Denver "examiner" wants city to launch Extraterrestrial Affairs Commission. Oh, and he hates NASA., another enterprise bankrolled by Denver-based billionaire Phil Anschutz (currently in danger of losing a a button or two on his shirt related to an aborted Michael Jackson tour he bankrolled), attempts to rack up web hits with help from thousands of "examiners" -- journalists with varying degrees of professional experience and self-proclaimed experts in various fields, who are paid for blogging based on the popularity of their submissions. However, few are as entertaining as "UFO Examiner" Jeff Peckman -- the man backing a ballot initiative calling on Denver to create an "Extraterrestrial Affairs Commission." On June 26, Peckman weighed in on Michael Jackson's passing by praising Jacko for "his special interest in life beyond all of us, that is, in UFOs and extraterrestrial civilizations." (Jackson's music? Peckman doesn't mention it.)

Then, over the weekend, he went off on Larry Sessions, a guy who dared to write a comment questioning the wisdom of supporting the aforementioned commission to Channel 9's Your Show, an Adam Schrager-hosted public-affairs program that featured Peckman on June 21. Using the modern journalist's most important tool (Google), Peckman discovered that Sessions "is one of the so-called 'solar ambassadors' for NASA and its Jet Propulsion Laboratory." That immediately called his credibility into question from Peckman's perspective, because "NASA itself has been the target for allegations of fraud and waste of taxpayer money." One example of misdirected priorities, in his view, is "the $134 million NASA IBEX Probe" that's "being sent to the edge of the solar system." After all, he goes on, "What's at the edge of the solar system anyway? Food for the hungry? Shelter for the homeless? Jobs for the unemployed? Is there anything out there of any value to anyone not working for NASA?"

Oh yeah: Peckman insisted on his Your Show segment that his extraterrestrial commission would actually save America money, because it would expose the many millions of dollars being spent by the government to cover up evidence of intelligent creatures dwelling beyond this mortal coil. Enjoy that theory -- not to mention the way Schrager keeps a straight face -- in the video above.

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Michael Roberts has written for Westword since October 1990, serving stints as music editor and media columnist. He currently covers everything from breaking news and politics to sports and stories that defy categorization.
Contact: Michael Roberts

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