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[P]
The Foo who fell from fame

By eavier in Culture
Mon May 08, 2006 at 12:00:00 PM EST
Tags: Focus On... (all tags)
Focus On...

Whatever happened to the little grey guys with big black eyes?

I miss the coverage and speculation that used to surround them and now seems to be focused solely on the wild sensationalism of Paris Hilton and her celebrity fakies.

An uninformed eavier goes looking for the truth.


It's late, it's dark and there's weird lights buzzing the Mini

After running into a couple of friends I hadn't seen in 5 years, we very quickly ended up in the wayback machine discussing who was up to what and laughing about good `ole times. Of course, a late summer evening in 1994 also came up that hardly changed our lives but certainly made me an avid fan of Agent Scully.

We had left Hamilton, a large service town smack dab in the middle of the North Island, New Zealand, heading for a our small hometown at the time, Morrinsville.

It was about 10:30pm and the last vestiges of light had disappeared about half an hour beforehand. Brucey drew our attention to a red light moving erratically around the sky, north of our position. We thought it an errant plane or the warning lights on the top of the transmission towers that littered this area, but the towers were west of us, far behind and no crop duster ever flew at night, let alone moving around like this object was.

We stopped and observed for about 15 minutes. The Foo now numbered half a dozen. Their colours would change, they would come closer then would disappear straight out into space in the blink of an eye, before returning back to our position about 300 metres away. The lights were odd, almost ethereal and we enjoyed the light show immensely, sure that their sighting would be in every local newspaper the next day. They weren't.


In fact, everyone who knew us at the time laughed, eager to find out who our dealer was. Thing is, we weren't high, there was no abduction, no alien sexual experimentation and definitely no anal probing. There were just three friends in a Mini who saw funny lights out on the plains late one summer evening.

Where have they all gone?

It got me thinking though, why don't we hear about UFOs that often, if at all anymore? Have the little green men really stopped visiting, or do we earthlings just have bigger things to worry about? Are the aliens simply observing us now instead of interfering with us or was it all a cold war / media fad? Researchers have discovered that Scotland has the highest concentration of UFO sightings in the world, with 300 reported close encounters every year. Are the Scots making this stuff up and confusing RAF sorties for little green men or are they really seeing aliens and we just don't hear about it?

Humans and UFOs go back a long way. We've been spying and spotting strange phenomena in skies around the world since biblical times, but it wasn't until Roswell in 1947 that UFOs went mainstream. This purported crash near the small New Mexico town had civilians arriving at the scene witnessing dead and injured alien bodies. When the U.S. military arrived they apparently captured the craft and aliens, initiated a massive cover-up and have been reverse-engineering little spaceships at Area 51 ever since. So whether it was an advanced weather balloon programme gone wrong, a giant hoax or real alien crash, Roswell helped propel the term `flying saucer' into the vocabularies of millions of people worldwide.

However, it seems that public interest in UFOs has waned significantly since Close Encounters of the Third Kind suggested that we were not alone. A recent statement on the website of the British UFO Research Association (BUFORA) declares that they are scaling down their activities as the "halcyon days of ufology are over," because of "dwindling subject material".

David Clarke, a historian at Sheffield University and the Fortean Times' UFO correspondent, is not convinced by the "peaks and troughs" line of UFO sightings. "People haven't stopped believing, but they do seem to be seeing far less than they did and it's not clear why," he says. "There's been a massive drop in sightings since 1996, which is when The X Files was on TV. It may also be that since 9/11 people have had other things to worry about. There is not just less interest in UFOs, but in all supernatural phenomena. People are more worried about terrorist bombs. The MoD also lost interest in UFOs when the cold war ended: what they had really been looking for was Russian intruder aircraft. They only collate sightings now because MPs keep asking questions about UFOs."

Are you a true believer?

The interesting news is that UFO Evidence reports that public opinion polls from the last 50 years, and from multiple different countries, report that 50% of the population still believes in the reality of UFOs; and 5% of the population has seen one.

My friends and I saw something weird that night but we have no proof and that's the killer for the UFO argument. There have been to many people out there `crying wolf' with poor evidence and that has given Ufology a bad name with the public and scientists alike.

Type `UFO' into Google and 41,900,000 entries appear. That says to me that the ET community hasn't gone away, just moved on-line in a big way. Unfortunately, UFO enthusiasts have also suffered by association with their loony element. Most of the sites that come up first are of the `right out there' fringe types, illustrating that UFOs, lizard races, Illuminati  and the Masons are all in some grand league with one another to subjugate the human race to their will. Understandably, this kind of press is a deterrent to potential hobbyists. This doesn't really appeal to average Joe and neither does photographs of out-of-focus Frisbees at low altitude.

The lack of evidence

Additional evidence that is endlessly cited is "expert testimony." Pilots, astronauts, and others with experienced eyes and impressive credentials have all claimed to see odd craft in the skies. It's safe to say that these witnesses have seen something. But just because you don't recognize an aerial phenomenon doesn't mean that it's an extraterrestrial visitor. That requires additional evidence that, so far, seems to be as unconvincing as the trickery-free saucer snaps.

What about those folks who have experienced alien beings first-hand? Abduction stories are awash on the net and some of them are pretty convincing. While some people such as Budd Hopkins, a pioneer UFO abduction researcher who brings out people's abduction incidents under hypnosis, fully believe that aliens have visited us through the 700 cases he has researched, others such as Harvard's Susan Clancy think that most people who believe that they were abducted by aliens, don't have vivid memories of what happened and they just suspect they might have been abducted. These are based on certain experiences that they've read about, watched on TV, or seen at the movies.

The other problem with strange craft prowling our planet is not only with the lack of actual evidence but why are they actually coming here at all. Humans can be a rather evil species that would happily temporarily disengage from their own petty grievances to unite against the new arrivals, whether they were peaceful or not. On landing, we'd probably react similarly to the 1978 Fort Dix incident and just shoot first, thereby setting off a multi galaxy misunderstanding. Yikes.

If they truly want to make a grand peaceful entrance, perhaps they should do so at Glastonbury, or any other large rock concert that is awash in feel good drugs. Even though their first `coming out' meeting would most likely be with some spotty tripping teen asking what was wrong with their faces, it would nonetheless get rid of all of the scepticism/fanaticism that seems to have built up over the years with anal probes, clandestine visits and relations with the US government of all establishments. They would also find us at such events on rare good form.

The bottom line is that the evidence for extraterrestrial visitors has not convinced many scientists nor the remaining 50% of the population. Very few academics are writing papers for refereed journals about alien craft or their occupants. Confronted with this, the UFO experts usually take refuge in two possible explanations:

The US government has it all

Ahhh, of course. All the material that would be convincing proof has been collected and secreted away by the U.S. government for it's own ends. Granted, this is endlessly appealing to UFO fanatics but it is also tantamount to saying to saying "we can't show you any good evidence because we haven't got any", and implies to boot that governments the world over are seeking to obscure the truth from their populations.
Mainstream Science has simply refused to take a closer look at our evidence and have dismissed it as a crock

In other words, scientists should blame themselves for not been swayed by what is often at best patchy research performed by the parts of the UFO community.

The scientific community does take the existence of ET seriously. A lot of good research is been done by many scientists around the world, with the most commonly known group, SETI; tasking themselves and their legions of Internet-connected computers with listening and processing the endless streams of narrow-bandwidth radio signals from space. This is all in aid of detecting intelligent life outside of Earth but as yet they haven't found any. This doesn't mean ET isn't out there, just that we may not be listening in the right way. Or David Icke is right and there really is malicious extra-terrestrials out there that have thrown a "frequency net" around our planet to prevent us accessing higher forms of consciousness ;)

Conclusion

The burden of proof is on those making the claims, not those who find the data dubious. There are plenty of investigators out there that are convinced that craft from other worlds are buzzing ours and I think their passion and search for the truth is great.


But they have an obligation to present the absolute best evidence they have and not resort to explanations that appeal to conspiratorial cover-ups or the failure of others to be open to the idea.

These UFO advocates are not asking us to believe something either trivial or peripheral, because there could hardly be any discovery more dramatic or important than visitors from other worlds. All bad information and sensationalism does is harm the very thing they are trying to get governments and the public as a whole to take a second look at.


I for one already have my exhibit A; that of a strange evening filled with wondrous lights some 12 years ago. What I need now, is a compelling exhibit B that everyone can believe in.

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Poll
Aliens?
o They're out there. 31%
o They're in the Diary Section. 41%
o You know too much. See you soon. 9%
o Go on, show me your wormhole. 17%

Votes: 41
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o Also by eavier


Display: Sort:
The Foo who fell from fame | 71 comments (49 topical, 22 editorial, 0 hidden)
once, when i was younger (2.81 / 16) (#3)
by circletimessquare on Mon May 08, 2006 at 12:28:06 PM EST

i loved making fun of ufo enthusiasts, as the wackjobs they were

then, after running into racists, creationists, scientologists, and a world where religious extremists seem to be setting the agenda, nationally and internationally, and other assorted other really scary wackjobs, i've come to realize what ufo enthusiasists really are: harmless wackjobs

therefore, where before i felt ridicule, i now feel endearment and nostalgia. lord, please: give me a world where all of the wackjobs are as harmless as ufo enthusiasts

plus, i always liked the x files. moldy and scolder, as models of ufo wackjobs, seem harmless enough

god bless the harmless wackjobs, as we suffer this early century under a plague of harmful ones


The tigers of wrath are wiser than the horses of instruction.

xfiles as a model? (3.00 / 1) (#4)
by t1ber on Mon May 08, 2006 at 12:34:45 PM EST

plus, i always liked the x files. moldy and scolder, as models of ufo wackjobs, seem harmless enough

Models?  What models?  NONE of the UFO wachos I've met ever had a chance in the porn industry.

And she said...
Durka Durka Mohammed Jihad
Sherpa Sherpa Bak Allah
Hadji girl I can't understand what you're saying.

[ Parent ]

Not even Al Gore? [nt] (3.00 / 2) (#5)
by debacle on Mon May 08, 2006 at 02:28:08 PM EST



It tastes sweet.
[ Parent ]
this is an example of (3.00 / 1) (#6)
by t1ber on Mon May 08, 2006 at 02:40:15 PM EST

There will always be someone who has a fetish you never even thought existed.

Hey man, whatever gets you off, I don't judge.

And she said...
Durka Durka Mohammed Jihad
Sherpa Sherpa Bak Allah
Hadji girl I can't understand what you're saying.

[ Parent ]

i got the hots for (3.00 / 3) (#11)
by circletimessquare on Mon May 08, 2006 at 04:09:22 PM EST

my local newscaster

oh wait... that's normal

guess i should take the spycam out of her linen closet

wait... is that normal?


The tigers of wrath are wiser than the horses of instruction.

[ Parent ]

traffic cam (3.00 / 2) (#12)
by t1ber on Mon May 08, 2006 at 04:26:59 PM EST

It lets you see how much traffic she's getting.

Or maybe it's a weathercam.  "Today is looking wet and slippery with a strong chance of slut moving in later for some golden showers following this high pressure system.  Later things will be opening up as tropical storm bitch moves into New Jersey and settles in with the scum of the eastern seaboard before finally headed out to sea with the latent smell of fish.  She'll move out later, but as for this morning, better wear your rubbers.  Now, back to Janet with the noose.  News."

And she said...
Durka Durka Mohammed Jihad
Sherpa Sherpa Bak Allah
Hadji girl I can't understand what you're saying.

[ Parent ]

ufos were cold war disinfo (2.00 / 2) (#7)
by Saber RICO on Mon May 08, 2006 at 02:56:51 PM EST

to scare the other superpower, is what I read on the interweb. Can't find linky now.
--
"YOU HAVE BEEN FINED by Delirium FOR GROSS MISUSE OF THE TROLL-SUMMONING MECHANISM"
here's your (1.50 / 1) (#26)
by eavier on Mon May 08, 2006 at 09:50:09 PM EST

linky

Whatever you do, don't take it into your house. It's probably full of Greeks. - Vampire Zombie Abu Musab al Zarqawi

Ufology Doktor in da house

[ Parent ]
UFO sightings have dropped (2.75 / 4) (#8)
by LilDebbie on Mon May 08, 2006 at 04:06:06 PM EST

as the US and other military/intelligence agencies rely less and less on atmospheric photography and more and more on satellite.

Less unidentifiable shit in the sky == less UFO sightings. QED

My name is LilDebbie and I have a garden.
- hugin -

Come on Debs (1.50 / 1) (#25)
by eavier on Mon May 08, 2006 at 09:43:04 PM EST

So you're telling me you haven't been beamed up into the mothership for a good ole anal probing?

Perhaps the little green suckers are tweaking the sats so they can't see their spaceships ;) Here I go into David Icke territory...

Whatever you do, don't take it into your house. It's probably full of Greeks. - Vampire Zombie Abu Musab al Zarqawi

Ufology Doktor in da house

[ Parent ]

Unlike some of us, I'm not in denial (3.00 / 7) (#27)
by LilDebbie on Mon May 08, 2006 at 10:23:49 PM EST

It's called "the park toilets after dark", not "the mothership".

My name is LilDebbie and I have a garden.
- hugin -

[ Parent ]
I used to go to a club (3.00 / 3) (#30)
by eavier on Mon May 08, 2006 at 10:38:05 PM EST

called the mothership. It used to alternate it's name on a weekly basis between the above and the "Torture Garden".

Wo betide the trance geek that turned up on the wrong week. You were up to your elbows in old spice and semen. You cannot believe how bad that combination smells.

Whatever you do, don't take it into your house. It's probably full of Greeks. - Vampire Zombie Abu Musab al Zarqawi

Ufology Doktor in da house

[ Parent ]

sigged. n (3.00 / 2) (#40)
by livus on Tue May 09, 2006 at 04:13:34 AM EST



---
HIREZ substitute.
be concrete asshole, or shut up. - CTS
I guess I skipped school or something to drink on the internet? - lonelyhobo
I'd like to hope that any impression you got about us from internet forums was incorrect. - debillitatus
I consider myself trolled more or less just by visiting the site. HollyHopDrive

[ Parent ]
Aliens are the new wee folk (2.75 / 4) (#19)
by werebear on Mon May 08, 2006 at 06:14:26 PM EST

An interesting and well balanced article. It could so easily succumed to several hoary old cliches but you are spot on - the topic deserves attention even though (or perhaps especially because) it is no longer as popular.

David Brin made the observation in one of his short stories 'Those Eyes' that there are interesting parallels between UFO abduction stories and historical folk tales involving fairys/elves - well you have to admit rural folk being telling tales of being engaged by otherworldy outsiders with big eyes, pointy ears and powerful magic/technology who play tricks with time is a bit of a coincidence .... perhaps these fullfill some human need for the unknown. Of course that still does not quite explain those lights in the sky ...

To my mind the question is not so much 'are thier aliens' as 'how many and how far away'. Given the size of the universe it is staggeringly humanocentric to believe intelligent life is unique to one planet - if it can happen here it can happen elsewhere - tp think otherwise is along the same lines as beliving the Earth to be the center of the solar system.
However at present we are sill unclear on several variables to apply for the 'Drake equation' - and our nearest neighbours could cheerfully be not only half a galaxy away but also extinct these last 3 million years.

If so - is it likely they are buzzing us ? As you commented why wouldn't these guys come down and say 'howdy' officially ? Hasty press conference, quick little speech along the lines of 'look after the environment, stop killing each other a bit and mind how you go' would probably do the trick nicely. (Or am I being a bit too 1950's ?)

Perhaps Ford prefect was right and these are just the rich alien kids with saucers strutting around in front of the locals who nobody is *ever* going to believe wearing silly antennae on thier heads making silly meep meep noises & teasing us for kicks :)

Theres also the Fermi paradox - if a race appereared interested in colonization/expansion then they could probably spread across our galaxy with something not terribly far in advance of our own technology in a mere eyeblink (a few million years anyway ... without recourse to FTL at that) So in which case why *aren't* they here and why is nobody chatting on the obvious (to us anyhow) radio frequencys ? Nobody is sending out 'hello world' in a glaringly obvious fashion and theres a whole lot of quiet out there.
It is a little lonely to tell the truth.

Interested to read that Scotland (where I live) is the current world leader in UFO sightings. Amusing given that the national hobby for the last century or so has been getting the hell out of here (emmigrating) for quite some time.

Maybe we just see them because we have been inflicted with a bit of the second sight ;)
Or the whisky. I've seen all sorts of stuff !


Thanks (3.00 / 2) (#21)
by eavier on Mon May 08, 2006 at 06:50:43 PM EST

It wouldn't be too 1950's and it would do us a damn lot of good if they did oficially come out - hell, they've been apparently watching us for long enough - enough with the voyeur shit already!!!

As I mentioned to t1ber below and you illustrated very nicely with the Fermi Paradox reference, I unfortunately think that we could be alone for the forseeable future for 1 or 2 reasons.

1) We're it. All those billions of civilizations that have developed over countless eons have gotten to their 'nuclear age' and just not made it. They have imploded in cultural genocide through the use of fission sticks. When you're teetering on the edge of extinction, the last thing you're checking is your galactic mail.

Or 2) We're too damn immature or dangerous to be talked to at the moment. We are without a doubt capable of the greatest cruelty as a species and the reason they are waiting is for us to grow up, stop killing each other and start working together before they stop in for a chat.

I for one, hope it's the second option, I'd hate to think we're it.

Thanks for your feedback.

Whatever you do, don't take it into your house. It's probably full of Greeks. - Vampire Zombie Abu Musab al Zarqawi

Ufology Doktor in da house

[ Parent ]

We're it ? (3.00 / 3) (#23)
by werebear on Mon May 08, 2006 at 07:44:28 PM EST

Heres an interesting question - if they have been watching us - and (eeep) anal probing/cattle mutilating all this time , then are they the sort of people we even want to talk to ? :)

The 'humans too immature/dangerous' option is a possibility: they could just be biding thier time. Or perhaps 1000 years is just the standard period over which the galactic social worker collects his notes.
The killing each other thing is a byproduct of evolution and we may not be unique in this - mother nature tends not to back wusses - but perhaps it could be our a noted tendency to expand into and overwhelm ecosystems. (And they want to see if we can understand the concept of sustainabilty before we get invited to come live in thier neighbourhood) or we are just plain head-cases - truth be told it's hard to imagine a race even slightly more destructive than ourselves living past the atomic age - and we're still not out of the woods yet at that. And of course that could also be why it's so quiet out there.

Then again if UFO's are here and get spotted so often then perhaps they are just a bit lousy ... or imaginary. (Sorry, still have an inner skeptic)

Pet silly theory - they may have been monitoring our TV and been scared by the B-Movie's in which humans always destroy the alien visitor. Look what happened to E.T. and he was practially a hippy ...

Maybe we are alone - either through everyone else going through a 'playing with matches' stage or just lack of numerous worlds where intelligent life sparks up in the first place - totally or just within this epoch of the galaxy, or so far from our neighbours that we shall never get the chance to meet them - thats not only a slightly lonely thought but also a huge responsibility: perhaps we are the only intelligent beings to gaze at and appreciate the universe.

Or at least these are the thoughts that go through my head while lying in a field looking out at the stars while comtemplative/drunk/stoned.
 

[ Parent ]

What we need is a goddamn (1.50 / 1) (#24)
by eavier on Mon May 08, 2006 at 09:38:45 PM EST

good ole fashioned space race.

If we are are the only ones out there, we need to get off this little blue and green jewel as quickly as possible. Hell, any moment we could be knocked back to the stoneages by a football pitch sized meteor, a supervolcano or a playground scrap with nukes.

Everyone has gotten so apathetic at the thought of conquering space that we've just forgotten that there's a great big solar system to explore and just turned into consumers.

I say, go the Chinese, go the Japs, go the ESA, go anyone with oversized tin cans, some rocketfuel, boosters and a set of matches. We need to get off this rock and explore!!!

Oh and as a sidenote, if they do exist, you're probably right about them staying away until we learn the skill of sustainability. It does seem at the moment that we have too many people on this planet with all the damage we're doing to it, but I read a while back that if resources were usually sparingly and evenly, the Earth actually has a carrying capacity of like 200 billion. That's a hell of a lot. Damn, I need to find that link...


Whatever you do, don't take it into your house. It's probably full of Greeks. - Vampire Zombie Abu Musab al Zarqawi

Ufology Doktor in da house

[ Parent ]

It's entirely possible that we are the first. (1.50 / 1) (#42)
by mr strange on Tue May 09, 2006 at 08:25:31 AM EST

Fermi's paradox isn't really a paradox. If it only takes a few million years for an intelligent species to entirely populate the galaxy, then the first one to the party will probably also be the last. How many new intelligent species are evolving on Earth right now? If the aliens had got here before us, then we would probably never have evolved.

Of course, each galaxy might get its own intelligent species, and the distances between galaxies are much much larger. But signalling between galaxies is much harder too, so again I'm not surprised that we've not heard anything.

intrigued by your idea that fascism is feminine - livus
[ Parent ]

dozens (1.50 / 1) (#44)
by khallow on Tue May 09, 2006 at 09:08:18 AM EST

Off the top of my head, there are a number of primates and cetaceans that qualify. Some cetaceans might even be more intelligent than us in ways we would value heavily (eg, rational thought, visualization, or mathematics). Humans have an unusual combination of intelligence and ability to manipulate the environment.

Stating the obvious since 1969.
[ Parent ]

Yeah and how many of them are on the... (1.50 / 1) (#47)
by mr strange on Tue May 09, 2006 at 02:27:57 PM EST

...endangered species list?

You make a good point. I didn't mean intelligent, I meant scientifically advanced and having a desire to travel.

intrigued by your idea that fascism is feminine - livus
[ Parent ]

whatever. (none / 1) (#52)
by Comrade Wonderful on Tue May 09, 2006 at 06:23:14 PM EST

I have yet to hear a convincing argument against the possibility of maybe we are the only ones out there.  Who the hell knows?  Right now we have a sample of one, Earth.  Possibly the things that need to go right to eventually spawn intelligent organic life are so unlikely that it's only liable to happen once in the history of a universe.

If there are advanced aliens, there is absolutely zero way of knowing what in the hell motivates them or makes them decide whether or not to visit or to say hello.  Maybe the Prime Directive keeps them away.  Maybe it's that we look fucking nasty to them.  Maybe they just don't give a shit at all.

[ Parent ]

I always wonder (3.00 / 3) (#54)
by livus on Tue May 09, 2006 at 06:57:26 PM EST

what makes people assume aliens would be on the same scale as us. For all we know, they are tiny spores wondering why we don't make contact with them, or alterantively beings so huge, and with such slow metabolic rates, that they can't actually see us.

---
HIREZ substitute.
be concrete asshole, or shut up. - CTS
I guess I skipped school or something to drink on the internet? - lonelyhobo
I'd like to hope that any impression you got about us from internet forums was incorrect. - debillitatus
I consider myself trolled more or less just by visiting the site. HollyHopDrive

[ Parent ]
John Keel (2.66 / 3) (#29)
by localroger on Mon May 08, 2006 at 10:34:21 PM EST

*Cough*

I am become Death, Destroyer of Worlds -- J. Robert Oppenheimer
Also, (2.75 / 4) (#31)
by livus on Mon May 08, 2006 at 11:05:33 PM EST

Rods. I see "rods" all over the place on TV and in badly scanned photos. Heh.

---
HIREZ substitute.
be concrete asshole, or shut up. - CTS
I guess I skipped school or something to drink on the internet? - lonelyhobo
I'd like to hope that any impression you got about us from internet forums was incorrect. - debillitatus
I consider myself trolled more or less just by visiting the site. HollyHopDrive

lol rods (3.00 / 2) (#34)
by bunk on Tue May 09, 2006 at 01:33:18 AM EST

the only real rod is the one Jose Escamilla has his hand on


hunger strike + bong hits = super munchies -- horny smurf
[ Parent ]
ror. Has a nice ring to it though (3.00 / 2) (#37)
by livus on Tue May 09, 2006 at 03:55:14 AM EST

rod-spotter, rod-chaser, etc.

---
HIREZ substitute.
be concrete asshole, or shut up. - CTS
I guess I skipped school or something to drink on the internet? - lonelyhobo
I'd like to hope that any impression you got about us from internet forums was incorrect. - debillitatus
I consider myself trolled more or less just by visiting the site. HollyHopDrive

[ Parent ]
Rod-snapper, Rod-googler [nt] (1.50 / 1) (#38)
by eavier on Tue May 09, 2006 at 04:06:38 AM EST



Whatever you do, don't take it into your house. It's probably full of Greeks. - Vampire Zombie Abu Musab al Zarqawi

Ufology Doktor in da house

[ Parent ]
Rod-hunter, Rod-chaser, Rodster n (3.00 / 2) (#39)
by livus on Tue May 09, 2006 at 04:10:41 AM EST



---
HIREZ substitute.
be concrete asshole, or shut up. - CTS
I guess I skipped school or something to drink on the internet? - lonelyhobo
I'd like to hope that any impression you got about us from internet forums was incorrect. - debillitatus
I consider myself trolled more or less just by visiting the site. HollyHopDrive

[ Parent ]
the sig is good, as is lildeb's original comment (3.00 / 2) (#41)
by bunk on Tue May 09, 2006 at 04:50:18 AM EST

but you really need to put in some mention of anal probing to give it that extra zing


hunger strike + bong hits = super munchies -- horny smurf
[ Parent ]
I thought it was implied (3.00 / 2) (#50)
by livus on Tue May 09, 2006 at 05:47:34 PM EST

I'm being subtle. Sheesh.

---
HIREZ substitute.
be concrete asshole, or shut up. - CTS
I guess I skipped school or something to drink on the internet? - lonelyhobo
I'd like to hope that any impression you got about us from internet forums was incorrect. - debillitatus
I consider myself trolled more or less just by visiting the site. HollyHopDrive

[ Parent ]
its better this way (1.50 / 2) (#58)
by Rohypnol or GHB on Wed May 10, 2006 at 12:13:35 AM EST



[ Parent ]
attn: bunk (1.00 / 1) (#59)
by Rohypnol or GHB on Wed May 10, 2006 at 12:25:59 AM EST

don't take the 0 personally, it was directed at the autopost algorithm, not you

[ Parent ]
lol (2.66 / 3) (#33)
by Kurosawa Nagaya on Tue May 09, 2006 at 01:06:26 AM EST

Acid is great, but, is far from reality.

The reason for this is simple: we're all full of shit ~ circletimessquare

lol aliens (none / 0) (#43)
by Enlarged to Show Texture on Tue May 09, 2006 at 08:38:51 AM EST

Sorry, Scott Baio did not give Cartman teh pinkeye. He might have done things to certain other eyes on his anatomy, but not that.

-1, resection to fiction


"Those people who think they know everything are a great annoyance to those of us who do." -- Isaac Asimov
-1, your hat is made of Al2O3 (none / 1) (#46)
by Linux or Mac OS X on Tue May 09, 2006 at 12:30:25 PM EST

NOT TINFOIL


"Ugh, my stomach is full of tequila and semen." - LilDebbie


ysb
Wouldn't that be a powder? (none / 0) (#49)
by The Ghost of ChefSalad Past on Tue May 09, 2006 at 05:32:29 PM EST

Maybe you meant a aluminum foil covered in a thin layer of aluminum oxide, which is what aluminum foil becomes when exposed to air?

One night .. he just spontaneously vomited and simultaneously defecated in his pants. - osm
[ Parent ]

yeah yeah yeah (none / 0) (#57)
by Rohypnol or GHB on Wed May 10, 2006 at 12:12:31 AM EST



[ Parent ]
I have one in my barn! (3.00 / 2) (#51)
by JD Wedbetter on Tue May 09, 2006 at 05:48:39 PM EST

Believe it or not. The derned thing crashed in my bean field a few summers ago. I was pissed at the crop damage, but intrigued. I hooked onto an empty hay wagon, drove out there, and used my skid steer loader to hoist it onto the wagon. I backed it into my barn and proceeded to pry the hatch open with a crowbar. There were four little fellas in there that communicate with me via telepathy. All they wanted was human sperm samples. I made a deal - I provide them with sperm samples on a regular basis and they stack my hay for me.

Apparently it is quite difficult getting spare parts for UFO's on this planet because they haven't left. Maybe they just like my sperm?

The Drake equation (3.00 / 2) (#56)
by BottleRocket on Tue May 09, 2006 at 11:14:55 PM EST

Someone mentioned the Drake equation here, which is worth going into detail about. The Wikipedia article contains an explaination for the equation, as well as the usual unrelated crap.

The numerical solution to the Drake equation provides us with N, the number of civilizations in our galaxy with which we might expect to make contact. Wikipedia pegs the number at
8 x 10-7, a very small number of civilizations, no matter how you look at it. But we might make some assumptions, like assuming that the Milky Way galaxy is typical in its rate of star formation. If so, and if NASA's estimate of 100 billion galaxies in the universe is correct, then the universe might contain 80000 civilizations with which we may make contact.

But aliens don't really concern me that much. They don't bother me, and I don't bother them. I'm much more concerned with, say, my container of fireworks as a safety hazard than with space creatures.

$ . . . . . $ . . . . . $ . . . . . $
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$ . . . . .
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Yes I do download [child pornography], but I don't keep it any longer than I need to, so it can yield insight as to how to find more. --MDC
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$ . . . . . $ . . . . . $ . . . . . $
$B R Σ III$

One thing you also need to consider (3.00 / 3) (#64)
by smallstepforman on Wed May 10, 2006 at 07:50:52 PM EST

Drake's equation predicts the number of technological capable species. But you mustn't forget that the Universe has an age, and at one point in the timeline of the Universe, one species is bound to be the first to acquire space travelling technologies. This species is bound to travel the depth of the universe wondering if there is life out there, other than themselves. While searching for others, they'd colonise every habitable world, leaving no room for another species to evolve and develop advanced technologies.

Taking this into consideration, the mere fact that we exist (as an evolved species native to this planet) leads us to a number of assumptions:

- we are the first. There are other species out there, but they are still evolving. We will never drink coffee with them, since we will colonise their planet and not give them the time they need to evolve.

- we are a few decades to 100,000 years more advanced than another species. We are looking for them, and we'll quarantine them.

- we're at the same level looking for each other.

- we are a few decades to 100,000 years behind another advanced species. They are either on route looking for us, or we've been quarantined.

- a previous species has withered away (dillution of their gene pool), only leaving artifacts behind

Close encounters of the >2 degree in the original article would indicate that we are being quarantined by a species a few decades to 100,000 years more advanced by us. Just great :((

[ Parent ]

+1FP, mentions New Zealand (3.00 / 3) (#61)
by murp on Wed May 10, 2006 at 02:07:42 AM EST

represent, y'all!

Just doesn't get so much press coverage (3.00 / 2) (#62)
by nebbish on Wed May 10, 2006 at 10:55:16 AM EST

Now there are more pressing concerns. The X-Files era was one in which much of the west and especially the US felt safe and invulnerable, hence the interest in the unexplained.

Local papers still have plenty of sightings. Check out the print version of the Fortean Times for a regular roundup.

Of course none of this explains why no-one sees ghosts any more...

---------
Kicking someone in the head is like punching them in the foot - Bruce Lee

Strange lights in the sky 1, Aliens 0 (3.00 / 3) (#63)
by gidds on Wed May 10, 2006 at 06:52:21 PM EST

I find it hard to take reports of UFO sightings seriously, having inadvertently caused some!

A couple of decades ago, a school friend, with my help, build a laser harp. You know, Jean-Michel Jarre and all that. It worked, too. Anyway, we had this red helium-neon laser; low power by today's standards, but still fun. And his house had a flat roof. Cue one lazy evening with nothing to do, and one of us had the bright idea of seeing just how far this laser would reach. So we rig up an extension lead, pop up there, and point the laser skywards.

It wasn't particularly impressive, but better than we'd hoped. You can't see the beam itself, of course, but it was a cloudy night, and the laser did indeed illuminate the underside of the clouds. It had spread quite a bit by then, producing a vague sort of red glow rather than a point, and it wasn't very bright. But enough for us to see it. After a few minutes, we got bored and found something else to do.

I thought nothing more of it until a few days later, when the local paper contained reports of UFOs, strange lights in the sky...

So.

I can well believe that over the years, many people have seen many strange lights in the sky -- but if all the causes you can think of are flying saucers, little green men, and grays with big eyes, anal probes, and no sense of humour, then you have far too little imagination. And probably a good deal too much credulity.


Andy/

UFO != Aliens (none / 0) (#65)
by Gooba42 on Wed May 10, 2006 at 08:58:47 PM EST

I'm not willing to go through the whole of the comments and make sure this hasn't been said but...

You obviously, by definition, saw a UFO. Unidentified Flying Object- It was unidentified, it was flying and it was presumably an object (as opposed to a person? I dunno...).

Was it alien? Was it extraterrestrial or a government secret? Nobody could say, it was, I must emphasize, an unidentified flying object.

This makes me crazy when the media makes the same mistake. Nothing can ever be mistaken for a UFO, it can be a UFO that later becomes an IFO (Identified Flying Object) but unless it's not flying or not an object then so long as it's also identified it is a UFO.

UFO's or not........ (none / 0) (#66)
by Marvaud on Wed May 10, 2006 at 11:40:24 PM EST

The thing with Americans and alleged abduction by aliens is just that Americans feel they have to tell everyone every little problem they have, even the most neurotic ones and oh, go hang that they all have to group together and talk about the alien thing. How about that? Yeh, well it's pretty funny. I personally, think there's nothing in it, except maybe a pinch of mental illness/paranoia . Now, theres different things to worry about. And no, I don't really believe in UFO's. Other people can though if they want.

and thats it (none / 1) (#67)
by eavier on Thu May 11, 2006 at 12:12:56 AM EST

I don't really believe in aliens either. That conviction would be rock solid if it wasn't for that one evening that I forget and then get reminded about by old friends.

As for Americans 'share all' mentality - that's just them - hell, I'm pretty sure they invented the talkshow - whether their aunty's cousin's mother's father is sleeping with their dog or they got visited by little green men, their public psychiatric sessions is just what makes USians, USians.

If we want to step back and say from a Universal point of view that we're it - then that's both a huge opportunity and responsibility to make sure we actually get out there and explore. Not stay put on this little rock and ultimately die out, through our own hand or some football sized piece of Kuiper junk.

Whatever you do, don't take it into your house. It's probably full of Greeks. - Vampire Zombie Abu Musab al Zarqawi

Ufology Doktor in da house

[ Parent ]

modern day equivalent of witches (3.00 / 3) (#68)
by brettd on Thu May 11, 2006 at 02:35:31 AM EST

"It got me thinking though, why don't we hear about UFOs that often, if at all anymore? Have the little green men really stopped visiting, or do we earthlings just have bigger things to worry about?"

Your question is easily answered when you consider that we invented religion as a means to coming up with answers to anything we didn't understand. I have never seen video or photographs that piqued my curiosity beyond figuring out how easy it would be to fake the effect. It is never an exercise that lasts very long.

There is a reason they're called UFO believers. There is a reason scientists think these people are absolutely batshit crazy. Why? "UFO believers" are people who think anything they can't explain must be UFOs, or think anything they see is a UFO until someone proves otherwise to them, and worse, they go absolutely crazy finding fault with any "proof". Show them a photo of the sky with a timestamp, and these people will check the alignment of the stars and tell you the timestamp is wrong so the photo must have been faked instead of, say, your clock being off by a few minutes. Show them any form of "proof" and they will launch on a journey of pseudo-scientific claims, nitpicking, expert-drudging (usually where some "expert" in photo analysis comes up with some magical expanation for how the shadow on this or that isn't right), guesswork, and half-truths. What results is the story ending with something like "so, this evidence COULD be real. But I THINK it was faked. I BELIEVE this case of aliens tampering with the ingredients in Pepperoni is real."

They're of the same caliber of individual as "ghost hunters" who take a flash picture in an old house, see little white spots in the resulting photo and declare "GHOSTS! My flash magically caught little ghosts!" instead of thinking, "huh, it was pretty dusty in there!" They see patterns on the wall that must be "spirits"- not the old mirror in the corner that caught the light of the flash. Or they hear people "walking around", when it is just an old building settling or creaking since it hasn't had anyone walking through it in a while. Or they hear "moaning" instead of "the wind." Ie: simple, uneducated, idiotic MORONS!

There's a reason the Air Force stopped talking to these people decades ago; they had better things to do with their time, like chase Russkies. And you know what? I bet there really was a crash at Roswell. I bet it was a new jet the military really didn't want the Russians to see. Then the townspeople saw the Air Force freak out, and saw when someone joked about it being "aliens" that they got lots of attention from it- and Roswell has been on the map ever since and raking in the money from sucker after sucker. PT Barnum would be both proud and jealous.

Stop giving them attention (with drivel like this article) and watch them continue to fade into the woodwork. You can't win against people who do not adhere to the principles of science (or worse, adhere to some, and thus appear semi-legitimate to the public), just like you cannot win an argument with a evangelical Christian.

ah, the ghosts (none / 1) (#70)
by Phil Urich on Fri May 12, 2006 at 01:49:57 PM EST

I remember back when I was in high school, and the local paper (well, the city paper, but the city I live in is kinda remote so I often speak in small-town terms to denigrate it; the area has over a million people and only one major newspaper worth even looking at) was all agog at a picture taken in a historical building from the 1800s.  The building was from then, kept intact by historical societies and the city government.  In fact, Edmonton has quite a few random old buildings that have either been preserved or reconstructed from that time period; probably to gloss over the fact that we've demolished anything else that's historical, and don't have much history beyond suburban sprawl anyways.

But the picture.  See, someone had taken a picture in this old house in the dark and, wow, there was a ghost in the mirror!  It was all translucent and eerie and blah blah blah.  It captivated the talk of my drama class one day (as Drama 30, hell Drama 10 and 20 as well, were all just hanging around with the rest of the class and putting off doing any work until the end of the year projects; the day or two before they had to be presented, that is).  I was arguing that it's the kind of weird thing that just shows up on cameras sometimes due to oddities of angle and lighting and whatnot.  Many others, including one guy in particular, were adamant about believing otherwise.  I mean, these are drama students, aspiring actors and such; say "MacBeth!" and they go into convulsions.

As it happened, for some reason we were taking pictures of things that day (I entirely forget why), and the one adamant "can't explain it other than ghosts" guy took a picture on the unlit backstage with a mirror in the picture; he managed to accidentally create a picture with an identical effect to what the picture that the Edmonton Journal was so impressed by showed.

Needless to say I won that particular argument in the end.  But on the other hand, the rest of the class still maintained that the school, specifically the areas that the Drama class, the stage, and the rather absurdly large and convoluted underground storage areas were haunted by this ghost of a former student.  They'd hear a strange noise and go "oh!  that's Emily!" instead of think, "hah, those pipes for the pool sure make some cool sounds" (which I verified in one of the supposed instances of ghost-overhearing).  The truth is that there is a lot going on in this complex world, and people always grasp for pop-culture and prosaic explanations.  Which is a shame, because often the truth, when you really get down to it, will turn out to be much more informative (from that ghost-picture incident I learnt alot about how to handle a flash, for instance; and speaking of Aliens and Roswell, I'm sure the actual explanation is both down-to-earth and also nonetheless a very, very insteresting story that none of us would entirely expect).

[ Parent ]

Ur FoOled (none / 1) (#71)
by jarth on Mon May 15, 2006 at 10:32:50 PM EST

In my not really-really young life i've had my share of u.f.o. 'madness', as well as others. I hesitantly admit to having had two or more "exhibit A" experiences.
What makes me wonder is the 'nature surrouding' some of these occurences, maybe it's just me but i can almost 'feel' the subject as it rises. Bet let's not be too overdramatic.

I'm in the dark as well as others on what's really going on with these events, aliens, ghosts, apocalypse ?

But let's stick to the u.f.o. thing.

Given the vague nature of witness reports, fraudulent statements and even footage i cannot blame any of the sceptics. But to me that same sceptisism actually appeared to be the drive for my mental problems. Refusing to accept a fact while it's almost in your face can cause more issues then you'd be willing to handle.

Wich is not a smart thing to mention when while testifying, but for completeness i must. On all but one occassion i was alone when i 'saw something', of just one i took a picture or two.

After thorough consideration i would only say one would clasify as the real thing though. It was during the ufo craze in Belgium in the mid-90's. Still feel sick to my stomach thinking of it. Very desorienting, plasma's are said to disturb your brain, well that must've been it then ...

The other (more recent) events i came to think of as odd, mental projections, oddities in the atmosphere or whatever. The one odditie i took a picture of happened on my birthday wich is why i had a camera with me and believe it or not, there were pictures from this on a nasa website as well (australia i think it was). Promised to scan and send the picture but these people all just KNEW the answers to that so i didn't really bother.

Just to cure my sore heart a bit i would state it was nothing more then a revelation of some sort but then again that too is nutcase-material in today's world. Let the primitive in me just state i don't believe these oddities to be just material events, maybe i'm too much of a dreamer but i don't really believe the contrary to be a true truth anymore.

Ah, hail google ... here's what i saw, strangely reported on a different date but also in antwerp I'm not the one who took the photo though. And here's more in australia This conclusions given in this last link especially tells me sceptics can be dead wrong, since i stood underneath the darned streak.

The truth might be out there but the reality is 'in here'

Thank you for your consideration.



- - -
Jarth Berilcosm : "within is without"
The Foo who fell from fame | 71 comments (49 topical, 22 editorial, 0 hidden)
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