Wednesday, January 5, 2011

Ken Johnston gets another 15 minutes

        Ken is the former Grumman technician and former clerk in the Lunar Receiving Lab who was trotted out by Richard Hoagland at the notoriously underattended "press conference" at the National Press Club on 29th October 2007 (video).

        Ken's job at the LRL was to ship moonrocks to scientists who had successfully applied to conduct experiments on them, along with context photographs showing their original environment and exact orientation. As such he had in his file cabinets a collection of copies of photo prints from the main Apollo archive, which was in a separate building.

        Somehow Johnston's role in Apollo became inflated in the tiny minds of Hoagland & Bara to "Director of Apollo Photo Archives" and the reason he was introduced (to almost nobody) at the 2007 press conference was that Hoagland was convinced that Johnston was the sole possessor of incriminating Apollo photography which showed unequivocal evidence of a lunar civilization. As it turned out, the so-called evidence was not merely equivocal but downright unconvincing (compare the actual file images AS14-66-9301 and AS14-66-9279.)

        Nor was that all. James Oberg found time to look into the curriculum vitae ascribed to Johnston by Hoagland & Bara and found it largely fictional. Mike Bara made a valiant attempt at defending it on the Dark Mission blog, but Hoagland, Bara, and their ignorant publisher Adam Parfrey all had to climb down and amend the text of Dark Mission's second edition. Pity they didn't correct more of the errors while they were at it.

        Just over a week ago, somebody using the pseudonym LiveForever8 posted two Youtube videos (originally from Sacred Mysteries Productions) of Ken Johnston on Above Top Secret, and the controversy gained a second life. The thread makes a good read, with Oberg in fine form giving us all a lesson in how to stick to the topic in the face of many attempts to derail the discussion into irrelevance.

Monday, January 3, 2011

What do you do when.... of your most persistent and confident predictions for 2010 crashes and burns? If you're Richard Hoagland, you just declare that it happened anyway, but nobody noticed.

        That was the official Hoagland line on Coast to Coast AM last night, confronted with the undeniable fact that "The Year We Make Contact" just ended with a distinct lack of contact unless you count the contact of Lindsay Lohan's hand on a Betty Ford Center technician in December. In a discursive three-hour chat with George Noory, Hoagland said several times that "contact has happened. You just have to look."

        The announced topic for last night was astrobiology, but as it turned out arsenic-tolerant bacteria weren't on the menu—Hoagland having perhaps realized that it's not a topic upon which he can hope to shine. Instead we got about an hour of what jolly good buddies Arthur C. Clarke and Richard C. Hoagland once were, then a tour of his favorite bits of nonsense including the robot head on the Moon and the Nazis in space. "Somebody," he said, is preparing us for "something," by coming up with all these science fiction movies (Transformers et al.) This was perhaps a bit of a slip-up, since if contact has already happened what need is there for preparation?

        It was a sleep-inducing three hours, ending with guess what? Oh yes, the 800 number.

        Of course.