Monday, June 11, 2012

True magazine

I am still enjoying Richard Dolan's podcast... agreeing with some of what he says, strongly disagreeing with others. I think that my disagreement with him is not one of fact but of ideology. Dolan is a very concrete thinker; very nuts-and-bolts, black-and-white: A contemporary Stanton Friedman. There really is nothing wrong with that, except that many students of UFOlogy believe that the field is more complex, nuanced, and muddier that what initially appears.

A prime example: the phenomenon of human abduction. It's my gut hunch that "abductions" really have nothing to do with the metallic craft that whizz and whisk above us. There is nothing about the appearance of a Grey at the foot of your bed at 3 a.m., and the orange orbs that show up over nuclear installations. No connection between "missing time," along with the telepathic receipt of cryptic information, and possible alien bases on the dark side of the moon. Yet, UFOlogists conflate the two distinct phenomena, based on a few accounts that associate the "Greys" with aerial craft. Is this distinction important? I think so, if you want to study the phenomena with a semi-scientific approach. UFOlogists pool together piles of anomalous phenomena, which may or may not have any causal association, and declare that it's all part of some amorphous alien unknown.

To me, the gross errors of logic and methodology of someone like Dr. David Jacobs is the consequence of this mindset. UFOs = aliens. UFOs = abductions. Hence, UFOs = hybridization of the human and "alien" race.

I actually believe that some UFOs might be "alien" craft. But I am increasingly believing that "abductions" are something else, a true unknown (we at least sort of know what UFOs "are"), and we can't rule out a sort of mass hysteria or psychopathology that, while quite real, is not really alien.

Where I find Dolan important is that he can ( I think) be a reliable reporter of fact. When he says such-and-such general saw this-or-that, I believe that he is correct.

The problem with UFO phenomenon is that it is heavily shrouded in a powerful "anti-structural" cover that tends to disintegrate any logical attempt to discern its origin and meaning. An alarming number of researchers have gone insane, committed suicide, or have destroyed their lives and careers after doggedly trying to expose the "truth" about UFOs. Little wonder, then, that some commentators deem UFOs "demonic" while others (such as Whitley Strieber) assume that they represent a form of logic both higher, and antithetical, to human logic. We don't know. It may be possible that we can't know.

One reason that I think that Strieber may be on to something is that, if intelligent life has evolved elsewhere, it might be not only physically different but human life, but it may assemble reality in a completely different manner than humans do. "Reality" is, largely, a product of our physical brains. But again... Do Strieber's experiences have anything to do with UFOs? Or with aliens, for that matter? There is no firm, causal link between conventional accounts of UFOs, and the high-strangeness phenomena that many UFOlogists associate with UFOs.

But that wasn't what I really wanted to write about. Dolan mentioned something that's been forgotten by modern UFOlogy: the importance of "True" magazine to mainstreaming of the UFO mystery. "True" was a magazine that was published between 1937 and 1974. I read the magazine avidly in the '60s, as a pre-teen. "True" printed a number of articles by Donald Keyhoe, which had a major impact on me. In fact, I think that "True" devoted an entire issue to the subject in 1969, an issue that I read over and over with growing fascination and terror. For years, I've doggedly tried to find a copy of that issue, without success. Even today, it's hard to dig up any information on "True" or that particular issue, even the publication date, but I can personally attest to the impact that it had on me and probably thousands of others. So if any stumblers-upon this blog have any information on that particular issue of "True," I would be grateful.

1 comment:

  1. You might have got the dares wrong? The biggie for True was 1967 and is still available on-line >

    Whatever is at the core of the abduction mystery, it's been surrounded by an 'abduction sub-culture' that looks inward for confirmation and outward in hostility. Some of the participants appear to have an alarming lack of critical-thinking and diminished ability to differentiate reality and fantasy. There seems to be a mental unravelling somewhere in there that's rather dark.