Wednesday, August 19, 2009

Coping with Abduction Coverage

PrimeTime - The Outsiders
By Billy Cox
De Void
8-19-09

Billy Cox     If, in times past, De Void had watched the sort of soft chewed cud that ABC “Primetime” served up last night, there might’ve been a small blurb in the obits about a forensics mystery in a south Sarasota apartment, with investigators wondering about a missing head, and how the splattered fragments wound up on the paddlewheel fan above. Fortunately, with an assist from Lao Tzu and controlled breathing techniques, De Void now knows how to avert needless tragedy.

Even as reporter Juju Chang’s package on alien abductions twice plucked “UFO enthusiasts” from the cliche bin, then swerved into a formulaic nonsequitur riff about SETI and radiotelescopes, De Void held the Buddha pose, imagining inhaled oxygen molecules as particles of white cleansing light. Consequently, Chang’s entire feature imploded into a harmless flash of deja vu, no better or worse than all those other canned network takes on abductions over the last 20 years.

No, the hook — in this case, three seconds of video footage of an alleged space alien peeping into the window of controversial alleged abductee Stan Romanek — didn’t merit the hype. And yes, the subsequent pros and cons of the “sleep paralysis” debate was right out of the playbook.

But in the context of De Void’s new-found coping mechanisms, Chang’s conclusion to the hour-long piece — “Psychologists say we will always be intrigued with the possibility of the unknown” — wasn’t lame or insulting at all. It was wise. Because it’s true. We will always be intrigued with the possibility of the unknown.

But if, at some point, any network actually contemplates going off-script with UFOs and wonders about a package that won’t require a massive budget, De Void offers a few suggestions:

Get an interview with John Podesta and ask what he’s done to advance federal transparency on UFOs since Obama came to office. Put a bee in Hillary Clinton’s bonnet by asking about her interest in the Rockefeller Initiative. Ask the military why it can’t produce radar records about the UFO that surged towards President Bush’s Crawford, Tex., ranch in January 2008.

Seriously — it won’t cost a lot of money. And you won’t have any competition.

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