- Written by Scott Meadow
Friedman may look like a goofy kind of sadistic UNIX administrator -- with big '70s glasses, a choppy Santa beard and the wardrobe sense of a lobotomized Queer Eye host -- but he also has a master's in physics from the University of Chicago and is widely called the "Father of Roswell." They don't call him that because he nailed a WB actress or wrote the T.V. series: they call him that because he was the first guy to think -- 31 years later, okay he was busy -- that it seemed fishy that the Army would report having a flying saucer and then immediately say it was a weather balloon. It seemed particularly fishy since the two things don't really look anything remotely alike and, stupid as the Army is, that level of incompetent intelligence is hard to fathom outside the Bush Administration.
In case you're having trouble visualizing the mistake, take a look at this and play "spot the saucer." Now I'm no Gallup employee, but I'll bet my beer goggles that damn near 99% of you can figure out the difference between a soggy weather balloon -- top secret or otherwise -- and a crashed interstellar spaceship sticking out of the New Mexico desert. (The rest of you are here because you Googled our ancient hot pic of Carmen Electra again.) Nevertheless, the Army intelligence officer who investigated the incident -- Major Jesse Marcel -- was apparently totally clueless, thus qualifying him for a position as Bush's National Security Advisor.
Then again, maybe he did actually possess those few extra chromosomes and was lying to cover something up. Aside from this genetic disqualification from Bush's cabinet, why did he lie?
Conspiracy guys are pretty unanimous on this point: he lied to cover up the fact that the Army did, in fact, recover E.T.'s spaceship and they didn't want to share, especially since the Cold War was just getting cooled after the Big Badass Berlin Blowout a few years earlier. What the hell they intended to do with it, and why the hell it crashed in the first place are two questions the UNIX guys almost as unanimously duck.
One theory has it that the Army intended to "reverse engineer" the spaceship's technology in order to gain a huge global advantage, despite the fact that in the '40s they'd have been damn lucky to figure out how to turn on my Palm Pilot let alone figure out thousands of years of advanced physics and propulsion technology. Nevertheless, this guy on the left -- Phil Corso -- managed to convince a whole lot of people that that's exactly what we did (well, HE did), and this produced all the modern marvels of the computer age today, including everything from microchips to microwaves. Of course, he didn't convince everyone, including our pal Santa Stan, who tore himself away from writing PERL scripts long enough to tear apart Corso's The Day After Roswell.
As to why the ship crashed during a July earth thunderstorm -- after travelling through the depths of interstellar space -- well, I can spot an alien no-bid aeronautics contract when I see one. I'll bet alien executives are still explaining that one to the alien congress around Alpha Centuri.
Now, Corso's dead and was pretty old when he banged out The Day After -- with an introduction by legendary Confederate Codger Strom Thurmond -- so I suppose we should cut him a break, but why start now? I think it's pretty obvious the man was insane -- or in a state closely resembling insanity -- his memory was faulty, and he was just plain wrong in many important details. Nevertheless, I applaud his efforts, because, like I said, nobody appreciates the bona-fide lunatic fringe like yours truly. And this brings me to the end of our lesson.
See, in the final analysis, it really doesn't matter what the truth really is about the Roswell incident or a lot of conspiracies like it. What matters is that we all keep questioning, keep probing, keep checking government power in every way we can. Political freedom means tolerating crackpots like Corso and Oxy-morons like Limbaugh. We all have a right to be card carrying paranoids and bang out whatever type of conspiracy laden screed we choose to write. That's what America's all about: The freedom to be as fucked up as possible.
So before you heap derision upon Santa and Crackpot or Strommy here, think about the children. Think about the future of a democratic society. Think about how lucky we are they forgot to include riders in The Patriot Act banning books, CDs, and audio tapes. Think about the message these "thinkers" bring and what that could mean to your tenuous grasp of reality.
And for buddha's sake stop touching yourself.