October 15, 2013

Saucers Over Albuquerque

a farce in three acts


**

Assumed Redemption
(being the preface to act 1)

by James Carlson

Some men dream of Valhalla in the heart, a mounted beast they can hope to control only with the most bestial of acts and the celebrations of their remembrance.  Others create their own personal mythologies, preparing symbols for their diet and their daily routines, hoping to learn how to survive the worst of the world along the way.  Men of conscience, on the other hand, may find themselves walking briskly along a thin road to either conflict, dust rising into the future and hiding the path forward while masking the past.  Memories assume direction without reference.  As a result, only a desperate few will ever be worthy of the dreams their lives will eventually preface for the rest of the world.  They create a vicious disregard in their hearts and write out their own lives amidst the pages of a world unimagined.

These are the elements and conditions that map the origin of the stories and legends we try most urgently to remember in the darkness when a quiet, calm world sleeps and predators howl.  Even on strident courses set aside for us by anxiety and sorrow, the huge majority of men are only rarely significant outside of their own surroundings, while the twisted aggregates of their intent and its corruptions are even less so.  This is why we repeat the stories that we learn and the tales told of earnest men and great and worthy dreams.  We measure out in painful breaths the uncertain value of those enigmatic thoughts borne by such men and the pitiable personae we have sketched out and adopted to describe them as if they were ours alone and not merely the tasteless leavings of other men’s lives.  It is an expression of our arrogance to believe them original and to call them our own.  They are not.  They are merely a handful of scattered enigmas vying for our short-lived yet nonetheless starving attentions.

It is precisely because we are unoriginal and suggestible that we all too often owe our dreams and our dilemmas to the feckless men who follow behind those rare few worthy of our symptomatic regard.  This is, in fact, our worst quality, the most ungracious description of the human character.  We try so hard to live the dreams of other men that we forget how to create dreams of our own.  This cultural amnesia ultimately forces us to rely on unnatural and ultimately meaningless tales for the sustenance of heart our temporal lives demand, allowing them entrance into minds and emotions that represent the undefined legacy of our species.  Once there, they flop and scuttle before us like breathless fish at the bottom of a boat next to a couple of cracked sinkers and ugly, wretched bits of worm and cricket, and the milky scales of day-old snappers.  It is our suggestibility that makes them real, not some natural and inborn quality possessed by the measurable habitations of life.

The stories we absorb are just poor reflections of what were once the steps of an unknown dance that left only footprints behind, soon scattered in the wind, and yet, they nonetheless help us to navigate our culture and the development of our values if we can only hold firm and refuse to define them as some kind of modeled template of our lives.  Complacency is necessary, not sacrifice and belief, for only complacency allows us to focus our attentions on what we can do, not on what we can imagine.  One example of the need for such complacency is represented by the Disclosure issues currently being sold to dreamers and madmen by shameless reprobates throughout every nation in the world where the word “UFO” has come to mean something other than an undefined anomaly in the sky.  Disclosure is defined and reconditioned to meet the expectations of men and women who cannot possibly reach a consensus based on real knowledge of real events, and yet it is being used to shape political desires and potential national policy.  It is an arrogance that yields only to the imagination.

                                                                                                                               

Most of the world is aware that the Full Disclosure beggared by the irresponsible optimism of wishful thinkers to the ultimate fate of the universe has already revealed its most curious and penetrating secrets.  Nonetheless, we forever debate the social implications of aggressive incontinence, and fool ourselves into believing there might be something alien yet rational hidden away in decades-old government briefing memorandums just waiting at the bottom of some steel-layered safe at the Pentagon for that one properly worded query amidst a stack of the new FOIA requests for the week.  That’s why so many continue to send those relatively pointless requests out once a month like some religious responsibility, week after week, over and over again.  Each time a FOIA request finds its way to the post office, it’s wrapped up in expectations that the response will be different this time.  Maybe that single word in paragraph six that was changed at the last minute will find favor with another faceless Admin rep.  It’s certainly possible that there’s a new classified materials officer at Edwards AFB, and this guy just might interpret our intentions with a friendlier attitude than the last three appointees.  Maybe whoever he is will finally send us the records that we’re so obviously referring to instead of those damned garbage histories that keep talking about Venus waxing with the waning moon.  Maybe this time …

 

These are the easy lessons – things we’ve learned from experience and unchanging response.  We already know the color and the flavor of its debris, and we immediately recognize its true value.  You see, the flying saucer hunters are no longer primed with cameras and videos as they used to be, and this tells us something important about intent.  Maybe this new aspect of gathering wool has come about because they’ve finally caught up with Hollywood FX, and are still unable to prove the point or improve the outcome.  They used to tell us that in the future everyone will have a camera, and the proof of UFOs from outer space will become more apparent as a result.  Today, both corporations and governments assure us that the 24-7 video record of our environment is a necessary, albeit violent, investment of privacy calculated to improve the quality of our instantaneous and oppressive security, and yet nothing is clearer than the primary tenet of our new Church of the Saucer:  outside of criminal enterprise, there is nothing very interesting for us to examine.

We’ve finally cornered the future within the weeks and months of our lives and we have discovered that nothing has changed.  In typical response to this world weary principle, the predators now conduct their hunts in the pages of old newspapers and magazines and amongst the faded words of FOIA documents that are older than the USAF.  This too has repercussions, of course, easily discovered within the pages of a new dogma, and just as easily defined:  in the future there won’t be any more secrets.  According to what passes as the new wisdom, this ultimate truth will finally and for all time be readily apparent, as if all we had to do was convince some guy with the appropriate security access who happens to be more than a little annoyed with the IRS to speak up a bit louder into the hidden microphone and change world history with a whisper.  Pay no attention to the man in the closet, and never forget:  this revolution’s gonna be televised.

Every kid in the third grade demands his own You-tube account, while the old farts who know exactly how much the best kept secrets are really worth tell themselves in that shady bit of twilight that spins the world around just before new sleep dims old intent that they’d spill whatever the rest of the world thinks qualifies as the beans in a heartbeat for a small fistful of goddamn antacid that really works. 

Somewhere in Ohio, an eight-year-old kid playing with his sister’s spandex leggings is watching Alien Autopsy on his Dad’s DVD player and 60-inch flat screen and thinking to himself, this is so corny – I bet I could do it better on my laptop.  And he’s not lying, either.

Across the street, the battle-hardened trio who tried to get a neighborhood UFO Watch club started, but couldn’t generate enough interest to schedule regular meetings has decided to rest what’s left of their hopes on the supposition that their dreams were somewhere recorded and co-opted and will someday be brought out into the light.  For them, the truth can only be approached after it’s been talked about between midnight and four on nationwide talk radio or exhibited across the screen on what used to be the History Channel.  Meanwhile, educated men greet such presumptions with rigid contempt and a little sour laughter.

Unfortunately, the world has been forced to listen to this silly little tune for far too long, and none of it has ever really changed, forcing us to examine its evolution in the splendor of its stillness and its uncompromising refusal to grow into something worth the energy necessary to redirect our national gaze.  Take a deep breath.  Hold it.  Exhale.  Now, in this single moment, this aggressive second of future reckoning, reconcile yourself to everything that’s unremarkable in life and recognize therein the true face of UFOlogy:  it is worthy of attention only when it’s marketable with a profit margin exceeding the investment of reasonable and well-focused contempt.  There.  That’s your first lesson on how a toss-off theory of economics can dictate the value of anything – even your own worthless hallucinations.  If you’re starting to think that maybe your emotional investment in this odd little world of UFOs and flying saucers and alien abductions just off the highway of poisoned impressions and slaughtered cattle bleeding out into the hot, red brick clay of a cracked valley where the rivers dried up long ago might have been too time consuming in your youth to enable any real objectivity today capable of keeping your blood pressure consistent and low, then you should probably go grab yourself a nice, cold beer and some of those generic cheese puffs in the 50-pound bags, ‘cause you’ve got some serious catching up to do…

 

60-years of man’s complete and utter failure to wrestle the flying saucer out of its natural reverie of folk tales and myths into groundbreaking reality has forced the world to abide with a somewhat weaker intent to discover the rare and unknown than in centuries past.  In a way, this is fitting, since UFOlogy, in its most general and aggressive terms, has been relegated to the dreariness of a poor history lesson.  The most fanatical or heretical of its judgments are raised to interpret events that can no longer produce witnesses, because so very few have survived the intervening years.  That’s one reason it’s become so popular amongst the starry-eyed glitterati to embellish new UFO claims on old USAF history in order to create a reality that few critics are willing to apply their disgust to so evenly.  For 60-years they’ve been buying twenty different tales of Roswell being sold by con-artists with the gross mentality of incompetent thieves, and they respond by cursing the CIA, the USAF, and the rest of the Department of Defense for refusing to tell them what really happened.  Meanwhile, the CIA, the USAF, and the rest of the Department of Defense fail to respond with anything approaching the expected reconciliation of rumor, having dismissed those making such demands decades ago.  These are lessons children could understand, and yet the UFO proponents are still confused, blaming governments for their own stupidity made plain in their refusal to adopt one of the most popular and easily understood philosophies of human existence yet devised:  examine carefully before buying!

Claims invented in the library need no accompanied resplendence to amaze and bewilder – they just need another badly faked signature so you think it might represent actual history.  As a result, UFOlogy has been enclosed within the same theoretical structure as Jack the Ripper, leaving its adherents no closer to an answer than those who insistently ask the world aether for the Ripper’s true identity, while expecting, of course, no serious or cogent response.  It’s now very clear that the greatest and most violent discussions produced under the aegis of world-wide UFOlogy concern events and the interpretation of events that occurred decades in the past.  UFOlogy now encompasses ancient history, precisely because it cannot find relevance in current events.  When there is nothing new under the sun, what, exactly, is there left to discover?  Similar to the nearly extinct Martians in Roger Zelazny’s A Rose for Ecclesiastes, it appears that we can always learn a little something from ancient man’s contemplation of futility.  And not unlike the Old Testament’s Book of Ecclesiastes, the Second Law of Thermodynamics makes all things equal through time, while heat death cleanses the universe of responsibility.

Hell, even the unconscious yearnings of the UFOlogical mind make its definition as a history lesson obvious to those caught up in the examination.  Full Disclosure, the single most sought after goal of UFOlogy’s most fanatical adherents, is encompassed within the passive desire for its justification, the importance of its existence to those desiring enlightenment.  Full Disclosure will justify the daily yearnings and the wasted nights of true believers most noted for replacing knowledge with faith.  Government secrets will finally vindicate their pre-teen assessments of this tiny bit of galaxy we call home, and shrink the Universe to a manageable size and dimension.  The intolerable laughter of human peers will finally fade out like the end of a laugh track queued to the closing credits of our own cartoon episode of The Ghostbusters Meet Scooby Doo on parade.  In the words of Mike Good, a columnist for UFO Magazine, Disclosure “is our last hurrah, right before we UFO aficionados say, ‘I told you so’ to all of those friends and family who poked fun at us and called us weirdoes and finally become, in Nick Redfern’s words – sorry Nick, I’m paraphrasing here – completely redundant and irrelevant.”  Disclosure, in other words, is the justification of belief that has failed to provoke any meaningful response outside of ridicule.

Mike Good

The connotation here is oriented in terms usually reserved for religious enlightenment, which is important to understand, given that Disclosure possesses a fundamentally secular definition.  Disclosure is simply the admission by the United States government that the truth behind UFOs and flying saucers is a story of extraterrestrial influence worldwide that has been known and classified by the Department of Defense for the past 60-years.  In other words, Disclosure is the reinterpretation of history.  This whole argument of religious tone and human development is based on the insistence of a few that their interpretation of history is correct, and the history known to the rest of the world is wrong.  60-years of UFOlogical failure is reinterpreted as UFOlogical success when the U.S. government finally admits that all of the paranoid secrets emblazoned, tattooed, and then branded by UFOlogists onto the psyche of America is not the effect of the commonplace and unexceptional collection of variables that the great majority of evidence indicates it is, but is instead the extraordinary causal effects of alien creatures, alien cultures, and alien technology.

Disclosure states nothing definitive about human existence today.  It’s merely the reinterpretation of human history undertaken to prove that UFOlogists were not wrong about Roswell, Minot AFB, American nukes and UFOs, aliens at the Pentagon, and a hundred other non-events that were bought and sold years ago.  It is simply the United States government’s validation of UFO claims that it has always rejected.  Disclosure is the release of classified materials proving that UFOlogists were right and the rest of the world was wrong.  Unfortunately, because the rest of the world was not wrong, and because UFOlogy is all too often the refuge of liars, hoaxers, the mentally ill, the mentally deficient, the uneducated, and the easily convinced, and because the U.S. government doesn’t really care about UFOs or those who believe in them, such a Disclosure will never occur.  And if something akin to Disclosure does occur, the results of that singular examination of classified knowledge will never be accepted as complete or honest by those who expect the past 60-years of UFOlogical failure to be exonerated, and thereby redefined as UFOlogical success.  As Mike Good says, “Disclosure:  It is the Holy Grail.  It is the culmination of all those years of cogitating about UFOs.”  When that “Holy Grail” is nothing more than the realization that authoritative historians – or the revelation of new FOIA documents – do not meet the expectations of those lobbying for that new lease on their desires and beliefs, those who are so eagerly awaiting their view of that “Holy Grail” will need to look at themselves a little deeper – not their government.  After all, there is nothing more certain than the fact that these UFOlogists are no longer looking for UFOs – they’re just looking for people to tell them they were right about their interpretation of events that transpired 60-years ago, or 50-years ago, or 40-years ago, or yesterday.  They demand that their shattered beliefs be repaired by the rewriting of history, which is essentially all that Disclosure really is.  At its heart, it’s just another word to justify the whining that all too often accompanies failure.   

Disclosure – the Holy Grail of UFOlogy – will supposedly solve all of the problems that UFOlogy’s many frequent failures have made so plain to the rest of the world.  When the USAF discloses all it knows about UFOs, the flying saucers at Roswell will finally become historically significant instead of the collection of folk tales and comedy routines that it represents today.  Disclosure will finally turn Robert Hastings’ silly musings, distorted reports, impulsive and obsessive lies, and nonsensical syllogisms about technologies he is completely ignorant of into the attendant usurpation of military strategies designed to bring about a new age typified by a fact-based approach to nuclear power and weaponry.  It will rewrite Robert Salas’ complete and utter lies, redefining them as lessons taught to us by the more advanced and infinitely more understanding aliens with a mission to protect us from ourselves.  With the onset of Full Disclosure, the tale of man’s search for meaning within the wallets of his neighbors – an object lesson warning us of the pain that can follow mental illness and its toleration for unprovoked supposition – will turn into the unified redemption of Stanton Friedman’s numerous, evolving claims regarding our government’s response to the birth of alien intervention in man’s affairs.  That’s all Disclosure really is: assumed redemption.  Remember, please, and attend to that single definition.  Disclosure is primarily the redemption of those who are wrong, as collected within their irresponsible rewriting of human history.  It’s what happens when mankind uses witchcraft to turn its failed search for God into our successful encounter with the body politic.  For the most part, it is always used in reference to a future event, and as such, it can never actually occur (which is a blessing without disguise for those like Richard Dolan, Bryce Zabel, Robert M. Collins, Robert Hastings, H. R. Phillips, Robert Salas, Stephen Greer and many, many others who are currently selling it worldwide).  Disclosure is simply a means of making money by selling ideals and the byproducts of wishful thinking amidst the assurance that wrong is right. 

Di$clo$ure is a profit-motivated system designed to treat the psychic wounds of those who refuse to accept the promise that their futures will be ordinary.  It is intended to address the fractured impressions of UFOlogy left behind at the culmination of the USAF’s investigative apparatus, Project Blue Book, the decision to shut down that money pit having been reached upon the Department of Defense’s conclusion that there was nothing important, substantiated, or reasonable to investigate and no cause for the Pentagon to pretend otherwise.  You might keep that in mind the next time you see that your dreams of flying saucers, unprovoked aggression, and alien manipulations have also been dreamed by others, and that these others have added a price tag to the tail end of them in order to flag down your lapsing attention.  And the next time you read one of those revelation-promising tomes wherein the world is buggered once again by hoary-eyed mystics riding unpronounceable, viciously lucid machines far too close to your damp and hidden face for you to decide whether they truly exist in a time that dances to the music of matter or are merely a preface to those dreams you have yet to spill, you might remember for one quiet, brief moment the true character surrounding UFOlogy’s aggressive intent:  only the first hit is free.

**

Soon to debut at this fine venue:  SAUCERS OVER ALBUQUERQUE:  A FARCE IN THREE ACTS ; Paranoid and Delusional (being act 1)







June 19, 2013

Science Rejected: Another Hastings Con Job at UFO Chronicles


By James Carlson

Robert Hastings

UFO researcher Robert Hastings recently published an internet article at TheUFOChronicles.com entitled “Science and UFOs: Part 1 – The Condon Committee Con Job” that has – like the spontaneous erosion of mental acuity at a frat house every time someone screams beer run! – been reprinted at every UFO website in the market for free copy without any real concern for content. It’s another of Hastings’ standard rants addressed to the base of UFOlogy, one intended to elevate the worth of his name to a population of readers more than willing to trust his ethics and believe his claims for one reason and one reason alone: he tells them exactly what they want to hear. He does so, in fact, confident that few will ever challenge his claims, let alone conduct an honest hour or so of basic research to determine whether the extent of his sincerity can be measured in the quality of his claims. Had they been inclined to do so in the past, they would have discovered long ago how irresponsible he is with facts, how willing he’s been to distort the claims of witnesses, and how eager he is to insert his own unchecked, and ill-conceived personal contributions into UFO accounts merely to increase that false sense of credibility in an environment already considered lethal to such commonly valued standards of integrity. It’s like a bad comic trying to merge the local drunk’s steamy leavings with one more example of pop culture’s endless aperitifs.

The primary source Robert Hastings uses to address his alleged Condon “Con Job” issue is the testimony of Dr. James E. McDonald, a highly flawed individual who, like many others, allowed the UFO issue to consume his better instincts. He was once a reasonably successful scientist who was published regularly in well-respected scientific journals and compendiums throughout his career, the only exception being the entire period encompassing his UFO assessments and studies. During that period, he wrote nothing at all that science-oriented journals were willing to be associated with. They refused en masse to publish his claims and conclusions, because he was unable to support them with anything even approaching the use of standard, scientific methods. He could not even articulate the means by which one could test the assumptions he willingly made throughout the remainder of his life. The reasons for this are obvious. Although he was a gifted physicist, McDonald had little intuitive comprehension of human psychology, and was unable to differentiate between the varied levels of “truth” inherent to witness testimony. And let’s be very clear: UFOlogy is nothing but witness testimony. McDonald’s solution to his little quandary was to accept that everything he was told must be true. And like many others trying to find complex technical solutions to relatively uncomplicated psychological problems, it wrecked him. He could have saved himself a lot of very personal grief if he had simply monitored a few college courses on trial law and observed a few legal disputes in action. Instead, he took it all too personally with disastrous results, because he couldn’t figure out what was actually going on around him every day of the week. UFOlogy didn’t need physicists – it needed folklorists and historians who were well-equipped and willing to focus on formative religions during periods of technical and social uncertainty. McDonald might have saved himself a world’s worth of grief if he had simply stepped back from the brink of his own despair, dropped the study of UFOs completely, and spent a few months of private study and self-reflection with somebody like Carl Jung, who had tried so hard to unravel the spastic convulsions typical of human myths, dreams, and symbols.

Dr. James E. McDonald

McDonald’s frustrations in the budding field of UFOlogy, his perceived failure to validate what he insisted must be true, and his inability to do anything at all that might eventually vindicate his reputation eventually led him to commit suicide. Robert Hastings not only accepts everything this man essentially failed to prove as if it were already validated fact, he even refers to McDonald as “one of the very few scientists to actually study the UFO phenomenon”, an incredible distortion of reality that he’s completely unable to establish, primarily because he’s so grievously wrong. Most educated Americans can unravel this twisted assessment for themselves by merely conducting the simple fact-finding exercises that those who publish Hastings’ tripe should conduct for themselves before giving voice to these ridiculous fictions. Dr. James E. McDonald was not “one of the very few scientists to actually study the UFO phenomenon,” as there have been many, one example of which is the same Condon Committee he’s attempting to discredit. He was, however, one of UFOlogy’s first failures, primarily because he lacked the means to adjudicate the worth of human testimony. In a world in which human testimony is the only evidence available, the willingness to believe is a handicap. McDonald’s failure and his inability to come to grips with that aspect of his research is proof of that.

In addition to McDonald, Robert Hastings once more evokes the contents of a memorandum dated August 9, 1966, that the Condon investigative committee’s project coordinator, Robert Low, originally drafted to convince two undecided members of the University of Colorado administration to accept the Condon UFO study contract offered by the USAF. It was undertaken to persuade the University administration to accept a contract that every other investigative body, university, and college had already refused to accept for the very same concerns held by the individuals Low addressed his comments to: that nothing of scholastic, let alone scientific worth could ever come about as a result of accepting such a contract. Low believed that the publication of such a study could eventually bring the University a level of common renown that it was very much lacking at the time, and he was willing to suggest how the acceptance of such a study should be interpreted by those still undecided. He was allaying fears, not outlining policy. Given the fact that those who were involved in the research and investigations necessary to reach valid, scientific conclusions were completely unaware of the contents of that memorandum, and had, in fact, already adopted a scientific and completely ethical approach to the Condon UFO study that was supported not only by every scientist involved, but by every scientist who later examined that very issue, it’s a bit disingenuous of Robert Hastings to suggest that policy was being determined. Dr. Edward Condon, a well-respected scientist who had been involved with the Manhattan Project during World War Two, was completely unaware of the memo’s contents and was blindsided when McDonald questioned him about it. At the time, Dr. James E. McDonald knew more about its contents than Condon did. Low’s memo, in fact, was a complete non-event in regard to any possible influence it may have had on the conclusions reached by the University of Colorado UFO Project. Even Dr. J. Allen Hynek insisted that Robert Low’s memo was insignificant, and shouldn’t be used to reject Condon’s assessment of UFOs. Hastings is often very good at neglecting important details while adamantly refusing to discuss or mention anything that presents sufficient information to reach a valid, knowledge-based conclusion; it is his modus operandi, one that he has resorted to for most of his career in a sad attempt to suggest credibility that does not otherwise exist.  He’s like a prosecuting lawyer who presents only that evidence that suggests motive and opportunity in relation to the defendant, while neglecting to tell the jury that the defendant was at home eating Chinese fried chicken at a family reunion of 60-people when the crime he’s accused of took place.  He tells obvious lies of omission, yes, but they are also remarkably stupid lies of omission.  Unfortunately, he’s considered something of an authority in a field that doesn’t really concern itself with credibility.  Well, good for him.

Given that a panel of the National Academy of Sciences, one of the oldest and most respected scientific organizations in the world, was charged “to provide an independent assessment of the scope, methodology, and findings of the (University of Colorado) study as reflected in the (University’s) Report”, I hardly think Robert Hastings’ paranoid and baseless whining is even necessary, let alone reasonable. After all, the National Academy of Sciences was given a congressional charter to properly assess questions of science and provide functional advisement to the government of the United States in regard to those questions, while Hastings merely lectures to mostly ignorant audiences while refusing point blank to answer detailed questions or otherwise provide sufficient information to correct that ignorance, thereby ensuring the outcome of an accurate and educated conclusion.

The UFO panel’s report can be found at http://project1947.com/shg/articles/nascu.html. Among its findings are the following points:

1. “In our opinion the scope of the study was adequate to its purpose: a scientific study of UFO phenomena.”

2. “We think the methodology and approach were well chosen, in accordance with accepted standards of scientific investigation.”

3. The National Academy of Sciences reviewing panel concurred with the Condon UFO study’s conclusion that there is no basis for the contention that the subject of UFOs is “shrouded in official secrecy”.

4. The National Academy of Sciences reviewing panel concurred with the Condon UFO study’s conclusion that “the history of the past 21 years has repeatedly led Air Force officers to the conclusion that none of the things seen, or thought to have been seen, which pass by the name of UFO reports, constituted any hazard or threat to national security.”

5. The National Academy of Sciences reviewing panel concurred with the Condon UFO study’s finding that there is no reason to suggest that the investigation of future UFO sightings might “contribute to the advance of science”. In recognition of this, they recommended the Department of Defense handle reports of UFO activity in the context of “normal surveillance operations,” without necessitating the use of special investigative units such as Project Blue Book.

6. The National Academy of Sciences reviewing panel concurred with the Condon UFO study’s finding that there is no need for the federal government to “set up a major new agency … for the scientific study of UFOs”.

7. The National Academy of Sciences reviewing panel concurred with the Condon UFO study’s finding that “nothing has come from the study of UFOs in the past 21 years that has added to scientific knowledge.”

8. The National Academy of Sciences reviewing panel concurred with the Condon UFO study’s finding that associated “important areas of atmospheric optics, including radio wave propagation, and of atmospheric electricity” are of fundamental scientific interest, and “are relevant to practical problems related to the improvement of safety of military and civilian flying.” For this reason, “scientists with adequate training and credentials who do come up with a clearly defined, specific proposal” should be supported.

9. The National Academy of Sciences reviewing panel also concurred with the Condon UFO study’s observation that UFO reports and beliefs may also be of interest to “the social scientist and the communications specialist.” For this reason, “scientists with adequate training and credentials who do come up with a clearly defined, specific proposal” should be supported.

10. The National Academy of Sciences reviewing panel concurred with the Condon UFO study’s conclusive observation that there appears to be “no reason to attribute them [UFOs] to an extraterrestrial source without evidence that is much more convincing.” This extends as well to the study’s conclusion that “the least likely explanation of UFOs is the hypothesis of extraterrestrial visitations by intelligent beings.”

11. The final conclusions reached by the National Academy of Sciences reviewing panel are balanced and orderly: “We are unanimous in the opinion that this has been a very creditable effort to apply objectively the relevant techniques of science to the solution of the UFO problem.”

It should be evident that Robert Hastings is somewhat handicapped when it comes to determining the value of any evidential support for or rejection of his claims. His refusal to address any balanced arguments whatsoever tends to result in exceptional failure, particularly when it becomes necessary to examine that failure in the context of properly interpreted evidence, the responsible application of which Hastings has shown a marked contempt for.

The National Academy of Sciences reviewing panel even sought the input of Dr. James McDonald, making an aggressive effort to review a number of reports the Condon Committee had neglected for one reason or another to review. The panel nonetheless approved of every conclusion to every argument the UFO study took into account. Does Robert Hastings believe that the National Academy of Sciences was also party to the egregious cover-up that he accuses the Condon Committee of perpetrating, or does his noteworthy paranoia in regard to scholarly assessments prevent him from reaching a balanced interpretation of Condon’s UFO report? There seems to be little doubt that something irresponsible and contrary to the well-assessed disciplines of scientific endeavor seems to have taken place somewhere between the National Academy of Science’s contemporary review of the Condon Committee’s study and Robert Hastings’ near clownish criticism of the same. It’s almost like he decided well in advance of his published condemnation that he wouldn’t even read the panel’s review accompanying the publication of the study’s report.

Upon a thorough examination of Hastings’ assessment of Condon’s study, it’s hard not to conclude that Hastings’ primary grievance with the University of Colorado’s UFO Study is somewhere tied to his outrageous claims that the USAF had insisted in advance that Condon’s study reach a very specific conclusion that would allow them to publically disown any further interest in UFO phenomena. A more balanced examination, however, shows us almost immediately that the USAF didn’t need Condon to reach the conclusions that the National Academy of Sciences also concurred with wholeheartedly. The fact is, the conclusions Condon reached had already been publically affirmed two years prior to the UFO study that was undertaken, making Hastings’ charges of a whitewash sheer lunacy – one more paranoid take of an issue he has proven himself both incapable and unworthy of examining with any real honesty.

Dr. Edward Condon and LBJ

What we’ve got here is just another case of whining by a UFO researcher who refuses to accept conclusions that the National Academy of Sciences found perfectly reasonable to adopt upon its examination of the very same issue. What we’re actually looking at is merely another attempt by UFO proponents to rewrite and reassess ancient history in a vainglorious and ill-advised attempt to whitewash their own past failure to properly address these same issues. It’s no accident that the only real evidence being presented in support of continuing UFO studies is, to a great extent, little more than the reinterpretation of decades-old accounts. The reasons for adopting such a seemingly self-defeatist strategy should be obvious. Since 1947, UFOlogy in general has defined the very character of failure, part of which is due to the previously referred to yet nonetheless habitual refusal of those attempting to promote these cases to examine all of the evidence available instead of merely those elements supporting the possibility that UFOs are somehow worthy of our attention. The fact that new cases, for the most part, have proven to be relatively easy to dismiss with real cause leaves those promoting this abject assessment with few options outside of rejuvenating older cases after their somewhat justifiable dismissal from further assessment many, many years ago. Attempts to refocus current interest on paranoid concerns that the reexamination of incidents 20 to 60 years ago supports the contention that UFOs are interested in nuclear weapons facilities is merely more misleading crap on the windmills, a desperate bid for undeserved attention that less flawed investigators dismissed years ago. Robert Hastings’ arguments aren’t new or original; they’re merely sour propaganda based on incomplete cases, the unbalanced consideration of available data, undisguised contempt for the fruits of actual science, and the repressive, illegible scrawls of men like Dr. James E. McDonald, who ended up killing himself when his obsession started to ruin his life, tear apart his family, and destroy what scholastic reputation he had somehow managed to foster before jumping on a bandwagon that he wasn’t psychologically equipped to encounter with any real sense of grace.

Perhaps this is why Robert Hastings has in the past found it necessary to invent or distort evidence, to lie about his witnesses’ statements and the conclusions reached on their basis, and has presented fraudulent claims thinly disguised as UFO testimony – all of which he has done repeatedly and liberally over the years. As a result, I hardly think his credibility is anywhere near that of the National Academy of Sciences (or the Condon Committee, for that matter). After all, they have over 200 Noble Prize recipients to rely on, while all Robert Hastings has got is a little sad experience promoting a hoax – and doing so in the absence of any ethical or educated assessment. It isn’t appropriate or honest, and he hardly qualifies as the expert witness called upon to reassess historical points of view regarding matters he doesn’t understand, is ill-equipped to examine, and has no intention of doing so with the open mind that science demands of both its critics and its champions.

In other words, he’s produced one more plaintive cry in the wilderness that we can safely and properly ignore as a complete waste of time.







October 1, 2012

The Aggressive Pursuit of Ignorance


(More Attempts to Establish UFO Claims by Neglecting the Details)

By James Carlson

Wikipedia LogoTim Hebert [see: http://timhebert.blogspot.com/] should be congratulated for attempting (and, for the most part, succeeding) to chronicle the recent attempts of UFO-nuke proponents to establish a case of UFO interference with nuclear missiles at Malmstrom AFB in March 1967 by recounting the most doubtful of their claims under new titles accessible via Wikipedia. Given a field of play that resulted in a great many changes to the published content over a relatively short period, Hebert’s desire to report progress in a chronologically lucid manner could not have been an easy task, but his perseverance resulted in an interesting and somewhat enlightening series of articles published on his blog.

Hints of the attempts by the unknown researchers were first accorded some attention in the Comments section of Hebert’s July 14, 2012 blog entry “The Oscar Flight Mystery: A Tree Falling in a UFO Forest” [see: http://timhebert.blogspot.com/2012/07/o … ng-in.html]. This recounts attempts to publish two articles on Wikipedia, “Oscar Flight UFO/Missile Incident” at http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Oscar_Flig … e_Incident and “Echo Flight UFO/Missile Incident” at http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Echo_Fligh … e_Incident. Both attempted to establish full flight failures of the missiles at each of the two flights (ten missiles for each) coincident to UFO sightings over the silos of each.

Establishing credibility for the claims must have seemed like an easy task for whomever the ultimate author(s) were, given Wikipedia’s liberal policy of reader participation in what is generally thought to be an associate editor role. Unfortunately, the author(s) were less acquainted with the need for accessible references required, and ultimately these attempts proved to be more damaging to the cases they were trying to illuminate than originally anticipated. As a result, the Echo Flight article, after a short period of debate, was ultimately deleted in full. Due to the fact that there are no references clearly insisting that the missiles at Oscar Flight did NOT fail, the Oscar Flight claims were allowed a further period of respite. It was eventually decided that the issue did not deserve an article of its own, and the the information was instead merged with the general article about Malmstrom AFB [see: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Malmstrom_ … O_incident]. Anybody interested in reviewing the entire process, as well as the arguments applied should not neglect the “Talk” pages running in tandem with all of the Wikipedia entries. A great deal more information has been published there [see: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Talk:Malms … Force_Base].

 
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Filed under: UFOlogy,UFOs — Tags: , , , , — James Carlson @ 7:55 pm




April 28, 2012

How to Demand Redress By Shooting Yourself in the Foot


Upon reading Robert Hastings’ most recent article — “Science and UFOs: Part 4 – Sincere but Uninformed Skeptics Have Been Duped by Skeptical Inquirer Magazine”, online as usual at UFO Chronicles — the daughter of a close friend of mine asked me if Hastings was truly as dishonest as I have often maintained.  It’s a good question, one that social responsibility intermixed with a desire to inform demands I address.  And so I have:

In light of his confirmed and irresponsible, dishonest approach to UFOlogical matters, Hastings’ attempts to once again find faults with the methods used by “Sincere but Uninformed Skeptics” has once again done little more than prove to the world his own desire to reach conclusions on the basis of tired logic, false pretenses, and complete lies and idiocy.  The only good news to come out of his most recent wasted attempt to brainwash normal people everywhere is his admission that his newest bit of blather is the “fourth and final installment”.  Thank God for small favors…

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Filed under: UFOlogy,UFOs — Tags: , , , , , , — James Carlson @ 3:16 pm




December 29, 2011

By their works shall ye know them… [Part 4]


This is the fourth and final part of James Carlson’s epic exploration into the many and varied ramifications of the F.E. Warren AFB hoax and Ufology in general. A little later than promised, we are sure you will agree it was worth the wait!


 

Disclosure imageThe fascinating point that needs to be recognized here is not the fact that Robert Hastings and his like-minded fellow conspirators have concluded that their goals cannot be reliably established as an unrealized yet historical presence, an all-encompassing worldview, without the use of dishonest and false and abrasive, socially regressive tools developed for that singular purpose.  It is the fact that they are very clearly and insistently using as their starting point the assumption of full disclosure as already accomplished history – a history that the USAF, the Department of Defense, and the government of the United States very effectively dismissed and buried in 1969.  Taking into consideration the fact that the character of their mission is essentially one of westernized religious impulse, it becomes very clear that their goals necessitate the redefinition of Washington, DC as the New Rome, with the Pentagon representing the Colosseum, the Amphitheatrum Flavium, an inaugural symbol of Christian martyrdom, and the celebrated birthplace of Christianity’s own eventually triumphant worldview.  Not even this aspect of the foundations of belief that are being forged upon the emotive consciousness of a social psyche being manipulated by the strategic planting of lies is a very original concept, however.  Washington, DC as the New Rome is a powerful theme stressed within the same complex dynamics of social engineering in the numerous works of science fiction author Philip K. Dick.  The ascension of religious symbology and its subsequent influence on human belief is a common tool with historical relevance for those desiring to harness the commitment and energy of aggressive faith in order to make real their own desires.  More importantly, if the effects of religious impulse have taught the world anything, it is that idealists are most dangerous to those around them when they make the decision to forsake morality in order to ensure that their vision of history is the only one addressed to future generations.  In direct contrast to Hastings and his professional cohorts, most men of ethics simply find it abhorrent to withhold sufficient information to reach valid conclusions, and then tell you what you should believe and demand of others on the basis of that purposely instituted ignorance.  At its most primal level, it is this compulsion to control the opinions and motivations of others that drives men like Robert Hastings to assert such malignant hostility in pursuit of their own goals.

Paranoia imageThe true nature of their compulsion is obvious:  Hastings and his paranoid interests are trying to ignite a common, fearful demand for full disclosure; they have consciously elected to fill the minds of as many individuals as possible with fear and paranoia in regard to the unknown.  They are doing this for political reasons, having convinced themselves that full disclosure is an absolute necessity.  It is not.  It is merely an arbitrary goal born of religious impulse with the same type of emotive conviction behind it.  Although their faith that the results of this disclosure will make clear and establish for all time the existence of extraterrestrial interference on this planet we inhabit may be a conviction they refuse to discard, it is nonetheless misplaced.  It has failed to justify the single and restless burst of anger that followed the United States Air Force’s very general dismissal of UFO claims in 1969, just as it has failed to justify their self-serving belief that full disclosure will eventually negate all of their exhibited impotence and their inability to make concrete the willful, blanketed collusion of that belief and their faith.  They cannot establish the fruits of their claims by their own efforts and have convinced themselves that this failure is the fault of others; they are not to blame for their weaknesses, because the USAF and the Department of Defense have effectively hidden the truth from them, establishing thereby an occultic authority.  It isn’t even relevant that their failures are the result of their own acts and their inability to establish anything more substantial than rumor and innuendo and consistent failure to realize any genuine goals.  When examined from an objective point of view, they have nothing in the absence of conviction, and it is for that reason alone that they rely on subjective viewpoints based entirely on conviction, and nothing else.

The only other socially relevant human experience that can be described in this way is our very human reliance on religious impulse.  The aggressive instincts commonly raised by these issues are due to the mistaken yet resolute conviction that this is a discussion best suited for scientific assessment.  It is not.  There is no scientific assessment capable of resolving this issue for the same reason that there is no scientific assessment capable of resolving the issues raised in regard to beliefs establishing life after death or how best to approach the concept of immortality in a finite universe.  These UFO true believers have created from nothing an issue that relies almost entirely on antiauthoritarian developments and expressions raised throughout the 1960s and early 1970s and washed in the explosive anger, selfishness, and fiscal irresponsibility of the 1980s and 1990s.  It is a social movement that they have failed completely to validate or otherwise objectify for the rest of the world, and they are now reacting in the only way possible that will still enable them to believe in some measure of personal, scientific accomplishment.

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December 21, 2011

By their works shall ye know them… [Part Three]


This is a continuation of James Carlson’s fascinating essay exploring the many and varied ramifications of the 2011 F.E. Warren AFB UFO Hoax. In Part One, James guided us through the blurred reality of the Robert Hastings “Reuters” Press Release, along with a thorough explanation of the F.E. Warren AFB hoax and the methods used by Hastings in order to further his agenda. In Part Two, James explained the real reasons behind the use of anonymous sources and concludes by examining the true motives of those behind the hoaxes.

Part Three continues below with another hard-hitting and refreshingly honest view from James Carlson.


Liar LiarI am currently exploring the numerous works of a select few UFO authors and investigators widely connected to the events they’ve attempted to manufacture and chronicle; they call themselves UFOlogists, so I shall too.  I believe the evidence is plentiful enough to establish their membership in an informal coalition, a loose cabal of similar minded individuals who have shown themselves more than willing to lie, to dissemble, to disable context in order to neglect content, to knowingly reach unsubstantiated conclusions on the basis of faulty information, to remain silent in regard to the known lies and errors in fact committed by other members of the coalition, and to express public support for the unsubstantiated conclusions of these same individuals in order to establish a united front against criticism and to forge a false aura of infallibility surrounding their enterprises and the value of their claims.  These individuals are united by their singular motivation for the deceit they have practiced:  they want to convince the world at large that USAF and DoD officials were knowingly lying when they insisted for years that UFOs as defined by J. Allen Hynek do not exist and are therefore not a threat to the security of the United States of America.  It’s that simple.

Their habits are notable to anyone paying attention to what they do and having the will to examine the same witnesses and evidence that they have made the subject of their claims.  Primarily, they convince those willing to be convinced by showing a united front, giving the false appearance of infallibility by assuming a point of view with vested opinions held by numerous “scholars” and “scientists” and “journalists” and “military witnesses” and “historians” from all over the world, supposedly “independent” minds reaching a natural accord on the basis of well-studied facts and consistent claims.

In actuality, this showboating is simply a pathetic lie that results from their collaborative failure to examine with any honesty the assertions and claims made by those who hold opinions of public regard for their own work and claims.  In other words, they refuse to criticize or otherwise examine the impact of bad research, false justifications, poorly established conclusions and blatant lies whenever such poorly integrated tales and inundations of wasted hours at a word processor support the general tone and structure of their own works and/or beliefs.  By resorting to such tepid strategies, they replace the common standards of peer review with worthless head nodding like nodding dogs on a particularly bumpy road [thanks to Stephen Broadbent for the markedly visual phrase].

Many examples of this behavior and other details of these somewhat erratic attempts to manufacture history will be discussed over the next few weeks in a series of articles divulging the machinations of the like-minded members of this cabal as the clearest method to reveal and condemn their methods.  They are legion, and that fact necessitates a more structured approach to the claims they’ve made.  It insists that relationships be explored and resonant claims appealing more to a unified vision than to actual events be dissected in order to discover the few facts they’ve either tried to hide because they reveal the dishonest core of their claims, or carelessly addressed without knowing the ultimate cost such claims would eventually weigh against their integrity and the worth of their claims.

One example of this behavior, however, will be presented now, because I want to define this aspect of their preferred methodology due to the reliance on its use being so common within the group that it can be measured and calculated upon their own aggressive allegations.  Basically, the act is universal and simple:  when one member reacts to criticism of his own personal claims by changing specific details of his story, other members of this united coalition act as if there were no changes made whatsoever.  They simply agree with whatever the current story on the record is.  The practice is, as I’ve said, common, and for that reason is easily established, and its purpose easily revealed.

Robert JamisonFor example, when Robert Jamison claimed that UFOs were reported over Malmstrom AFB in correlation with his claims in regard to Oscar Flight missile failures alleged by Robert Salas, members of the cabal were notable and united in their insistence that reports of UFOs over Malmstrom AFB supported Jamison’s claims, and thereby Salas’.  This was accepted as evidence of mutual claims asserted, and was discussed as acceptable evidence of an actual event by other members of the group, such as Richard M. Dolan, author of “A.D. After Disclosure: The People’s Guide to Life After Contact”.  Dolan, in fact, found the measure of worth so valuable, that he later insisted the evidence for Salas’ Oscar Flight claims surpassed even those Salas has addressed for an Echo Flight incident, even though there has never been presented any documented evidence or reasonable assessment of any such event having ever occurred at Oscar Flight.  The circular perambulations these people rely on to make such a weak point could carve tornadoes into the sun.

Unfortunately for those claims, Oscar Flight is at least a hundred miles away from the UFOs reported at Malmstrom AFB, which couldn’t possibly be used to reflect any related claims whatsoever.  When this became public knowledge as a result of critical assessments, Robert Jamison changed his story (not for the first time nor the last) and announced that UFOs were reported over Lewistown in correlation with his claims in regard to the same Oscar Flight missile failures.  He dutifully drafted a new affidavit for Robert Hastings to use and the event was thereby set in stone, another worthless claim for the insensible few who weren’t paying attention to first principles.  Following this, members of the cabal acted as if there was no change at all in his story, and simply insisted that the UFO reports over Lewistown had confirmed Jamison’s claims.

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December 20, 2011

By their works shall ye know them… [Part 2]


In Part 1 of By Their Works Shall Ye Know Them, James Carlson guided us through the blurred reality of the Robert Hastings “Reuters” Press Release, along with a thorough explanation of the F.E. Warren AFB hoax and the methods used by Hastings in order to further his agenda. Displaying an eerie resemblance to the methods used by Scammers Inc. in their attempts to propagate the discredited Project Serpo story, James now continues with his explanation of why Anonymity must be examined in accordance with its purpose – that purpose being the creation of a myth.


 

The first step in this process, of course, is to question why anonymity has been relied upon in the first place.  After all, this isn’t the 1960s, and anonymity isn’t necessary in most cases – not when there’s a gamut of whistleblower protection laws intended to protect such individuals.  The point is, in most cases – particularly in the military where official acts are only rarely independent of command justification – anonymity is unnecessary.

It does, however, establish the proposition that the individual is either afraid of retaliation, or afraid of having his name associated with claims that are untrue.

In this particular case, Hastings is using anonymous sources to affirm the following points:

1.         The U.S. Air Force lied when it insisted that the communications breakdown at F.E. Warren AFB lasted only 59 minutes.  According to Hastings’ anonymous sources, “the communications issue, while intermittent, actually persisted over several hours.”

2.         These same anonymous sources reported that there were sightings by “numerous teams” of an enormous, cigar-shaped craft that maneuvered high above the missile field on the day of the disruption.  “The huge UFO appeared similar to a World War I German Zeppelin but had no passenger gondola or advertising on its hull, as would a commercial blimp.”

3.         These same anonymous sources also allegedly reported “that their squadron commander has warned witnesses not to talk to journalists or researchers about ‘the things they may or may not have seen’ in the sky and has threatened severe penalties for anyone violating security.  Consequently, these persons must remain anonymous at this time.”

Any review of current whistleblower protection laws and military regulations, however, not only insists that the third statement regarding the need for anonymity is completely untrue, but that any honest indications that the first two statements were true are protected by federal law should they be revealed by those with actual knowledge of the events.  Moreover, if those events can substantiate an ordered and progressive attempt by the Air Force to establish in the public mind a system of national defense that does not, in fact, exist, the justification for exposure of that fact increases significantly.   With this in mind, it’s very difficult to conceive of any valid reason for anonymity if this incident really happened as Robert Hastings has described it.  Any revelation by parties involved would be protected by federal law, making any retaliation of the type he suggests – these “threatened severe penalties for anyone violating security” – an illegal act, particularly if the UFO that his alleged sources have described had anything at all to do with the missile failures, as Hastings obviously wants the world to conclude.  In fact, any examination of this incident leaves one with the unmistakable impression that actual anonymity would only be useful if the claims being established were untrue.

The facts are very clear.  Robert Hastings has once again shown the world that he lacks the necessary substantive knowledge of security protocol to convincingly make claims of UFO interference during actual military incidents.  His foolishness is persistent, but that doesn’t make it believable.

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Filed under: Disclosure,UFOlogy,Ufology History,UFOs — Tags: , , , , — James Carlson @ 11:25 pm




December 19, 2011

By their works shall ye know them… [Part 1]


Ramifications of the 2011 F.E. Warren AFB UFO Hoax

By James Carlson

 

At what point along the journey to create or influence convincing public concern does a community of those with common beliefs and similar goals as a result of that belief have to reach before individual members of that community begin to consider whether a more dishonest or deceptive approach might be necessary to satisfy those goals?  And what if the extent or the measure of this supposed necessity, as such individuals might imagine it, is a reflection of their personal belief that the failure to accomplish these goals may well endanger or at least setback for some indefinite period the potential growth and development – in a very real cosmic sense – of their own species?  As it turns out, it’s about 50 years… give or take a decade or so.  Being a question of morality, it would, of course, depend on the individual.  Being a question of morality, however, it’s not an indifferent question, and it should, for that reason, be explored a bit.

In June 2011, Robert Hastings, American chronicler of fables and folktales and currently the loudest and most self-promoting voice in UFO proponent communities world-wide, paid Reuters Newswire a nice sum to distribute a press release that he had authored, thereby borrowing the impression of the same high credibility that the network has labored at for decades in regard to its own work without actually having any more credibility than Hastings himself can muster on any given day – which isn’t very much.

The story Hastings wrote is entitled “Robert Hastings: Unidentified Aerial Object Sighted During October 2010 Nuclear Missile Incident”, a title typical of his vehement yet somewhat insipid self-promotion.  It supposedly establishes UFO interference with the now well-known incident of equipment failure that occurred on October 23, 2010, at F.E. Warren Air Force Base in Cheyenne, Wyoming.  During this incident, launch technicians temporarily lost the ability to communicate with 50 of its Minuteman III missiles. The five Missile Alert Facilities responsible for those ICBMs would have been unable to fire them during the period of the disruption, although airborne commanders would still have been able to fire the weapons at will.

The credibility that Robert Hastings paid for, while nonexistent in and of itself, has nonetheless been assumed by those in the UFO proponent communities on the basis of Reuters’ reputation alone.  After all, as Reuters’ advertising department is fond of noting, with some truth, we should add, “Thomas Reuters is the world’s leading source of intelligent information for business and professionals.”  It should be stressed, however, that the content of this article came from Hastings alone, and had nothing at all to do with Reuters Newswire reporting.  They merely released the story upon payment.  One only has to examine the numerous reprints of this article of Hastings’ throughout the internet to measure the worth of the borrowed (or paid for) credibility that has been associated with these claims as a result of his apparent marketing savvy.

At http://warlords2010.blogspot.com/2011/09/check-out-this-incredible-reuters-ufo.html, for instance, the first thing we note is that “It is a bit unusual to get a UFO story from the likes of Reuters but here is one such case.”  The author calls it “this incredible Reuters #UFO story”.  Reuters?  Well, they insisted that the article be printed only with the rider “Reuters is not responsible for the content in this press release.”  They were merely selling the distribution of Hastings’ article, not the content.

Huffington Post has published, to their credit, a much more detailed airing of the story at http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2011/07/07/ufos-at-nuclear-missile-site-eyewitnesses-afraid-to-talk_n_881802.html, but they also failed to examine the method itself that Robert Hastings has and continues to rely upon, a practice that allows him the freedom to invent whatever details he wants and call it “fact”.  It’s a freedom that has been allowed to take flight upon such airy and ill-imagined wings by other authors as well.

At http://earthstar.tripod.com/TSB_dir/2011/Radio0811.html, for example, Ray Larsen has also used this freedom to invent liberally, claiming that “a huge cigar-shaped craft was spotted by multiple witnesses, both civilian and military, hovering over the missile field and jamming communications with the missiles for 59 minutes.  The Air Force’s public face didn’t seem too upset about it, but some witnesses have reported receiving threats of severe penalties from their commanders for talking to reporters or researchers.”  It’s immediately notable that none of the above claims can be supported by anything at all aside from Hastings’ article, which pointedly fails to mention “multiple witnesses, both civilian and military” and merely implies (at best) that a UFO was “hovering over the missile field and jamming communications with the missiles”.  The rest of Larsen’s account in regard to Hastings “research” is equally devoid of anything that can actually be supported by more than the paranoia Hastings (and many others) are profiting from.  “I think the ETs, whoever they are, were close to ready for some form of contact, but now, I think they may be confused and have postponed their plans.  If they wanted to be a threat to this planet, I think they would have no problems in doing so, as their level of technology seems to still be beyond the understanding of our black budget scientists and engineers.”

Apparently the ETs aren’t the only ones who are confused…

It’s not the first time that Robert Hastings has performed this little con on the internet.  He did the same thing in the days leading up to his much (and very properly) ridiculed press conference of September 27, 2010.

At http://flyingflashlight.com/tag/robert-hastings/, for instance, we learned that “A major news organization says flying saucers are toying with American nuclear weapons, but you better read the byline and ‘article’”.  This author looked a little closer, and hats off to him:  “I am suspecting an automatic feed from PR Newswire to Reuters.com has created this most alarming of headlines to be prominently displayed on the organization’s home page (it’s the No. 2 most-popular article): U.S. Nuclear Weapons Have Been Compromised by Unidentified Aerial Objects.

“If you stopped right there and didn’t read any further, you would fail to discover that this piece of information being presented as an ‘article’ is actually a paid-for advertisement (oh, I mean ‘press release’) for an upcoming news media conference of ex-military members who plan to discuss their experiences with unidentified flying objects.”

At http://www.facebook.com/lesliekean/posts/143133802389746, author Leslie Kean (who should know better and who will be discussed in more detail later for that very reason) notifies us that “Reuters has posted the press release about the upcoming press conference on U.S. nuclear weapons being compromised by unidentified aerial objects, organized by Robert Hastings and Robert Salas, on Sept. 27th in Washington. The media needs to be alerted about this.”  Yes, I’m certain the media felt the same way immediately following that little rape of the truth.  The Washington Post reporter who attended that pathetic little example of Scrappy-doo show-boating was quite clear that the only thing of value he could find were the cookies that were made available to the press.  Those who watched the DVD that Salas and Hastings were trying to sell immediately afterwards didn’t even get that.  It’s a shame they couldn’t at least have included a coupon for 25 cents off a package of Toll House chocolate chip cookies, but these entrepreneurs simply aren’t the type to plan so far in advance.  Proof of this can be verified from any summary of losses incurred from their DVD sales of the event when potential customers discovered almost immediately that they could watch the conference on CNN for free, an unfortunate development when profiteers fail to weigh the future out-of-pocket costs to their budding business portfolio when the event they’ve planned in such detail so far in advance is freely open to all press and media representatives who might also wish to attend.  Not that it matters much; they’ll likely recoup their losses when the movie version is finally released, unless they do something completely boneheaded like bar any use of Muppets ® technology.  That’s not a joke either – those Muppets ® can turn almost any silly idea into a blockbuster summer release, if you give them a little lead time.

At http://roblorinov.wordpress.com/2011/06/25/robert-hastings-unidentified-aerial-object-sighted-during-october-2010-nuclear-missile-incident-reuters/, we read “Amazing that Reuters is reporting this as the major mainstream media do not usually report UFO activity.  What is reported in this story is NOT the first time a US missile system has been rendered nonfunctional while a UFO is in the area.”  Of course, this particular claim hasn’t been examined by the writer of the piece – he’s assuming that Hastings is telling the truth both here and in his book UFOs and Nukes, which purports to catalogue such events.  As a result, the writer’s assumption that the incident “is NOT the first time a US missile system has been rendered nonfunctional while a UFO is in the area” is based on nothing, certainly not Reuter’s credibility, which in this case has been bought and paid for by Robert Hastings as a way to establish credibility that he’s failed to establish with his writings alone.  It’s just more unconscious disinformation by people who are otherwise unable to back up their claims with anything more than “Hastings says it’s true.”  The writer of the article isn’t necessarily lying; he simply believes the claims of a charlatan and a fraud who is creating this belief for reasons of his own, reasons having nothing at all to do with an accurate accounting of the “incidents” he and others are associating with UFOs – incidents that simply cannot be substantiated by any jury outside of the imagination they’ve liberally applied to the subject at hand.

It isn’t the first time that Robert Hastings has attempted to make such claims.  In relation to a case of numerous missile failures that occurred in March 1967 at Malmstrom AFB, he attempted the same type of deception.  Fortunately for anybody insisting upon a measure of valid evidence, a true accounting of testimony, or a determined and faithfully assessed credibility in regard to that testimony, the witnesses he has used to establish these claims have insisted very clearly that he was lying and denounced entirely any interference, reporting, or investigation resulting from any UFO incident Robert Hastings or Robert Salas have proposed.  Both are merely being deceptive, a fact that was easily proven once the “witnesses” were reinterviewed by individuals with a more ethical concern for the truth than any possessed by these two UFOlogical frauds.

It should be pointed out, however, that Robert Hastings learned something very important from the subsequent and embarrassing exposé of his methods.  He learned that his “witnesses” can be tracked down and reinterviewed, at which point the truth can be made known.  And when the weak link in your claims happens to be inherent to your use of non-witness witnesses capped by an inability to properly interpret what testimony has been presented, the best recourse – for those wishing to continue with the presentation of such false claims – is to prevent others from gaining access to your witnesses, thereby removing any embarrassing revelations that might come about subsequent to the lie.  It should come as no surprise, therefore, that this is exactly what Robert Hastings has now done.  He purchased the apparently marketable commodity of credibility held by Reuters as a result of their own fine and professional conduct, because he knew that credibility would be necessary in order to freely assert another hoax regarding UFOs and nuclear missile failures.  He then followed up this sad little attempt at reputation repair by essentially taking the weak link represented by the witnesses and their testimony completely out of the equation.  That’s right, folks:  Robert Hastings went anonymous…

By adapting the witness to the lie, Hastings was able to rediscover for himself the Great Lesson of fashionable con-artists worldwide, from P.T. Barnum through a long line of hidden personalities trying to sell crack outside of Narcotics Anonymous meetings:  surprise! anonymity can protect not only his witnesses from being questioned about those little details that Robert Hastings invented out of nothing – tossing ‘em in just as the story starts to gel around the public’s perception with a slick panache guaranteed by addled, nameless used-car salesmen everywhere to make the story sound a little better than anything you’ve got in your pocket right now – but can also prevent the sad-eyed teamster leaning against the telephone pole downstairs from picking up the common knowledge of Hastings’ own fraudulent activities and exposing them to the Greek hooker on the stairway who doesn’t even give a damn about UFOs, and just wants a little iced tea and lemonade in a clean glass by the time The Simpsons come on.  It’s another one of those ageless “I can create an indefinable wall between me and those skeptical critics by inventing a witness, but keeping everything about him a secret” type of lessons.  This type of deception, however, requires a little extra on the other side of the equation, making the weight of established credibility of the sort Reuters has turned into a marketable commodity a great and necessary benefit when it’s associated by no fault of their own with attempts to use imaginary witnesses to establish a point of view that’s so essentially separate and unassociated with the author’s – this, of course, being Robert Hastings.

Hastings’ article not only makes this anonymity very clear, but emphasizes as well the use that only he is willing to put it to:

Regarding the recent situation at F.E. Warren AFB, Hastings emphasizes, “My sources have not said that the UFO sighted during the October 23, 2010 missile-communications disruption actually caused it. And it must be noted that the Air Force’s Global Strike Command has officially attributed the problem to an improperly-replaced circuit card in a weapons-system processor.”

 He adds, “Nevertheless, the intermittent presence of a huge, cigar-shaped aerial craft during the hours-long –- not minutes-long –- crisis was definitely noted and remarked upon by various technical teams working in the base’s missile field.”

And that’s how you take a lie and turn it into something all brand new and sparkly, like a box full of stars tossed up into the heavens.  It’s a shame these witnesses have refused to come forward, if they even exist at all.  In firm recognition of the dire importance Robert Hastings has placed on this issue of anonymity, without once focusing on the fact that he has again struck the hammer against the steel, sparks flying like tiny little abrasions in the wind, and has repeated old sins by making a number of spurious, pointless and fact-free claims without presenting anything at all in the way of validated evidence to back it up, that last supposition absolutely must be properly addressed.  The creation of such alleged witnesses, after all, encompasses an implied deception that many people – who are very willing to come forward – are quite certain that Hastings is more than capable of.  It also fits in very well with any collation of his past failures to build a case in the absence of the tools and materials necessary to do so honestly.  The facts of his past deceptions alone would establish quite handily his moral capabilities for such a strategy.  The ease with which his claims can be shattered, in many cases by simply analyzing his work for elements that cannot be reconciled with any of the internal conflicts typical of the military environment he limits himself to, and yet refuses to learn anything about, tends to support his capability for invention far more than his ability to uncover hidden facts that the rest of the world has failed – for whatever reasons – to notice.  Where anonymity describes the source, as it does here, Robert Hastings can say absolutely anything he likes.  The sad truth is, he’s done it before; invention is, after all, his forté.

The suspicions raised by the assumed anonymity of his only witnesses must to be examined if we’re to consider any of these recent claims credible at all, particularly when any attempts to confirm such claims – this search for confirmation beginning shortly after he broke this “big” story – instantly produce literally dozens of insistent, disgusted affirmations that there was no UFO in fact or rumor, nor was a UFO reported or investigated.  Most members of the military are justifiably proud of their accomplishments and their service, so when someone like Robert Hastings – who never served in the military – assumes the arrogance necessary to redefine those accomplishments and that service, doing so by trivializing their contributions to national defense, they generally respond with understandable anger and rancor, something that Hastings has never acknowledged, preferring by far to use unsustained anecdotes to establish a case that simply can’t be made honestly.  Anonymity must, therefore, be examined in accordance with its purpose – this purpose being the creation of a myth.

Part Two follows tomorrow.



Filed under: UFOlogy,Ufology History,UFOs — Tags: , , , — James Carlson @ 12:25 pm




August 7, 2011

Strategic Editing


Strategic Editing

or

The Power of Positive Misdirection, Partial Transcripts,

Electronic Hums, Soft Voices and Self-Promotion

by

James Carlson

The Hastings TapesI have reached the conclusion that an analysis of Robert Hastings’ recent interview with Col. Frederick Meiwald is in order, primarily because I believe it demonstrates how Hastings’ habitual reliance on audio recordings in lieu of written affidavits allows him to take one man’s claims and twist them into a new meaning in support of old lies.  Having already clarified most of the details regarding the below article with a number of missileers across the country who have made themselves available for such light tasks, I am personally convinced that my interpretation of the references below is correct and to the point.  Unfortunately, I have been unable to convince Col. Meiwald to comment on the major points for the sake of clarity.  This does not necessarily establish the assertions made by both Robert Salas and Robert Hastings as factual; it merely means that Col. Meiwald has decided not to comment on the many problems I’ve noted regarding his supposed statements to Salas and Hastings.  This leaves the world with something of a hole in the accounts, because Robert Hastings cannot be trusted to tell the truth in regard to Meiwald’s claims, has certainly mislead his audience in regard to those claims, and Robert Salas has changed his story so often and so significantly, that he cannot be trusted to tell the truth either.  The only certain claim that can be established is that thus far, Col. Meiwald has failed to make clear what exactly occurred during the incident under examination.

I certainly don’t believe Col. Meiwald is lying (although Robert Hastings has very often charged me with calling Meiwald a liar; however, he’s proven himself unable to get much of anything right, and has very often lied in regard to other aspects of this case, so I chalk it up to more of the same).  On the other hand, I don’t believe that he has validated the UFO stories that have been so carelessly established either.  It is my personal belief that he is simply unaware of the claims that have been associated with his memories, and has no interest in establishing for himself the honest claims of concern on their own merits.  Like many men, he simply doesn’t care about the petty squabbles of dishonest men attempting to establish UFO interference with the military systems they walked away from many years ago.

(more…)







July 31, 2011

Case Closed? A Re-Evaluation of the Echo Flight Incident


RU member and former SAC Missile Crew Commander Tim Hebert has now posted an intriguing summary of his findings and conclusions on his blog Did It Really Happen? regarding his lengthy investigation into the now famous March 1967 Malmstrom AFB Missile/UFO Incident.

As followers of this blog know, the heated debate in this case between Robert Hastings and James Carlson, son of Eric Carlson, one of the two launch officers present at Echo Flight, reached a fever pitch last year running up to Hastings’ scheduled press conference at the NPC in Washington, DC in March of 2010 with Robert Salas and a number of other alleged “witnesses”.  Salas claims another missile shutdown occurred a week later at Oscar Flight and it was caused by UFOs, however, unlike the Echo Flight incident on March 16th, no documentation or witnesses exist to support a shutdown occurred on March 24th, let alone that UFOs were involved in either case.

In an effort to get to the bottom of all this and make sure everybody had all sides of the story, RU’s Ryan Dube took it upon himself to dig through all of the claims and counter claims and this resulted in a number of articles published right here at Reality Uncovered (shown below).

He interviewed, – for the first time anywhere – one of the two key “witnesses” in this case, James’ father Eric Carlson and also helped to facilitate the dissemination of James’ correspondence with the other key witness, Walter Figel.

With all of this information to hand, it was now much easier for everyone to make their own minds up about the case and not have to rely on dubious sources or rumour:

(in reverse chronological order)

The James Carlson Malmstrom Problem

The Echo Flight UFO Debate Continues

An Interview With Malmstrom AFB Witness Eric Carlson

Malmstrom AFB Missile/UFO Incident – Part III

The Malmstrom AFB Missile/UFO Incident – Part II

The Malmstrom AFB Missile/UFO Incident, March 1967

Tim’s previous articles posted at his blog have also been discussed here:

Did UFOs Disable Minuteman Missiles at Malmstrom AFB in 1967?

The Makings of a UFO Myth

Tim begins his summary with the following introduction:

First, let me start off by saying that the Malmstrom AFB Echo Flight case is a great UFO story.  It’s the perfect storm for UFO buffs in that there are reports, documents, and “witnesses.”  Its listed in the top ten of UFO cases. People have been interviewed to the extent that every surviving individuals cerebral memory capacity has been extracted, evaluated, discarded and re-extracted for what ever purpose in the attempt to prove or disprove individual pet theories. In short, it’s a ufologists dream come true…or is it.

He then goes on to explain why he feels this case is nothing more than an “illusion” and what factors he used to base his “case closed” conclusion on.

Walter Figel’s Story

Tim notes the following regarding Hastings’ latest “witness” that has become the focus of much debate and a source of a great confusion for many of us trying to get to the bottom of all this:

Walter Figel’s accounting of events on 16 March 1967 remain the only seemingly solid foundation for the UFO story and has remained so up to this current time.  But, is it a consistent story?  Based on the two interviews, one given to Robert Salas in 1996 and the second given to Robert Hastings in 2008, there are numerous inconsistencies when the two interviews are compared for content.

Go to Tim’s blog to read his very comprehensive analysis of these interviews and a number of other factors.

Hebert’s Email to Walter Figel

The above discussion cumulates with the following email sent to Walt Figel requesting clarification…

Col. Figel, my name is Tim Hebert.  I, like you, am a former Minuteman crew member.  I was assigned to Malmstrom AFB, 490th SMS, from 1981-1985, with a follow-on assignment to Grand Forks AFB, Wing Codes Division, from 1985 to 1988.  I’m writing you in regards to the Echo Flight case which occurred back in 1967, as I have been following the history of the case and on-going points of contention between Robert Hastings and James Carlson.  I was wondering if you would indulge a fellow Minuteman crew dog by my asking your opinion of the case.  I am aware that the Echo Flight incident occurred some 40 years ago and that you have been asked numerous times for your recollections of that event, yet will spare me some of your time.

I have read extensively both of your interviews given to Robert Salas in 1996 and Robert Hastings in 2008.  In both of the interviews you mention the actions of maintenance and security teams in the Echo flight area on 16 March 1967.  Both interviews are somewhat remarkably different as to who initially reported to you the sighting of the UFO over one of Echo’s LFs.  After reviewing the contents of the declassified 341st SMW Unit History, I was struck by the total lack of any mentioning of any wing agency debriefing either a maintenance team or security response team.  Yet, the Unit History goes into detail mentioning you and Eric Carlson as being debriefed by a wing maintenance evaluation team, OOMA, and Boeing.  This would lead me to conclude that there is a high probability that no maintenance teams were located on any of Echo’s LFs on 16 Mar 1967.  This would also explain why no names have ever surfaced as eye witnesses to any actual UFO sighting.  Knowing that this incident occurred some 40 years ago, is it possible that there were no maintenance activity on any of your LFs?

When Hastings and Salas gave their press conference in Washington D.C. back on 27 Sept. 2010, I noticed that you were not in attendance.  This struck me as odd as for the past few years Mr. Hastings has used your interviews as the foundation to proffer his UFO theory.  Did Mr. Hastings ever ask you to sign an affidavit similar to the other participants of that conference?  If Hastings did ask and you declined, why so?

And lastly, did Mr. Hastings offer to pay you for your interview?  Please forgive my directness, but if this was so, then this would explain Mr. Hastings on and off attitude towards you as he has recently stated in numerous articles that you were “timid” and “waffling” as far as his (Hastings) perceived weakening support for his UFO theory.

Your thoughts in these matters would be greatly appreciated.  Quite honestly this would go along way towards the clearing up of a lot of confusion concerning this case.  Personally, I’m not a big fan of Robert Hastings (he is not a fan of mine) as he tends to paint those of us that served honorably in SAC and on the crew force as pawns or dupes of the government.  It appears that he may attempt to do the same regarding the recent events at FE Warren.  Our command and government were not perfect by any means, but we all, including our leadership, attempted to do the best that was possible in the defense of the country.

Sincerely,

Tim Hebert

As of this writing, Walter Figel has not responded.

Conclusion

Tim begins the conclusion section of his article with these important points:

I believe that I have shown that there is now enough evidence to strongly support that UFO/s could not have caused Echo’s ICBMs to shut down.  The following strongly supports my conclusion:

1.  High probability that no maintenance teams were out on any of Echo’s sites during shutdowns.
2.  No maintenance or security teams mentioned in the Unit History.
3.  After 44 years, none of the supposed eye witnesses have ever been identified, nor have these people ever came forward, concluding that they may never have existed in the first place.
4.  Walter Figel’s inconsistency from both Hastings and Salas’ interviews.
5.  Walter Figel’s perceived reluctance to publicly support Hastings’ UFO theory, as evidence by, his absence from the D.C press conference, lack of an affidavit affirming his statements.
6.  Eric Carlson’s strong denial of receiving any UFO reports from security personnel.
7.  No intercept missions flown by the Montana National Guard against any unknown radar contacts.
8.  Minuteman LF design of connectivity isolation precludes any one event (UFO included) from affecting the remaining ICBMs in a given flight.
9.  Echo was a flight specific event with no other adjoining flight effected
10.  The only plausible UFO scenario would have been a UFO over/near Echo’s LCF/LCC.  This never occurred and no reports or rumors ever comes close to supporting this scenario.
11.  The Boeing ECP and final installation of EMP suppression fixes resulting in no Echo-like situation from ever happening again for all SAC missile wings (Minuteman and Titan).

Case Closed?

At this point I think the ball is now firmly placed in Figel’s court to come forward and respond to these questions in public as he sees fit… or not.

Please go to Tim’s blog to read his entire article and let him know what you think…

http://timhebert.blogspot.com/2011/07/case-closed-re-evaluation-of-echo.html

Also, feel free to discuss this in our ongoing thread (link is to a recent relevant post of mine) in the Reality Uncovered Forums or leave a comment below.



Filed under: UFOlogy,Ufology History,UFOs — Tags: , , , , — Access Denied @ 5:51 pm




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