In defence of space aliens

Discussion in 'UFOs, Ghosts and Monsters' started by Magical Realist, Oct 10, 2017.

  1. Magical Realist Valued Senior Member

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    Insert sound of shameless ass-smooching...
     
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  3. Q-reeus Banned Valued Senior Member

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    Piss off troll.
     
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  5. Gawdzilla Sama Valued Senior Member

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    Dude, if you want to start a thread on your hobby, that's fine.
     
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  7. foghorn Registered Senior Member

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    Too much detail about what you and Q-reeus are doing here on this thread.
    How does it go? ''like'' ''like'' ''smooch'' smooch'' ''Like'' like''

    Don't be silly, I'm here to fiddle around with your email notification settings.
    You sound angry.
    I'm sure MR will ''like'' your post. ''smooch'' ''smooch.''

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  8. Magical Realist Valued Senior Member

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    I'm sure your "Doctor" will be in soon to clear all that up for you...

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  9. Q-reeus Banned Valued Senior Member

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  10. James R Just this guy, you know? Staff Member

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    Yazata:

    Jet planes, whales, submarines, spurious radar echos etc. etc. The various possibilities have been discussed, though I'm sure there are others we haven't thought of.

    I'm not being (entirely) flippant here. One potential pitfall in thinking about these things is to assume that sightings that are close together in time, but made by different apparatus and/or different observers, must always have a single explanation. That needn't be the case, and in the more problematic UFO cases it can actually be a convergence of coincidence, often involving one or more mistakes on the part of eyewitnesses or subsequent reports after the events, that mean that people attempt to explain unrelated events as having a single cause. Human beings love making connections between things, but sometimes there are no connections to be made other than temporal proximity.

    You might say that Occam's razor would imply that we ought not to multiply causes unnecessarily, and you'd be right about that. But Occam's razor is (a) only a rule of thumb, and (b) only meant to be used to separate equally plausible explanations. Given everything else we know about our universe, alien visitation is much less plausible an explanation than, say, the coincidence of a plane being directed to an area due to a radar glitch and the pilot spotting a breaching whale in the sea in that area.

    Consider also this: take 100 UFO reports. Let's say 70 of them are easily identified due to witness errors and the like, as mistaking the planet Venus or other familiar astronomical object for an alien spacecraft. Say another 20 of them are so vague and lacking in evidence that it's impossible to reach any reasonable conclusion about them based on the available evidence. That leaves 10 more-difficult cases to grapple with, say. Say that 9 of those cases are solvable after a detailed examination of the evidence in relation to other events subsequently found to be going on at the right place at the right time. That would leave a single "very difficult" case which has a "difficult" explanation. Now, it's possible, of course, that at the end of the day the correct explanation will eventually turn out to be little green men, but what if it's one of those combinations of whales and radar glitches and eyewitness error, or similar? What if it can ultimately be put down to a series of unlikely coincidences? Remember, this is the 1 case out of 100 we're talking about. That, in itself, makes it unusual, so the solution to the mystery is likely to be equally unusual.

    In considering the few "problem" cases, it is important not to lose sight of the fact that positive evidence for any alien explanation is needed, not just uncertainty about whether we can explain it as due to mundane causes. If we can't explain it, the answer doesn't then default to "It must have been aliens". It defaults to "We can't explain it (yet)."

    When the UFO skeptics say "we're not convinced this was aliens", we aren't ruling out the (very low) chance that maybe the UFO fanboys are right after all. If the fanboys have positive evidence for their alien conclusion hypothesis, they need to bring it. It's not enough for them to say "Skeptics can't show it wasn't aliens, so it was aliens." It's also not enough for them to say "I don't believe the skeptics' suggested explanations, so it was aliens." Even if the UFO pushers can show that a particular skeptical explanation is untenable, they still don't get to have their alien spaceships by default. If they have a case to make, they need to make it.

    Remember that you're dealing with the 1 case in 100 here, not the run-of-the-mill UFO sighting. See above.

    It's not dismissive. Dismissive would be to say "I won't believe this was aliens, no matter what evidence is put up in support of that hypothesis." Dismissive would be "All this UFO stuff is bunk. We don't even need to consider the available evidence in order to conclude that this couldn't be aliens."

    If your sticking point in this particular case is the eyewitness testimonies, I would ask you what convinced you that those testimonies are trustworthy. Bear in mind that the more extreme reports (cf. "I saw something on a radar screen that I couldn't identify" to "I saw flying tic tacs that actively evaded the fighter jet I was flying") come from a very small number of witnesses. Visual sightings, even those made by military pilots, are not necessarily always accurate. Pilots are human beings, subject to the same types of perceptual and psychological effects as the rest of us.

    Part of the problem we're running into in this thread is that several "targeting pod" videos taken at different times and in different places are being mixed up. It's not entirely our fault. It seems to me that community of UFO believers on the web tends to encourage this confusion, often posting unrelated videos and talking about them as if they are videos of a single incident.
     
  11. James R Just this guy, you know? Staff Member

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    (continued...)

    That's quite a bizarre thing to say, on the face of it. Being charitable, maybe all you mean it's good as a sighting of an unidentified object - i.e. the convergence of circumstances and the particular lack of evidence in this particular case make it interesting and harder to solve than normal.

    On the other hand, maybe you have actually convinced yourself that evidence of alien visitation can't get any better than this. If that's the case, you're sorely mistaken, which should be obvious if you take a minute or two to think it through. My impression of you is that you're not that naive.

    See above. And hold that thought about "multiple mundane explanations".

    Great! Then you'd do well to keep a careful separation between yourself and somebody like Magical Realist, who jumped into the deep end of space alien nuttery long ago and appears irretrievably lost to it.

    I have no complaint about that, as far as it goes. As for myself, I think I have a few clues as to a probable partial explanation, at the very least.

    But I'd also just like to flag a problem that arises when you use a blanket phrase like "something was physically there". Which part of the sequence of events are you referring to? A trace on a radar screen that was "physically there"? A perception of an visual witness was "physically there"? An unidentified disturbance on the surface of the ocean was "physically there"? Or an alien flying tic tac, as described by one eyewitness, was "physically there"? There's quite a gap between these various things that may or may not have been "physically there".

    Don't you find it at all arresting that there is apparently no "official" report of any length on these incidents (that any of us have access to)? All this furious speculation and debate we're having here, and all of the breathless stuff on the UFO fanboy sites, as far as I can tell, is based on the same few eyewitnesses and a few nightly news bulletins that reported the story released (arguably) by the military.

    You don't apply Occam's razor there, though. Why?

    I mean, historically, these UFO flaps tend to come to nothing, or else they do indeed turn out to be bullshit of one kind or another. So, what's the most likely outcome for this one according to Mr Occam (Friar Occam, Brother Occam?)

    You ought to realise that no science has been discussed in reference to this, as far as I can tell, the only possible exception being the analysis of how FLIR images are formed (of jet exhausts, for instance). Really, we haven't gone beyond applying basic critical thinking to this, which is about the most we skeptics can do with the evidence available to us here.

    There's a glaring absence of anything scientific from the UFO fanboy crowd here. There are lots of breathless claims of extreme manoeuverability of the alleged "tic tacs", for instance, but nothing in the way of solid data that is available for real analysis. Some might claim that the Navy has the data, perhaps, but like many other aspects of this, we're supposed to just take that on faith.
     
    Last edited: Dec 12, 2019
  12. James R Just this guy, you know? Staff Member

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    For many years, there was an offer from skeptics worth $1 million, open to anybody who could demonstrate any kind of "paranormal" phenomenon under controlled scientific conditions, those being agreed in advance of any test by both skeptics and prospective claimants. Even now, there's still at least $100,000 on offer. Nobody has ever come close to collecting the money.

    Claims about supposedly "dogmatic skeptics" with "ideological assumptions" tend to come across as sour grapes from people who have failed over and over again to make a good case for their claims.

    That's simply the most common theory advanced by the fanboy crowd. Skeptics do not prejudge the matter. We only say "show us the evidence". If you have evidence of Interdimensional Time Travellers from the Z Dimension, by all means present it and we'll take a look. In the meantime, forgive us if we use the shorthand "alien spaceships" to describe whatever is your flavor-of-the-month assumption about what these things are.

    How do they assess whether they defy conventional aircraft, when they can't be identified as anything?
     
  13. James R Just this guy, you know? Staff Member

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    These days, virtually every adult in the country where most UFO sightings happen - the good old US of A - carries an excellent camera in his or her pocket constantly, equipped to take high-resolution photographs and video at a moment's notice. And yet, the evidence put forward for alien spaceships is still, by and large, the same grainy, out-of-focus, useless stuff we've always seen from the UFO crowd.

    If we were to assume that the rate of alien visitation has remained approximately constant since the 1950s, say, then we ought to expect that the photographic evidence of these visitations should have increased over time exponentially in quality and in volume. The population itself has increased, making it more likely that somebody would be in the right place at the right time, for starters. Then there's the photographic equipment.

    Why is it that all the good alien spaceship footage is found in the movies, and not on people's iphones?
     
  14. Gawdzilla Sama Valued Senior Member

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    BUT! If we could prove UFO were NOT alien spacecraft MR would poof out of existence, his mission a failure. The mothership would not be happy with him.
     
  15. James R Just this guy, you know? Staff Member

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    I see things are kicking off again from the usual suspects. Almost on cue...

    Welcome to the thread, Q-reeus.

    Will you contribute anything of use to the actual discussion we're having, or are you planning to make your entire contribution meta - i.e. about the people posting here and your issues with them and the chip on your shoulder that relates to that?

    Bwahaha! The Evil Moderator Conspiracy is Out to Get You, Q-reeus! But never fear. We won't ban you. We will only mess with your email notification settings in such a way that there is no proof and readers can only take your word for it that it is happening. In this way we will gaslight you until you start to think you're going mad!

    Maybe every now and then, I'll adjust your settings so that everything works as it should again for a while, only to turn off your notifications again when you start getting comfortable! O, the fun! O, the joy it brings me!

    Bwahahhahaa!

    (But seriously, folks. This is some paranoid crazy shit, don't you think? Please, Q-reeus, seek help before it gets any worse.)
     
  16. James R Just this guy, you know? Staff Member

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    Thankyou, Doctor foghorn. I will take it from here.

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  17. James R Just this guy, you know? Staff Member

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    I have received no reports about foghorn being a sock puppet. In particular, this is the first I've heard from you about this.

    We have a "report" button, or you could try starting a private conversation, if you have some information you'd like to share.

    On the other hand, maybe I'll arbitrarily mess with your messaging settings, just for the fun of it. Because, you know, that's something I do regularly to lots of people, evil old me. (Or is it just you that I single out for special attention in that respect? It's so hard to know, isn't it? Paranoid yet?)

    The mods are far too busy messing with your mind. Look into my eyes. Don't look around the eyes, look into the eyes. You are getting sleepy...
     
  18. Magical Realist Valued Senior Member

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    The case here has been more than well made. Multiple well-trained, experienced, and credible eyewitnesses. FLIR video camera footage. And corroboration of targets on multiple radars and even sonar. The incidents in 2004 and 2014/2015 share common traits regarding the appearance of the ufos and their amazing flight performance. Tic tac shaped with no jet flares. Sudden supersonic accelerations and turns. It all ties into the long well-established history of similar ufo reports by military and commercial pilots dating back over some 70 years. The case for the existence of these strange objects remains both compelling and well-evidenced after decades of hundreds of well-investigated case studies into the phenomenon. Nothing you have offered in the way of youtuber speculations, online skeptic debunks, biased complaints, and fantastical scenarios of multiple errors and glitches has diminshed at all the fact that these things are very real and continue to make their enigmatic presence known to us even in our present era. Facts remain facts, even after all your endless testy rants and bitchings.
     
    Last edited: Dec 12, 2019
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  19. James R Just this guy, you know? Staff Member

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    The case for what?

    On the skeptics side, we have developed a reasonable case that there are plausible avenues of investigation that could lead to an identification of the various "mystery" objects seen in the videos, on radar and described by witnesses.

    On the fanboy side, no case has been advanced beyond what was originally posted - some video of an unidentified object (which remains unidentified) and some links to anecdotal evidence.

    Let's face it: most of the discussion has focussed around the statements of just one witness who has been doing the rounds of the talk shows.

    Consistent in some cases with jet exhaust images and gimbal rotation. In all cases, the nature of the objects can't be positively IDed from the footage.

    We have only anecdotal accounts of these supposed targets.

    Could be coincidence. Could be due to the generally indistinct nature of the footage. Could be due to the use of similar equipment that displayed similar artifacts.

    Shape is indistinct where no jet flares are seen.

    There is only anecdotal evidence for that.

    There's a long well-established history of similar UFO reports, including by military and commercial pilots, turning out to be bunk, also dating back decades.

    The case remains full of holes, generally poorly supported and largely pushed by True Believers who share various traits including credulity, an unwillingness or inability to think critically, and inclined to conspiracy theorising.

    Nothing you have offered in the way of open-eyed credulous fanboyism, online UFO fandom, unskeptically credulous imaginative "reconstructions" and fantastical scenarios of little green men has diminished at all the fact that the evidence that these things are anything other than mundane objects or artifacts is abysmally weak and unconvincing to the critical thinker.

    Facts remains facts, even after all your fanboy promotionalism.
     
  20. Magical Realist Valued Senior Member

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    Last edited: Dec 12, 2019
  21. DaveC426913 Valued Senior Member

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    Isn't this a rehashed article about the same incident? It's one level removed, like a copy of a copy. You start to lose critical detail.

    It gets harder and harder to find the original incident reports when these "poor photocopy" articles start to spread.
     
  22. Magical Realist Valued Senior Member

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    It's a CBS news report summary of an original NYT article, which I feel adequately answers James' claim of there being no other eyewitnesses of these incidents without belaboring details already covered in this thread.
     
    Last edited: Dec 13, 2019
  23. Q-reeus Banned Valued Senior Member

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    Are you that stupid or just pretending to be? It should be obvious from full context of quoted post, the possibility of sock puppet was just that and an ancillary point.
    The evident to all issue was foghorn's blatant trolling behavior. Then again, that's exactly your behavior in latest ridicule & baiting style responses to me, and in many other posts on this topic especially.
    James R - king of the SF trolls.
     
    Last edited: Dec 13, 2019

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