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Location: UFOUpDatesList.Com > 1998 > Jun > Jun 16

Re: Occam's Razor and UFOs

From: Greg Sandow <gsandow@prodigy.net>
Date: Tue, 16 Jun 1998 09:09:18 -0400
Fwd Date: Tue, 16 Jun 1998 19:12:05 -0400
Subject: Re: Occam's Razor and UFOs

> Date: Mon, 15 Jun 1998 14:00:26 -0500 (CDT)
> To: UFO UpDates - Toronto <updates@globalserve.net>
> From: Dennis Stacy <dstacy@texas.net>
> Subject: Re: UFO UpDate: Re: Occam's Razor and UFOs

> >From: Greg Sandow <gsandow@prodigy.net>
> >To: "'UFO UpDates - Toronto'" <updates@globalserve.net>
> >Subject: RE: UFO UpDate: Re: Occam's Razor and UFOs
> >Date: Sun, 14 Jun 1998 10:07:03 -0400
> <snip>
> >Good point, Jerry. And when Dennis (in another post mentioning
> >this piece) calls this a typical New York Review article, I
> >can't agree.

> <snip>

> >Greg

> Greg:

> I suppose it depends on what you mean by typical, doesn't it?

> For example, my advice, if you wanted to write a typical article
> for the New York Review of Books, would include the following:

> 1) Pretend you're the world's foremost authority on the subject
> under review, even if all you nominally know about it is what
> you read in the three or four books you knocked off in a single
> sitting the day before;

> 2) Always review the subject itself. (See No. 1 above.) Only
> occasionally refer to anything actually having to do with the
> idividual books ostensibly under review.

> Of course these are the same guidelines generally in use at the
> NY Times Book Review, too, except that they only deal with one
> book at a time.

> So what you're really saying is, Crews's article is simply more
> typical than most.

> Do I detect a New England Establishment, an intellectual elite,
> at work here?

> Actually, to be pefectly honest (and non-paranoid), anytime
> humans are involved in a situation, complexity is apt to rear
> its ugly head. So to put the record straight -- if memory serves
> -- didn't Mack's book get a fairly decent hearing (a more decent
> one than I would have given it at any rate) in the Times Book
> Review, and wasn't Carl Sagan's recent The Demon-Haunted World
> taken out behind the woodshed in the NY Review of Books?

> Hey, reviews happen!

Perfectly reasonable, Dennis. I remember the NY Times review of
Mack -- by Dean Koontz, wasn't it? His open-mindedness, stretched
in the direction of naivete, was really sweet. (Or wait -- maybe
that was Koontz's review of C.D.B. Bryan's abduction book.)

Anyhow, I wasn't trying to make any overall point about the
treatment of UFOs in the high-tone media. As I might have made
more clear, I was talking about a subset of UFO reviews, in which
disbelief reaches the level of hysteria. The tone of Crews's
article isn't something I normally find in the NY Review, but
you're certainly right when you say the form of the piece was

Greg Sandow

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