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Location: UFOUpDatesList.Com > 2012 > Apr > Apr 3

Printy 'Science' & Kecksberg

From: David Rudiak <drudiak.nul>
Date: Mon, 02 Apr 2012 14:36:21 -0700
Archived: Tue, 03 Apr 2012 07:11:17 -0400
Subject: Printy 'Science' & Kecksberg

[was: Debunkers Irrational Uninformed And Ignorant]

>Source: Frank Warren's UFO Chronicles


>Thursday, March 29, 2012

>UFO Debunkers: Irrational, Uninformed And Ignorant
>Stanton T Friedman

>In early February, 2012, Andre Skondras, who distributes many
>interesting UFO articles on the internet, carried a 15 page 2008
>article by Tim Printy entitled The UFO Disclosure Myth; I am a
>primary target of the last portion of the article. I also found
>his paper My Skeptical Opinion about UFOs. Clearly he is a
>debunker not a skeptic. He seems to know very little though he
>has strong opinions.

Ah yes, Tim Printy, the Sarah Palin of Ufology, indeed
irrational, uniformed, and ignorant. He thinks he knows much
more than he really does, claims to be the defender of "science"
But like a lot of debunkers, he is more of a science wannabe who
thinks he knows what "science" is about, but hasn't a clue about
true scientific argumentation. Printy never really had any
formal scientific education. Unlike Stan or me, or many others
in this crazy field, Printy has zero college science degrees.
Just remember that whenever you read Printy ranting about how
sancrosanct "science" is and how supposedly pseudoscientific
Ufologists like Stan or me are.

According to a bio he once did on himself, he has only a high
school diploma before putting in for (as I remember) a 20 year
stint in the Navy as a tech on a nuclear submarine. Nothing
wrong with that, of course, but it doesn't somehow make one a
"scientist" any more than being an auto mechanic makes you a
scientist. Nonetheless, that and being a long-time amateur
astronomer, apparently makes Printy think he is a scientific
genius, even though he bungles just about every argument he
makes because he usually 1) doesn't get his basic facts right or
just makes them up or omits/dismisses inconvenient ones, or 2)
doesn't even comprehend what the argument is about.  Printy is
bombastic in his writing style and knows just barely enough to
make him sound superficially authoritative, but when you analyze
his arguments, they almost invariably turn out to be total

Much like Printy's recent attacks on Stan Friedman which Stan
felt he had to respond to, I recently put up a second web page
on the 1965 Kecksburg incident to counter a lot of Tim Printy
foolishness attacking me personally and another Kecksburg page I
put up. I was originally criticizing a 1967 astronomy paper in
the Journal of the Royal Astronomical Society of Canada (JRASC),
that Printy and other debunkers rely heavily on, that claimed to
prove that a widely seen fireball associated with Kecksburg was
really on a trajectory at right-angles to one that would have
taken it in the direction of Kecksburg. Thus, this supposedly
proved the fireball couldn't possibly have anything to do with
Kecksburg. (Printy's basic argument is absolutely nothing of
significance happened there.)

But the JRASC paper had lots of problems with it. I pointed out
that the two astronomer authors had no error analysis in their
triangulated trajectory and even very tiny errors in their
measurements (examples of which I pointed out) could have easily
created a trajectory towards Kecksburg. Further, the photos they
used in their trajectory triangulation showed a thinning trail
strongly suggestive of the fireball moving off in the distance
towards western Pennsylvania, rather than sideways to the
cameras as they claimed (where one would have expected a trail
of about the same average thickness).

Original web page:


My later counter to Printy:


In attacking me and my Kecksburg website, Printy claimed some of
the following pseudoscientific nonsense:

1. It was in an astronomy journal (ooooh, scary!), therefore the
article was above criticism. Did you know that any scientist or
paper they write never makes any mistakes, at least in fawning
Printy DebunkerWorld? Instead, Printy claimed it was up to me to
prove measurement error, when any idiot with even minimal
science training knows that there are ALWAYS errors in
measurements. All _properly_ refereed science journals demand an
error analysis--from the authors, not the readers--to
demonstrate results are not artifacts of inherent errors. This
is absolutely fundamental to the scientific method, but Printy
obviously doesn't know this. (To show how sloppy the paper
actually was, the authors reversed their trajectory data points,
meaning they originally had the fireball flying upwards into
space instead of crashing into the ground, and in point 4 below
is a good example of how they played games with the actual
eyewitness data to support the meteor hypothesis.)

2. Printy claimed another much-better studied and
photographically documented fireball showed a thinning trail as
it approached the camera, i.e., Printy claimed to have provided
a counter-example proving my thinning argument wrong.
Unfortunately for the totally clueless Printy, he obviously
didn't spend event two seconds to analyze the data and photo he
referenced, because if he had he might have realized he had the
direction of travel BACKWARDS. (All he had to do was look at a
map to get it right.) In other words, the fireball trail was
indeed getting larger as it approached the camera, or thinned
out as it moved away, as photographed from other sites, just as
one would expect from simple geometrical laws of perspective.

3. Three times claimed that single-point data "confirmed" the
trajectory of the authors, when any minimally educated person
knows it takes at least two points to determine a line or
trajectory. E.g., he cites a seismographic single-point data
record used by the authors as somehow proving their trajectory,
when it proves nothing of the sort, since one seismographic
record can't possibly tell you what direction a sound came from
or the direction of travel of the object that made it. In
reality, the authors used the seismographic record of a sonic
boom or explosion near Detroit to try to pin down the time of
passage. They obviously knew a lot better than to make Printy's
absolutely inane argument that the single seismic record showed
direction of travel.

4. Claimed I deliberately left out the collected eyewitness
reports, supposedly supporting the absoluteness of their
trajectory. In reality, there was nothing for me to report,
since the analysis of the 66 detailed eyewitness reports they
said were gathered and analyzed was supposed to be "Part II" of
the JRASC paper, but was NEVER published, for reasons that have
never been explained. (Their article was "Part I", they
referenced "Part II", and "Part II" should have been the very
next article, but it never appeared.) Instead, the only two
specific witnesses mentioned, the two photographers whom the
authors claimed were best-positioned to accurately report the
fireball, disagreed with the paper on two key points. One, e.g.,
made several statements (one in a letter to Project Blue Book
immediately afterward) that the fireball appeared to be fading
out in the distance and moving away from him (born out by the
photographs of the thinning trail), i.e., headed eastward
towards western Pennsylvania, not diving northward into Lake
Erie. Both disagreed with the authors' estimate of duration
(used to calculate speed), one saying 1 second, the other 4
seconds. What did the author's use?: the "average" of 2 seconds,
even while noting that the vast majority of the other
eyewitnesses placed the duration at 3 to 4 seconds. Why didn't
they use the much more statistically sound average of everybody?
Well, it seems the longer average duration would have cut the
speed to well below expected meteor speeds to more like what one
would expect from a re-entering space object. So it was obvious
the authors were massaging the eyewitness duration reports to
support their meteor hypothesis, a good example of confirmation
bias in action.

5. Claimed there were no eyewitness accounts from the period
supporting a Kecksburg area crash. But if there were, they were
all due to faulty reporting, e.g., a Columbus, Ohio weather
observer reporting a bright object due east of him, i.e. right
in the direction of Kecksburg (but if the event ended near
Detroit, he should have reported it due north, so, of course,
the reporter quoting him must have gotten it wrong, at least
according to Printy). Actually there were many other reports
back then supporting something flying well beyond Detroit and
into western Pennsylvania airspace, such as widely reported
grass fires in Elyria, Ohio (also recovered metallic fragments).
But Elyria was on a trajectory taking the fireball towards
western Pennsylvania. None of what was reported in Elyria could
have happened if the JRASC trajectory, 50 miles away and at
right angles, was correct.

There were also widely reported sonic booms in western
Pennsylvania discussed by an astronomer (and even a Project Blue
Book log of reports associated with the fireball noted an
unspecified "sound" from Greensburg, PA, near Kecksburg 10
minutes after the fireball event supposedly ended). The
Pittsburgh airport control tower said there was something in
their airspace several minutes later, i.e., again after the
fireball had supposedly ended near Detroit. Project Blue Book
files also had a dramatic eyewitness written report of a
passenger on a Canadian airliner, a former RCAF pilot, south of
Pittsburg near Kecksburg, seeing a bright UFO out his window in
a direction opposite Detroit (to his east, not backward and to
his northwest) going from horizontal flight into a rapid steep
dive at an unbelievable rate. There was another newspaper report
from Uniontown, PA, even further south, of a bright object north
of the area appearing to head toward eastern suburbs of
Uniontown (whereas sighting of a meteor diving steeply near
Detroit should have been reported strictly to the northwest and
headed straight into the ground, not seeming to fly to the east
of Uniontown). There was a widely reported Army and military
scientists/engineers search of the Kecksburg area prompted by 7
local eyewitnesses seeing something dive into the woods there.
Printy again claims the reporters were confused by a small Air
Force unit called out there (never noting, e.g., that one of the
reporters, Bob Gatty from Greensburg, was raised in an Army
family and was well aware of what Army uniforms looked like).
And why would either the Army or Air Force be involved in the
search for a suspected "meteorite"? Obviously they would be
concerned about something else possibly crashing there.

6. Printy made many other foolish, false, and spurious claims.
E.g., he claimed I deliberately didn't quote a passage from the
JRASC authors (when I always had, questioning in detail it's
accuracy--kind of hard to miss if he had actually bothered to
read what I wrote). He falsely claimed I had never looked into
the seismographic angle (I had years before Printy, contacting a
NOAA expert, who informed me that data like sonic booms or
explosions were typically thrown out of permanent records
because they are considered artifactual seismic data--the
Detroit area data point used in the JRASC article no longer
exists either.)

In short, I feel Stan Friedman's frustration and pain dealing
with a perpetually clueless and dishonest debunker like Printy.
But fellow debunkers love to cite his stuff, being equally
clueless as to just how vacuous it really is. Really, thinking
there are never any measurement errors by scientists or getting
the direction of meteor exactly backwards does not speak highly
of his "scientific" acumen, now does it?

David Rudiak

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