[Had to re-post this.]
Awesome – I always knew I’d make it!
Today I got an email that included this paragraph from the most recent Jim Marrs book (he’s known for promoting just about every conspiracy under the sun):
“Researchers that worked with Michael Heiser (that critic of Zecharia Sitchin) are government funded and they use a newer base to translate with, which is preposterous to do so, due to the changing meanings and subsets of civilizations over time. The originals were hundreds if not thousands of years older than the database that Heiser’s group was translating with.”
This is incredibly inept on so many levels.
His comment is in regard to my criticisms of Zecharia Sitchin’s absurd teachings about the Sumerian Anunnaki gods (which many – Marrs? – thinks are extraterrestrials / ancient astronauts). On my website devoted to exposing Sitchin’s nonsense, I made a screen capture video of yours truly going to the ETCSL site (Electronic Text Corpus of Sumerian Literature), typing in the term for Anunnaki, and then getting the search results — in transliterated Sumerian/Akkadian with English translations. I did that because I wanted to make the point that, when I say NONE of Sitchin’s claims about the Anunnaki exist in even a single tablet, folks don’t need to just believe me — they can check for themselves.
So Marrs somehow (this is the sort of research mistake grade-schoolers suffering under Common Core would make) thinks that I was involved in the ETCSL project. I wasn’t. I was in grad school in another discipline. I’ve never met anyone who worked on the project. (Hey Jim — there’s this thing called a phone you could use to verify that). But wait … maybe this nefarious plot to show Sitchin’s ideas were bogus was so covert, so utterly secret, that even I didn’t know I was part of the project and on the payroll. . . . Hmmm (I’m stroking my chin now).
Marrs also makes the ludicrous claim that the researchers who produced the database weren’t the original tablets. This shows a deeply flawed understanding not only of the project, but also of the source for the data (another clue for an expert researcher like you, Jim – read the front matter of the site to know what they did). The idea that a database of transliterated cuneiform tablets was really created from “other” tablets besides the ones cited in the database itself is pretty much the dumbest thing I’ve ever read. Jim – what tablets did they use if not the real tablets? When they assign numbers, those numbers aren’t arbitrary — they correspond to known transliterations of known tablets published in scholarly literature since the turn of the 20th century. Any student of Assyriology or Sumerian would instantly know if the transliterations were bogus.
Maybe I’m wasting my time. I’m expecting Jim Marrs to even know what transliteration is.
In short, the tablets in the digital database of SUMERIAN literature are (dare I say) the SUMERIAN tablets. (Think about the absurdity of having to even write that sentence). There are no “older” Sumerian tablets hidden away by scholars (hey, Jim – how did Zecharia Sitchin get those real ones? … just a fun digression … I know Sitchin never translated anything … he used existing English translations of tablets that …. drum roll please … are the same as those in the database that Jim thinks is the result of “other” tablets). The circle of intellectual insanity is now complete.
I feel like I’m writing the script for the Inception sequel.
But there’s a lesson to be learned from Marrs’ stupefyingly dumb statement: this is the level of research quality offered by the ancient astronaut community. Statements so careless and misinformed that one wonders if they’re real. This one was published, so it’s real.
Finally, I’m not paid by the government (apparently Jim made the comment because ETCSL had government funding — like most humanities projects in the world). Since I was no part of it, I never got a dime transliterating tablets, even ones that don’t exist (again, hard to believe I even had to write that).
But just for fun, Jim, here’s something to which you can apply your investigative powers:
1. Documentation that I participated in ETCSL.
2. Documentation that I’ve ever gotten money from the government for services detrimental to the reputation of Zecharia Sitchin.
Will Marrs waste his time chasing these non-existent items? Maybe. After all, he wasted his time trying to prop up Sitchin’s non-existent claims. But seriously, Jim — how easy would it be to produce ONE line of ONE tablet that addresses the items in my open letter to Sitchin if I were wrong? Even easier than making up stuff like you did with your statement.
Be that as it may, it’s exciting to have earned the status of being a living testament to how lame ancient astronaut research really is. It’s a great first-person lesson for my kids and those of others I know — a real-life example that one has to dispense with all coherent thought to believe this stuff.