Friday, August 2, 2002
1. ANTI-GRAVITY: A GRAVITY SHIELD WOULD
BE VERY NICE, BUT...
Never has an idea with no prospect for success so captivated corporate
research managers who either never studied or never understood the most
basic laws of physics. Both Boeing in the US and BAE Systems, the British
aerospace giant, are trying to make the Podkletnov gravity shield work.
BAE has already been at it for two years (WN
31 Mar 00), with no success. When NASA couldn't make the Podkletnov
shield work, they invested another million dollars (WN
22 Jan 99). When it still didn't work, they decided the tests were
"inconclusive" and sank another mil into it (WN
12 Oct 01). I have identified seven warning signs of bad science http://www.bobpark.com.
The Podkletnov gravity shield fits all seven. So why would Boeing choose
to spend millions to test a ridiculous claim by an obscure Russian physicist
that has failed every test and is a physical impossibility to begin with?
OK, so the Pentagon is paying for it. But there's also this goofy book
by Nick Cook, who writes for Jane's Defense Weekly.
2. BOOK REVIEW: "THE HUNT FOR ZERO POINT,"
by NICK COOK.
If this book is about controlling gravity, what's with the "zero point"?
The confusion is natural; both lie within the province of fringe scientists
who haven't a clue of where the real world stops and the fantasy world
of Atlantis and UFO's begins. Cook is not a scientist of any sort; in
his world, these guys are the insiders. Don't look for them in the pages
of Phys Rev; they're not a bunch of pointy-headed academics. They are
part of the black world of really important top secret stuff like -- well,
electrogravitics. So who exactly fed Nick Cook this enormous pile of horse
manure? If you're a regular reader of WN, you've already met them all.
3. FRINGE: WHERE EVERYTHING IS SECRET,
AND NOTHING IS IMPOSSIBLE.
When Cook set out on his search for "the biggest secret since the atom
bomb," he went straight to the Integrity Research Institute, in Washington,
DC, where you can buy books and videos with titles like "Holistic Physics
and Consciousness" (WN 5 Mar 99).
IRI is really Tom Valone, a former patent examiner who lost his job in
the fallout from the Conference on Free Energy (WN
21 May 99). He had recruited Paul LaViolette, who claims the B-2 uses
anti-gravity, reverse engineered from a crashed flying saucer. He was
also fired (WN 18 Aug 00). They
sent Cook to the Institute for Advanced Study. Not the one in Princeton;
the one in Austin, TX. It consists of Harold Puthoff, who wants to extract
energy from the zero point of the vacuum. He used to run the CIA's "remote
viewing" program, which was inspired by "Mind Reach," a book he wrote
with Russell Targ (WN 11 Mar 94).
Finally, Cook sought advice from Charles Platt, founder of CryoCare, a
company that keeps human heads bobbing in liquid nitrogen until scientists
can figure out how to restart them (WN
21 Jul 00).