UFO UpDates
A mailing list for the study of UFO-related phenomena
'Its All Here In Black & White'
Location: UFOUpDatesList.Com > 2007 > Aug > Aug 1

Re: Core Case [was: The Fermi Paradox]

From: Gerald O'Connell <gac.nul>
Date: Tue, 31 Jul 2007 15:16:23 +0100
Archived: Wed, 01 Aug 2007 09:14:25 -0400
Subject: Re: Core Case [was: The Fermi Paradox]

>From: Brad Sparks <RB47x.nul>
>To: ufoupdates.nul
>Date: Tue, 31 Jul 2007 08:57:07 EDT
>Subject: Re: The Fermi Paradox


>It is sad that many NICAP members spent years fighting for the
>release of the AF files, then when the AF files were finally
>released it was too late, those fighting for release were gone
>or had lost interest, or could not recruit assistants to tackle
>such a huge project. To this day no one really knows what is in
>all the AF files, publicly available for over 30 years now, as I
>can show by the startling cases that I have found so far. Breezy
>books skimming over a few sensational cases doesn't cut it.
>Cutting corners by jumping to the 500+ Unidentified cases and
>ignoring the probably 5,000 other unexplained cases won't cut it

>A major drawback to some websites and case collections is the
>commingling of disreputable cases and personalities with
>legitimate UFO cases and researchers. This is an increasing
>problem as apparently the US Air Force continues to propagate
>disinformation to discredit the UFO field, by promoting
>questionable organizations and claims that mix the legitimate
>with the fraudulent. Whenever someone tries to point out these
>discrediting associations the AF stooges and their unwitting
>followers gang up on them.

>Another problem is the dogmatic insistence of UFO advocates that
>the entire UFO problem must be solved all at once, or else none
>at all. But this is not how science works. As much as some just
>hate hearing this, science is fundamentally "reductionistic," a
>fancy word meaning the "reduction" of a problem to its simpler
>parts (not necessarily smaller parts, by the way, but _simpler_
>aspects which could very well be physically larger).

>UFO researchers sink their case by demanding that scientists
>solve all of the UFO phenomenon all at the same time, including
>the toughest cases right at the beginning, such as abductions
>and CE III's, etc. This kitchen-sink approach is never going to
>impress physicists at the American Physical Society or
>astronomers at the American Astronomical Society. Don't come
>back at me saying this has never worked, it will never work,
>etc. It has never been tried before so you can't say that.

Brad, I have to agree with just about everything you say here,
except in one respect: I'm not at all sure about the dynamics of
cause and effect between public opinion and scientific activity.
I agree that scientists need to be engaged, and engaged in the
right way with the right data, but I also believe that that
engagement will be much more successful if undertaken against a
background of positive public opinion.

That's why I have responded positively to Eleanor's 'core case'
suggestion for use with the popular media. The two approaches:

1. Serious/Scientific

2. Popular/PR

are both necessary, and will support each other if undertaken

Conversely, I think we shoot ourselves in the foot if we believe
that either one of these approaches can do the work all on its
own. Two very different jobs, but both essential.

 -- Gerald O'Connell

Listen to 'Strange Days... Indeed' - The PodCast