It looks like you're using an Ad Blocker.

Please white-list or disable AboveTopSecret.com in your ad-blocking tool.

Thank you.

 

Some features of ATS will be disabled while you continue to use an ad-blocker.

 

The Skeptics Dilemma

page: 12
16
<< 9  10  11    13  14  15 >>

log in

join
share:

posted on Mar, 18 2009 @ 08:24 AM
link   
I'm still reading this thread, but wanted to reply to this one point before I forget it:

reply to post by godless
 
It's not the skeptic's role to prove your illogical assumptions wrong but rather your role to convince him thru a mountain of irrefutable proof that you are right.

I believe the point of a discussion board is discussion. Denying ignorance can be done with facts but is most usually done with "exploration" and "shared perspective" and "mutual education", of which facts sometimes find their way in there somewhere (usually against the will of most involved LOL).

The idea that one must 'prove someone else's illogical assumptions wrong' is as polarized as the idea that one must 'convince others through a mountain [or in fact any] 'irrefutable' proof'. There is no discussion happening under either of those circumstances; that is almost the definition of moving something from discussion or debate to 'pissing contest'.

There are areas of science where in order to even DO something, the scientist also had to invent tools even capable of measuring what they were doing (for example, Bose) (and ironically some of his work the world is still not quite caught up with, in part because the measuring tools themselves are not common, hence their reporting is not perceived as evidence by people choosing not to look at it; they pre-define what constitutes evidence and by doing so, pre-define the answer to the question; which is not science, just rationalization of existing belief systems). Some of the same issues are in play even in 'hard sciences' (eg plasma theory vs. newtonian gravity theory) as are found in the UFOlogy and other 'fringe' topics.

Best,
PJ




posted on Mar, 18 2009 @ 08:48 AM
link   

Originally posted by nerbot
reply to post by nablator
 

I firmly believe that IF there ever was "proof" of extra-terrestrials it will come NOT from a youtube clip or posting on a site like this but from a personal source (our own eyes) and UNDENIABLE from ALL perspectives and in ANY country by EVERYONE.


Perhaps your reality will get more interesting one day and you'll get "a personal source" up close and personal, extensively, repetitively, but you will not alas get the "UNDENIABLE from ALL perspectives and in ANY country by EVERYONE" (boy that's optimism).

Then if you attempt to discuss your experiences with others, to better understand them or what they might mean, you'll get all the folks exactly like you USED to be at that point, parroting a belief system at you that essentially implies if you do not have talking aliens in a test tube and UFOs on the white house lawn that you're either a liar or insane. You'll see those seemingly 'logical' belief systems that you used to hold so dear as hopelessly shallow and simplistic. And you'll be stuck in the dilemma where you can talk with people you respect about your legitimate experiences, but they will think you are a moron, or you can talk with people who believe you, but they are morons LOL.

Don't ask me how I know...

PJ



posted on Mar, 18 2009 @ 09:11 AM
link   

Originally posted by SaviorComplex

Originally posted by MarrsAttax
But what if the phenomenon under study was intelligent and being deliberately deceptive in order to hide its true nature?


While it may be possible, this kind of thinking lends itself to circular reasoning.


I agree that it does lead to circular reasoning. This particular approach is almost inextricable in many (political) conspiracy topics as well.

Unfortunately it might also be true, which really complicates things. It is like that joke about not being paranoid if people really are out to get you -- if one precludes that Option X can ever be the answer, merely because that would make it damn difficult to measure and would greatly worsen the degree of delusion allowed into the process, then it's a bit unfortunate a tactic if it turns out the answer really is Option X.

To me, in order to even consider that angle, one would have to consider what evidence -- personal, empirical, historical, or objective -- there might be to suggest there might be (a) intelligent direction in these cases [note I am not specifying anything about that intelligence; could be locals] and (b) any inferred/implied "seeming attempt to operate" in such a way to hide 'the true nature of the phenomenon' from the population exposed to it.

Bit much to get into in this particular thread but I do think there is at least serious food-for-thought in this area.

Best,
PJ



posted on Mar, 18 2009 @ 09:16 AM
link   

Originally posted by TrueBrit
I would like for you to remember that in ancient times in Japan, Ninjas would be able to get in and out of some pretty well defended places, without being detected. We do it to ourselves all the time, why would a race with the most advanced vehicles we have seen, have ANY problem doing the same ?


Now that particular point I liked -- well made.

Best,
PJ



posted on Mar, 18 2009 @ 09:33 AM
link   

Originally posted by MarrsAttax


You can't simply reject all the testimony because there were a few bad apples involved

The Disclosure Project selected most of its witnesses from within military/governmental departments.

A lot of the people involved are extremely credible, whatever the original motivations of Stephen Greer may have been.




Yes, I read the list. One name I recognized immediately - Philip J. Corso. His book describing his involvement in conveying the Roswell alien technology to the private sector is on a scale of credibility from 1 to 10 a minus 5. Does anyone actually believe those ridiculous confabulations?

I assume Corso is representative of the people considered credible on the strength of their onetime employment in the military or some other credentialed profession.

It looks to me as if out of hundreds of thousands of military personnel and other professions, the Disclosure Project was able to round up a few dozen what you call 'bad apples'

Having a military or scientific career, even as an astronaut, does not mean a person is immune to self-deception. You'll find attention seekers, the foolishly gullible, and just plain whack jobs in any field.


Mike F



posted on Mar, 18 2009 @ 09:38 AM
link   

Originally posted by Nohup
Maybe there's a way to accurately remote view it, since remote viewing seems to work outside the standard Newtonian/Einsteinian model of the universe.


If you are referring to psychic functioning within a remote viewing science protocol -- as opposed to electronic surveillance -- then there is no answer there. Not because any individual cannot provide what they believe to be psi- based information about any given thing*. But because there is no evidence a 'remote viewing has truly occurred' until there is feedback to compare to the data presented so accuracy can be evaluated. Which makes any viewing of unanswered questions mostly just more completely unevaluatable data. (I think I made that word up...)

Where viewing can sometimes be useful with 'unanswered question' topics is in providing what amounts to 'food for thought' that investigators using more traditional means can use to follow up; which in a way amounts to 'creative brainstorming', just in this case the ideas are coming from an assumedly different source or style of information. Sometimes theorists could use such input in a positive way.

Like many issues in our world related to anomalies, the primary problem with assigning a given type of investigation, is finding people who will use investigative tactics that are legitimate, and not further pollute any attempt at understanding with error, fraud, commercialism, etc.

As for how remote viewing works, I don't think anybody knows that yet. It has demonstrated repeatable effect size -- to a degree that even medical studies with lesser effect size have been canceled for seemingly such powerful results that it was considered unethical to continue the control group without the treatment being studied -- so reproving that point yet again is now pretty much a waste of time and many years ago research turned to more interesting and specific questions. (The USA has almost none, but it's alive elsewhere.) But being a 'free response' form of psi it is inherently subject to the "measuring problem" (meaning there is no way to measure it 'objectively', although the fuzzy-set analysis using a team of judges comes as close as one is likely to get I suspect; a human must be involved in the evaluation somewhere). I agree that it does not seem to have the limits stated, only because I have yet to see any particular limits hold true for it, aside from the "it's exasperatingly inconsistent in accuracy" limit.

Best,
PJ


* Although of course, if they were working in an RV science protocol, they would be unaware of the target, and would not even have physical exposure to anybody who was, so they'd have no idea what they were describing at the time probably.



posted on Mar, 18 2009 @ 09:55 AM
link   
reply to post by mmiichael
 




I assume Corso is representative of the people considered credible on the strength of their onetime employment in the military or some other credentialed profession.


No he is not representative. That's my point.

Whatever your opinions on Philip Corso, they bear no relevance on the credibility or otherwise of people like Gordon Cooper, Edgar Mitchell, Lord Hill-Norton, Nick Pope etc, etc.

You should confront each person's testimony individually on their own merits not just dismiss everyone involved because some accounts may be dubious.

It's the same sort of false logic that would say because one UFO report has been proved a hoax then all UFO reports are hoaxes.


[edit on 18/3/2009 by MarrsAttax]



posted on Mar, 18 2009 @ 10:33 AM
link   

Originally posted by platosallegory
You can have overwhelming evidence of something that you can weigh within reason without proof that it exists.

Just because we don't have the technology to prove it or we don't have the funds going to research to prove it doesn't mean we don't have evidence to weigh within reason and we can come to the conclusion that extra-terrestrials or extra-dimensional beings exists.

We do this all the time. For instance.

MIT Professor Seth Lloyd has come to the conclusion that the universe is a quantum computer. He doesn't have proof but when he makes his argument he presents evidence to support his conclusion.

David Deutsch has come to the conclusion that parallel universes exists based on evidence and reason he doesn't have proof. He has never seen a parallel universe. He doesn't have pictures of a parallel universe yet he has reached this conclusion without proof


Gathering enough evidence to come within a conclusion does not make the conclusion an absolute fact. It's simply a conclusion that we choose to accept at the point in time because we don't have the technology, know how or evidence to conclude otherwise. At one point the Earth was said and taught to be flat until a new perspective aided by new ideas, theories, technology and evidence to further "prove" that is actually round. We accept it as fact nowadays but honestly I personally just allow the notion to slide because accepting this was required of me to pass exams in our educational system. I do not have the knowledge or technology to prove to myself or anyone else that the Earth is indeed actually round. I have never left the ground I currently walk on to see for myself.



posted on Mar, 18 2009 @ 10:40 AM
link   

Originally posted by mmiichael

I assume Corso is representative of the people considered credible on the strength of their onetime employment in the military or some other credentialed profession.



why do you make this assumption?



posted on Mar, 18 2009 @ 10:56 AM
link   
As soon as you question the believers beliefs they immediately start to attack you. All I'm saying is that witness testimony is flawed because of personal bias, hallucinations and problems with how our memories work. Pictures and video can be easily hoaxed while mass sightings can be explained away by the test flying of highly advanced prototype aircraft.
Abductions can be put down to fantasy prone individuals, lucid dreaming or liars. So what's left? As far as I'm concerned the only way I'll accept the reality of aliens visiting earth is if somebody comes up with cast iron evidence which all the experts cannot refute. I'd love that to happen but at the moment it doesn't look very likely.At the moment not even the believers can agree on one single case which they all accept as difinitive proof. The only reason you love arguing with us skeptics is because it stops you arguing with each other!



posted on Mar, 18 2009 @ 11:00 AM
link   
There is plenty evidence to suggest that there are unknown objects flying about in our skies. We're still learning about our planet however and to assume that something that is being observed inside the confines of our planet, comes from outside of it, is a very large stretch.

The extra terrestrial theory for these objects really derails the study of them. Sure there's a chance these things are from outer space but if you look at things sensibly there's no reason to think that at all.

The 'Unidentified' part of the UFO acronym has really fallen out of favour. Most of the discussions about them are between people who have convinced themselves that they are alien in origin and people who go to lengths to identify them within phenomena that they are familiar with. Both sides are missing the point. Yes there are things we can't identify in the skies but No, we don't know what they are.

[edit on 18-3-2009 by Capt_Krumpet]



posted on Mar, 18 2009 @ 11:16 AM
link   

Originally posted by rickyrrr

Originally posted by mmiichael

I assume Corso is representative of the people considered credible on the strength of their onetime employment in the military or some other credentialed profession.



why do you make this assumption?



I don't make an assumption. Corso's book, which was actually written by William Birnes, is a complete Fraud. Repeat a complete Fraud. Even Corso objected to what came out in print.

Karl Pflock, a former assistant secretary of defense and author of "Roswell: Inconvenient Facts and the Will to Believe" says:

"The book is a cross between a 1940 pulp thriller and contemporary pop science fiction. It is one big outrageous joke that a retired officer could
pull off this kind of thing. He offers no proof, no back-up and no
documentation."


Even the UFO community, by and large, consider Corso's book a terrible embarrassment.

In most areas of science, history, journalism, critical thinking is a prerequisite. UFOlogy appeals to fantasy, and there is plenty of it
in the supposed documentation.


Mike F



posted on Mar, 18 2009 @ 11:20 AM
link   
Just for posterity ,and in case some cynics (not sceptics) need reminding,
here are some interesting articles and quotes regarding common misconceptions about the UFO/OVNI/USO subject ;the importance for objectivity in research and the predictable traits of hopelessly cynical pseudosceptics.

Misconceptions:

Stereotypes die hard. The myth among scientists that UFOs are a "nonsense problem" without any substance was firmly established more than 50 years ago and persists until this day.

Among the deeply embedded misconceptions of scientists are:

*UFOs are nothing but vague fleeting lights seen at night,

*No trained or experienced observers have reported truly puzzling UFOs,

*UFOs are prosaic objects or phenomena that are converted into spaceships by "believers,"

*A religious-like "will to believe" in salvation from the outside drives the entire UFO phenomenon, and

*Nothing of substance has been reported that science could investigate even if it wanted to.

These notions all are demonstrably false. They are "psychological road-blocks" that need to be cleared away so that discovery of UFOs can proceed.

web.archive.org...



UFO cynics -four major rules:


What the public doesn't know, we certainly won't tell them.


Don't bother me with the facts, my mind is made up.


If one can't attack the data, attack the people. It is easier.


Do one's research by proclamation rather than investigation. It is much easier, and nobody will know the difference anyway.

www.v-j-enterprises.com...



Cynics/Psuedosceptics abusing Occam's razor:


UFO cynics don't understand Occam's Razor, and they abuse it regularly. They think they
understand it, but they don't. What it means is that when several hypotheses of varying
complexity can explain a set of observations with equal ability, the first one to be tested should
be the one that invokes the fewest number of uncorroborated assumptions. If this simplest
hypothesis is proven incorrect, the next simplest is chosen, and so forth.

But the skeptics forget two parts: the part regarding the test of the simpler hypotheses, and the
part regarding explaining all of the observations.
What a debunker will do is mutilate and butcher
the observations until it can be "explained" by one of the simpler hypotheses, which is the inverse
of the proper approach.

The proper approach is to alter the hypothesis to accommodate the
observations. One should never alter the observations to conform with a hypothesis by saying "if
we assume the object was not physical, despite the level of evidence that would imply the
solidity of a conventional aircraft with near-certainty, then we can also assume the object was
not moving, was not exhibiting the color orange, was not 50 feet in diameter as described, and
then declare that it was really Venus."

www.nicap.org...



Cynic/pseudosceptic definition:


The term pseudoskepticism (or pseudoscepticism) denotes thinking that appears to be skeptical but is not. The term is most commonly encountered in the form popularised by Marcello Truzzi, where he defined pseudoskeptics as those who take "the negative rather than an agnostic position but still call themselves 'skeptics'". University of Washington electrical research engineer William J. Beaty describes pseudo-skepticism as;

"A variety of pseudoscience:the behavior of highly biased 'sneering scoffers' who try to legitimize their prejudice by donning the mantle of science and proper skepticism. They claim to support reason/logic while in fact filling their arguments with plenty of ad-hominems, straw-man, poisoning-the-well, and numerous other emotion-enflaming fallacies and debating tactics."

en.wikipedia.org...



Important Article:

'What is the responsibility of the scientist?'
www.nicap.org...



Apt quotes:


"There exists a phenomenon... that is worthy of systematic rigorous study... The body of data point to an aspect or domain of the natural world not yet explored by science... When the long awaited solution to the UFO problem comes, I believe that it will prove to be not merely the next small step in the march of science but a mighty and totally unexpected quantum jump."
J. Allen Hyneck


"Any scientist who did not read some serious books and articles presenting the real indications of the phenomenon should have intellectual honesty to abstain from making declarations presented as scientists"
Dr. Bernard HAISCH-Astronomer


"I believe that the attitude of spirit that one must adopt with respect to these phenomena is a completely open attitude of spirit, i.e. who does not consist in denying a priori as besides our ancestors of the previous centuries had to deny things which appear perfectly elementary to us today"
Mr. Robert Galley, Minister for the Armies.


"The best means of not finding an evidence, it is not to seek some".
Pierre Guerin,Astrophysicist.




Taken from:
www.abovetopsecret.com...'

[edit on 02/10/08 by karl 12]



posted on Mar, 18 2009 @ 11:24 AM
link   
reply to post by karl 12
 


What the public doesn't know, we certainly won't tell them.


Don't bother me with the facts, my mind is made up.


If one can't attack the data, attack the people. It is easier.


Do one's research by proclamation rather than investigation. It is much easier, and nobody will know the difference anyway
------------------------------------------------------------------------------

It seems to me that this kind of accusation could easily be levelled at a certain section on both sides of the argument, especially the, don't bother me with the facts, my mind is made up.



posted on Mar, 18 2009 @ 11:29 AM
link   
reply to post by karl 12
 


In trying to debunk stereotypes of believers, all you have done is show your own stereotypes of skeptics. Few, if any, of the stereotypes you claim skeptics hold of believers are in keeping with reality. And what you presented as the rules of a cynic (read: skeptic) could just as easily be applied to certain believers (see: STS-80 thread).



posted on Mar, 18 2009 @ 11:32 AM
link   

Originally posted by Mintwithahole.
It seems to me that this kind of accusation could easily be levelled at a certain section on both sides of the argument, especially the, don't bother me with the facts, my mind is made up.


Yes perhaps wild eyed beleivers who think 'everything' is a UFO and hopelessly cynical pseudosceptics have more in common than they like to think (and are in fact just a mirror image of each other).
Cheers.



[edit on 02/10/08 by karl 12]



posted on Mar, 18 2009 @ 11:47 AM
link   

Originally posted by RedCairo
If you are referring to psychic functioning within a remote viewing science protocol -- as opposed to electronic surveillance -- then there is no answer there. Not because any individual cannot provide what they believe to be psi- based information about any given thing*. But because there is no evidence a 'remote viewing has truly occurred' until there is feedback to compare to the data presented so accuracy can be evaluated. Which makes any viewing of unanswered questions mostly just more completely unevaluatable data. (I think I made that word up...)


Not only that, remote viewing itself might be responsible for creating essentially "phantom universes," as a result of insinuating a new point of view into a virtual probability set. If our own universe results from all the living things in it working together to observe the universe and define/create it by collapsing quantum wave functions and separating the real from a spectrum of virtual probabilities, then a remote point of view might do the same thing, only on a smaller scale. So you might get data, but it wouldn't necessarily be a remnant of a previous possible timeline. Instead, it could be from an alternate reality created by the remote viewer himself. Hmmm....

It's a puzzle. If I went back in time and changed something, how could somebody in the changed timeline tell unless they went with me and were already aware of how things would have played out had I not gone back?



posted on Mar, 18 2009 @ 11:58 AM
link   

Originally posted by mmiichael
I don't make an assumption. Corso's book, which was actually written by William Birnes, is a complete Fraud. Repeat a complete Fraud. Even Corso objected to what came out in print.


Yep. Philip Corso, Jr., gave a couple of talks on the subject and essentially confirmed that the book was not what he understood to be the real story, based on his dad's notes and conversations he had with him. It turns out that Birnes, with his dogged determination to promote and prove the ET Hypothesis, spun the story away from a time travel event and toward "aliens." In the process, he actually made the story easier for skeptics to poke holes in it.



posted on Mar, 18 2009 @ 12:05 PM
link   

Originally posted by mmiichael

Yes, I read the list. One name I recognized immediately - Philip J. Corso... I assume Corso is representative of the people considered credible on the strength of their onetime employment in the military or some other credentialed profession. It looks to me as if out of hundreds of thousands of military personnel and other professions, the Disclosure Project was able to round up a few dozen what you call 'bad apples'... You'll find attention seekers, the foolishly gullible, and just plain whack jobs in any field.


Come on Mike, that's a completely illegitimate way of dealing with evidence. Need I say more? Your words kinda say it all for me.


[edit on 18-3-2009 by Malcram]



posted on Mar, 18 2009 @ 01:12 PM
link   
It seems the skeptics don't want their positions questioned.

They want to have "diplomatic immunity" when it comes to saying any illogical thing about ufology.

We are talking about the pseudo and bogus skeptics who are really closed minded debunkers.

I asked the question earlier, can extra-terrestrials or extra-terrestrial beings be the most likely explanation for abduction cases, eyewitness ccounts, mass sightings, trace evidence, pictures and video and many of you debunkers said no. You then said you would have to "prove" that extra-terrestrials or extra-dimensional beings exist before they could be the most likely possibility for these things.

Again, this is a closed minded debunker who tries to mask themselves in open minded skepticism.

When you can't even allow for the possibility that extra-terrestrial or extra-dimensional beings can be the most likely explanation then you have made up your mind and you're not seeking the truth but your seeking to debunk in order to try and validate your position.

When you ask for proof first, it goes against logic. We always gather evidence and weigh it within reason before we have proof of something. It's like someone said earlier about the earth being round. They had to come to that conclusion through reason and evidence before they had proof.

They do this in court cases, investigative reporting, police investigations, science and more. We always gather evidence and reach conclusions before we have proof.

When it comes to ufology and the paranormal the skeptics wants to throw out logic and reason and say we want "proof" first. This makes no sense. We always weigh things within reason and come to conclusions before we have proof. We may not have the technology or the proper funding to prove alot of things but that doesn't mean we can't weigh the evidence and come to a conclusion within reason based on the evidence.

A skeptic is agnostic when it comes to these things and that's the difference between a bogus or pseudo skeptic that's really a closed minded debunker.

A skeptic could easily say that extra-terrestrials or extra-dimensional beings can be the most likely explanation for these things even if they don't accept the premise.

A closed minded debunker can't even allow the possibility that extra-terrestrial or extra-dimensional beings can be the explanation for these things because they have their minds made up and their not seeking the truth but trying to protect what they already believe.

How can you not even allow the possibility that extra-terrestrial or extra-dimensional beings can be the most likely explanation for abduction cases, trace evidence, pictures, videos, eyewitness accounts, mass sightings and more?

We all so have physicist talking about extra-dimensions, parallel universes, braneworlds, the multiverse and more. We just discovered liquid water on Mars and as one Nasa scientist said before they found water, where there's water there's life.

We don't know what constitutes dark matter/energy yet it makes up 96% of the universe and visible matter only 4% of the universe and the pseudo or bogus skeptic can't even allow that extra-terrestrial or extra-dimensional beings are the most likely explanation for these things?

I can accept that there might be some other explanation that we may find one day and that may be the most likely explanation for these things. I don't agree with it because the skeptic will keep these things unexplained or unidentified forever in order not to weigh these things within reason. But I'm open minded enough to accept the possibility.

The closed minded debunker is not and they try to cloak themselves in open minded skepticism but it's not going to work.



new topics

top topics



 
16
<< 9  10  11    13  14  15 >>

log in

join