Carl Sagan on Ramtha and Other Conspiracy Lunacies

By AnonyMaker

Strange, even somewhat dangerous concoctions or treatments almost seem to have a certain place in high control groups or cults, where pseudo-science is rife.

It’s also the sort of weird half-baked thing that comes out of the imaginative processes of the mind that actually produce what passes for “channeling” or “past lives.”

Here’s what a real renowned scholar from some of the most prestigious institutions has to say about J. Z. Knight and Ramtha in general, taken from the book The Demon-Haunted World: Science as a Candle in the Dark –

The Fine Art of Baloney Detection
by Carl Sagan

“J.Z. Knight of the State of Washington claims to be in touch with a 35,000-year-old somebody called “Ramtha.”

He speaks English very well, using Knight’s tongue, lips and vocal chords, producing what sounds to me to be an accent from the Indian Raj. Since most people know how to talk, and many — from children to professional actors — have a repertoire of voices at their command, the simplest hypothesis is that Ms. Knight makes “Ramtha” speak all by herself, and that she has no contact with disembodied entities from the Pleistocene Ice Age. If there’s evidence to the contrary, I’d love to hear it. It would be considerably more impressive if Ramtha could speak by himself, without the assistance of Ms. Knight’s mouth. Failing that, how might we test the claim? (The actress Shirley MacLaine attests that Ramtha was her brother in Atlantis, but that’s another story.)

“Suppose Ramtha were available for questioning. Could we verify whether he is who he says he is? How does he know that he lived 35,000 years ago, even approximately? What calendar does he employ? Who is keeping track of the intervening millennia? Thirty-five thousand plus or minus what? What were things like 35,000 years ago? Either Ramtha really is 35,000 years old, in which case we discover something about that period, or he’s a phony and he’ll (or rather she’ll) slip up.

“Where did Ramtha live? (I know he speaks English with an Indian accent, but where 35,000 years ago did they do that?) What was the climate? What did Ramtha eat? (Archaeologists know something about what people ate back then.) What were the indigenous languages, and social structure? Who else did Ramtha live with — wife, wives, children, grandchildren? What was the life cycle, the infant mortality rate, the life expectancy? Did they have birth control? What clothes did they wear? How were the clothes manufactured? What were the most dangerous predators? Hunting and fishing implements and strategies? Weapons? Endemic sexism? Xenophobia and ethnocentrism? And if Ramtha came from the “high civilization” of Atlantis, where are the linguistic, technological, historical and other details? What was their writing like? Tell us. Instead, all we are offered are banal homilies….
People pay attention to these puerile marvels mainly because they promise something like old-time religion, but especially life after death, even life eternal.”

Sagan’s point about Ramtha’s supposed age is an interesting one – and a good catch, by truly clever, inquiring and rigorous mind. One of the typical tricks of gurus and leaders is to project an aura of false authority by asserting things with certainty, specificity and detail that sound scholarly or scientific, when they’re just pulled from nowhere. We assume that everyone knows their age (though even in primitive cultures that is not necessarily true), and so Knight’s credulous followers are unlikely to think to stop and question what point of reference Ramtha would have for calculating that.

Conspiracy Lunacy

Many of the articles supporting conspiracy theories are lengthy not because they are packed with solid information but because they use the old rhetorical trick of trying to substitute a mass of innuendo and implication for solid evidence.

As the old saying goes, ‘if you can’t dazzle them with brilliance, baffle them with bullshit.’

They’re just more evidence of the shoddiness of conspiracy theorizing – which obviously beguiles and fools some, just as do cults and gurus which, of course, typically have their own baseless conspiracy theories that followers breathlessly buy in to and then tout.

Image result for sathya sai baba miracles phony
Holy guru Sathya Sai Baba had millions of disciples in India and many in America. He performed ‘miracles’ by materializing rings, medallions, watches and sacred ashes from out of the heavens. People came by the millions [and donated millions] just for a chance to see him. Slow motion cameras proved his miracles to to be slight of hand. Sai Baba was caught on camera pulling items concealed in the sleeves of his robes.  Being caught had no effect on his popularity. Even being exposed for molesting young boys had no impact. He is considered by millions in India and thousands in America and elsewhere around the world to be a great saint. He died in 2011.

Conspiracy Theories and Roger Clinton

If they were “documenting” anything, the piece would be full of references to actual documents or other evidence, including footnotes. There are no factual “details” from which we could draw any conclusions, other than our own speculation layered on top of the author’s.

One of the first quick and easy fact check opportunities that show up is the claim that “Clinton’s half-brother Roger was busted for cocaine smuggling.”

Roger Clinton’s conviction was actually for “social” cocaine distribution and possession, after haplessly selling a tiny amount to an undercover officer, apparently as part of the furnishing of recreational cocaine within social circles of the young wealthy, that was common at that time – I can remember going into the bathroom of a bar that catered to that crowd, and finding the floor littered with the “bindles” used for small amounts of cocaine that were snorted.

Image result for roger clinton
Bill Clinton and Roger Clinton. Roger did not – contrary to many conspiracy reports – smuggle cocaine.

Wealthy Indicted in Alleged ‘Social’ Drug Distributing

The younger Clinton, who was apparently only included in such circles because he was the then-Governor’s brother, became known as “headache” to the Secret Service, and continued his hapless career of trying to trade in on his family relationship:

“A close look at Mr. Clinton’s effort to help Rosario Gambino secure early release from prison, based on interviews and documents obtained through the Freedom of Information Act, portray him in a different light: a tireless, if inept, advocate whose persistent pleas annoyed and worried parole commission officials.”


Image result for bill gates jeffrey epstein

Bill Gates did not conspire with Jeffrey Epstein for sexual perversions

Bill Gates Donation to Epstein Was Small

The soliciting of a comparatively small donation doesn’t necessarily mean “socializing” involved – and Bill Gates indeed, and plausibly, denies any social relationship with Jeffrey Epstein.

Epstein did apparently get a meeting with Gates to pitch some philanthropy, but had to work his connections with people who might actually have rubbed elbows with Gates:

Jeffrey Epstein directed allies to aggressively lobby for a meeting with Microsoft’s Bill Gates – he eventually got one

For Gates, $2 million is literally like $2 to the average person. The average American’s net worth is just under $100K, so that’s actually the proportional representation.  The money Bill Gates gave to Epstein is the sort of money you’d give to a bum to get them to stop bothering you.

It does seem to illustrate how Epstein worked, however, worming his way into the sort of circles where that kind of money is the type of small change that people wouldn’t bother to chase after if the wind caught it – pick up some of it yourself, and before long you’ve got real money by most people’s standards, if not Gates’.


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  • Nothing to see here people just more conspiracy kooks.

    SECOND Kevin Spacey Accuser Dies in Midst of Assault Lawsuit Against Actor

    The first acccuser of Kevin Spacey was mowed down by a Toyota as she stepped into a busy intersection in February.

    The driver was not charged.

    The news first broke in May.
    Radar Online reported:

    The first whistleblower to go public with allegations branding shameless Kevin Spacey a sexual predator is dead — and her grieving family is demanding answers!

    Now, in a world exclusive, can reveal investigators have launched a murder probe into Linda Culkin’s mysterious death, while 59-year-old Spacey faces a felony charge of indecent assault and battery for allegedly groping a young man in Nantucket, Mass., in 2016.

    On Feb. 25, Culkin was walking to her home when she was mowed down by a Toyota as she stepped into a busy intersection, Quincy Police Capt. John Dougan told Radar.

    Now this…
    The second Kevin Spacey accuser died recently in the midst of his sexual assault lawsuit.
    Via The Hollywood Reporter:

    The massage therapist was allowed to proceed anonymously in the case. No details yet on the circumstances of death.
    An anonymous massage therapist who claims to have been sexually assaulted by Kevin Spacey has died, according to a notice filed in court by the actor’s attorneys.

    The individual, suing as a “John Doe,” filed claims in September 2018 with the allegation of being forced to grab the actor’s genitals twice during a massage two years earlier at a private residence in Malibu. In May, a federal judge in California allowed the case to move forward despite Spacey’s objection that the plaintiff’s identity was being shielded.

    Now, just a month after the parties came to a plan for proceeding in the suit that detailed prospective discovery and envisioned a seven- to 11-day trial, the plaintiff’s attorney has informed Spacey that the client “recently passed.”

    • First, I should note that Spacey is completely off topic.

      And, indeed, it looks like your first line is correct.

      The first death was an accident – which just goes to show that strange things happen in the real world.

      Here’s what I found when I went to fact-check:

      “The Patriot Ledger reports that Linda Culkin, 59, was crossing Burgin Parkway when she was hit by a car, with police Sgt. Karyn Barkas stating that Culkin was crossing while the traffic light was green. The driver tried to avoid her and, as a result, hit another vehicle head-on. No charges were filed against the driver.”

      It looks like she was something of a kook herself, who may just have been a deranged stalker and not an actual victim:

      Woman killed by car in Quincy served time for death threats
      “Between 2009 and 2011, federal investigators said Culkin mailed threats to several people and their workplaces in the United States and abroad. One of her hoax bomb threats caused police in a foreign city, near one of the biggest train stations in the country, to evacuate a building and close off a neighborhood. Another, an envelope that contained a white powder that looked similar to anthrax, caused people nearby to be quarantined and fear for their health.

      Prosecutors also said she was obsessed with actor Kevin Spacey, saying she threatened to kill the actor. She also sent bomb threats to two of his workplaces and sent threats to his coworkers and associates.”

      I’m not sure that failure to grasp that life in the world outside the basement is actually often strange and seemingly random, has a specific name as a logical fallacy or cognitive bias. Implying that odd occurrences or coincidences that may not seem to make sense, somehow prove that devious forces and conspiracies are at work, is essentially a from of personal incredulity:

      your logical fallacy
      personal incredulity
      Because you found something difficult to understand, or are unaware of how it works, you made out like it’s probably not true.

      • Yes, Linda Culkin stalked Kevin Spacey, but she did so because she was furious that he sexually abused a boy she knew. The Associated Press mentions it here: “Prosecutors said at the time that Culkin became obsessed with Spacey after a patient told her of being attacked by him..”

        Don’t use her past bad behavior to try to discredit her when you don’t have all the facts or the bigger picture.

  • I want to note that in this rollup of items, the part with the sections Conspiracy Lunacy and Conspiracy Theories and Roger Clinton is a response to a recommendation from someone to read a long article at Mint Press, which must be some sort of conspiracy theory website that apparently appeals to at least one person who posts links to their screeds. In fairness, I tried to wade through as much of it as I could until I started to choke on all the fallacies and sloppy supposed evidence.

    One of the first and most blatant false claims I ran across in the piece was that Bill Clinton’s brother Roger was a international cocaine trafficker, which seemed like a good example to debunk. I realized that lest anyone think I’m a Clinton defender, I should have pointed out that to me the evidence points to just what a low-grade sleazeball Roger was, lacking the savvy of his half-brother. He didn’t even have what it took to be a real cocaine distributor working his way into international trafficking circles, he was just a hanger-on in the circles of the sort of sleazy wealthy people involved in the social cocaine scene of the 1980s, stuck working as a low-level gofer to pay for a habit he couldn’t afford on his own – and that only because he was the Governor’s brother, if not he probably would have ended up somewhere more like a trailer park doing crack. That’s the sort of gritty, small-scale that underlies most of what conspiracy theorists try to spin as grand machinations.

    • No, I’m not the same.

      And I’d never heard of Kreuk until I came here, and I find it annoying and distracting to hear her continually brought up when she doesn’t seem like that important a figure. I just pipe up and object to what must be jilted and now bitter former fanboys of hers who continually try to interject their rants about what an evildoer she was, when put in perspective she seems to have been at most a hapless peripheral player – and when there are much more important things for us to focus on, like the cases of the other Canadian actresses who seem to have been about equally involved and yet get virtually ignored, like Kendra Voth (another person whose name I only know from here) who some say may have been even more dedicated to GBD than Kreuk.

      Come to think of it, we haven’t seen much about Kreuk recently, which is a relief. And we are digging into some of the more relevant aspects of the case, including trying to better understand Mack’s curious but much more central role, though I think she also still gets more than her share of attention as a winsome fanboy heartthrob.

    • You just figuring this blowhard out. Everybody that points out that he is full of shit is painted as a conspiracy kook, when in fact he is the real kook. He posts here more than shadow when not stalking Kruek.. People that are constantly on a blog 24/7 spouting their agenda are to be disregarded as the tools they are.

About the Author

Frank Parlato is an investigative journalist.

His work has been cited in hundreds of news outlets, like The New York Times, The Daily Mail, VICE News, CBS News, Fox News, New York Post, New York Daily News, Oxygen, Rolling Stone, People Magazine, The Sun, The Times of London, CBS Inside Edition, among many others in all five continents.

His work to expose and take down NXIVM is featured in books like “Captive” by Catherine Oxenberg, “Scarred” by Sarah Edmonson, “The Program” by Toni Natalie, and “NXIVM. La Secta Que Sedujo al Poder en México” by Juan Alberto Vasquez.

Parlato has been prominently featured on HBO’s docuseries “The Vow” and was the lead investigator and coordinating producer for Investigation Discovery’s “The Lost Women of NXIVM.” In addition, he was credited in the Starz docuseries 'Seduced' for saving 'slave' women from being branded and escaping the sex-slave cult known as DOS.

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