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Why is the skeptics OPINION given any weight?

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posted on Aug, 25 2012 @ 04:29 PM
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About that two-tiered thread model: besides ATS, I am a member in several other forums, some of which I visit frequently, some not. From all those forums, there are two that are on the opposite sides of the spectrum, one is full of believers in anything that is against mainstream science, the other is full of people that think that science is the only thing that matters and that it knows all. Most threads on those two forums are extremely boring, with someone making the opening post and most of the following posts being just virtual pats in the back of the poster, because they all know that they are the ones that know the truth. I run away from those threads as fast as I can, they are not only boring, they are depressing, as they show how many people can engage their brain just enough to nod their heads in agreement or to shake them in denial.

Sorry everybody for the off-topic diversion, and please, keep the discussion of the two-tiered thread model to the appropriate thread, not here.




posted on Aug, 25 2012 @ 04:36 PM
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Originally posted by ArMaP

...

A small advice: in the opening post provide a clear meaning of the words you are using and that may have different interpretation by different people, that way people will understand better what you mean and everyone will know what is the subject.


Just to nip a potential problem in the bud. This isn't going to stop people from calling you out if you use this strategy to try to paint all your opponents in a certain light. For example: defining a skeptic as someone with a blindness to the facts.

Just so we're all on the same page I'm going to start off this thread by defining a "believer" as an irrational loony and someone whose opinion should be dismissed out of hand. What have they got to add to this conversation anyway, besides noise? (/end satire.)




edit on 25-8-2012 by Tearman because: (no reason given)



posted on Aug, 25 2012 @ 06:09 PM
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Originally posted by Tearman
This isn't going to stop people from calling you out if you use this strategy to try to paint all your opponents in a certain light. For example: defining a skeptic as someone with a blindness to the facts.

No, it will not stop that, but it avoids confusion and misunderstandings, something that I have seen taking a long time to be cleared.



posted on Aug, 25 2012 @ 06:12 PM
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Originally posted by AldrinAlden
Or just be skeptic and wait for someone else to do it for you.

That shows that didn't understand what a sceptic is, as a sceptic does not accept what other people tell him without real evidences.

I have participated in several threads in which I was the only person making experiments to see what happened in those conditions; the believers accepted what was presented without any doubt, the deniers said that it was not possible, I tried it to see if it was or not.



posted on Aug, 25 2012 @ 08:06 PM
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Originally posted by Druscilla

As I just asked, show us your logical path of reasoning just as I've demonstrated myself which leads you to such an "Alien" conclusion.

Do you have a logical path of reasoning toward conclusion?
If so, then, please demonstrate.



I second this emotion. If you feel so strongly that the evidence leads to the ETH, you should probably at least make an attempt to elucidate your reasoning. You've said - not you Druscilla, but the member you're responding to - that you've reached your conclusion based on the evidence. Well let's have it then.



posted on Aug, 25 2012 @ 08:35 PM
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Originally posted by Orkojoker
you've reached your conclusion based on the evidence. Well let's have it then.
Good point.

The problem I have with these threads is that generalities get us nowhere. Looking at specific evidence is much more productive.



posted on Aug, 25 2012 @ 08:36 PM
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reply to post by ArMaP
 



keep the discussion of the two-tiered thread model to the appropriate thread, not here.

I honestly thought that the thread was addressing skeptic's opinions and if they should be considered. Therefore, I was thinking that the two-tier thread model was a good fit. Sorry if it wasn't appropriate here.


edit on 25/8/2012 by MarkJS because: (no reason given)



posted on Aug, 25 2012 @ 08:47 PM
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I think some have hit the nail on the head when coming to the conclusion that a lot of this comes down to not only perception, but also how willing you are to base your beliefs on something less than concrete proof. For instance I believe all the historic data, including the overwhelming ammount of personal testimony, ancient lore, physical anomolies, and the myriad of contextual evidence is so enormus that it would be all but impossible for ALL of it to be baseless. So, even though I do not have personal expierence with UFO's and specificly Intelligent Alien Life, I have come to the conclusion (read: belief) that they do exist. Not to say I know exactly what they are, or anything at all about them, but there is 'something' to this beyond fiction.

Now, some will look at the total body of evidence and conclude that there is not a single shread of concrete proof they can hold as the beacon of truth, the smoking gun per see. So they will dismiss the entire body of evidence at hand. And thats their right. I can understand and relate to that even though I tend to see, weigh, and precieve things differently.

In the end, a skeptic (read: not a debunker) is in it for the same reasons we all are, to seek the truth.



posted on Aug, 25 2012 @ 08:49 PM
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I am a skeptic. I need to be shown actual evidence to persuade me one way or another, with a dash of expirences Ive had.

I had opinions before on this site, that I was certain of, and completely blown away by some good evidence leading me to a new conclusion.

What you are describing is someone that will not be persuaded of another thought no mater what evidence you give them.

It goes both ways, just because a thread is made stating its a video of a ufo, and great evidence shows without a doubt that it is something else, there is the blind belief that its a ufo and nothing is going to change their minds.

Skepticism is a good thing. If it can withstand the brunt of fleshing out truth or fiction, that makes the evidence that much stronger.
edit on 25-8-2012 by cavscout11cav because: forgot to say something



posted on Aug, 25 2012 @ 08:55 PM
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Originally posted by neoholographic
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.


I wanted to make a comment about the statement in bold.
Belief is a work-saving mechanism. It makes sense to be less skeptical about things when the fallout from harboring an inaccurate belief is inconsequential or when a belief has already been overwhelmingly reaffirmed by evidence.

Example belief: The sun will rise tomorrow.
Why there's no use being skeptical about it:
a) Past experience overwhelmingly agrees with that conclusion.
b) there are no alternative conclusions that make any sense.
c) if it's wrong there's nothing to be done about it anyway.

So I'm going to go ahead and not burn any extra calories being skeptical on that point.

Let's compare that to another belief: some UFOs are the result of extraterrestrial activity.
Why it makes sense to be skeptical about this conclusion:
a) Accumulated evidence is uneven and a lot of it is from unreliable sources. Evidence cannot be reproduced and many important details cannot be confirmed.
b) There are an abundance of alternative explanations many to do with the limitations of human perception or the consequences of human psychology.
c) If it is true then it would change EVERYTHING!
edit on 25-8-2012 by Tearman because: (no reason given)



posted on Aug, 25 2012 @ 09:10 PM
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reply to post by Tearman
 

This viewpoint was succinctly expressed by Carl Sagan as "extraordinary claims require extraordinary evidence", which I don't recall being mentioned in this thread until your post, but it's a very important point, so thanks for bringing it up.



posted on Aug, 25 2012 @ 09:29 PM
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Originally posted by HomeBrew
Now, some will look at the total body of evidence and conclude that there is not a single shread of concrete proof they can hold as the beacon of truth, the smoking gun per see. So they will dismiss the entire body of evidence at hand. And thats their right. I can understand and relate to that even though I tend to see, weigh, and precieve things differently.

I don't doubt there are people that do that, but speaking for myself as a skeptic, and suspecting others share my view as well, despite not having the so called "smoking gun" I have not dismissed "the entire body of evidence." The "entire body of evidence" is an indication of something, but my point, and that of others, is that considering the available evidence and knowledge, I don't think anyone can honestly claim that it's been proven to be aliens.

I am comfortable with admitting that, considering the solid evidence — namely those 5% of cases Leslie Kean wrote about, which have been thoroughly investigated, involve multiple witnesses and ample data, but still cannot be explained — it's quite clear that something unknown is flying in our skies. I think most members here would have no problems with this statement.

But we don't have to jump to a conclusion because something currently unexplained is apparently going on. I think, unfortunately, a lot of people, for some reason, need to have an answer right now, and believing an answer is sufficient for them.

I am okay with the fact that we presently don't have an answer to the mystery of UFOs. That's part of science and the pursuit of knowledge.




edit on 25-8-2012 by Quaesitor because: (no reason given)



posted on Aug, 25 2012 @ 09:44 PM
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Hello strykr,



Originally posted by strykr619

Pilots (specially military pilots) know a lot more about aircraft then 99% of the "ufologists" period.


Aircrafts, chances are. Unidentified Flying Objects, not so sure.




The fact that most pilots won't come out due to fear of ridicule or loss of employment is telling. My extended family has 3 civilian pilots, 2 naval aviators and 2 retired airforce pilots (one flew the B2 and the other F 117's) ALL of them have either heard stories or witnessed strange sightings . One thing they have ALL said is they will never file FAA reports because they would lose flight status AUTOMATICALLY and maybe permanently.

Its considered a no-no to talk about UFO's in both civilian and military aviation.


I totally agree with you. But we were talking about the accuracy of their testimony, when some of them do come out to say it. Not their flight status being in jeopardy if they do so. But when it comes to that, yes, I agree with you.




posted on Aug, 25 2012 @ 10:00 PM
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Originally posted by Quaesitor
I am comfortable with admitting that, considering the solid evidence — namely those 5% of cases Leslie Kean wrote about, which have been thoroughly investigated, involve multiple witnesses and ample data, but still cannot be explained — it's quite clear that something unknown is flying in our skies. I think most members here would have no problems with this statement.
I have a big problem with that statement.

In fact I'm a big advocate of changing the term "UFO" to "UAP" or "Unidentified aerial phenomena". NARCAP uses this term. Regarding those 5% of cases, I would agree they indicate "UAP" or "Unidentified aerial phenomena".

That doesn't necessarily mean something unknown is flying. Perhaps it is, perhaps it isn't, but if the cases are unexplained, that means we can't explain them.

Here is a specific example where I find the pilot 100% credible, and I have absolutely no doubt that an "Unidentified aerial phenomenon" was observed:
2007_Alderney_UFO_sighting

To my knowledge this is still unidentified. However to suggest that "it's quite clear that something unknown is flying in our skies" based on this case or other unexplained cases like it is utterly and completely wrong, and I object strongly.

Maybe in some other cases we might be able to come to that conclusion, but again this is the problem I have with generalizations. Discussing specific cases is much more productive.
edit on 25-8-2012 by Arbitrageur because: clarification



posted on Aug, 25 2012 @ 10:17 PM
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reply to post by Arbitrageur
 

I think the differences you point out are meaningless or non-existent. Your objections to my statement appear to be these: you prefer to call the phenomenon UAP instead of UFO. And instead of unknown you call it unexplained. Okay...

You say that "regarding those 5% of cases, I would agree they indicate 'UAP'." And I said, based on those 5%, "something unknown is flying in our skies."

It seems to me that we agree there is a percentage of well document and investigated cases that indicate that undeniably there were things, in the sky, whose origin and nature remains unexplained.

Unless I have horribly misunderstood your point we are in essence saying the same thing and I quite frankly don't see the need for you to point out the differences, let alone to claim you "have a big problem" with my statement.



posted on Aug, 25 2012 @ 10:18 PM
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reply to post by neoholographic
 


Mate; without skeptics believers and those in process of becoming believers would be easily or too easily sucked on by fraudsters but having said that I think many 'skeptics' on this website are paid skeptics. That is they are inserted into these chat rooms for the purpose of undermining factual premise and logic.

A couple years ago there was a thread on ATS about some government official who recommended to the government to do exactly this, particulraly in relation to 911.



posted on Aug, 25 2012 @ 10:20 PM
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reply to post by Quaesitor
 

The key differences are the following:
There may be no "object" and it may not be "flying".
Hence the replacement of "flying object" in "UFO" with "aerial phenomena" in "UAP".

edit on 25-8-2012 by Arbitrageur because: clarification



posted on Aug, 25 2012 @ 10:27 PM
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reply to post by Arbitrageur
 

Well I understand your concern, but having explained my position on the topic — mainly that we can't yet attribute any origin to any of the solid cases — I was hoping you would have given me more credit than assuming that by using the popular nomenclature UFO I would strictly be thinking and talking about actual objects that flew in the conventional sense of flight.



posted on Aug, 25 2012 @ 10:29 PM
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I was waiting to hear the claim "Extraordinary claims require extraordinary evidence."

What is extraordinary evidence? Why isn't the evidence enough? Is there some scientific measure of extraordinary evidence?

Who decides what's an extraordinary claim? What's extraordinary to me might not be extraordinary to you.

Skeptics like throwing out this quote but it makes no sense especially today.

Is saying we live in a holographic universe and extraordinary claim? Is saying that parallel universes exist an extraordinary claim? Is saying the universe is a quantum computer an extraordinary claim?

The fact is none of these are extraordinary claims based on knowledge we have in 2012.

It's the same with saying based on the available evidence, extraterrestrials exist. If I said this in 1950 it might be an extraordinary claim but not in 2012 with all the evidence and scientific knowledge that has accumulated over the years it's not.

Like I said these skeptics have to speak in absolutes or they have to require "extraordinary evidence" which is simply more nonsense that allows them to reject any evidence that has accumulated over the years.

So evidence isn't enough, it has to be extraordinary evidence which is a meaningless term.
edit on 25-8-2012 by neoholographic because: (no reason given)



posted on Aug, 25 2012 @ 10:31 PM
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Originally posted by Quaesitor

Originally posted by neoholographic
U.F.O.'s means their unidentified, not that we can't identify what they are based on evidence which includes eyewitness testimony.

That's exactly what UFO means to an impartial person. You however apparently think unidentified = alien. Then you are guilty of the same bias the denialists you vent about are.


We entrust some of these people with our lives, so why should I belittle what they're saying just to placate my belief system? This is what skeptics do?

I didn't belittle anyone. I said eyewitness testimony isn't really useful, in my opinion, not because I think those people are liars, but because testimony only gets you so far. Someone saw something. They describe what they saw. Great. Now what? It's not tangible data you can work with.

I have seen a UFO and I don't claim to know what it was much less that my sighting is proof of anything, other than I saw something I couldn't identify. I have no problem admitting that, objectively, I don't know what I saw. Nor do I need to believe a particular theory to mask and feel comfortable with my ignorance.

Get 'em, Killer. Well put!







 
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