Wednesday, October 09, 2013

Kimball Empties Roswell Saucer

Filmmaker/researcher Paul Kimball has seen the light – and it ain't a UFO.

For years he commented on various subjects including ufology at his Blogspot site, The Other Side of Truth.  I stopped by there the other day and couldn't access it.

With some Google searching I discovered that Paul has closed down that site.  The Other Side of Truth is now a subdomain at his personal website [ ].

On his Facebook page [ ] Paul announced the best of his writing from Blogspot is being transferred to his personal Website.  Also he will continue to comment on paranormal subjects such as ghosts but no more UFOs.

As I had suspected the Blogspot site was shut down due to the dust-up between Paul and UFO researcher Kevin Randle.

Just to hit the key points of the controversy:

Kevin belonged to a "Dream Team" of researchers searching for the truth behind the Roswell Crash.  Recently a rumor circulated that photographic slides from 1947 had been discovered that show aliens or deformed humans, proof that something strange did happen near Roswell.  Paul received emails from Kevin discussing the Dream Team research and the slides.

Through the email correspondence Paul learned some details that he felt should be out in the open, even though he would be violating Kevin's confidence.  Paul challenged Kevin's public assertion that Kevin wasn't involved in the investigation of the slides.

At his own blog, A Different Perspective, Kevin Randle presents his side of the story [ ] .  He says that he was out of the loop with the alien slide investigation and wasn't directly involved.

Paul also challenged Kevin in regards to Dream Team member Don Schmitt.  Don has faced accusations that he's a veracity challenged Roswell researcher.  With Kevin's emails Paul showed how Kevin in private still doubted Don Schmitt's honesty despite giving a favorable impression of Don in public.

Here is what Paul posted from Kevin's email:

"I hung in there with the unilateral decision to invite in Schmitt [to the Dream Team], even given his history of lying (which, BTW, continues in some arenas, and Schmitt's grab for the spotlight to the exclusion of all others). But this latest book [by Schmitt] seems to sink our effort before we even get to the end point."

Paul questioned Kevin's actions, saying that Kevin went along with the "evasions, half-truths, and untruths" because Kevin couldn't maintain objectivity in regards to Roswell.  Paul invoked the term "believerism" in describing why some are so blinded by Roswell = UFO.

Controversy erupted and now rages.  Some felt Paul should have never violated Kevin's trust.  Others praised Paul for getting the truth out.  In that latter group a few said Paul should have given Kevin a warning about the revelations before publication.

Because of the heat from rabid Roswell-Was-A-UFO-Crash believers and Randle supporters Paul Kimball is turning his back on ufology.

One could never accuse Paul of being mealymouthed.  Sometimes he states his views in undiplomatic terms.  Before his Blogspot site was closed he shared his opinion in a post entitled "Death of A Dream... by self-inflicted wounds" that Kevin Randle is "as slippery as an eel and has the ethical compass of a kumquat."

I contacted Paul via his Facebook page about the shutdown of his old blog.  He replied in part: 

"[A]s you may recall, I stopped blogging about two years ago and only recently started again... which was enough to remind me of why I stopped. The Other Side of Truth blog was fun for a while, but it's too closely linked to UFOs and ufology, subjects I have less and less interest in (particularly after the whole Randle brouhaha, which I found very disappointing, both in terms of Randle's behaviour but in the broader sense with people's reactions)."

Paul also clarified a point for me in another FB comment reply:

"I've always made a point of saying that I'm not in 'ufology' – I'm just an observer and student of it as a subculture, in the same way that conspiracists interest me... or neo-Nazis."

The late Jim Moseley observed that we will never learn the truth about Roswell because it was buried under too much bull flop.  And now with some of that stuff impacting the air circulation propeller, obscuring the real story even more, I think Jim was right.



Anonymous said...

" Because of the heat from rabid Roswell-Was-A-UFO-Crash believers and Randle supporters Paul Kimball is turning his back on ufology."

Not being in either category, I still find myself delighted that narcissistic drama queen Kimball is taking his toys and leaving.

It looks like Kimball didn't count on the reaction [lukewarm amongst his supporters and disgusted-but-expected amongst his detractors] he got for releasing two private emails that were of no consequence to begin with but showed just how icky Kimball is.

Lord Jim said...

This is a good basic summary of the recent 'controversy'.

Debates raged for decades in anthropology over whether you could just be an 'observer' of other cultures. Some people spent years or decades living with indigenous peoples, eating their meals, performing their rituals with them, sometimes even marrying into their group.

But at what point do you cease to be a neutral observer and become a participant?

This is the question that Paul Kimball failed to answer in any intellectually honest way, and when I put it to him pointedly, he closed his blog in a huff. It seems to me that you could frame the thing with a Jeff Foxworthy-style list: "You Might Be in UFOlogy if..."

1. You are convinced of your moral rightness and righteousness, and your convictions border on zealotry.

2. You behave in ways that are questionable ethically.

Now, as a genuine outside 'observer' who does not maintain a UFO blog, has never been interviewed on UFO podcasts, or even made a documentary on a famous UFOlogist -- I can say that it was with little surprise that the name 'Paul Kimball' appeared in connection with the ethically questionable leaking of private e-mails. In fact, you could have swapped out the name 'Paul Kimball' with 'Steven Greer' or 'Jeremy Vaeni' and it would have been the same: figures in the subculture called UFOlogy who are on a mission and are bound to act questionably because that is what you get in UFOlogy.

Somebody like Kimball prides himself on being a wry, cynical outside observer of UFOlogy -- then goes on to behave in a way absolutely consistent with it. After all, in what other field would the logical response to somebody saying one thing in public and another in private (Randle about Schmitt) be to leak the private e-mails on a blog? It's as if Kimball has gone native, forgetting how normal people are supposed to behave.

What after all did Kimball 'expose'? The only thing he conclusively exposed was that Randle was two-faced when it came to his public statements/personal feelings about Schmitt. Kimball didn't even really show that Randle lied about being involved in the investigation. Randle stated publicly that he was not involved in it in the sense of directing it. And all he said privately was that in effect he was in the loop. Kimball put the two of these (Randle's feelings about Schmitt, and his cautious statements about his role in the investigation) together as if to expose some Great Falsehood.

That's simple zealotry, and it's hard to imagine a situation more consistent with UFOlogy as it exists today.

X. Dell said...

What I find confusing is that Randle has discussed Schmitt's dishonesty before. That was hardly a secret. If Randle had reason to maintain his faith in him, that's one thing. But that point alone doesn't really address the issue of whether Randle himself is telling the truth with respect to these slides, or if that compromises his "objectivity."

But even if the post directly addressed that issue, it would seem that there could still have been intermediary steps before publishing an account given in confidence.

One thing I've noted over the years is researchers' lack of faith in each other. I feel this sort of thing, the inability to communicate freely without risk of out-of-context disclosure, might have stymied much needed cooperation in many areas. This type of thing doesn't help.

As for Kimball's assessment of Randle as an individual, he's certainly entitled to it (I've questioned Randle myself as a reliable source). If he feels the need to expose Randle, then by all means, he's not only entitled to do it, but obligated.

The problem here is that it seems to have been a pretty incompetent way of going about things, and the consequences are obvious.

Regarding the Moseley quote: I'm not quite convinced vis-a-vis the veracity of the statement, but I do sympathize with his cynicism.

Anonymous said...

Talk about synchronicity; just last night I was listening to a podcast from 2006 and Paul Kimball was just as toxic and narcissistic a character then. His contribution to the discussion spanned the spectrum from flagrant self-promotion to insulting people who weren't there to defend themselves. He added -zero- to the actual topic of discussion. I guess some things never change.