Black Sites

Flashback Friday: Weird Tales, and Images, from Wisconsin

“Wisconsin has the highest proportion of eccentric environments in the USA, more than 10% of the total.” – Jan Friedman

Since the demise of Time Cube, I’ve become nostalgic for the early, more personal days of the internet. Before social media was around, before content was shuffled towards a few overarching services. Things that are now Twitter feeds and Tumblr blogs would once be a gigantic number of individual, single-topic websites and forums, an array of personal homepages and strange blogs stretching off into eternity. You might stumble across a weird Subreddit now, but at least it’s cloaked in the familiarity of a larger site. Finding one of the web’s oddities once meant entering into an alternate world, created to mirror the author’s mind.

I once enjoyed browsing these websites. I heard about them on the old Snopes message boards, or places like Crank.net and the Museum of Hoaxes, or through long lists of links on places such as the Insolitology or even the Sci-Fi Channel.

I don’t know where I found today’s website. It’s one of several sites describing the many oddities of Wisconsin. I’ll detail the others in future Flashback Fridays; bizarrely, while today’s site is defunct, the other sites that are still up look way more outdated.

What do you think of when you think of Wisconsin? Cheese? Beer? Serial killers? The Fonz? How about the Beast of Bray Road, the werewolf that calls Elkhorn home? Or the Hodag, a reptilian beast made up in a failed attempt to make Rhinelander interesting? Those are just the obvious legends about the state. Today’s site looks at the deep cuts.

The now-defunct Weird Wisconsin last updated in 2004; it vanished some time in 2006. Presumably inspired by Weird New Jersey, it’s home to many accounts of Wisconsin’s paranormal phenomenon, and wonderful images like this:

WISCONSIN (more…)

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So this is how liberty dies: In a Wal-Mart in El Paso.

Jade Helm's sinister reach.

Jade Helm’s sinister reach.

Jade Helm begins today. If you don’t remember Jade Helm, here’s a reminder. The government is about to steal Texas’ guns, as they’ve planned to do every year since 1992. They’re going to lock them up in train cars (just like Hitler did in Glacier National Park!), and trap them in Wal-Marts. My God, Texans will rot in a terrifying big box prison, forced to rely on whatever they can find there to survive. Could you handle that? Would you be willing to kill a man over the last can of Minions Spaghetti-O’s? You have kids to feed (damn those cheap Minions condoms!) and THIS IS WHAT IT TAKES TO SURVIVE. COULD YOU HANDLE IT?

Here’s how this is gonna go down, Texas: no one will take your guns. No one will force you into shackles and sentence you to life in the Duck Dynasty aisle. Glenn Beck will write a book about this and you will buy it. You will also buy gold. A month later, when Jade Helm is over and everyone’s guns lie unpryed in their warm, living hands, everyone will forget this ever happened, or pat themselves on the back for defeating the massive government conspiracy by Tweeting about it, and then they will rush on to the next imaginary government plot.

It’s akin to a church that gathers on the top of a mountain to witness the end of days, only to see nothing; “ah”, says the pastor, “I made a mathematical error. The world ends this time next year”. The government’s always going to stamp down our rights come tomorrow, if the sheeple don’t wake up. There will always be a Jade Helm just around the corner.

The Governor-validated paranoia of Jade Helm

It’s been about a week since the world failed to end. And, as you can probably guess, that failed prophet of doom promptly vanished from the Earth come May 1st. He should’ve revealed his prophecy a couple of years before 2015! That’s how you make the kind of serious bank that the 2012 doomsayers hauled in. Richard Noone’s 5/5/2000: Ice – The Ultimate Disaster entered bookstores a good three years before the predicted planetary alignment that would plunge the Earth’s cities under the ocean. Three years in advance is a good time to announce the date of the future apocalypse: enough time for some paperback printings, maybe a TV movie deal…Don’t bother with this “random Reddit hoax” business. Not if you want to become an entrepreneur in the lucrative doomsday industry.

jh-15-map-2

A map of Jade Helm’s sinister plans.

And now, a small-scaler doomsday. I’ve been tracking Jade Helm for a while. It’s the conspiracy theory of the moment, and it’s been validated by some unlikely figures.

Jade Helm is a planned military operation in Texas and other southwestern states. It is nothing more than a large-scale training mission. Or IS IT? …yes, yes it is.

Or perhaps it’s a sinister conspiracy involving…Wal-Mart?

“There can be no doubt that the internal events at Walmart holds the key to the end game of Jade Helm operations. Jade Helm and Walmart are inextricably linked and the existing evidence suggests one of two possible end game probabilities for Jade Helm.

1. Converted Walmart stores will be processing centers for FEMA camp political prisoners.

2. Some Walmarts will be used as supply and staging centers for an internal conflict within the United States.”

Yes. Jade Helm conspiracy theorists believe that Wal-Marts, closed for “renovations”, will actually be used as concentration camps for political prisoners. Our Kenyan Muslim dictator-in-chief will declare martial law and take our guns, and maybe ISIS will come over the border and strike America.

The story about Wal-Marts closing due to “plumbing” failures have swirled around for a while now. And according to some, they’re renovating them into sinister prisons.

Worse, a Texas Ranger claims that there are train cars equipped with shackles:

“Let me drop a bombshell that I have not seen you address. There are trains moving throughout Texas that have shackles inside some of the cars. I have not personally seen them, but I know personnel that have seen this. This indicates that these trains will be used to transport prisoners of some sort. I know from reading your articles that your default belief will be that these are for American political prisoners and will be transported to FEMA detention camps of some sort. We have been told by Homeland that these trains are slated for transporting captured terrorists, non-domestic. We are not sure we can trust this explanation because Homeland is keeping a lot from us and we are growing increasingly uncomfortable with their presence in Texas.”

And somehow this ties back to ISIS.

All this would be typical black helicopter nonsense. These theorists are always panicking over some vaguely defined threat. Political enemies will languish in Wal-Mart jails, the Government will grab the defenseless people’s guns, and terrorists will take over Texas, while a group of delusional Unabomber types will live out a power fantasy where they can somehow repel the military single-handedly.

What makes this different is how these paranoid fears have been validated by Texas’ governor.

First came a simple briefing by the military. Anti-Jade Helm Activists overwhelmed an ordinary press conference. We saw this with Agenda 21, a non-binding sustainable development plan from the early 90s that Glenn Beck blew up into a scheme to destroy American sovereignty. Legions of protestors descended on woefully unprepared zoning board members. And we can only assume that at least one of these assholes was wearing a tricorne hat and introduced himself as a “taxpayer”. These loons ensured the death of an award-winning development plan they regarded as the new Holocaust. Here, 200 people stormed in and relentlessly insulted some poor Colonel.

Said Bob Wells, a resident of Bastrop, where the briefing was held:

“It’s the same thing that happened in Nazi Germany. You get the people used to the troops on the street, the appearance of uniformed troops and the militarization of the police. They’re gathering intelligence. That’s what they’re doing. And they’re moving logistics in place for martial law. That’s my feeling. Now I could be wrong. I hope I am wrong. I hope I’m a ‘conspiracy theorist.’”

The Governor of Texas then pledged that the Texas State Guard would monitor Jade Helm. The Governor of Texas decided to validate the people haranguing the military about how a routine training operation is somehow the second coming of Nazi Germany. THE GOVERNOR OF TEXAS THINKS PEOPLE LIKE THIS ARE WORTH PANDERING TO.

And they probably are. The “paranoid, anti-government” demographic is a key one in deep red Texas. The government is going to imprison you in Wal-Mart, and Obama’s scheme to declare martial law and take our guns is imminent, as it has been for the last seven years. They fight an all-powerful conspiracy that’s, curiously, fine with random nobodies on the internet exposing their evil plans that would imprison or kill thousands. They’ll imprison political prisoners on a massive scale once the conspiracy kicks in, but won’t stop protestors from harassing the military now.

It’s a curious little fantasy that’s at the core of the conspiratorial ideology. Here, look at this Facebook post revealing Obama’s plans – it’s wedged between your grandmother’s Minion meme and your uncle’s terrible thoughts on Baltimore! In the past, they’d be ranting about black helicopters on Usenet. Now, their words – and their votes – are given inexplicable weight.

Luckily, not all in Texas agree with the Governor. Former State Representative Todd Smith said:

“Your letter pandering to idiots… has left me livid. I am horrified that I have to choose between the possibility that my Governor actually believes this stuff and the possibility that my Governor doesn’t have the backbone to stand up to those who do.”

And that is the real question here. Does the Governor of Texas believe in Jade Helm, or is he just abetting the spread of these conspiracies because he needs to pander to their beievers? Honestly, I can’t decide which reality is worse.

“The energy bolts give the necessary conditions for these other dimensional civilizations to be able to start experimenting with our universe and/or planet.”

This document is the alleged result of the actions of one or more scientists creating a covert, unauthorized notebook documenting their involvement with an Above Top Secret government program. Government publications and information obtained by the use of public tax monies cannot be subject to copyright. This document is released into the public domain for all citizens of the United States of America.”

“They have started to send probes here, in order to know more about the natural conditions or our universe and planet. The probes are limited to one specific semidome of energy, a circle, in a field where they have scanned the energy bolt…”

Lately, conspiracy theories have been depressing. A lot of bigotry and people eager to write off tragic incidents as “false flags”. What happened to the aliens-and-Area-51 conspiracy theorists of yore?

Well today I bring you all something truly magical: documents about life on other planets, supposedly from an official of some shadowy agency. It’s just one of many documents on a wonderful site I must explore in the future. (more…)