Seeing is "not" believing.

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posted on Mar, 20 2011 @ 01:35 PM
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Originally posted by Arbitrageur

Originally posted by BLKMJK
Brother your clarity of thought is much respected. I was not impressed with the Phoenix lights. Without digging into it too much it looks like flares. I am stumped with the case in 1976 with the ball chasing the pilot but who knows. It is exiting but as you say "without the pics?" What is the most intriguing case you have studied that puzzles you?
The Phoenix lights consisted of two events, one at 8:30 and one at 10pm. The later one is solved, but without video of the 8:30pm event it's not solved, though the one video I saw that claims to be of the 8:30pm event just looks like planes to me, but it's of such poor quality it's inconclusive.

The Japan airlines case was one of the most puzzling for me before I researched it, and it still puzzles a lot of people but I'm pretty sure I have a good idea what happened there, I spent a lot of time analyzing that case. What really helped me figure out what it was, is when I finally found a picture of the UFO, in the place nobody else was looking, in a satellite photo. I discussed my findings in this post:

www.abovetopsecret.com...

I'm 99.999% sure the radar signature was coming from the object in that picture, all the radar evidence confirms that. The visual evidence points in another direction and I'm not quite as sure about that but the evidence is pretty persuasive because all the visual sightings come from the direction of an airport and the sketches drawn by the captain look like sketches of airport lights. There's one piece of evidence that doesn't line up with the airport, but it may have a psychological explanation, the captain said he felt heat on his face. If that was due to getting flush with excitement he could have felt heat on his face without it coming from the object. I admit that's the achilles heel of my explanation but I still find it quite plausible, the pilot was a UFO enthusiast, and he was seeing a UFO, so why WOULDN'T he get excited?
He even looks excited here and all he's doing is re-telling the story:


The 1976 Iran case is probably the most puzzling to me without photographic evidence, followed closely by the Coyne Incident

One of my favorite cases with photographic evidence (even though it's very poor in quality) is the 2000 incident witnessed by at least 5 reliable witnesses, 4 of them police officers, and one of them took a photo:

www.youtube.com...



Those are 3 different animations of the object as described by 3 different witnesses. They are different enough to demonstrate that no two witnesses see the exact same thing when they witness an event (a fact well known by judges and lawyers) but similar enough to be convincing that they all saw the same thing, and just perceived it a little differently.

Why is this case so great?
1. Unlike the Japan airlines case for example, where all evidence suggests there was no solid object in the sky, there's no doubt in my mind that there was an actual solid object in the sky in the 2000 Illinois case.
2. From these descriptions I have little doubt that any conventional aircraft can explain the sighting, at least nothing that's been de-classified.
3. While the photograph is poor, it's sufficient to rule out any celestial explanation like Venus, etc (which causes a surprising amount of UFO sightings).
4. Satellites or other non-aircraft explanations can be ruled out.

I think it's the clearest case ever of an unknown aircraft. Now whether it's military or alien, I'd have to lean toward military. That's also mentioned by some people in the video. However people make a valid point by asking why the military would fly a secret craft over a populated area? I admit it's a good question. I don't have an answer. But I can also ask, why would aliens do it? I don't have an answer to that either.


But it's the best proof I've personally seen that there are things flying in the sky, that we don't know what they are. Of course now that we've seen things like the F-117 and other previously secret aircraft declassified, we know this has been going on for decades and Lockheed Skunkworks is still alive and well and probably flying things we won't learn about for another 40 years.

So what was it? Well it's the best evidence ever or a UFO in my opinion, but probably not alien, though who knows. One possibility is a "stealth blimp" or what's called "neutral buoyancy" or "rigid hull airship" by this aviation writer Bill Scott:

edit on 19-3-2011 by Arbitrageur because: clarification


I can see why you feel these accounts are the best evidence out there I mean DAMN! Regarding the first case with the police officers I am stoked. I would think that if it was Military it would be declassified after 11 years. I find it odd that only one officer took a picture of it. I would assume that all Police officers have camera's in their patrol cars and more than one photo would have been taken. And also why did the officer only take 1 photo? I can't imagine however it would be a blimp being that everyone knows what a blimp looks like. I do like the Lockheed Skunkwork idea but this event baffles me all the same.

The The Coyne incident, Mansfield, Ohio, 1973 has me starting to think maybe aliens ARE here. The cockpit was bathed in intense green light? No noise or turbulence was noted? WTF? LOL!

How the hell did the helicopter go up when the stick was down?

Thank you for these fascinating cases. I'm getting a bit spooked now lol!




posted on Mar, 20 2011 @ 01:37 PM
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reply to post by Arbitrageur
 


Your awesome buddy. I really got into reading about the ball lighting. I wish I had the skills to research as you do.



posted on Mar, 20 2011 @ 01:41 PM
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Originally posted by Toxicsurf

Originally posted by BLKMJK
Wow! Dr McDonald's report gave me chills! That is crazy! How can something move at super sonic speed without making a boom? Have you made a thread about this case?]


What people relatively new to the phenomena don't realize, is that in the 50's & 60's these close up cases by credible people (police, air-force personnel, government figures, pilots, etc) were becoming almost commonplace with 100's of cases per month being reported. The Air-force and other government agencies tried hard (and pretty much succeeded) in squashing the whole subject through false identification and ridicule. I really had no idea how prevalent the issue was at the time until I started digging up all the older books and research material. James McDonald, along with people like John Fuller, Frank Edwards, Don Keyhoe and the Lorenzen's researched and documented ton's of close up sightings which were made by multiple witnesses, were caught on radar and were not just night sightings...

What makes alot of the cases even more substantial, IMHO, is the often ludicrous attempts by the AirForce to explain away and debunk theses cases...Karl12 has started numerous quality threads about these people, the qood sightings and the government cover-ups...


Yeah for sure, I'm new to looking in depth to this stuff and it's a bit scary to be honest.



posted on Mar, 21 2011 @ 01:58 AM
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Originally posted by BLKMJK
I can see why you feel these accounts are the best evidence out there I mean DAMN! ....I can't imagine however it would be a blimp being that everyone knows what a blimp looks like.
I agree with most everything you've said so far, but I'm afraid I have to disagree for the first time that everyone knows what a blimp looks like. This probably isn't what people think of:

www.jpaerospace.com...




That dude looks kinda small standing in there, doesn't he? This thing is pretty big.



I do like the Lockheed Skunkwork idea but this event baffles me all the same.
Those photos are of a non-classified, non military design. With their multi-billion dollar black budget, it's not unreasonable to wonder if the military doesn't have something far more advanced and has had it longer. Put 3 bright lights on that puppy and hover silently over someone's neighborhood and the phone lines will light up with TR-3B or alien spacecraft reports.

And it's not just speculation, Lockheed Martin has patents. And popular Mechanics wrote an article about the Stealth Blimp:


it’s a matter of public record among those in the industry that Lockheed has always been interested in airships for military purposes, and a telling 1982 diagram of a “stealth blimp” is featured in Popular Mechanics, September 1999, page 64 (with supporting notes on page 119).

According to a SPACE.com interview with L Scott Miller, professor of Aerospace Engineering at Wichita State University in Kansas, and a distinguished lecturer of the American Institute of Aeronautics and Astronautics (AIAA),

"Lockheed has shown a great deal of interest in airships for many years. The real question is whether the Department of Defense has committed to buy and use such machines. I do think that a large airship, with a heavy lift and other mission objectives, has been built."



The The Coyne incident, Mansfield, Ohio, 1973 has me starting to think maybe aliens ARE here. The cockpit was bathed in intense green light? No noise or turbulence was noted? WTF? LOL!
How the hell did the helicopter go up when the stick was down?
If you figure it out, please let me know!

I got nothing on that one, no explanation. But if you're going to jump to conclusions, what makes you think it was aliens instead of time travelers? We know forward time travel is possible already. If it got here by unknown technology could just as easily be humans from the future as aliens from another planet as neither backwards time travel nor interstellar travel has been developed on earth yet


Thank you for these fascinating cases. I'm getting a bit spooked now lol!
You're welcome. But don't you wish someone in that helicopter or on the ground had snapped a picture? I'm not calling these guys liars, I really have no reason to doubt that they reported what they thought they saw, but I also know our eyes can play tricks on us. Like most people with normal vision, I see a green dot that doesn't even exist when I look at this:

Stare at the crosshairs. Do you see the green dot too? If we can see things that don't even exist like a green dot in this simple experiment, shouldn't we be a little cautious about jumping to conclusions regarding cases based on nothing but witness testimony? A camera can be fooled in some cases but it will not record the nonexistent green dot that we see. We have a human flaw, in that we tend to think highly of our powers of observation. We really shouldn't think that, we aren't very good observers. Seeing green dots that aren't there is just the tip of the iceberg, CHUD has written a lot more good info on this topic.



posted on Mar, 21 2011 @ 02:36 AM
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reply to post by Arbitrageur
 


Ummm...yeah...you got me again. That black blimp is off the hook! If that is the real deal there is no doubt people would mistake that think for an Alien craft. In regards to our fallible perception I totally agree, everything you said cannot be disputed. But two people witnessing the same distorted perception? I don't know.

Give me some more good stuff brother!



posted on Mar, 21 2011 @ 06:56 PM
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Originally posted by BLKMJK
But two people witnessing the same distorted perception?


That's actually very plausible since peoples brains are very similar in the way they work...

The same flaws exist in all our brains. No one (except perhaps a very small percentage of the population) is "immune".

Take the optical illusion that Arbitrageur posted above for example - ask your family and friends to look at it and see how many do not see the illusion. I'll bet that they all see it.

You may have seen this if you followed the links I posted earlier:

Preconceptions can also influence what a witness remembers, i.e. if they hear an explosion, they expect to see fire and will remember seeing it. Children have more open minds and are often more reliable than adults.

USAF Witness Interview Guidelines

If two (or more) people have the same preconceptions, then they may well "see" the same thing.

Here are a few more illusions that I recently came across that will have you saying WTF?!!. Again - try them on your family/friends to see for yourself how we are all prone to seeing things that are not really there.



posted on Mar, 21 2011 @ 09:29 PM
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Originally posted by BLKMJK
reply to post by Arbitrageur
 


Ummm...yeah...you got me again. That black blimp is off the hook! If that is the real deal there is no doubt people would mistake that think for an Alien craft. In regards to our fallible perception I totally agree, everything you said cannot be disputed. But two people witnessing the same distorted perception? I don't know.

Give me some more good stuff brother!


Not to mention three people witnessing the same distorted perception, as was the case in the Coyne report. And then having two more people witnessing a similar distorted perception from a completely different vantage point on the ground at the same time. I think at some point, the idea that people actually saw what they think they saw begins to look like the most logical explanation in some instances. A significant part of our tendency to grasp at any and all alternatives, regardless of how unlikely, rather than seriously consider the possible objective reality of some of these occurrences arises from some part of us - maybe a subconscious part - that feels that these things simply can't be, even if we are willing to consciously suspend our disbelief.
edit on 21-3-2011 by Orkojoker because: added text



posted on Mar, 21 2011 @ 11:04 PM
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Originally posted by C.H.U.D.

Originally posted by BLKMJK
But two people witnessing the same distorted perception?


That's actually very plausible since peoples brains are very similar in the way they work...

The same flaws exist in all our brains. No one (except perhaps a very small percentage of the population) is "immune".

Take the optical illusion that Arbitrageur posted above for example - ask your family and friends to look at it and see how many do not see the illusion. I'll bet that they all see it.
Exactly. My prediction would be that if anyone doesn't see the green dot, it would be because of some identifiable irregularity in their vision, such as color blindness.


You may have seen this if you followed the links I posted earlier:
I did follow the earlier links you posted...good stuff!



Originally posted by Orkojoker
Not to mention three people witnessing the same distorted perception, as was the case in the Coyne report.

You say that as somehow that would be unexpected. Do you not also have the same distorted perception as everyone else who isn't color blind and see the non-existent green dots? Almost all of us see the same illusion, as we are constructed not identically but very similarly.


And then having two more people witnessing a similar distorted perception from a completely different vantage point on the ground at the same time.
I agree the different vantage point adds credibility to the Coyne incident and it's one reason I find the case particularly compelling.


I think at some point, the idea that people actually saw what they think they saw begins to look like the most logical explanation in some instances. A significant part of our tendency to grasp at any and all alternatives, regardless of how unlikely
Actually you have this backwards. It is the incident occurring exactly as described that seems most unlikely.

We know from experience that humans have a long and distinguished record of misperceiving what the observe. There is simply no doubt about this, it happens over and over and over again. Not 100% of the time, but frequently.

Now if we take any individual part of the Coyne story, such as the helicopter ascending while the controls were in the descend position, do we have any parallel observations we are confident in on how that might happen? Microburst? This isn't consistent with the story since the other object was reported to be relatively stationary during this part of the event. Temporary controller malfunction which then returns the controller to perfect function? Space-time distortion? The fact is, any alternative explanation we can think of, doesn't have as well a documented background in fact as human misperception.

Add to this the other extraordinary elements of the sighting and we have an extraordinary claim, a series of them actually. Yet the only evidence to back it up is eyewitness testimony which is known to be quite fallible.

Now is it possible that everything happened exactly as the witnesses described? Yes, while it would be unusual for an eyewitness to recall all aspects of an event perfectly, that's possible.

Is it possible that it didn't happen exactly as witnesses describe? That's possible too.

Which one is more likely? Based on what we have documented, human misperception is an undisputable fact. Just look at how some cleverly drawn lines on a piece of paper causes us to misperceive things, there are many such optical illusions and they fool just about all of us. We can't even figure out some lines on a piece of paper!!!

Helicoptors ascending when the controls are in the full descend position while next to a stationary object would almost seem to be a violation of the laws of physics as we know them. So personally, I find it difficult to say the known and documented fact of human misperception isn't more likely than a violation of the laws of physics as we know them.

On the other hand, I have admitted that I find the Coyne case one of the most fascinating to me and I can't rule out the possibility that it happened as described. Wouldn't it be cool if it did? It's possible, I'm just citing reasons why it doesn't seem very likely. Or as Dr Feynman put it:

Feynman - The Likelihood of Flying Saucers
I wouldn't even be as harsh as Feynman, because there is nothing irrational about seeing the green dot which doesn't exist in the optical illusion, most people that see it are completely rational. So even the majority of rational people can see things that don't even exist. It's more a problem of flawed human perception, coupled with the psychological aspects that should make us question the accuracy of extraordinary eyewitness accounts.

Here's another illusion we still don't fully understand:

The Moon illusion is an optical illusion in which the Moon appears larger near the horizon than it does while higher up in the sky. This optical illusion also occurs with the sun and star constellations. It has been known since ancient times, and recorded by numerous different cultures. The explanation of this illusion is still debated.
How many people see this same distorted perception? Just about all of us. So there's nothing remarkable about multiple people having exactly the same distorted perception, it's literally a daily occurrence. For a long time I thought the atmosphere was magnifying the moon on the horizon because it looks so big on the horizon. I had to make some measurements to prove to myself that it's not really magnified by the atmosphere. It's really just a completely psychological illusion, or what Neil Tyson calls a "Brain failure". We have lots of those "brain failures" but we don't like to admit it, and we often have the same "brain failures" or misperceptions, that's why those optical illusions work on almost all of us.



posted on Mar, 22 2011 @ 12:25 AM
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reply to post by Arbitrageur
 


I certainly wouldn't say that any witness to any event, ordinary or extraordinary, remembers or could report every detail about that event perfectly, but I would disagree a little bit with your characterization of our perceptual fallibility. There are differences from one occurrence to another that would seem to make the accuracy of an observer's perception and memory of any given event vary. Observations of short duration would probably be more likely to result in misperception than those of long duration, for example. I would guess that there are many such factors in any given observation that would make it more or less likely that an observer would make significant errors in his judgment of what he is perceiving. In other words, while witness testimony may, as a rule, be fallible, I would not go so far as to say that all witness testimony is equally fallible.

Regarding the optical illusions you mention, the difference between your examples and hypothetical failures of perception such as those that would have to be posited to explain the Coyne incident is that - as you point out - the above mentioned illusions are well documented and known to occur. As far as I know (which may not be very far, so correct me if I'm wrong), there is no known optical illusion that is likely to account for the kind of spectacular effect reported by the witnesses to the incident over Ohio. At best, then, we would have to invent out of thin air an ad hoc optical effect that has never before been documented, the occurrence of which would be practically as mysterious as the presence of an actual object hovering above the helicopter. To be sure, we do know that eye witness testimony is imperfect, but I think we need to be reasonable (despite the availability of seeming counter examples) in the degree of potential imperfection we attribute to observers in any given situation. James McDonald had some thoughts on witness testimony which we may find to be pertinent to this discussion:


Then, looking at the negative side, all of us who have checked cases are sometimes in near anguish at the typical inability of the scientifically untrained person to estimate angles, to even understand what you are asking for when you ask for an angular estimation. We are all aware of the gross errors in distances, heights, and speeds so estimated. And I would emphasize to those who cite jury trial experience that the tendency for a group of witnesses to an accident to come in with quite different accounts, must not be overstressed here. Those witnesses don't come in from, say, a street corner accident and claim they saw a giraffe killed by a tiger. They talk about an accident. They are confused about details. There is legally confusing difference of timing and distance, and so on; but all are in agreement that it was an auto accident. So also when you deal with multiple-witness cases in UFO sightings. There is an impressive core of consistency; everybody is talking about an object that has no wings, all of 10 people may say it was dome shaped or something like that, and then there are minor differences as to how big they thought it was, how far away, and so on. Those latter variations do pose a very real problem. It stands as a negative factor with respect to the anecdotal data, but it does not mean we are not dealing with real sightings of real objects.


I'm not saying we should accept at face value what every observer of an alleged strange event claims to have seen. However, I see no reason to - in every case - relegate the possibility that a reported event actually occurred more or less as described to the position of the absolute least probable explanation solely because the occurrence does not fit neatly into our conception of what is and is not possible.



posted on Mar, 22 2011 @ 10:23 PM
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Originally posted by Orkojoker
reply to post by Arbitrageur
 


I certainly wouldn't say that any witness to any event, ordinary or extraordinary, remembers or could report every detail about that event perfectly, but I would disagree a little bit with your characterization of our perceptual fallibility. There are differences from one occurrence to another that would seem to make the accuracy of an observer's perception and memory of any given event vary. Observations of short duration would probably be more likely to result in misperception than those of long duration, for example. I would guess that there are many such factors in any given observation that would make it more or less likely that an observer would make significant errors in his judgment of what he is perceiving. In other words, while witness testimony may, as a rule, be fallible, I would not go so far as to say that all witness testimony is equally fallible.

Regarding the optical illusions you mention, the difference between your examples and hypothetical failures of perception such as those that would have to be posited to explain the Coyne incident is that - as you point out - the above mentioned illusions are well documented and known to occur. As far as I know (which may not be very far, so correct me if I'm wrong), there is no known optical illusion that is likely to account for the kind of spectacular effect reported by the witnesses to the incident over Ohio. At best, then, we would have to invent out of thin air an ad hoc optical effect that has never before been documented, the occurrence of which would be practically as mysterious as the presence of an actual object hovering above the helicopter. To be sure, we do know that eye witness testimony is imperfect, but I think we need to be reasonable (despite the availability of seeming counter examples) in the degree of potential imperfection we attribute to observers in any given situation. James McDonald had some thoughts on witness testimony which we may find to be pertinent to this discussion:


Then, looking at the negative side, all of us who have checked cases are sometimes in near anguish at the typical inability of the scientifically untrained person to estimate angles, to even understand what you are asking for when you ask for an angular estimation. We are all aware of the gross errors in distances, heights, and speeds so estimated. And I would emphasize to those who cite jury trial experience that the tendency for a group of witnesses to an accident to come in with quite different accounts, must not be overstressed here. Those witnesses don't come in from, say, a street corner accident and claim they saw a giraffe killed by a tiger. They talk about an accident. They are confused about details. There is legally confusing difference of timing and distance, and so on; but all are in agreement that it was an auto accident. So also when you deal with multiple-witness cases in UFO sightings. There is an impressive core of consistency; everybody is talking about an object that has no wings, all of 10 people may say it was dome shaped or something like that, and then there are minor differences as to how big they thought it was, how far away, and so on. Those latter variations do pose a very real problem. It stands as a negative factor with respect to the anecdotal data, but it does not mean we are not dealing with real sightings of real objects.


I'm not saying we should accept at face value what every observer of an alleged strange event claims to have seen. However, I see no reason to - in every case - relegate the possibility that a reported event actually occurred more or less as described to the position of the absolute least probable explanation solely because the occurrence does not fit neatly into our conception of what is and is not possible.


Could you explain your last paragraph to me in a different way? I'm not able to put together what exactly saying? Sorry, you guys are just talking over my head a bit. My apologies.



posted on Mar, 22 2011 @ 10:26 PM
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Just a note on the thread title : Neither once seeing, hearing, feeling, thinking, etc, can be believing if you accept that your perceptions can be altered.
edit on 22-3-2011 by Hitoshura because: (no reason given)



posted on Mar, 22 2011 @ 10:37 PM
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Originally posted by Hitoshura
Just a note on the thread title : Neither once seeing, hearing, feeling, thinking, etc, can be believing if you accept that your perceptions can be altered.
edit on 22-3-2011 by Hitoshura because: (no reason given)


I think you would have to agree that our perception is prone to fallibility in certain environments and due to our own preconceived notions and ideas. Everything has to be taken into consideration when making extraordinary claims as previously mentioned. I cannot tell you what I saw that night but I have no reason to believe it was "alien". To me it will always be just a UFO.



posted on Mar, 22 2011 @ 11:46 PM
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Originally posted by BLKMJK
I think you would have to agree that our perception is prone to fallibility in certain environments and due to our own preconceived notions and ideas. Everything has to be taken into consideration when making extraordinary claims as previously mentioned. I cannot tell you what I saw that night but I have no reason to believe it was "alien". To me it will always be just a UFO.


Good to see that you are not jumping to the alien conclusion (as so many do), just because we can't find a definitive answer for what you saw.


I think it's also worth noting that our perceived notions can also be heavily influenced by all the hype surrounding UFOs. People often assume, that because so many UFOs are reported, the sheer number of reports in itself is evidence that there is something going on (like extraterrestrial visitation), but that is unlikely to be the case, as we have established in this thread.

I think one of the main issues that contributes to this is the way UFO witnesses are interviewed... There are quite a few people out there who tout themselves as "UFO investigators", without having done any real training. Proper interviewing techniques are crucial to gathering meaningful witness reports. Without those skills, it's easy to ask leading questions which basically colour/taint the resulting reports.

I've seen this in almost all of the UFO witness interviews that I have read, even from the "better organizations" such as MUFON. I think over zealous and poorly trained UFO investigators have a lot to answer for as to why there is so much confusion in the field. It's just one of the many examples in this field where doing a "half-arsed" job results in more harm to the field than doing nothing.


edit on 22-3-2011 by C.H.U.D. because: typo



posted on Mar, 22 2011 @ 11:55 PM
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reply to post by C.H.U.D.
 


I would have to agree with your entire post. I have been spending a good 8 hours a day reading up on the top 100 UFO cases and I have been trying to keep an open mind to just see where it leads me. As of yet I have not found one case that solidifies and real visitation of any kind. I have read a few that really blows me a way but again, no scientifically verifiable "alien" events. Most are just subjective eyewitness testimonies. But again, I am extremely new to this study. Everyone's help has been fun, exiting and sincerely appreciated.



posted on Mar, 23 2011 @ 12:02 AM
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Originally posted by BLKMJK

Originally posted by Orkojoker
I'm not saying we should accept at face value what every observer of an alleged strange event claims to have seen. However, I see no reason to - in every case - relegate the possibility that a reported event actually occurred more or less as described to the position of the absolute least probable explanation solely because the occurrence does not fit neatly into our conception of what is and is not possible.


Could you explain your last paragraph to me in a different way? I'm not able to put together what exactly saying? Sorry, you guys are just talking over my head a bit. My apologies.
I read it as a denial of Sagan's quote in my signature that "Extraordinary claims require extraordinary evidence", but correct me if I'm wrong.

By the way not only did Sagan say that, the concept appears to be part of English law:

www.publications.parliament.uk...

27. Richards LJ expressed the proposition neatly in R (N) v Mental Health Review Tribunal (Northern Region) [2005] EWCA Civ 1605, [2006] QB 468, 497-8, para 62, where he said:

“Although there is a single civil standard of proof on the balance of probabilities, it is flexible in its application. In particular, the more serious the allegation or the more serious the consequences if the allegation is proved, the stronger must be the evidence before a court will find the allegation proved on the balance of probabilities. Thus the flexibility of the standard lies not in any adjustment to the degree of probability required for an allegation to be proved (such that a more serious allegation has to be proved to a higher degree of probability), but in the strength or quality of the evidence that will in practice be required for an allegation to be proved on the balance of probabilities.”

In my opinion this paragraph effectively states in concise terms the proper state of the law on this topic.

"The more serious the allegation the stronger must be the evidence" is essentially a parallel concept to "Extraordinary claims require extraordinary evidence". I don't deny that it's possible the extraordinary claims may in fact be true, but as the mental Health Review quote suggests, "a more serious allegation has to be proved to a higher degree of probability" which is certainly the case in the Coyne incident with what we know about the mechanics of helicoptors and the laws of physics that they don't go up with the controls in the down position, and then resume normal function.

I will add that just because it's unlikely, and the claim therefore requires greater evidence to prove it than a less extraordinary claim, doesn't mean it didn't happen exactly that way. The incident may have happened exactly as described. Even if that's true, it's still logical to assign that possibility a lower probability than some other less extraordinry explanation, seeing as the abilities of humans to misperceive things are well documented so human misperception is far less extraordinary than breaking the laws of physics.

While I can't say specfically what the misperceptions were in the Coyne incident (if any), we can say what the misperceptions were in other cases where the UFO was eventually identified. Following is a report that has a similarity with the Coyne incident in the aspect of a "collision course" and perhaps some other misperceptions which include behaviors that defied the laws of physics (when no laws of physics were defied):


Originally posted by Orkojoker
As far as I know (which may not be very far, so correct me if I'm wrong), there is no known optical illusion that is likely to account for the kind of spectacular effect reported by the witnesses to the incident over Ohio.
If you look at case studies of pilot misperceptions you will have a better idea of how pilots have reported things like "collision courses" with other objects have been reported when that was a misperception. Just look at all the pilot misperceptions in one UFO case that WAS solved:

www.zipworld.com.au...

"The accompanying Tornado pilot was so convinced that they were on collision course with the lights (apparently nine of them were seen) that he 'broke away' and took 'violent evasive action'. This same pilot later added that he thought he was heading directly for a C5 Galaxy, a giant US transport plane. The formation of UFOs carried 'straight on course and shot off ahead at speed -- they were nearly supersonic. Some C5!', he said, indicating that they were going faster than the speed a C5 can achieve.

"The pilot known to Paul Whitehead commented, 'This is all a good true story, and could do with an explanation. All the pilots are adamant that what they had seen was definitely not satellite debris -- and they should know,'"

So was that formation of UFOs really on a collision course (as was reported in the Coyne incident)? What else was reported?


Further details were reported in the National Enquirer, March 12, 1991, page 50: "Airline pilot in chilling brush with giant UFO", by Fleur Brenham. Has photo of "Veteran pilot, Capt. Mike D'Alton. He's convinced it came from outer space."

"A massive glowing UFO stunned a veteran British Airways pilot and his crew when it shot in front of their Boeing 737 on a night flight from Rome to London -- then zoomed out of sight at fantastic speed"

The newspaper quoted the pilot: "This thing was not of this world," declared Capt. Mike D'Alton. "In all my 23 years of flying I've never seen a craft anything like this."

More: "Capt. D'Alton says he's convinced the mysterious craft came from outer space because: It was traveling at tremendous speed, but caused no sonic boom. . . it had a bizarre shape like nothing he'd ever set eyes on . . . and it made a sharp turn while flying at high speeds -- an impossible maneuver that would rip any man-made aircraft to bits.
So what was that thing? Just a satellite re-entry, and the pilot perceptual errors give us a clue about how pilots misperceived the incident:


Now, what can we make of these impressive testimonials? The satellite reentry was occurring right before their eyes, and these pilots made many, many perceptual and interpretative errors, including:

1. In FSR, the anonymous BA pilot (obviously D'Alton) recalls: "One of the lights . .. was brighter than the others, and appeared bigger, almost disklike." It was just as light, a piece of burning debris, and the "disk" interpretation was a mental pattern conjured up from previous experience, not from this actual apparition. Note that later, Good alters this comment to have the pilot unequivocally call it "a silver disc".

2. The main light "was followed closely by another three that seemed to be in a V formation," according to the pilot. Referring to a "formation" is an assumption of intelligent control. The pieces of flaming debris were scattered randomly in a group and stayed approximately in the same relative positions, but the pilots misinterpreted this to mean they were flying in formation.

3. FSR reports the pilot saying "I watched the objects intently as they moved across my field of view, right to left," but the objects' actual motion was left to right, as reported elsewhere correctly. Either the FSR writer, or the pilot, jumbled this key piece of information.

4. The pilot did not believe the apparition was a satellite re-entry because "I have seen a re-entry before and this was different." These re-entries are particularly spectacular because of the size of the object, and the pilot was speaking from an inadequate experience base here.

5. The RAF military pilots in the Tornadoes concluded that "the lights 'formated on the Tornadoes', which is the kind of thing a fighter pilot is trained to detect and avoid, not dispassionately contemplate. The lights, of course, never changed course, but the pilots who were surprised by them feared the worst.

6. The accompanying Tornado pilot was so convinced that they were on collision course with the lights that he "broke away" and took "violent evasive action". This move would be prudent in an unknown situation, but there's no need to believe that the perception of dead-on approach was really accurate. Since the flaming debris was tens of miles high, no real "collision course" ever existed, outside the mind of the pilot.

7. D'Alton in the National Enquirer is quoted as claiming " it made a sharp turn while flying at high speeds -- an impossible maneuver that would rip any man-made aircraft to bits. " Again, the actual object never made such a turn, and the pilot's over-interpretation of what the object MUST be experiencing was based on mistaken judgments of actual distance and motion.

8. After two minutes of flying straight, said D'Alton, ". . .it took a lightning-fast right-angle turn and zoomed out of sight." But we know that the actual observed object never made such a maneuver, but D'Alton remembered it clearly when trying to explain in his own mind how it disappeared so fast.

9. The newspaper account, quoted in Good's book, has D'Alton claiming that "ground radar couldn't pick it up, so it must have been travelling at phenomenal speed." Actually, the speed would have had nothing to do with radar failing to pick it up, but the actual distance -- which D'Alton misjudged, leading to subsequent erroneous interpretations -- did.

10. The Tornado pilots described the flaming debris as " two large round objects, each with five blue lights and several other white lights around the rim." Since they were used to seeing other structured vehicles with lights mounted on them, when they spotted this unusual apparition, that's the way they misperceived and remembered it.

11. "In Belgium, dozens reported a triangular object with three lights, flying slowly and soundlessly to the south-west," but these were separate fireball fragments at a great distance, which witnesses assumed were lights on some larger structure. Their slow angular rate was misinterpreted to be a genuine slow speed because their true distance was grossly underestimated.

12. "A British pilot . . . reported four objects flying in formation over the Ardennes hills in south Belgium." The pilot may have been over southern Belgium, but the objects he saw didn't have to be, they were hundreds of miles away. And despite his instinctive (and wrong) assumption the lights were "flying in formation", they were randomly-space fireball fragments.

13. Note that Good writes that "Jean-Jacques Velasco,. . . said an investigation would be launched," but Good saw the results of that investigation before his book went to press, and he neglected to tell his readers that Velasco proved the lights were from the satellite re-entry.

Such selective omissions make many such stories appear far stronger than they really are.

14. One Air France pilot told a radio interviewer: '. . . It couldn't have been a satellite (re-entry) because it was there for three or four minutes', but such reasoning is groundless since near-horizontal re-entriers can be seen for many minutes, especially from airplanes at high altitude. The pilot didn't know this, and rejected that explanation erroneously.

15. "In Italy, six airline pilots reported 'a mysterious and intense white light' south-east of Turin. Pilots also reported five white smoke trails nearby." They may have been near Turin when they saw the lights and assumed incorrectly they were 'nearby', but the lights were far, far away.
Did you notice #6? They were convinced it was on a collision course and even took violent evasive action, yet no collision course ever existed. The Coyne incident contains a claim about a collision course which we don't know is any more true, it could also be a misperception. There are other misperceptions in that list which could relate to the Coyne case also. Misperceiving the shape of the object, defying the laws of physics, etc.

And this list gives you some idea why Hynek's research showed that commercial and military pilots were the worst witnesses among all categories of UFO observers with misperception rates of 88-89%:


Hynek's assessment of the accuracy of "UFO reports" from pilots appears to be right on target. It is not meant as an insult to their intelligence, integrity, or professional competence. It does, however, reflect the training their minds have gotten from years of flight experience.
That's just one case study, there are more case studies at that link with many more pilot misperceptions that are documented, and obviously Hynek had lots of data on pilot misperceptions which he used to assign them a 88-89% misperception rate.
edit on 23-3-2011 by Arbitrageur because: clarification



posted on Mar, 23 2011 @ 12:26 AM
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reply to post by BLKMJK
 


Yeah, sorry. There should have been a comma in there that would have made that last sentence a little more intelligible.

Basically, some people approach reports such as the Coyne incident with the attitude that such an event is SO unlikely to have actually occurred that there MUST be a more conventional explanation for it, even if neither we, nor anyone else, can even begin to imagine what that conventional explanation might be. In other words, it can't be; therefore, it isn't.

Such people generally seem to consider one particular explanation - namely, the explanation that the event actually happened like the witnesses said it happened - to be the LEAST likely of all possible explanations. It then follows that ANY explanation one might come up with, no matter how unlikely or unfounded, is by definition more likely than the idea that the event actually occurred as reported.

A good example of this attitude is embodied in a statement from the U.S. Air Force-sponsored study of UFO reports conducted at the University of Colorado in the late '60s. After reviewing the details of an airborne sighting by a pilot who described observing an unidentified object and six smaller objects - the latter of which maneuvered around the "parent object" before appearing to enter or merge with it, at which point the object disappeared from view - the project staffer attempted to explain the sighting in this manner:


This unusual sighting should therefore be assigned to the category of some almost certainly natural phenomenon, which is so rare that it apparently has never been reported before or since.


In other words, it doesn't matter what prompted this sighting report. It could not have been what it appeared to be. Let's move along. Nothing to see here.



posted on Mar, 23 2011 @ 12:46 AM
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reply to post by Arbitrageur
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I would agree that the apparent "collision course" is not strange enough to require any speculation beyond misperception. If that were the sum of the strangeness of the case, there would be nothing to discuss. Wouldn't you agree, though, that what you just did was to extract one relatively mundane aspect of a report and offer a possible explanation for it while ignoring the remaining - and far more puzzling - details?

The men reported that the object stopped directly above and in front of them, only a short distance away, in full view, for a number of seconds. They describe a bright green light emanating from one end of the object and flooding the cabin of their helicopter. Coyne reported that he "could see lights reflecting off the structure, and you could not see any stars behind the object itself."

That quote can be heard at about 1:12 in this video.

I think hallucination is a much more likely explanation for sightings like this than misperception.



posted on Mar, 23 2011 @ 12:48 AM
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Originally posted by Orkojoker
Such people generally seem to consider one particular explanation - namely, the explanation that the event actually happened like the witnesses said it happened - to be the LEAST likely of all possible explanations. It then follows that ANY explanation one might come up with, no matter how unlikely or unfounded, is by definition more likely than the idea that the event actually occurred as reported.
Undoubtedly the claim of human misperception IS more likely in some cases. If someone tells me they saw a pink flying elephant (or an object traveling at mach 2 making a right angle turn), events I consider unlikely, should I give them the benefit of the doubt, or conclude it's unlikely they really saw that?


Originally posted by Orkojoker
In other words, it doesn't matter what prompted this sighting report. It could not have been what it appeared to be. Let's move along. Nothing to see here.
Yes that conclusion is a bit extreme. It would be more logical to conclude that reports of things that defy the laws of physics are unlikely, but still possible, as our knowledge of physics is incomplete. But I think human misperception still must be considered a more likely explanation than defying the laws of physics as we know them even with our limited knowledge of physics.



posted on Mar, 23 2011 @ 12:57 AM
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Originally posted by Orkojoker
I would agree that the apparent "collision course" is not strange enough to require any speculation beyond misperception. If that were the sum of the strangeness of the case, there would be nothing to discuss. Wouldn't you agree, though, that what you just did was to extract one relatively mundane aspect of a report and offer a possible explanation for it while ignoring the remaining - and far more puzzling - details?
Do you consider a pilot taking "violent evasive action" to avoid a collision with an object that is nowhere near a collision course to be mundane? I hope I'm never on any such "mundane" commercial flight!


If the Coyne case wasn't unique, I wouldn't find it so interesting. And I didn't attempt to offer any specific alternate explanation for the more bizarre aspects of the case, other than to suggest that human perception plays a role in virtually all aspects of the sighting. As I said, it may have happened exactly as they described. I don't consider that very likely, but I don't rule out the possibility either. There are too many cases where people claiming the laws of physics have been defied turned out to be misperception issues.



posted on Mar, 23 2011 @ 12:59 AM
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reply to post by Arbitrageur
 


Great post Arbitrageur


That old chestnut that pilots, trained naval observes, and the like are somehow less infallible than the average person is so often used to (mistakenly) give reports an air of credibility. I've often found my self "banging my head against a brick wall" trying to explain why this is not the case, but thanks to you, I have a very good example that proves the point.





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