From: Andrew Johnson
Date: 2010-03-11 23:31:47
www.starchildproject… Why TV Shows Distort Alternative Research: A response to the MonsterQuest debacle in which the show’s producerslinked the Starchild Skull to the Flatwoods Monster. By Lloyd Pye (03/11/2010) Despite being a specious comparison between an apple and a watermelon, the show was not really a “debacle.” It was actually just “typical.” However, I am receiving so much outraged email from fans of the Starchild, I can only call it a “debacle” from their point of view. For me it was purely “typical.” In order to understand why such TV shows are shaped the way they are, you have to be aware of two important points: (1) Scientists, despite all of their virtues and abilities, fundamentally don’t know their backsides from third base. I realize that sounds rather harsh, but please bear with me as it unfolds. And: (2) TV is totally hamstrung by the enormous pressures applied by scientists who are very well aware that they don’t know their asses from third base. In addition to understanding those two points, you need to understand two pertinent facts, one recent and one nearly two decades old: The first is an essay in Wired Magazine by Jonah Lehrer (12/21/09) called Accept Defeat: The Neuroscience of Screwing Up. I’ll provide a brief overview of it in this report, but the link to its full text is: www.wired.com/magazi… The second pertinent fact is the so-called “Sphinx Rule,” which all modern TV shows must follow or face destructive consequences from the collective wrath of mainstream science. This goes back to a famous documentary film called Mystery of the Sphinx, aired in 1993 on NBC. Let’s examine that first and cover the Wired article after Mystery of the Sphinx frames the picture. In 1993, every mainstream scientist, and particularly Egyptologists, believed with a fervent passion what they still proclaim today: that the four outsized monuments on the Giza Plateau—the three great pyramids and the sphinx—were constructed within the lifetimes of the three pharaohs who are alleged to have built them. Experts quibble about the dates for beginning and ending each monument, but roughly within the 100 years from 2550 to 2450 BCE. No group of scientists are more hidebound than Egyptologists because it is screamingly obvious that the pyramids are, even today, vastly beyond our physical capacity to duplicate in terms of size and perfection. It requires a great deal of self-delusion to keep that bubble of hot air afloat. Therefore, mainstream Egyptologists were unprepared for the stunning plausibility and effectiveness of the alternative arguments put forth in Mystery of the Sphinx. A researcher named John Anthony West (deemed a “maverick” because he had no academic degree in Egyptology) teamed up with a young geologist named Robert Schoch to present the idea that the deep marks of weathering on the walls of the Sphinx enclosure, and across the Sphinx itself, had been caused by rain rather than the scouring of wind across the desert. And when was the last time rain fell heavily in Egypt? No less than 10,000 years ago! Needless to say, if such an ancient date were allowed to stand, mainstream Egyptologists around the world would have to ditch absolutely everything they profess to “know” and start over from scratch. They could never, ever allow that, so they mounted a virulent campaign against NBC for allowing such a destabilizing (to science) show to be presented to millions of people who otherwise would have remained quite happy in complacent ignorance. Egyptologists everywhere bombarded NBC with complaints about allowing such “unsanctioned” ideas to be presented as if they were facts, even though they clearly were facts. That was followed by threats to never cooperate with NBC in making any other show. Finally, scientists insisted that NBC should refuse to air a rerun of the show scheduled for several weeks later. NBC considered those complaints and threats, as any big corporation would, but in the end, inevitably, it voted with its pocketbook. Scientists had been complaining so loud and so long, the sheeple became aware of the dispute and were anxious to watch the rerun and see for themselves what all of the commotion was about. Thus, it would have cost NBC millions in revenue to cancel the rerun, which ultimately played to a vastly larger audience than the debut. In the end, as a direct result of their hapless whining and fragile egos, Egyptologists shot themselves in both feet. They shoulda shutup…… An interesting side note is that the Mystery of the Sphinx went on to win the Emmy Award in 1993 as the best documentary film. However, the brouhaha surrounding it also taught the television networks that if they wanted to stay out of the crosshairs of enraged mainstream scientists, they could never air shows that made alternative arguments seem in any way plausible or valid. Also, the more convincing an alternative argument might be, the more it had to be trivialized or marginalized by skeptics if it were allowed to be shown. Have you ever wondered why alternative TV shows even bother trying to present alternative information, when in every instance they have a skeptic appear to denigrate what is said? Well, this explains it: They have no choice! It is an unwritten, undocumented, but strictly enforced rule. No alternative subjects can be presented on TV in the kind of objective light that fell on the Mystery of the Sphinx, which to this day remains one of the most compelling arguments against everything Egyptology has always stood for. Now, with that explained, let’s examine the article in Wired Magazine. Its theme is that scientists live and work in a world of mistaken assumptions. After careful study and analysis of data, a researcher named Kevin Dunbar came to realize that nearly all scientific discovery is a product of mistakes turning into victories. Scientists do experiments looking for one thing and find the result they anticipated is not “right.” Often, though, what they find can be turned to advantage and a new “discovery” is made by accident. Dunbar discusses how this proclivity for constant error haunts scientists, closing tight what should be constantly open minds. Scientists come to be forever seeing what they want to see, what they anticipate seeing, rather than what is actually there. This is why they have developed so many ways to avoid confronting information they don’t want to have to deal with. They find endless ways to convince themselves that what they don’t already know can’t possibly be correct. If, collectively, mainstream science hasn’t agreed to accept the reality of something, that thing, whatever it is, can be wiped clean from their mental radar. As in politics, it can be “disappeared.” Bigfoot? Not a chance! UFOs? Absurd! Aliens? Fagettaboutit! And so it goes with the monsters featured on the MonsterQuest show. Now, let’s start focusing on last night’s episode, “Lizard Monster,” in regard to the Starchild skull. Given the parameters the producers have to work within, they did not do a bad job. The National Geographic Channel did an infinitely worse job in 2007. But to say it wasn’t as bad as Nat’l Geo is not to say it was good. The problem most fans have is that the Starchild was linked in the minds of the viewing audience with the Flatwoods Monster, when a moron could see they have literally nothing in common. So, yes, that’s true, but the show is called “MonsterQuest,” with the emphasis on monster. There is nothing at all monsterish about the Starchild skull, so a connection to one had to be established, and the Flatwoods Monster apparently drew that assignment. Let’s also keep in mind that the forensic reconstruction by Bill Munn was quite good. Not the way I would have done it in a couple of areas, but we shouldn’t quibble. Overall, it was a light year better than the UFO Hunter sculpture that had the face of Lee Harvey Oswald below a greatly enlarged cranium. I think Bill did an outstanding job, and we wouldn’t have it now without MonsterQuest producers paying what it cost to have it created. Returning to the downside, another question many fans ask me is why the Starchild has never had an hour all on its own, a show that examines it in great depth? This has been attempted on three separate occasions, the first being nine years ago. In each case, the network executives to whom the idea was pitched rejected it as a “stand-alone” project. They insisted the Starchild had to be wrapped within a package dealing with odd skulls, or odd relics, or whatever. It can only be presented as part of a larger package, and it must be neutralized by a skeptic or the show can’t air. No producer makes any bones to me about why it must be this way. Mainstream science demands it. Remember, the more likely an alternative subject is to cause mainstream science serious grief, the more it must be marginalized or trivialized. This is, unfortunately, the Starchild’s situation. It has the ability to prove beyond any level of scientific protesting that alien life existed on Earth at least once, 900 years ago. Just as with bigfoot tracks, all that is needed is a real one to make it highly likely that most, if not all, of the others are real. Therefore, science and their media toadies have no choice but to keep it out of the limelight. The last area of fan outrage is how the designated skeptic, Dr. Susan Myster, chose to do her job of marginalizing it and trivializing it. Please understand that Dr. Myster is not some humbug like Joe Nickell, the skeptic brought in to deal with the Flatwoods Monster. She’s a topnotch forensic specialist, and I found her to be an absolutely delightful person throughout the day we were together doing our filming. For those of you who want her email address so you can send her disparaging messages, I will not provide that. Here’s why: She was only doing her job! You have to understand that. Without her, or someone like her, the show could not be aired. Unless somebody goes on camera to say that whatever I’ve said about the Starchild is wrong, it can’t be aired. Thus, her role was vital to have any exposure for the Starchild at all, regardless of how well or poorly it might have come across to its fans. Please understand that before Dr. Myster was interviewed, I explained to her how the Starchild could not possibly be a child. She understood that. I also explained how the skull could not possibly have been shaped by any kind of deliberate “manipulation,” the word she kept using for it. Also, the show was completely wrong about its definition of cradle boarding, confusing it with the photo they showed of head binding, which is completely different. But Dr. Myster had a job to do and she did it. No one should fault her for that. Also, that hand-held device for testing hardness was designed to test metal, not bone. You may have glimpsed the tiny needle-pointed nub at its bottom. Every time we applied that to the bone with any real vigor, it punched into the bone and the reading stopped! In the end it was essentially useless, but the producers put much time and effort into getting us all together to carry it out, so I can’t blame them for wanting to get their money’s worth from it. This brings me to what I want to leave you with today: none of the above matters any more! Because we have found a geneticist willing to do an intermediate analysis of the Starchild’s DNA, we are now in position to carry through with the recovery of its genome. That, in turn, will lead to establishing its genetic heritage to a degree that no scientist or skeptic can dispute. It will bring this last quarter of the “great game” about UFO-alien reality to an end, and in this case we, the alternative team, will win. As of now, the geneticist feels he has isolated the Starchild’s mitochondrial DNA, which was also found in 2003. He also feels he has started recovering the nuclear DNA, which could not be accomplished with the technology of 2003. And understand that if he does recover nuclear DNA, we will be ready to prove what we said all along we could prove: that the Starchild’s genetic profile is significantly different from a human’s. At that point all we’ll need is the money needed to recover the entire genome, and money should readily flow toward a project with such enormous financial potential. If we do prove the Starchild is not entirely of human origin, that will end TV’s obligation to protect the feelings of scientists. We’ll be able to create and broadcast our case as it stands, without muddying the waters around it with Flatwoods Monsters or any other kind of monsters. The Starchild will at long last move away from the hokum scientists currently lump it with, to stand alongside those of us who care about it now and have cared about it all along, out on the cutting edge of history, bare toes wiggling in the air, ready to make our grand leap into the new reality waiting out there for all of us. Lloyd Pye, firstname.lastname@example.org, is an author and lecturer who has directed the Starchild Project for 11 years. His eBook about the Starchild skull can be found at: www.starchildproject…. His mailing list can be joined at: www.starchildproject….