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bngbuck
SFN Addict

USA
2437 Posts

Posted - 04/23/2008 :  09:55:37  Show Profile Send bngbuck a Private Message  Reply with Quote
4/23/08 09:46

I just heard on MSNBC (home of The Mann!) that the famous "Phoenix Lights" of several years ago have been clearly explained. A Phoenix man has confessed to putting lights in helium baloons, carefully tethering them in a precise pattern, and elevating them to a matched altitude on a moonless night!

Don't have a reference yet, but I'll get one and put it up as soon as I find corroboration!

Damn. I have to rewrite a whole fucking chapter, now, and dream up another crazyass explanation as to why I thought this was a pretty good example of "Unexplained Aerial Phenomena"

The list is getting a little shorter!

Dave W.
Info Junkie

USA
26000 Posts

Posted - 04/23/2008 :  11:05:47   [Permalink]  Show Profile  Visit Dave W.'s Homepage Send Dave W. a Private Message  Reply with Quote
Here's one at The National Ledger.

- Dave W. (Private Msg, EMail)
Evidently, I rock!
Why not question something for a change?
Visit Dave's Psoriasis Info, too.
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Dave W.
Info Junkie

USA
26000 Posts

Posted - 04/23/2008 :  11:08:23   [Permalink]  Show Profile  Visit Dave W.'s Homepage Send Dave W. a Private Message  Reply with Quote
Phoenix man: Neighbor caused Monday's mysterious lights.
Originally posted by bngbuck

Damn. I have to rewrite a whole fucking chapter, now, and dream up another crazyass explanation as to why I thought this was a pretty good example of "Unexplained Aerial Phenomena"

The list is getting a little shorter!
Now you know why the "UAP of the gaps" argument is so crappy.

- Dave W. (Private Msg, EMail)
Evidently, I rock!
Why not question something for a change?
Visit Dave's Psoriasis Info, too.
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filthy
SFN Die Hard

USA
14408 Posts

Posted - 04/23/2008 :  11:22:27   [Permalink]  Show Profile Send filthy a Private Message  Reply with Quote
It's a very interesting story and a pretty neat gag. I read about it here this morning. It's a latter-day varition of an old oriental trick.

I wonder, over the centuries how many of the easily confused have gone ga-ga over these:



Does it give you any ideas for early April next?




"What luck for rulers that men do not think." -- Adolf Hitler (1889 - 1945)

"If only we could impeach on the basis of criminal stupidity, 90% of the Rethuglicans and half of the Democrats would be thrown out of office." ~~ P.Z. Myres


"The default position of human nature is to punch the other guy in the face and take his stuff." ~~ Dude

Brother Boot Knife of Warm Humanitarianism,

and Crypto-Communist!

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bngbuck
SFN Addict

USA
2437 Posts

Posted - 04/23/2008 :  11:48:31   [Permalink]  Show Profile Send bngbuck a Private Message  Reply with Quote
Dave.....

Before you get too Hummerightous, let's wait a few days and let this shake out a little. For one thing, the cable news report clearly stated that the guy put lights inside of helium balloons and tethered them so they would appear to be in formation.

Now we learn from several other sources that the light source was flares (which certainly could not be inside a helium balloon) and that the balloons were released to free flight, not tethered.

Many of the initial reports, including the governor's, stated that the lights stayed in formation in one place for long periods of time, which would not have been possible if the balloons were released - in sequential order. There are other questions relating to the reported timing of the release of the free-flight balloons and their photographed appearance in formation.

I do not intend to be either Dudish or Hummerish with regard to this matter. I took enough shit here last August and September. I would say right now, that there is the rarest wraith of the rancid redolence of rodent regarding the report, but it is far too early to draw any conclusions, pro UAP or con (hah) UAP from this "confession".

My case will stay rested regarding the Phoenix matter until this confessor is thoroughly tried in a court of robust skepticism. Which can certainly go either way, and at this point I would be reluctant to give odds on one or the other.

Meantime, just call me God of the Craps!

My favorite tune is The Turd Man Theme

I am making a Defecation of Independence, here!

Just take it nice and fece!


(I'm sorry, folks, Dude made me do it!)
Edited by - bngbuck on 04/23/2008 12:00:04
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bngbuck
SFN Addict

USA
2437 Posts

Posted - 04/23/2008 :  11:53:39   [Permalink]  Show Profile Send bngbuck a Private Message  Reply with Quote
Filthy.....

Man, those tricky Asiatics have done wonders with helium balloon design! Anerobic flares! Wow!
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filthy
SFN Die Hard

USA
14408 Posts

Posted - 04/23/2008 :  12:19:39   [Permalink]  Show Profile Send filthy a Private Message  Reply with Quote
Originally posted by bngbuck

Filthy.....

Man, those tricky Asiatics have done wonders with helium balloon design! Anerobic flares! Wow!
This could probably be done with an ordinary paper bag sprayed with Pam containing the frame holding the heat source and a slow-fused cherry bomb.

I'm willing to accept the guy's tale, conditionally of course, due to the frailty of human memory. While there is no way that he's going to even ignite a road flair inside a balloon, much less burn it, it is perfectly feasible for him to have suspended one beneath it. And if he knows how to cut a flair down and still set it off, he could have used just a small portion of one so as to reduce the weight and thus need much smaller (and cheaper) balloons.




"What luck for rulers that men do not think." -- Adolf Hitler (1889 - 1945)

"If only we could impeach on the basis of criminal stupidity, 90% of the Rethuglicans and half of the Democrats would be thrown out of office." ~~ P.Z. Myres


"The default position of human nature is to punch the other guy in the face and take his stuff." ~~ Dude

Brother Boot Knife of Warm Humanitarianism,

and Crypto-Communist!

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pleco
SFN Addict

USA
2996 Posts

Posted - 04/23/2008 :  13:11:48   [Permalink]  Show Profile  Visit pleco's Homepage Send pleco a Private Message  Reply with Quote
Originally posted by filthy
Does it give you any ideas for early April next?


No, of course not.

by Filthy
The neo-con methane machine will soon be running at full fart.
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bngbuck
SFN Addict

USA
2437 Posts

Posted - 04/23/2008 :  13:55:16   [Permalink]  Show Profile Send bngbuck a Private Message  Reply with Quote
Filthy....

Cherry Bombs! Christ, Filth the damned UFO's didn't fucking explode!!
it is perfectly feasible for him to have suspended one beneath it. And if he knows how to cut a flair down and still set it off, he could have used just a small portion of one so as to reduce the weight and thus need much smaller (and cheaper) balloons.
The burning time, or the use of flares under a ballon is not in question! Of course this would be relatively easy to do in still air!

But creating and maintaining a fixed, precise formation for ten-twenty minutes (there were differing reports on this), is quite another matter. Far more difficult.

The report states that the balloons were released at one minute intervals. The cable news report said that they were tethered! (different news on the cable tube today) If released sequentially at one minute intervals, how maintain a stationary, precise formation?

I don't think this "answer" to this puzzlement is all that complete or believable, at this time; but much more information, including duplicating the demonstration to get the effect described by the then-Governor of Arizona and many others, is clearly in order!

Neither do I believe that little purple people-eaters were cruising over Phoenix that night!
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Dude
SFN Die Hard

USA
6891 Posts

Posted - 04/23/2008 :  13:55:49   [Permalink]  Show Profile Send Dude a Private Message  Reply with Quote
bng said:
I do not intend to be either Dudish or Hummerish with regard to this matter.

So you will continue to be credulous instead of skeptical? Interesting.


Ignorance is preferable to error; and he is less remote from the truth who believes nothing, than he who believes what is wrong.
-- Thomas Jefferson

"god :: the last refuge of a man with no answers and no argument." - G. Carlin

Hope, n.
The handmaiden of desperation; the opiate of despair; the illegible signpost on the road to perdition. ~~ da filth
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bngbuck
SFN Addict

USA
2437 Posts

Posted - 04/23/2008 :  15:26:05   [Permalink]  Show Profile Send bngbuck a Private Message  Reply with Quote
Dude.....

So you will continue to be credulous instead of skeptical? Interesting.
Absolutely! My middle name is Crudulous! I have a deep and abiding belief in little green UFOs, Tellypathy, Homeypathey, boobs all over the landscape, and turds! I can quickly refer you to specific posts of mine here on SFN conclusively proving the above!

I am delighted to learn that you find me interesting, as it feeds the ravenous hunger of my ego far better than being ignored - as in the case of Hummer who does not like being compared (inadvertantly, I must say) to a ten-ton atmosphere-polluting armored anomaly of a vehicle that is feared wherever it rolls! And I don't blame him a bit! Change one letter in my stage name and it immediately offends the delicate sensitivities of little children and citizens of Sweden!

But, Dude I called you a name recently, and I did it in a spirit of praise and complement! Seriously! I made the hideous mistake once of using the unspeakable perjorative "PC" with reference to Marf, and immediately found the naval cannons of one of the Olympians trained on my navel!

So I am trying to be circumspect, but, for some reason , that is difficult for me. All, I want to say, Dude, is if you (or your parents) are truly offended by my intended praise, I will retract and repent.

And, yes, my credulity far exceeds the legal limit at this ivory altitude of SFN. I leave the door ajar for no end of Fortean possibilities that proper Critical Thinkers would be excommunicastrated for in a new york minute, if they strayed so far from the flock.

You know that already! Evidence is a good god, but not all gods are known! At least not to me!

I am even an agnostic for the simple reason that atheism assumes a knowledge that is not possible; but my god is truly the God of Mathematical Probability. Unfortunately, She does not raise her hydra-coiffed head frequently enough to be of assistance in many matters.

So nut-case, timid atheist, asshole, prick, all apply; as well as Alzheimic, senile, and just fucking old You are welcome to use any epithet your excellent imagination can concoct to address me in even-handed retaliation for my implication (not intended) that your paternal genealogical line was in question. As I have told others recently, I really care not by what names I am addressed, it is the context and intent that counts! Credulous with moderation, is not too far from the mark!
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filthy
SFN Die Hard

USA
14408 Posts

Posted - 04/23/2008 :  16:07:53   [Permalink]  Show Profile Send filthy a Private Message  Reply with Quote
Why not a cherry bomb? Some dumb light floating around in the sky is a really boring proposition to all but the very easily impressed. Blow it up, and at least you get some action out of it. And the very easily impressed will flip completely out and exhibit every behavior from panicked bomb-shelter building to writhing in orgasmic delight, to speaking in tongues.

These UFO fakers are all a bunch of lame amateurs -- blast 'em all, I say!




"What luck for rulers that men do not think." -- Adolf Hitler (1889 - 1945)

"If only we could impeach on the basis of criminal stupidity, 90% of the Rethuglicans and half of the Democrats would be thrown out of office." ~~ P.Z. Myres


"The default position of human nature is to punch the other guy in the face and take his stuff." ~~ Dude

Brother Boot Knife of Warm Humanitarianism,

and Crypto-Communist!

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Dude
SFN Die Hard

USA
6891 Posts

Posted - 04/23/2008 :  16:08:26   [Permalink]  Show Profile Send Dude a Private Message  Reply with Quote
bng said:
So I am trying to be circumspect, but, for some reason , that is difficult for me. All, I want to say, Dude, is if you (or your parents) are truly offended by my intended praise, I will retract and repent.

Well, I may think it objectionable to be called "little"... but generally speaking namecalling rarely offends me.

Strawman arguments (and the related offenses of informal fallacy) are much more likely to irritate me.


You see, there is this thing called "evidence". If you have none, then you have no claim. Abscence of evidence (obviously) is also not evidence of abscence. The best possible case for your pet phenomenon (UAP/UFO) is that some unexplained lights in the sky have been seen. Thats it. Thats as far as you can take it and remain rational.

Yes, you have never explicitly stated that you think these unexplained instances are anything else, but your almost obsessive interest in them hints at something more.


Ignorance is preferable to error; and he is less remote from the truth who believes nothing, than he who believes what is wrong.
-- Thomas Jefferson

"god :: the last refuge of a man with no answers and no argument." - G. Carlin

Hope, n.
The handmaiden of desperation; the opiate of despair; the illegible signpost on the road to perdition. ~~ da filth
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Dave W.
Info Junkie

USA
26000 Posts

Posted - 04/23/2008 :  19:21:41   [Permalink]  Show Profile  Visit Dave W.'s Homepage Send Dave W. a Private Message  Reply with Quote
Originally posted by bngbuck

Before you get too Hummerightous, let's wait a few days and let this shake out a little.
Whether right or wrong, it's still a gap argument.

- Dave W. (Private Msg, EMail)
Evidently, I rock!
Why not question something for a change?
Visit Dave's Psoriasis Info, too.
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bngbuck
SFN Addict

USA
2437 Posts

Posted - 04/24/2008 :  00:59:18   [Permalink]  Show Profile Send bngbuck a Private Message  Reply with Quote
Dude, Dude, dude! You're all rested, roasted russet, and ready to rumble, eh? Well, I'll make this deal with you.

I'm leaving tomorrow for Phoenix - be gone about a week. I've got too much lined up there to spend the requisite time necessary on my laptop to dance with you and the others that are likely to be interested in this developing topic.

So I'll respond to your challenges in the above post tonight, but I won't be back to satisfy your thirst for blood until late next week. I understand your need for a UAP woo-woo to stand in as whipping-boy for christian woo-woo BillScott, or the one-eyed troll type whatever-his-name that occasionally squeaks loudly from his pulpit.

But we're going to have to have coitus interruptus with this subject until I get back and hopefully you can provoke somebody else to act the UFOol in the interim. That's probably gonna be hard, as I don't know of any other idiot that shares my sponge-like capacity for absorption of superstitious sophistry like "lights in the sky", except JustMe; and I think she retreated back into the Arctic Circle some time ago!!

Let's start at the beginning:
Well, I may think it objectionable to be called "little"... but generally speaking namecalling rarely offends me.
Several other choices occured to me: but in deference to Kil's vain hope of "can't we all just get along?", I will leave it to you to insert any adjective of your choice before the B word. "Brilliant" maybe?

Strawman arguments (and the related offenses of informal fallacy) are much more likely to irritate me.
You know, informal fallacy is so common in all debate, in fact in all conversation, that it's a wonder you're not on clonazepam or it's equivilant. I'm good at it,(IF), as you know, and you mustn't let it put you out of control, Dude. I'll try to watch it, but the image of Ray Bolger merrily tripping down that yellow brick road keeps tantalizing me as I write!
You see, there is this thing called "evidence". If you have none, then you have no claim.
But Dude why does every mention of UAP (for example) have to involve "claims"? Or at least claims of things so unlikely that you have to strain to make it appear that a "claim" is being made? As in
Yes, you have never explicitly stated that you think these unexplained instances are anything else, but your almost obsessive interest in them hints at something more.
My intent, last fall and now, was to elicit sophisticated commentary on UAP for some source material on a book chapter I was working on. I was really surprised by several things in the response I received. First was the near unanimity of all the menbers clamoring for Links (which I knew of, at the time, only as sausages) and "back up your claims".

At first, I didn't know what claims they were talking about, then I found out that I was perceived as claiming that unexplained UAP sightings were indeed evidence of extraterrestrial activity, moreover, that I was not providing evidence of this alien activity because, of course, I couldn't provide proof of something that doesn't exist.

Next, and the big surprise, was that practically no one on the Forum really knew much about the long, long history of UAP sightings! I had (wrongly) assumed that everybody knew everything about "flying saucers", as I spent my formative twenties with the subject in the newspaper headlines every few days. The world has gotten a great deal more complicated since the fifties, and I failed to take that into consideration! Truly a generation gap thing!

Dude, I have no more idea as to whether extraterrestrial aliens exist and are flying around in the atmosphere of our planet than I have a belief in your favorite simile, pink unicorns in the garage; or know that God is in the heavens, controlling our every move! I am completely agnostic on all such ideas!

However, I do assign degrees of probability to various anomalous phenomena! Unicorns and spaghetti monsters = 99.98% impossible! Not very interesting! God = 97.751937% impossible, but how many dozens of billions of people can be totally wrong? Pretty boring, also! Alien UAP= highly unlikely, but, a very interesting, very stimulating slim possibility! No percentage, because the jury is so far out on this in the year 2008 that the Hubble couldn't find eight out of twelve of them!
The best possible case for your pet phenomenon (UAP/UFO) is that some unexplained lights in the sky have been seen. Thats it. Thats as far as you can take it and remain rational.
You know, Dude rationality isn't an issue here for me. Education is. You obviously didn't gain anything useful from the 25 or so pages that we all struggled through last year, but I did.

Many of the members comments made sense to me, and I enriched my understanding of the perception of the UAP phenomenon greatly; which is what I set out to do.

And, I made the acquaintence of Bernard Haisch, with whom I have kept up a lively conversation ever since. He is a remarkable scientist with a remarkable current project (sort of a super wiki) and scholar, par excellance!

I just wrote him for opinion on the recent Phoenix Lights events, and I will publish his comments whenever I get them. Most of all, the two threads generated several thousand words, many of which I intend to put into print.
your almost obsessive interest in them hints at something more.
Of course there is something more! The something more is the whatever that caused the lights, the "unidentified" something that is the phenomenon! As you know, many possibilities were put forth, aliens being one of the more unlikely.

I am certain that there are possibilities not yet dreamt of in our philosophy:
And therefore as a stranger give it welcome.
There are more things in heaven and earth, Horatio,
Than are dreamt of in your philosophy.
But come;
Here, as before, never, so help you mercy,
How strange or odd soe'er I bear myself,
As I perchance hereafter shall think meet
To put an antic disposition on,
That you, at such times seeing me, never shall,
With arms encumber'd thus, or this headshake,
Or by pronouncing of some doubtful phrase,
As 'Well, well, we know,' or 'We could, an if we would,'
Or 'If we list to speak,' or 'There be, an if they might,'
Or such ambiguous giving out, to note
That you know aught of me: this not to do,
So grace and mercy at your most need help you, Swear.
Hamlet Act 1, Scene 5
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Kil
Evil Skeptic

USA
13462 Posts

Posted - 04/24/2008 :  07:28:11   [Permalink]  Show Profile  Visit Kil's Homepage  Send Kil an AOL message  Send Kil a Yahoo! Message Send Kil a Private Message  Reply with Quote
Bill:
My intent, last fall and now, was to elicit sophisticated commentary on UAP for some source material on a book chapter I was working on. I was really surprised by several things in the response I received. First was the near unanimity of all the menbers clamoring for Links (which I knew of, at the time, only as sausages) and "back up your claims".

At first, I didn't know what claims they were talking about, then I found out that I was perceived as claiming that unexplained UAP sightings were indeed evidence of extraterrestrial activity, moreover, that I was not providing evidence of this alien activity because, of course, I couldn't provide proof of something that doesn't exist.

You asked for our opinion on UAP's that had been seen by a lot of people and were as of yet unexplained. We asked you to provide an example so as to better offer an opinion. You refused. That was what sparked the argument. It was never because we thought you were claiming that there were little green men flying around out there. (Hell, you said you doubted that enough times.) Let me repeat. You claimed a kind of sighting, and we wanted you to source an example.

I can understand how that might rattle a novice at a skeptic site. We tend to be nit picky, not all that unlike you, Bill. I don't see any reason for you to add stuff that wasn't there...

Uncertainty may make you uncomfortable. Certainty makes you ridiculous.

Why not question something for a change?

Genetic Literacy Project
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