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Location: UFOUpDatesList.Com > 2002 > Nov > Nov 14

Re: Jimmy Carter The Nobel Prize &

From: Jerry Cohen <cohenufo.nul>
Date: Thu, 14 Nov 2002 12:47:49 -0500
Archived: Thu, 14 Nov 2002 16:08:46 -0500
Subject: Re: Jimmy Carter The Nobel Prize &

>From: Bob Young <YoungBob2.nul>
>To: ufoupdates.nul (UFO UpDates - Toronto)
>Date: Thu, 7 Nov 2002 15:30:32 EST
>Subject: Jimmy Carter The Nobel Prize & Extraterrestrials


>Please post this response to Jerry Cohen from non-subscriber
>Robert Sheaffer.


>Bob Young


>>From: Jerry Cohen <rjcohen.nul>
>>Date: Sun, 03 Nov 2002 00:58:42 -0500
>>To: UFO UpDates - Toronto <ufoupdates.nul>
>>Subject: Re: Jimmy Carter The Nobel Prize & Extraterrestrials


>Jerry Cohen reveals how little he has researched the Jimmy
>Carter UFO case when he says (Nov. 3),

><"Then I found myself asking 'I wonder who Bob Scheaffer
><interviewed?' No supporting evidence was given to make it
><possible for others to check what he says in this regard."
><Had he bothered to read my book 'UFO Sightings' (or its earlier
><incarnation, "The UFO Verdict"), he would have found a long
><chapter on the Carter UFO, explaining exactly who I interviewed
><and what they said.
>He might have even spelled my name

>(In fact, I interviewed even more Leary residents
>than I mentioned, but to keep a reasonable length I left out

>Once again, we find a "serious" UFOlogist arguing
>against an analysis he hasn't even read. Jerry, you gotta at
>least READ what the people you don't like have to say, if you
>want to argue against them without looking like a fool.

>So, Carter said that the UFO was in the west, instead of the
>southwest? He said it was 30 degrees up instead of 25? Nobody
>ever makes errors like this in estimating an object's position,
>do they? If Carter had also seen Venus, he could have said, "the
>object was just to the left of Venus, and above it,"  and that
>would have ruled out Venus as a suspect. But he didn't. In all
>probability,  Venus *was* his mysterious UFO.

>I invite anyone who thinks this case is so great to look at a
>1978 newspaper story on my web page:


>about this case, "Learyites leery of Carter's encounter." It
>says, "As it happens, however, there is no one in Leary who
>remembers sighting a UFO in company with the future president.
>Carter insists that the object's brightness attracted a crowd,
>but it appears it only attracted him. Not one resident recalls
>anything unusual about that particular January evening.....
>Mayor Stanley Shepard says he has talked with everyone who
>might have attended the Lions Club meeting on the night in
>question, 'and nobody remembers anything about flying saucers.'
>People recall that Carter's speech was dull - but as for spaceships,
>no...". Remember, I didn't write that, a reporter did.
>Whatever Carter 'thinks' that he might have seen that evening in
>Leary, he's the only one who thought he saw anything out of the
>ordinary. If there were truly something amazing flying around
>the sky that night, the others with him would surely have
>remarked on it, and remembered it.

>Robert Sheaffer
>Skeptical to the Max!

Hello Robert,

Sorry I haven't responded a little sooner but we had family
obligations this past week with multiple events occurring
simultaneously and long trips to complete them. I have some
points to make concerning some of the things you say, but first
let's dispense with the silly stuff so we can get to the more
pertinent areas.

As far as the spelling of your name, you have me there. However,
it was a typo as I was composing my post and I already stated
this and apologized immediately in a succeeding post. Clicking
below will take you to it.


You can also note it is spelled properly in succeeding posts.
Also, if you take the time to examine my web site at


you'll notice I'm pretty meticulous in this regard and that it
is not a normal occurrence.

As to your research, I certainly give you the benefit of the
doubt that it was an honest effort. Getting out there and
investigating is not an easy task and I give you credit for that
and for your efforts in publishing your book. These are by no
means easy things to accomplish.

As far as my not reading your book I guess I missed it due to
the presentation of the information that Bob Young had us look


It was to that information provided that I was responding
to in my post.


I'm saying this next part with respect and as a suggestion, not
as a put down. I didn't realize it was your web site until you
said it just now. Of the five articles he had us look at, two of
them were on Rosalynn Carter's haunted house. (3 pages on my 18"
screen) When you see something like that, it doesn't inspire
confidence in the rest of the research. I don't see how
attacking Carter's wife can have anything to do with his
reported sighting or his case and is no more effective than
attacking his children or his pet canary (if he has one). I
guess it is possible you don't realize this tends to cloud the
actual issue of his specific sighting and is less than a
professional presentation to offer the internet community. If
the rest of your research is legitimate, the "Rosalynn Haunted
House" part actually takes away from what you have researched
and would tend to make intelligent people shy away from reading

I certainly am going to read your book(s). However I believe,
from what you did present on the net, the other points I made
are still valid. I'll list what I believe are our areas of
agreement and disagreement.


__The corrected date of the sighting: January 6, 1969
__Place and time: Outside the Lion's club, approx 7:15
__The technical data as to where the UFO was sighted.
__The technical data as to where Venus was at the time.
__The fact that most people didn't remember it.

__"The only Leary resident who recalled the incident at all was
Fred Hart, 1969 president of the Leary Lions Club, who faintly
recalled standing outside with Carter watching a light in the
sky. Mr. Hart believed that the object might have been a
"weather balloon" and said that the incident did not leave much
of an impression on him."


Portions of your solution do not match exactly with the
details Carter gave us.

Details from Carter's sighting:
- - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -
 From the report to the International UFO Bureau,
Oklahoma City, Oklahoma

Carter was given 3 choices for his description:
Fuzzy or Blurred, Like a bright star, sharply outlined
He chose "sharply outlined"

Hand wrote: "Bright as the moon, luminescent, not solid"

Did it speed up & rush away - "yes"

When asked the size of the object, he was given 6 choices:
nickle, half dollar, silver dollar, orange, grapefruit, larger.

Carter hand-wrote: "about same as the moon, maybe a little

- - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -

Robert, these descriptions do not sound like Venus to
me, even after reading what Bob Young wrote at


Bob Young wrote:

"Robert Sheaffer's detailed investigative report (The UFO
Verdict - Examining the Evidence, Prometheus Books,
1981, pp. 4-12), states, "When I obtained the weather
records from the nearby Albany airfield, they revealed
that the weather was cold and clear, although a few
scattered clouds were present that evening."

Sheaffer reports that Carter's sighting report filed with Heyden
Hewes' International UFO Bureau described the object as, "bluish
at first - then reddish," it "seemed to move toward us from a
distance, stop, move partially away, return then depart."

This could describe the planet gradually fading and brightening
behind clouds."

Robert, in the last sentence of paragraph 2 of your description
of the case (President Carter's "UFO" is Identified as the
Planet Venus) you yourself say "Weather records show that the
sky was clear at the time of the sighting." This does tend to
make one think that cloud cover would be reduced to a severe
minimum and hardly be a factor. I find this to be an


You also mentioned that if Carter didn't mention seeing Venus
and it was in the general area, it must have been Venus he saw.
I thought about this a little further and have been finally
forced to decide that just because Carter didn't mention Venus
is definitely no guarantee that what he saw _was_ Venus.

My reasoning:

At bit more concerning the clouds: If Carter's attention was
focused on the "object" he probably would have noticed it going
behind a cloud, if the cloud even existed in the first place.
Carter never once mentioned anything about clouds. If you want
to use the fact he never mentioned seeing Venus, you also have
to use the fact he never mentioned anything about clouds. You
can't have it both ways, again, especially since as you said
"the sky was" (jc basically) "clear at the time of the

Additionally, if the object was much larger than Venus as
in his description, his attention would have been focused
on the object, not on the planet.

In regard to mistaking Venus for a UFO, I would be interested in
any cases you have where where people have both mistaken Venus
for a UFO and described it in size similar to what Carter has
said (i.e. almost as large as the moon) and combined with the
other details he gave. I was wondering if you provided any for
us in your book(s)? If not, can you possibly supply this for us?
I'm sure you most likely have this data.

- - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -

I also have information to submit which may explain why
the people you surveyed did not remember the event. It
concerns two things; as mentioned in previous posts, my
wife's reaction to my own personal sighting and the effect
of the publishing of the Condon Report on the general
public prior to the time of Carter's sighting:

My sighting:

My own sighting (with my wife present), her reaction to it
as compared to mine, demonstrates that people can see
an object and have totally different reactions to it,
especially if one person is technically oriented and the
other(s) not.


Carter's was a nocturnal light case. My sighting was a daylight
sighting much more detailed than Carter's and was also witnessed
by my wife. Yet it eventually left her mind as if she had never
seen it, I might add, to my great anger over time. If the other
people who Carter says witnessed his "nocturnal" (i.e. less
detailed) UFO thought to themselves "it has to be something
else, it can't possibly be a UFO," it probably would fade from
their minds a lot easier than our sighting faded from my wife's
mind, especially if most if not all of them were less
technically schooled than Carter who had a degree in Nuclear
Physics. With all the questions I asked her, and her failing to
answer them, I felt she should have at the very least questioned
it. She did not. I have since discovered this is a typical
reaction of any person that does not believe UFOs can possibly

- - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -

Public reaction to, and the effects of, the Condon Report
released prior to the Carter sighting:

At the time of Carter's sighting, the Condon Report had already
been issued and the public was being told UFOs didn't exist.
NICAP was in the process of refuting this but the general public
never saw the rebuttal, which went out to NICAP members. A
posting I wrote to Bruce Hutchinson covers all this in great
detail and includes a rebuttal NICAP made to that study.


Relating all I've said above to the Carter sighting:

If you don't think there is any possibility for something to
exist, it is impossible for you to ever contemplate analyzing
it. This is certainly a good reason why other people may not
have remembered the sighting. (i.e. they never analyzed it in
their minds when they saw it.) Carter's credentials indicate he
would have been an "above average" observer. Additionally, since
he stated the UFO disappeared from view approximately 2 hours
before Venus had actually set, and his description doesn't quite
jive with the explanation given, I can't in good conscience
state definitely to myself that what Carter saw was Venus.

I read Bob Young's post concerning the brightness and position
of Venus on the evening in question.  Whether or not Rudiak was
correct concerning the brightness of Venus on the night in
question (and I am going to check further for my own knowledge
and for what I display on my web site), what I've said in the
paragraphs above is still reason enough for me to not be able to
simply stash Carter's sighting away in a neat "Venus" box.

Since it took place approximately a year and two months after my
own sighting, and the people he claims saw it with him didn't
support him, I had no choice but to relate to it. To me, it is
not impossible that Carter is telling the truth. It is not that
I think the case is great (it is basically a nocturnal light
case), but that I still truly haven't been able to fully resolve
it to my full satisfaction. The varied circumstantial evidence
(pros & cons) surrounding it cancel(s?) each other out for me.
 We will probably never know what he really saw.  I certainly
don't expect you or Bob Young to agree with me but perhaps
others out there will understand why I feel the solution you
have given is not written in stone.

Jerry Cohen


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