Across the world’s great deserts, a mysterious sheen has been found on boulders and rock faces. These layers of manganese, arsenic and silica are known as desert varnish and they are found in the Atacama desert in Chile, the Mojave desert in California, and in many other arid places. They can make the desert glitter with surprising colour and, by scraping off pieces of varnish, native people have created intriguing symbols and images on rock walls and surfaces.
How desert varnish forms has yet to be resolved, despite intense research by geologists. Most theories suggest it is produced by chemical reactions that act over thousands of years or by ecological processes yet to be determined.
Professor Carol Cleland, of Colorado University, has a very different suggestion. She believes desert varnish could be the manifestation of an alternative, invisible biological world. Cleland, a philosopher based at the university’s astrobiology centre, calls this ethereal dimension the shadow biosphere. “The idea is straightforward,” she says. “On Earth we may be co-inhabiting with microbial lifeforms that have a completely different biochemistry from the one shared by life as we currently know it.”
It is a striking idea: We share our planet with another domain of life that exists “like the realm of fairies and elves just beyond the hedgerow”, as David Toomey puts it in his newly published Weird Life: The Search for Life that is Very, Very Different from Our Own. But an alternative biosphere to our own would be more than a mere scientific curiosity: it is of crucial importance, for its existence would greatly boost expectations of finding life elsewhere in the cosmos. As Paul Davies, of Arizona State University, has put it: “If life started more than once on Earth, we could be virtually certain that the universe is teeming with it.”
However, by the same token, if it turns out we have failed to realise that we have been sharing a planet with these shadowy lifeforms for eons, despite all the scientific advances of the 19th and 20th centuries, then we may need to think again about the way we hunt for life on other worlds. Robot spacecraft – such as the Mars rover Curiosity – are certainly sophisticated. But what chance do they have of detecting alien entities if the massed laboratories of modern science have not yet spotted them on our own planet? This point is stressed by the US biologist Craig Venter. As he has remarked: “We’re looking for life on Mars and we don’t even know what’s on Earth!”
The concept of a shadow biosphere was first outlined by Cleland and her Colorado colleague Shelley Copley in a paper in 2006 in the International Journal of Astrobiology, and is now supported by many other scientists, including astrobiologists Chris McKay, who is based at Nasa’s Ames Research Centre, California, and Paul Davies.
These researchers believe life may exist in more than one form on Earth: standard life – like ours – and “weird life”, as they term the conjectured inhabitants of the shadow biosphere. “All the micro-organisms we have detected on Earth to date have had a biology like our own: proteins made up of a maximum of 20 amino acids and a DNA genetic code made out of only four chemical bases: adenine, cytosine, guanine and thymine,” says Cleland. “Yet there are up to 100 amino acids in nature and at least a dozen bases. These could easily have combined in the remote past to create lifeforms with a very different biochemistry to our own. More to the point, some may still exist in corners of the planet.”
Science’s failure to date to spot this weird life may seem puzzling. The natural history of our planet has been scrupulously studied and analysed by scientists, so how could a whole new type of life, albeit a microbial one, have been missed? Cleland has an answer. The methods we use to detect micro-organisms today are based entirely on our own biochemistry and are therefore incapable of spotting shadow microbes, she argues. A sample of weird microbial life would simply not trigger responses to biochemists’ probes and would end up being thrown out with the rubbish.
That is why unexplained phenomena like desert varnish are important, she says, because they might provide us with clues about the shadow biosphere. We may have failed to detect the source of desert varnish for the simple reason that it is the handiwork of weird microbes which generate energy by oxidising minerals, leaving deposits behind them.
The idea of the shadow biosphere is also controversial and is challenged by several other scientists. “I think it is very unlikely that after 300 years of microbiology we would not have detected such organisms despite the fact that they are supposed to have a different biochemistry from the kind we know about today,” says Professor Charles Cockell, of the UK Centre for Astrobiology at Edinburgh University. “It is really quite unlikely,” adds Cockell, whose centre will be officially opened this week at a ceremony in Edinburgh.
Ways need to be found to determine whether or not the shadow biosphere exists, says Dimitar Sasselov, professor of astronomy at Harvard University and director of the Harvard Origins of Life Initiative. “If you want a clue you can count up the amount of carbon that is emitted by living things – cows, sheep, grass, plants, forests and all the planet’s bacteria. When you do, you find there is a discrepancy of around 5% when you compare the amount given off from Earth’s standard biosphere and the amount you find in the atmosphere.”
In other words, there is slightly too much carbon dioxide in the atmosphere than can be explained by the emissions of standard lifeforms on Earth. There could be an error in these calculations, of course. Alternatively, the shadow biosphere could be responsible for this excess, says Sasselov. “There is plenty of room for a shadow biosphere. That is clear. Certainly, it is not true, as some allege, that we have strong evidence to show that it does not exist. In fact, the opposite is true: we do not have good enough evidence to dismiss it.”
A key point to note is that scientists – although describing the inhabitants of the shadow biosphere as weird – still assume they will be carbon-based entities. Complex chemistry based on other elements, such as silicon, is possible, they acknowledge but these alternatives cannot create the vast range of organic materials that carbon can generate. In other words, the shadow biosphere, if it exists, will almost certainly be inhabited by carbon life, albeit of an alien variety.
“Billions of years ago, life based on different types of carbon biochemistry could have arisen in several places on Earth,” says Cleland. “These varieties would have been based on different combinations of bases and amino acids. Eventually, one – based on DNA and on proteins made from 20 amino acids – formed multicellular entities and became the dominant form of life on Earth. That is why we find that life as we know it, from insects to humans and from plants to birds, has DNA as its genetic code. However, other lifeforms based on different bases and proteins could still have survived – in the shadow biosphere.”
A different prospect is highlighted by Sasselov, who points out that a complex organic chemical can come in two different shapes even though they have the same chemical formula. Each is a mirror-image of the other and are said to have a different chirality. “Amino acids are an example,” says Sasselov. “Each comes in a right-handed version and a left-handed version. Our bodies – in common with all other lifeforms – only use left-handed versions to create proteins. Right-handed amino acids are simply ignored by our bodies. However, there may be some organisms, somewhere on the planet, that use only right-handed amino acids. They could make up the weird life of the shadow biosphere.”
But how can scientists pinpoint this weird life? Microbes are usually detected in laboratories by feeding nutrients to suspected samples so they grow and expend. Then the resulting cultures can be analysed. A weird lifeform – such as one made only of proteins formed out of right-handed amino acids – will not respond to left-handed nutrients, however. It will fail to form cultures and register its existence.
One solution to this problem is being pursued by Sasselov and colleagues’ Harvard Origins of Life Initiative. They are building an artificial cell – or bionic system – made only of right-handed components including right-handed DNA and right-handed ribosomes. “If there are right-handed lifeforms out there, many of them will be viruses – which will attempt to hijack the DNA of our bionic cells,” adds Sasselov. “When they do that they will leave evidence of their existence. Essentially we are building honey traps to catch any right-handed viruses that might live in the shadow biosphere and so reveal their existence.”
Other scientists suggest a different approach – by looking at Earth’s most inhospitable ecological niches: hot vents on the seafloor, mountaintops, highly saline lakes, Antarctic ice sheets and deserts. Standard lifeforms, mainly bacteria, have been found in these places but only a few. Some niches, researchers speculate, may prove to be just too inhospitable for standard life but may just be tolerable enough to support weird life. Microscopic studies would reveal their existence while standard culture tests would show they had a different biochemistry from standard lifeforms.
Stripes of desert varnish line the canyon walls of Capitol Gorge in Utah. No laboratory has been able to re-create the phenomenon. Photograph: Larry Geddis/Alamy
And a promising example is provided by the desert varnish proposed as a target by Cleland and backed by David Toomey in Weird Life. “No laboratory microbiologist has been able to coax bacteria or algae to make desert varnish,” he states. “It is also possible that the stuff is the end result of some very weird chemistry but no one has been able to reproduce that either.” So yes, these sites could provide proof of the shadow biosphere’s existence, he argues.
Not surprisingly, Cleland agrees. “The only trouble is that no one has yet got round to investigating desert varnish for weird life,” adds Cleland. “I confess I find that disappointing.”
Fascinating. I have come across different versions of Earth “shadow” life over the years; Mac Tonnies’ “cryptoterrestrials“, ancient creatures older than mankind whom remain hidden and undetectable from us. And Peter Watts’ “Behemoth” right-handed amino acid life forms taking over the Earth during the 21st Century.
And I’m not even counting legends of elves, Bigfoot, dwarves, demons and angels from past decades and centuries.
So the idea of Earthly “alien” life isn’t new.
But maybe, just maybe with advanced biotechnology techniques, we’ll be able to detect this shadow life.
Perhaps a whole hidden world!
Hat tip to the Daily Grail.
The UFOInvestigations and Research Unit, based in Shrewsbury, have turned their attentions to Anglesey in their quest to gather information on extraterrestrial phenomena.
Phil Hoyle, who runs the unit, said: “We are currently investigating numerous sightings that have taken place around Anglesey and, in particular, near Puffin Island.
“Many witnesses, some ex-military and professional people, have witnessed unconventional lights entering or leaving the sea around Puffin Island.”
In January, 1974, a number of people claimed to have seen large, structured objects leaving the sea near the island, and similar sightings have been sporadically reported up to the present day, said Mr Hoyle.
“The people who have contacted us have all been unrelated, but have all told us the same thing,” he said.
“We would be very interested to hear from anyone who might have additional information regarding these as yet unexplained sightings.
“Someone might have seen something last week or seen something 50 years ago, but if other people have seen the same thing it will hopefully make them realise that they’re not crazy.”
Victims of abduction near Shrewsbury were told by the humanoid beings who contacted them that they came from a base under the sea near Puffin Island, said Mr Hoyle.
The area has been suggested as the location of Cantre’r Gwaelod, the legendary ancient sunken kingdom.
Anglesey’s ancient past means the island could be a UFO hotspot, said Mr Hoyle.
“There is definitely a link; we’ve found an 80% increase in UFO activity over ancient sites compared to anywhere else, including Anglesey.”
Mr Hoyle said he had visited Anglesey and taken a boat around Puffin Island after hearing of the sightings, but that the investigation was still at an early stage.
In January, the Mail reported a number of sightings of strange objects in the skies over Anglesey, and an incident in 1977 – when pupils at Ysgol Rhosybol saw a strange object hovering overhead – made national headlines.
NOTE: After reading this piece, I thought I’d dig through some alien underground base evidence and commentary and add it to this article…Lon
SUSPECTED JOINT HUMAN / ALIEN UNDERGROUND BASES
The Dulce, New Mexico Base
An underground Military Base/Laboratory in Dulce, New Mexico connects with the underground network of tunnels which honeycombs our planet, and the lower levels of this base are allegedly under the control of Inner Earth beings or Aliens. This base is connected to Los Alamos researchfacilities via an underground “tube-shuttle.” (It can be assumed that such a shuttle way would be a straight-line construction. It should then be possible, by using maps and some deduction, to determine the most likely location of this base, especially since the general location is already known.) Beginning in 1947, a road was built near the Dulce Base, under the cover of a lumber company. No lumber was ever hauled, and the road was later destroyed. Navajo Dam is the Dulce Base’s main source of power, though a second source is in El Vado (which is also another entrance). Most of the lakes near Dulce were made viagovernment grants “for” the Indians.
Dulce Base – The Central Hub
-1st Level – contains the garage for Street Maintenance.
-2nd Level- contains the garage for trains, shuttles, tunnel-boring machines and UFO maintenance.
-3rd Level – the first 3 levels contain government offices.
-4th Level – Human Aura Research as well as aspects of Dream Manipulation, Hypnosis, and Telepathy. They can lower your heartbeat with Delta Waves and introduce data and programmed reactions into your mind (for those implanted with brain chips). Most people already are, they just don’t know it.
-5th Level – witnesses have described huge vats with amber liquid with parts of human bodies being stirred inside. Rows and rows of cages holding men, women and children to be used as food. Perhaps thousands.
-6th Level – privately called “Nightmare Hall.” It contains the genetic labs. Here are where the crossbreeding experiments of human/animal are done on fish, seals, birds, and mice that are vastly altered from their original forms. There are multi-armed and multi-legged humans and several cages and vats of humanoid bat-like creatures up to 7 feet tall.
-7th Level – Row after row of 1,000s of humans in cold storage including children.
NOTE: It is alleged that Los Alamos and the mountainous regions east and southeast of it in and around the Santa Fe National Forest are the major holding area of earth based extraterrestrial beings in North America, although there are a number of smaller habitation locations scattered throughout the underground networks between Dulce and Area 51. ‘Dulce Base’ is said to hold the second largest repository of extraterrestrials and equipment in North America. None of this information takes into account what resources other nations and governments possess. All the evidence I have received is anecdotal but, IMO, the sources are reliable…Lon
It’s interesting to note that most of these bases as described are repositories of human/alien(?) hybridization, torture, imprisonment and other indecencies being perpetrated against normal folks on a grand scale, often with corroboration and approval of some kind of government officialdom.
My question is however, “If these are truly aliens, how can they be genetically so similar to human beings that gene splicing and hybridization can take place?” And; “Given that caveat, how can they ‘eat’ us and draw nourishment?”
Wouldn’t that imply that ‘they’ shared DNA with us to begin with?
Maybe Mac Tonnies had a point?
When Mac Tonnies’ final tome ‘The Cryptoterrestrials’ was released for publication last month, it was received with critical acclaim, mostly good.
Mainly the good receptions were from whom I consider Tonnies ‘posse’ when he was alive, but hey, loyal friends are needed in life and death, right?
Now it seems that there is some opposition to Mac’s cryptoterrestrial theory and no it’s not from Mac’s friends, it comes from a person who pushes the extraterrestrial ‘nuts and bolts’ theory of UFOs and that the US recovered an ET craft at Roswell, New Mexico many years ago in 1947:
In recent months a myth about the “true” origin of aliens has made a troubling re-emergence. Several authors and bloggers seem to once again be touting the possibility that the interior of the Earth is the main center of operations- if not the ultimate origin- of the various alien groups present on our planet. New books such as “The Cryptoterrestrials” with the bizarre subtitle, “A Meditation on Indigenous Humanoids and the Aliens Among Us” by the late Mac Tonnies put this notion forward again. Tonnies’ delusional book is now being vigorously promoted by notable commentators such as Greg Bishop, Paul Kimball and Gene Steinberg. But the truth is that such utter nonsense finds its impetus in writings by the certifiably insane, in occult antecedents that speak of “master races” and in religious fable.
In Tonnies’ just produced book (published by Anomalist Books) Mac attempts to make the case that we should be looking down, not up, for the origin of aliens. Mac maintains that there may well be “indigenous humanoids” that are a race of people who quietly live deep below the Earth in hidden caverns, caves and tunnels. Such “cryptos” may be the pilots of advanced technology. These people believe that we should seriously consider that UFOs come not from beyond Earth, but from under the Earth’s surface. This supposed terrestrial race accounts for things that we previously thought as extraterrestrial. This secret and ancient race, says Tonnies, is a possible reason for flying saucer and alien sightings by people who live on the Earth’s surface. Such speculation should have been put to rest decades ago and has no place whatsoever in trying to discern from whence the alien comes.
THE SHAVER MYSTERY
Richard Shaver was a crane operator and welder for an auto-body shop in Detroit. Shaver had the idea that there was a race dwelling beneath our feet. He believed that this “underworld” was inhabitated by beings he called “Deros” which stood for “detrimental robots.” They were in constant conflict with another inner-earth race he called “Teros” which were constructive or “integrative” robots. Shaver attracted thousands of fans to this concept in the late 1940s when he began to submit manuscripts to Ray Palmer, the managing editor of the pulp magazine “Amazing Stories.” Though most of what was written in Amazing Stories was acknowledged as fiction fantasy, Shaver insisted that his story was fact. When a series of Shaver stories (collectively called “the Shaver Mystery“) were published in the magazine, the circulation hugely increased. Palmer never disagreed with Shaver – and Palmer enjoyed the boost in sales from these subterranean stories.
What is little known about the Shaver Mystery is that a diligent researcher named Michael Barkun found out the sad, sick truth about Shaver a long time ago. Barkun discovered that Shaver was hospitalized for psychiatric illnesses in the 1930s. Diagnosed as a paranoid schizophrenic, he had spent much of his life as a hobo vagrant. Once settled, Shaver carved out a menial life doing welding jobs here and there. Shaver suffered delusions that one of his welding guns “by some freak of its coil’s field attunements,” was allowing him to hear the thoughts of tortured entities deep within the Earth. He began to discern a proto-language spoken by these cryptoterrestrials that spoke of marvelous technologies of aviation and weaponery. The “people beneath us” were a highly advanced pre-historic race that liked to come above to the surface and torture humans. Incredibly, even well after the publication of Shaver’s stories in Palmer’s magazine -and even after Amazing Stories went defunct- “Shaver Clubs” sprung up around the country to discuss the “mystery” even well into the 1950s. During the 1960s and 1970s, Shaver began to sell “rock books” through the mails by advertising in the classifieds sections found in the backs of occult magazines like Fate. He claimed that within certain rocks he found images of the Deros and Teros entites. These “rock paintings” were slices of polished agate that had grotesque images emblazoned on them by what Shaver called “special laser-like devices.” With a little imagination, even this author (who as a child, had purchased such rock paintings) could discern the strange cryptoterrestrial images. Today, as an adult, this author is ashamed at considering such nonsense. The authors who tout Mac Tonnies’ “theory” about such subterraneans should be similarly ashamed.
Victorian novelist and occultist Edward Bulwer-Lytton wrote such volumes as “The Coming Race.” Published in 1871, the book describes a vast subterranean world in which dwelled a vast subterranean world inhabited by a technologically superior “master race.” Like Shaver’s Dero, with their ray guns, Bulwer-Lytton described powerful “ray machines” that emanated an energy called “Vril.” Soon other books such as “The Lost World of Agharti” by Alec MacClellan appeared, repeating similar themes.
Other authors have proposed the idea of “ascended masters” of esoteric wisdom that inhabit subterranean caverns. Antartica, Tibet, Peru, the North Pole and Mount Shasta have at various times all had their advocates as locations of entrance to an underworld realm of sentients.
Wow, Bragalia has a problem with Tonnies’ theory, equating it with spiritualism of all things!
This is good in a way though, I think Mac’s book has largely had a huge pass since its release, accepted as fact without much scrutiny at all. Bragalia’s post against the theory seems to me as the proper thing to do.
But I don’t like his choice of words for the title of the post. I don’t think Mac was trying to perpetuate a ‘lie.’
Just a theory.
Like the ‘nuts and bolts’ “theory” of UFOs.
Read the comments section after you read the entire post, very entertaining!
THE LIE ABOUT ALIENS FROM THE INNER EARTH by Anthony Bragalia
It is well known that Cro-Magnon Man lived along side of Neanderthal Man 30,000 to 45,000 years ago and much is speculated how that relationship existed.
Now there might be a third type of human being thrown into the mix to confuse things even more!
Scientists have identified a previously unknown type of ancient human through analysis of DNA from a finger bone unearthed in a Siberian cave.
The extinct “hominin” (human-like creature) lived in Central Asia between 48,000 and 30,000 years ago.
An international team has sequenced genetic material from the fossil showing that it is distinct from that of Neanderthals and modern humans.
Details of the find, dubbed “X-woman”, have been published in Nature journal.
Ornaments were found in the same ground layer as the finger bone, including a bracelet.
Professor Chris Stringer, human origins researcher at London’s Natural History Museum, called the discovery “a very exciting development”.
“This new DNA work provides an entirely new way of looking at the still poorly-understood evolution of humans in central and eastern Asia.”
The discovery raises the intriguing possibility that three forms of human – Homo sapiens, Neanderthals and the species represented by X-woman – could have met each other and interacted in southern Siberia.
The tiny fragment of bone from a fifth finger was uncovered by archaeologists working at Denisova Cave in Siberia’s Altai Mountains in 2008.
An international team of researchers extracted mitochondrial DNA from the bone and compared the genetic sequence with those from modern humans and Neanderthals.
It is speculated that tribes of Homo Erectus survived into this time frame, this could be the proof paleo-anthropologists need to prove the theory.
But with no other Erectus DNA to compare it with, this might be a hard sell.
Branches of Humanity are often nebulous things to grasp in our modern society and most cultures discount our biological past, so research such as this is important in understanding who we were.
From earthly ancestors to possible extraterrestrial (or crypto?) ones as we continue the study of human beings using DNA technology.
The Star Child Skull is famous (or infamous) for being proof positive of ET contact with humans and has many detractors of course for the obvious reasons.
Lloyd Pye has had possession of the Skull for many years and had it’s DNA tested in 2003. The findings showed that the individual had a human mother, but because the testing couldn’t resolve the father’s nuclear DNA, proof positive of the origin wasn’t forthcoming.
Now, that is about to change:
We finally have a recovery of nuclear DNA from the Starchild!
This past weekend I met with the geneticist working on the Starchild’s DNA. He explained how he can now prove the Starchild is not entirely human, which has been our position for years. Now it is no longer a question of “if,” but of “when” and “how” we spread this astounding new reality beyond the mailing list. First, though, let me bring the list’s newcomers up to speed.
In 2003 we had a DNA analysis that used human-only primers to recover the Starchild’s mitochondrial DNA, the DNA outside the nucleus, which comes from the mother and her genetic line. That meant its mother was human. But we could not recover its nuclear DNA, which comes from both mother and father, which meant its father was not a human. Unfortunately, with the recovery technology of 2003 we couldn’t prove what he was, which left us in scientific limbo. The “no result” from the search for the nuclear DNA clearly meant Dad wasn’t human, but we could not prove that fact beyond all possible doubt.
Now, in 2010, there have been many improvements in the recovery process, and those improvements have been applied to the Starchild skull with the stunning result you see below. This is a gel sheet that shows a clear recovery of its nuclear DNA, which could not be done in 2003.
The next two screen shots are taken from the national genetic database at the National Institute of Health, NIH. That public-access database is a centralized repository of all genetic information generated by geneticists all over the world, and now covers essentially all living organisms on Earth, from various kinds of viruses and bacteria, to various kinds of crustaceans and fish, to all kinds of animals and plants, including great apes and humans.
For many species, humans included, there are already nucleotide sequences covering entire genomes. Therefore, sequences from the Starchild’s DNA can be directly compared against this vast database to look for any matches. In one such comparison below, you see the text below the blue line at the bottom (if you can read it, sorry it’s so fuzzy) that 265 base pairs (a good length) of recovered Starchild nuclear DNA matches perfectly with a gene on human chromosome 1. This verifies beyond any degree of doubt that some of the nuclear DNA seen in the gel sheet is from a human being.
In the one below, and again at the bottom, you see the stunning report that in a string of 342 base pairs (another good length), “No significant similarity (is) found.” To recover a stretch of base pairs as long as that with NO reference in the NIH database is astounding because it means there is no known earthly corollary for what has been analyzed! This incredible anomaly will put the Starchild in history books!!!
Please understand that this result has now been verified several times, and a few more different fragments have been identified that cannot be matched in this database to anything known. Despite that fact, mainstream skeptics will be obligated by their positions to try to say it’s some kind of gibberish or some kind of mistake because in their world view it simply can’t be true.
Luckily, their bleating protests can be easily overcome with continued repetition of the result, finding more and more similar fragments in the library that will be created from the Starchild’s DNA, which is what the geneticist is confident will happen over the next weeks and months—nothing but verification that a significant part of the Starchild’s genome is not found on Earth.
I will investigate this further over the weekend to see if I can find other leads.
No matter if it ends up that we are genetically manipulated by ‘aliens’ (I have a feeling Mac Tonnies might be vindicated, holy synchronicity!) of some type, this will blow the lid off from various theories of Human Origins.
Today’s hat tip goes to the Anomalist.
I’m not sure this is a good thing or not since I’m an ol’ country boy:
The world’s mega-cities are merging to form vast “mega-regions” which may stretch hundreds of kilometres across countries and be home to more than 100 million people, according to a major new UN report.
The phenomenon of the so-called “endless city” could be one of the most significant developments – and problems – in the way people live and economies grow in the next 50 years, says UN-Habitat, the agency for human settlements, which identifies the trend of developing mega-regions in its biannual State of World Cities report.
The largest of these, says the report – launched today at the World Urban Forum in Rio de Janeiro – is the Hong Kong-Shenhzen-Guangzhou region in China, home to about 120 million people. Other mega-regions have formed in Japan and Brazil and are developing in India, west Africa and elsewhere.
The trend helped the world pass a tipping point in the last year, with more than half the world’s people now living in cities.
The UN said that urbanisation is now “unstoppable”. Anna Tibaijuka, outgoing director of UN-Habitat, said: “Just over half the world now lives in cities but by 2050, over 70% of the world will be urban dwellers. By then, only 14% of people in rich countries will live outside cities, and 33% in poor countries.”
The development of mega-regions is regarded as generally positive, said the report’s co-author Eduardo Lopez Moreno: “They [mega-regions], rather than countries, are now driving wealth.”
“Research shows that the world’s largest 40 mega-regions cover only a tiny fraction of the habitable surface of our planet and are home to fewer than 18% of the world’s population [but] account for 66% of all economic activity and about 85% of technological and scientific innovation,” said Moreno.
“The top 25 cities in the world account for more than half of the world’s wealth,” he added. “And the five largest cities in India and China now account for 50% of those countries’ wealth.”
The migration to cities, while making economic sense, is affecting the rural economy too: “Most of the wealth in rural areas already comes from people in urban areas sending money back,” Moreno said.
The growth of mega-regions and cities is also leading to unprecedented urban sprawl, new slums, unbalanced development and income inequalities as more and more people move to satellite or dormitory cities.
“Cities like Los Angeles grew 45% in numbers between 1975-1990, but tripled their surface area in the same time. This sprawl is now increasingly happening in developing countries as real estate developers promote the image of a ‘world-class lifestyle’ outside the traditional city,” say the authors.
To quote Jameske of the Daily Grail, “Judge Dredd soon to follow.”
“I am de la-aw!”
Sly Stallone will always have a job I guess.
UFO activity has long been associated with volcanic and earthquake activity, especially in Mexico, Central and South America.
Here we have photos of UFOs that were taken after the recent 8.8 R quake in Chile:
Long-time researcherLiliana Núñez Orellana(formerly with AFLA)sent us a video clip from Chilean television displaying some of the truly startling images captured before, during and after the 8.8 magnitude earthquake in that country. Interviewed for this presentation were Rodrigo Fuenzalida and Alberto Urquiza. Mr. Fuenzalida was asked to provide an analysis of the situation, and he shared an interesting theory: that UFOs, regardless of their nature or origin, vacate their underground or underwater lairs before an earthquake much in the way that our own surface ships set out to sea before a hurricane.
This might be evidence of Mac Tonnies’ cryptoterrestrial theory in that in the shear numbers of these objects that vacate geological volatile areas of the planet before, during and after these events.
Are you seeing this Mac?
When it comes to Cold War stories of UFO contact like the Roswell Incident of 1947 I maintain a healthy skepticism because of the CIA’s active plans of disinformation utilizing the phenomenon.
But the stories keep popping up as the people involved pass away and leave the tales to descendants to either disseminate or dispose of as they wish:
Retired Colonel Robert B. Willingham, 84, says he visited the site of a crashed unidentified flying object near Del Rio, Texas, in 1955 and saw three non-human entities through a hole in the ruptured hull of the ship. The strange beings, two of which were badly mangled, appeared to have died in the crash. “It didn’t look like humans to me,” Willingham said during a recent interview on the Jeff Rense radio program. The retired aviator said the beings he saw fit the common description of UFO occupants with large heads, slit-like mouths, and arms “like broomsticks.”
Asked how the dead entities were clothed, Willingham replied, “They weren’t dressed at all.” He said that despite the mangled condition of the bodies, he does not recall seeing traces of blood around the creatures. “But man, I just got to glance in there, because he [a Mexican Army lieutenant] wouldn’t let me go look in it.” Even though he got only a momentary glance inside the wrecked UFO, what he saw has haunted him for the past 55 years.
The story of Willingham’s 1955 encounter with the crashed UFO began earlier in the day while flying an F-86 fighter jet during a Cold War simulated bombing run out of Carswell Air Force Base in Fort Worth, Texas. Willingham and other aviators in his squadron observed an orb of light “as bright as a star” moving across the skies of West Texas at about 2,000 miles per hour. The large, intensely bright object, moved generally west to east before suddenly executing a 90-degree turn and heading south toward Del Rio, Texas, located on the border with Mexico.
Willingham requested and received permission to pursue the object “to find out what the hell it was and give a full report to the commander back at base.”
Turning his F-86, he followed the object’s contrail down toward the Rio Grande River and observed that the UFO had begun wobbling uncontrollably and descending rapidly. He watched as the streak of light nearly took the roof off a house on the Texas side of the border before impacting on the south bank of the Rio Grande, where it skidded for 300 yards prior to coming to rest against a small hill.
Determined to return to the crash site in a smaller plane that he could land along the riverbank, Willingham returned to his squadron and asked permission to go back to base. After returning to Carswell AFB, Willingham turned in his jet and picked up a small, two-seater training plane, which he and a man named Jack Perkins, now deceased, piloted back down to where the UFO had crashed.
Upon arriving at the crash site, Willingham and Perkins found a damaged silver orb, roughly disc shaped, “sticking in the side of a hill.” They also noticed a 300-yard gouge in the earth, where the UFO had skidded before stopping. The object, which was still intensely hot, was being guarded by a large detachment of Mexican Army personnel, including several officers – all of them armed. The Mexicans would not allow Willingham to get very close to the smoldering wreckage, and a lieutenant told him that they were waiting for the U.S. Air Force to arrive in order to turn the object over to them.
Mexico and the US have had a less than congenial relationship dealing with UFO crashes over the decades, usually with the US coming out on the better end. Witness the 1973 crash in northern Mexico (Inexplicata Journal) in which an attachment of the Mexican Army is sent to recover a UFO, but end up dead. Then a US Army recovery team mops up and ends up with the goods.
It seems the US Army is practiced at recovering these items. I wonder if they know what they have yet?
From Adam Gorightly’s site:
Comment by Abdullah the Butcher on Gorightly’s site, “Which one is the alien?” LOL!
The one on the left looks like my great-great grandfather!
I wonder if the “alien” traveled around in one of these things?
Interesting the cigar shaped UFO meme has returned recently. The little ‘alien’ is still with us. Apparently they’re not mutually exclusive.
The resurgence of phallic symbolism?
The little ‘aliens’ represent ‘seed?’
Some things are just so damn strange even the mainstream can’t ignore it:
The Boskops had big eyes, child-like faces, and an average intelligence of around 150, making them geniuses among Homo sapiens.
In the autumn of 1913, two farmers were arguing about hominid skull fragments they had uncovered while digging a drainage ditch. The location was Boskop, a small town about 200 miles inland from the east coast of South Africa.
These Afrikaner farmers, to their lasting credit, had the presence of mind to notice that there was something distinctly odd about the bones. They brought the find to Frederick W. Fitz Simons, director of the Port Elizabeth Museum, in a small town at the tip of South Africa. The scientific community of South Africa was small, and before long the skull came to the attention of S. H. Haughton, one of the country’s few formally trained paleontologists. He reported his findings at a 1915 meeting of the Royal Society of South Africa. “The cranial capacity must have been very large,” he said, and “calculation by the method of Broca gives a minimum figure of 1,832 cc [cubic centimeters].” The Boskop skull, it would seem, housed a brain perhaps 25 percent or more larger than our own.
The idea that giant-brained people were not so long ago walking the dusty plains of South Africa was sufficiently shocking to draw in the luminaries back in England. Two of the most prominent anatomists of the day, both experts in the reconstruction of skulls, weighed in with opinions generally supportive of Haughton’s conclusions.
The Scottish scientist Robert Broom reported that “we get for the corrected cranial capacity of the Boskop skull the very remarkable figure of 1,980 cc.” Remarkable indeed: These measures say that the distance from Boskop to humans is greater than the distance between humans and their Homo erectus predecessors.
Might the very large Boskop skull be an aberration? Might it have been caused by hydrocephalus or some other disease? These questions were quickly preempted by new discoveries of more of these skulls.
As if the Boskop story were not already strange enough, the accumulation of additional remains revealed another bizarre feature: These people had small, childlike faces. Physical anthropologists use the term pedomorphosis to describe the retention of juvenile features into adulthood. This phenomenon is sometimes used to explain rapid evolutionary changes. For example, certain amphibians retain fishlike gills even when fully mature and past their water-inhabiting period. Humans are said by some to be pedomorphic compared with other primates.Our facial structure bears some resemblance to that of an immature ape. Boskop’s appearance may be described in terms of this trait. A typical current European adult, for instance, has a face that takes up roughly one-third of his overall cranium size. Boskop has a face that takes up only about one-fifth of his cranium size, closer to the proportions of a child. Examination of individual bones confirmed that the nose, cheeks, and jaw were all childlike.
The combination of a large cranium and immature face would look decidedly unusual to modern eyes, but not entirely unfamiliar. Such faces peer out from the covers of countless science fiction books and are often attached to “alien abductors” in movies. The naturalist Loren Eiseley made exactly this point in a lyrical and chilling passage from his popular book, The Immense Journey, describing a Boskop fossil:
“There’s just one thing we haven’t quite dared to mention. It’s this, and you won’t believe it. It’s all happened already. Back there in the past, ten thousand years ago. The man of the future, with the big brain, the small teeth. He lived in Africa. His brain was bigger than your brain. His face was straight and small, almost a child’s face.”
Boskops, then, were much talked and written about, by many of the most prominent figures in the fields of paleontology and anthropology.
Yet today, although Neanderthals and Homo erectus are widely known, Boskops are almost entirely forgotten. Some of our ancestors are clearly inferior to us, with smaller brains and apelike countenances. They’re easy to make fun of and easy to accept as our precursors. In contrast, the very fact of an ancient ancestor like Boskop, who appears un-apelike and in fact in most ways seems to have had characteristics superior to ours, was destined never to be popular.
Sometimes evolution doesn’t reward the quickest, prettiest or smartest with another chance to breed.
Sometimes it’s the species with the most cunning and guile.
It’s been a while since I posted about Stanton T. Friedman, the most vocal proponent of the “nuts and bolts” theory of UFOs, i.e., actual spacecraft flown by an ETI (extraterrestrial intelligence). This is one of the original theories of UFO activity and was bolstered by the Roswell Incident in 1947 and kidnappings by alien entities, such as the Barney and Betty Hill incident in 1961, in which Friedman recently wrote about.
One of Friedman’s arguments for UFOs being spaceships is trace evidence being left at sights where UFOs have been witnessed, (burned plants, flattened plants, white ash left, trace radiation ,etc) to wit Friedman claims that these phenomena are evidence of nuclear energy being employed, which happens to be his stock and trade since he’s a nuclear physicist.
It’s been many years since Frieman’s been a practicing nuclear scientist, for over forty years he’s lectured on UFO activity. I don’t know if that’s been a lucerative career for him, but he’s on the road a lot. Recently he’s made a stop in Murfreesboro, Tennessee to lecture on the subject:
Evidence is overwhelming that intelligently controlled vehicles are visiting the Earth, which would lead to a cosmic Watergate if disclosed by the government, a nuclear physicist said Saturday in Murfreesboro.
Physicist Stanton T. Friedman said he has not seen an unidentified flying object but he hasn’t seen Tokyo either, even though he knows the city exists.
His beliefs are based on years of study and interviews with citizens who sighted UFOs.
Friedman, known as the Flying Saucer Physicist, made his remarks before 80 people during the Tennessee Mutual Unidentified Flying Object Network meeting at the Baymont Suites on Armory Drive. He is a former classmate of Carl Sagan.
During his lecture, Friedman outlined four conclusions:
• The evidence is overwhelming that Planet Earth is being visited by intelligently controlled extraterrestrial spacecraft. In other words, some UFOs are alien spacecraft. Most are not.
• The subject of flying saucers represents a kind of Cosmic Watergate, meaning that some few people in major governments have known since July, 1947, when two crashed saucers and several alien bodies were recovered in New Mexico, that indeed some UFOs are ET. As noted in 1950, it’s the most classified U.S. topic.
• None of the arguments made against the first two conclusions by a small group of debunkers such as Carl Sagan, Friedman’s University of Chicago classmate for three years, can stand up to careful scrutiny.
• The Flying Saucer story is the biggest story of the millennium: visits to Planet Earth by aliens and the U.S. government’s cover-up of the best data (the bodies and wreckage) for over 50 years.
The federal government is not close to disclosure about UFOs because it would have serious implications to technology and the economy. Church attendance would increase but the stock market would decrease. Fundamentalist church groups would be upset because it would be a contradiction to their doctrine.
Also, governments fear young people will feel allegiance to the world, not their own countries. Big powers would be afraid of loss of power.
UFOs are coming to Earth using energy the world doesn’t know about now, he said. Big oil companies might feel threatened if this technology were shared with mankind.
The more education a person has, the more likely they are to believe the Earth is being visited by UFOs, Friedman said.
Friedman first became interested in UFOs after reading a book in 1958. He worked for 14 years on the development of classified, advanced nuclear and space systems for GE, General Motors, Westinghouse, McDonnell Douglas and Aerojet General Nucleonics.
He gave his first lecture in 1967 and in the mid-1970s began the civilian investigation of the recovery of crashed flying saucers near Roswell, N.M.
Friedman spoke to Jesse Marcell Sr., who was the intelligence officer at a nearby air base. Marcell went to the crash site with a rancher and viewed the debris field. Jesse Marcell Jr. later wrote “Roswell Legacy” about his father’s experiences and his recollection of his father bringing home part of the debris.
Friedman interviewed Barney and Betty Hill, who claimed they were abducted Sept. 19, 1961 while driving in New Hampshire. They went under hypnosis separately and told about their experiences.
He has published more than 90 UFO articles, co-authored “Crash at Corona: The Definitive Study of the Roswell Incident” and the new 2008 “Flying Saucers and Science.”
During the lecture, Friedman showed members a power point presentation about the Roswell investigation in 1947.
The meeting was broadcast worldwide on short wave.
Max Mitchell of Kingsport, the state chief MUFON investigator, said there have been 96 reports in 2009 of UFOs investigated by MUFON as of November in Tennessee.
Participant Don Odom of Lewisburg, a retired Tennessee Wildlife Resources Officer, said his most memorable sighting while driving. He stopped his truck and a 150-foot long object floated by. It was 300 to 500 feet away and had 22 porthole lights and strobe lights on the top and bottom. It was red, white and blue.
He is now a MUFON field investigator.
Alyson Burgess, director of public relations for Tennessee MUFON headquartered in Memphis, said the mission statement of MUFON emphasizes the scientific study of UFOs for the benefit of humanity.
“We here at Tennessee MUFON take the mission statement to heart by galvanizing our current membership and helping it to grow,” Burgess said. “We may be part of a scientific finding that may benefit mankind.”
The MUFON organisation generally tries to stick to the scientific method to gather evidence of UFOs and I commend them for that for that’s the only way credibility of the subject is going to be gained.
So far it hasn’t happened, mainly because entertainment types have dominated the UFO meme and a carnival atmosphere have taken over serious convention gatherings.
Someday perhaps, knowledge will be shared among the population of the planet and it will be an eye-opener.
But not today.
Gene Steinberg and David Biedny celebrate the life of Fortean/science-fiction writer Mac Tonnies on the November 1st, 2009 Paracast with guests Greg Bishop, Patrick Huyghe, Paul Kimball and Nick Redfern, people who were close friends or worked with Tonnies on various projects.
A very touching send-off for Tonnies.
Somehow, I have to think that in the many Universes of the Multi-verse, Mac got up that Monday morning as normal and went to work as if nothing happened, still thinking about publishing his book.
Western militaries have been searching for a technological edge against whatever enemy-of-the-decade we happen to be fighting against for the past sixty-five years. Power supplies happen to be part of that equation since if western militaries can lower the incidences of refueling airborn and ground fighting machines, that means they can spend more time fighting the ‘enemy.’
Enter Project Kugelblitz.
The announcement came in May 2006 that – after decades of secretly investigating UFOs – the Ministry of Defence had come to the conclusion that aliens were not visiting Britain. The MoD’s claims were revealed within the pages of a formerly classified document – entitled Unidentified Aerial Phenomena in the UK Air Defence Region, and code-named Project Condign – that had been commissioned in 1996 and was completed in February 2000.
Released under the terms of the Freedom of Information Act thanks specifically to the work of FT contributor Dr David Clarke and UFO researcher Gary Anthony, the 465-page document demonstrated how air defence experts had concluded that UFO sightings were probably the result of “natural, but relatively rare phenomena” such as ball lightning and atmospheric plasmas. UFOs, wrote the still-unknown author of the MoD’s report, were “of no defence significance”.
Inevitably, many UFO investigators claimed that the MoD’s report was merely a ruse to hide its secret knowledge of alien encounters, crashed UFOs, and high-level X-Files-type conspiracies. And although the Government firmly denied such claims, the report did reveal a number of significant conclusions of a genuinely intriguing nature.
The atmospheric plasmas which were believed to be the cause of so many UFO reports were “still barely understood”, said the MoD, and the magnetic and electric fields that emanated from plasmas could adversely affect the human nervous system. And that was not all. Clarke and Anthony revealed that “Volume 3 of the report refers to research and studies carried out in a number of foreign nations into UAPs [Unidentified Aerial Phenomena], atmospheric plasmas, and their potential military applications.”
That such research was of interest to the MoD is demonstrated in a Loose Minute of 4 December 2000 called Unidentified Aerial Phenomena (UAP) – DI55 Report, which reveals: “DG(R&T) [Director-General, Research & Technology] will be interested in those phenomena associated with plasma formations, which have potential applications to novel weapon technology.”
This was further borne out in an article on Condign written by James Randerson and published in the Guardian on 22 February 2007 (“Could we have hitched a ride on UFOs?”). It stated in part: “According to a former MoD intelligence analyst who asked not be named, the MoD was paranoid in the late 1980s that the Soviet Union had developed technology that went beyond western knowledge of physics. ‘For many years we were very concerned that in some areas the Russians had a handle on physics that we hadn’t at all. We just basically didn’t know the basics they were working from,’ he said. ‘We did encourage our scientists not to think that we in the West knew everything there was to be known.’”
And it wasn’t just the British Ministry of Defence and the Russians who recognised the potential military spin-offs that both plasmas and ball lightning offered – if they could be understood and harnessed, of course. Official documentation that has surfaced in the United States reveals that only two years after pilot Kenneth Arnold’s now-historic UFO encounter over the Cascade Mountains, Washington State, on 24 June 1947, the US military secretly began looking at ways to exploit such phenomena.
While the US Air Force was busying itself trying to determine whether UFOs were alien spacecraft, Soviet inventions, or even the work of an ultra-secret domestic project, the US Department of Commerce was taking a distinctly different approach. In its search for answers to the UFO puzzle, the DoC was focusing much of its attention on one of the most mystifying and controversial of all fortean phenomena: ball lightning.
A technical report, Project Grudge, published in 1949 by the Air Force’s UFO investigative unit detailed the findings of the DoC’s Weather Bureau with respect to ball lightning, which it believed was connected to normal lightning and electrical discharge. The phenomenon, said the DoC, was “spherical, roughly globular, egg-shaped, or pear-shaped; many times with projecting streamers; or flame-like irregular ‘masses of light’. Luminous in appearance, described in individual cases by different colours but mostly reported as deep red and often as glaring white.”
The Weather Bureau’s study added: “Some of the cases of ‘ball lightning’ observed have displayed excrescences of the appearance of little flames emanating from the main body of the luminous mass, or luminous streamers have developed from it and propagated slant-wise toward the ground… In rare instances, it has been reported that the luminous body may break up into a number of smaller balls which may appear to fall towards the earth like a rain of sparks. It has even been reported that the ball has suddenly ejected a whole bundle of many luminous, radiating streamers toward the earth, and then disappeared. There have been reports by observers of ‘ball lightning’ to the effect that the phenomenon appeared to float through a room or other space for a brief interval of time without making contact with or being attracted by objects.”
Possibly unknown outside of official circles – until I made the discovery at the US National Archives, Maryland, two years ago – is the fact that a complete copy of the Air Force’s Project Grudge document was, somewhat surprisingly, shared with US Army personnel at the Edgewood Arsenal, Maryland, in early 1950.
Even more surprising is a curiously-worded entry contained in the covering letter from the Air Force to Edgewood staff that accompanied the Grudge report: “You are aware we have already discussed with Mr Clapp the theoretical incendiary applications of Ball-Lightening [sic] that might be useful to the several German projects at Kirtland. Useful data should be routed to Mr Clapp through this office.”
Precisely who the mysterious Mr Clapp was, I have thus far been unable to determine; however, the fact that he is described as ‘Mr’ is a strong indication that he was not a member of the military. ‘Kirtland’ can only be a reference to Kirtland Air Force Base, New Mexico. Named in 1942 after Roy C Kirtland – the oldest military pilot in the Air Corps – the base is located in the southeast quadrant of Albuquerque, New Mexico, adjacent to the Albuquerque International Sunport airport, and employs over 23,000 people. Moreover, Kirtland AFB has been the site of numerous mystifying UFO incidents since the late 1940s.
As for the reference to “the several German projects” apparently in place at Kirtland at the time, this is almost certainly related to the US Government’s controversial Operation Paperclip which, in the post-World War II era, saw countless German scientists – some of whom were Nazis, and many of whom were engaged in advanced aerospace research – secretly offered employment in the US, and particularly at military installations in New Mexico, such as the White Sands Proving Ground.
So, can we assume from the hints contained in this letter that by early 1950 some sort of combined Army-Air Force project, or at the very least, an exchange of information, was underway at Edgewood Arsenal – possibly working in tandem with a similar project at Kirtland Air Force Base – to try to understand and harness the power of ball lightning?
The answer would appear to be yes. Documentation has disclosed the identity of a project nicknamed Harness-Cavalier, the purpose of which was indeed to understand and capitalise on the true nature of ball lightning, and which, from 1950 to at least the mid-1960s utilised the skills of personnel from Edgewood Arsenal, Kirtland Air Force Base, and also Wright-Patterson Air Force Base, Dayton, Ohio.
Via the Freedom of Information Act, a whole host of documents from the files of Harness-Cavalier – now numbering more than 120 – have surfaced, demonstrating that those attached to the project were kept well-informed of any and all developments in the field of ball lightning, and particularly how it might be exploited militarily.
Such documentation includes: “Theory of the Lightning Ball and its Application to the Atmospheric Phenomenon Called ‘Flying Saucers”, written by Carl Benadicks in 1954; “Ball Lightning: A Survey”, prepared by one JR McNally for the Oak Ridge National Laboratory, Tennessee (year unknown); DV Ritchie’s “Reds May Use Lightning as a Weapon”, which appeared in Missiles and Rockets in August 1959; and “An Experimental and Theoretical Program to Investigate the Feasibility of Confining Plasma in Free Space by Radar Beams”, which was written by CM Haaland in 1960 for the Armour Research Foundation, Illinois Institute of Technology.
The strongest evidence that confirms Edgewood Arsenal’s deep interest in the potential use of ball lightning on the battlefield can be found in a December 1965 document entitled “Survey of Kugelblitz Theories for Electromagnetic Incendiaries”. Written by WB Lyttle and CE Wilson, the document was prepared under contract for the US Army’s New Concepts Division/ Special Projects at Edgewood.
This is totally fascinating in that this explains quite a bit of why the US military kept the stories of ‘UFOs’ alive and were able to keep the prying eyes of the public away from their various research projects.
Exploring ‘ball-lightning’ and the use thereof would solve quite a lot of the problems of refueling fighters and other esoteric weaponry DARPA could dream up to kill people.
Tesla invented the concept himself one hundred years ago when he imagined transferring artificial electrical ‘ball lightning’ from transfer station to transfer station around the world (spawning a theory about the 1908 Tunguska, Siberia explosion).
No wires or cables required. A completely ‘wireless’ network world-wide.
We don’t know for sure if the Pentagon has this ability and we only have people like Andrew D. Basiago’s claims they do, but imagine the implications!