Tuesday, October 21, 2014

A Nifty Old Book

I like old-book hunting. Every now and then you find a gem, like this one here, whose find I briefly report here in the seasonal spirit: Marion L. Starkey's The Devil in Massachusetts, Time Inc. Book Division, New York (1963).  This book I discovered and purchased is the 1963 republishing of M.L. Starkey's 1949 historical piece based on court transcripts of the 1692 Salem Witch Trials. To make the package even more delectable, it comes with an introduction by Aldous Huxley.  This was quite a find, and its condition was definitely not poor; the book, I can tell, has never been read, probably never even cracked open, for 51 years.  Huxley's introduction is refreshing, considering that he makes no bones whatsoever about the paradigm shift with respect to the "wholly evil," that it is the force, the authority, which has perpetuated witch-hunts throughout the centuries.

From M.L. Starkey's introduction:

"It's bad business meddling with the devil; it makes you superstitious. I find myself impelled to report that the very hour I began my formal research ... a small hurricane came through my open window, wrecked the room, brought every tree in the yard crashing against the house, and toppled the steeple of the East Saugus Community Church, visible in the lightning beyond my window. Then again, the evening of the day I finally shipped off this manuscript, there came a plague of lightning, continuous and directly overhead, striking neighbors' houses but missing mine."

Tuesday, October 7, 2014

1947 Roswell "Flying Disc" Questions

Here are some questions regarding the ancient Roswell UFO incident of July 8, 1947 at the Roswell Army Air Field (RAAF). Why this topic, all of a sudden? I was watching something on TV about it, so these are all my somewhat rhetorical questions about the event.

If the object which crashed was in fact the purported nuclear-testing Project Mogul balloon, then how come Walter Haut and 509th Operations Group of the field didn't know about it? And even if he (they) didn't know about it, why would the Roswell Army Air Field public-information officer say that a "flying disc" was uncovered if a flying disc wasn't uncovered? Why did he use the word 'flying,' why didn't he just say they uncovered a disc, plain and simple? Why would he have publicly jeopardized his job and secret military activities by saying such a thing to the media, to what avail?

Think about it. Let's say you're a coast guard person on duty. You see something unusual floating in the ocean, in the dark. You see it for a while then it's gone. You don't see it again. First thing you'd think, and be trained to think, is that it's something that belongs in this world. Would you hold a press conference the next day and claim that you had seen the Kraken, Godzilla, or Cthulhu?  Would you say you had seen a flying unidentified object when it was only floating?  Would you jump to that unwarranted, absurd conclusion and come out and say it?  No, you wouldn't, though you didn't know what it was that you had seen. You wouldn't say anything about it in the first place except to your close circles, because it would be something important to report, but that would be about the size of it.  In other words, a high-security military man wouldn't have called a fallen balloon a "flying disc."

So what would compel a man to say he had seen a 'flying disc' uncovered at a high-security military field if it was a balloon?  No matter how you view it, his choice of words is very odd, the very action itself is very odd, if in fact they had just uncovered some kind of balloon.

There's a lot of ideology contrary to extraterrestrial scenarios of all kinds, but people experience what they experience, sometimes shattering their ideology of a closed world governed by scientific principles as contemporaneously known or ideology based on religious dogma. People who embrace scientism would never admit it, but their closed-off zeal is quasi-religious.  There have been publicly prominent, respectable people who have said to have seen UFOs.  Why would they do that, what for, if they didn't?

In the 80's I knew a retired professor emeritus, a deep, brilliant man of keen intelligence, tell me quite matter-of-factly that he stepped outside to the back of his house to feed his mountain cats, and there was an enormous disc-object that had landed there (this is up in the desert mountains of Southern California).  He said it was very quiet, that it had lights on it.  He watched it for a while, then went back in to his house, and when he returned, it was gone.  He had nothing to gain by telling me a whopper.  It wasn't his style.  In fact there are many people who have seen unexplainable things in the sky or on the ground; it would beat all scientific odds if every instance is based on misperception or hoax.  It's far easier to believe that there is indeed something extraordinary to the overwhelming accounts than to believe that they're all hooey.