MUFON: What is going on there?
Not being a dues paying member of MUFON, I look from the outside in at their activities and wonder what might be going on there. Their website says that their mission is “The Scientific Study of UFOs for the Benefit of Humanity”. The MUFON chapter nearest to me is in Sedona, Arizona, and it is their complete lack of scientific interest that has stopped me from joining. Due to this, I even called MUFON’s main office to confirm that this chapter is really a valid chapter. It is. You have probably guessed from this that I am a nuts-and-bolts kind of UFO guy, and you would be right. Any comments that I make about MUFON are done from the perspective of an outsider.
All UFO orgs of the past have had spy scrutiny and infiltration by government agencies. In fact, this was one of the recommendations of the Robertson panel. This activity assisted the government with the dissolution of NICAP and APRO, although these groups also self-destructed to a large extent as well. It appears to me that MUFON in its formation tried to avoid a hostile government by consciously avoiding a political agenda, and that continues to this day. For example, the recent petitions to the government to reveal what it knows about the cover up came from people who were acting independently of MUFON. I happen to believe that MUFON should have a political agenda, and it should have been they, not “regular” people, who first submitted these petitions. It should have been done years ago by MUFON through a lobbying process, a role which now belongs to one lonely person, Steven Bassett.
MUFON has also undergone recent internal turmoil. The well publicized boondoggles with Robert Bigelow and the previous young director of MUFON indicate a seething, cash strapped org. I can only hope that they survive and prosper beyond these kinds of tempests.
On the MUFON web site, several forms are listed which appear quite well done. The one I looked most closely at was the one the investigators use for sightings of “entities.” Most of my own research is based on Close Encounters of the Third Kind sightings (i.e. entities). I was pleased to see that the four check boxes for observed alien activity started with “sample gathering” followed by “repairs”. This exactly matches my own research results for the first and second most observed alien activity during CE3 sightings.
One thing that I did NOT see on these forms was any reference to local legends and ghosts. I would like to find out if this sort of coverage area is recommended by the MUFON manual, so that is why I want to obtain one. The reason I bring this up is that I read a report written by a MUFON Star team (or is it A Team?) investigator a few years ago on the UFO Chronicles blog site. The Star or A Team was composed of the best MUFON investigators, and the report mentioned that one of the first steps was to check into local cemetery lore such as Indian burial grounds and other local paranormal things such as ghosts. (I am going purely by memory here; I cannot find this report on UFO Chronicles anymore.) Given MUFON’s stated mission as being the “scientific study of UFOs …” I thought that this due diligence of investigating ghosts, etc. rather odd and unscientific. But then as time has passed, I now think, why not? Certainly UFOs have a kind of paranormal component, and who am I to restrict the boundaries of such an investigation? This investigator was thinking out of the box which is a good thing for UFOs. If I owned a MUFON Field Investigator’s Manual, I could find out if researching the spiritual and/or paranormal is discussed in it, but the only way I can get my hands on it is to pay $70 which I am not going to do.
I just saw a Richard Dolan video in which he speaks his concerns for MUFON. UFO believers need such an organization, so if MUFON falls, what are we all to do? He alludes to concerns/complaints that people have about its Board of Directors. Maybe some of these are valid, but I am sure that most are not. Having served on a subdivision board of directors for 3 years, I can assure everyone with absolute certainty that even a board consisting of Jesus, Mohammed, Buddha, Abe Lincoln and George Washington would still receive a ton of complaints in our litigious society.