Monday, August 1, 2011

Who are you going to believe, Branch Hoaglandians?

A: Three highly-trained scientists, who have been intimately involved in the Dawn mission throughout the Vesta encounter?


B: A pseudo-scientist without any training in astronomy, geology, or geochemistry, who has not been anywhere near JPL for years, and who has a record of ridiculously false interpretation of planetary images (Phobos, Tempel 1, Mercury)?

Group A were at a JPL press conference today, showing further imagery of Vesta. A few points:

o Vesta is surprisingly dimorphic: Heavily cratered in the northern hemisphere, relatively smooth in the south.

o The very pronounced equatorial grooves may have been produced by a massive south-polar impact, strong enough to have caused compression of the entire body, followed by relaxation.

o Landslides on the walls of deep craters are surprising — not only because of the very small gravitational field but because of light/dark streaking which is currently unexplained. Likewise some scattered dark spots outside craters.

o A preliminary look by the VIR shows very variable chemistry over the surface, which will be available for further study as the spacecraft drops into lower orbit.

Group B (Hoagland, as ever was) has been proclaiming ever since the first images of Vesta that there are "unmistakable" ruins of cities all over the surface. He says he sees straight lines, 90° angles, and grid patterns all of which can only be the work of a city-building civilization. Conspicuously absent from his FB ravings on the subject have been images to support that claim. Apparently he's saving those for the fee-paying customers at the Leeds Exopolitics Conference.

In an internet radio show with Howard Hughes late last week, Hoagland slam-hyped his own appearance at the Leeds meeting, promising...

o This is going to change EVERYTHING
o These images are MIND-BOGGLING
o I'm going to present A REVOLUTION
o Disclosure IS UNDER WAY

Well, we'll see about that, won't we?

Hoagland also claimed several times that the JPL press conference had been re-scheduled from 14:00 to 12:00 EDT because the artificial features on Vesta would be announced, and they wanted to be sure of getting the lead on the evening's TV network news.

Well, we'll see about that too, won't we?

Update 1: Hoagland has now commented, on FB.

Calling Vesta a "planet" and ... "a world" ... MAY make the Evening News ....

Stay tuned.

They're STILL in "drip ... drip ... drip" mode. :)

The geometric/artificial features on Vesta that we KNOW are there (which wewre not shown or commented on AT ALL ...) are NOT going away; time and time again Russell (the chief scientist) said-- "We need to wait for the HIGH-resolution images ...."


"We can't AGREE [on the Team] what the hell these things are! So, we need MUCH BETTER images ... before we're going to say ANYTHING in public!"

They were OBVIOUSLY "buying time" .... And, DELIBERATELY "burying" this Vesta data under the "debt-ceiling news."

As I said a couple days ago .... :)

This is classic Hoagland-twist. If they say what he predicted, it's "SEE I WAS RIGHT, NYAA NYAAA." If they don't it's "They were OBVIOUSLY buying time and DELIBERATELY burying Vesta data. JUST LIKE I SAID NYAAA NYAAA"

Except, that's NOT what he said. If this makes the network news before 1st commercial break I'll eat my scale model of Phobos.

Update 2:
Well, my papier-mâché Phobos is safe. Not a whisper of this on network news, as far as I can tell. As usual, Hoagland was wrong, wrong, wrong.

This is such a shame. There's plenty of real science interest in what Dawn is doing. Richard Hoagland, because of his eloquence, has the attention of thousands of inquisitive young minds. Instead of leading them to the real story, he's teaching them that everyone in NASA is a liar, and a press conference can mean whatever you want it to mean "if you know what to look for."


Chris Lopes said...

Yeah, the whole Vesta thing (like Elenin) is turning into the usual Hoagland Hype Event. For those playing at home, the pattern is this:

1. NASA takes some pictures of a celestial object in the solar system.

2. Hoagland claims he sees artifacts (buildings, walls, pyramids, Class 5 Vegan Starships....) in those pictures.

3. Hoagland then uses those "artifacts" as proof that "they are getting ready to tell us the TRUTH(tm)".

4. Hoagland hypes this nonsense for a few months to get some time with George Noory and promote his next "conference".

5. No disclosure actually takes place.

6. Hoagland goes onto some other subject without much comment.

He does this all the time. Last year, it was the ESA conference in September. That too was months and months of hype with talk of "disclosure". That too ended as a total fail on Hoagland's part, with no "sorry I wasted your time folks" in the end. He'll be playing this game as long as he can generate a fresh supply of suckers (who wouldn't have remembered all his past failures) to buy it.

strahlungsamt said...

One question:

If I was the chief of an alien tribe and I wanted to set up an outpost in the Solar System (to watch the inhabitants of a minor planet in the SK system)...

Why, in the name of Ming the Merciless, would I set up on a rock with no atmosphere, in the asteroid belt, where my evil empire is fully exposed to the next meteorite (or alien laser blaster) that comes along?

Just a thought.

Chris Lopes said...

You'd do it because you know that when the clever naked apes on the 3rd planet actually get around to taking pictures of their solar neighborhood, they're likely to go looking at all those airless rocks that are floating around. Since your main mission is to provide "stunning confirmation" to future pseudo-scientists while trying to hide what you did as cleverly as possible, you'll also make your bases look as much like natural features as you can. See it's all part of The Plan. :)

Biological_Unit said...

RCH has banned all thinkers.

The remaining idiots are drooling over the fact that this person might be still famous - and is talking to them! RCH is a parody of what he should have been.

Chris Lopes said...

I couldn't agree more.

Biological_Unit said...

He doesn't understand that allowing those lightweights to post won't help him.
He is supposed to be under active attack by Space Nazi's.
He will leave Facebook once he realizes this. Mars Revealer, SwArd and RCH should leave the Internet altogether.

Chris Lopes said...

I think his biggest problem is going to be that without the threat of anyone around to correct him, he's likely to start believing his own BS. That's when the real fun begins.

Remember the rocket equation fiasco? Just think how bad it would have been for him if Expat and others hadn't brought the "errors" to everyone's attention. There was supposed to be a new chapter in the second edition of Dark Mission that dealt the issue. Because Hoagland (and his publisher) knew people were on to him on that, the chapter never materialized.

My guess is that Expat will have a much easier time (not that Hoagland doesn't provide a target rich environment to begin with) finding his goofs. He's working without a net now, so he'll be even more careless with the truth than before. It will be fun to watch in any case.

Chris Lopes said...

Now that I've given you my own theory of what will happen, let me address the actual point you were making. Yes, having no "paid dis-info" agents does kind of take away from the "we are at war with evil forces" meme. It is likely to get very boring after a while.

I think though, you underestimate Hoagland's ability to create drama even when there is none. This is the guy who spent an entire evening trying to decode the symbolic meaning in a presidential press conference. He also had quite the time yesterday with a simple FB problem. So if he doesn't have any real enemies, he'll just manufacture them.

Biological_Unit said...

Yes, he is well versed in rhetoric.

(he's a bullshitter)

Chris Lopes said...

You have to admit he has a talent for it. He's managed to scratch out a living as a "celebrity" of sorts in the weird world of pseudo-science. He's the "science" guy who is only interested in "data".

The incessant name dropping though (my old friend Carl, or Gene, or Arthur), is a clue that he knows he isn't really in their league and never will be. Oh he'll certainly try to bluff his way through (and after 4 decades at this thing, he's pretty good at it), but he has to know no one outside of the C2C crowd will ever take him seriously. He's an entertainer, nothing more.

Chris Lopes said...

If Hoagland tried to do real science, he'd have to compete with guys like Zimmerman, Plait, and Kaku. We all know he doesn't have the background for that. So instead, he invents his own brand of "science" where only he knows the rules (which have a tendency to change when the situation suits him) because he's the only one doing "research" in it. It's a fun game that anyone can play, though not as well as Richard. He's been doing it for a long time.

Biological_Unit said...

NASA was going to hire an apologist named James Oberg a few years ago to write the definitive book stating that NASA went to the moon ... but NASA balked and cancelled the Oberg book ... why ??? because every statement that Oberg would have made would have raised 20 new questions ... so what did NASA do ??? they took the fifth and said nothing ..

strahlungsamt said...

This is priceless :)

Anti Censorship Of Richard C Hoagland On Facebook

Chris Lopes said...

Perhaps they thought it wasn't really worth the effort. Like no one at NASA is currently engaged (despite what Hoagie claims) in writing a book to disprove any of his "models". Sometimes you just end up feeding the conspiracy thing no matter what you say. Just remember how effective the final report on Roswell was at ending those conspiracies. :)

Chris Lopes said...

That was indeed good. Unfortunately, irony (like mathematics, science, and honesty) has never been Hoagland's strong point. He once stated that one of the reason's he wanted to know James Concannon's true identity was to check his credentials. :)

James Concannon said...

Thanks for posting that, strahlungsamt. Gave me a good laugh.

Perhaps it hasn't occurred to him or the Branch Hoaglandians that censorship (of truth) is exactly what he's practising himself.

Biological_Unit said...

NASA has broadly hinted that Men never went to the Moon. Neil DeGrasse Tyson said as much on the Colbert Report. The LEM model at their museum is realistic - LARGER than the alleged craft was! I know that yous all pretend to believe for office politic reasons. Lets get there in 3 days using all the destroyed blueprints.

Chris Lopes said...

If the truth were as much an enemy to you as it is to Hoagland, you'd be keen on this censorship thing too. Hoagland's whole act depends on people believing he knows more about pretty much everything than they do. When you expose the nasty truth that he doesn't, that kind of kills the illusion. Neither he nor his followers appreciate that much.