Savage Thoughts -- Sortie Craft Sightings

By Leo Savage

One reason I'm not a famous columnist by now is that I only write when I have something to say. I suppose I could make my site a popular hot spot with thousands of people flocking to it by coming up with any old crap every week just to keep people interested, but that's not what I want to do. There are already lots of people on the web who do exactly that.

My goal is different. Wheat with less chaff. Each of my essays has been carefully thought out over time. You might disagree with my conclusions, but at least you know I didn't just pound them out to fill space.

In keeping with that policy, I don't have a lot here yet. I don't want to collect junkie reports from a bunch of nut cases. Here's what I have so far:

My own sighting on March 7th, made with a witness present who agrees with me about the details. This is for real, 100% guaranteed. I may not know what it was, but I know what I saw. These are the details to the best of our ability to record them.

An Associated Press report from June 19th, and a revised version from June 20th about Arizona Governor Fife Symington's two press conferences about similar sightings over Phoenix on March 13th. Note that in the first press conference he is reported as being totally serious, and he's backed up by his aides in his seriousness. Then "several hours later" he reveals that it was all a prank as his aides "laughed hertily". An odd sort of joke from a Governor facing federal fraud charges -- not the sort of thing to help convince a judge and jury that good old Governor Symington would never perpetrate a fraud.

Also an odd sort of thing for any politician to do. One can assume that for every person who called to report seeing something there are a good many others who also saw something but didn't report it. First he promises all those people that he will "get to the bottom of it" because "it's important to give people an answer." Then he reveals that it was all an elaborate setup for a practical joke. I can see frat boys doing that. I even know one or two particularly odious people that I could see doing it. I don't see an elected politician doing it. Politicians don't normally make a habit of pissing off voters for no good reason.

I don't know what the good folks of Phoenix saw that night, but I'd be willing to bet that Governor Symington was serious at the first press conference. I'd love to know why he changed his mind. I could make a guess, but that's all it would be -- a guess.

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