UFO Conjecture(s)

Thursday, April 05, 2012

Tim Printy

UFO researcher and skeptical guy, Tim Printy, has been beleaguered by David Rudiak and Stanton Friedman because he (Mr. Printy) has had the chutzpah to challenge some of their work and ideas.

He has challenged a few of our ill-conceived insertions here also.

But we like Tim Printy.

He's brilliant and self-effacing when necessary.

When ideas about UFOs are thrown out, they always bring opprobrium if they challenge the UFO orthodoxy.

And the opprobrium can be vicious, as it was recently at UFO UpDates, by David Rudiak, regarding Tim Printy.

The UFO topic is innately bizarre. Hypotheses about UFOs have to be bizarre also, by the very nature of the phenomenon (or phenomena, if you will).

Tim Printy, like Robert Sheaffer, go after orthodox ufology in ways that deconstruct bad thinking; this makes the bad thinkers angry.

Thus they lash out.

This is just a short note to say that we support all heterodox thinkers: Printy, Sheaffer, Caravaca, et al.

May they thrive for a very long time....



  • I enjoy Tim Printy's SUNLITE and his general attitude to ufology. He is certainly a skeptic, but I would say a moderate one (when compared to, say, Klass & Menzel). I have not read the whole background to the Kecksburg case, but I do know how easy it is for a pro-ETHer such as Dr Rudiak to punch holes in explanations and add a few conspiratorial ideas, and presto - you have a big unexplained UFO case.

    This sort of thing goes on and on. Because believers knock a few, or even more than a few, holes in a case does not really advance their ETH cause. And it can, and does, cause a lot of friction and antagonism. Even if a case does end up officially as unexplained, as I (and Rudiak) would say is the case with Socorro, where does that leave us?

    We may have (almost) proved what the UFO was not, but in no way have we proved what it was. The USAF had over 750 'unknowns'. So what? Allan Hendry's 1980 book should have put a damper on these. Look at all the 'ifs', 'but's, 'could be's, and 'maybe's that are attached to any and all of these 750. There is no real finality on a single one of them.

    Rudiak is dedicated to ETH and cover-ups (exactly like STF), but he knows that the precious hard evidence he so earnestly wants, and hopes for, is non-existent. Therefore it is all being covered up. He won't even accept General Vandenberg's official daily log for July 8 as accurate. Therefore parts were omitted, either in error or as part of some grand deception.

    However, I shall stop at this point, as I am positive you will not want to repeat that debate here!

    By Blogger cda, at Friday, April 06, 2012  

  • Thanks, Christopher...

    Yes, a debate that ends up at Roswell would not do us well.

    Frank Warren was good enough to send me data, for my Randle/Roswell post, that showed we had twice as many postings about Roswell here than Mr. Randle had at his blog!

    I told Frank that many of our Roswell postings were from Anthony Bragalia before we gave him his own blog.

    (Also pointing readers here to Mr. Bragalia's blog counted as a Roswell post, against us.)

    As for Tim Printy, he has scalded us for some postings, but he has always been judicious, sane, and right.

    The hysterical attack on Tim by Rudiak at UpDates was across the line.

    I understand, as do you, why these guys, who are sinking into old age (like you and I) get crazy when their ET scenario is laughed at; it makes their life-long effort and religious-like belief into a futile waste of time, intelligence, and personal existence.

    For some of use -- I include you here -- UFOs intrigue, we'd like to know what they are or have been, and we haven't thrown out the ET possibility by a long shot.

    But we need something more as an explanation than "faith."

    Tim Printy thinks likewise I imagine.


    By Blogger RRRGroup, at Friday, April 06, 2012  

  • I take a look at Printy's sunlite. His layout is horrible, that's really my biggest criticism of it. People do not download these files and print them out and read them like a magazine, they read them on a computer and a format that is appropriate for that would be an improvement. It especially hurt what was a really good effort on the RB-47 case. His publishing of a pseudonymous and factually in error hit piece on Nick Pope evidenced a horrific lack of appreciation for ethical journalism.

    By Blogger Frank Stalter, at Friday, April 06, 2012  

  • I've had the pleasure of discussing numerous areas of conjoining interest with Tim Printy, specifically with the UFO nuclear weapons angle propagated by others. Simply, with both of us being former military, we have a mutual interest.

    It's unfortunate that his analysis of the RB-47 case appears to have fallen on deaf ears. His work on the case has been woefully under appreciated, yet stands out as an example of his good work and solid research.

    Why Friedman and others chose to comment on a 4 year old paper at this given time is a curiosity. Slow day or week in ufology?

    By Blogger Tim Hebert, at Friday, April 06, 2012  

  • Tim really is one of the good guys.

    In my experience, his interest is in getting things right. He doesn't waste much time with rhetoric. I, too thought that Dr. Rudiak's piece was way over the top--mostly ad hominem, start to finish.

    I have certainly gotten into attack mode with Dr. Rudiak and I have apologized to him about it and tried to avoid it. But, it seems to me, that Tim almost never lowers himself to that level. Indeed, I have tried recently to emulate him that regard.

    Also recently, I feel that Dr. Rudiak and I have had productive communications and I hope that can continue.

    We would all do feel to remember that we are all just hobbyists in a field that almost no one cares about. If we didn't have each other, who would we talk to?

    I haven't broached the subject with Tim but I wonder if SUNlite might not reach a larger audience as a blog?

    Tim creates so much content that I am certain that it would be in a position or build readership.



    By Blogger Lance, at Friday, April 06, 2012  

  • Yes, Lance...

    I'd like to see Printy more than we have, and we'll point readers here to his web-site (or blog if he starts one up).

    Paul Kimball says that blogging is so 2006, but our journalists and reporters -- the people we deal with at our MediaWatch sites -- are heavily invested in the blog format....at the moment anyway.

    More Printy....one of the good, smart guys, like you, CDA, and Gilles Fernandez.


    By Blogger RRRGroup, at Friday, April 06, 2012  

  • Lance-

    Blogging is the way to go in my view. If you have a few favorite forum stops and want to promote there, that never hurts and sites like Facebook are fine but limited, but great work can get buried in forums. You did the right thing getting your own blog going and Tim Hebert has a nice blog too. I think getting my own blog going was one of the best things I've done in recent years.

    By Blogger Frank Stalter, at Friday, April 06, 2012  

  • Thanks Frank,

    And I'm hitting a prolific streak, hoping for 2 posts this year (fingers crossed!).


    By Blogger Lance, at Friday, April 06, 2012  

  • Haha, even I've got that work rate beat Lance. I do think it's quality over quantity anyway. Someone can bury their own good work too if they aren't careful. I think layout is important to any blog or site, there's a lot of flexibility in the xml templates and html within a given post or in the sidebar, and images too. I definitely had the old pulp type magazine covers in mind when I put together my layout balanced with easy navigation and readability. I pull a big chunk of my traffic from image searches as well as text searches. The other nice thing about blogging over print is you can always fix a mistake or update like with the Kelly Johnson case in response to your article, which I will do as soon as I get around to it.

    By Blogger Frank Stalter, at Friday, April 06, 2012  

  • Frank,

    I regularly check your site and am looking forward to new posts from you. As I had commented on UFO Partisan, your article on Drake's Equation was nicely done! Yes, your layout is easy to navigate. Get busy!...and thanks for the kind statements concerning my humble blog site.

    Lance, thoroughly enjoyed what you have posted on your site, again, another site that I check frequently.

    Count me in with the consensus that Tim Printy evolve to a blog site, but I believe that Tim wanted to retain a "nostalgic" feel from folks like Phillip Klass. Besides, he's Navy, the Air Force always moved towards technology at a quicker pace!

    By Blogger Tim Hebert, at Friday, April 06, 2012  

  • Agree with Frank S. - These look to be MSWord files with graphics (poorly) inserted saved as PDFs. He sorely needs some graphics (and copyediting) assistance even if he prefers the print newsletter format. They're hard to read or skim onscreen or even printed out (I actually did that with one).

    Tim really should clean them up a bit. Their appearance diminishes the quality of the thought behind his effort.

    I enjoyed reading about his road trip to test out a theory about the alleged Hill abduction, even though he ended up where others who've examined the case have -- some of the Hill's related experiences just can't be easily explained away.

    By Blogger purrlgurrl, at Friday, April 06, 2012  

  • Hmmm.....I appreciate the comments and I hope to address a few of them here.

    Re: Format of SUNlite - This is the first time I heard a complaint about the format. Based on this, I will experiment in the July issue (the next issue is already half-way done) with a single column format per page. BTW, I do have to print out one copy for the supreme commander down in the Keys as he does not use a computer.

    Re: A SUNlite blog - I originally thought of doing this but I used to have an astronomical "journal" and I sort of got bored with it. I mentioned this in SUNlite 1-1. I like the idea of a newsletter because it sets deadlines for me and gives others a chance to write something in the newsletter if they desire.

    Re: Navy vs AF. The reaon the AF is always ahead of the Navy in technology is because it is faster to build a golf course (I am making a joke - let's say an airplane) than it is to build a ship! A ship takes years, which means you have to use the technology when it was initially designed. It is also much harder to upgrade the technology of a ship over an airplane.

    By Blogger Tim Printy, at Friday, April 06, 2012  

  • @Tim Hebert-

    Thanks Tim. The next thing is just to update the Johnson case and it's more about the graphics than the text, that's the holdup for now. There are certainly some other great cases out there, but they seem pretty well covered. If I had something unique to add, I'd do it. Being an amateur at this, I'm a 99% inspiration, 1% perspiration guy. ;O)

    By Blogger Frank Stalter, at Friday, April 06, 2012  

  • "The UFO topic is innately bizarre. Hypotheses about UFOs have to be bizarre also, by the very nature of the phenomenon (or phenomena, if you will)."

    There is no "UFO" phenomenon(a) there are only "UFO" reports made by individuals living within societies affected by the media-manufactured "UFO" collective delusion. This delusion's origin, history and pathology are completely documented and very well understood, as are dozens of similar collective delusions experienced worldwide. The Psychosocial hypothesis isn't about "UFO" reports, it's about the widespread false belief that there are "UFOs" of any kind at all, it is the very idea--"UFO"--that is the delusion.


    By Blogger zoamchomsky, at Saturday, April 07, 2012  

  • Zoam...

    Yours is a particularly rabid belief -- that UFOs are products of a delusionally induced conspiracy.

    Those of us, thought to be normal by current standards of measurement and who have seen UFOs, will find your view a bit on the nonsense side of rationality.

    Yes, some UFO reports derive from delusional behavior, and spring forth from media-inspired hysteria.

    But all UFO sightings?

    You are merely being provocative, more than we try to be, right?


    By Blogger RRRGroup, at Saturday, April 07, 2012  

  • To come to a broad swath conclusion that UFOs sightings are based solely on delusional thinking fails to understand what delusion truly are...product of a known pathology.

    The question should be looked at in the context of the possibility that the individual was suffering from delusional thoughts prior to any encounter.

    Misinterpretation (visually)does not always equate to delusional thought content.

    By Blogger Tim Hebert, at Saturday, April 07, 2012  

  • "Yours is a particularly rabid belief -- that UFOs are products of a delusionally induced conspiracy."

    How'd you get that since I didn't say anything of the sort. I wrote about the "UFO" collective delusion, the widespread false belief that "unidentified flying objects" of some sort exist in the world and can be seen. There's a very simple explanation why this is the case: the very idea--"UFO"--is a delusion.

    "Those of us, thought to be normal by current standards of measurement and who have seen UFOs, will find your view a bit on the nonsense side of rationality."

    It's quite the normal mainstream view on the rational, skeptic side. Have you heard of the Null hypothesis? Read Carl Sagan's TDHW? There are several chapters explaining why there are no REAL "UFOs" of any kind.

    People report seeing things in the sky that they can't identify. That doesn't mean they've seen something other than what is known to exist in the world. The mere failure to identify does not create some extraordinary other. That's the inherent conceptual absurdity of the idea of "UFOs." Check the definition of "UFO." Unless it means imaginary "flying saucer," there's nothing that can be said about a universal "UFO" since there are no "UFO" facts--brute facts being the minimum requirements for things said to exist in the world.

    "You are merely being provocative, more than we try to be, right?"

    Hardly. Read sociologist Bartholomew's article, better yet, his book on the subject, "UFOs & Alien Contact: Two Centuries of Mystery."

    "But all UFO sightings?"

    Yes, ALL "UFO" reports, since it's the very idea that there are "UFOs" to be seen in the first place. There aren't any REAL "UFOs" of any kind and there never were.

    By Blogger zoamchomsky, at Saturday, April 07, 2012  

  • "that UFOs sightings are based solely on delusional thinking fails to understand what delusion truly are"

    The term "Mass or Collective Delusion" has a different meaning. Sociologist Robert Bartholomew writes: "Collective delusions are typified as the spontaneous, rapid spread of false or exaggerated beliefs within a population at large, temporarily affecting a particular region, culture, or country."

    "UFO" REPORTS are made by individuals in societies affected by the "UFO" myth and collective delusion.

    By Blogger zoamchomsky, at Saturday, April 07, 2012  

  • Well ZoamChomsky...

    We're into territory best referenced by your counterpart, Noam Chomsky.

    You arguing a semantical counterpoint.

    I appreciate the attempt at an academic-like debate, but...

    I prefer hypotheses and discussions that try to tell us what those strange anomalous things seen in the sky and on the ground are.

    You want to haggle over definition and the essence of names....UFOs in this instance.

    I'll pass...


    By Blogger RRRGroup, at Saturday, April 07, 2012  

  • "I prefer hypotheses and discussions that try to tell us what those strange anomalous things seen in the sky and on the ground are."

    Oh, you mean, business as usual, which produces nothing but keeps the "UFO" myth and delusion under consideration as if it's not the failed hypothesis ("UFOs" are real) and the least likely of all explanations for why people make what are called "UFO" reports. Those are the hallmarks of a pseudoscience in Popperian demarcation theory.

    Again, there is no "UFO" phenomenon(a). There aren't any "strange anomalous things seen in the sky." There are only "UFO" reports; but irrational Believers in the myth would rather ignore that fundamental point and fallaciously assume that the subjects of "UNidentified" reports have an extraordinary "identity" by the mere act of failure to identify. See the problem? It's not semantics; it's the difference between skeptics and Believers.

    And I just love it when someone uses the word "anomaly" in "UFO" discussions. (vbg)

    By Blogger zoamchomsky, at Saturday, April 07, 2012  

  • Zoam...

    You're splitting hairs and being intellectually obtuse.

    I appreciate your attempt to be obliquely erudite, but you appear to me to be silly.


    By Blogger RRRGroup, at Saturday, April 07, 2012  

  • RR:

    Do you see the point of my question to Zoam... about Portmeirion? Am I being obtuse too?

    Apologies for changing the subject.

    By Blogger cda, at Sunday, April 08, 2012  

  • I've seen your Portmeirion reference, CDA, and it's obtuse in exactly the right way.

    You can change the subject anytime you like here,

    You have carte blanche to be obtuse, abstruse, and anything else you want to be.


    By Blogger RRRGroup, at Sunday, April 08, 2012  

  • In relation to unknown aerial phenomenon, we are left with the rationalism of logic that oddly is turned against itself and becomes another form of solipsism. As R.A Wilson said these sort of debates, end up as "who has the better language" and yet are all moot points or further, a from of abstracted pointillism.
    The nature of this as we experience it is certainly existential wherein the measurement of probability is is inherently biased. Not everything we read in a book is true. This phenomenon does not manifest in a known context. One size of theory does not fit all. Not all of our hunches will be correct. Even delusion and distortion, if this is so, remain mysteries that remain impenetrable as to why they occur in this repetitive context.
    All of these issues are usually side stepped for a pulpit or a abstraction. Yet for all these reasons, this phenomenon drives us by this varied stimulus. All of our psychological suitcases comes to the fore. Whatever it is, it may have nothing to do with machines, aliens or the fourth dimension. The fact that it is subtle in the nature of the whole phenomenology that manifests itself suggests to me it is buried under the skins of the observable and opinion, like McKenna said, as a metaphorical onion. However, to most this is absolutely unacceptable. We desire a cogent and coherent explanation as it's observers, but we are ultimately neither cogent or coherent in relation to it. It reminds me of scatter shot and pinning the tail on the donkey whether one is labelled a skeptic or a vested theorist.

    By Blogger Bruce Duensing, at Sunday, April 08, 2012  

  • Just a quick note to say that I love Zoam!
    And as far as CDA's obtuseness, all I can say is

    Be Seeing You,


    By Blogger Lance, at Sunday, April 08, 2012  

  • A further comment that occurred to me in regard to this discussion is the difference between reading about a phenomenon and experiencing it. The further we are distanced from direct experience as a self verifying phenomenon that poses a question, the more freedom this distancing allows for replacing inquiry and bewilderment with the logic of reductionism painted in various stripes. It sort of a form ( it seems) of denial as well as a self comforting psychology that Gurdjieff perhaps would call a "buffer" to prevent the colliding effect of acknowledging the existential threat of stultification. Personally, you can take the microscope of science, philosophy, etc and point it anywhere beyond unknown aerial phenomenon to see this sort of half an answer is better than none, except that half answers are a sort of false consensus. What is cancer, where does it come from? Who in the Sam Hill was Jesus? Etc.
    I think more self effacement is due in relation to would be mavens, as if we go to the root of the phenomenon, dig deep none of know what it is we are talking about. Its that simple. I think all of this gets lost and it becomes a contest of personalities and "being right" at the expense of some overdue humility toward our own backyards. As a kid, I thought I knew everything, and as an oldster, as I deconstruct my own "education", I know very little, if anything more than when I stepped off the boat.

    By Blogger Bruce Duensing, at Sunday, April 08, 2012  

  • You like Zoam, Lance, because he is extremely heretical.

    I like extremism too, as a former John Bircher, but Zoam thinking (or believing) that UFOs are a total chimera/delusion is a bit much, even for me.


    By Blogger RRRGroup, at Sunday, April 08, 2012  

  • Greetings,

    That's cool to see Mister Zoam pointing to the Sociologist Robert Bartholomew and the mass or collective delusion hypothesis/approach.
    I humblely often pointed and refered in our French UFO-Skeptic forum to his psychosociological approach, I share too. In particulary (but not only) offering a very good approach about UFO waves too (as mass delusions/psycho-social contamination).
    I then liked Zoam's commentaries.
    So, just sharing this, as I hope to read Zoam more often!

    Best Regards,

    Gilles F.

    By Blogger Gilles. F., at Sunday, April 08, 2012  

  • Gilles, yes "sociologist" not "psychologist" Bartholomew. I've read some of Bartholomew's papers and for the most part have agreed with his analysis, especially regarding the New England cases some 100 years ago.

    I personally tend to gravitate towards hysteria versus that of delusions. A marked difference in manifestation.

    By Blogger Tim Hebert, at Sunday, April 08, 2012  

  • Hello Tim (the other^^),

    Personnaly, I prefer mass delusion term than mass hysteria. Mass hysteria is not "founded" here, because if we use "hysteria", then you must have "obligatory" physical symptoms.

    Mass delusion is then "behaviour" related, and dont involve physiological effects, but only behaviourist and cognitive ones, and the term sounds more applied to vast group, community (then the Society) than hysteria, which in general concerns one individual or very confined milieu when "in mass". Bartholomew and Goode explains better than me the nuance in their article, I quote them:
    "In short, all mass hysterias are collective delusions as they involve false or exaggerated beliefs, but only rarely do collective delusions involve mass hysteria as to do so, they must report illness symptoms."

    At least, it is how I see the main differences and use this term.

    BTW, in french, delusion (délire) have a bad meaning for Gran' public, associated to madness, so I think we use english equivalent of mass contamination (contagion de masse).


    PS : I use "Sociologist", not "psychologist in my previous short post ?!

    By Blogger Gilles. F., at Sunday, April 08, 2012  

  • Now listen up you crazy, skeptical bastards...

    While some UFO sightings and reports are inspired by hysterical and delusional mental activity, all UFO sightings and reports are not so evoked.

    There is a real phenomenon, things with tangibility and some without.

    The many reports by persons without mental defect provide ample circumstantial evidence, since time immemorial, for something strange seen in the sky or on the ground.

    That UFOs are ET-instigated is, despite my view that so many UFO reports belie visitations by galactic visitors, a possibility.

    To take the view that all UFO sightings or UFO reports (as ZoamChomsky has it) are products of a mass delusion or hysteria is itself delusional.

    And taking that skeptical stance makes reasonable thinkers livid.

    To assume a heretical view or anti-orthodox view about UFOs or UFO reports, one must remain tethered to intellectual, rational thought processes.

    To go off on a view that something as widely reported as UFOs is a product of severe psychological or sociological malfeasance is sheer lunacy....sheer intellectual perversity.

    Yes, something happened at Roswell.

    What that was is unknown but still grist for study by those who want to waste their time scouring the incident.

    That something was seen by Frank Mannor and his son in Ann Arbor in 1966 and also seen by co-eds at Hillsdale Michigan simultaneously was not hysteria or delusionally produced.

    Gilles, as a psychologist, you know better.

    Lane and Zoam, you are just being contrary which is not an attractive trait, which I will deal with in a new post this coming week.

    It doesn't surprise me that UFO believers, ET and otherwise, find such views as expressed here in comments to be evidence of mind-sets that are intellectually shaky or worse.


    By Blogger RRRGroup, at Sunday, April 08, 2012  

  • Greetings,

    Bastards ? He, coolos, zenos, that's ufology only, my friend ;)

    More seriously, and for those interested, in 2007, french ufologist Claude Maugé translated his approach called reductionist-composite theory. With Belgium Jacques Scornaux, I think he illustrates admirably the "new ufologists school" (I'm humblely reclaiming myself from), appearing first end 70's and in the 80's.
    Sorry Rich if I dont share your opinion on UFO's. I respect your, but that's not mine (but I'm open mind ^^). We must considerate each alternative, particulary in a domain claiming extraordinary claims like ufology. Personnaly, I have never seen something extraordinary in ufologye, each case having ordinairy hypothesis/approach. Until a scientific evidence agaonst the PSH/RC theory...

    I hope you will enjoy reading Claude Maugé:

    I hope we will translate Jacques Scornaux a day too, admirable text too I think.

    Best regards,

    Gilles Fernandez

    By Blogger Gilles. F., at Monday, April 09, 2012  

  • Thank you Gilles...

    But even you have to admit that if UFOs or UFO reports (ZoamChomsky's bugaboo) are just hysterical or delusional items, they have a reality of some kind; that is, they form a category that may be intangible but real in the psychological sense.

    To dismiss UFOs or Zoam's UFO reports out of hand as only psychological or sociological quirks seems to me to a kind of denial that one might call aberrant.

    One can be skeptical about some UFO sightings/reports but to broadbrush all UFO sightings and/or reports as delusional or elements of hysteria is just intellectually nutty.

    Skeptics who take such a stance are more easily discounted than the rabid ETers, whose position about UFOs being vehicles from extraterrestrials isn't as nutty as an atheistic ufological view.

    I've had three UFO sightings in my life and I've interviewed people who say they have seen something one can define as a UFO.

    Now I may be nuts but those people I've interviewed aren't; they are normal people, with rational minds who've seen something that has all the earmarks of an irrational but real object.

    Just because you, Lance, and a few others of my favorite skeptics haven't seen a UFO, you can't, reasonably take the obnoxious view that all those reporting a UFO sighting are hysterial or delusional.

    Even Jose Caravaca's exampled encounters can't be dismissed as totally delusional, according to his Distortion theory.

    That's it...

    I appreciate your views, you know that, but when someone dismisses the totality of UFO sightings as hysterical or delusional, they become, for me, in need of some psychiatric therapy themselves.


    By Blogger RRRGroup, at Monday, April 09, 2012  

  • Talking about mass delusion or mass hysteria, where would you place cattle mutilations?

    Was this an episode of collective delusion or was there something to it? Something occurred in those days (1970s mainly) to cause farmers to suspect their cattle had been mysteriously mutilated, maybe even by ETs. The news spread and multiplied. Ultimately it reached a crescendo then died out. Occasionally it revives and dies out again.

    Yet it has all been debunked several times as a form of collective hysteria (or maybe delusion). Even the FBI got involved at one time!

    Strange phenomenon. My own view is that nothing sinister is at work. But I might think differently if I was a farmer or rancher and experienced it first-hand.

    By Blogger cda, at Monday, April 09, 2012  

  • CDA
    I think cattle mutilations were annexed to identified aerial phenomenon by misplaced reductionism because some of the events involved reported "lights in the sky". The same arguments Valle used in refuting human abductions still remain apt in terms of the "abduction" of livestock. Colm K while at NIDS wrote an interesting paper on the U.S covert monitoring of cattle diseases, to avoid creating the impression of a crisis. Some, not all were clearly the work of scavengers. Some proposed the range of the mutilations matched the drift pattern of fallout from the nuclear explosions at Nevada, and radioactivity in the food chain was being sampled. UFOs are sort of a catch all label for either dismissal by belief at the expense of alternative theories or simply denied by blanket statements. Nothing has changed in a half century.

    By Blogger Bruce Duensing, at Monday, April 09, 2012  

  • Another aside to CDA..
    Are you familiar with the case that involved the entanglement of UFO's with the corpse of what I vaguely remember of a policeman found at the top of a coal pile? Some wags thought it was evidence of human abduction due to the fact the body somehow was placed atop it without disturbing the loose coal, as if from above. One could not rearrange the coal to it's original conical shape ( so they said) without further disturbing it's geometry. It may have not been a police officer but my memory says it was. It was a fascinating case I had forgotten about because at the time it reached a dead end. Your comment on cattle abductions brought it to mind. Any thoughts or recall of this event?

    By Blogger Bruce Duensing, at Monday, April 09, 2012  

  • Bruce:

    The policeman abduction was the weird case of Alan Godfrey in November 1980 in Todmorden, Yorkshire, which is described in several books on abductions. And he did get publicity out of it, on TV and in the press. Needless to say, there were several problems with his story.

    The body atop a coalpit (or coaltip) was, I think, that of a Zygmunt Adamski (no relation to George) that occurred at about the same time and in the same locality as the Godfrey case. I can find no mention of it anywhere now, probably it was concluded to be of no significance. But yes, I do vaguely recall the story.

    By Blogger cda, at Monday, April 09, 2012  

  • RR writes: "but you appear to me to be silly."

    Since my Null/Psychosocial hypothesis view sits squarely in the Skeptic/Magonia camp, are we all "silly?"

    "Zoam thinking..that UFOs are a total chimera/delusion is a bit much, even for me."

    It's not that the stimuli for reports are delusions but the media-implanted predisposition in the minds of witnesses--the IDEA--that the failure to identify a stimulus makes it extraordinary and so worthy of reporting--a "UFO"--that is the delusion.

    "...The Pelican [and the Debunker have] long since solved the UFO so-called “mystery”.

    There are two separate but related fields of study...but very few people pursue them. One kind of study uses the physical sciences to investigate UFO reports to try to discover the physical stimuli which produce them. For example, a ‘strange’ light in the sky reported by a number of witnesses might be identified as the planet Venus. The other kind uses the social sciences and involves psychologists, sociologists and folklorists in the study of ufologists and UFO groups, and their beliefs and motivations.
    "Both kinds of study, if carried out with appropriate scientific or academic rigour, incur the condemnation of UFO enthusiasts, including those who like to consider themselves to be Serious Ufologists." --John Rimmer, 1998

    But that doesn't alter the fact that ufoolery is history already!

    By Blogger zoamchomsky, at Monday, April 09, 2012  

  • Thanks, Lance and Gilles!

    You're both on top of this subject obviously. Keep up the good work!

    By Blogger zoamchomsky, at Monday, April 09, 2012  

  • [RR writes a lot of silly straw-man-like nonsense I won't quote.]

    Dear RR; I think you're smart enough that you're going to get the Null (Skeptic) / Psychosocial (Magonia) / Collective Delusion (Bartholomew's mainstream social psychology) hypotheses of "UFO" REPORTS eventually; and then you will join us in the world beyond the pop-subculture pseudoscience of ufoolery and outside the false beliefs of the "UFO" collective delusion.

    Best wishes, Z

    By Blogger zoamchomsky, at Monday, April 09, 2012  

  • Zoam...

    You have a few admirers whom I respect so I can't just wash your views away with twaddle.

    But you, as I see it, are making too much of the topic (UFOs and UFO reports).

    There is a phenomenon (UFOs) and there is the phenomena you cite that involves the social sciences, et cetera.

    You wish to sweep UFOs under the social science rug, whereas one, who finds the topic (the reports too) and UFOs fascinating, wishes to know what the things are or what mental machinations are at work, using the sobriquet UFOs as the instigator of sightings and reports -- or hysteria/delusions even.

    The IDEA (of UFOs) is after the fact, not before the fact.

    In this case the medium (UFOs) is the message.

    The media are not the message.

    You've gone astray.


    By Blogger RRRGroup, at Monday, April 09, 2012  

  • @ Rich mainly,
    That's difficult to exchange about the Reductionnist-Composist theory in the comments place of a blog, but I hope you have read Claude Maugé effort in English (?)

    I say it, because after reading your comments, it transpires "we" are considerating UFO's witnesses or the stimulus as madness processing, illusions, hallucinations, hysteria... No, it is more complex of course, as Human cognition + her culture ambiance/filters are.

    That's the (UFO) culture who "made the delusion" in the sens UNidentified stimulus(i) become(s) ufological culture linked (aka as probably E.T.I or fortean in nature then).

    The reports of UNidentified must remain as they are imho. Why?

    Because the IFOlogy (the study of UFO cases becomed IFO's) showed us and MANY TIMES for now, cases presenting a priori an very high level of strangeness and solidity. And this, legitimaly.
    But it was "only" prosaïc/trivial stimulus(i), complex misinterpretations, etc.

    I have sincerly never understood why ufologists consider that the residual cases CANT be like them. I Dont see why seriously, regarding what IFOlogye teached us. I'm prudent even if "open mind","creative", "curious" in my personnal nature and behavior.

    In short, there is maybe not a difference in NATURE between UFOs and IFOs, but just a difference in degree : the statut only (Identified/not identified). Period.

    After all, there exists several casuistics (murders, accidents, pannes, etc) with residual cases (UNexplained). That's not involving "as correlat" for scientists, etc. that if they are "still" UNexplained, it is because there is a phenomenom different in Nature, a fortean one, under them.
    And explaining them (and then, they will become unexplained until a science paradigm change will come). You see what I mean?

    In other words, we have learned with IFOlogy that report(s) could have a very hight level of strangeness, involving credible witnesses, presenting a priori awesome extraordinary carracteristics alleged, residual and resisting to all explanations for long times (recently -2010-, it have been solved by Manuel Boras and Eric Maillot a 1965 very strong french case - Fort-de-France- as Top secret project MARTLET obus observations! And this 45 years later!).

    But it is "as if" UFOlogy have learned nothing or few regarding what IFOlogy teached us... No :(

    Personaly, I'm Skeptic (in the noble sens of the term imho) about the residual cases, because I have humblely learned about IFOs.

    I consider, until now, there is no real reason (excepting BELIEF) to considerate there is not only a difference in statut (not in Nature then) between IFOs and UFOs.

    Until an EVIDENCE (in the scientific meaning of the term), of course, prooving/validating scientificaly a nature difference. Did you see it. ME not.

    Just a summerize of my humble "approach" regarding Ufology.

    Best regards,


    By Blogger Gilles. F., at Monday, April 09, 2012  

  • Gilles, mon ami...

    I understand your position and I do not find it egregiously wanting in any significant way.

    But the attempt to provide an IFO classification on all UFO sightings that we have records for or reports about is gilding the skeptical lily.

    Yes, one might be able to, if they have all the data and information at hand, explain all UFO accounts.

    But that isn't happening and hasn't happened.

    The very essence of UFOs is their enigmatic nature.

    If only one UFO sighting is truly of an unexplainable thing in the sky (or on the ground), that takes the topic into a realm where study and research is truly needed.

    You (and Lance and Zoam) try to persuade that all UFOs are IFOs that haven't gotten proper scrutiny.

    That may be true but the reasoning is outrageous on the face of it.

    Anyone with a rather good knowledge of the sighting record and reports knows that something more than neurological glitches is at work here..

    Your skeptical view is, for me, like that of an atheist: the palpable evidence for an unexplained phenomenon is so sturdy that to deny its reality is a kind of denial, as I keep saying, that borders on insanity.

    We can argue the point, as Bruce Duensing notes, like the Scholastics with their perpetual discussions about how many angels can dance on the had of a pin, but that gets us nowhere.

    Zoam Chomsky argues from "authority" -- that is he cites, as do you, persons who've presented a case for delusional behavior by media and UFO sighters.

    But I would like you or Zoam to take one of those authoritative views and apply it to one of two UFO cases that have cachet and prove that the sighting came about from media influence or the mental disability of the sighter(s).

    There are, as Kinsey noted in his sex studies, two extremes in the sexual spectrum.

    This is exactly the case here: we have you, Zoam and Lance taking the extreme view that UFOs are, in toto, non-existent as a real phenomenon and then we have the Rudiaks, Clarks, and Randles who, after years of following the matter, think there is something substantial impacting Earth and it inhabitants, something tangible and real -- not figments of imagination.

    The truth lies somewhere in between; that is, the norm resides in the middle.

    You, as a psychologist, know that this is how it is.

    To be so adamant that psychology explains all UFO sightings or UFO reports (as ZoamChomsky would have it) is intellectually ludicrous.

    That doesn't mean I disown you (or Lance) as friends...after all I have lots of loony friends.

    But it does mean that you fellows are full of merde by adopting such hardened views as expressed here.


    By Blogger RRRGroup, at Monday, April 09, 2012  

  • Dear Rich,

    With all due Respects, it remembered me Professeur Auguste Meessen and the SOBEPS/COBEPS team defending the Petit-Rechain photography and presenting it, not only as a "true UFO" EVIDENCE (aka a spaceship or fortean thing), but more : speculating about the propulsion mode of the ETI aboard... Asking a scientific paradigm revolution. How Science is cautious, that's bad, dogmatic, etc. (You know the in repeat mode vinyl disc).

    Seriously, how many books, articles, TV shows with this picture as the ufology mascott, flag (in Francophony or Europe at least)... Leslie Kean recent best-seller included.

    And all of this despite Skeptic's RED FLAG, prudency, mainly showing how what the witness explained concerning how the shoot was taken was impossible or really strange, not coherent regarding the picture, or having replicated of course not exactly the same picture, but very approaching ones with only rudimentar material and "tricks". Who cares!?

    How many "calls" about this picture as THE evidence and Skeptics proove me wrong?
    "We" have only launched a red flag and claimed that there are many problems regarding the picture, and then it cant be admit as a SOLID evidence, aka SCIENTIFIC evidence. Period.

    Now, that it have been prooved as a 20 years hoax because the hoaxer confessed in summer 2011, we see ufology and he reflex when an information is too much dissonant regarding her belief:

    "Well, in fact that's realy not a problem : How do you explain now this other UFO picture?"

    Richie, "MAYBE" the question is imho if or not ufology is and will be ONLY abble to call in the residual cases each time a case is explained? Without questionning them...

    "OK, for this case, ok for this picture, even if "we" - ufologists - claimed it was our solid card, the best ever, unexplainable. Now, we will take another one in our wallet of residuals.
    OR for this one, several (skeptic or not) pointed several good directions and pists to explain it, but they didn't explain it FULLY.

    Note too how the ETH proponents are not in agreement on their residuals sample (pointing again how all of it is SUBJECTIVE).

    But, the question is in which aspects, level of strangeness in the testimonies, which caracteristics, color, size, witnesses, etc. the residual sample (UFO) is different the explained sample (IFO)?
    Excepted maybe the statut UNexplained versus explained? I see nothing personnaly.

    There exists residuals in all casuistics, after all. Ufologists are considering the casuistic have between 80% and... % IFOs.

    Why the residuals must be ABSOLUTLY of another nature than the explained ones? Only because their statut "unexplained" if I follow ufologists.
    Good deal... But not evidence, not an hard data, not a DNA, etc... I mean that's very poor, I regret.
    OK, I stop here, too much texts (which serves nothing) and it is very difficult in English.

    Best Regards,


    By Blogger Gilles. F., at Monday, April 09, 2012  

  • Well of course, Gilles, the UFO believers will rationalize anything to make their case -- to augment their UFO faith, their UFO religion.

    I concede that.

    That's ufology, as you say...not even good enough to be called a pseudo-science.

    That kind of thing -- defense of obvious hoaxes and/or mentally aberrant sightings -- is what has tanked UFO studies for science and academia, and allowed media to have fun with the topic.

    But that doesn't mean all apples in the barrel are spoiled.

    One can't make a blanket statement that all UFO accounts are hoaxes or misidentified something or other, or are visions by the mentally botched.

    Logic and intelligent thinking don't allow such a blanket statement.

    It's similar to, in many ways, the argument for God.

    The evidence is not substantial so some resort to faith, and the great Thomas Aquinas provides a rational approach to faith.

    There is no "Thomas Aquinas" in ufology, just a bunch of old men who need something to provide them with importance, ego boosts as it were.

    We can't let the dregs that have taken hold of the UFO topic, for years, control how or why UFOs should be studied.

    Yes, I abhor most ufologists; they reek of self-importance and ignorance.

    But they can't totally taint the phenomenon for me and a few others, although they've scarred it quite a bit.

    Your gripe is with ufology I think, not UFOs.

    CDA is similarly affected.

    I hope you've read my Camus post above this one.

    It puts the issue(s) in perspective.


    By Blogger RRRGroup, at Monday, April 09, 2012  

  • "To take the view that all UFO sightings or UFO reports (as ZoamChomsky has it) are products of a mass delusion or hysteria is itself delusional.

    And taking that skeptical stance makes reasonable thinkers livid."

    Hey, marry one, and you marry the whole family.



    By Blogger Don, at Tuesday, April 10, 2012  

  • Rich : "Logic and intelligent thinking don't allow such a blanket statement."

    Well, If you judge I'm illogic and without intelligent thinking, that's your opinion. I respect it, cause I'm zen.

    But admit, my friend, your opinion doesn't validate scientificaly that UFOs have a fortean or ETI Nature one iota.

    My point was I dont see what is different between IFOs and UFOs, excepted the statut UNidentified versus Identified.

    After all, I have humblely seen many so proclamed-solid cases, so proclamed-very strong cases or so-claimed resistant in any prosaic/trivial explanation cases, previous UFOs then.... becoming IFOs.
    When I read again many IFO cases when they were UFO statued, the level in strangeness was very HIGH (by the witness(es), the investigator(s), in the narrative, etc.
    It was prosaïc stimulus(i)...

    The University of IFOlogy is very rich now, my friend.

    On the other hand, I have never seen an UFO prooved scientificaly as "fortean" in nature, or as an ETI spaceship. Do you?

    So, as a pragmatic-person, a skeptic by the examen of several IFO cases (and not by ideology), I'm asking me (as others probably did, do and will do) if finaly the difference between IFOs and UFOs is not ONLY a difference in degree (explained cases versus unexplained cases). But maybe none difference in Nature.

    I think this interrogation legitimated, for my part.

    Well, future generations will have probably the answer ;)



    By Blogger Gilles. F., at Tuesday, April 10, 2012  

  • Gilles...

    Oh my...I would never think or write that you are illogical or unintelligent.

    I was pointing to the blanket view held and promoted by Zoam Chomsky.

    You are a brilliant guy, and I accept yuor views as sensible and mostly right.

    So forgive me if I've left an impression that doesn't reflect my view of you or our friendship.


    By Blogger RRRGroup, at Tuesday, April 10, 2012  

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