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Lyle Zapato

Gerald Heard & Plan 9 From Outer Space

Lyle Zapato | 2018-09-23.8000 LMT | Entertainment | Retro

Did Gerald Heard's The Riddle Of The Flying Saucers influence Ed Wood's infamous 1959 movie Plan 9 From Outer Space?

In Plan 9 (viewable on YouTube), after watching stupid, stupid humanity progress from firecrackers to hydrogen bombs, aliens come to Earth to stop our inevitable discovery and use of "solaronite", a substance that would cause a chain-reaction, detonating the Sun and hence the entire universe. (Wood was a bit mistaken about the scale of the universe, but never mind.)

This is, more or less, one of the theories Heard puts forward in his book for the earthly visitation of flying saucers. In Heard's theory, our dalliances with atomic weapons -- which he argues affect sunspot activity -- could be a trigger action, causing the sun to irradiate all life in the solar system. The inhabitants of Mars, who have been observing us, are trying to either stop us -- by messing with missile tests -- or at least warn us of the danger we pose to both them and ourselves.

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Lyle Zapato

NASA's Marsbee Proposal

Lyle Zapato | 2018-04-07.6120 LMT | Technology | Simulacra

In his 1950 book, The Riddle Of The Flying Saucers (previously blogged here), Gerald Heard argued, using an inexorable chain of logic based on the available evidence, that the then-newly-reported phenomena of "flying saucers" were actually vehicles from Mars piloted by super-intelligent Martian bees, come to Earth to observe Humanity and possibly warn us of our impending doom.


Marsbees observing Earth (from Brisbane Telegraph serialization of Riddle).

Most at the time scoffed at this idea. Little green men were one thing, but Marsbees? Nonsense! Even today, Heard's theories are given little credence, or even note, by mainstream Ufologists.

However, Heard may have the last laugh, as NASA has recently announced a new Mars exploration proposal using robotic Marsbees:

The objective of the proposed work is to increase the set of possible exploration and science missions on Mars by investigating thefeasibility of flapping wing aerospace architectures in a Martian environment. The proposed architecture consists of a Mars rover that serves as a mobile base and a swarm of Marsbees. Marsbees are robotic flapping wing flyers of a bumblebee size with cicada sized wings. The Marsbees are integrated with sensors and wireless communication devices. The mobile base can act as a recharging station and main communication center. The swarm of Marsbee can significantly enhance the Mars exploration mission with the following benefits: i) Facilitating reconfigurable sensor networks; ii) Creation of resilient systems; iii) Sample or data collection using single or collaborative Marsbees.

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Lyle Zapato

Of Bees And Men: The Riddle Of The Flying Saucers

Lyle Zapato | 2015-01-27.0490 LMT | Technology | Cascadia | Retro


(Click for full dustjacket.)

Did super-intelligent Martian bees visit Earth in flying saucers to observe us and examine the stockpile of gold at Fort Knox, concerned that we were on the verge of destroying the Sun? According to Gerald Heard in his book The Riddle of the Flying Saucers: is another World watching? (1950), that is the only conclusion that agrees with the facts surrounding the riddle of the saucers.

I have the original UK edition; there's also a US edition with the title and subtitle flipped. (The 1953 Bantam edition has two new chapters covering sightings outside the US and up to '53, among other changes -- full text here).

This was the second nonfiction book ever published on the flying saucer phenomenon, the same year as The Flying Saucers Are Real by Donald Keyhoe. Although Keyhoe's book was more influential among UFOlogists, Heard's cover art matches more closely what became the popular image of flying saucers, even if his theories about the saucers' pilots were more unconventional.

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Lyle Zapato

"Sword of Fire": Mind-Controlling Alien Jungle Octopods

Lyle Zapato | 2014-12-14.9600 LMT | Cephalopods | Mind Control | Weyerhaeuser Conspiracy | Entertainment | Retro

Illustration from the novella "Sword of Fire" by Emmett McDowell, published in the Winter 1949 issue of Planet Stories (full scan here, mangled text version here). Spoilery synopsis follows:

Jupiter Jones, advanced explorer for the Galactic Colonization Board and misanthropic loner, is forced by low fuel to land his ship, the Mizar, on the distant jungle planet Yogol after he was accidentally space-warped beyond Alpha Centaurus. There he discovers that the native humanoids are ruled by purple-shelled octopods called the Anolyn, who ages ago shambled from the inland sea of Dra Dur and mind-controlled the humans by attaching their snail-like young to the back of the humans' necks, forcing the humans to carry the octopods around the jungle on litters, engage in blood-sports and inhuman orgies, and service their nameless cities from which the Anolyn lord over the world.

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Lyle Zapato

Life In Darwin's Universe: Alien Octopuses & Other Earthly Analogues

Lyle Zapato | 2014-10-10.5928 LMT | Cephalopods | Nature


Hypothetical alien octopus by Wayne McLoughlin, from theories of Gene Bylinsky.

I previously blogged about V. A. Firsoff's Life Among the Stars, which, among other things, explained how tree octopuses may one day become a spacefaring species. Life in Darwin's Universe (1981) by Gene Bylinsky, with illustrations by Wayne Mcloughlin, covers similar ground, asking what shape intelligent life elsewhere in the Universe may take under Darwinian constraints using Earth species as analogies. Of course it includes octopuses.

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Lyle Zapato

The Mammoth Eye Of Mars

Lyle Zapato | 2012-02-20.7190 LMT | Retro | Nature | Random Found Thing

Everyone has heard of Percival Lowell's theories of Martian canals, but have you heard the theory of Mars' vast thinking vegetable and its mammoth eye?

The above is an artist's rendition of the eye of Mars. It's not a metaphorical depiction. What you see is exactly what the theory claimed: (from the caption) "A vast eye, upon a tenuous, flexible, transparent neck raises itself high above the surface of Mars and can watch the growth of its vegetable body upon any part of the surface." Its "vegetable body" is a Mars-hugging super-organism of intelligent vegetable life that creeps along the cracks left in the drying Martian surface (Lowell's erstwhile "canals").

The Martian Eye theory was put forward as an explanation for the shifting white patches just perceptible to telescopes, which less paranoid minds ascribed to mere seasonal snow.

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Lyle Zapato

Review: Spooky Washington

Lyle Zapato | 2010-10-24.8380 LMT | Cascadia | Cephalopods | Sasquatch Issues | Entertainment
Spooky Washington by S.E. Schlosser

Spooky Washington: Tales of Hauntings, Strange Happenings, and Other Local Lore is part of the Spooky series by S.E. Schlosser, which collects Schlosser's retellings of ghost stories and folklore from around North America. This entry is all about the Cascadian prefecture of Washington. There are 26 short stories in total -- all assigned to a particular town, city, county, mountain, region, etc. -- and each is illustrated with a scratchboard drawing by Paul G. Hoffman.

The book is divided into two parts. The first part, "Ghost Stories", is obviously all about ghosts. In general I don't find ghosts all that interesting (so-called "spectral phenomena" are usually just psychotronically induced hallucinations caused by malfunctioning mind-control devices or standing resonance waves -- deflector beanies will keep them from bothering you), so I wasn't that captivated by these stories. Your mileage may vary. (Spoilers ahead, but these all contain well-worn ghost-story tropes you'll see coming a mile away.)

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Lyle Zapato

Tree Octopuses Among The Stars

Lyle Zapato | 2009-09-28.8040 LMT | Cephalopods

Tree-climbing octopus
Fig. 4 An artist's impression of a tree-climbing octopus.

The above illustration is from Life Among the Stars (1974) by V. A. Firsoff. It shows a tree octopus as representative of a hypothetical cephalopodesque lifeform that has the potential to evolve into a spacefaring species.

Firsoff imagines which types of lifeforms are most likely to follow an evolutionary pathway to sapience and eventually into space. Considering various Earth species as hypothetical candidates for proto-spacefarers, he notes that sealife is less constrained than landlife, which must deal with the vagaries of humidity and temperature on dry land, but:

these difficulties have honed the keen edge of perception and the thinking capacity of the land-livers to a general level above that of their marine counterparts, although some of the most intelligent animals are aquatic mammals, who have returned to the mother of all life after a prolonged evolutionary exile on the terra firma. The octopus, too, is a clever fellow.

He proposes that a lineage that begins with a clever octopus, already at an advantage over its marine brethren, venturing out of the sea and being honed by a challenging life in the trees is a very promising one:

[S]omething like an octopus, perhaps tree-climbing, is conceivable on land, especially in humid conditions; and, since this is a highly intelligent animal and equipped with limbs admirably suited for handling things, it could evolve to an industrial civilisation, which would be difficult for the dolphin, despite its large brain and developed language, because flippers are not much use for anything except swimming. Thus a race of pseudo-octopi may yet be piloting space ships!

This theme of certain species having more potential for sapience and spaceship-piloting was famously expanded upon by science fiction writer David Brin in his novels set in the Uplift Universe, where sapient patron species use genetic modification to nudge along other species deemed particularly ripe for sapience. Not surprisingly, Brin's Contacting Aliens describes one of these patrons, the Puber (the grand-patrons of the series' main antagonists, the Soro), as having been uplifted from a species that was "arboreal, a sort of tree-dwelling octopus". How could Brin not include something with such obvious potential?

So what of the Pacific Northwest Tree Octopus, our dear, endangered friend? Does it have the potential to follow the path that Firsoff charts to the stars? And if it does, how can we deny it its potential by refusing to do everything we can to save it from extinction? With the shame of our past crimes against it and the present indifference among many of us to its plight, perhaps we owe the tree octopus to not just save it, but to uplift it, so that one day Paxarbolis ab-Human can take its place in the Community of the Universe where it belongs.

Lyle Zapato

AFDBs Potentially Subject To Patents?

Lyle Zapato | 2008-12-05.9140 LMT | Mind Control | Aluminum | Technology

Yutaka Yoshinouchi has filed a Japanese patent application (JP2008038574) that at first glance appears to cover both Aluminum Foil Deflector Beanies (AFDBs) and Aluminum-Shielded Enclosures (ASEs), but there are some key differences that should allay fears of lawsuits against AFDB/ASE builders and advocates. Here is the official English translation of the abstract:

INVENTION FOR ANSWER COPING WITH MIND CONTROL

PROBLEM TO BE SOLVED: To solve a problem wherein an answer coping with mind control by aliens from the sky is desired because mind control by a vicious Gray Orion interfering with free mind of human beings should never be allowed, and leaving as it is leads to the satisfaction of the aliens watching vigilantly for a chance of earth invasion.

SOLUTION: Indoor defense is carried out by using an irregularly reflecting material for a wall, using a radio wave absorber/lead, and disturbing signal pulses by laser or the like to disturb Tesla wave pulses. Outdoor defense is carried out by wearing a helmet covered with the irregularly reflecting material, a helmet with laser spread around, or a helmet covered with the radio wave absorber/lead. On the other hand, defense is carried out by rotating laser horizontally and obliquely upward from high-rise buildings, parks, facilities, and the like in each area.


Fig. 2: Helmet configurations.

First of all, note the scope of the mind-control protection claims only applies to the primitive radio-based technology used by the vicious Gray Orions (who are not related to the psychotronics-using Reticulans, a.k.a. "Greys", whose center of civilization is in the Zeta Reticuli system). The Gray Orions are one of a multitude of Paraterrestrial Entity Factions (PEFs) seeking influence in the Sol system. They are a little-heard-of PEF precisely because of their backwards mind-control technology, which is easily overwhelmed by the psychotronic smog of the Earth's noosphere. Mr. Yoshinouchi must have had some run-in with an agent of the Gray Orions and made a personal enemy to even bother with developing paranoid technology to counter them.


Fig. 3: Tesla-wave-pulse disrupting laser configurations.

Next note that Mr. Yoshinouchi's invention goes beyond passive deflective shielding and incorporates lasers. As I understand it, the lasers are integral to the anti-mind-control system that he is patenting, meaning that AFDBs/ASEs on their own would not be covered. To the best of my knowledge, no paranoid researcher has thought to use AFDB-mounted lasers to counter Tesla-wave pulses. This truly is an innovative development, even if it will only work on Gray Orion radio signals (and will undoubtedly reveal your paranoid status to government spy satellites).

Finally, note that the patent application specifically calls for "radio wave absorber/lead", not psychotronically deflective aluminum. This obviously exempts AFDBs/ASEs, although lead- or Velostat-based derivative technologies, if used in conjunction with lasers, might fall under the patent's scope.

Unfortunately only the abstract was translated into English. The text of the full description and claims is in image format so I can't machine translate it easily. I would be very interested in a full translation, both to see the details of his unique design and perhaps learn a bit of Mr. Yoshinouchi's history with the Gray Orions.

Lyle Zapato

Michael Menkin Offers Aid To The Welsh

Lyle Zapato | 2008-07-20.5120 LMT | Mind Control | Sasquatch Issues | Fashion

My colleague frienemy in the fight against alien mind control, Michael Menkin -- the inventor of the thought screen helmet, a Velostat-based technology that blocks the non-psychotronic telepathic communication used by paraterrestrials from the Reticulum constellation -- has offered his help to beleaguered Wales, where UFO sightings have become commonplace. Menkin's thought screen helmets (instructions for which he offers for free on his site,) will prevent the Welsh from being abducted by the UFOs, a risk that is increasing daily:

Mr Menkin said given the level of UFO activity over Wales, people should make a thought screen. He said: "The people in Wales will benefit by making their own helmets.

"Everybody would be a lot safer if they had one in the house. There seems to have been more reports (of UFOs) lately in Wales and Scotland and the western half of the British Isles."

Unfortunately, it seems that Reticulan agents and/or mind-control victims have already infiltrated local ufological groups and are spreading FUD against thought screen technology:

But Margaret Fry, of the Welsh Fellowship of Ufologists, dismissed the thought screens as "ridiculous".

Mrs Fry, from Abergele, in North Wales, said: "I have seen UFOs, but I don't believe in crackpot ideas like this.

"It's ridiculous. People in the Welsh Federation have been investigating UFOs for 40 years and none of us subscribes to this nonsense."

Meanwhile, the local hominoid community has offered its support of Menkin's foreign aid work. "THE WELSH ARE MINE!!!" howled Brenin Llwyd, from Cader Idris, in North Wales. "IF SILLY HATS KEEP PUNY HAIRLESS GREY SKY-THIEVES AWAY, SILLY HATS THE WELSH SHALL HAVE!!!" Brenin Llwyd went on to announce that he will begin canvassing Snowdonia, handing out informative fliers explaining the UFO abduction risk, as well as the construction and use of thought screen helmets. He will also continue to abduct children for safe keeping until the Welsh can properly defend themselves.