Sailing the seas of cheese...
- What would it be like to stand on Mars, and take a good look around? Something like this I'd imagine. So, so cool.
- Heaven's Gate, ten years on. Wonder if C2C will cover the anniversary?
- Storm warning! The solar minimum we're currently in is the calm before the storm, with a massive solar maximum expected in (*gasp!*) 2012.
- Company wins $19million lawsuit against Amway distributors for spreading rumours about its links with Satanism.
- 'Bleeding' Jesus portraits draw crowds in India.
- Nature goes on the attack against alternative therapies being taught in universities.
- UK paper apologises on front page for supporting the legalisation of marijuana, claiming they now believe the drug is dangerous. Numerous stupid comments, such as the one about marijuana being more dangerous than Ecstasy and LSD - the reason it's rated higher is because the other two aren't considered dangerous...the report lists alcohol as being significantly more harmful than marijuana.
- Need to navigate the current paradigm? Here's a handy map.
- Scientists create microscopic alphabet soup. I looked for some Voom! in there, but I couldn't find any.
- Mapping the 248th dimension.
- Hinode space telescope reveals the impossible on the Sun.
- Futuristic NASA think tank to be shut down.
- Anomalous lights seen in conjunction with earthquake.
- Scientists study sacred sounds.
- Professor decries 'DaVinci Codification' of culture over the past few years.
- You don't need sex to evolve. Hell of a good way to kill 40 million years though...
- Duke University patents mind-controlled weapons.
- Study details catastrophic impact of nuclear attack on US cities. Scary things, like no American Idol to watch, no McDonalds to get a snack from. Duck and cover!
- Was Marilyn Monroe tricked into killing herself by the Kennedys?
- Remember when those scientists did a proof of how vampires could not exist? Seems they forgot the Buffy factor (first thing they teach in 'Maths in Vampirology 101').
Quote of the Day:
Sell a man a fish he eats for a day, teach a man to fish and you've ruined a wonderful business opportunity.
Alistair from Fortean Times has sent over a quick note:
I've just put up a book sale on the FT site. The books have been priced ludicrously cheap, and we've thrown in some nice giveaways with it.
Anybody in the UK should have a quick look. If you're in Australia like me, due to the Dollar-Pound conversion I think the cheapest costs $342,999 (okay, I'm exaggerating...just a little).
Perhaps when those pyramid doors are opened there will be more evidence of the pyramids being young.
- Pyramid’s secret doors to be opened.
- Nikola Tesla: the electric wizard.
- Why aren’t humans furry? Another possibility.
- The Great Sphinx: who was he? Or she?
- Penn & Teller: Bullshit!
- Brain damage turns man into human chameleon.
- Erasing the pain of the past. Eternal sunshine…
- Burrowing dinosaur unearthed.
- Brain man.
- Another electrical shock for astronomers.
- Moving big rocks.
- Underwater city Dwarka getting buried.
- New reason to hit the gym: fighting memory loss.
- Can Newton’s second law be violated on Earth?
- Sun-climate connection found in Old Nile Records.
- 2012: most intense solar maximum for 50 years.
Quote of the Day:
It is hard to believe that a man is telling the truth when you know that you would lie if you were in his place.
Debate has reopened in China as to whether the tomb of China's first emperor Qin Shi Huang should be excavated. Zhang Wuchang, a respected economist, says that "the cultural enlightenment from excavating the tomb of Qin Shi Huang will surpass the pyramids of Egypt," adding that an added benefit would be that tourism revenues to the area would also double.
The burial place of Qin Shi Huang is currently best known as the imperial tomb that accompanies the famed Terracotta Warriors, and which lies beneath one of the 'Chinese Pyramids'. However, there may be far more of note hidden beneath this structure, with historical records from less than a century after the emperor's death telling of a map of the heavens with stars represented by pearls, and on the floor of the tomb a map of China with the rivers and seas represented by flowing mercury. The latter at least may well be true, as surveys have shown high levels of mercury in the area.
As befits a king with his own pyramid, it is said that Qin Shi Huang was obsessed with finding the key to immortality, which led him to embark on numerous quests and 'trials' (including sex with multiple partners - though abstaining from climax, and also the drinking of mercury - before its ill effects were known). Many western archaeologists also think that the lack of excavation of Qin Shi Huang's tomb is based not so much in concerns about preservation, but in Chinese traditions and warnings about disturbing the dead...especially one so powerful in life. Certainly, if it ever happens, this will be one of the great archaeological excavations of this century.
If this topic interests you, I thoroughly recommend the video I've posted today, The First Emperor - a great documentary.
A strange assortment to get you through the week...
- Greg Bishop describes Penn and Teller as 'Masters of Deception' on his UFO Mystic blog.
- Binnall of America audio this week is the conclusion of Tim's chat with Mac Tonnies (available as mp3/podcast download, or streaming via Flash). That's right, almost four hours of Mac talking about UFOs.
- Loren Coleman tells "How Wallace Was Blamed for the Patterson Bigfoot Film", over at Cryptomundo.
- Whitley Strieber's latest journal entry is "Government by Contempt".
- Skeptic Randi's latest newsletter continues griping about the 'damage' that Oprah did that is so 'damaging'. Or words to that effect.
- The Société Périllos have a new Rennes-le-Chateau related article available, "The Priestly Gardener".
- Filip Coppens has a new essay on his website, covering various aspects of esoteric history. The new addition is "Salvador Dali: Painting the Fourth Dimension".
- Thothweb has "Rewriting History: America and the Vikings".
- Regan Lee discusses the Trickster in ufology at the OrangeOrb blog.
- On the Biblical Archaeology Society blog, Steven Feldman asks who this BAR crowd is, and why has the 'lost tomb of Jesus' debate got ugly so fast?
- Filer's Files #11 has the latest ufological news from around the globe.
- UFO Area has "The Great Sphinx: Who Was He?" by Ellen Lloyd, and also "Following the Sky Patterns", by Angus Sutherland.
- UFO Casebook #247 revisits the Phoenix Lights, amongst other things.
Many a sudden change takes place on a spring day.
- Tilted Earth is at its 'equal night of spring'.
- Hidden fossil, flying dragon.
- My - what long, needlepoint teeth you have: Fossil of ancient sea-going croc surfaces in eastern Oregon.
- A transatlantic team of number-crunchers announced they had built a theoretical structure in 248 dimensions, resolving a 120-year puzzle that could be used to test theories about the structure of the cosmos. More.
- 500 Hubble photos taken over a one-year period have been woven together to reveal at least 50,000 galaxies.
- In his testimony to the US House of Representatives, Dr. James Hansen delivered a withering critique of the way the White House has interfered with climate scientists at NASA. More.
- Cosmic Log's Alan Boyle takes a look at the caves on Mars. Nice photo of those Martian caves.
- The buzzing of bees can warn of nearby poisons.
- Paying attention to not paying attention: Researchers are studying a pervasive psychological phenomenon in which oh man we've got to finish doing the taxes this weekend ...
- Monkey see, monkey do: study demonstrates that we can learn much better just by watching than previously thought.
- Can exercise make you smarter?
- Whether from a personally experienced aversive event or only an event that's witnessed, human fears are acquired through similar neural processes.
- Infants are able to detect the 'impossible' at an early age.
- Playing music significantly enhances the brain.
- Laughter may boost altruistic behavior.
- Scientist finds the beginnings of morality in primate behavior.
- A group of organisms that has never had sex in over 40 million years of existence has nevertheless managed to evolve into distinct species.
- Enviro-cateclysm of the week: Rivers run towards crisis point.
- James Lovelock (think 'Gaia hypothesis') fears that Europe will soon become an uninhabitable desert.
- Over the past 25 years, global warming has led to a fall in the yield of some of the world's most important food crops.
- Alarm raised over soaring level of bird extinctions.
- The £25 fridge gadget that could slash greenhouse emissions.
- Some scientists are eyeing odd climate fixes.
- Then there are the innovators like civil engineer Mike Strizki, who hobbled together the US's first solar-hydrogen house.
- A floating house built out of trash in a reeking channel of a Rio de Janiero slum will be preserved as a model for recycling in a government anti-pollution campaign.
- Second Life offers virtual taste of schizophrenia.
- Full-mental nudity: the arrival of mind-reading machines.
- According to a secret FBI file, Marilyn Monroe was tricked into committing suicide.
- Bananas of mass destruction.
- FOIA documents reveal 185 sightings of big cats were reported to Scottish police between 2000 and 2006.
- Atlantis: Just the facts.
- The Seymore Hersh Mystery.
- Update: Gods of Spring: The Erotics of the Equinox.
Quote of the Day:
We're taught history under neat subject headings: dates, people, movements that do remarkable things (like end slavery). The assumption is that what's past - in terms of bullying policemen or grisly haircuts - is very much past, fit for nostalgic purpose, potentially relevant only as some BBC classic serial. And the assumption beyond that, 30 or 50 years on, is that human existence automatically involves the "progress" that politicians promise from every platform. Here's a long march towards more of everything desirable: more burgers, more holidays, more medication, more sweet satisfactions.
But real life, when you examine content, not style, isn't like that. Real life features greed, venality and Archie's spiritual emptiness in unchanging quantities. And, even in material ways, "progress" can seem a surprisingly frail concept.
Peter Preston, Guardian columnist, in People like us.
The debate over scientific proof of the 'power of prayer' is set to continue, with recent news that a meta-analysis of all experiments done so far shows a positive effect (ignore the headline of the story...the experiments do not mention anything about a 'God' being involved). David R. Hodge, an assistant professor of social work in the College of Human Services at Arizona State University, analysed the results of 17 major studies on the effects of intercessory prayer on people with psychological or medical problems:
"Some people feel Benson and associates’ study from last year, which is the most recent and showed no positive effects for intercessory prayer, is the final word," said Hodge, referring to a 2006 article by Dr. Herbert Benson of the Harvard Medical School that measured the therapeutic effect of intercessory prayer in cardiac bypass patients. "But, this research suggests otherwise. This study enables us to look at the big picture. When the effects of prayer are averaged across all 17 studies, controlling for differences in sample sizes, a net positive effect for the prayer group is produced."
This debate has been going on for some time (see for example this CNN story, and a Skeptical Inquirer commentary, from seven years ago). Benson's study was quite comprehensive, but no doubt this new meta-analysis will set off more argument and counter-argument. I guess key to its impact is the quality of studies which were part of the analysis.
Here's the alternative radio schedule for the first half of the week.
Coast to Coast AM: First hour Monday, researcher William Warwick shares an update on the Phoenix Lights, then author Whitley Strieber discusses his forthcoming novel, 2012: The War for Souls. Afterwards George talks to Ed Neil, who is an expert on the details, history, and on-going investigation of one of the nation's most notorious cold cases - The Zodiac Killer. On Tuesday, Senior Fellow of the Discovery Institute, Dr. Geoffrey Simmons, will discuss evolution, and evidence that the complexity of human anatomy could not have developed by chance. Wednesday's guest is Olav Phillips, who will talk about how he is using technology to explore and quantify the sea of information about UFOs and the unexplained. Thursday is still TBA (check the link for updates).
More details including relevant guest links are available at the C2C website.
What happened to January, February and most of March?
- The former Governor of Arizona, famous for ridiculing the Phoenix Lights by having a member of his staff dress up as an alien at a press conference, has done a 180-degree turn and now claims to have seen them. Funny how attitudes change when political reputations are no longer a concern.
- Even more bizarre is news that Sheik Khalid Mohammad has hired KPMG to begin an immediate forensic audit and investigation of UFO researcher Kevin Randle's numerous claims about the 1947 Roswell UFO crash. He's not the Al-Qaeda mastermind by the way.
- The Apache have legends of tunnels beneath the land made by people who live near the stars; could they be connected to Tiahuanaco?
- If you're interested in the above kind of story, I highly recommend Gary David's book The Orion Zone (Amazon US or UK), a fascinating journey through Native American and Ancient Egyptian culture, landscape, and myth.
- Myths and legends exist that tell of a time when the Earth had no moon.
- Are flying saucers the results of secret American research projects from World War II?
- Reports of UFOs spotted above the Prime Minister of India's home in Delhi.
- Rotorua in New Zealand is a hive of UFO sightings.
- Pictures taken by NASA's Odyssey spacecraft reveal what may be seven caves on the surface of Mars. If they're thinking about landing there, I hope NASA has seen Star Wars: The Empire Strikes Back.
- The Inuit hope science can explain why the sun is acting strangely in the Arctic. Something this mind-blowing should be on the front pages of all newspapers.
- The northern hemisphere recorded its warmest winter on record and El Nino is to blame.
- Scientists are at a loss to explain why some of the largest glaciers in Antarctica and Greenland are losing ice at an alarming rate.
- It shouldn't be that hard to work out, especially if they watch An Inconvenient Truth (Amazon US or UK).
- Two leading UK climate researchers say some of their peers are overplaying the global warming message.
- Two left-wing film-makers disillusioned with Michael Moore's hypocrisy give him a taste of his own medicine in a new documentary, Manufacturing Dissent.
- The President of Gambia claims the cure for AIDS was revealed to him in a dream by his ancestors.
- South African Credo Mutwa says the Suderlandia Fructosate plant can cure HIV, which is more credible than the Gambian President's secret herbs and spices.
- The tomb of China's first emperor could rival that of Tutankhamen, but a heated debate among Chinese archaeologists and Party officials question whether to excavate it at all. Maybe the Chinese can borrow Zahi Hawass's pyramid-shaft robot, he doesn't appear to be using it.
- A respected Chinese economist says the "cultural enlightenment from excavating the tomb of Qinshi Huang will surpass the pyramids of Egypt"; but his reasons could be considered a wee bit biased. My novel depends on the tomb remaining a mystery.
- No such hesitation in Mexico, where archaeologists have recently excavated more than 29 different tombs dating back about 2000 years.
- Delaware County workers stumbled onto what scientists believe to be a well-preserved earthwork built by pre-historic Woodland Native Americans.
- About dot com has an interesting article detailing encounters with the elusive little people.
- Everyone can be a psychic clairvoyant to an extent because we all possess an intuitive part of our soul.
- Are psychic abilities inherited traits passed on by parents with the right genes, or can they be developed by anyone?
- A cryptographer has solved Randi's Psychic Challenge, but has politely (and wisely) declined the prize money of $1million in worthless bonds. The gentleman is Matt Blaze, and he explains the solution on his blog.
- And because it's an excellent read, I highly recommend Paul Smith's commentary on the MoD's remote viewing efforts. I hope linking to TDG doesn't cause a hole in the time-space continuum.
Quote of the Day:
The pyramids of Dashur have always been the odd ones out. Evidence has convinced Egyptologists that the two Dashur pyramids, as well as that at Meydum further south, belonged to the pharaoh Snefru, founder of the 4th dynasty and father of Khufu. But three pyramids for one king is a serious “weakness” to the tomb theory of Egyptology.
Robert Bauval, from an interview by Greg Taylor in Sub Rosa Issue 6
A new article here on TDG: I've added a commentary from remote viewing expert Paul Smith (current President of the International Remote Viewing Association) titled "They Think They Know", on the recent revelations that the British Ministry of Defense explored intelligence gathering in a similar manner to the US army/CIA/DIA Project Stargate. Smith, a former Major in the US army's intelligence service, and author of the well-known "Co-ordinate Remote Viewing" manual, gives his thoughts on the scientific validity of the experiments, and on the media's coverage of the news.