Theology is “a rhapsody of feigned and ill-invented nonsense.” Scriptures are “so stuffed with madness, nonsense, and contradictions, that you admired the stupidity of the world in being so long deluded by them.” Jesus must have “picked up a few ignorant blockish fisher fellows, whom he knew by his skill in physiognomy, had strong imaginations.” Moses, “if ever there was such a man,” had, like Jesus, “learned magic in Egypt, but that he was both the better artist and better politician than Jesus.” (Thomas Aikenhead, executed January 8, 1697, at age 20.*)
Many years ago I briefly subscribed to a short-lived publication called “Lies of Our Times.” It was an ongoing critique of just that, the daily lies that stream out of Langley, Wall Street, the Pentagon, and every other set of moving lips in our nation’s power centers. Those lies are repeated uncritically by our journalists, apparently their job.
The words “of our times” are important.
John Lennon was supposedly intrigued by the notion that Jesus faked his death. That’s funny to me, because there was no Jesus, or many. Galileo was housebound by power for merely saying something true. Poor Aikenhead, above, must have wondered why he was given a brain if it was a crime to use it. Abraham Lincoln, who appears to have had some honest qualities about him, spent his brief tenure in the House of Representatives trying to expose the lie that allowed the United States to steal the Southwest from Mexico. The United States was witness to a massive purge in the 1950’s called “McCarthyism,” though historians are only allowed to use that word (“purge”) when referencing Stalin and Mao.
The United States itself is based on a gigantic lie, that we are a democracy. Or a republic. Since we are neither, let’s not struggle with terminology. This particular lie carries with it the notions that the American public is well-informed; that our leaders do not lie to us, and that we are somehow exceptional.
I hope you are catching the humor here, as the lie contained within the lie is that there are no lies. I love that kind of layered humor. But wait … there’s more!
“Una Ronald” lived in Australia, and was watching the moon landing on her telly in 1969 when something odd happened. As the astronauts walked about, a Coke bottle rolled across the screen. At the time, perhaps 30% of a smarter American public did not believe the landings to be real. I have to guess that percentage was even higher in Australia.
It is not that the bottle appeared on-screen. It’s deeper than that (cue spooky music): We all know that the astronauts in their garb could not possibly have been able to remove a coin from their pocket and place it in the lunar vending machine (the LVM**).
I am not going to go through the maze of evidence here to prove to you what is so easily understood – the moon landings were a hoax. Just a bit of a journey and some perusal of photos will tell you that on your own. I marvel at how everything Americans need to know can stay hidden in plain sight.
It is a question of why. That’s a little more complicated. I’ll stumble into that ground tomorrow, and I do mean stumble, as I can only speculate on why $35 billion was diverted from the general fund and funneled into the disguise called “Apollo.” For now, I only want to deal briefly with the usual objection when this subject comes up, that such secrets cannot be kept for long.
- 1. Government can and does keep secrets. Galileo learned this. It has power over people, and can punish them by means of ridicule, loss of benefits, or death.
- 2. But secrets do get out. Those who have studied the moon landing photographs have walked away suspecting that people back in 1969 were deliberately putting clues in there of fakery for later generations. The Coke bottle incident might not have been an accident.
- 3. Think Manhattan Project, or compartmentalization. Most of the people involved in the moon landings thought it was a real venture. They were fooled, just like us.
- 4. Cold and frightful silence ensues. Even as so many NASA and industry people might have realized the game was a game after the fact, they know to shut up. The people who did this are serious and powerful and had another game in mind.
Tomorrow I’ll try to carry forward. For today, I want to introduce the notion of “Lies of our Times.” There’s nothing new under the sun. In our more technologically advanced age, the tools of mass persuasion, mostly the television set, are able to create bigger myths and make them stick with more people.
*The Aikenhead passage is taken from the book Doubt: A History, by Jennifer Michael Hecht, p 338
** I believe that Lockheed Martin partnered with Coca Cola Company on this venture, which cost $2.7 billion in development, and never really worked correctly, in fact, was never tested on earth. When placed on the lunar surface all of the Coke inside immediately vaporized in the intense radiation. Coins that the astronauts carried with them to purchase Cokes were later given to other nations as souvenirs. The Netherlands coin, on display in Amsterdam, was seen to have the date 1979 on it instead of 1969, and so was thought to be counterfeit.