I gather from some of the comments I have received on social media that a good number of my followers think I post too much on Twitter about the material I am researching for my new book rather than my usual diet of UFOs and pyramids. In pre-pandemic times, I imagine I would have bounced ideas off people in real life, but I don't have that luxury as often today. Now, I grant you that it is very different content, and sometimes more explicit, but I do not control history. If people see a significant difference between writing about James Dean's much duller than you would imagine sex life and George Adamski allegedly paying blond teenage boys for sex while telling people they were Venusians visiting his hotel with cosmic secrets, I can only shrug and wonder. But, good news! I have finished more than ten of my book's twelve chapters, and there is not much left. Then I will have nothing to talk about!
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.
Since I am working on my books and not blogging this week, I am cross-posting my newsletter news items for those who do not subscribe.
This week two more celebrities announced their supposed encounters with space aliens, and it was about what you would expect. The less surprising was Miley Cyrus, who told Interview magazine that she was traumatized by a flying saucer that she witnessed while high on drugs:
As I’ve been working on my book, I’ve noticed that the theme has slowly drifted away from my original plan. My outline had such a nice, rigid structure with a tripartite division among the three moral panics that originated in 1947, the Red Scare, the Lavender Scare, and the UFO scare, with discussion of how these panics resulted from defining groups of outsiders against a conformist mainstream culture. But as I wrote, the separation between the parts started to break down, in large measure because the social aspects of all three moral panics rather quickly subordinated themselves to a broader concern about redefining masculinity after the crisis of the war years. Hence, the Red Scare devolved into panic over gays, gay panic plunged into disputes over effeminacy and weakness, and from the very first day of the UFO flap, everyone measured witnesses’ credibility by their masculinity. The very first flying saucer articles even talked about Kenneth Arnold’s high school football salad days and how muscular and tall he was, as though masculinity equaled credibility.
Last week, Rolling Stone published a lengthy piece on extraterrestrial pop culture by Stephen Rodrick tracing America’s renewed obsession with space aliens and flying saucers. Although the article’s subhead promised that it would explain “how UFO culture took over America,” it was primarily a description of the incestuous mutual masturbation of the U.S. national security apparatus, the UFO entertainment industry, and To the Stars Academy of Arts and Science—exactly the same combination of crony capitalism, delusion, and self-interest that I have chronicled in these pages for years. As Rodrick noted, the three pillars undergirding UFO culture all share personnel and a dubious ideology. Pentagon UFO researchers become To the Stars employees and become entertainers on TV, and then they cycle around again, using their TV and newspaper access to worm their way into government meetings and lobby for another ride on the merry-go-round of speculative nonsense.
On Tuesday, Fox Business host Lou Dobbs asked President Donald Trump about flying saucers, and Trump promised to follow Dobbs’s lead in investigating objects in the sky. During Dobbs’s interview with Trump, the following exchange occurred:
As most of you know, I am doing some preliminary research for a book I am thinking about writing which would revolve around the various moral panics that began in the summer of 1947 and continued through the 1950s. As I mentioned a couple of weeks ago, I’m not interested in writing a textbook (nor do I have the ambition for the kind of granular research it would require), so I want to tell the story in a more impressionistic format, using the lives of real people to illustrate broader themes. I settled on making the life and afterlife of James Dean the central thread providing unity to the project. That, of course, involved learning about my subject to see how feasible that plan would be.
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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