USA Today Ridicules Chemtrails: Nothing is ''out there'' except water vapor and ice
By Traci Watson, USA Today
March 18, 2004
----- Original Message -----
Sent: Thursday, March 18, 2004 9:08 AM
Subject: found something amusing for you..
You probably have seen this disinformation or something like it, but just
thought you could do with a laugh... They think stereotyping us as "conspiracy
theorists" will continue to work forever..
Conspiracy theorists read between lines in
By Traci Watson
A new conspiracy theory sweeping the Internet and radio talk
shows has set parts of the federal government on edge.
The theory: The white lines of condensed water vapor that
jets leave in the sky, called contrails, are actually a toxic substance
the government deliberately sprays on an unsuspecting populace.
Federal bureaucracies have gotten thousands of phone calls,
e-mails and letters in recent years from people demanding to know what is
being sprayed and why. Some of the missives are threatening.
It's impossible to tell how many supporters these ideas have
attracted, but the people who believe them say they're tired of getting
the brush-off from officials. And they're tired of health problems they
blame on ''spraying.''
''This is blatant. This is in your face,'' says Philip Marie
Sr., a retired nuclear quality engineer from Bartlett, N.H., who says the
sky above his quiet town is often crisscrossed with ''spray'' trails.
''No one will address it,'' he says. ''Everyone stonewalls
The situation Marie and others describe is straight out of
The X-Files. He and others report one day looking up at the sky and realizing
that they were seeing abnormal contrails: contrails that lingered and spread
into wispy clouds, multiple contrails arranged in tick-tack-toe-like grids
or parallel lines, contrails being laid down by white planes without registration
Believers call these tracks ''chemtrails.'' They say they
don't know why the chemicals are being dropped, but that doesn't stop them
from speculating. Many guess that the federal government is trying to slow
global warming with compounds that reflect sunlight into the sky. Some propose
more ominous theories, such as a government campaign to weed out the old
Exasperated by persistent questions, the Environmental Protection
Agency, NASA, the Federal Aviation Administration and the National Oceanic
and Atmospheric Administration joined forces last fall to publish a fact
sheet explaining the science of contrail formation. A few months earlier,
the Air Force had put out its own fact sheet, which tries to refute its
opponents' arguments point by point.
''If you try to pin these people down and refute things, it's,
'Well, you're just part of the conspiracy,'' says atmospheric scientist
Patrick Minnis of NASA's Langley Research Center in Hampton, Va. ''Logic
is not exactly a real selling point for most of them.''
Nothing is ''out there'' except water vapor and ice crystals,
say irritated scientists who study contrails. Some, such as Minnis, are
outraged enough by the claims of chemtrail believers that they have trolled
Internet chat rooms to correct misinformation or have gotten into arguments
''Conspiracy nonsense,'' snorts Kenneth Sassen, an atmospheric
scientist at the University of Utah. ''These things are at 30,000 to 40,000
feet in the atmosphere. They're tiny particles. They're not going to affect
The cloud-forming contrails that conspiracy theorists find
so ominous are ''perfectly natural,'' Minnis says. The odd grid and parallel-line
patterns are easily explained as contrails blown together by the wind, scientists
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