Posts Tagged UFO

Unidentified Substances + Wishful Thinking = UFOs

Earlier this month more UFO files were released as part of a three year ongoing project between the Ministry of Defence and The National Archives. The files can be viewed here. They range from the more usual “I saw some lights in the sky and don’t know what they were” type of report, to the more extravagant “Flivob the Venutian wanted my sperm to repopulate his planet” kind of story. Ok, I obviously made that last one up, but those kinds of stories do crop up. I believe whiskey is normally involved. And a prior tendency to spout nonsense.

The files range from the years 1981 to 1996, and we get some cool stuff in there. We get waves of sightings recorded across Belgium in 1989 – 1990, which led to F-16 jets being scrambled by the Belgian Air Force. The F-16s obtained lock-ons with their radars but were unable to explain the phenomena. We also get a 1994 report by an air crew flying from Moscow to Tokyo, which describes a huge object entering the Earth’s atmosphere over the Arctic, creating a shockwave supposedly 200 miles long. The crew reports that the UFO came in over the North Pole at an estimated speed of 10-15,000mph. There are numerous records in the files of reports by pilots and air crews, including near-misses between UFOs and airliners. Read the rest of this entry »

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UFOs Spotted Over Lake District. Really. UFOs. No Fooling. OK, Maybe SOME Fooling…

So the Lake District is the latest area of England to be visited by UFOs.  Following on from the ones spotted in Shropshire, Cambridgeshire, London and… erm, well… Merseyside.  Yes, Merseyside.  That sound you can hear is us, dropping the ball on that one.  Aliens in our back gardens, and there we were out ‘mobbing’ local ‘psychics’.  Boy were our faces red.

But as it happens, the Merseyside UFOs weren’t aliens, after all.  I’ll let you have a moment to stop reeling from that shock revelation.  Done?  Good.  They were countermeasure flares deployed in a navy training routine.  Even the woo-tastic Telegraph is happy to go with this explanation, so it must really hold water – give those guys half an inch of wiggle room and it seems they’re the first ones to don their tin-foil hats and hum the theme tune to the X-Files.  And the BBC are not much better – ‘Do-Dee-Derr-Derrr…Do-Dee-Do-Derr-Derr-Derr…‘   As it happens, I was half-way through an ‘it’s probably something straightforward’ type post when it emerged that it was, in fact, something straightforward.  ‘Oh,’ thought I, ‘that’s that then.  No need to write on UFOs, it’ll be ages before another one of those comes up.’  But UFOs, like buses and clichés, rarely come along one at a time… Read the rest of this entry »

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How to demonstrate ghosts are real in one easy step

Imagine a conversation between two people.  We’ll call them Bill and Frank.

  • Frank claims: “God is real.”
  • Bill claims: “God is real.”
  • But Bill disagrees with Frank’s claim;
  • and Frank disagrees with Bill’s.

The solution to this simple problemette is that Bill and Frank define the word “God” in different ways. Bill, a fundamentalist Christian, worships the abrahamic god Yahweh.  Frank is a pantheist, and worships a spinozan god who might also be called “nature”.  The apparent contradiction in their conversation arises because they both use the word “god” to refer to the object of their worship, even though the concepts they are expressing are not equivalent.

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