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Location: UFOUpDatesList.Com > 2007 > Jul > Jul 25

Re: Why The Cover-Up?

From: Jerome Clark <jkclark.nul>
Date: Tue, 24 Jul 2007 09:36:51 -0500
Archived: Wed, 25 Jul 2007 07:58:05 -0400
Subject: Re: Why The Cover-Up?

>From: Paul Scott Anderson <paulscottanderson.nul>
>To: ufoupdates.nul
>Date: Mon, 23 Jul 2007 07:36:51 -0700
>Subject: Re: Why The Cover-Up?

>>From: Richard Hall <hallrichard99.nul>
>>To: ufoupdates.nul
>>Date: Sun, 22 Jul 2007 14:06:22 +0000
>>Subject: Re: Why The Cover-Up?

>>What people like Jerry Clark and me are jaded about is the
>>apparent complete ignorance of scientific method constantly
>>diaplayed by numerous people on this list, chief among them the
>>purveyors of the ludicrous notion that all ideas or hypotheses
>>are equally valid and deserving of equal consideration. It is
>>indeed horse-laughable.

>The problem is that some ideas simply get dismissed out of hand,
>based only on personal bias, not facts. That's why I like
>Stanton's idea of a "gray basket" where non-provable ideas can
>be put on the back burner until further evidence perhaps comes
>along, instead of just being discarded altogether.

The "problem" is not, in the self-serving definition above, that
ideas are rejected "based only on personal bias" (similar
charges are routinely hurled against physics professionals by
lay physics cranks who think they've disproved Einstein), but
that silly ideas, based on personal belief as opposed to a body
of compelling evidence, get continually reycled over ufology's
history. That's why we get nowhere, and that's why those of us
who know something about the requirements of science - not to
mention the history of ufology - lose our patience.

As this mind-numbing exchange has staggered onward, I have more
and more come to understand that at least some on this list
have, at best, a grade-school understanding of how science works
(that is, if they don't reject science altogether). They also
hold the absurd view that one idea being as good as another, all
ideas - however bizarre, however question-begging - deserve
respectful consideration, especially if in some way they
challenged that most hated of heresies, the ETH, which they can
be counted on to drag into every discussion even when it's not
at issue. I am pretty certain that by "gray basket," which any
thoughtful anomalist has in his intellectual tool kit, Stan
Friedman did not mean the ideas of Richard Shaver, M. K. Jessup,
and Ed Gehrman, or, for that matter, hollow-earth doctrines (in
which a secret advanced race is also thought to be living mostly
hidden from our view) that are unmistakably related. Right,

It's simply, really. Human evolution, archaeology, and ancient
history are well-established disciplines, stretching over
decades and centuries. These disciplines are well funded, have
produced a massive literature, and are taught in schools,
colleges, and universities across the world. Research into them
continues daily as new discoveries and insights deepen our
understanding of how we got to where we are now. The well of
richly documented, established data is deep. (None of the above
can be said for ufology, obviously.) Meantime, on the fringes
Gehrman conjures up a fantastic claim which contradicts a
staggering amount of established knowledge, not to mention what
those who possess it would deem common sense. If against all
odds he happens to be right, Gehrman is an intellectual hero to
rank with history's immortals, for example Galileo, who also had
to suffer inquisitors like Dick Hall and me.

So if you think his claims are reasonable, so, we may safely
presume, must scholars. In their professional life, after all,
they examine and analyze the relevant materials that would
demonstrate that Gehrman's theories are not, as surface
indications would suggest, stereotypical crank speculation, in
this instance rooted in his belief in the alien-autopsy film and
in an uncritical reading of true-mystery literature written by
non-professionals. After all, his would arguably be the greatest
discovery in all of history: that a technologically advanced
civilization that has co-existed pretty much unknown to us is
responsible for a wide range of heretofore unexplained
appearances and phenomena.

If this is true, direct evidence for its presence would be all
around us. Archaeologists, historians, and others in relevant
disciplines would have written papers in refereed scientific
journals examining it and constructing hypotheses around it. So
let's see those citations, shall we?

By the way, Graham Hancock, not a reputable academic, does not
count. And please don't waste our time by pointing out that
archaeological anomalies exist. Anomalies _always_ exist. Nobody
says we know everything about the human past. (Beyond that, we
don't know everything about, for example, gravity; yet nobody
disputes its existence. On the other hand, we haven't heard from
Ed Gehrman or his defenders on that subject. Maybe they'll tell
us that scientists who work on gravity are close-minded
incompetents who don't know anything.) But unless you can prove
otherwise - and you can't - it's time to stop insulting your
colleagues' intelligence and wasting our time.

If you really think you have a serious claim on their time and
attention, it is your obligation not to harangue us growingly
impatient ufologists but to take it to the scientific
professionals for their assessment. Time, too, to start citing
papers in the scientific literature that show the professionals
deem the existence of a hidden terrestrial civilization even
marginally possible. Time, in other words, to put up or shut up.
Why do I expect that you will do neither?

Jerry Clark

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



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