Tuesday, November 29, 2011

Hoagland Grunt

        "The symbology is running the show," stated Richard Hoagland during a very brief appearance on Coast to Coast AM on Monday night. Phobos-Grunt, he explained, was not out of control at all.  Moscow Mission Control was merely waiting for the numerology to come right. The spacecraft would depart for Mars on Tuesday, 11/29/11—because 29 is just as good as 11, see?

        As we know, Hoagland's notion that space agencies wait for numerology, or for certain stars to achieve certain elevations, is entirely, tragically, irretrievably, mistaken.  Of course, the dawn of 11/30/11 saw Phobos-Grunt still stuck in orbit.

        On Monday night, Hoagland also stated that the ESA antenna in Perth was no longer involved in the attempt to contact and/or command P-G. According to space.com Perth made another attempt to contact the spacecraft on Tuesday night. Must be the fault of Hoagland's now utterly discredited "sources."

        If Coast-to-Coast had any respect for its audience it would ban Hoagland for ever. However, it doesn't and it won't. Instead, it will give Hoagland and his sources three full hours to tell lies tonight. This blogpost will resume.....


        George Noory is SUCH A WIMP. He let Hoagland so far off the hook that the hook itself straightened out and apologized for ever having been a hook. I didn't expect an actual confrontation, but considering it was just 48 hours since Hoagland had said "The symbology is running the show," surely some powder-puff like "So what happened to that?" would have been appropriate?

        But no. It immediately got worse. Hoagland was allowed to give himself a GLOBAL AND NON-EXPIRING FREE PASS, saying:
"I try not to lead people in the wrong direction by saying 'This will happen.' I almost never say something will happen. ... Just because we say something might be possible, or might have happened, we're not married to this idea. We could get new data tomorrow that would toss that idea out... "
        Noory either said nothing or grunted his approval.  Well, I'm better at prediction than Hoagland and I don't even claim to see the future. On the CoastGab forum last Sunday I offered this spoof preview of last night:
RCH: According to Roscosmos, the Russian/Chinese spacecraft Phobos-Grunt/Yinghuo-1 is now a dead loss, in a slowly decaying Earth orbit. But my sources tell me that we can expect a "convenient resurrection" some time in the next month, after which the spacecraft will be re-targeted to an asteroid -- the asteroid that was the secret destination all along!!! And what asteroid do you think that is, George?

Noory: Umm... I dunno Richard.

RCH: None other than YU55!!!
         ....and that's pretty much how the first dreary hour went. He even used the word 'resurrection.' Hoagland was highly troubled by the discrepancy between the Mars-departure windows of Phobos-Grunt and Mars Science Lab. "They should be the same," he complained, using that as phony evidence that the Russians never intended to go to Phobos. What he doesn't understand is the difference between MSL's one way journey and P-G's round trip. For the Russians, not only does Mars have to be accessible from Earth at departure, Earth has to be accessible for the sample return. In fact, real space scientists (as opposed to wannabees with scary hair) are saying that if P-G magically came to life today, it could still get there but the sample return would have to wait two years.

A Tragedy of Errors

        What followed was a tour of Hoagland's previous mistakes, even reiterating that ridiculous pseudo-statistical "proof that Elenin was artificial" despite the fact that several people have told him his math is a joke (insert swift plug for the Awake & Aware DVD, "because you need to understand the background to this".) Another old favorite was also trotted out of the barn: Those crater chains on small solar-system bodies like Phobos are "weapons fire," from the Great Galactic War 65 million years ago. Oh, how we laughed at that one!!

        Then a brand new fantasy: The USAF's X-37B space plane actually rendezvoused with YU55 and took hi-res images, which are due back on Earth in a couple of days. How did he know that? The Air Force Base in Colorado from whence X-37B is controlled was "lit up" on November 9th. Very persuasive -- not.

Image Credit: NASA/JPL-Caltech

        But a sizable chunk of the second hour was devoted to the landing site of MSL/Curiosity in Gale crater, shown above in false color. Hoagland approves of this, and he correctly described the somewhat hair-raising landing procedure that's been forced on mission planners by Curiosity's 900 kg heft. He likes it because the central peak is, he told us, a tetrahedron (nonsense) and there are plenty of features that are unmistakable signs of civilization (balderdash.) Too bad it's nowhere near 19.5° latitude.

        You could tell he was working toward some Grand Finale, and here it came (after about 5 very uninteresting phone calls): MSL is going to be a huge success. So huge, in fact, that it's going to force disclosure. Yes, folks -- 2012 is THE YEAR WE MAKE CONTACT!! Now where have I heard that before?.....

On C2C-AM 13th January 2012, in  the News-snippets segment, Hoagland told us that Nazis in space had probably caused the failure of Phobos-Grunt.


Chris Lopes said...

C2C has no more respect for its audience than Hoagland has for his. Both see their audiences as little more than a product to be sold (Hoagland sells his to C2C, while C2C sells them again to the advertisers) and whose intelligence can be insulted with impunity. They are feeding the need for wonder in us all with sour milk of bull shit.

jourget said...

Unfortunately, while the need for wonder may be universal, if you failed critical thinking class then RCH's complete lack of evidence can easily be construed as enlightened esotericism.

Chris Lopes said...

Must definitely. In his element, Hoagland can be very persuasive if you don't think about what he's saying. To the mathematically illiterate for instance, his probability calculations look like pure genius. To the scientifically illiterate, all his papers sound like Nobel prize winners. That's why the folks at C2C have him on. For the time he's there, he sounds credible and interesting enough to keep people there through the commercials.

Biological_Unit said...

RCH will be saying something controversial tonight! No doubt it will be at odds with reality. Mars Revealer - "Mad Martian" on Facebook - has told his friends to call the show to make trouble.

Chris Lopes said...

What he's saying is already at odds with reality. Apparently [spoiler alert] the Curiosity probe is going to land in in the middle of an arcology at the bottom of Gale Crater. Another city on the edge of forever. It will get him through winter and maybe a conference or two. That's all it really has to do.

Biological_Unit said...

Uncomfortable Questions:
Was the Death Star Attack an Inside Job?

My Website:

Biological_Unit said...

The people who know this guy has no sources are considered to be overly cynical. Count me as Overly Cynical.

Biological_Unit said...

Someone is living on the moon - I'm sure they died of low gravity

Biological_Unit said...


expat said...

It's just come back to me that RCH also said the two recent uncontrolled reentries of large satellites were a deliberate preparation for the "mysterious disappearance" of P-G. The official story will be that it reentered over the ocean, but really it'll be off on its SEEKRIT mission.

That's right, Richard -- the controllers of those satellites planned it all 10 years ago before Phobos-Grunt was even scheduled. NORAD will mysteriously FAIL to track the spacecraft as it leaves Earth orbit, sure....

Do the disciples even THINK?

Chris Lopes said...

I just finished to this gabfest. On a quick factual note, the Rapid Capabilities Office is actually located in Washington D.C., not Schriever AFB. Apparently his "sources" don't know how to use Google. Perhaps his assistant can teach them.

Hoagland gave his FB fans a preview of all this stuff, he just didn't tell them how god awful boring it would turn out to be. Once you get beyond the Curiosity is about disclosure stuff (again more pareidolia), it was pretty much a rehash of every crack pot theory he's been selling for the last year. This show was effectively over somewhere in the middle of the second hour. Calling the phone calls uninteresting was being much too kind.

So now we have to look forward to almost a year of staring at pictures of Gale Lake, looking for artifacts. On the up side, we won't have to worry about reading any boring ass paper, just the boring ass power point presentations he's planning to give at those "conferences". Like I said, he bought himself a few months before having to look for something else.

P.S. Expat, tell me you didn't do a spit take on Noory's "Mr. Science" line? lol

Chris Lopes said...

I think he mentioned that towards the end of the last hour. Hoagland's conspiracy logic has always been a bit off, which is why it's best not to think about it too hard. Apparently everyone is at (symbolic)war with everyone else and everyone is sending everyone else secret messages. His signature phrase "the lie is different at every level" was invented to cover such Grand Canyon like gaps in logic.

On another subject, I was surprised he brought up Francis Walsh. The last I heard, he (Francis)had come to the conclusion that Elenin had broken up (he spent a lot of time on the official Elenin Comet FB page talking to real astronomers), so using him to prove the opposite is dishonest.

Biological_Unit said...

It's a fool-proof scam actually. A lot of people believe we live in "special" times. They need a sooth-sayer. RCH has found an Ecological Niche. Mars Revealer is his nearest competition, but he's too shrill in his delivery.

Chris Lopes said...

I have to agree with everything you just said.

Biological_Unit said...

I think Crater Chains and Polygonal structures are explained by the Electric Universe theory. These theorists have been on Coast.

Anonymous said...

In the cultist connotation of "disciples" and the prevailing context therein, the exercise of independent thought is forbidden. Thinking is the sole prerogative of the supposed "enlightened" cult leader. Only unquestioning belief is permitted within the ranks.
A thought police ( aka Red, RCH's consort) maintains purity of thought and adulating praises amongst the followers.

Hail the infallible RCH.
And stay tuned.

Chris Lopes said...

He also uses rewards as a way of reinforcing his control. On Wednesday's show he gave a shout out to the cult member who came up with the "brilliant" idea that Curiosity is nuclear powered so it can go inside the "ruins". This particular disciple has been quite the defender in the past, so I guess he really earned it.

Anonymous said...


Even the "crazies" are think Hoagland are full of 19.5 tons of BS!

(but it's a good read)

Chris Lopes said...

The "Saga" (as Expat puts it) is too complicated to really get into. My own take is that some people can't deal with the implications of just how dishonest Hoagland can be, so they made him part of the conspiracy he's always talking about. Some call it crazy, others call it karma.

Anonymous said...

And -as rightly pointed out- if you're a good little lapdog (or sheep) and continue to support Captain Enterprise's ideas and indulge his ego, you might just get a shout-out on the radio!....... (It was almost hard to hear the broadcast over 28,000 voices from FB-land saying "love me as well, Richard, love me too!!")

But then, did anyone REALLY expect Hoaxland to get an "intellectual grilling" on C2C?!? The "99%" do not want serious, boring science-y questions asked which might invalidate or call-out RCH when we can have more wonderful stories (not predictions!!) about secret mars missions to yu55 or the military secretly spying on the moon nazis etc etc. (Dare I say C2C is more of a joke than Joakland is!)

But I'm sure something wonderful is coming - after all, "Barry the saviour of humanity" is going to his 19.5 hawaii home for the holidays, whilst we all put up our christmas trees (which are shaped like Elenin triangle tetrahedrons, right?!), and it's 27 days to 2012, when the truth comes out and we all live happily ever after (oh, and anyone who has read Dark Mission will know 27 and 2012 and all other numbers are really code for 19.5!!)

So I know I'm staying tuned - my super secret sources have told me to!

Chris Lopes said...

You are right, it's definitely the story (pitched by a very good story teller) that's selling here, not the facts. One of the reasons Hoagland was more fun to listen to back in the Art Bell days was that Art could make himself a part of the story and really sell it. With Noory, Hoagland is on his own, and that can make for a very long evening.

Chris Lopes said...

Any guesses on who the "Captain" is going to explain away Phobos Grunt now that parts of it are starting to come off?

expat said...

It's the observation capsule sent by the SEEKRIT space program to monitor P-G's departure for YU55.