This year he’s running for Mayor, and predictably, most of the press about him is tongue in cheek or downright scornful. An exception is this report, by, believe it or not, Fox News! — until the reporter’s very last remark. It’s as if the reporter couldn’t allow himself to actually take Peckman seriously, though every fiber of his being longed to.
I post this for sociological reasons: notice, once again, the ridicule factor that colors all mainstream talk of extraterrestrial matters.
Let me point out that, when we ridicule something, we unconsciously acknowledge its power over us. Taboo subjects are those that the culture, for whatever reasons, need to keep hidden. Taboo subjects have a charge, a pent-up power that sooner or later, will burst loose and expand our view of the world with such alacrity and such vastness, that it takes our breath away. Think of sex, before Freud. Or “the occult,” before Jung. Or democracy (U.S. brand), before the 2000 presidential election. Or (fiat) money, before the recent ponzi bankster revelations. Or war, before wikileaks.
Much has been revealed. But none of these revelations hold a candle to the ET presence. After all, these other revelations are all threads in the fabric of our world; ET points to other worlds that telescope everything we have done, or felt, or thought about since “time began” into a miniscule blip in the infinite ocean of being.
As with any revelation, once the cat is out of the bag, we will say, “But how could we not have known?” Or, “But I knew that. Why didn’t I talk about it before?”
Because if you did admit this to yourself, you would have lived your entire life differently.
It’s very, very hard to go against the cultural grain. Jeff Peckman, by refusing to allow ridicule to intimidate him, is one courageous man.
Who’d have thought that Jeff Peckman — you know, the crazy guy who wanted to investigate UFOs — may not be that crazy after all?
Last Tuesday at a mayoral forum that included all 10 candidates, much deference was given to Peckman, known to most voters — those who know him or the other candidates at all — as the “UFO guy.”
Indeed, it was Peckman who ran 2010’s Initiative 300 to create an Extraterrestrial Affairs Commission within city government — a proposal that got Peckman more than his share of attention from the media, local and national outlets alike before being voted down.
At the forum Tuesday, sponsored by environmental groups and focusing on conservation and sustainability, many of the candidates referred to Peckman’s intelligence, some even asking to give their answers to questions before he did so as not to look less thoughtful by comparison when going after.
Chris Romer, the candidate widely viewed as the frontrunner in the mayoral election, even joked that Peckman’s solution for trash removal might be “letting the UFO’s come and take it away”.
The joke bombed, as a few soft boos went up from the few hundred people in the crowd at the Museum of Nature and Science.
The following night, Peckman was not present at a “Candidate Survivor” forum organized by New Era Colorado that included the six candidates most often grouped as the “serious” or “viable” candidates in the field.
At the end of that forum, the six candidates were each asked which of their competitors they would vote for if not themselves.
It was a question they’d all been asked at least once before (trust me, I asked it); and it was a question the group once again struggled to answer openly.
After Carol Boigon drew boos from the crowd for taking nearly a minute before flat-out refusing to answer, the other five candidates to follow all gave the same answer — all five said they would vote for Peckman.
On Saturday at yet another candidate forum, this one including all 10 candidates, six of them picked Peckman when asked which one of them would be the most successful candidate to appear on the quiz show ‘Jeopardy!’
Now, with ballots set to be mailed out at the end of the week, Jeff Peckman himself has a question — he has lots of them, as a matter of fact, but this one above all others: why isn’t the one candidate uniformly recognized as intelligent and worth electing by his peers more of a factor in the race?
Never mind why isn’t he included in half the candidate forums? Or the public polling on the race to date?
The conventional answer to all three of those questions is simple, of course: Peckman’s campaign lacks the usual trappings of his more “viable” rivals — money, a staff, TV ads and yard signs.
But when you ask Peckman the same question, he talks about stress and suggests that implementing cutting-edge stress relief programs for police officers could greatly reduce police brutality and thereby begin restoring the community’s trust in the department, at little cost.
“The poll seemed very biased in that it appears that the names of four of us were not mentioned to the people being surveyed. And yet for different reasons, Danny Lopez and I might very well have received enough votes to get into the ‘top six’,” Peckman said.
According to Peckman, his own name recognition is among the highest in the field based on a simple Googlesearch of his and other candidates’ names followed by the term “Denver mayor”.
Romer still outpaced all his competitors with 236,000 search results. But Peckman finishes second with 140,000, most of them referencing Initiative 300, not his run for mayor.
No other candidate in the race breaks the 100,000 mark.
Peckman is also questioning the Denver Post’s possible influence on the race, and he’s not alone.
The editorial board’s early endorsement of Romer on April 1, published even ahead of the newspaper’s series of candidate profiles, has raised eyebrows from political observers across town.
The pollster, Floyd Ciruli, wrote on his blog that “the Post’s editorial strategy tends to micromanage the campaign environment, usually to the end of helping their endorsees and to the disadvantage of the remaining field.”
“The Denver Post seems to be manipulating this campaign in obvious and not so obvious ways,” Peckman said.
Peckman returns to the RBI poll and, specifically, the Post’s coverage of it and the newspaper’s assessment that “the numbers show former state Sen. Chris Romer leads the pack of 10 candidates vying for the position.”
“The numbers do not ‘show former state Sen. Chris Romer leads the pack of 10 candidates’,” Peckman said, referencing the Post’s coverage. “The numbers show only that Sen. Romer leads the pack of 6 candidates who were mentioned in the only poll done so far.”
“The Denver Post is trying to influence the outcome of the election by using invalid poll results in a deceptive way,” he said.
Peckman, as his fellow candidates often note, may have a point.
But does it matter if he doesn’t have the financial resources to take those arguments to the larger public?
Thousands of Coloradans log on to the Post’s website daily. Meanwhile, Peckman’s website gets a tiny fraction of those clicks.
Perhaps it’s easy for rivals to respect Peckman’s answers when they know it’s unlikely the public is really listening to them — or to the questions he’s asking now.
Turns out, Jeff Peckman’s no joke.
The joke is just on him.