Discussion in 'UFOs, Ghosts and Monsters' started by Magical Realist, Oct 10, 2017.
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So nothing from the Party? Figures
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You sound like one of those guys who thinks the word "skeptic" is an insult. I always take it as a compliment.
It can be. It depends on what you are skeptical of. The moon landing? The Holocaust? The efficacy of vaccines? To me the word implies a bias against something being a fact. A faith-based belief system. It suggests to me a certain stubborn closed-mindedness--an ideological stance of denialism against something being true laden with underlying motivations. Hence the ufo skeptic is skeptical of the evidence of the senses because of his underlying disbelief in ufos as a mysterious phenomenon.
And here I thought we were done with the sniping. But no, it's back to the potshots at science and skepticism.
Q: What do zealots do when they have no science?
A: They distract with quotes from century-old political fiction.
Q: What's next?
A: Quotes from the Bible.
Indeed. And unicorns, Santa Claus and faeries.
Oh wait. You mean some people claiming to have seen some things isn't enough to make then fact?
Huh. It's almost like we'd need to delve into those claims to tease out the factual from the fictional.
We'd have to be ... wait for it ... skeptical.
Can we be done with these stupid flawed pot shots? You're alive because skeptics and scientists did their jobs. You would otherwise have died of dysentery or an infected hangnail. Accept it and move on.
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Regarding the word ''skeptic,'' I take that word to mean someone who is on the fence, not necessarily an unreasonable naysayer. They tend to come down from the fence, when there is irrefutable proof; they're not likely to take someone's word for it, as evidence.
And just like religion, the knee-jerk moral outrage at skepticism being attacked for ultimately being subjective. An alleged crime on the level of blasphemy.
Projecting much? The only one expressing moral outrage is you.
All the rest of us are doing is saying 'nope not convinced'.
Requesting thread be locked as it has run its course and is drifting further off into mere editorializing and platitudinizing.
And just like religion, the feeble and desperate attempt of skepticism to censor opposing views. Self-imposed quarantine from the threat of unexplained phenomena.
Requesting that all posts from 7336 onward be moved to a new thread, entitled "Ad hominems - attacks on opponent as opposed to attacks on evidence and arguments."
This thread won't have to be locked if we can get back on topic.
Please review thread title if there is any confusion about what is - and what is not - the topic of the thread under discussion.
MR is offering explanations - the title of the thread isn’t about evidence of UAP’s per se, it’s about explanations. MR accepts some of the explanations that haven’t been peer reviewed by the science community.
I think you have not been following the last score of posts or so. MR has is not presenting or arguing evidence and is just taking ad hom shots at opponents.
Let's get back on topic. Or grant that there's nothing left to analyze. One of the two.
There's a difference between criticizing a position and insulting or ad homing a person. I have made no mention of anybody in my posts. I am only critiquing the ideology of skepticism itself and the asssumptions it makes. James R otoh has made it a ritual to personally flame me every chance he gets, calling me stupid, foolish, gullible, and a wacko. Noone objected to that (except for wegs and Yazata). I sense a double standard here.
I don’t see him mud slinging at anyone, just offering his theories on why he disagrees with skeptics. But, the thread may have run its course.
In 1984, you are to believe whatever the Party tells you to believe, even if what they tell you to believe contradicts your own experience.
Perhaps in some ways, that isn't unlike how things are today.
After all this time, you don't get to pretend that you don't know what skepticism means. After all, we have explained it to you many many times. You should stop being so dishonest.
One more time: skepticism is not a bias or tendency to dismiss things as being facts. Skepticism is an attitude regarding the need for evidence, first and foremost. The skeptic starts with an open mind, unlike the faith-based believer who starts with a conclusion he wants desperately to believe. The skeptic is not convinced by appeals to emotion or to fantasy or to what makes you comfortable. The skeptic is convinced by evidence. That's really all there is to it.
I understand why you find skeptics annoying. It's their incessant demands for actual evidence for the things you accept on the basis of your faith.
Skeptics are not biased against your little green men being a fact. They are just not yet convinced that your little green men are a fact. Understand yet?
What you need to do is not to angrily lash out like you do, but to find some convincing evidence that supports your claims. This is not new. This was first explained to you years ago. But here you are, pretending not to understand. Why can't you be honest and just admit that the evidence you have is hopelessly unconvincing in term of supporting the claims you want to make for it? Why do you feel you need to lie and pretend? You really ought to take a good hard look at your own beliefs, rather than whinging about evil skeptics. Work out what it is about skepticism that you can't stomach. Work out why you feel that way. Maybe you'll end up a more honest person who is more in touch with his own mind, rather than being this rather pathetic figure who recoils at the thought of needing evidence for things.
Can't you see that this describes you, not the skeptics?
You have been given all the tools that would enable you to recognise, for instance, that (based on the evidence you have) it is absurd for you to believe there is a super-advanced aquatic alien species living at the bottom of the Atlantic ocean and building tic tac craft that can fly in water and in air. And yet, you continually display this ideological stance of denial that this is the case. You are laden with underlying motivations that I can only conclude are deeply emotional and personal. Your faith didn't come from nowhere. Probably the reason you get so angry about this stuff is that you've internalised this rubbish as part of your identity, for some reason. You really ought to explore why that is. Or maybe you already know why.
Usually, it's not so much a matter of doubting the senses. It's more a matter of doubting the way the sense data is interpreted or understood by the viewer. When people see unusual or unfamiliar things (or familiar things under unusual circumstances), it's very easy to misinterpret what they are seeing. Add to that the well-documented issues with memory and social influences that can affect perceptions after the event and the only sensible approach is to maintain a healthy skepticism.
You have also been informed of this previously, of course. You consistently choose to ignore it and to pretend that human perception and memory is, for the most part, infallible.
What you describe as moral outrage is more likely to be a display of frustration from skeptics. After all, they have attempted to educate you. Many times. But here you are, still adamant that you're going to keep your head stuck as far into the sand as you can.
Speaking personally, I tend to oscillate between rolling my eyes at your apparent wilful blindness (and (feigned?) stupidity) and being annoyed by your continual dishonesty (which is both a moral concern, admittedly, as well as practical one).
Ah yes, the guy who has been given a platform here for years complains about censorship of his "opposing view".
Problem is, you can't give a single example of how you've been censored. Because it hasn't happened.
The fact is: we've all heard you out. You have been given ample opportunity here, over years, to present your best evidence for your beliefs. What do you have to show for that? Not much. Mostly, you're just a stamp collector, trawling the interwebs for youtube videos to prop up your fantasies. You're not interested in investigation or analysis - that much is clear. Your interest here lies only in trying to proselytise for your faith.
You just mentioned me. Did you notice?
Previously, I have speculated as to whether you are stupid or a troll. Now I think it's actually a combination of the two. Clearly, you're gullible enough to believe nonsense without any convincing evidence, although maybe that gullibility is confined to certain topics rather than extending in a harmful way to your daily life (of course, I don't know about that, so this is speculation).
Clearly, you're also willing to play stupid when it suits you, but maybe that's more your troll side.
I'm not sure what a "wacko" would be, exactly. No doubt you have something in mind. You don't come across to me as being mentally unbalanced in a way that would impede your normal functioning in society, but I'm not an expert and - as I said - I know next to nothing about your life outside this forum. I suspect that you might hide the true extent of your "fringe" beliefs from those who are close to you, because at some level you're probably aware of how far out on that limb you are, compared to the norm, but I could be wrong about that too.
I know that you're willing to turn a blind eye determinedly to truths that make you uncomfortable or which threat to upset your comfortable apple cart. Maybe we're all like that, to some extent. However, you're also on the record as being willing to knowingly tell lies when you feel you need to in order to prop up your belief system. Your dishonesty and evasion frustrates me. Maybe it is just a self-protection mechanism for you. I suspect that is most likely the case. If I'm wrong about that, then you're a deliberate and calculating troll, which would make you somebody I wouldn't want to talk to.
I will certainly continue to call you out when you tell lies. Indeed, I have at times in the past moderated you for certain blatant examples where you have been caught out. But I'm not going to censor you. You're a fantastic example of what not to do, in terms of being sucked into a vortex of fantasy, misinformation and cult-like belief. It's instructive to point out how this works, so that others can learn. As for you, you'd need to want to change, if you were to make any progress towards using your spare time more productively that you currently do. I can't see that happening any time soon.
Irrefutable proof (of just about anything) is not usually available, so it is not required.
The thing skeptics really want is a reasonable evidence-based argument in support of a claim, with "evidence-based" often being the most important aspect.
The skeptic never says "I'm never going to believe your claim." They do often say "I'm not yet convinced of your claim, because I have not yet seen sufficient evidence to establish it".
To use some legal terminology: it's perfectly fine to conclude that a thing is more probable than not. It doesn't have to be beyond reasonable doubt.
The other defining characteristic of the skeptic is being open to changing your mind in the light of new evidence. That is, one should not hold opinions dogmatically, but should proportion one's belief to the evidence (hence the quote from Hume in my signature line).
To be clear: somebody's speculative fantasy is not an "explanation" of anything.
If you ask me how electricity works and I tell you that electricity is made by magical pixies, that is not any kind of explanation. Note: it might ultimately turn out that electricity is made by magical pixies, but what we need is the explanation of how, exactly, we go from pixies to running the refrigerator, for instance. Step 1 in that explanation, by the way, would involve gathering evidence to show that pixies exist in the first place. Then, in subsequent steps, we would need to show how pixies do magic, then how the magic affects electrical things like refrigerators.
Another example: if we see a light in the sky and you ask me what it is and I tell you "It's a flying mirrored carousel reflecting sunlight", that's not an explanation. It's a speculative guess at best. To get to the explanation, I will need to explain - for starters - how it is that a carousel can come to fly through the sky. How is this consistent with the known laws of physics? Are there any previously-known and well documented incidents of flying carousels? Can we be sure we're even looking at a carousel? How can we tell it's that, rather than, say, the planet Venus? etc. etc.
Magical Realist presents lots of "just-so" stories, like a lot of UFO believers. If we accept (without any good evidence) that an advanced tic-tac building aquatic civilisation decided to send one of its craft to bother some Navy jets, then we can explain why a Navy pilot reported seeing something that looked like a flying tic-tac. But notice what we have to assume - without any independent evidence - to accept the validity of this "explanation". This is a huge problem. The purported explanation doesn't go from A to B to C to D etc. It just jumps straight from A to Z, skipping all the intermediate steps without any justification.
Why does a giraffe have a long neck? It's not so that it can reach the leaves on the highest trees. It's not because giraffes in the past stretched their necks and somehow passed this "stretching" trait to their young, thus giving them longer necks. It's not because God decided that he liked the idea of having long-necked animals roaming the Earth (or, at least, this is not an explanation, for reasons explained above). At some level, all of these ideas sound appealing. Indeed, all of these ideas were widely believed by various people in the past; no doubt some still believe them. But the evidence does not support any of these explanations.
You should be skeptical of everything.
How would I know those things were real if I wasn't skeptical enough to look into them?
You should have a bias against everything until you have evidence to support it.
Just the opposite. An absence of belief in anything that is not sufficiently evidenced.
But I DON'T have an underlying disbelief in UFOs. I just have a higher standard of evidence than you do.
Separate names with a comma.