After a 15-month investigation, a New Jersey man has been charged with one count of criminal mischief in the vandalism attack on America's Stonehenge that left the New Hampshire colonial cold cellars wrongly believed to be an ancient Old World monument defaced with QAnon slogans. Mark Russo, 50, is currently is in jail in New Jersey waiting for extradition to New Hampshire to face trial.
In the wake of the Capitol insurrection and renewed interest in QAnon and its web of conspiracy theories, Q-believers have been trading images of a map of "hidden history" that, not coincidentally, maps exactly onto the fake history deployed by Ancient Aliens, Scott Wolter, and the History Channel, Science Channel, and Travel Channel band of speculators. To the best of my knowledge, the map was first developed in 2018 by fashion designer Dylan Louis Monroe, a Q-curious artist who displayed it at both the History Channel's AlienCon and a special 2018 exhibit at the Metropolitan Museum of Art devoted to conspiracies theories as art. The Met called it a way to "oppose political corruption, bureaucracy, and media manipulation." You know, by accusing all of history of being a Jewish-Catholic Satanic conspiracy. As you do. Seriously, how could the Met not have considered the consequences?
For years now, I have ended each trip around the sun with a summary of the preceding twelve months in fringe history, space aliens, and the weird. Most years, these summaries run into the thousands of words because so much happened. This year, the COVID-19 pandemic and the American presidential election severely curtailed the number of extreme claims made about ancient history, as conspiracy theorists turned their attention toward disease and politics. Last year, I said I was ready for a long, difficult year to end, and now those look like the good old days. This year I published a new book and wrote two more, and I look forward to what I hope will be big things next year when publishers get a look at my newest manuscript. In the meantime, we can look back in sadness and anger.
On December 12, former America Unearthed host Scott F. Wolter appeared on Mars conspiracy theorist Richard Hoagland’s amateurish podcast The Other Side of Midnight. It was weird. Much of it was the same repetitive blather about Wolter’s greatest hits, particularly the Kensington Rune Stone, but listening to him try to discuss his ideas with a man who thinks the universe is filled with ancient alien ruins makes it an unusual exercise in mutual delusion.
In an interview last week with radio host Jimmy Church, which stretched into hours of familiar conspiracies, former America Unearthed host Scott F. Wolter claimed that an agent of the United States government had contacted him to help publicize the disclosure of UFO secrets. “We want to talk to people who are considered credible,” Wolter alleged that a government agent told him. “That’s why they reached out.” Wolter said that over the past five years he has become convinced that space aliens are visiting the earth, that they walk among us, and that the government knows about it. He declined to provide details about what “the military and the government” want him to disclose, but he said that the military’s disclosure plans have been put on hold due to Pres. Trump’s erratic behavior and domination of the news cycle. “The government is frustrated by that,” Wolter claims. “There’s a reason they want people to know.” Therefore, they logically chose a failed former cable host with a third-rate blog to reveal the most momentous story of discovery in human history.
This week Scott Wolter, the erstwhile host of America Unearthed, gave a two-hour interview to the Leak Project in which he repeats many of his familiar claims and stories. We haven’t heard from him for a while, and there isn’t much new to report. It’s two hours, so don’t expect me to go through all of it in detail. I’ll only note a few highlights and you can listen to the whole thing if you’d like.
It’s been a big week for former America Unearthed host and current fringe media gadfly Scott F. Wolter. In this important moment of reckoning with systemic racism, the History Channel chose this weekend to begin making available episodes of the Eurocentric, conspiratorial, pseudohistorical America Unearthed for free on YouTube as a teaser for purchasing complete seasons, including the one featuring Wolter nodding in agreement to praise of the Confederacy and its pro-slavery terrorist group Knights of the Golden Circle. Promoting a series whose defining message is “whites were here first” is an odd way for History to honor its supposed commitment to diversity and tolerance.
Janet Wolter and Alan Butler Make False Claims about Templars, Pyramids, Gothic Architecture, and More in Podcast Interview
This past week, former America Unearthed host Scott Wolter appeared on a Freemason podcast to discuss his usual round of nonsense, devoting most of the time to reminiscing about his favorite America Unearthed episodes from the previous decade and his beloved Kensington Rune Stone claims from the decade before that. However, there were a few interesting highlights, mostly surrounding his enhanced view of goddess worship and his growing acceptance of outdated early twentieth century views of Christianity as an astrological myth.
Scott Wolter did another interview, this time with biophysicist and pyramid conspiracy theorist John DeSalvo on the Science and Paranormal Hour radio show. DeSalvo appeared on an episode of America Unearthed and claims to have lost half his listeners as a result. That’s neither here nor there, nor is the fact that I can’t stand his voice. He sounds like a midcentury children’s show clown, and for me it was like listening to fingernails on chalkboard. His habit of shouting all of his questions made it still worse, his effusive praise of Wolter notwithstanding. (Even Wolter noted that DeSalvo was blowing smoke up his ass.)
I'm an author and editor who has published on a range of topics, including archaeology, science, and horror fiction. There's more about me in the About Jason tab.
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