The Evidentiary Thread (Exhibits, Documentation, Testimony)

Hard to debunk

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Postby Access Denied » Sat Jun 30, 2007 6:54 pm

Serpentime wrote:Likely a "terrestrial" mystery, but still a mystery anyway.

Nah, no mystery really, clearly a meteor collided with Kosmos/Venera and therefore both terrestial explanations are correct. :lol:

Serpentime wrote:Robertson's January 1953 recommendations effectively turned post-Ruppelt Bluebook into a "psychological" asset of CIA.

That’s a matter highly subject to interpretation in my opinion and there’s really no evidence to suggest that the recommendations in question were carried out in the way many UFOlogists believe, specifically using the CIA as a means of debunking the governments alleged “knowledge “of UFOs as alien spaceships. The concern as stated was the potential subversive nature of these groups, one which I think remains valid even to this day. However, this perception was specifically addressed by the SAB in 1966 that recommended using a more open scientific approach to address the “problem”…

SPECIAL REPORT OF THE USAF SCIENTIFIC ADVISORY BOARD
AD HOC COMMITTEE TO REVIEW PROJECT "BLUE BOOK"
MARCH 1966

http://www.ncas.org/condon/text/appndx-a.htm

[emphasis mine]

I. INTRODUCTION
As requested in a memorandum from Major General E. B. LeBailly, Secretary of the Air Force Office of Information, (dated 28 September 1965 (Tab A), an SAB Ad Hoc Committee met on 3 February 1966 to review Project "Blue Book." The objectives of the Committee are to review the resources and methods of investigation prescribed by Project "Blue Book" and to advise the Air Force of any improvements that can be made in the program to enhance the Air Force s capability in carrying out its responsibility.

In order to bring themselves up to date, the members of the Committee initially reviewed the findings of previous scientific panels charged with looking into the UFO problem. Particular attention was given to the report of the Robertson panel which was rendered in January 1953. The Committee next heard briefings from the AFSC Foreign Technology Division, which is the cognizant Air Force agency that collates information on UFO sightings and monitors investigations of individual cases. Finally, the Committee reviewed selected case histories of UFO sightings with particular emphasis on those that have not been identified

[snip]

III. CONCLUSIONS AND RECOMMENDATIONS
It is the opinion of the Committee that the present Air Force program dealing with UFO sightings has been well organized, although the resources assigned to it (only one officer, a sergeant, and secretary) have been quite limited. In 19 years and more than 10,000 sightings recorded and classified, there appears to be no verified and fully satisfactory evidence of any case that is clearly outside the framework of presently known science and technology. Nevertheless, there is always the possibility that analysis of new sightings may provide some additions to scientific knowledge of value to the Air Force. Moreover, some of the case records which the Committee looked that were listed as "identified" were sightings where the evidence collected was too meager or too indefinite to permit positive listing in the identified category. Because of this the Committee recommends that the present program be strengthened to provide opportunity for scientific investigation of selected sightings in more detail and depth than has been possible to date.

To accomplish this it is recommended that:

A. Contracts be negotiated with a few selected universities to provide scientific teams to investigate promptly and in depth certain selected sightings of UFO's. Each team should include at least one psychologist, preferably one interested in clinical psychology, and at least one physical scientist, preferably an astronomer or geophysicist familiar with atmospheric physics. The universities should be chosen to provide good geographical distribution, and should be within convenient distance of a base of the Air Force Systems Command (XFSC).

B. At each AFSC base an officer skilled in investigation (but not necessarily with scientific training) should be designated to work with the corresponding university team for that geographical section. The local representative of the Air Force Office of Special Investigations (OSI) might be a logical choice for this.

C. One university or one not-for-profit organization should be selected to coordinate the work of the teams mentioned under A above, and also to make certain of very close communication and coordination with the office of Project Blue Book.

It is thought that perhaps 100 sightings a year might be subjected to this close study, and that possibly an average of 10 man days might be required per sighting so studied. The information provided by such a program might bring to light new facts of scientific value, and would almost certainly provide a far better basis than we have today for decision on a long term UFO program.

The scientific reports on these selected sightings, supplementing the present program of the Project Blue Book office, should strengthen the public position of the Air Force on UFO's. It is, therefore, recommended that:

A. These reports be printed in full and be available on request.

B. Suitable abstracts or condensed versions be printed and included in, or as supplements to, the published reports of Project Blue Book.

C. The form of report (as typified by "Project Blue Book" dated 1 February 1966) be expanded, and anything which might suggest that information is being withheld (such as the wording on page 5 of the above cited reference) be deleted. The form of this report can be of great importance in securing public understanding and should be given detailed study by an appropriate Air Force office.

D. The reports "Project Blue Book" should be given wide unsolicited circulation among prominent members of the Congress and other public persons as a further aid to public understanding of the scientific approach being taken by the Air Force in attacking the UFO problem.

Of course, these recommendations were carried and as a result Blue Book was canceled completely due to the Condon Committee's (University of Colorado) conclusion that there was nothing of scientific value to be gained by further study. In this case UFOlogists probably should have been a little more careful what they wished for… :wink:

Serpentime wrote:If you have some spare time, see if you can find a copy of Carroll Quigley's Tragedy and Hope.

Thanks, I checked it out… yikes! NWO, Trilateral Commission, and Illuminati oh my! :shock:

Yep, it’s a pyramid scheme. However I think Quigley may have missed what keeps the pyramid from collapsing and ultimately limits control… each level is supported by the one below it. The (no doubt greatly oversimplified) way I see it is the Gigarich dudes can’t afford to piss off the Megarich dudes who outnumber them and are their clients and customers and so on. Granted you’re totally screwed if you’re at the bottom but there’s really nothing stopping you (it’s still a free country) from working your way up to a higher level where you’re not so vulnerable and have some influence is there? Capitalism… gee what a concept. :)

Serpentime wrote:Didn't Dave really have it in for Rikki, back then? I've always heard that Dave enjoyed using Rikki as his personal pinata!! LOL

Yeah well Dave’s like twice Riki’s size. The good news though is they both quit drinking and mellowed out a LOT. Hell, Riki just told me recently (after I called him a poser LOL) that he traded in his Dyna for a bagger (aka geezer glide)… what a wuss. :D

Serpentime wrote:Ah... Wake up dead!! :D

Nailed it. 8)

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Postby Serpentime » Sat Jul 07, 2007 7:38 am

Access Denied wrote:Nah, no mystery really, clearly a meteor collided with Kosmos/Venera and therefore both terrestrial explanations are correct. :lol:


Occam’s Razor at its finest! :D


Access Denied wrote:
Serpentime wrote:Robertson's January 1953 recommendations effectively turned post-Ruppelt Bluebook into a "psychological" asset of CIA.


…However, this perception was specifically addressed by the SAB in 1966 that recommended using a more open scientific approach to address the “problem”…


Yes indeed, but I find it an amusing that USAFSAB’s recommendations coincided with the infamous Michigan “swamp gas” episode which provoked Congressman Gerald Ford to start questioning the scientific objectivity of the AF investigation (even though the Ad Hoc Committee had already met during the previous month).

Clearly, SAFOI and USAF had been taking a fair amount of public relations “flak” over the alleged scientific objectivity of its UFO investigations prior to General Le Bailly’s request. In, particular NICAP was pressing for a Congressional hearing into the April 1964, Socorro landing incident, going so far as to approach the Senate Armed Services Committee:

Major Hector Quintanilla wrote:There was pressure on Congress, and every week I’d hear rumblings and rumors that a congressional investigation was imminent. Most of these rumors were circulated by NICAP members, but they were taking their toll. My staff was overworked and I was near a nervous breakdown from worrying about the politics in the program. General LeBailly, of SAFOI, was also concerned about all the rumors so he asked that a “Scientific Advisory Board” be appointed to investigate Project Blue Book. When I first heard about this I was livid with anger and I remember saying, “God damned, here we go again, another God damned investigation.”.


Scientific or not, Major Quintanilla’s profanity (and his own words: “I was not disappointed with the findings of the Scientific Advisory Board, however I had hoped that their recommendation would have included a statement regarding the possible termination of the project.” ) clearly indicated that he was not enjoying his “job”.


In fact, his own comments regarding the Socorro case appear to spell out his “objectivity” rather plainly:

I was determined to solve the case and come hell or high water I was going to find the vehicle or the stimulus.

…I replied, “God damned it Maston, if there is an answer to this case it has to be in some hanger at Holloman”.

…I went from one end of the base to the other. I spent four days talking to everybody I could and spent almost a whole day with the down-range controllers at the White Sands Missile Range. I left Holloman dejected and convinced that the answer to Zamora’s experience did not originate and terminate at that base.

…On my way back to Wright-Patterson, I hit upon an idea. Why not a lunar landing vehicle?

…I got the names of the companies that were doing research in this field and I started writing letters. The companies were most cooperative, but their answers were all negative.

…It was now time for me to pass judgment on the case after a careful review of all the information at hand. I hate to use the word “judgment”, but that is exactly what it boils down to.

…I labeled the case “Unidentified” and the UFO buffs and hobby clubs had themselves a field day. According to them, here was proof that our beloved planet had been visited by an extraterrestrial vehicle. Although I labeled the case “Unidentified” I’ve never been satisfied with that classification.

…so the solution to this case could very well be lying dormant in Lonnie Zamora’s head.


LOL

So… When in doubt, label the (very respectable?) witness a kook. Sounds good, anyway. :)


Argumentum Ad Hominem is neither scientific, nor logical. :(

But it is convenient. :)


Access Denied wrote:…and there’s really no evidence to suggest that the recommendations in question (i.e.Robertson) were carried out in the way many UFOlogists believe, specifically using the CIA as a means of debunking the governments alleged “knowledge “of UFOs as alien spaceships. The concern as stated was the potential subversive nature of these groups, one which I think remains valid even to this day.


Correct. The “Washington Merry-go‘round” flap of July 1952 had crystallized a great deal of concern at CIA about “psychological” aspects of the “phenomena”, and the potential that public “mass-hysteria” had to “jam” the relevant air defense reporting channels.

(Potential) Soviet “psychological” exploitation of “flying saucers” was also of great concern.

The Robertson Panel wrote:3. The panel further concludes:

a.That the continued emphasis on the reporting of these phenomena does, in these parlous times, result in a threat to the orderly functioning of the protective organs of the body politic.

We cite as examples the clogging of channels of communication by irrelevant reports, the danger of being led by continued false alarms to ignore real indications of hostile action, and the cultivation of a morbid national psychology in which skillful hostile propaganda could induce hysterical behavior and harmful distrust of duly constituted authority.


In my opinion, these are certainly logical and valid concerns. In such context, the following well-known recommendation appears (again, IMO) to be entirely reasonable:

The Robertson Panel wrote:4. In order most effectively to strengthen the national faculties for the timely recognition and the appropriate handling of true indications of hostile action, and to minimize the concomitant dangers alluded to above, the panel recommends :

a. That the national security agencies take immediate steps to strip the Unidentified Flying Objects of the special status they have been given and the aura of mystery they have unfortunately acquired…


{Bold added}

The “Educational Program” section of the recommendations specifically states:

The Robertson Panel wrote:The Panel’s concept of a broad educational program integrating efforts of all concerned agencies was that it should have two major aims: training and “debunking”.

…The “debunking” aim would result in (a) reduction in public interest in “flying saucers” which today evokes a strong psychological reaction. This education could be accomplished by mass media such as television, motion pictures, and popular articles. Basis of such education would be actual case histories which had been puzzling at first but later explained. As in the case of conjuring tricks, there is much less “stimulation” if the secret is known.


Whether “implemented”, or not, this passage clearly suggests that a deliberate “Public Relations” campaign to combat “flying saucer” hysteria was entirely feasible, if not even presciently required, by Cold War circumstance.

Simply put, it thereby becomes sensible, if not unsurprising, to suggest that an “ulterior” motive may have indeed colored (?) the future public relations “statements” offered by SAFOI to Congress and the public.

~ Minus the “Hangar 18” (”I know too much…” ;)) stories and allegations, a very solid (and entirely terrestrial) National Security requirement certainly continued to remain in place during those “parlous” times.


But then again, the Robertson conclusion regarding the “scientific value” of UFOs was:

The Robertson Panel wrote:… there is no evidence that the phenomena indicates a need for revision of current scientific concepts.


Furthermore, the panel also stated:

The Robertson Panel wrote:We firmly believe that there is no residuum of cases which indicates phenomena which are attributable to foreign artifacts capable of hostile acts…


Which, in turn, seems to beg the question of why Project Blue Book was still necessary in any capacity?


Captain Ruppelt stated:

Report on Unidentified Flying Objects; pp. 225.

I fully expected that they (Robertson) would recommend that we at least reduce the activities of Project Blue Book if not cancel it entirely. …(But) The panel didn’t recommend that the activities of Blue Book be cut back, and they didn’t recommend that it be dropped. They recommended that it be expanded.


But when Ruppelt tried to carry out those “recommendations”…

Report on Unidentified Flying Objects; pp231.

Ever since I’d returned to the project, the orders had been to build it up – get more people – do what the panel recommended. But when I asked for more people, all I got was a polite “so sorry”.


~ One officer, a sergeant, and a secretary, might seem adequate for “educational” purposes, I suppose, but why should the Air Force consider only “two desks” to be “scientific”?

Why go through the motions, at all?


Unless…

Basis of such education would be actual case histories which had been puzzling at first but later explained. As in the case of conjuring tricks, there is much less “stimulation” if the secret is known.


-----------------------------------------------------------------------------


Access Denied wrote:Of course, these (USAFSAB) recommendations were carried and as a result Blue Book was canceled completely due to the Condon Committee's (University of Colorado) conclusion that there was nothing of scientific value to be gained by further study. In this case UFOlogists probably should have been a little more careful what they wished for… :wink:


By any chance, has anyone here read the Condon Report?

If so, do you believe that the conclusions stated were reached in accordance with the Scientific Method?


That matter is subject to interpretation in my opinion. ;)


From the Colorado Study Conclusion (which is un-scientifically placed before the analysis):

We believe that the existing record and the results of the Scientific Study of Unidentified Flying Objects of the University of Colorado, which are presented in detail in subsequent sections of this report, support the conclusions and recommendations which follow.

As indicated by its title, the emphasis of this study has been on attempting to learn from UFO reports anything that could be considered as adding to scientific knowledge. …Careful consideration of the record as it is available to us leads us to conclude that further extensive study of UFOs probably cannot be justified in the expectation that science will be advanced thereby.


Granted, many of the cases studied could be dismissed as irrelevant without too much effort – begging the question of why they were included in a “scientific” study to begin with?


{Battelle Memorial Institute had already completed a STATISTICAL analysis over a dozen years earlier. A small, but significant, sample of the sightings were labeled as “unidentified” due to unusual speed and/or maneuverability. These reports were NOT evaluated as “insufficient evidence”. That category was separate.}


~ But what of some of the others?


For example:

~ McMinnville, Oregon, 1950. (Two still frames)

Conclusion:

This is one of the few UFO reports in which all factors investigated, geometric, psychological, and physical appear to be consistent with the assertion that an extraordinary flying object, silvery, metallic, disk-shaped, tens of meters in diameter, and evidently artificial, flew within sight of two witnesses. It cannot be said that the evidence positively rules out a fabrication, although there are some physical factors such as the accuracy of certain photometric measures of the original negatives which argue against a fabrication.


Against this rather significant (positive?) evaluation, the only possibility of fabrication was assumed to rely on invisible strings suspending a hypothetical model from power lines:

Possibility of fabrication:

The above tests all appear to be consistent with the witnesses' testimony. The possibility of optical fabrication seems remote. A model thrown into the air by hand appears an unlikely possibility because of the evidence for absence of rotation.

Another possibility can be considered, however. The object appears beneath a pair of wires, as is seen in Plates 23 and 24. We may question, therefore, whether it could have been a model suspended from one of the wires. This possibility is strengthened by the observation that the object appears beneath roughly the same point in the two photos, in spite of their having been taken from two positions. This can be determined from irregularities, or "kinks," in the wires. The wires pass between the camera positions and the garage (left). We know from the change in orientation of the object that it moved, or was re-oriented by hand, between exposures. The possibility that it is a model hanging beneath a point on the wire suggests a further test: Is the change in distance of the object in Plates 23 and 24 equal to the change in distance from the wires? Measures of the disk indicate that it is about 8% further away in Plate 24. Measures of the irregularities in the wires indicate that they are further away from the camera in Plate 24. The amount of the latter increase from the wires (measured by the separation of rather ill-defined "kinks") is less certain than the distance increase from the disk, but it is measured to be about 10%.

These tests do not rule out the possibility that the object was a small model suspended from the nearby wire by an unresolved thread.


{Emphasis added}

Yet computer enhancement of the negatives (I believe? …Performed with technology that was not available in the late 1960s) DOES appear to rule out the possibility of a suspended model.

“Skeptics” such as Phil Klass and Robert Sheaffer have attempted to debunk these photographs on hypothetical assumptions of dirty camera lenses and/or shadows on the barn, but given the choice offered to us by the Condon Report itself:

Given the foregoing analysis, one must choose between an asymmetric model suspended from the overhead wire, and an extraordinary flying object (See Table 1).


…My opinion is that Occam’s Razor likely (?) favors the latter conclusion. And seeing as Condon’s own criteria:

From the point of view of the Colorado study the principal question of concern is: does a case have probative value in establishing the reality of unusual aircraft?


…Came very close to being met in this case, I would postulate that the: “…Careful consideration of the record as it is available to us leads us to conclude that further extensive study of UFOs probably cannot be justified in the expectation that science will be advanced thereby”, statement is not scientifically justified.



The conclusion of this case study is not as strong, but not far from it, either:

~ Great Falls Montana, 1950. (Motion picture)

Past investigations have left airplanes as the principal working hypothesis. The data at hand indicate that while it strains credibility to suppose that these were airplanes, the possibility nonetheless cannot be entirely ruled out.

There are several independent arguments against airplane reflections.
(1) Short-term variations in image size (correlated with brightness), time scale ca. 1 sec., are typically not more than ± 5%. A priori considerations of aircraft stability and empirical observations by Baker indicate that it is very unlikely that two aircraft could maintain such constant reflections over not only the 16 sec. and the 20° azimuth arc photographed but also the minimum of 50 sec. visually observed. I have confirmed this by studying aircraft visually in the vicinity of Tucson airports; in at least a dozen cases none has been seen to maintain a constant or unidentifiable reflection as long as 16 sec.

(2) Assuming that 15 August was the correct date, Air Force investigators found that there were two F-94 jets in the vicinity and that they landed only minutes after the sighting, which could well have put them in circling path around Malstrom AFB, only three miles ESE of the baseball park. However, Witness I reported seeing two planes coming in for a landing behind him immediately following the filming (3), thereby accounting for those aircraft.


{Emphasis added}



And here’s another favorable individual conclusion:

~ Greenwich, England, 1956. (Radar-visual sighting at USAF/RAF facility.)

In conclusion, although conventional or natural explanations certainly cannot be ruled out, the probability of such seems low in this case and the probability that at least one genuine UFO was involved appears to be fairly high.


Rather than debunk the “scientific” value of UFO investigations, it appears to me that scientific analysis of more than one of the Condon cases (buried BEHIND the unfavorable conclusion}, ought to point serious, scientifically-oriented, minds in the opposite direction.

But that’s just my opinion.



In the end, Condon himself gives us a choice (when he’s not substituting RIDICULE for the Scientific Method at public appearances, and reaching his conclusions BEFORE the cases are analyzed… LOL):

If they (scientists) agree with our conclusions, they will turn their valuable attention and talents elsewhere. If they disagree it will be because our report has helped them reach a clear picture of wherein existing studies are faulty or incomplete and thereby will have stimulated ideas for more accurate studies.


…And again, I prefer to choose the latter.

To me, it’s just more “scientific”. :)

---------------------------------------------------------------------


Access Denied wrote:
Serpentime wrote:If you have some spare time, see if you can find a copy of Carroll Quigley's Tragedy and Hope.


Thanks, I checked it out… yikes!


LOL

I knew you’d do that GodTom. :)

Access Denied wrote:Yep, it’s a pyramid scheme.


That’s not a bad analogy, in my opinion.

As I see it, The Giga-rich Dudes invest money in the “entrepreneurship” of the Mega-rich Dudes – who the Giga-rich Dudes realize want to be just like them someday. ;) Therefore, the Giga-rich Dudes now hold a “lien” on the Mega-rich Dudes.

And as anyone who owes a lien on a home mortgage (…for instance) to a bank probably realizes, liens create de facto “leverage”.

The Mega-rich Dudes thereby realize that it is NOT a good idea to “bite the hand that feeds them” – OR the hand that might someday assist in pulling the weight of their OWN ambitions up the pyramid.

In this way, the Mega-rich Dudes are “controlled “ from pissing off the Giga-rich Dudes. LOL


In addition, Giga-rich Dudes like to invest their money in Politics, Academia, Religion, the Arts, and other “charitable” causes. Not only does this create practical “liens” (debts? control?) across many varied social parameters, but it also ensures that the gross taxes paid by the Giga-rich Dudes to their respective governments are often ZERO, or close to zero.

“Charitable” Foundations, et. al., create not only tax shelters, but also allow the influence of large amounts of money (that would otherwise be “spent” accountably by the “People’s” Governments…) toward the private “world-views”, “elite” ambitions, and/or personal “whims” of the Giga-rich. Such influence is, of course, inversely proportional to the world’s proportion of Giga-rich Dudes to ordinary Joes.


~ Just picture that “pyramid” metaphor upside-down. ;)


And when the Giga-rich Dudes really get smart, they enjoy loaning money to many of the National Governments, themselves. That way, they accrue “liens” on entire countries – and all of the ordinary Joes who live in them.

~ For example, is the U.S. Government “borrowing” money from the American taxpayers to fight the Global War on Terror, or is it borrowing those Hundreds of Billions, or even Trillions (?), of dollars from International Investment Banks?


In the end, I suppose that it probably doesn’t matter; What the Taxpayer isn’t paying for now will only be paid for – later – by his children in the form of INTEREST on all of that National debt.


~ Principal, PLUS interest (which is then “re-invested” to secure more “liens”)…


Now that’s what I call a pyramid scheme. :)


Access Denied wrote:Capitalism… gee what a concept. :)


Yes, exactly. :D

And that was the great, scholastic, lesson that Quigley inferred in Tragedy and Hope:

Namely, that the natural organizing tendency of Power in capitalistic societies is inherently anti-democratic. :shock:

Or, in other words:

"The Golden Rule" wrote:Those who have the Gold, make the Rules.


~ And as basic logic (IMO) also informs us (in the form of a corollary, if you will?):

Those who make the Rules, make those Rules so that they can win, and everyone else can lose.

That’s basic human nature, as best I understand it.



~ In my humble opinion, Tragedy and Hope is the quintessential anti-conspiracy textbook.

Though Quigley does reference such influential fraternities (?) as Morgan’s Council on Foreign Relations, “Milner’s Kindergarten”, The Royal Institute of International Affairs, and the British Business Round Table, his macro-historical approach eliminates the need for the more pedestrian “NWO” sensationalism, conspiracy-mongering, and hysteria, typically assumed and promoted in these fields – replacing it instead with the pure and elegant logic of manifest Geo-capitalism.


Certain key (?) pieces of 20th century History (particularly the full financial components) are commonly un-cited in most popular, and scholastic accounts, as they relate to the more well-known historical events…

Carroll Quigley simply fills in (some) of those missing pieces (from his own “privileged” experience) and lets the reader decide the logical significance (?) of those “pieces” for himself. :shock:


Quigley is very well informed, in my opinion, and his grasp of the Macro-historical perspective appears quite formidable. I doubt that he missed much of anything. ;)


~ On the other hand, however, I would suggest that the popular reviews simply do not do true justice to this impressive tome. In my opinion, the familiar “hype” is simply not warranted. ;)


Access Denied wrote:Granted you’re totally screwed if you’re at the bottom but there’s really nothing stopping you (it’s still a free country) from working your way up to a higher level where you’re not so vulnerable and have some influence is there?


In theory, no. But practical examples might be somewhat rare. Aristocrats – by definition – are born to their station. Even worse (LOL), most of the “folks” at the top of the pyramid were simply “stationed” there to begin with, and never had to “work their way up” at all.


~ Just think - all of these fine Capitalists missed out on the formative “Capitalist” experience of wondering where their next paycheck was coming from…

LOL


...As soon as you climb to the “top” of the pyramid, just let me know what you see there. ;)


{Hint: I won’t be waiting up. :( I don’t think that either of us will live that long. :P}



Access Denied wrote:Yeah well Dave’s like twice Riki’s size. The good news though is they both quit drinking and mellowed out a LOT. Hell, Riki just told me recently (after I called him a poser LOL) that he traded in his Dyna for a bagger (aka geezer glide)… what a wuss. :D


Before they played Holy Wars, Dave came back out on stage with a big SMILE on his face! He even gave the audience a three-minute “standing ovation” of his own. Driving home, I got to listen to him talk about his “new” life on the radio, and he sure seemed like a pretty HAPPY guy to me! Found God, and all that…

Good for him. :)


Oh, and thanks for correcting Riki’s name for me. :) I must have been thinking of Rikki Rockett and got my posers confused… LOL


~ Riki Rachtman a poser? Never…!!!! ROFLMAO



Serp :)
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Postby ryguy » Mon Jul 09, 2007 12:20 pm

Hey Serp....I'm impressed! You've just broken the record for our longest post ever! Congratulations and good work! :)

-Ry
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Postby Serpentime » Tue Jul 10, 2007 1:16 am

LOL

Thanks, Ry. :)

The words just fly when you're having fun, I guess. ;)


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Postby Access Denied » Tue Jul 10, 2007 5:42 am

ryguy wrote:Hey Serp....I'm impressed! You've just broken the record for our longest post ever!

LOL me too and I'm the one who has to follow up on it. This is going to take a while... :)

Hey Serp, in the meantime, in the interest of not wasting a lot of effort bringing each other "up to speed", have you read Rich Dolan's "UFOs and the National Security State: Chronology of a Cover-up 1941 to 1973"? If so, I'd be interested in knowing what your opinion of it is. Although I don't agree with many of his conclusions ( :shock: ) I thought it was a pretty good compilation and I think it's useful as a starting point for further discussion. Also, I'm VERY familiar with the Condon Report and the apparent contradiction between the (~90% pre-ordained) conclusion and the ~30% of the cases they examined remaining unexplained... but more on that when I have to time to respond properly.

AD

P.S. The other Rikki (Rockett) lives near me in Canyon Country and he’s into British bikes now... poser is right! :lol:
Last edited by Access Denied on Tue Jul 17, 2007 2:12 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Postby Serpentime » Thu Jul 12, 2007 2:50 am

Access Denied wrote:I'm the one who has to follow up on it. This is going to take a while... :)


Knowing you, I have no worries at all. :D


Access Denied wrote:Hey Serp, ...have you read Rich Dolan's "UFOs and the National Security State: Chronology of a Cover-up 1941 to 1973"? If so, I'd be interested in knowing what your opinion of it is. Although I don't agree with many of his conclusions ( :shock: ) I thought it was a pretty good compilation and I think it's useful as a starting point for further discussion.


No, unfortunately. :( I was going to buy it when it first came out, but (...and please correct me if I'm wrong about this) I gathered the impression that Richard Dolan was basing his theses largely on information gathered from de-classified documents.

Personally speaking, I have hundreds of copies of (the usual) de-classified docs around here (somewhere!), and speculated that I was probably familiar, already, with most of Mr. Dolan's subject areas.

Then again, I haven't read the book, so I could be completely wrong. :x


Your suggestion for a common, comprehensive, reference datum is well taken, though. :)

Seeing as UFOs and the National Security State... is increasingly recognized (?) as a benchmark (?) work - and I was going to buy it at one time, perhaps I could pick up a copy (in the next few days) to use as a reference?

If you think it might be useful, I'd be willing to give it a shot. ~ It'd be cool to know that we're both trading "licks" in the same "key". ;)


Let me know what's best for you. :)


Access Denied wrote:P.S. The other Rikki (Rockett) lives near me in Canyon Country and he’s into British bikes now... poser is right! :lol:


Yikes!! I was going to say something about Look what the Cat Dragged In, but I guess I’ll just offer you my condolences, instead. ROTFL

~ And the best his band can do is a “new” album of old covers, huh?

As a friend of mine used to say: Wimpy. Wimpy. Wimpy. :(


I pity you, dude. Your property value must be dropping by the minute… LMAO


And as for the bikes, my motto always was: "Real men do it in the DIRT". :twisted:


But that’s just my opinon. 8)



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Postby Access Denied » Thu Jul 12, 2007 4:57 am

Serpentime wrote:Knowing you, I have no worries at all. :D

Working on it as we speak. :( :)

Serpentime wrote:If you think it might be useful, I'd be willing to give it a shot. ~ It'd be cool to know that we're both trading "licks" in the same "key". ;)

Nah, save your dough and buy the new Rush album instead if you haven’t already. This one’s actually starting to grow err… sorry I just...it's starting to hit me like a um...um...two-ton heavy thing :wink:

"The Larger Bowl (A Pantoum)"

Some are blessed and some are cursed
The golden one or scarred from birth
While others only see the worst
Such a lot of pain on the Earth


Let’s stick with the raw docs. I do refer to the (pretty extensive) index occasionally when I need a quick reference (e.g. names and dates) but you’re right, it’s mostly derivative and since there’s always three sides to every story (the “key” we’re in 8)) it’s wise to have more references... Google is God. :)

Serpentime wrote:~ And the best his band can do is a “new” album of old covers, huh?

Hey, take away the hair and makeup and what are you left with? :shock:

Serpentime wrote:And as for the bikes, my motto always was: "Real men do it in the DIRT". :twisted:

LOL me too… until I ended up in the hospital one too many times. Then I discovered "Real men ride RIGID" (pun NOT intended) but because of my age I ride a SOFTail now. :lol:

Anyway back to work…
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Postby Serpentime » Fri Jul 13, 2007 1:49 am

Access Denied wrote:LOL me too… until I ended up in the hospital one too many times. Then I discovered "Real men ride RIGID" (pun NOT intended) but because of my age I ride a SOFTail now. :lol:


I defied gravity AND the hospital!

{But that's what happens when your skull is as thick as mine is... :shock: LOL}


Message received. 8)


Neill Peart wrote:It's a far cry from the World we thought we inherited...


Personally, I believe that we're experiencing what I would call a "Crisis of Consciousness". How we Emerge from this "crisis" may well depend on our Intent, but that's a whole 'nother thread... ;)


~ I got to "meet" Rush for a couple of minutes, some years back. Seems they were playing a show across the road from the airport when I was in Flight Instructor school...

Standing at the dispatcher's desk booking my schedule, Geddy Lee walked-up right beside me and asked to use the phone in a VERY tiny-little voice. :shock: Alex and Neill were just a few feet behind us talking to their management.

Seeing as the FBO manager got all of the "group" photographs and signed pictures, I never did get the chance to say hi (they were in a hurry), but it was still a bit of a "trip" to be taken by surprise like that. :)


I went home and played "Tom Sawyer" for a while. What a wanker... LOL



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Postby Access Denied » Sun Jul 15, 2007 2:46 am

Serpentime wrote:Message received. 8)

Workin' them Angels - Overtime ;)

Serpentime wrote: DIRT [snip] defied gravity AND the hospital [snip] Flight Instructor school

Uh oh, I think I see where this is going…

Dropping all my weight
Going down full throttle
The pale horse awaits
Like a genie in a bottle
Fire in my veins
Faster as I go
I forgot my name
I'm a dirt torpedo!


8) :twisted:

Serpentime wrote:Geddy Lee walked-up right beside me and asked to use the phone in a VERY tiny-little voice.

Cool. So you recognized him right away? What was your first clue? :)

I remember one night at the Cathouse this scrawny looking dude, kind of effeminate, with long blond hair sat down next to me at the bar and offered to buy me another drink. I accepted and we chatted for a while about guitars and girls until this chick comes over and asked me to dance (as was the tradition there). I of course accepted and as we were grinding away to "Smooth Up in Ya"? or some such nonsense she asks “So how do you know Axl? What band are you in? You guys want to come over to my place and party with me and my girlfriends later?” and points to a group of girls dancing together… I’m like who’s Axl??? 8)

{edit: I forgot to mention the really ironic part of the above story, I was in the military at the time and probably the only guy in the place who had NO HAIR so it definitely wasn’t ME they were after!} :lol:

Anywho, just wanted to drop in, say hi, and keep the groove going until I can finish my response to your to most excellent post. I’m about halfway done but I’ve been a little distracted with the Roswell media blitz and tonight we will be having all six grandkids staying with us (instead of the usual three) so it might be a little hard to concentrate… ahhh!!!! :)
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Postby Access Denied » Wed Jul 18, 2007 1:39 am

Serpentime wrote:Occam’s Razor at its finest! :D

He he.. I thought you might find that amusing. :)

Now on to responding to the longest post in RU’s history…

(I’ll try to keep it short)

Serpentime wrote:Clearly, SAFOI and USAF had been taking a fair amount of public relations “flak” over the alleged scientific objectivity of its UFO investigations prior to General Le Bailly’s request. In, particular NICAP was pressing for a Congressional hearing into the April 1964, Socorro landing incident, going so far as to approach the Senate Armed Services Committee:

Major Hector Quintanilla wrote:When I first heard about this I was livid with anger and I remember saying, “God damned, here we go again, another God damned investigation.”.


LOL I can’t say I blame him for being pissed off. If it were me I think I would have felt the same way. Here he was doing his best to meet the public’s demands to explain the unexplainable so of course he was doomed to fail… especially when the only acceptable answer was “ET”. :)

Serpentime wrote:In fact, his own comments regarding the Socorro case appear to spell out his “objectivity” rather plainly:

Major Hector Quintanilla wrote:I labeled the case “Unidentified” and the UFO buffs and hobby clubs had themselves a field day. According to them, here was proof that our beloved planet had been visited by an extraterrestrial vehicle. Although I labeled the case “Unidentified” I’ve never been satisfied with that classification.

…so the solution to this case could very well be lying dormant in Lonnie Zamora’s head.

LOL

So… When in doubt, label the (very respectable?) witness a kook. Sounds good, anyway. :)

Argumentum Ad Hominem is neither scientific, nor logical. :(

But it is convenient. :)

And quite possibly correct. :) I don’t know, presumably he actually met the man so maybe he has some insight into his “character” that we don’t? ;)

On a purely subjective basis, indeed the only one available in the absence of any unambiguous physical evidence, clearly Major Quintanilla was not impressed with Mr. Zamora’s experience… but yet in spite of that he still opted for the “scientifically correct” conclusion… go figure. ;)

No doubt it’s a tough pill to swallow for some who’ve seen something they can’t explain but in the “eyes” of Science the cold reality is…

Robertson Panel wrote:Attention should be directed to the requirement among scientists that a new phenomena, to be accepted, must be completely and convincingly documented. In other words, the burden of proof is on the sighter, not the explainer.

I think it’s irresponsible at best to validate anyone’s experience based solely on his or her apparent (or presumed) objectivity … THAT is a purely subjective and unscientific conclusion and gets us nowhere. How can anyone say for sure what someone saw is unexplainable or happened the way they said (or more importantly thought) it did? Everybody’s experiences are subject to interpretation… and error. I know this from my own experience. I’ve seen things that freaked me out at first… that is until I realized it was just an illusion… though I must admit sometimes not without somebody else’s input. :) [slaps forehead] Then again, I’ve seen a “classic” UFO with my Mom when I was a kid… f__k if I know what is was. :shock:

Serpentime wrote:The “Educational Program” section of the recommendations specifically states:

The Robertson Panel wrote:Basis of such education would be actual case histories which had been puzzling at first but later explained. As in the case of conjuring tricks, there is much less “stimulation” if the secret is known.


Whether “implemented”, or not, this passage clearly suggests that a deliberate “Public Relations” campaign to combat “flying saucer” hysteria was entirely feasible, if not even presciently required, by Cold War circumstance.

Simply put, it thereby becomes sensible, if not unsurprising, to suggest that an “ulterior” motive may have indeed colored (?) the future public relations “statements” offered by SAFOI to Congress and the public.

Right, and as you clearly showed earlier, I think it’s safe to say that some of those statements may have been “colored” by repeated exposure to unverifiable claims or worse… stuff that’s simply way too “out there” to even begin to try and explain. :)

We see the same effect with police officers who are exposed to the general public “in the wild” on a daily basis… in many cases a deep-rooted cynicism (perceived as “bias”) develops and can “cloud” their judgment… human nature unfortunately. :(

Serpentime wrote:~ Minus the “Hangar 18” (”I know too much…” ;)) stories and allegations, a very solid (and entirely terrestrial) National Security requirement certainly continued to remain in place during those “parlous” times.

Exactly. Or as in “Return to Hangar” (“Possibly I’ve seen too much…” ;))

All the guilty paid the price
Suspended by their broken necks
No one survived to tell the story
When foreign life forms resurrect
And military intelligence is
Still two words that can't make sense


:twisted:

Serpentime wrote:Captain Ruppelt stated:

Report on Unidentified Flying Objects; pp. 225.

I fully expected that they (Robertson) would recommend that we at least reduce the activities of Project Blue Book if not cancel it entirely. …(But) The panel didn’t recommend that the activities of Blue Book be cut back, and they didn’t recommend that it be dropped. They recommended that it be expanded.

But when Ruppelt tried to carry out those “recommendations”…

Report on Unidentified Flying Objects; pp231.

Ever since I’d returned to the project, the orders had been to build it up – get more people – do what the panel recommended. But when I asked for more people, all I got was a polite “so sorry”.

~ One officer, a sergeant, and a secretary, might seem adequate for “educational” purposes, I suppose, but why should the Air Force consider only “two desks” to be “scientific”?

Why go through the motions, at all?

Exactly. Given the AF had already determined to their own satisfaction there was nothing more of value to be gained from the longstanding investigative approach, I think the only reason it wasn’t cancelled was precisely because it WAS only “two desks”… a concerted PR campaign per the Robertson Panel’s recommendations would have been too expensive in terms of manpower and resources and arguably ineffective. Let’s not forget the seeds of the coming “cultural revolution” had already been planted and the government was increasingly finding themselves backed into a corner on many fronts… of course in retrospect taking such a laissez-faire approach and pressuring Blue Book to “plus up” the “explained” category probably didn’t help matters much. ;)

I suppose in the final analysis it’s a Catch-22… dammed if you do, damned if you don’t. :)

Serpentime wrote:By any chance, has anyone here read the Condon Report?

Nah, I just looked at the pictures. :)

Serpentime wrote:If so, do you believe that the conclusions stated were reached in accordance with the Scientific Method?

That matter is subject to interpretation in my opinion. ;)

But of course! :)

Serpentime wrote:Granted, many of the cases studied could be dismissed as irrelevant without too much effort – begging the question of why they were included in a “scientific” study to begin with?

{Battelle Memorial Institute had already completed a STATISTICAL analysis over a dozen years earlier. A small, but significant, sample of the sightings were labeled as “unidentified” due to unusual speed and/or maneuverability. These reports were NOT evaluated as “insufficient evidence”. That category was separate.}

I suspect the cases were chosen to be a somewhat representative sample… therefore illustrating both of the sides of the “argument” in order to support the “preordained” (or as I see it inevitable) conclusion. :)

Serpentime wrote:~ But what of some of the others?

For example:

~ McMinnville, Oregon, 1950. (Two still frames)

Condon Report wrote:Conclusion:

[snip]

Given the foregoing analysis, one must choose between an asymmetric model suspended from the overhead wire, and an extraordinary flying object

…My opinion is that Occam’s Razor likely (?) favors the latter conclusion.

Except there’s at least one unresolved discrepancy I see that possibly favors the former?

Robert Sheaffer wrote:Weather Conditions at the Time of the Sighting

The witnesses contend that the sky was overcast, with a ceiling at about 5000 feet. Hartmann suggests that this is confirmed by the photographs. However, records kept by the U.S. Department of Commerce Weather Bureau indicate otherwise.

The Weather Bureau station at McMinnville, Oregon has a record of surface weather conditions from 7:00 AM to 7:00 PM daily. Their last observations on May 11, at 6:00 and 7:00 PM, both show perfectly clear skies. During the entire day only a few clouds are recorded from 9:00 AM to 5:00 PM, the other times the sky being clear. Partly cloudy conditions prevail the next morning. At no time is there any ceiling recorded between 9:00 AM May 10 and 10:00 AM May 12.

The reason for the discrepancy between the witness’ story and the weather records is not known. This is not the only discrepancy found for which no motive can be suggested.

[snip detailed analysis showing pictures were most likely taken at 8:20 AM on a clear day instead of around sunset on a cloudy day as claimed]

Conclusions

In light of the above, it is clear that the witnesses’ story of supposedly photographing a UFO cannot be accepted at face value. It is difficult to see what advantage would be gained in altering the alleged circumstances of the photographs, but the scientific investigator must guard against becoming an apologist. No serious researcher would contend that a photograph is of any value whatsoever in establishing the existence of an extraordinary object unless it is solidly corroborated by the testimony of one or more witnesses.

Also I believe the object in question has been found more recently to correspond quite nicely with a model train wheel? ;)

In which case your following postulation…

Serpentime wrote:…given the choice offered to us by the Condon Report itself:

Condon Report wrote:From the point of view of the Colorado study the principal question of concern is: does a case have probative value in establishing the reality of unusual aircraft?

…Came very close to being met in this case, I would postulate that the: “…Careful consideration of the record as it is available to us leads us to conclude that further extensive study of UFOs probably cannot be justified in the expectation that science will be advanced thereby”, statement is not scientifically justified.

…is perhaps NOT so justified after all?

Serpentime wrote:The conclusion of this case study is not as strong, but not far from it, either:

~ Great Falls Montana, 1950. (Motion picture)

Perhaps but personally I don’t see what all the fuss was about. Looks like two jets to me…

http://www.nicap.org/images/montana.mpeg <-- view the actual film here

I mean so what if all the analysis in the world in the 50s and 60s of a crappy film couldn’t conclusively prove that’s what it was (or rule it out)? Two F-94s landed nearby within minutes of the sighting and in the film two “objects” behaving just like jets are streaking across the sky… Occam says you do the math. :)

Also, the witness’s credibility also seems a little suspect to me in this case. Why didn’t he claim (as I understand it) to have seen the F-94s behind him until AFTER the AF kicked it back to him with the aircraft explanation? And what about his claim that it was returned to him the second time with the “good stuff” at the beginning taken out? Was anybody he showed it to in any of his public screenings before he sent it to the AF able to confirm that? Not to my knowledge and claiming he had a letter from the AF stating they had taken those frames out (instead of just the one frame they freely admit they removed because it was damaged) and then claiming surprise… he lost it… doesn’t add much to his credibility you think? :)

Serpentime wrote:And here’s another favorable individual conclusion:

~ Greenwich, England, 1956. (Radar-visual sighting at USAF/RAF facility.)

In conclusion, although conventional or natural explanations certainly cannot be ruled out, the probability of such seems low in this case and the probability that at least one genuine UFO was involved appears to be fairly high.


I agree, definitely a UFO… but was it an ET craft or was it something else? :)

I can certainly picture some sort of bizarre (i.e. extremely rare) electrically charged (i.e. “intelligently” controlled = natural attraction/repulsion to maintain equilibrium) plasma-like (i.e. extreme maneuverability = ~zero mass) objects accounting for the observed behaviors but there just isn’t enough data to be able to come to any kind of conclusion which leads us to your next point…

Serpentime wrote:Rather than debunk the “scientific” value of UFO investigations, it appears to me that scientific analysis of more than one of the Condon cases (buried BEHIND the unfavorable conclusion}, ought to point serious, scientifically-oriented, minds in the opposite direction.

I disagree. What more could possibly learned from those cases without new data?

Furthermore, what if anything of scientific value can be learned from another study into a phenomenon that remains extraordinarily elusive? How would you even go about it? Why not just wait and cross that bridge when we come to it… assuming we ever do? If indeed we are being visited by ET craft it stands to reason (statistically?) that sooner or later something might happen that will give us the data (and corresponding scientific interest) we haven’t been able to obtain yet in order to come to a scientifically sound (acceptable) conclusion doesn’t it?

One only needs to look to past studies to see these questions have already been answered for the most part. Here’s one example…

Robertson Panel wrote:INSTRUMENTATION TO OBTAIN DATA

The Panel was of the opinion that the present ATIC program to place 100 inexpensive 35 mm. stereo cameras in the hands of various airport control tower operators would probably produce little valuable data related to U.F.O.'s. However, it was recognized that such action would tend to allay public concern in the subject until an educational program had taken effect. It was believed that procurement of these cameras was partly the result of public pressure in July 1952. With the poor results of the year-long Project TWINKLE program of 24-hours instrumentation watch (two frames of film showing nothing distinguishable), a widespread program of sky-watching would not be expected to yield much direct data of value.

There was considerable discussion of a possible "sky patrol" by amateur astronomers (Hynek) and by wide-angle cameras (Page). Dr. Page and Dr. Robertson pointed out that at present a considerable fraction of the sky is now--and has been for many years--under surveillance every clear night in several meteor and aurora observing programs as well as sky mapping programs at the various locations listed below. Although the attention of these astronomers is largely directed toward identified rather than unidentified objects, no case of any striking unidentified object is known to Dr. Page or Dr. Hynek. Such an object would most certainly be reported if found on patrol plates.

Now one could argue we have much more sophisticated and affordable Instrumentation today (and I would agree since Instrumentation is what I do for a living :)) but then the question is what are we looking for that we haven’t been already? If you can see the phenomena with your own two eyes the object(s) in question are radiating/reflecting light in the visible spectrum so you don’t need anything fancier then a camera to capture a replica of it since a camera is designed to see what you see. Cameras (and people) are more ubiquitous in the hands of civilians (and astronomers LOL) now then ever were so why don’t we have any compelling (in mine and many others opinion) photographs (and the requisite number of independent corroborating witnesses) of a solid object (as is frequently reported) to examine yet?

I don’t know. Perhaps these objects (excluding misidentifications) aren’t really “solid” (as in alien spaceships) per se?

Help me Serp, what’s a poor Scientist to do? :)

Serpentime wrote: In this way, the Mega-rich Dudes are “controlled “ from pissing off the Giga-rich Dudes. LOL

[snip]

~ Just picture that “pyramid” metaphor upside-down. ;)

Great analogy. Indeed it works both ways… however I would suggest that when viewed from somewhere in the “middle” does it really matter? :)

Serpentime wrote:~ In my humble opinion, Tragedy and Hope is the quintessential anti-conspiracy textbook.

Interesting… i.e. a sort of macroscopic Que Sera, Sera. Thanks for sharing that. Meanwhile, the microscopic (fractal?) pyramid struggles continue…

Black man trapped again, holds his chains in his hand
Brother killing brother for the profit of another
Game point, nobody wins
Decline, right on time
What happened to the dream sublime?
Tear it all down we'll put it up again
Another EMPIRE?

-- Geoff Tate

Serpentime wrote:...As soon as you climb to the “top” of the pyramid, just let me know what you see there. ;)

Screw that, at this point I’ll consider my life a success if I can continue to keep my head above water, provide for my family, and (with any luck) retire before I die. :)
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Postby Serpentime » Wed Jul 18, 2007 2:11 am

Access Denied wrote:
Serpentime wrote: DIRT [snip] defied gravity AND the hospital [snip] Flight Instructor school


Uh oh, I think I see where this is going…


No. Bummer... :( I never did the High Speed Dirt thing, but only because nobody ever put me up to it. :shock:

~ Once upon a time, I was an arrogant, vainglorious, young man who loved to live on the edge... before Father cast me down from Heaven to become a winged Serpent in a Tree. ROTFL ;)


Access Denied wrote:I’m like who’s Axl???


D'oh!!!


I've always felt that it hurts to go home alone... :(


{...Just kidding. 8)}


Access Denied wrote:I remember one night at the Cathouse this scrawny looking dude, kind of effeminate, with long blond hair sat down next to me at the bar and offered to buy me another drink. I accepted and we chatted for a while about guitars and girls until this chick comes over...


Wow. You got Welcome(d) to the Jungle and didn't even realize it...

~ It must have been some trip (after the fact...) to have had Axl buy you a drink and then sit there with him having a normal, cool, convo. Good for you. :)

As for me, I used to have girls ask me (seriously): "Do you like Axl Rose?? - to which I got in the habit of answering: "I dunno. I've never met him." LOL


~ Where the F-~ were you?? ROTFL


Access Denied wrote:Cool. So you recognized him right away? What was your first clue? :)


You mean you could place his nose on someone else's face? LOL

Seriously, though, I DID have a quick heads-up:


About five minutes prior to our "meeting", a private Jet had just taxied up to the building, and I had heard someone in the Office say that "Rush is here." I hadn't recalled, up to that point, that Rush was playing across the highway that evening, but I did - of course - crane my head to look out the window.

The pilots were just getting out of the AC, but I had assumed that the band would probably just take the outside (private) gate straight to their limo...

After that, I just went straight back to my own business until the little dude with the long hair (unusual at the Airport) - and the unforgettable face - just walked up right beside me. :shock:

And there were Alex and Neill, standing almost right behind us.


I figured they'd probaly be too "important" to come inside, but I guess I found out the hard way that I was mistaken... LOL


All around, they seemed like pretty cool guys. :)


Access Denied wrote:Anywho, just wanted to drop in, say hi, and keep the groove going until I can finish my response to your to most excellent post. I’m about halfway done but I’ve been a little distracted...


Arrgh... The suspense is killing me!! :o


Don't worry. Family first, though. :)

I've been a little bit busy, myself, this week. :(



Serp


>ah... never mind. You just posted ahead of me. :) I'll respond ASAP.
Last edited by Serpentime on Wed Jul 18, 2007 2:26 am, edited 1 time in total.
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Postby Access Denied » Wed Jul 18, 2007 2:21 am

Serpentime wrote:Arrgh... The suspense is killing me!! :o

Don't keel over yet, at least not until you read the post just before yours. :D

^
^
^
^

{edit: Oops, I see you found it. No hurry my friend, take your time.... I did 8) }
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Postby You Can Call Me Ray » Wed Jul 18, 2007 2:22 pm

Hi AD:

Access Denied wrote:I think it’s irresponsible at best to validate anyone’s experience based solely on his or her apparent (or presumed) objectivity … THAT is a purely subjective and unscientific conclusion and gets us nowhere. How can anyone say for sure what someone saw is unexplainable or happened the way they said (or more importantly thought) it did? Everybody’s experiences are subject to interpretation… and error.


This point cannot be stressed enough, especially in today's world where anyone can publish any information (sans validation) on the internet as a "conspiracy theory". People think you are being predjudiced (and therefore non-scientific) when you question someone's "eyewitness account", but in reality they are the ones being prejudiced by simply accepting such an account without corroborating evidence from other sources (and by other sources I mean those not burdened with the pitfalls of a human mind, which can be fallible especially under stress).

Then there are the UFOnuts who attack you and say things like "you mean to tell me that you are going to question a PILOT'S report that he saw such and such...?" These people turn the questioning of an eyewitness report into a personal or emotional judgment against the alleged witness, but that is not the intent. Here is a very pertinent analogy that I share with such people to try and get them to understand that it is not scientific to accept one (or even SEVERAL) eyewitness accounts without other evidence:

Every day there are magicians all over the world who present their craft to entire audiences. No doubt there have been esteemed and accomplished professionals from all walks of life who have enjoyed this form of entertainment: scientists, engineers, doctors, pilots, judges, etc. People who you should "inherently trust" because we assume they are ethical (first assumption that can go wrong). For the sake of this analogy, let us even assume that all such people at a single magic show are, indeed, ethical and upstanding people who would NOT lie to us about what they saw. As they exit the magic show of (let's say) David Copperfield, we ask them to describe in as much scientific detail as they care to use, what they saw (or what they THINK they saw). "I saw a woman cut in half, then put back together, and she lived thru the whole thing without so much as a scratch." Indeed, that is what you THINK you saw, and it is also PRECISELY what the person behind the illusion INTENDED for you to THINK YOU SAW. But because we are AWARE that it is a magic show, no one actually thinks that is what happened... not the scientist, not the engineer, certainly not the doctor...

It boils down to a familiar saying (wish I knew who said it first): "You are always limited in your conclusions by what you DO NOT KNOW." To come to a conclusion about what you saw, without knowing how it was done, would be silly with respect to a magic show. So why do UFOnuts constantly think we should come to conclusions about alleged UFOs with nothing more than an eyewitness account (or two, or three, or even 100)? There is little difference between them and people who saw a magic show. But wait! Let me modify that! There IS a difference, and that is with a magic show an observer KNOWS it is a trick, a scam, intended to fool their senses. With a UFO you do not know if this is what is going on!

I am always amazed at these "True Believers" who cannot accept this analogy as a valid reason for NOT jumping to a "UFO/ET" conclusion based solely on eyewitness accounts. When they reject this appropos analogy and still cling to their conclusions and conspiracies is when I know they are beyond hope of ever looking at something rationally and with a scientific eye. I feel sorry for such "True Believers" who follow organizations like ExoPo, but I feel a great deal of anger at the leaders of orgs like ExoPo, for they should know better, and this tells me they are actively seeking to deceive as a means to gain their own political power and "time in the spotlight".

Ray
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Postby ryguy » Wed Jul 18, 2007 3:18 pm

Access Denied wrote:
Serpentime wrote:Arrgh... The suspense is killing me!! :o

Don't keel over yet, at least not until you read the post just before yours. :D


I will need to run these posts through a wordcount to determine the current holder of the longest RU post in history. But from the looks of it....it's pretty darn close.

-Ry
---
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Postby Serpentime » Sun Jul 22, 2007 7:16 am

"Whad’y ya mean, I don’t support your system?! I go to court when I have to…"


AD, I believe that you might have me exactly where I want you. :D


Access Denied wrote:Help me Serp, what’s a poor Scientist to do? :)


LOL

He’s supposed to practice “Science”, of course. :)


{~ Did I mention that I’m a total enthusiast of Science??}


…And this “practice” of Science is where I express a difference of conscience with the “traditional” Scientific Establishment, regarding the historical study of anomalous aerial phenomena, and the like.


According to J.P. Seipmann, Editor of the Journal of Theoretics, the notion of “Science” can be defined as:

…the field of study which attempts to describe and understand the nature of the universe in whole or part.


As cited by Seipmann, this is a broad, working, definition of concept that may be applied even inside of the bounds (where experimentation is not possible) of the traditional Scientific Method – which according to Dr. Frank Wolfs of the University of Rochester, may be further defined as:

…the process by which scientists, collectively and over time, endeavor to construct an accurate (that is, reliable, consistent and non-arbitrary) representation of the world.

Recognizing that personal and cultural beliefs influence both our perceptions and our interpretations of natural phenomena, we aim through the use of standard procedures and criteria to minimize those influences when developing a theory. As a famous scientist once said, "Smart people (like smart lawyers) can come up with very good explanations for mistaken points of view." In summary, the scientific method attempts to minimize the influence of bias or prejudice in the experimenter when testing an hypothesis or a theory.


I. The Scientific Method has four steps


1. Observation and description of a phenomenon or group of phenomena.

2. Formulation of an hypothesis to explain the phenomena. In physics, the hypothesis often takes the form of a causal mechanism or a mathematical relation.

3. Use of the hypothesis to predict the existence of other phenomena, or to predict quantitatively the results of new observations.

4. Performance of experimental tests of the predictions by several independent experimenters and properly performed experiments.


If the experiments bear out the hypothesis it may come to be regarded as a theory or law of nature. If the experiments do not bear out the hypothesis, it must be rejected or modified. What is key in the description of the scientific method just given is the predictive power (the ability to get more out of the theory than you put in; see Barrow, 1991) of the hypothesis or theory, as tested by experiment. It is often said in science that theories can never be proved, only disproved. There is always the possibility that a new observation or a new experiment will conflict with a long-standing theory.


What we read here above, then, suggests that the purpose of “Science” is to attempt “to describe and understand” Reality, while employing a consistent and logical process of inquiry that is designed to minimize personal bias, and inevitable Human error, in said attempt to “describe and understand”.


By way of clarification, Wolfs elucidates some of these common “Scientific” error-“tendencies” in greater detail:

III. Common Mistakes in Applying the Scientific Method

As stated earlier, the scientific method attempts to minimize the influence of the scientist's bias on the outcome of an experiment. That is, when testing an hypothesis or a theory, the scientist may have a preference for one outcome or another, and it is important that this preference not bias the results or their interpretation. The most fundamental error is to mistake the hypothesis for an explanation of a phenomenon, without performing experimental tests. Sometimes "common sense" and "logic" tempt us into believing that no test is needed. There are numerous examples of this, dating from the Greek philosophers to the present day.

Another common mistake is to ignore or rule out data which do not support the hypothesis. Ideally, the experimenter is open to the possibility that the hypothesis is correct or incorrect. Sometimes, however, a scientist may have a strong belief that the hypothesis is true (or false), or feels internal or external pressure to get a specific result. In that case, there may be a psychological tendency to find "something wrong", such as systematic effects, with data which do not support the scientist's expectations, while data which do agree with those expectations may not be checked as carefully. The lesson is that all data must be handled in the same way.

Another common mistake arises from the failure to estimate quantitatively systematic errors (and all errors). There are many examples of discoveries which were missed by experimenters whose data contained a new phenomenon, but who explained it away as a systematic background. Conversely, there are many examples of alleged "new discoveries" which later proved to be due to systematic errors not accounted for by the "discoverers."

In a field where there is active experimentation and open communication among members of the scientific community, the biases of individuals or groups may cancel out, because experimental tests are repeated by different scientists who may have different biases. In addition, different types of experimental setups have different sources of systematic errors. Over a period spanning a variety of experimental tests (usually at least several years), a consensus develops in the community as to which experimental results have stood the test of time.


~ Importantly, we are also reminded (previously above) that it is rightfully difficult to conclusively prove ANY theory beyond the reach of available data and present observations.


In the complementary words of Wiki:

Scientists never claim absolute knowledge of nature or the behavior of the subject of the field of study. …Unlike a mathematical proof, a scientific theory which makes statements about nature in an inductive way, is always open to falsification, if new evidence is presented. Even the most basic and fundamental theories may turn out to be imperfect if new observations are inconsistent with them.


and:

Despite popular impressions of science, it is not the goal of science to answer all questions. The goal of the sciences is to answer only those that pertain to perceived reality. Also, science cannot possibly address nonsensical, or untestable questions, so the choice of which questions to answer becomes important. Science does not and cannot produce absolute and unquestionable truth. Rather, science tests some aspect of the world and attempts to provide a precise, unequivocal framework to explain it.


But then again, “scientifically minded” people (like us :)) already know that the methodology / process of “Science” is NOT a religion, nor a comprehensive worldview. Rather, it is in fact, only an analytic tool - meant to assist in the description, and understanding, of Reality.

Therefore, “Science” is not an “absolute”. It is instead, a continually evolving “work” in progress. (~ Like that strange fractal “Pyramid” with the perpetually “floating” capstone. ;))


Necessary – if not vital – for such fundamental progress, also, is the impartial application of a true desire to learn – as opposed to the desire for reductionism for its own sake.

In pedestrian terms, we might refer to such “impartiality in inquiry” by the name: Intellectual Honesty.


Again, Wiki:

Certain value judgments are intrinsic to science itself. For example, scientists value relative truth and knowledge, and the actual progress of science requires cooperation between scientists, and is highly intolerant of dishonesty. Cooperation and honesty are thus values which are intrinsic to the actual social practice of the scientific method itself.


------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------


So, in brief, I have now constructed (I hope?) a useful template for understanding the requirements that “Science” demands from its practitioners (?). In addition, I have also attempted to define what “Science” is, the contextual purpose that “Science” serves, and the instances where its operative limitations might potentially (?) lie.


And with all of THAT :shock: now out of the way – and with this basic “template” fresh in mind – I believe that I can better address our relevant questions at hand. :)

------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------



~ Regresamos a Socorro… ;)


Access Denied wrote:
Serpentime wrote:
Major Hector Quintanilla wrote:I labeled the case “Unidentified” and the UFO buffs and hobby clubs had themselves a field day. According to them, here was proof that our beloved planet had been visited by an extraterrestrial vehicle. Although I labeled the case “Unidentified” I’ve never been satisfied with that classification.

…so the solution to this case could very well be lying dormant in Lonnie Zamora’s head.


And quite possibly correct. :) I don’t know, presumably he actually met the man so maybe he has some insight into his “character” that we don’t? ;)

On a purely subjective basis, indeed the only one available in the absence of any unambiguous physical evidence, clearly Major Quintanilla was not impressed with Mr. Zamora’s experience… but yet in spite of that he still opted for the “scientifically correct” conclusion… go figure. ;)


In “judging” the Socorro “sighting” to be scientifically “unknown”, I will agree with you that Major Quintanilla’s conclusion appeared to have been reached – admirably – by way of the Scientific Method. Nevertheless, this “scientifically correct” conclusion came only after MUCH revision of his initial “biased” hypothesis (and evident personal distaste for his assignment):

I was determined to solve the case and come hell or high water I was going to find the vehicle or the stimulus.

…I replied, “God damned it Maston, if there is an answer to this case it has to be in some hanger at Holloman”.


And yet he still – admittedly – didn’t like the idea that the Scientific Method wouldn’t support his “animated” terrestrial and/or psychological “preferences”. ~ In turn, this makes me wonder what night have occurred had the metrics of this particular case not proved so “frustratingly” unambiguous to the investigator (apparently)? Though Quintanilla DOES come to the proper scientific conclusion in the end, he certainly doesn’t like the possible implications of his logic… is unwilling to support it… and eventually…

…lapses back into illogical (?) argumentum ad hominem, for which even he, himself, appears to know of NO supporting or corroborative evidence.


“Judging” – in fact – by his own classified comments to the CIA in late 1966, one might (?) even suggest that his feelings toward Lonnie Zamora may have approached the near schizophrenic:


"There is no doubt that Lonnie Zamora saw an object which left quite an impression on him. There is also no question about Zamora's reliability. He is a serious police officer, a pillar of his church, and a man well versed in recognizing airborne vehicles in his area.

"He is puzzled by what he saw, and frankly, so are we. This is the best-documented case on record, and still we have been unable, in spite of thorough investigation, to find the vehicle or other stimulus that scared Zamora to the point of panic."



-- Major Hector Quintanilla; Studies in Intelligence, 1966.



Again, go figure… ;)



As to whether Major Quintanilla personally interviewed Zamora, I am not entirely sure, but he (Zamora) certainly did speak to other Military and Intelligence personnel:

The first military investigator on the scene, on April 25, was Army Captain Richard T. Holder, Up-Range Commander of White Sands Proving Grounds, along with an FBI agent, D. Arthur Byrnes, Jr., from the Albuquerque office. Major William Connor from Kirtland AFB and Sgt. David Moody, who was in the area on TDY, investigated for Air Force Project Blue Book on April 26. Dr. J. Allen Hynek arrived on April 28. Hynek also conducted a follow-up investigation on August 15, 1964. Following is an excerpt from Capt. Holder's report:

"Present when we arrived were Officer Zamora, Officer Melvin Katzlaff, [and] Bill Pyland, all of the Socorro Police Department, who assisted in making the measurements. When we had completed examination of the area, Mr. Byrnes, Officer Zamora, and I returned to the State Police Office [at] Socorro, then completed these reports. Upon arrival at the office location in the Socorro County Building, we were informed by Nep Lopez, Sheriff's Office radio operator, that approximately three reports had been called in by telephone of a blue flame of light in the area...the dispatcher indicated that the times were roughly similar...."

Zamora told Capt. Holder and Major Connor, according to their notes:

"Noise was a roar, not a blast. Not like a jet. Changed from high frequency to low frequency and then stopped. Roar lasted possibly 10 seconds--was going towards it at that time on the rough gravel road....At same time as roar, saw flame. Flame was under the object. Object was starting to go straight up--slowly up.....Flame was light blue and at bottom was sort of orange color....Thought, from roar, it might blow up...."

When the roar stopped, he heard a whining sound going from high tone to low tone, which lasted about a second. "Then," he said, "there was complete silence....It appeared to go in [a] straight line and at same [constant] height--possibly 10 to 15 feet from ground, and it cleared the dynamite shack by about three feet....Object was traveling very fast. It seemed to rise up, and take off immediately across country."


According to the radio operator / dispatcher’s account, three related reports / phone-calls had come in to the Sheriff’s office regarding what was apparently the same “occurrence” (?) at roughly the same time.

Strictly speaking then, Zamora was not (?) the only primary witness to what appears to have been a manifest, unusual, occurrence.


The FBI report from SAC, Albuquerque (personal document collection), tells us that:

Information received APR twenty four and twenty five, from (redacted – Zamora’s name) considered sober, dependable, mature, not of fantasy…


and that not only was an alleged object observed by the witness, but that other officers arriving on the scene observed:

…four small irregularly shaped smouldering (sic) areas and four regular depressed areas approximately sixteen by six inches in rectangular shaped pattern averaging about twelve feet apart.


In addition, Special Agent Byrnes (who had known Zamora personally, it appears?) described the “site” first-hand, from his own perspective:

Special Agent Byrnes noted four indentations in the rough ground at the “site” of the object described by Officer Zamora. These depressions appeared regular in shape, approximately sixteen by six inches rectangular. Each depression seemed to have been made by an object going into the earth at an angle from a center line. Each depression was approximately two inches deep and pushed some earth to the far side.

Inside the four depressions were three burned patches of clumps of grass. Other clumps of grass appeared not to be disturbed. One burned area was outside the four depressions.

There were three circular marks in the earth which were smooth, approximately four inches in diameter and penetrated in the sandy earth approximately one-eighth of an inch as if a jar lid had gently been pushed into the sand.


A small sample of the “charred” material was also transported to the Albuquerque FBI office for further inspection.


So, while the physical evidence may have been (subsequently) deemed “ambiguous” by certain researchers (…fire-breathing rodents? …or nesting Phoenix birds? LOL), there conversely appears to be little doubt that the alleged “site” was disturbed in a highly coincidental (at the very least) manner (?).


All of the official documents (in my possession) regarding Socorro largely express nothing but general “puzzlement” regarding the entire incident. In the best possible terms, no one around those parts seemed to have had the slightest clue about what had happened there. :(


Access Denied wrote:LOL I can’t say I blame him for being pissed off. If it were me I think I would have felt the same way. Here he was doing his best to meet the public’s demands to explain the unexplainable so of course he was doomed to fail… especially when the only acceptable answer was “ET”. :)


Then again, while NICAP’s only “acceptable” answer was E.T. (of course), Major Quintanilla’s baseline “answer” of choice equally appeared to have been “bunkum”. As such, NEITHER side of the argument was bound to have been particularly pleased with a scientific outcome of unknown.


Scientifically speaking, neither a hoax, nor a misperception, nor an alien landing, has been substantially “proven” from the data set.

The Scientific Method has only “proven” (to the best of USAF’s knowledge and “judgment”) that the case remains: Unknown.


Access Denied wrote:No doubt it’s a tough pill to swallow for some who’ve seen something they can’t explain but in the “eyes” of Science the cold reality is…

Robertson Panel wrote:Attention should be directed to the requirement among scientists that a new phenomena, to be accepted, must be completely and convincingly documented. In other words, the burden of proof is on the sighter, not the explainer.


I think it’s irresponsible at best to validate anyone’s experience based solely on his or her apparent (or presumed) objectivity … THAT is a purely subjective and unscientific conclusion and gets us nowhere. How can anyone say for sure what someone saw is unexplainable or happened the way they said (or more importantly thought) it did?


I agree that it’s irresponsible and very unscientific to base scientific conclusions strictly on hearsay. Your observations are entirely correct, in my opinion.

On the other hand, however, might it also be irresponsible (and unscientific) to discard potential data simply because a human being has a story to tell?

Does it logically follow that no one EVER tells the truth, or NEVER reports enough of the information accurately to be of ANY use to a scientific investigation?


And what of multiple witnesses who independently observe / report an event? Sure, the nature of Perception tells us that these accounts may differ from – or even contradict – each other, but doesn’t the multiple response to a unknown stimulus offer scientifically useful input on the probability that such a stimulus was actually extant?


Yes. Far from conclusive...


…But not always scientifically insignificant, either.



In my opinion, it is completely correct to place the scientific burden of proof for emergent phenomena on the “observer”, but it is not correct (IMO) to use the “burden of proof” clause to stifle unpopular lines of inquiry, or to discard potential evidence (if so) that doesn’t “match” with one’s own pre-existing “preferences”.


Regarding the Roberson Panel’s scientific “orthodoxy”, Captain Edward Ruppelt stated:

Report on Unidentified Flying Objects; pp.224.


Each of the fifty of our best sightings that we gave the scientists to study had some kind of a loophole. In many cases, the loopholes were extremely small, but scientific evaluation has no room for even the smallest of loopholes and we had asked for a scientific evaluation.


Scientifically speaking, Ruppelt agreed (as do I) that the Panel was correct, but then again, aren’t there always a few “loopholes” in scientific knowledge, too?


~ Did not the French Academy of Sciences – for instance - discard key witness testimony (in the 1850’s?) that contradicted their firm “scientific” conclusion that “rocks DO NOT fall from the sky”?


Ooops. :(



But as for the data itself, Ruppelt further states:

Report on Unidentified Flying Objects; pp. 242.

I wouldn’t classify myself as a “believer”, exactly, because I’ve seen too many UFO reports that first appeared to be unexplainable fall to pieces when they were thoroughly investigated.

But every time I begin to get skeptical (sic) I think of the other reports, the many reports made by experienced pilots and radar operators, scientists, and other people who know what they’re looking at. These reports were thoroughly investigated and they are still unknowns. Of these reports, the radar-visual sightings are the most convincing. When a ground radar picks up a UFO target and a ground observer sees a light where the radar target is located, then a jet interceptor is scrambled to intercept the UFO and the pilot also sees the light and gets a radar lock-on only to have the UFO almost impudently outdistance him, there is no simple answer.


Reductionism – such as ignoring the “forest for the trees”, or discarding “unknown” UFO cases (one at a time) in analytical isolation from the comprehensive data field - provides simple answers, of course.

But Reality is not always simple.


~ In my humble opinion, that is the great “Scientific” caveat.


Access Denied wrote:Everybody’s experiences are subject to interpretation… and error. I know this from my own experience. …Then again, I’ve seen a “classic” UFO with my Mom when I was a kid… f__k if I know what is was. :shock:


Personally, I’ve never seen anything in the sky that I could not substantially identify (and I’ve spent a lot of time as a pilot - and an astronomy nut - “scanning” the sky, too…), but just because I’ve never witnessed anything strange doesn’t necessarily imply that others must NOT have, also. ~ Or at the very least, that’s the way I’m inclined to think of it now.

But you’re right - as far as Science knows, you and your mom saw a sundog. Or a blimp. Or a lenticular cloud (No, it’s not scientific to laugh… :(). Or maybe something else (“earthlights?” “sprites?” “non-human intelligence?”) that lies at, or beyond, the boundaries and knowledge of contemporary Science and understanding?


Maybe Science couldn’t test the data?


Maybe we’ll never know?


Then again, I wasn’t there either, so I’ll be darned, too. :)

Darned, but not laughing. :)


Ergo,

…so the solution to this case could very well be lying dormant in Lonnie Zamora’s head.

-- Major Hector Quintanilla


Access Denied wrote:
Serpentime wrote:Whether “implemented”, or not, this passage clearly suggests that a deliberate “Public Relations” campaign to combat “flying saucer” hysteria was entirely feasible, if not even presciently required, by Cold War circumstance.

Simply put, it thereby becomes sensible, if not unsurprising, to suggest that an “ulterior” motive may have indeed colored (?) the future public relations “statements” offered by SAFOI to Congress and the public.


Right, and as you clearly showed earlier, I think it’s safe to say that some of those statements may have been “colored” by repeated exposure to unverifiable claims or worse… stuff that’s simply way too “out there” to even begin to try and explain. :)


The nature of this “assignment” would try the patience of most military bureaucrats, I believe? Especially when one of them cuts himself on a cactus and forgets his Interplanetary Blue Cross card (as one investigator duly reported)… LOL

My focus on “color” centered more around the idea that the sole point of contact for UFO related information was SAFOI, and as every journalist covering the Pentagon would probably tell you, the branch PR office is the LAST place that you’re going to find the real story. :(

Further, because SAFOI was subject to National Security Council Intelligence Directives (they who authorized the Robertson Panel, I believe?), it might be inferred that the “information” being released to Congress (through the Office of Legislative Liaison) and the Public was also subject to those policies – whatever they might stipulate.


~ Would anyone seriously argue (especially after Robertson – and the Chadwell “memos” that helped establish it) that the National Security Council would evince no further interest in the air defense / psychological warfare aspects of “flying saucers” as identified by CIA S&T through the DCI?

Logic suggests (to me) that “banking” the “flying saucer” fires could have been a vital National Security aspect for that time period – for those (earthly) reasons alone. Scientific and “intellectual” honesty certainly could have come in “second” through a military “gatekeeper” (McLuhan? LOL) that functioned in a mainly military context.


Ruppelt; pp. 228.

The January 7, 1955 issue of the Air Force Information Services Letter said, in essence, people in the Air Force are talking too much about UFOs – shut up.



That’s all I was trying to say. :)


Access Denied wrote:We see the same effect with police officers who are exposed to the general public “in the wild” on a daily basis… in many cases a deep-rooted cynicism (perceived as “bias”) develops and can “cloud” their judgment… human nature unfortunately. :(


Judging from his memoirs, we might suspect that this same “cynicism” may have “clouded” the synthesis of Major Quintanilla (?).

Speaking from a bureaucratic standpoint, I probably couldn’t blame him, either. :shock:


Access Denied wrote:Given the AF had already determined to their own satisfaction there was nothing more of value to be gained from the longstanding investigative approach, I think the only reason it wasn’t cancelled was precisely because it WAS only “two desks”… a concerted PR campaign per the Robertson Panel’s recommendations would have been too expensive in terms of manpower and resources and arguably ineffective.


O.k.

I’ll agree that “two desks” and the “gatekeeper” of SAFOI were probably all that was necessary to “bank” the “flying saucer” fires (or attempt to do so).

Access Denied wrote:…of course in retrospect taking such a laissez-faire approach and pressuring Blue Book to “plus up” the “explained” category probably didn’t help matters much. ;)


O.k.

“Two desks” being “pressured” to “plus-up” the “explained” category would probably be sufficient to “debunk” (Robertson’s word…) most USAF UFO “cases”, if necessary, also.


~ The only loose-end that I can still see remaining is that Project Bluebook was not the sole (or even primary) recipient of the AF’s UFO data. :shock:


According to AFR 200-2 (12 August 1954):

b. Investigation. Air Defense Command will conduct all field investigations within the ZI, to determine the identity of any UFOB.


In addition, the Reporting requirements stipulate that all data be forwarded to:

(a.) Commander, Air Defense Command, Ent Air Force Base, Colorado Springs, Colorado.

(b.) Nearest Air Division (Defense). (For ZI only).

(c.) Commander, Air Technical Intelligence Center, Wright-Patterson Air Force Base, Ohio.

(d.) Director of Intelligence, Headquarters USAF, Washington 25, D.C.



Note that the recipient at Wright-Pat was not BLUEBOOK, but Commander ATIC, Bluebook’s parent section. Before the reports went to the “two desks” they likely went through other hands first – nominally looking to sort out any “technically” useful data before handing off the “errata” to “Project Saucer”. And from the looks of the distribution, there were far more than two low-level analysts tasked with processing UFO data.


~ Again, with all of this officially prescribed (and secret at the time?) analysis, why keep those two infamous “desks” in business, at all?


To “plus up” the “explained” category, me thinks. ;)

{…and so that OLL and SAFOI could put a few “bodies” behind the “counter” when Congress came a callin’… as Congress was sometimes wont to do. ;)}


~ As they say, perhaps it was all just “…good enough for government work”. :)


Access Denied wrote:I suppose in the final analysis it’s a Catch-22… dammed if you do, damned if you don’t. :)


Good analogy. :)

Just think of it this way:

The USAF had a tactical requirement to collect UFO data in the pursuit of its Air Defense and Technical Intelligence missions, and – for that purpose – potential observers had to be made aware that the AF was interested in collecting that data. :shock:

On the other hand, public knowledge of the AF interest in “UFOs” became a constant source of friction between the AF, the American public, and the UFO community, who – as you said – were only willing to accept an extraterrestrial conclusion.

The demand for “Public Relations” expertise must have been considerable (?). FUBAR, as they say. ;)


Access Denied wrote:
Serpentime wrote:By any chance, has anyone here read the Condon Report?


Nah, I just looked at the pictures. :)


GodTom a poser? NEVER!! ROTFL


Access Denied wrote:
Serpentime wrote:Granted, many of the cases studied could be dismissed as irrelevant without too much effort – begging the question of why they were included in a “scientific” study to begin with?


I suspect the cases were chosen to be a somewhat representative sample… therefore illustrating both of the sides of the “argument” in order to support the “preordained” (or as I see it inevitable) conclusion. :)


Actually, the cases sent to the University of Colorado study were directed there by AFR 80-17 (C1) 26 October 1967. The intent of this was – indeed – to sample exactly the same cases that were being analyzed by FTD (Bluebook) and the Air Force Research and Development Command.

Unfortunately, in my opinion, the predictable number of prosaic or incomplete cases that became included in the study ultimately detracted from isolating the better, more noteworthy, data.

While this approach may have been fine (IMO) for a military sponsored study that was intended to render a verdict on Project Bluebook, it seems to me that a true scientific investigation should have focused only on the truly inexplicable cases and data (of which the study suggested there might be a small, but salient, minority?).


Then again, it might have been harder to reach a scientifically convincing conclusion from “ambiguous” cases that “Science” could not explain…?


And that, of course, would have done nothing to solve the USAF public relations “Catch 22”. :)


Access Denied wrote:
Serpentime wrote:If so, do you believe that the conclusions stated were reached in accordance with the Scientific Method?

That matter is subject to interpretation in my opinion. ;)


But of course! :)


Irrelevant of what other studies might suggest, Condon’s own analysis left him with at least a handful of “good”, “unknown”, cases, although his conclusion somehow makes little acknowledgement of that result – other than to speculate that such anomalies could likely have been resolved (one way or the other?) with additional data… (so what else is new?)


For that reason, I find Condon guilty of Scientific “error” as Wolfs describes it:

Another common mistake is to ignore or rule out data which do not support the hypothesis. Ideally, the experimenter is open to the possibility that the hypothesis is correct or incorrect. Sometimes, however, a scientist may have a strong belief that the hypothesis is true (or false), or feels internal or external pressure to get a specific result. In that case, there may be a psychological tendency to find "something wrong", such as systematic effects, with data which do not support the scientist's expectations, while data which do agree with those expectations may not be checked as carefully. The lesson is that all data must be handled in the same way.


Maybe I’m wrong, but Condon’s neglect of the “unknowns” at the promotion of the “explained” makes me feel that he unduly neglected anomalous data that didn’t bear out his hypothesis. Clearly, such data was present. Then again, perhaps he was genuinely feeling real, or imagined, “external pressure”?


~ Might the public “hype” and the media “spotlight” have “colored” his views, somehow – his USAF sponsorship not withstanding?


And his public statements about how he wasn’t supposed to conclude that the data was worthless until a year or so later, appear to indict him for this basic scientific “error”:

As stated earlier, the scientific method attempts to minimize the influence of the scientist's bias on the outcome of an experiment. That is, when testing an hypothesis or a theory, the scientist may have a preference for one outcome or another, and it is important that this preference not bias the results or their interpretation. The most fundamental error is to mistake the hypothesis for an explanation of a phenomenon, without performing experimental tests.


Yet representation of his “hypothesis” as an “explanation” was exactly what he did on January 25, 1967, when Condon spoke before a chapter of Sigma Xi, the honorary scientific fraternity. According to the Elmira, N.Y. Star-Gazette, he reportedly told the audience:

"Unidentified flying objects are not the business of the Air Force,"... Dr. Edward U. Condon said here Wednesday night... Dr. Condon left no doubt as to his personal sentiments on the matter: "It is my inclination right now to recommend that the Government get out of this business. My attitude right now is that there's nothing to it." With a smile, he added, "but I'm not supposed to reach a conclusion for another year..."


In what way does this “deduction” reflect the Scientific Method?


While Wolfs tells us that: "Smart people (like smart lawyers) can come up with very good explanations for mistaken points of view", it must also be acknowledged (with all due respect) that the VERY SAME thing can also be (hypothetically) said for government scientists who don’t follow the Scientific Method. :(

{…and who don’t mind spending hundreds of thousands of taxpayer dollars to tell them what they already know.}


“Scientifically” speaking, might this be another valid “strike” against AAAS’s endorsement of Condon, perhaps?



In addition, though I can’t recall the specific case (I read about 2/3 of the Condon Report when I was in college), I can remember where one of the write-ups raved about what a classic “unknown” case had been placed before the investigator. According to the analysis, there should have been plenty of useable data to identify the sighting – all the earmarks of an emergent phenomenon were believed to be present – but when the evidence ruled out a prosaic explanation the investigator incredibly concluded:


”The phenomenon observed is obviously a natural phenomena that has never been observed either before, or since."


Exactly how the investigator had used the Scientific Method to arrive at this conclusion, however, I was completely unable to quantify. :(

Scientifically speaking, there was no valid evidence to select for “natural phenomenon” over any other type of “phenomenon”. i.e. A “natural” phenomenon that had absolutely no scientific provenance.

What Science DID appear to indicate, however, was that at least one, genuine, unidentified aerial phenomenon DID most likely exist, and tangibly accounted for the stimulus that triggered the report.

But seeing as it had to be (by default?) a mere “natural phenomenon”, there was absolutely no reason to investigate it (or any of its other possible manifestations) further anyhow, I guess?


Better yet, why not simply create answers where none exist? The UFO “Believers” do that all the time, don’t they? So why can’t the scientists?


Then again, perhaps the investigator simply flipped a coin: Heads, uncorrelated “natural” phenomenon wins; Tails, NICAP loses…


At least this “approach” might be thought of as statistically “scientific”, I think? LOL



Access Denied wrote:
Serpentime wrote:~ But what of some of the others?

For example:

~ McMinnville, Oregon, 1950. (Two still frames)

Condon Report wrote:Conclusion:

[snip]

Given the foregoing analysis, one must choose between an asymmetric model suspended from the overhead wire, and an extraordinary flying object


…My opinion is that Occam’s Razor likely (?) favors the latter conclusion.


Except there’s at least one unresolved discrepancy I see that possibly favors the former?

Robert Sheaffer wrote:Weather Conditions at the Time of the Sighting

The witnesses contend that the sky was overcast, with a ceiling at about 5000 feet. Hartmann suggests that this is confirmed by the photographs. However, records kept by the U.S. Department of Commerce Weather Bureau indicate otherwise.


In light of the above, it is clear that the witnesses’ story of supposedly photographing a UFO cannot be accepted at face value. It is difficult to see what advantage would be gained in altering the alleged circumstances of the photographs, but the scientific investigator must guard against becoming an apologist. No serious researcher would contend that a photograph is of any value whatsoever in establishing the existence of an extraordinary object unless it is solidly corroborated by the testimony of one or more witnesses.


Also I believe the object in question has been found more recently to correspond quite nicely with a model train wheel? ;)

In which case your following postulation…

Serpentime wrote:…given the choice offered to us by the Condon Report itself:

Condon Report wrote:From the point of view of the Colorado study the principal question of concern is: does a case have probative value in establishing the reality of unusual aircraft?


…Came very close to being met in this case, I would postulate that the: “…Careful consideration of the record as it is available to us leads us to conclude that further extensive study of UFOs probably cannot be justified in the expectation that science will be advanced thereby”, statement is not scientifically justified.


…is perhaps NOT so justified after all?


”No serious researcher would contend that a photograph is of any value whatsoever in establishing the existence of an extraordinary object unless it is solidly corroborated by the testimony of one or more witnesses.”


Scientifically speaking, this statement may – indeed – be correct, but it still seems to strike a dissonant chord (IMO) against the way that we are (frequently?) told that if the eyewitnesses were ONLY to present some sort of corroborating physical (photographic?) evidence, then maybe their testimony might be worth listening to.

Here, in this argument – however – it is now suggested that the requisite physical evidence must be disallowed (?) because the ever-fallible human witnesses that were involved apparently forgot to timestamp their photos (?).


I that guess nobody read the pictures their Miranda rights, either… LOL


Regardless of the time of day, weather, shadows on the wall, or witness inconsistencies, it is still the photographic evidence itself in this case – and in my opinion – that must be fully accounted for.

And what the hard, scientific, evidence apparently shows (according to Condon?) is that the photographic negatives showed no sign of manipulation (photo tricks); that a tangible “object” had most likely been photographed; that the “object” pictured was NOT a “natural” phenomenon; and that there was no evidence to suggest that the object had been thrown into the air by a hoaxer.


So how did a tangible “object” (whatever it was?) get up into the air to be photographed, then?


According to the Condon conclusion, the possibility of a “model” (or a model train wheel) suspended by a string was not entirely ruled out, but could not be scientifically confirmed, either.

That is until a subsequent computer analysis of the negatives (I believe?) appeared to conclusively rule out the presence of any “strings”, or of any other sort of physical “suspension” mechanism that could have hypothetically supported the “object”.


~ This is a significant scientific finding, is it not?


Right here, I have a few model railroad cars with plenty of road wheels between them, and none of them resemble (IMO) the “object” in question in any but the most superficial appearance or aspect.

Neither do they resemble the photograph of a very similar object that was allegedly taken over France four (?) years later (which might be seen to provide secondary “correlation”, whatever that correlation might be…).


Maybe I missed the actual train wheel “exhibit”, somewhere?


But what I still don’t have is any verifiable scientific explanation for how an apparently extant object (not a film trick) was photographed in mid-air defying the laws of gravity?


Until science shows me how that was possible, I am forced to consider the case as an “unknown”.


{“Alien” spacecraft, or not. :)}


Access Denied wrote:
Serpentime wrote:The conclusion of this case study is not as strong, but not far from it, either:

~ Great Falls Montana, 1950. (Motion picture)


Perhaps but personally I don’t see what all the fuss was about. Looks like two jets to me…


Here we disagree again.

Beyond the Condon analysis of the case – which appears to suggest that the constant luminosity displayed by the objects is NOT consistent with the characteristics of aircraft reflecting sunlight, I have also read other independent analyses (which, unfortunately, I don’t have handy) that appear to reach the same conclusion.

In addition, I personally have spent a LOT of time (specifically due to this case) closely observing aircraft in flight as they reflect sunlight on bright days with clear blue skies, and none of my observations has ever remotely matched the appearance of the Montana film.

But that’s just the way that I see it.


My own personal Gnosis (right or wrong) just won’t correlate “aircraft”. :(


Access Denied wrote:…Two F-94s landed nearby within minutes of the sighting and in the film two “objects” behaving just like jets are streaking across the sky… Occam says you do the math. :)


In 1952, Ruppelt actually did do the “math” at the request of the Pentagon:

Report on Unidentified Flying Objects; pp. 220.


First we studied the flight paths of the two F-94s. We knew the landing pattern that was being used on the day of the sighting, and we knew when the two F-94s landed.

The two jets just weren’t anywhere close to where the two UFOs had been. Next we studied each individual light and both appeared to be too steady to be reflections.

We drew a blank on the Montana movie – it was an unknown.


Observation –> hypothesis (UFOs are jets?)–> testing = negative result. The Scientific Method rejects the aircraft hypothesis.

No airplanes = No known scientific explanation. Therefore, the conclusion of “unknown” continues to appear scientifically justified.

In my opinion. :)


Access Denied wrote:Also, the witness’s credibility also seems a little suspect to me in this case. Why didn’t he claim (as I understand it) to have seen the F-94s behind him until AFTER the AF kicked it back to him with the aircraft explanation (…and so on). …doesn’t add much to his credibility you think? :)


No. Changing stories are always suspect. But they aren’t always exclusionary, either – particularly where the film evidence appears (in both my and other opinions) to show a genuinely uncorrelated phenomenon (whatever it is).

Nicholas Mariana always maintained (I believe?) that the objects were silent and maintained a constant luminosity throughout their flight paths. Allegedly, he claimed that the beginning of his film better showed the “self-luminous” characteristics that analysts were debating, but I – personally – have no explanation for the subsequent witness discrepancies.

Then again, my questions most importantly revolve around the film evidence, which largely avoids the human intangibles and ultimately validates or disproves the “unknown” phenomenon on its own.


Eyewitnesses are unreliable, anyway. ;)


Access Denied wrote:
Serpentime wrote:And here’s another favorable individual conclusion:

~ Greenwich, England, 1956. (Radar-visual sighting at USAF/RAF facility.)

In conclusion, although conventional or natural explanations certainly cannot be ruled out, the probability of such seems low in this case and the probability that at least one genuine UFO was involved appears to be fairly high.



I agree, definitely a UFO… but was it an ET craft or was it something else? :)

I can certainly picture some sort of bizarre (i.e. extremely rare) electrically charged (i.e. “intelligently” controlled = natural attraction/repulsion to maintain equilibrium) plasma-like (i.e. extreme maneuverability = ~zero mass) objects accounting for the observed behaviors but there just isn’t enough data to be able to come to any kind of conclusion…


Which is a scientifically correct observation, in my opinion. I agree. :)


Access Denied wrote:which leads us to your next point…

Serpentime wrote:Rather than debunk the “scientific” value of UFO investigations, it appears to me that scientific analysis of more than one of the Condon cases (buried BEHIND the unfavorable conclusion}, ought to point serious, scientifically-oriented, minds in the opposite direction.


I disagree. What more could possibly learned from those cases without new data?


Why nothing, of course. But how can new data be obtained (for those, or future cases) if Science refuses to look for it, or won’t take the data seriously when it does find it?


Access Denied wrote:Furthermore, what if anything of scientific value can be learned from another study into a phenomenon that remains extraordinarily elusive?


Granted, by definition, what we may be dealing with here (the true scientific “unknowns”) is something that Science calls a “transient” phenomenon. That is, a phenomenon that cannot be predicted or placed in a controlled environment for study.

But simply because a phenomenon may be “transient”, does not logically imply that it (whatever it is…) does not, or cannot, exist.


~ In this case, Seipmann’s definition of Science (”…the field of study which attempts to describe and understand the nature of the universe in whole or part.) might be seen to suggest that without the crucial metric of ATTEMPT, the scientific endeavor simply cannot function.


But again, that’s my opinion.


Access Denied wrote:How would you even go about it? Why not just wait and cross that bridge when we come to it… assuming we ever do? If indeed we are being visited by ET craft it stands to reason (statistically?) that sooner or later something might happen that will give us the data (and corresponding scientific interest) we haven’t been able to obtain yet in order to come to a scientifically sound (acceptable) conclusion doesn’t it?


Sure, it’s quite a scientific challenge to investigate a transient phenomenon, now isn’t it?

And maybe the cost and logistics of a major, ongoing, and full-scale, inquiry might not return results consistent with the considerable expense. (Or not?)

But isn’t the whole purpose of Science to be inductive? To GATHER, REPEAT, and SHARE data and analysis that will TRANSFORM the human perception?


~ Excluding hypotheses based on the testing of predictions may be scientific justified, but discarding an entire area of inquiry simply because Science is (as yet) unable to provide answers other than “unknown” IS NOT justified, or scientific, in my opinion.

“Unknown” does not imply “alien spacecraft”, nor does it imply “natural phenomenon”, or anything else. It simply means “unknown”.

And that’s why Science exists: To make the unknown KNOWN.


~ Indeed, Humans may quit from a challenge out of frustration and impatience, but science is designed to ameliorate human error, isn’t it?

Let Science work, I say. Or let it learn from our human limitations and EVOLVE.


The Unknown will still be waiting. :)


Access Denied wrote:Now one could argue we have much more sophisticated and affordable Instrumentation, but then the question is what are we looking for that we haven’t been already?

…Cameras (and people) are more ubiquitous in the hands of civilians (and astronomers LOL) now then ever were so why don’t we have any compelling (in mine and many others opinion) photographs (and the requisite number of independent corroborating witnesses) of a solid object (as is frequently reported) to examine yet?

I don’t know. Perhaps these objects (excluding misidentifications) aren’t really “solid” (as in alien spaceships) per se?


Sure, the “unknowns” may be ANYTHING – from “natural phenomena”, to “alien space/time craft”, to living “awareness” of some magnitude that we can’t even begin to fathom within our current models (?).

Maybe their full quantitative “detection” lies outside the boundaries of our current technology – perhaps in the way that a primitive man waiting to read distant “smoke signals” could never imagine a radio carrier wave passing through his head (?).

But we’re never going to find (out) if we don’t bother to keep seeking. And that’s why I postulate a “scientific” problem with Condon’s “conclusion”. :(


As far as the photographic / electronic evidence matter goes, I’m not so sure that there isn’t at least some “unknown”, uncorrelated, data out there that the Scientific Establishment won’t even bother to investigate (thanks to Condon, AAAS, and others… LOL).

Personally, I can think of at least a small handful of seemingly “unknown” phenomena that were witnessed and clearly recorded by many corroborating witnesses. Some of them also behave in ways that are seemingly hard to assign to “nature” (as I understand it).


~ Perhaps – if I find the time – I could start posting some of these materials or references in the “Best Evidence” forum? I’m sure that they might generate an opinion, or two, and if anybody can identify ANY of these things for me, I’d sure love some answers! :)


That’s a great question you’ve raised there. :D


Access Denied wrote:Help me Serp, what’s a poor Scientist to do? :)


So, at long last, we return to where we began… :) LOL


Practice Science, AD. That’s what a scientist does. :)


A scientist attempts to describe and understand reality. To do this, he (or she) makes observations and gathers data, from which testable hypotheses are then constructed and experimented upon.

A scientist attempts to avoid personal bias, attempts to avoid rejecting data because it doesn’t match his pre-existing theories, and avoids jumping to conclusions that the data does not warrant. And when a scientist finds that the data is un-testable, or that his adherence to the Scientific Method permits only a conclusion of “unknown”, he states that outcome clearly and without equivocation.

This is the “Intellectual Honesty” that Science requires. {~ For without it, a scientist may find himself tempted across the “line” into unscientific “debunkery”.}


And if a scientist finds that his “tool” is not adequate for the task, he looks to other alternatives to improve that “tool”, and realizes that “cutting edge” investigations into “transient” phenomena may require special and unique approaches that the contemporary reductionist philosophy does not countenance (or permit).



Given, I argue with the “pure” science of USAF’s Project Bluebook and the Condon Report, but then again, “pure” science was not the AF’s interest to begin with. Instead, USAF was mainly concerned with National Security questions of Air Defense and Technical Intelligence, while the NSC and CIA were most interested in the “psychological” aspects of “flying saucers”.

It was not their responsibility (or intent) to study the so-called “extraterrestrial” hypothesis, but only to concern themselves with more “earthly” requirements. And for this application, Condon may have indeed made a worthwhile case that “two desks” and further military study of “unknown” phenomena were not worth the continued expense and unavoidable P.R. problems that the AF was incurring.


Unfortunately, however, Condon’s “conclusion” did not do a service to learning, in my opinion, or to the essence of “pure” science – that being: the ongoing and methodical investigation of the UNKNOWN. ‘Cause that’s what Science is all about. 8)



~ Ask me if I “believe” in “Aliens” and “UFOs” and I will tell you: NO. :shock:

Ask me what I DO believe in, and I will tell you that I believe in God. As such, it is not my prerogative to believe in Aliens or UFOs.


IT IS GOD”S PREROGATIVE TO BELIEVE IN ALIENS OR UFOS.


And if God doesn’t believe in Aliens or UFOs, then that’s 100% fine with me. :)


For most of my earlier life, I was a very self-satisfied “we-are-alone-in-the-Universe” type. Carl Sagan and the SETI “Order of the Dolphin” were my “fact-based” gurus. Chronic self-reference easily convinced me that anyone who talked about UFOS was an instant “head case”, and if you mentioned flying saucers, all I could picture was (you guessed it…) silly models hanging from strings, and automobile hubcaps flying through the air.

And all along, the media, the government, and the Scientific Establishment – together – blindly continued to “force-feed” me the same-old “flat” worldview that I was simply too arrogant and self-congratulatory to question on my own.


In a “nutshell”, I was the Lord and Master of all conventional wisdom. LOL


~ Nobody ever told me about all of those scientific “unknowns” that existed in the Condon report, or elsewhere. Nobody ever talked about, or discussed, “UFOs” or “Aliens” without laughing. And now that I’ve found that data – after a very long and considered INDEPENDENT inquiry of my own, and the learning of a little bit of common humility – I consider that popular zeitgeist to be a scientific shame.

Sure, the scientific evidence has never proven the existence of an “Alien” spacecraft (or some such), but it has never disproved their existence either. ~ And Science DOES appear to have “proved” the potential existence of “unknown” aerial phenomena in and about the Earth’s environment, which – to me – plainly suggests the need for further scientific inquiry to make these vexing “unknowns” known (for whatever they may ultimately become known as...).



~ On the other hand, If God DOES believe in Aliens and UFOs, then that’s fine with me, too. :) Given that God was “creative” enough to believe in me, then perhaps it would not be so surprising, either, to learn that God had “created” Aliens somewhere else in this vast “Creation”, also?

And if we question the ability of those “Aliens” to account for some of those “unknowns” in our skies, then we may also choose to recognize that it was God who fathered the great Cosmic truth:


Where there’s a will, there’s a way.


And that – in my opinion – is what Science is all about. :)




Never underestimate your Creator. You can take that straight from a Snake in a Tree. :D



Que sera, sera,

Serp :)



>"If there's a new way, I'll be the first in line; But it better work this time." :D
"Life's fantasy... To be locked away, and still to think you're free."

-- Ronnie Dio
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