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Extra-terrestrials have today conceded that a decades-long programme of abduction to gather detailed knowledge of human society and biology might have produced better results had they looked beyond suggestible loners with a history of mental health problems.‘In hindsight, I suppose there was always going to be a limit to the intelligence we could get from a depressed farmer drink-driving his tractor at 2am,’ said an alien spokesbeing today. ‘We were disappointed to find that the majority of these people from isolated rural communities were not as well-connected to the planet’s major political powers as we’d hoped, and in truth they only confused our understanding of the human race. For a time we weren’t sure the species had a definitive stance on incest, or indeed what the correct number of fingers and toes was for a human. Perhaps we should have made better use of Wikipedia.’