The Brookings Report

In this blog, I have silently pledged to stay away from discussions of UFOs in general. This primarily because the subject has been “done to death” and that I don’t feel that I can bring anything new to the topic.

However, here is something worth considering. In 1961, the U.S. Congress released The Brookings Report, also known as “Proposed Studies on the Implications of Peaceful Space Activities for Human Affairs”.

Aside from other discussions, it has an interesting section “The implications of a discovery of extraterrestrial life”.

This section of the report considers the possible effects of an encounter on alien life:

While face-to-face meetings with it will not occur within the next twenty years (unless its technology is more advanced than ours, qualifying it to visit earth), artifacts left at some point in time by these life forms might possibly be discovered through our space activities on the Moon, Mars, or Venus.

And we receive the following warning regarding its effects on our society:

Anthropological files contain many examples of societies, sure of their place in the universe, which have disintegrated when they have had to associate with previously unfamiliar societies espousing different ideas and different life ways; others that survived such an experience usually did so by paying the price of changes in values and attitudes and behavior.

And how shall we guard against such a menace to our Way Of Life? I know, how about a coverup:

Historical and empirical studies of the behavior of peoples and their leaders when confronted with dramatic and unfamiliar events or social pressures. Such studies might help to provide programs for meeting and adjusting to the implications of such a discovery. Questions one might wish to answer by such studies would include: How might such information, under what circumstances, be presented to or withheld from the public for what ends? What might be the role of the discovering scientists and other decision makers regarding release of the fact of discovery?

Imagine the societal chaos, if the truth be known:

An individual’s reactions to such a radio contact would in part depend on his cultural, religious, and social background, as well as on the actions of those he considered authorities and leaders, and their behavior, in turn, would in part depend on their cultural, social, and religious environment. The discovery would certainly be front-page news everywhere; the degree of political or social repercussion would probably depend on leadership’s interpretation of (1) its own role, (2) threats to that role, and (3) national and personal opportunities to take advantage of the disruption or reinforcement of the attitudes and values of others. Since leadership itself might have great need to gauge the direction and intensity of public attitudes, to strengthen its own morale and for decision making purposes, it would be most advantageous to have more to go on than personal opinions about the opinions of the public and other leadership groups.

So, imagine you are a teenage boy, and you have a younger brother. You can pretty much dominate the kid, right? Until your father enters the scene; then your little empire comes to an end.

Think of this: Who would be in control if an alien craft parked on the proverbial White House Lawn? Would we continue to buy petroleum-based energy products if we knew there was something else (alien) that was free or better in some other way? What would happen to the energy industry?

Our nations, and others, have elaborate and expensive defense industries. Would the public continue to support these once we realized that we were no longer alone?

These and other things would begin to chip away at our society, and our economy. Collapse would be difficult to prevent.

The secret of extraterrestrial life – it would be very hard to conceal forever. The best plan would be to reveal it slowly, to give society a chance to adapt to this revelation.

Consider whether this is the plan indeed. Are we being fed little tidbits: extrasolar planets, the possibility of life on other planets, SETI and so on. It might take a generation before it will become safe to reveal the truth to the population in general.

But they can’t stop us from finding out on our own.

Imagine if these guys were in charge.

Copy of the Brookings Report:

http://www.nicap.org/papers/brookings.pdf

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