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Location: UFOUpDatesList.Com > 1997 > Nov > Nov 11

Re: ETH &c

From: clark@mn.frontiercomm.net [Jerome Clark]
Date: Mon, 10 Nov 1997 10:27:32 PST
Fwd Date: Tue, 11 Nov 1997 01:52:09 -0500
Subject: Re: ETH &c


> From: Boroimhe@aol.com [Jeff King]
> Date: Sun, 9 Nov 1997 21:02:24 -0500 (EST)
> To: updates@globalserve.net
> Subject: Re: ETH &c

> Top o' the morning to the list, and especially to Jerry Clark:

And likewise.

> >From: clark@mn.frontiercomm.net [Jerome Clark]
> >Date: Sun, 09 Nov 1997 12:59:22 PST
> >Fwd Date: Sun, 09 Nov 1997 15:24:01 -0500
> >Subject: Re: ETH &c


> First let me say that I seriously doubt that I am the only person
> on this list who has difficulty distinguishing between the *most
> important* case (note that the original quote was not qualified
> by "potentially") and a *best* case.  Especially when the most
> important case is described as "the most thoroughly investigated,
> the most completely documented event in the history of ufology."
> It would seem that the definition of best case would be that
> which is the most completely documented and thoroughly
> investigated.   Perhaps your understanding differs from mine in
> that regard.  To each his own.

I am not sure I understand the point of Jeff's posting here.
It adds nothing to what he or I have already said.  Perhaps
he just wants to be heard again, which makes him human
if not especially illuminating or interesting about the matters
at hand.

If people have a hard time distinguishing between the
potentially most important case and the currently best-
documented case, perhaps they should examine their
souls, and possibly their IQs as well.

> >I have followed the debate, listened seriously to all sides, and
> >adjusted my thoughts accordingly.  I would like to think you'd do
> >the same, Jeff, but maybe you think a view once lodged in your
> >mind can never be removed or even modified. Personally, I harbor
> >a sentimental preference for an always open mind.


> >My mistake was in having and expressing excessive optimism about
> >what we could learn about something that occurred long ago and
> >under circumstances that would have rendered truth-determination
> >difficult even had a (civilian) investigation been launched
> >immediately.

> Perhaps.  But let me also point out that you should hardly be
> jumping on me because I took your statements in IUR at face
> value.  As I said above, your description of the case surely
> meets most people's understanding of a best case.  You changed
> your mind after further information came to light. Fine.  My
> statement to the Duke, therefore, would seem to be accurate, even
> if you don't agree with my choice of words to describe your
> change of heart. Unless, of course, I should give your statements
> in IUR the same weight you wish me to give your postings to the
> list.

Again, what point are you making, Jeff?  I have written a great
deal -- arguably, in fact, more than any other single human -- on
the UFO question.  Over time I have changed my mind, for which my
critics love to attack me.  Of course, if I never changed my
mind, they'd accuse me of rigid dogmatism.  Remember, there was a
time when I adhered to psychosocial speculations which I now
consider nonsense (I have never been forgiven for that heresy in
some quarters.)  In fact, my and Loren Coleman's 1975 book was
the first book-length treatment of this particular approach. Like
anybody, my opinions are based on my best reading of a particular
situation at a particular moment in time. When new, conflicting
evidence comes to mind, I am willing to adjust my views.  For
which practice, by the way, one of my critics calls me
wishy-washy.  To others, however, I am the Great Satan, the focus
of all evil in ufology's universe.  A guy just can't win in the
damned-if-you-do, damned-if-you-don't universe of paranormalist/
psycho-sociologist rhetoric.  At least, thank God, I don't have
to be one of them.

> >In any event, Jeff misses the larger, more important point: that
> >unlike most abduction-related claims, phantom pregnancies are
> >falsifiable.

> Wrong again sir.  The laughing Duke has pointed out time and
> again that you are as ineffective at mindreading as the rest of
> us, so please stop trying.  I am fully cognizant of the point.
> In fact you seem to be missing the most important point-that
> Hopkins' and others' claims of missing pregnancies have been
> *falsified.*  To play the citing game I suggest the following:

> 1.  Dr. Richard Neal's comments in Close Encounters of the Fourth
> Kind describing the prosaic causes of "missing pregnancies" and
> the fact that no abduction researcher has performed the minimal
> investigation required to conclude that any anomalous missing
> pregnancy has occurred.

> 2.  The Duke's piece in Fortean Times 85 (making the same points
> as Neal, but with a British OB-GYN giving the expert testimony).

> 3.  The November 1991 MUFON Journal article describing Ann
> Druffel and Georgeanne Cifarelli's investigation of the missing
> pregnancy claim of an abductee who had contacted Hopkins and was
> referred by him to Dr. Neal and others on the west coast.  Their
> investigation included complete access to the abductee's medical
> records and doctors and concluded that the termination of the
> abductee's pregnancy was well within earthly norms.  I also
> suggest Hopkins' follow up letter to the editor as a straight
> from the horse's mouth example of how poorly he investigates and
> interprets such material.

Again, guy, you are nowhere near the point.  I am well aware
of this information, have actually written an article about it,
and cited Ann Druffel's excellent research into a particular
case elsewhere (e.g., The UFO Book, p. 215). I have said
these raise serious doubts about the reality of ATPs
(anomalously terminated pregnancies).  Hopkins and Jacobs
(not to mention other abduction investigators) continue to
report that abductees with whom they work experience ATPs.
This is an  extraordinary claim for which they ought to
produce relevant medical evidence.

> >We're not churning out deathless prose here.
> >We're writing ephemeral stuff, and we're writing it fast, and
> >it's not going to stand in print to get quoted back to us years
> >(or, in my case, sometimes decades) later.

> May I point out that the only years (not decades) old quotes of
> yours I posted were from IUR and a newsletter, not the list.
> Again, were they also meant to be ephemeral?  From the ephemeral
> list or not, if someone makes a, relatively, logical inference
> from your words may I suggest that you provide a brief, polite
> explanation, rather than complaints about the speed of your
> writing.

I have already answered you on this.  See above.  Perhaps
now you can start doing something useful, such as collecting
papers written by scientists, political pundits, social critics,
and others over the years and documenting how they've
changed their minds, been wrong, or otherwise failed to be
dogmatically consistent over time.  You've got your work
cut out for you, buddy.

> P.S.  You still didn't tell me who the master forger of my prose
> style is. I'll be gone for a week or so, but please, enquiring
> minds want to know.

How old are you, Jeff?

Cheers,

Jerry Clark


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