Monday, August 31, 2009

Physics UFO Research

Physics UFO Research and Development Inc.
By Ed Komarek 8/31/09
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I recently asked theoretical physicist Dr. Jack Sarfatti for suggestions as to how Ray Stanford might get his excellent scientific research on Anomalous Aerial Objects published in academic peer reviewed publications.

Jack's response was forthright and to the point. Jack said, " No mainstream physics journal will accept a UFO article. It's too non-PC. Taboo topic in mainstream academia. That's a fact. He should put his data on the WEB and be done with it. It ain't gonna happen. Tell him not to waste his time and simply put all out there and hope for the best."

More email conversations ensued and Jack elaborates, " The fact is that Ray, who has no academic credentials in physics, will not be able to publish a paper in any major physics trade journal. For example, Physical Review has an explicit policy forbidding any such topic that was triggered by Henry Stapp's very good paper on Retro-PK. All such fringe topics are verboten in mainstream physics. That's the way it is. With special effects no one will believe any videos and they are not acceptable in physics journals."

Jack continues, "Look, I have no opinion one way or the other on the value of Ray's work. The fact is he will not be able to publish it in a serious mainstream physics journal. He may be able to publish it in JBIS. I know who he is from Sirag. In fact Sirag mentions Ray in my book Destiny Matrix."

Jack responds to some comments made by Michael Horn publicizing Billy Meir. "Physicists in their professional capacity don't care about any of this. Also it's simply hearsay of no scientific interest. He said. She said etc. The sort of stuff you and Ray talk about is not the proper concern of physicists. It is essentially police/intelligence detective work. The methodology is totally different. Read George Knapp's Skin-walker book about Bigelow's Utah Ranch.

Jack continues. "Only those physicists with independent means can afford to show a public interest in UFOs, paranormal and other fringe topics. Otherwise, with rare exceptions, they are out of a job in academia. The only exception are military physicists in black projects or projects funded by private money like Bob Bigelow's. Physicists only care about equations and experiments. All of this is totally "alien" to them and their concerns. Trying to publish this sort of stuff in a physics journal is a complete dead end. Wrong venue. JBIS is probably Ray's best shot. PS Even consciousness is non-PC as the history of Stapp's retro-PK paper in Phys Rev A proved."

This prompted a response by Optical Physicist Dr. Bruce Maccabee, "Jack speaks the truth regarding publication in a refereed science journal. However, in one case my attempt to publish was not a "complete dead end." In 1974 I sent an article on a UFO sighting to SCIENCE magazine. It was rejected. I had better luck 5 years later. In August, 1979, Applied Optics published my letter to the editor regarding my calculation of the brightness (power output) of an unidentified light source that was seen and detected on radar and filmed off the coast of the South Island of New Zealand during the early morning hours of Dec.31, 1978. This was the first of three letters to the editor that were published on the NZ sighting. So far as I know, after 30 years those three letters are still the only articles in a physics journal that discuss a UFO sighting. For the articles and the somewhat convoluted story of how they happened to be published, see (especially the footnote)

Bruce continues, "Years ago I presented 15 minute UFO talks at the Washington, DC symposia of the American Physical Society. The abstracts of these talks were published in the Bulletin of the APS. They were not refereed. That was in the good old days when they had a section on "cosmology" . In recent years there has been no section into which one might insert a discussion of a UFO sighting."

Michael Horn brings up Froning in relation to Billy Meir in another email and Jack responds. "Froning is not a mainstream academic physicist who publishes in serious trade journals. Astronautical engineers are not considered physicists by top-rank physicists. JBIS is not a physics journal. JBIS would be more suitable for Ray. This shows that you have no idea how the mainstream professional physics community works. It's all connected with USG and major foundation funding. UFOs, paranormal is a kiss of death for academic physicists in prestige universities and institutes like Kavli - they will not touch it with a ten foot pole. All serious funding of this is deep black hidden behind the event horizon so to speak - for obvious military hardware reasons."

Physicist Dr. Paul Murad enters the fray and says, "Jack: Unbeknownst to you and your physicist friends is that Froning is a very credible and talented individual. He has more hands on experience to include building flying hardware than a majority of the physicists that have worked for many decades. He published many papers on exotic technologies in accepted engineering forums...

This elicits this response from Jack. "You misunderstand my point again Paul. This has nothing to do with Froning's abilities. Froning has no influence with the editors of mainstream physics journals. He could not publish a paper in Phys Rev on anecdotal evidence about UFOs - not even Hawking could even if he were so inclined. It's off-topic to mainstream academic physics. It ain't gonna happen ever not even if Hell freezes over. Nuff said. ;-)"

These email exchanges between the above physicists in relation to getting UFO data published in peer reviewed academic physics and aeronautical journals sounds eerily similar to the state of Fire Ecology research in the first half of the 20th century. Like Ray Stanford my father Ed Komarek Sr. was a non-academic scientist, not by choice, but by circumstance. Economic conditions after 1929 caused my grandfather to go bankrupt and my father had to quit college and go to work for the Field Museum of Chicago collecting mammals in the Southeastern United States.

While Dad was in college he was mentored by one of the founding fathers of Ecology Dr. Allee and they continued the relationship for the rest of their lives. Then Dad went to work for non-academic scientist Herb Stoddard in the 1930s
another father of Ecology who was also a close friend of Aldo Leopold yet another father of Ecology. Herb Stoddard introduced Dad to Fire Ecology and Dad became the most recognized and experienced Fire Ecologist of his time and was even recognized by Academia with a honorary PHD from FSU for his lifetime of scientific research and accomplishments.

As my fathers interest in Fire Ecology developed he began to run into politically motivated roadblocks to publication in academic science publications on fire from both the U.S Forest Service's Smokey the Bear anti-fire propaganda campaign, and from associated academia who would not publish fire papers in their peer reviewed journals for political reasons just as is now happening with UFOs. There was no scientific basis for the U.S. Forest Service position that was based more on fear of fire than anything else.

Dad and his scientific associates both academic and non-academic decided to organize a end run around academia and government to get support for fire research and publication of fire research papers. Dad organized Tall Timbers Research Inc that held annual Fire Conferences in which scientific papers were presented by pro-fire mavericks from around the world. The research station also published these papers in its annual proceedings and the proceedings were widely distributed free of charge at least in the early days.

In fact I think that it was the first fire conference that my father organized and the free publication and distribution of the proceedings that really put Tall Timbers and fire research on the map politically and academically. I believe the institution organized itself around these early fire conferences. The first fire conference was the spark that ignited the institution. A UFO physics institution might well do the same thing.

Tall Timbers became the international leading light in fire research and undermined the U.S. Forest Service's unfounded scientific position and forced academia to recognize the importance of fire in the natural environment and begin publishing fire scientific papers in peer reviewed journals. Dad's tactic worked eventually and now fire and controlled fire are accepted all around the world both by governments, national parks and forests and the private sector. Academics no more own science than the priesthood owns religion and my father and his associates proved that.

So my question is why can't a few courageous independent physicists and UFO private financial backers band together and do for UFO physics what my father and his associates did for fire research? Why can't we create a Physics UFO Research and Development Inc. that is independent of academia, the CIA and other government political influence to promote good UFO physics science? Such a organization could then provide the needed support for both academic and non-academic scientists doing good scientific research into UFOs. With such support both non-academic scientist Ray Stanford and academic scientist Dr. Bruce Maccabee can publish their UFO physics research in a credible and responsible venue.

I sent this article as a rough draft to Jack and he responded to this question. Jack said, "Fine, answer to your last question is that it has been done by Bob Bigelow and Joe Firmage. Bigelow succeeded, Firmage failed. In the current world financial crisis the probability for what you want to happen is exactly zero in my opinion.

Bigelow Aerospace in Las Vegas is the only show in town for American UFO/paranormal R&D. I understand there is a quasi-governmental French group but it's only a rumor. The only thing that will change this is a mass landing like in the films "District 9", "Independence Day" or "War of the Worlds" - otherwise it's all just hype in the media with a small group of competent scientists working on the serious issues."

Jack could be right but I think all it would really take would be a physicist or donor who was a good organizer, manager, credible and highly motivated to do the same thing my father did for Fire Ecology. If it had not been for my father, Tall Timbers would have never happened and for the same reasons Jack has suggested. Fire research would have been continued to be politically suppressed for at least another 30-50 years.

My reasoning for is that the opposition to anti-fire Forest Service propaganda was fragmented and weak and the Forest Service itself politically strong and well funded with a firm hold on academia. Only a person like my father would be competent and dedicated enough to pull together the small group of independent physics mavericks and donors into a viable institution. Absent such a person I would have to agree with Jack. However, one should not underestimate the power of one or several very committed organized individuals as has been proved throughout history.