Skeptophilia (skep-to-fil-i-a) (n.) - the love of logical thought, skepticism, and thinking critically. Being an exploration of the applications of skeptical thinking to the world at large, with periodic excursions into linguistics, music, politics, cryptozoology, and why people keep seeing the face of Jesus on grilled cheese sandwiches.

Monday, October 3, 2011

A rip in Canadian space-time

I know it's kind of ridiculous to make generalizations about a whole country, but I'd always had this feeling that Canadians were, on the whole, pretty sensible folks.  Oh, you had your odd crank like Dennis Markuze ("Mabus"), sending out 458 gazillion emails per week to anyone who publicly identified him/herself as a skeptic, but that was the exception.

Imagine my surprise, then, when I ran across the publication The Canadian.  From the name, you'd expect the main stories to revolve around hockey, how to avoid grizzly bears, and other essentials of Canadian life.  Instead, I find therein headlines such as the following:

"Global Economy and Human Evolution Don't Go Together"
"Scientists Find Extraterrestrial Genes in DNA"
"9/11 Hijackers Miraculously Brought Back to Life, Says Japanese Democratic Party"
"The Romantic Striptease!"

So, I guess what this turns out to be is sort of a Canadian version of The Weekly World News

I'd like to look at one article from The Canadian more closely, and no, don't get your hopes up, it's not going to be "The Romantic Striptease!"  For one thing, this is a PG-13 rated blog.  For another, between the blackflies and mosquitoes and the fact that in most parts of Canada is seldom gets over 50 degrees, I would think that a Canadian version of a romantic striptease would be fast, involve large quantities of insect repellent, and end with both parties huddled under a quilt shivering.

The one I want to look at is, "Extraterrestrial War of the 1930s Altered Human Consciousness Of Itself Into A Destructive Timeline."  (You can read the whole article here.)  I didn't know about any extraterrestrial war in the 1930s, did you?  There certainly doesn't seem to be much about it in the history books.  That's to be expected, says Alex Collier, the originator of this idea; the Great War of the 1930s resulted in our being pushed into some kind of alternate dimension, and the aliens wiped our memory of the event, so now our history is proceeding in a way that it was never intended to do.  It's kind of like the episode of Star Trek: The Next Generation wherein the Starship Enterprise enters a rip in the space-time continuum.  Space-time seems to have an awful lot of these rips, given the fact that the Starship Enterprise ran smack into one every couple of weeks or so.  Each time, though, they acted as if it was a great big surprise, as if this had never ever happened before, and it always seemed to take Geordi LaForge until the third commercial break to figure it out despite the fact ordinary non-Starfleet members like myself had it figured out in the first five minutes.  Anyway, in this particular episode, they ended up in a universe where the Klingons and the Federation had never become allies, and they were in a terrible war, blowing each other up right and left.  It turned out that the only way to make it all better was if Tasha Yar died again, an event that happened only slightly less often than running into rips in the space-time continuum.

But I digress.

Anyhow, Collier is convinced that the aliens who perpetrated this atrocity need to be exposed, so he's written a book called Defending Sacred Ground which describes how most of what we're told about aliens is disinformation spread by the aliens themselves.  Also, by the bye, he believes that both creationism and evolution are alien propaganda.  He knows all this, he says, because he was contacted by "Ethical Extraterrestrials" from the Andromeda Galaxy, and they want us to show up the bad aliens for being the villains they are, so they told Collier how to tell the alien propaganda from the truth.  If we can just get enough people to understand what's happened, he says, it will allow us to get back into our proper time line without even having to kill Tasha Yar.  We can do this,  he says, because we're on the "Eleventh Density" (whatever the hell that means), and we are capable of "a very large area of spiritual evolvement."

All of which makes perfect sense, as long as you've spent the last half-hour doing sit-ups underneath parked cars.

The whole thing leaves me feeling a little dazed, and wondering if I might not have been better off analyzing "The Romantic Striptease!" after all.

In any case, I guess it's just as well to find out that Canada has its share of wingnuts.  I was all too aware of our American assortment, and it really was a little ridiculous of me to think that the USA had cornered the market.  I'm quite sure, however, that just like here in the States, the majority of Canadian citizens are reasonably smart, rational, and sensible people, so I won't judge you based on people like Collier and Markuze if you'll promise not to judge us based on people like Michele Bachmann and Alex Jones.


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