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How the UFO mystery is affected by circular logic

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The UFO Phenomenon


John Michael Greer points to bias and circular reasoning as to why we have made little or no progress in UFO research over the last sixty years. Skewing the meaning of UFO to include alien craft has been detrimental in the process argues the author in the ‘The UFO Phenomenon’.
Frequently, ‘an object in the air that has not been identified’ is equated with ET craft by UFO proponents and debunkers alike. This unscientific approach to the subject will never satisfactorily prove or disprove if we are alone in the universe because it does not serve the original meaning of the term: ‘unidentified object in the air’.
Believers in the null hypothesis, those unwilling to yield to the affirmation that ET craft may have flown in our skies, base their logic that alien ships cannot exist. Therefore, Greer contends, these disbelievers attempt to explain why sightings are mistaken for haze, clouds, humidity, gas or even other planets. These ad hoc hypotheses are not falsifiable hypotheses unless proved. Many times these conclusions, as evidenced in the Condon Committee Report in the 1960’s, are not investigated to a satisfactory scientific conclusion. The debunkers only attribute natural phenomena for the alleged sightings of craft, and by doing this, never conclude that weather was actually the reason the witness mistook a ship for a planet.
Proponents are equally guilty when they reason anything unexplained in the skies must be alien if it isn’t a natural occurrence or hoax.
Both sides insist upon bolstering their point of view in a biased manner. UFO proponents generally validate anecdotal evidence when it supports their point of view. Debunkers dismiss all sightings, even those truly unidentifiable, because they are convinced there are no advanced civilizations navigating our skies.
But how and when did UFO believers first become convinced alien ships exist? Greer indicates this phenomenon grew from pulp science fiction and twentieth century conflicts among nations. Saucers depicted in fiction may have influenced witnesses to believe a secret military craft was indeed alien. Governments, desperate to keep their technology under wraps, often used the public’s belief in these otherworldly saucers to confuse the issue.
Greer posits the neurological hypothesis is why this might happen. The UFO mystery has often been affected by perceptions. Witnesses of UFO’s often give accounts that fit popular culture. The author is skeptical as to why the majority of modern day sightings involve similarly shaped craft and Grey-type aliens. Eyewitness accounts changed from saucer to triangular shaped sightings with the advent of new military technology in the 80’s. Even the descriptions of the aliens changed from blonde Nordic-like beings in the 50’s to small, large-eyed aliens in the 70’s.
Neurochemical events in the human brain may be influencing these sightings via hallucinations. Neurologist Michael A. Persinger has studied temporal-lobe epilepsy, a condition which may be triggered by magnetic fields. Tectonic stress combined with technology can and does impact these fields, meaning a person could be affected by an altered state of consciousness when they view moving lights in our skies. This type of study may prove falsifiable and finally provide the breakthrough needed to determine whether or not aliens visit us.


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