August 16, 2013 |
LAS VEGAS - For decades, Area 51 was the U.S. government's Cold War-era secret that hid in plain sight, the 5-ton elephant in the Nevada desert that Washington continually denied (“No, it's not there.”), prompting reams of conspiracy theories. Well, now it's official: Area 51 really does exist. In newly declassified documents, the Central Intelligence Agency is acknowledging the existence of the mysterious war-test site in central Nevada that has captivated listeners on the far ends of the radio dial, spawning countless UFO conspiracies.
September 11, 1994
Jack Smith's column over the years has been a shining ray of reason in a country where most people seem incapable of recognizing superstitious or supernatural baloney when they see it. Jack should consider UFO lover John Norkin's letter, ("Jack Should Stick to Earthly Matters," Sept. 4) a badge of honor. I'm sure Jack will continue to show the UFO silliness for the garbage that it is--just as he has done for several decades. That's why we love him. JAMES R. GALLAGHER Huntington Beach
November 21, 2002
The Leonid meteor storm was a total bust! I was in the desert just outside the city of Palm Springs from 1:30 to 4 a.m. Tuesday expecting to see the light show of the century (up to 6,000 shooting stars in one hour). All I could see were a bright moon, three fluttering bats, one flying owl, a possible UFO and one wimpy shooting star. I am definitely canceling my star party in the year 2098, when the next Leonid meteor storm hits the Earth. Rick Schreiner Pasadena
April 3, 2014 |
As the found-footage horror genre reaches the please-lose-it-again point, "Alien Abduction" arrives to remind us how tedious the camping trip set-up has become as well. Taking the notorious "ghost lights" above North Carolina's Brown Mountain as its inspiration, the movie purports to be Air Force-leaked footage from an 11-year-old autistic boy's camcorder of how things went horribly wrong for his family on a weekend nature outing. (Considering some of the eye-level shots, he must be a very tall 11-year-old.)
October 16, 1999
I was nonplused and shocked at F. Kathleen Foley's mean-spirited, dismissive take on my play "Stolen Time" ("E.T.-Themed 'Time': Hilarity, Call Home," Oct. 8). Rarely is a play dismissed so cavalierly in The Times. Claiming the stage is set for "high hilarity," Foley apparently fails to recognize that "Stolen Time" is both a comedy and a drama, a fact that other reviewers were clear about. The play is not simply a "high-concept" romp at a UFO conference that appeals to "the lunatic fringe."
June 28, 1992
Like any sect of true believers, the promulgators of satanism paranoia deal in faith, not fact. Like the alternate universe of UFO buffs, the "defenders of the faith" feed not from truth but from tracts handed out by itinerate fundamentalist preachers and others who make a living reprinting baseless "facts" about this so-called widespread activity. It is obvious, in the wake of the McMartin debacle, that children can and do lie, particularly when prompted by well-meaning, wrong-headed adults.