How David Childress Created the Myth of a Smithsonian Archaeological Conspiracy
I admit to being somewhat mystified by claims of a Smithsonian conspiracy to suppress the truth about American history. Why the Smithsonian? Why not the Metropolitan Museum of Art? Why not the British Museum, which, arguably, was more influential for most of its existence? It must be because the Smithsonian is a charitable trust administered by the United States government and therefore connected to the Lovecraftian evil that is the U.S. government.
Let’s stipulate that the Smithsonian cover-up could not have begun prior to 1846, when the museum first opened its doors. Prior to this period, the U.S. government, its agents, and its officials openly advocated the existence of a lost white race of Mound Builders, Welsh Indians, and other such topics now consigned to fringe history. The conspiracy was also of fairly poor quality since the Smithsonian’s own official publications recorded the existence of the “paleo-Hebrew” Bat Creek Stone, as well as various “giant” skeletons, and attributed American mounds to a lost white race for several decades, until 1894. The conspiracy somehow not only “allowed” the Bat Creek Stone to be found and published, but also allowed it to go on public display, where it remains to this day. The deep origins of the alleged conspiracy are not hard to see: In 1894 Cyrus Thomas published a report concluding that America’s ancient mounds were of Native American origin, disappointing many who believed in various and sundry lost white races, and Thomas was dismissive of alleged European or Near Eastern artifacts supposedly found in America thereafter. But few attributed this to a conspiracy at the time since Thomas’s position was so well-known, and his evidence transparently published.
I frankly have had a hard time tracing the origins of the conspiracy theory that holds that the Smithsonian has been collecting anomalous ancient artifacts and shipping them off to Washington to be destroyed or otherwise purposely lost. This conspiracy theory surrounding the Smithsonian is so disorganized that it failed even to make it into Peter Knight’s 2003 Conspiracy Theories in American History: An Encyclopedia. But I have been able to pinpoint an origin point through a literature review and the process of elimination.
We know that the conspiracy theory did not exist in 1909, when the Arizona Gazette published its famous hoax that had Smithsonian officials openly and publicly discussing excavating a Tibetan-style tomb in the Grand Canyon. Had the Smithsonian conspiracy been a common belief back then, the hoax could not have been written. Similarly, there is no hint of a Smithsonian conspiracy in the 1932 book Death Valley Men by Bourke Lee. In that book, Lee describes a conversation with Death Valley residents who claimed to have found an underground city of caves filled with gold statues and gold-clad mummies, all lit by natural gas lamps. (This seems to be derivative of Frederick Spencer Oliver’s Dweller on Two Planets and works inspired by it, which posited a similar cave city beneath Mt. Shasta, as well as the highly similar pulp fiction stories of the era such as H. Rider Haggard’s archaeological thrillers and Edgar Rice Burroughs’s hollow-earth Pellucidar novels.) The men told Lee that they attempted to show the treasure to agents of the Smithsonian Institution, but that the Smithsonian refused to listen to them when a friend stole the treasure and a freak rainstorm, they claimed, rearranged the entire landscape of Death Valley, hiding the cave forever. Again, if the modern conspiracy theory existed at this point, we’d expect to read that the Smithsonian had actively sealed the cave and seized the treasure.
Therefore, we can establish that the conspiracy theory—and the conspiracy itself!—can’t predate 1932. So when did it start? The first rumblings that I can find emerge with the growth of creationism in the 1970s and 1980s, in which creationist authors begin to complain that the Smithsonian was unfairly conspiring to promote evolutionary theory. But it was not a widespread belief. In a review of “ancient mystery” books from the 1950s, 1960s, and 1970s, I can’t find an assertion of Smithsonian conspiracies. Frederick J. Pohl found an 1892 Smithsonian publication (hiding through publicizing!) about a few hollowed-out wood coffins from Alabama that were sent to the Smithsonian, but when he enquired in 1950 as to their whereabouts the Smithsonian said that they had been received but were somehow lost. He did not consider this a conspiracy but rather of, in his words, “neglect.” The coffins, later determined to be troughs, were eventually found in a warehouse. It was the change in designation upon identification that led to the confusion over their whereabouts.
Robert Temple—who believes that the CIA was in fact conspiring against him—makes no mention of a Smithsonian conspiracy in The Sirius Mystery (1976), nor does Erich von Däniken discuss one in Chariots of the Gods (1969) or its immediate sequels. Alan Landsburg failed to mention it in his ancient mystery books of the 1970s.
In fringe books where we should expect to see a discussion of the Smithsonian conspiracy—those dealing with American prehistory—it is also absent. In 1950 S. N. Hagen praised the Smithsonian while defending the Kensington Rune Stone, and actually demanded that the Smithsonian take custody of the relic! Charles Michael Boland’s They All Discovered America (1961), written just before the acceptance of the L’anse-aux-Meadows site, when Viking excursions to America were not yet confirmed, fails to mention any Smithsonian conspiracy across hundreds of alleged pre-Columbian voyagers and sites he catalogs. Ivan Van Sertima’s They Came Before Columbus (1976) actually mentions the Smithsonian four times, but he praises them for publishing the “facts” about what he wrongly considered to be African skeletal remains found in pre-Columbian contexts in publications dating from as recently as 1975. Instead, he preferred to see the National Geographic Society and academia in general as engaging in an unofficial “conspiracy of silence.” Even David Childress himself—the man who first claimed a Smithsonian conspiracy to “suppress” the truth about the Grand Canyon—makes no mention of a Smithsonian conspiracy in any of his books published prior to 1993 that I have been able to review, but rather cites the Smithsonian as openly providing information about mysterious or diffusionist objects in their collections!
To put a cap on this: Stephen Williams’s Fantastic Archaeology, published in 1991 and covering virtually every fringe archaeology claim made from 1492 to 1991, has exactly zero mentions of a Smithsonian conspiracy to destroy or suppress artifacts, even while chronicling the Smithsonian’s early advocacy of lost white race theories. Williams does note, however, a growing discontent with the Smithsonian after 1894 and Cyrus Thomas’s Mound Builder report, as time and again Smithsonian scholars investigated fringe claims and published results declaring alleged artifacts ranging from the Tucson Lead Artifacts to the Kensington Rune Stone to be less than their promoters claimed them to be. But there was no claim of an organized conspiracy, only vague charges that “academia” in general was “close-minded.”
So what changed?
I think that Raiders of the Lost Ark (1981) began the process of laying the groundwork for anti-Smithsonian conspiracies, not because it was so convincing but because of who watched it. At the end of the film, the Ark of the Covenant is locked away in a government warehouse, never to be seen again. David Childress cites this scene in his very first Smithsonian conspiracy piece, and he identifies himself as a “real-life Indiana Jones.”
In the early 1990s, David Childress seems to have kicked off the anti-Smithsonian conspiracy theme with his question of whether the Smithsonian was so intent on denying the existence of Tibetans (whom he misreads as Egyptians) in the Grand Canyon that they erased all evidence of the (hoax) 1909 expedition to the Grand Canyon:
Is the idea that ancient Egyptians came to the Arizona area in the ancient past so objectionable and preposterous that is must be covered up? Perhaps the Smithsonian Institution is more interested in maintaining the status quo than rocking the boat with astonishing new discoveries that totally overturn the previously accepted academic teachings.
He termed the alleged suppression of evidence “Smithsoniangate” in World Explorer vo1. 1, no. 3 (1993, reprinted and recycled in several later volumes and distributed online via Nexus magazine and Keeley.net), where he cites Raiders as a touchstone before abstracting from it to a “real” conspiracy:
To those who investigate allegations of archaeological cover-ups, there are disturbing indications that the most important archaeological institute in the United States, the Smithsonian Institute, an independent federal agency, has been actively suppressing some of the most interesting and important archaeological discoveries made in the Americas.
He provides no solid evidence of his claims but instead rehearses the Cyrus Thomas tale and sees in Thomas’s scientific conclusion a conspiracy to suppress evidence of white travelers to America. (This was during the period when, under the influence of the Lemurian Fellowship and James Churchward, Childress advocated the existence of an ancient white master race that ruled the world and enslaved black and brown peoples.) Specifically, he accuses Thomas’s boss, John Wesley Powell, of inaugurating the conspiracy in 1881 to hide evidence of a lost white race. Childress provides as “evidence” of an ongoing conspiracy an anonymous secondhand report from an unnamed “well-known historical researcher” (probably another fringe writer) that the researcher had heard from an ex-Smithsonian employee that someone else had told him that the Institution had dumped a barge full of pre-Columbian artifacts (!) into the sea to prevent them from breaking Thomas’s pro-Native American paradigm. All this, of course, while Childress himself admitted in earlier work that the Smithsonian openly allowed research on allegedly non-Native objects like the Bat Creek Stone and continued publishing the findings of diffusionist anthropologists and archaeologists.
Childress cited Pohl’s 1950 inquiry into the Alabama wooden troughs as proof of a conspiracy because the Smithsonian reported in 1992 that these troughs could not be viewed because they were housed in an asbestos-contaminated warehouse. Childress called this suppression, and later writers, mostly on the internet, misunderstanding the situation, turned these into European stone coffins and claimed that the Smithsonian had intentionally destroyed them.
Childress further collected various secondhand reports, which he did not attempt to verify, of the Smithsonian collecting artifacts that then disappeared. One was a story from Ivan T. Sanderson reporting a letter he received from an engineer who claimed to have found giant skulls two decades earlier that the Smithsonian collected and made disappear. (The skull measurements provided are only slightly above average; Childress misunderstood how the skulls were measured.) Diffusionist John H. Tierney, Childress said, accused the Smithsonian of a disinformation campaign to discredit a set of 32,000 ceramic statues that included images of humans having sex with dinosaurs which were supposedly found in an ancient Mexican context. Further testing determined the figures were modern fakes.
He concluded his article with “proof” that the Smithsonian was covering up the 1909 “discovery” of an “Egyptian” tomb in the Grand Canyon—a story derived from an Arizona Gazette newspaper hoax of April 5, 1909. Childress, who introduced the mistake repeated by Scott Wolter that the newspaper was called the “Phoenix Gazette,” cites as “evidence” of a cover up two facts: (a) a staff archaeologist he spoke with by phone denied the Smithsonian had any Egyptian artifacts from a New World context and (b) the Smithsonian’s Board or Regents conducts meetings that are not open to the public. Sadly, every time the Smithsonian truthfully denied fringe claims, it only served as more proof for conspiracy theorists that something was being covered up.
Childress’s article was picked up by David Icke for The Biggest Secret (1993), which added aliens to the mix.
The story might have ended there since Childress’s sum total of “evidence” for a conspiracy was (a) official publications that publicized the allegedly suppressed material, (b) two missing wooden troughs that were not actually missing, (c) secondhand accounts of decades-old memories, (d) fake statues of dinosaurs having sex with humans, and (e) a newspaper hoax. But Childress had the good fortune to have his work widely distributed right at the time when perpetual presidential candidate Pat Buchanan decided to politicize the Smithsonian and accuse it of engaging in a conspiracy to denigrate American history.
In 1994, the Smithsonian announced plans to put the Enola Gay’s fuselage on display as part of an effort to commemorate the fiftieth anniversary of the bombing of Hiroshima in 1995. Critics immediately complained that the exhibit focused too heavily on the Japanese who died in the bombing rather than on the military rationale for the use of the atom bomb. On November 6, 1994—only a year after Childress created his “Smithsoniangate,” Buchanan wrote in his syndicated newspaper column that the Smithsonian was engaged in
a sleepless campaign to inculcate in American youth a revulsion toward America’s past. Ultimate goal: Breed a generation of Americans who accept the Left’s indictment of our country, who refuse to defend her, and who decline to appeal the death sentence that Leftists the world over long ago pronounced on the United States and Western civilization.
He said that the Smithsonian was “toying with suicide” by working to destroy traditional manly American values (such as viewing fighter pilots as “knights of the air”), and for valuing non-Americans (non-white peoples unstated but implied) over Americans. In this he was joined by fellow newspaper columnist John Leo, a longtime critic of cultural “pollution,” who claimed to have discovered dozens of examples of liberal bias, anti-Americanism, and negativity in Smithsonian exhibits. Rush Limbaugh picked up the story, and the right wing media turned the Smithsonian’s alleged anti-Americanism into a cause, over the shocked objections of professional historians and museum curators.
This story is told more fully in the 1996 edited volume The History Wars: The Enola Gay and Other Battles for America’s Past by Edward T. Linenthal and Tom Engelhardt.
The political furor over alleged bias at the Smithsonian lasted for a year and led to House Speaker Newt Gingrich appointing the conservative Rep. Sam Johnson (R-Tex.) to the Smithsonian Board of Regents to provide ideological “balance.” Johnson declared: “We’ve got to get patriotism back in the Smithsonian. We want the Smithsonian to reflect real America and not something that a historian dreamed up.” The politicization of the Smithsonian was complete, and the very real and significant damage done to the Smithsonian’s reputation opened the door to conspiracy theories.
While there is no direct connection between Childress’s claims and those of the right-wing politicians and media, the coincidence of timing served to reinforce Childress’s insinuations. Readers were subjected to multiple streams of information all telling them that the Smithsonian was engaged in a conspiracy to distort or fabricate American history. If politicians were certain that the Smithsonian was placing the (foreign) Japanese above traditional (read: white) Americans, then surely it was plausible that they had also been promoting the interests of Native Americans by denying or destroying the true pre-Columbian (read: white) heritage of America. The recent passage of the Native American Graves Protection and Repatriation Act and the subsequent groundbreaking for the National Museum of the American Indian reinforced the idea that the Smithsonian and the U.S. government were conspiring to bury the “truth” by emptying museum vaults and literally burying unwelcome artifacts in the ground in service of pro-Native American (and thus implicitly anti-white) propaganda. Many protested plans to repatriate some of the 14,500 Native American skeletons in the Smithsonian collection, and even observers favorable to the Smithsonian criticized the new American Indian museum for favoring subjective viewpoints and myth over documented history and fact.
In this environment, extreme conservatives had come to see the Smithsonian as an enemy, and this let creationists move from merely accusing the Smithsonian of pro-evolution propaganda to insinuating an outright conspiracy to suppress and destroy evidence of antediluvian giants (Nephilim) as well as evidence of Lost Tribes of Israel in America. However, were we would expect to see this discussed, in Charles DeLoach’s Giants: A Reference Guide from History, the Bible, and Recorded Legend (1995), the most famous creationist text on the subject, the conspiracy is absent; it had not yet filtered from Childress to creationism. Similarly, Graham Hancock’s attempt to imagine a global white master race in Fingerprints of the Gods (1995; check the book: he calls them “white” many, many times) makes no mention of a Smithsonian conspiracy, even though Hancock would eventually accuse NASA of one. In fact, in 2005’s Underworld Hancock praised the Smithsonian, as Ivan Van Sertima had before him, for actively investigating diffusionism, albeit from Japan rather than Europe.
Instead, the conspiracy theory percolated on the internet where David Childress’s 1993 article circulated widely, reproduced thousands of times. Ross Hamilton upped the ante in 2001 with his online article “Holocaust of Giants: The Great Smithsonian Cover-Up,” which as of today is not currently online at its original location (the server may be down). He offered not a lick of evidence for a conspiracy but instead implied one by listing publicly available Smithsonian documents referencing giants and then asking why the bones were accessible only to “government officials.” He did even less research than Childress into the Smithsonian and instead followed the bizarre notion that the conspiracy somehow was compelled to make publicly available descriptions and information about the bones they were supposedly charged with finding and destroying! Vine Deloria told Hamilton that he had come to believe that Raiders of the Lost Ark was an accurate depiction of Smithsonian policies. This was less a confirmation that giants existed than a reflection of the recently-passed controversy over Republican efforts aimed at getting the Smithsonian to change curatorial practices to downplay non-American and Native views.
Thanks to repetition across the internet, the Great Smithsonian Conspiracy slowly entered the mainstream of the alternative history movement. Alternative history luminaries like the Mormon hyper-diffusionist Wayne May and the Neo-Nazi convicted sex offender Frank Joseph (Frank Collin) on the fringe history side and L. A. Marzulli on the creationist and/or Nephilim side relentlessly promoted the idea that the Smithsonian was actively suppressing the truth, though they disagreed as to what truth was supposedly being suppressed. May and Joseph promoted the idea in the pages of Ancient American magazine where the idea would receive vocal and vociferous support from none other than Scott F. Wolter, who blasted the Smithsonian in its pages. Wolter carried over this distrust of the Smithsonian into America Unearthed, where he asserts the reality of a cover-up that did not exist before David Childress invented it out of half-truths, rumors, and lies.
The fact is that before Childress’s 1993 article there was no claim of a Smithsonian conspiracy, even in places where we would expect to see evidence of such a belief. As we end 2013, we can take a moment to curse Childress on the twentieth anniversary of his creation of a modern myth.
12/31/2013 08:28:04 am
I suppose in it's own way, even that mimics the Raiders plot: '$10 in any New-Ager shop...but I take it, bury it in the interwebs for 20 years, it becomes fact!"
James Randy Simmons
3/27/2015 03:43:52 pm
Okay, then where are all of the artifacts we know were found, but now,they arent displayed anywhere,nor discussed in the science community, debated on,or further and deeper investigations into all of the artifacts, that were deep sixed in the oceans,1000's upon thousands of giant bones,so to disprove the Bible?
12/31/2013 04:34:50 pm
"they didn't send it off to oblivion, they just sent it back to Minnesota"
1/1/2014 12:16:49 am
My point is that this is another example of how the establishment in general and the Smithsonian in particular, did NOT suppress artifacts indicating pre-Columbian contact, and in this case bent over backwards so far to be open-minded they fell on their asses.
12/31/2013 08:52:44 am
Just curious - have you ever looked at the origin of Men In Black concerning Alien conspiracies? From what I recall, it seemed to have initially bounced around from NASA (as the suppressors of information) to the CIA, NSA, and finally settled on some secret agency only known as MIB. There may have been a similar evolution to the Smithsonian (as kind of the official National Museum) eventually becoming the catch-all for all suspected conspirators relating to historical artifacts.
Secret Agent 666
12/31/2013 09:50:03 am
MIB = Gray Barker, They Knew Too Much About Flying Saucers (1956)
12/31/2013 09:24:39 am
This article sums up the meaning behind the saying "Never underestimate the power of stupid people in large numbers".
Secret Agent 666
12/31/2013 10:01:57 am
The 1909 hoax was inspired by the place-names around the Grand Canyon - Isis Temple, Tower of Set, Tower of Ra, Horus Temple, Osiris Temple (Brian Haughton, Hidden History: Lost Civilizations, Secret Knowledge, and Ancient Mysteries, 2007)
3/8/2017 08:36:17 am
This article is what's stupid as Colavito makes several leaps and nonsensical assertions such as, "_____ never spoke about it, ergo it didn't exist or happen" as if speaking about something brings it into existence and not speaking about it, means it doesn't or never existed. Yet you buy that making you a stupid dipshit as well and brainwashed by bullshit.
12/31/2013 12:36:30 pm
On the subject of Nexus Magazine, in the current issue (Dec 2013 - Jan 2014) you can find an article linking the Norse gods to the Annunaki and an advert for a book claiming that December 2012 was in fact the beginning of the end, that's going to come in 2019.
12/31/2013 12:47:20 pm
Oh, boy. The abstract says that the Anunnaki "exiled" some of their number to Scandinavia! But the recorded version of the Norse myths (Snorri's preface to his Edda) say that the gods were really Trojan princes. It's all so confusing. I guess that's why fringe writers say "aliens" and leave it at that!
12/31/2013 01:57:43 pm
It might also explain why fringe writers seem to think US institutions can affect things before they were created. It's something I've seen time and again in fringe material along with the assumption that the world ends at the US borders.
12/31/2013 05:26:58 pm
"I think that Raiders of the Lost Ark (1981) began the process of laying the groundwork for anti-Smithsonian conspiracies..."
12/31/2013 05:38:35 pm
re: images of humans having sex with dinosaurs.
12/31/2013 05:40:32 pm
It wasn't me, it was David Hatcher Childress.
3/8/2017 08:38:37 am
You fancy boy bitch, you're so funny you should take your show on the road.
12/31/2013 11:09:41 pm
"Conspiracy" is an easy answer to the question of why no serious scientists give any credence to one's fringe theories. It is also probably a case of psychological projection, since it ascribes the fringe theorist's own aversion to evidence to the Smithsonian.
12/31/2013 11:17:17 pm
There have been scientists who have held fringe theories (Isaac Newton, Albert Einstein, Zecharia Sitchin, Josef Blumrich, to name a few
1/1/2014 01:24:58 am
Newton and Einstein were not fringe scientists. Newton held a prestigious professorship at Oxford even before he published his physics theories. Einstein gained a place in academia and wide respect in the physics community as a result of the publication of his theories. Both of them produced testable, albeit revolutionary, theories that other scientists were able to confirm. Fringe theorists do not.
1/1/2014 01:34:25 am
Ok, name the theories Einstein and Newton held, you can disregard Sitchin as he is a fraud, who lied about being able to translate Sumerian and made up his own renditions in order to fit his ancient astronaut theories. Blumrich tried to apply his technical training to show Ezekiel's vision was a spaceship but didn't use a good translation and did no work on biblical theology which would go some way towards explaining within the context what his vision meant.
1/1/2014 01:38:06 am
When I say fringe theories I mean unverifiable tales told by people who usually have some agenda behind their stories, whereas Newton and Einstein contributed towards science, both men who did an enormous amount of work to prove their theories. Frankly I feel you would be insulting them to compare them to people who rely on hearsay and hoaxes to push forward agendas and make money.
I guess I would agree that all theories, or at least many, begin as fringe theories. But I take the term to mean theories that over time, have been consistently unable to earn any scientific acceptance, and therefore should be discarded, but are instead embraced and defended by a cadre of pseudo-scientists and their true-believers.
1/1/2014 02:51:56 am
I think H33 was talking about Newton's affinity for alchemy. I've never really heard of Einstein professing anything fringe, though.
1/1/2014 04:11:54 am
Albert Einstein wrote the foreword to Charles Hapgood's 1958 "Earth's Shifting Crust". Lots of books have been written about Isaac Newton's fringe beliefs including one BBC documentary
1/1/2014 06:42:45 am
A wrong theory is not the same as a fringe theory. I read Einstein's introduction. As he pointed out, Hapgood was explaining real anomalies in the Earth's history and presenting evidence for his conclusions. However, Hapgood and Einstein were wrong in assuming that the Earth's crust was a single rigid sheet that had to move as a whole. We now know, from the theory of plate tectonics, that it is made up of a number of sliding plates, thereby explaining all of the evidence that Hapgood accumulated by a different mechanism. In other words, Hapgood's theory, when Einstein wrote his preface, was not a fringe theory, one that Einstein promoted in the face of contrary or no evidence; it was merely one that turned out to be wrong.
1/1/2014 07:15:27 am
Forget all about historical contexts. Today, at this very moment, there exist rational scientists upholding strict principles that also uphold absurdities. The beauty of the internet is that it has demonstrated this phenomena to be totally factual. There are no exact boundaries and demarcation points. A human being is comprised of a kaleidoscope of different colours, a whole range of different impulses that accommodate a whole range of complex inconsistencies and contradictions.
1/1/2014 11:13:19 am
You cannot forget about historical context. You cannot place Newton or Einstein in our current time period and expect them to think or behave the same way.
1/1/2014 12:36:44 pm
The truly sad part, Harry, is that there were those who DID try to suppress Einstein when he came out with his Theory of Relativity. There was a whole big highly-politicized smear campaign against Einstein. Didn't work too well, as we might notice.
1/1/2014 11:53:38 pm
1/2/2014 01:15:18 pm
Well, it was less "suppression" than "a smear campaign" attacking Einstein on a personal level, with some significant anti-Semitism in. My understanding is that it wound up tied into the politics in Germany at the time, though it was "established academia" that got the ball rolling.
1/3/2014 12:53:09 am
1/4/2014 02:12:42 am
Re Newton: 1) his alchemical researches were "fringe" in his day, in the sense that they were basically illegal, and they were illegal in part because alchemists were legendary (back at at least to Chaucer's time) for running scams based on the promise of turning base metals into precious ones.
5/28/2015 10:59:23 am
@ Harry 01/01/2014 9:24am
1/1/2014 04:15:01 am
Isaac Newton - The Last Magician (BBC Documentary)
1/1/2014 04:24:49 am
Isaac Newton - The Dark Heretic
1/1/2014 06:09:41 am
1/1/2014 06:15:58 am
I'm too young to have any memory of the controversy as it happened, nor do I have any idea what the Smithsonian's text would have said. I'm not taking a position on the use of the Bomb; I'm just reporting the fact that the Smithsonian engendered a controversy that resulted in the politicization of historical presentation. Many historians disagreed with the Smithsonian's text, from what I read, but were more appalled that politicians were trying to interfere with curatorial practices for political reasons.
1/1/2014 07:45:04 am
5/12/2014 03:33:43 pm
1/1/2014 05:05:29 pm
I was aware of the controversy at the time and it was more about concerns it focused too much about the loss of civilian life and suffering of the Japanese versus American motives in using the bomb.
1/1/2014 06:14:07 am
Sorry my new iPad locked up. I wanted to finish by saying Buchanan is more of a paleoconservative and populist..more like Robert Taft and the older school of sound money, tariffs, and non intervention then the neoconservatives today. I was never a big fa of his but much enjoyed his book on hitler and Churchill...not every international issue is Munich demanding American involvement.
1/4/2014 04:06:23 am
Jason--would like to hear your thoughts on what I see as a kind of meta-topic here, namely the similarity of rhetorical tropes used in all these books. E.g. --
1/4/2014 04:15:33 am
…adding, it's one thing for Reverend Sockpuppet here to say "Hey lighten up, it's just TV" when all that's at stake (apparently) is some goofy idea about whether aliens dropped pyramids from UFOs. But when you see the exact same rhetorical techniques deployed with great success by a Glen Beck, you're talking about something with real political consequences. If people are indoctrinated again and again that believing in ancient aliens, and the pseudo logic that gets you there, is what really constitutes thinking for yourself, then your mental immune system has been weakened against all the other paranoid viral memes out there, many of which are being cynically deployed for specific political and economic outcomes.
1/4/2014 12:38:25 pm
It's certainly a weird backhanded embrace of postmodernism, a strange reflection of the academy's flirtation with the "if it's true for you" brand of analysis. But you're right that their use of the trope doesn't even rise to postmodernism's low standards but instead creates the impression that possibility equals probability, and a question presupposes its own answer.
terry the censor
4/8/2014 02:03:56 pm
I hear regular people using fringe-style logic when defending non-fringe beliefs (about political and social issues, especially). Reading older UFO literature (50+ years), I see the exact same special pleading as today.
2/5/2014 02:08:12 am
This whole tactic of labeling beliefs & assertions as "Conspiracy Theory" is unscientific at it's core. This tactic was made popular after the Kennedy assassination & now is the mantra of 'Accident Theorists' worldwide!
2/5/2014 03:16:58 am
But it's not just labeling is it? What I read here was a detailed analysis pointing out specific errors of fact and inference. How is that mere "labeling"? It precisely IS scientific in any sense I understand. What is NOT science is misreporting, falsification, failing to engage evidence counter to one's hypothesis, and treating fact-free speculation as proof.
terry the censor
4/8/2014 02:07:12 pm
> This whole tactic of labeling beliefs & assertions as "Conspiracy Theory" is unscientific at it's core.
4/5/2014 01:15:32 am
So then, where are all the skeletal remains turned over to the institute? Where did they all disappear to?
terry the censor
4/8/2014 02:09:00 pm
> where are all the skeletal remains turned over to the institute?
4/21/2014 04:35:36 pm
I admit I did not read the entire article. I understand Childress was an important character. Nonetheless, this doesn't explain the several newspaper articles detailing discoveries of giant humanoid skeletons in connection with the Smithsonian Institute BEFORE Childress came on the scene. These blogs and articles highlight a few:
4/21/2014 04:52:07 pm
I grew impatient. I should have read the entire article at first. That being said, I still find it incredibly naive for anyone to not think that something else is at work with the amount of documented evidence of skeletons being turned over to the Smithsonian and their apparent absence from public record at the museum. Why is it that so many independent news stories claim these findings' affiliation with the Smithsonian Institute only for them to be denied by the museum? Someone's lying, and I doubt it's all of the newspapers.
12/29/2014 03:11:19 am
I appreciate this article as a balance to a lot of what I have been reading. I am deeply interested in the Giant/Nephilim/Diffusion theories.
7/20/2015 07:57:47 am
Very easy to type on a keyboard that: the Arizona Gazette article is a hoax. I read the article and if it is a hoax then the writer thereof has an imagination that exceeds the best of our science fiction writers.
9/15/2015 10:54:51 pm
Actually the Smithsonian did indeed admit to destroying "thousands" of giant skeletons, so therefore it is no great leap to conclude that various artifacts have met a similar fate. One need only look at a book entitled Forbidden Archeology and ask what happened to all those artifacts.
terry the censor
9/15/2015 11:13:55 pm
> the Smithsonian did indeed admit to destroying "thousands" of giant skeletons
6/4/2016 02:01:10 pm
With luck, this might help sort out any confusion for everyone:
6/4/2016 04:25:08 pm
Alas, it will take more than luck, Chris. "One need only look at a book entitled Forbidden Archeology and ask what happened to all those artifacts." See? If it's in a book, it must be true. Archeology is easy peasy when you know This One Simple Trick.
6/28/2016 10:55:49 am
What about Steve Quayle's Genesis Giants & etc. and his assertions of a Smithsonian coverup? All wrong? I do believe the giants and the ancient race existed - pre-flood (Atlantis). As to whether the Smithsonian covered up anything, I don't know.
5/4/2017 10:26:01 pm
Academia is dead
10/13/2017 01:37:16 pm
Okay so let me start by saying I enjoy reading your own alternative take on things. Can't say I've read a lot you've posted. Sometimes I find you subject to the same criticism you're using as an argument. But I digress.. Am I to take it that in your "research" you somehow missed dozens of newspaper articles involving anatomically large people from a time when the news regularly covered such discoveries? It's all pre 1900, for one. They do not by any means indict the Smithsonian every time, but it is seen to happen often. Smithsonian became interested and involved, and carted off the remains for further examination. They never touch on anything to the effect that anything is being destroyed. So no conspiracy, simply what you would expect of an institution of science. Ive never read any books by Childress, and I am not in favor of Alien life helping us, we are quite capable as humans. Childress however did not create this concept, so that's deliberate misinformation. Maybe you disagree with the guy, who knows, who cares? I frequently disagree with some of what you read. By your logic alone, you are creating the very sort of conspiracy you've aimed to bring to light. Taking us full circle to where I started this comment.
10/13/2017 01:59:00 pm
Even happening upon this page, which is the second time I've found myself here while looking for info myself, was because I woke up this morning to this article:
10/13/2017 02:31:39 pm
Now having finished your article, I noticed your jab at Hancock. He pushes no White man agenda, and its pretty slandorous to imply he was. I have to address that not only are you discrediting and then supporting other statements he's made, and I am by no means an advocate for taking anyone's singular word whole heartedly as truth, but you're adding yourself to a list of people who otherwise try to discredit Hancock by cherry picking Fingerprints of the Gods. I read an article online about Charles Hapgood, a man now relegated to "fringe" and only having "alternative theorists support" his biggest supporter being "Graham Hancock". I have no doubt you've read Fingerprints of the Gods. If you haven't, you probably shouldn't be addressing it on any terms, which is what most people do. The same article claims Hancock is trying to prove the existence of Atlantis, which is a load of crap. The book itself is divided into different scientific disciplines, map making, archaeology, ice age science, mythology, precession of the equinox and the math involved, and egyptian archaeology, math involved in the Great Pyramid etc. You, sir, are doing the same thing as the other journalist in suggesting a white agenda, which carries with it stigmas of racism. You took the mythology section of the book, subjugated a particular fact you read, in doing so taking it out of context, and somehow missed he takes the word of the people in south and central america at face value when they claim fair skinned people helped advance their civilization. He refers several times to it in the book, but never suggests white man built all this. He also refers to Plato's story several times, typically in the context of the date it was supposed to have happened coinciding with the end of the ice age. The book is 500 pages, people can only conceive what amounts to short opinions. It is not short, or simple. It is also not about white mans grand archaeology, or Atlantis. But when you marginalize this, all people see is what you wrote. Effectively breeding, again, new conspiracy of your own
7/24/2018 01:24:28 am
Yes everyone knows we must always believe what the government tells us. Not that I'm a conspiracy theorist, but how many times has the government been caught lying to the people? Look at the CIA in the experiments they did with LSD on people. Look at experiments that the military did on African Americans. These are just a couple I can think of off the top of my head. You can imagine the things we don't know that our government has done. So it is far-fetched to believe that a government run facility could destroy or hide artifacts that they have come into possession of. And of course what of all the newspaper articles of all these artifacts that were discovered and turned over to the Smithsonian only to be lost or destroyed and the museum to tell us they never existed in the first place. Now be a good little fellow and run along will tell you what to think
10/19/2021 05:50:11 am
Enjoyed the article Mr. Colavito. Falls pretty much in line with my own research, except where you've pointed to connections that I haven't uncovered; and I'm appreciative of those connections.
Your comment will be posted after it is approved.
Leave a Reply.
I am an author and researcher focusing on pop culture, science, and history. Bylines: New Republic, Esquire, Slate, etc. There's more about me in the About Jason tab.
Enter your email below to subscribe to my newsletter for updates on my latest projects, blog posts, and activities, and subscribe to Culture & Curiosities, my Substack newsletter.
Terms & Conditions
Please read all applicable terms and conditions before posting a comment on this blog. Posting a comment constitutes your agreement to abide by the terms and conditions linked herein.