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Location: UFOUpDatesList.Com > 2004 > Mar > Mar 8

Re: Depressing But Instructive - Hall

From: Richard Hall <hallrichard99.nul>
Date: Mon, 08 Mar 2004 13:54:40 +0000
Fwd Date: Mon, 08 Mar 2004 19:47:59 -0500
Subject: Re: Depressing But Instructive - Hall


>From: John Harney <magonia.nul>
>To: <ufoupdates.nul>
>Date: Sun, 7 Mar 2004 17:58:39 -0000
>Subject: Re: Depressing But Instructive

>>From: Richard Hall <hallrichard99.nul>
>>To: ufoupdates.nul
>>Date: Sun, 07 Mar 2004 15:58:31 +0000
>>Subject: Re: Depressing But Instructive

>>>From: John Harney <magonia.nul>
>>>To: <ufoupdates.nul>
>>>Date: Fri, 5 Mar 2004 21:34:36 -0000
>>>Subject: Re: Depressing But Instructive

>>>On your UFO Page you deal with the story of the alleged killing
>>>of an ET at Fort Dix/McGuire AFB. The dead ET was said to have
>>>been hauled off to Wright-Patterson AFB (where else?).

>>>You consider this preposterous story to be authentic, despite
>>>the fact that it has - unlike Trindade, as Jerry Clark kept
>>>reminding us - _negative witnesses_. Yet you just sweep these
>>>negative witnesses aside with the words: "The fact that several
>>>of the officers involved have denied to other investigators
>>>having any knowledge of the incident is not surprising at all
>>>under the circumstances."

>>On what basis do you conclude this "story" (i.e., direct
>>testimony from two witnesses and partial documentation) is
>>"preposterous?" Does your armchair have magic buttons that
>>reveal ytruth to you? I'm envious. Your total negative bias is
>>showing. Since there are no real UFOs, it can't be true.  (Non
>>potest, ergo non est.)

>"I can't believe _that_!" said Alice.

>"Can't you?" the Queen said in a pitying tone. "Try again: draw a
>long breath and shut your eyes."

>Alice laughed. "There's no use trying," she said: "one _can't_
>believe impossible things."

>"I dare say you haven't had much practice, " said the Queen.
>"When I was your age, I always did it for half an hour a day.
>Why, sometimes I've believed as many as six impossible things
>before breakfast."

>-- Lewis Carroll, "Through the Looking-Glass"

John,

Ironically, the late Isabel Davis used to quote that exact
dialogue to characterize what skeptibunkers believe in
preference to facing up to reality: such things as high
altitude, high-speed pelicans; hot-air balloons that leave deep
imprints on the ground and scare the pants off a cop; fireballs
that persist for many minuites, stop, hover, maneuver.

>>The NIDS investigator called me several times and tried to pry
>>loose my private and confidential files on the case, but I
>>didn't give them to him. Neither he nor any of the others at
>>NIDS interviewed the witnesses.

>But they interviewed the _negative_ witnesses. So an unbiased
>person looking at the information available on this case has to
>choose, at least provisionally, between the two witnesses or the
>several negative witnesses as telling the truth. Elementary
>logic and common sense come down in favour of those who say that
>nothing unusual occurred.

Phil Klass used to cite a person who lived in Socorro and didn't
see the object land, therefore it didn't happen. Do you believe
that too? The people NIDS interviewed were not the cops on the
scene (a la other people on the same deck of the ship).

>>I can't prove the case is true because I lacked the resources to
>>follow-up the additional leads, but (as you conveniently left
>>out of your post) the primary witness checks out completely.

>I left out most of the details because I expected that those who
>were interested, or wished to contribute further comments would
>visit your website and the NIDS website first.

>>I met him on numerous occasions, his wife, his colleagues, etc. I
>>arranged for others to meet and question him, and in the fulll
>>sense of the word interrogate him. I am convinced his story is
>>true and the event is a closely held secret. Everything points
>>in that direction. But personal conviction obviously is not
>>proof, or even strong eveidence.

>Precisely. Far to much credence is given to many UFO cases
>because of personal conviction, friendship, and assessments of
>the characters and personalities of alleged witnesses, rather
>than hard evidence, independent testimonies, and genuine
>documentation.

Therefore those cases are false? It depends a great deal on the
skills, character, ability, and reputation of those doing the
assessment, doesn't it? Independent testimonies we have in
abundance. Lots of documanettaion in many cases. Hard evidence
in some. But if you want to use the term "preposterous," let's
apply it to the caricature of science that demands a saucer in
the laboratory for physical analysis before even being willing
to look at evidence.

><snip>

>>My reputation for careful, thorough investigation and a cautious
>>and conservative approach to the UFO subject (ask many people
>>on this List who utterly disagree with me about lots of things)
>>should give people pause about rejecting the report out of hand
>>as you are doing. I would advise you and everyone else to
>>suspend judgment.

>You don't suspend judgement in the account of it on your
>website; you insist that it's authentic. Hardly a "cautious and
>conservative approach" to such an extravagantly bizarre story.

Try reading it again, John, as a test of your reading
comprehension. I pointed out quite plainly that my conclusion
was only a personal coinviction, and repeated that on this list.
I also made it quite clear that I could not prove the case, but
felt that it is authentic. What does "conservative" mean to you?
Assuming that a case or event is false because you can't offer
absolute physical proof of it?

"Extravagantly bizarre" on what basis other than your overt
prejudice and unwilingness to suspend judgment since your magic
buttons reveal that it is untrue? Look in the mirror, John, and
you will see a firmly closed mind apparently incapable of
careful judgment, lacking awareness of nuance, ignorant of the
protocols of scientific method. It is my hypothesis that the
case is genuine. Dispute my hypothesis all you wish, but don't
claim magic avenues to ultimate truth.

 - Dick




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