Wednesday, December 16, 2009

MJ-12 Survey Results

The first thing to say about this MJ-12 poll is that it was not scientifically conducted. That means, simply, that the participants were self-selected, which could skew the results.

I also noticed, though it was unintentional, that there were three positive answers and one negative. It means that I could group those three together since they suggested a belief that there was some merit to the MJ-12 documents. That too, would skew the results.

But, I could also group two of the answers together, meaning that now the negative answer could be paired with the needs more research answer and that too, could skew the results.

And, though people were only supposed to vote once, and there was supposed to be a restriction built into the poll, it was easily defeated which means that either proponents or opponents could have voted more than once.

Even with all that, nearly 50 percent believed that there was nothing more to be learned from MJ-12, or that they believed the documents were not authentic. About a quarter believed the documents authentic, though you can add those who believed the first few authentic so that over a third believed some or all of the documents are of value.

About an eighth thought that more research needs to be done, though I confess I don’t know what that research might be. Archives have been searched. Various government officials questioned and their records have been reviewed. The FBI and other government agencies have investigated this under the idea that true classified documents had been leaked but found no hint that this is the case. There is not a single, independent document that suggests any of MJ-12 is real.

In fact, there is new information to suggest that the Eisenhower Briefing Document, one of the first few, is a hoax. After the first of the year, I’ll be exploring this in more detail here. This is known as foreshadowing... or creating a cliffhanger ending.

In the end, it could be said that 62% (those who voted no and those who thought more research needed to be done] do not now accept the documents as accurate. About 37% believe that some of the documents are authentic. In other words, just under two-thirds of the respondents, believe there is nothing currently of value in MJ-12, and over one-third believe there to be some value in them.

Or...

We could say that just under half believe there is nothing to MJ-12 while just over half believe there is enough to MJ-12 to require additional research if you group the answers differently.

And, of course, these are opinions. I don’t know what the rational was for voting one way or another, and that could tell us something more about those responses. That too, could shade this poll.

These results, by the way, are similar to another unscientific poll I conducted about ten years ago and that is sad. It means that we’ve made no progress one way or the other.

Now, let the interpretations by others begin.

16 comments:

starman said...

Kevin, I don't buy those so called MJ12 documents any more than you do; just because a person believes in ETs doesn't mean he has to accept every claim. But Friedman has persistently defended the EBD at length, even if he rejects others.

Paul Kimball said...

Kevin,

I didn't notice the poll, or I would have voted. So I'll "vote" now by saying that the MJ-12 documents are frauds, and that anyone who asserts the contrary is letting their need to believe triumph over the facts.

Paul

cda said...

There is also the cop out by Roswell ETHers, some of whom say that although the documents are probably phony the information in them could well be true, thus trying to have it both ways. This is equivalent to saying that even if most of the Roswell story is false, the core truth (i.e. an ET visit took place) remains. Does this approach apply to you, Kevin?

Lance said...

Hi Christopher,

This multiple out (as we call it in magic) strategy is prevalent in paranormal belief.

Witness the most common apology among UFO Believers in relation to the contactees of the 1950's:

They had a real experience at first but then needed to create hoaxes and lie so that they could continue to spread the word.

I just listened to a podcast with Nick Redfern promoting his new book in which that very strategy is employed.

There is no way to falsify UFO belief, which is why it is not recognized by science as anything other than entertainment.

By the way I wonder who the majority of us might think hoaxed the actual documents. A prominent skeptical blog suggests Stanton Friedman but I think that is dead wrong.

I would put a LOT of money on Bill Moore.

Lance

cda said...

Yes Lance:
The idea that STF hoaxed them is dead wrong. In fact the true forger(s) set out to make STF the VICTIM of the hoax, as witness the enormous amount of wasted time & money (i.e. MUFON &
FUFOR money) he spent on researching Donald Menzel's 'double life'. Menzel's name was included as a 'try on' to see how many suckers would fall for it. A few, perhaps many, did including Stan, poor fellow!

Anyway, yes I agree STF is an innocent party. But I doubt Kevin intends us to debate MJ-12 and its origins all over again. Nor all the 'supporting' (ha! ha!) documents that came with it and after it.

Frank Stalter said...

It's great fan fiction. The "Twining Report" to Truman is a terrific read . . . very dramatic. I like the Serpo material too, much better than a lot of science fiction I've read. You just can't take it seriously, enjoy it.

Bob Koford said...

Before I met Ryan Wood, I had been researching information regarding our current Air Defense systems.

Part of the early infromation I had read had to do with Jay Forrester, and his Top Secret report referenced as the L1, and L2reports. These, it has been said, deal with the utilization of digital technology for several programs in which the Navy was interested in, including submarines. At that time, I could not get these reports, to read them. The best I was able to do was to get copies of MIT's newsletter, which had done a historical series, which had references to these reports. They were all heavily redacted.

When one of the so-called MJ-12 documents was published, called the L-1, and L-2 report, I -of course- jumped up, and ordered it from Ryan.

Whatever its source, it was interesting to me to see the correct terminology, when I STILL hadn't even talked to anybody who was ever able to read the actual L-1, and L-2 reports, authored by Mr. Forrester.

It was reasons such as these that has made me "linger" around some of these docs.

Nick Redfern said...

Lance

I wouldn't say that was a "strategy" on my part at all.

Rather, I really do believe that some of the Contactees had real experiences (but probably not at all with literal long-haired aliens, and far more likely with classic "trickster"-like phenomena of the type that has long toyed with the Human Race to get a message across, as I noted in the show), but that they then blatantly lied later on (or even sooner), to keep the story going.

I think some of the Contactees did believe in the philosophy of what they were saying, and they did what they felt necessary to keep it going.

But this was their downfall, as they went down the wrong road of fabricating.

Lance said...

Nick,

I would like to read your book because I am fascinated by the contactees.

I can agree they believed in their philosophies. But this really means nothing in relation to whether or not they flew in saucers, etc.

Indeed Adamski wrote much of what became his philosophy well before his supposed encounter--embarrassing. He even derisively referred to being forced into the "saucer business".

In my extensive research on Otis T. Carr, I was able to explore the Flying Saucer Club culture of the 1950's that is intimately tied to the contactee movement.

I became throughly convinced that Otis believed his own stuff, too (incidentally the I AM movement was just one of the many philosophies that Otis was part of--that group's main text was published out of the OTC headquarters).

I remember talking to Howard Menger about Otis (Mr. Carr attended some of Menger's famous conventions). Within a few moments, Menger had focused all attention back upon himself--he was working for the government, spying on Carr--top secret stuff etc., etc. This self importance and cult of personality is undoubtedly a main driver for the contactee movement.

Presenting the contactee movement as more or less a religious one is probably the right way to think about it. It is wholly unrelated to actual experience with saucers and I think you know that. Unfortunately, your suggestion that there might have been something to the initial claims of the contactees is just another example (if not a strategy!) of the poor grasp on critical thinking that pervades this field. Why is it there any need to be an apologist for obvious, proven, and often even admitted hoaxers?

Why for UFO believers, is it not:

Lie to me once, shame on you
Lie to me twice, shame on me


Instead of:

Lie to me once
Lie to me again!


Now on to the Trickster...

A few weeks ago I also listened (on the same show) to 2 hours of drivel about the Trickster. I suppose this is the new way to apologize for a lack of evidence of the paranormal and yet still imply that something important is happening.

Hilariously, Christopher O'Brien attributes just about everything to the Trickster, making his theory perhaps the laziest one in the field to date! Sorry to see that you are using it as well.

So vapid and meaningless is this new "theory" that it is hard to see how smart people could think that it had any value at all (except its obvious one as a common mythological character type).

Let's attribute everything to the Trickster that we don't understand. Ok, now what do we know?

...

That's what I thought.

Lance

starman said...

cda:

"There is also the cop out by Roswell ETHers, some of whom say that although the documents are probably phony the information in them could well be true, thus trying to have it both ways."

A document can be dismissed as bogus solely because of stylistic issues. But it can have SOME true (or corroborated)data. The MJ12 documents are misinformation. They contained enough truth to initially convince some believers, only to be later exposed as fakes. The idea was to demoralize believers and make people reluctant to accept anything they say, or conclude that an ET Roswell never happened. Essentially "MJ12" (and phony witnesses) serve the same purpose as out and out debunking.

cda said...

Starman:
My remarks were really directed at Kevin (& others) who reject MJ-12 but accept Roswell and ETs as fact. Kevin, chiefly through General Exon, accepts the existence of a secret group called "The Unholy Thirteen", as described to him by Exon. Yet if we examine what this group supposedly did, we find that it was much the same as MJ-12 with even some of the same members!

OK, so people reject MJ-12 but accept The Unholy 13. What for? The two groups are essentially the same with the same purpose. Both were official groups and both set up by the President, both involving similar personnel.

People who accept one but reject the other are 'having it both ways'. There are parts of the MJ-12 papers that are certainly true (e.g. the references to the Arnold case, Projects Sign, Grudge & Blue Book), all the named members are genuine people and the dates fit in well with other known events. This is all a smokescreen and shows the forger had done his homework.

As for The Unholy 13, my conclusion (but I cannot prove it) is that Gen. Exon had never heard of the Majestic 12 until the documents appeared in public. He then similarly named, or imagined, his equally fictitious group but upped the number from 12 to 13.

If you buy the '13' but reject the '12', or vice-versa, it hardly matters, since you have signalled that you are a Roswell ETHer in either case.

By far the strongest argument against the MJ-12 papers is that the events described in them never happened.

Nick Redfern said...

Lance

I wouldn't say there is any particular need to be an apologist for these people, or indeed to be an apologist for anyone who fakes things.

Again, it comes back to the simple fact that I think some of the Conatctees (and I stress some) had legitimate experiences.

And, honestly believing (as I do) that some of the Contactees encountered "something" doesn't make me an apologist. It makes me someone who has merely formed an opinion.

Plus, I'd say that (as I do in the book) pointing out that I am absolutely convinced that many of the Contactees lied at some point, or massively distorted their experiences, hardly makes me an apologist.

It makes me as someone who doesn't see things as purely black-and-white - because that's not how the world works.

As for the "shame on you, shame on me" issue you bring up: you may think I'm being flippant with the following. But, I'm truly not. I'm just using the following as an example that human-beings are complex animals.

I got interested in UFOs as a 13 year old, when my dad told me about 2 UFO incidents he had been involved in when he was in the British Royal Air Force working as a radar-mechanic in the 1950s.

These cases were the typical type of fast-moving objects that defied explanation.

Now, when I was, maybe 3 to 7 years of age, my mom and dad (like parents everywhere at this time of year) told me that Santa Claus brings presents every Christmas.

Just like parents everywhere, the stories they told about Santa were quite complex, regarding where he lived, his mode of transport, the name of his reindeer, how he would come down the chimney etc.

Of course, there's nothing wrong with this and kids love it. And, although me and my wife don't have kids, I'm sure it's great fun for the parents too, to see their kids wide-eyed with wonder about Santa.

But, in literal terms it's a lie. Actually quite a complex lie, with lots of strands and aspects to it, but a lie nonetheless.

Now, knowing that my dad spun me an elaborate untruth about a man in a red-suit who gets flown all around the world (in just one night, no less) by a bunch of reindeers, does that mean I should dismiss his later Royal Air Force story?

No. It means that life is not as black and white as "he lied but she didn't."

Again, I'm not being flippant. I'm pointing out that at this time of year, parents all across the planets - in their millions - will be encouraged to lie to their kids.

But that doesn't make those same parents people who we should view as liars - period. It, again, means life isn't black and white.

Since I'm limited re how many words can go in 1 comment, I'll post part-2 right after this.

Nick Redfern said...

Part-2 from Nick Redfern

It's interesting you mention Carr: he's one who (although he may have believed his stories) I have no faith in - at all. I think he made it all up.

You wrote: "Presenting the contactee movement as more or less a religious one is probably the right way to think about it. It is wholly unrelated to actual experience with saucers and I think you know that."

Yes, and that's the theme of my book. This isn't the place for me to hijack the thread for my own book promotion, but since you originally brought up my book in this thread, I'll say this:

In the book, I do present the Contactee movement from somewhat of a religious movement, and one that -like all religions - can create a vice-like grip on its believers and that, like all religions, is utterly belief-driven in terms of its ideologies, and totally lacking in any sort of hard evidence.

And, as I have mentioned on the radio-shows about the book, the idea that the Contactees met literal, long-haired aliens from Venus, and who arrived in metal ships is in my opinion, ironically, the absolute least likely scenario. In fact, there's no way Venus is the home to anything living and advanced.

But, there are certain subtleties that lead me to believe in the existence of something that has interacted with us for a very long time, and that may have been out in force in the deserts of California in the late 40s and 50s.

It may be literally alien in the sense that it's non-human and unknown to us, but may not be alien in terms of extraterrestrial.

And the space-brother imagery is almost certainly a facade, an image, a false memory of an encounter with something else.

It's the same phenomenon that has been responsible for everything from religious conversion, to Joseph Smith's angel Moroni, to Orthon, etc etc.

One of the people I interviewed for my "Contactees" book was Colin Bennett (author of, among other books, "Looking for Orthon"), who stated the following, with which I would broadly agree:

“Many Orthons have appeared throughout history. The equivalents to Adamski’s Venusian ‘space brother’ have appeared on mountain tops, in deserts, and have appeared to walk on water, or fly in the sky. Their sole function is to sow seeds in the head; just as a farmer grows a particular crop. These seeds act on the imagination, which replicates and amplifies whatever story-technology is around at the time. People such as Adamski and the rest of the Contactees were, and still are, like psychic lightning - rods for certain brands of information. Deception and all its ramifications is the key to this whole business. This does not burst the bubble of the mystery, however; for manipulative levels of faction may well be our first clue as to how a possible alien mind might work. If the levels of deception of all kinds in human culture are anything to go by, [then] the range of such within an alien culture must be both multiple and profound. The ‘space-folk’ are sculptured by wars between rival viral memes competing for prime-time belief. It may be that, as an independent form of non-organic life, memes as active viral information can display an Orthon entity at a drop of a hat. [They] come complete with sets of cultural agendas. After they have rung the doorbell as it were, and the goods are sold, these metaphysical salesmen disappear like the traditional Men in Black, no doubt traveling on to seed other dreams in other towns and other heads. The goods we have unwittingly bought are half-formed memories of having met someone from another world."

starman said...

cda:

"..it was much the same as MJ12 with even some of the same members!"

Wouldn't be at all surprising, considering the stature of Twining, Bush, Vandenburg etc. The inclusion of Menzel in MJ12 is obviously suggestive of a hoax.

"The two groups are essentially the same with the same purpose."

Again, no surprise, inasmuch as a real event would've led to the creation of SOME secret group like MJ12. The latter was just a phony creation to get people off the trail of the real group. Of course, the same MIGHT be true of the "unholy thirteen."

"By far the strongest argument against the MJ12 papers is that the events described in them never happened."

No, lol, the strongest arguments against them are stylistic errors. What happened was convincing enough to an intelligence officer, and those who ordered a press release.

smallawei said...
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smallawei said...
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