The UFO Iconoclast(s)

Friday, May 27, 2011

Jacobsen and her book, Area 51, disputed by ABC News

31 Comments:

  • I have listened to the interview, and the subsequent short commentary on Area 51. I have not seen the book and do not particularly want to. Presumably Jacobsen's narrative about Area 51 is reasonably close to the truth (?) but the part about the Roswell affair is, we can say with near certainty, total trash.

    Yet there are plenty of people who will rush out and buy this book. It will have a few days, maybe weeks, of fame, then fade from the news. In other countries, such as the UK and Europe, it will most likely never even get into the news.

    By Blogger cda, at Friday, May 27, 2011  

  • You Brits, CDA, are more sensible than we Yanks.

    Media here, of which most of he RRRGroup is part, is not objective in any sense of the word.

    Media constantly seeks out sensational items, to garner ratings, readers, and thus advertisers.

    It's shameful, despicable almost, as journalism is or should be a calling like the priesthood.

    The buying of the book goes to my constant harping on the nature of the rabble, whom Nick Redfern finds to be okay and "nice."

    Phooey...

    RR

    By Blogger RRRGroup, at Friday, May 27, 2011  

  • I posted an essay yesterday regarding another form of the same phenomenon of ignorance posing as insight which centers around the connections between a recent essay connecting the Men In Black with Aspergers Syndrome and then then turns a full circle back to Peter Gersten when the author changed the title of his piece based on my own and another's comments. Lunacy in it's many forms can also draw blood. Is all this a case of massive cross contamination in the information field as opposed to critical thinking?

    http://materialintangible.blogspot.com/2011/05/some-days-are-better-than-others.html

    By Blogger Bruce Duensing, at Friday, May 27, 2011  

  • Bruce:

    We luv ya man, but your comment really belongs inside another posting here, not this one.

    (I'll leave it up, but you might consider re-sending it to its proper venue. Thanks.)

    RR

    By Blogger RRRGroup, at Friday, May 27, 2011  

  • I drink beer, I watch loads of reality TV, I watch English football every day, I go down the pub. I like the rabble cuz I'm one of them, and proud in the process!

    By Blogger Nick Redfern, at Friday, May 27, 2011  

  • Anthony Bragalia has also done something on the Jacobsen book, having contacted her "source" for the alleged Roswell bits.

    See it at:

    http://bragalia.blogspot.com

    RR

    By Blogger RRRGroup, at Friday, May 27, 2011  

  • Well, you may be right and yet isn't this a war of vested propaganda that is a competitive sport of narratives post editorially attempting to apply euclidean rationality to a ( as of yet) undetermined series of entangled anomalies? A narrative myth to sell a book about Area 51, a Heavens Gate myth to commit suicide by, a myth about aspergers attached to MIB, a myth that is informative only in the sense that we cannot fit square pegs into round holes by recycling them as "psychic" propaganda in the information field in order to keep our old conceptual models from vanishing, and the attempts are getting more deluded in many a stunning example of a form of cross contamination. You of course could be right, and I of course could have posted this in the wrong venue. Sorry about that.

    By Blogger Bruce Duensing, at Friday, May 27, 2011  

  • Bruce:

    Since you believe that everything is connected, I guess posting your comment hither rather than yon makes sense.

    I just thought that persons would find it more relevant in a spot where the contents matched.

    No need to aplogize.

    Insights from you are grist for enlightenment where ever they appear.

    RR

    By Blogger RRRGroup, at Friday, May 27, 2011  

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    By Blogger Paul Kimball, at Friday, May 27, 2011  

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    By Blogger Paul Kimball, at Friday, May 27, 2011  

  • Paul:

    I'm having an e-mail dialogue with Bragalia at the moment.

    He thinks that the O'Donnell story, passed on to Jacobsen, is true, but O'Donnell experienced a satged event -- ostensibly, if I understand him rightly, to throw off scientists at Area 51 about the ET nature of the 1947 Roswell "crash."

    I told Tony the story gets loopier and loopier, so you and I are in agreement it seems.

    Roswell will not die! It is the summa bonum of UFO believers I'm afraid.

    (And yes, we're abetting the damn thing by posting at our blogs ongoing Roswell nonsense. You have a mea culpa from me for that.)

    RR

    By Blogger RRRGroup, at Friday, May 27, 2011  

  • I have read Bragalia's article and agree with Paul Kimball's conclusions. Bragalia is as guilty as Annie Jacobsen and is peddling more garbage about Roswell, garbage of a different kind, but still garbage.

    Instead of the old guy McDonnell being the one who (mis)informed Ms Jacobsen, we now have him portrayed as an innocent victim of someone else, who is anonymous. And the case gets more and more complicated, as usual.

    Boy, are we making progress!

    By Blogger cda, at Friday, May 27, 2011  

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    By Blogger Paul Kimball, at Friday, May 27, 2011  

  • Paul and CDA:

    Tony's interview is not journalistic, I agree.

    His training is not in the methods of the Fourth Estate, obviously.

    But he thinks he has a story, which I told him earlier was trumped by ABC's Nightline segment last night (5/26).

    Be that as it may, we (mostly me) try to accomodate all views, goofy and otherwise, here.

    I have few loopy insertions of my own, as you know and won't dispute.

    If someone makes an effort to present an item, and offers it graciously and with some attempt at creativity, even if lacking logic or common sense, I'll give them a venue.

    After all, I don't want to be a total fascist....

    RR

    By Blogger RRRGroup, at Friday, May 27, 2011  

  • You know Paul, you are all talk. I'd like to see you be able to find and interview Annie Jacobsen's source.

    And guess what: I've found several other of her EG&G sources! So you must give some credit to me that I am resourceful in researching documents and successfully hunting people down.

    And Paul, you do not know what my firm does, but it involves speaking with high-level executives at our nation's defense contractors every day who are my clients. I make professional calls.

    And in my UFO investigations, I have interviewed dozens of retired elderly who held high-level intelligence or military posts. There is a way that you must go about approaching them. You must appeal to their sense of things that are larger than themselves, remind them subtly that they are in the winter of their lives, etc.

    Remember that O'Donnell said that he would not say anything to me originally? But he wound up saying and confirming much because I did press..

    And Paul, using a string of derogatory words such as "shoddy" "wild" and "pitiful" to describe me is unbecoming of you...

    AJB
    Anthony Bragalia

    By Anonymous Anonymous, at Friday, May 27, 2011  

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    By Blogger Paul Kimball, at Friday, May 27, 2011  

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    By Blogger Paul Kimball, at Friday, May 27, 2011  

  • Paul:

    Bragalia has an inordinate respect for old people I think. (He treats me well.)

    Just as Joseph Capp and a few other "ufologists" do; they treat old witnesses and old people involved in the UFO debacle with kid gloves.

    That's nice -- not journalistic or scientific perhaps, but nice.

    I, too, was sympathetic to the old man, O'Donnell, as Tony was relating to me, in real time, his contact with the man.

    O"Donnell has issues, those that come with being 88 years old.

    He was treated with deference by Tony and I give Tony props for that.

    But I would have gone for the jugular.

    That's just me, however...I'm a bastard.

    RR

    By Blogger RRRGroup, at Friday, May 27, 2011  

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    By Blogger Paul Kimball, at Friday, May 27, 2011  

  • Paul-

    You may have "written about it over the years" but you could not possibly have talked to as many people as I have re Roswell and related areas.

    You seem to forget (and I believe now purposely):

    O'Donnell would not speak to me at all!!!

    He knew that I had "found him out" and he wanted to get off of the phone...

    What use would that have been to anyone? What part of that do you not get Paul?

    So I tried to keep on truckin'...

    I moved the conversation along till he began to 'loosen' somewhat and continue to speak...

    Your "old journalism Professor" Paul?- have him contact me directly. There are some that teach and some that do. Get it? And I am new-school, ambush journalism...and as your Uncle Stan says, "we're chasing the undertaker" to get to the truth...

    AJB
    Anthony Bragalia

    By Anonymous Anonymous, at Friday, May 27, 2011  

  • Again I have to agree with Paul. Tony Bragalia is kind and polite to ageing witnesses, which is well and good. But this is not the point when dealing with important historical facts. Showing respect and deference is simply not enough. As far as I can tell from his interview, this ageing witness had nothing useful to say, nothing at all. What did we learn from him?

    Bragalia was out to impress him with his knowledge of Roswell and the USAF cover-up of it. Just like Stan Friedman is out to impress witnesses with his qualifications in nuclear physics, and his knowledge of the grand UFO cover-up. What new info was gained from Tony's interview? Absolutely zilch. The interview was so one-sided that it got nowhere. Meanwhile he promises more revelations to come. There is always "more to come". The perfect way to keep people glued to this blog. "Stay tuned" as they say. Indeed.

    By Blogger cda, at Friday, May 27, 2011  

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    By Blogger Paul Kimball, at Friday, May 27, 2011  

  • Well, I did chuckle when I read the ambush journalism thing.

    As a bona fide reporter, with a few sons and people here who are also journalists or media staffers, Tony's entitlement tickled me.

    But, you're right, I have decried such boasting at UpDates and elsewhere, and our Media web-site eschews such braggadocio when it is so blatantly off the mark.

    But Tony Bragalia has credibility in his profession and cachet as a serious researcher with his business, so we cut him some slack when he goes over the top.

    See, I treat (some) younger people with deference, just as he treats older folks.

    RR

    By Blogger RRRGroup, at Friday, May 27, 2011  

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    By Blogger Paul Kimball, at Friday, May 27, 2011  

  • Paul:

    I've taken your comments, CDA's, and even Redfern's (privately) to heart.

    That's why we've given Tony his own blog, although it's housed in our conglomeration of blogs; not in this set but in another which also houses Nick's files that don't exactly fit with our purposes here.

    You'll note that you're commenting inside our presentation of ABC's Nightline segment about Jacobsen from 5/26, not Tony's blog.

    We haven't even linked, in a post, Tony's blog posting, although I did give him a nod, here, in comments.

    So there is no direct imprimatur, although I wouldn't have been loath to provide Tony's posting here, had ABC not beat him to the punch with Jacobsen's source, unnamed by ABC but known to cognoscenti and us because Tony divulged it earlier in the day, Thursday.

    I don't find Tony's "onslaught" to be anathema, no matter how much it rankles a few people -- you, CDA, and maybe Redfern.

    Now let's allow the matter to terminate under its own normal volition, or to go forth should others wish it to do so.

    RR

    By Blogger RRRGroup, at Friday, May 27, 2011  

  • Paul-

    I am asking this in all sincerity:

    What the hell are you on? Or is there no substance involved and you are just naturally an asshole?

    Dear God, you sound as if you have become unhinged. You are embarrassing yourself as and overwrought and rabid wannabe with an inflated sense of self. You're begging for money on your site I see, go beg for the attention that you also seek, elsewhere.

    You are rambling on and on between two other people (one a yes-man skeptic, CDA) and trying to incite me and draw me in.

    I just realized that maybe I should have used you, Paul, as a prime example when composing my article on UFOs and the Descent into Madness...

    AJB
    Anthony Bragalia

    By Anonymous Anonymous, at Friday, May 27, 2011  

  • "I think you must forget about your oaths and clearances. The Soviet threat is no longer. It is more than six decades on Alfred! I sometimes almost get emotional about all of this…doesn’t, does not truth mean anything? Why have our children’s children believe in fantasy, if this is what it was?"

    "I will think about it. I will give it some consideration…"

    Alfred, have other people called you about this?

    "I’m not going to say anything at all about that."

    The first response left the door open, it did not completely close and the second response appeared to indicate that others had called, otherwise a simple defensive no or a simply no is a shorter route of response. An act of consideration on this gentleman's part appears to have led him where he does want to go, that is to say being entangled in controversy. Was anything lost in this effort to attempt a dialog? No, this does not appear to be the case. Would a face to face interview been more productive? Of course. I, for one am interested in Mr Kimball's reasoning as to what constitutes shoddy oral research in this example. A narrative appeared necessary to be conveyed inasmuch as that may have just as easily prompted a refutation just as the affirmation regarding Linus Pauling. If the truth is what is paramount, I suggest as well as the history of Roswell suggests, no single narrative supplied by anyone, including this elderly fellow will ever suffice. All of these competitive narratives wag the dog. In the end, it is always about the context of events whether it is a murder case, a Cryptozoic creature or the cold war. Inference in the place of facts is the story of Roswell. It may be a chimera due to the fact it never happened, that it was a feint, an effective intentional ruse. Why did R Regan use the same extremely effective ploy against the Soviets with a non existent Star Wars? Perhaps because it worked before. Look at the same that the U.K used against the Third Reich. Again history tells us it was very effective. On and on.

    By Blogger Bruce Duensing, at Friday, May 27, 2011  

  • There is nothing wrong with the man's answer if he thinks her book needed to be released for whatever reason. He did NOT say he wanted to help her make money off the sales of the book.

    Furthermore, I think an 80 year old 'confused' man might still prefer to NOT display his emotions on national television. And that's what a deep sense of patriotism is -- it's an emotion.

    The two answers are not even exclusive to each other. They don't conflict. He can certainly want to get the word out -- which is accomplished by helping her sell as many books as possible. And he can also feel an emotional need for doing so -- patriotism.

    Whatever this guy intended to prove about this woman, he failed in doing so. Instead, this interview proved to me that the person asking the question has a very poor understanding of logic.

    By Blogger Parakletos, at Saturday, May 28, 2011  

  • The ABC reporter fails to interview objectively. This account of the infamous "Roswell" incident sounds a little far fetched, specifically because none of these claims have ever been made before. That alone does not make it untrue, however one would think if such a story was created in the creative, and or delusional mind of an old man, there would be better points to attack in this story. The ABC reporter fails to be objective and ask any relevant questions. He was intent on attacking this account from the start, and for no good reason from what i can tell. Remember the good old days? When news was news and personal opinions had no place in reporting it? Remember when an interview consisted of objective questions designed to get the facts? Gone are the days of old. C'est la vie.

    By Blogger Adam, at Saturday, May 28, 2011  

  • The argument between Paul Kimball and Anthony Braglia sums up what is wrong with ufology today.

    Take a chill pill and grow up, Paul.

    Tony, learn to take criticism, even if you don't think it's fair.

    Personally, I think Tony did what he could with an old man who didn't want to say "boo". I've conducted interviews that were like squeezing water out of a rock -- but I didn't use filler to get what was nothing printed into something.

    Spare a thought for Thomas Carey and Donald Schmitt, who interviewed hundreds of people for their Witness To Roswell.

    By Anonymous Anonymous, at Saturday, May 28, 2011  

  • The transcript of the telecon on Bragalia's blog should be shown to two or three attorneys experienced in courtroom procedures, to see if they agree with me that the questioner (Bragalia) is guilty of 'leading' the witness by the nature of his questions. This is the sort of thing Stanton Friedman does. It has nothing to do with the age or memory of the witness. It is known as suggestibility, using leading questions.

    There may be bits of the conversation omitted, but it seems to me that O'Donnell is being very coy about his classified work at Area 51 (which is only to be expected), but that Tony Bragalia has planted, or maybe reinforced, the idea in O'Donnell's mind that ETs were involved at Roswell. My conclusion is that O'Donnell never heard of Roswell when he was at Area 51, but has picked up bits here and there during the past decades, from all the publicity it had. He has told Annie Jacobsen one thing; then Bragalia comes along, reinterviews him and gently persuades O'Donnell that he was the victim of a cover story by his bosses at Area 51. There is nothing in the transcript suggesting that O'Donnell knew, or suspected, the 'truth' during his time at Area 51.

    I'd be interested to know, for example, if O'Donnell had read Nick Redfern's book of 5 or 6 years ago. It would also be interesting to see the full transcripts of the Jacobsen-O'Donnell interviews. Do they exist?

    Truth will out, Bragalia says. Yes, but only if there is a 'truth' to come out.

    By Blogger cda, at Sunday, May 29, 2011  

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