Noory isn't the sharpest knife in the box, especially when the topic is physics or astronomy. He has two standard questions for any physicist that comes his way as an interviewee: "How did the Big Bang happen, I just don't get it?" and "What could Einstein have accomplished if he had had a modern computer?"
Mining the Moon
Last night's interviewee wasn't exactly a physicist, but a sort-of-expert on space science, Rick Sterling. Sterling didn't commit any howling errors, and said several times that the future of US space exploration was mostly in the hands of private enterprise now. He's right about that, of course, but the show's own titular science adviser Bob Zimmerman could have said the same thing only better.
It was in discussing the possibility of the remnants of an ancient civilization on the Moon that George Noory brought the level of the conversation down to Ancient Aliens -style pseudo-fact. He remarked that the late Ingo Swann had "remote viewed" the far side of the Moon and had seen structures, buildings, roads and all the features of a civilization. He then pushed the topic even further away from any semblance of truth or logic by stating that he believes humankind was once very advanced, technically, with H-bombs and spacecraft and all the trappings of modern society, but then "something happened." He clearly thinks it quite possible that this former version of mankind inhabited the Moon and built stuff before, for unknown reasons, it lost all that capability and reverted to a hunter-gatherer society.
It just astounds me that the moon-anomaly crowd don't go to the obvious place to find out what's up there. Why TF would you get your information from a laughably inaccurate form of woo such as "remote viewing" when you can simply look up the library of images returned by Lunar Reconnaissance Orbiter? That marvellous piece of engineering has been in orbit now for more than ten years and has sent us images of more than 75% of the lunar surface at 0.5m/px resolution.
Case in point—Sterling said his group (The Society for Planetary SETI Research) has been investigating some "anomalous" features near the satellite crater Paracelsus C that look a lot like mining operations. Paracelsus C is at 21.7° S, 165.1° E. Here's the LRO image at 64 m/px:
I can offer Rick Sterling better. Here's a permalink to the zoomable version, and the lunain can be examined all the way down to 0.5 m/px. See any mining, Rick? See any of the solar panels that would obviously be required for a technical civilization to do its thing???
By sweet coincidence, that interview aired on the same night as Lesley Stahl's in-depth interview with YouTube CEO Susan Wojcicki on CBS's 60 Minutes. Wojcicki, a very confident and appealing personality, talked about the difficulty of policing YouTube content considering that 500 HOURS OF NEW MATERIAL ARE UPLOADED EVERY MINUTE. She basically admitted that the best her reviewers can do is to remove content that can be defined as actually harmful, and allow generalities that most of us would consider trash. The example she gave was nix to “Don’t hire somebody because of their race," but OK to “White people are superior.” She also said that the platform is viewed for A BILLION HOURS A DAY, making it the most-used of the social media after Google itself.
So it seems we have raised a YouTube generation, exposed to inevitable lies. Facebook is full of propaganda. Lightweights such as George Noory are considered in some sense opinion leaders. Truly, my friends, our culture is in danger.
Update 7th December:
Today Jason Colavito commented on Randall Carlson's YouTube video asking "Why is there NO record of ancient humans?" Carlson has the same idea as Noory, and I'm sure Jason won't mind me quoting him—his reasoning is impeccable, as usual:
"He alleges that catastrophes have wiped out every trace of prior cycles of advanced civilization, though he declines to explain the infrastructure of said civilization and how comets and volcanoes could eliminate every nut, bolt, and screw; destroy every domesticated animal; and burn away all traces, even the very pollen, of the domesticated plant species they would have had to farm to feed such a civilization. Where are the alterations in the record of the environment from their agriculture and industry? In other words, beyond temples and fortresses, there should be many other traces of a lost global Atlantis-like civilization, and no disaster could both destroy all of them and leave enough humans to carry on in its aftermath."