Operation Traficant


According to the San Francisco Chronicle, the Air Force paid $25,000 last year to investigate the teleportation of people and objects. I suspect the money could have been spent much more effectively on a dozen hammers, but a few people have stepped up to defend the research. Here's my favorite argument:

In interviews, some experts on military funding policy suggested that maybe the Air Force doesn't take teleportation seriously, but wants any enemies to think that it does so they'll waste fortunes studying it.

"The strategy is to get China to waste money on things that we know are not feasible, while discouraging them from working on things that we believe to be quite promising," said John Pike, a veteran defense policy analyst in the Washington, D.C., area. He cites the military's bankrolling of research on an allegedly novel source of energy called hafnium isomers: "The U.S. continues to fund work in this field, despite the fact that it contravenes known laws of physics."

Yeah, but who's fooling who? The Chronicle reports that the author of the teleportation study "expressed great enthusiasm for research allegedly conducted by Chinese scientists who, he says, have conducted 'psychic' experiments in which humans used mental powers to teleport matter through solid walls. He claims their research shows 'gifted children were able to cause the apparent teleportation of small objects (radio micro-transmitters, photosensitive paper, mechanical watches, horseflies, other insects, etc.).'" Alas: Another physicist notes that these findings "have not been translated into English and so [have] not yet [been] subjected to critical reviews by the scientific community at large."