Sunday, October 04, 2009

UFOS: The Best Evidence

When I was younger, I was a big fan of UFO documentaries – I’m pretty sure that I sat through Unsolved Mysteries just to get to the bits about aliens and whatnot, and I would often run out to the kitchen during ad-breaks relaying to my mother the terrifying ‘proofs’ that aliens were among us and poking things up our bottoms. It was a simpler time.

Now that I’m a rather obnoxious skeptic, I consider this type of programming to be filth, as I realise how it is little more than wishful thinking masquerading as science. That said, when I saw that one of the featured videos on Vuze today was ‘UFOs – Best Evidence of Strange Encounters’, I thought it’d be ignorant of me not to give ‘the best evidence’ a cursory glance.


It’s dreck. Absolute, utter horseshit. But I sat through all 51 brain-meltingly awful minutes of it, so I’m going to write some more about it, damnit!

The video opens with the ‘Paranormal TV’ logo – which immediately put me off the entire endeavour – a name like that makes me inclined to think that they’ve got a vested interest in propagating paranormal belief, but I decided to wait and see how even handed they are with their reporting.

I'm not five minutes in and I'm already being bombarded with moody stock-footage, as well as pictures of 'strange orbs' and 'unexplained phenomena':

Look! An unexplained orb in the..... - Nevermind!

Looks like a Cheetoh under a heat-lamp to me.

The story begins in the quaint town of Fyffe, Alabama, a serene place where the neighbours look out for each other, and the happy community leaves in perfect harmony, and everything is peachy-keen. Except for the fact that cattle are getting CUT THE FUCK UP every so often!

Cue the negative-effect and zoom that sucker in! It's time to look at some butchered bovine!

And of course, the only thing more upsetting than looking at these placid animals after they've had their reproductive organs brutally plucked from their bodies is the cast of sorry characters that comprise the locals who are bothered by "them thar alien folk who be laserin' arr cattle".

That cross-eyed hick on the right? That thar bumpkin is Ted Olyphant, former paranormal-documentary filmmaker turned sheriff, who is the only man with the integrity to stand against Big Media's cover-up of the aliens who are committing these heinous acts!

The voiceover guy seems a little sympathetic to the plight of the venerable Mr. Olyphant, given his recollection of the media attention that came when Olyphant went public with his investigation's findings:
Skeptics called them "hicks and bumpkins", leaving emotional scars which are still evident"
Those damn skeptics - all they do is ignore evidence and upset people, isn't that right, voice-over guy? Surely they're not as hard on those blighted by alien abduction, are they?

"Resistence to the possibility of alien abduction has been nearly universal among scientists and mental health professionals, most of whom haven't studied the data whatsoever"
Those damn scientists and mental-health professionals! How dare most of them not study the data! Well, who does study the data?

Budd Hopkins, you say? And how do the skeptical community feel about this guy?
"A guy out to sell books" say the cynics of Budd Hopkins..."
Hmmm... Something tells me that there's a more generous description coming...

"A courageous pioneer, his supporters retort, who is dragging the scientific community, kicking and screaming into the 21st century"
And how is he 'dragging the scientific community kicking and screaming into the 21st century? By compiling anecdotal experiences into a book and calling it 'research'. Crafty.

Hopkins is the hero of the tale, according to the sycophantic voice-over guy, "Hopkins, perhaps more than any other person has risked all - including his personal life and his health, in order to convince the world to sit up and take notice of abduction reports. Finally, his efforts appear to be paying off".

I'm part of the vast conspiracy to cover up UFOs, so don't take my word for it, let's have voice-over dude explains why people are mean to American heroes like Budd:
"His lack of scientific credentials certainly opens him up for bitter criticism from those with degrees on the wall"
Note that this isn't just criticism, or incisive criticism, or even forthright criticism - this is bitter criticism - how dare he do what scientists do without having a fancy piece of paper on the wall! You mean nobody has to spend years earning a scrap of paper before opining on a given subject? Hell, I know I'd be bitter if some guy declared himself an authority on something I worked hard to qualify in!

Part of the problem I have with this documentary is how it lists innumerable anomalies, but never proffers the contravening evidence that motivates the skeptics, characterising them as elitist and arrogant - remember now, the heroes featured in this tale "refuse to accept the easy explanation".

When discussing crop-circles - or to use the correct nomenclature this drivel insists on, 'agri-glyphs' - the English farmers who admitted to starting the craze are mentioned, but the footage of them is set to silly carnival-music, and their designs are dismissed as 'primitive' whilst the viewer is beat over the head with numerous examples of beautiful crop-art messages from our celestial neighbours

Remember - these agri-glyps can't be done by humans because they're too perfect! [I'd link to a great video on YouTube if I could find it, but instead you can just check out this link]

The programme tries so hard to drive a wedge between everyday life and science, doing its very best to cast the scientific process in as absurd a light as possible. They even have an Einstein doppelganger promoting this nonsense!

"For most scientists - still rooted in the concepts of the 17th century, such concepts are preposterous - if something can't be physically measured, then it can't exist - meaning there are no souls, no human spirit, no God, no alien-worlds"

"[Abduction cases are] tailor-made to shatter the arrogance of the western world view" according to one interviewee.

"Many scientists simply refuse to believe that abductions are real, no matter what... Those scientists who do investigate are often amazed at the scope and similarity of abductee tales."
Science is old-fashioned, elitist, dogmatic, and conspires against what people believe in, so fuck science! All it ever does is try to tell us that we're stupid because we don't know stuff, but we're not going to take it any more! From now on, I'm going to trust the words of these guys. They have [stock footage of] satellites!

See! That's sciencey! Not convinced yet? Ask yourself this, whose side do you want to be on, the side of the guys who say "we've yet to make contact with extra-terrestrial intelligence", or the guys who have a gin-u-wine alien channeller guy!

Checkmate, science!


Jason said...

Lulz were had at this:

“...who is the only man with the integrity to stand against Big Media's cover-up of the aliens who are committing these heinous acts!”

Yeah, it's wishful thinking masquerading as objective truth-seeking.
Like so much nutbaggery and delusion in the world.

There are two possibilities that UFO hunters should consider: that the shitty, grainy little pictures shown on Paranormal TV are snapshots of intergalactic alien species who have overcome light-speed limitations and have visited our planet with super hightech spacecrafts to anally probe random hicks and leave crop circles – or “agri-glyphs” – for us to ponder. Or... it's a fuckin frisby, and you're retarded.

UFOs must stroke some deep, hardwired emotional itch for the otherworldly and preternatural – that same momentary feeling you get when you hear the X Files theme.

Anonymous said...


just registered and put on my todo list

hopefully this is just what im looking for, looks like i have a lot to read.