Thursday, September 22, 2005

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Jack Sarfatti
From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia.

Jack Sarfatti is a frequent poster to certain Usenet groups, such as sci.physics. His contributions, which are notable for their extensive use of technical buzzwords, are often inaccuratly regarded as incoherent by poseurs illiterate in physics who think they know when they don't. Sarfatti's entry in the net-legends FAQ begins:

Posts long strange posts on physics, consciousness, and metaphysics, many of which do not make much sense to practitioners of the above fields. Used to crosspost to hell and back. Can be seen in the sci.* groups and alt.consciousness. A small collection of posts is available. *Not* a "crackpot" in the classic sense; has a Ph.D. in physics and understands the field quite well - but tends to use it to delve into philosophical concepts and outre' theories rather deeper than many other physicists care to read about. Also posts on and off to sci.psychology about connectionism and perception, and the neuro-psychological implications thereof.

Sarfatti's websites have quite unjustly earned the crankiest rating from the website by lesser minds than his. (See links below.) "They all laughed at Christopher Columbus, when he said the world was round." Cole Porter.

Sarfatti is definitely a fecund highly creative original eccentric, "but his knowledge of basic cosmology issues is razor sharp. As an example he was able to carefully delineate the basic flaw in the zero point energy paradigm as it relates to the Einstein cosmological constant, which I found extremely useful to know." A. Beckwith, physicist

Unlike most who have been labeled crackpots, Sarfatti does have a strong academic background in theoretical physics from good universities. He earned an undergraduate BA from Cornell University in 1960, where he wrote an honor's thesis under the close guidance of Hans Bethe that corrected a small error in Julian Schwinger's WWII work on the polarization of synchrotron radiation. He went on to earn a Ph.D. from UCR in 1969, writing a thesis on local gauge invariance in the theory of superfluids under the direction of Fred Cummings. He taught at San Diego State was a Research Fellow under David Bohm University of London and Abdus Salam (ICTP) where he explained the universal slope (1Gev)^-2 of the Regge trajectories of hadronic resonances as rotating Kerr black hole "micro-geons" with strong short range gravity G* ~ 10^40G before venturing into non-academic pursuits in Cold War covert intelligence operations in Europe. Sarfatti's 1967 paper "The Goldstone Theorem and the Jahn-Teller Effect, written with Marshall Stoneham at Haarwell (later head of Theoretical Physics Div, Harwell UKAERE), is cited in the American Institute of Physics "Resource Letter on Symmetry in Physics." Ray Chiao, professor of physics at Berkeley credits Sarfatti's 1967 paper on self-trapped laser filaments as analogy with Type II superconductor vortices as helpful in his early experiments in nonlinear optics. Leonard Susskind, inventor of string theory, credits Sarfatti's help in his first published paper in 1964 at Cornell on quantum phase and time operators. Susskind and Sarfatti were students together with Johnny Glogower.

Sarfatti predicted the recently observed ODLRO "supersolid" in Physics Letters A before Nobel Prize Tony Leggett did. George Chapline, who according to "... received the U.S. Department of Energy E.O. Lawrence Award in 1983 and served as Science Advisor to the Associate Lab Director for Defense Programs at the Los Alamos National Labs in 2000 and 2001 ..." wrote on 16 February 2005, saying in part: "... Jack, Your solid He4 superfluid paper is wonderful! ... This paper is a precursor to quantum gravity, and much more important in that regard than string theory ( you can quote me). george ...".

Tony Smith web site at

Unlike most who have been labeled crackpots, Sarfatti does have an academic background in theoretical physics. He earned an undergraduate from Cornell University in 1960, where he wrote an honor's thesis under the guidance of Hans Bethe. He went on to earn a Ph.D. from UCSD in 1967, writing a thesis under the direction of Fred Cummings. He taught at San Diego State and the University of London before venturing into non-academic pursuits.

In various writings over the years, Sarfatti has apparently made numerous claims about his activities, including these:

* at age 13, received "phone calls from the future" informing him of his special destiny,
* founded a "Physics-Consciousness Research Group" with Werner Erhard, the founder of Esalen, and others,
* consulted for U.S. intelligence agencies on the so-called "physics" of remote-viewing,
* consulted for the U.S. Department of Defense on the Strategic Defense Initiative,
* has worked or is working under 'deep cover' (allegedly explaining the small number of his published research papers),
* involved in the publication of a controversial memoir by former K.G.B. agent Pavel Sudoplatov,
* taught math and physics for the U.S. Navy at sea (on board aircraft carriers)
* derived Einstein's field equation from the Goldstone phase of the Higgs field for SU(2)hypercharge using the curvature form method of Elie Cartan. This "derivation" is generally regarded as nonsense[1].

Sarfatti has had three books published by Author House since 2002, Destiny Matrix, Space-Time and Beyond II & Super Cosmos. He was awarded the Victor von Frankenstein "Weird Science" Award in December 2004 by the denizens of the alt.usenet.kooks newsgroup.

See also

* Usenet, an article about the Usenet in general


External links

* Reality check], an essay by the now deceased physicist paranormal debunker Milton Rothman, reviewing for the skeptic group CSICOP the website of a "corporation" apparently created by Jack Sarfatti. Martin Gardner wrote extensively about Sarfatti and Uri Geller in "Magic and Paraphysics" in "Science, Good, Bad and Bogus."
* Crank dot net, a very extensive list of cranky websites,
* Part 1 of the net-legends FAQ,
* Is Jack Sarfatti a kook or a genius.., a thread from sci.physics,
* disformation (an interview of Sarfatti),
* a Sarfatti website,
* a Sarfatti web page containing some snippets of autobiography by Sarfatti, including photographs of himself literally at sea (on the flight deck of a carrier); see what appears to be Sarfatti's own account of the phone calls mentioned above,
* a Sarfatti website,
* a Sarfatti blog.

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