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Moontanman

UFO evidence and how it's handled.

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22 minutes ago, Moontanman said:

Not until quite recently but well before then assumed to exist. 

Something was observed,. It seemed like lightning, and was spherical. Ball lightning.

 

22 minutes ago, Moontanman said:

You really don't see what you just did? Ball lighting had no evidence other than things people claimed to have seen yet was assumed to be a real phenomena.

Yes.

22 minutes ago, Moontanman said:

UFOs are attributed to dumb radar operators even when that, if it were true, doesn't even come close to explaining what occurred. The desperation to explain no mater what destroys any possible objectivity... 

UFOs are also assumed to be real phenomena. We just don't know exactly what they are.

You are conflating "UFO" with "alien" and it's the latter that lacks evidence.  

 

22 minutes ago, Moontanman said:

And evidently still is... 

I'm not asking for conclusions, I'm asking for data to taken at face value rather than twisted to support some predetermined conclusion... 

What predetermined conclusion would that be? 

You can't say it's "there is no evidence that aliens exist" when a) there is no evidence you can present, and b) it's not a conclusion.

It's the assertion that "it's aliens" that is not taking evidence at face value. 

 

22 minutes ago, Moontanman said:

This simply the same as saying that someone on a log raft couldn't get to North America from Europe therefore no one ever well. The Vikings did it in not much better though a series of smaller steps. 

And who is claiming this?

 

22 minutes ago, Moontanman said:

Pictures are either too good to be true or not good enough to matter, not enough of them or far too many all of those have been used to debunk UFOs

You are assuming, one all sighting have equal merit,

No.

22 minutes ago, Moontanman said:

two aliens must travel from their home planet to us in one go,

That makes the situation I described worse.

22 minutes ago, Moontanman said:

three as we get more advanced we become more dangerous and better tech is used to observe, play, mess up or whatever it is that aliens do.

I said nothing about getting "more dangerous" (and I don't know what that has to do with this) and I think it's objectively and trivially true that our ability to observe things has gotten better in whatever reasonable interval of time you want to pick.

22 minutes ago, Moontanman said:

Four, you are assuming they are aliens. 

Is that not your position?

 

22 minutes ago, Moontanman said:

There is a cavern someplace in the London Metro system, long abandoned, people who go there are sure they have contacted the supernatural, ghosts, demons ect. It was once and still maybe a popular tourist spot, a few researchers took it seriously and over a period of time were able to determine the acoustics of the cavern was the culprit. 

At least some legitimate researchers attribute some UFOs to earthquake lights and electromagnetic effects on the human brain when underground crystal deposits are stressed by tectonic movement. No smoking gun really but possible steps in the right direction that writing them off as dumb radar operators will not...  

How does this help your case? That the scientifically unreasonable position was not simply assumed to be the case, just because some people asserted it?

The phenomena was simply unidentified, until enough evidence could be obtained to come to a conclusion. Can you see the actual parallel here?

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6 hours ago, Moontanman said:

I don't know that any UFOs are aliens, I do know that ball lightings is assumed to be a thing and was for centuries (due to eyewitnesses only) yet until quite recently not even photos existed. And of course everyone knew rocks could not fall from the sky...

This is rather the point. Ball lightning is the mundane explanation. And stones falling from the sky have a mundane explanation. 

Quote

There are, UAP''s lets call them, that simply defy rational explanation and only hand waving away at least some of the available data allows the status quo to continue.

The only reason they "defy rational explanation" is because there is insufficient evidence to allow any explanation. This does not rule out any mundane explanations. And it certainly doesn't support anything beyond the mundane. 

For all cases where there is enough evidence then it turns out the explanation is mundane.

You have not provided any examples of evidence being hand-waved away. And all the support for your claims is hand-waved into existence.

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IOW the null hypothesis is not that it's aliens, it's that it's a mundane phenomenon. You need to be able to positively exclude mundane explanations in order to conclude that it's aliens. And if evidence is lacking, there is no way to do that.

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18 hours ago, swansont said:

Something was observed,. It seemed like lightning, and was spherical. Ball lightning.

I've actually seen ball lightning, it looks nothing like lightning and if it weren't observed during a thunderstorm, sometimes, a connection would have been unlikely to have been made. There are actually more than one manifestation of some spherical glows that are said to be ball lightning, even UFOs has been explained away as ball lightning. Plasmoids, not the kind associated with earth's magnetic field sounded like a homerun until someone pointed out there was no mechanism for such a thing to form or exist for extended periods of time.. 

18 hours ago, swansont said:

Yes.

Yet UFOs are mistakes by dumb radar operators.... Ad hom attacks piss me off... especially by people who have an agenda and threaten others who disagree with them... 

18 hours ago, swansont said:

UFOs are also assumed to be real phenomena. We just don't know exactly what they are.

In the 1952 washington sighting it was written off as weather inversion even though the sighting could only partially be explained that way and the experts on site said that was not the case. Only people who had not been there with little to no expertise made that claim. The only honest answer was we don't know. 

18 hours ago, swansont said:

You are conflating "UFO" with "alien" and it's the latter that lacks evidence.

No, actually I am not, I am saying the data is always twisted to get a negative, not null, result in nearly all cases, the ones that cannot be twisted that way are ignored or hidden. It's Why Dr Hynek came over to the other side.. 

18 hours ago, swansont said:

What predetermined conclusion would that be?

The predetermined conclusion is always something mundane even though that is often close to being worse than aliens. If you don't know, you should say I don't know, not Venus was reflecting through a layer of haze and caused the pilot to see a V formation of glowing objects buzz his aircraft... 

18 hours ago, swansont said:

You can't say it's "there is no evidence that aliens exist" when a) there is no evidence you can present, and b) it's not a conclusion.

I can say there is data that suggests something unknown is going on and claiming something mundane that doesn't fit is wrong. 

18 hours ago, swansont said:

It's the assertion that "it's aliens" that is not taking evidence at face value.

I am not asserting it's aliens, I am asserting the data is twisted to make some mundane explanation fit.

18 hours ago, swansont said:

And who is claiming this?

Anyone who is saying that going from another star in one go is the only way it can be done. I would say that is the least likely way but that is just speculation. 

18 hours ago, swansont said:

No.

The deal about pictures has been with us from the very beginning, too good to be true or not good enough to be meaningful with little to no middle ground.

I say you are because you lump it all together, some data is more compelling than others.  

18 hours ago, swansont said:

That makes the situation I described worse.

Typo, my bad sorry... 

18 hours ago, swansont said:

I said nothing about getting "more dangerous" (and I don't know what that has to do with this) and I think it's objectively and trivially true that our ability to observe things has gotten better in whatever reasonable interval of time you want to pick.

And yet the really great photos and videos coming out are meaningless, most UFO sightings are almost certainly of mundane things that could be why the actual number of sightings have gone down since we can take better photos now. 

18 hours ago, swansont said:

Is that not your position?

No my position is that no true study of the data, all the data, has ever been undertaken and that ridiculous are often pushed to the point of being almost as unlikely as aliens...  

18 hours ago, swansont said:

How does this help your case? That the scientifically unreasonable position was not simply assumed to be the case, just because some people asserted it?

For quite sometime the "supernatural" in one form or another was assumed by many to be the case until real research was done, can you not see the actual parallel? 

18 hours ago, swansont said:

The phenomena was simply unidentified, until enough evidence could be obtained to come to a conclusion. Can you see the actual parallel here?

Until evidence was gathered in a scientific way all the other explanations mundane or otherwise were meaningless.. 

18 hours ago, Strange said:

This is rather the point. Ball lightning is the mundane explanation. And stones falling from the sky have a mundane explanation.

They are mundane now, not then... 

18 hours ago, Strange said:

The only reason they "defy rational explanation" is because there is insufficient evidence to allow any explanation. This does not rule out any mundane explanations. And it certainly doesn't support anything beyond the mundane. 

Not ture my friend, many events have an embarrassing amount of data, if you read it the sighting  in the OP is one such, weather phenomena could not have explained that sighting yet that was what was pushed like an ostrich up a ducks butt... 

18 hours ago, Strange said:

For all cases where there is enough evidence then it turns out the explanation is mundane.

Citation please... 

18 hours ago, Strange said:

You have not provided any examples of evidence being hand-waved away. And all the support for your claims is hand-waved into existence.

That is exactly what I have provided in the OP, I suggest you read it and put aside your surety it has to be mundane...   

3 hours ago, swansont said:

IOW the null hypothesis is not that it's aliens, it's that it's a mundane phenomenon. You need to be able to positively exclude mundane explanations in order to conclude that it's aliens. And if evidence is lacking, there is no way to do that.

I would agree but pushing the mundane that doesn't fit is not science and I think you would agree with that. 

AFAIK no scientific study of even a large number of random sightings has even been taken. The first study ever done was rejected out of hand because the man in charge simply refused to believe it, not because of a lack of evidence or due to a large number of scientists disagreeing, he simply we with his own incredulity...  

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6 minutes ago, Moontanman said:

The only honest answer was we don't know.

Remember the rabbit hole?

11 minutes ago, Moontanman said:

For quite sometime the "supernatural" in one form or another was assumed by many to be the case until real research was done, can you not see the actual parallel? 

Can you?

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35 minutes ago, Moontanman said:

 Yet UFOs are mistakes by dumb radar operators.... Ad hom attacks piss me off... especially by people who have an agenda and threaten others who disagree with them... 

You've said this a number of time but without reference. What "dumb radar operators" What ad hominems? Who are the people with an agenda? AFAIK the only agenda here is science, and any conclusion other than "we don't know" is an unscientific one.

 

35 minutes ago, Moontanman said:

In the 1952 washington sighting it was written off as weather inversion even though the sighting could only partially be explained that way and the experts on site said that was not the case. Only people who had not been there with little to no expertise made that claim. The only honest answer was we don't know. 

And not "it was aliens"

35 minutes ago, Moontanman said:

No, actually I am not, I am saying the data is always twisted to get a negative, not null, result in nearly all cases, the ones that cannot be twisted that way are ignored or hidden. It's Why Dr Hynek came over to the other side.. 

The predetermined conclusion is always something mundane even though that is often close to being worse than aliens. If you don't know, you should say I don't know, not Venus was reflecting through a layer of haze and caused the pilot to see a V formation of glowing objects buzz his aircraft... 

There are a number of examples where it was actually Venus. But that, too, gets ignored when rigor goes out the window.

 

35 minutes ago, Moontanman said:

I can say there is data that suggests something unknown is going on and claiming something mundane that doesn't fit is wrong. 

Nothing wrong with the former, and as for the latter, no, probably not. Simply because there is't enough data to make that determination. 

 

35 minutes ago, Moontanman said:

I am not asserting it's aliens, I am asserting the data is twisted to make some mundane explanation fit.

It sure seems like you are.

"Yes, I am claiming a cover up!"

"I can make a very credible argument as to how and why aliens might be nearby."

"My idea is that aliens are already here"

 

Why is it that "unidentified" has to mean anything more than "unidentified"?

 

35 minutes ago, Moontanman said:

Anyone who is saying that going from another star in one go is the only way it can be done. I would say that is the least likely way but that is just speculation. 

The deal about pictures has been with us from the very beginning, too good to be true or not good enough to be meaningful with little to no middle ground.

I say you are because you lump it all together, some data is more compelling than others.  

Typo, my bad sorry... 

And yet the really great photos and videos coming out are meaningless, most UFO sightings are almost certainly of mundane things that could be why the actual number of sightings have gone down since we can take better photos now. 

 

35 minutes ago, Moontanman said:

No my position is that no true study of the data, all the data, has ever been undertaken and that ridiculous are often pushed to the point of being almost as unlikely as aliens...  

The crux of the matter is a lack of evidence. There isn't more data to study.
e.g. you get a radar signal. There isn't another platform that you can bring online to study the phenomenon in real time, to get more data. It doesn't happen in a way that you can do a systematic study. It's not like that area of London you mentioned, where you could actually go and set up equipment to get more data, because the phenomenon had a specific location. At least looking for ghosts you have the advantage of a localized phenomenon. UFO study in that sense is less amenable to being rigorous than ghost hunting. That's a reason why decrying the lack of study is so ludicrous.

 

35 minutes ago, Moontanman said:

For quite sometime the "supernatural" in one form or another was assumed by many to be the case until real research was done, can you not see the actual parallel? 

I don't care about what the average person thinks. We're discussing science. When has science been satisfied with a supernatural explanation?

 

35 minutes ago, Moontanman said:

 Citation please... 

What citation can be provided for the non-existence of credible sightings of a non-mundane phenomenon?

 

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1 hour ago, Moontanman said:

I've actually seen ball lightning, it looks nothing like lightning and if it weren't observed during a thunderstorm, sometimes, a connection would have been unlikely to have been made. There are actually more than one manifestation of some spherical glows that are said to be ball lightning, even UFOs has been explained away as ball lightning.

Exactly.

In some cases, initially unidentified objects have been explained (not "explained away") as ball lightning. In other cases, it is one of a number of possible explanations, but there is insufficient evidence to be certain. (And of course, many cases have nothing to do with ball lightning.)

The point is, we know ball lightning exists and it is therefore available as a possible explanation.

We have zero evidence that aliens are a possible cause, so they can only be considered if all other explanations have been definitively eliminated. (Not just "there is no known explanation" but "other explanations are impossible".)

1 hour ago, Moontanman said:

Yet UFOs are mistakes by dumb radar operators....

Some may be. Although how many radar operators are "dumb"? Why are you making this ad how attack on radar operators?

More likely they are misinterpretations by very smart radar operators. Some may be faults in the equipment. Some may just be anomalous signals (which radar system generate all the time, and they are normally ignored; tell the operators that someone has seen something and they might start taking the noise/random signals seriously.)

1 hour ago, Moontanman said:

In the 1952 washington sighting it was written off as weather inversion even though the sighting could only partially be explained that way and the experts on site said that was not the case. Only people who had not been there with little to no expertise made that claim. The only honest answer was we don't know. 

Yep. "We don't know" is not "aliens".

1 hour ago, Moontanman said:

They are mundane now, not then... 

Huh?

It is still a normal, natural phenomenon. Not aliens.

1 hour ago, Moontanman said:

Not ture my friend, many events have an embarrassing amount of data, if you read it the sighting  in the OP is one such, weather phenomena could not have explained that sighting yet that was what was pushed like an ostrich up a ducks butt... 

Every case that has a lot of (useful) evidence can be explained as mundane phenomena.

Every case that lacks an explanation is because there is insufficient evidence to reach any conclusion.

1 hour ago, Moontanman said:

That is exactly what I have provided in the OP

There were extensive reports evaluating the evidence. That is not "hand waving it away". Either, possible explanations were provided or the answer was "we don't know".

To my mind, "handwaving away" would be saying "there were no lights" not "we don't know what caused the lights that people claim to have seen". (Note, allowing for the possibility that there were no lights, despite people thinking they saw some, is not "handwaving away"; it is relying on known, possible explanations.)

The trouble is, you seem to think that any failure to find the explanation you want is "ignoring the evidence". 

 

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Philip Klass in the OP link said dumb radar operator when asked why the radar operators didn't agree with the weather inversion. He was semi famous for such remarks and Edward Condon publicly said he would destroy the careers of any scientist who took UFOs seriously. Just two examples there are more Dr Hynek was willing to take that risk not to mention stop the flow of money from the air force because he saw what they were doing had nothing to do with science. 

2 hours ago, swansont said:

 

It sure seems like you are.

"Yes, I am claiming a cover up!"

"I can make a very credible argument as to how and why aliens might be nearby."

"My idea is that aliens are already here"

These have nothing to do with this thread. 

2 hours ago, swansont said:

 

Why is it that "unidentified" has to mean anything more than "unidentified"?

 

When Unidentified in the context of UFOs is more likely to mean explained away by the military in anyway the public can be convinced of. 

Dr Hynek and others of much less stature academically quit playing the Air Force's game when it became clear there was no study of anything but ways to cover up sightings. The Military has leaked like a sieve with people coming forward with some truly inexplicable sightings the military simply refused to even talk about, civilians have been involved and injured. Ground traces of landing and this is a wold wide phenomena but very few have the means to do more than shrug their shoulders and follow the lead of the US...   

All I wanted to talk about was how evidence is treated, that has been destroyed in this thread, you can close it...  

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30 minutes ago, Moontanman said:

Philip Klass in the OP link said dumb radar operator when asked why the radar operators didn't agree with the weather inversion.

It was in the context of the remark that allegedly, seasoned operators could differentiate between real and spurious signals. Which by itself is an admission that not all operators could make that distinction. I read the response as offering the possibility that, if the claim about the abilities was true, the operators were part of the latter group.

You were also railing on about the Air force, and Philip Klass was (is?) a "senior editor for Aviation Week magazine"

 

 

30 minutes ago, Moontanman said:

These have nothing to do with this thread. 

No? The thrust of the quoted material in the OP is that these are assumed to be spacecraft.

 

30 minutes ago, Moontanman said:

When Unidentified in the context of UFOs is more likely to mean explained away by the military in anyway the public can be convinced of.

A large part of the problem is that there are people (some very vocal) who are unsatisfied with "unidentified" as an answer. When you try and give them your best assessment, still others are unsatisfied with that answer. 

There is a certain amount of dissatisfaction stems from not getting the answer they wanted it to be (a sentiment expressed earlier in this thread)

 

30 minutes ago, Moontanman said:

 Dr Hynek and others of much less stature academically quit playing the Air Force's game when it became clear there was no study of anything but ways to cover up sightings.

"Cover up" implies they knew what was there.

 

30 minutes ago, Moontanman said:

The Military has leaked like a sieve with people coming forward with some truly inexplicable sightings the military simply refused to even talk about, civilians have been involved and injured. Ground traces of landing and this is a wold wide phenomena but very few have the means to do more than shrug their shoulders and follow the lead of the US...   

I certainly hope you aren't talking about crop circles.

 

30 minutes ago, Moontanman said:

All I wanted to talk about was how evidence is treated, that has been destroyed in this thread, you can close it...  

Scientifically speaking, there isn't a lot of evidence, there are anecdotes. If you have a beef that things aren't being investigated scientifically, remember that the Air Force is not a science institution. 

_ _ _ _ 

 

As I said earlier, if there was anything to this, you would expect the sighting frequency to go up with people having cameras. And my comment that our technology has gotten better over time. (This is in a similar vein to the observation that "introduction of digital filters in the 1970s led to a steep decline in UFO sightings on radar.") That's an actual scientific hypothesis one could test.  

 

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31 minutes ago, swansont said:

It was in the context of the remark that allegedly, seasoned operators could differentiate between real and spurious signals. Which by itself is an admission that not all operators could make that distinction. I read the response as offering the possibility that, if the claim about the abilities was true, the operators were part of the latter group.

You were also railing on about the Air force, and Philip Klass was (is?) a "senior editor for Aviation Week magazine"

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Philip_J._Klass Just one example but Klass's remark that always got to me was his assertion that UFOs were slow moving meteors or comets. Klass did work in some capacity for the airforce as a consultant. 

Quote

In the late 1960s, Klass quietly abandoned his plasma theory and afterwards argued that all UFO sightings could be explained as misidentification of normal phenomena (such as clouds, stars, comets, or airplanes) and/or as hoaxes. Jerome Clark contends[19][23] that Klass argued in favor of hoaxes more than almost any other UFO skeptic, but that Klass rarely had evidence in favor of his accusations; this position was echoed by Don Ecker,[24] who asserted that during a 1992 debate, Klass made unsubstantiated charges of "drug smuggling" against Australian pilot Frederick Valentich, who disappeared in 1978 after claiming a strange UFO was flying near his airplane.

31 minutes ago, swansont said:

 

 

No? The thrust of the quoted material in the OP is that these are assumed to be spacecraft.

 

A large part of the problem is that there are people (some very vocal) who are unsatisfied with "unidentified" as an answer. When you try and give them your best assessment, still others are unsatisfied with that answer. 

There is a certain amount of dissatisfaction stems from not getting the answer they wanted it to be (a sentiment expressed earlier in this thread)

 

"Cover up" implies they knew what was there.

 

31 minutes ago, swansont said:

 

I certainly hope you aren't talking about crop circles.

Not hardly... 

31 minutes ago, swansont said:

 

Scientifically speaking, there isn't a lot of evidence, there are anecdotes. If you have a beef that things aren't being investigated scientifically, remember that the Air Force is not a science institution. 

On the other hand the Air Force did finance the only admitted scientific study called the Condon Report who asked the air force what results they would like and the airforce told them if they couldn't come to the proper conclusion to apply for more money... 

31 minutes ago, swansont said:

_ _ _ _ 

 

As I said earlier, if there was anything to this, you would expect the sighting frequency to go up with people having cameras. And my comment that our technology has gotten better over time. (This is in a similar vein to the observation that "introduction of digital filters in the 1970s led to a steep decline in UFO sightings on radar.") That's an actual scientific hypothesis one could test.  

 

Let me ask you a question, have you ever really looked into any of the unexplained reports the military actually admits to? Minot Airbase is a good one i http://minotb52ufo.com/introduction.php There are plenty more. https://www.mufon.com/ufo-news/montana-air-base-loses-power-as-ufo-hovers-overhead

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1 hour ago, Moontanman said:

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Philip_J._Klass Just one example but Klass's remark that always got to me was his assertion that UFOs were slow moving meteors or comets. Klass did work in some capacity for the airforce as a consultant. 

You have presented no actual evidence that contradicts this. Have you pointed to any actual official Air Force commentary? Because this is just anecdotal. 

 

1 hour ago, Moontanman said:

 On the other hand the Air Force did finance the only admitted scientific study called the Condon Report who asked the air force what results they would like and the airforce told them if they couldn't come to the proper conclusion to apply for more money... 

Citation needed.

 

1 hour ago, Moontanman said:

Let me ask you a question, have you ever really looked into any of the unexplained reports the military actually admits to? Minot Airbase is a good one i http://minotb52ufo.com/introduction.php There are plenty more. https://www.mufon.com/ufo-news/montana-air-base-loses-power-as-ufo-hovers-overhead

No. I deal with enough crackpottery here on SFN. I don't go looking for it.

But I took a look at the links. From the econd one:

 

"The filed report indicates the object was black in color with no structural features. The object size was larger than 300 feet. No exterior lights. No emissions. The object was hovering at less than 500 feet in altitude. The object was over one mile away from the witness. No landing was observed."

There is no explanation of how this information was determined. Which makes it almost worthless. How do you know if something is bigger than 300 feet and less than 500 feet up, or a mile away? Estimates of distance require knowing the size. Estimates of size depend on knowing the distance.

If that's the best you have, then the best you have is crap.

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18 minutes ago, swansont said:

You have presented no actual evidence that contradicts this. Have you pointed to any actual official Air Force commentary? Because this is just anecdotal. 

Slow moving meteors and comets? You didn't catch that? 

18 minutes ago, swansont said:

 

Citation needed.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Condon_Committee

Quote

In late January 1967, Condon said in a lecture that he thought the government should not study UFOs because the subject was 'nonsense', adding, "but I'm not supposed to reach that conclusion for another year."[2] One NICAP member resigned from NICAP in protest and Saunders confronted Condon to express his concern that NICAP's withdrawal would eliminate a valuable source of case files and produce damaging publicity.

Quote

In July 1967, James E. McDonald, a confirmed believer in the validity of UFO sightings, learned from a Committee member about a memo Low had written on August 9, 1966, in which he reassured two University of Colorado administrators that they could expect the study to demonstrate that UFO observations had no basis in reality.[15] McDonald, after locating a copy of the memo in the project's open files, wrote to Condon, quoting a few lines from it.[2]

In response to the memo, on April 30, 1968, NICAP severed its ties with the Committee and Keyhoe circulated copies of Low's memo. Press coverage included an article in the May 1968 issue of Look, "Flying Saucer Fiasco", that presented interviews with Saunders and Levine, detailed the controversy, and described the project as a "$500,000 trick."[16] Condon responded that the article contained "falsehoods and misrepresentations."[17] Scientific and technical journals reported the controversy.[18] Representative J. Edward Roush said the Look article raised "grave doubts as to the scientific profundity and objectivity of the project."[19] He held a hearing dominated by critics of the Project.[20] Low resigned from the Project in May 1968.[21]

Some later critics of the Committee's work saw little reason to make much of the memo. Committee member David Saunders wrote that "to present Low as a plotter or conspirator is unfair and hardly accurate."[22] Project investigator Roy Craig's later wrote that the memo did not trouble him because Condon had not known of the Low memo for eighteen months and it did not reflect his views.[23] Condon wrote in the Project's Final Report that the memo's description of the Project as emphasizing the "psychology and sociology" of those who report UFO sightings showed how completely Low misunderstood the Project when he wrote the memo.[24]

 

In the summer of 1966, Condon agreed to consider the Air Force's offer. He was among the best known and most distinguished scientists of his time. Condon's tenacious encounters with the House Unamerican Activities Committee and other government Loyalty Boards in the 1940s and 1950s made him "almost legendary" among fellow scientists.[4][7] On Condon's behalf, Robert J. Low, an assistant dean of the university's graduate program, explored faculty reaction to the proposed project and found it mixed and wary. He tried to reassure those who found the enterprise unworthy of scientific investigation. Low told the Denver Post that the project had met the University's acceptance threshold by the narrowest of margins and was accepted largely because it was difficult to say no to the Air Force.[citation needed] Some have suggested that finances were factor in Colorado's decision to accept the Air Force's offer of $313,000 for the project. Condon dismissed this suggestion, noting that $313,000 was a rather modest budget for an undertaking scheduled to last more than a year with a staff of over a dozen.[8]

18 minutes ago, swansont said:

 

No. I deal with enough crackpottery here on SFN. I don't go looking for it.

But I took a look at the links. From the econd one:

So if one is crap both both are? 

18 minutes ago, swansont said:

 

"The filed report indicates the object was black in color with no structural features. The object size was larger than 300 feet. No exterior lights. No emissions. The object was hovering at less than 500 feet in altitude. The object was over one mile away from the witness. No landing was observed."

There is no explanation of how this information was determined. Which makes it almost worthless. How do you know if something is bigger than 300 feet and less than 500 feet up, or a mile away? Estimates of distance require knowing the size. Estimates of size depend on knowing the distance.

If that's the best you have, then the best you have is crap.

You are gonna have to excuse my inability to use the quote system, something is wrong with my key board today, I can't seem to make it work but a link to this was included.

Quote

If you want to get into specific cases it is really difficult to say one or another is the best. But this one is one of the more extraordinary... 

https://www.huffpost.com/entry/ufo-nearcollision-with-army-helicopter-40-years-ago_n_4119987

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ith the unknown object hovering in the air above the helicopter, Coyne and his crew suddenly noticed a light coming out of the aft end of it — a light that swung 90 degrees and came into their cabin.

“It was a bright green light. And all of the red night lights that we utilize for night navigation were dissolved in this green light — the whole cabin turned green. It hit all of us directly in the face.”

Coyne and his crew knew they were encountering something extraordinary.

“We assumed it was a high-performance fighter, but when it stopped directly in front of us, then all four of us realized that was no high-performance aircraft. This craft, from the angle that we saw it, was cigar-shaped. It had no wings, no vertical or horizontal stabilizer, was approximately 60 feet long, 15-20 feet in height.”

What occurred next was like something out of science fiction.

“We were at 1,700 feet,” Coyne recalled. “Then this craft began to move slowly to the west away from us. At this time, I was worried we were going to hit the ground, and I looked at my altimeter and our helicopter was at 3,500 feet, climbing 1,000 feet a minute with no changes in the control. We went from 1,700 feet to 3,500 feet in a matter of seconds and never knew it!”

The helicopter topped out at 3,800 feet and the four men felt a bump, “like turbulence, at which time we had control of the aircraft again. I had control and we went back down to 2,500 feet and then continued on to Cleveland,” Coyne said.

“As far as the vehicle itself, there’s no doubt in our minds what it looked like. A craft that can move at terrific speeds in excess of 1,000 knots, and then stop on a dime, maintains altitude, can change altitude, climb, descend. To encounter a UFO when it approaches your aircraft, you have no idea what it is. I think if it wanted to collide with us, it could have. You can’t get away from it — you don’t have that much time to respond!”

Lending credibility to this case were eyewitnesses on the ground who observed the UFO-helicopter encounter. The Army didn’t prevent Coyne and his crew from speaking out about their experience. In fact, Coyne was allowed to recount the UFO incident to the United Nations in 1978, as seen below, under the sponsorship of Grenada.

 

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12 minutes ago, Moontanman said:

Slow moving meteors and comets? You didn't catch that? 

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Condon_Committee

“Citation needed” means back up your claim. Can you point to where they “told them if they couldn't come to the proper conclusion to apply for more money“

 

12 minutes ago, Moontanman said:

So if one is crap both both are? 

You tell me. Is there any reason to think the other link is better? If it is, why bother with the bad one? 

 

 

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3 hours ago, swansont said:

“Citation needed” means back up your claim. Can you point to where they “told them if they couldn't come to the proper conclusion to apply for more money“

I'm still looking into that.

3 hours ago, swansont said:

You tell me. Is there any reason to think the other link is better? If it is, why bother with the bad one? 

Some are better than others, often the difference is so small or the difference has to do with various parameters one has but the other does not it doesn't matter which one is chosen first.

I honestly wonder what you kind of evidence it would take for you to at least make you wonder if a sighting was extraordinary instead of mundane...   

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14 hours ago, Moontanman said:

I honestly wonder what you kind of evidence it would take for you to at least make you wonder if a sighting was extraordinary instead of mundane... 

Extraordinary evidence would fit the bill, but lets not forget the wonder of that teapot orbiting jupiter and what wonders that may...

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14 hours ago, Moontanman said:

 I honestly wonder what you kind of evidence it would take for you to at least make you wonder if a sighting was extraordinary instead of mundane...   

A short story about when I was in my postdoc at TRIUMF and we were trying to trap K-37 atoms. K-37 is radioactive with a short half-life and nobody know its exact spectroscopic properties (nobody ever had enough around to study it), so the laser frequency needed to do this was unknown. We had a rough estimate, but had to search more precisely. After doing so for a few days (continually - 24/7 experiment), we saw a glow from the trap. It went away when we tuned the laser by several MHz. But that wasn't enough to announce we'd trapped it, because we still had to do systematic tests to show that the only conclusion was that the signal was from the atoms. We had to confirm that it wasn't scattered light, or some weird behavior of the detector, or anything else that might account for the signal. Only after we had done that did we announce, and write the paper to say we'd trapped the atoms.

That's the kind of rigor I expect. And that's not even an extraordinary phenomenon. 

 

There are few parallels in science for UFOs. It's not something you can do in a lab. It's not something you can model — even one-offs like supernovae or (more recently) black hole mergers, where you can't predict where and when they will happen, you can at least compare the data to a model. And with those, you have instruments that are tailored to investigating the phenomena. Partly because you know what kind of signals to look for, and you can look just about everywhere. Which leave a pretty large gap between the evidence that has been presented, and Klaatu and Gort landing on the mall in DC.

And it doesn't help that the strategy in presenting evidence has been quantity instead of quality. If you're trying to convince someone, a bunch of lousy evidence probably isn't the way to go, because what's the motivation to sort through mountains of poor evidence?

 

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15 hours ago, Moontanman said:

I honestly wonder what you kind of evidence it would take for you to at least make you wonder if a sighting was extraordinary instead of mundane...  

Something for which no mundane explanation is even possible. That rules out claimed sightings of unidentifiable objects, unexplained radar signals , etc. Because there are countless possible mundane explanations for these. Unexplained does not mean unexpainable.

Note that when people say they saw something, as well as all the possible possible things they could have seen, you also have to account for all the possible reasons why they might not have seen anything. At which point UFO proponents often start with "But why are you accusing them of lying?" Well, while lying is one possibility, I would (because I am hopelessly naive and have great faith in people) put that right near the bottom of possible explanations. 

There was a recent case where London's main airport was shut down for a couple of days because of repeated drone flights in the airspace. It was assumed that someone was maliciously launching a drone whenever the airport was ready to re-open again. However, after much investigation, it became clear that a lot of the sightings did not involve the drone at all. People apparently saw a bird, a cloud, a "floater" (in their eye) or nothing at all and reported it as a drone. It is possible that a small proportion of those were maliciously reporting something to cause more trouble, but I would be confident that most were "genuine" sightings, just not of a drone. It is entirely possible that only the very first sighting was actually a drone, while the rest were misidentifications. 

Would I trust those people to tell me they have seen something which could only be explained by extraterrestrial technology? No. (Would I call those people "dumb" or dishonest? Also no.)

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You have to apply some kind of simple logic to these UFO claims. I love a mystery, but I'm also well aware how people can hallucinate, at odd times, without any input from illicit drugs. Which is more likely, a hallucination, that is very real to the victim, or a visit from aliens ? Obviously, the answer is hallucination, so without any harder evidence, that should always come before the alien explanation. 

But personally, I think the very first go-to explanation for any UFO claim should be that the witnesses are lying, and/or that the person reporting second-hand what alleged witnesses said is lying. There's a huge amount of lying happening every day. Some people just can't help themselves, and those of us who are unused to their ways are often easily taken in. 

You often hear people discussing these claims asking " why would anyone make that up? " and that's the biggest weapon of the liar. They often throw in details that actually go against their claims, to make people think, "a liar wouldn't have said that " . They are devious buggers. 

The biggest logical argument against UFO claims though, is common sense. If we humans eventually got the technology to visit another world, that was inhabited by a more primitive civilisation, what would we do ? Creep around in secret, just appearing as a Will-O'-The-Wisp to one or two individuals? I don't think so. 

And of course, there is the glaring fact that as smart phones get better and better, and billions of people are carrying high quality video cameras with them, the UFO sightings seem to be getting fewer and fewer. When they should be all over the media, in HD video.

So as I said, I love a good mystery, but not the obvious hoax kind. Rule out lying and hallucination, and produce some proper evidence, and I'm interested. 

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On 11/5/2019 at 1:49 PM, studiot said:

What part did you think was interesting ?

I found several points, some interesting eg the linear v accelerating development comment and the prevalence of technology arguments comment (though he actually does both as well)

I also found some comments just plain wrong. eg the claim that humans are the only species that can use opposable grasp and learn/ reason/plan ahead/construct mental maps of something.

What I liked is what you liked - he takes a down to Earth stance. 
I think youre over reacting with labeling him wrong on opposable thumbs, learning and reasoning. The context of the sentence where he speaks about this doesn't seem remotely dodgy to me. In fact, I think youre just picking on him or me perhaps? :D 

I apologize for a late answer, I was working.

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3 hours ago, koti said:

I think youre just picking on him or me perhaps?

Neither.

But I had just watched an interesting Natural World TV programme about Bears.

One species of bear apparantly has an opposable wrist that he can manipulate in conjunction with his claws,  like our thumb and fingers.
He can also develop mental 'maps', remember them and use them for future planning.

I did not know this until I saw the programme and the video of those bears.

I do know that many species can emulate some of our capability or another, perhaps in a small way.

But your author was claiming we are the only species that can...........

I humbly suggest we need to beware of such puffed up self importance that once boosted religous claims.

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I find it very difficult to assume everyone is lying that claims to see a UFO, I know that some sightings suffer from an embarrassment of data not always lack of data. While I cannot honestly claim that any sighting I know of is extraterrestrial there are a few i cannot discount out of hand either. 

There was a time, when I was young, I pretty much expected a landing any day. As I became more and more skeptical I realised that unknown didn't necessarily mean extraordinary. How ever if I am honest i have to say that unknown doesn't mean mundane either. There are sightings that are are either straight up hoaxes or actual instances of ET prowling our skies with photos to back up the claims. 

There are a very small number that, if you have a normal level of curiosity, have to make you are least scratch your head and wonder WTF! 

I have done a lot of personal research in the "me too" phenomena of human behavior and i think it accounts for nearly all routinely repeated claims of extraordinary things. I'd be willing to bet money that sightings around the polar regions are magnetic or aurora related.  

Objects that shut down nuclear missile silos are either really extraordinary or faked by the US gov as tests. 

The Recent Nimitz sightings almost have to be drones or some sort of electronic warfare tests. 

My main problem with all of this and the reason for this thread, is the way data from UFO sightings is handled. It's not all that unusual for the explanation  to be even less likely that the ET hypothesis... Slow moving meteors or comets? I mean come on, can anyone be dumb enough to even consider those?  Fireflies between the windshields?  Pelicanism is a big part of the debunkers and is just was bad as those who think every light in the sky is an alien spacecraft. 

I did not want this to degenerate into dueling sightings and yes i think the Air force is covering stuff up, it's not an "if" it's a "what" question... 

The Condon Report was fixed before it began, it's sad but true, that can be confirmed, I'm still looking for confirmation that the US Air Force Offered more money if what they first agreed to wasn't enough to come to the conclusion they were asking for. And yes The people doing the study, Condon as a matter of fact, asked the Air force what result they wanted. This could have been relatively innocent but it wasn't anyway to start what was supposed to be a scientific investigation. 

There was some relatively big names in science of the time period who changed sides and became supporters of the ET hypothesis although I think it was mostly because they realised the air force was covering something up. that cover up could have been anyone of a number of things but it made the endeavor look less than honest to say the least.  

If aliens land next week I'll be amazed but not as amazed as i would be if the moon split in half or the rapture occurred...

Besides, this is all moot, Trump is going to announce soon that he cannot be impeached because space aliens will invade and he is the only person who can stop them. >:D 
 

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9 hours ago, Moontanman said:

I find it very difficult to assume everyone is lying that claims to see a UFO

Has anyone ever claimed that?

If anyone said that everyone were lying, I would consider them just as ridiculous as someone who claims that aliens walk among us and run the government.

9 hours ago, Moontanman said:

I know that some sightings suffer from an embarrassment of data not always lack of data.

Volume of data is not the same thing as quality of evidence.

A single data point could be compelling. But a gazillion bits of low quality data are no more useful than 10.

9 hours ago, Moontanman said:

Objects that shut down nuclear missile silos are either really extraordinary or faked by the US gov as tests. 

You really think those are the only two possible explanations?

9 hours ago, Moontanman said:

My main problem with all of this and the reason for this thread, is the way data from UFO sightings is handled. It's not all that unusual for the explanation  to be even less likely that the ET hypothesis...

Sorry, but no. Mundane explanations are based on known, existing phenomena (despite your attempts at ridicule and dismissing them out of hand [see what I did there?]). Any explanation based on aliens is inherently less plausible than any mundane explanation because it is not based on things that are known to exist.

Your are being blinded by your faith, here.

9 hours ago, Moontanman said:

although I think it was mostly because they realised the air force was covering something up. that cover up could have been anyone of a number of things but it made the endeavor look less than honest to say the least.  

So, you are saying that either aliens only ever visit the USA, or the US Air Force has a lot more control than seems reasonable. 

 

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47 minutes ago, Strange said:
10 hours ago, Moontanman said:

I find it very difficult to assume everyone is lying that claims to see a UFO

Has anyone ever claimed that?

TBF mistermack did.

16 hours ago, mistermack said:

But personally, I think the very first go-to explanation for any UFO claim should be that the witnesses are lying

I agree with the rest your post...

11 hours ago, studiot said:

I humbly suggest we need to beware of such puffed up self importance that once boosted religous claims.

Curious use of the word humble, in this context,since it's only religion that teaches humility and strangly not off topic.

The mundane expination for the start of the major religions is: a person had a good idea that could explain how another person could be content with his/her life; no need to evoke a deity or aliens.

Edited by dimreepr

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51 minutes ago, dimreepr said:
12 hours ago, studiot said:

I humbly suggest we need to beware of such puffed up self importance that once boosted religous claims.

Curious use of the word humble, in this context,since it's only religion that teaches humility and strangly not off topic.

The mundane expination for the start of the major religions is: a person had a good idea that could explain how another person could be content with his/her life; no need to evoke a deity or aliens.

Thank you for your response.

I think other non religous philosophies also advocate humility, as did and do many scientists and other thinkers.

Note I said boosted religous claims.
Perhaps this was too brief to convey my full meaning.
I was referring to the power grab over society that characterises so many religions, although there may have been a 'good and humble' idea at the beginning.
The usual development is that following the power grab the religous doctrine becomes that of the new leaders rather than that of the originator and oftetimes inflexible to boot.

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15 minutes ago, studiot said:

Thank you for your response.

I think other non religous philosophies also advocate humility, as did and do many scientists and other thinkers.

Note I said boosted religous claims.
Perhaps this was too brief to convey my full meaning.
I was referring to the power grab over society that characterises so many religions, although there may have been a 'good and humble' idea at the beginning.
The usual development is that following the power grab the religous doctrine becomes that of the new leaders rather than that of the originator and oftetimes inflexible to boot.

We could argue over the term "power grab", or wether science/philosophy explicitly teaches humility, but that would be off topic; I'd enjoy the exchange though, if you want to post a new topic.

Edited by dimreepr

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