Sunday, March 15, 2009

Bigelow Cash Infusion To MUFON Evokes Many Questions

Money Falling From Sky on MUFON
By Steven Kaeser
3-9-09

Editors Note—Since the uproar created by the publication of an article by “Eddie Middleton” originating from the Nashville UFO Examiner regarding the major cash infusion to MUFON from Billionaire entrepreneur, Robert Bigelow, many questions have been forth; some of the more cogent come from long time Ufologist, Steven Kaiser—FW.

  • Where will the "Dispatch Operator" be housed and how will that person be notified of an incident?

  • Will NUFORC be a major source for your calls, or will a completely new network for UFO reporting be created?

  • How will those calls be vetted for importance and what will the trigger be to generate a call for an emergency investigation into an incident?

  • Where will the "sophisticated equipment and laboratories manned by 50 scientists in all fields of study" located, and who are they?

  • As a follow-up, I would ask what equipment is included in this mix, since the discussion of this several years ago was very extensive?

  • As with any emergency preparedness scenario, this would require practice to become efficient at the process. Are there test scenarios being considered to prepare for the real thing?

  • Has there been a discussion of what the trigger would be to initiate a quick response?

  • If "physical evidence" is the key (as it was in earlier discussions), how many such Events have occurred in the past two years that would meet that criteria in the North American Continent? This would give you an idea of how often such responses might be needed and the funding level required.

  • How do you handle the "local" MUFON investigators who want to race to the scene and might contaminate the evidence that is gathered? There are jurisdictional issues here that MUFON will have to address, and to believe that all MUFON investigators are qualified to handle such investigations is, IMO, foolish.

In the end, what is the goal of this "investigation"? Previously, the goal was to generate articles for publication in scientific journals on the unusual nature of trace case evidence, but current cases were few and far between. Bigelow wasn't into the scientific exploration as much as the technology that he might profit from, so I'm not sure this is his focus.

We haven't seen many MUFON leaders mention this backing, with the exception of the article that everyone is quoting. I suspect that this information wasn't supposed to be released yet and MUFON may be caught off guard a bit.

One other point I might make is that MUFON was part of the effort funded by the SciFi Channel that looked into this concept, but the “UFO Leadership” group was headed up by Mark Rodeghier of CUFOS, and if he’s working with MUFON in the Bigelow effort they would at least have a head start at some of the issues to be addressed and some early thinking. Most of us involved in the early effort became disillusioned by the lack of response from some quarters, leaving the proposed web site and rapid response team up in the air. It didn’t help that the SciFi Network was bought out and their focus changed, but we might have gotten a bit further if we’d been able to get more involvement.

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