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Mysterious Crop Circles: Alien Messages Or Hoax?

From: Eustaquio Andrea Patounas <socex.ufobras.nul>
Date: Sun, 19 Jun 2011 21:54:11 -0300
Archived: Mon, 20 Jun 2011 08:39:13 -0400
Subject: Mysterious Crop Circles: Alien Messages Or Hoax?

Source: NPR

http://tinyurl.com/6yq5l42

In the wake of last week's post on the alien autopsy video, it
seems pertinent to take on another "sign" of alien visitation
or, perhaps, of paranormal phenomena, the mysterious crop
circles that have spread across the world in the thousands since
the late 1970s.

I'm sure many of you remember the 2002 blockbuster Signs,
directed by M. Night Shyamalan and starring Mel Gibson and
Joaquin Phoenix. "It can't be by hand, it's too perfect," said
Rev. Graham Hess (Mel Gibson), after inspecting a football-field
sized pattern cut on his wheat crop. The movie grossed $408
million dollars worldwide. I watched it with my son and had a
great time.

If you search "crop circles" on Google, you'll find some
amazingly beautiful images, huge patterns of all kinds cut on
crops, from symmetric mandala-looking circles to abstract
symbols and even an alien face with a disk next to him, carrying
some kind of image.

A documentary, Crop Circles: Quest for Truth, directed by
William Gazecki, interviews several experts who are clearly
puzzled by the whole thing, attributing it to aliens or
supernatural phenomena. The preview opens with scary words: "How
do you understand what can't be explained"... "These things are
footprints of intelligence," a voiceover later states. They are
indeed.

This documentary should be contrasted with the enlightening one
from National Geographic Channel, Crop Circles: Is it Real? or
with the confessions of a crop circle designer, the author Matt
Ridley, published in Scientific American in 2002 (Crop Circle
Confession.) In his words:

"The whole episode taught me two important lessons. First, treat
all experts with skepticism and look out for their vested
interests =97 many cerealogists made a pot of money from writing
books and leading weeklong tours of crop circles, some costing
more than $2,000 a person. Second, never underestimate the
gullibility of the media. Even the Wall Street Journal published
articles that failed to take the man-made explanation seriously.

As for the identity of those who created the complicated
mathematical and fractal patterns that appeared in the mid-
1990s, I have no idea. But Occam's razor suggests they were more
likely to be undergraduates than aliens."

I'd add that fractals became popular at that time. The
documentary by National Geographic explains how it's done.

The amazing thing is that even after the two pranksters that
started it all in 1978, Doug Bower and Dave Chorley, confessed
their hoax demonstrating how easy it was to make the circles,
the sheer number of them still gets to people: how could there
be thousands of these things spread around the world? Surely,
some may not have been man-made?

Believers remain unabated. Of course, no one has ever seen a
non-human-made crop circle appear in front of a witness. It all
happens in secrecy, at night, out of view. If the purpose of the
circles is to convey some kind of message, wouldn't it make
sense to have it happen in front of witnesses? ("Maybe we are
not ready," some would say.)

And what's this message that's taking thousands of crop circles
to write over 30 years? Either it's very complex or we are just
plain stupid and can't get it. Thankfully, the aliens are
patient teachers. Or, perhaps, some of our own brothers and
sisters are having a good laugh and making good money at the
expense of people's yearning to believe in what's not there.

Isn't there enough wonder in what exists?



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