Peter Levenda Attacks "Ancient Aliens" in "Rolling Stone" without Actually Watching "Ancient Aliens"
Last week I complained that I was getting tired of material that pretended to be new but was really recycled. It happened again this week. The Daily Mail breathlessly reported that a YouTube channel called SecureTeam10 posted a “new” video about the so-called Roswell Rock, which you will remember from its appearance on Ancient Aliens and In Search of Aliens several years ago. The video turns out to be mostly a summary of the Ancient Aliens and In Search of Aliens episodes, with worse visuals and worse voice over. The video doesn’t bother to even add new claims to those of the earlier shows.
The fact that the Daily Mail even noticed that Tsoukalos had previously done a show on the stone but didn’t actually watch it to see what was lifted from it is rather depressing, not least because the Mail happily lifted from it, too, for their article.
This sort of daisy chain of repetition and ignorance is annoying when it comes from amateurs and click-bait journalists, but it is downright obnoxious coming from so-called professionals in the field of ufology and ancient astronautics. Tom DeLonge and Peter Levenda decided to opine on the subject again to promote their book Sekret Machines: Gods, this time in Rolling Stone, and they repeated their own ignorance for a mass audience, recycling a debunked assertion that they have an approach to ancient astronautics ignored by Ancient Aliens.
Now, to start with, I am annoyed that Rolling Stone writer Elisabeth Garber-Paul purposely conflated the scientific conclusion that extraterrestrial life is likely on other planets with the fringe claim that said life likely or even definitely arrived here on the Earth, something that seems statistically improbable given the size of the universe. It’s kind of important to note the distinction between the probability that extraterrestrial life exists and the probability that it visited the Earth in historic times.
Anyway, Levenda continued his ignorant claim that he and DeLonge are forging new ground untrammeled by the ancient astronaut theorists of Ancient Aliens:
But, as the authors point out, they're not claiming that everything you've seen on shows like Ancient Aliens is real. "Humans are responsible for building the pyramids, for instance," says Levanda. "I think we can agree on that. But what was the impetus behind it? What we're saying is the initial contact is what prompted all this. Not that there were aliens out there telling us how to build pyramids. I think that just devalues the entire conversation, and we're trying to get beyond that."
Yes, Rolling Stone spelled Levenda’s name wrong.
The ancient astronaut theorists of Ancient Aliens haven’t claimed aliens built the pyramids, and even Erich von Däniken stopped short of saying it in Chariots of the Gods. Take, for example, Giorgio Tsoukalos’s infamous 2011 tweet, the one that launched me on the path of translating medieval Arab pyramid legends: “Repeat after me: The pyramids were NOT built by aliens. According to ancient Egyptian texts, the pyramids were built by humans WITH THE ASSISTANCE of the ‘Guardians of the Sky,’ or the ‘Teachers from Heaven,’ the ‘gods,’ who descended from the sky in ‘flying barges’... (If you're wondering what ‘texts’ I’m referring to, check out the AL-KHITAT by Al-Maqrizi.).”
So how does Levenda’s methodology differ from Tsoukalos’s? He does not have aliens coming quite as often, I guess, and he also prefers to use Aztec examples rather than Egyptian:
"Religions around the world consistently say that beings from the heavens came down and taught us this or gave us that," says Levanda. "In Gods we go into the nuance of this, from Aztec blood sacrifices to various creation epics that say we were created as servants to some other race of beings." For this volume, they went back and looked at original texts from various civilizations to see what information they could glean. "We don't create myths out of whole cloth," says Levanda. "Something happens and we create a myth around it. We're talking about events that are being described by people using the vocabulary they had."
This just makes me angry because Levenda is pretending as though he has a whole new approach that those cretins on the History Channel never considered, and yet there he is saying exactly what they have said, year in and year out, decade after decade, with the only real difference being how much time he allots between contact and building construction.
And just for kicks: Reddit users have been discussing whether this man who appeared in an OTO occult ritual as a member of the OTO in a 2013 episode of Secrets of Secret Societies that aired on Discovery and later AHC is in fact Peter Levenda, who claims not to be an occultist. The resemblance is uncanny. While I can’t say whether he is or isn’t the man in the video, it would hardly surprise me if he is, since he is also the man who swears he is not Simon, the author of the Necronomicon, but is happy to have HarperCollins warrant and vouchsafe in a legal document to the federal government that he is “Peter Levenda, whose pseudonym is Simon.” Surely, if he is not Simon, he must be thoroughly horrified to know that his publishers at HarperCollins lied to the federal government on his behalf and will forthwith correct the legal paperwork.
4/11/2017 08:55:36 am
"Last week I complained that I was getting tired of material that pretended to be new but was really recycled. It happened again this week."
4/11/2017 09:15:06 pm
Let’s have some fun changing a few words in your headline, shall we?
4/11/2017 09:32:20 pm
Hey everyone! Let's describe our keyboards in graphic detail.
4/11/2017 09:36:29 pm
SteveSTD- I asked you a question a few days ago that you have failed to answer because you are to busy being a douche. Perhaps you could put the bottle down and pull your head of your ass and answer the question now-
4/11/2017 09:39:07 pm
Hey everyone! Let's all try to be clever like KATHLEEN and irrelevant like AMERICANEGRO.
4/11/2017 09:44:00 pm
Steve, allow me to now critique your *comment*.
4/11/2017 09:46:44 pm
Hey SMALLDICK (yet another all cap fake name),
4/11/2017 09:50:51 pm
Even you slobbering acolytes have to admit that turning BIGNICK into SMALLDICK is a great abuse of a fake name. I’m quite proud of that one. You’re welcome.
4/11/2017 10:07:28 pm
4/11/2017 10:10:17 pm
4/11/2017 10:23:33 pm
Oh my! Let's go back topical discussion and save the trashy talk for the playground during recess. Apologies for my participation.
4/11/2017 10:29:28 pm
So... am I not a participant in the hatefest? I feel like you haven't read all my comments. I understand. The alcohol must really be affecting your vision by now. Plus, you probably have enough trouble reading when your sober, taint.
4/11/2017 11:06:13 pm
"I'm not here to engage with inane slobbering acolytes like you. I'm here to abuse the participants in this hate fest, you dumbass."
4/12/2017 12:04:17 am
Cap'n Steve. What to do? While on the one hand I'm down with drinking to excess, you seem not to be good at it. Additionally you present as someone who is mentally ill. Did it all fall apart for you when Wolter lost his TV show? Have you had a personal crisis? Is it related to conflict over sharing your orientation? Or do you anticipate having to report in every Halloween from now on? You sound like someone with little or nothing to lose; perhaps you should be taking inventory of available pipes, ropes, and stools.
4/12/2017 12:25:24 am
You'll have to forgive Steve, everyone. Centuries of keeping the Bloodline pure and safe have resulted in some rather crippling defects of character in its modern-day scions.
4/12/2017 01:36:28 am
4/12/2017 01:59:41 am
I feel like Smalldick and SteveSTD are equally funny and equally immature. I would accept a third party ruling on that.
4/12/2017 02:07:59 am
Not everyone is in the Eastern Time Zone.
4/12/2017 02:26:59 am
"Wow, I step away for a couple hours to have a life (something Colavito’s fervent followers might consider sometime) only to return to see that Jason’s pathetic acolytes have indeed piled on, as predicted."
4/12/2017 02:34:01 am
My, my! A wall of text to pick through. Let's see:
4/12/2017 02:21:24 pm
"Even if you hate your enemy, you must occasionally admit when they come up with a funny approach to attack you."
4/12/2017 05:37:23 pm
You know, Steve's right about one thing: I've been hiding behind a fake name. It's actually Clinton on my birth certificate, but when your parents are big Clint Eastwood fans that last syllable gets dropped unless you're six and in a lot of trouble.
An Over-Educated Grunt
4/12/2017 08:12:48 pm
HELLO MISTAR SANCLAIR I AM VERAY INTARESTED IN SANCLAIR DNA BECAUSE MY COUSAN WAS LAST KING OF SCOYLAND IDI AMIN DADA YOU ARE GREAT STRONG INTARNET MAN LIKE COUSIN DO YOU THINK YOU MAY ALSO BE CUSAN SANCLAR?
4/11/2017 02:51:28 pm
It's really discouraging that Rolling Stone's reporter seems even less capable than Levenda et al. It seems like believing even the slightest bit of this fringe nonsense lowers your IQ by double digits and takes away basic language skills.
4/11/2017 03:04:48 pm
As a great man once said, "Your mastery of the Internet has created a following for sure, but like a lot of miss-guided [sic] ventures, be careful what you wish for. Your attempts to undermine me personally have only hardened my resolve."
4/11/2017 03:05:23 pm
I can't say I'm surprised that Rolling Stone would publish this trash. I used to have a subscription; the whole magazine consisted of depressing human interest stories and naive political commentary buffered by the occasional story about Deadmau5's latest single.
4/12/2017 02:09:19 am
I used to enjoy seeing Loggins and Messina's girlfriends topless and Linda Ronstadt in pink panties back when she was hot. William Greider's political pieces were particularly good.
4/12/2017 11:06:07 am
I admit, that last part was impressive.
4/11/2017 04:23:37 pm
If a name is found misspelled, and caught by the editor, the article is not going to print. If they allowed it to go to print misspelled, then that shows some editor was not paying attention.
4/11/2017 06:28:24 pm
"If a name is found misspelled, and caught by the editor, the article is not going to print."
4/11/2017 07:50:01 pm
. . unless there is a serious conspiracy afoot! On Levenda's FB page, someone named Donald wrote in that the misspelling was deliberate, though he only believed it to be a sign of disrespect for Peter. However, I had to apprise Donald and Levenda of a much more sinister conspiracy lurking like Lovecraft behind the misspelling, so I wrote this:
4/11/2017 04:37:43 pm
4/12/2017 03:29:58 pm
Steve StC, we know you are trolling, since 2013. We also know you cannot possibly be the blogger St Clare, as his writing is similar but far better researched. You don't actually have a blog, so you come here to harass others.
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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.
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