Home > Critical Thinking, Current Affairs, Dystopia, Musings, Philosophy sans Sophistry, Reason, Secular Religions, Skepticism, Technology > Smartphones Exposed Police Killing Unarmed People, but not UFOs

Smartphones Exposed Police Killing Unarmed People, but not UFOs

I have been trying to finish and post this somewhat odd blog post for the last few weeks, but was distracted by other posts and life in general. The idea for this article comes from some blog post (or discussion thread?) I came across a few months ago. The post (or discussion thread?) was about how smartphones with cameras have exposed many hitherto hidden events and facts- from “normal” women being narcissistic and slutty to police routinely killing unarmed black men. One of the commentators in that thread also talked about how trail cameras have been able to catch images of unknown or seldom seen species of animals.

All of this got me thinking- Why has the global proliferation of cheap and ubiquitous smartphones in the previous few years not provided us much more visual evidence (photos or videos) of UFOs?

Here is why I find this odd.. Reports and accounts of unidentified Flying Objects (UFOs) are not exactly new. Accounts of unidentified flying objects under apparently intelligent control can be found in literature from classical antiquity. Similarly multiple written accounts from the 16th-17th century also talk about mass sightings of flying objects what we would today call UFOs. Even more oddly, more than a few of these accounts are from east-asian cultures. Perhaps most significantly, almost all these older sightings occurred in the era before humans started building lighter-than-air or heavier-than-air flying machines.

As many of you know- accounts of UFO sightings exploded in the 20th century. While a significant part of this increase in number of alleged sightings can be accounted by the human desire to “see” more than what they actually saw- it is also clear that more than a few sightings of UFOs (especially by experienced pilots and amateur astronomers) are based in reality. Perhaps most tellingly, sightings of UFOs by pilots and astronomers almost always describe objects that are so different from existing aircraft (and balloons) that we have to consider the possibility that they were seeing real physical objects matching the description.

The worldwide proliferation of film cameras in the mid-1900s resulted in a wave of photos of objects alleged to be UFOs. While many have since been exposed as hoaxes or misidentification, a few have always remained explainable. We saw another mini-wave of recorded visual evidence for alleged UFOs after the proliferation of camcorders in the 1980s and 1990s. But then something curious happened. The introduction and even wider and global proliferation of digital cameras (standalone or in smartphones) has not resulted in an even larger wave of photographic evidence for UFOs. The question is- why not?

FYI- here is where I stand on the whole UFO issue. In my opinion, there is no reason for sentient life-forms to be unique to our planet. Furthermore, it is very likely that sentient and technologically capable life-forms in other planetary systems would explore other stellar systems using autonomous (and artificially intelligent) space probes.

What do you think? Comments?

  1. February 29, 2016 at 4:12 am

    The Fermi paradox is rather puzzling. By now, other intelligent life should be an easily confirmed fact, not a subject for conspiracy theorists.
    Perhaps there simply is no way to travel faster than sub-light speeds and we happen to be far enough way from the nearest neighbors.
    I read one possibility that sounded like it made some sense… That intelligent species intentionally keep a low profile because each reasons there could possibly be a more advanced species out there that nips potential future competitors in the bud.
    If such a malicious species exists, it would help explain our apparent isolation. If not, it might explain why other intelligent species don’t advertise themselves or even actively hide.
    Or, maybe intelligent species either go extinct or experience a singularity where they leave bodily existence behind within a very short window of geological time, so each is an undetectably brief event.

    One of my older posts is about that issue.

    https://dissention.wordpress.com/2010/03/06/my-views-on-the-fermi-paradox/

  2. Webe
    February 29, 2016 at 4:41 am

    Perhaps other forms of life and self-organizing material are so different from us that we would not even recognize it when we see it. As far as intelligence goes, this is usually conceived of in a rather anthropomorphic fashion. Lots of animals have intelligence, some have types of intelligent action and recognition superior to human beings, but they get little credit, and they are probably not communicating with anything outside of the earth’s sphere. In addition, many UFO sightings seem pretty steeped in the imagery and metaphors of the time. Although I would never dismiss the sightings out of hand, there are many steps from perceptual data to actual conclusions about “things”.

    While I am very skeptical about claims of visits by little green or gray men, it is much harder to dismiss the idea that UFOs are semi-autonomous atmospheric probes released by an orbiting “unmanned” (and fully autonomous) spacecraft.

  3. hans
    February 29, 2016 at 5:15 pm

    Ah, the UFO disclosure narrative is soo last century.
    What you actually should worry about is what “OUR” boys have been doing all this time with that funky alien tech.
    The operative words here are “breakaway civilization”.
    Search for the name “CATHERINE AUSTIN FITTS” on the UTub. Keep the popcorn and after digesting her info, a bucket to hurl into nearby.

  4. Ed
    March 1, 2016 at 9:27 am

    A few points on UFOs.

    1. The fact is that that scientists, the US government, and other governments have been actively looking, using more and more powerful instruments, for life elsewhere in the universe for decades and found nothing. Not even dumb life, let alone intelligent life. They could be not looking hard enough, or found something and are keeping quiet about it, or there is stuff out there but it is hiding, or there is nothing out there at all, but any UFO theory has to take this into account. The simplest explanation is that there is nothing out there.

    2. The argument for there being intelligent life is that the universe is vast, almost infinite, so the laws of probability dictate that there has to be something out there. But time is also vast, also infinite. If species and planets are mortal, as they almost certainly are, there is more than enough time for intelligent life to appear on a planet and then perish. The chances of the lifespan of such a species coinciding with the lifespan of a human species is basically zero. That is actually the best explanation of the Fermi paradox.

    3. Humans only mastered sending radio signals, then sending machines into space, then machines beyond Earth orbit in the last century. We existed as a species for hundreds of thousands of years before that. There is no particular reason why, if another intelligent species existed, they would have had an industrial revolution like humans did, which also requires a planet with exploitable metal and fossil fuel deposits.

    4. Since humans have been able to send a grand total of two small machines outside the solar system, there is no reason for even an advanced intelligent species to notice humans or Earth, or to care enough to investigate if they did. There is also no particular reason why they would have the human sense of curiosity.

    5. Environmentalists have been arguing that industrial processes will eventually poison the biosphere to the point where it will soon be no longer possible to sustain industrialized human civilization, or even the human species itself. These arguments are pretty well supported by evidence, if nothing else the fossil fuel deposits will run out eventually. If true, the same conditions would apply to other planets, in that just when they have developed enough industrially to support a space program, they would wind up either poisoning their own planet or running out of the required fossil fuel or metal deposits, which might be less extensive than those of Earth in the first place.

    6. The theory of physics holds that nothing but light can go faster than the speed of light, or even approach it. Solar systems are thousands, if not hundreds of thousands of light years apart. For space aliens to travel between solar systems, a number of wildly implausible theories have to be true. Either all our theories of physics have to be wrong, or the space aliens have to be made of light, or they have to have lifespans of hundreds of thousands of years -no plant or animal on Earth has a lifespan even close to what is required, or they have to have spacecraft where they can raise tons of generations of aliens, or hibernate for hundreds of thousands of years, just to get to Earth, which would be kind of stupid even if they could do this.

    7. The conspiracy theory that the government is covering up visits by space aliens conflicts with some other conspiracy theories. One of these is that the government is spreading rumors of space aliens to cover up their own secret attempts to develop advanced flying weapons, and biotechnology. These conspiracy theories are pretty plausible, much more than the UFO ones. Another conflicting conspiracy theories is that the US faked its claimed trips by its astronauts to the Moon, since its not possible to get people safely through the Van Allen Belts, or to get the landing craft to blast off to the moon and then dock with the orbiter consistently. The Moon conspiracy theories also have some plausibility -the Apollo missions are the only times humans claimed to have gotten past the Van Allen belts- and they indicate that interplanetary travel is much harder than people think, certainly too hard for all those space alien visits.

    The space alien stuff is really implausible if not impossible (and you don’t have to accept or even most of these arguments to see this). Its really just an updating of the old beliefs about monsters, fairies, and celestial beings. The old beliefs at least had some charm and more actual evidence to support them.

    • hans
      March 2, 2016 at 2:14 pm

      http://i.imgur.com/GU6Wxvq.gif Yeah, whatevar.
      This is why I usually don´t bother arguing with these assholes, because they always ignore actual scientific data (ex.Van Allen Belt) and immediately start shloning around with their beloved “conspiracy torrorist” boon-dongs.

      It´s like trying to explain the horizon to a flat-earther.

  5. P Ray
    April 15, 2016 at 11:33 pm

    It might have to do with most people being afraid of what someone (they can see)in a uniform and a gun on the ground can do to them,
    vs. an advanced lifeform from Tau Ceti with a mass driver, hurtling unseen above them.

    In short, you are more likely to be killed by another person than an alien, which is why you see more of that. People don’t want to get killed 🙂

  1. March 2, 2016 at 5:31 am
  2. September 6, 2017 at 5:01 pm

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: