RESEARCHING THE CRAFT OF INTELLIGENCE
In addition to being hot as hell, June and July were eventful months for little me, but they were also very busy ones.
First off, even though the dashing Uri Geller was tromping around giving the mainstreams an increasingly large headache, I was also being lionized and sought after.
Most of my friends, and the ASPR itself, were besieged with calls from people who wanted to know how much I charged for a reading or a consultation.
"Mr. Swann doesn't give readings."
Hesitation . . . "But what does that mean? He's a PSYCHIC, isn't he?"
"Mr. Swann says he's not a psychic."
Hesitation . . . "Well, give me his phone number anyway?"
"Sorry. Mr. Swann's phone number is CLASSIFIED." (I'm serious: this IS what my friends had begun saying.)
"If he's not a psychic, why is everyone saying he is?"
"Mr. Swann only works with scientists."
Hesitation . . . "But what does THAT mean?"
The American Society for Psychical Research had
a lot of calls from media types wanting to talk with me. When I say the
ASPR, I mean the archdeaconess, Fanny Knipe, took the calls. She called
me to ask what to do about the calls. I said: "Tell them to stick their
heads where the sun don't shine."
Fanny said: "You know, Ingo, you're the first psychic we've ever known who doesn't want publicity."
"Fanny, dear, I'm NOT a psychic. I'm a . . . (grasping for words) . . . I'm a perceptual researcher, that's all."
After Buell Mullen Central and Ruth Hagy Brod Central
complained to Zelda Central about my refusal "to go public," Zelda
undertook to change my mind over a good game of Scrabble.
"Zelda, Dear," I said, "you know what the media will do... toast my nuts, that's what. You know how they treat the entirety of this topic."
"Publicity would be good for the ASPR," she began again. "It might help them raise money for research."
I looked at her in astonishment. "What! Raise money for those turds who trashed Osis and MY work?"
Zelda said: "You know, any publicity is good publicity. Just make sure they spell your name right."
At some point in July, Puthoff called wanting,
among other things, to discuss the possibility of a second trip to SRI.
"We'll pay your airfare again, and maybe some per diem if I can work
"You haven't paid the first airfare yet."
Gloria Swanson called from Portugal, at about 4
in the morning East Coast time.
"Oh, hello Miss Swanson."
"Oh, for crissakes, DO NOT call me Miss Swanson!"
"Oh, what should I call you, then?"
"I'm SWANSON, simply SWANSON!"
She had read the package of materials I'd sent her -- and wanted to know what she could do to help."
Remembering the chicken aspic dinner with the Brods, I said: "Well. I think there's something going on in Washington, behind the scenes that is. I don't have any way of finding out anything."
She was silent for a moment, and then said something like: "OK, I know what to do. I've done this kind of thing before."
SWANSON called back a day or so later. "They're
upset about the Russians -- that's all I can find out."
"You mean about the girls' book, PSYCHIC SECRETS BEHIND THE IRON CURTAIN?"
"Oh, heavens no! Something much bigger. Don't tell Lucille I told you this."
I like bigger pictures, and I began putting two
and two together. Zelda was my closest intimate friend.
Swann-to-Zelda over another game of Scrabble: "You know, I think I'm going to end up working for the CIA or something."
Zelda-to-Swann: "Your head's getting too big."
Zelda thence appointed herself as permanent deflator of my inflated head.
I decided I didn't know enough about how intelligence
agencies actually worked. I knew something, of course, from past on-the-job
experience in the Army and at the United Nations.
But my knowledge along these lines was taken mostly from mainstream media sources -- which in this sense is to say my knowledge was SUPERFICIAL IN THE EXTREME.
I did understand that the CIA made asses of itself. But I did not understand, as I later did, that the intelligence agencies of the world made the world go round. I had a general, superficial picture; but knew nothing at all of the details regarding the way the world's intelligence agencies actually conducted their activities.
Having had good reason, as of 1967, to research Marxism, I knew a great deal about it and international Communism, and even about the KGB. But let me be specific here. I had a great deal of BACKGROUND information. I had nothing in the way of hands-on knowledge -- except that I understood that Marxists ruled the Art Establishment.
The first book I read was THE CRAFT OF INTELLIGENCE
(1963) by Allen W. Dulles who had been Director of the CIA, but who was
forced to resign in 1961 because of events that brought the CIA into controversy
and criticism, most notably the Bay of Pigs invasion of Cuba.
The book was dedicated "To the men and women of the Central Intelligence Agency who are devoting their careers to the building of American Intelligence."
It seemed to me that this was a rather good book in that it dealt with the issue of intelligence requirements of a free society (a necessity which few seemed to consider). It described the various tasks of collecting, how intelligence is put to use, and the role of intelligence in the Cold War.
And here I think I should remind readers now in
1997 that in 1972 the Cold War WAS a serious and complex issue -- and if
this is forgotten, then how and why remote viewing came into existence will
not make much sense.
I think I'll dare to say that even if the Soviet Union is gone, that the Cold War has not really gone away as of May 1997 as I write this. It has simply shifted its formats, gone deeper underground, and become more complicated. In that most people recognize and deal with only simple things and superficial issues, doubtless many will disagree with me here.
It was easy to take the information in the Dulles
book on board. But the second book I read was more difficult -- and a little
mind-bending. This was THE INVISIBLE GOVERNMENT (1964) by David Wise and
Thomas B. Ross. I'll simply quote the summary on the flaps of the book's
"This startling and disturbing book is the first full, authentic account of America's intelligence and espionage apparatus -- an invisible government, with the CIA at its center, that conducts the clandestine policies of the United States in the Cold War.
"The Invisible Government is made up of many agencies and people, including the intelligence branches of the State and Defense Departments, of the Army, Navy and Air Force; specialists in codes, propaganda and espionage; and even seemingly private companies and institutions, academic groups, radio stations, a steamship line and a publishing house. But largest and most important of all is the Central Intelligence Agency.
"Aside from the tremendous power these agencies wield, they spend literally billions of dollars yearly. Moreover, as the authors show, money is concealed in the Federal budget and is approved by Congress without debate and without any real knowledge of how it will be spent.
"Inevitably, this shadow government is shaping the lives of 190,000,000 Americans. Major decisions, sometimes involving peace or war, are taking place out of public view -- and even without knowledge of our elected representatives."
This book was rather well-documented. It contained
informative chapters on the National Security Agency (NSA) and the Defense
Intelligence Agency (DIA).
I soon became entirely fascinated with this subject matter. I DID like to find out how things worked. I was a bookworm. I understood libraries and how to organize information. I still try to keep up-dated on this today.
Together with HOOVER'S F.B.I. (1970) by William
W. Turner, I took the above two books with me when between June 18-23, 1972,
I went to give lectures at the annual retreat of Spiritual Frontiers Fellowship
held at the Carleton College Campus, Northfield, Minnesota.
I had decided to support Spiritual Frontiers because one of its missions was to re-introduce psychic phenomena into religious contexts. But I had decided I'd not talk about myself, rather I'd focus on what was going on in larger-picture kinds of ways. A little over 400 people attended this retreat. This was the first time I was to mount a podium and speak. I was terrified, uncertain.
There were 31 speakers. The business of the retreat began at 6:30 a.m. with meditation and prayer and did not conclude until 10:00 p.m. I gave two seminars a day, and three major lectures in the evening. For this I was promptly reimbursed my airfare and, if I remember correctly, paid $200.
The people were wonderful, individually and as
a group, as was to be the case with SFF people everywhere.
But by the end of the retreat I had begun to realize the larger dimensions of a situation I already knew existed.
People really don't like to have their realities
or visions tampered with no matter who or what they are.
They accept what fits with their realities or visions.
They may listen to what doesn't fit, but they don't really hear it.
Whomever it was who coined the maxim "Pissing into the wind" knew what they were talking about.
It was at the Carleton College retreat that I got
to wondering why people think as they do, and why they are not open to information
and data that contrasts or contradicts their realities. Up until then, I
had believed that people just preferred being stupid or uninformed. But
the majority of those at the retreat were by no means stupid.
Two factors emerged from this wondering. One speaks
to people ONLY in THEIR own terms -- or one is pissing into the wind.
The second factor emerged about a year later -- and I dubbed it MENTAL INFORMATION PROCESSING GRIDS. I was then able to say that if one thinks they are dealing with people, well, they are in error.
They are actually dealing with walking, talking information processing grids -- of which a great deal will be said in chapters ahead.
I didn't think my talks at the Carleton retreat
went over very well -- especially when I said that we should dump everything
thought to be known about Psi and simply start over on a new basis.
But in the weeks ahead invitations to speak poured
in from all directions. I met Robert Ashby at Carelton, and when he telephoned
a few weeks later to invite me to Kansas City to talk, I asked why. I didn't
think I related to the public very well.
"But you do!" he insisted. "People LIKE to consider larger pictures, but are seldom given the opportunity to do so. All things conspire to keep them fixated in small stuff. Please do come."