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Why is the Believability Threshold Different for UFOs?

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posted on Oct, 5 2005 @ 08:00 AM
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Has anyone wondered why the level of proof for many folks to believe in UFOs is so much higher than for other postulations? You can say "extraordinary claims require extraordinary evidence," but don't we HAVE extraordinary evidence.

Let's say, for example, I make the extraordinary claim that there are dinosaurs living in Montana. To back up this claim, I present TENS OF THOUSANDS of eyewitnesses that vehemently claim to have seen these dinosaurs. These eyewitnesses are from all walks of life, and include many"reliable" witnesses like doctors, lawyers, police officers, and military and government personnel. In addition, I present HUNDREDS of photgraphs and videos showing what appear to be dinosaurs running through the fields and forests of Montana. I even manage to find some unexplained footprints and droppings to add to the evidence collection.

Given the above, wouldn't the scientific community HAVE to investigate this? Wouldn't the weight of evidence, even if it were JUST the eyewitness accounts, be more than enough to justify having some field researchers go out and at least take a look?

In light of the sheer volume of UFO reports, and the public's interest in the topic, how can the scientific community justify NOT at least designing some independent experiments to test the validity of the UFO claims? Given Fermi's Paradox and other factors, this lack of study is VERY unscientific, yet the science community has a stigma on this topic that tries to turn this around and makes the topic itself seem somehow "unscientific."

What is wrong with these people?

How hard would it be to design an experiment to test for the existance of UFOs? Of course no such experiment could provide definitive proof without actually capturing a craft. But a series of skyward-pointing wide angle video cameras, placed in areas of high UFO reports, with infrared capabilities, and perhaps backed up by a radar station, might be enough to capture some UFO data. This video could be analyzed by UNBIASED personnel in fields such as astronomy, aerospace engineering, meteorology, to try to rule out "mundane" explanations. Government sources like the FAA, NORAD, and others could be used to rule out aircraft in the area of the observed phenomena.

It just doesn't seem that hard, and looks like it is a straightforward, scientifically-valid experiment...



[edit on 5-10-2005 by MrMorden]




posted on Oct, 5 2005 @ 08:28 AM
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Originally posted by MrMorden
Has anyone wondered why the level of proof for many folks to believe in UFOs is so much higher than for other postulations? You can say "extraordinary claims require extraordinary evidence," but don't we HAVE extraordinary evidence.


Actually, it isn't. May I present for your attention the case of the Giant Squid: seawifs.gsfc.nasa.gov...

Long considerered mythical, a lot of PHYSICAL evidence (consistant physical evidence) showed up that came to be identified as "giant squid." This included beaks and tentacles -- AND carcasses.

The physical evidence showed a particular DNA type, and the size substantiated that they came from a very large creature. However, it was not substantiated until researchers came up with photos and videos and a large dead squid.

If you follow the UFO "evidence" chain, you'll see that there's no agreement on what "aliens" look like, where they come from, what they wear, how they speak to us, and their "message" (which varies culturally according to the person delivering the message.)

It's inconsistant evidence.


Let's say, for example, I make the extraordinary claim that there are dinosaurs living in Montana. To back up this claim, I present TENS OF THOUSANDS of eyewitnesses that vehemently claim to have seen these dinosaurs.

And millions of people saw David Blaine make the Statue of Liberty disappear. Visual sightings don't mean a thing, alas.

I even manage to find some unexplained footprints and droppings to add to the evidence collection.


I think if you'll hunt down these "physical evidences" you'll find that they all "mysteriously disappear" or the references go silent.



Given the above, wouldn't the scientific community HAVE to investigate this? Wouldn't the weight of evidence, even if it were JUST the eyewitness accounts, be more than enough to justify having some field researchers go out and at least take a look?


In fact, they have. One of the professors here at my university investigated the Aurora UFO sight and came back with an "unknown metal." UFO groups made a big deal of it. When the "unknown metal" turned out to be roofing tin that had been in a fire, the UFO groups did nothing with the report.

No "Men in Black" stole his material. He wasn't threatened in any way. He did an honest survey of the site and was honestly excited about the find. His report was honest, too.


How hard would it be to design an experiment to test for the existance of UFOs? Of course no such experiment could provide definitive proof without actually capturing a craft. But a series of skyward-pointing wide angle video cameras, placed in areas of high UFO reports, with infrared capabilities, and perhaps backed up by a radar station, might be enough to capture some UFO data.


You think this hasn't been done, when in fact it HAS been done and is continually being done. There's a body of scientists who photograph the sky every night, looking for anomalies. Over the course of a year, this group of scientists takes billions of photographs and spends billions of hours studying them and looking at the sky.

They're called astronomers.

They have found a lot of anomalies (including stuff that they report before official sources report them.) Hobbyist astronomers are usually the ones who find comets as well as some Near Earth Objects before the university astronomers do -- though that group usually finds the most comets and anomalies.

Now, ask yourself this: In all the centuries of watching the sky, why haven't any astronomers come up with ship photos? Even just one? You can't argue "government coverup" because the hobbyist astronomers aren't influenced by government. There are astronomers in every country of the world, too.

So ask yourself why all those professional and amateur photographers of the sky haven't come up with a single UFO picture.



[edit on 5-10-2005 by Byrd]



posted on Oct, 5 2005 @ 08:57 AM
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MrMorden

How hard would it be to design an experiment to test for the existance of UFOs? Of course no such experiment could provide definitive proof without actually capturing a craft. But a series of skyward-pointing wide angle video cameras, placed in areas of high UFO reports, with infrared capabilities, and perhaps backed up by a radar station, might be enough to capture some UFO data. This video could be analyzed by UNBIASED personnel in fields such as astronomy, aerospace engineering, meteorology, to try to rule out "mundane" explanations. Government sources like the FAA, NORAD, and others could be used to rule out aircraft in the area of the observed phenomena.

It just doesn't seem that hard, and looks like it is a straightforward, scientifically-valid experiment...



Scientist have done exactly this , Project Hessdalen, and they found that Unknown Luminous Objects are real and can be measured Scientifically.

www.itacomm.net...

www.hessdalen.org...


[edit on 5-10-2005 by lost_shaman]



posted on Oct, 5 2005 @ 09:06 AM
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We may be talking about two different things here. I certainly believe there are UFOs. I have yet to see anything in print, on line, or elsewhere, that would make me conclude with any degree of certainty that they are extraterrestrial in origin. The "U" in UFO is a subjective question. Just because they're "U" to to some doesn't mean they're "U" to all. And for that matter even if they're "U" to everyone doesn't mean they're extraterrestrial by nature. Just maybe no one knows.



posted on Oct, 5 2005 @ 09:14 AM
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Hello




Originally posted by Byrd
So ask yourself why all those professional and amateur photographers of the sky haven't come up with a single UFO picture.


That's wrong. Lots of astronomers have seen and reported ufos during the last two centuries, including famous astronomers like Clyde W. Tombough, the discoverer of planet Pluto, Charles Messier, Herschell. However, only a few have been able to photograph them, but this is quite normal considering the brevity and suddenness of the majority of ufo appearance, and also the fact that astronomers are mainly focused on a specific part of the sky. However, a few have been able to take some photos. In Zacatecas, Mexico, Jose Bonilla, chief astronomer, photographed a fleet of 400+ disks 200,000 km out, flying towards the Moon in 1883. When i find time, i will make a complete thread about sightings by astronomers and scientists.



Originally posted by MrMorden
Has anyone wondered why the level of proof for many folks to believe in UFOs is so much higher than for other postulations? You can say "extraordinary claims require extraordinary evidence," but don't we HAVE extraordinary evidence.


That's also wrong. We have not only extraordinary evidence, but PROOFS of Unidentified Flying Objects above Earth, with some NASA footage. I'm gonna also make a post soon on a particular footage which is "undebunkable".

[edit on 5/10/2005 by Musclor]



posted on Oct, 5 2005 @ 09:15 AM
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I think too that the reasons for the burden of proof being so high in terms of proving the existence of UFOs and aliens has to do with our inability to conduct meaningful, overt research about them, as well as the implications of proving their existence.

By "overt research" I mean that it is difficult in the extreme for us to actively pursue an investigation of UFOs in the same way we would conduct an investigation into the possibility of dinosaurs surviving in the wilds of Montana. After all, we can go to Montana and stake out areas in which people have reported dinosaur sightings and actively seek them out for study if we wanted to. But we are unable to do the same with UFOs. We are instead forced to wait for them to come to us, which makes them far more difficult to study in any degree of significant detail. Because of this, tangible evidence from credible sources is difficult to come by, which makes proving their existence extremely difficult. When you combine this with the large number of deliberate hoaxes, the burden of proof naturally becomes significantly higher than it would for phenomena which we are able to study more directly.

Another reason for the believability threshold being so high has, I believe, to do with the enormous implications of proving the existence of UFOs and aliens. If phenomena such as Bigfoot or the Loch Ness Monster were proved to be genuine, they would be counted absolutely amazing scientific discoveries. But proof of intelligent, extraterrestrial creatures who have been actively visiting the Earth for decades would be nothing short of earth-shattering news. It would change the way in which we view not only the cosmos, but our role within it. It would call into question our religious beliefs, our assumptions regarding ourselves and would generate a broad range of fears and hopes in people all across the globe. For these reasons, the believability threshold is naturally set higher than less significant phenomena. Because if people are forced to concede that UFOs and aliens are real, then everything changes and it can never change back.



posted on Oct, 5 2005 @ 10:27 AM
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I'll give you the real reason, but you probably won't like it.

Perception and belief do not function in the manner you appear to believe.

People do not "see something, and then believe it" but rather quite the opposite. It is believing that allows them to see it. Let's work with a cute, harmless example. Let's take a stage magician. But, let's pretend for a moment, that our stage magician is actually a real magician...and can genuinely work magic...cause objects to materialze, dematerialize, pass trough one another, anything you'd like.

So, our real, genuine magician goes up on stage and explaisn that the audience is in for a treat, because today he is going to show them not a sleight of hand, but a real, true and genuine working of magic. Then, with no fanfare, he causes a lion to be teleported from the local zoo into stage.

Would anyone believe it wasn't a stage trick?

No. Of course they wouldn't.

And...no matter how much he explained and demonstrated...no matter how many witnesses he brought in, no matter that the local zoo was missing a lion...nobody in the audience would ever believe that it was anything but clever stage trick.

Would they?



posted on Oct, 5 2005 @ 11:58 AM
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I think that the phenomenon is just too elusive to apply the scientific method to it. But over the last 50 years it is clear that something is going on. I think regardless of the cause it is worth scientific study. As others have stated though, even if something happened that was definitive proof of the existence of extraterrestrials, it would still take a long time to be accepted by everyone. I look back at history to see how long it took to accept other Earth shattering revelations, like learning that everything did not revolve around the Earth. This is no different, and once proven would still take a generation or two to be accepted.



Originally posted by lost_shaman
Scientist have done exactly this , Project Hessdalen, and they found that Unknown Luminous Objects are real and can be measured Scientifically.

www.itacomm.net...

www.hessdalen.org...

Those are excellent links lost. I had not heard of this study before, and will read more later.



posted on Oct, 5 2005 @ 11:58 AM
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It's inconsistant evidence.


I disagree there. While there are some varied accounts, the commonly pictured "grey" is pretty consistent....as is a saucer-shaped craft.



So ask yourself why all those professional and amateur photographers of the sky haven't come up with a single UFO picture.


I'm puzzled by this one. There are thousands of UFO photos and films, some are even much clearer than fuzzy blurs, etc. Some even mystified government panels, such as the Trementon film, etc. These photos and films have been taken by everyone from amateur photographers to gun camera footage, even NASA, military personnel, etc.



have yet to see anything in print, on line, or elsewhere, that would make me conclude with any degree of certainty that they are extraterrestrial in origin


Video of crafts that defy capabilities of any known craft or technology. If it was a military project, then why, decades later, is it not now in the private sector or even in military use? Credible eyewitness testimony, from pilots, military personnel, etc. (trained aerial pbservers), who see crafts perform such maneuvers, under intelligent control, i.e. following, evading, etc. This is the evidence for an extraterrestrial origin.

Then we have the abduction cases. While it is difficult to believe many, the sheer volume is astounding. Then, you have cases like the Hill Case, which is simply amazing.

Furthermore, we then have the crash cases, such as Roswell, where military officers in charge of the world's most advanced weapon of the time (the A-Bomb), go on record saying that the debris simply is not of this world.

The evidence is there. But the conclusion that evidence leads to is being ignored...just like that of the giant squid, Troy, the ceolocanth, etc. Many scientists will say "more, more, more", right up until the point where they shake hands with an alien. And even then, they'll probably be looking for the seams in the "costume"...



posted on Oct, 5 2005 @ 12:13 PM
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Originally posted by Gazrok

Video of crafts that defy capabilities of any known craft or technology. If it was a military project, then why, decades later, is it not now in the private sector or even in military use?

Maybe because there's a much larger issue at stake? I could speculate, but that's all it would be.


Credible eyewitness testimony, from pilots, military personnel, etc. (trained aerial pbservers), who see crafts perform such maneuvers, under intelligent control, i.e. following, evading, etc. This is the evidence for an extraterrestrial origin.

Or evidence of a super-secret advanced technology originating here on Earth


Then we have the abduction cases. While it is difficult to believe many, the sheer volume is astounding. Then, you have cases like the Hill Case, which is simply amazing.

Amazing. But true?


Furthermore, we then have the crash cases, such as Roswell, where military officers in charge of the world's most advanced weapon of the time (the A-Bomb), go on record saying that the debris simply is not of this world.

As far as they knew at the time.


Many scientists will say "more, more, more", right up until the point where they shake hands with an alien. And even then, they'll probably be looking for the seams in the "costume"...


You're absolutely right. And I struggle with this. No matter WHAT the answer turns out to be, it's pretty fantastic, and I don't necessarily mean in a good way. I enjoy your contributions and respect the work you've put into this topic. I'm just not 'there' yet.



posted on Oct, 5 2005 @ 12:42 PM
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Aborted post. Man I'm tired today. -_-

[edit on 5-10-2005 by Drexon]



posted on Oct, 5 2005 @ 02:19 PM
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Maybe because there's a much larger issue at stake? I could speculate, but that's all it would be.


I simply can't imagine ANY kind of project capable of such feats that would STILL not be production after 50 years....(or more in some cases). Likewise, if we had top secret materials like that described at Roswell, we'd certainly be USING such material on planes, tanks, etc. now more than half a century later.

This is the main reason the "it's all military test stuff" theory doesn't fly. It not only defies logic, but it defies the very way the military functions.



posted on Oct, 5 2005 @ 02:26 PM
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Originally posted by Gazrok

This is the main reason the "it's all military test stuff" theory doesn't fly. It not only defies logic, but it defies the very way the military functions.


...and therein lies my dilemma. I don't percieve a scenario that doesn't defy logic. No matter what the real answer is, either it requires a level of complicity and secrecy totally unprecedented in all of human experience, or nobody really knows.



posted on Oct, 5 2005 @ 02:32 PM
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Or a combination of the two...maintained secrecy because nobody really knows exactly what the heck is going on....



posted on Oct, 5 2005 @ 02:36 PM
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Originally posted by Gazrok
Or a combination of the two...maintained secrecy because nobody really knows exactly what the heck is going on....


...which in and of itself would seem to defy logic...
(fun, isn't it?)



posted on Oct, 5 2005 @ 11:35 PM
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"either it requires a level of complicity and secrecy totally unprecedented in all of human experience, or nobody really knows." == yeahright

Exactly. Apply Occam's razor. Nobody really knows. But you have left out some other possibilities.



posted on Oct, 6 2005 @ 02:10 AM
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Originally posted by Jeremiah25
I think too that the reasons for the burden of proof being so high in terms of proving the existence of UFOs and aliens has to do with ................... the implications of proving their existence.


Another reason for the believability threshold being so high has, I believe, to do with the enormous implications of proving the existence of UFOs and aliens.


I couldn't agree more. As someone else posted earlier, they'd have to come down and shake hands.

In the very short time I have been interested in the subject, I am increasingly despairing of any hope for a "universal revelation" either by the aliens themselves, or those who are supposedly in league with them. In order for there to be a day to day mass interest in UFO's and Aliens, people would need incontrovertible evidence. Something that changes the opinions of those who ridicule the subject.

Looking around me, my family, my work collegues, friends etc, even bringing up the subject of UFO's/Aliens is so difficult. People in general do not have the time for it. We are too busy "putting food on the table". I reckon even I spend far too much time on the web researching, for very little in return, when I could be spending the same time with those important to me, who don't know/care.

In my more pragmatic moments, I ask myself; what really, although the subject is fascinating, does it contribute to my daily life other than titillation? And then, perhaps even more concerning for me, if it were true, i.e. that aliens not only exist but fly here frequently, what is the agenda?

My primary drive now in life is to look after my young children. If it were only myself to look after, things would be different. Call me a coward, but personally I could not bear raising them in what would surely be a totally disrupted, unstable world, reeling from the shock of alien reality. It would take a VERY long time for things to settle down.

Of course it could be that very soon (my lifetime) all will be revealed. However I do reckon that we are all too woven into the daily business of making a living, our hobbies, our loves, our passions, our religions, we are too busy to care. Or maybe even truer, most of us probably don't want to know. Strange isn't it?



posted on Oct, 6 2005 @ 06:59 AM
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MrMorden


We have to include the conscious intentions of the visiting races and the specific affect they intend to make on us.

If we do not know what the evidence proves of them, then it may as well prove anything. Too much too soon only continues to serve disinformation. It is better for us not to believe they are real, than to have "irrefutable evidence" to prove that all the wrong things are right. As long as we keep wondering, we can keep open to what is actual and keep learning.

The forces on Earth who are against the aliens being here, cannot hide the aliens. They can only disguise the evidence of them, both in front of our own eyes and in our minds. This has been easily successful ever since the aliens actively began to try to open communication with our race- not because the aliens don't give us evidence, and not because Earth forces are great magicians, but because of the natural willing ignorance and gullibility of the populace.

Evidence is under protection by the alien races. They are trying to mete it out to us at the rate we can get it right despite whatever we are being taught on Earth to believe about it. There is already sufficient evidence through our history, but most of us deny it all. We disregard it because we are told to believe that it is something else. Earth forces create and maintain a great deal of confusion with false claims and evidence made to be discredited, in order to discredit the true evidence as well.

The alien races can and do prove themselves completely openly to people, but when those people know too much and speak out, they are silenced by Earth forces in one way or another. The more knowledge they have, and of particular kinds of things, the more dangerous may be their silencing.

The message from Earth forces to the alien races is: Show up in the sky and we will slander your reputation to the people and frame you for crimes so the people will never trust you.

Also: Meet with individual humans who dare teach others about you, and we will take care of those individuals in direct response to their threat to national security.

Also: We are the power of Earth and if you want to come here, you have to serve us and our agenda. We don't want your help with our world problems, we like the way we are running Earth already.






[edit on 10/6/2005 by EarthSister]



posted on Oct, 6 2005 @ 08:24 AM
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For the debunkers..............explain the Whitehouse getting buzzed by numerous UFO's twice in one week in 1954.

[edit on 6-10-2005 by ferretman]



posted on Oct, 6 2005 @ 10:10 AM
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Originally posted by nightwing
"either it requires a level of complicity and secrecy totally unprecedented in all of human experience, or nobody really knows." == yeahright
Exactly. Apply Occam's razor. Nobody really knows. But you have left out some other possibilities.

I have? Either the "powers that be" know [Earth based tech or ET - either requires a big-time level of complicity and secrecy] or no one does. [no offense meant to those that claim contact]. I'd be interested to know what other possibilities there are.



originally posted by ferretman
For the debunkers...explain the White House buzzed by UFOs

I probably shouldn't respond to this because I don't consider myself a 'debunker', but rather than disputing that this occurred (which I can't) I'll just say that there's nothing about that event which compels an ET explanation to me.

A few posts back, LordBucket had a little thought experiment which required a momentary acceptance of real magic and what it would take to convince someone of its existence. And I think that's a good analogy. ETs presence on Earth is as likely as teleporting a lion from the zoo. I can't prove it hasn't been done, but I'm not convinced it could be, or has been. And I've seen some stage magicians in Vegas do some phenomenal things.

Great discussion, by the way.




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