High Strangeness: UFO DOA? WTF?

Monday, June 12, 2017


This is interesting timing. Just as my book is about to hit the stands, a prominent UFOlogist makes a very dramatic public statement in which he sticks a fork in UFOlogy. And the thing is, the guy makes a really good argument.

I'm talking about Vicente-Juan Ballester Olmos and recent blog post entitled Anniversary Issue -- 70 Years After Arnold, and you can read it here. I urge you to so, because it's good reading and it doesn't shy away from some ugly truths about this field of endeavor. "Arnold," of course, refers to Kenneth Arnold, the private pilot who in June 1947 saw a string of silvery flying objects traveling at fantastic speeds among the peaks of the Cascade mountains in the Pacific Northwest, and kicked off what we now call "the modern era" of UFOs. It was 70 years ago that Arnold's sighting made world headlines and triggered the public's unending curiosity with UFOs, and yet here we are, 70 years later, Mr. Ballester Olmos says, not knowing anything more today than we did back then.

As I said, it's a good read, and it's sobering to see someone admitting that his 50 years of research has essentially been wasted. He bases this on the fact that we have not uncovered a single shred of proof that UFOs represent anything other than a naturally-occurring phenomenon. "There is nothing more frustrating than realizing that you have wasted your life in the pursuit of a mirage or a delusion," Ballester Olmos says, then follows up with this:
"Time and again a seemingly water-tight UFO incident springs a leak and skinks. Even case histories that acquired fame and that required books to be told meet inglorious finales. It is realized how even the most impressive accounts end up beyond belief, simply implausible. But the believer soon exchanges the previous disappointment for a shiny-new, surely insoluble 'unknown'. And so the merry-go-round continues. The believer never quits."
But I think his desire to call time of death on UFOlogy is premature. To me, the real issue is that the way that UFOlogy has largely been practiced for the past 70 years is hopelessly flawed. This idea comes up in my book, The Close Encounters Man, but now that Ballester Olmos has shot this arrow into the heart of UFOlogy it bears more thorough consideration.

I hope that this is the beginning of a really interesting conversation!

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