Here is my response which I have just posted to updates:
I have kept a lazy eye on this thread, but didn't particularly
want to take part in it. I did expect a previous correspondent to
make similar comments to the ones I have inserted below, which is
why I have delayed this post.
> John, you are surely blowing smoke if you actually believe
> are no testable hypotheses. Actually I agree with Dick, you
> apparently haven't studied anything besides anecdotes... such
> the stories in Weekly World News, Carl Sagan's favorite source
> of UFO data in 'Demon Haunted World'. No scientific studies are
> mentioned even though he was involved with two. Here are a few
> hypotheses, in no particular order:
> 1. If no true UFOs (The unknown UFOs still remaining after
> investigation by competent investigators) represent alien
> spacecraft, then there should be no difference in the
> characteristics of these unknowns as compared to the
> characteristics of the knowns. Test result? The probability
> the unknowns are just missed knowns is less than one percent
> based on a chisquare analysis of the two groups involving six
> different characteristics. See 'Blue Book Special Report No.
> somehow not noted in 13 anti-UFO books.
You have made a gross error here-you have assumed that because
the evidence in a particular case does not suggest a known cause,
the only possible solution is an alien spacecraft. What about
other possibilities, such as temporal disturbance, or unknown
terrestrial phenomena for example?
> 2. If no unknowns represent alien spacecraft, than the better
> quality of the sighting because of the duration of observation,
> the background of the observer, etc the less likely to be an
> unknown. Test Result? The better the quality of the sighting
> MORE likely to be an unknown. Ibid.
> 3. If unknowns are just poorly observed knowns, seen for only a
> brief time, than the duration of observation for the knowns
> should be greater than for the unknowns. Test Result? The
> average unknown was observed for a longer time than the average
No dispute, though I haven't checked your assertion.
> 4. If unknowns are just poorly observed knowns, than the
> percentage of sightings listed as unknowns should decrease as
> the quality of the sightings increases. Test Result? The better
> the quality of the reports, the _less_ likely to be listed as
> 'Insufficient Information'.
> 5. The only reason sightings can't be identified is that there
> insufficient data available to pin down an identification. Test
> result? In the largest study ever done, there was a separate
> category 'Insufficient Information'. Not enough data to justify
> any particular explanation. By definition these were not the
I am curious as to how it is possible to differentiate between an
"unknown" and an apparent object for which there is insufficient
information to identify it. Surely they must both be "unknowns" ?
> 6. If there were really ET spacecraft flying around in the
> atmosphere, they should surely be observed by radar. Test
> result? There have indeed been many radar sightings including
> combined radar visual cases. See J.E. McDonald's congressional
But what is the evidence that the detected objects were
extraterrestrial spacecraft rather than an unknown terrestrial
phenomenon? All that can be factually determined is that we don't
know what generated the returns, surely?
> 7. If there were really ET spacecraft flying around in the
> atmosphere, governments should be very concerned about finding
> out more about the objects being seen. Test result? Wilbert
> Smith learned that Flying Saucers are the most classified
> subject in the US, even more than the H-Bomb. General Carroll
> Bolender stated that "Reports which could effect National
> security are NOT part of the Blue Book system and would
> to be be made under JANAP 146 and AF Regulation 55-11.even if
> Blue Book were cancelled.
Does this prove that that UFO's are of extraterrestrial origin?
What about the possibility, for example, that the UFO's (and I
mean "UNIDENTIFIED flying objects") exposed weaknesses in the
nation's air defence? Would that fact not merit a high level of
interest from the DoD together with a high security rating?
> 8. If alien spacecraft were really flying around one, would
> expect them to land to make closer obswervations. Test? Ted
> Phillips has collected more than 5000 physical trace cases from
> 70 countries. He considers 2000 to be excellent cases.
There is a difference between excellent cases and excellent
evidence of ET visitation.
> 9. Surely even aliens aren't perfect and if there are so many
> craft flying around, some ought to crash. Test? Read 'Crash at
> Corona: The Definitive Story of the Roswell Incident' by
> Berliner and Friedman .There were 2 crashes. Len Stringfield
> listed more than 60....
...and where is the irrefutable evidence? I say that there have
been at least 5 million crashed cheeses in the past hour, all of
them on my doorstep. Does this make it true?
> 10. Most sighting reports actually turn out to be secret
> government vehicles such as the U-2 and SR 71. Test? So where
> are the fancy 'secret vehicles' observed in the 1940s and
> None seem to have showed up in the Korean War or Vietnam or the
> Gulf War. even though the whole point of development of
> high performance craft would be for military applications.
> Maccabee showed that there was no increase in sightings when
> U-2 and SR-71 started flying, despite claims to the contrary by
> the CIA historian.
I can't claim any expertise on 40's and 50's experimental
aircraft, but I can point out several example of more recent,
relatively bizarre looking aircraft that could at one time have
been reasonably misidentified. I would however challenge the
assertion that military traffic generates most
misidentifications-I would have thought most misidentifications
were of astronomical phenomena, satellites, or conventional civil
> >>>Rather, it is a
> >>>reflection of the sociology of science and ridicule of the
> >>>subject that has virtually made it a taboo subject.
> >>I think ufologists actually like believing that they are
> >>dangerous outsiders in a taboo subject which science rejects.
> >>any great number of scientists decided there was worthwhile
> >>in ufology and started doing UFO research in a big way, what
> >>would happen to all our hole-in- the-corner little magazines
> >>like Magonia and IUR? All our little groups and mailing
> >>We'd be out there with the green cheese boyos, believe you
> I certainly don't believe I am a dangerous outsider in a taboo
> subject. If I did, would the title of my college and
> professional group lecture be 'Flying Saucers ARE Real?' Where
> is the danger? I have had fewer than 12 hecklers in over 700
> lectures. Two of them were drunk. There would be even more if I
> spoke about religion or politics or figure skating. Usually I
> travel by myself. No body guards. I never saw Bruce Maccabee
> with a bodyguard either. Just who would fund all these
> entrepreneurs? I suspect there are plenty of scientists working
> on the inside, just as there are at Area 51, even if they don't
> publish in the Physical Review.
I acknowledge that there may be covert studies of the phenomena
of UFO's being carried out by Government agencies, but again, I
point out that the "U" in UFO stands for "UNIDENTIFIED", and not
"Alien spacecraft". I will venture even further and acknowledge
that there is a possibility that some UFO's could be alien
spacecraft, but qualify that with _we_do_not_know that they_
are_, because ther is no real proof!
Surely you must also acknowledge that there is a stigma
associated with UFO research by scientists? John Mack is
certainly of that opinion, judging by his comments at the Leeds
conference last year, and I am unaware of much resource being
applied to UFO research by universities compared to resources
applied to global warming, for instance?
> >I think we would, mercifully, be put out of business and I
> >certainly would welcome a `takeover' by real scientists
> >well-funded for the work. But are you now psychoanalyzing all
> >Ufologists en masse?
> I wonder if all butterfly collectors are considered biologists?
I would certainly class butterfly collectors as people with a
biological interest, but not assume that all biologists were
butterfly collectors- did I misunderstand this question?
To summarise, you seem to have decided that anything that is not
readily identifiable must be of alien origin-are you familiar
with European car manufacturers? If not, I own an old Citroen BX
which was sold to me by a visiting venusian, would you be
interested in purchasing it as an alien artifact?
> Stan Friedman
--- In ufonet@y..., Tim Edwards <tedwards@w...> wrote:
> From Bill Hamilton/Skywatch