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Skeptics, Debunkers, and Pelicanists, Oh my!

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posted on Aug, 18 2010 @ 04:34 AM
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I figured that this thread would be relevant since we have had some posts crop up by the mods on the subject.

This website talks a lot about the subject as a whole

A few excerpts:


I have over the years acquired something of a reputation as a "debunker" of UFO reports. If this arose from my honest desire to find a rational natural explanation for the stimuli that give rise to the reports, a procedure very frequently crowned with success, then I must bear with that reputation. If it stems, however, from a belief that I deliberately adopted a Procrustean approach, cutting down or stretching out evidence to make a forced fit, deliberately to "explain away" UFO reports at all cost, then it is a most unwarranted charge. (Hynek)



There's a word the ufologically "faithful" use to "demonize" their skeptical opponents. Various lengthy attempts have been made on certain UFO lists to "objectively" define this particular word. These attempts have been little more than hot air; in practice, anyone who dissents against the views of one of the faithful, regardless of the quality of his/her argument, will be conveniently labeled with this term. It's an old propaganda trick, a standard in rhetorical argument. Within ufological circles, it's the kiss of death, leveled with all the venom of more extreme pejoratives, such as "asshole," "scum," "vermin," etc. The word is "debunker." (Brock)



"...the practice of ascribing _any_ explanation, however scientifically unsustainable, illogical, or fantastic, to a UFO event or experience, in a desperate effort to deny that anything seriously anomalous may be going on." (Clark)



...someone who prefers explanations which do not involve non human intelligences to ones that do.(Rogerson)


[edit on 18-8-2010 by -Blackout-]




posted on Aug, 18 2010 @ 04:43 AM
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Another website on the subject

A few notes:


"It is difficult to get a man to understand something, when his salary depends upon his not understanding it" -- Upton Sinclair Professor Marcello Truzzi, sociologist from Eastern Michigan University, was editor of the CSICOP journal when it was called The Zetetic. He had a difference of opinion with the Executive Council about whether dissenting views should be published. He says CSICOP isn't sceptical at all in the true meaning of the word but is "an advocacy group upholding orthodox establishment views". Their alleged scepticism has become just another dogmatic blind faith. Debunkers spread misinformation "Over the years, I've read my share of debunking and extremely skeptical books about UFOs. In the early years, when I was trying to make sense of the field, I considered very seriously the "facts" and arguments of these irrational critics. They did succeed in leading me astray for a while, but perseverance in reading the literature luckily saved the day, and I eventually understood what I was reading to be the highly prejudiced material that it is." -- Keith Rowell, Oregon MUFON Assistant State Director A Guide to Debunking and Extreme Skepticism



"We must consider real a fact of which we possess eight thousand certain sightings. I cannot say if they are or are not interplanetary vehicles, but nobody can doubt any more their existence". -- Prof. Hermann Oberth (German rocket scientist, the teacher of space scientist Dr. Wernher von Braun one of the fathers of modern rocketry) in a radio interview during the First Astronautical Week in Barcelona, Spain, May 3-9, 1965


In most cases, people who deny the reality of UFOs (i.e. not just refute some specific case) have either

* never bothered to check the UFO evidence (When asked to provide evidence for UFOs, the astronomer Dr. J Allen Hynek, who had been the scientific consultant to USAF's UFO Study Project BlueBook for 20 years, would respond sarcastically "Where do you want the truck to stop?" But as they say, "You can lead a horse to water...")
* have succumbed to the classic dilemma: "your soul or your job" or
* are in denial. Apparently, when people are confronted with a phenomenon that challenges their basic assumptions about reality, they will react to the cognitive dissonance by abandoning their critical faculties for any "explanation", no matter how implausible and contrived. Many of the "prosaic explanations" seem to be Prozac induced.


Who are you gonna believe, us, or your lying eyes? "Skeptics, who flatly deny the existence of any unexplained phenomenon in the name of 'rationalism,' are among the primary contributors to the rejection of science by the public. People are not stupid and they know very well when they have seen something out of the ordinary. When a so-called expert tells them the object must have been the moon or a mirage, he is really teaching the public that science is impotent or unwilling to pursue the study of the unknown." (Vallee, J., Confrontations, New York: Ballantine Books, 1990.) -- Jacques Vallee, Ph.D astrophysicist, computer scientist, prominent UFO researcher






[edit on 18-8-2010 by -Blackout-]



posted on Aug, 18 2010 @ 05:46 AM
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reply to post by -Blackout-
 


Great thread and S&F, but

I've always wondered, if ET is so advanced and has been coming here for so long, then why not just show us?

Land at the Whitehouse or anywhere, cut into our communication and say what they want or what they are doing here....

I can't get my head around the fact that is real, UFO's do NOT want to communicate...



posted on Aug, 18 2010 @ 05:48 AM
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Originally posted by -Blackout-
In most cases, people who deny the reality of UFOs (i.e. not just refute some specific case) have either


And what is this "reality" of UFOs?

Is there no room for another explanation? Not that they have considered the evidence and found it wanting? Or feel there are better explanations as based on the evidence? Or is it only ignorance and denialism?


Originally posted by -Blackout-

Who are you gonna believe, us, or your lying eyes? "Skeptics, who flatly deny the existence of any unexplained phenomenon in the name of 'rationalism,' are among the primary contributors to the rejection of science by the public. People are not stupid and they know very well when they have seen something out of the ordinary. When a so-called expert tells them the object must have been the moon or a mirage, he is really teaching the public that science is impotent or unwilling to pursue the study of the unknown." (Vallee, J., Confrontations, New York: Ballantine Books, 1990.) -- Jacques Vallee, Ph.D astrophysicist, computer scientist, prominent UFO researcher


Here Dr. Vallee is wrong. People may not be stupid but they are flawed and prone to mistakes. They may see something out of the ordinary they are unable to explain but that does not mean it is necessarily unexplainable nor that their perceptions are correct. Dr. Vallee himself damages public perception of science in claiming that science is flawed for not supporting a particular answer or belief.




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