Last week a writer for the Sydney Morning Herald discovered that Ancient Aliens is still on the air, and he called it “an embarrassment to our entire planet.” The paper must have something against ancient astronauts because this week another article in the Sydney Morning Herald by a different writer takes 30-year-old actor Megan Fox to task for her “weird” belief in ancient astronauts. Fox is a known fan of Ancient Aliens, and the paper quotes her as claiming that archeologists and museums are working to suppress the truth about space alien involvement in ancient history:
Mystery Solved: Why H. P. Lovecraft and Erich von Daniken Thought Aliens Wrote the "Stanzas of Dzyan"
Do you remember the Stanzas (or Book) of Dzyan, the imaginary book of ancient lore concocted by Helena Blavatsky as the peg for her Secret Doctrine? I’ve been puzzling over a questionable claim about the Stanzas and it took me quite a while to find its source. That claim is that space aliens wrote the book, or, more specifically, how it was that both H. P. Lovecraft and Erich von Däniken came to use nearly identical words to describe the extramundane origins of the Stanzas of Dzyan. It’s something I wrote about in 2012, and finally I have the answer. To be fair, I probably could have found it a few years ago, but it didn’t cross my mind again until this weekend.
Have you seen the bombastic YouTube video that J. Hutton Pulitzer put out as the first effort from his and Scott Wolter’s new XpLrR company? (Or, as Wolter capitalizes it, Xplrr.)
This episode of Ancient Aliens is entitled S11E04 “The New Evidence,” and it promises to provide startling new information that will support the ancient astronaut theory. In the past, when the show has promised “new” evidence, it usually involved a talking head reading a news article copied from the internet, usually nearly verbatim, before recycling old content on a tangentially related topic. What will this episode hold in store? Let’s find out…
In keeping with my new (or at least summer-long) goal of giving Fridays over to sharing some of the excellent work others are doing, today I’d like to highlight a recent interview that Matthew R. X. Dentith and Josh Addison conducted on The Podcaster’s Guide to the Conspiracy this week. Their guest was none other than the legendary David Icke, fresh off his suitably looney tunes interview on the BBC’s The Week program last week. There he attempted to present himself as a rational critic of David Cameron and current British social and political policies, only to be undermined when the host stopped to remind him that he also believes that all of the actors in government are secret lizard people. (“There’s a whole backstory!” Icke protested.) The appearance there must have been fresh in his mind because he recycled some of the same material, almost word for word, in the podcast.
Fringe historians have no shame. I received an email yesterday from Peter Demmon, the fiction writer who invented the Book of King Og, a fictitious translation of a lost apocryphal Jewish text. I knew that Demmon made it up, but I wasn’t sure if he intended for his readers to believe that the hoax was real. Demmon let me know that he didn’t intend for the fake to text to be taken seriously, and he was shocked to discover that gigantologist Steve Quayle—the right wing anger bomb who blames the Nephilim for homosexuality and implies biblical support for the genocidal extermination of gays—not only accepts the Book of King Og as real but went on disgraced televangelist Jim Bakker’s TV show to talk about how important the book is and his belief that it was written by Og, the Bible giant, himself:
“They just found his writings,” Quayle said. “And guess who released them? The Vatican, supposedly.”
Last year writer Mark Adams published Meet Me in Atlantis, his account of meeting and listening to some of the people who devote their lives to looking for the lost continent of Atlantis. My review is here. That book is now being released in paperback, so Adams is once again on a media tour doing publicity for the book. In a recent interview with Wired magazine’s Geek’s Guide to the Galaxy podcast Adams revealed that one of the results of writing a book even vaguely connected to fringe history is a barrage of invitations to appear on Ancient Aliens. Adams told Wired that despite monthly invitations, he’s not biting.
J. Hutton Pulitzer and Scott Wolter Celebrate Forensics as Key to History; Plus: A "Fortean" Approach to Religion?
Yesterday J. Hutton Pulitzer, newly minted “forensic historian,” posted a blog explaining why forensics is to henceforth be the gold standard in investigating history. Scott Wolter tried to support his XpLrR partner with a blog post of his own explaining what “forensic geology” is, but like the gang that couldn’t shoot straight, they managed to be on different pages and failed to link to one another’s blog posts, or to post their joint responses to their XpLrR.tv website, resulting in an off-brand, off-message rollout for the pair’s corporate partnership.
This morning Graham Hancock announced that he is working on a “lengthy article” taking down the ancient astronaut theory, particularly that of Zecharia Sitchin. It would seem that Hancock is getting a bit upset that Ancient Aliens is driving a fringe history conversation he thinks he should be dominating with his resurrected Atlantis hypothesis. I will of course cover his “lengthy article” when it is released, but for now I can’t help but point to this hilarious line from his announcement explaining why he feels ancient astronaut theorists are dishonest: “[I]n order to give the impression that the sites and texts do support their hypothesis, it is necessary for ancient astronaut theorists again and again to take the ancient texts out of context, or to misquote them deliberately, rather than to present them to readers in an honest and transparent way.” Seriously? Hancock is worried about other people taking texts out of context or misquoting them? This is the same man who relies on encyclopedias and summaries for his knowledge of ancient myths and who happily borrows quotations from secondary sources without bothering to check their original context—or even if they’ve been quoted correctly.
On Friday, self-described forensic geologist Scott F. Wolter and self-proclaimed forensic historian J. Hutton Pulitzer announced the creation of a new media company, XpLrR Media, in order to create fringe history streaming content for the internet as part of a drive to democratize what they demonize as elitism in the “recording of history.” The new company launched an unfinished website, XpLrR.tv, which they promptly mislabeled as XpLrR.org. They also provided social media hashtags for fans to use to discuss the new venture, #GoXplrr and #WolterPulitzer, which, as of this writing, had garnered almost no discussion across popular social media platforms such as Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter.
I am an author and researcher focusing on pop culture, science, and history. Bylines: New Republic, Slate, etc. There's more about me in the About Jason tab.
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