Coruma and Dering participated in was related to WW-II German research, but the modern replication had been financed by Joe Firmage’s ISSO startup for about 1.2 million dollars, and wasn’t an exact replica of the original device. SARA’s version was much smaller (about 100 watts) and they’d modified the design, since they didn’t actually know many of the details of the original Bell’s construction (emphasis added).
The author's photo of Joe Firmage in 2000 with Betty Hill and
"Junior," her supposed alien abductor, sculpted by Marjorie Fish.
The so-called "Nazi Bell" is a supposed prototype Nazi "super weapon" developed in secret during World War II. According to some, the Bell was the power source behind Nazi flying saucers. Of course, there is no real evidence that such a "Bell" ever existed, or that Firmage's ISSO built one.

In September, 2000, Firmage sponsored a by-invitation-only conference, Encounters at Indian Head, to look at the famous alleged UFO abduction of Betty and Barney Hill. This conference, in which I participated, was "secret" at the time, and was only "declassified," so to speak, several years later, when its proceedings were finally published.

Firmage teamed up at least briefly with Ann Druyan, the widow of Carl Sagan, in a venture, "One Cosmos." This sounds so much like To The Stars that it makes me wonder if they copied One Cosmos in their business plan. (At the time, I contacted Ms. Druyan to suggest that a partnership with Firmage might not be a wise idea, but she replied that she had her eyes open and was not too concerned.)
OneCosmos, under the leadership of Joe Firmage and Ann Druyan, is forming a new type of visionary alliance of partners in finance, science, learning, media, and entertainment to create an "integrated experience network." Our canvas is an Internet portal, a studio, and a press. With them, we aspire to demonstrate convergence of remarkable and responsible learning and entertainment.

Our success will be measured in three ways: commercially in return to our employees and shareholders, ideologically in our commitment to the intellectual and spiritual nourishment of humanity, and in the remarkable things the founders will do with their personal equity. 
The venture was not financially successful. Some of Firmange's other weird ventures include ManyOne Networks, Intend Change, International Academy of Science and Arts (InterNASA), and Motion Physics, none of which seems to have been particularly successful. 

Here is an excerpt from Firmage's presentation to a "Planetwork" conference in San Francisco back in 2003.  
Our mission is about the possibility that we will be able to explore the Milky Way galaxy in an interstellar spacecraft within your lifetime. Our mission is about helping to enable a renewal of human civilization, and Nature as a whole.
Motion Sciences Organization is therefore truly a public enterprise and if we're successful, the proceeds yielded from technologies sponsored by Motion Sciences will be given back to humanity through select philanthropies. As a not-for-profit 501(c)3, our success in these missions will be dependent upon the support of visionary sponsors and citizens of Earth. People like you. We have a goal for the 2001 calendar year: engaging the support of 100,000 citizens of Earth, becoming members of the Motion Sciences Community...

The theoretical group within Motion Sciences has operated for two years as the California Institute for Physics and Astrophysics (CIPA), and is led by Dr. Bernard Haisch, formerly of Lockheed-Martin, whose work in this field is an outgrowth of NASA Research Contract NASW-5050, "Inertia and Gravitation in the Zero-Point Field Model" (1996-2000) awarded to the Lockheed Martin Advanced Technology Center. This contract in turn resulted from a seminal paper published in 1994 in the journal Physical Review A entitled: "Inertia as a zero-point field Lorentz force" by B. Haisch, A. Rueda and H. E. Puthoff. Based on work carried out at California State University at Long Beach, the Lockheed Palo Alto Research Lab, and the Max Planck Institute fur extraterrestrische Physik in Germany, a significantly new insight into the nature of mass was proposed in that paper. Thereafter, work under the NASA contract published in subsequent papers confirmed and indeed strengthened the proposed connection between inertial mass and the quantum vacuum. In recent years, the explorations of the relation between mass and the quantum vacuum have been extended with possibly significant insights into the nature of gravitation. Possible implications of this and of a rapidly widening body work in the domain of quantum vacuum physics are that: It may be possible to generate propulsive forces without the ejection of material propellant or reaction masses.

It may be possible to extract energy from the quantum vacuum. Both inertial mass and gravitational mass may be electromagnetic phenomena, which would open the door to the possibility of manipulating inertia and/or gravitation.
Note that the work of Hal Puthoff, "co-founder and Vice President of Science and Technology" of Tom Delonge's To The Stars Academy, is cited here. That 'free energy from a vacuum' (or "Zero Point energy") is one of his main claims.

More recently, Firmage claims to be developing an anti-gravity, faster-than-light propulsion system, and he has a video promoting it. It supposedly will provide not only anti-gravity lift, but faster-than-light travel. Suposedly the device entered functional testing in October, 2015. However, no further information about it has been released.

Joe Firmage with his Anti-Gravity device. (from his video)

Kal Korff interviewed Kiviat about the lawsuit:
"because I had been investigating the latest anti-gravity research developments, I was amazed that Pandolfi definitely was supporting the activities of controversial UFO researcher and “Contactee” Joe Firmage. Firmage when approached, eventually offered me a position that would not only afford me the opportunity to document the supposed anti-gravity breakthrough Pandolfi was supporting. But also I’d be in a great position to determine its veracity” [said Kiviat].

Soon after Kiviat signed the employment contract with Firmage, Firmage expected Kiviat not only to plan a six month public roll-out of the device which Firmage was supposedly inventing, leading to a live demonstration; but Kiviat was also expected to develop and sell the network television series that would tell the Joe Firmage anti-gravity story, and also the story of the Aviary UFO history as seen through the eyes of Pandolfi. But it gets even better! Pandolfi, through his closest operative, also wanted Kiviat to tell the incredibly bizarre story of how his Pakistani wife allegedly from Kashmir, purportedly arrived on Earth via a “inter-dimensional portal,” and other tall tales which would be hard for even Hollywood to make up.
Kiviat has even started a GoFundMe page to "Help My Lawsuit To End Govt. UFO Secrecy." Kiviat's  GoFundMe page offers additional explanation of what this lawsuit is all about:
I began talking with a company called InterNASA, directly with its CEO (former Silicon Valley millionaire and entrepreneur Joe Firmage) who told me he was being backed by Ron Pandolfi, the aforementioned top CIA scientist.  Firmage also claimed to be on the verge of proving "gravity control" was a reality.

After Firmage had assured my attorney he had secured the necessary operating capital, I accepted a contracted employment position to run the company's news, PR and overall media division.  But when my dedicated work, covering many critical aspects of the company's activities, went unpaid for many months, and the prototype "gravity control" device stalled in development, I investigated and found out that Pandolfi - who ran something called the CIA's "weird desk" - has seemingly been orchestrating a disinformation operation all along known as a “flytrap” scheme,  where honest people's skills, talents, and in my case, considerable TV and media experience, are usurped and played with, somewhat maliciously, without any concern for proper financial compensation to those involved... Presently, [former Congressman] Marriott is only covering "technical improvements" on InterNASA's "gravity-control" device, motivated by Pandolfi, with the exception of a  $5000 payment to me which Marriott's lawyers now claim  was "just to be nice."  

Since Pandolfi is essentially the one CIA science officer who’s also widely thought to be the keeper of America's most  guarded UFO secrets, I decided to file the civil lawsuit to not only receive the substantial contracted employment salary arrears InterNASA currently owes me - which I sorely need with one teenage son about to enter college and another soon thereafter -  but also use the vast power of the Court of law as a result of this legal action to get to the bottom of the UFO enigma and what our government actually knows. 

As of this writing, Kiviat has raised $320 out of a targeted $250,000, which means that he is well over  1/1000 the way to his goal. We hope that Kiviat succeeds in smoking out all of the CIA's deep secrets about UFOs.

In recent years, Firmage seems to have fallen on hard times. He continues to pursue business ventures, but apparently without a lot of success. Firmage was arrested for DUI in February 2011, in June and again in  November 2013, and in March 2014. In 2016 Joe Firmage and his mother filed for bankruptcy to avoid the sale of jointly-owned real properties. His venture Manyone Networks apparently did not pay its employees for about a year. Even if Kiviat does get a judgment against Firmage, it doesn't seem likely that he could collect very much.

Saturday, March 16, 2019

AAWSAP Meets the SERPO hoax

Yet another weird thing has surfaced. Perhaps many of you recall the SERPO hoax that first surfaced in  2005. Tom Delonge, founder of To The Stars Academy, knows all about SERPO. In accepting the 2017 UFO Researcher award at the International UFO Congress, Delonge said,
I’m just like you guys. I spent 20 years up all night, reading about Roswell, Dulce, Serpo, Churchill, the crashes here, Nazis building craft there, Antarctica, what’s on Mars, what’s on the back of the moon, and structures and anomalous this etc. I mean, I’ve done it all. I know it all. I read all the same authors as you guys, hundreds of books. I look at all the same sites. I listen to all the Coast To Coast stuff that you guys do. I’m the same.

The SERPO story goes like this:
the survivor [of the Roswell crash] provided them with the location of its home planet and continued to cooperate until its death in 1952. The alien provided information regarding the items found inside the crashed UFOs. One of the items was a communication device that it was allowed to use, contacting its home planet.
Fake alien image, supposedly from SERPO.

A meeting was set for April 1964, when an alien craft landed near Alamogordo, New Mexico. Upon retrieving the bodies of their dead comrades, the extraterrestrials engaged in an information exchange that was carried out in English, thanks to the aliens’ translation device. One thing led to another and in 1965, the aliens accepted to take a group of humans back to their planet as part of the exchange program. Twelve military personnel were carefully selected for a ten year stay on Serpo. The ten men and two women were specialists in various fields and their task was to gather as much information as possible, regarding all aspects of life, society and technology on the alien planet. They were three years late and four people short when they finally returned in 1978. Two men had died on the alien planet. One man and one woman had decided to stay. The journey to Serpo, located 37 light years from Earth, took only nine months aboard the alien craft.
Needless to say, the story is total bollocks, as the Brits would say. The reason this is coming up again right now is because of the people involved. One of them is Richard Doty, a well-known UFO fabulist, which is no surprise. He has confessed to supposedly providing disinformation to the poor, mad Paul Bennewitz on behalf of the Air Force. (I say that Bennewitz (1927-2003) was "mad" because he was literally using tinfoil to keep out alien thought rays, even before he had any contact with the Air Force.) Although in my view it's much more likely that Doty was operating as a free-lance disinformation agent, telling B.S. stories to Bennewitz for his own inscrutable reasons.

But two other names are indeed a big surprise, especially in the present-day context of UFOology:
  • Christopher ‘Kit’ Green, M.D. (CIA Analyst, retired)  "Kit is also a close and long-standing friend of Rick Doty, who he talked about with unguarded warmth and respect, though he was forced to admit that sometimes Rick's actions could be both puzzling and frustrating ... at a Denny's restaurant back in 1986 he, along with physicist Hal Puthoff and computer scientist and ufologist Jacques Vallee, distilled what they knew about the subject into what has become known as the 'core story.' Simply put, the core story, according to Kit, is this: "The ETs came here, maybe once, maybe a few times. Either through accident or design, the US Government acquired one of their craft. The only problem was that the physics that powered the craft were so advanced that for decades we humans have struggled to understand it or to replicate it." (quote is from Mark Pilkington's book Mirage Men, p.278-9. From the Unidentified Aerial Phenomena blog.)
Hal Puthoff (left), and Kit Green, from a video posted by Radio Misterioso.
Why this is surprising is that both these people were contracted to write papers for AAWSAP (AATIP), the Pentagon's once-secret but now-famous UFO program. Puthoff is "co-founder and Vice President of Science and Technology of TTS Academy," and their all-around go-to guy for weird physics. Here is a collection of SERPO-related emails from 2006 involving Doty, Green, Puthoff, and others. Maybe somebody can explain to us exactly what is going on? Some of these comments sound quite suspicious, to say the least:
Green to several others: "How much did you two guys tell this lady about Hal, Rick, Kit...use our names ever? Say what we were doing with the Team of Five? Give our backgrounds or credentials? Any of our emails?: (p. 8).
Bill Ryan writes to Green: "Remember: WJ, Shawnna xxxxxxxx and “Valhall” (real name xxxxxxxxxxx, “Springer”s wife) also know your involvement in the team of five. All three will be harboring grudges." "Springer" is a well-known moderator on Above Top Secret (p. 12).

Green writes to the others: "I don't know who besides the two of you know that Hal, myself, and Rick are working an issue together on Serpo (with the two of you...who are mysteriously missing from the addressee line.) No one else...ever in the entire period has ever sent a note like this linking specifically the three of us, and just the three of us. Not even Sarfatti knows, or Dan, or Collins, or WJ. Until now, maybe." (p. 12)

Green writes to the others: "to the extent this is a true story (SERPO) that is, and that at LEAST 50% is true...mixed with 50% untrue (to allow plausible deniability, as is done officially all the time) and that there is a "battle" going on with some of the insiders now being in power to stop the SERPO release officially" (p. 29). "For the nth time, and for the nth time on summary remains the same: SERPO is not is a hoax because it looks like a hoax, smells like a hoax, feels like a hoax. But it doesn't WALK like a hoax; it "walks" like someone is in or has access to official capability, or knows very advanced IT technology to legally appear they do...and may be engaged in something we simply do not understand. An Alternative Reality Game....purposely inserting memes and engrams in the collective consciousness by using a viral marketing model...fits 100% of the data I have seen. It may even be legal..and it may only be us who ends up thinking that the hurt it causes people is unethical. (p. 30).

Green writes to the others: "Well, if Hal and myself are "OUTED" we sure know who caused that, don't we?" (p. 39)

Green writes to Doty and Puthoff: "I have lost a great deal of trust in the ability of the team to either keep secrets, do what we say, and more." (p. 65).
Green is obviously very concerned about "who knows what we are doing here?" Frankly, this smells quite suspicious. Note that the website the "Team of Five" is worried about is, which is a site debunking the SERPO story. According to Shawwna at that website, "The "Team of 5" consists of: Christopher 'Kit' Green, MD, Harold Puthoff, Richard C. Doty, Victor Martinez, and Bill Ryan  In other words, they are frantic to find out 'who has been leaking information about us to the debunking website?' Puthoff and Green owe us a very good explanation of their role in the SERPO hoax and the "Team of Five" if they want to be taken seriously.

(Thanks to Curt Collins for research assistance on this and the previous posting.😃 The story of the Anti-Gravity Lawsuit will be in the next posting.)

Friday, March 15, 2019

Bigelow's Other Haunted Ranch, and More Zondo Boo-Boos

Most everyone has heard about the so-called "Skinwalker Ranch" near Ft. Duchesne, Utah, where weird paranormal events supposedly happen all the time, but somehow a bunch of smart guys with expensive cameras and state-of-the-art electronic equipment couldn't seem to capture anything over a period of several years. The ranch was purchased by the famous UFO magnate Robert Bigelow so that the people in his National Institute for Discovery Science (NIDS) could investigate it. They ended up with a lot of exciting stories, but little else. See the book, The Hunt for the Skinwalker by Colm Kelleher and George Knapp. (A 2018 documentary of that same name adds little.) In 2016 Bigelow sold the ranch, cryptids and all, to a corporation called Adamantium Real Estate, LLC, whose description says that it provides "recreational facilities" and "special events" for "social entertainment purposes." However, "for business purposes the owner of Adamantium Real Estate has to remain anonymous." Reportedly a forthcoming documentary will reveal the new owner, but this has not been confirmed. Today a lot of effort is going into promoting the Skinwalker "mysteries," but that's a story for another day.

Former senator Harry Reid, who appears to have created the Pentagon's Advanced Aerospace Weapon System Applications Program (AAWSAP, sometimes also AATIP) as a favor to his longtime campaign contributor Bigelow, said according to reporter George Knapp that "part of the [AAWSAP] focus was on a mysterious ranch in northeastern Utah, a property once owned by businessman Robert Bigelow."

According to Ancient Astronauts magazine in 1978, Jacques Vallee
might actually be the mysterious Count of Saint Germain.
The eternal Jacques Vallee has published a fourth volume of his life story Forbidden Science, which covers the 1990s. (Amazon has a long preview excerpt from this book, which might not be available to readers outside the US.) I have read the previous three volumes, and strongly recommend them to anyone interested in the history of UFO and paranormal investigations. I called Vallee "eternal" as a kind of tribute to his longevity and seeming permanence as an active UFO investigator. His career of sixty years is surely one of the very longest ever. But the suggestion was earlier made that Vallee is actually the mysterious and famous 18th Century Count of Saint Germain, who claimed to be some kind of ancient alchemical immortal. Ann Shapiro wrote in the January, 1978 issue of Ancient Astronauts magazine that Vallee might literally be the current identity used by Saint Germain, "a mysterious creature with superhuman powers." I really doubt that's true, since Vallee looks quite a bit older than he did fifty years ago. But maybe that's just to trick us? 😏

The reason I brought up Vallee is that the main point people are taking from that long excerpt from Volume 4 (I haven't had a chance to read all of it yet) is his discussion of Bigelow's other Haunted Ranch, the Mt Wilson Ranch about 180 miles northeast of Las Vegas, Nevada, which Vallee visited. I had not heard of this ranch before, and apparently hardly anyone else had, either.

According to some, lots of spooky stuff is going on at Bigelow's Mt. Wilson Ranch. Tables float in the air, and strange entities menace visitors. People are reacting as if Vallee had revealed some secret place known only to "insiders." I'm wondering how "secret" some place can actually be when it offers rooms for rent to the public? I trust that some enterprising investigator will soon book a vacation up there, then give us a report on the spooky things that did or didn't happen.

How "secret" can Bigelow's other Haunted Ranch be if it is renting out rooms to vacationers?

We reported last October how, when To The Stars went to Rome to meet with Italian UFO groups, good old Luis Elizondo, their supposed authority on UFOs, made numerous major boo-boos when talking about the famous Washington, DC UFO flap of 1952. Well, Zondo has done it again. His article "Enter The Quantum World: What The Mechanics Of Subatomic Particles Mean For The Study Of UAP, Our Universe, And Beyond" was posted on March 5. It dramatically reveals how little TTSA's go-to UFO expert, Luis Elizondo, knows about the UFO subject. In it he makes the usual sort of weird science claims like "Quantum physics helps us explain the behavior of UAP" (Quantum!!!).

But what is really revealing are his huge blunders concerning UFO history. Zondo informs us,
With Project Blue Book, the U.S. Air Force compiled reports of tens of thousands of UFO sightings over 17 years. But in 1966, another Air Force committee published the Condon Report, which concluded that most of the sightings examined were explainable.

Then the 2017 DoD disclosure occurred, directly contradicting the findings in the Condon Report.
Let's see: While it's true that Project Blue Book operated for seventeen years, earlier U.S. Air Force projects (Project Sign and Project Grudge) began in 1947, so the Air Force actually investigated UFOs for a total of 22 years. But more significantly, Zondo writes, "in 1966, another Air Force committee published the Condon Report." First, the Condon Report was prepared and published by the University of Colorado, under contract to the Air Force, not by an "Air Force committee." Dr. Edward U. Condon was a physicist at that university. The report was published in 1968, not 1966. These were not extemporaneous comments by Elizondo, but from a published article, which he obviously did not properly research.

But the most absurd is his claim that "DoD disclosure" happened in 2017. The Defense Department did not "disclose" anything in 2017. All that happened in such matters in 2017 was that Elizondo and a few others who were knowledgeable about the AAWSAP began to talk about it publicly. The program does not appear to have actually been classified, although its existence was not announced to the public. To The Stars claims to have chain-of-custody documentation for the DoD's supposed release of those three blurry infrared UFO videos they are so proud of, but nobody has ever seen such documentation, and the DoD denies ever having released any such thing.

As for the AAWSAP, it's not even clear if its purpose ever had much to do with UFOs. The only deliverable that AAWSAP is known at this time to have produced are thirty-eight papers on weird physics, none of which have to do with UFO investigations. So nothing has actually been "disclosed," except by TTSA itself, and by now we have all seen how credible their information isn't.

(Next: AAWSAP meets  SERPO, then later a very strange anti-gravity lawsuit).

Sunday, January 20, 2019

We Learn More About AATIP - and it's Filled with Woo!

Australian Keith Basterfield has now given us a close look at a briefing document prepared by AATIP, the Pentagon's recent UFO investigation program set up by Senator Harry Reid, and apparently for the benefit of Robert Bigelow. These documents appear to have been leaked from "a certain US website maintained by a team member of the To The Stars Academy (TTSA)" (other sources name this person as Chris Mellon).

The most interesting slide is this one. It shows that AATIP was firmly planted in the zone of fantasy science, not the real world.

"Slide 9 From Outer Space." From the AATIP briefing document (from Keith Basterfield). 
So, AATIP says that "the science exists" for "Psychotronic weapons," that we need to defend ourselves against. One website describes "Psychotronic weapons" as 
any other unacknowledged or as yet undeveloped means inflicting death or injury on, or damaging or destroying, a person (or the biological life, bodily health, mental health, or physical and economic well-being of a person) through the use of land-based, sea-based, or space-based systems using radiation, electromagnetic, psychotronic, sonic, laser, or other energies directed at individual persons or targeted populations or the purpose of information war, mood management, or mind control of such persons or populations.
The silver lining is that "psychotronic weapons" have not been shown to exist. Their use has been alleged (for example, against U.S. diplomats in Havana), but such allegations have never been proved. Conspiracy-oriented websites are filled with accounts of supposed government "mind control," and the best defense against "psychotronic weapons" is apparently a tinfoil hat. AATIP is convinced that such weapons do exist, or could be developed, and they want money to work on this.

My favorite is: "Anomalies in the space/time construct." Think about that one: supposedly some enemy might bend space and time, and kick us back into the Jurassic era, or perhaps into some distant galaxy via a cosmic wormhole. They actually believe this. Since Einstein it's been known how to 'bend' space-time: get a huge chunk of mass.  A few solar masses should suffice. Compress it into an unimaginably dense state. AATIP has never explained how they, or anyone else, might do this, let alone control it.

"Penetration of solid surfaces" is another knee-slapper. This brings to mind an actual such experiment undertaken in the Pentagon. We read in the first chapter of Jon Ronson's 2004 book, The Men Who Stare at Goats:
Gen. Stubblebine
This is a true story. It is the summer of 1983. Major General Albert Stubblebine III  [1930-2017] is sitting behind his desk... He is the United States Army's chief of intelligence, with sixteen thousand soldiers under his command...

Am I ready? he thinks. Yes, I am ready. He stands up, moves out from behind his desk, and begins to walk. I mean, he thinks, what is the atom mostly made up of anyway? Space! He quickens his pace. What am I mostly made up of? he thinks. Atoms! He is almost at a jog now. What is the wall mostly made up of? he thinks. All I have to do is merge the spaces. The wall is an illusion. What is destiny? Am I destined to stay in this room? Ha, no! Then General Stubblebine bangs his nose hard on the wall of his office. Damn, he thinks. General Stubblebine is confounded by his continual failure to walk through his wall. (p. 1-3)
AATIP informs us, "DoD has been involved in similar experiments in the past." Indeed they have, although Gen. Stubblebine is not credited. What AATIP is apparently telling us is: General Stubblebine was right, it is possible to penetrate solid surfaces and walk through walls. (An interesting piece of UFO trivia: Albert Stubblebine was married to Rima Laibow, a psychiatrist well-known for her work with supposed UFO abductees.)

"Unique cognitive human interface experiences." These are weasel words, but probably they are talking about ESP, out-of-body experiences, etc. Who knows what they really mean?

"DoD controls several facilities where activities have been detected." Note the use of the passive voice - this is not something that DoD is doing, but someone or something else is in control. What "activities" have been detected? Aliens? Ghosts? Psychic spies?   Perhaps the esteemed Mr. Elizondo could answer some of these questions for us?
AATIP ends the slide, and presumably the presentation, with the quote, "What was considered "phenomena" is now quantum physics." As Deepak Chopra would say, "QUANTUM!"

In any case, we now know what kind of 'advanced science' AATIP and TTSA are referring to. And it's the usual wacky woo stuff we find on the fringes of science, where extraordinary claims are not challenged and proof is not required. We've seen all of this before - and properly rejected it.

Wednesday, January 16, 2019

"Project Blue Book" Flatters the Flatwoods Monster - Episode Two

Could the second episode of the monumentally misleading Project Blue Book on the "History" Channel possibly be as bad as the first? As has been said before, "Second Verse, Same as the First!"

Dr. Hynek and Mr. Malarkey find radiation while investigating the Flatwoods Monster.

Last week I presented a partial list of absurdities in the first episode. Here is this week's list:
  • Dr. Hynek did not travel to West Virginia to investigate this incident. In fact, Project Blue Book did not perform its own investigation of the Flatwoods case, but only collected a few press clippings.
  • Witnesses' eyes were not "burned," and there were no physical symptoms in anyone.
  • Debris from an alleged 'spacecraft' were not found in the woods. Nothing was found, and no object was "removed.".
  • The ground was not radioactive. 
  • The whole town did not show up and threaten to lynch the principal UFO witness, or to at least to tar-and-feather her.
  • There was no witness in a psychiatric hospital, and nobody killed themselves over this.
  • The woman whose role some have termed a 'lesbian angle' with Mimi Hynek turns out to be a Russian spy, spying on Blue Book.
  • When the boy is supposedly looking at Mars in a small telescope, they set up the telescope backwards. It is pointing at the ground, not the sky, but nobody seems to notice this.
Joe Nickell's illustration of what the witnesses
reported (left), and what they  actually saw (right).

If you want a credible account of the "Flatwoods Monster" incident, it isn't hard to find. Joe Nickell, CSI(COP)'s sole full-time researcher for lo these many years, wrote up the results of his investigation in the Skeptical Inquirer, December, 2000. The reported UFO was obviously a meteor, noting that "the fireball had been seen on a relatively horizontal trajectory in various states." So, like the Kecksburg "UFO crash" in 1965, the Flatwoods "UFO" was not just a local sighting, but actually a distant object high above the earth, seen across a very wide area. As for the "monster," Nickell agrees that it was probably a large owl sitting on a tree branch, and he sketched an illustration suggesting what they actually saw.

UFO promoters Leslie Kean and Ralph Blumenthal,  wrote the much-cited New York Times article on December 16, 2017 that first publicly revealed the recent defense department UFO investigations launched by then-Senator Harry Reid, "Glowing Auras and 'Black Money.' They have a new UFO article in that august publication. It is about this program, Project Blue Book. They write,
The History series predictably sensationalizes and overdramatizes case investigations and the historical figures involved, adding many story elements that simply never happened. It’s already hard enough for those trying to understand the truth about government involvement with U.F.O.s without mixing fact and fiction. Nonetheless, melodrama aside, the real story is there.
What is interesting is the commentary by Mark O'Connell, author of The Close Encounters Man, a biography of Hynek. He has suggested that Hynek must be spinning in his grave because of the distortions and inventions this series. O'Connell writes on his Blog High Strangeness UFOs that he got a "surprise email" from Leslie Kean just before her latest article appeared in the New York Times, asking if he could fact check a couple of questions concerning Project Blue Book for her. He shares them with us, and I was astonished to find the following among them:
Q: Did Hynek ever crash in a plane while recreating a UFO dogfight that had been reported by a pilot?
A: That's a big NO!
Q: Did Hynek ever see what looked like an alien body floating in a tank in a secret facility, and take photos of it?
A: That's an even bigger NO!

Seriously, I never expected Leslie Kean to be as credulous and foolish as this, and so ignorant of UFO history. She seriously thought that these things might be true? It looks like I have overestimated her. (My review of her popular UFO book is here.) O'Connell says, "[Kean] has as big a problem with this show as I do, and she's going to say so in the New York Times! Halleluja!!" (emphasis in original). Unfortunately, the mild statement I quoted above seems to be as far as Kean's "big problem"with the show extends. Indeed, Kean says that "‘Project Blue Book’ Is Based on a True U.F.O. Story.". Well, loosely-based. Very loosely. She seems happy to accept any crazy thing that will promote public belief in UFOs.