Friday, February 5, 2016

The Singer's Hybrid Daughter, Part I


Excerpt from The Abductionist's Wife: A Memoir

by Carol Rainey

“Extraordinary...beautifully written...with a highly original almost unbelievable story.”

- Candy Schulman, author of essays and articles in The New York TimesThe Washington PostMcSweeney'sNewsweek, and the book Lost and Found.


“Carol Rainey has had an insider's view of the decades-old argument between promoters and detractors of the reality of abductions….yet she never lost her critical, intelligent, sensitive viewpoint. [Her long-awaited book] is the first rational, deeply human appraisal of an enduring enigma that challenges all our ideas about the unknown, and our complex relationship with it.”

- Dr. Jacques Vallée, one of today's most respected researchers of unexplained aerial phenomena. He holds a master's degree in astrophysics, a Ph.D. in Computer Science, and once served as consultant to NASA's Mars Map project. Vallee is the author of several books, including Passport to Magonia (1969) and The Invisible College (1975).

“A very powerful story! I now understand why it's taken [Rainey] so long to write about all this. One really needs time and distance to dispassionately contemplate and articulate these kinds of events….I think [her] reports are exceptionally valuable…a very important contribution. The writing itself is superb.”

- George P. Hansen, author of The Trickster and the Paranormal, is a scholar primarily interested in the paranormal in its social context. His papers are published on his website and in multiple journals of parapsychology.



Blogger's Note

     The work presented in both parts one and two of this post, including all written content and photos, is credited to Carol Rainey. I am pleased to provide a venue for it. - Jack Brewer


Author’s Note

     It seems timely now, in this era of frighteningly extreme beliefs, to make public my own personal story of how even the unlikeliest person can find herself drawn to enter into an extreme belief system. How she gets caught up in its mythic power, becomes part of the community, and finally, faces the painful fact that she must leave it and people she loves behind. What are the forces that collude to cause a thoroughly modern, educated woman like me to embrace such an unconventional set of beliefs as that of alien abduction and UFOs? It would be easy to explain away by blaming it on my falling in love with and marrying the charismatic leader of this community at the far edges of society. But it’s more than that. There’s a deeper reason, even, than love.

     
Author at work, 1994
As I write this unfinished memoir, poking at the past a little every day, it is extraordinarily difficult to tell you – or to understand myself -- what happened to me inside that chaotic, exciting, almost cultish environment for well over a decade. Just as somebody entering thick woods might pick up a sturdy stick, I picked up my video camera to help me understand the beliefs of my husband and the victims who came to him for counsel and hypnosis. Making the film only drew me closer into his investigations, case by case. I saw how a UFO researcher actually did his recovered memory work; not what he said he did. If I questioned his methods or what seemed like a willingness to believe almost anything, that temerity landed me on the enemies list. Days later, we wouldn’t be able to keep our hands off each other. It was the most madly in love, rage-filled, crazy-making, tumultuous relationship of my life.

     Some readers may dismiss my story for that very reason. The angry ex-wife…motives…too close for objectivity. But there is no one else to tell this story. On a day-to-day basis, abduction researchers work alone, with no peer review and no one to double-check their methods and ethics.i It was only the abductionist’s wife who saw, first-hand, how researchers could and did shape the alien abduction narrative they wanted -- the terrifyingly invisible alien takeover of the planet and the human species. It is my hope that The Abductionist’s Wife digs far below the surface of the UFO community to reveal the compulsion and complexities of any belief. What I want to offer is a poignant, but clear-eyed story about a great love gone awry in a tangled, emotionally taut search for answers to a human mystery.

****

     The events in this excerpt occurred early on in our marriage. “The Singer’s Hybrid Daughter” involved two fragile and volatile people, a case that I found particularly disturbing. Pseudonyms are used for the singer and her daughter, as well as for Linda Cortile. All other events and people are depicted as I remember them, aided by personal journals, correspondence, planning calendars, emails, and extensive audio and video.

     Serious inquiries from publishers are welcome.




 “The Singer’s Hybrid Daughter”

Excerpt from The Abductionist’s Wife: A Memoir

by Carol Rainey


     One late afternoon in the winter of 1997, snow began falling all over Manhattan. Not much at first, barely four or five inches, but rumors of a coming snowstorm cast a spell over the city. I was headed home up Seventh Avenue, arms full of groceries, delighted as a child to be out in the fresh falling snow. For a brief moment in time, New York seemed to have been draped in reams of shimmering white silk. Everything had become equally beautiful, simple and pure – a sculpture in the park, potholes, a bus-stand, gargoyles in the architecture. The surprised city forgot its city-ness. Traffic thinned to almost nothing; yellow taxis crept along. Avenues and streets grew hushed and the trees that lined them made pale, blunt shapes with their boughs. I’d only been living here for two years and had never seen the city like this, so still and quiet. It seemed in a rare mood for listening.
     
Blizzard on West Sixteenth Street 
I thought: This is the kind of enchantment that happens in fairy tales, when the world suddenly turns strange and the girl wandering in the woods somehow knows that her life is about to change. It needed to; it must.
     I juggled the bags for balance and twisted to look back through a scrim of falling snow. A single set of footprints trailed behind me. They were dark holes punched in the snow, like bullet holes in a wedding gown. At the sight of those lone footprints, I felt joy begin to leak out of me. It was for the promise of a true partnership that I’d taken the chance of marrying again. But, so far, even as recently as last night, evidence suggested that I might have been an idealistic fool.
     A middle-aged broad with a middle-school girl’s swoony notion of a couple’s side-by-side stroll through marriage. Sad, sad, sad.
     On West Sixteenth Street, I let myself into the lobby of the modest two-family brownstone that Budd had owned and shared, before me, with two earlier wives and a now-grown daughter. There were signs of these women all through the house. Hanging here in the hallway, for instance, his daughter Grace’s abstract photographs, so like her father’s canvasses – vibrant with color, intentionally flat, and devoid of the human figure. In that same hallway laid a woven wool rug of cerise and green stripes that was made by Wife #1 sometime in the sixties. I thought it looked dated and homely, but Budd liked things to stay as they were. The heavy snow slid down off my hair and coat, forming a dark pool of water on the rug.
     And here she stands now, poor thing, hemorrhaging enchantment all over the ugly rug.
     I considered my immediate options. If I went downstairs now, we’d probably run into each other – two people who’d barely spoken all day - and I’d know he still hadn’t forgiven me for the question I’d asked last night. The injustice of that would then trigger the anger I’d been so good (so far) at keeping under wraps. Oh, what a volatile pair, the two of us!

Rainey and Hopkins
Lake Lucerne, Switzerland, 1996
     But my half-finished video segment about the Brooklyn Bridge abduction was calling. I headed down to my studio, following the twists and turns of the hallway, remembering how well the plan started out. I’d left behind in Boston a long career in producing well-funded films about science so I’d have the freedom to make my own films and to marry Budd. Still blissed-out newly-weds, we’d been so charged by that sense of kinship with the other, we’d work around the clock, seven days a week, on the mysterious phenomenon that Budd had already devoted twenty-five years of his life to investigate.

     For reasons I didn’t yet fully understand, the fragmented memories of the people Budd called “abductees” had fascinated me from the start. Most seemed quite sane and sincere - which proved nothing, of course, about the physical reality of their experiences. When someone tells you, however haltingly, that they’ve been snatched from a picnic or a nice warm bed by five or six humanoid creatures, then floated through walls and placed on a table in a round, domed room – it’s not so easy to suspend your disbelief and wait to see how the fuller story unfolds.

A scar, often called a "scoop mark,"
photographed on the leg of an alleged alien abductee
     They’d roll up their pants legs and reveal scars that might have been made by scalpels; they’d brought snapshots of a large circular burn in the field next to their house. Innately more skeptical than my husband, I simply couldn’t explain what had happened to the people who were here to consult with Budd. But the abductees saw that my interest in them was genuine and so trusted me to document their stories. It pleased me, too, to watch the way my artist husband worked with them. You might have thought he was a pastor, this silver-haired, attentive man. It was his unusual combination of humor, fatherly compassion, and complete acceptance that provided these baffled and angry people with the safest of places for saying the craziest things.

     Our plan had been this: I’d begin the production phase of a documentary about my husband’s strange work, while Budd would carry on as usual, bringing in new individuals for initial interviews and hypnosis sessions. I’d shoot with him every step of the way, knowing that I’d end up not using most of this early footage. I’d bide my time until Budd would zero in on one individual’s story, the way he’d done with Linda Cortile (Witnessed) and Kathie Davis (Intruders). Both of these women had complex narratives that Budd had turned into influential and popularly successful books.

     But after fourteen months, I was getting concerned. What if we continued like this for another year – even two or three years? There didn’t seem to be any end in sight, no goal we were moving toward. If only I could make out a method or specific process in the way Budd worked with new people! There was rarely, if ever, any second, third or fourth session with the people I had on tape - over forty individual cases, so far. They were all “one-offs,” still at the anecdote level: a first interview, followed by a single hypnosis session. Then goodbye and good luck and we rarely saw a single one of them again. Meanwhile, all production costs were coming out of my own pocket. The nature of the subject matter itself made my movie a funding pariah to foundations and state arts organizations. Add in the sad truth that low-budget indie docs rarely returned a profit and you just might feel my growing panic. Goodbye, my life-savings! Hello, my dread future as a bag lady.

Possible new witness to Cortile abduction, 2003
     Silly me, I’d had visions of shooting fly-on-the-wall, detective-style scenes with Budd as he investigated a particular story. The viewer would be compelled go along with him, following this intelligent man’s obsession to pin down a phenomenon that delighted in thumbing its nose at anyone who tried to do that. But viewers would see that Budd Hopkins was an extraordinary man, one with a reputation of having come closer to touching that mystery than anyone else had. Everybody loved a good story, especially a convincingly scary paranormal tale, and Budd knew how to tell this one with exceptional conviction. The film would build in power and suspense as the investigator explored the where, when, and why of his subject’s reported abductions. He’d draw out family members and friends, each of them shining light on a different facet of the story.
     Over dinner last night, I’d explained my production worries to Budd. I was genuinely baffled, I said, puzzled about what he was looking for: “What criteria do you use to select that one person whose abduction experiences you want to investigate?”
     I’d been taken aback by his instant reaction. He stopped eating, pushed back from the table and said he wouldn’t sit here pretending to have a nice dinner with his wife, when he was actually being attacked. He left the apartment so abruptly that I remember my mouth open to respond but he was gone before any words emerged. Later, looking from the kitchen across the rooftop garden, I could see him in his studio writing-loft, banging away on the keyboard. I was sorry to have caused such turmoil and turned the question this way and that in my mind to see what disturbance it held. I couldn’t put my finger on it. The question had been logical; my tone genuinely puzzled.
     After a while, I gave up and read myself to sleep. In the morning, a three-page typed letter lay folded on my nightstand. In it, he said I constantly discouraged and disempowered him with my “innocent-seeming” questions. That I clearly knew nothing about research, which must always begin as an exploration with no known outcome in sight. From here on out, he ordered, it was essential that I not interfere with the exploratory phase of his research.
     The letter set me back on my heels. What could a person do with such condescension, bordering on contempt? He knew full well that I’d come to New York, to this house, straight from years of making films with epidemiologists. He knew that the scientists and I had co-written dozens of hefty proposals to the National Institutes of Health – and that we’d been awarded a high percentage of them. If he’d ever read one of the proposals, he’d have seen the way we developed hypotheses and designed the study; reviewed similar research in the field; described the goals of our own project; and wrote protocols for collecting data and protecting our research subjects. The section I most loved was always this one: “Describe how your research [and related film] will advance knowledge in the field.” Imagine actually doing that – or trying to! There was something sacred, really, about a person’s desire to add even one true thing to the body of human knowledge.


Hopkins writes in loft during snowstorm, 1997
     
     Reading Budd’s letter to me was unsettling, disturbing on several levels. My right to question him was certainly the front and center issue, but was he actually denying that my very recent past life in the academic and scientific worlds had ever happened? Or did he mean that whatever I thought I knew about mainstream research was utterly meaningless when facing a phenomenon this enormous and mysterious and menacing? Or that only a select few investigators like he and David Jacobs knew how to “ask the right questions” about alien abduction? Or that they were “the only two people in the world who really knew what was going on” in this silent, largely unseen invasion of the planet by alien forces? They did say things like that to each other. Often, in fact. But if that’s what he meant, he should say that, not make seemingly factual statements about the questioner, me, that almost made me doubt my own sanity.
     Gaslighting. Such a strange old word to come floating into my head. But I couldn’t recall what it meant.
     In the lower studio, I went quickly past the long wooden staircase that led up to Budd’s studio – then turned around, went back and stood at the base. Okay, I could let the evening drag on with both of us miserable….or I could send out a white dove to test the waters, so to speak. Misery or the dove?
     I called out: “The snow’s still falling, Budd! And the city seems so strange. Why don’t we go out for dinner? Make an adventure of it?”
     From upstairs, the silence stretched on just long enough to suggest that he was still angry at me. But then my husband, handsome, silver-haired and grave, was standing at the top of stairs. He seemed to be looking down at me from a great distance. “It will have to be inexpensive,” he said.
     As if that was news! I said I knew just the place.
     Half an hour later, we were slipping and sliding on unshovelled walks toward a Jamaican joint on Greenwich Avenue, a few blocks away. Snow was falling more heavily now. City snowplows were missing in action and most of the shops had closed. It was so hard not to fall that Budd and I were forced to grab onto each other. We stopped to take in the utterly surreal sight of three cross-country skiers in high-end wilderness apparel making their way up a deserted Seventh Avenue. That gave me an idea. I grabbed a garbage can lid, took a running start on a downhill slope and jumped on. The saucer spun me around and around, gaining velocity, before it crashed into a mailbox. Here came Budd on a sheet of cardboard, zipping right past, a big grin on his face. It was this man’s constant buzz of energy that had first drawn me to him, already sixty-five when we met. We shot the avenue’s downhill slope again and again, competing to be the one who’d slide the greatest distance. In the course of all that silliness, breathless action and flirting with danger, the tensions of yesterday’s accusations and hurt fell away. We helped each other struggle through the drifts without falling, which involved a lot of body contact and touching. Any fool who had eyes could see that both of us were relieved to be back in love again. That’s the way it went with us: one day, we’d be in despair, in a fury; and the next, unable to keep our hands off each other.
     The “Day-O” was a relic of old Greenwich Village, a downscale ethnic restaurant that featured coconut lampshades, metallic paint, and loud soul music, but the price was right and the food was good. Waiting for our grilled shrimp and coconut rice, Budd sipped his evening Scotch and warmed my frozen hands in his own. He told me he had a promising lead on a new case, a couple from Ohio he’d spoken to today. I told him about the documentary scene I’d just rough-cut. It was barely a fragment of the convoluted Witnessed case, Budd’s latest and most controversial book yet, claiming over twenty witnesses. At conferences and to book reviewers, he consistently referred to it as the “UFO case of the century,” while I carefully refrained from commentary on the uses and abuses of hyperbole.

Linda Cortile talks of her fear of security agent Dan
     Months earlier, I’d filmed the heroine of the story, Linda “Cortile,” in my studio. I’d seated her in front of a monitor with videotape playing on a loop. Poised and immaculately groomed as usual, Linda hadn’t a shade of reluctance about being on camera. She flipped her heavy brunette tresses back over the right shoulder, turning a now unobstructed face toward me. She explained how she’d come to be screening six hours of recorded television coverage of the 1991 international peace negotiations going on at the United Nations. It was a long shot, but she hoped to spot the two elusive federal agents, known only to Budd (and to readers) as “Richard” and “Dan.” They’d written to him about the early morning events of November 30, 1989, when they said they witnessed Linda’s abduction out of her 12th story apartment and into a glowing red UFO that hovered over her building down near the Brooklyn Bridge. In their car that night, they added, was another witness, an international VIP they were protecting. Budd based much of his book’s narrative on the traumatized men’s letters and Linda’s hypnotic recall of events. Although they refused to ever meet with Budd, the men’s fascination with Linda drove them to repeatedly pursue and abduct her for questioning. If anyone were an ideal candidate to identify the two men, it would be Linda.
     The waiter brought our dinners and Budd asked how Linda did on camera. I said she’d been surprisingly capable at re-enacting the emotional, gut response she’d had when her tormentor Dan, against all odds, suddenly appeared on the screen. In fact, like a pro hitting her mark, she’d given me three or four slightly different re-enactments to choose from.

Linda identifies Dan at the United Nations, 1991
     Linda’s hand had shot forward, her long fingernail rapping the monitor. “There he is!...There he is, like an eagle. Look at those eyes! He was a very cold, mean person.” She’d pointed out a tall, stern-looking, classically handsome man in a suit, striding quickly along a corridor of the United Nations, alongside Secretary General Javier Perez de Cuellar. The way his eyes darted left and right, non-stop, he certainly seemed to be guarding the VIP.
     “Linda said she could hardly believe it,” I told Budd. “She’d positively identified Dan! Put a finger, literally, right on the guy who’d turned her life into a nightmare.”
     Budd nodded, pleased. “I’ve always said that making a positive ID like that certainly speaks directly to Linda’s credibility. If somebody was pulling a hoax, they’d never risk pointing at a photograph and saying: ‘That man is definitely Dan, the one I’ve been telling you about.’ Think how easy it would be to prove she was a liar!”
     In the interest of sustaining our harmony, I kept my thoughts to myself: But if these men, “Richard” and “Dan,” really did work for one of the federal intelligence agencies, it was quite likely that their actual names and job titles were fully protected from being disclosed to anyone.
     My own research had turned up “The Intelligence Identities Protection Act,” passed by Congress in 1982. It had established criminal penalties for unauthorized disclosure of information that identified U.S. intelligence agents.1 2 3 Clearly, Budd himself wasn’t familiar with the Act, although he’d discovered that local security agencies played their cards close to the chest. I wondered if Linda, with an ear much more attuned to popular culture, had known that intelligence agents were protected from identity disclosure? Might it have been a plot point in the television programs she watched or in the many mid-list novels she read? If Linda knew that, then she’d know that making a “positive ID” of Dan posed no risk at all to her. Budd could approach a hundred federal agencies, waving “Dan’s” photograph, and never find out a thing.
     Dinner and the night out had been an oasis of time for us to purely enjoy each other again. A place apart from a home that sometimes felt to me like Grand Central Station for all of ufology – not only for abductees, but for other researchers, writers, journalists, foreign visitors, and camera crews. By the early 1990s, it was clear that UFOs had captivated the public’s imagination and, right behind them, the media -- and they all came calling on Budd Hopkins, eventually. Reluctantly, I stood to leave while Budd retrieved our coats. Then we heard his name shouted from across the room. A woman’s voice, volume at full throttle. Not your usual restaurant etiquette, even for the Day-O. A stout woman I didn’t know was waving Budd over to her table. She seemed to have materialized straight out of the anti-fashion ‘seventies, liberated from make-up and the tyranny of fitness and style. This woman had a fuzzy ball of big hair topping a plump, bespectacled face. Latching onto Budd’s arm with great affection, the woman was bursting to tell him some news.
     “Listen, Budd, there’s been a major development with the kid. Something freaky as hell.”
     People at nearby tables glanced over. Budd leaned in closer, a subtle suggestion to hold her voice down. But this woman had no patience for subtleties. Her voice raised a few more decibels.
     “I’ve been meaning to call….Budd, you’re the only one who’s really gonna get it!” She drew in a great breath. “Not one of her doctors can explain what’s happening to Julia. They don’t have a friggin’ clue!”
     Now diners on the other side of the room were sneaking a discreet look, the way New Yorkers do when they spot a celebrity out in public but would rather die than reveal their uncoolness quotient by staring.
     Budd quickly moved to contain the situation. I felt his arm encircle my shoulders, pulling me forward. The wife in her body-blocking role! Make way for the abductionist’s wife! I was used to it by now. In those first years when we were madly taken with each other, I’d been both pleased and embarrassed at the openness of Budd’s elation. Whether it was at his friend’s book-signing party in George Plimpton’s apartment or at a summer art opening in Provincetown, he always had one arm around my shoulders, steering me from one group of old friends to the next.
     He’d say to each of them what he said now: “Arlene, this is my wife, Carol. The one I thought I’d never find. My soul mate.” Each time, he flashed that Hopkins bad boy grin and added: “The third time, we finally got it right!”
     Arlene beamed, genuinely happy for us. She struggled to her feet and gave me a hug that was the real thing, a squeezing, rocking big old body hug. I had no idea who she was to Budd. But she wanted me to know that she’d come to see him ten years ago and that he’d helped her “discover some mind-blowing shit.” This husband of mine, she said, had saved her friggin’ life.
     Okay, now I understood. One of Budd’s earlier abductees, someone he worked with years before I’d moved to New York in the spring of ‘95.
     That evening in the restaurant, I’d seen Arlene as a drama-queen, a cut-up, a fat, foul-mouthed broad. I liked her immediately. I liked anyone who spoke straight from the gut, no filters. She seemed to approve of me, too, saying I had to come meet her daughter. Would I do that? She persisted until I said yes, we’d be glad to come.
     “Then get ready to have your hair blown back,” she warned me. Swiveling to Budd, she added: “These are medical records you’re going to want to see, m’dear.”
     I saw something flare briefly in his eyes when the woman said “medical records” – and I saw that she glimpsed it, too. Maybe she’d intended this reaction, set him up somehow. I knew nothing of their history together or what the child meant to Budd. Such a great talker and storyteller, my husband had filled me in on the back-stories of literally hundreds of abductees he’d worked with. But there’d never been mention of an “Arlene.” He glanced at his watch, exclaimed it had gotten so late and when he looked up again, the earlier flare of interest had been tamped down into an air of detachment.
     “That would be great.” He concentrated on holding my coat for me. “Listen, lady, if we can find a free spot on the calendar, we’ll take a drive over – You could show the records to Carol while we’re there. She’s made quite a few films with scientists and doctors. She understands the lingo.”
     You could almost call that an apology….
     Out on Sixth Avenue, I asked what that had been all about. We were walking through old Greenwich Village, past the Waverly diner, its iconic red neon sign a bit bedraggled; past the old guys at the West 4th Street subway stop who’d set up folding tables under the shine of street lamps and laid out their used books and music to sell, snow or no snow. The clanking plows were out in force now - bullies and thieves - re-claiming the avenues for vehicles. Sturdy Latino men and boys, the brawn employed by many shop owners, had scooped hobbit-sized pathways through the drifts. It was a sorry business, really, watching how quickly the city gave up the ghost of its fairytale interlude.
     Budd said it was his usual Mexican standoff with this woman. Every couple of years or so, Arlene got in touch, promising him the girl’s medical records, but something always came up so she couldn’t hand them over. It made him angry to talk about it. He knocked the still falling snow out of his hair. “Arlene’s a difficult woman, but she’s not stupid. She knows full well that the stakes are huge!”
     “Really?” My pulse quickened. The pursuit of a cosmic mystery, I’d discovered, had a familiar addictive quality about it. In recovery from intoxicating substances for many years now, I remembered quite well that heightened sense of being alive, a rush, a buzzing in the blood. You grew convinced that any day now, just around the corner, some experiencer would show up and present us with a piece of material evidence that definitively proved the existence of aliens and their superior aircraft. If it weren’t the person in my viewfinder right now, it would be the one right around the next corner, or the one after that. Any day now, it would happen - if you just kept at it. You felt compelled to break that mystery open, even just a crack. Press your eye to it and you’d get a glimpse of something grand, a sideways slice of the cosmos, an exaltation of patterns that made up our everything.
     I asked to be brought up to speed on the significance of Arlene and her daughter.
     “You do know who she is, don’t you? Arlene Love?”4
       “Never heard of her.”
     Budd’s bushy dark brows shot up and he peered over to see if I was kidding. “Arlene Love, the star who shot to the top and made the cover of ‘Rolling Stone?’”
     I shook my head.
     He named a certain song, evidently quite popular, and asked if I knew it. Arlene’s break out song.

Plymouth Brethren in Illinois, 1952 (Carol’s family) 
     I shook my head again. We’d apparently stepped into another one of the many black holes in my knowledge of popular culture. Each time he encountered one, Budd fumed about my Midwestern Plymouth Brethren family, calling them “religious extremists who seal off their kids from the world so they can brainwash them.” Once, I’d have been pleased to beat that drum right alongside him. But over time my feelings about my strict upbringing had grown more nuanced and complex - more aware of my own role in bringing down the curse of banishment and a long exile from family and community. It seemed impossible, though, that I’d ever be able to fill in all that cultural missing time. Cut off from most “worldly people,” television, movies, radio, novels, magazines, parties, dancing, and the aforementioned intoxicating substances, you’d have to concede that I’d missed some rather large chunks of ‘fifties and ‘sixties popular culture.
     “Now you’re making me feel all Amish,” I complained.
     “Oh, baby,” he said, reaching for my hand, “I can definitely take care of your Amish condition.”
     “I’ll bet you can,” I said, flirting right back. He was a big hand-holder, this sweet man who had eighteen years on me. I told him the only way he could redeem himself was to tell me the whole story about this singer.
     That was like tossing a Frisbee to a retriever. A born storyteller like Budd didn’t hesitate to seize the invitation. He launched into the dramatic arc of Arlene Love’s tragic rise and fall in the music industry. A singer with almost no formal training, she’d been gifted with an extraordinary vocal range – a contralto with a bluesy growl, capable of sweeping over four octaves. That sound had made her extremely, yet fleetingly famous in the 1970s. She’d been on the cover of Rolling Stone, sang hits with Paul Simon and Linda Ronstadt, appeared on “Saturday Night Live” and was nominated for a Grammy as Best New Artist. Her first album went gold and she’d entertained presidents and kings. Then she gave birth to a severely handicapped daughter and rumor had it that Arlene had gone a little mad. Her career took a steep dive and never recovered. She went from those early glory days to full time caregiver for Julia, a child so profoundly malformed and brain damaged that many people said she should have been institutionalized. The star fell and was lucky these days to get gigs doing commercials. It was during one of the terrible downswings in her life that Arlene had first come to see him.
     At home, Budd rummaged in our merged record collection, pulling out one of Arlene’s earliest albums. “There’s a UFO on the cover!” I exclaimed. Budd smiled and dropped the vinyl LP on the turntable. I turned up the volume and we stood there listening, touching, swaying to the rhythm.
     It was a lilting, guitar-based song. It was rumored that she’d written it for a married lover. Before we’d met, Budd and I had each endured our own times of love lost, pain and longing. In Arlene’s voice, we felt the authenticity and regret of that bluesy passion in our very bones. It made us wrap our arms around each other and dance the length of the faded Oriental carpet.

2.



     Two weeks went by and the brief encounter with Arlene Love had faded into the background of more pressing problems at home. I was only hearing about them now -- the alarming debt Budd had been kicking down the road for years; and the hazardous conditions of the one hundred year old house we lived in. Frazzled wiring cried out for attention by sometimes creating small fires that broke out inside the walls of the house. The insurance company, at one point, refused to renew the building’s policy until the falling down chimney, another fire hazard, was repaired. But nothing was done, so the building went uninsured. On this particular day, I’d just paid a carpenter out of my own account to replace the full set of tall but leaky windows that ran the length of my studio’s rear wall. They let in sunlight and air all year around; in warmer weather, I could step over one windowsill and sit out back in the narrow garden I’d started there. When one of the lower studio’s old floorboards caved in, you could reach down with one finger and touch the rocky earth of old Manhatta. It was the one place in the house where I felt safe – literally grounded.
     Overhead, I could hear Budd making end-of-workday sounds. He’d been painting earlier, small collages with paper and acrylics, and now his chair rolled over to the phone machine where he’d listen to his messages. Our studios were separated by only a rough wooden floor and I couldn’t help hearing them too. A man reporting a triangle of lights hovering over his house; he was sending video. A woman anxious for advice - her five-year-old said that little people came through the window at night. People hopeful of booking a hypnosis session with Budd. A plea to hold another abductee support group. The PR woman from Simon & Schuster with more radio programs for him to do.
     Then came a very different message, a full-throated voice that soared right out of the phone machine, swelled up into the rafters, and poured down the old wooden stairs into my studio. It was Arlene Love’s rough contralto, belting out: “Hey-hey-hey, Budd, are you and Carol still coming over for drinks this afternoon? Left a coupla messages for you, never heard back. But you’re not going to believe your eyes when you see this fucking kid. I swear, Budd, it has to be something they’re doing to her. Come see for yourself!” She let out a final chord that was a whoop combined with a moan and then wrapped it.
     Budd came clattering down the stairs, wild-eyed. “Honey, oh god,” he said. “Can you believe it? Arlene Love just called and wants us to be in Jersey at six, I think it is. Forty minutes from now--” He was jittery and rushed, pulled abruptly out of the day’s dream of color romancing shape.
     He forgets to write down some appointments, but never admits it. I sighed, put my arms around him and leaned my head on his chest. “Yeah, I heard her.” His neck still smelled sweet from this morning’s shower, an odor now mixed with acrylic paint and glue-stick. Budd hugged me back, dropped a kiss on the top of my head and was gone, a bird on the wing. Headed up to the second floor apartment. He could sure move fast, for a sixty-seven year old man with a bad leg from childhood polio.
     “You better give her a call!” I cried after him, rapidly recalibrating my own plans for the evening. I’d reserved a seat at a screening where a director I admired would speak afterwards. A sharp tang of regret stung my palate. I hated to give up the screening, but Budd had asked me for help with Arlene and the missing medical records. I have to confess that Arlene’s case intrigued me, maybe for the same reason it had kept a grip on Budd’s hopes for so long: the once-famous singer and her damaged child would make one hell of a story!
     I would go with him tonight and ask for more consideration, please, in giving me advance notice of such events. Three years in, I still hadn’t gained the art of living gracefully in the middle of a whirlwind. On any given day or night, you couldn’t predict who might turn up on the doorstep: a camera crew, a sheriff’s deputy, or a prince from a far-away land. It was a way of being that Budd seemed to thrive on. I definitely did not thrive on this level of anxiety or the sudden reversal of all your plans. Evidently, if you were the abductionist’s wife, you shouldn’t expect to have any plans at all, other than being a happy camper on the support team for “the most important discovery in human history.”


Speakers from 1999 UFO conference in New York

3.

     An hour late, we pulled up to Arlene’s building in a New Jersey city across the river from Manhattan - one of those many bland, nondescript high-rises built in the ‘fifties. As the elevator rose, Budd squeezed my hand, always pleased to be able to introduce me to somebody whose art I respected. “I’m going to get the daughter’s medical records from Arlene tonight,” he assured me. “For ten years, she’s been promising to give them to me…”
     “What if she doesn’t?”
     He let go of my hand. “Then there’s nothing else I can do with her case! I’m not going out on a limb if she’s not willing to back me up with proof.”
     “Sounds reasonable. But I’m not certain what you want to prove.”
     “It’s not the time to get into that.” Budd didn’t feel like talking about it anymore. A bell clanged, the door slid open directly into Arlene’s apartment, and he grinned, back to his old genial self. “Here we are!” He pulled me forward quickly.
     And there was Arlene, beaming and moon-faced. She hugged us each in turn against her belly, sloshy as the waterbeds so loved by her fans back in the day. Her cloud of curly dark hair brushed my face like steel wool. Dark moles spotted her face, magnified under those unfashionably large spectacles. I’d forgotten just how loud and brash her normal speaking voice was.
     “I swear, Hopkins, you’d stand up the goddamn Pope.”
     “No, no, I didn’t forget, did I, honey?” He pulled me in close to be his false witness. “It was a hectic day, one thing after another, and I lost track of time.”
Hopkins working on Witnessed
     Arlene jabbed me with an elbow. “Next thing you know, this guy’ll be handing us some bullshit about ‘missing time.’”
     We all laughed. Arlene clearly felt affection for Budd, as most of the abductees did. I teased him that it was because he reminded people of their fathers, or of fathers they wished they’d had. A silver-haired, generally sweet-tempered father, a natural-born raconteur, an intelligent man who loved the arts, and leaned left in all the right ways. An aging father, but one whose energy rarely flagged and who would sit down, give you his undivided attention for two hours, and seriously consider any crazy-sounding, illogical thing you’d come to tell him.
     Come in. Entrée, entrée! Missing time or not, I'm just friggin’ glad you're here to share her with me!
     Arlene led us into a modest-sized living room that was plumply filled with round-edged, overstuffed furniture, all in beiges and browns. It was like a rabbit’s nest, one lined by the doe with fur plucked from her own belly. A place to fall down in and not get hurt. It was as utilitarian and unpretentious as Arlene herself.
     Budd placed both hands on Arlene’s shoulders and stooped a bit to look directly into her eyes. He said he worried when he hadn’t heard from her for a long time.
     “We have been away, my friend. I found two really fabulous doctors in this Mexican alternative clinic. Great big promises, right? They did alternative this and alternative that with Julia. They tested her up the wazoo, but medically? They did jackshit. Still, that kid kept amazing them. Things that are friggin’ impossible, scientifically! The medical team couldn’t believe it. I’ll show you their reports.”
     Budd said yes, he wanted to see them. “But I’m not one whit surprised that you’re still Julia’s greatest advocate.”
     I'm in love with this child,” Arlene said, shrugging, with a big grin. “As simple as that.”
     Budd glanced up, catching movement in the dimly lit hall coming from the bedrooms. Arlene turned, saw what Budd saw. And her normally loud voice grew louder, almost heraldic. This mother’s voice, announcing the coming of her damaged child, carried an undertone of golden trumpets and strings.
     “Here she comes! Isn’t she beautiful?”
     I turned around, a little too fast for polite. Unexpectedly, I was terribly afraid to meet this eighteen-year-old girl. There’d been so much hushed talk about multiple deformities and extreme brain damage, that I dreaded seeing an unbearably grotesque version of a human youngster. One whose own mother had hinted that the girl was only partly human. I wasn’t entirely clear where Budd stood on that question.
     The girl wobbling down the hall toward us was small, her frail body topped with a head that seemed disproportionately large. Her spine curved sideways, turning her chest into a shallow bowl. Her pale face was strikingly triangular, with large dark eyes set so far apart they seemed mounted on the sides of her head. A small, flat nose made barely a bump above a long upper lip. Her ears were so low-set, I half-expected them to pivot backwards like a dog’s. Everything about Julia seemed crooked, out of sync, like she'd been cut out of the same basic material as other people, but the parts had been glued together wrong. She didn’t look like any human being I’d ever seen.
     Budd and I were both stunned into silence. He’d only met Arlene’s daughter briefly, years earlier. The girl’s jolting gait came to a stop in front of us, her head low and swaying. “Say hello to our friends, sweetheart,” Arlene said.
     Julia fell against me. I felt her skeletal arms surround me and her head wedged itself under my chin. Ashamed I wasn’t ready for this closeness, I gave her an awkward hug back. She didn’t quite see me, or maybe she saw two of me. One eye pointed east, the other tugged west. The movement of her eyeballs was not a smooth, continuous turning. Sunk in large, dark sockets, her hazel eyes jerked past me like digital video, in tiny mechanical jolts.
     She wavered over to bump her dark, curly head against Budd’s chest. Arlene was quite pleased. "She remembers you, Budd, you see that?" Budd looked uncertain about that. This girl with low-slung ears that could not hear, who had only learned to walk at sixteen, and had never spoken a word – who could say what she remembered?

In Istanbul, researchers John Mack and
Budd Hopkins work with an abductee, 1999
     Budd seemed so oddly disconcerted that my heart went out to him. In his last two books, Intruders and Witnessed, he’d written about people with abduction experiences who, under hypnosis, recalled how the “beings from elsewhere” had presented them with their hybrid, half-alien children aboard a craft. These recollections emerged damply out of hypnotic regression, wet with tears. The experiencers had to leave the hybrid children behind. I’d always mentally filed these reports in my “Maybe/Maybe Not” box. It held all things that were hypothetically possible, but that lacked any material evidence. Now one of Budd’s abductees had presented him with an actual child-in-the-flesh instead of the theoretical ones he wrote about and he was clearly having a hard time taking it in. I slipped a hand into his elbow as we sat down.
     Arlene thumped a thick album of photographs on the coffee table. Julia sat slumped sideways next to her mother. For the next hour, she was silent and immobile, except for two fingers that listlessly picked, picked, picked away at invisible lint.
     “I want you to see what a goddam weird kid she was right from the start.”  
     Budd and I sat forward, fascinated at first, but with a growing sense of horror and sadness. In the first pages, Arlene showed off images of a newborn that could have sprung full-blown from the mind of David Lynch. This might be Eraserhead’s mewling child. Arlene’s insistence was that we look, not back off from what we were seeing. Her doughy body stretched, reached, and spread across the tabletop, never letting up. She kept doling out photos of a big-headed, listless baby with a face as flat as a dinner plate and nearly as featureless.
     “Look, no lips to speak of…A little splat of a nose, almost not there. Like you-know-who, the little grey guys….And here, at fifteen months, see the long smooth upper lip, the turndown? That’s called a ‘fish mouth.’”
     Arlene sorted quickly through a number of shots and then triumphantly produced the one she wanted. "Here's the neck webbing she was born with. Like a little rhino or baby lizard. That really spooked people. You were just Momma's little freak show, right, Stinky?”
     Budd’s eyes met mine briefly. The whole scene made us both very uncomfortable. For one thing, Julia was sitting right there and her mother was going on as if she didn’t exist. When we’d first arrived, Arlene had let me know that she believed the girl was secretly and profoundly wise, preternaturally gifted even. I glanced over at Julia. The lint-picking mission was ongoing.
Hopkins talking with Rainey
during production, 1995
     For one moment, I wondered and allowed the thought to grow: what if Julia was a genius, a super-being trapped inside that frail, droopy body? But something didn’t add up here. If Arlene really believed that her daughter was an über-genius, she’d hardly be making such brutally frank comments about her grotesqueness right in front of her. And if she had proof of something so extraordinary—in the form of medical records, say—then why hadn’t she long ago shown that evidence to Budd?
     He was now shooting me a meaningful look. It was time for me to give it a try. But, without warning, everything in me resisted. Now that I was here, at the very center of the life these two were forced to share, all my desire to “investigate” Arlene’s abduction story had vanished. Like her, I’d been the single mother of a young daughter for many years. And for me, too, there had been those times when a pit yawns open in front of you and says: All is not right with your beloved girl. Our maternal experiences were similar – yet utterly different by orders of magnitude.
     Stalling, my eyes followed the photographs that Arlene was slapping down in front of us like an expert blackjack dealer. One showed a young-ish man with big hair and bellbottoms, awkwardly holding the infant Julia. The camera’s flash had captured a glint of shamed panic in his eyes. With a red marker, someone, presumably Arlene, had scrawled a caption across the bottom: “O, Happy Man!”
     I could feel Budd’s eyes on me. His leg was doing an anxious jig-jig-jig. Finally I managed a question: “Arlene, I’m sure you’ve taken Julia to a clinical geneticist or two. What was the diagnosis?”
     “From the time this kid was born until just last year--” Arlene pounded the sofa for emphasis. “Nobody’s come up with a diagnosis. She’s been in and out of every hospital, every specialist’s office on the Eastern seaboard. Nobody in medicine has ever seen anything like the number of defects that Julia has. Twenty-one dysmorphologies! It’s one for the record books….But they can’t explain them. She doesn’t have Down syndrome, she doesn’t have Turner’s; she doesn’t have the usual ‘syndromes’—a fancy word for some kid that’s been born with a wackadoodle shit-load of major physical defects.”
     “And none of those specialists could come up with a diagnosis?” Budd asked the question kindly, but I was surprised to hear a hint of doubt in his voice. Arlene picked up on it, too.
     Her voice rose sharply: “Julia’s no textbook genetic fuck-up, Budd! That’s the whole point of you coming here to see her.”
     From the moment we’d walked in the door, I’d sensed that Arlene had an agenda for the evening. It was as if she had seized an audience and intended to hold us hostage until she’d delivered herself of a shameless bid for…what, exactly?
     “I’m sorry I don’t know the full story,” I said. “What do you mean? What’s ‘the whole point’?”
     Arlene sat forward, focused and intense. “So you’ve got this kid who’s a complete mystery to the medical profession. But it gets wilder still. Fast forward to the present--to the insanely wonderful part of it. You listening, Budd?” Arlene was pleased to see that she had our full attention. “This kid’s genetic defects are being reversed! Yeah, I said ‘Reversed.’ Neuromuscular defects—she can walk now, she can hold up her own big head. Chronic edema of the hands and feet—gone. Bladder and bowel constrictions—greatly improved.” She turned to me. “You know it’s medically impossible to reverse shit like this, right?” I nodded. “They don’t have a clue how it’s happening.”
     She closed the album with a thump and swung back to Budd. Her smile was broad and beatific, triumphant in its certainty. “But we know. We know why and we know how it’s happening, don’t we, Budd?”
     My husband’s own smile was constrained, his voice quiet. I was relieved to see that he’d regained his footing. “Well, it’s something we can only speculate about….”
     Arlene stared at him. Behind the thick glasses, her eyes seemed to bulge. “‘Speculate?’ Fuck that!” Her good humor suddenly went on the fritz. She glared at him, genuinely shocked. “You were right there with me the whole way! During those friggin’ long hypnosis sessions. On that puke green living room couch of yours. Bawling like a baby. ‘Waa-waa. Is she a bug? Oh, god, she’s one of them!’ Speculate?”
     Budd was kind, but firm. He reached over and covered both her hands with his own. “We can be fairly certain that the aliens—whatever, whoever they are--they were involved with you, Arlene. With you, from childhood on. But nobody can say for sure that they had anything to do with Julia.”
     She glared at him again. “What the fuck? You said they did, Budd! I’m not making this stuff up.”
     I was puzzled, my unease deepening by the minute. Somebody’s memory was terribly skewed. Whose? My aging husband completed the Times crossword puzzle every morning before getting out of bed. His memory, long-term and short-term, was extraordinary.
     Budd stood his ground. “We only explored your early childhood experiences, Arlene. We didn’t get much further than that.”
     “Bullshit. I must be losing my mind.” Arlene stared at him, then whirled and confronted me. “What, am I nuts, Carol? Do you think I’m a wack job?”
     “No, I don’t.”
     “Thank you very much! Because this is all that keeps me going.” She jabbed a forefinger skyward like a preacher implicating God. “What I found out with Budd about their intervention. I’ve been caring for this kid for so long, I got nothin’ left….The career, the man—long gone. It’s no picnic, I can tell you.”
     “I can certainly understand that,” I said, trying to rally. “But Budd’s right—he needs you to provide him with documentation. Nobody’s going on record about genetic defects being reversed unless there’s solid, gold-star medical evidence for it. That would be a major scientific discovery!”
     “Let Carol take the records home,” Budd urged. “Maybe there’s something the doctors overlooked.”
     Arlene flipped back around to Budd. “Now you’re changing the subject. I guess there’s all kinds of games going on around here.” She stared at him in furious disbelief. “I’m really pissed off at you, Budd Hopkins. Unfuckingbelievable.”
     His smile was sad, gentle, and charming all at once. “Arlene, I’m very sorry you’re angry. I just want to be straight with you about what happened.”
     “Bullshit! That’s not being straight with me! It’s not what happened. For some reason, Hopkins, you want me to think I’m nuts! Making up stuff…” Arlene was struggling to get to her feet from the soft depths of the sofa. Her face was red and congested. Dislodged, Julia fell onto her side and began to squeal. Budd jumped up to help them, but Arlene waved him away.
     “…That I’m nuts and don’t remember what happened. But I know this for a fact, Budd: This kid is proof positive that the grey guys make mistakes in this genetic game they’re playing with our silly little species. And she’s also proof positive that they can and will fix whatever they screw up. Do you read me loud and clear, Hopkins? They can fix her.”
     Panting, Arlene planted her feet and glared at him one final time. Her daughter’s sounds of distress escalated and her hands flapped like the wings of a downed bird. Arlene bent down and lifted the girl up against her sturdy body, held her until the panic eased.
     “Momma’s girl,” she crooned into the cap of curly dark hair so like her own. “Momma’s little freak show.”

4.

     Everyone had been relieved when the evening had come to a rapid close. We’d left Arlene’s apartment shortly after Julia went into a second meltdown and needed to be taken to bed. On the way out, Budd had asked Arlene, one more time, if she’d mail us the medical records. She’d handed us our coats, yessed him, and said that she would. I was certain that she wouldn’t. The woman’s sense of betrayal was palpable.
     It clung to us like a bitter odor on the trip back to the city. We were both quiet, each of us caught up in our own thoughts and turbulent emotions. Behind the wheel, Budd’s face was grim. I wished that I could offer sympathy for my husband’s discomfort—a touch or a word--but I suddenly dreaded finding out that some part of what Arlene accused him of might be true. If it was, if Budd had led this volatile woman to believe otherworldly beings were the cause of her child’s deformities and brain damage, he’d made a terribly self-serving call. If he had – he surely intended to push the envelope on what he believed was an historic discovery about alien intervention in the human gene pool. But in medical terms, Budd Hopkins was not qualified to diagnose even a case of measles in a child!
     But there in Arlene’s apartment, Budd had been adamant: he denied and denied again that he’d ever made such a claim to Arlene.
     Our silence lasted across the George Washington Bridge, with its elevated and northernmost view of Manhattan stretching to the right. The old blue Toyota shifted into the right lane and curved around and down, merging onto the Hudson River Parkway. With the roar of bridge traffic left behind, I broke the silence.
     “I don’t understand what happened back there.”
     Budd said ‘nothing happened.’ It was just Arlene being Arlene. She was a very difficult woman. He’d researched her case the way he did every other one: somebody has an experience, it disturbs their life, they come to him, and together they start to explore it through hypnotic regression. Perfectly routine. But, I countered, nothing about Arlene’s case seemed routine. I hesitated to say directly what it was that I most wanted him to explain away, but there was no way around it.
     “She said you led her to believe that her daughter’s deformed because she’s a hybrid, a half-alien kid.”
     “If there’s one thing you know, it’s that I do not lead people!” Now he was angry. The Toyota drifted into another lane. A horn blared. Budd jerked the wheel to the right and a red BMW shot past us on the left, doing ninety. Budd swore.
     “Don’t get mad at me, please,” I said. “You asked me to be part of this and I’m trying to understand how the abduction investigation might have influenced Arlene’s care of her child. Maybe she ran wild with the idea of a cure all on her own. I don’t know. I wasn’t there. I’m asking you.”
     He didn’t seem inclined to answer. He stared ahead at the winding parkway.
     “Budd, after the first half hour in that apartment, I felt sick about even being there…. Like we were a MUFON delegation on a field trip to a children’s cancer ward.”
     “Oh, great. First, my work’s an abomination. Now it’s all a big joke.”
     “Not at all. Hardly! Budd, you know I’ve always defended your right to work with abductees. But when people are as vulnerable as Arlene and Julia… Isn’t there a possibility for real damage? Please help me understand one thing – something so important to Arlene that she said it two or three times. She said you told her Julia’s condition was caused by alien intervention.”
     He slapped the steering wheel. “I did no such thing! What is this third degree I’m getting from you?”
     I looked out my passenger window at the silver river unfurling on the right, bearing along the gleaming facets of stars. After a moment, I said quietly: “Any time you don’t like the questions I ask, I always know that something’s wrong.”

Part II to follow

[View second half of the story at The Singer's Hybrid Daughter, Part II]

Hudson River at dusk


Endnotes:


i I do not count the small coterie of psychologists and academics who were groomed by the researcher to help him counter critics’ claims that he wasn’t qualified to do this work. These people were happy to be invited to the house once or twice a year and sit in on several hypnosis sessions with the researcher and one or two abductees he had pre-selected. He’d worked with them before; he knew how they’d respond. The credentialed observers had no knowledge about possible previous telephone or in-person contact between the two. Neither did they seem familiar with the substantial body of academic research regarding “the suggestive environment” and the influence of “context” on the creation of recalled memories. They left after this limited and staged presentation, believing they had witnessed the great man at work. They reported that they had observed no leading of subjects. There was nothing wrong with the researcher’s methodology.

1 NYTimes, June 11, 1982, “Bill to Penalize Uncovering of Agents Passed by Senate.”

2 https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Intelligence_Identities_Protection_Act: The Intelligence Identities Protection Act of 1982 (Pub.L. 97–200, 50 U.S.C. §§ 421426) is a United States federal law that makes it a federal crime for those with access to classified information, or those who systematically seek to identify and expose covert agents and have reason to believe that it will harm the foreign intelligence activities of the U.S.,[1] to intentionally reveal the identity of an agent whom one knows to be in or recently in certain covert roles with a U.S. intelligence agency, unless the United States has publicly acknowledged or revealed the relationship.[2]

3 CRS Report for Congress, Intelligence Identities Protection Act, Jennifer K. Elsea, Legislative Attorney, 7-5700, April 10, 2013. wwww.crs.gov. RS21636

4 Pseudonyms are used for both Arlene and her daughter Julia.



Acknowledgements

     A deeply felt thank you to the following people for ongoing friendship, their trust in me to get it right, and intelligent feedback on this part of the memoir:

     Jeremy Vaeni
     Jeff Ritzmann
     Jack Brewer
     Tyler Kokjohn
     Peter Brookesmith
     Penelope Franklin
     Ryan Harbage
     Fred Thompson
     Lynda Cooper
     George Hansen
     Marianne Macy
     S.G. Collins

54 comments:

  1. Well written and important. I look forward to part two. But even more, I look forward to the book.

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  2. That's some powerful stuff. Extremely well written. I'm ready to read more.

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  3. I feel for "Julia". Based on Rainey's account, Julia's mother Arlene seemed mentally disturbed. I don't read, in any sense that Budd made Arlene believe that Julia was a hybrid. It seems he was visably upset by the meeting and the way Julia was being treated as well as Arlene not producing medical records she promised for a decade.

    For about a hundred dollars anyone can request a swab kit to test for ones genetics from 23andme dot com. I and some relatives have utilized this and its fascinating - from ethnicities to health conditions, it's just about spot on (at least for me and my relatives). But, I have no idea how any kit could determine something other than human in a person's genetics. It can determine RH factor and that of your parents (because you carry theirs, recessively). If there are hybrids or if we (as the human species) are all hybrids, I'd think it's so embedded in our dna as to be 'hiding in plain site'.

    I'd like to hear from the late Budd Hopkins on Rainey's continued criticisms of his work and him as an individual. She had no problem co-writing with Hopkins on Sight Unseen, a very forward thinking speculation about transgenic beings. I can take Rainey, at this point, only with a huge grain of salt; especially after reading her bizarre threatening emails to Sean Mears (which I initially thought were a hoax to make her look like an unstable fool, but found out they were indeed real).

    Budd has also been visciously attacked, posthumously, by the likes of Whitley Streiber and Anne Streiber. Considering the irony of Streiber writing a book on hybrids and also claiming to have met one seems to be the proverbial pot calling the kettle black. And the late Anne Streiber's attack on Hopkins regarding him being a seducer of middle-aged women abductees made me feel sad for Anne and whatever personal issues she may have had.

    At this point, I choose to take the good words of Peter Robbins, Mike Clelland, Jerome Clark and Debbie Kauble ("Kathy Davis") in their positive assessments of Budd Hopkins. But that doesn't mean I accept Hopkins theory in its totality nor his excluding and putting into a 'gray box' outlier abduction reports.

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  4. "...I can take Rainey, at this point, only with a huge grain of salt; especially after reading her bizarre threatening emails to Sean Mears (which I initially thought were a hoax to make her look like an unstable fool, but found out they were indeed real)..."

    I was going to comment in like manner, but you've said it all (with both the above and the following).

    Ditto.

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    1. Thankyou Bayareamom. I appreciate your comment.

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  5. "At this point, I choose to take the good words of Peter Robbins, Mike Clelland, Jerome Clark and Debbie Kauble ("Kathy Davis") in their positive assessments of Budd Hopkins. But that doesn't mean I accept Hopkins theory in its totality nor his excluding and putting into a 'gray box' outlier abduction reports."

    There are undoubtedly many who consider Hopkins to be almost a saint. Early on Jerome Clark compared investigator George Hansen ("A Critique of Budd Hopkins' Case of UFO Abduction of Linda Napolatino") to the Spanish inquisitor Torquemada. It's hard to argue against an almost religious belief.

    Some state that Budd wanted to help others. I can accept that. There are others - such as Phillip Coppens ("New York, New York: the Linda Napolitano 'Abduction'") who suggest that in the process, Hopkins may have been manipulated in one of his key investigations. Perhaps one might lead to the other. I don't think we'll resolve that issue here.

    But Hopkins was also quick to label Rainey as a "debunker" and assert that he never had made "any mistakes or leading moments" in all of his work". Kevin Randle addressed that aspect of Budd:

    http://kevinrandle.blogspot.com/2011/02/response-to-budd-hopkins.html

    So Carol's portrait of Budd strikes me as being consistent and believable. Given her history and the kind of reaction that she must have surely expected when she first began to raise issues with Hopkins, she showed remarkable courage and determination. But more importantly, her work gives us further insight into the problems with the use of hypnotic regression to discover actual experience.

    Jack as done a far better job with documenting the problems with that technique better than I can do in a single comment. At bottom, the research has been done on hypnotic regression. The trail it has left behind - not only with abductions but in its role in the satsnic abuse hysteria - is well documented.

    So perhaps, as Randle suggested, it's time to move away from the "cult of personality" and look hard at the evidence - to seek validation in the ways that Dr. Kokjohn has explained; to look at how hypnosis can be another form of manipulation; and to evaluate the work that Hopkins did on its own terms rather than rely on either positive or negative assessments of his character.

    Rainey is worth reading in that light. She had a unique perspective not only as Budd's life but as one who documented his work through film. And as I wrote earlier, I look forward to reading a further installment and hope that it will lead to an eventual book.




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    1. PART 2:

      In 2001, ufologist Jacques Vallee reviewed "UFOs and Abduction," a book edited by Jacobs. In the version Vallee submitted to the "Journal of Scientific Exploration," he wrote: “Even when certain authors are quoted, it is only for some favorable comment about the contributors to the book. Thus French journalist Marie-Thérèse de Brosses is cited (page 239) for being impressed with Hopkins' technique, but her skepticism towards other aspects of abduction research is not mentioned. In her well-researched book de Brosses had some sharp things to say about the negative impact of the hypnosis process on the lives of abductees she interviewed, yet those comments are ignored. One witness, for instance, had recurring experiences of traveling with a being of light she assumed was an angel. Following hypnosis sessions with Jacobs she was told the being actually was an alien intent on harming her, and her experiences became intensely traumatic. It is in these missing citations and omissions that we may find a partial explanation for the reluctance of the academic community at large to enter into a field of research so obviously riddled with selection effects and so slow to acknowledge its previous errors and learn from them.” (The version published in the JSE omitted the sentences that described Jacobs turning an angel into an alien.)

      http://www.jacquesvallee.net/bookdocs/reviewabductions.pdfhttp://www.jacquesvallee.net/bookdocs/reviewabductions.pdf
      https://www.scientificexploration.org/journal/volume-15-number-3-2001

      In 2010, self-described experiencer Jeremy Vaeni published the article, "Reflections on 2 Journeys: Where Do We Go From Here?" wherein he describes a Paracast interview: "This week’s show features Deb 'Kathie Davis' Kauble. Deb 'Aliens Stole My Baby' Kauble. The template upon which stories like those of Kim Carlsberg are written. Deb shares with us with all the passion and hurt and anger of someone telling the truth. The truth is: She never said that. That was Budd’s theory. The truth is: She doesn’t like the term 'alien abduction' because she doesn’t know what this phenomenon is but she doesn’t think it’s extraterrestrial, never saw a spaceship, and has great disdain for the word 'abduction.'"

      http://www.authorsden.com/categories/article_top.asp?id=59802
      http://www.podcastchart.com/podcasts/paratopia/episodes/paratopia-92-deb-kauble-uncensored

      Incidentally, the Mack Institute recommends both the Rainey and Vaeni articles, saying of the first, "it is a criticism of researchers being lured by their own expectations of what the alien encounter experience is, and what sort of cases promise 'proof' -- when the reality could be that the nature of alien encounters is far stranger than one may expect..."

      http://johnemackinstitute.org/2011/01/the-priests-of-high-strangeness-a-warning-about-expectations/

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    2. PART 3

      In 2012, Professor Michael Swords, former editor of the "Journal of UFO Studies," hosted a casual meeting of some of his prominent UFO buddies, including abduction expert Dr. Eddie Bullard, and UFO historian Jerome Clark. Swords wrote:

      "Abductions: I was surprised (even as well as I know these guys) that not one of them was buying the hypothesis of a colossal numbers of abductions taking, or taken, place. Not even Eddie. Not even Jerry nor I, who considered Budd Hopkins a very good colleague and friend, and have felt similarly about Dave Jacobs. Everybody around the table considered the infamous Roper poll to be a piece of garbage as far as indicating anything about abductions is concerned, although it MIGHT be indicating 'something' about 'something' undetermined." Yes, veteran ufologist Swords, not a diabolical debunker, used the word "garbage" to describe the Roper poll. And no one named in the post believed the claim by Hopkins and Jacobs about "a colossal numbers of abductions taking, or [having] taken, place."

      http://thebiggeststudy.blogspot.ca/2012/10/bells-books-and-candles.html

      I have many more examples in my files: I could go on and on and on.

      My point being: it is facile to dismiss Rainey as a debunker or a lone agent motivated by personal animosity. There are many similar criticisms of Hopkins and Jacobs by prominent researchers within ufology, as well as journalists who were given special access by Hopkins and Jacobs themselves. Such apparent corroboration doesn't of itself prove Rainey's allegations, but shows us that such charges are not to be dismissed out of hand, they must be addressed on the merits.

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    3. erickson - I'm aware of Hansen's critique and think it's important as it raised questions that those of us who read The Brooklyn Bridge Abduction wondered about. I thought it was possible Budd was played as all the witnesses would only interact through mail, drawings sent in mail and phone calls. Linda Cortile and a couple of other people in on a hoax could have pulled it off....But, I'm a suspicious person by nature. As an example I think that Travis Walton, his brother and friend Mike hoaxed his abduction. It probably was going to be a bad joke on the rest of the loggers in the cramped truck, but it blew out of proportion for whatever reasons and it became known to the public. I've watched his demeanor and bearing at ufo conferences and on youtube and I do not believe he's telling the truth. He also failed more lie detector tests than he passed. But that's only my impression as is my rather negative impression of Linda Cortile.


      As for Dr. Kokjohn, he works on finding a cure for Alzheimers Disease, a noble cause. But, he has no background in investigating ufo abductions and also afaik, he's not a geneticist.

      Hypnotic regression has been done by most well known and lesser known researchers going way back into the 1960s. When hypnosis yields something useful it fill in snippits of the missing time (or time skips or amnesia) apparently induced by these beings. Can a subject be influenced? Yes. However, abduction hypnosis is not "a crime against humanity" as one Rainey devotee had claimed in a post to me, in his former forum. There's plenty more in our country and the world for us to worry ourselves about regarding human abuses.

      Just my opinion...

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    4. I greatly respect most of Michael Swords work. He too however has his filters and bias, as we all do. He doesn't think abductions by ETs occur. He has hinted at negative (demonic) entities making people think that they're ETs. It's been quite awhile but I think he used the Betty Andreasson case as an example. He's alluded to this deception a couple of times in the past on his blog. Michael is a devout, sincere Roman Catholic whose close friend is an RC Priest.

      Though I'll consider any origin of these entities: ET, UT, Crypto-T, Demonic, Djinn, Archons, Allies (Toltec) Fairies....phew! You name it. It probably doesn't matter who they are.

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  6. It is wonderful, Carol. If it was a book, I would not be able to put it down. I am greatly looking forward to the next installment.

    Thank you for sharing this part of your life. I respect your courage and contribution to trying to move research in Ufology to a better level.

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  7. ....Budd’s bushy dark brows shot up and he peered over to see if I was kidding. “Arlene Love, the star who shot to the top and made the cover of ‘Rolling Stone?’”

    I shook my head.

    He named a certain song, evidently quite popular, and asked if I knew it. Arlene’s break out song....

    This singer had a hit in Britain, that I didn't like. However, the song has been going through my head since reading this article before I noticed it was (i.e. unconsciously, at the start, without consciously having dwelt on the song, at all). Has anyone else experienced something like this?

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    1. I don't know if anyone else experienced something like that, Daniel, but "Arlene Love" was a pseudonym. As Carol Rainey stated in her endnotes, "Pseudonyms are used for both Arlene and her daughter Julia." Hope that helps.

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    2. Carol Rainey continues the Budd Hopkins tradition of applying pseudonyms to other people, while writing in a fiction-like style. This singer's link to the general subject area is already known/published. Even if that were not the case, the identity could be worked out purely from the information in the article by anyone that put in a little effort.

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    3. Daniel, I get your point. I consider what Rainey (and others) do as creative license. I realize that there's likely no way, even in the most unusual, bizarre circumstances with these two tragic women; would anyone be blessed with an elephants memory of them for such details and descriptions so many years later....But I won't fault Rainey for that. It's her incessant campaign of blame on Hopkins, long after co-writing Sight Unseen with him. Integrity would have dictated she shouldn't haven't co-penned an abduction book with him, imo.

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  8. (My comment is too long for the site. Sorry for pulling a Rudiak and going all multi-part, but I actually deleted some examples before I tried to post.)

    PART 1:

    > Hopkins was also quick to label Rainey as a "debunker" and assert that he never had made "any mistakes or leading moments" in all of his work. Kevin Randle addressed that aspect of Budd:

    Erickson makes a good point: Rainey's criticisms of Hopkins and Jacobs are not unique to her. Many others have documented their reckless, unscientific methods:

    In 1994, journalist Jim Schnabel published “Dark White,” based on extensive interviews with Hopkins and Jacobs. Schnabel writes: "Hopkins also devoted considerable time to a report from a couple whom he had met on his recent Australian tour. They had shown Hopkins four oddly red-tinted photographs taken at a bayside park on an afternoon in 1978. One of the photos showed two children and the father, but the other three showed empty scenes of the park -- although they should have included the couple and their children. When Hopkins hypnotically regressed the couple, it became clear that they and their children had been abducted while the red-tinted photographs were being taken, and that the aliens had planted a screen memory in their minds to make them think that they had actually been standing by the bay photographing each other. Hopkins presented the case at the 1993 MUFON conference, and although his presentation was well received, a number of conference-goers mused on the irony that in this case, nothing was being used as evidence of something" (pp 281-2 of the hardcover).

    In 1995, journalist CDB Bryan published "Close Encounters of the Fourth Kind." Over 100 pages of the book are an account of hypnosis sessions conducted by Hopkins, who invited Bryan to observe. We meet a middle-aged woman who has come to Budd with a suspicion -- but no memory -- of being raped by her father as a child. Unsurprisingly, under hypnosis, her rape "memory" comes out. Immediately, Budd declares it wasn't her father who sexually assaulted her, it was aliens! Hopkins blatantly swaps out the subject's testimony for his own version. This callous imposition of his agenda is shocking, and undermines all this claims that he does not lead witnesses under hypnosis. (See pages 340 and 353-4 of the paperback for the details.) Hopkins often stated he could find abduction memories better than a trained therapist, and Bryan gives us stark evidence of why that was true.

    In 1999, ufologist Kevin Randle, filmmaker Russ Estes, and clinical psychologist William Cone published the book "Abduction Enigma," which had chapters on both Hopkins and Jacobs. The authors destroy the methods and claims of both abduction investigators. Keith Basterfield summarises the book here:

    http://ufos-scientificresearch.blogspot.ca/2013/04/alien-abductions-answer.html

    (I recommend all these books very highly.)

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    1. Terry, you wrote: "In 1995, journalist CDB Bryan published "Close Encounters of the Fourth Kind." Over 100 pages of the book are an account of hypnosis sessions conducted by Hopkins, who invited Bryan to observe. We meet a middle-aged woman who has come to Budd with a suspicion -- but no memory -- of being raped by her father as a child. Unsurprisingly, under hypnosis, her rape "memory" comes out. Immediately, Budd declares it wasn't her father who sexually assaulted her, it was aliens! Hopkins blatantly swaps out the subject's testimony for his own version. This callous imposition of his agenda is shocking, and undermines all this claims that he does not lead witnesses under hypnosis. (See pages 340 and 353-4 of the paperback for the details.) Hopkins often stated he could find abduction memories better than a trained therapist, and Bryan gives us stark evidence of why that was true." - - - -

      You're referring to Beth Collings. She & Anna Jamerson co-wrote their own book['Connections: Solving our own Alien Abduction Mystery']. Collings goes in depth with her memories (conscious and regressed) of what was usually a routine fishing trip and how both she and her father 'came to' and were paralyzed in different locations (he still in the little boat with an expression of horror stuck on his face and she, laying on the bank confused as to how she got there). Collings came to the realization and relief that her Dad had not sexually molested her. There had been no untoward behavior from him during her whole life and this strange, incomplete memory haunted her for so long. Daughter and father were able to discuss their memories of being taken by ufo-related entities, which happened to them several times. Her father and other relatives had their own abduction memories as well. Collings hypnotically recalled what actually happened and fleshed out even more in conscious memories that returned (as is often the case in this strange subject), without the use of hypnosis. She also utilized hypnotherapists and did her own self-hypnosis and had her roommate Jamerson hypnotize her too (the latter two methods shouldn't be practiced though, imo).

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    2. Brownie,

      You are absolutely correct. I have Anna's and Beth's book. What you've described is precisely what Collings stated in her book. I can remember FEELING the enormous relief she had when she discovered her father had not raped her, but yet at the same time to find out she'd been experiencing these events along with her father, was a hard cross for her to bear.

      Both Anna and Beth (not their real names) appear in a documentary I found recently over at YouTube. Sorry I don't have the title of that video, but if you type in something like "Collings and Jamerson abduction events," you should be able to find it.

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    3. And actually, if I remember this correctly, it was ANNA who had initially thought her dad had raped her, not Beth.

      At any rate, this book is absolutely one of my favorites. It is comprehensively/articulately written; both these women are intelligent, well educated women who had successful careers behind them when both started remembering, and wondering about, some of their childhood (and on into adulthood) experiences.

      Beth's details as to what she eventually found was a MILAB experience, was downright chilling...

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    4. Bayareamom, Yes, Collings was quite clear and sincere. Likr you, I find it always is helpful and humbling to read the actual first person account. That was an excellent book for many other reasons too.

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    5. Oh! I stand corrected! I'd thought it was the short haired blonde woman who was Beth Collings.

      Delete
  9. I can assure everyone I didn't post my 3-part comment in such a haphazard order! (Unless it reads better, then it was an inspire choice.)

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  10. Thanks for all of your interest and comments.

    Given that the subject matter tends to inspire passionate remarks reflecting deeply cherished beliefs, please keep statements civil so that I don't have to.

    And remember - there is a Part II.

    Thanks.

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  11. I've never considered Budd Hopkins, nor anyone else in this field of research, to be some sort of saint. We all have our imperfections; none of us is perfect. Of late, I've been viewing some of his lectures and have tried to keep an open mind as I've done so. I have to say, I have more admiration for Budd's work now, than I have in the past. Admittedly, I allowed a former 'researcher' taint my perceptions about Hopkins' work, and although I do not agree with some of Budd's conclusions about this phenomenon and its implications, I do detect a clear note of humanity in Budd as he speaks.

    I have spoken to a few individuals who worked with Budd. Overall, the general opinion of Budd's work by these individuals was that he was a caring and compassionate researcher. The common thread, however, which ran through most of the conversations I had with these people was that Budd tended to set aside certain scenarios of which he felt more than mild discomfort, such as government involvement with some of these abductees. I was told he would simply redact any sort of government involvement when writing about and/or speaking about, these events. He frankly admitted to one particular MILAB researcher that he was far more comfortable having her discuss the government's involvement than having to deal with that, himself.

    Instead of criticizing, why not try helping? Is Carol interested in continuing this line of research, only perhaps performing that research in the manner in which she sees fit? Instead of criticizing, why not fix this then (if that's possible).

    If Carol is not interested in working in this field, then I would respectfully ask why she feels it important to continue on in this manner? If she is no longer interested in performing this type research, then let the body of work/research continue on with those of whom are interested. Mistakes will continually be made with this type research, just as surely as mistakes are made with any other.

    For those of whom have issues with hypnosis with this research, don't use it. I try not to be too judgmental when it comes to this research. I have read a number of books regarding various abduction events and I have to say, most of what I have read rings a bell of truth. I don't find any of the individuals of whom I've read about to be liars or hoaxers.

    IF Hopkins' work was so flawed, that will bear out over time. If it wasn't as flawed as is opined by Ms. Rainey, that, too, will bear out over time.

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    1. Excellent observations and points, Bayareamom! After being highly influenced by some of the negative nancies with their crusade against Hopkins, I reread his works over the past two years or so and read or watched (on youtube) his long time associates and friends who have stood by him and his work.

      What we certainly can ask, dare I say expect, is for Carol Rainy (who made money off of Budd by co-authoring 'Sight Unseen') to do investigative work in abduction research, which I suspect holds the key to just about everything from our origins, religions, consciousness, science and our place in the universe.

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    2. "holds the key to just about everything from our origins, religions, consciousness, science and our place in the universe."

      Agree. Further, given Carol's issues with Budd's work, it might behoove her to delve into this matter a bit more herself. Flesh out the nuances, if she can; seek the answers to the questions she may actually have with all of this. If she's not interested in performing this research any longer, then I must say I am more than a bit puzzled as to why this continued bashing of Budd's work.

      IF there is no interest on Carol's part regarding this type research, then leave it in the hands of those who are interested. And as I've stated, if Budd's work was so riddled with efforts and misinformation, that will bear out in time.

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    3. I agree about the "issues". At this point I get the impression Budd was the love of her life and the ending of their marriage was too painful for her.....Also, to initially attack (with her video and her interviews) when Budd was dying of terminal cancer, will be something she'll have to be spiritually responsible for sooner or later, imo.

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    4. I don't think Rainey is attacking Hopkins. I think she is making known the truth of what he did in his research behind the scenes, so that people can know about it.

      The reason Rainey came forward and made this information public, is because she heard about what Jacobs did to me. She felt that she had to speak out then, because people were being hurt by abduction researchers who were not following proper procedures for the protection of human research subjects.

      Rainey had not spoken out before then, even though she left her marriage with Hopkins years before. She was not on any vendetta to hurt him. She took the difficult step of doing the right thing when she heard about my case and realized that she had to speak out.

      Rainey knew that she wold be attacked, because she had already seen how people attacked me. She knew she would lose friendships that she valued. It was not an easy thing for her to do. But she did it because she felt that she should, and I will always respect her for that.

      I know that there are many in Ufology who privately agree with Rainey, but do not want to say so in public. I imagine that may be partly due to the attacks that she has received, and the friends she has lost. Who would want to put themselves in that position?

      I think that people who continue to attack Rainey, without seeing the value of the information she has provided about Hopkins' work, and without seeing how hard it was for her to do that, are helping to keep the culture of intimidation alive. It helps to keep people unwilling to raise real concerns that they have about the research, in case they suffer the same fate as Rainey (or myself, for that mater).

      The fact is that Rainey has shown that Hopkins's research was deeply flawed, that his major cases were outright hoaxes and he was unable to see that, and that he could be dishonest in presenting his evidence. We need to know those things if we are to make an informed assessment of his work.

      Whether Ufology chooses to improve the research methodologies and practices used, or whether it continues to slide into a circus show harming experiencers, and with people too scared to speak out, I don't know.

      However, I think that in times to come, historians of Ufology will recognize the extremely valuable contribution that Rainey has made to the field.

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  12. erickson wrote, "So perhaps, as Randle suggested, it's time to move away from the 'cult of personality' and look hard at the evidence - to seek validation in the ways that Dr. Kokjohn has explained; to look at how hypnosis can be another form of manipulation; and to evaluate the work that Hopkins did on its own terms rather than rely on either positive or negative assessments of his character."

    I'd agree with that, erickson, I just don't think most people know what it means or how to do it. My experience in UFO circles would lead me to strongly suspect that's the case, as well as lead me to conclude that some of those who do know what it means find it advantageous to pretend they don't. If people understood how to argue such work on its merit, there would be nothing to debate.

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  13. "...If people understood how to argue such work on its merit, there would be nothing to debate."

    How would you or anyone else propose to do this, Jack? This is SUCH an elusive subject, fraught with all sorts of nuances. You have technologies employed which are beyond the wildest of imaginations of most people.

    I would encourage all those who read at this blog to view the documentary about John Mack. Just plug in (YouTube) "John Mack Documentary," and it will come up. An experiencer by the name of Karin is featured, as well as a number of other extremely credible individuals. These individuals all worked with Mack (and Hopkins I believe). These are mentally competent, sane individuals. The school children visited by Mack is also a must see, at least in my book. Those children were credible, very articulate, and amazing to watch.

    Perhaps this is precisely what is meant to happen, i.e., our inability to CONTROL this phenomenon. This phenomenon is so far outside the normal emotional/mental grasp of most that to experience anything like this would astound even the most die-hard of skeptics.

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  14. I think that Budd Hopkins was kind and caring to those who fitted with his view of things.

    However, if you did not fit with Budd's view of things, he was far from kind and caring. I received a letter from him trying to stop me from speaking publicly about what David Jacobs did to me, that was, in my opinion, very manipulative and dishonest.

    Hopkins lied in public about how I contacted him and Jacobs, both on the Paracast show and in an article in UFO Magazine, with the intent, in my opinion, to portray me in a false light, so that the material I have made public about David Jacobs' conduct would not be taken seriously. Jacobs told the same lie on his website initially, and then changed his story. It seems like Hopkins did not realize that Jacobs had changed his story, so told the same lie in his UFO Magazine article, even though it meant that they both contradicted each other.

    Carol Rainey has made public how Hopkins would have one hypnosis session with people, during which they may have remembered very distressing events, and then would not take their calls after that, even though they might leave several messages. I don't think that is caring at all, and it also seems quite irresponsible.

    I don't want to take away from those who had a good experience with Hopkins. That is their experience, and I respect that.

    However, as someone who had a bad experience with Hopkins, I know that the man could be uncaring, manipulative, and dishonest. That is part of who he was, and part of his legacy.

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    1. "However, as someone who had a bad experience with Hopkins, I know that the man could be uncaring, manipulative, and dishonest. That is part of who he was, and part of his legacy."


      Emma,

      I am SO sorry to hear about your experiences with Budd. I don't delve into this genre too much these days and although I've read a bit about your story, admittedly I don't know all the 'ins and outs' about the entirety.

      I, too, had a somewhat bizarre shall we say encounter with Budd. This was several years ago - around 2006, if memory serves. It wasn't anything like what you've experienced, but nonetheless, it was a bit off putting.

      I didn't know much about Budd's work at that time, but I looked him up, found his contact information and gave him a call (this was late at night).

      Amazingly, he returned my phone call within five minutes (I've since heard this was highly unusual for Budd to do this as it would oft times take him months to respond to inquiries). The information I'd left for him on his voice-mail took all of a few moments; I didn't flesh out anything to him over voice-mail due to issues with privacy concerns.

      Budd's response to me was decidedly bizarre. When I answered the phone, he told me who he was and w/o asking me ANY questions about my background, he proceeded to tell me to contact MUFON.

      At that time, MUFON did not have a group of individuals whose field of expertise was in dealing with abduction. But again, Budd's response to me was SO off the wall, i.e., he showed NO interest, nor any sort of concern for me whatsoever. He was just shy of being rude to me during this call. I was just astounded with his lack of interest and support. Admittedly I'd given him absolutely nothing in the way of information, save for a couple of statements that I was remembering some things from my childhood and I mentioned a few things that I'd recalled which happened to me at night when I was a kid, but his response was just...weird.

      I had never, ever contacted anyone about my experiences, so this initial reaction from someone who was supposedly highly regarded in this field left me somewhat reeling after I hung up with him (I don't think we were on the phone for more than two minutes).

      When I wrote my comments above, I was simply reiterating what I had been told by several individuals who had worked with both Jacobs and Hopkins. To the last one, they all told me that although they generally liked working with Budd, they ALL had issues as to the bias involved with both these men as to the government's heavy hand with some of this. Neither one of these two men, I was told, wanted ANYTHING to do with the government's involvement with the UFO phenomenon. I was also told by a couple of these individuals that many of Budd's and Jacobs' 'clients' left them to pursue work with other researchers, given both Budd's and Jacobs' penchant for redacting certain elements of the research they were uncovering when working with these individuals.

      Again, Emma, I am so sorry to hear about some of the issues you had with both these researchers. I think it's very apparent that some people had great experiences when working with Budd, and others did not.

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    2. Thank you, Bayareamom. I appreciate it. Thank you also for sharing your story about Hopkins. It is interesting.

      I am not sure why Hopkins did not want to pursue the government angle, because Jacobs told me that Hopkins thought that the government was involved. Jacobs told me that was one of the differences between him and Hopkins.

      I spoke to Hopkins by phone a few times, and in one of the early calls, in September 2002, Hopkins asked me if I could hear a sound on the line. It was so long ago now that I don't remember if there was a sound, or what it was. But he sounded nervous about it, and I had a sense that he thought that the line might be tapped.

      I know that in one of Carol Rainey's videos about the Cortile case, Hopkins was having his house checked for bugs.

      Considering that it seems like Hopkins did think the government might be involved, I wonder why he did not want his clients to pursue that line? It would be interesting to know the answer.

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    3. Bay, Hopkins was (unfortunately) probably culling you out of potentially interesting people to interview

      That behavior reminds me of what Jim Weiner (Allagash Abductions) spoke about and Ray Fowler admitted to. When the two first met at a conference in New England Ray, who was signing autographs and speaking with several people, basically blew Jim off, ignoring him after suggesting he contact his local MUFON group (for a standard investigation). Then Jim boldly continued to talk with Ray mentioning his identical twin Jack Weiner and two friends (Charlie Foltz, Chuck Rak) experienced this event together. Ray admitted that when he heard "twin" he did an about face and became interested and the investigation ensued.

      Unfortunate and unfair as it is, the compartmentalizing of people happens.

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    4. You're most welcome, Emma. I didn't want you to feel that I was dismissing what has been your own experiences with both Budd and David. That wasn't my intention...

      Regarding the government's involvement: I'll share a small, private (until now) story as to just one of the things that has happened in our family. Years ago, I met a woman who lives in our area whose husband is connected to one of our intelligence agencies. She met her husband in Europe, in some sort of club, i.e., a club of which many who were involved with SHAPE (Supreme Headquarters Allied Powers Europe).

      At the time I met this woman, I did not know of her husband's former intelligence background. One day, back in (or around) 2006, this woman and I were on the phone; I was just starting to remember some of the strange scenarios of which occurred during my childhood, and of issues shall we say as to my own father's involvement with intelligence.

      I was sharing with her some of what I was starting to remember, and as I did so, our phone connection simply went dead, as in around two full minutes, if not longer. During that duration (I was using a landline at that time), I tried picking up the receiver to try to get a dial tone, to no avail.

      The phone had simply gone dead.

      Finally, after a few minutes, I was able to call my friend back. Both she and I were rather incredulous as to what had just transpired, and both our suspicions led us to believe wholeheartedly that 'someone' had been listening in, decided I'd gone a bit too far as to what I was sharing, and cut us off as a friendly, but firm warning.

      Later, and on more than one occasion, this same sort of warning occurred during several calls wherein I was discussing this same topic. And it wasn't just that I was discussing this topic, but those disconnects had to do with SPECIFIC areas of conversation, of which I'd long suspected at that point, were more than a little tenuous issues for ME to be discussing on the phone.

      I have my suspicions as to why Hopkins in particular may not have wanted to touch on the whole government involvement issue, but I'll take the high road on that one and keep that to myself. I have been told by what I do deem to be an extremely credible source, as to all of that, but given that I cannot verify the information at hand, I am not willing to present it at an online forum.

      Suffice to say that should you dig a little further on the net, there is at least ONE source of information which may lend itself to some of Budd's reluctance to own up to government involvement.

      I've learned over the years to be exceedingly careful when it comes to sharing either some of what I and my family have experienced, and what is considered SAFE to do so, for a variety of reasons.

      My Dad used to say three things to me when I was a kid: a) This world is not as it seems, b) People are not always who and what they seem, c) There are deeper meanings behind every word spoken and every deed performed, d) Timing is everything, and last but not least, e) Things will happen when you least expect them.

      I've come to find out throughout all these years that he was right on the mark re those statements. I have never, ever forgotten them.

      Best to you, Emma. I hope you have managed to get your life back on track after all that's happened to you.

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    5. Yes, I have wondered about that, but the point is that I was never, ever planning on going 'public' with my story, for a variety of reasons, so it doesn't really matter to me 'why' Hopkins treated me the way he did, only in that he was rather rude when speaking to me.

      That sort of rude response wasn't something I expected when speaking to him. Furthermore, it wouldn't have been practical for me to work with Budd, given both he and I were on opposite coasts. Eventually, I did actually, hook up with someone who worked with MUFON, it just happened that I didn't end up working with the person Budd referred me to. She did a fantastic job helping me and eventually, I ended up working with someone else who REALLY helped solidify a lot of the questions/concerns I had with all of this.

      But even after that rather bizarre short phone call with Budd, I still do admire the bulk of his work.

      I have taken the time to read up on Sean F. Meers' work re the Cortile case. The research of Sean is, in my view, quite considerable and well documented (something we see all too little of with this type research).

      Meers' work led me into a different direction vis-a-vis Budd's work and eventually I was able to set aside some of my own bias when redirecting myself toward Budd's work.

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    6. "Bay, Hopkins was (unfortunately) probably culling you out of potentially interesting people to interview..."


      One last point to clarify (this is important):

      Hopkins knew absolutely nothing about my experiences and/or my past history. As I have explained, I left very, very little info. in my voice-mail message to him. Still, he returned my call within FIVE MINUTES and immediately told me to contact MUFON.

      I found this so entirely odd, because again, he knew absolutely nothing about me. We were perhaps on the phone for no more than one or two minutes...tops.

      So I don't think this was some sort of culling (and even if it were, I wouldn't have cared as I was never going to go public, nor work with Budd).




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  15. Can anyone here holding the position that hypnosis is good for memory retrieval point me to recent scholarly research in support of that?

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    1. Jeremy, there isn't scholarly research on ANY of this. This is not a subject which is generally speaking, going to elicit appropriate funding to determine what type of research best suits this genre.

      It is what it is...

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    2. "There isn't scholarly research on ANY of this."

      As Jack has documented, significant research has been done on the reliability of the techniques that most abduction researchers use. Not too long ago, I posted a statement elsewhere that hypnosis had been discredited as a means to determine actual experience. In response to others, I tried to summarize references that I used. But it soon became apparent that studies were really not the issue for those who have come to believe they are abductees.

      I do not think people who believe they have been abducted are liars, hoaxers. or crazy (although there are some exceptions). Susan Clancy’s work (Abducted) shows the opposite. Clancy wanted to study how people come to believe they were abducted by aliens. She writes about how people are aware of explanations like sleep paralysis and that they have been told about how hypnosis can implant intense, traumatic “memories.” But the science does not matter. They have experienced something and abduction provides an answer. She ultimately describes abduction as a “baptism into a new religion of our technological age.”

      (I'm aware that Budd wrote a lengthy criticism of the book, based in part about her lack of belief in alien abduction and that she did not turn to him for assistance with her project, but I do not want to get sidetracked here into a discussion about whether Budd was right. I refer to the book only in the way it confirms that for many, studies and research will not define the issue.)

      I believe that many abductees have experienced something. I do not believe it is anything that unusual or is based on technologies that we cannot begin to understand.

      In the end, however, it may be a matter of belief. During the height of the satanic ritual abuse hysteria, fueled in large part by hypnotic regression, the FBI investigated and did not find any evidence to support it. But its harder to prove or disprove alien abduction.

      Still, we can look at the techniques used and ask if they are reliable - if the experience can be validated. This is important to do with any type of eyewitness event, but it is all the more necessary in the abduction cases. There is a reason why the British UFO Research Association, has a moratorium on using hypnosis to investigate abduction reports. The article on their website, "Alien Abduction, Hypnosis and Memory" is worth reading.

      It is not just a matter of deciding that I do not want to be hypnotized. The techniques themselves can have profound consequences. Emma’s experience of being given hypnotic suggestions that she was suffering from multiple personality disorder is one example of this. As Jack has emphasized, people who are looking for answers to profound questions in their lives deserve more.

      Jack wrote about how The Grays Have Been Framed. The Grays are lucky that they are beyond the reach of earthly jurisdictions. People have spent lengthy time in prison on the basis of memories recovered through hypnosis -- although it is worth noting that most courts now reject hypnotic evidence or incorporate standards that would render abduction experiences inadmissible. (See State v. Moore (2006) 188 N.J. 182 [reversing previous decisions that to find that hypnosis is not sufficiently reliable to be used as evidence]; R. v. Trochym (2007) S.C.C. 6 P 27 [Canadian Supreme Court finding a presumption against testimony based on hypnosis].)

      Hypnotic regression has had a profound and tragic legacy. Some have described it as the most dangerous idea in mental health (www.psmag.com/health-and-behavior/dangerous-idea-mental-health-93325). Given this, we need to tread cautiously. We need to seek validation and corroboration. Those two things are within our reach.

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    3. "...I believe that many abductees have experienced something. I do not believe it is anything that unusual or is based on technologies that we cannot begin to understand..."

      That is your opinion and I respect that, but you don't speak for me, my son, or my family. I will absolutely not get into a debate with you or anyone else here as regards the entire regression issue.

      I have, indeed, read up on a plethora of vocal standpoints regarding this entire genre; I also base my thoughts and well thought out opinions, based on my own experiences, of which have been numerous and heretofore, MOST of which have been in total consciousness. Most of what I remember, has not been with the use of hypnosis.

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    4. "Jeremy, there isn't scholarly research on ANY of this."

      Are we really still having the debate about the integrity of hypnosis for retrieving REAL memories?

      There is a mountain of scientific evidence against.

      Here's a good start:

      https://webfiles.uci.edu/eloftus/Loftus_ScientificAmerican_Good97.pdf

      I have noticed that MUFON are pushing the hypnosis angle with a renewed vigour these days. Go figure.

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  16. "Hypnotic regression has had a profound and tragic legacy..."

    I'm not so sure about that; Dr. John Mack, for one, would certainly disagree with you overall. Although I am certain hypnosis has been abused by those of whom are not appropriately trained, I am also just as certain that, when used correctly, hypnosis can be a useful 'tool,' along with other modalities when researching the abduction phenomenon.

    I have read up on hypnosis research somewhat extensively, although admittedly am no expert on this issue. From what I have researched, various camps in both psychiatric and psychology fields disagree as to the appropriate use (or inappropriate) of hypnosis in the retrieval of traumatic memories.

    As I've stated on a couple of occasions herein, I have had two hypnotic regressions and neither of those regressions turned up any further useful information, other than what I had already remembered on a conscious level.

    I certainly respect your opinion on this topic, but having said that, may I ask you a question if you don't mind? Are any of you who are so violently opposed to hypnosis, experiencers? If so, do you have personal histories with having hypnosis used in order to recover uncovered memories?

    Here's an interesting article written for PSYCHOLOGY TODAY re Mack: http://www.jillneimark.com/mack1.php

    To my dying day, I will never understand WHY there are so many who outright want to disregard the plethora of work/research on this issue and insist that this phenomenon is not real, etc., so forth. To ME, if someone does not believe in other beings in this vast universe, then so be it. But why on earth some of those disbelievers seem so obsessed with disproving something of which has been documented since Biblical times, just amazes me.

    I do not say this with any sort of facetiousness. I am really incredulous as to the amount of disbelief on this topic, when, according to my own exhaustive research and my own experiences, this phenomenon has been here, as Dr. Karla Turner once told C2C, most likely for centuries.

    I honestly do not believe we are being 'visited,' so much as having experiences (or at least many of us) that many, many have had for eons. This phenomenon is nothing new, from what I have come to understand. We simply, now, have a way within which to communicate with one another about this issue in ways which were not yet common to the masses, many years ago.

    The craft that both I, our son and my husband have seen, have been absolutely exquisite. Breathtaking, really. Others, not so much. I just do not understand the FEAR behind this phenomenon, and make no mistake, I really do believe that fear drives the engine that drives the train, for many a skeptic.

    I actually consider myself somewhat of a skeptic. I tend to be an analytical type person, which is one of the reasons I gravitated toward the legal community after college. It's no small coincidence, perhaps, that someone such as myself and my very left-brained husband have borne witness to the many events which have occurred. We cannot 'unsee' what we've seen out there and I would definitely be lying to all, if I were to suddenly say I hadn't seen these things.

    Now, where they're from, who precisely they are, I cannot say. But I would surmise that, just as with the human race, some are benevolent/friendly, some are not, and most likely most of them are somewhere in between, with decided imperfections and flaws, as all the rest of us.

    I do come from an intelligence background (that being my dad). So perhaps I've been witness to a few events that most have not. I don't know. But I DO know this phenomenon is very, very real. What real purpose these beings have in our lives, I'm not quite certain, but I do have my own feelings about most of that.

    My hat goes off to those brave individuals who have come forward and have had the courage to share their stories with the rest. MOST of these individuals, I would say, were honest and very credible.

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    1. I don't want to spam up this thread, as it's growing long (hats off to Jack, for allowing it!) So, I'll combine comments to Erickson and Bayareamon :

      erickson wrote: " It is not just a matter of deciding that I do not want to be hypnotized." - - -

      I think it should be just that. We are individuals responsible for our own lives and the consequences of choices and decisions we make. I too have chosen not to be hypnotically regressed to fill in missing time episodes. At this point in my life, at 62 years old, nothing would surprise me. .... But, I won't force my decision to eschew hypnosis on anyone else.

      ~~~~~

      bayareamom wrote: "To my dying day, I will never understand WHY there are so many who outright want to disregard the plethora of work/research on this issue and insist that this phenomenon is not real, etc., so forth. To ME, if someone does not believe in other beings in this vast universe, then so be it. But why on earth some of those disbelievers seem so obsessed with disproving something of which has been documented since Biblical times, just amazes me.

      >I do not say this with any sort of facetiousness. I am really incredulous as to the amount of disbelief on this topic, when, according to my own exhaustive research and my own experiences, this phenomenon has been here, as Dr. Karla Turner once told C2C, most likely for centuries." - - - -


      I agree with your impression on what I personally see as the obsessive nature of debunkers regarding ufos and/or 'alien' abductions. I've wondered if it's manipulation by the Intelligence behind UFOs which exerts influence over some people to attack other people who've had sightings and CEs. Perhaps part of a control system.

      I don't see these debunkers go after Bigfoot Hunters, Ghost Investigators, Flat Earthers, ect.

      You mentioned Karla Turner. She was fantastic! Her audio books are now available for free on youtube (though a computerized voice reads them). She, and her mentor Barbara Bartholic (also died quickly) were both abductees and investigators. And both utilized hypnosis for themselves and some of their research subjects. Turner picked up on the MILABs intrusions as well, during a time when very few investigators were looking at that part of the complex subject.


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  17. Let's try to use a bit more discretion in posting comments, please. Making more of an intentional effort to stay on topic would also be appreciated. Over a dozen posts in 24 hours seems a bit excessive to me.

    Thanks.

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  18. Jack: Am home sick today and actually thought I'd deleted that last comment before it went to post. I thought it was too long and off topic, but there you go. I'm actually surprised you put it up there.

    Having said that (and this will be my last comment), I find it incredibly sad that Budd's name is being besmirched when he's no longer here to defend himself. I realize he made mistakes, but no one abduction event is without its complications. I think Budd did the best he could, given what little resources are available for this type research.

    What depresses me is the incredible amount of back stabbing and finger pointing in this community. It serves no real purpose and prevents many who would otherwise come forward, from doing so. The wealth of information that I am positive that could be shared with so many, is kept close to the vests of those that would never dare risk their own integrity to step into the cesspool that is considered UFO/abduction research.

    Until and/or unless researchers in this field will be willing to pool together their resourced material and simply SHARE what they have with one another, this field is going absolutely nowhere. I know for a fact the researchers in this field will NOT do this, because I have privately spoken with a few of whom admit this to me.

    Sorry for the 'excessive' posting on this subject, but this REALLY gets to me. This is the biggest issue re mankind, but the level to which it's been taken is appalling and just plain sad.



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  19. I think that when people talk about the benefits of hypnosis for memory retrieval they should be able to point to at least one study. That's not a lot to ask. The reason they cannot isn't because studies don't exist. It's because the existing studies do not back that claim. They simply don't and so that should be the end of discussion. If it is not, then there has to be a reason more rational than hero worship, not wanting to throw the baby out with the bathwater, fear of starting over in the field, and so forth.

    Further, the notion that Carol Rainey is besmirching Budd is incorrect on its own terms--but the notion that we're not allowed to examine his work with a critical eye because he's not here to defend himself goes against everything we ever do ever in any field. Ever.

    Can we be critical of Einstein's work? What about Genghis Khan? Freud? Are we allowed to dismantle some of his stuff without his defense? How about Reagan? How does any field advance if we're not allowed to rethink the practices, policies, and studies of the dead? Truly, the defense of Budd Hopkins' work rests in 1.) the validity of hypnosis as a memory retrieval tool and 2.) his application of it. We don't need to address 2 because the answer to 1 is that it isn't valid.

    All of that stated, the fact is, Carol DID hand Budd her Paratopia Magazine article criticizing/exposing his work before we published it. Granted, that's not her book, but it's the same in principle. And Budd DID defend himself while he was alive. Unfortunately, he simply resorted to smear tactics instead of answering the substantive charges. One assumes he did this because in ufology, few care to tell the difference. Far too many just want to hear him say "Don't listen to her." That's good enough for some who have spent decades listening to his tales and believing in them and in him. But for the rest of us who think that facts matter even if they take the form of a bitter pill to swallow... more is needed than "Don't believe her because you like the public image I've cultivated."

    When can we be honest and admit that this, not cruel and crazy detractors picking on the dead--certainly not that hypnosis is even still in question--is what it's about?

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  20. Last night’s PBS NOVA documentary “Memory Hackers” will provide solid ground for understanding “memory”….

    In the second half an alarming study with college students reveals how easily the memory can be manipulated. It gives great insight into why people will admit to crimes they never committed.

    You don’t need to be ‘water-boarded’ to ‘confess’, and actually when one has gained ‘confidence’ and ’trusts’ the ‘interviewer’ one is more likely to go along with the story presented …

    70% of the college students ‘recalled’ events that never happened !

    You can watch it on-line for about a week -orig air date 2/10/16

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    1. Re. 'Memory Hackers' on PBS's NOVA. Imagine the implications for eye witness accounts - re. police investigations, accident reconstructions, criminal trials.... For that matter, the idea that a man's word is his bond and the western world's concept of the Rule of Law.

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    2. brownie,
      “The state supreme courts of New Jersey and Massachusetts mandate that judges instruct juries that eyewitness testimony is inherently unreliable.”
      taken from “Remembering a Crime That You Didn’t Commit” by Douglas Starr in New Yorker March 5, 2015

      Also, 30 per cent of wrongful convictions looked at by the Innocence Project in the United States resulted directly from false confessions of the persons accused.

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  21. I immediately recognized the singer. I was a fan (her voice was liquid gold) and know her story and why she dropped from sight. It's sad to learn that she fell victim to her own delusions (aided by Hopkins). But being the single mother of a seriously developmentally and mentally challenged child, it's understandable why she would grasp at any straw to try to understand the lousy hand that fate dealt her and the child. I feel nothing but compassion for her. That's a hell of a road to walk alone.

    As for Hopkins, he exploited her vulnerability at first, then when she didn't pan out as his ticket to everlasting fame and glory appeared to start losing interest in her. It's a sorry and also pretty damned sleazy story.

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  22. I just found this blog this AM (while Googling for current info on Leah A. Haley) and wanted to say how glad I am that (right or wrong) Carol Rainy's writing is being published. I wrote to Budd years ago and mentioned the MILAB elements of my own story, which only cropped up after my move to the SF Bay Area with (back then) its many military bases. Unlike other "alien abductees" I knew then who'd written to him, I received only silence and now I have a possible explanation for that, from this thread. I met him and Carol later at a local appearance and liked them both for the intelligence they brought to the subject matter. But intellect is only one component of effective investigation--the exclusion of data is a fatal flaw, as is subjectivity in general. And "leading" is this field's most pervasive investigator error and the most frustrating for survivors. I no longer expect to live long enough to see the phenomena explained or the identities of the creeps who use it for their own advantage exposed. But I'm still interested in all of it. If I can just understand more fully, that will have to be enough.

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  23. It’s worth recalling that the reason John Mack’s alien abduction research was so controversial was less the alien abduction part than the fact that he used regressive hypnosis and took the results as veridical. I was in grad school studying the satanic ritual abuse panic and remember when Mack’s work was called out. The aliens aspect wasn’t particularly surprising to people who studied hypnosis and memory because it was well known that, given the right conditions, you could pull pretty much any rabbit you wanted out of the regression hat. What was shocking and questionable was that Mack interpreted the results of his work literally. Even then, I wonder if anyone in academe would have ever paid attention to Mack’s sideline of abduction research if the implication of what his research methodology could lead to was not simultaneously being highlighted by the events of the satanic ritual abuse panic.

    Those who did not live through the satanic ritual abuse panic of the late 80s/early 90s and/or are accustomed to today’s world with its explosion of interest in and popularity of all things paranormal may not realize how much hypnotic regression helped aim and deploy false accusations that destroyed the lives of innocent people. A paragraph from a 1994 Psychology Today article sketches the context of the times:

    “More than the legitimacy of UFOs is at stake. The fact is that Mack--at least to those who view him from the outside--is actually in the white hot center of a controversy that has been raging around the country. It's a battle about the essential nature of the human mind, really; a war over the nature of memory, and access routes to it, particularly hypnosis. Can hypnosis recover repressed memories of sexual abuse, satanic ritual abuse, past life abuse, and abuse at the hands of aliens? In a tabloid culture, recovered memories have led to accusations and court cases so damaging and sordid they've been compared to the witch-hunts of another age.”

    https://www.psychologytoday.com/articles/200910/the-harvard-professor-the-ufos

    Rainey’s work is important, just as Hopkins’ ouvre is likely to continue to be of interest, because beyond the UFO aspect it offers a vivid illustration of some of the most enigmatic and powerful ways we delude ourselves and contribute to the delusions of those around us, even while we search for the truth.

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