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5/30/08  #471
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Draw your blinds...hide the children...bring in the cat and dog... because once again your e-mail box has been invaded by your weekly visit of the strange and unknown.  Yes, that's right, Conspiracy Journal, home of conspiracies, UFOs, the paranormal and other interesting bits of news and information is here to confound your senses and infuriate those who wish to keep the truth secret. 

This week, Conspiracy Journal takes a look at such eye-scorching tales as:

- Scientist Creates Cold Fusion For the First Time In Decades -
- Charles Lindbergh's Deranged Desire to Live Forever -
- Opening its Files, Britain Says Strange Aircraft Are Not UFOs -
- Haunted Happenings -
AND: Continental Jet Has Near Hit With "Rocket"

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

~ And Now, On With The Show! ~


Home of the Underground Dwellers
And Ancient Gods


Come along with paranormal journalist Tim Beckley and other well known researchers and experiencers as they explore the most mysterious place in North America. Here are stories of Lemurians and survivors of other "Lost Civilizations" who roam the mountain freely and occasionally wander into town to trade gold for supplies. Plus, little men who seldom come out except at night to collect edibles and return to their secret cavern homes. Native Americans residing in the backwoods say they have not only heard the screams of Bigfoot, but have seen these hairy creatures close-up! Visit Telos, the capitol of the Inner Earth occupied by the Ascended Masters of Wisdom.

• Here are stories of Lemurians and survivors of other "lost civilizations" who roam the woods freely and occasionally wander into town to trade gold for supplies.

• Little men who seldom come out except at night to collect edibles and then return to their secret cavern homes deep within the mountain.

• Native Americans residing in the backwoods say they have not only heard the screams of Bigfoot, but have seen these hairy creatures close-up!

• Mt. Shasta is said to contain the capital of the subterranean world known as Telos, occupied by the Ascended Masters of Wisdom. This city is rumored to be connected to the Hollow Earth through a worldwide network of secret tunnels.

• Accounts of miraculous healings, including those whose eyesight has been regenerated after being struck by mysterious blue beams of light coming from inside the mountain.

The number of unexplained events associated with Mt. Shasta are now literally in the hundreds. This large size book of nearly 200 8x11 pages makes for exciting reading as well as information you won't find being printed even in the nearby daily and weekly newspapers!

Order MYSTERIES OF MT. SHASTA for the Low, Low price of only $20.00, plus $5.00 shipping.

Mysteries of Mt. Shasta

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In This Incredible Issue:
Sleep Paralysis, Split Personalities,
and Spirit Possession

Michelle Belanger: Life as a Psychic Vampire

Science and Psychism:The Future of Artificial Intelligence

From Microbes to Monoliths:The Search for Life on Mars

PLUS: From Dwarfs to Giants: Sightings of Unusually Sized Humans

News Blackouts and the Non-Reporting of UFOs

The Mysterious Disappearance of Agatha Christie

College Campus Urban Legends:Tall Tales that Students Tell

Moonville, OH:A Haunted Railroad Town

Virginia’s Twitching Illness and Other Mass Maladies

The Children of God:Jesus Freaks and Flirty Fishing

Get your issue TODAY at your favorite bookstore or magazine stand.


Scientist Creates Cold Fusion For the First Time In Decades

Cold fusion, the act of producing a nuclear reaction at room temperature, has long been relegated to science fiction after researchers were unable to recreate the experiment that first "discovered" the phenomenon. But a Japanese scientist was supposedly able to start a cold fusion reaction earlier last week, which—if the results are real—could revolutionise the way we gather energy.

Yoshiaki Arata, a highly respected physicist in Japan, demonstrated a low-energy nuclear reaction at Osaka University on Thursday. In front of a live audience, including reporters from six major newspapers and two tv studios, Arata and a co-professor Yue-Chang Zhang, produced excess heat and helium atoms from deuterium gas.

Arata used pressure to force deuterium gas into an evacuated cell that contained a palladium and zirconium oxide mix(ZrO2-Pd). Arata said that the mix caused the deuterium's nuclei to fuse, raising the temperature in the cell and keeping the centre of the cell warm for 50 hours.

Arata's experiment would mark the first time anyone has witnessed cold fusion since 1989, when Martin Fleishmann and Stanely Pons supposedly observed excess heat during electrolysis of heavy water with palladium electrodes. When they and other researchers were unable to make it work again, cold fusion became synonymous with bad science.

But the method Arata showed was "highly reproducible," according to eye witnesses of the event. If nobody calls this demonstration out as a sham, Arata might have finally found the holy grail of cheap and abundant energy—nuclear power, without its destructive heat.

Source: Gizmodo


Why Finding Fossils on Mars Would Be Bad News for Humanity

The idea of life on Mars has been with us for nearly 300 years, ever since early astronomers saw what they believed to be polar icecaps through their primitive telescopes. If NASA's Phoenix lander successfully touches down on Mars this afternoon, it will become part of a long experiment to determine whether the planet was ever habitable, and whether it contains any traces of life, extinct or still active.

Discovering traces of life on Mars would be of tremendous scientific significance: The first time that any signs of extraterrestrial life had ever been detected. Many people would also find it heartening to learn that we're not entirely alone in this vast, cold cosmos.

They shouldn't. If they were wise, they'd hope that our probes discover nothing. It would be great news to find that Mars is a completely sterile planet.

On the other hand, if we discovered traces of some simple extinct life form - a bacterium, some algae - it would be bad news. If we found fossils of something even more advanced, like a trilobite or even the skeleton of a small mammal, it would be horrible news. The more complex the life we found, the more depressing. Scientifically interesting, yes, but dire news for the future of the human race.

Why? To understand the real meaning of such a discovery is to realize just what it means that the universe has been so silent for so long - why we have been listening for other civilizations for decades and yet have heard nothing.

Aliens may visit us in books and films and in rumors in Internet chat rooms, but it's a fact that there has been no objective evidence for the existence of any extraterrestrial intelligent civilization. We have not received any alien visitors, nor have our radio telescopes detected their signals. As far as we can determine, the night sky is empty and silent.

We know that the universe contains many stars. There are some 100 billion of them in our galaxy alone, and the observable universe contains billions of galaxies. Thanks to recent astronomical discoveries, we now know that it's common for these stars to have planets. Many of these solar systems are much older than our own. You start with billions and billions of potential germination points for life, and you end up with a sum total of zero alien civilizations that developed technologically to the point where we earthly observers can detect them.

So what's stopping them? Perhaps the most compelling theory is that there is some kind of barrier - what the economist and polymath Robin Hanson called a "Great Filter" - that prevents the rise of intelligent, self-aware, technologically advanced, space-colonizing civilizations. This filter would be one or more highly improbable steps along the path that starts with the creation of a planet and ends with a race capable of colonizing the galaxy.

Somewhere between those two points, the Great Filter operates, and it must be powerful enough that even with all the billions of possible starting worlds on which life might evolve - all those rolls of the cosmic dice - one ends up with nothing: no aliens, no spacecraft, no signals, at least not in our neck of the woods.

The important question for us, however, is just where on the long timeline of development this Great Filter might be located. Is it behind us, in our distant past, or somewhere ahead of us in the decades or millennia to come?

Consider first the possibility that the filter is in our past, somewhere between the creation of our planet and emergence of digital technology. We tend to take it for granted that the evolution of life was inevitable because, well, here we are. But perhaps it's extremely improbable that even simple self-replicating organisms should emerge on an Earthlike planet. Perhaps that very first step could be the Great Filter in which almost all planets get stuck.

Or perhaps it comes later, during the transition from the most basic life form into something more complex. For example, it took 1.8 billion years for life on Earth to evolve from prokaryotes, the most basic organism, into eukaryotes - still very simple, but with the addition of a membrane-enclosed cell nucleus. That immense span of time suggests that some extraordinary, improbable coincidence, some bit of amazing luck, might have been required in order for the simplest kind of life to become just a little bit more complex. This step is a good candidate for a Great Filter. Others include the rise of multicellular organisms or sexual reproduction. Each of these steps took a very long time, suggesting that they might have required a huge amount of evolutionary trial and error, combined with a huge amount of luck.

So one possibility is that the Great Filter is behind us. If so, this also explains the absence of observable aliens. Why? Well, if the rise of intelligent life is sufficiently improbable, then it follows that we are likely the only such civilization in our galaxy, and perhaps even in the entire observable universe.

But it may be that the Great Filter is ahead of us, in our future. That would mean that there is some great improbability that will prevent humanity - and perhaps any technological civilization - from traveling to other parts of the galaxy and making its presence known to others.

Throughout history, great civilizations on Earth have imploded - the Roman Empire, the Mayan civilization that once flourished in Central America - but here we are hypothesizing a more drastic termination, the extinction of the intelligent species itself, or at least the permanent destruction of its potential for further development. Would the event be nuclear war? Environmental disaster? A deadly superbug? Probably not; we might recover from any of these, eventually. The kind of collapse that merely sets a civilization back a few hundred or a few thousand years would not help explain why no such civilization has visited us from another planet.

There are planets that are billions of years older than Earth. Any intelligent species on those planets would have had ample time to recover from repeated social or ecological collapses. Even if they failed a thousand times before they succeeded, they could still have arrived here hundreds of millions of years ago.
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Obviously, we must hope that the Great Filter is behind us rather than ahead of us. If the Great Filter is ahead us, we have still to confront it. The kind of risk we are talking about here is called an "existential risk" - one that would either cause the extinction of Earth-originating intelligent life or destroy its potential for future development. It could be a war fought with powerful future weapons; badly programmed superintelligent machines; even a high-energy physics experiment gone awry.

If it is true that almost all intelligent species go extinct before they master the technology for space colonization, then we must expect that our own species too will go extinct before reaching technological maturity - we have no reason to think that we will be any luckier than most other species at our stage of development.

If the Great Filter is ahead of us, we must relinquish all hope of ever colonizing the galaxy, and we must fear that our adventure will end soon, or at any rate that it will end prematurely.

Now what has all this got to do with finding life on Mars? Consider the implications of discovering that life had evolved independently on another planet in our solar system. That discovery would suggest that the emergence of life is not a very improbable event. If it happened independently twice here in our own backyard - indeed, on the only other planet we have closely examined - it must have happened millions of times across the galaxy. This would mean that the Great Filter is less likely to occur in the early life of planets and is therefore more likely still to come.

If we discovered some very simple life forms on Mars in its soil or under the ice at the polar caps, it would show that the Great Filter almost certainly exists somewhere after that period in evolution. If we discovered a yet more advanced life form, such as some kind of multicellular organism, this would be even worse news for us. And if we discovered the fossils of some very complex life forms, like a vertebrate mammal, we would have to conclude that the probability is overwhelming that the bulk of the Great Filter is ahead of us. Such a discovery would be a crushing blow.

Yet most people reading about the discovery would be thrilled, not realizing that they were looking at the worst news ever displayed on the front page of a newspaper. They would not understand the implications of the finding. If the Great Filter is not behind us, it is ahead of us, meaning that the human species is doomed to fail ever to reach technological maturity.

So this is why we should hope that our space probes will discover dead rocks and lifeless sands on Mars, and also on Jupiter's moon Europa, and everywhere else our astronomers look. It would keep alive the hope for a great future for humanity.

Even if we are the only intelligent species that has ever evolved in our galaxy, and perhaps in the entire observable universe, it does not follow that our survival is not in danger. Nothing in the above reasoning precludes the Great Filter from being located both behind us and ahead of us. It might be extremely improbable that intelligent life should arise on any given planet, and very improbable that intelligent life, once evolved, should succeed in becoming advanced enough to colonize space.

But if Mars is indeed found to be barren, we would have some grounds for hope that all or most of the Great Filter is in our past. In that case, we may have a significant chance - if we play our cards right - of one day growing into something almost unimaginably greater than we are today.

In this scenario, the entire history of humankind to date is a mere instant compared with the eons of history that lie still before us. All the triumphs and tribulations of the millions of peoples who have walked the Earth since the ancient civilization of Mesopotamia would be like mere birth pangs in the delivery process of a kind of life that hasn't really begun.

Imagine the tremendous responsibility of those who find themselves present and called upon to midwife the conception of such a future. And that is where we are, you and me.

Source: The Boston Globe


Charles Lindbergh's Deranged Desire to Live Forever

Flying had a strange effect on the great aviation pioneer Charles Lindbergh, leading him to team up with a French surgeon and embark on a quest for ever-lasting life... for a chosen few.

What do you know about Charles Lindbergh?

You probably know he was an American aviator. He achieved overnight world stardom when he became the first person to fly non-stop across the Atlantic, solo, in 1927.

You might also know that Lindbergh was a peace activist who opposed American involvement in World War II - until Pearl Harbor, after which he volunteered to fly combat missions in the Pacific.

And you might know that in later life he became a prolific author, an explorer and an environmentalist.

But did you know that he was also a machine-obsessed inventor, who entered into a macabre alliance with a French-born surgeon to try to achieve immortality?

Forget aviation hero. On the side, Lindbergh was a Dr Frankenstein figure, who used his mechanical genius to explore the possibility of conquering death - but only for the select few who were considered "worthy" of living forever.

"Beating death was something he thought about his entire life", says David M Friedman, American author of the new book The Immortalists. "Even as a small child, he couldn't accept that people had to die. He would ask: 'Why do you have to die to get to heaven?'"

Friedman's The Immortalists relates the untold story of Lindbergh's frequently bizarre efforts to cheat death by creating machines that might sustain human life.

In the 1930s, after his historic flight over the Atlantic, Lindbergh hooked up with Alexis Carrel, a brilliant surgeon born in France but who worked in a laboratory at the Rockefeller Institute in Manhattan. Carrel - who was a mystic as well as a scientist - had already won a Nobel Prize for his pioneering work on the transplantation of blood vessels. But his real dream was a future in which the human body would become, in Friedman's words, "a machine with constantly reparable or replaceable parts".

This is where Lindbergh entered the frame. Carrel hoped that his own scientific nous combined with Lindbergh's machine-making proficiency (Lindbergh had, after all, already helped design a plane that flew non-stop to Paris) would make his fantasy about immortal machine-enabled human beings a reality.

"Both of their needs were met in this rather strange relationship", says Friedman. "Carrel benefited from Lindbergh's mechanical genius and inventiveness, and for Lindbergh - well, Carrel became the most important person in his life, effectively steering the way he viewed the world and the people who lived in it."

At the Rockefeller lab, Lindbergh and Carrel - almost like a real-life Jekyll and Hyde double act - made some extraordinary breakthroughs.

Lindbergh created something that Carrel's team had singularly failed to: a perfusion pump that could keep a human organ alive outside of the body. It was called the "Model T" pump. In later years, Lindbergh's pump was further developed by others, eventually leading to the construction of the first heart-lung machine.

"Some people, even academics and science students, are still shocked when they hear about the contribution that the aviator Lindbergh made to developing life-saving cardiac machinery," says Friedman.

But there was a serious downside to what Friedman refers to as Lindbergh and Carrel's "daring quest" to live forever.

Carrel was a eugenicist with fascistic leanings. He believed the world was split into superior and inferior beings, and hoped that science would allow the superior - which included himself and Lindbergh, of course - to dominate and eventually weed out the inferiors.

He thought the planet was "encumbered" with people who "should be dead", including "the weak, the diseased, and the fools". Something like Lindbergh's pump was not intended to help the many, but the few.

Lindbergh himself sympathised with the Nazis.

"I wouldn't say Lindbergh was the philosophical partner of Himmler or Hitler," says Friedman. "But yes, he certainly admired the order, science and technology of Nazi Germany - and the idea of creating an ethnically pure race."

Friedman says Lindbergh considered himself a "superior being". "Let's not forget that, as a pilot, he felt he had escaped the chains of mortality. He had had a god-like experience. He flew amongst the clouds, often in a cockpit that was open to the elements. Flying was such a rare experience back then. In taking to the skies, he did something humans have dreamt of for centuries. So it is perhaps not surprising that he ended up trying to play god in a laboratory."

Ethical ever-lasting life

Even contemporary transhumanists - the name given to those who want to extend human longevity and possibly conquer death - are surprised to hear about Lindbergh's contribution to machine-assisted life.

"I never knew that", says Nick Bostrom, director of the Future of Humanity Institute at Oxford University and President of the World Transhumanism Association.

For Bostrom and his colleagues, aware that some people think transhumanism is the same thing as eugenics, the key today is the "ethical use of technology to extend human capabilities".

"There are many ways we have used science and technology effectively to 'cheat death'", says Bostrom, "whether it's through antibiotics, organ transplantation, or even lightning rods to deflect electrical currents from the sky. You know, when they were first invented some people said it was 'playing god' to try to deal with lightning in this way."

Bostrom believes that reversing the ageing process, or at least using stem cell therapy to slow down the negative effects of ageing, should be "the next frontier" in medical science.

"But it should be for the benefit of everyone and it should be done ethically - somewhat different to what Lindbergh got up to", he argues.

Stuart Derbyshire, a leading expert in pain based at the University of Birmingham, says it is certainly "desirable to live a long and healthy life" - but from Lindbergh's experiments to today's ethical question for longevity, he says there is also a "troubling" side to the "quest to live forever".

"Any life, long or short, is only worthwhile if it is lived towards some purpose. The zealous pursuit of health and longevity can too easily become a substitute for real purpose.

"Health itself becomes a quasi-religious crusade against the old sins of the flesh - gluttony, sloth, lust - with all the attendant odious associations of physical impairment or disease with moral turpitude or a bad life."

His implication is clear - while Lindbergh and Carrel's quest had all the hallmarks of Nazi-promoted eugenics, it's perhaps impossible to separate the pursuit of ever-lasting life with notions of supremacy.

The Immortalists by David M Friedman is published in the UK by JR Books on 16 June.

Source: BBC


Opening its Files, Britain Says Strange Aircraft Are Not UFOs

LONDON: They were shaped like cigars, saucers, coffins and amorphous blinking blobs. They hovered in a menacing manner, traveled at impossible speeds and vanished into the netherworld, or, in one instance, a hedge in Cornwall.

A few carried humanoid life forms, or so it seemed. A few materialized courtesy of the observers' possibly having had a drink too many, as in the case of an unidentified flying light cluster witnessed loitering in the sky by the patrons of a pub in Kent.

Whatever they were, these phenomena reported to the British Ministry of Defense over the years and made public this month were almost certainly not actual alien aircraft piloted by actual alien beings.

"The government has been telling us the truth," declared David Clarke, a senior lecturer in journalism at Sheffield Hallam University, who has a side interest in UFOs. "There are a lot of weird things in the sky, and some of them we can't explain, but there's not a shred of evidence for a single alien visitation."

Which is, frankly, a letdown, as is the government's prosaic explanation of why, for decades, it has meticulously documented reports of UFO sightings. "We only check the sightings from the perspective of making sure that our military airspace has not been breached, and we pretty much never have airspace breaches," a Defense Ministry spokeswoman said.

The spokeswoman, who spoke on condition of anonymity because that is government policy, said the ministry had begun making the files public because it had been inundated with UFO-related requests under the British Freedom of Information Act.

The files from 1978 to 2002 were released this month. Some older files have already been declassified and made public; the rest will be released over the next few years. Available on the Web from the National Archives at, they cover hundreds of sightings but are hardly the X-Files. Much of the material consists of one-page forms carrying details like how big the supposed aircraft was and what, if anything, it seemed to be doing.

A citizen who gives her profession as "meals on wheels operator" describes her shock and awe at the sight of a smallish "Vulcan-shaped object" hovering in the sky. Another witness says she was roused from bed by a brilliant light emanating from a UFO "the size of a milk-bottle base."

"Some time on a Monday evening during the break in watching 'Quincy' - I checked my watch - I noticed an unusual happening in the sky," one correspondent wrote. And from Cornwall, a report arrived from a 28-year-old motorist who observed a bright yellow light "which bobbed and weaved" over the road, an image recalling Tinkerbell's mode of travel in "Peter Pan."

"The light changed to a purplish color, prior to its exit into a thick hedgerow," the report reads.

The files include random newspaper clippings of questionable journalistic rigor. A 1986 Daily Mirror article reports that the light "from a glowing red object" suffused the cockpit of a Royal Air Force jet carrying Prince Charles, seriously unnerving the pilot. As an aside, the newspaper noted that "Prince Philip has been a keen UFO follower for the past 36 years."

There are long letters asking big questions. "When is a flying saucer not a flying saucer?" muses one correspondent. "And is the mothership man-made or from a distant planet?"

In the old days, the United States systematically compiled reports of UFO sightings, too. But its last program, known as Project Blue Book, was closed down in 1969 after government officials concluded that if something was out there, it was not anything they wanted to investigate.

Some UFO enthusiasts said last week that they believed the British government had not released all of its files and was concealing the truth about a massive cover-up it had long perpetrated on the British people.

But Joe McGonagle, a self-described UFO researcher here, said the documents showed that far from concealing anything, the government had failed to investigate the sightings properly in the first place. "A lot of people imagined that there was this vast UFO project with lots of people working on it, when in reality it was a civil servant spending 25 percent of his time on it, filing reports," he said.

It is not as if the authorities have always failed to take the issue seriously. In 1950, the government convened a secret committee, the Flying Saucer Working Party, to investigate sightings of UFOs. It concluded that UFOs were optical illusions, weather phenomena, airplanes seen from strange angles and the like, which has been the government's line ever since.

In 1979, the House of Lords debated the matter at the urging of the Earl of Clancarty, who believed that man was descended from aliens who crawled from the earth's core via special tunnels or flew in spaceships 65,000 years ago.

He was not the only noble believer.

"I should like to tell your lords about some of the sightings I have seen," said the Earl of Halsbury, "beginning at the age of 6, when I saw an angel."

Lord Gainford said he had seen a UFO, which he described as "bright white ball with a touch of red followed by a white cone," at a New Year's Eve party in Scotland. Some children saw it, too, he added, and they "had been drinking soft drinks."

None of their accounts were as detailed as that of a 78-year-old ex-soldier in Aldershot. His story, which he told to a UFO investigator, can be found in the newly released files.

Out fishing in 1983, the man had just poured himself a cup of tea, he recalled, when he was approached by two beings about 4 feet, or 1.2 meters, tall, wearing pale green overalls and large helmets. They led him into what turned out to be their ship and, apparently considering whether to subject him to extraterrestrial experiments, suddenly announced: "You can go. You are too old and infirm for our purposes."

"Anxious to avoid causing offense," the report said, the man asked no questions, even obvious ones like, what planet do you come from? Instead, he returned to the riverbank, where he finished his tea (by then cold) and resumed fishing.

Source: The International Herald Tribune


Teen Snaps Eerie Ghost

This is the sensational picture which proves ghosts exist, a teenager claims. The spectral vision was captured by 14-year-old Connor Bond at an ancient castle in the Scottish highlands famed for its ghostly residents.

The ghoulish apparition was snapped by accident while the youngster and his family were attending a wedding at the castle. The family only noticed what they had captured when they downloaded the image on to their computer and saw the ghostly hand and a swirl of mist around it.

The ghost was captured at Tulloch Castle in Dingwall in the Scottish Highlands - a historic pile well known for its supernatural residents.

Despite describing themselves as ‘sceptics’, Connor and dad Mike are now convinced the ghost they snapped is real and are hoping experts will examine it and prove them correct. Mike, 52, from Inverness said: "We were at this wedding and Connor was walking around taking loads of photos. I think he took about 200 in total.

"After we loaded them up on to the computer we were looking through them and were just stopped in our tracks by this one shot.

"You can clearly see this ghostly figure on the staircase.

"You can see a hand on the banister and what appears to be a white mist around it.

"Being a sceptical person I thought Connor had done something to the picture but he says not and I believe him."

He added: "Even other members of the family can’t believe what they’ve seen and are all checking their own photos now."

Tulloch Castle dates back to the 1200s and has a long history of ghostly activity. The most famous of them is the Green Lady who has been seen by dozens of people, and even has the castle’s bar named after her. She is believed to be the ghost of Elizabeth Davidson, whose family once owned the castle where her portrait hangs in the Great Hall.

Mike added: "I just don’t see what else it could be - it’s a digital camera so you can’t accidentally double expose the shot and Connor swears there was no one around at the time. It’s a mystery."

For Sale-Ghost in a Bottle

A Florida man is in the business of selling bottled spirits; but you may not want to drink what he claims is inside the containers.

In rural St. Johns County, there's a little shed that's considered haunted because inside, Jon Deese said he's storing ghosts, Jacksonville television station WJXT reported.

Deese said he has ghosts trapped in bottles, and they're for sale.

"This was actually the first one that was caught, in Decatur County, Ga., in an old farmhouse," Deese said, showing off one ghost in a bottle.

While Deese said he contracts with professional ghost catchers around the country and that it’s the ghost catchers who actually stuff the phantasms into a bottle, he wouldn’t elaborate on exactly how the ghosts get into the bottles.

"Well, if you went to KFC, you wouldn't ask for the secret recipe," Deese said. "They’ll go in and catch them from haunted establishments, cars, hotels, maybe even graveyards."

Whether supernatural or just a spooky novelty, the ghosts in bottles come with a warning -- open at your own risk.

"Some people will open the bottle and say they don’t get results and it’s just a fun conversation piece. Others say, 'There’s strange things happening in my house. Where're my car keys? Where's the remote to the TV?" Deese said. "The ghost in the bottle is more toward Casper the Friendly Ghost than the Exorcist. We're kind of in the middle."

Ghost in the Campus

Any apparition, if limited to a few flimsy sightings in historical ruins or in dark and deserted bungalows, is always questioned on its veracity. However, if such an experience of supernatural is publicly acknowledged by an Ivy League Institute the paranormal experience becomes a more believable proposition.

The reports published in India and international press surrounds an uncanny tale of a supernatural in Indian Statistical Institute's New Delhi Chapter located on Sansanwal Marg near Qutab Hotel. On August 24, 2004, a new entrant to the institute's MStatistics program died in the classroom succumbing to a festering heart disease. Startled classmates crowded around him for possible medical aid but with no avail.

"The ailing student was always little withdrawn and living on a frugal diet of fruits," told an old security guard to Hindustan Times. "I suspect he was mentally ill too," he added.

However, more frightful than the death of the student was the tale of the deceased remaining in the campus - in his incorporeal form. He continued living his campus life the way he way he did before - wearing cologne, smoking cigarettes, and playing pranks with others. Many students claimed seeing him stalking the long corridors in the evening, knocking on doors in a fit, and jostling the students off the stairways.

"A girl who never smokes, felt a strong stench of cigarette in her bathroom," said Saptrishi, a student representative of the institute reported in a newspaper.

Many others seconded the claim of the girl student narrating their creepy experiences of smelling deodorant and aftershave which announced the presence of the deceased.

Reuters reported: "Fear of a ghost who knocks on doors and wafts the scent of aftershave lotion along corridors has forced a prestigious college for statisticians in the Indian capital, Dehli, to close".

"Students of the Indian Statistical Institute say the ghost of a dead classmate has knocked on doors, jostled them on staircases and left traces of aftershave lotion and cigarette smoke."

Following a series of bizarre incidences the institute called off the classes for a week and the fear-stricken students were allowed to leave their hostel for home. To make way for divine intervention, the students were also officially provided vehicle to visit temple. Some campus residents even consulted sorcerers for exorcising the ghost.

Rajeev Karandikar, then the head of the institute, found it difficult to ward off the media. Annulling classes and allowing students to stay away from the campus had compounded his problems -- he was portrayed as an obscurantist. 
Rajeev Karandikar meekly defended: "A fear psychosis had gripped some students, so we thought it was best to allow them to go home if they wanted to."

It took a few months for bringing the institute back on an academic calendar. Many students on their return to campus were still afraid to be alone in the campus and they were dreadful of nights.

Four years after, today, the story of apparition seems to be on the wane but the old security guard and many others testify to the boy's shadowy existence. People, who know the story, still feel uneasy in the night while alone in a corridor or climbing a stairway. Perhaps in the hindsight they know how precarious their foothold can be as many in the past were so brutally pushed off the stairway occurring to swollen knees and bleeding shins.



Continental Jet Has Near Hit With "Rocket"

HOUSTON -- Jet pilots aren’t used to sharing their airspace, so you can bet a rocket will get some attention.

Continental Flight 1544 was flying at 5,000 feet about 11 miles east of Bush Intercontinental Airport after takeoff Monday morning when the pilot called the tower to report an object headed toward the plane. The pilot described seeing a fast moving object with a thick smoke trail nearing his airspace.

The FAA now says it thinks that object was some kind of model rocket. Both the FAA and the Houston Area Joint Terrorism Task Force continue to investigate the incident that first reported early this afternoon.

Neither said conclusively what the pilot saw was indeed a model rocket, but an FAA spokesperson told 11 News that it was likely a high-powered model rocket. It is a federal crime to launch a rocket of any sort without notifying the FAA.

The plane was at about 5,000 feet at the time of the sighting and the flight continued on to Cleveland.

Sources told 11 News that the flight was met by Continental officials and FAA investigators to interview the passengers and crew.

Part of that investigation included a FBI call to John Etgen, who is an officer with one of the local model rocket clubs in the area.

When the FBI told him what had been reported, the rocket enthusiast was shocked.

"This is completely outside of all of our safety codes and all of our practices. We actually behave a lot like visual flight rules pilots. This is if we can't see clear airspace and already have permission to be in that air space we are not allowed to launch and we don't,” said Etgen.

Etgen said it's certainly possible for a model rocket to get that high up, but he also said the description given by the pilot doesn't match up.

At that height, a model would have been coasting for quite some time and maybe emitting a small trail of white smoke and not the thick smoke like the pilot’s report.

He explained that while model rocketry is supposed to be fun, it is also highly regulated. Regulated by the same federal agency that has oversight of the airlines – the FAA.

The FAA confirmed that there were no requests to launch or notifications filed for the Houston area for Monday.

There are also no official launch sites within 50 miles of Bush airport.

The Boeing 737 with 148 passengers and six crewmembers aboard, took off from Terminal C at Bush IAH at 10:17 a.m. Monday and arrived at Hopkins International Airport in Cleveland at 2:13 p.m. – nine minutes later than scheduled.

Source: Texas Cable News

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