Now Then


By George Simpson © AUFORN Victoria

I wrote the following article soon after seeing the British “Big Picture” documentary on UFOs and I was understandably annoyed. It was advertised as a program that would reveal 'new evidence' and the 'truth' about these British “X-FILES”.

For starters, anyone who headlines a documentary purporting to contain the 'truth' about UFOs and uses the term 'X-FILES' in the same headline clearly knows nothing about the subject.

If you are interested in presenting the “truth” you can't be selective about which facts get included and which facts get omitted. It really is a matter of requiring the “whole truth and nothing but the truth”.

These documentary makers have unfortunately presented extremely poorly researched revisions of well known and documented cases and failed to present the truth. They have even failed to use science to present their cases. They have created a new 'bad science' where you start with the proposition that the facts in a case are so incredible that you just ignore them, invent some alternative explanation to the factual events that occurred and then re-create the new altered 'selective' viewpoint and “voila” , a new “explanation” is created, minus the FACTS.

That's what I call 'bad science', and unfortunately these poor documentaries are cropping up everywhere, especially concerning UFO incidents.

The Australian Broadcasting Commission have done it too, just recently on a nightly radio program. A caller rang in to talk about the Valentich mystery, and he was told one of these preposterous Astronomer's explanations about the event, by the astronomer guest on Tony Delroy's program.

One major problem with this is that 'astronomers' are regarded as experts and therefore should be believed. But, unfortunately, astronomers are not necessarily UFO researchers, and have not necessarily looked closely at the facts.

The problem is that the public know more than the astronomers about what they have observed, and about cases they have studied and researched. If the astronomer had done any research on the case he would know that Valentich never flew 'up-side down'.

I just can't believe that ANYONE still believes that kind of rubbish. To quote John Auchettl, who is a pilot and UFO researcher , “You know it if you fly upside down, well first of all the floor mats fly up and hit you in the face along with anything else like hand luggage, and you find yourself hanging there by your lap belt” . And Valentich's plane was a simple one that used gravity feed from the wing tanks to the engine, so if he ever inverted the the plane, the engine would have stalled. It was still running at the end of the transmission, after he had stopped talking. Case closed with regards to inversion flying…it just never happened that way.

It seems that lately there has been a concerted effort to discredit many well known and researched UFO incidents and cases. The people that do this waste millions of dollars producing glitzy docu-dramas that present only one view of a case , and a biased one at that, which is heavily skeptical and extremely inaccurate.

A few years ago a team produced a science based documentary which decided it would be a good idea to attack the Hills case from the 1960s. It was theorized that their entire recall of events was a result of their having watched a Science fiction program on TV. The actual program was named, and a picture of the “alien with wrap around eyes” was presented as evidence that their minds had been filled with the image of an alien as seen on the said TV program.

Great theory, but to believe it you had to either reject the facts of the case, ignore them, or both.
I'm a big fan of the science fiction series 'Outer Limits'. Because of this I had the facts on hand to check the programs claims. The Hills had their encounter in 1961. The details of the case never made it out in the public domain until 1966.

The episode attributed to causing their “false recall of events” had not even been written when they had their encounter!

So there goes that theory…very BAD science indeed.

A similar thing has been attempted recently with the “British X Files” , a British TV Documentary. It's pretty transparent the way the cases are treated, and the way that cases are discussed by people who were never there, who have never had a sighting, and who obviously know nothing about the subject.
To disguise the program's bias , actual witnesses are interviewed and given a fair go at explaining their feelings about what they saw and experienced. However, these cases are then explained by 'theorists' who know none of the facts about the cases.

A laughable account was given about how the public suddenly became aware of the possibilities of space travel and the existence of aliens. Some early trashy UK Sci-Fi program that was never heard of in Australia, and therefore would have had NO impact here, was presented as the nexus of the whole phenomena. Total bollocks.

These theorists were then somehow allowed to make ridiculous statements about how in the 70s it became 'fashionable' to have seen a UFO. Further, they claim that it's interesting that the number of reported sightings increased when LSD use was fashionable in the 60s.

Now that's a long bow to draw, as if there was ever any evidence to link the two. It's just totally false. In fact, if there ever was a time when LSD use was at a peak it would be more likely that there would be LESS UFO sightings being made, because the users would be busy staring at the 'sparks' between their fingertips for hours on end, rather than looking upwards.

And how many drug users would bother to report a sighting? Honestly, all they want is their next trip, their next hit, their next fix…you get the idea.

I just can't get over the enormity of this incredible Insult to the intelligence of the population at large, and the insult to the integrity of every concerned citizen who has ever been scared witless by a close encounter and bothered to report it.

The BBC's 'Big Picture' documentary series producers have really plummeted in my estimation as a worthy documentary production company as a result of their endorsement of this disgusting garbage. I think an apology is warranted.

Even worse than this is the 'Discovery Channel' with it's “Unsolved History” series.
After seeing a few episodes I'm left wondering who was their target audience? Obviously not intelligent viewers.

Maybe they are creating TV shows for the unintelligent, or for the totally ignorant. Maybe these silly documentaries are popular with the brain dead. ( My sincere apologies to all the brain dead souls out there who are forced to watch these moronic cable tv documentaries on hospital TV because they can't escape).

The following are examples that defy description, the bad science used in these productions is frightening.

By using 'state of the art' video technology they were able to produce a video effect that simulated how a weather balloon would appear to Thomas Mantell from his perspective of a lower altitude. To their minds they have “solved” this mystery. Actually, far from it. To accept their point of view you have to ignore and reject the actual witnesses , and their testimony. The fact that the commanding officer on duty who scrambled Mantell on the day , actually saw the HUGE UFO as it passed low over the Military Airbase, is completely ignored. He recently made a public apology to Mantell's family , and explained that Mantell was not following any weather balloon but was following orders to get as close as possible, and to shoot it down. Mantell was shot down instead. He should be remembered as a hero attempting to protect the American Airspace rather than a fool who flew too high , so that he passed out. The documentary makers conveniently overlooked the known facts of the case, that the plane was found in tiny pieces full of micro holes, the largest fragment about the size of a tin can, and that Mantell's body was totally dehydrated.

Another example of this shockingly bad science is their attempt to explain how crop circles are made. A group of young BLT graduates and undergraduates were given the assignment to re-create a crop circle. They were told that it must be big…large enough to be seen from the air. It had to also have signs of microwave stress, the nodules in the plant stems had to be “blown out” as found in the genuine circles. Also, the soil surrounding the circle had to contain an abundance of magnetic micro meteoric (metallic) particles, just like the real circles.

It's interesting to note that these boffins actually agree that there are fake and “real” crop-circles. This was getting me curios and curioser. So, here is how they set about making a bad science program. They went out and pushed over the plants in a pattern that they planned, al la Doug and Dave.

Then they walked around and treated the plants with microwave radiation using a specially modified microwave device , using the magnetron from a microwave oven. They followed this with a ridiculous exhibition of pyrotechnics by spraying the whole area with iron filings shot through a propane gas energized portable “ring of fire”. It looked spectacular enough, but I'm mystified as to how they managed to not set the whole crop alight.

Of course the melted iron filings might RESEMBLE the micro meteoric metal spheres found in the soil of the real circles, but this is hardly anywhere near an explanation of the phenomenon. Just spray them over the top.

And to top it off, after the thing was finished , the advisors discussed the results with the students. One of the students referred to the microwaved plant nodules and the melted metal filings as “special effects”.

MY GOD…now evidence found in real crop circles is considered to be merely “special effects”.
Maybe Mantell's plane plummeting to the ground was only a “stunt” to get attention.

These people have me completely mystified.
It's funny how these science students were praised in their efforts to fabricate 'special effects' in order to mimic the real thing. Anyone searching for the truth would be horrified. If this was a legal case and solicitors went out and simulated evidence in this manner the entire case would be expelled from the court.

Another disturbing technique these people use is that they will interview and present a genuine witness, and let them have their say, while then completely undercutting them and therefore their credibility by presenting false or misleading counter evidence. The effect is to make the witness look foolish. It's a disturbingly dishonest way to treat their guests who attempt to present the facts of the case. It's also demeaning, insulting , rude and patronizing.

So much for “Unsolved History”.
There are many other feeble attempts by this production team to discredit the Roswell case, and alien abductions. All along the same lines, discredit the witness, ignore the facts etc.

Beware next time any TV documentary is advertised with the lines “find out the “real truth”…” because it might be another example of 'Bad Science'.
We've all heard of “lies, damn lies and statistics”…well this “Unsolved History” series makes bent statisticians look like Saints. It's really not worth watching this dishonesty produced crap. It really makes you wonder who is behind it .