an insult to my intelligence

Discussion in 'Philosophy' started by CH3VELLE, Sep 16, 2007.

  1. "flares being dropped from a plane." suuuuuuure. :rolleyes:
  2. What if the government is really all behind these alien stories, like they're influencing people or coming up with people for these stories and they do it to distract people from all the technology they fly around. You know they've got some strange stuff, like lasers that can vaporize an airplane I believe. I saw this on television a long time ago, thats where I remember it from. If people think it's alien stories then people will be like, oh it's just an alien story nothing here.
  3. Well I'm unsure what event your talking about specifically, but it's happened before, and can certainly happen again.

    Look at the Pheonix Lights, they've been pretty conclusively shown to have been aeronautic flares dropped on an air force training op.

    Although, to some UFOlogists, it's just too good of a fantasy to let go of, and that's declared a conspiracy.
  4. i realize that i already seem insane for believing in God, let alone aliens. for those of you who think im some kind of nut case, well, i dont blame you. i hesitated to even make this thread because i realize how ludicrous i may sound.

    weather balloons, satellites, swamp gas, space debris, meteors...and now they are trying to convince us that they were flares being dropped from a plane? the government is simply insulting my intelligence.

    so even if the notorious phoenix lights can indeed be explained by a natural phenomena, what about the hundreds of thousands of other sightings?

    rasta, you're right about the fantasy part to an extent. i think we are all guilty of that in one way or another. i also want to add that although i was overly obsessed with the investigation of the UFO phenomena as an adolescent, it isnt the case for me anymore. i have since came to the realization that these events are simply out of my hands, and spending unnecessary time researching/investigating would be irrelevant.
  5. It's good that you realize that.

    Or is it more likely that people see things in the sky and use their preconceptions, bias and fallacious logic to reach a desirable conclusion?

    More than likely mistaken things of terrestrial or explainable origin. To assume that any one of them is an alien space craft is to commit the logical fallacy of argumentum ad ignorantiam.

    It is as simple as Ockham's Razor.

    That's true. It's a whole lot easier if you hold the burden of evidence to find evidence and exercise critical thinking and skeptical inquiry.

    Then why are you making posts about the topic?
  6. But believing that aliens are visiting us more or less regularly, and governments around the world (many who despise eachother) keep this secret from the populace at large for decades, is not insulting your intelligence?

    You put to much faith in governments ability to keep things secret. Consider for a moment that the Manhattan project, the most grandest secret undertaking in modern history, was leaked to the soviets long before WW2 was over.

    That the allies had detailed knowledge of the secret weapons program, nuclear included, of nazi germany, one of the most secretive governments we've seen.

    The conspiracy theory supporting alien visitors do not hold up. Simple as that.

    Have aliens visited us though? We do not know. That is the correct answer. There is no evidence to support such an idea. It is not impossible, far from it. But it is not probable. And what the UFO fanatics preach is very often provable false. Good old hoaxes and logical fallacies cooked up in a soup of ignorance and paranoia.

    So, who is first to mention extra-terrestial lizard rulers in a masonic new world order?
  7. hehe, i asked myself that, and like i mentioned in my previous post, it is nothing but an unnecessary waste of time.

    i see it as just another distraction.

  8. Valid but not more likely. Perhaps there are accounts of people actually seeing one close enough to make a positive I.D. that is wasn't a plane- and the government just says you don't know what you are talking about. It would be a very simple coverup.

    That's if they didn't see it close enough or good enough to make a positive ID- which I've heard accounts of people making positive IDs, and using descriptions like hovering and rotating, which would mean either it's a Harrier jet or something similar which wouldn't be easily mistaken for a disk. If the government has a harrier disk, why would it be so top secret? Perhaps these people really DID see something on a rare occasion?

    Arguement from ignorance would be correct only if they didn't get a really good look.

    I like these types of topics because they could very well be an actual sighting but we can't prove it. It's interesting that to think of what could be- it seems that the government and science would be able to totally dissolve non-believers with proof of what was really there at the time (radar, satilite imagery) but perhaps it's because these believers actually see something they can't prove or show to another.

    It just sounds like a coverup... "flares dropped from a plane"...

    I would like the government to tell me they will be doing flybys dropping experimental flares at low altitude above my land BEFORE they do it, is that so much to ask? LOL
  9. No, then according to Ockahm's Razor, those people are diagnosable and deluded. The reality is, is that there is no valid evidence of this. To simply make the assumption that they are right and those are extraterrestrial aliens is to be incredibly intellectually dishonest, without regard to skeptical inquiry.

    What the hell is a positive ID? Are these people aeronautical engineers?

    Right, and we both know how reliable testimony is. :rolleyes:

    Well, firstly your using a very specific example to refute a very general topic. The reality is, is that by vast margins of probability -- what they see is of earth origins, regardless if that individual feels so or not.

    Secondly -- you ask why the government would keep something top secret -- because of national security. It's about as plain and simple as that.

    It is said that if you know your enemies and know yourself, you will not be imperiled in a hundred battles; if you do not know your enemies but do know yourself, you will win one and lose one; if you do not know your enemies nor yourself, you will be imperiled in every single battle.
    - Sun Tzu, The Art of War
    Perhaps, but there is no evidence for that conclusion.

    Wrong, because any actually identification of an alien spacecraft is one of ignorance. It's not as if these things are labeled "Intersteller Recon Scout Ship from Alpha Centauri".

    It is an argumentum ad ignorantum, because they see something in the sky they cannot define or identify (ergo the name UFO), and because of biases and fallacious logic, the argumentum ad ignorantum is made that it is an alien spacecraft.

    "But we can't prove it". It is more probable that they are not.

    Yes, but one must recognize it was fantasy and nothing more.

    And sometimes they are.

    Rather unfortunate for them.

    Irregaurdless of what is sounds like, it's not. The claim that it's a cover-up is just a hand-waving refutation with absolutley no basis in reality.

    But see, the thing is, is that they have pretty conclusively proved this. To deny it is to deny evidence, fact and reality.

    They have illustrated that is exactly what you would expect to see if jet aircraft were to launch LUU-2B/B illumination flares, in formation, near a populated area.

    Not to mention THIS

    What more evidence do you possibly need? Your denial is simply unfalsifiability.

    Take that up with your local Air National Guard; don't set it up as a strawman. :rolleyes:

  10. Who says there was no regard to skeptical inquiry in all cases? To me, that seems like the best weapon against their testimony- saying they haven't questioned it. How can you say that every single one of these sightings didn't involve the observer questioning in depth what he actually saw? Not everyone thinks it a UFO right off the bat, I'm sure at least some think the government is doing some advanced technology testing- and then when they ask about what they saw, they get such a ridiculous and non-sensable answer that they think the government is trying to cover it up. It's either a government coverup or a UFO at that point, and some don't buy that the government has ships that advanced, to move the way they saw.

    How can you just lump them all into one group and lable them dellusional? All you can prove with logic is "maybe" in this case. You cannot prove that they didn't see it. That's why I wonder why you try to use logic to "prove" something you already admit you cannot. What gives?

    Do you really just not like that some people have an imagination? Do you feel that they are trying to press their imaginary ideas on you or something?

    If the ship was obviously enough something different (a craft that could come out of the ocean and fly straight up into orbit, something just stop in midair moving quickly)

    Perhaps aeronautical engineers have sighted them too, I should look for a case... That would be interesting.

    Ok, Ok, but for the sake of the argument there have been many sightings over the course of many years. Testimony is shaky, yes- but consistancy in testimony over the course of many individuals for years is not as shaky. It starts to look like something we need to at least give some sort of credit to looking into.

    Says who? The logic and reason behind it doesn't shut me down completely and get me to accept it? Hmm... The logic and reasoning is not there if I don't agree with it yet. It could be a bad relay of information, but I believe it's because it's unfalsifiable like you were saying. So I keep it as valid and think about it what I prefer to think about it until I'm forced by reason to actually KNOW what it is.

    So knowing that, you don't think the government is capable of knowing aliens exists and visit our planet yet keep it from us? They could be doing such a good job that they have people like yourself backing up their excuses.

    Wow, how convienient considering the government reserves the right to elliminate or cover up all evidence that may risk national security. I actually would expect it to be that way considering the evidence, that government activities were the result of a scare... If they are so serious about not causing a scene, why even go there? Why not test the flares over a non-populated area?

    If it is a coverup, all you've done is successfully bought their lies hook, line, and sinker.

    The hook was "no evidence" the line was "it was a jet dropping flares" and the sinker is you coming in here to back that story up on top of it. What evidence did they provide again?

    Wow, golly gee- testimony! :eek: That's good enough evidence for you if it comes from the right authority? So this guy gets to say it was flares but the observers don't get any credit at all?

    Plus, what reason would an observer make these claims??? The pilot could be a total puppet.

    What if it was? In english just to piss us off when we can't prove it? I'm not even saying it was, but to say it was or wasn't is based off of things we can't prove. I could say I would rather think or it makes more sense to me, but trying to prove it is impossible either way.

    And what of obductees? Are they just crazy? I know I can't prove it either way, but I still feel there is enough to it to actually wonder if it's really true.

    That's how you feel, I would prefer to think that something else is going on. It's nothing more than opinion on if a story is good or not here.

    Why? Because you say so? How can you be so sure?

    In this case there is nothing they can do, so it's left up to us to decide what we believe. If logic and reasoning can't get two intelligent parties to agree than it obviously isn't logical and reasonable.

    Oh no, weather ballons and flare tests are good enough excuses I don't know what I was thinking believing otherwise... I mean the goverment says so, it must be true! A pilot said he was there! :rolleyes:

    Did the couple say that's what they saw after the government explained???

    You might have bought that line- don't try to act like I should too.

    Sorry we don't have something we can actually debate with facts... We could debate if we could have a side we could prove though.

    ^how you like my double strawman Rasta? Do you think it will keep the crows away? I would debate if I could LOL
  11. Because the depth of their conclusion is evidence of that.

    Why does it have to be one or the other? There are MANY other explanations of terrestrial origins.

    I'm not, it's just a general response to a general question. Specific claims are given more specific reasoning. For the most part, that would be the explanation though, I think. I should also clarify, I think much of it is psychological self-deception as opposed to delusion.

    Maybe, back up be magnitudes of probability.

    Yes, but since they cannot prove the did, then we must assume that "entities should not be multiplied beyond necessity."

    Deduction, my dear Watson. Using logic to establish probability, and therefor illustrating why it is not sensible for anybody to believe them.

    And imagination is one thing, but there is a fine boarder between acknowledging one's own fantasy being self-deceptive and delusional. There comes a point where belief in the "fantasy" becomes a dangerous perversion of reality.

    It just boggles my mind that some of those people are allowed to vote.

    (P.S. just so we're all clear, none of this is directed at CH3VELLE - I actually have respect for him, he has illustrated some very important critical thought in his above posts -- I don't want anybody to think I'm attacking them. I'm just commenting on some of the more deluded individuals I've talked to in my personal life)

    Again, that's not a positive ID, it's all an assumption based on fallacious logic.

    As soon as there is some evidence, I'm willing to revise my opinions....

    Ockham's Razor. Do I really need to explain to you the nature of life in our universe?

    Really, well give this article a read. It sums it up better than I can

    I don't follow this one.

    Again -- no evidence of this, so I don't see how you come to that conclusion. They couldn't even keep the Manhattan project from us. How do they hide extraterrestrials from SETI, and the entire astronomical sciences community?


    I don't pretend to know their reason, but I would assume that they expect people to have more sense to listen to evidence than to deny and revel in conspiracy.

    They expect people have a little bit of critical thinking capacity, instead of committing fallacious logic and assuming lights in the sky are aliens. :rolleyes:

    I'd rather remain true to rational inquiry than to make fallacious assumptions about grand conspiracies.

    The fact that they did it? If you want to commit argumentum ad hominem and deny evidence because it came from the government, go ahead.

    I don't know what other evidence you need or expect.

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    argumentum ad hominem - it is a testimony, backed up by evidence.

    So you're trying to discredit the testimony of the pilot who light the flares and cause the lights, who is backed up by the USAF and the visual evidence, by comparing it to the unreliable, and unsubstantiated testimony of witnesses who cannot in any way substantiate their claim rather than with an argumentum ad ignorantum?

    Think on that one.

    To satisfy an intentional of psychological urge or compellation. Perhaps a hoax, perhaps a cognitive bias. Any number of reasons.

    And this conclusion is based on what?

    I'm not really following.. it this just a hypothetical your proposing?

    Wonder all you like, but speculation is not evidence.

    There are a number of psychological conditions which can account for many of these experiences, including schizophrenia, sleep paralysis, hyper-religiosity, epilepsy, etc, etc.

    Well your entitled to all the speculation you want. But like I said, it's no evidence, and nor is it logically consistent.

    Because you said "It's interesting that to think of what could be", by definition that is fantasy. I'm just stressing to important of recognizing what it fantasy as fantasy and not mistaking or replacing it with reality.

    No, there is a huge number of people, in my experiences, so are totally unaware of logic and reason and would rather use their imaginations, cognitive biases and fallacious logic to reach a conclusion that pleases them.

    It doesn't mean it isn't logical or reasonable.

    Sarcastic ad hominems are no way to make a point. Like it or not, the government, specifically the USAF is the agency who would have the most information on the subject, they are the ones who are qualified to make a judgment call on the topic -- and not ONLY that, but it is backed up by the visual evidence and the suggested mechanisms explain EVERYTHING that needs to.

    What other evidence would you expect to get?

    what couple? I'm confused...

    Denying evidence and reason is a good way to internally substantiate your beliefs.... :rolleyes:

    ... I'll agree with you there.
  12. You just appeal to authority all the time, you are no different than any of us in that aspect Rasta.

    All of your evidence could be faked.

    You believe what you want to believe, you want it to be more logical and reasonable than other's but the fact is, it isn't. The reason why is because I am not swayed but your "proof" you THINK you have. That is what logic and reason will do, and if it doesn't- I am either a moron or you can't prove it with logic and reason.

    If you always appeal to authority and use others studies and opinions on matters, you are nothing more than a relay of information that may not be even factual in the grand scheme of things.

    So why should we believe you? Ockham's razor? How about we believe it because it makes sense instead?

    You want to spin it that I don't take evidence into account, well I don't take evidence that could be a coverup into account, and lean on what I FEEL, just like how YOU FEEL, and use your wikiauthority to try to prove, but cannot.

    You even say it's unfalsifiable, then say you have evidence? Which is it man?
  13. They cannot prove what they saw came from an alien civilization, as such, it would be illogical to conclude that what they saw came from an alien civilization. It is possible, of course, most everything is.

    There is nothing wrong with having an imganiation, there is however, something wrong with thinking what you imagine must be the truth simply because you cannot come up with something better. Ever watch one of those mystery shows where they hype on the drama over some weird event, throughout the thing you're almost convinced some alien/ghost/demon something had to be involved 'cause what other explanation is there, only to find out at the end of the show there was a perfectly rational explanation that links up with all the facts? I know I have. People tend to wildly imagine things when they cannot explain them, instead of taking the time to figure out what actually went on. They give themselves an easy answer that "seems likely" and accept it, then they no longer have to dwell on it.

    They could be lying you know. Look at crop circles, people have come forward admitting to making them, and then showing how they did it in the given time period. Some people enjoy hoaxes and making people believe something that is not real.

    Still, it could be some as yet unknown phenomena that we just have not explained yet. Take a look at ball lightning, I am sure some people saw that from far off and believed it was an alien visitor. Just because we do not have a better explanation does not mean we should accept a wild one that comes out of the blue.

    We should indeed try to explain it, but we do not have to assume it is something otherworldly until we prove that it is. Chances are, there is some local explanation that we have no visited yet.

    It would be a big conspiracy, and those are hard to keep under wraps. Some low level flunkies would undoubtedly find out, especially if we have alien tech that we are working on, and they would blow the whistle. It happens for everything else. In order to accept that the government could keep this a secret, you have to accept that all governments are willing and able to keep it a secret. Russia had spies inside the Manhattan Project, how top secret do you think that was?

    France recently declassified all of its UFO files. Look into it and see what you find out.

    If it is a cover up. I am sure both Rasta and I are open to new evidence. If someone came up with the required evidence that proved we were being visited by aliens, we would accept it. We do not have that now. We have lies, we have unexplained events, and we have a massive amount of faked videos and pictures. What would that lead you to conclude?

    Explain how it is an appeal to authority, please.

    lol, that is an even harder pill to swallow and would imply such a massive conspiracy it would be completely implausible it could ever be pulled off. You would literally need millions of people to be in on it.

    That is not true. Logic can be understood, we know about logical pitfalls and traps, avoid those, and you remain logical. I believe, and I am sure Rasta does too, that things that have evidence to support it are more likely to be real than shit without evidence. We require the evidence, before we accept something as fact. This does not mean we cannot imagine, or cannot dream, or engage in what ifs, it simply means that we will not waste time accepting something is real, when there is no good reason to do so.

    Lack of evidence. There we go. Logical proof. Just because you do not accept it, does not mean it is not logical.

    It is not an appeal to authority if that "authority" backs up their claims with evidence and peer review.

    It does not make sense that the government is engaged in a massive conspiracy to keep us ignorant to the knowledge of other forms of life. But hey, it is possible, I am not saying it is not. But man that would be hard to pull off.

    Burden of Proof.
  14. How did I know I was going to get another fisk? :rolleyes:

    I'm going to sum this up for you Rasta because you are seriously missing my point:

    Is it a valid possiblity for aliens existing and visiting this planet?

    If no, I cannot argue with someone who can't give the benefit of the doubt.

    I am arguing that the possibility is there and you cannot claim it is logical not to believe it's a valid possibility.

    That's it- I am not trying to convert you or get you to see my side. All I'm asking is that you don't try to make it seem like it's stupid to give it any thought OK? :wave:

    Are we on the same page with this?
  15. Actually you're wrong on that one.

    An argumentum ad verecundiam is when a statement is assumed to to be true wholly based on the person or source's knowledge or position. It is a fallacy not because of method of obtaining knowledge, but in regards to the supposition of the source's credibility.

    Wikipedia puts it in plain language: "On the other hand, there is no fallacy involved in simply arguing that the assertion made by an authority is true, in contrast to claiming that the authority is infallible in principle and can hence be exempted from criticism"

    Now, the source I'm citing is not infallible, but there is no relevant evidence to suppose that source to be incorrect, aside from the assertion of a conspiracy, which again, has no evidence.

    Now, if you had some reliable evidence to think that the USAF or David Tanaka is lying about this incident, then please present it as legitimate grounds to commit to disarm the source, not a fallacious ad hominem.

    Now, addition, the source's information is backed up by visual evidence, and an explained hypothesis, which meets all the criteria of explaining the phenomenon.

    So, sorry, but calling it an argumentum ad verecundiam is just plain incorrect.

    Indeed. We could all be living in bubbles of reddish liquid, with hoses supplementing our bodily functions while out brains are connected to a massive computer simulation of reality.

    Let's stick with what we can prove though, alright?

    Actually, that couldn't be farther from the truth.

    I'm willing to believe evidence, weather I like it or not. Hell, I'd believe in God if there was proof of it. I'd believe in the Flying Spaghetti Monster if they had evidence!

    I don't much care for gravity and it's nasty constraints, but the evidence indicates that it exists!

    You're right, it's not. That's why I argue with it. A belief that UFOs are aliens is not based in empiricism or logic or reason. It requires unwarranted faith.

    You seem to have some sort of vendetta against proof.

    No comment :p

    We've already blown THAT one out of the water :rolleyes:

    Poisoning the well.

    You're quite right. The thing is, though, I am more than willing to adjust and revise my opinion once new legitimate information and evidence is presented. Until then, I'll stick to my guns.

    But it doesn't. It's all based on fallacious logic, we've established that.

    Well you seem to be disregarding it entirley, claiming conspiracy in it's stead. I can't fathom why.

    What? That doesn't even make sense.

    If you disregard the evidence, then indeed it is unfalsifiable. If you accept the burden of proof as your guiding light then it quickly becomes entirely falsifiable.
  16. I'm not Rasta, but I will answer anyway.

    It is a possibility, as everything is, I would not go so far to call it a valid one, because it is pretty improbable given what we know. Granted, we could discover some kind of technology that would allow us to travel to other stars rather easily, we cannot claim we will or will not, and if we do then the possibility becomes more probable. Especially if we discover that life is abundant elsewhere in our galaxy. I am certain it exists, the numbers would suggest it is more probable than us being alone, by a vast amount in my mind, though is it abundant? However, most of the UFO sightings have been explained rather well, some of them have been explained in a way that would suggest the Government was testing something and they want to keep it under wraps. They have tested flying-saucer-like objects before. They have tested a lot of weird aircraft before. Some small number, a very small number, remain unexplained. That however, does not suggest they do not have a local explanation. None have been shown to be extraterrestrial beyond a doubt, or even well. I myself have seen odd things in the sky, I'm not going to claim it an alien just because I do not know enough of what was going on throughout the area to base an actual judgment on. You do not have all the evidence, on that basis alone I can claim it is not logical to believe that it is aliens.

    Therefore, It is a possibility, though as I said, not a likely one.
  17. I wasn't saying you commited a fallacy... LOL Geez dude...

    I was saying all you do is appeal to authority, it was more an observation than anything. I'm starting to see how most people's knowledge comes from an outside source and that's why they don't think for themselves. The authority doesn't, so they don't.

    It's ad hominen but the topic can't be argued- I'm only standing for the possibility of it being valid. If you argue with that, then I won't find it hard to believe I don't understand your reasoning; mostly because it doesn't take several pieces of understanding into account.

    You think you are so right because of evidence you think you have, but what you know you may have been deceived your whole life into believing. So to try to get me or anyone else to believe what you alone have decided to believe speaks for itself.

    Logic and reasoning do not trump fantasy and irrationality in my eyes, sorry.
  18. LiquidTruth-

    Would you try to argue that I shouldn't believe that it's a valid possibility? Or have I made it look like I believe in aliens beyond the idea of possibility and that's why Rasta is arguing?
  19. Yes, I would argue that you should not believe it is a valid possibility. A possibility yes, but it is astronomically improbable. It is however, still a possibility. Just like when I cannot find my keys, it is possible elves came and stole them to hide them away on me, there is nothing that says that cannot happen, but, how unlikely is that? Thus I believe I misplaced my keys, which is the most probable thing to have happened.

    You have argued for the possibility a lot, I think that makes it seem like you take it more than just mere possibility. If you want someone to admit that it is a possibility, well, I am sure everyone can admit to that. But, calling it valid is a big stretch.
  20. Liquidtruth really hit a home run with his last answer.

    "A possibility yes, but it is astronomically improbable. It is however, still a possibility." That and the following analogy was fantastically well illustrated.

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