|EDITOR AND STILL
James W. Moseley
Volume 52, No. 9
October 20th, 2005
(Whole Number 385)
P. 0. Box 1709
Key West, FL 33041
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MORE ABOUT THE LATE PHIL KLASS
The worst remarks we have heard following Klass' death come from former ufologist William Moore, of Roswell and MJ-12 fame. In a telephone interview we told Moore of Klass' painful final years and his reply was "Divine retribution". Then he went on to say, for attribution: "The world is better off without him. My sainted grandmother told me not to say anything about the dead unless I could say something good. He's dead. Good!"
Klass was indeed very mean-spirited at times, but nothing could be more mean-spirited than the above. We are very disappointed in Moore, whom we have known for many years.
The long Fortean Times obituary on Klass is much more mellow, and concludes with the remark: "Klass rather enjoyed his notoriety and took some impish amusement from tweaking the tails of both True Believers and 'Serious Ufologists'. In evidence, one might note how he carried on lengthy correspondence with representatives ef both sub-species and was great friends with ufology's self-appointed clown, Jim Moseley."
Finally there's "The Last Will and Testament of Philip J. Klass", first published in "Smear" in 1983. Says he:
"To ufologists who publicly criticize me or who even think unkind thoughts about me in private, I do hereby leave and bequeath THE UFO CURSE. No matter how long you live, you will never know any more about UFOs than you know today.... As you lie on your own death-bed you will be as mystified about UFOs as you are today. And you will remember this curse."
Of course, this curse is ambiguous when you really think about it. The fact that you may never know any more about UFOs than you do today does not necessarily mean that there isn't a genuine mystery! It just means that the mystery may not be solved any time soon. We obviously know that Klass did not live long enough for a solution to be found. Perhaps others of us will be more lucky and perhaps not.
We know this must have been an important convention, as the ubiquitous Stanton Friedman (Nuclear Physicist, UFO Expert, etc., etc.) was one of the main speakers. Said Stan, "Ufology is blossoming in China, and the participants are mostly professionals." We are hoping that these "professionals" are more skeptical about the wilder UFO claims than Stan has been. (Our thanks to Vince Ditchkus)...
We wish we had more details, but that's the whole story as given by Ananova. It reminds us of the "flying humanoids" story on Page 5 of our last issue. (Thanks again to Vince Ditchkus )...
The $2.6 million lawsuit asks a judge to decide whether or not the building really is haunted, and if so, whether the the ghosts would interfere with the new tenants' restaurant business. Meanwhile, renovations have ceased and the building remains empty. (Our thanks to Steve Dunn)...
Most of these people are pictured here, plus NUFOC's executive director Lisa Davis, to the left of her friend John Miller, in the middle of the front row. Note the row of jazzy NUFOC posters on the back wall. Your editor is not shown here because he took the picture.
A good time was had by all, but we were disappointed in the attendance and in the fact that not very many peoole in the "hard core" of saucer fiends showed up. We did have interesting conversations with Las Vegas researcher Norman Howard (see his Letter to the Editor further along in this issue), and with a fascinating abductee whom we will call Barbara (because that's her first name.)
Barbara has had personal experiences with strange entities all her life, since she was a small child. She does not call herself an abductee because "she always went willingly". What we find significant is that these repeated experiences did not really make her more religious or more spiritual, and she seems to have no cosmic message to give us. She believes the whole thing is "genetic", and accepts it as just part of her otherwise-normal life.
What this tells us is that the abduction experience is very strange and complex, with no easy answers. So is the saucer mystery in general!
Unfortunately, till something really new and exciting turns up, UFO conventions are going to continue to attract less attention than they deserve. Lisa is doing a good job as executive director of NUFOC, but she is fighting an uphill battle!...
A conservative pair of film makers recently infiltrated a Raelian seminar at which they claim to have shot very damaging footage "under cover". They are mainly disturbed by the sexual freedom. Homosexuals are welcomed; and one of the film makers admits that he himself was "seduced by a couple of the women and got in pretty deep"- whatever that means!
This pair of documentary makers sound mean-spirited indeed, in that their aim is to force the Raelians to disband, in exchange for not showing this documentary to the public. Of course Rael has threatened to sue. Supposedly he also offered them money to scrap the documentary, but they refused. Said one of them, "We want to keep kids from being sucked in by this."
But their attitude sounds like blackmail to us. Except for the stuff about aliens, and claims to have created human clones in 2003 (which they were never able to prove), the Raelians seem like a relatively harmless cult. Bush would probably not approve of it, however!
That was back in 1996. Now, in July 2005, sponsors of the Visit Scotland Adventure Triathlon (whatever that is) in Loch Ness signed a policy whereby any of the competitors attacked by the Loch Ness Monster would receive up to the equivalent of $1.8 million dollars.
How about a policy for women (only) who are impregnated by the Loch Ness Monster! The premiums on this should be really low! (Thanks to Steve Dunn)...
Former UFO researcher Bill Moore has told your editor personally that this book is the most important offering of the year, but we must admit that we have merely paged through it. Says Bishop of Moore (Page 271): "According to many UFO researchers, I should include Bill Moore on my list of helpful government employees, but I'll just leave him in the 'excluded middle', and thank him for his support, assistance, and longtime friendship. This book would have been impossible without his generous cooperation and incredible patience with my annoying questions and thinly veiled accusations."
On the back cover, this book is described as "The horrifying true story of a government-authorized campaign of disinformation that defined an era of alien paranoia and destroyed one man's life." The whole thing is written in capital letters, but we have toned it down in order not to frighten our readers too much.
The back cover rant goes on:
"In 1978, Paul Bennewitz, an electrical physicist living in Albuquerque, New Mexico, engaged in some aggressive radio monitoring of the nearby Sandia Labs, then managed by the Department of Defense. When he became convinced that the strange lights hovering over the labs and Kirtland Air Force Base signaled the vanguard of an extraterrestrial alien invasion, he began writing TV stations, newspapers, senators -and even President Reagan- to alert them.
"For the most part Bennewitz received form-letter replies, but Air Force investigators paid him a visit, as did Bill Moore, author of the first book on the Roswell Incident. Before long Moore - then a new force in civilian UFO research - was tapped by a group of intelligence agents and a deal was struck. Moore was to keep tabs on Bennewitz while the Air Force ran a psychological profile and disinformation campaign on the unsuspecting physicist. In return, Air Force Intelligence would let Moore in on classified UFO material.
"This is Bennewitz's harrowing tale, told by fringe-culture historian Greg Bishop. It is the troubling account of the custom-made hall of smoke and mirrors that eventually drove Bennewitz to a mental institution, as well as the story of the explosive propagation of disinformation that began in 1979 and reverberates through the UFO community and pop culture to this day."
It gets even better after that, but "Smear" is not primarily a pornographic magazine, so we will spare you further details (which, however, have already been printed previously in our humble zine.) Probably you must really read this book to get the true dimensions of what is going on!
The case is complex, with some very interesting DNA test results and the strong possibility that (gasp!) something really happened here. But on the surface the incident is so ludicrous that it is not likely to ever be taken as seriously as it might deserve.
Anyhow, we agree with Dwight Connelly's last remark: "If you can purchase only one UFO book this year, this is the one to buy."
There hasn't been anything like this since John Stuart (also an Australian!) authored a took published by Gray Barker, circa 1955, called "UFO Warning". In it, a decent young damsel is raped by a group of several hideous invisible monsters...
"Thanks for the mention in the current 'Smear' of my Top Ten and Bottom Ten lists for Ufology, which appeared a month or two ago at my blog, www.redstarfilms.blogspot.com....
Your inclusion in the Top Ten was an obvious choice to me. I know there are those in the ufological community who pooh-pooh your contributions to ufology, including some people who are friends of mine. However, as I said at my blog, every field of study needs a court jester, a role you have filled for decades with aplomb and wit. And no matter what Wendy Conners says, 'Shockingly Close to the Truth" is a must-read - one of the few UFO books that is both genuinely interesting and well-written (many often being either one or the other, but rarely both).
"Now, as for your questions about my relationship with Stan Friedman, I can only say:
"(a) Yes, he is my uncle (married my Dad's sister 25 or so years ago), a fact that neither of us has ever hidden.
"(b) He and I often disagree, particularly about MJ-12 and Wilbert Snith, but we also agree about a great many things too - like the ridiculousness of exopolitics, for example. Our biggest disagreement centers on the Extraterrestrial Hypothesis - he places the emphasis on the Extraterrestrial part, and I place it on the Hypothesis part, even as I tell anyone who asks that I find it an entirely plausible, although unproven, hypothesis; and
"(c) Despite the disagreements mentioned above, I have nothing but the greatest respect, admiration and affection for Stan. I may kuow him as well, at least in a personal sense, as anyone in ufology. He is sincere in his beliefs, and a decent honorable man, through and through. Plus he was a hoot to have around at family reunions when I was a kid!
"Anyway, thanks again for the 'subscription', and all the best for the future. May 'Saucer Smear' and its Esteemed Supreme Commander live long and prosper!"
"Mary Sutherland's high-water mark in Ufoology recently coincided with her visit to Carbondale, Pa., where she shot a documentary film on this long-ago non-UFO incident, interviewed alleged witnesses to the event, and managed to anger one of her star witnesses (Ms Dawn Race), while also losing the friendship of a paranormal researcher (Rick Fisher) when Mary posted 'false' and 'grossly exaggerated' accounts of what Mr. Fisher and Ms Race apparently said and did over the course of their limited involvement with Mary and her pair of woefully-defective UFO detectives at Carbondale!
"As a result of this discord, both Race and Fisher have requested that Sutherland remove their names and the 'distorted accounts' of their involvement with BUFO (The Burlington UFO and Paranormal Radio of Wisconsin) from Mary's many web sites and links. Ms Race alleges that Mrs. Sutherland has failed to do so and that she has made this request of Mary more than once'"Moreover, there still remains the absolutely dreadful problem of Mary's posting equally objectionable accounts of one of her own field investigators being an eyewitness, too. He says that he never saw anything at the pond back in 1974 because the crowds were quite large and he couldn't get close enough. Yet, Mary places him at the pond watching a glowing light move about under the water's surface. (Egads, this is beginning to sound like an old Adamski fiasco!)...
"When one considers the fact that the Roswell and Aztec, N.M. annual UFO conventions and festivals have become 'extraordinarily lucrative' entertainment/tourist industries - as well as meccas for countless UFO believers and enthusiasts. It's quite easy to understand how the long-dead Carbondale UFO crash story might be 'claimed' and creatively 'resuscitated' by a self-promoting internet impresario from Wisconsin and her unwitting, fawning pair of saucer sleuths doing almost all the investigative leg work back in the coal-cracking town of Carbondale.
"For those wishing to read more about this sad but true BUFOOLogical tale, I recommend visiting the many BUFO sites at 'carbondale.pa.ufo crash', 'paranormal pa', or my story which appears in the Magonia Supplement No. 55 issue..."
"If you so wish, you may even contact me at 'firstname.lastname@example.org' and tell me how foolish I am to doubt the validity of the 'veracity-challenged' Mary Sutherland's pond stories. Let's see, at last count BUFO had speculatively linked the '74 pond incident to a UFO crash, a Soviet missile crash, a portion of a Soviet missile crash, a radioactive something-or-other laying on the pond's floor, unspecified paranormal activity near and within the pond, a 'portal' or gateway opening up into another space and time continuum, a submersible UFO that dodged police bullets fired at it, and of course, the shameful coverup lantern.
"Somehow Mary and Ron forgot to mention the possibility that 'Carbie', the famous Carbondale pond monster may have been splashing about in the murky water too. But, then again, one can't be expected to think of everything.
"So, just as with Mary's online store, it appears there's a bit of everything and anything to choose from if you're a UFO/Paranormal browser. Has Mary's meteoric climb in UFOOLogy reached its zenith? Has it been extinguished in the depths of the old silt pond? As that rascal George Adamski would say, 'Time will tell'.
"A few years ago a man calling himself 'Prophet Yahweh' ('Yahweh' is Hebrew for 'God' although the 'prophet' is a Black man, not a Jew) came onto the scene here in Las Vegas and offered to call forth a UFO on demand. The local MUFON chapter sent a few investigators to his house, a falling-down shack in the worst part of town, to witness this historic event. When they arrived, the local TV stations were already there, having been summoned by the 'prophet' himself.
On cue, Prophet Yahweh told everyone present to look at a certain section of the sky where a Mylar balloon had been released by a confederate of the 'prophet'. He then demanded money for this extraordinary effort! Upon receiving the grand sum of zero dollars, he flew into a rage, chasing everyone away with curses!
The MUFON investigators went to work, discovering that Prophet Yahweh is really Raymond Watkins, a man who had been sent to a mental institution twice by court order because of various behavioral acts deemed worthy of 'observation' by psychiatrists. When MUFON reported these facts to local media, Prophet Yahweh telephoned the MUFON investigators and made threats to do bodily harm to them. He admitted that he had been in the mental institution during the reported time periods. (As an employee! The inmates are running the asylums!)
He then requested a second chance to demonstrate his unusual (to say the least) ability to call forth a UFO on demand. Again, local MUFON investigators were dispatched (this time without the local TV stations), and again they were treated to silver-colored Mylar balloons - this time, two of them.
He has since been soliciting donations to establish his own religion. Perhaps Las Vegas zillionaire Robert Bigelow could fund Prophet Yahweh, and Dr. Steven Greer could provide some pointers as to how to do a better job of calling forth the aliens!"
"Re the notorious 'Straith Letter', your warning (that it was a hoax) came after the book about George Adamski was published. Far from ignoring your warning, I inserted typewritten slips to the effect that the letter was bogus - in all subsequent copies sold."
"I was interested to read in 'Smear' about Michael Jackson's UFO beliefs. He joins Lou Rawls, Dan Ayckroyd, Jackie Gleanson, and others among UFO advocates in the entertainment industry. But you fail to point out a possible UFO-abduction connection to Michael Jackson: Many visitors to his Neverland estate have reported odd memories of lying on a kind of bed while a strange, alien-looking being with an odd skin color and a vestigal nose performs medical-examination type procedures on them. Now, Jackson denies that anything like this goes on, so it must be extraterrestrials!..."
Michael Luckman's book "Alien Rock", about Jackson and many others, is so bad that it was even panned by UFO Magazine! How low can one sink?? - Editor.
"In 'Saucer Smear' Vol. 52, No. 6, I read with interest that Hopkinsville, Kentucky was holding a celebration of the '50th Anniversity of the Kelly Green Men'...
"You might be interested in knowing that Hopkinsville is widely considered the 'Occult Capital of the South' for reasons including, but not limited to, the 1955 incident. Hopkinsville is the home town of Edgar Cayce, the 'Sleeping Prophet' who made many predictions regarding such subjects as Atlantis and the 'End Days'. Hopkinsville is also about 20 miles from Adams, Tennessee, where a famous haunting took place in the early years of the 19th century. This particular spirit was referred to as 'The Bell Witch' and was the inspiration for the recent movie 'The Blair Witch Project'. The Bell Witch haunting purportedly caused so much consternation that Andrew Jackson himself supposedly called on the Bell family in order to experience the phenomena first hand.
"Many descendants of the Bell family eventually moved to Hopkinsville and one of them, a dentist, owned a large Victorian-style house, which a friend of mine - the president of a local bank - purchased after it had remained vacant for many years, and began a fairly ambitious restoration project. He said that workers would not remain in the house after dark because of its reputation for being haunted. (My friend stated that he himself had never experienced any unexplained phenomena in the house whatsoever.)
"I have traveled to Hopkinsville many times on business and have asked local residents if they remembered the famous 1955 UFO incident, and surprisingly, a great many had never even heard of it. Those that would speak of it tended to laugh it off, and probably rightfully so. One gentleman - echoing Ebenezer Scrooge's line in 'A Christmas Carol', stated that there was probably more 'moonshine than moon' connected with the 1955 flap. Still, if Hopkinsville can benefit by good-naturedly playing up this event, good for them!...
"I absolutely loved your book, and have read it through at least a half-dozen times. Your light-hearted look at 'ufoology' is a welcome breath of fresh air in a field populated by way too many folks who take themselves much too seriously!"
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