And note, he unabashedly calls them flying saucers and not UFOs. How can this subject, the subject, the existence of extraterrestrial beings, especially now as the latest iteration of Star Wars breaks all box office records, be of no interest to the media? And moreover, as newsrooms are shuttered, as news resources are pared and slashed, as the current crop of journalistas are desperately shaking the bushes for something, anything, to report on or cover, how can the most fascinating subject that has captivated humans since time immemorial not be leapt upon with the usual ferocity? A cursory review of the Internet reveals numerous countries along with the Vatican openly acknowledging the existence of UFO files and investigations. Do you mean to suggest there exist no enterprising media types who are unwilling to vouchsafe the fact of the investigations themselves without verifying or acknowledging the existence of alien life and interstellar adventure?
I’ve asked this question for years and renew my query, especially in view of one-time chief of staff to Bill Clinton and an outgoing advisor to Barack Obama, John Podesta and his confession this year as to his biggest regret, viz. not securing the disclosure of UFO files. RT’s Manila Chan and I discussed this very topic in The Year in Space: 2015.
Yahoo News reported that at a 2002 presser organized by the Coalition for Freedom of Information, Podesta spoke as to the necessity and importance of disclosing government UFO investigations to the public.
“It’s time to find out what the truth really is what’s out there,” he said. “We ought to do it, really, because it’s right. We ought to do it, quite frankly, because the American people can handle the truth. And we ought to do it because it’s the law.”
Why not jump on his words for that AHA! moment? Especially from the likes of the consummate White House insider. As this is a subject of great interest to me I provide the following opinion and educated hunch.
First, in full disclosure, I’ve never witnessed or viewed anything that I could or would remotely categorize as extraterrestrial, UFO-esque and/or the like. In fact, I never gave the subject much thought for most of my life, choosing instead to believe the oft-cited trope that folks who claim to have observed flying space critters were usually drunk, draft, hallucinating or combinations thereof. I’d laugh at the usual account of some hayseed roused from sleep in his double-wide only to be anally probed by some macrocephalic, almond-eyed central casting ET.
After all, the notion was preposterous. Right?
Enter the Internet and my road to Damascus moment. I happened upon the work of Mr. Friedman, a nuclear physicist and University of Chicago classmate of Carl Sagan, and immediately delved into the subject. I simply had no idea the amount of first-hand accounts, eyewitness testimony, reports and radar records, you name it, that comprised the repository of data. Not to mention the oft-yet misquoted Project Blue Book Special Report No. 14. Yes, No. 14! What about 1-13? Good question, but that’s for another time. But suffice it to say that as for the plenitude of data that you will find when you dip into this subject, the level of misunderstanding and disinformation is simply amazing. Amazing when you consider the certitude employed by those who emphatically reduce the subject to mythology and folklore.
But what about the media and their reluctance and refusal to give any attention to the matter? Here are my suppositions, hypotheses and theories.
Institutional bias. The media reflect the world around us. They take no chances, buck no convention and challenge no public opinion. As far as they know, any suggestion as to the viability of the theory that aliens or extraterrestrial biological entities (EBEs) exist or have been spotted is a no-no. Similar to the notion of the conspiracy theory, these subjects represent a journalistic no man’s land and the unwritten rule is that if coverage of any form is had it will be in a jocular presentation, minimizing any suggestion of the story’s veracity or verity. In other words: It’s understood that it’s to be disregarded.
Scientific illiteracy. This represents the crux of scores of issues that are given short shrift or ignored altogether by an increasingly juvenescent newsroom. Newsers have been told that interstellar travel is pert near impossible for a host of reasons they’ve yet to verify or attempt to comprehend. Unimaginable distances, limitations on light speed are but a few. They’ve simply accepted what is to be excepted.
Blind acquiescence and patellar, Pavlovian governmental obeisance. The last thing your government would want is for there to be an acceptance of the notion that not only have we been visited (and are) but that evidence of such has been kept from the masses. And not because of the usual theory posited that we would run into the streets crazed and panicked à la the 1938 Mercury Theatre’s War of the Worlds, but because interstellar travel most probably involves a means of a locomotion source that didn’t involve chemical combustion such as antigravitic propulsion. And when petrochemical combustion in particular is not necessary, can you imagine the impact this would have on a world economy dependent on the petrodollar and petrocracies?
The dissolution of nationalism and the emergence of the “Earthling.” Just imagine what the world would look like reconfigured to think not as mini-jurisdictional borders such as countries or tribes, sects, religions and the like, but as a complete and contiguous assemblage of Earthlings. So long jurisdictional tiffs. Adios, religious disquietude. Toodle-oo, nationalism and sectarian identification. Hello, fellow inhabitants. “Kumbaya” meets “We are the world.”
Now, let me remind you what the media believe are critical and worthy of mention without surcease – Steve Harvey’s Miss Universe misfire, the latest viral video of a duck playing the piano and anything Donald Trump related. No, that’s front page. That’s the lead. But the umpteenth sighting of potential interstellar, extraterrestrial intelligent craft?! Nope. Not interested. They’re just too busy.