Thursday, August 29, 2013

Ken Johnston, Thornton Page and Tsiolkovsky

        Kennote 1 was on "Coast" last night, plugging his application to be one of the first crew members on the "slow suicide" mission to Mars in 2022. Since he'll be 80 by then I don't reckon his chances much, but I wish him well. He lobbed a verbal grenade in James Oberg's direction -- once he remembered Oberg's name, which took several seconds. It seems to be Down With Oberg week, what with that and snarking on this blog from Misti/Jaq. I doubt if JimO cares, but he's well able to riposte without any help from me.

        Ken trotted out his standard story about how he was once showing Apollo14 lunar backside pass film to Thornton Page and other miscellaneous scientists — some "meaningful looks" were exchanged, and they remarked on what looked like a manned base in Tsiolkovsky, complete with a flashing light. Which was later "covered up". Oh yeah. Just like those "glass skyscrapers" which were really crap on Hoagland's scanner.

        Here's the followup question a well-briefed host would have asked: "Very interesting, Ken. Now, the resolution of those Apollo images would have been -- what? 200m per pixel? Since that time Lunar Reconnaissance Orbiter has covered the entire Moon at 77m and most of it at 0.8m resolution, 200x better than what you saw that night. Have you checked the LRO image library to see if there's a manned base?" Do I need add that that's NOT what George Noory asked? I thought not.

Here's the link.

        By the way, at the time of Apollo 14 Tsiolkovsky was under serious consideration as a future landing site, despite being out of contact with Planet Earth (the plan was to do comms via a lunar satellite). So there would have been nothing unusual about Page et al. showing special interest.

        As for the "flashing light"... is he sure Page didn't have a laser pointer?

Update 1: I'm wrong
        The resolution of those images was most likely much better than 200m. See comment #7. It does remain true that the LRO images are the best, and certainly the most accessible.

        Also, if the frames were from the Topographic Camera, they would not have been in the form of a movie. So it's a mystery how a flashing light could have been seen. I sure wish Ken would respond to my e-mails.

Update 2: James Oberg sets the record straight
Partial transcript from last night:
24:15 GN: You’re a whistle-blower, aren’t you?

KJ: Well (laugh), you know, that’s funny. I don’t usually go on and look up myself, [but] a person said, you need to check this out, and I went and did google on a name, and up pops, um, (laugh) my old nemesis (laugh..draws breath) help me out here, will you? What’s his name? Um ..

GN: Give me a hint.

KJ: James Oberg

GN: OK. All right.

KJ: He always pops up again and starts chipping away at my credentials and my background, and things like that. You know, he never was … He and I used to sit in the same room talking stories about his Master’s thesis which was “Mass Media Indoctrination” having to do with space, and all. For some reason he’s the hatchet man, he’s trying his best to do a number on me, I just sorta blow it off and don’t pay any attention to it, 'cause the people themselves can filter through and find out what the truth is. 
JimO: Needless to say, there is NO 'Master's thesis in mass media indoctrination' I ever wrote, nor ever talked to anyone about. My MS degrees are in "Computational Methods in Astrodynamics for Space mission Planning" [applied mathematics], and "New Developments in Compiler Theory"  [computer sciences]

        The deets of the dispute over Johnston's credentials are still here, on the Unexplained Mysteries forum.

[1] For newbies, this is who Ken Johnston is.


Unknown said...

A 200 meter flashing light? Sounds pretty reasonable to me. :D

Chris Lopes said...

The problem with Johnston is that the validity of his narrative hangs on his credentials. If his publicly stated credentials do not match reality, his story falls apart. Shipping clerks are not archivists, and would not have access to original (as in one of a kind) lunar images.

Unknown said...

If Ken Johnston is able to make ti to Mars, then Maybe there's still time for James Oberg to get a job related to his degree?

expat said...

Chris, it's totally obvious to me that Ken's photo-set showed nothing special at all. The artifacts that Hoagland & Bara say are structures, are the result of storing glossy 10x8s in a folder for 40 years, then pulling them out and scanning them incompetently on a consumer-grade scanner that has not been kept very clean. Surprise, surprise! They look different from the NASA scans, which were done by professionals in a clean room.

Julian: Resolution might be deceptive here. We're not talking "pixels" as in the digital images we all know about today. Maybe I should have written "film grain" instead. But either way, it's perfectly feasible for a point source of light to show on a photograph even if its physical size is well below the theoretical resolution of the film. You wouldn't be able to determine whereabouts it was within the pixel/grain, but you would know it's there.

Anonymous said...

As a matter of interest, what B&W film did they use for the moon? I know they uses Ektachrome for the colour shots. I'm guessing the B&W was quite high(film)speed stuff?


expat said...

Not that fast, but fine grained.
Panatonic (+/- 32 ASA)

expat said...

UPDATE: The film Ken refers to was almost certainly from the Lunar Topographic Camera -- a motion-compensated mapping camera specifically installed for future landing site reconnaissance.

Film frames were 4.5 in. square, and the resolution varied from 20ft (6m) to as little as 4ft (1.2m) at pericynthion. Frame rate was variable from 4 - 75 fps and shutter speeds 1/50, 1/100 0r 1/200 sec.

So I was incorrect in writing that LRO images would be far superior.

Chris Lopes said...

Expat, if you are suggesting that the "anomalies" Hoagie/Bara talk about in their almost NYT best seller are a product of a dirty scanner, of course you are correct. The point is though, that without Johnston and his so called status as a high ranking NASA insider, the images would have no credibility even by their lowly standards. As a shipping clerk, Johnston's story sounds a lot less impressive (and believable) than the narrative he is trying to sell would suggest. It's not just a matter of how you define words like pilot, it's a matter of whether anything the guy says can be believed.

Anonymous said...

Misti, Mr. Oberg is honorably retired after an outstanding career using his degrees in applied math, computer science and Russian. What have you done with your life aside from spreading flapdoodle, codswallop and loon drool?

Unknown said...

I sincerely doubt that James Oberg, under that moniker, is writing for free. He has admitted to no degree in either history or psychology, and most certainly is not a licensed psychotherapist, so where does he get off saying that people who report of witnessing UFOs and experiencing abduction by aliens are delusional, as he has in fact asserted?

Unknown said...


Tell you what. I'll make you a challenge.

Go to youtube. Type in UFO. You will get literally thousands of results. Including all the "proof of aliens on the moon/mars", top secret apollo missions, abductions, time travel etc etc poppycock, it's probably the next biggest category on youtube after cat videos.

Yet, I have never once seen a video that's definitive proof of alien life. Everything I've seen there is either a misunderstood phenomenon (planes, birds, balloons etc) or a fake (glass reflections, alien suits, computer imagery) but never anything conclusive.

Can you show me ONE DEFINITIVE PROOF OF A UFO on youtube? Something that stands up to a bit of scrutiny. Something that's plainly in focus and clear and cannot be an illusion or a fake.

The ball's in your court Misti. Who knows? Maybe I'll start going to church again.

Tara Jordan said...

Strahlungs Amt

You all know that I am ultra skeptical,I don't buy any of the paranormal/space brothers lunacy,but no one can honestly dismiss the testimonies of hundreds of civilian/military pilots,radar operators,aviation professionals,government officials, who publicly testified about what they experienced.

There is also a tremendous amount of declassified documents that demonstrates there is definitely something going, that defies rational & scientific explanations.Years ago,the French Ministry of Defense & the French Air Force conducted an in-depth study of UFOs.they failed to provide an explanation but acknowledged the "reality" of the phenomena known as "unidentified flying objects".

I don't know what is the nature of this phenomena but reducing it as mere swamp gases, hallucinations,or celestial bodies,is a ludicrous as pretending that ufo`s are visitors from outer space.

Unknown said...

The Phoenix lights of March 13, 1997, were witnessed by thousands of people who will attest to the fact that they saw them. To this day, those lights seen in the sky remain unidentified.

James Oberg might not care to create a hypothesis about such phenomenon, but to dismiss such as imaginary is not only not scientific, but stupid.

Anonymous said...

Show us where he has asserted that, Misti. Oh, right, you can't, like Hoaxland you find it easier to just make stuff up and home no one calls you on your BS.

Expat, Misti brings nothing to the party, can we please ban her again?

Anonymous said...

Misti, you never did answer my question: What have you done with your life but spread codswallop, flapdoodle and loon drool?

expat said...

I'm not going to ban Jaque yet but too many repetitions might lead that way.

Unknown said...


I remember the Phoenix lights. They hovered over Phoenix for the night and lots of people saw them. They still haven't been explained.

They don't count sorry. They could also have been a bunch of flares or helicopters flying in formation. Inconclusive. They may be real but what are they? I'm not interested in questions or what ifs or maybes. I'm interested in answers.
What I meant was something that couldn't possibly be human or a natural phenomenon. Something that had to be alien. A UFO picture where we could see the windows quite clearly and which was witnessed by lots of people would do. Also a perfectly square object (not just a rock that looks almost perfectly square) on Mars or the Moon would do.
Youtube is a big place. Keep looking.

@Emma Peel,

Pilots in the USAF were jacked up on amphetamines to stay awake a lot of the time. This can cause a person to see bright lights and aliens and weird stuff and would also explain why the phenomenon never shows on photos.

I'm not trying to push an agenda here. I'm just asking for conclusive proof of any claims of extraterrestrial intelligence or higher dimensions. It's the job of the claimant to provide the proof, not the audience.

Unknown said...


It doesn't take a PhD in psychology to tell that someone is nuts.

Unknown said...

The Phoenix flares occurred at a latter hour on that same date in an entirely different location. The Phoenix Lights qualify as a UFO sighting.

Occam's razor is neither a law nor proof, but merely a starting point for developing a hypothesis. Furthermore, the most simple answer is rarely obvious.

To diagnose an illness without a medical degree is a crime in the United States.

James Oberg would better serve society by remaining silent if he can't qualify his opinions.

expat said...

>>To diagnose an illness without a medical degree is a crime in the United States.<<

Please tell that to Dave Bara, twin brother of Mike, who wrote the following to an Amazon 2-star reviewer of his book Speedwing:

"My honest suggestion is that you either take the medications you already have as scheduled, or seek out a professional that can provide you with the help you need. There is a cure out there for you. I hope you get help."

Anonymous said...

Who is paying you, Misti? No one posts as much codswallop, flapdoodle and loon drool while looking like a fool for free. So who is paying you and why are they doing it?

Unknown said...

A medical degree and a license to practice medicine, I might add. In the case of the Barass', that goes double.

Unknown said...

If anybody doesn't like it, they can just pay me to stop.

expat said...

Dave also wrote this to a 1-star reviewer:

"I'm sure there is a name for what is wrong with you, just as I am sure that their [sic] is a proper schedule of medication for it. I hope that you get the help that you seem to so desperately need, whoever you in fact, are."

If you think that's unprofessional, you're right!

Anonymous said...

So, Misti, you admit someone is oaying you to "write?" too bad they didn't pay you to think as well. So, who is paying you, Misti, and why?

Anonymous said...

Strahlungs Amt : "What I meant was something that couldn't possibly be human or a natural phenomenon".

That's not the definition of U.F.O., not even within the UFO community.

Misty wrote about the mystifying nature of "unidentified flying objects".

That's it. A huge field of observations that have many different possible explanations and theories attached. It's mostly in the realm of anecdotal and unstructured evidence.

Nobody has to prove the existence of flying objects lacking identification, it's an observable fact of life. What could be discussed is if it would be worthwhile researching the topic as one distinct topic. Or which approach would then be meaningful.

Just denial and ridicule is not in the spirit of science or open minds. Perhaps a sign of discomfort? Or watching too much faked video's? Who knows?


jourget said...

Interestingly, the current largest volcano on Earth was recently confirmed at 33 degrees north:

The old RCH would have immediately jumped on this as the latest confirmation of HD physics at work. The new, nearly silent RCH? We'll have to wait and see.

Unknown said...

Misti/Jacqueline B. Nipples/Dee or whatever your name is now.

Is it really so hard for you believers to produce JUST ONE verifiable image of a flying saucer, you know, one that's come close enough to see in the windows?
I mean really, they've been watching us since WWII at least, there's thousands of pictures and youtube videos up there, yet not one single piece of verifiable evidence.
And I don't care what you "believe" or what the definition is in the UFO community. I want proof.
And no, the Phoenix Lights are still inconclusive. They could have been anything. I WANT FUCKING PROOF.
Thank you.

Stay Tuned......

Trekker said...

Strahlungs Amt, The Phoenix Lights were explained long ago. These sites are good reads:


Unknown said...

The Phoenix Lights have not been explained by anyone who witnessed them. In other words, a lot of people with big imaginations and equally big mouths, have made unscientific assertions without addressing the actual phenomenon in question. What ever it is they are talking about is not the Phoenix Lights.

All I believe about the Phoenix Lights is that they were seen up in the sky and remain Unidentified. I don't jump to the conclusion that they are necessarily objects or that they were actually flying.

Anonymous said...

Strahlungs, Amt, Trekker or whatever your slightly paranoia mind think you are right now,

"Is it really so hard for you believers to produce JUST ONE verifiable image of a flying saucer"

Apart from the unfounded assumption that I'm a "believer": what is a "verifiable image" exactly? And UFO does not equal "saucer". Get some education on elemental debating techniques please.

"I mean really, they've been watching us since WWII at least"

There's no accepted theory inside the UFO community or outside it about any actions, motives, identity and historical behavior of UFO's. But perhaps you just don't know much about the topic at all. Just ranting then?

"not one single piece of verifiable evidence. And I don't care what you "believe" or what the definition is in the UFO community. "

The problem is more that there's no good theory to begin with. Or definition for that matter. So you might not care but that's the main problem of nearly all serious UFO research. What are they exactly investigating?? Where are the limits and boundaries?

Dee. (and nobody else)

Trekker said...


Why do you call me a 'believer' and imply that I'm the same person as Strahlungs Amt? I'm not.

I gave two links to pages of detailed analysis which explains what the Phoenix Lights were. It would seem to me that you haven't even bothered to look at them.

Unknown said...

Tim Printy is a kibitzer; neither a first hand witness, a scientist, field investigator, nor rigorous investigative journalist. He is entitled to express his opinion, and does seem to qualify them as such.

Who the hell is Tony Ortega? He didn't debunk anything. He says that the Phoenix Lights was a formation of planes, yet presents no evidence. What type of planes? Where did they come from? Why were they flying in formation? How come the FAA didn't have a flight plan on file? Were they on a secret mission? How could he know?

The Phoenix Lights remain, UFOs.

Anonymous said...

Trekker, sorry, I was just joking about Strahlung calling me "Misti/Jacqueline B. Nipples/Dee or whatever your name is".

So I just added some random names too when replying. It was just ironic to see someone arguing against UFO and at the same time sound so paranoid and sloppy.

But I didn't want to dreg you into it, my apologies. I did read you first link and found it useful. Thanks! I have just a mild interest in the UFO phenomenon but mostly from the psychological perspective.


JimO said...

Brimble: "where does he get off saying that people who report of witnessing UFOs and experiencing abduction by aliens are delusional, as he has in fact asserted? " B: Where do you get off lying about me? Where did I ever say that? You dreamed it up. Shocker. Why are you run-of-the-mill 'ufo nuts' so darned self-satirizing?

Unknown said...

Good article. 'dork mission' ;+}

TheREalJimmyRoberts1 said...

I'll make YOU a challenge: Prove to me that you exist in the next 24 hours. Image isn't good enough. Could be fake. Can you do this?

expat said...

Challenge declined. It would not have any bearing on what did or did not happen in Tsiolkovsky.