Part 30 Michael A. Bellesiles: Mega Anti-Gun-Nut

Larry Pratt

Well, now. Here’s an interesting little tid-bit regarding Emory History Professor Michael A. Bellesiles, author of Arming America (Knopf, 2000). The April 19, 1997 edition of the Emory Report, published by a division of the University’s Office of Public Affairs, quotes Bellesiles as saying that Courtney Brown’s past actions should not be grounds to impede his research “no matter how embarrassing to the department.”

OK. So, who’s Courtney Brown and what did he do that might prove to be embarrassing? Well, he was and is a professor of political science at Emory. But, — and this is the thing that might possibly be a wee bit embarrassing — Brown is also founder of the Farsight Institute, which believes in something called “scientific remote viewing.” He’s written some books — two of which are titled Cosmic Voyage: A Scientific Discovery Of Extraterrestrials Visiting Earth and Cosmic Explorers: Scientific Remote Viewing, Extraterrestrials, And A Message For Mankind.

According to the previously mentioned edition of the Emory Report, Brown’s book Cosmic Voyage reveals, among other things: “A colony of Martians has settled in a South American country; a Buddha-like figure runs the Galactic Federation; Jesus is unhappy with the current state of the earth. A race of aliens named the Greys is using humans for genetic experiments in the hopes of assisting human survival of an ecological collapse. But the human race need not worry about such teeming perils — these extraterrestrials are influencing the writers and producers of shows like Star Trek: The Next Generation to introduce the aliens and publicize their ideal of peaceful coexistence.” Brown’s method of detecting alien presence, we are told, is called “scientific remote viewing.”

What, exactly, is “scientific remote viewing”? Well, on his Farsight Institute website Brown says it “is a trainable mental procedure that enables a person to extract accurate and detailed information from distant locations across time. Simply SRV is a controlled shifting of awareness that is performed in the normal waking state of consciousness. SRV uses the human nervous system in a way analogous to the way an astronomer uses a radio telescope. Using SRV, the human nervous system acts as a tuning device that connects us to an underlying field of nature through which knowledge of all things is possible.”

But, what caught our eye was the additional statement on this website which said that the folks at the Farsight Institute “are dedicated to the practical and benevolent use of remote viewing to solve problems and to answer questions that are otherwise intractable.”

Hmmmmmm, so “remote viewing” solves “problems” and “questions that are otherwise intractable,” eh? So, maybe this is the answer to Bellesiles’ thus far “intractable problem” of trying to prove that Arming America is true. Maybe SRV could at least be used to help Bellesiles find all his missing data. Is this a possibility?

Well, no, says Courtney. In an interview he explains: “It would take a huge project to do anything. Remote viewing is not good for finding a pen or something like that. It’s best done with high topological variety targets. It’s not so good for finding a needle in a haystack. It’s good for identifying — when you do validation targets, which is what you’re talking about, targets where you’re actually trying to validate the phenomenon itself. You try to be able to say you can distinguish between a mountain range, a cityscape, a target with some subjects in a structure.”

OK. So, how about using remote viewing to help Bellesiles locate the structure where he says he saw a lot of probate records but he says he doesn’t remember exactly where? Nope. Says Courtney:

    No. You have to go in the opposite direction. It’s not that remote viewing is done to find what you want in the physical world. What you’re doing is you’re using the physical world problems to validate the phenomenon itself. We’re not really there yet to be able to say that remote viewing is good in a court of law for finding and sorting out things. You’re still in the laboratory environment trying to validate the phenomenon itself.

Courtney adds, again, that remote viewing is not used “to find things.” He says: “You’re looking at it to see if the process works. Did you determine the difference between a mountain and a golf course? Was there a structure? Did it have people in it? Was the target flying above ground and that there was a distance behind it. But, you’re not using remote viewing the opposite way — to find out where somebody’s papers are lost.”


I say “oh” because, to be honest, I’m speechless. I haven’t the foggiest idea what, exactly, Courtney has said. But, it’s obvious, I guess, that what he says means remote viewing will be of no help to Bellesiles. Still, I’m not sure why.

Courtney seems to have said that remote viewing can see mountains. The amount of material Bellesiles has been unable to produce to support what he says in Arming America — including his 100,000 pages of notes he alleges was destroyed in a flood — is certainly the size of a small mountain. So, why can’t remote viewing find this mountain of Bellesiles’ missing material? All of this could change, however. Brown says that remote viewing is “still in its infancy” and “our research is ongoing.”

So, for now, it seems that there is no hope for Bellesiles to salvage his reputation. It was not very farsighted of him to produce such an easily-proven fraud called Arming America.