Thursday, October 06, 2005

Words of Wisdom... From a "Wise" Man

Will Wise, who heads up the Project Blue Book Archive (www.bluebookarchive.org), the best research resource available on the Internet for people who want to study the Project Blue Book files, has left a comment here at The Other Side of Truth that is worthy of "Guest Column" status (Will must be honoured!!).

Here it is, in its entirety:

"Hi Paul:

It seems to me that any group that wants to set itself apart from the kooks, crooks, and spoilers of Ufology needs to adhere to a few key principles. There are probably more but I'll throw some ideas out.

1) Ignore the kooks, crooks, and spoilers. You just shouldn't take the bait from these people. Let your work stand on its own and don't give in to the desire to defend it from all comers. SETI does just fine and rarely, if ever, responds to criticism from a Ufologist. If your work is questioned by important sources within the mainstream respond in a dignified and intelligent manner and never stoop to personal attacks.

2) Build a consistent track record of objectivity and critical self-examination. Be your own worst critic and you won't find yourself caught off-guard by criticism from outside sources. If the criticism is valid then accept it gracefully and, indeed, with pleasure and then build on it. This kind of criticism is a GOOD thing and you should thank them (even if they acted like a first-class you-know-what) for their help.

3) Build bridges with those who matter. The world is run by political, academic, and corporate leaders and these are the people who count the most in terms of public opinion. We all may get one vote on election day but on most every other day the opinions of certain people matter more than others. Focus your efforts on these individuals and try to build bridges between what they believe and what you are trying to tell them. For example, SETI supporters believe strongly in extraterrestrial life but often do not give much shrift to the feasibility of interstellar travel. Others believe in interstellar travel but not strongly in the possibility of intelligent extraterrestrial life. Target your message to each audience if you want to gain their support and realize that if you are successful it may be many years between tolerance, provisional acceptance, and public support.

4) Make a long-term commitment and do not function under the illusion that you will achieve your goals in the near-term. If you are serious about the studying the UFO phenomena then, in y estimation at least, the odds are against you and it may be after you die that your efforts bear fruit. Plan for the worst and hope for the best.

5) Be positive. Attacking others is easy but building up something worthy is difficult and difficult. Don't attack others just because they deserve it as you may need their support in some way in the future.

6) Have high standards. Carefully vet members of your organization and insure that they will not prove to be an embarrassment to you in the future. If they do then jettison them like yesterday's trash and never speak of them again.

Any other thoughts?

Will"

Wise words, indeed, to which we should all do our best to follow.

My only thought would be that sometimes it's necessary to expose the kooks, crooks and spoilers, lest they garner a larger audience simply because they go unchallenged. Other than that, I agree wholeheartedly.

Thanks Will. You're one of the good guys in ufology.

Now, if only you'd pop by UFO Planet a bit more often!!

Paul Kimball

2 comments:

William said...

Hi Paul:

Thank you for your kind words! I hate re-reading my own posts only to find careless stream-of-thought errors in punctuation and spelling. For some reason it's only after I post these errors that I notice them. Grrr...

I really should spend more time over at UFO Planet but I think if I add one more straw to the camel's back that is my daily grind it's going to break...or at least get me in trouble with the misses and we can't have that! I do really enjoy your blog though-- it's one of the few places I check daily and one of the even fewer places I post.

Keep up the good work!

Will

Paul Kimball said...

Will:

Thanks. Like I said, you're one of the good guys. Your work at www.bluebookarchive.org is extremely important.

Paul