A strange assortment to get you through the week...
- Cosmos and Psyche: Ray Grasse interviews Richard Tarnas about his latest book (Amazon US). . Read more about the book at the website.
- 23 Skidoo. Loren Coleman bids farewell to his friend Robert Anton Wilson. Greg Bishop also has some words on RAW over at UFO Mystic.
- Michael Prescott discusses the curiously literal mind.
- Fortean Times has published two free essays on their website, from the FT backlist: "Photographing Phantoms, by Alan Murdie, and "9/11: The Video", by Jack Sargeant.
- Bryan Appleyard has a new book, How to Live Forever or Die Trying (Amazon UK). You'll find an extract from the book at Times Online.
- Dean Radin has a little to say about militant atheism.
- Filer's Files #2 for 2007 has the latest ufological news from around the globe.
- UFO Casebook #238 is also now online.
- And just to settle you down a bit, skeptic Randi's latest newsletter has also made its way on to the internets.
- Filip Coppens has a new essay on his website: "Glozel: the fraud or find of the 20th century?".
- And lastly, "Zen and the Art of Ufology", by Daniel Brenton.
This is a circular vortex, spinning...
- Four years ago Sylvia Browne and James Van Praagh said Shawn Hornbeck was dead. Now they have some explaining to do.
- WaPo have a long and in-depth article on people how believe they are victims of mind control experiments.
- Critics brand UK super-database "frightening and intrusive".
- Excavations show that Stonehenge didn't stand alone.
- Grand Canyon creationist tale has National Parks service under fire from scientists.
- Creationist museum has dinosaurs and humans living together.
- Ancient stone tools may rewrite American prehistory. Perhaps they were Noah's?
- The terror on the face of an Amazonian mummy.
- Ancient spice healing remedies - an ingredient in curry shows promise for Alzheimer's, cancer, and other diseases.
- The New York Times has an obituary for Robert Anton Wilson.
- Humanoid robot controlled with the mind (with video).
- Japan recommends scrapping Moon mission.
- NASA's Pluto probe prepares for Jupiter flyby.
- String theory? Knot.
- The latest issue of Scientific American is now out - one of the free articles from the new issue is this one on dark energy.
- 2006: The year in sci-fi book cover art.
- The must-know lexicon of the 21st century intellectual.
- Woman dies during "hold your wee for a Wii" competition.
- America goes insane over the weather.
- World's first test tube baby gives birth to her own baby, doing it the old-fashioned way. Much messier.
- Genetic search closes in on Alzheimer's mutation.
- Are memories made of this molecule?
- What we hear, and how it affects what we see.
Quote of the Day:
Men, for years now, have been talking about war and peace. But now, no longer can they just talk about it. It is no longer a choice between violence and nonviolence in this world; it's nonviolence or nonexistence.
Martin Luther King
Wired has a new article on James 'The Amazing' Randi's infamous million dollar prize, with news that the 'open challenge' will now become a more pro-active, targeted affair:
Randi says he'll start actively investigating professional mind-readers and mediums for proof of criminal fraud, or opportunities for civil lawsuits. Like Elliot Ness stalking Al Capone, he's not above busting a psychic for tangential infractions like tax code violations or an SEC matter.
At the same time, the foundation will choose six to eight high-profile targets each year, meticulously outline their claims, and then call them out one-by-one.
It seems that no longer will standard issue 'woo-woos' be allowed to apply - instead, only certain people will be targeted with direct challenges, beginning on April 1st with Uri Geller (of course), Sylvia Browne, John Edward and James Van Praagh. There are more details in the latest JREF newsletter.
Here's the alternative radio schedule for the first half of the week.
Coast to Coast AM: Monday's guest is dowser Raymon Grace who will discuss his process for cleansing spaces & individuals of negative entities. Tuesday is TBA (check the link for updates), on Wednesday John Lear will discuss cities and mining operations on the moon, and on Thursday Gregg Braden will discuss his latest book, The Divine Matrix: Bridging Time, Space, Miracles, and Belief.
More details including relevant guest links are available at the C2C website.
It's 2007, where are the hover cars and robot maids?
- South Korea isn't letting me down, aiming to put a robot in every home by 2010.
- Also in South Korea, a robot that gives birth is helping medical students who can't practice because of the country's low birthrate. Governator Arnie plans to use it in his new movie, Terminator Junior.
- Australia is taking part in the One Laptop Per Child project for aboriginal communities in the top end.
- Will Windows Vista be one step forward, two steps back? One day we will witness iWindows.
- Comet McNaught, named after the Australian astronomer who discovered it last August, streaks across the southern skies this week, but Sydney may miss out. Some punters say it's a cricket ball smashed by Gilchrist from hapless English bowlers.
- Black diamonds may have their origins in intersteller space, US researchers claim.
- A researcher says the Viking space probes of 1976-77 did find life on Mars, but inadvertantly killed it and didn't recognise what it had found.
- We are the Martians.
- New life forms have been discovered in the Arctic Ocean.
- A plant with the world's largest flower evolved from a family of flora whose blossoms were nearly all tiny. You should see the bees.
- A duck believed to be extinct has been found alive because scientists were looking in the wrong habitat for 18 years. Maybe the duck was hiding.
- A 36'000-year-old skull discovered in South Africa gives support to the "Out of Africa" hypothesis.
- But wait, there's more. Modern humans may have spread out of Africa only relatively recently according to the analysis of fossil finds in Russia.
- Tools found in northern Minnesota may be 13000 to 14000 years old, which many skeptical archaeologists are having a hard time grasping.
- A quartz stela unearthed in the Avenue of Ram-headed Sphinxes in Luxor has changed what Zahi Hawass knows of Ancient Egypt's 20th dynasty.
- A slickly-produced SciFi Channel program is looking for flying dinosaurs in the mountainous jungles of New Guinea with sexy guides.
- The Transylvanian castle loosely associated with Vlad the Impaler is on sale for $91million US, but could end up as part of a theme park. Now I know why Greg made a donation link for TDG.
- This is the reason, not Stephen King's It novel and miniseries, why clowns scare the hell out of me.
- A campaign to clear the name of Mrs Helen Duncan, jailed for nine months in 1944 for being a witch, is gaining international support.
- What is this strange flying orb captured on video?
- The Other Side of Truth says the O'Hare UFO incident, for better or worse, will define how the public views UFOlogy. If only the public read TDG instead of celebrity paparazzi gossip magazines.
- Paul Kimball also believes that self-styled alien abduction researchers -- such as David Jacobs and Budd Hopkins, have is a cult. I'm disappointed in Paul, he (conveniently) fails to mention John Mack's research.
- But this piece by the UFO Iconoclast(s) is just plain offensive, describing abductees as people experiencing psychotic episodes who need to be "cured". Whoever wrote that needs to be anal probed by klingons.
- Nick Redfern says he supports people who search for ET using radar and radio, but wonders if we'll have a better chance winning the lottery. I forgot to buy a ticket last week.
- The Beyond Reason talkshow discusses the latest in UFOlogy with Dr Kevin Randle.
- Does this video footage really show a spiraling UFO above Russia, or is it a clever fake?
- The opposition to String Theory is growing. I can hear the snip snip of scissors.
- The internet needs less cell-phone recordings of Saddam Hussein's latest booze-up and Paris Hilton's execution , and more pics of the O'Hare UFO.
- Is this the face of Dante? The author of The Divine Comedy (Amazon US or UK), not the guy from Clerks.
- I'm a big fan of Rob Brezsny's Free Will Astrology and Pronoia (Amazon US or UK), and I'm delighted to discover he reads TDG.
Quote of the Day:
"I have a dream that in the New World Oprah Winfrey will buy up all the Pizza Huts on the planet and convert them into a global network of menstrual huts, where for a few days each month every one of us, men and women alike, can resign from the crazy-making 9-5, drop out and slow down, break trance and dive down into eternal time."
from Pronoia, by Rob Brezsny
Developments continue in the O'Hare airport 'UFO incident', with Chicago Tribune reporter John Hilkovitch revealing that pilots on the ground may have snapped an image of the object with a digital camera. In a video interview (which also contains the pre-interview conversation), Hilkovitch makes clear that he thinks both O'Hare airport officials and the FAA are not being entirely honest.
The video is around 8 minutes long. Even if the object turns out to have a mundane explanation, the reaction of 'officialdom' in this case makes for an interesting case study for ufology.
Update: This video is being removed from various sites - I've been switching the link to new providers, but I'm sure it will eventually disappear altogether. If you want to reference it in future, I'd suggest either saving it to your hard drive, or writing out a transcript.
A few things to keep you busy over the weekend...
- Skeptoid dissects the Philadelphia Experiment (podcast audio and transcript).
- An interview with Stanton Friedman on Roswell and his own career in ufology.
- Brainsturbator has "DMT and Extraterrestrial Communication".
- The Archaeology Channel has 'Moving Megaliths' (video).
- Nearthwort Obtain has a podcast interview with Nick Redfern available. Also, you can check out Nick's recent article on UFO Mystic, "Ghostly Grays".
- New website Skeptico has a podcast with Rupert Sheldrake discussing "How Controversial Science is Debated".
- Whitley Strieber has a new journal entry, titled "Strange Days".
- American Chronicle looks back on the Phoenix Lights, as the ten year anniversary approaches.
Here's the rundown on the radio schedules for the second half of the week:
Whitley Strieber's Dreamland: This week William Henry talks to Christopher Jones, who has translated one of the legendary “hidden” books of our time, Otto Rahn’s Crusade Against the Grail (Amazon US and UK).
Coast to Coast AM: Friday is open lines. Early show Saturday, Ian welcomes surgeon and author Dr. Pauline Chen, who shares inside details of medical training and treatment, after first hour guest Peter Lance updates the Oklahoma City bombing case. In the late show, Art Bell talks to Ann Druffel about her work with alien abduction as well as the mystery of what "End Time" is. Sunday's guests are UFO and crop circle researchers Ed & Kris Sherwood, who will be discussing recent UFO sightings over Santa Monica and Mexico as well as related crop circle events in the fields of England.
More details including relevant websites are available at the linked pages above. Remember also that while Coast to Coast is subscription, Dreamland is free. Dreamland also now offers a podcast of the most recent show.
Robert Anton Wilson has died, 7 days short of his 75th birthday:
Robert Anton Wilson Defies Medical Experts and leaves his body @4:50 AM on binary date 01/11.
All Hail Eris!
On behalf of his children and those who cared for him, deepest love and gratitude for the tremendous support and lovingness bestowed upon us.
(that's it from Bob's bedside at his fnord by the sea)
RAW was a Fortean, anarchist, futurist and esotericist who merged all his various interests in his fictional works, such as The Illuminatus Trilogy. A huge loss.
- Russian archaeologists discover body of 2000-year-old warrior preserved intact in permafrost.
- "Orcs in loincloths" is how this Mayanist describes Mel Gibson's Apocalypto.
- Peru pushes to make Machu Picchu a wonder of the world.
- Aboriginal anger as Wandjina graffiti spreads to the city.
- The Priory of Sion resorts to recruitment by spam. Things must be tough in the secret society business.
- Ball lightning created in the lab (with link to video).
- The subversive skeptical strategy: we all know UFO really means aliens from outer space...right?
- Unless they are of course owls. Greg Bishop riffs on 'skeptic' Joe Nickell's owl fixation, in a post on the 'Kelly Green Men'.
- Research continues into deep space travel propulsion.
- Europe targets its own Moon and Mars missions. It's gonna get pretty crowded up there I think.
- Dogs are as good at sniffing out cancer as an state of the art technology. Coincidentally, Astraea radio recently interviewed Nicholas Broffman on this very topic.
- Several thousand birds mysteriously drop dead in Australia.
- Pessimists are likely to die early. Guess they'll be self-righteous now too.
- And in more self-confirming news, a research thesis into procrastination is finally finished...after ten years.
- Hitachi develops system that reads people's minds via their blood flow.
- Desktop fabricator may kick-start a home revolution.
- Relax if you're in London. You're secure beneath watchful eyes.
- 2006 was the warmest year on record for the U.S. Conversely, it's half way through summer here and we've barely had a hot day.
- Scientists make molecular rings in shape of King Solomon's Knot.
- Here's a map of world happiness. One day I'm going to set up a lobby group for colour blindness...do people realise how hard it is to make sense of diagrams using such close colours?
- Next James Cameron movie (Avatar) will take 'digital actors' to a new level.
- Tourists ponder Loch Ness Monster's feeding times. I hope some quick local said something like "when the plumpest tourist gets close to the water".
- A short message from Robert Anton Wilson about his impending death.
Quote of the Day:
In America attendance at church is much higher, and it convulses the body politic because, unable to fulfill it's sacral function, the church has become simply a lobbying force for fundamentalist social policy...I think we should level [churches] to the ground and start over.