Anyone interested in the serious study of the UFO phenomenon must at least read, if not own, Dick Hall's The UFO Evidence, Volume I and II (Vol. II pictured below).
There is a great discussion underway at the moment at UFO Updates (www.virtuallystrange.net) about an Exopolitics conference being held in Toronto in September (Stephen Bassett, Paola Harris, Richard Dolan and Stan Friedman are speaking). My Nova Scotia colleague, Eugene Frison, has been perhaps the most vocal person at Updates in talking about how much damage Exopolitics does to ufology. I would wade in, but my opinions on the subject are already fairly well know - exopolitics is New Age snake-oil contactee-ism for the 21st century - so I leave this particular debate at Updates to Eugene, and other like-minded, reasonable people.
However, if you are thinking to yourself, "gee, lighten up fellas - how much harm can exopolitics really do?" then I have a little exercise for you. It's one that I conducted a few months ago, when Michael Salla and I were debating exopolitical "methodology" over at Updates.
1. Find a copy of The UFO Evidence (your best bet is to buy it). I used Volume II, as it is more current, but Volume I will work just as well.
2. Make 5 copies of the chapter dealing with military sightings, on pp. 73 - 115.
3. Contact five friends with at least one university degree each, but who have no expressed interest or involvement in the study of the UFO phenomenon, and ask them to read pp. 73 - 115. Tell them that after they're done, you have a single question for them.
At the same time, contact 5 more friends, again, all with at least one university degree and no expressed interest or involvement in the study of the UFO phenomenon.
1. Send them an e-mail directing them to www.exopolitics.org, Michael Salla's website.
2. Ask them to read "A Report on the Motivations and Activities of Extraterrestrial Races - A Typology of the Most Significant Extraterrestrial Races Interacting with Humanity," which can be found on Salla's site at www.exopolitics.org/Report-ET-Motivations.htm. Tell them that you have a question you want to ask them when they're done.
The question is the same for both groups:
"After reading the materials I sent along, what do you think of the UFO phenomenon, and would you be interested in learning more?"
As I said, I conducted this little survey a couple of months ago.
Of the UFO Evidence group, all five said they found it interesting, and eye-opening. Three asked for further references, which I provided.
Of the Exopolitics group, all five said they thought Dr. Salla was "out there" (I'm being politically correct here). None of them wanted further references - I sent each of them copies of pp. 73 -115 of the UFO Evidence anyway. All of them e-mailed or called me and asked me why I didn't send it to them in the first place! This time, two asked for further references, which I provided.
I urge everyone who is inclined to give exopolitics a free pass, or to say, "well, what harm can it do," to try this little exercise themselves, and, after the answers come in, ask yourself - "is exopolitics good or bad for Ufology?"