Skeptics have already made their minds up about UAPs

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

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

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    You didn't actually answer the question I asked you. Do you want me to moderate you - and myself - more than I currently do, or are you happy to continue on with business as usual? Please try to concentrate and answer the question I asked you.
     
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  3. James R Just this guy, you know? Staff Member

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    Stop clowning, Magical Realist. Contradicting yourself in almost consecutive posts makes you look like a fool.
     
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  5. James R Just this guy, you know? Staff Member

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    Responding to odds and ends...
    Why do corporations or governments want to fund scientific research and pay scientists' salaries? Think about it.
    There's a hint for you. Now, brain on. Think more generally. Corporations want to pay scientists to work out how to make better leaf blowers, perhaps. That suggests that scientists are considered valuable for something. But what?

    Recall that your previous contention was that scientists are stuck in ruts of dogma and group think. Better leaf blowers are never going to get invented in that kind of environment, are they? And yet, leaf blower technology has advanced. There must be a reason for it. People are getting paid to advance leaf blower technology. People who get paid to advance leaf blower technology are considered worth paying. Why? It's not too hard to work out.

    Moving on...
    Some are human technology, because some turn out to be human aircraft. Others are not technology at all, because some turn out to be birds or the planet Venus. Others might be superadvanced aquatic alien technology, but there's no good evidence for that yet.
    Clearly this does not apply to the flight behaviour of the planet Venus, for instance, or of regular birds, both of which have been reported many times as UAPs.

    Meanwhile, no reported UAP has ever been shown to be explainable only with reference to antigravity or anti-inertial capabilities.
    Yes. The planet Venus certainly does that.
    Maybe they are ping pong balls?
    Lots of things seem to be what they are not.
    Birds and the planet Venus certainly aren't jet propelled. They do both show heat exhaust, however.

    How confident are you that heat exhaust is always detectable?
    The planet Venus is totally silent (when observed from your backyard). Birds at a distance can appear to be totally silent. So, for that matter, can jet planes.
    Some are the planet Venus. Some are birds. Some are misidentified human aircraft. Some are misidentified weather phenomena. Some are spurious radar glitches. And so on and so forth.

    Meanwhile not one has ever been identified as an alien spaceship.
     
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  7. James R Just this guy, you know? Staff Member

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    wegs:
    What is Mick West dogmatic about?

    Dogmatic (a.): inclined to lay down principles as undeniably true.

    What principles does Mick West insist are undeniably true?
    I have never once heard Mick West criticising the notion that space aliens exist. The general question of whether space aliens exist is not relevant to what he does - at least not until such time as space aliens become the most reasonable explanation for some UAP or other.
    The tic tac is unidentified. That doesn't necessarily mean it is unidentifiable.

    What we can say about it is that what we know about the tic tac is not inconsistent with it being a bird flying over the ocean, as birds often do.
     
  8. Yazata Valued Senior Member

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    Yes, I watched it live and posted about it at the time.

    I agree that MR got ahead of himself there. I'd prefer to put it this way, "If they are technology and if they performed as described, then they would seem to be technology beyond current human capabilities". I think that probably captures MR's perfectly valid point.

    They certainly seem to me to battle tooth-and-claw against the obvious modus ponens implication in the sentence above. Hence the sighting must not be conceived of as technology (birds! Venus!) or the descriptions of their performance must be way off. Presumably the "skeptics" must have some motivation for making those kind of rhetorical moves. To say nothing of all the insult, sarcasm and ridicule of anyone who fails to make the move with them.

    I have fewer expectations about NASA, I guess. For one thing, they are actually proud of the fact that they don't have access to classified reports. They argue that makes it possible to share their findings with the public and that it makes academic and international cooperation easier. That's all true.

    The problem is that the US military gives all military UFO/UAP reports security classifications. Just try getting pilot sighting reports by FOIA. If they are released at all, then all of the descriptions of what was seen are redacted. They flat out refuse to release any video, citing its security classification.

    I wouldn't expect most foreign governments to be any more forthcoming with their best sightings.

    The real value of the NASA work probably lies in their attempt to define more "calibrated" data and in their attempts to make that data more amenable to AI big-data analysis.
     
    Last edited: Sep 11, 2023
  9. DaveC426913 Valued Senior Member

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    Yazata has used the word "must" three times in as many sentences.

    I'd be very curious to see reference to a single instance of any skeptic saying that some sighting "must" be something.

    In fact, as it stands, I calculate that Yazata has invoked the term "must" at least ̶f̶i̶v̶e̶, ̶t̶w̶o̶ ̶t̶h̶o̶u̶s̶a̶n̶d̶ one hundred thousand times more often than any skeptic. World's tallest strawman.

    Yazata's incendiary "Big Lie" is the singular cause of this very thread being extracted from more constructive content. Which is perfectly fine. This thread stands as the de facto Cesspool for the UFO forum, so it's a perfectly appropriate place for such.
     
    Last edited: Sep 11, 2023
  10. Yazata Valued Senior Member

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    My impression is that Mick is trying to deny the antecedent in this modus ponens: 'If these sightings are actually technology, and if they really behaved as described, then they would seem to be technology well beyond current human capabilities.' So his arguments all seem to have the goal of arguing that what was observed wasn't technology, or else that it didn't actually behave as described. My expectation is that he does that precisely because he doesn't want to lend the implication any credence.

    I don't think that he's a villain either. What he's doing is probably valuable.

    It's valuable to keep in mind that possible explanations exist besides the most exotic ones. Even if the less exotic explanations are largely speculative and aren't entirely consistent with the descriptions of the sightings.

    I strongly and emphatically agree that the possibility that the 'tic-tac' was something extraordinary shouldn't be dismissed with insult, ridicule and sneers. Certainly if the observer reports are taken at face value, then that would seem to be the most likely possibility in my opinion. But it's still just a possibility.

    Bottom line is that we just don't know at this point.
     
    Last edited: Sep 11, 2023
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  11. Magical Realist Valued Senior Member

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    I can't sit thru a 4 hr youtube video without turning into a pumpkin. I DID read about the AARO's slide presentation to them by director Sean Kirkpatrick. Very interesting data presented about metallic spheres. I encourage you to review that. It's basically an admission of what I've been saying all along: at least some uaps are some sort of unknown technology.

     
    Last edited: Sep 11, 2023
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  12. Magical Realist Valued Senior Member

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    You seem to be saying that the purpose of the scientific method is to falsify or debunk supernatural claims. That seems an awful waste of time. It should result in plausible explanations based on evidence. To that extent it is useful. But as I said, it isn't the sole arbiter of truth. Logic and intuition have been doin it for ages before the SM came along.
     
    Last edited: Sep 11, 2023
  13. foghorn Valued Senior Member

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    Dave, you have matched yourself against a giant here:
    So why do it here:
    Big head goes with the big lie.
     
  14. DaveC426913 Valued Senior Member

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    It's not.
     
  15. Magical Realist Valued Senior Member

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    Even you speculated that the metallic sphere in the video is some kind of domed drone. Hence some sort of exotic technology. Are you sticking to that or have you changed your mind?
     
    Last edited: Sep 11, 2023
  16. C C Consular Corps - "the backbone of diplomacy" Valued Senior Member

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    Unknown or "unidentified" technology is actually a more conservative or accurate adjective with regard to epistemic status than the "extraordinary technology" label appended by some opinion pieces in journalism.

    (June 2, 2023) US military has been observing ‘metallic orbs’ making extraordinary ‘maneuvers’
    https://thehill.com/opinion/nationa...metallic-orbs-making-extraordinary-maneuvers/

    EXCERPT: To be sure, rigorous scientific analysis may ultimately identify a prosaic explanation for such observations. In the meantime, however, such “metallic orbs” are prima facie evidence of extraordinary technology. After all, how would spheres, lacking wings or apparent forms of propulsion, execute “maneuvers” of any kind?

    Mick West is apparently siding with the view that the earlier 2016 Mosul orb was a metal-coated mylar balloon. In the photos, I've got to admit that the only thing it seems to be missing is the lines of webbing around it (due to limits of resolution).

    https://twitter.com/MickWest/status/1617845809093152770

    https://twitter.com/MickWest/status/1666477231483531265

    Was 'Mosul Orb' UFO just a stray US spy balloon?
    https://www.thenationalnews.com/world/2023/02/16/was-mosul-orb-ufo-just-a-stray-us-spy-balloon/

    EXCERPTS: There have been at least three incidents of US aerostats coming loose and drifting towards Iran, according to the trove of leaked military and diplomatic cables related to the war on terrorism and US foreign relations that was published by WikiLeaks in 2010. [...] While the image appears mystifying, the orb in question is not dissimilar to the Winch Aerostat Small Platform, a spherical surveillance balloon used by the US military — and possibly the Iraqi army — at the time.

    DoD customer places order for Drone Aviation's Winch Aerostat Small Platform
    https://www.auvsi.org/industry-news...drone-aviations-winch-aerostat-small-platform

    VIDEO LINK: Spy balloons are being tested
     
  17. DaveC426913 Valued Senior Member

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    1. What does my fanciful hypothesis have to do with the debate?
    2. Regardless, a speculation is not an admission.
    3. And it is questionable if they speculated.
    4. A drone (not exotic) with a salad bowl hat (also not exotic) does not constitute exotic technology. Nor are either of them "unknown". At least, not to me. Maybe it is to you.
    MR, it is often hard to believe you are arguing this sincerely. In post 68 you made a pretty bold claim about the 4 hour debate and some 'admission'. When that claim of yours was challenged, you have responded (p72) with bizarre idea about my hypothetical speculation that's both disingenuous and has zero to do with the debate being referred to.

    Do you want to try again?
     
    Last edited: Sep 11, 2023
  18. James R Just this guy, you know? Staff Member

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    Quotes or it didn't happen.

    Please give us the part(s) where NASA or the military says that "at least some uaps are some sort of unknown technology".

    Or, stop making false claims.
     
  19. billvon Valued Senior Member

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    Nope. It is to arrive at the truth. In fact, if a scientific investigation determines the truth behind a supernatural claim, it (by definition) is no longer supernatural.

    We used to think lightning (and plague, and thunder, and earthquakes, and tides) were supernatural. Then we added science and demonstrated that they were not. That, believe it or not, is progress.
    No. It should result in ACCURATE explanations based on science. No one - not me, not science, not the public - cares if you find it plausible or not.
    . . . and came up with Noah's Ark, and the Salem witch trials, and the Spanish inquisition, and the Crusades. Best we leave those in the past IMO.
     
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  20. James R Just this guy, you know? Staff Member

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    Yazata:

    As usual, you're ignoring my posts and pretending I haven't raised points that you need to address. That's not a good look for you. It smacks of a lack of intellectual honesty on your part. You'll probably ignore this post, too, but just saying.
    There's no real battle against that.

    There are two massive hurdles you need to overcome before we get to deny your modus ponens. You need (a) to verify that at least some UAPS are "actually technology", and (b) that "they really behaved as described".

    The problem you have is that for all the UAPS where you can establish (a), you fail to establish (b), except in cases where the described behaviors were consistent with mundane things such as jet planes or balloons. Moreover, a great many UAP reports fail to establish (b), regardless of what the UAP was, because sufficient evidence is not available or provided.

    Perhaps if you could bring a few cases where you can establish both (a) and (b) we will be able to test your assertion as to whether the skeptics will accept the logical conclusion or not. Until then, you're just casting aspersions into the wind.
    A sighting is either consistent with birds (or Venus) or it isn't. This is not a matter of your personal preferences or wishful thinking - or any of those that you imagine skeptics might have. It is a matter of establishing sufficient relevant facts to show consistency or inconsistency. If all the available data is consistent with the UAP being a bird, then the UAP could be a bird. If the data is consistent both with the UAP being a bird and it being an alien spaceship, then the UAP could be a bird or an alien spaceship; in that case the case remains unsolved until new data comes along to exclude the bird or the alien spaceship hypothesis.

    We are all free to "conceive of" many possible explanations for a UAP sighting. Only the evidence can help us to decide which of these conceptions is consistent with reality, if any.
    The skeptics have as much motivation as you do for making rhetorical moves. We can all speculate on the motivations of the other, and the innermost thoughts and feelings of people who make claims about UAPs, from either side of the fence. Doing that doesn't get us much further towards determining what the damn things are, though.
    I think you're upset because your own sub-par rationalisations about the whole UAP thing have been pointed out. Rather than adjusting your position and adopting a more reasonable stance, you're casting around for reasons to blame the messengers, even if that involves inventing hidden motives, conspiracies or Big Lies, based on nothing but your own wishful thinking. It's not a good look for you. But rather than trying to justify your position or trying to dig yourself out of the hole you've dug for yourself, it seems you'd rather pretend not to hear the reasonable criticisms of your stance and methodology. Also not a good look.

    Is this how the most intelligent and reasonable member of sciforums is supposed to set the example for the rest of us plebians?
    Things never get far enough for that to become an issue that matters for Mick (or any of us), even if it was real. See above.
    Why do his goals matter to you?

    Suppose that we accept, as you assert (completely without evidence, I might add) that Mick's goal is to argue that no UAPs are technology. Suppose that Mick then advances an argument that a particular UAP is not technology. Does his goal matter, then? Either the evidence is consistent with that particular UAP being technology or it isn't. If Mick's argument shows that the evidence is consistent with it not being technology, and Mick's argument is valid, then the claim is established, regardless of whatever motives Mick might or might not have.

    Similarly, either the UAP really behaved in a super-human, extraordinary way (as described), or it didn't. Whether it did or it didn't can only be determined by examining the evidence. You can subject Mick West to a lie detector test or a year of psychoanalysis to try to understand his motives and it won't get you an inch closer to solving the problem of whether the UAP actually behaved as described or not.

    I think that the only reason you want to guess at Mick's motives, and pretend that they are relevant, is that you don't want anybody looking too closely at the strength of the data, the evidence. And yet, ultimately, only the evidence really matters, not Mick's goals (which you are just guessing at, anyway).
    The implication is totally unimportant and insignificant, until such time as the premises of your modus ponens are established.

    Sure, you'll have a valid point if you ever manage to show for a particular UAP that (a) it was technology and (b) it actually behaved in a way that is beyond the capabilities of any human technology and (c) that Mick West nevertheless denies that the UAP can only be put down to a non-human technology.

    I think you should concentrate on trying to establish (a) and (b), then you can worry about (c) if it ever actually becomes an live issue. Until then, all this discussion of the motives you guess Mick might have is pretty much just idle speculation.
     
    Last edited: Sep 13, 2023
  21. James R Just this guy, you know? Staff Member

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    How does one ever debunk a supernatural claim?

    Consider thunder, for example. Some say that thunder is the God Thor banging his magic hammer in the sky. Before science, no doubt this was an explanation that many people accepted as valid. Some other, more careful and rational people, might have just said something along the lines of "I don't know what causes thunder. Maybe it's Thor, as some claim, or maybe there's another explanation".

    Then - lo and behold - along comes science, with the hypothesis that thunder is a shock wave caused by the rapid expansion of superheated air in the wake of an electrical discharge in the sky (with a lot more theoretical detail, of course). This hypothesis is supported by other evidences, including experiments involving such things as electrical discharges, sound waves, rapid heating of gases etc. under laboratory conditions.

    What has the science shown? The scientific theory of thunder does not require Thor. Has science disproved the hypothesis that thunder is caused by Thor? No, it has not. How could it disprove the supernatural explanation? The supernatural explanation, involving magical gods and magical hammers, can't be disproven. However, science has debunked the claim that thunder requires Thor and his hammer to explain it, by showing that, in fact, well-understood natural processes are sufficient in themselves to explain thunder, without invoking Thor and his hammer.

    The debunking of the Thor/hammer hypothesis of thunder was not something scientists explicitly set out to do. Rather, the debunking was a side-effect of the scientific process doing what the scientific process does.

    On the flip-side, we might ask: what evidence did the Vikings have in the first place to show that Thor and his hammer were ever responsible for thunder?

    And what would science require to accept the hammer theory of thunder as part of the scientific canon? A minimal standard of proof would require sufficient evidence that a God called Thor actually exists as a real thing, that this God has a real (magical) hammer and that the magical hammer really can cause thunder. Of course, science would want more than this minimum. It would want to investigate how the hammer is able to cause thunder, for instance, but that would be a secondary question.

    The scientific theory of thunder is generally considered superior to the Thor theory because we have lots of evidence for things like electrical charge buildup in clouds, electric discharge, the heating of gases by electric discharge, the production of sound using electrical discharges etc. etc. but zero (independent) evidence that a god called Thor is real, that his magic hammer is real, that it can cause thunder etc. etc. [It's no good arguing in circles that Thor must be real because without him thunder couldn't exist; that would just be begging the question.]

    In terms of plausibility, try Occam's razor. Which explanation "multiplies entities" to the lesser extent: the one involving the actions of known substances and verified natural things, or the one invoking unverifiable supernatural beings and supernatural magic?
     
    Last edited: Sep 12, 2023
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  22. Magical Realist Valued Senior Member

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    It's a 1-4 meter diameter metallic sphere that makes "interesting maneuvers", reaches heights of 30,000 ft, and can reach speeds of mach 2, If that isn't technology then what is it? The planet Venus?

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    Last edited: Sep 12, 2023
  23. Pinball1970 Valued Senior Member

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    I don't know. What did you think meteor was Before it was explained?
     

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