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Why is the skeptics OPINION given any weight?

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posted on Aug, 24 2012 @ 05:01 PM
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I was channeling through different stations and came across a story about U.F.O.'s. There was a Police Officer describing what they saw and going over what they experienced. Then the skeptics comes on and talks about "wishful thinking" and "vivid imagination."

The skeptic just gave a silly opinion based on his belief against what the Police Officer actually saw and experienced.

If you had these same Police Officers, Astronauts, Pilots and people who are respected in their community say, I was an eyewitness to Mob crimes and some of them were even abducted by the Mob. Their eyewitness testimony would be given a lot of weight and I doubt you will hear any skeptic challenging their eyewitness testimony with silly opinions.

When it comes to U.F.O.'s these well respected people all of a sudden become blathering idiots with wild imaginations.

So at the end of the day, a skeptics opinion is meaningless when weighed against eyewitness accounts from Police, Pilots, Astronauts and more.
edit on 24-8-2012 by neoholographic because: (no reason given)




posted on Aug, 24 2012 @ 05:04 PM
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Some skepticism is good. Or else every weather balloon would be ET and every bug on a camera would be a ghost.

I agree with you though that their are who just blow off reliable eye witness accounts because it is not what they believe.


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posted on Aug, 24 2012 @ 05:13 PM
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Then the skeptics comes on and talks about "wishful thinking" and "vivid imagination."
That wasn't a skeptic, that was a jerk.


If you had these same Police Officers, Astronauts, Pilots and people who are respected in their community say, I was an eyewitness to Mob crimes and some of them were even abducted by the Mob.
In a case like that I would tend to believe the police officer because he might actually recognize members of "the mob". I would even believe that an astronaut or a pilot would realize people were committing a crime, but as far as them providing accurate descriptions? Not so much.


So at the end of the day, a skeptics opinion is meaningless when weighed against eyewitness accounts from Police, Pilots, Astronauts and more.

Eyewitness accounts are notoriously inaccurate. I have no doubt that police and pilots have seen things in the sky that they didn't understand and would therefore be unable to identify them. But I'm curious about those astronaut accounts. Can you be more specific?

edit on 8/24/2012 by Phage because: (no reason given)



posted on Aug, 24 2012 @ 05:13 PM
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reply to post by neoholographic
 


Neoholographic,

While I understand what you are saying, I do not necessarily agree..


So at the end of the day, a skeptics opinion is meaningless when weighed against eyewitness accounts from Police, Pilots, Astronauts and more.


Police, pilots, astronauts are not UFOlogy experts.

Yes, they give a description of what they have seen, to the best of their abilities, just like anyone else. Doesn't mean they are right, doesn't mean they are wrong. It is their testimony. Oftentimes, it is based on what they do think they saw and it doesn't necessarily mean what it actually was.

A testimony is just that. A testimony. Skeptics question and have every right to do so. Questioning leads to learning.

Just my opinion.



posted on Aug, 24 2012 @ 05:14 PM
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Originally posted by neoholographic
The skeptic just gave a silly opinion based on his belief against what the Police Officer actually saw and experienced.

The people you are talking about aren't skeptics because skepticism involves having an open mind, and those people have made up their minds. They are denialists. And on the other end of the spectrum you have the true believers. And both groups are equally bad.


If you had these same Police Officers, Astronauts, Pilots and people who are respected in their community say, I was an eyewitness to Mob crimes and some of them were even abducted by the Mob. Their eyewitness testimony would be given a lot of weight and I doubt you will hear any skeptic challenging their eyewitness testimony with silly opinions.

To be fair this comparison doesn't really work because "mob crimes" are earthly mundane things that everyone knows have happened. UFOs on the other hand, by their definition, are unknown and remain unexplained.



posted on Aug, 24 2012 @ 05:15 PM
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reply to post by neoholographic
 

If there were fewer whackadoodles claiming all sorts of far-out scenarios and conspiracies and site like ATS actually had an occasional conspiracy or prediction pan out, then I think there would be more respect for alternative views. But when a bear eating a fish suddenly becomes proof of Jurrassic park and overnite sweeps every alternative news site, then, well, Houston-we have a problem.



posted on Aug, 24 2012 @ 05:27 PM
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reply to post by Quaesitor
 


This is exactly my point. You said:


To be fair this comparison doesn't really work because "mob crimes" are earthly mundane things that everyone knows have happened. UFOs on the other hand, by their definition, are unknown and remain unexplained.


What's "mundane" is based on ones personal belief. Actually, there's no difference between the two. The only difference is how people weigh the eyewitness testimony. Rather he's talking about a mob crime or a U.F.O., he or she is still a credible witness and their eyewitness account has to be given weight.

These people don't become unreliable idiots because the subject matter switches from mob crimes to U.F.O.'s. So it's more about the personal belief of the skeptic over objective, eyewitness testimony that you would accept in just about any other situation.



posted on Aug, 24 2012 @ 05:28 PM
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In the example you used, I agree. That wasn't so much opinion as it was an ad hominem attack against individuals. That's useless. However, a skeptic is not always JUST offering "opinion," but alternative explanations. For example, after the Jimmy Carter UFO sighting came to light several folks took the information he provided and correlated it with latitude, longitude, weather, and time of day. They found that Venus just happened to be sitting right about where Carter says he saw something.

People seem to think that pilots or police officers are superior to the general public in their ability to "observe." This simply is not true. I'm a pilot myself and I was never given any instruction, in ground school or in the air, on observation skills. The idea that certain classes of people are better at observation is simply not true. It is an "argument from authority" (argumentum ad verecundiam) which is just as invalid as argumentum ad hominem.

In terms of eye witness testimony, it usually is not very good and subject to all kinds of error. Both Isaac Koi and greeneyedleo are in the legal business. Ask them what they think of eye witness testimony. (I know what they'll say because I've heard them say it.) Lawyers will shy away from eye witness accounts as testimony of they possibly can.

Lastly, whom you label a skeptic might just have more experience in observing certain objects than the witness or you do. As an example, I've been studying UFOs longer than most of you have been alive. I've been fooled many times. Many years ago I came across a case that looked pretty good to me, but a "skeptic" pointed out it was a diving seagull. After much dismay and people saying, "Why is this skeptic's opinion given any weight?" he patiently pointed out the head, the beak, the tail, etc.

It was taken at the seashore at the beach. It was a bird. Now every time I see a picture similar to that my first thought is, "Is it a bird?" The same is true of mylar balloons, lamp posts, and reflections in windows. After you've seen a few of these, you tend to look there first and try to eliminate those explanations.

I'm not entirely dismissing your complaint, but I think you may be treating a true skeptic unfairly and mistaking troll activity as words from skeptics. For example, I have an extensive thread on Steven Greer right now with over 700 replies. It has been extensively trolled by some people who do not appreciate any critiques of Greer. One or more people have reincarnated on a daily basis to spout drivel, be banned, and show up again. It's really quite pathetic when the only substantive criticism they can come up with is, "You must be jealous."

So when you hear a skeptic,, the one thing you should ask is, "Are they contributing something useful to the issue? Are they suggesting alternative explanations, or are they simply making fun of the issue. If the latter, I agree they are worthless, but if the former, they may be just trying to help.



posted on Aug, 24 2012 @ 05:29 PM
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reply to post by neoholographic
 


edit on 8/24/2012 by Klassified because: Nevermind. Didn't come out right.


+3 more 
posted on Aug, 24 2012 @ 05:31 PM
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reply to post by neoholographic
 


If it weren't for some very, very smart skeptics on this sight, in all honesty, we'd all be sitting here reading threads about a Plegaran takeover of our home world while we watched movies of airplanes, called UFO's - taped by a rather nutty blonde woman, as a transexual who claimed to be a NASA employee told us all about the virtues of Blossom Goodchild.... Oh and we'd be engaged in a frantic debate over whether or not a rubber toy in a faked autopsy video was real or not.

The skeptics are just as important as the 1% of stuff they cannot explain. Because without them we'd never know which 1% mattered.

Have you hugged a skeptic today?


~Heff



posted on Aug, 24 2012 @ 05:32 PM
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What you have to remember is that all scientists are skeptics. A scientist will not believe something without putting it to rigorous testing.A scientist may hope something is right but they will go through the motions of proving it by discounting all possibilities of it being wrong before calling it a fact.


edit on 24-8-2012 by PhoenixOD because: (no reason given)



posted on Aug, 24 2012 @ 05:33 PM
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I am skeptical that this skeptic was skeptical enough to say all that. I think you may have a vivid imagination and that what was said was wildly different



posted on Aug, 24 2012 @ 05:44 PM
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reply to post by schuyler
 


Wrong,

A true skeptic knows his or her opinion is meaningless without evidence. It's just an opinion.

What you described is an opinion based on evidence. That's true skepticism. It's possible that Carter may have saw Venus at that time. The isn't just an opinion. This is a rebuttal based on facts.

Saying someone has a "vivid imagination" is just an opinion.

I I saw the profession skeptic Michael Shermer debating these issues. He could rebut anything the guy was saying about Ufology so he started talking about "little green men."

Skeptics do this all the time. Skepticism has been turned into a belief system by many people who claim to be skeptics instead a true search for the truth.

You then talked about Pilots. Yes, their eyewitness testimony should be given weight. Just like we give weight to well respected people in the community. Unless you can impeach their testimony and some how show they become blathering idiots with vivid imaginations when talking about U.F.O.'s, you have to give what their saying weight. We trust some of these people with our lives.

So when a Pilot or Police Officer describe what they saw and experienced, why should I doubt them based on the skeptics opinion? That makes no sense.

First their needs to be evidence presented that counters what they're saying or that impeaches the witness.

So I assume the Pilots, Police Officers and Astronauts are telling the truth until I have some evidence that their not. The reason skeptics try to belittle these eyewitnesses is because of their personal belief system.



posted on Aug, 24 2012 @ 05:47 PM
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reply to post by neoholographic
 


Because the skeptic is the one who generally makes the most sense. Your perception is always colored by experiences and expectations. It is far more likely that what has been observed is normal but presented in a rare manner to the observer and misinterpreted than it is to be something unknown to science.



posted on Aug, 24 2012 @ 05:48 PM
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Originally posted by neoholographic
reply to post by schuyler
 


Wrong,

A true skeptic knows his or her opinion is meaningless without evidence. It's just an opinion.

What you described is an opinion based on evidence. That's true skepticism. It's possible that Carter may have saw Venus at that time. The isn't just an opinion. This is a rebuttal based on facts.

Saying someone has a "vivid imagination" is just an opinion.

I I saw the profession skeptic Michael Shermer debating these issues. He could rebut anything the guy was saying about Ufology so he started talking about "little green men."

Skeptics do this all the time. Skepticism has been turned into a belief system by many people who claim to be skeptics instead a true search for the truth.

You then talked about Pilots. Yes, their eyewitness testimony should be given weight. Just like we give weight to well respected people in the community. Unless you can impeach their testimony and some how show they become blathering idiots with vivid imaginations when talking about U.F.O.'s, you have to give what their saying weight. We trust some of these people with our lives.

So when a Pilot or Police Officer describe what they saw and experienced, why should I doubt them based on the skeptics opinion? That makes no sense.

First their needs to be evidence presented that counters what they're saying or that impeaches the witness.

So I assume the Pilots, Police Officers and Astronauts are telling the truth until I have some evidence that their not. The reason skeptics try to belittle these eyewitnesses is because of their personal belief system.


Ahhhh. The ol' skeptics suck and should be crucified debate......been awhile.....

The skeptics of ATS are what keep this forum going....they do more work on figuring out what something is, then anyone else....That is a fact....all it takes is one perusing the forum.

As as been pointed out over and over from thread to thread......studies show that eyewitness testimony is the least reliable piece of evidence. That is not my opinion, that is what all those experts doing studies say. And well, it is pretty easy to do your own experiments



posted on Aug, 24 2012 @ 05:48 PM
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Originally posted by neoholographic
reply to post by schuyler
 


Wrong,

A true skeptic knows his or her opinion is meaningless without evidence. It's just an opinion.

What you described is an opinion based on evidence. That's true skepticism. It's possible that Carter may have saw Venus at that time. The isn't just an opinion. This is a rebuttal based on facts.

Saying someone has a "vivid imagination" is just an opinion.

I I saw the profession skeptic Michael Shermer debating these issues. He could rebut anything the guy was saying about Ufology so he started talking about "little green men."

Skeptics do this all the time. Skepticism has been turned into a belief system by many people who claim to be skeptics instead a true search for the truth.

You then talked about Pilots. Yes, their eyewitness testimony should be given weight. Just like we give weight to well respected people in the community. Unless you can impeach their testimony and some how show they become blathering idiots with vivid imaginations when talking about U.F.O.'s, you have to give what their saying weight. We trust some of these people with our lives.

So when a Pilot or Police Officer describe what they saw and experienced, why should I doubt them based on the skeptics opinion? That makes no sense.

First their needs to be evidence presented that counters what they're saying or that impeaches the witness.

So I assume the Pilots, Police Officers and Astronauts are telling the truth until I have some evidence that their not. The reason skeptics try to belittle these eyewitnesses is because of their personal belief system.


Ahhhh. The ol' skeptics suck and should be crucified debate......been awhile.....

The skeptics of ATS are what keep this forum going....they do more work on figuring out what something is, then anyone else....That is a fact....all it takes is one perusing the forum. They keep this topic in check and weed out all the crap. You do acknowledge there is a lot of crap out there right?

As as been pointed out over and over from thread to thread......studies show that eyewitness testimony is the least reliable piece of evidence. That is not my opinion, that is what all those experts doing studies say. And well, it is pretty easy to do your own experiments.

Next, I do not respect a person because of their position, per-say. I mean, even astronauts can turn crazy.

Skeptics are not disbelievers. They just use their brain instead of belief.....



edit on August 24th 2012 by greeneyedleo because: (no reason given)



posted on Aug, 24 2012 @ 05:51 PM
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Originally posted by neoholographic
reply to post by schuyler
 


Wrong,

A true skeptic knows his or her opinion is meaningless without evidence. It's just an opinion.

What you described is an opinion based on evidence. That's true skepticism. It's possible that Carter may have saw Venus at that time. The isn't just an opinion. This is a rebuttal based on facts.

Saying someone has a "vivid imagination" is just an opinion.

I I saw the profession skeptic Michael Shermer debating these issues. He could rebut anything the guy was saying about Ufology so he started talking about "little green men."

Skeptics do this all the time. Skepticism has been turned into a belief system by many people who claim to be skeptics instead a true search for the truth.

You then talked about Pilots. Yes, their eyewitness testimony should be given weight. Just like we give weight to well respected people in the community. Unless you can impeach their testimony and some how show they become blathering idiots with vivid imaginations when talking about U.F.O.'s, you have to give what their saying weight. We trust some of these people with our lives.

So when a Pilot or Police Officer describe what they saw and experienced, why should I doubt them based on the skeptics opinion? That makes no sense.

First their needs to be evidence presented that counters what they're saying or that impeaches the witness.

So I assume the Pilots, Police Officers and Astronauts are telling the truth until I have some evidence that their not. The reason skeptics try to belittle these eyewitnesses is because of their personal belief system.


Anybody else agree with this guy? I laid out what I thought was a pretty good accounting of skepticism versus, say trolling, and he dismisses it in a heart beat with logic that escapes me. I think I'll stick with my explanation just the same. I donl;t think OP really knows what he's talking about.



posted on Aug, 24 2012 @ 05:52 PM
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reply to post by BayesLike
 


What is normal? Again, this is just subjective belief as to what's normal and what's not.

THIS ISN'T SKEPTICISM!

This is belief masquerading as true skepticism.

This is why these "skeptics" are usually skeptical about things they don't believe and their less skeptical about things they consider "normal" which they already believe.

True skepticism demands an open mind and what's considered "normal" is just based on a subjective belief.



posted on Aug, 24 2012 @ 05:54 PM
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reply to post by schuyler
 


What you said didn't make any sense.

It had nothing to do with my original post. Of course evidence backed skepticism is fine but in most cases you see opinion masquerading as true skepticism.



posted on Aug, 24 2012 @ 05:58 PM
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Originally posted by neoholographic

If you had these same Police Officers, Astronauts, Pilots and people who are respected in their community say, I was an eyewitness to Mob crimes and some of them were even abducted by the Mob. Their eyewitness testimony would be given a lot of weight and I doubt you will hear any skeptic challenging their eyewitness testimony with silly opinions.

When it comes to U.F.O.'s these well respected people all of a sudden become blathering idiots with wild imaginations.


The mob has been proven to exist. Aliens have not. Would you be more willing to believe a police officer if he told you someone was beaten up by an ex convict or a pixie? The comparison you used was extremely one-sided in the attempt to prove that policemen know more about visiting alien life forms than someone else.



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