Skeptics have already made their minds up about UAPs

Discussion in 'Conspiracies' started by Yazata, Sep 1, 2023.

  1. wegs Matter and Pixie Dust Valued Senior Member

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    Eyewitness evidence could be evidence. I think what MR is getting at is that all too often, skeptics rule out eyewitness testimony because it’s not substantial enough to build a case. But, it shouldn’t be discarded.

    For example, with the tic tac flying object, we have gone a few rounds on this forum over (a few skeptics) disqualifying the testimony of those navy pilots. I don’t understand why, to be honest. They were there, in the moment. No, their testimony isn’t conclusive evidence, but it’s substantial enough to build a case. To examine it.

    Now I know someone will reply with “no one here has disqualified or discarded what the pilots said,” but you have in post after post, as to how it could be a bird or a plane or something easily identifiable. So, in so many words, yes, you are saying that the pilots were mistaken, insinuating that what they saw wasn’t anything unusual at all. Isn’t that insulting?

    Thankfully, the US government took their report seriously.
     
    Last edited: Nov 27, 2023
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  3. billvon Valued Senior Member

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    Again, no one is disqualifying their observations, or claiming they are lying.
    Right. And there's nothing wrong with examining the available data.
    Again not mistaken in their OBSERVATION. Possibly mistaken in their INTERPRETATION. Those are two different things.

    This comes up in court all the time.

    Witness: "I saw John's killer walk out of John's hotel room at 7 that night! It was HIM! Joe Defendant! He had just killed him!"
    Lawyer: "Are you sure it was John's hotel room?"
    Witness: "Yes! He was in something like room 106. It was dark but . . . Yeah that's it."
    Lawyer: "Did he have a murder weapon? Did you see any blood on him?"
    Witness: "Well, no."
    Lawyer: "Are you aware that Joe Defendant was in fact staying in room 160 which was across the hotel from John's hotel room, almost a quarter mile away?"
    Witness: "What? No! Why would he be . . ."
    Lawyer: "Are you aware that Joe Defendant was attending a trade show at the convention center across the street that week?"
    Witness: "Well . . . ."
    Lawyer: "Are you aware that Joe Defendant left his hotel room at 7 that night to go to a trade show meet-and-greet, and was seen by over a dozen people at that meet-and-greet?"
    Witness; "Well no one told me that!"
    Lawyer: "Given that, are you certain that the room he walked out of was room 106, rather than room 160, which is much closer to where your car was parked?"
    Witness: "I'm . . . not sure. I mean, I thought it was John's room."

    Was that witness lying about what they saw? Or did they just get their interpretation wrong?

    No. No more so than that lawyer was insulting that witness.
     
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  5. James R Just this guy, you know? Staff Member

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    wegs:
    Have you followed this conversation?

    Eyewitness evidence is undoubtedly evidence. The issue is usually about how reliable it is, and that can only usually be judged by referring to independent evidence. See the court case example in the previous post, for instance.
    Not "rule out". Rather, skeptics assign appropriate weight to it, rather than pretending - as Magical Realist does - that it is reasonable to assume that it is essentially infallible.
    Nobody discards it, except when it is shown to be false by other evidence.
    Not disqualifying!

    Skeptics have merely raised reasonable questions about how accurate the pilots' observations were and how accurate their interpretations of what they saw might be.
    So you haven't really followed the discussion, then. That's a pity.
    Nobody has refused to examine it. Indeed, we have had a lot of discussion about it. It has been examined in some detail. Try actually reading through the UAP thread.
    Do you think it couldn't be a bird or a plane? If that's what you think, then join the conversation. Tell us why you think it couldn't possibly be a bird, for instance. Join the conversation regardless - tell us what you think it was, and why you think that.

    Again, nobody has said it is "easily identifiable". There'd be no need for long discussions if the thing was easily identifiable.

    The main obstacle to making a positive identification is the lack of sufficient reliable information, when it comes to the tic tac thing. It has that in common with many other UAP sightings for which we have scant evidence, even though this one might be considered better than average in terms of the quantity and quality of the evidence. Still, we haven't been able to reach any definite conclusion on what was seen, so the evidence clearly isn't good enough.
    They probably didn't see anything Not of This World. It would be astounding if they did.

    But maybe they did. I'm open to the possibility that they did. But I don't think the available evidence supports that conclusion.

    If the pilots believe that they saw something Not of this World, then I say they are rushing to a premature conclusion, because the evidence to support their conclusion just isn't there.

    Do you agree with me, or do you agree with the pilots?
    Why? What difference did it make?
     
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  7. wegs Matter and Pixie Dust Valued Senior Member

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    Could skeptics be wrong in their interpretations? I think all we can honestly go on in lieu of tangible evidence, capable of being closely examined, is our individual interpretations. So I agree, if that’s what you’re saying.
     
  8. wegs Matter and Pixie Dust Valued Senior Member

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    I’ll answer your last question for now in that it makes a difference in how the topic is perceived by skeptics. It’s not just a cult of tin foil hat wearing enthusiasts, posting off the mark YouTube videos, trying to gain followers. (To be clear, I don’t think that of you, MR. lol!

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    The government has no interest other than getting to the truth, just like skeptics. I think it helps the cause of genuinely establishing a standard as to how best to go about exploring these UAP’s. Don’t you think the government’s involvement creates more credibility around the topic, in general?
     
  9. DaveC426913 Valued Senior Member

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    Good skeptics don't make assertions about what things are; they analyze what things could be.

    If it could be a goose (because the facts don't prelcude it being a goose), then the skeptic is not prepared to say 'well this must be piloted by bug-eyed monsters'.
     
  10. Yazata Valued Senior Member

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    Yes, this particular disagreement has a long history on this board. I remember battling with Kittamaru and Bells years ago over this very point. They were insisting that personal experience was generally speaking unreliable and I was wondering how they managed to survive their daily lives.

    And I agree that the unreliability of perception arguments typically get trotted out when there's some motivation to attack an unwelcome conclusion that's based on somebody else's experience. If there's no motivation to dispute a conclusion based on somebody's observation, then their observation will most often be accepted at face value and little effort is expended to debunk it.
     
    Last edited: Nov 28, 2023
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  11. billvon Valued Senior Member

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    Of course. By definition, they are merely skeptical of another interpretation.
    Well, of course you will end up with your own individual interpretation. That's how everyone ends up. Much of the discussion here concerns how to come to that individual conclusion based on best practices - logic, physics, history of such conclusions, understanding the strengths and weaknesses of observers, understanding how our perception works.
     
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  12. wegs Matter and Pixie Dust Valued Senior Member

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    But, MR isn’t adamant about his interpretations. He doesn’t claim space aliens. From reading through the various back and forth arguments over the years on here, he rules out the mundane quicker than you might, and you rule out the extraordinary, quicker than he might. You both may share more common ground thank you think. Same for you, billvon. lol

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  13. wegs Matter and Pixie Dust Valued Senior Member

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    Unfortunately, James has responded to my thoughts relative to this, and states that he and skeptics in general don’t have any bias or motivation. “They’re not afraid” of alternative opinions, he says. We all have some bias, but when I’ve suggested that Mick West is biased, they try to debunk my theory.

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  14. Magical Realist Valued Senior Member

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    I recall a few of those debates in the past. Dave has championed the "faulty perception" argument against ufo eyewitnessess a few times. Short of getting banned again for saying it, it certainly seemed an example of convenient and ad hoc "motivated reasoning" to me.
     
    Last edited: Nov 28, 2023
  15. wegs Matter and Pixie Dust Valued Senior Member

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    What is “Yazata’s Big Lie?” James mentions this on occasion but can someone give me the “TL;DR” version?
     
  16. foghorn Valued Senior Member

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    Wegs, are you serious there? I won't have my "Mick West is biased" theory questioned or challenged.
     
  17. wegs Matter and Pixie Dust Valued Senior Member

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    Somewhat tongue-in-cheek, but somewhat serious.
     
  18. foghorn Valued Senior Member

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    I hate to say this, but I think you were a little miffed about people daring to ask for your evidence.
     
  19. wegs Matter and Pixie Dust Valued Senior Member

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    No, honestly…not “miffed,” I’m a little lazy when it comes to gathering evidence to post here. I guess that’s required on a science forum. But, even if I posted the evidence, would it change your mind on West? West doesn’t do much in the way of heavy lifting; he just sprinkles seeds of doubt. There’s nothing inspiring about that to me. But, if his opinions resonate with you, that’s fine.
     
  20. DaveC426913 Valued Senior Member

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    It must be very frustrating when people put words in other member's mouths.
    I say MR and Yazata like to eat kittens.
    What use is a good faith discussion if we all simply make shit up about our opponents?
     
  21. DaveC426913 Valued Senior Member

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    This thread's title is Yazata's Big Lie. This entire thread only eixsts because James has pulled out the references where Yazata keeps telling it.

    But what do you expect from someone who likes to eat kittens?
     
  22. wegs Matter and Pixie Dust Valued Senior Member

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    I’m not following. What I posted there, is true.
     
  23. wegs Matter and Pixie Dust Valued Senior Member

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    Oh. Well, Yazata’s not off the mark with that assumption, but not all skeptics are alike. Some are willing to admit they’re biased. Some are willing to put aside their bias, for the greater good. He is likely talking about those who are unwilling to give up their biases.
     

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