EdgeScience 46


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The Anomalist

October 28

"The total denial argument [against UFOs] has now definitely, and finally, failed." Thus an "Op Ed" piece by Digital Journal's Editor-at-Large Paul Wallis, who justifiably calls that "denialism" approach "pseudoscience." But Wallis also dismisses "the Chariots of the Gods" and other enthusiasms as "wild-mouthed advocacy." He foresees a more logical middle-ground attitude regarding "the overall re-evaluation of UFOs as matters of actual legitimate interest, not just hype." NASA Administrator Bill Nelson recently steered that course during a "live stream chat" hosted by the University of Virginia, as related in Space Jam: Former Senator Talks Aliens, Asteroids and 'Star Trek' With Larry Sabato. Whitelaw Reid also notes other discussion topics, including the relieving news that NASA is trying to do something about redirecting earth-threatening asteroids. Hopefully that effort won't cause any such Armageddon-type problems! Whitelaw directs to the podcast Interview with Bill Nelson October 19, 2021. (WM)

Nick Redfern reminds us that no matter how knowledgeable you are about the subject of lake monsters, there will always be some you haven't heard about before (and you should never, ever feel safe in or on the water). He gives examples from Sweden, England, and (of course!) Scotland, making us wonder if we'll ever truly understand the origins of these (alleged) freshwater leviathans. Next we have an Update on the 1981 Loch Morar Film. It's more of an update on red tape and inflation getting in the way of decent research, so brace yourself for a dose of frustration. Hats off to Roland Watson for his persistence and dedication in the face of obstacles that would make the rest of us give up. (CM)

Miguel "Red Pill Junkie" Romero cautions the UFO Community and particularly recent "joiners" not to reject "high strangeness" cases in the excitement created by the "nuts-and-bolts" ones the government supposedly studies. "RPJ" here summarizes thoughts voiced during Seriah Azkath's podcast Wandering the Road with Joshua Cutchin and Red Pill-Sept 4, 2021. But has UFO investigator Russ Kellett gone too far from RPJ's "highly coveted veneer of respectability UFOlogists are so obsessed with"? Item: Digital Reporter Matt Warner's UFO Investigator Invites Celebs to Communicate with Aliens in North Wales. Seems the Brits--both celebrities and investigators--are as active as their American counterparts in expressing UFO interest. An English singer/entertainer Warner mentions is John Ward and Hayley Parker's focus in Robbie Williams Asked to help UFO Hunter Search for Aliens. Seems Williams actually took a "sabbatical" from his career 15 years ago "to go alien hunting." Williams also reveals two personal weird experiences he stresses were unassisted by drugs or alcohol. Paul Seaburn remarks the Great Britain/U.S. similarities while reporting that Kellett is Calling All Celebrities to Wales to Summon UFOs and ETs. Noting Kellett's claim of sharing an alien ship ride with Williams in 1999, Paul himself suggests creative artsy folks might be more likely to experience ET interchanges. (WM)

October 27

Dr. Elizabeth C. Turner's discovery supports a "sponge-first" hypothesis for the beginnings of animal life and an assumption it could have happened "as much as 900 million years ago." So why does she "expect lively controversy to ensue"? As Turner explains, it's the nature of her evidence, its interpretation, other assumptions about far-distant eras, and that the find would add about 350 million years to the uncontested existence of animals here on Earth. David Graeber and David Wengrow consider less-remote yet still-poorly-known origins in Unfreezing the Ice Age: The Truth about Humanity's Deep Past. This important piece challenges traditional thinking about human biological and cultural development. Compare this last reconstruction, which integrates Gobekli Tepe, to Stephen Childs' speculations about Corpse Recycling at Gobekli Tepe: The True Purpose of its Ancient Stone Circles? One outstanding origins question seems definitively answered as Scientists Confirm Vikings Were in North America Centuries Before Columbus' Voyage. Jocelyne LeBlanc says unfreezing wood samples from the Newfoundland L'Anse aux Meadows site has produced a true year date for the Vikings' "deep past" in the New World. (WM)

It's said that in times of societal upheaval--pandemics, political unrest, economic crisis--we naturally seek distraction within our folklore. We want evidence of our ability to survive and thrive after calamity and darkness. This is particularly evident in the rise of Dark Tourism and the resurgence of interest in tales of Mothman and related cryptids.  And while we may be acquainted with how this bipedal, winged terror came to be part of the West Virginia folkloric landscape, we may not be familiar with How the Chupacabra Became an Emblem of the Latin American Cultural Imagery. The mid 1990s in Puerto Rico marked the first notable news reports of a hyena-like creature with spines running down its back, attacking livestock and sucking their veins dry of blood. As the beast grew in notoriety among farmers, news reporters, and even celebrities and businessmen, the name "Chupacabra" took hold and a new legend was born in the Latin American folkloric landscape. In these seemingly endless dark times, it's worth remembering that those red lights shining in the darkness are more than a cryptid's eyes reflecting back in the beams of your car headlights. They are our light at the end of the proverbial dark tunnel. (CM)

Three different perspectives on two recent additions to the ufological library. Bill Chalker extracts several strange paranormal, not strictly "UFO" events in Dr. James Lacatski, Dr. Colm Kelleher, and George Knapps' Skinwalkers at the Pentagon: An Insiders' Account of the Secret Government UFO Program. These led the Advanced Aerospace Weapon System Applications Program (AAWSAP) to adopt a "broader approach" to the UFO subject than just "nuts-and-bolts" stuff. Bill thinks this choice is supported by similar experiences he and others had in Australian investigations over the years. An AAWSAP connection emerges in Trinity UFO Crash Investigated by Jacques Vallee. George Knapp chats with Paola Harris' co-author Vallee about Trinity: The Best-Kept Secret. Vallee covers background to the book and the 1945 San Antonio (New Mexico) UFO crash it purports to describe. Vallee propounds the story as he learned it, why he believes it, and what's more to be done (and discussed at a November Laughlin, Nevada, conference). Vallee also discusses his role in architecting a "data warehouse" for AAWSAP. Jason Colavito's accessed that interview and provides his contrarian "take" in Jacques Vallee and George Knapp Discuss Their Wacky New Books. (WM)

October 26

It's been more than four centuries since 10 men and women were accused of witchcraft in Pendle Hill, Lancashire, where they were tortured and died for their spiritual beliefs. Intrepid ghost hunter Hayley Stevens is circulating a petition demanding the British Government pardon these ten maligned and slain individuals in the name of religious freedom. Around the same time, there was A Witch Trial and a Shape-Shifting Apparition: An Obscure Bit of The Weird. Fortunately the judge involved with the case recognized a false accusation when he heard one, and the the case was arraigned. Then it got more interesting. We'll finish off this witchy Tuesday with something that Smells Like Witch Spirit: How The Ancient World’s Scented Sorceresses Influence Ideas About Magic Today. Perfumes, plant essences, and the like have long been used to heal, to harm, and to beguile. Often known only to the person using or wearing them, they were and are a type of "invisible spell" used to provoke a sensation or outcome. Yet somehow we feel confident that Alfred Sung, Calvin Klein, and Chanel are safe from accusations of witchcraft. (CM)

You have one guess which case the headline refers to before seeing the illustration for Nick's article. Yes, here is Nick marshaling many of his usual arguments against the "traditional ET crash" scenario at Roswell, Nick next offers Project Moon Dust: The Top Secret Team That Retrieved Crashed UFOs? Or Russian Rockets? Nick makes another familiar, very important, yet frustratingly not always honored point about the term "UFO." Having just propounded his idea that "Project Moon Dust" wasn't the really exotic thing some think it was, Nick hedges a bit, saying about The Bolivia "UFO Crash" of 1978: Time for a New Investigation. Any takers? And Nick completes his "Moon Dust Trilogy" with--wait for it--From Hollywood to UFOs...and Then to Death: Marilyn Monroe Again. Hoax? ET UFOs? Just "Foreign" UFOs? Marilyn Monroe murdered? Even Nick's confused after writing an entire book on the late actress's demise. (WM)

I'm a Full-out Saganite! UFO Conjectures
One may differ with a prediction by Rich Reynolds of a ufological "Dark Age" and his assessment about Carl Sagan's "open mind and courteous demeanor," but Rich's "Facebook" information is interesting and more than a tad disquieting. Rich notes that former Presidents didn't display personality changes psychologists might expect in The Aftermath of Alleged UFO/ET Encounters. Nonetheless, some "deluded" folks think Eisenhower et al. did have such meet-ups. Also concerning are Rich's conjectures about Luis Elizondo's Hesitancy. And in Ancient Aliens or Actually "Gods"? Rich offers for consideration and debate a theory alternative to the ancient astronaut one that "human" ancestors weren't smart enough to develop civilizations on their own. (WM)

October 25

Irving Finkel, a "world authority on cuneiform," is much excited by the discovery of previously undetected markings on a small clay tablet, long-forgotten in the bowels of the British Museum. Thought to be the earliest depiction of a ghost, it comes with instructions on how to get rid of one. Importantly, it seems, the advice is "don't look back." And according to Connor Stringer, Brighton Is The Most Haunted City in the UK , followed by York and Bristol, all three of which already have thriving tourist industries, which might now be enhanced by their alleged ethereal residents. Finally, we hear that Spooked Britons Seek Out Tales Of Paranormal Amid Covid Uncertainty. The theory is that, due to the stresses and uncertainties which the UK has endured for years, the population is turning to spooky stuff in "these times of brutality and chaos," as humans are wont to do, when the real world is more terrifying than the nether world. Although it all, unfortunately, ties in with big money-spinner, Halloween (which, in the UK, was ignored until recent years), it's a theory which is supported by evidence of previous upswings of paranormal interest, during crises of the past. (LP)

Premonitions are those little hunches some individuals get that something terrible has either occurred or is about to occur--and then in short order the event is confirmed. As common as these are, science still can't explain with any certainty what's going on, although the term Quantum Entanglement has been tossed around a number of times. What we'd like to know is why no one ever has premonitions of something lovely about to happen. (Check out Time Loops by Eric Wargo (Anomalist Books) for a possible answer to that question.) Next up, Strange Psychic Powers and the Mysterious Case of the “Brooklyn Enigma” Molly Fancher. In 1866, after a number of life threatening injuries, this woman fell into a very strange coma lasting 9 years during which she received very little sustenance, a condition which continued after she awoke. Stranger still were the multiple personalities that appeared to "live" within her along with a full set of psychic abilities that no one was able to disprove. She passed away after 50 years of a bedridden life, with science no closer to explaining her condition than when it started. (CM)

Nick Redfern focusses upon the creature behind the title of Skinwalkers at the Pentagon: An Insiders' Account of the Secret Government UFO Program. Nick says "you might not be happy with what you are about to learn" about the beast, and promises a book review. Lacatski is not such a summary, but consists of Keith Basterfield's notes and comments upon information that's new in the book. John Greenewald references the book while expressing further confusion from the government in his FOIA efforts with DIA Says "UFO Program" Had No Mission Statement, Outline or Objective Document. In other current news, there's no doubt what various governmental agencies thought about comedian Matty Roberts' 2019 online "Bad Idea" as Files Reveal Feds Prepared Deadly Force Responses For 'Storm Area 51' Rally. The documents make for sobering review. (WM)

October 24

If Martin Rees is right, earthbound astronomers should be looking for little green machines rather than little green people. Spicing up his thesis is how these little green machines could be weirder than we imagine. For those of you who read Three-Body Problem, you'll remember the Centaurans first sent atom-sized AI to Earth. While the Five Hundred Meter Aperture Spherical Radio Telescope (FAST) may not be able to detect those, one Physicist Says China's New Telescope May Be Able To Spot Alien Probes if they are macroscale. Or maybe a swarm of von Neumann machines. Turning away from Red China and a mechanistic philosophy of SETI, Josh Wilbur wants to know what would religious leaders do if aliens showed up. I Want To Believe too, but seven paragraphs about Lue "Shilling Saucers For Retirement" Elizondo is more than the guy deserves. Far more deserving are the Muslim, Jewish, and Christian theologians lending their learned perspectives on you-know-who and their place within Creation. (CS)

If you thought KIC 8462852 was cool, TW Pictoris is gonna knock your socks off. Typically white dwarfs dim over the course of days or months, not minutes, and astrophysicists are abuzz over this unique discovery. In keeping with the Hallowe'en season, the FRBs are coming from inside the galaxy! Such is the gist of Marcus Strom's analysis of those Strange Radio Waves Emerging From Direction Of The Galactic Center. Of especial interest is the unusual behavior observed by Ziteng Wang making it unlike other fast radio bursts, intra- or extragalactic in origin. And trust Jordan Pearson over at Vice when he says astronomers are hard at work. In fewer than two months Scientists Detect 1,652 Radio Signals From Mysterious Source In Space and each one is weirder than the last. (CS)

Many forteans and anomalists like to argue mainstream scientists have tunnel vision, but in this case they may be onto something. For quite some time two magnetiic anomalies have puzzled scientists, but Jennifer West of the University of Toronto Canada decided to link them with surprising results. While it will take time to prove her hypothesis, we're certain some Electric Universe advocates will hop on this train to support their particular flavor of woo. In keeping with this attractive theme, everybody wants to know, "Did The Earth Tip On Its Side 84 Million Years Ago?" Joe Kirschvink and Ross Mitchell have the unsettling answer to this question but not if we are overdue for yet another pole flip. (CS)

October 23

You can't take it with you, but if you wind up sticking around after kicking the bucket then your heirs are due for a windfall once the world knows how you're rattling chains late at night. Browse some of the hottest, and spookiest listings, with Anna Cottrell who explains why what was once real estate poison is now real estate gold. Also in keeping with the Hallowe'en season, Brent Swancer shares a blast from the past with The Bizarre Case Of A Haunted Woman And How She Was Cured Of A Poltergeist. It's a darn sight scarier than take two ghostbusters and call us in the morning. Other times the hauntings aren't in the house, but from something in the house, writes Tim Binnall when he spreads the word how a Haunted Cradle Has A New Home At Virginia Museum after years of unusual behavior. (CS)

Sad that Ted Lasso's second season has ended? Can't be bothered with the torture porn of Squid Game? Why not check out Midnight Mass? Red Pill Junkie has a particularly trippy take on the show's intersection with 5-MeO-DMT in a profound manner when it comes to death, and somehow Midnight Mass captures that mystical lightning in a bottle making for recommended viewing. Weirder still is George Knapp's in-depth conversation with David Luke, late of the University of Greenwich, discussing what he's uncovered whilst researching psychedelic experiences, the sheer power of DMT, and Speaking To Aliens And Angels. (CS)

"Why is there anything" is the enduring question bandied about by cosmologists and theologians, but Paul Sutter reckons Bruno Bento and some friends may have an answer. Rather than starting with everything compressed into a singularity, or even with a start, Bruno suggests there's something far more interesting and plausible than what one Harvard professor proposes. "Our Universe Was Made In A Lab By Aliens!" Avi, bubele, if you're going to rip off Greg Egan's Crystal Nights at least be up front about it. With that crackerjack tale in mind, Loukia Papadopoulos tries to make sense of a lunatic theory only deserving of a headline because of their educational pedigree. Riffing a bit on the universe being a creation and a simulation, wonders why In An Infinity Of Universes Countless Ones Are Run By Cats. It's not so much about cats, but as to how many alternate universes are necessary for reality-as-we-know-it. A lot, according to Daniel Díaz and Robert Marks. Probably more than Graham's number to the power of Graham's number. (CS)

October 22

Last Tuesday's press conference featuring four former USAF missileers gets Mystery Wire's attention and hopefully that of its primary Congressional targets. George Knapp and Duncan Phenix present the conference in toto, focus upon Robert Jacobs' experiences, and pay homage to the yeoman work of Robert Hastings. Hasting's book UFOs & Nukes: Extraordinary Encounters at Nuclear Weapons Sites comprehensively covers the history of such encounters. Paul Seaburn notes the Jacobs story in USAF Officer Claims He Filmed Flying Saucer Shooting Light Beams at Nuclear Missile and Was Ordered to Cover it Up. Paul adds context to the press conference while worrying about some extrapolations made elsewhere. Jason Colavito is of course tired of the whole thing, per his Repetitive UFO News Conference Tries to Frighten over Half-Century-Old Incidents. Jason inserts a favorite money-making theme, and tries to finesse that the June 25th ODNI Preliminary Assessment is in a sense an official and recent governmental complement to the stories these men tell. The former AATIP head provides no relief for Jason in Ex-Pentagon Staffer Luis Elizondo Talks UFOs Over Nuclear Sites And Chinese State-Sponsored UAP Research on "Rebelliously Curious With Chrissy Newton". While Christopher Plain's commentary might seem like collegial cheerleading, the interview is quite interesting. (WM)

This pair of possible Bigfoot accounts are both a little underwhelming but also a little bit fun. This first is a clip from 2012, recorded at night with a FLIR camera. The image is definitely Bigfoot-like, but with little context to go on we're left to conclude either anything or nothing at all. This next post is a bit odd in that the author seems a little angry and committed to discrediting himself before he reveals a word of his discovery: Bigfoot Nest Found In Wyoming is a structure that could have been built by Bigfoot, yes--or humans. It's smallish though, so it's purpose is difficult to determine. (CM)

"[P]resent author/TV producer/screenwriter/UFO investigator" Bryce Zabel has challenged "astrophysicist, planetary scientist, and science communicator" debunker Neil deGrasse Tyson to a debate. That's the headliner to a romp through current ufological themes by Zabel and Paracasters Gene Steinberg and co-host Collins. Zabel discusses his "On the Trail of the Saucers" blog, and has a possibly surprising "take" on MJ-12 as well as "Disclosure." A week prior Dr. Irena Scott with Tim Swartz featured the author of Beyond Pascagoula: The Rest Of The Amazing Story. The book and interview cover new information on that 1973 Charles Hickson/Calvin Parker CE-IV case, with additional context including a UFO flap and a thunderous noise heard over many midwestern and central eastern states. Some rather fascinating incidents in Dr. Scott's own life are also considered. (WM)

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