Tuesday, December 25, 2012


This would be just another day in the week for me but most places were closed today and the few friends I have were busy with family and friends.  Sometimes an individual ends up as an outsider not by choice.  

I decided to spend the day profitably and bang out another edition of my print zine, Ray X X-Rayer, albeit a short one, one sheet - two pages.  With that printed and out in the mail earlier in the afternoon, I'm using the quiet evening time to reformat the zine article and post them here.  Usually I do the opposite: blog posts first, then reformat them for a zine. 

I don’t know how coherent my writing is today because I’m suffering from a one-two punch of allergies and a cold, sneezing and coughing.  The cold started last night.  How appropriate.  Like I say, timing is all about the comedy.

At least the sun was out today.  My computer is near a window and the streaming light felt good while I was working on my zine, even though was around the freezing point outside.  Better than the usual cold gray gloom that I see most days during the six months of winter around here.  

Even with the sun out I was shivering while walking over to the Post Office, despite being bundled up.  I must have some sort of bug if my energy and resistance is that low.  But at least I got out of this efficiency apartment / monastic cell for some fresh air.

Now time to reformat and post my latest articles to follow this one.

Give Me Liberty Or Give Me Disobedience

While listening to the Liberty Net (www.3950.net) recently I’ve heard the term “civil disobedience” mentioned.  This was provoked by the re-election of President Obama, an event that produced consternation among the ultra-conservative ham radio operators.

Here are some select comments from the chat room on 11/18/12 by one Rick “CAPS LOCK SHOUTER” Flynt :



“I TUNED INTO THE CHAT TO FIND HOPE FOR US. THERE IS NONE! NOT A WORD OF WHAT WE CAN DO AT ALL AFTER Nov 6th!! Not HOPE but HOPELESS! All freedoms, any way out have been sealed before we could save our country from slavery and confiscation of ALL of our property! Nothing is sacred. Everything will be taken in the next fer months, not years!!  
Owhore is the most destructive human ever!  
Qwhore hates goodness!  
Owhore is the Anti-Christ!  
Owhore has no soul!”

“Owhore is taking the place of God and family!   Nothing is more important or must be worshiped more than him! HE BRINGS TO US ALL THINGS!  wE ARE BEING JUDGED BY IMPOSSIBLY LOW RATING OF TOLLERENCE, WE VIOLATE EVERY LAW OF ACCEPTANCE TO HIM. WE ARE ALWAYS WRONG ON ANY SUBJECT, SO WE MUST BE DESTROYED!!   Being judged by this filthy sickening pervert is just rediculous! This fool judges others?? The good people are not acceptible to him!!   He doesn't represent us at all!
Because of this I wonder if there is a God!!   
Nov. 6th he kicked our ass!”

Keep in mind that the LibNetters’ man was Ron Paul, not Mitt Romney.  They would have grudgingly accepted a Republican like Romney: he was the lesser evil of two lessers.  Should be interesting to see if the LibNetters do formulate some sort of plans for civil disobedience instead of bloviating as usual on air and online.

Leap Of Leap

“UFO lawyer” Peter Gersten waited for an interdimensional portal to open above Bell Rock in Sedona, Arizona after the magical hour of the winter solstice arrived on December 21, 2012.  With his Leap of Faith he said he was going to jump into the portal and save the world which he considers to be nothing more than a hologram.

No portal, no Leap of Faith as advertised.  Gersten just went home.

Apparently the authorities were concerned about him and anyone else showing up for the cosmic event who might be considering taking a leap.  Police and an emergency crew were nearby as seen in a news video posted online by the Fox 10 TV station in Phoenix*.  The video also shows some of the characters who showed up, including a couple of aluminum foil aliens, i.e., people wrapped in foil suits with springy antennas topped with silver balls attached to their heads.

Speculation on why Gersten didn’t jump: Maybe he realized that even hologramic gravity can turn you into a splat all over some rocks.  In another earlier video** he talked about the upcoming solstice event and used the phrase “a good day to die.”  A videographer corrected him and said the right term was “transition.”


** http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=raNb9r8Dk80

Silly Saucer

For some of you the image of the cute cartoon flying saucer above looks familiar. I previously wrote about a movie serial from the 1950s based on the comic book character Blackhawk. The hero is in his plane when the bad guys attack with a remote-controlled flying saucer.

The “Blackhawk” serial was made in 1952 with Kirk Alyn as “the fearless champion of justice.” Back in 1950 Alyn starred as the hero in a different serial based on Superman. I didn’t see “Atom Man vs. Superman” until recently and was surprised to spot a familiar cartoon flying saucer making its appearance, this time under the control of Supe’s arch enemy Lex Luthor. At one point newspaper reporter Clark Kent (Superman’s secret identity) and his co-worker Lois Lane are in the Daily Planet airplane when they encounter the animated weapon. Fortunately Lois faints so that Clark can change into Superman and save the day.

The “Blackhawk” movie serial two years later did some recycling from this movie. It used the same airplane, the same lead actor, and the same cartoon saucer.

If you think the saucer looks bad in my screencap image, you should see how they did some of the flying shots in the Superman serials. Clark Kent would run behind a tree and then a cartoon Superman would fly up, up, and away.

Saturday, December 08, 2012

Zine Zaps: Fadeaway & Opuntia

Quick looks at what has been popping up in my snail mail box. (The Web hasn't killed off paper zines yet.)

* * *

FADEAWAY – Robert Jennings, 29 Whiting Rd., Oxford, MA 01540-2035.

“A fanzine devoted to science fiction and related fields of interest.” 8 ½ x 11,, side stapled, 30 pages + per issue. A mix of articles, art, and an active “Reader Reaction” department where topics like the high price of comic books, the death of paper books, and old SF fandom versus modern fandom are discussed. While Robert is open-minded about all sorts of POVs, I could tell he was writing from the perspective of an older fan (he revealed in #32 that he’s 69 years old, “a genuine geezer.”). Then again, you would be surprised how old some zinesters (ahem) are…

Robert’s articles are well-written. Even though I’m not a fan of Tarzan or old time radio, I ended up reading an article about Edgar Rice Burroughs marketing his most famous character to radio back in the heyday of the medium. What hooked me was how ERB was trying to be a smart businessman, unlike most writers/artists.
Subs are $18.00 for six issues. Copies are available for a print fanzine in trade or letters of comment (LOCs are preferred).

* * *

OPUNTIA – Dale Speirs, PO Box 6830, Calgary, Alberta, Canada T2P 2E7. Digest size, 16 pages. $3.00 cash (US banknotes acceptable) for a sample copy, trade for zine, or letter of comment.

If you want diversity, you can find it with zines. Dale’s background includes working for many years for the Calgary Parks Department. Opuntia #69.5 (Oct. 2010) has an article about a visit by Princess Margriet of the Netherlands told from his viewpoint as a park employee. An interesting slice of (park) life. Other issues deal with topics – with a Canadian slant – such as financial panics, the oil and gas business, and transportation.

And if you’re really geeky, Dale has a feature called SEEN IN THE LITERATURE with excerpts and occasional commentary on such articles as “Pitchers of Nepenthes rajah collect faecal droppings from both diurnal and nocturnal small mammals and emit fruity odor” from the Journal of Tropical Ecology. Hey, if you work in a park, you gotta know your plants.

Friday, December 07, 2012

Ronson & Jones: New Hit TV Series Created By Ray X

It's a big hit even before it's on the air – or even before one episode has been produced.

A slightly nebbish writer/documentary producer from England – Jon Ronson – teams up with a ranting right-wing radio commentator from Texas – Alex Jones – to investigate shadowy evil conspiracies around the world.

High concept: "The Odd Couple" meets "The X-Files."

My series is based upon Ronson's non-fiction book, "Them: Adventures with Extremists" (2002), detailing his travels about the US and Canada while looking into the world of conspiracy theories. In the book Ronson encounters Alex Jones, anti-Illuminati crusader, and works with him to penetrate the secrets of Bohemian Grove.

The Grove is a vast California campground where some of the most powerful men in the world meet mid-summer for two weeks to piss on redwoods and watch a ceremony called Cremation of Care where a human effigy (or live sacrifice, according to Jones) is burnt in front of a giant owl statue.

To Jones the owl represents Moloch, an ancient god associated with child sacrifice. The ceremony represents the apex of evilness among the men who meet at Bohemian Grove each year, a Luciferian - Babylon mystery religious rite.

To Ronson the whole Bohemian Grove experience is nothing more than a bunch of aging men acting like college kids once again, frat-boy nonsense.

The dichotomy is obvious between Ronson – the rationalist – and Jones -- the ranter. In "Them" Ronson describes how he and Jones found a way to get into Bohemian Grove to witness the Cremation of Care. They were told from a contact who had already sneaked in to dress and act preppy and just walk up the road as if they belonged there.

For dapper Ronson dressing and acting preppy was easy. Jones and his radio show producer had to practice, walking around in their new clothes from a nearby Eddie Bauer and practicing the manners and speech of Grovers.

When the time came to take the walk into the Grove, Ronson and his contact just strolled by the guard. On the other hand, Jones and his producer couldn't handle such an easy entrance: they dived into the bushes and snuck in like kid commandos.

Very dramatic. Makes interesting radio – or in this case, TV.

Afterwards when comparing notes, Jones thought he had visited an inner circle of hell. Cool calm Ronson didn't agree with Jone's paranoid POV. But Jones kept raving...

Is this set-up a natural or what?

Another non-fiction work by Ronson, "The Men Who Stare At Goats," was made into a movie loosely based on the events in his book about the US Army going New Age, e.g., experimenting with remote viewing. It featured a nebbish journalist, Bob Wilton, portrayed by Ewan MacGregor, a character apparently loosely inspired by Ronson. (It was a loose movie.)

MacGregor would be adequate for the TV series. Best casting would be a young Don-Knotts-type as Ronson. As for Jones, is the Incredible Hulk available?

"Ronson & Jones" -- coming to an alternative TV network in an alternative universe near you.

Thursday, December 06, 2012

Peter Gersten: Still Planning His Apocalyptic Leap?

"If I'm wrong, everybody dies."

So proclaims a 70-year-old freethinker in an online video (ebaumsworld.com) entitled "Apocalypse 2012 Hero Peter Gersten" about his plan to save the world by leaping off a towering rock at the moment the winter solstice arrives.

Human beings, he believes, are part of a computer program, a hologram.

Peter Gersten is known as "the UFO lawyer" for his legal efforts to find out what the US government really knows about strange things in the sky. He has announced that he will leap from Bell Rock in Sedona, Arizona at 11:11 UT (Universal Time) or 4:11 AM local time on December 21st, 2012.

As one article has noted, the winter solstice doesn't really occur until 11:12 UT. Hopefully Gersten won't jump the gun. Maybe he needs a minute head start to achieve his goal: participating in a T-DE, Trans-Dimensional Event, that will allow him to enter a cosmic portal.

I wrote before about Gersten's Leap of Faith but I didn't know about the save the world angle. He states in the video that he's doing this for his children and grandchildren, all of the carbon-based life forms in this world.

In a prepared statement published months ago Gersten said that he didn't know what would exactly happen when the fateful moment arrived. He said:

"...I believe that some type of cosmic portal will be opening at that time and place and that an opportunity will present itself. I fully expect that it will either lead to the next level of this cosmic program; freedom from an imprisoning time-loop; a magical Martian-like bubble; or something equally as exotic."

Gersten says the we're all trapped in a computer program that is scheduled to shut down. Unfortunately I haven't found any further details on how his leap will stop the Apocalypse except it somehow undoes the prophecies of doom. Maybe his leap will reset the cosmic computer?

Another video I found on YouTube -- "Peter Gersten Bell Rock Leap of Faith," -- provides a possible answer to how his leap will save the world. At one point it seems that Gersten, responding to a question, mentions something about a corrupting virus in the computer program. There's a lot of wind noise that drowns out most of his reply but I'm guessing the Leap of Faith will transform him into an anti-virus.

In this second video Gersten also mentions that the jump is 20 months away and that his family and friends aren't taking him that seriously.

Gersten explains he is going to go "be in the moment," seeing what happens at the magic time. The universe, he continues, will fill in the details. Asked what he will do if the portal doesn't appear, he replied someone on this side might be needed to open it and so he will have to do it himself by jumping.

There's a disturbing moment in the video when Gersten responds to a question, saying that December 21st, 2012 should be a good day to die. A video crew member corrects him, telling him to use the term transition, not die. Gersten sorta shrugs his shoulders, saying transition or death, it's just a question of semantics.

In his prepared statement Gersten observed:

"Most of you will think that I am delusional and that my insane act will certainly result in my death. Death is inevitable – at least nowadays – and 100 years from now it won’t matter whether I died in 2012 or 2013 or even 2020."

I can only speculate on what he really going on inside Peter Gersten's head. Maybe he's having some doubt with his belief in the cosmic portal. Doubt does strike at times with people of faith.

A cynic would say this is a way of getting attention, making one's life have more meaning. I'm guessing that as the time draws near Gersten's friends and family are trying to talk him out of his leap.

No news -- at least any I can find online -- whether or not he has changed his mind.

Sunday, December 02, 2012

Everyone Loves Vern But Not Everyone Loves Ray X

Besides 3950.net another site, stickam.com/ thelibertynet, also streams the Liberty Net on-air discussions with a chat room. This image is from the second site. LibNetters claim that they are against Barack Obama but not because he is black. Then why do some of them use terms like "monkey" when referring to him?

And the sisyphean Liberty Net keeps trying to roll their rock up Reality Hill, each time expecting a different result.

Every Saturday night the Lib Netters take to the airwaves, ham radio operators of the ultra-conservative bent (think mega-conspiracies: Illuminati, New World Order, etc.). Simultaneously they also share their views via text in a chat room at 3950.net .

Sometimes I copy and archive the chats. I found one session from three months ago to be particularly interesting.

One person who joins the LN airwave discussions is Vern Kasper, an older man who is has been successful in business, owning a number of commercial radio stations. Vern has also traveled around the world a bit and offers a cosmopolitan view on current events.

I wrote about Vern one time at this blog, noting how some people in the Lib Net chat room -- not all -- said some unpleasant things about him one night. Comments like "I, I , I , I, I, I, Vern is the EYE man," "over half an hour of the marvelous Vern," and "Glad I can be here to be listening to the VERN net."

You can read all the comments at that previous post. I didn't invent the comments; I just copied and pasted them.

On September 9th, 2012 Vern made another appearance on the Liberty Net. Once again he went on for a while about his radio stations, his travels around the world, repeating some of the same points he has made before. (Then again, most LibNetters keep repeating the same points every week.) Of course, a few in the chat room had to make disparaging observations.

Like this one: "And now, broadcasting from his new Cadillac, high atop the parking garage of VER"

One LibNet chatter known as JD was looking for a photo of Vern online and came across my blog post. He shared the link with the other chatters.

The following chat room excerpts show what kind of reaction my blog post provoked.

"RickFlint: JD That is amazing! What a dink Ray X (or Ray Jay...) is!"

"RickFlint: THin [sic] skin Ray doesn't know sh*t! We love Vern. No disrespect other than some joking around due the the [sic] boredome [sic] time. It's like waiting in a check-out lin [sic] forever at the grocery store, an [sic] eventually buy a damn candy bar!"

"RickFlint: For Ray Jay to knock us for simple comments show his own simplicity. FOR THE RECORD, WE LIKE VERN, THINK HE IS SMART AND CELEBRATE HIS AGE!"

"JD: I agree with you. I have no idea who the Ray guy is, never heard of him. Vern is all right by me!"

"RickFlint: I don't think the 'Vern Show' is disrespectful or any other thing. Remember two weeks ago when Al couldn't get back to his comments when Vern just popped in and overwhelmed the net for a half hour! Al was really ticked off but we chatters just busted a gut laughing! What else could be more entertaining than that? Lemonaid [sic] from lemons... God bless Vern and Ray, buzz off!"

I'm thin-skinned? I think the ones with the diaphanous epidermis are the LibNetters who don't like it when someone follows their conversations, makes notes, and then just shares what he observed.

It's hard to argue when it's in plain black and white text.

Anyway, you think conspiracy theorists would never assume no one outside their inner circle with a contrary POV is lurking.

Tuesday, November 20, 2012

Jim Moseley: Flying Saucer Farewell

I'll miss my late night phone conversations with Jim Moseley.

Despite trying to track how he was doing in his fight against cancer I didn't hear the bad news until yesterday. Jim died on November 16, 2012.

One of my regrets that I never had the opportunity to visit him in Key West and spend a day with him. Even though we never met in person, he was a friend.

I mainly knew Jim as a voice on the phone -- and, of course, as the writer-editor of the zine Saucer Smear (and also as the author of postcards he sent to me marked PRIVATE AND CONFIDENTIAL).

Jim was around at the dawn of ufology -- or as the topic was called way back then, flying saucers. Parts of the field he couldn't accept, personalities way out there without anything real to back them up. For example, George Adamski. Jim was critical of "ufoology."

Through his writings Jim made friends and enemies. His humor and tell-it-like-it-is attitude didn't endear him to everyone. He said that one anti-UFO skeptic was probably gay. The skeptic threatened legal action through his lawyer. Jim backed off. Then the skeptic came out of the closet. Jim was right.

Gray Barker, one of Jim's friends who had died years ago, was gay. Jim was open-minded; he didn't care if the skeptic was gay but that the skeptic -- someone revealing "the truth" about others to the ignorant masses -- wasn't being truthful about himself.

When I asked him about what the title of his zine meant, Jim told me he wanted to smear the lies.

Sometimes he would call and my answering machine would pick up. He left messages like "Dr. X, this is Mr. Y."

Jim was 81 years old but when talking with him on the phone he had the irreverence, spirit and energy of an 18 year old. Until the last call.

I hadn't heard from him in a while and caught him at home. He sounded tired, weak. He said he would have to go to the hospital because he wasn't eating. You could tell the cure -- radiation and chemo -- were doing a number on him.

The last words he said to me before hanging up: "You're a good man, Ray."

Jim Moseley was a good man.

Friday, September 14, 2012

Time Wasting Crap

Beside personal crap, one main reason why I haven't been blogging at all for the last two months is this piece of garbage I'm typing on. I hate shit-rate products whether it be the computer or the software.

I don't like being completely dependent on Microsoft products like Word. So I've tried using other word-processing programs.

Open Office. Libre Office. Abiword. Jarte. They're all shit.

I gave up on Open Office a long time ago because I wanted something that could create files compatible with Word documents. But when formatting my zine, all the work I put in would fuck up, the layout would move around when I opened the Open Office .doc file in Word.

Libre Office seemed promising until I got this message only a week after I had installed it:

"For some reason Libre Office has stopped working."

OK, I go into the control panel and do a repair. I open up Libre Office again and --

"For some reason Libre Office has stopped working."

So I uninstall the program, then download the latest version, carefully following the directions. Then when I try to open up the new version --

"For some reason Libre Office has stopped working."

So I permanently uninstalled that shit and tried Abiword. It's also shit. I tell it I want my text in Tahoma 10 point and it keeps defaulting to Times Roman 12 every time I add more copy.

I start to Google info about the problem and find that other people have the same problem. The fix is involved -- and then I stop, saying FUCK IT!, I've wasted enough time on this crap. If the software doesn't work right out of the box, then why should I troubleshoot it like one of its developers?

There is also a program called Jarte but in print preview it lies to you. It shows 4 pages but when you print there's a spill over to page 5.

Also, my big piece of shit Brother Printer likes to reprint files I've already printed. I have to go in and delete the files in its memory even though the jobs are done. If I don't delete, the next time I turn on the printer it I end up with a second useless copy. Sometimes the damn thing prints ghosts file out of nowhere, stuff I didn't tell it to print.

So I'm back using an old version of Word that has its faults but does work.

Now if I could uninstall the personal crap in my life...

Sunday, June 03, 2012


It's amazing how materialism can suck down higher intentions.

During a nine-year stretch Vermont filmmaker Mac Parker said he was raising money to create a spiritual documentary. Prosecutors countered that he was engaged in a $28 million Ponzi scheme.

So far no movie but there's a book by Parker, a work of fiction dealing with the theme of trust. Back in March Parker accepted a plea deal, saying he was guilty of conspiracy to commit wire fraud and tax fraud. Prosecutors said that only $700,000 of the millions raised for the proposed movie, "The Birth of Innocence," went towards the film project. As with a typical Ponzi scheme, prosecutors contend some of the money was used to pay back earlier investors.

Parker's partner and mentor, chiropractor Louis Soteriou of Connecticut, was also indicted but pled not guilty to the charges. As part of the plea deal, Parker will help prosecutors with their case against Soteriou. Authorities say that around $3.8 million of the money raised was diverted to Soteriou for his plan of spiritual attainment. Soteriou claimed he has no money and was allowed to use a federal public defender.

Parker told prosecutors he was led along by his mentor Soteriou. To make up some of the money owed to investors Parker has written a book, "Rare Earth," being sold at $12 a shot at his website. He assures the public that 55% of money raised through his book will go into an escrow account for those lenders still left in a lurch.

I haven't read the book -- I wasn't one of the lucky ones sent a free PDF copy -- but a few details about the fictional work were revealed in an article in the Vermont alternative weekly newspaper, Seven Days.

In her article "You Can't See Mac Parker's Film, But You Can Read His Book" (05/02/12), reporter Margot Harrison explains "Rare Earth" centers around a Texas company that wants to exploit a mountain for its rare earth minerals, the conflict between defenders of nature -- spiritual new age types -- and materialistic greedy businessmen. Through the love of her boyfriend the woman protagonist overcomes her mistrust to embrace a new perspective on life.

So while things turn out well in the novel, the woman's trust is rewarded, in real life Parker has claimed in court that he was led astray while under the spell of his guru Soteriou.

Parker sent out a few free copies of "Rare Earth" and it appears that it might take him a while for his book to put a dent in the debt he owes. One person described it in the Seven Days article as "“insipid, trite, predictable and saccharinely sentimental." Then again, that reviewer is one of the people Parker owes money.

When questions were raised about the funding and long delay with Parker's documentary, some rushed to his defense, demonstrating blind faith. One true believer questioned why prosecutors were after such a good man as Parker.

Parker says his trust in Soteriou was misguided but he is trying to prevent himself from becoming a hard, cynical person.

I don't value cynicism myself but in this case investors should have approached Parker's project with a bit of skepticism.

In the meantime, if you have any extra money sitting around, please send it to me. Why? Let's say that act of faith will change your worldview. Or at least make mine better.

Thursday, May 31, 2012

Randle's Mysterious Pumice

Roswell. 1947. Some people claim that an alien starship crashed in that area of New Mexico. There are stories about pieces of metal from that doomed craft that one could crumple up into a ball and it would flatten itself out, a molecular memory.

And then there's the pumice.


The non-fiction book, "The Truth About the UFO Crash at Roswell" (1994), details the 1991 investigation by Kevin Randle and Donald Schmitt into the Roswell crash. They interviewed people who said they had held hard evidence of the crash, evidence that somehow has disappeared, apparently sucked up by the US government's TOP SECRET vacuum cleaner.

In the chapter entitled "A Complete Examination of the Evidence" I found this statement:

"Kevin Randle handled a small piece of material that he was told was picked up on the crash site. It looked like gray pumice, had no weight to it, some stratification, and seemed to be very tough. It didn't act like any pumice he had ever seen."

I wondered what happened to that hard evidence but there's no mention of the strange pumice in the rest of the book. Some Googling didn't turn up anything.

I couldn't locate an email address for Kevin Randle so I left a comment on his blog, A Different Perspective, inquiring about the mysterious material. So far no reply.

But in trying to find contact info for Randle I did come across the Wikipedia entry under his name. Apparently someone (not me) slipped one through the Wikipedia watchdogs because Randle is described as a "prominent ufoologist."

Sunday, May 27, 2012

Important Notice From Jim Moseley

In the latest issue of Saucer Smear (May 20th, 2012) Jim Moseley included this item:

"As of this writing, it looks like your Editor will soon have a serious operation.  The next issue of 'Smear,' as well as answers to your letters, etc., may be delayed for a currently unknown period of time.  More later, hopefully..."

Jim added this statement:

"Details are KLASS-ified."

Good luck with the surgery, Jim.

Wednesday, May 16, 2012

Mental Capability And The Hand Lotion Threat

Is there a conspiracy to target certain human genetic types with hand lotion as a delivery system of destruction?

Leave it to the theorists at the Liberty Net -- the ham radio/Internet forum for ultra-patriots -- to discuss such an idea as a plausible threat. During a recent get-together longtime member Al Parker mentioned a news story from New Zealand about a mysterious group of vendors -- apparently Israeli citizens - who were aggressively pushing hand lotion from a shopping mall kiosk. The same organization has also set up kiosk operations in other malls in Australia and the United States.

According to the NZ article, the vendors disappeared overnight, leaving considerable damage to the plumbing in a rental unit after they whipped up some of the special lotions.

Al Parker suggested that maybe the so-called Israeli vendors were actually Arab terrorists in disguise. The operation could be a front for biological warfare, setting up kiosks all over the world, ready to spread a deadly agent at the same time. He thought the vendors were "creepy," questioning why they came all the way to the United States to distribute their products. Of course, maybe it was just a scam but...

Liberty Net controller Vic Misek agreed with Parker, saying that most people were suckers, believing in anything. After all, he said, they voted for Obama. He added that the vendors could easily introduce radioactive substances or carcinogens into the product, causing victims to suffer lingering deaths.

Two other LibNetters chimed in, each saying that he had been approached by the same operation in their respective hometown area malls. The vendor urged each one to try the hand lotion. Both had forgotten about the incident until Parker brought it up.

Misek wondered what kind of intelligence operation could be run through a mall kiosk. Parker raised the issue of why the hand lotion vendors wanted to touch the people, rubbing in free samples. He claimed there are reports that "They" have race- and ethnic-specific bio-weapons. So the vendor with his different genetics would be immune to whatever he was rubbing into a person's hand.

Misek concurred, saying that there could be a substance in the lotion that would affect the mental capability of the victim, rendering that person harmless, but targeting only those people with a particular genetic transcript.

Like the angry white men (and one woman) who participate in the Liberty Net?

The entire forum is archived at http://3950.net/live as Liberty Net - 2012-0505, the date of the original transmissions. The discussion about the hand lotion threat starts around the 5:13:35 mark.

Saturday, April 28, 2012

OK, UFOs -- Do Something!

Now this is taking my suggestion to the extreme...

The reports keep coming in. Some are hoaxes, some are misidentifications, some are delusions. What remains are unexplainable incidents.

A person sees a strange light in the night sky performing maneuvers beyond the capability of any terrestrial vehicle. Another observes a mysterious object during the daytime, a mysterious visitor from beyond the outer limits. The sightings are usually brief, no proof left behind. Photos and videos? Images can be faked, especially in this age of CGI. Not hard evidence.

UFOs keep teasing, just out of our tangible grasp.

Enough is enough. I can't bother to read any more inconclusive reports involving will-o-wisps. I'm ignoring the phenomena, at least the endless and meaningless reports.

Until you UFOs do something, I'm not bothering playing your game.

Put on a real show instead of pissing around in the heavens. Don't harm any living creature but make us believe. Land. Hang around for a while until every news organization in the world shows up.

Hey, even a bit of vandalism would work. Maybe you can turn the Washington Monument upside down, its point buried in the ground. Or carve some graffiti with a heat ray on the side of a mountain. (ORTHON LOVES AURA RHANES) Leave some incontrovertible evidence behind.

C'mon, what are you afraid of?

I know you're out there. I can hear you breathing.

See this microchip on my shoulder? I dare ya to knock it off.

Planning Your 2012 Doomsday Vacation? 

Pic de Bugurach, Wikimedia Commons 

Hippies? I thought they died out in the 1970s, either by cleaning up their act and going mainstream or by ODing on bad drugs. 

But that's the term I encountered in a headline about the people gathering around a mountain in France, hoping to hitch a ride aboard a starship when the world ends (once again) on December 21st, 2012. ("Hippies head for Noah’s Ark: Queue here for rescue aboard alien spaceship"

Well, if you're a "hippie" or New Ager wondering what do to (again) on doomsday, your best bet seems to be joining the approximately 20,000 souls who are abiding their time in the area of a Pyrenean village called Bugarach and a mountain named Pic de Bugarach. 

The mountain is the focus of all of the attention. Some say a spaceship is hidden inside Pic de Bugarach and when the cosmic crap hits the celestial fan, the benevolent ETs will provide a safe ride away from all of the destruction. I hope the spaceship is big enough to handle the passengers who want aboard: it's predicted the number of the New Agers or "esoterics" is going to swell up to 100,000. 

The mayor of Bugarach is concerned the situation might get out of hand, e.g., mass suicides, people leaping into eternity off the mountain. Maybe the mayor read my article "Vortex Or Void" about "UFO lawyer" Peter Gersten who plans to escape doomsday here at home in the good ol' USA by jumping off a towering rock in Arizona, escaping into an interdimensional gateway when everything is in cosmic alignment on December 21st.

Bugurach's mayor has contacted MIVILUDES, the French government watchdog that tracks cults. The agency's name is an acronym for Mission interminist√©rielle de vigilance et de lutte contre les d√©rives sectaires, translated into English as Interministerial Mission for Monitoring and Combatting Cultic Deviances. "Hippies" have been seen ascending Pic de Bugarach, naked. Other groups have been seen carrying some sort of ball with a silver ring up the peak. 

Deviance, indeed.

Thursday, April 12, 2012

Alternative Title For New Age Film:
Death of Innocence

Profile photo from Birth Of Innocence Facebook page.

"BIRTH OF INNOCENCE is a feature-length narrated film by Mac Parker about the power in every single one of us, waiting to be brought into our lives through our innocence..." -- Facebook page for BOI
[ http://www.facebook.com/pages/Birth-of-Innocence/115493931813189 ]

"For most of my adult life, I have been an ambassador for Vermont through my stories, my writing, and my films... Birth of Innocence is my most ambitious project yet, and my hope is that it too will reflect beautifully on our state and our people. How ironic that an agency of this state I love so much is now spending taxpayers’ money trying to prove that I’m a bad guy." -- Mac Parker, quoted from his written statement, article "State Files New Charges Against Filmmaker Mac Parker" by Shay Totton, Seven Days reporter, April 23, 2010
[ http://7d.blogs.com/blurt/2010/04/state-files-new-charges-against-filmmaker-mac-parker.html ]

"Mac's vision is as pure and inspiring as ever. It's guiding this project as surely as a captain steers his ship, and I believe that with a little love, luck and compassionate determination, the manifestation of this film is near at hand." -- Commenter, April 9, 2011, Facebook page for "Birth of Innocence" movie project (link listed above)

"The Office of the United States Attorney for the District of Vermont stated today that a federal grand jury has returned an 18-count indictment charging Louis James Soteriou, 54, of Middlebury, Connecticut, with wire fraud, mail fraud, conspiracy, and money laundering offenses relating to his role in the “Birth of Innocence” movie project. The United States attorney also filed today a plea agreement executed by Malcolm “Mac” Parker, 54, of Addison, Vermont, pursuant to which Parker agreed to plead guilty to conspiracy to commit wire fraud and a tax crime in connection with this same movie project. Under that agreement, Parker agreed to cooperate with the United States in its prosecution of Soteriou." -- U.S. Department of Justice, FBI Press Release, March 16, 2012
[ http://www.fbi.gov/albany/press-releases/2012/multi-million-dollar-birth-of-innocence-fraud-prosecution-announced ]

     RUTLAND, Vt. - Mac Parker left the Rutland Federal Courthouse Wednesday afternoon on his own recognizance, after admitting his role in what prosecutors call a $28 million Ponzi scheme.
     He didn't want to talk with us, but investors like Pedie and Armond Brisson say they thought they were investing in their neighbor.
     "My life's earnings; I farmed it for 50 years and he's got it all," Armond Brisson said. "I told many friends and then some of them invested, many did, and many are ripped at me right now because they got burned..."
     "I don't understand why Mac couldn't see that there's no connection between spirituality and money," Pedie O'Brien Brisson said.

-- WCAX-TV news story, Apr 11, 2012, "Vt moviemaker pleads guilty in film fraud scheme"
[ http://www.wcax.com/story/17388331/mac-parker-pleads-guilty-in-film-fraud-scheme ]

"...Let's get behind Birth of Innocence and tell BISHCA (VT Department of Banking, Insurance, Securities and Health Care Administration) to leave him alone! They are wasting our tax dollars on attacking a beautiful project and its humble creator--huh? in this atmosphere of desperately trying to balance the state budget, they're wasting how many hundreds of thousands of dollars on this assault?" -- Commenter, May 12, 2010, BOI Facebook page.

Wednesday, March 14, 2012

But It Probably Wasn't The Ghost Of An Angry Santa

So what was banging away at night on the roof where Steve Volk lived when he was young? Was a ghost terrifying his family, trying to hack its way it, the same entity that yanked the covers off the beds of his sisters?

I don't know.

Volk describes the incident in his non-fiction book, FRINGE-OLOGY: How I Tried To Explain Away the Unexplainable —And Couldn't. As a reporter he couldn't write the typical joke article that laughed off the supernatural as the crazy delusions of fringe types. While tagging along with ghost-hunters, he could see that while many cases had earthly explanations, there were a few incidents that couldn't be dismissed so easily.

Unlike hard-core skeptics who create scientific justifications to dispel any paranormal ideas, Volk thinks some things are simply unexplainable.

Volk says that the supernatural and the paranormal are not the same. The supernatural is “of or relating to an order of existence beyond the visible observable universe” which can involve God/gods/spirits/devils while the paranormal deals with "events or perceptions occurring without scientific explanation.”

He observes: "If we take these definitions, the supernatural seems to force us toward religion, while the paranormal merely forces us to say, 'I don’t know.' There should be no shame in that, but I think the faithful too often want to equate their beliefs with knowledge, while the skeptics fear that admitting a lack of a final answer opens the door to all manner of hoo ha, including God. The skeptics also tend to view the words supernatural and paranormal as if they are easily interchangeable, but whereas the supernatural seems to lie firmly beyond science, the paranormal waits patiently for the technology and the willing scientists necessary for its discovery."

At the same time Volk isn't totally anti-skeptic, mentioning he's a fan of Brian Dunning and Alex Tsakiris, two skeptical podcasters who try to bring together both sides to discuss issues. But there are those dogmatic/hard-core skeptics who want to stay inside their palaces of knowledge, not stooping to rub elbows with those they regard as intellectually inferior.

For example Volk describes the experience of Dr. Stuart Hameroff who spoke at the Beyond Belief Conference. Hameroff, a believer in human quantum consciousness, faced an unfriendly audience of atheist scientists and philosophers. Hameroff said the conference was like the Spanish Inquisition but in reverse, the skeptics attacking those who believed in religion with ridicule.

While Hameroff didn't have a problem with attacking organized religion, he thinks that there is room in science to explore spirituality. Why did he speak before such a closed minded crowd? Because hard-core skeptics want to replace organized religion with their own belief system.

Along the way Volk in his book investigates other topics as near-death-experience research, telepathy, and the Stephenville, Texas UFO flap.

Thursday, March 08, 2012

Alex Jones: Stochastic Agent?

The hyperlogic razor can cut both ways. Ask Alex Jones.

Jones is a conspiracy theorist who rants on about the New World Order through his radio program and Websites. He angrily calls out certain political leaders and governmental officials for being masters of deceit. Imagine Milton William Cooper but without the charm.

The Website truther.org has run a series of articles implying that Alex Jones is a deceitful master. According to David Chase Taylor, there is evidence making it "likely" that Jones is really a double-agent working for Stratfor (Strategic Forecasting, Inc.), a private intelligence firm whose secret emails were recently published by WikiLeaks.

In his articles Taylor claims that Jones is really working for the Israeli Mossad, hiding the truth from his unsuspecting followers that the US is really under the control of the Zionists. Taylor also calls Jones a "stochastic terrorist," i.e., someone who uses mass communication "to stir up random lone wolves to carry out acts of terrorism."

So who is David Chase Taylor? He's described as "an American journalist, researcher, writer, teacher, media analyst and peace activist. He is the editor in chief of Truther.org, a false-flag and state-sponsored terror whistleblower website which serves as a conduit for worldwide peace related news and information."

In his criticism Taylor states that while Alex Jones terror predictions do come true (apparently thanks to his Stratfor connections), Jones "never cares to substantiate his predictions with hard evidence."

So let's look at the hard evidence (as such) Taylor uses to link Jones to Stratfor.

Taylor points out the fact that Alex Jones and Stratfor call Austin, Texas home base. In 1996 Jones started his radio career, the same year that Stratfor was founded. And then Taylor includes these details:

"The city also boasts other political intelligence operatives; namely: Karl Rove, top Republican Strategist, Steven Jackson, founder of the Illuminati card game, Jehmu Green, founder of Rock the Vote, and Silona Bonewald, founder of the League of Technical Voters."

The Illuminati card game? OMG!

Taylor also mentions that presidential candidate Ron Paul lives "only 199 miles" away from Austin. See how it all ties together?

While it's a private firm, Stratfor is known for its connections with governmental officials; it serves both corporate and US Military clients. Taylor uses this detail in comparing the Jones and Stratfor Websites, saying that they're the same. He quotes from the "STRATFORE WEBITE" [sic], outlining how it collects intelligence while Jones' sites, infowars.com and prisonplanet.com, mentions the names of intelligence officials who appear as guests on Jones' programs.

In fact, Jones has "elite" guests on his program like Charlie Sheen, Willie Nelson and Jesse Ventura. So how can Jones be a true conspiracy theorist, asks Taylor, while having such connections to the elite? The answer: Jones is working for an intelligence agency.

See how it all fits together?

But there's more. Stratfor was founded by an admitted Zionist, says Taylor. Jones' wife is an Israeli. What additional proof do you need?

Well, it would be nice to see more than hyperlogical reasoning. Maybe WikiLeaks will publish actual emails between "Israeli tool" Jones and his Stratfor bosses, showing exactly how Jones is taking orders from Stratfor, all the dirty conspiratorial details. Assuming such emails exist...

So far only one Stratfor email provided by WikiLeaks has popped up mentioning Jones. Regarding the assassination of Osama Bin Laden, the email says that photos of Bin Laden's corpse should be made available to "shout down the lunatics like Alex Jones and Glenn Beck.” Lunatic? Is that any way to describe a faithful double-agent/tool like Jones?

Or maybe someone will claim that email is disinfo, allowed to leak to cover up the true relationship between Jones and Stratfor.

But that's how it goes in the murky world of conspiracy theory. Jones has made some dubious leaps of logic and now the same kind of (un)reasoning by another conspiracy monger has come back to bite him in the ass.


"Is Alex Jones A STRATFOR Double Agent?"

"10 Reasons Why Alex Jones Should Be Tried For Treason"

"Is The Assassination Of Alex Jones Next?"

"Alex Jones STRATFOR Connection And The Murder Of Andrew Breitbart"

"Stratfor leak: Show Bin Laden body pics to shut up 'lunatics'"

Thursday, March 01, 2012

Earthling Or Earthding?

"Because all you of Earth are idiots... Your stupid minds! Stupid! Stupid!" -- Eros, Plan 9 From Outer Space

Are earthlings nothing more than a bunch of ding-a-lings who need ET visitors to bump up our collective IQ?

That's the POV of most true believers into the ancient astronaut/exopolitics meme. Take Roswell -- please. Like a bumbling Prometheus aliens crashed their ship into the New Mexico desert so that earthdings could reverse engineer the tech on board, thus resulting in miraculous devices like high def flat TV panels showing the same old crap but with superior resolution.

In fact, if you follow the reasoning behind AI (alien intervention), the people of Earth didn't have the brains to build pyramids. Aliens in saucers came down like the gods and used their advanced tech to lift and place colossal stone blocks. Forget the thousands of expendable human slaves under the whip using rope, rollers, and ramps to do the job. Hypersonic levitation gets all the credit.

But there's a problem with this scenario. If a planet's inhabitants are too stupid to figure out anything on their own, how did alien visitors to Earth get to be so smart? Did an advanced starship from another world crash on their planet, kickstarting their development through reverse engineering? If so, how did the ETs on that crashed craft become so advanced?

Is the impetus for civilization on various planets nothing more than the result of interstellar traffic accidents?

Monday, February 20, 2012

Our Father Who Art In Space

Let's talk about religion and ETs – or advanced beings (ABs) if you will.

Author Paul Von Ward is apparently a member of the exopolitics crowd. In his book, We’ve Never Been Alone: A History of Extraterrestrial Intervention, he takes the exopolitical stance that otherwordly beings are here, no argument about it, so we better start thinking about mankind’s relationship with those visitors.

Von Ward accepts evidence of AB reality through the works of such writers as Zecharia Sitchin, the whole ancient astronauts were the basis for the gods/God shtick.

Yup, YHVH was only an alien with superior technology that he used to control his faction of humans. Apparently in ancient times advanced beings showed up and each one had his own share of the mankind market. They fought among themselves and then left, leaving behind the structure of what Von Ward calls “god-cults.”

The reason why many nations and religious groups are fighting among themselves, says Von Ward, is because of the ABs’ meddling in our affairs in the dim past.

I wouldn’t mind it if he presented his argument mainly as speculation. The trouble I have with the exopolitics crowd is their evidence is dubious. Yes, there are strange things in this world, UFOs in the sense of unidentified phenomena, but to take a leap of faith and say it’s all part of a grand scheme by aliens/ABs as Von Ward and others lay out – sorry, I don’t buy it.

Just because someone claims he was contacted by otherwordly beings, receiving messages warning mankind to avoid great disasters – that’s at best an anecdote without any hard evidence to back it up.

Saying something doesn’t make it so.

By the way, I’m a genius.

Yeah, That'll Work

Anyone in favor of skeptocracy, government by skeptics?

That concept popped into my head the other day. After all, skeptics are supposed to stress rationality over emotion. Dealing with facts, not opinion, should lead to better government.

In the previous issue I talked about Elevatorgate, an incident from last year that proved how skeptics are all on the same page when it comes to The Truth. Rebecca Watson, of skepchick.org, was at a conference where she spoke about sexism and skepticism. She claimed a male conference attendee hit on her in an elevator when she was returning to her room. She hated being regarded as a sex object – even though she appeared semi-nude in a couple of Skepchick calendars.

Her take on the incident whipped up a storm of controversy among the skeptical community. Atheist Richard Dawkins wrote a satirical piece involving a letter to a fictional Muslim woman, a victim of severe oppression in another country, telling her that her problems were nothing compared to poor Rebecca’s.

Rebecca responded by saying that she would never again endorse any of Dawkins’ books. So there!

Another skeptical blogger thought Rebecca was blowing the elevator incident way out of proportion, adding the letter “T” to her last name when referring to her. How rational.

Skeptics are supposed to deal with facts, looking beyond ad hominem attacks and cheap shots. Rebecca in an YouTube video advised that instead of hitting on her, lonely men should invest in inflatable love dolls.

I wonder if Rebecca was in power if she would set up a Junior Anti-Sex League like in George Orwell’s novel 1984.

Anyone in favor of skeptocracy?

Sunday, February 12, 2012

Another Year On Paper

February 2012 marks 18 years I’ve been zining about offbeat topiX. I can’t remember the eXact date of that freezing winter night when I sat down at a computer and roughed out a short four page issue, Ray X X-Rayer #1.

It was a way to get through the drudgery of the long winters around here. But as time has passed neither winter nor zining has become easier.

Back in those early years I was reviewed in Factsheet 5, the leading publication for zine reviews. That exposure did generate a few readers but nothing like the hundreds I have with my blog.

I think print zines suffer from the Poet Syndrome: for every 100 people who write poetry, only one reads poems by others on a regular basis.

So as another winter drags on − despite its relative mildness – I’m still putting out a zine, albeit in a much shorter form, one double-sided sheet, two pages total, for those who prefer paper over photons.

All four of them.

Stromy Relationships

A girl has finally joined the boys club.

The Liberty Net is a long-existing group of amateur radio operators who meet weekly to discuss “current events” from the perspective of angry white men who think the New World Order / The Illuminati is taking over mankind.

Sometimes it sounds like the guys are falling all over themselves because Nissa wants to be in their treehouse. Of course, one woman in the group reflects on how most voices in the areas of both ham radio and conspiracy theory are male.

I’ve only heard Nissa a few times but from what she says I don’t detect that streak of racism evinced by others in the net.

The other night a new commenter said he hoped the mainstays of the group weren’t engaging in racism when talking about President Obama. The commenter said he didn’t like the policies of the president but there was no reason to attack the POTUS based on just his race.

A LibNetter replied that Obama could be as white as a ghost and they would still criticize him for destroying the great nation of the United States of America. But as usual a couple of others came on later with sharp comments about illegal immigrants and poor minorities, their prejudice thinly disguised.

But this isn’t surprising when you consider that Kevin Alfred Strom has been involved with the Liberty Net. He runs the group’s Website, www.3950.net, and has been instrumental in setting up the live online audio stream with phone patches for the group when they’re on the air.

It’s not that hard to find unflattering articles about him on the Web.

Kevin Strom

Strom once belonged to a neo-Nazi group called the National Alliance. He created a radio program called “American Dissident Voices” to help the NA spread its messages promoting racism and anti-Semitism.

In 1990 Strom married Kirsten Kaiser who eventually left him. She has spoken out about her troubled marriage. They had three children. When the middle one was diagnosed with autism, Strom blamed his wife for the disorder. He took the two “worthy ones” with him, leaving Kaiser with the child that “violated,” if you will, the Nazi eugenics code.

Strom ended up marrying a second time in 2000 but that marriage fell apart after she caught him with digital child porn. In January 2008 during a plea hearing Strom pled guilty to having child pornography images on his computer. He spent 23 months in jail and was released in September 2008 with time served.

Strom maintains that his second wife set him up, that’s he’s really the victim of a politically motivated plot. He says he only pled guilty so that he would spend less time in jail and be re-united with his children sooner. Strom now says he wants to spend time with all of his children, including the severely autistic one.

I wonder what Nissa, the Liberty Net’s only female member, thinks about this. She must have some sort of maternal instinct that would lead her to question why Kevin turned against his autistic child in the first place.

Kevin Strom’s estranged second wife, Elisha Strom, has also generated her share of articles online. Like Kevin she’s ended up spending some time sitting in jail over images on her computer but of cops, not kids.

Elisha Strom

On her blog, I HeArTE JADE (I Love/Hate JADE), she had been sharing images and addresses of members of the Jefferson Area Drug Enforcement task force.

Elisha lives in Virginia and it’s forbidden under that state’s code to publish images and addresses of law-enforcement officers with the intent to harass or intimidate. In July 2009 she was arrested and charged with violating that law in regards to an ATF officer who was also a JADE member.

But she was found not guilty in court, the judge saying there was no evidence that Elisha reasonably knew her actions had put the officer in danger. Elisha had stated that the addresses of the officers were public knowledge, easy to find on the Web.

So she was able to continue her blog, publishing photos of JADE men with cute nicknames like “Longhead,” “Pringle” and “Porn Star.”

When found innocent of the charge, Elisha was quoted by a local newspaper as saying: “Oh, my God, I’m not a stalker.” An interesting statement from someone who follows cops around and photographs them as a “hobby.” Some people in bloggerdom consider her court case a victory for free speech.

So how did JADE attract Elisha’s eye? One of its officers was involved into the child porn investigation of her husband Kevin.

Elisha still shares some of Kevin’s ideals, saying that she is a white separatist.

As for Kevin, on his Website he has referred to her as a “perjurer,” blaming her for his “unjust” jailing.

Friday, January 13, 2012

Rosary Workout

For some people exercise is their religion. But what if you could combine physical and spiritual fitness in one program?

Author Peggy Bowes, a devout Catholic, has the answer. Through her book, "The Rosary Workout," you can discover how to pray and exercise at the same time.

I was completely unaware of this Rosary-exercise combo until I happened to hear Peggy on the radio while dialing through the shortwave band. EWTN, the Eternal Word Television Network, has a SW radio outlet. EWTN is a cable TV channel started up by a nun in the 1980s to reach the masses to draw them to the masses (and the collective collection plate). Peggy was a guest on the program, "Blessed 2 Play," described as "spiritual sports radio."

For those of you unaware of the Rosary, it is a set of prayer beads that loops back on itself, a circle with one row hanging from the bottom with a small crucifix. Think of a large O with a tail. The prayer holds a bead between thumb and forefinger, each bead representing a prayer that has to be said in proper sequence.

The saying of the Rosary can taken some time, especially if the person is meditating on the spiritual aspect of the rite which is supposed to be the whole point of the rite. But with practice it can be over fairly quickly. One time I attended a funeral and the priest sped along as he lead everyone in prayer. His rate of utterance was close to what you hear on TV or radio when the ad announcer races through all the disclaimers, twenty-seconds-worth of words said in less than five. I'm not judging that priest; maybe he was running late and had another funeral to attend or a bad bladder.

At amazon.com there's this review of "The Rosary Workout:"

Kneel. Stand. Sit. Stand. Kneel again. "Catholic calisthenetics" is no longer just for church! The Rosary Workout is the real thing: exercise science and authentic Catholic teachings combined to strengthen body and soul and deepen your awareness of God's presence in every facet of your life.

I find this concept of saying the Rosary to regulate exercise a bit disconcerting. I was raised by parents devoted to the Roman Catholic Church. The Rosary was a sacred rite not to be mixed with ordinary secular activities. It was to be used for times of deep meditation or special intervention.

For example, a family needed a miracle: one member was in the hospital, dying from a terminal illness. The rest of the family knelt together in the living room of their home and prayed the entire Rosary, beseeching through the Blessed Virgin Mary for Godly grace.

But to go to the gym and work out on a treadmill while saying the Rosary, getting sweaty while toning your sexy bod? OK, that's not as extreme as an adulterer saying penance while copulating with his mistress but...

For a long time I've been a "lapsed Catholic" (AKA devout atheist). So I'm not upset by this new trend to tap into the yuppie need for a trim body. I just find it strange. Go back five decades in Catholic time and such a proposal would be considered heresy.

But times have changed. During the interview Peggy said her husband wasn't Catholic. In the dark ages that wouldn't have flown. Back in the 1970s you could read in a textbook for Catholic high school students that Catholics should only marry other others of the One True Faith. No unions with non-Catholics. The person of the "lesser faith" had to convert to Catholicism.

So with faith mixing comes exercise-Rosary mixing. But this isn't surprising, considering the severe financial hit the Roman Catholic Church has taken from being on the losing end of lawsuits involving pedophile priests. Of course, the church was reprehensible, covering up the misdeeds of child molesting priests while moving them to another parishes where the priests could easily sin again (and did).

Listening to Peggy Bowes on the radio, she sounds like a very pleasant lady who sincerely believes that her program can benefit everyone, even non-Catholics. Praying the Rosary, she stated, attracts the presence of good angels while driving away the bad ones (demons).

Angels are an important aspect. She wanted to use the concept of nine choirs of angels for her exercise program but in her research she found that some expressed doubts whether it was biblical. Then one day during a beautiful sunset she saw a sign: nine mini-clouds in the sky.

Me, the last few wintry days around here have been generally overcast, dark and depressing. I take that as another sign there is no God.

Sunday, January 08, 2012

2012: The Year The World Ends (Again)

It’s another new year in which we’re faced with eschatological excrement of a taurine nature.

In 2011 biblical scholar/radio broadcaster Harold Camping was rapping that the Rapture was happening on May 21. Some of his followers emptied their bank accounts, donating all to the cause: billboards, books, etc. Money gone forever.

Nothing happened.

Camping’s organization said sorry, no refunds.

Then Harold said he was a bit off with his calculations, that all good Xtians would bodily ascend into Heaven on October 21 before the world was destroyed. Again, nothing.

Between his two predictions Harold suffered a mild stroke that affected his speech. This prompted one Xtian Website to pose the question: “Was Harold Camping's stroke punishment from God?”

In the meantime it seems that the only world that is ending is Camping’s.

After such events in 2011 you think we would get some time off from the End Times. No such luck.

This time the target date is 12/21/12, based on the Mayan calendar. There’s been enough buzz about that scenario so I won't rehash it. Instead I want to focus on a lesser known Prophet of Doom: Nancy Lieder of zetatalk.com .

Nancy is one of those believers in Planet X, that rogue orb that will or already has entered our solar system to wreak havoc.

Back in 2003 she said Planet X was here. She told listeners on a radio program that they should put down their pets. After all, it would be hard to feed Fido and Fluffy when everyone was scrounging for food.

I wonder how many prematurely euthanized critters ended up in pet cemeteries due to her failed prediction.

Where does Nancy get her inside info on the cosmic timetable? From a brain implant courtesy of some aliens from the star system Zeta Reticuli, made famous by the Betty and Barney hill abduction.

Nancy has said in Zeta Report videos available via YouTube that through the Zetas she has met many different kinds of aliens. Cartoonish illustrations of these myriad ET types are included in the videos. One time she met a “Beanbag man” with a slug body. Another time she met an eight-foot dinosaur being that had a kind soul like Mother Teresa. Cold blooded doesn’t mean cold hearted, she points out.

Obviously Nancy is in a unique position to predict the future.

And as for her failed 2003 prediction, she stated that it was a “white lie” to fool The Powers That Be. She has stated she won’t reveal the date because that would give the Establishment enough time to declare martial law and hinder survival efforts.

In the meantime some people are connecting her Planet X with the doomsday talk related to the Mayan calendar. So when December 21 rolls around be prepared for a near miss or collision.

Or nothing.

Critical Skepchick Shows Uncritical Thinking

I almost missed this item from last year: Elevatorgate!

Rebecca Watson, leader of a core of skeptical women over at skepchick.org, was attending a conference in Dublin, Ireland during June 2011 and a guy in an elevator hit on her (or so she claims). No, the man didn’t assault her, just asked her back to his room to discuss various issues over a cup of coffee.

Apparently Rebecca didn’t like being a hittee. Her lecture topic at the conference dealt with anti-feminism. It really bugged her the Elevator Guy was “sexualizing” her.

Really. Is this the same Rebecca Watson who posed nude for Skepchick calendars?

It’s too bad that the Elevator Guy got the shaft.