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In Association With Mysteries Magazine!
9/28/07  #436
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The north wind blows with fresh visions of arboreal sleep. Where green once danced in harmony with the Earth's loving breath, vibrations of matter freed of material concerns reveal the browns, gold and orange of weary leaves.  Restless wings stretch in anticipation of the open sky and the siren call of lands over the horizon.  Soon, the quiet serenity of frozen slumber will draw itself over the land with sweet promises of carefree dreams and Persephone’s return.

This week Conspiracy Journal brings you such nerve-wracking stories as:

- That's No Moon -
- Reich, Little Rock and UFOs -
Guardian of the Loch -
- Study Reveals The Truth About Parallel Universes -
AND:  Steve Fossett's Disappearance Adds to Nevada's Mysteries

All these exciting stories and MORE in this week's issue of
CONSPIRACY JOURNAL!

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Mr. Happy Meets Mr. UFO

Culture of Contact Episode 4: Does Jeremy Vaeni have a deep dark secret similar to certain public stall lovin' politicians? We find out. Then, Timothy "Mr. UFO" Beckley joins for a winding, free-for-all of a conversation that is sure to get your mind racing!  All that and the prerequisite MORE! on this, the 4th edition of Culture of Contact!


- LOOK, UP IN THE SKY DEPARTMENT -

That's No Moon

Many Uncrazy Clevelanders Have Seen Strange Lights In The Sky. Who - Or What - Is Buzzing Northeast Ohio?

To suggest that Northeast Ohio could be witness to the next mass UFO sighting does not officially make you a member of the tin-foil hat crowd. If you believe even just a few of the witnesses, Cleveland and its surrounding communities might already be a hotspot.

During the previous two years, the Cleveland UFOlogy Project, considered the oldest of its kind on this side of the globe, has documented 20 credible sightings. The 2005 documentary Dan Akroyd: Unplugged on UFOs highlighted the peculiar lights over Lake Erie near Eastlake, where witnesses reported their latest sighting just this past June. Earlier this year, an "orb" was videotaped over the Key Bank Tower during a peace rally, and the incident made it on the CBS nightly news.

The hype continues: Literally hundreds of thousands have downloaded Internet videos of Northeast Ohio UFOs. The Cleveland Office of Homeland Security has investigated. And one of the Eastlake UFO witnesses says he's signed a contract with a History Channel for a documentary.

"If you take all of the people in Ohio who are interested in this subject, I bet half of them are from that part of the state," says Central Ohio-based William E. Jones, state director for Ohio MUFON, or Mutual UFO Network. "A lot of folks up there have seen things over the years. More people are interested up there. I don't know why."

Sam Phillips has long been a fixture of Cleveland's music scene. He's an accomplished drummer and "hand snapper," and appeared on The Arsenio Hall Show. When interviewed for this story, however, he was homeless and sleeping at the homes of friends and family. Phillips taped a strange light spinning and hovering over the Key Bank Tower on March 10, during a peace rally.

"This is not about me," says Phillips, who admits he has become obsessed with what he saw that night. "There's a pattern here. There's a riddle here. And I want answers. I want an explanation."

He believes it wasn't coincidence the sighting took place over a peace rally. During the sighting, he recalls saying that our "brothers and sisters are going to come down from the universe and humble our ass."

Phillips' story, however, is but a sidebar in the current wave of Northeast Ohio UFO mania. Taking center stage is Lake Erie, and Michael Lee Hill of Eastlake.

Hill, like Phillips, is a musician. In 2001, Grammy-award winner and guitar legend Steve Vai picked Hill as the winner of a national guitar contest. Hill is gregarious, upbeat and likeable. He's unconventional and complex. He's certain that the UFOs he has seen are targeting him.

"I've had contact my whole life," he says. "I remember asking my mother, "Why do Santa's elves keep visiting me?'"

The recent visitations started in earnest five years ago, not far from the coal-burning power plant, he says. While walking on the beach, not far from his home, Hill said he witnessed a top hat-shaped craft hovering and pulsating over the shoreline. This same area is also famous in UFO lore for a 1988 encounter documented by the Coast Guard.

Hill started taking a video camera to the lakefront. Since then he's captured scores of bright lights that appear to hover over Lake Erie. He's uploaded many of his videos to YouTube, and those caught the attention of David Sereda, who directed the Akroyd documentary. Hill created the music for Sereda's latest project, From Here To Andromeda. Hill also says he recently signed a contract for a History Channel project, but the channel did not return Free Times' calls.

"I really do consider myself a spiritual messenger; I know it sounds freaky," says Hill, adding that the UFO filmed over the Key Bank Tower is one of the same orbs he captured over Lake Erie. "There's a huge story unfolding here. I think they're absolutely sending us a message. I believe they are here to help us become a galactic society."

At the other end of the spectrum is Eastlake resident Gary Strauss, who says adamantly, "I'm not one of those UFO people." He's a chemist and a supervisor at a local laboratory. He's lived in his home on the lake since 1984, in the same neighborhood as Hill, though they've never met.

Early on the morning of June 21, Strauss and his son saw four bright lights, shaped like the tip of a Sharpie marker, high above the water. The lights were in a line parallel with the shoreline, positioned at 11 o'clock and 30 degrees above the horizon.

Then one vanished. Then another. Soon all four were gone. Suddenly, they reappeared in the shape of a diamond. Then they went flat again. This went on for more than an hour.

He called the Eastlake police and they dispatched an officer. Strauss remembers the officer saying, "What is that?"

The following day, his son checked the Internet for lights over Lake Erie and found one of Hill's videos. He recalls his son shouting, "That's it! That's what we saw!"

But unlike other Lake Erie witnesses, Strauss doesn't believe the lights are extraterrestrial. He guesses they're the result of government or aerospace industry experiments with new technology. "They're bouncing radar off some type of object," he speculates. "Some form of radar reflection technology. I'm just making an educated guess."

Nevertheless, he's intrigued.

"I look outside a lot more. I want to see it again," says Strauss. "This time, I'm going to have my camera." But he rejects the suggestion that it's anything more than curiosity: "No. I'm not obsessive. Absolutely not."

The Eastlake police actually had two witnesses that night. A detective, who asked not to be named, told the Free Times that he too saw the lights, but from a different vantage point.

The Eastlake police asked the Cleveland office of Homeland Security to look into the sighting, and the detective says he was told later that on the night of the sighting, the Canadian Coast Guard was near the opposite side of the lake searching for a man who had been reported missing. A Canadian Coast Guard helicopter dropped flares, connected to miniature parachutes, over the water. Later it was discovered the man had drowned.

Strauss finds this implausible, believes the lights appeared in a straight line, then vanished, then reappeared in a diamond formation.

The Bush administration reportedly has funneled billions to the aerospace industry to develop space-based weapons under the guise of missile defense. Secret military space-plane programs are believed to have been revived as well.

Another possibility are LAGEOS, or Laser Geodynamics Satellites. Publicly, the government says two are in orbit, and both are roughly the size of a basketball. They are made of brass and partially covered with a retro-reflection material that returns light in the direction it comes from, similar to a road sign.

There's also NASA's Glenn Research Center at the Plum Brook site in Sandusky. The site is home to the world's largest space environment simulation chamber. That chamber will test NASA's new spacecraft, Orion, which will take the US back to the moon. Recent upgrades to the Plum Brook site will also allow it to test "next- generation lunar landers, robotic systems, and military and commercial aircraft," according to NASA's Web site.

"So here I come walking out of the TV station one night in November maybe a decade ago after our early evening newscast," says Ted Henry of New Channel 5. "In perfect formation there were five large objects flying smoothly in my direction. It was stunning.

"What I saw was the undersides of five flat objects flying in exact formation. The front two were enormous, maybe the size of several football fields, and the three trailing were smaller, flying in a slightly irregular pattern."

"What do I think they were? All I can really tell you is what I saw."

Henry has talked about his sighting many times on the air. He puts the experience this way: "One thing is certain, for people who see something in the sky, as I did over Cleveland years ago, it can be a life changing experience."

Source: The Cleveland Free Times
http://www.freetimes.com/stories/15/21/thats-no-moon

- GUEST AUTHOR DEPARTMENT -

Reich, Little Rock and UFOs

by Kenn Thomas - steamshovelpress.com

The Little Rock Nine, a group that integrated Central High School in Little Rock, Arkansas in September 1957, observed its anniversary Tuesday even as the protests in Jena, Louisiana underscored continued racial strife in the US . But the plight of the Nine was not the only social oppression that America suffered in 1957--the UFO cover up was in full flower and UFO believers were handily marginalized and even prosecuted. The scientist Wilhelm Reich was thrown in jail in part for exploring human energy potential and therapeutic techniques not approved by the Food and Drug Administration, but also in part because he was using the consequent cloudbuster technology to battle UFOs in the Tucson desert.

Reich had been condemned as a medical quack, his books had been burned and his "life energy" boxes, precursors to a type cannon called a cloudbuster that harnessed atmospheric energy, were destroyed. Reich had harmed no one and, indeed, had helped many with his understanding and manipulation of what he called the orgone. He witnessed several UFOs on his estate in Maine and used the orgone cloudbuster guns to cause them to go away. He did the same on a famous trip to the desert southwest that he documented in his last book, Contact With Space. By his own estimation, he fought the first battle against space intruders, and won. The FDA, of course, never truly followed Reich's scientific protocols on either orgone boxes or cloudbuster guns, and convicted Reich only on technical violation of its injunction to stop distributing orgone boxes.

Authorities threw Reich in a prison cell in Lewisberg , PA from which he did not emerge alive. In memos to the prison chaplain before his death, however, Reich continued to write passionately about the social situation in the US . His note from September 1957 even includes reference to the disturbance at Little Rock Central High School . He emphasized the very psychological and emotional undercurrents he felt were being ignored in the broader social arena of conspiratorial 1950s America , what prevented many from seeing the space ships he saw in abundance:

"I am merely fulfilling my public duties as a U. S. citizen and worker in planetary affairs if I continue to point out where the true danger to our social and personal existence is placed: its is Emotional Poisoning: disruption through sowing distrust throughout our society, doping and drugging of our population, especially our YOUTH; draining us financially through areas [...]race, a camouflage of the true menace, the Emotional Poisoning a la Little Rock racial upheavals; keeping our high placed officials at bay through fear of sexual scandals [Clinton!--kt], railroading efficient men and women into prisons or lunatic asylums through [?] up there environments; subverting justice by whispered little lies & frightening or using judges. Doing all this destruction unnoticed as it were by all those responsible. It was clear from the very beginning that [?] and now lyrics were subverted by such use of stupidities & evasions on our part [rock'n'roll!--kt], especially by the staid reluctance to talk bluntly and take the bull by the horns. The bull is really no more tan a few slimy tape worms eating away at our emotional guts. It is high time to start giving social power to the established functions of Love, Work & Learning as bastions against the tapeworms."

The prison memo form includes this banal and perhaps prescient statement: "Your failure to specifically state your problem may result in no action being taken." Reich's imprisonment was in part the end result of mis-reporting on him that appeared in the New Republic under the editorial leadership of a now-confessed communist spy named Michael Straight in a book entitled, After Long Silence. New Republic made its own pronouncement about Little Rock in its July 7, 1958 edition, complaining about the Supreme Court's failure to stop legal challenges that were slowing down the integration process. The Supreme Court, opined New Republic, "must stand the ground they themselves have assumed, or the grand experiment they inaugurated will end in bitter farce, with consequences for the state of the union that stagger the mind."

Clearly the magazine had a better view of the possible consequences of Supreme Court actions than it did on its own. The consequences of Reich's work with UFOs and otherwise, on the other hand, and the implications of the study of character structure on the understanding of race issues has continued over the years. Writing in a chapter called "Racism and Slavery" in The American Slave: A Composite Autobiography (Westport, Connecticut: Greenwood Publishing Company, 1972), my old friend historian George Rawick notes the impact of "that great underground classic of modern thought, Wilhelm Reich, Character Analysis, 3d ed. rev., first published in German in 1933, and its less well-known but significant companion, The Mass Psychology of Fascism, first published in German in 1933. While I cannot subscribe to all of Reich's system, this chapter could not have been written without his monumental attempt to relate Marx and Freud which loosened the ideological armoring of Western rationalism for me and many others." Although Reich never stated it explicitly, clearly he saw that same armoring as the block that keeps so many from accepting the realities of the UFO issue.


Kenn Thomas' new book, The Conspiracy Files, as well as the new issue of Steamshovel Press, is available through his website, www.steamshovelpress.com

- MYSTERIES OF THE DEEP DEPARTMENT -

Guardian of the Loch

Adrian Shine came to Loch Ness in 1973 to find the monster. Today he protects the highland glen, unravels its natural mysteries and exposes the hoaxes.

The world's foremost expert on the Loch Ness Monster is sitting in a lodge overlooking the fabled highland lake, discussing plans to seek UN World Heritage Site status to protect the area.

Suddenly his eyes flash to the window and a pointing finger shoots out like the hand of God.

"Look -- look out on the loch! That's amazing!" A visiting Canadian journalist jumps to the window, wildly hopeful -- despite himself -- that he will see Nessie cutting through the cold, dark water below.

Instead, the object of excitement is an antique coal-burning steamboat billowing clouds of black smoke as it chugs southward down Loch Ness.

"That's a Clyde Puffer," says Adrian Shine, naturalist, scientist, inventor, explorer, renaissance man and chief guardian of the Loch Ness legacy. "Haven't seen one of those in years."

Shine's eyes sparkle with pleasure at the sight of the rare watercraft. Or perhaps amusement at the naive expectancy and obvious disappointment of the visitor.

Adrian Shine certainly wasn't expecting to see a long-necked water beast cruising down his beloved loch.

Shine's Loch Ness Project group was instrumental in unmasking the most famous image of Nessie -- the so-called "surgeon's photo" seen on the next page -- as a fraud in 1994, 60 years after it seared the spectacle of a prehistoric water monster into the public imagination.

He has been exploring the loch's immensely deep underwater world for the past 34 years. In that time, the young zealot has become the reasoned and skeptical elder statesman, debunker of hoaxes and false hopes, and formulator of rational explanations for the hundreds of eyewitness accounts of Nessie sightings.

But still, there is always the hope of a Nessie eureka.

As Shine says: "I do not believe in the Loch Ness Monster -- yet -- because there isn't enough evidence for it. But 1,000 people like you and me do believe they've seen it."

Shine first came to Loch Ness in 1973, more than a decade after organized, scientific investigation of the Nessie phenomenon had begun. His early efforts were more brave than productive. The first summer, he spent nights rowing around Loch Ness and an even deeper loch, Morar, as he dragged bait and waited to photograph whatever emerged from the black depths. Nothing did.

By the next summer, he was plunging into those murky depths in a homemade submarine built of fibreglass and plate glass in his parents' backyard over the winter. With the help of an amateur crew, Shine made dozens of dives during 1974 and '75 in his one-man submersible. He came close to dying on at least one occasion, but never found the object of his hunt.

Today that submersible is on display at the Loch Ness Centre in Drumnadrochit, where the efforts of Shine and others to uncover the truth underlying the mysteries of the lochs are explained in a stunning multi-media exhibition.

While other Loch Ness investigators fell away, Shine stuck to his quest and slowly became the driving force and chief chronicler of Loch Ness research projects. In the 1980s, that quest shifted from the search for an actual creature to a comprehensive study of the loch environment in which such a creature might exist.

In 1981, Shine and a volunteer crew began sonar exploration of Loch Ness, cruising 24 hours a day in the patrol vessel John Murray as an operator sat glued to the echo sounder.

That culminated in Operation Deepscan in 1987, a massive operation involving dozens of sonar-equipped boats that provided the first complete mapping of the 230-metre-deep loch. Sonar images of several large, moving masses were captured but remain unexplained.

In the 1990s, Shine again engineered new equipment to take deep core samples from the lake bottom, giving researchers a record of sedimentary deposits from Ice Age clay through to nuclear pollution from the Chernobyl disaster.

Today his focus is primarily on the search for historical artifacts on the bottom. So far he and other searchers have found the remains of the Crusader jet boat in which John Cobb died in 1952 while trying to set a water speed record on Loch Ness, as well as a large fishing vessel that sank in the 1920s and a Wellington bomber that ditched in the loch after engine failure during World War II.

"There's all sorts of room out there for strange things," Shine says.

But at the end of the day, there is always Nessie.

"I could make a very good case (for the monster's existence) in court," Shine says. "Unshakable eyewitness testimony is very powerful."

Whether Shine believes or not, others certainly do.

"Absolutely there is a Nessie," local historian and story-teller Ray Owens says. "I've lived here my entire life and never seen it, but I do know two people -- including a police sergeant -- who have. I can't explain it."

Taxi driver Frank Davidson has lived in the area since 1964 and says he has seen two "disturbances" on the loch that he attributes to Nessie.

Shine says most, if not all, of the Nessie sightings can be accounted for by more mundane explanations.

"Conventional science can illuminate the mystery," he says. "For example, there are strong underwater waves in the loch that can move objects against the current."

Some recorded sightings have turned out to be birds, boats, swimming deer, the wake of passing vessels, even sunken logs popping to the surface. And always there is the possibility of giant fish or eels, although Loch Ness probably does not have a sufficient food supply of smaller fish to support a large creature.

Shine's favourite hypothesis for the "strange fish" sightings of the 19th century is that a giant Atlantic sturgeon made it into Loch Ness through the Caledonian Canal. The sturgeon, which can grow to more than three metres long, has a reptilian head that has been described as looking like everything from a crocodile to a horse.

The most recent significant sighting came last May. Gordon Holmes, a lab technician from the University of Bradford near Leeds, videotaped a strong disturbance in the loch, which he believed to be caused by a moving creature. He took the video to the Loch Ness Centre for Shine's assessment.

"I looked through the viewfinder and said it looked like the wake of a large fish," Shine said.

Shine's initial observation helped propel Holmes' footage onto the BBC evening news and the front pages of British newspapers. But further review of the video in better conditions has led Shine to change his opinion: "It showed more like a vertical downdraft (of wind) called a cat's paw."

Shine's Loch Ness quest will always be tied to Nessie.

"We're trying to use the monster story to open up an appreciation of lakes in general and Loch Ness in particular," he says. "It's showing how dynamic a lake is and opening up what you can't see just by looking at the surface."

And maybe one day ...

"There's a big difference between being cynical and skeptical," Shine says. "A cynic can make his living off the monster without ever believing in it. A skeptic will say there isn't enough evidence to prove there's a Loch Ness Monster but there is also no irrefutable proof there couldn't be one."

Source: The Toronto Sun
http://torontosun.com/News/OtherNews/2007/09/24/4521335-sun.html

- A CONSPIRACY OF SILENCE DEPARTMENT -

Top Five Reasons for Governments to Keep UFOs Secret


Stanton Friedman, a physicist who once worked for such giants as Westinghouse and General Electric, has devoted much of his adult life to ferreting out clues in the UFO controversy.

Pitching his case before more than 600 campus audiences, Friedman concludes that alien aircraft have been around for decades and that governments have tried to keep an airtight lid on them.

He has five reasons for a massive and sustained cover-up that he labels “the cosmic Watergate.”

1. Government agents want to figure out how crashed aircraft work.

2. No one wants any enemy governments to know what has been discovered.

3. If some trusted public figures, say the queen of England and the pope, disclosed UFOs, society would be shaken up, and earthlings would begin thinking of themselves as such, rather than as citizens of individual nations.

4. The fourth problem is the fundamentalist Christian perspective that aliens are “the work of the Devil,” quoting 700 Club founder Pat Robertson and the late Rev. Jerry Falwell. The two said earth contains the only intelligence life in the universe, he said.

5. A public confirmation would lead to economic chaos, and lastly, secrecy is a way of life in government.

“Is there really intelligent life on earth?” Friedman asked. “Look at how we act. Isn’t that kind of an insult to the notion of an Almighty God that this is the best You can do?

“Look around the planet. The U.S. will spend half a trillion dollars on the military this year. Yet, 30,000 children will die needlessly this day, ever single day, of preventable disease or starvation.”

Friedman pointed to 300,000 pages of still-classified materials in the Eisenhower Library, unrelated to UFOs, and accounts of the government lying to families of downed military pilots, decades after they finally acknowledged their deaths but distorted the truth behind each one.

Without question, he said, thousands and thousands of sighting have been confirmed and kept secret by the government.

Friedman can only surmise why aliens are checking out the planet, but said there are “a zillion reasons,” including mere scientific research or perhaps mining for precious metals since Earth is the densest planet known.

“Perhaps they’re trying to evaluate behavior,” he said.

More likely, with the rapid technological advances within the past 100 years and the arming by nations of nuclear firepower, Friedman suggested, aliens could be jittery about what’s going on in the galaxy, since they obviously have reached a superior level if they can reach us and we can’t travel to their turf.

“When you break it down, I make one assumption about every advanced civilization — namely, that it’s concerned about its own survival and security. You have to keep tabs on the primitives in the neighborhood but only close tabs on those primitives who show signs of being able to bother you.”

When World War II ended, aliens knew earthlings had achieved three basic steps that suggested they were ready for space travel — nuclear weapons, V2 rockets and powerful radar. Interestingly enough, all three were centered at Roswell, N.M., and in 1952, shortly after the legendary Flatwoods Monster in Braxton County, this country tested its first H-Bomb in the Pacific, a 10-megaton blast that produced a fireball three miles in diameter.

Friedman isn’t sure if the aliens are to be feared. Possibly, he suggested in jest, Earth is the ideal honeymoon capital for newlyweds in the galaxy. For more than six decades of known observance, they have yet to do anything harmful.

Yet, on the other hand, there is the analogy of the domestic turkey.

“Turkeys in mid-November probably say, ‘Look how lucky we are. We have these masters who give us all the food we can eat, more than we can eat, water to drink, and keep us warm when it’s cold inside. They’re nice guys.’ Then Thanksgiving comes along ...”

As Pravda.Ru previously reported KGB agents were making records of UFO observations in special Blue Folder Files comprising the famous Blue Folder have been declassified a while ago. The prominent Soviet cosmonaut Pavel Popovich got the folder from the KGB in 1991. These days Mr. Popovich holds the position of honorary president of the Academy of Informational and Applied Ufology. The folder contains numerous descriptions of UFO flights and reports on some (mostly failed) attempts taken by the military in order to catch the aliens.

Aliens acknowledged back in 1968

In 1968, 13 leading aircraft designers and engineers of a brand-new aircraft section of the Soviet Committee on Space Technology and Exploration forwarded a letter to the Soviet Prime Minister Alexei Kosygin. Actually, it was a request to set up a special organization for the study of UFOs. A reply to the letter was signed by Academician Shchukin. It is an amazing document per se:

“A number of competent organizations of the Presidium of the USSR Academy of Sciences in cooperation with the Chief Directorate of Meteorological Service, Defense Ministry and a few other agencies considered the issue of nature of the so-called flying objects. The organizations involved in the study of the atmosphere and space have been instructed to register and do research on any cases of UFOs for identification purposes. The USSR Academy of Sciences is charged with general monitoring of the phenomena, and therefore a special organization for the study of UFOs is not required.”

Source: Pravda
http://english.pravda.ru/science/mysteries/10-09-2007/96923-ufo_secret-0

- DEATH FROM ABOVE DEPARTMENT -

Scientists Say Object From Space Caused Ice Age Extinctions

What caused the extinction of mammoths and the decline of Stone Age people about 13,000 years ago remains hotly debated. Overhunting by Paleoindians, climate change and disease lead the list of probable causes. But an idea once considered a little out there is now hitting closer to home.

A team of international researchers, including two Northern Arizona University geologists, reports evidence that a comet or low-density object barreling toward Earth exploded in the upper atmosphere and triggered a devastating swath of destruction that wiped out most of the large animals, their habitat and humans of that period.

“The detonation either fried them or compressed them because of the shock wave,” said Ted Bunch, NAU adjunct professor of geology and former NASA researcher who specializes in impact craters. “It was a mini nuclear winter.”

Bunch and Jim Wittke, a geologic materials analyst at NAU, are co-authors of the paper, which fingers an extraterrestrial impact 12,900 years ago for the mass extinctions at the end of the Ice Age. The paper was just released online in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences. The research team includes several members of the U.S. National Academy of Sciences and researchers from Hungary and the Netherlands.

No one has found a giant crater in the Earth that could attest to such a cataclysmic impact 13,000 years ago, but the research team offers evidence of a comet, two and a half to three miles in diameter, that detonated 30 to 60 miles above the earth, triggering a massive shockwave, firestorms and a subsequent drastic cooling effect across most of North America and northern Europe.

“The comet may have broken up into smaller pieces as it neared the Earth and then these pieces detonated in various places above two continents,” Bunch said.

The evidence for multiple detonations comes from a four-inch-thick “black mat” of carbon-rich material that appears as far north as Canada, Greenland and Europe to as far south as the Channel Islands off the coast of California and eastward to the Carolinas. Two sites exist in Arizona at Murray Springs and Lehner Ranch, both near Sierra Vista.

Evidence of mammoths and other megafauna and early human hunters, known as the Clovis culture, are found beneath the black mat but are missing entirely within or above it. This led the research team to conclude an extraterrestrial impact wiped out many of the inhabitants of the Late Pleistocene. Bunch notes that some animals may have survived in protected niches.

The black mat was formed by ponding of water and algal blooms and contains carbon, soot and glassy carbon—remnants of burned materials. Some of these remnants are extraterrestrial in nature. For example, the research team has identified fullerenes, spherical carbon cages resembling a soccer ball, which are formed in shock events outside the Earth’s atmosphere. Trapped inside the fullerenes is a concentration of helium 3 that is many times greater than what is found in the Earth’s atmosphere.

The black mat also has turned up nanodiamonds, which are formed in the interstellar medium outside the solar system, by or by a high-explosive detonation.

“Either these things came in with the impactor or they were made during impact detonation. We have no other explanation for their presence,” Bunch said.

The magnitude of the detonations would have been huge.

“A hydrogen bomb is the equivalent of about 100 to 1,000 megatons,” Bunch said. “The detonations we’re talking about would be about 10 million megatons. That’s larger than the simultaneous detonation of all the world’s nuclear bombs past and present.”

The research team believes the detonations destabilized a vast ice sheet, known as the Laurentide Ice Sheet, that covered most of what was then Canada and the northern United States. Heat from the detonation and firestorms would have melted much of the ice sheet, releasing water vapor into the atmosphere.

“The result was rapid cooling of about eight degrees over the next 100 years,” Bunch said. The melting of the ice sheet and subsequent climate change would explain the water-based nature of the black mat.

Catastrophic extraterrestrial impacts are not new. Scientists theorize a much larger asteroid impact annihilated the dinosaurs and about 85 percent of the Earth’s biomass about 65 million years ago. The most recent incident, known as the Tunguska event, occurred in 1908 in Russia. The Tunguska explosion was an airburst of a comet or meteorite estimated at 10-15-megatons that destroyed tens of millions of trees across more than 800 square miles.

Bunch says impact airbursts may be more common than previously thought with possibly two or three such events having occurred over the last 100,000 years. And more are sure to follow.

Source: Eureka Alert
http://www.eurekalert.org/pub_releases/2007-09/nau-rts092407.php

- MULTIPLES UPON MULTIPLES DEPARTMENT -

Study Reveals The Truth About Parallel Universes

Parallel universes really do exist, according to a mathematical discovery by Oxford scientists described by one expert as "one of the most important developments in the history of science".

The parallel universe theory, first proposed in 1950 by the US physicist Hugh Everett, helps explain mysteries of quantum mechanics that have baffled scientists for decades, it is claimed.

In Everett's "many worlds" universe, every time a new physical possibility is explored, the universe splits. Given a number of possible alternative outcomes, each one is played out - in its own universe.

A motorist who has a near miss, for instance, might feel relieved at his lucky escape. But in a parallel universe, another version of the same driver will have been killed. Yet another universe will see the motorist recover after treatment in hospital. The number of alternative scenarios is endless.

It is a bizarre idea which has been dismissed as fanciful by many experts. But the new research from Oxford shows that it offers a mathematical answer to quantum conundrums that cannot be dismissed lightly - and suggests that Dr Everett, who was a Phd student at Princeton University when he came up with the theory, was on the right track.

Commenting in New Scientist magazine, Dr Andy Albrecht, a physicist at the University of California at Davis, said: "This work will go down as one of the most important developments in the history of science."

According to quantum mechanics, nothing at the subatomic scale can really be said to exist until it is observed. Until then, particles occupy nebulous "superposition" states, in which they can have simultaneous "up" and "down" spins, or appear to be in different places at the same time.

Observation appears to "nail down" a particular state of reality, in the same way as a spinning coin can only be said to be in a "heads" or "tails" state once it is caught.

According to quantum mechanics, unobserved particles are described by "wave functions" representing a set of multiple "probable" states. When an observer makes a measurement, the particle then settles down into one of these multiple options.

The Oxford team, led by Dr David Deutsch, showed mathematically that the bush-like branching structure created by the universe splitting into parallel versions of itself can explain the probabilistic nature of quantum outcomes.

Source: Channel 4 (UK)
http://www.channel4.com/news/articles/science_technology/
parallel+universes+exist++study/838052

- STRANGE TIMES, STRANGE PLACES DEPARTMENT -

Steve Fossett's Disappearance Adds to Nevada's Mysteries

Alien towns. Lost 19th-century cannons. Lake monsters. Frozen bodies swimming at the bottom of Lake Tahoe. Nevada is a vortex for the unexplained.

And it appears at this writing that we have another whopper of a puzzle to add to the list.

The case of missing aviator Steve Fossett who disappeared from the Flying M Ranch near Yerington Sept. 3 has techno-sleuths, psychics and concerned folks around the world focused on our region.

The attention is natural, and for the same reason we see grown men in suits scribbling out sudoku puzzles in airports -- our race is obsessed with solving problems.

We want to know what happened to this most incredible man who has broken world records and triumphed over fear time and again only to be taken down during a simple day trip.

Fossett's tale inflates exponentially as the weeks pass without any signs of the famed pilot or his blue and white plane, building upon his already legendary life.

"We like to think that anything is findable with enough resources. But it could turn into another Amelia Earhart situation," Ric Gillespie told the Associated Press this week.

Government aircraft have searched more than 20,000 square miles around Northern Nevada, followed every lead by air and foot and have found nothing. Family and friends of the famous adventurer have also used state-of-the-art technology and aircraft to scour the land and have come up empty-handed.

And for the first time, Internet users have joined the effort. Tips and satellite coordinates have poured in from all corners of the globe by well-intended people who want answers.

One reader sent me an unusual e-mail message this week. The reader's psychic friend had a vision of Fossett landing in Walker Lake (her best guess for the water she envisioned). The reader wrote: "She said his plane had a cracked block and he was trying to get back to the ranch when he crashed."

Like Earhart, Fossett has fans the world over. Many wonder how much the search has cost our government agencies as the constant drone continued overhead for two solid weeks until the Civil Air Patrol ceased air operations on Monday.

Final numbers aren't in, but it surely pales in comparison to Earhart's search.

In 1937, when Earhart disappeared, the U.S. government spent $4 million looking for her, making the search the most costly and intensive air and sea operation of its kind in history.

Coincidently, Fossett's plane could have landed close to the area of another mystery Nevadans have been trying to solve for more than a century -- Union General John C. Fremont's lost cannon.

Snow was deep over the Carson Pass in January 1844 as Fremont's group, which included Kit Carson, tried to cross. The 1835-model mountain howitzer they carried proved too cumbersome and they left it behind somewhere near the state line and Bridgeport, Calif.

"They were in the vicinity west of the Walker River," said Nevada state archivist Guy Rocha. "They just walked away from it."

The group headed to California and never returned to find it. Along the way, Fremont is believed to be the first white man to view Lake Tahoe. Treasure hunters have looked for the prized cannon without success, using Fremont's journals as a guide.

"Like buried treasure, people will look for that cannon 'til kingdom come," Rocha said.

Other enigma that may never be solved includes Tahoe Tessie, the lake-faring monster that believers say lurks in the icy waters of Lake Tahoe (no matter how much science is thrown at them to disprove this notion).

Another stumper is the business about frozen bodies at the bottom of that same lake in the Sierra. Oceanographer Jacques Cousteau was supposedly frightened right out of his wetsuit during a dive in a sub in the mid-1970s. "The world isn't ready for what was down there," he was quoted as saying.

Cousteau did not release photographs from the deep-water trip, adding to the mystery. Many divers have since requested to duplicate the dive.

And, of course, the mother of all mysteries: Area 51. Scientist Bob Lazar who first spilled the beans about working with alien spacecraft at the site in 1989 is now living in New Mexico with his wife, Joy, their dogs and a rescue horse, and reportedly no longer talks about the little green fellows.

I hope by the time this is published, Fossett has been found and this mystery can be put to rest. If not, Nevada will keep his memory alive in its treasure trove of unsolved mysteries.

Source: Douglas Times
http://news.rgj.com/apps/pbcs.dll/article?AID=/20070921/DOUGLAS
07/709210317/1144/NEWS

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