MORE

Extraterrestrial life: White House claim that it has no proof clearly false, says Jeff Peckman

As conspiracy theorists wonder if the federal government is being forthright about today's nationwide Emergency Alert System test, the White House is under fire from UFOlogists after formally declaring that it possesses no evidence of extraterrestrial life. Jeff Peckman, the man behind Initiative 300, which would have established an Extraterrestrial Affairs Commission in Denver, thinks the feds are hiding something. Make that a lot of somethings.

As we've reported, the Barack Obama administration created a program called We the People, which promises an official review and response to any petition posted on a designated website that reaches a predetermined threshold (initially 5,000 signatures, later bumped up to 25,000) within a prescribed period.

A flood of petitions followed -- among them at least two related to extraterrestrial life. One asking the White House to "immediately disclose the government's knowledge of and communications with extraterrestrial beings," has garnered 5,387 signatures at this writing. The other, asking the president to "formally acknowledge an extraterrestrial presence engaging the human race," was even more popular, passing the 12,000 signature point.

Peckman encouraged Obama to address the ET question during his late October appearance in Denver, but that didn't happen. Instead, the task fell to Phil Larson, who "works on space policy and communications at the White House Office of Science & Technology Policy," according to a document affixed to the petitions this week. In the response, on view in its entirety below, Larson writes:

The U.S. government has no evidence that any life exists outside our planet, or that an extraterrestrial presence has contacted or engaged any member of the human race. In addition, there is no credible information to suggest that any evidence is being hidden from the public's eye.

This statement strikes Peckman as disappointing. In his view, "It doesn't seem to be a smart move for them to take that position in light of an overwhelming amount of compelling evidence to the contrary. I think that either this man, Phil Larson, who seems to be a low-level staffer, is deliberately lying, or he's so grossly ignorant of evidence from around the world, from high-level military officers and pilots and government contractors and ordinary citizens, that he's simply not qualified to issue a statement about this issue on behalf of the White House."

Still, Peckman sees the government's actions as positive in at least one respect: "Now that this is on the record, they're going to have to work hard to defend themselves against criticism by eyewitnesses to the fact of an extraterrestrial presence.

"There's no doubt that the government has been covering up these facts, and that the news media has been involved in this. It all started with the Robertson panel back in the mid-'50s... and since then, the government has been trying to keep this a secret for many reasons. There are elements of protecting the fossil-fuel industry and trying to keep things under control. And how do you do that if you acknowledge that there are more advanced extraterrestrial civilizations -- maybe more than one -- that have an influence on our planet? Clearly, the White House is not willing to be honest and open with the public about this yet."

As for Peckman, he says he's taken a step back from his UFO work to devote himself to "promoting clean energy technologies and different sustainable practices, and getting those clean energy technologies into the market." But he's confident there are plenty of other experts capable of continuing what he sees as a good fight.

"Now that the White House has offered an official response and made false statements, that opens up a can of worms for them," he allows. "And that's a good thing."

Page down to read the full White House response.

 

Searching for ET, But No Evidence Yet

By Phil Larson

Thank you for signing the petition asking the Obama Administration to acknowledge an extraterrestrial presence here on Earth.

The U.S. government has no evidence that any life exists outside our planet, or that an extraterrestrial presence has contacted or engaged any member of the human race. In addition, there is no credible information to suggest that any evidence is being hidden from the public's eye.

However, that doesn't mean the subject of life outside our planet isn't being discussed or explored. In fact, there are a number of projects working toward the goal of understanding if life can or does exist off Earth. Here are a few examples:

SETI -- the Search for ExtraTerrestrial Intelligence -- was originally stood up with help from NASA, but has since been moved to other sources of private funding. SETI's main purpose is to act as a giant ear on behalf of the human race, pointing an array of ground-based telescopes towards space to listen for any signal from another world.

Kepler is a NASA spacecraft in orbit that's main goal is to search for Earth-like planets. Such a planet would be located in the "Goldilocks" zone of a distant solar system -- not too hot and not too cold -- and could potentially be habitable by life as we know it. The Kepler mission is specifically designed to survey our region of the Milky Way galaxy to discover Earth-sized, rocky planets in or near the habitable zone of the star (sun) they orbit.

The Mars Science Laboratory. Curiosity, is an automobile-sized rover that NASA is launching soon. The rover's onboard laboratory will study rocks, soils, and other geology in an effort to detect the chemical building blocks of life (e.g., forms of carbon) on Mars and will assess what the Martian environment was like in the past to see if it could have harbored life.

A last point: Many scientists and mathematicians have looked with a statistical mindset at the question of whether life likely exists beyond Earth and have come to the conclusion that the odds are pretty high that somewhere among the trillions and trillions of stars in the universe there is a planet other than ours that is home to life.

Many have also noted, however, that the odds of us making contact with any of them -- especially any intelligent ones -- are extremely small, given the distances involved.

But that's all statistics and speculation. The fact is we have no credible evidence of extraterrestrial presence here on Earth.

Phil Larson works on space policy and communications at the White House Office of Science & Technology Policy

Click here to follow and like the Michael Roberts/Westword Facebook page.

More from our News archive: "UFO believer Jeff Peckman's letter to Barack Obama: Tear down this wall of UFO secrecy."


Sponsor Content

Newsletters

All-access pass to top stories, events and offers around town.

Sign Up >

No Thanks!

Remind Me Later >