NTS LogoSkeptical News for 12 July 2001

Archive of previous NTS Skeptical News listings

Thursday, July 12, 2001

A reader replies:

Hello. You used my name in your May-11 update. Next time, please verify personal information prior to publication or republication. I was born in 1959, and left the Communist-occupied Ukraine in 1972. I changed my last name to Stonehill not because my new name is less"Russian-sounding" (actually, it was of another, non-Slavic language), but because of reasons that are of a more personal nature. I am certain that you (whoever G.C. happens to be) had previously never had heard about "Alien Lake Frogmen". This is a very crude description of what the Soviet military personnel had observed in the lake that fateful day. Nevertheless, there is a great deal of information that has come out from the former USSR about their Naval research and observations. I have published reports of Soviet (and Ukrainian, Russian) miltary sightings and findings in my book THE SOVIET UFO FILES (1998). But, of course, much more will be published in the new book I and Philip Mantle have written. Our main sources of information are scientists, government officials, military officers, and so on.

If you have any questions, do not be afraid to ask me. We are not in the Soviet Union, where Marxist-Leninist regime muzzled those who challenged its dogmas, its rule, its insistence that we all follow one line. I was one of those who challenged them, even as a teen; alas, I did not do enough. But now the Marxist-Leninist regime is no longer in charge of the destiny of my homeland. People are free to study science, research UFO phenomena, believe in God, travel, experience new things, and question authorities. Until 1989, there was an official ban on any mention of UFO phenomenon in the Soviet media. No mas, amigos, horita tenemos libertad, as my buddies from east L.A. would say. In today's Russia, Ukraine, etc., UFO researchers and skeptics have an equal chance to express their views. This, I believe, is progress.

Paul Stonehill

Articles of Note & Skeptics in the Pub

From: Barry Karr

Lizard Sewer Invasion Smells Like a Myth
New York Daily News


"New York City's latest urban legend slithered into town last week, provoking amusement, curiosity and perhaps a bit of fear."

Shipping gator aid to the Big Apple
By DON ADDIS St. Petersburg Times


"My old cohort in humor, Paul Dickson, with his pal Joseph C. Goulden, once wrote a book called There Are Alligators In Our Sewers & Other American Credos -- "a collection of bunk, nonsense and fables we believe.""

British witches upset by Harry Potter broomstick style


"Hollywood studio Warner Bros. has had a spell cast on it for showing apprentice wizard Harry Potter riding his broomstick with the brush part at the back."

Man at heart of 1980s child abuse case may be freed
by Jan Cienski
National Post


"A figure at the heart of a 1980s child abuse panic may soon be released from jail, years after much of the evidence against him was discredited as the imaginings of children."

Gov. Swift in no hurry to let Amirault go free
by Ellen J. Silberman
Boston Herald


"Acting Gov. Jane M. Swift yesterday said she is in no rush to let convicted child sex abuser Gerald ``Tooky'' Amirault out of jail."

Tracking Myakka's wily Skunk Ape
By Mischa Vieira
East County Observer


"It's been nearly nine months and there's been no reappearance of the Myakka Skunk Ape. At least no official reports."

Count Dracula Beaten in Wine Ruling


"Count Dracula has been thwarted in a bid to stop his name being used to sell wine, according to a German court ruling published on Tuesday."

Herbal Supplements Risky in Surgery
By John McKenzie


"In a report in Wednesday's Journal of the American Medical Association, researchers warn that commonly used herbal medications may cause serious problems in patients during surgery and that more doctors need to know what herbal medications their patients are taking before the operation."

Study finds herbs, surgery don't mix
By Rhonda Rowland


"Physicians should ask all patients preparing to undergo surgery if they use herbal remedies, since they may cause complications during the operation, according to a study in this week's Journal of the American Medical Association. Doctors should also be familiar with the potential complications of commonly used herbal medications and know how to handle them, the researchers said."

This is your reminder for the JULY 2001 'Skeptics in the Pub' meeting.

DATE - Wednesday, July 18th, 2001 [Note: this month's it's Wednesday, not Thursday]
TIME - 19:30
PLACE- Upstairs in the Florence Nightingale pub,
199 Westminster Bridge Road, London, SE1, U.K.
Junction with York Road, on the roundabout, near Waterloo station.
Entry fee is 2 pounds.

Detailed directions and a map of how to get to the pub can be found at

This month's night is a must-see, as we have JON RONSON coming to talk to us. His highly entertaining show "The Secret Rulers of the World" recently aired on Channel 4, and his book "Then: Adventures With Extremists" has recently being released by Picador (copies will be available on the night).

A welcome is extended to anyone interested in, or skeptical about, conspiracy theories, the paranormal, alternative medicine, psychic powers, pseudo-science, UFOs, alien abductions, creationism, Fortean phenomena, cult religions, water-divining, lost civilisations, etc. The evening will be an informal one, in a relaxed and friendly pub atmosphere. Real ales and food available. Non-skeptics are welcome and you can turn up at any time during the night.

Planned meeting dates to September are as follows:

Thursday August 16: Scott Wood.
Topic: Sex and Dogs and UFO's: A Meze of Strange Beliefs and Outsider Ideas.

Thursday September 20: Dr Charles Paxton (Univ of St Andrews).
Topic: Sea Monsters? Science and unknown giant aquatic animals.

Thanks to CSICOP/The Skeptical Inquirer, The Skeptic and ASKE for their support.

E-mail me for more information, or to recommend a speaker (perhaps yourself), or to remove yourself from this list. Scott Campbell .

Dr Scott Campbell,
Department of Philosophy,
University of Nottingham,
University Park, Nottingham,
NG7 2RD, U.K.

The history of psychiatry is one of nearly unmitigated failure

From Ben Avery

A history of failure

Author and psychologist Bruce Levine pummels psychiatry, psychotropic drugs and the role both may have played in the case of Andrea Yates.

Full article at:


Anyone know more about Dr. Levine or the International Center for the Study of Psychiatry and Psychology?

Wednesday, July 11, 2001

More on Moon Landings

From Barry Karr

Interesting article on the claim that the Moon Landings were hoaxed and a response the article has drawn from Arthur C. Clarke.


One giant leap for lunar skeptics
As many as 20 percent of Americans believe that the moon landings were faked.

Michael Cabbage | Sentinel Space Editor
Posted July 10, 2001

CAPE CANAVERAL -- As cosmic conspiracies go, this one has it all. Government lies and treachery. Murdered astronauts. Global domination by a one-world cabal.

Move over, grassy knoll and Area 51. The myth that America’s lunar landings were faked by the U.S. government is booming -- and not just among X-Files addicts. Millions of Americans, as many as 1 in 5 according to some estimates, now suspect Neil Armstrong took his one small step inside a television studio in the Nevada desert.


As a long-time admirer of the United States, I am appalled to hear that a recent poll suggests that 20% of Americans are ignorant fools: I hope the figure is grossly exaggerated, as no other term is strong enough to describe anyone who believes the Moon landings have been faked. If the late unlamented Evil Empire was still around, I might have suspected some of being communist sympathisers attempting to discredit the one achievement for which the U.S.A. may be remembered a thousand years from now.

Remembering how quickly Watergate unravelled, how could any sane person imagine that a conspiracy involving *hundreds of thousands of people over more than a decade* would not have done the same? Ben Franklin put it well : `A secret known to three people can be kept - as long as two of them are dead.'

And how do these nitwits account for the fact that, for the last thirty years, the laser reflectors and radio sensors on the Moon have been transmitting terabytes of data back to Earth? Who do they think put them there - E.T.s?

But I can't waste any more time on lunatics: I am too busy proving that George Washington never existed, but was invented by the British Disinformation Service to account for a certain minor unpleasantness in the Colonies.


Arthur Clarke 11 Jul `01.

PS Everyone: Please pass on - but don't give my address!!

Lie Detectors

From: Beth Wolszon

Dean wrote:

It seems that even Congress isn't beyond the reach of fashionable
pseudosciences like polygraph testing. Maybe they'll finally get the
message and outlaw this polygraph bullshit.
Well, they may be headed in that direction:


Monday, December 4, 2000

DOE Agrees to Fund Bingaman-Urged Polygraph Validity Study

WASHINGTON - U.S. Senator Jeff Bingaman today announced that the Department of Energy has released funding to finance a study he requested to determine the scientific validity of using polygraphs on DOE employees and employees of national defense laboratories, including Sandia and Los Alamos.

DOE will spend $860,000 to fund a National Research Council study. The National Research Council coordinates studies for the National Academy of Sciences and the National Academy of Engineering - the nation's most prestigious scientific and technical organizations. The 18-month study is expected to begin early next year with the appointment of experts to a panel, which will be charged with reviewing existing data on the science underlying polygraphy.

``A lot of people in Congress believe that polygraphs are some sort of panacea," Bingaman said. ``The fact is, they may be useful in some contexts, but we need to find out whether applying them as a screening tool to thousands of lab employees is one of those instances."
Bingaman is the top Democrat on the Senate Energy and Natural Resources Committee, which has jurisdiction over energy policy. -30-

Here's the url for the study. Clicking on the links for the first two meetings leads to more links to those meeting's agendas and audio files of the discussions.


Project Title: Study to Review the Scientific Evidence on the Polygraph

The Federation of American Scientists has an excellent resource page on the polygraph:


About a year ago, Salon published a good article discussing the problems with polygraph. It notes that regardless of its accuracy, law enforcement still finds the polygraph test useful in extracting confessions from guilty parties who happen to _believe_ it can accurately determine deception. David Lykken is quoted as saying

"If I was in the police business I would use [the] polygraph," says Lykken. "It's a powerful inducer of confessions, and you don't have to hit 'em with any clubs. I can't blame the police for using it; I only blame them for believing it."

The article can be found at


Beth Wolszon

Speaking of which, I want to call things like astrology and tarot-card reading, and all that sort of tomdickandharryfoolery, 'cogno-intellectual correlational sophocracies'. Has a nice post-it-note-modernist ring to it, mmm?
-- Wade Smith

Arrest after 'human skull' appears during exorcism

From Ananova at:


A man who claims to be a prophet has been arrested in Zimbabwe after using a suspected human skull in an exorcism ritual.

A woman had gone to a church in Harare asking for help for her sick child and was introduced to the man.

He told her evil spirits, including goblins, were haunting her house. While 'cleansing' the home the man claimed to have found the skull.

He asked for payment before he could burn it.

The skull is reported to have had human hair in its ears and nostrils.

The family contacted the police and the man was arrested.

Tests are being carried out on the skull to find out exactly what it is, reports The Herald.


Dean Baker of The Columbian Portland, OR, July 9

What if the Indians weren't here first?

More from pdxguide.com
Oregon News Radio KPAM

And what if white people weren't either?

What if the first humans in America were more Asian and entirely different than either Indian or Caucasian?

Those are the kinds of questions that scientists want to answer. But they are the kinds of questions that some tribal leaders and politicians don't want asked.

After eight years of legal wrangling, eight scientists expect to find out within weeks whether they have convinced a federal magistrate in Portland to overrule the U.S. government and allow them to study 380 skeletal fragments from the 9,300-year-old Kennewick Man.


Tuesday, July 10, 2001

New York residents fall victim to lizards myth hoax

From Ananova at:


New York residents have fallen victim to a hoax concerning the city's favourite myth: lizards in the sewers.

Enterprising hoaxers have plastered the city's manholes with stickers reading "Stay clear. Sewer lizard fumigation in progress".

Hundreds have appeared on city streets and fake staff have handed out cards to the public in busy areas telling them about the so-called spraying.

And they direct the curious to a website (www.sewer-alert.org) which tells them the fumigation is an attempt to kill off 10ft, 200-kilo lizards that mutated from reptiles flushed down toilets in the 1960s.

"Due to a recent increase in population of these giant sewer lizards (tentatively classified by the New York Sewer Alert as C. Hemizibecus Gigantus), it has been deemed in the civic interest to begin a remediation process," the website warns.

"The sewer lizard can be considered dangerous to humans. There were 30,575 cases of sewer lizard encounters with Americans in the period beginning April 1998 and ending May 2001."

But the stickers, websites and even scientific names are complete fakes reportedly being used to promote an American television channel. Now angry sewerage bosses have accused the hoaxers of wasting the public's time.

Charles Sturcken, chief of staff of the city's department of environmental protection, told the New York Daily News: "It might have been done in jest, but it's not funny.

"You can't advertise on public property. We actually got calls from people in all five boroughs asking what was going on. It turns out to be a waste of time for our workforce. We've handed it over to the sanitation department and police intelligence."

The myth first emerged in the 1960s after a trend for keeping lizards as pets ended when the animals became too big and many got flushed down toilets.

Astrologer helps racehorse prepare for 100th defeat

From Ananova at:


An astrologer has been drafted in to help prepare a horse aiming to end its losing streak of 99 straight races.

Jayne Headon is plotting 16-year-old Quixall Crossett's horoscope in the run-up to his landmark 100th race.

The gelding holds the modern-day European record for running 99 races and losing every one of them.

Large crowds are expected on July 22 at Southwell racecourse to cheer Quixall Crossett on to his century.

He is trained near Middlesbrough by Ted Caine and has his own fan club and website.

"It's not about trying to predict if he will win. We are using astrology to understand more about Quixall, his behaviour and his abilities," says Jayne, who hosts a weekly astrology slot on London radio station, Millennium FM.

"Looking at Quixall's chart, I can see that at the time of his race, his moon forms an angle with Uranus that will help to bring out his more unique and unusual qualities.

"His chart shows that he can have problems channelling his energies in the right area, and also a tendency to be impulsive and a touch accident-prone and this was something that concerned me, especially as Mars is currently retrograde - suggesting that Quixall could be very prone to accidents at the moment.

"Thankfully, Mars is due to start moving in the right direction two days before Quixall's race, and although it squares his moon, making it difficult for him to relax, he will be less likely to get hurt.

"I couldn't tell you if Quixall was going to win - but I would tentatively suggest not. However, his chart shows that he is physically and mentally in good shape, and will be prepared to do his best."


From: Francis Kushner

Any review of WaveZorb developed for cellphones by Calgon Carbon?


Monday, July 09, 2001

Skeptics put luck to the test on Friday the 13th

Amherst, NY (June 29, 2001)-July 13, 2001 is Friday the 13th. While friggatriskaidekaphobes (those afraid of this dreaded day) will be staying at home with the curtains drawn, skeptics will be gathering at the Center for Inquiry in Amherst, NY, to put old superstitions to the test. Now in its sixth year, the "Friday the 13th Superstition Bash" is becoming something of a tradition, an event where people don't worry one bit about straining their relationship with Lady Luck.

Participants will take part in the "Luckless Raffle" (where the "winner" loses all); a "Superstition Obstacle Course"-where people will open umbrellas indoors, walk under ladders, and dodge a black cat bent on ruining their day. They can also try their hand at dunking a witch or get a reading from a real "Misfortune Teller" and tour a "Museum of Superstition." The event will culminate in an official "Breaking of the Mirror " where skeptics will collectively thumb their noses at superstitions about bad luck.

"While most of the superstitions we poke fun at during the Superstition Bash are relatively harmless," says Paul Kurtz, chairman of the Committee for the Scientific Investigation of Claims of the Paranormal (CSICOP), "people need to remember that the kind of thinking it represents-attributing the wrong causes to effects-gets in the way of real problem solving."

"Superstitions derive from magical rather than rational thinking," says CSICOP Senior Research Fellow Joe Nickell. "People are at their best when they use their critical thinking skills, rather than worrying over irrelevant circumstances."

At the end of the day, skeptics hope to at least set the public record straight for the maligned number 13. After all, 13 American colonies united to make a very successful country. And looked at objectively, the 13th comes out looking pretty good as far as days of the month go. Some very successful people-including Harrison Ford, Alfred Hitchcock and Stevie Wonder-were born on the 13th, and Friday, October 13, 2000, marks the third anniversary of British fighter pilot Andy Green's new land speed record in the Thrust SuperSonic vehicle, which broke the sound barrier in Nevada's Black Rock Desert.

The Superstition Bash runs from 4:00 p.m. to 8:30 p.m. with closing ceremonies at 8:00. The Center for Inquiry is located at 1310 Sweet Home Road in Amherst, NY (across from the State University of New York at Buffalo North Campus). The event is open to the public. Admission is free.


From: Raymond Nelke


Here comes the sun Neutrino study validates solar energy theory...

From - Date - Author
U.S. News - July 2, 2001 - Charles W. Petit

Article Located At:
PHYSICS - SUN - UNIVERSE so-called standard model (SN: 7/1/95, p.10) contains major flaw.

Physics Bedrock Cracks, Sun Shines In By solving a decades-long mystery about the sun, researchers have set off a scientific ripple that could alter conceptions of the universe as a whole...

From - Date - Author
Science News - June 23, 2001 - Peter Weiss

Article Located At:
PHYSICS - SCIENCE et al - National Institute of Standards and Technology, aka NIST

Atomic Rulers of the World Nanoscale optics, quantum computing - the battle for technology supremacy is being fought inside the labs of a national standards agency called NIST. And the new enemy is in the White House

From - Date - Author
Wired - June 2001- Brian Alexander

Article Located At:

Frozen Light Slowing a beam of light to a halt may pave the way for new optical communications technology, tabletop black holes and quantum computers...

From - Date - Author
Scientific American - July 2001 - Lene Vestergaard Hau

Article Located at::

The cuddles that kill

By Christopher Reed
Glasgow Herald, Scotland
June 21, 2001, (Features, page 17)

Children are abused, and held so tightly they can't breathe -- with the consent of authorities. Christopher Reed reports on the controversial America therapy that killed Candace Newmaker.

In a court hearing this week in Colorado, two women, Connell Watkins and Julie Ponder were given the minimum prison sentence of 16 years each for suffocating to death a 10-year-old girl, Candace Newmaker, in a grotesque "re-birthing therapy" technique. Most Americans think this will end a horrific but isolated incident. In fact, the treatment used is widespread, systematic, backed by authorities, and linked to the deaths of at least four other children in America.

In fact, the case has helped highlight the fact that this is far from the end of the story.

As a result of the Newmaker case, many victims of frighteningly similar treatment from all over America are coming forward to describe what they suffered. One is Jessica Bice (sic), who asked the judge to impose maximum sentence and whose letter was read in court. She said the Newmaker case was "not the first time that this therapy has killed". She said "Watkins did rage reduction therapy on me when I was aged five to 11" in which she suffered "bruises under the arms and verbal abuse". She said Watkins "never cared if I was hurting or tired, but I was lucky, I was strong."

The treatment involves deliberate violence and abuse of young children who are prevented from moving, gripped in holds that can restrict breathing, and "take downs" in which they are knocked to the floor in a rugby tackle. Parents are also encouraged to withhold food. Clinics charge thousands of dollars for such treatment, which may be performed by unqualified staff.

It is called Attachment Therapy (AT), and is used on children, usually adoptees, suffering Reactive Attachment Disorder (RAD), the "disease" diagnosed in Candace Newmaker, the girl who died in a Colorado clinic.

Some psychologists recommend AT, but the American Psychological Association declines to recognize it as proper treatment. Yet there is almost no criticism, and only one qualified academic has specifically denounced AT as violent and dangerous. In a country where dubious psychological treatments are commonplace, the techniques follow the history of quackish remedies, with attendant gurus of outlandish theories. AT can be seen as a fad that replaces the disastrous "repressed memories" cases of the 1980s and 1990s in which dozens on innocent people went to prison on baseless charges of sexually molesting children.

RAD is defined as a child's inability to bond with parents, and attachment practitioners claim 90% of adoptees suffer from it because of the traumatic loss of their natural mother. Its symptoms include sullen and distant behavior, violent temper, aggression, and uncontrollable acting-up. Attachment, of "holding" therapy, uses physical restraint, abuse, and violence, deliberately inducing rage, terror, and panic. This rage is then supposed to dissipate and the child develops warm affection and eye contact with the present parent, creating "attachment" and loving, obedient behavior.

In the re-birthing that Candace underwent, a process linked to AT, she was tightly swaddled under the supervision of two women -- Watkins, 54, a well-known AT advocate but not qualified in psychology, and Ponder, 40 -- both of whom practised in Evergreen, near Denver. They pushed against Candace from the outside to simulate contractions and the girl was meant to struggle out of the swaddling, as if emerging from the womb, to form a new and close attachment to her adoptive mother, Jeane Newmaker, 47, a nurse. Candace suffocated while the therapists leaned on her supine, wrapped body talking for half an hour about housing prices. The entire episode was filmed and shown at the trial in April.

Before the re-birthing, Candace endured two AT "holding" sessions for a total of 69 minutes, during which a therapist grabbed or covered her face 48 times, shook or bounced her head 83 times, and shouted 68 times in her face from close-up. It was approved attachment therapy, the court heard, and is conducted at most AT clinics in America, and also by parents at home. The four other deaths were: Russian adoptee Viktor Matthey, seven, in New Jersey in 1999; another two, in Colorado in 1997; adoptee Lucas Ciambrone, seven, in Florida also in 1997; and Krystal Ann Tibbets, three, in Utah in 1995. In each case, lawyers defending the adoptive parents argued that the children had been diagnosed with RAD and the violent treatment was approved. Las August a Colorado mother, Denise Kaye Thomas, 43, was convicted of trying to sell her adopted daughter on the internet. She said the girl had RAD and "dressed like a Spice Girl, like a hooker. I could see the way men looked at her". The girl was eight. Other children who underwent AT are said to have been deeply damaged by it, and there may have been suicides.

AT can be traced to Wilhelm Reich, the Freudian-Marxist psychiatrist from Vienna. He was imprisoned in the US in 1956 for fraudulently promoting his "orgone box", which was supposed to boost sexuality and mental health. He died in prison in 1957. A more recent theorist is Dr. Arthur Janov, who has a clinic in California, but repudiates the methods used on Candace Newmaker. It was Janov who popularized "primal screaming" in the 1970s, a method by which people could deal with their primitive feelings by screaming out loud.

Several psychologists continued to develop AT theory, but a more definitive -- and controversial principle was Robert Zaslow's Z-Process, which detailed in 1975 the restraining and rebirthing techniques. Zaslow, who lived in California until losing his medical licence, is believed to have returned to Europe several years ago.

The Z-Process involved several holders, one of whom restrained the head, while others rubbed their knuckles up and down the child's ribcage "in order to provoke rage and overcome resistance". Children could be restrained for two hours, said Zaslow, although sessions could last eight hours. Active resistance and bruising were to be expected before the child admitted that the therapist was "boss". Zaslow saw rage as a great primordial force to be turned to productive use, and the anger and hysteria AT aroused were "the last resistance of negativism and also the beginning of the transition to positive behavior".

A technique linked to AT is "re-parenting", introduced in American by Jacqui Schiff, a social worker now retired. She treated adults as children, making them wear nappies and suck on teats, to re-structure their early development. Schiff's methods have been denounced as "sadistic pseudo-science". In one personal account she described touching the genitals of a naked, restrained patient, her adopted son, with a large hunting knife to confront his castration anxiety. He was later convicted of involuntary manslaughter in the scalding death of a schizophrenic youth, aged 16, in 1972. Dr. Jean Mercer, professor of psychology at Richard Stockton College in New Jersey, is the academic who has raised concerns about attachment therapy. In a paper on AT entitled "Violent Therapies" that she is preparing for publication, she writes: "It is surprising and distressing to discover that a violent transformational therapy for children and adolescents is being practised in the US, not only as an underground "alternative" or "complementary" treatment...[but] taught in courses awarded education credits, supported in publications by the Child Welfare League of America, and made available by a leading scholarly publishing house. States have appropriated funds for training as well as treatment with AT techniques (New Hampshire, for example)."

In another paper on "potentially dangerous" AT methods, published in the current Journal of Child and Adolescent Psychiatric Nursing, Dr. Mercer itemises eight "red flag" warnings about suspect treatments. These include "cult-like defensiveness", and "absence of empirical support", and poor comparisons with "accepted psychotherapy practices". Attachment therapists often invoke two books. One is The Secret Life of the Unborn Child, which claims the foetus has conscious awareness of the mother's attitudes towards the pregnancy, and that negative reactions are a source of later rage and grief. The second, The Primal Wound, asserts that all adopted children mourn the loss of their birth mother. Dr. Mercer concludes: "Needless to say, these ideas are completely at variance with available information about infants' cognitive abilities and emotional reactions."

The AT techniques are a historical descendant of the bad old days of mental health treatment in which patients were whipped, chained, and even thrown into snake pits, to create terror that would shock the patient back to sanity. But there is also an unmistakable whiff of exorcism about today's therapy. Consider this article in the Rocky Mountain News of April 30 by Dr. John Dicke, clinical director of the Child and Adolescent Psychotherapy Institute in Colorado. Of Candace he wrote: "In many ways she was 'the devil' that we are afraid of in all of us...She was destined for a life of misery and perhaps drug abuse, living on the streets or in prison. In five to six years, she might have been prosecuted by the same district attorney who convicted Watkins and Ponder. Instead of homicide, perhaps they should have been charged with defiling a corpse, for, tragically, Candace Newmaker's soul died the day her unable mother cast her aside."

During the trial the Colorado legislature hastily passed a law forbidding the rebirthing technique that killed Candace, but it is widely criticised as riddled with loopholes.

Meanwhile, the governing body of AT, the Association for Treatment and Training in the Attachment of Children, or ATTACH, does not answer queries from journalists and its website is being "rebuilt". Connell Watkins and Associates has closed, and she and Julie Ponder now begin their 16 years each in prison.

The body of Candace was cremated.

Friday, July 06, 2001

Em-induced Consciousness Effects

From Terry W. Colvin

Primary Parameters Associated with EM-induced Consciousness Effects


From Electric UFOs: Fireballs, Electromagnetics and Abnormal States by Albert Budden (London: Blandford, 1998)

1. Subjects report a history of psychic experiences, such as seeing apparitions or formed figures, self-reported extrasensory perception (ESP), or out-of-body experiences (OBEs).

2. Subjects live in electromagnetic (EM) hot spots (and have exposure opportunity). For example, they may live near power lines, in the near-field of radio-frequency (RF) transmitters, close to a radio ham or CB radio or the like, or beside substations, transformers, or junction boxes. (This should, of course, be verified by field surveys, using meters to measure the magnetic, electric and RF/microwave fields separately.)

3. Subjects have been exposed to a major electrical event (MEE), often in their formative years. (This is especially associated with alien-abduction experiences.) MEEs include: proximity to a lightning strike, ball lightning (BL), unclassified atmospheric phenomena (UAPs), corona discharges, major electrocution, electroconvulsive therapy (ECT), or defibrillation.

4. Subjects suffer from food allergies and/or chemical sensitivities, often without being aware of this, that is, at subclinical levels (masked allergies). These include allergies to milk and wheat products, E-rated additives, aerosols, cleaning products, tobacco smoke, domestic gas, perfume, after-shave, alcohol, and other volatile substances.

5. Subjects are hypersensitive to bright light (photophobia), such as sunlight. They cannot tolerate fluorescent light, which produces headaches, tiredness, and other symptoms. (Full-spectrum light is tolerated better.) Strobing or flickering lights are also contra-indicated.

6. Subjects report sensitivity to electrical equipment, which often malfunctions in their presence, especially electronically sophisticated appliances, such as computers, checkout registers, photocopiers, tape recorders, and quartz watches. Often watches do not work when worn. Also, electrical equipment behaves oddly in their home. For example, the TV comes on spontaneously, light bulbs last for very short periods of time, and other appliances activate spontaneously.

7. Subjects report a metallic taste in their mouth due to an electrolyte effect between saliva and the amalgam of tooth fillings induced by the presence of an electrical field.

8. Subjects report an overwhelming feeling that someone or something is in the room with them, and that they are being watched, although they cannot see anyone (sense of presence).

9. Subjects have periods of time for which they cannot account. This is due to automatic behavior, drop attacks or allergic/EH trance states ("blank-outs"). They also experience time distortions, in which time seems to stand still or pass in a flash (desynchronization), and repeated periods of intense deja vu, or conversely, jamais vu. Another very distinctive neurological effect, in addition to a sense of timelessness, is a strange eerie silence, during which all ambient sound is lost. This is due to the stimulation of the reticular portions of the mid- and forebrain.

10. Subjects display profuse writing activity, often on subjects of cosmological or philosophical significance (hypergraphia). Poetry and stream of consciousness or other creative compilations are typical. Often writing takes place at night during periods of intense meaningfulness. Lunar/night sky fascination is typical.

11. Subjects experience tingling, "pins and needles," and/or numbness (somesthesia and paresthesia). They also experience painful electrical rippling sensations in the muscles just under the skin (fasciculation).

12. Subjects report generalized sensitivity to noise, vibration, and crowds (hyperaesthesia). A homebound life-style is typical. Also, subjects may hear Morse-code-like signaling, buzzing, whines, clicking, etc. (microwave hearing).

13. Subjects experience highly enhanced static build-up and painful electric shocks on contact with metal bodies, such as car bodywork and door handles.

14. Subjects display Reiter's magnetic response (MR) when strong magnets on the 1000-2000 Gs range are placed at various positions on the skull.

15. Subjects commonly have a history of childhood abuse.

UFOs Haunt Missile Crew

From Terry W. Colvin June 27, 2001

By Billy Cox

When you're a launch-control operator in charge of a single missile fitted with a plutonium warhead packing enough yield (three megatons) to enlarge Hiroshima's incineration by a factor of 150, life in even the loneliest desert can get a little intense. You remember the big things first.

You remember things like October 1962, when activating the go codes - and a nuclear exchange - was literally at your fingertips. As it was again in November 1963, when the president got blown away and the first prime suspect was already locked into a pre-targeted grid pattern. If you were at the Strategic Air Command outpost near Roswell, N.M., you watched fuel explosions destroy three Atlas silos, and you wondered what would happen if it got down to launching live rounds.

You remember other crazy things, like the 24-hour shifts, which actually worked out to about 27 after you added round-trip drive time. You remember the toll baby-sitting ICBMs took on marriages and other relationships, the divorces.

But it wasn't until last month, when Jerry Nelson of Cocoa Beach read about the Disclosure Project going on in Washington, D.C., that he remembered something else.

In May, some 20 people claiming encounters with unidentified flying objects while performing military or government duties went public to demand open congressional hearings on this largely classified phenomenon. One Air Force veteran, Robert Salas, reported how UFOs buzzing missile silos at Malmstrom Air Force Base managed to shut down more than a dozen Minuteman nukes in Montana during March 1967.

Actually, more widely publicized UFO snooping into restricted space around nuclear weapons systems occurred in the autumn of 1975. That's when security forces at Loring, (Maine), Wurtsmith (Michigan), and Malmstrom (again) Air Force bases were scrambled - in vain - to apprehend the intruders. But Nelson had never heard of those events. And even though he was stationed at Walker AFB on the outskirts of Roswell in the 1960s, he also says he never heard of the alleged 1947 flying saucer crash near the New Mexico cow town until several years ago.

What Nelson does recall is how, as a member of the 579th Strategic Missile Squadron, his post at an ICBM silo called Site 9 sustained its own peculiar nocturnal security breaches during a period of several months.

"The guards were scared," says Nelson, a retired pharmacist. "These objects would hover over the silo and shine lights down on them without making any noise. So I'd call the base and the base would say, 'We'll take it under advisement,' but I never got a chance to see it, because I couldn't leave my post."

One USAF veteran who got a look at something a little different was missile facilities technician Bob Caplan, now living in Rohnert Park, Calif. He didn't work with Nelson's crew, but late one night on another shift, a guard at Site 9 asked the ranking officer below to dim the security lights to cut the glare because weird lights just beyond the perimeter were giving him the willies. Caplan went topside to check it out.

After emerging into clear, moonless, pitch-black darkness, Caplan says it took him a few moments to spot the silent interloper. "It was definitely on the ground, and it was white and very intense," he recalls. "It's hard to explain. It didn't put a beam of light out, it was more concentrated, but not like a sphere. More like a flat circle, like a halogen light that's shining flat on the ground."

When Caplan and a guard swung their flashlights toward the thing and approached, it vanished. Nothing was there. The light reappeared seconds later, some 20 to 30 feet away, only to disappear without a trace. Although Caplan never saw it again, he was interrogated several days later by an Office of Special Investigations agent. Caplan never saw the report, assuming one was filed.

Gene Lamb of Oklahoma City was a 579th SMS deputy crew commander who didn't see anything, but heard about and read UFO stories. "One of those things supposedly landed north of Roswell," he says. "It was reported by a highway patrolman who said it left a triangulation pattern where its legs touched down. And there was another (UFO) incident after that, a daylight sighting."

Even his crew commander witnessed UFO activity. Lamb says he can't get into it, because his old buddy feels constrained by a security oath.

Lamb, by the way, is the reunion coordinator for the 579th, whose short life span ran from 1961 to 1965. Although the assignment produced some lasting personal bonds, Lamb says not everybody wants to attend get-togethers. "I've had guys tell me, 'I don't want to be discourteous, but what happened out there ruined my life.' One even told me he suffered a nervous breakdown afterward."

Can The Living Talk To The Dead?

Forwarded from the Paranormal Discussion List (which is on topic far more often than this list is):

From World of the Strange at:


Can The Living Talk To The Dead? Psychics say they connect with the spirit world, but skeptics respond: 'Prove it' by: Greg Barrett Gannett News Service

If Cyndi Wallace is a psychic as she claims, why does she include this on her voice-mail greeting: ''Leave me your name, area code and phone number . . . ''

Shouldn't she know?

Wallace, a $95-an-hour medium who says she can read the future and channel the dead, knows she is an easy mark for the cheap shot. It's tempting, perhaps comforting, to dismiss psychics as a sideshow, the gypsy cousins to three-card monte. To do so maintains our tactile boundaries and some sense of control.

But regardless of whether spirits are attempting to communicate with us, we are trying to communicate with them: parents with deceased children; children with deceased parents; spouses with deceased spouses. Skeptics and believers alike say it is this love -- and love lost -- that drives our undying desire to talk to the dead.

Fully 28% of Americans (up 10% from 1990) believe that people can hear from or communicate mentally with the dead, a new Gallup poll reports. Another 26% aren't sure, but won't rule it out. Half of all Americans believe in extrasensory perception. And everyone from Hillary Clinton to Nancy Reagan to Adolf Hitler are known to have consulted psychics, famous and obscure.

''These are not the Shirley MacLaines of the world channeling 3,000-year-old Assyrian warriors,'' says Tom Smith, director of the General Social Survey at the University of Chicago's National Opinion Research Center, which reports that roughly one in three Americans believe that they have personally communicated with the dead.

''Clearly, this is a phenomenon that is fairly common, and particularly common to those who have lost someone very significant to them.''

''People not only want it to be true, they need it to be true. It's the feel-good syndrome,'' says longtime skeptic and magician James Randi, 72, whose standing offer of $1 million to psychics who can independently verify their ''magic'' has gone unclaimed for four years.

''Everyone wants to be reassured about loved ones who have passed. Just once I want to find a spiritualist who says, 'Oh, well, sorry. She went to hell and I can't reach her.' ''

TV psychic John Edward tells viewers of his popular cable show Crossing Over With John Edward that the ''love bonds'' created on Earth ''stay with us after we cross over.''

Since its debut last summer on the Sci Fi Channel, Edward, who claims to talk to dead people, has seen his show grow from an audience of 275,000 U.S. households to 614,000, and move from late night to prime time, Sundays through Thursdays at 8 ET. His personal appearances nationwide are typically sold out weeks in advance, and the current wait for a $300 consultation at his Huntington, N.Y., office is two years. It's no wonder he uses a pseudonym.

''The amount of requests coming in here is absolutely overwhelming,'' says Edward, 31, born John MaGee Jr., a fast-talking, broad-shouldered son of a New York cop. It is helping ''to satisfy a curiosity, a desire, a need for more knowledge of spirituality.''

Government doubts

Perhaps unbeknownst to most people, you, too, have invested in psychics. U.S. taxpayers between 1972 and 1995 quietly supported the paranormal profession -- be it genuine or fake.

Prior to severing its ties to psychics in 1996, the CIA and various U.S. Defense Department intelligence agencies spent $20 million in an effort to turn psychics into spy satellites. Particulars about the program are being reviewed for declassification and could be made public this year, says CIA spokeswoman Anya Guilsher.

The government's conclusion: ''It was unpromising,'' Guilsher says.

Never mind that in 1981 psychic Noreen Renier was lecturing on ESP at the FBI Academy in Quantico, Va., when she warned that President Reagan would soon receive an injury to the upper chest. Two months later, the name John Hinckley was notorious.

After investigators interrogated Renier and cleared her of any involvement in the assassination attempt, she says they had one final question:

''Do you see any other danger for the president?''

She didn't.

Some are gullible

If Deborah DePolo is a psychic as she claims, why can't she afford her own studio instead of borrowing the Washington, D.C., office of environmental lobbyist Ronald Sykes?

Shouldn't she just channel some winning lottery numbers?

DePolo soon might not need the lottery. Three months into her part-time job of ''spiritual consulting,'' she says she averages 10 clients each week who pay $60 an hour. Her business card reads Danielle Armstrong, a pseudonym, a deception common in her profession.

''I didn't want to use my real name because the whole thing is still sort of taboo,'' says DePolo, 42, the stepdaughter of a West Virginia coal miner and a self-proclaimed psychic with intense gray eyes and claims of foreseeing the deaths of two of her fiancés and NASCAR's Dale Earnhardt.

In a word, says Paul Kurtz, chairman of the Committee for the Scientific Investigation of Claims of the Paranormal, all this medium stuff is ''nincompoopery.''

''But for whatever reason, it's all the rage. . . . Certain members of the public are just gullible,'' says Kurtz, whose Skeptical Inquirer magazine attempts to play foil to the voodoo. ''What John Edward and others are claiming to do is a miracle. Such an extraordinary claim requires extraordinary evidence.''

Tea bags and tears

Nebraska's Maxine Weaver believes her evidence, if not extraordinary, is extrasensory. Ten years after her daughter, Lindy, shot herself in the head, Wallace, a Maryland psychic, described her perfectly to Weaver and said Lindy was attempting to talk to her.

''Do you remember the tea bags?'' Wallace asked Weaver, who then began to cry. Six months after Lindy's 1974 suicide, Weaver had found a note penned by her that read, ''I love you, Mommy.'' It was buried in a canister that held Weaver's tea bags.

''No one else knew about that other than my husband. How can it be fake?'' asks Weaver, 77, a faithful Methodist who attends her childhood church in Humboldt, Neb. ''Now when I go to church and hear the minister talk about some things, I realize we agree on a lot, but my thoughts at this moment go just a step further.''

Harvard-educated Gary Schwartz also thinks he has the evidence. His University of Arizona Human Energy Systems Laboratory is a psychic testing ground. Two years ago, five mediums Schwartz refers to as the ''Dream Team'' (Edward among them) were flown to Tucson and put through a battery of tightly monitored tests. On average, the psychics scored 83% in revealing personal details about others (when asking yes or no questions), a score that was nearly double Michael Jordan's lifetime shooting percentage, says Schwartz, who favors the basketball metaphor.

''If mediums are willing to stand up and be counted, scientists should be willing to stand up and count them,'' Schwartz says. ''If it is real, it will be revealed, and if it is fake, we'll catch the mistake.''

Many questions

If Dream Team psychic Laurie Campbell is all that she says, why do ghosts reveal mostly mundane information to her and speak in shards of sentences? And why does Campbell ask as many questions as she answers?

Shouldn't she know?

''Is there a person in the family with a name like Francis or Frank or Fred?'' she asks. ''Is there an Adam, an A-name, an Albert or an Andrew?''

Skeptics call this sort of questioning ''cold reading,'' a hunt-and-peck Q&A that encourages people to author their own dialogue with the dead. The theory is that people who want to believe, or ''need to believe,'' as Randi says, will grasp onto the accuracy and forget the inaccuracy.

In tapes of Crossing Over With John Edward scrutinized by Randi, he says Edward had an accuracy of 13%. In one 45-second interrogation of a TV guest, Randi counted 23 questions by Edward with three correct answers.

''James Randi would record Michael Jordan's air balls but not count his numerous dazzle shots,'' Schwartz says. ''On rare occasions John Edward might get below 20%, but on the average his percentages are extremely high, sometimes above 90%.''

None of Schwartz's Dream Team will challenge for Randi's $1 million prize, a sum given by an anonymous U.S. donor that generates $50,000 to $60,000 in interest annually for Randi's paranormal education foundation. Randi is an eternal skeptic who will never convert, Schwartz says.

''We will not jump through hoops for him,'' says Campbell, who is on Schwartz's staff at the University of Arizona. Randi ''will never let anyone win the prize. If he did, his house of cards would fall.''

Yes, it would, Randi agrees. ''Let's do it then,'' he says, laughing. ''Blow down my house, Laurie.''


From: Raymond Nelke


Divine Design As scientists delve deeper into the mysteries of nature, they are being confronted by evidence that demands a supernatural Creator...

From - Date - Author
The New American - December 18, 2000 - Dennis J. Behreandt

Article Located At:

Edward T. Oakes and His Critics The critique of Darwinism is important not because Intelligent Design theory tells us about the character of God---it doesn't. The problem is that so many educated people take the supposed success of Darwinian science as a proof of the materialist metaphysics that bases the theory...

From - Date - Author
First Things - April 2001

Article Located At:

Scientific Skepticism, CSICOP, and the Local Groups Scientific skepticism defines skepticism around the principles of scientific investigation. Specifically, scientific skepticism addresses testable claims; untestable claims are simply outside the realm of science.

From - Date - Author
Skeptical Inquirer - July 1999 - Steven Novella and David Bloomberg

Article Located At:

Assault on evolution The religious right takes its best scientific shot at Darwin with "intelligent design" theory...

From - Date - Author
Salon.com - February 28, 2001- Larry Arnhart

Article Located At:



Monkey Man Attack! Simian assailant sweeps parts of New Delhi -- anxious populace is gripped by terror...

From - Date - Author
TIME Asia - May 28, 2001 - Michael Fathers

Article Located At:


Show me the monkey! India's menacing monkey-man has New Delhi in hysterics and the rest of the world in stitches. What's more, the birth of the terrifying beast was inevitable...

From - Date - Author
Salon.com - May 25, 2001 - Chris Colin

Article Located At:


"Provided by MagPortal.com"


Richard Dawkins: The prophet of reason

From: Ian Pitchford

Need someone to deny the existence of God? Then Richard Dawkins is the man to ask. Thomas Sutcliffe meets the best-selling scientist with an answer for everything (almost)

05 July 2001
"Anyone would think I was the only atheist around," says Richard Dawkins, in tones of mildly frustrated grievance. He isn't, of course, but if you happen to be in the market for an atheist, there's little doubt that the Charles Simonyi Professor in the Public Understanding of Science at Oxford University is the market leader ­ a Rolls-Royce of anti-clerical argument, whose contradictions and counter-propositions slam shut with a perfectly engineered thunk. For the moment, though, he's happy to let the business go elsewhere. "You've no idea how often I turn down invitations to do that kind of controversial stuff," he continues. "Time and again broadcasters will be looking for somebody to say something negative about God and they'll come to me, and nowadays I say no almost always."

Full text:


Pensioners' garden over-run by gnomes

From Ananova at


An Oxfordshire garden is being invaded by mystery gnomes.

Tom and Susan Gould, of West Hendred, near Wantage, are struggling to accommodate the gnomes which started arriving on Millennium Eve.

Their collection has grown from just under a dozen to around 54, with their latest addition standing four-foot tall.

Despite almost weekly new arrivals at their home, neither has any clue where they are coming from, the Oxford Mail reports.

Mr Gould said: "They keep appearing but I haven't got a clue where from.

"It started on the Millennium Eve when two strange ones arrived, but since then they have been turning up two or three at a time. Then at the weekend this giant four-foot tall one appeared."

His wife said: "They are over-running the garden. We have got gardening gnomes, fishing gnomes, gnomes riding pigs, ones that nod, and ones that tell the time."

200 hacked to death in Congo for being witches

From Ananova at


Over 200 suspected witches have been hacked to death in villages in northeastern Congo, a senior army official said.

Brigadier Henry Tumukunde said diseases are being blamed on witchcraft and newcomers uprooted by war are called witches.

His comments come in the wake of a UNICEF and the World Health Organisation report which says every facet of society in Congo has collapsed.

The killings started on June 15 and began in Aru, but they spread deep inside northeastern Congo.

Ugandan troops have been sent back to Aru district to stop the killings and arrest suspected killers.

Mr Tumukunde said diseases endemic to the region were being blamed on witchcraft but noted that drugs to treat the diseases have not been available since the war broke out three years ago.

Uganda and Rwanda joined forces in August 1998 in support of a rebellion seeking to oust President Laurent Kabila.

"The war forced people to move to other areas, and the internally displaced were the targets of local villagers, who accused them of witchcraft," Mr Tumukunde said.

In a report released jointly Thursday by UNICEF and the World Health Organisation, experts said after a recent 12-day visit to Congo, "every facet of society - whether human rights or economy, education or water and sanitation, housing or social care - has collapsed."

The 10-person mission blamed "decades of state and external looting of national resources" and war for pushing "Congolese households over the brink''.

Woman can keep lizard 'possessed by her dead son'

From Ananova at


A woman who claims her son has been reincarnated as a lizard can keep it until she performs religious rites to send his spirit away.

Chamlong Taengniem claims the monitor lizard followed her home after her 13-year-old son was cremated in Thailand last month.

It's illegal to keep the reptile in captivity, but officials have agreed to let her keep it until she's performed the rites.

Crowds have visited her home in Nonthaburi, believing the lizard is lucky. Some have rubbed its skin hoping to see winning lottery numbers.

The reptile is being fed on yoghurt and milk - favourites of the dead boy.

The lizard is said to be in a poor condition and growing weaker. It will be taken to a wildlife sanctuary once the rites have been performed.

Until then, forestry staff will be allowed daily access. Mrs Chamlong has been banned from taking the reptile to appear on TV shows, the Bangkok Post reports.

UFOs Interfering with Airplanes?

Thursday, 05-Jul-2001 08:49:57 EDT

JEFFERSON VALLEY, N.Y. (Wireless Flash) ­ Turbulence isn¹t the only thing airplane passengers need to fear ­ UFOs are posing a risk too. UFO journalist Patrick Huyghe reports there have been at least 100 documented ³close encounters² between airplanes and UFOs over the past several years.

He says the interactions have ranged from near-collisions to tractor beam- like incidents where the plane was inexplicably pulled toward the UFO. Although current data indicates the risk of an airplane-UFO encounter is low, Huyghe says many cases may be unreported because of the ridicule a pilot could face for filing a UFO report. But that may soon change. A California group called the National Aviation Reporting Center on Anomalous Phenomena has set up a neutral website for pilots to report UFO incidents.

Huyghe is the author of the new book Swamp Gas Times (Paraview Press).
Thu 07-05-01
InternetTrash News


Thursday, July 05, 2001




July 5, 2001 -- A strange cult of UFO worshippers - which plans to clone a human being in the next year - is threatening to haul the federal government into court if it tries to close down their lab.

The Raelian Movement, which is doing experiments in a lab in Syracuse, believes humans were genetically engineered by extraterrestrial visitors. Now, cult members want to clone people in the same manner.

French biochemist Brigitte Boisselier, who heads the project, said her firm, Clonaid, will produce a cloned child, despite a U.S. Food and Drug Administration crackdown.

The FDA has said human cloning experiments need its approval, which the agency will not give - at least for now - because of safety concerns.

"I do not want to infringe on the law," Boisselier said this week. "But we may have to go to federal court to challenge the jurisdiction of FDA agents, or any ruling that would hurt us from cloning."

French former journalist Claude Vorilhon - leader of the Swiss-based, atheist cult - founded Clonaid in the Bahamas in 1997, the same year scientists cloned Dolly the sheep.

Vorilhon, who changed his name to Rael, and his followers view cloning as the means for humans to achieve eternal life, and they claim Clonaid will offer infertile or homosexual couples the chance to have kids.

Besides the lab in Syracuse, Clonaid has a secret facility at an undisclosed site outside the United States.

"I have had death threats, but I continue to pursue my goal of making science work for the improvement of mankind," Boisselier said.

"We are doing nothing wrong. We are trying to help mankind. And we are not going to be stopped, even if I have to take a bullet. I want to make babies, not bombs.

"I have five scientists working around the clock."

Boisselier said Clonaid is prepared to leave the country if necessary.

"Human cloning may happen here, or at our other lab. It all depends on how we and our work are accepted," she said.

Clonaid's backers are said to include a couple whose baby died at 10 months and who hope the tot can be reproduced.

The Raelian Movement describes itself as the world's largest UFO-related nonprofit group, with 55,000 members in 84 countries.

Vorilhon claims ancient alien scientists created all life on Earth through genetic engineering - including humans in their own image.

Darwin hits back

Salon: Published June 14 - 20, 2001
Darwin hits back

WE SEATTLEITES are suckers for national media attention, but even the most boosterish among us may admit to qualms about our latest claim on the spotlight: as a mail-order nursery for an attractive yet noxious intellectual weed called Intelligent Design--a supposed scientific alternative to the Godless materialism of evolutionary theory as taught by Charles Darwin and his followers.

Intelligent Design has been rattling around the back alleys of academe for a decade, but it really got going about five years ago when Seattle's Discovery Institute embarked on a well-funded campaign to propagate it: publishing numerous books on the subject by salaried Institute "fellows" and hosting a highly publicized congressional seminar on the subject. The movement's big breakthrough came in April, when, in the wake of the state of Kansas' restoration of Darwin to the curriculum, both the Los Angeles Times and New York Times and ran prominent articles on the Institute's campaign to give anti-evolutionism intellectual credibility.

Intelligent Design drives mainstream scientists crazy because it presents its arguments as scientific, yet it refuses to phrase them in the only way scientists recognize as valid: as assertions subject to disproof. Instead it appeals to emotion and intuition. Given the sheer complexity of the natural world, and living things in particular, proponents say, how can anyone believe that Mind and Will were not required to give shape to Creation?

Today's advocates of this idea have no better evidence to support it than Saint Augustine did in the 5th century, but they do their best to veil this weakness by finding people with reputable scientific credentials to act as spokespersons capable of dazzling a lay audience with myriad conundrums drawn from materialistic science itself. The argument boils down to "I've got a Ph.D. and I believe it, so why shouldn't you?"

The only answer a scientist can give to that argument is: "Having a Ph.D. doesn't prove that what you say is right; in the long run a scientist's credibility depends on just one thing: whether he or she can come up with evidence capable of convincing other scientists. You are not qualified to judge a scientific question if you're not willing to accept scientific rules of what evidence is and then work through the evidence yourself. The opinion of the man in the street doesn't count."

Put that way, the argument sounds distressingly "elitist." And unfortunately, outside the realm of the lab and the scientific journal, the opinion of the man on the street counts for quite a lot. So reputable scientists tend to keep their elitist mouths shut and hope the whole issue will blow over, however much they disapprove of the intellectual shenanigans of the Discovery Institute and its "fellows," funded by millions donated by conservative Christians like the McCallies of Tennessee and the Ahmansons of southern California.

FORTUNATELY, there are other people with money, and some are willing to spend it to counter the covert Christian campaigners of Intelligent Design. Some of the most committed--and monied, for that matter--are also based right here in Discoveryland. On Sept. 24, the Public Broadcast System will kick off a seven-part, 8-hour mega-series bravely titled Evolution, supplemented by simultaneous publication of a companion book by one of America's most respected science writers, a massive educational campaign to supply study materials to schools across the country, and an interactive Web site to tie the whole sprawling project together.

You could pore for hours over the background materials in the Evolution Project's CD-ROM publicity package and still not notice who put up the numerous millions to make it possible. Only in the small print will you learn that the production of the NOVA Science Unit of Boston's WGBH was financed by Clear Blue Sky, the film production arm of Paul Allen's Bellevue-based media conglomerate Vulcan Northwest.

With discretion unwonted in an Allen enterprise, Clear Blue Sky has already made a considerable mark in the independent film scene since its foundation in 1997, having backed Julie Taymor' extravagant film version of Shakespeare's Titus Andronicus starring Anthony Hopkins, John Sayles' Latin American revolutionary drama Men with Guns, and, currently in theaters, the John Turturro/Emily Watson vehicle The Luzhin Defense.

Blue Sky has also funded two recent documentaries by the -Up director Michael Apted, but Evolution is by far its most ambitious educational project yet. If properly designed, programs like this become part of the permanent "lending library" of American education, cycling endlessly on educational cable channels, serving as materials for classroom and distance-learning programs.

Up till now, substantial Allen money has not been directed toward traditional educational goals. With this one project, the Allens deserve a place among the nation's Pews and Annenbergs: families committed to building America by making Americans smarter, better informed, and harder to fool. The Discovery Institute's Darwinian disinformation campaign will still appeal to those looking for pseudoscientific support for their private ideologies. But in persuading a dispassionate public that they've got something more than propaganda to offer, they've now a formidable opponent to contend with.

Was Jesus a Space Alien?

From: Dean A. Batha

Don't miss the web link below, it's an interesting twist on history and science (a la von Daniken, Sitchin and other ancient astronuts) incorporating pseudo-archeology, pseudo-astronomy, DNA "research", Martian civilizations at Cydonia, Sumerian and Vedic mythology, pyrimidiocy, mystic mathematics (Numerology) and, of course, the supposedly "scientific" Search for Extraterrestrial Intelligence (SETI), which concludes with the author claiming that the space aliens (whom ancient people mistook for gods) are re-programming human DNA remotely, by means of radiation, in preparation for their eminent return. It's a rare gem, as far as nutty web sites go.

From the Paranormal Discussion List:



I am a 16 year old student and I am wondering if you can give me some advice on how I can persuade different people with different religious and scientific beliefs to believe the things you are posting on your site.


I will be happy to give you an answer that to me makes the most sense...

If we believe what the bible says, then Jesus came to Earth sometime in the past. And from this and other recorded events from the bible, people feel very strongly that he will return, and that there is a heaven beyond earth.

Today's understanding of science and our ability to see into space and look at other planets, gives us a chance to look into our past with a new understanding that the ancient people did not have...

If Jesus were to return right now to earth, many people would think he was an alien. The time that the bible talks about does not take into account that they didn't have the technology that we do today. The ancient people did not have the same advances in technology and space travel that we do now.

So if the same "beings" known as the gods, or Jesus, etc.. came back today, with our view of modern science we would see these beings as aliens. Even if they look just like us. As the bible says "in their image, and after their likeness."

It is very possible that god has created many other life forms out there, and we are only part of the bigger picture. See the link below for a good intro article that compares Modern Science to Ancient Knowledge.


Jason Martell

See also: http://xfacts.com/x.htm


More than 600 UFO enthusiasts
hear N.C. man's theories

By Sandra Fish, Camera Staff Writer

They came from Tabernash, Fort Morgan and Aurora. They came from Peyton, Berthoud and Boulder.

Who knows? Maybe some even came from outer space. This much is certain: More than 600 UFO enthusiasts crowded into a University of Colorado auditoreum intended for about 500 Saturday, sitting on stairs, the floor and standing at the back of the room.

They came to see a two-hour video of testimony from former government and military employees about the existence of extraterrestrial beings and the government's monitoring of them. It's part of Dr. Steven Greer's "Disclosure Project," in which the North Carolina physician is trying to get Congress to hold hearings on the government's interaction with alien life forms.

As a child, Greer witnessed a "disc-shaped craft" at close range and began studying aliens. He said he thinks people from outer space are monitoring Earth, in part to monitor weapons use.

"I think they are waiting for us to reach the early stages of maturity, where we can live peacefully, so they can interface with us," Greer said.

Katie Hofner of Fort Collins was among the hundreds who watched Greer's video, a program that began a 17-city tour in Boulder.

"I think it's fascinating," she said. "It's very compelling information."

Others weren't so enthusiastic. Maureen Murphy of Boulder handed out fliers inviting people to "The Alien CoverUp," a panel from noon to 1:30 p.m. today at the Boulder Public Library sponsored by the Allies of Humanity.

"We don't disagree with Dr. Greer on the disclosure agenda," Murphy said. "We just disagree on the aliens' agenda. They're taking women against their will, they're creating a race that will have an allegiance to the visitors."

Greer said he's unfamiliar with that group's efforts.

Contact Sandra Fish at... or

Black Helicopter Autopsy

Photographic Evidence Of The Conspiracy


On October 25, 1999, I received a package from a trusted source with governmental access (more I cannot say, obviously) that contained still photos from a film shot during the autopsy of a juvenile Black Helicopter. I am posting them on the Internet to expose the truth of the existence of nanobiotechnological agents being used against citizens.

Little is known about the autopsy, who performed it, and who made the film. Only four stills of the film are known by my source to exist. The photos may have originated from a top-secret report on the film and autopsy, however the other contents of that report remain elusive.

The quality of the images is very poor and amateurish. This would suggest that the film—and ergo the autopsy—was done hastily, possibly by someone not trained to use a camera. The last image (going from numbers found on the pictures) seem to point to the autopsy ending with something going awry.

The date of the autopsy is unknowable from the evidence in hand.

See the full story at


'Talking baboons' convicted of sex demand attacks

From Ananova at


Three youths have been found guilty of dressing up as baboons and terrorising residents in Swaziland.

The boys, aged 12, 15 and 16, broke into a woman's home dressed in the animal costumes and demanded food and sex.

Hluthi National Court heard women fled their homes for fear of being attacked by the "English-speaking baboons".

The gang of youths vandalised property and robbed residents in the village of Galile.

The 12-year-old has been sentenced to five lashes. The two teenagers were ordered to pay fines of around £18, or face 10 months in jail.

All three youths will return to court this week on further related charges, the Swaziland Guardian reports.

While they were on the loose, a Senator urged police to shoot the "mysterious creatures" on sight.

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