UFO Conjectures

Saturday, September 17, 2016

UFOs and oneupmanship (rather than UFO research)

Cartoon from http://annehodgson.de/2009/11/16/one-upmanship/

UFO buffs (ufologists?) are more interested in internecine arguments than they are interested in resolving the UFO mystery.

Kevin Randle referred to this as oneupmanship, a little used term nowadays that denotes the practice of besting an opponent in a discussion, using any machination to wipe the floor with one’s adversary: ad hominems, illogic, vituperation, vulgar epithets, anything.

UFOers like to argue. They do not like to exert energy on the UFO phenomenon itself.

Some (like David Rudiak and Kevin, himself) pursue the vicissitudes of sightings, the aspects of witness testimony and the alleged “evidence” offered as proof of a UFO sighting or event.

Everyone else jumps on a UFO account (or report) to debunk or approve it. These UFOers engage in back-and-forths with each other, not to clean away the scrim of a UFO sighting but, rather, to see who sounds the most intelligent. Circumspection is nowhere to be found.

Meanwhile, a few (very few) work to see what they can discern from the (often) weak elements of a UFO account that witnesses provide.

(Zoam Chomsky) derides witness accounts as meaningless and sees all UFO sightings as the empty ramblings of delusional observers, whose ramblings have provided a mythos, one without any substance at all.)

Quiet UFO research hasn’t gotten us anywhere close to a discernment of what UFOs are either. The primary reason for that is so-called “ufologists” are deficient in research acumen; that is, they are untrained in the mechanisms of research, and lack the disciplinary accoutrements of science.

Even a UFO maven as skilled as Jacques Vallee hasn’t come up with anything worthwhile, just untested conjecture and erudite rumination, which doesn’t go far when dealing with such a barbarously elusive phenomenon as UFOs.

Thus, we are stuck in an unresolved rut of wayward wrangling and opportunistic jousts to make points, for an audience that doesn’t care one fig for what UFOs are. They just want a voice at the UFO table, to give some kind of value to their meaningless lives.

And that, dear friends, is “ufology” as French skeptic Gilles Fernandez often reminds us.

RR