archiv~1: Re: SETI Off-topic Censorious Posts

Re: SETI Off-topic Censorious Posts

Mitchell Jones ( )
Tue, 17 Nov 1998 04:47:24 -0600

>On Mon, 16 Nov 1998, Mitchell Jones wrote:
>> ***{Frankly, these astonishing SOHO photos and their associated
>> interpretative difficulties were only pointed out to me a few days ago, and
>> I have not had time to get much feedback about them. The reason for my
>> posting of these links, in fact, is to elicit feedback. I am open to any
>> alternative theories anyone may care to toss at me. That's why I posted
>> those links on this list. It is only within the last month that I have
>> begun to seriously consider the possibility that all of this talk about
>> "flying saucers," "alien visitations," etc., may have enough factual basis
>> to be subject to scientific verification, and my opinions on this topic are
>> anything but firm. One thing does seem crystal clear, however: a supposed
>> "search for extraterrestrial intelligence" that, on principle, refuses to
>> consider the possibility that there may be aliens in our own solar system,
>> is little more than a fraud. Tentative hits from near the earth, or near
>> the sun, cannot reasonably be discounted without evidence. And if the
>> government simply asserts that something is a satellite, they must be
>> required to support their assertions with evidence. Too many people have
>> alleged that governments are trying to cover up the existence of ET's for
>> us to place them in the position to be the final arbiters of whether we
>> have a "hit" or not. --Mitchell Jones}***
>You might read through the archive of this listserver. There was a
>posting back in May that tried to claim that the planet Mars was an alien
>spacecraft that the government was trying to cover up based on a SOHO
>image. I think the same people are still at it.

***{I have seen claims that the "suncruiser" was really Mars, as well as
claims that it was Saturn or a comet, but such arguments leave me cold. The
reason: it is apparent by simple inspection that it could be none of those
things. Frankly, I haven't seen any claims that the "suncruiser" has been
tracking the coordinates of Mars or those of Saturn, so I can't speak to
that. Nevertheless, let's suppose that some object, just for the sake of
argument, always seems to be where Mars should be, when we point our
telescopes at it. However, when we actually look through our telescopes at
the object, we see a kangaroo. The question is: should we label the
kangaroo as "Mars" and go on to other activities, or should we pause and
consider the possibility that something odd is going on? In my view, common
sense dictates that we should do the latter. Unfortunately, common sense
does not yet seem to have entered the picture where the "suncruiser" is
concerned. --Mitchell Jones}***

>> ***{Actually, the coordinates of EQ Peg are RA 23h31m52s, DEC 19deg56m15s,
>> according to a reference I pulled off of the net. What the declination
>> number means is that EQ Pe lies almost 20 degrees above the plane of
>> Earth's equator. However, since the plane of the ecliptic is tilted at an
>> angle of 23.5 degrees to the plane of Earth's equator, the actual angular
>> distance between EQ Peg and the Sun varies throughout the year as the Sun,
>> from the point-of-view of the celestial coordinate system, swings about the
>> Earth. Now I do not have access to a program that would be capable of doing
>> an exact calculation of this sort, but from the perspective of simply
>> visualizing the situation that existed from Sept. 17 until the end of
>> October, when these various possible SETI hits occurred, it seems to me
>> that the "suncruiser" may have been in the vicinity of the line of sight
>> from Earth to EQ Peg. [Note: the first tentative SETI hit on EQ Peg was
>> happens. I would try it in English: "Hello out there. We read your signal
>> loud and clear. Do you have anything to say to us? Over." If we got a
>> response, it would be the beginning of a mind-boggling adventure, and would
>> be guaranteed to transform the world.
>> Of course, these are merely possibilities. But pointing an amateur dish at
>> this signal and transmitting a response to see what happens is an
>> experiment to test these possibilities, and so this thread has already
>> progressed from the point of speculation to that of hard science. As such,
>> it is fully legitimate even by that standard, and those who claim that
>> discussion of this alleged hoax is off topic are out of line.
>The sun won't line up with EQ Pegasi until the middle of January.

***{Well, I don't have a computer program to check out your claim, but when
I visualize the situation, what you say looks wrong to me. The sun will
cross the ascension plane of EQ Peg about a week before it crosses the
ascension plane of the vernal equinox--which means: about Sept. 15. [These
two ascension planes are separated by an acute angle of 0h28m8s, which is
about (28/60)15 = 7 degrees. Thus we have (7/360)365 = 7.09 days, or about
a week.] At that time, the Sun will be very near the Earth's equatorial
plane. (Sept. 22 is the autumnal equinox.) Since the Earth's equatorial
plane has a declination of zero by definition, that means EQ Peg will be
about 19 degrees above the Sun when it has the same ascension coordinate as
the Sun. That means the Sun and EQ Peg will *never* line up. --Mitchell

>whole line of thought is wrong from the start.

***{No. I never claimed that Paul Dore's alleged SETI hit came from the
Sun. What I am putting forward as a *possibility* is that the source may
have been the suncruiser, or perhaps a relay beacon put out by the
suncruiser. While the photos that I have seen show both the suncruiser and
the Sun, I have no direct way of determining, from those photos, whether
the suncruiser or perhaps a relay beacon from it, may have been located
when the Paul Dore SETI hit was claimed and then later confimed. Perhaps
the suncruiser or such a beacon was the source of the signals claimed by
these people, if they were real. It just strikes me as a bit odd that we
have photos showing a gigantic object near the center of our solar system
which looks like some sort of space ship, and time lapse photos showing
suspicious traces that look like they were made by an object moving under
its own power, all coming from the same generalized region of the sky as
these allegedly fake SETI hits. If I owned or had access to a
radiotelescope--which regrettably I do not--I would very thoroughly examine
that region of the sky at the 21 centimeter wavelength and, if I found
nothing, I would expand the search to nearby wavelengths, until I had
thoroughly convinced myself that there was no signal to be found. This is
simply too important a possibility to be dismissed with what amounts to a
wave of the hand, as the SETI institute appears to be doing. --Mitchell

>> ***{What is your point--that I am the hoaxer, perhaps? Well now there's an
>> occasion for a good laugh! Hell, maybe *you* are the hoaxer! Can you prove
>> that you aren't? Maybe you are insinuating that it's me to divert attention
>> away from yourself! :-) --Mitchell Jones}***
>According to what I read elsewhere, it looks like the hoaxster's real
>identity is becoming known at last. It may actually increase the signal
>to noise of the entire internet by a small amount.

***{If you are referring to the speculations recently posted on Art Bell's
website, I don't buy it. The guy they are claiming to be the hoaxer, based
on his writings, appears to be a virtual illiterate. There is *no way* he
could be the author of the posts originally attributed to Paul Dore, K.F.
Benton, and Jay Oka. --Mitchell Jones}***

>Daniel Fox

***{By the way, when I checked Art Bell's website today, I noticed that he
had pulled the alien photos that I intended to reference with my links the
other day. All that remained were crapola photos that could have been
easily faked up by any reasonably talented and determined creature effects
guy. As a matter of curiosity, did any members of this list access my alien
photo links in time to get to a good quality color photo of a dead alien
with green skin and a feathered crest down the midline at the back of his
skull? He was lying on a sheet of what appeared to be aluminum foil coated
with transparent plastic, and he had a bloody wound about 3 inches across
at the top left, on the back of his head. Did any of you actually see that,
or did the photo disappear before anybody got to it? If the latter, then I
am extremely disappointed: it was the most spectacular alien photo I have
ever seen, and the *only* one I have ever seen that looked like an actual
creature. I would have liked to have heard some reasoned criticisms of that
possibility from someone. --Mitchell Jones}***