Tuesday, August 16, 2011
Surfing on Driftwood in a Molten Lava Sea
Yeah, maybe I was naive, thinking the world would self-correct while I left the blog for a few days (though I did check in to say a few words about the death of the remarkable William R. Corliss -- see previous blog).
Another significant death, for me, occurred a few days ago. Dan and I had served together in a Texas Air Force hospital over 40 years ago and, as usually occurs after the brevity of military relationships, we moved on and lost contact with one another. To my surprise, however, Dan found my blogs three years ago and we began e-mailing and having occasional phone conversations, he having remarried, living way out West. Unfortunately, all was not well, as he was about to embark upon a cascade of surgical interventions because of multiple brain tumors and lung cancer. He stayed tough, overcoming numerous surgical challenges, but eventually a fatal malignancy claimed his life.
Strange how long-forgotten memories resurface when somebody from our past meets their demise. Early one evening after USAF hospital duty hours in 1969 he took me to a Texas dirt-bike range, where my hands-on experience reminded me that you don't have to be a kid to appreciate the wonders of dust and mud. And there was that pleasant weekend with Dan and his (first) wife at his in-laws' beautiful lake house in Possum Kingdom (you may have heard about Possum Kingdom, which was all but destroyed by this spring's raging firestorms), particularly memorable for a little incident where my eyeglasses fell off while I was swimming (yep, dove underwater and miraculously found 'em within minutes). Who is foolish enough to wear unsecured eyeglasses while swimming?
Meanwhile, the world burns on. Change you can believe in. Al Gore recently made a speech riddled with obscenities and frustration -- evident in his presentation, perhaps, because the truth is that there is no "consensus" among a majority of world scientists that climate change is primarily man-made. In fact, some scientists in the know blame current heat wave and drought conditions in the U.S. and elsewhere on reactivation of intense solar activity. Yes, our old nemesis, the sun. Love it or hate it, it isn't going away anytime soon. The International Business Times, quoting the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, outlined potential chaos bluntly last week:
"The NOAA predicted four “extreme” solar emissions which could threaten the
planet this decade. Similarly, NASA warned that a peak in the sun's magnetic
energy cycle and the number of sun spots or flares around 2013 could enable
extremely high radiation levels.
"This is a special problem in the United States and especially a severe threat in
the eastern United States as Federal Government studies revealed that this
extreme solar activity and emissions may result in complete blackouts for years
in several areas of the nation. Moreover, there may also be disruption of power
supply for years, or even decades, as geomagnetic currents attracted by the
storm could debilitate the transformers."
Not to mention possible satellite disruptions and lasting damage with obviously frightening military implications. Digital denizens of the world, unable to function without a cache of electronic gadgets substituted for book knowledge and common sense, may well collapse under an avalanche of daily living's undecipherable necessities. Geek extinction, accomplished in total silence, with no fossilized evidence of human computer enthusiasts left for alien explorers of the far future. (You geeks do realize, don't you, that one of the dictionary definitions of "geek" is a carnival performer who does what are said to be "disgusting" acts?)
Then this from the Los Angeles Times of August 6: That the U.S. government -- the spooky D.A.R.P.A. specifically -- plans to award up to $500,000 to a research team best able to develop solid, shovel-ready methods to initiate interstellar space flight 100 years from now. Essentially, a new physics or way of organizing a journey to another star system is called for, not necessarily a physical vehicle. Something like mixing the ingredients for cookies without actually having the ability to bake them, near as I can figure.
On top of this comes word that actress Jodie Foster and other concerned members of the citizenry have successfully donated big dollars to keep S.E.T.I. running. Well, at least somebody can depend on keeping their jobs, as they search for evidence of alien intelligence, probably in all the wrong places (they mighta' tried earth-based UFO incidents first).
I hope the government/D.A.R.P.A. project takes into consideration UFO propulsion theories proposed or embraced by former NASA scientific and engineering associates such as Alan Holt and the late Paul R. Hill, both of whom wrote books espousing their ideas (Hill, in his book, Unconventional Flying Objects: A Scientific Analysis, rightfully corrected one of my basic assumptions regarding a conductive medium in my 1971 A.P.R.O. Bulletin article which asked, could UFOs employ ultrasound technology?). Even the borderline has two sides.
Regarding the subject of UFOs, incidentally, if you've tired of all the nonsense and have an acquired taste for documentation -- and have a little reading time on your hands -- don't fail to check out researcher Thomas Tulien's massively detailed and illustrated Web site regarding the Minot Air Force Base UFO Case of October 24, 1968. Representing the Sign Oral History Project, Tulien's in-depth detective work and (his specialty) interviews with key participants will keep your head spinning for hours. Go to: http://www.minotb52ufo.com to examine some outstanding work.
But yes, the world burns. I think back upon President Ronald Reagan's statements (and actually those of some UFO researchers of note) expressing that the planet's peoples would unite if faced with an attack from extraterrestrials. Ha! Frankly, the world's political leaders and the United Nations' abundance of thugs would go right on squabbling over other matters. Didn't anybody learn anything from the Nazis as they waltzed into country after country?
Which, by the way, seems to be happening all over again in the Middle East, as Israel is increasingly threatened from all sides, helped along by the profound influence of Iran's crazies. Neither the Palestinians, Russia, China nor a box-load of other nations are our friends, and since our only true ally in the Middle East is Israel, we must choose sides and Israel absolutely deserves U.S. support as things become uglier every week.
The U.S. just gave 100 million dollars to Africa to help combat famine. That's nice -- but where did the money come from? Did we print more cash out of thin air or did we put it on our eternal hellfire tab with the Chinese? How about 25 million of it dedicated to intensive birth control, family planning education and a good old-fashioned butt-kicking to all the young men who think it's just fantastic to make starving babies by the score as they beat their women into submission (whilst all the time, of course, international religious "relief" organizations fly in like vultures to dissuade anything even resembling birth control). Lucky if even a small portion of the food gets beyond radical Muslims, who feed themselves to fight and kill us another day. Kindly we Americans are, but we're sometimes a bunch of damned fools.
Oh -- can't forget the Tea Party. . .as an Independent voter, I've no love affair with Republicans or Democrats, though I am quite liberal on several issues and conservative on others. Yet, I've grown to admire from afar the Tea Party simply because the major, grotesquely corpulent and entrenched political parties h-a-t-e them so much, and their members often do make sense (their views are distorted by the press, no surprise there). The major clunker for me is the re-emergence of the Religious Right, and harkening back to previous elections I recall warnings to Republicans by their own party members not to let these folks dominate the issues. But they're back in force and that's a worry for me.
If anybody thinks all of this will ultimately lead to UFO "disclosure," forget that dream.
And now a word about our current leadership. As I've stated previously, I once wrote Mr. Obama and encouraged him to run for president because I liked his speech before the Democratic National Convention a few years back. However, once he actively began campaigning and I listened more closely to his ideas, I felt like slapping myself silly. Yes, yes, I looked forward to having the first black U.S. president -- the first, not the worst! I wish we could convince Florida Congressman Allen West to make a run for the White House: He seems a no-nonsense gentleman with leadership and military experience, hardly the sort to be running all over the world, apologizing for our country or community-organizing its Constitution to please nations which will always despise our government, no matter what.
The current White House occupants' method-acting seems best suited for the issuance of royal decree via Executive Order and for the influence of pipsqueaks in the background, turning out regulation after regulation. "Obama-care" ranks high amongst the absurdities, when common sense tells us it would have been far cheaper for businesses and individuals simply --yes, simply -- to allow the thousands of insurance companies in this country to compete for customers across state lines. Health insurance costs would be forced into significant decline and federal government intervention would be unnecessary.
And (my message to members of the Right who hug giant industry too closely) I get really rattled when conglomerates are allowed to market hybrid seeds to the exclusion of the original natural ones, with legal consequences for farmers who prefer to do things their own way, but find their crops contaminated with the patented variety churned out by corporate monsters.
Not to leave Congress out of this mess. Too many vampires and mummies in both the House and Senate who made a career out of staying put for years, progressively relating less and less to their constituents. Oh, term limits for all -- if only. . .
Pakistan? Afghanistan? Iraq? Intelligence analysts seem to agree that China, Russia, North Korea and numerous rogue states conspire to continue nickel-and-diming the U.S. military to drain its resources.. Either get our military people out of this mess or bomb both the daylights and night lights out of every area that even looks suspicious -- and then hope we have leaders with the courage to dispatch enough personnel to keep our own borders protected and not poised to blame border patrol agents for doing their job.
I'm telling ya, old Robert's getting pretty tired of university intellectuals who have little in common with the common man or woman, running our lives to the max with their nutty self-serving theories, regulations and favors based upon financial political contributions. Godzilla himself couldn't do a better job of screwing up this country over what we currently suffer through.
Worst of all, as we've said before, your babies aren't cute anymore.