Friday, December 02, 2016

Oak Island and the King's Mark

I hadn’t really gotten into this season’s Oak Island other than to note that they have found the money pit. By that I mean they’re planning to dump two million dollars into the ground where they believe the original hole had been dug. It means that they are throwing two million into the ground and I will wager big dollars that when all is said and done, they’ll have another big hole in the ground but no treasure. They will have spent two million creating a money pit.

But what got me was their diving down into a well some twenty miles from Oak Island where they believe they found a “Templar’s Cross” suggesting the Templars had been there hundreds of years ago. As a diver was lowered into the well, he found symbols marked on the rocks used to line the well. On one of these they called a “King’s Mark” which, it seems to me, they attempted to relate to the Templars.

Broad Arrow Mark found in Australia.
The thing is, that mark, or one like it, apparently didn’t come into use until Henry VIII created the Office of Ordnance. Then this broad arrow mark was used to mark objects bought by the King’s money.

More importantly, it became widely used around the world. There are no indications that the Templars used it for anything and the fact that it appears on a stone in a well in Canada is of little real significance. It was used to mark trees here in North America (which I know includes Canada so don’t point that out) and in England and Australia used to mark prisoner’s uniforms. It marked roads and government property. It marked lots of things and is quite common.

The point here is that there was nothing to link the broad arrow to the Templars and no real reason to become excited when it was found on a rock in Canada. This is just more hype to keep us tuning in and after so long with so little to show for it, I probably won’t be one of those watching any more. There is too much nonsense and too little pay-off, except for those involved in the production and broadcasting the show. They’re the ones reaping the treasure.

Tuesday, November 29, 2016

Treasure Quest - Snake Island: A New Height of Nonsense

This is becoming like shooting fish in a barrel and in the last episode they provided so many set ups that I couldn’t resist just one more commentary on the show.

But first, I missed a bet with the week three show entitled, “Treasure Found.” This was a lie since they found no treasure. Oh, sure, they were shown a silver bar that seemed to have been created by the Jesuits, but there was nothing to prove that it had a thing to do with the Treasure of the Trinity. Then they paid the black market guy a thousand bucks to tell them where it came from and he pointed them to Argentina.

Jesuit Santa Ana Mission in Argentina.
So now we’re in Argentina, and they have arrived at the Santa Ana mission where that silver bar was allegedly made. They’re standing in the center of the compound and one of the guys talking about the pile of silver said, “We could be standing on a big pile…”

And I’m thinking, yeah, a big pile of crap…

Later, as they explore the area, they’ve split into teams and while one team is studying a wall, they hear a shout and realize their South American guide has fallen. They all jump up and start yelling, “Emilio! Emilio!” and all I can think of is the Batabi brothers from A Night at the Roxbury telling the story of Emilio Estevez using the telephone and one of them starts screaming “Emilio!”

Emilio has apparently fallen into a hole and badly injured his ankle. They spend time carefully lifting him out and getting him some first aid… but not much later it doesn’t look as if he has hurt himself at all. He healed very quickly.

They head back to their boat which they had apparently left unattended while they traipse around the jungle for hours and hours. It appears to them that someone has broken in. They find the place trashed but oddly, nothing was stolen. The electronic equipment is left behind because the people who broke in didn’t know the value. Their fishing gear is left behind suggesting it wasn’t some random fishermen. In fact, it just looks as if someone broke in just to make a mess because they could find no evidence of anything missing. One of then asks, “Why would they do this?” Another says, “Intelligence,” meaning, of course, that someone had been looking for information on the Treasure of the Trinity… but it doesn’t seem any of their papers were stolen either. The break-in makes no sense, unless, of course, you need some drama for your South American adventure and proof of how dangerous it is.

But to me this is proof that this whole thing is staged and they will never find the treasure, just the clues they tell us prove they are on the right trail… though the things they find prove no such thing… and found so they can keep us tuning in. The treasure they seek are ratings so the production company can continue to fund these fake adventures. They will never get to the end of the rainbow for the pot of gold unless the ratings dip and they decide there is no pot of gold.

Friday, November 25, 2016

X-Zone Broadcast Network - Mark O'Connell

Mark O'Connell
Mark O’Connell was the guest on this week’s program. I had seen a posting that he and Don Schmitt had debated the Roswell case a number of weeks ago. This debate was broadcast at the time and it was supposed to be uploaded to the Internet so that those of us who hadn’t heard it live might get a chance to hear it now. The problem is that we can’t find it anywhere, which of course means only that we can’t find it. The debate might be up somewhere. Maybe we’ll get a hint. However, you can listen to our discussion here:

Part of that discussion was on the Roswell Slides and some of it was about the Roswell case as well. We also talked about the vast interstellar distances among the stars. At the moment we know of no way of defeating those distances and we have no craft capable of reaching relativistic speeds. That is not to say we won’t figure some of this out at some point. Remember, it wasn’t all that long ago that people believed that if you traveled faster than 60 miles an hour the breath would be sucked from your lungs (okay, that was sometime in the middle of the 19th century but you get the picture) but we now know that isn’t true. What is true today sometimes changes as our knowledge and abilities increase.

For those of you paying attention, visit to learn of the other programs available on the X-Zone Broadcast Network, and if the mood moves, vote for your favorite host.

Next Week: John Greenewald, Jr.

Topic: The Black Vault

Thursday, November 24, 2016

A Question for Everyone

Here’s a question that has been asked several times in the last couple of months. It came up on my radio show, it came up during a Skype interview with the Kansas MUFON UFO group, and it came up in an interview I did a couple of weeks ago. I know what my answer has been, but thought it might be something that you all would like to chime in on…

Has the Roswell Slides fiasco harmed UFO research in general and the Roswell case in particular?
I suppose an ancillary question might be if this harmed the reputation of those involved.

Sure, we can talk about some of the other recent missteps including the alien autopsy, MJ-12 and even Frank Kaufmann and those of his ilk. Anyway, since I have been asked about this, I thought it time to get a reading from others who might have had a chance to interact with others. But keep it cordial, keep on topic and we'll get along.

Tuesday, November 22, 2016

Treasure Quest - It Just Keeps Getting Worse

Yeah, yeah, I know that I wasn’t going to review these shows each week but they just keep getting dumber, or maybe I should say that they expect us to accept some of the dumb conclusions they draw. If you remember the second week, the crew was heading toward a clearing in the jungle where something important might be hidden. When they reached it, we learned it was a pile of bricks which, frankly, didn’t seem to be all that old.

The major find here were a number of them with cutouts in them that the team decided were molds used to form bars of precious metals. Without a single reason, they concluded that these molds were used as the Jesuits melted the Inca gold into bars for easier transport. They just stood in this clearing without making an effort to date the bricks, without wondering why after what had to have been a century or two, these bricks looked as crisp as if they had been made last week and then dumped into the clearing for these people to find. I wondered who really put them there.

Having failed to find any real signs of treasure, they returned to their camp and decided the best course of action was to tap into the black market and see what they can find that way. They couldn’t take in cameras because the black marketer wasn’t going to let them film the transaction but they did have a plan. Lipstick cameras cleverly hidden in a hat and a backpack because no one would ever think of looking there. We are treated to their travels through the a maze of streets and hallways until we’re in a back room with the man who conveniently speaks English and I have to say, it seems to me that the camera work is much better than the random shots you would get from these tiny cameras hidden in a hat and a backpack.

First, we are shown artifacts that the guys say are faked and by a huge coincidence I see on an episode of Law and Order the next day similar artifacts hanging on the wall of people of Latin descent. I wonder if the set designer on Law and Order is the same one used in this show.

The Mission at Santa Ana, which I put here so that you won't be surprised when the find this on the next episode.
Finally, we’re shown a silver bar that the black marketer wants ten grand for. I don’t know how much the bar weighs, but I do know that silver has been trading for about seventeen bucks an ounce and this doesn’t look big enough to be worth ten grand. Our guys say they didn’t bring money and the black marketer suddenly goes berserk because they have wasted his time. It looks as if there is a big confrontation coming but all we get is another string of commercials. When we return, we’re at the camp as those left behind express their concern about their partners who have been gone a long time. Not to worry though, they are suddenly back and for a thousand dollars, they had learned where that silver bar came from and they are off to the Santa Ana mission in Argentina… and I wonder how long it took them to get permission to traipse around in Argentina or if this had all been arranged weeks earlier which is another indication that the reality here maybe isn’t so real.

So off they go, traveling along the rivers that will lead them to the mission. They stop for the night in the center of a large river during their trip to Santa Ana, confront some guys in a boat who are probably fishing though we’ve been told that this river is a highway for smuggling and that it is a very dangerous area. It’s so dangerous that they decide to make some weapons, bombs actually, and they break out their crossbow for which they have a single bolt. I’m thinking what a bunch of loons who have been watching too much television in their spare time. I wondered if they had a satellite feed on the boat.

I could go on, but I’m really tired of this whole thing. The script is terrible, the acting not much better and the danger invented… sure, there are snakes and spiders which they show us repeatedly and their xenophobia is becoming annoying. No one they meet is a regular human… they are people bearing down on them on highways, floating around in boats, and trying to sell them fake Inca artifacts.

The first season wasn’t quite as ridiculous as this season is turning out. The longer it goes on, the more likely this whole thing is staged for a South American adventure show that has no basis in reality. I mean how big is the production crew? Where do they stay? Whose clearing the way for them to travel across Paraguay and then into Argentina? And why is everyone telling them that everything they find is a clue to the Treasure of the Trinity? I will bet we’ll end the season with them finding nothing of great value, but if the ratings are high enough they’ll be back for the next travelogue with a new set of clues that could take them to the Oak Island where they can meet up with the Laginas.

Thursday, November 17, 2016

Chasing Footnotes -The Socorro Case

As anyone who visits here regularly, you know that I chase footnotes. I sometimes try to find specific instances to make the case, but when I search without a known destination, it seems to be an impossible task. Instead, I find the bad footnotes by accident. This is just something that cannot be forced.

Lonnie Zamora
As you all also know, I have been looking into the symbol that Lonnie Zamora reported seeing on the side of the landed UFO. That research has bled into other areas, including the idea that other members of the Socorro Police Department or the New Mexico State Police saw the same object as Zamora. In the Unidentified Flying Objects Briefing Document: The Best Available Evidence compiled by Don Berliner, Marie Galbraith and Antonio Huneeus and “presented” by CUFOS, FUFOR and MUFON, in December, 1995, I read the short segment on the Socorro case. They wrote, “At this time, Zamora was joined by a police sergeant [Chavez] who watched the craft fly away into the distance.”

This is an argument, that Chavez saw the object, that has been made here by David Rudiak and one that Ray Stanford as well as Ben Moss and Tony Angiola shared during the interviews on my X-Zone Broadcast Network radio show. The links can be found in the postings for those programs. It is not this argument, that Chavez saw the object, which I’m concerned with here, but with the footnote about where this information was found or where it could be verified. According to Berliner, Galbraith and Hunees, this was a “Written statement by Lonnie Zamora to Project Blue Book, 1964; reprinted in Steiger, Brad, ed. Project Blue Book, ibid.”

In the last weeks I have been through the Blue Book files several times. I have discussed this idea of other police witnesses, both privately with a number of people and publicly on this blog. I have a copy of Steiger’s book and a complete copy of the Blue Book file on the case. Nowhere in the statement by Zamora does it suggest that the police sergeant arrived in time to see the UFO as it disappeared in the distance. In fact, Zamora in that statement said:

As I was calling Nep [a police radio operator], I could still see the object. The object seemed to lift up slowly, and to “get small” in the distance very fast. It seemed to just clear Box Canyon or Six Mile Canyon mountain. It disappeared as it went over the mountains. It had no flame whatsoever as it was traveling over the ground and made no smoke or noise…

Zamora said that he then went down to where the craft had landed and saw that one of the bushes was still smoking. He then said:

Gave directions to Nep Lopez at radio and to Sgt. M.S. Chavez to get there. Went down to where the object was (had been), and I noted the bush was burning in several places. At that time, I heard Sgt. Chavez calling me on radio for my location, and I returned to my car, told him he was looking at me. Then Sgt. Chavez came up and asked me what the trouble was, because I was sweating and he told me I was white, very pale. I asked the Sergeant to see what I saw, and that was the burning bush. Then Sgt. Chavez and I went to the spot, and Sgt. Chavez pointed out the tracks.

It is clear from Zamora’s statement in the Blue Book files and in Steiger’s book, that Chavez didn’t arrive until after the UFO had disappeared in the distance. Now we really don’t have to go through the arguments again about how Chavez did arrive in time to see it in the sky. What I’m saying here is that the sources quoted for the information do not support that idea. We can argue about other sources, but in this very limited case, those additional sources are irrelevant because they weren’t cited. The sources quoted do not support the statement, and that is all that is relevant here.

X-Zone Broadcast Network - Rob Mercer

Rob Mercer
For those of you keeping score at home, this week, I talked with Rob Mercer. He was the guy who found the Blue Book files for sale on Craig’s List, or rather a box of them. Though we didn’t spend much time talking about the cases found in there, I was more impressed with the investigative lengths he went to finding the original owner of that box. He was able to trace the files to a former member of Project Blue Book, Carmon Marano, who was interviewed here a couple of weeks ago. Just the story about how he found Marano, and as I mentioned, I have found his name in the case file of the Minot UFO sighting, which was detailed in Project Blue Book – Exposed. You can listen to the Rob Mercer interview here:

Next week: Mark O’Connell
Topic: His impressions of his Roswell debate with Don Schmitt

Sunday, November 13, 2016

Treasure Quest, Season Two, Episode Two - A New Boondoggle

I had said to myself that I would not review this program after every episode but give them a chance to pull their fat out of the fire. There are hints that they do find some treasure. After last night’s program I changed my mind because they really fell off the rails.

To begin, we are treated, once again, to the big pot they found in the mud but now we get to see what was inside. Nothing of human origin. It was a couch shell. Our pal, the archaeologist/diver Meghan Heaney-Grier, declared that it was of Incan origin. Now, if couch shells were only found on the west coast of northern South America I might buy that. As near as I can tell, no one did any test to determine where the shell might have originated and even a basic Internet search showed they turn up on many parts of the world and are used for many things. They even describe the variations in the shells which means they might be able to identify its place of origin if they give it a shot. The fact that the Inca Empire used them does not translate into proof that this shell had ever been in the hands of anyone from that empire. We don’t even get an idea of how old this mud-covered shell might be and the cynic in me still wonders if it wasn’t planted.

Then we have the danger. First, we’re treated to Cappy off to find another bottle of booze when we hear screams or shouts or something to alert the camp. He’s spotted two big green eyes but the animal ran off into the jungle. They find a print in the mud that they tell us is of a big cat, a jaguar, the apex predator in the area, and that it will be watching them from afar or some such. According to their guide jaguars have been known to drag people out of tents…

Next they’re back in the river, because they are certain that the treasure, if kept in the village would be in the part that fell into river centuries ago. No worries about piranha or caiman because they can block off the river with a net. They do find
This is a little more elaborate than the
one they found but gives you the idea.
what they call a nose jewelry or face plate, which they say the Inca used. Okay, I have no knowledge of this, but it isn’t one of the super rare, super valuable ones made of gold. Does it connect to the Inca Empire? Hell, I don’t know but that’s what they claim.

They find nothing else after several days of diving, so they decide the treasure isn’t in that place, so they head out to the southeastern edge of Paraguay for the next part of their search.

During this show, they have been calling this the Treasure of the Trinity, and talk, as I did in the last post about the Portuguese adventurer, Alexio Garcia, who amassed the fortune. But then they also explain that it was part of the ransom for the Incan Emperor, Atahuallpa. The problem here is that the ransom, that supposed to have filled a huge room with gold and silver, is reported to have been dumped into a lake by an Inca general RumiƱahui after the emperor had been killed. He wanted to keep it out of the hands of the Spanish. This is known as Treasure of the Llanganates, so now I’m wondering if they actually know what they’re looking for, and if they do, they seem to be in the wrong place because everything suggests that the Treasure of the Llanganates is hidden in Peru but I digress.

So they are now in a town, sitting at an open air table, discussing their finds with the local expert who apparently sent them to the wrong place first. He’s impressed with what they have, though I’m not. Someone else is, as he walks by the table a couple of times and one of the men goes off to confront him about his interest in their artifacts. (I’m wondering why they are conducting this discussion outside where everyone can walk by to see the valuable artifacts they had recovered.) Once the conference is over, they’re off to an old Jesuit mission that night where they might find a clue or two.

I still don’t know why they would make the trip in the dark unless the hotels where they were really sucked. I would have thought it would be better to make the trip in the daylight, but then I’m not an experienced treasure hunter or adventurer. I’m just a guy who chases UFOs when I’m in the mood.

There is another confrontation during this drive with great tension as someone in a big truck (I’m thinking pickup) who suddenly turns on his bright lights and speeds up. The guys in the lead vehicle are shouting over the radio to those in the second, “Don’t let him pass. Don’t let him pass.” So they maneuver to prevent that as the truck, with the bright lights, speeds up and slows down. I’m thinking, “What a bunch of road hogs. Maybe all the guy wants to do is pass a slower vehicle.”

After several minutes of this drama which might have been interrupted by a commercial break, it’s so unimportant that I don’t remember, the guy with the bright lights turns off. I mean, what conclusion do you draw about this? American road hogs wouldn’t let one of the locals pass so that he could get home. They are really dragging this one out. Apparently the only danger was from a guy who was in a hurry and not some hijacker out to take their artifacts.

They reach their destination; they find the remains of a church and tell us that the Jesuits often hid treasure on their grounds. We get ground penetrating radar and more searches with metal detectors, but they don’t seem to find anything and decide to use a drone so that they can search the surrounding jungle. What would a treasure hunting show in South America be without a drone? We end with the drone having found a clearing of some sort and the team moving rapidly to it.

But I don’t care because Gold Rush is next and we know that Parker and Tony Beets will find gold, millions of dollars of it, and Todd Hoffman has made what looks to be another bad move because he’s only finding a couple of thousand dollars (okay, he’s doing a little better but it’s not looking all the prosperous for him). So, I’ll watch the real treasure hunters while those people in South America find a clearing.