Tuesday, October 29, 2013

Review of Mike Bara on Coast to Coast AM, 28 Oct

        Mike Bara's gratuitous insult directed at Stuart Robbins at the start of hour 4 ("He may be a scientist but he sucks at it") will come back to bite him, as Stuart will now get a guest spot on C2C and quite possibly a chance to debate Mike live. I can hardly wait.

Oh, Ziggy, Where Art Thou?
        Even though the main topic was Mars, Mike couldn't resist attempting to justify his irresponsible promotion of the Daedalus Ziggurat on the Moon. He actually acknowledged that Stuart Robbins and I had done his research for him, but denied he ever doubted that Terry James (kksamurai) had created the original image. Good thing this blog keeps an archive, and I can therefore remind you that on the Inception Radio Network, Friday June 14th this year, he did indeed say that. And he did write on his blog that he "enhanced" the image before passing it to Hoagland, who apparently "enhanced" it some more. The image that finally got posted to the Coast to Coast web site was named AS11-38-5564-Mike-oirginal-enhanced3.jpg.

        Mike's new position on the wiggy ziggy is set out in incredible detail in his new book, now copied to his blog. I can't imagine even his greatest fans wading through all that garbage, and Mike needs to learn the difference between "forward" and "foreword."

Caught by Logic
        As he droned on through the usual accusations of sinister NASA cover-ups, the logical problem that this blog has often mentioned became very clear. Mike and his ilk really have painted themselves into a corner. They come up with these triumphant toldyas all the time -- the sneaker on Mars (titter), the satellite dishes on the Moon, bla bla bla -- but since their sole source of this imagery is NASA itself, they force themselves to claim, simultaneously, that NASA is covering things up and also that NASA photography reveals things that ought not to be there.

        So we have the spectacle of Mike claiming that one Apollo 11 frame, AS11-38-5564, contains incriminating evidence that NASA covered up the ziggy but failed to cover up a crane, a spaceship, a gun emplacement, a jack, a flying saucer, a beach house and a human head (but of course  there's no such thing as pareidolia.) Last night he referred to a feature on Mars which JPL scientists themselves have nicknamed the "Inca City." Are they covering it up? No, of course not, they're even jokily comparing it to a Peruvian archaeological site. Mike, of course, wants to have it both ways.

        Mike last night talked himself right into another logical trap, when describing the "tidal model" of Mars proposed by Richard Hoaglandnote 1, combined with Tom Van Flandern's hypothesis that Mars was once the moon of a larger planet that exploded. Neither of these is a daft idea per se, but what Mike doesn't get is that they don't work well together. In fact, they're mutually exclusive.

        There are the two claimed tidal bulges, Arabia at the 60° longitude and Tharsis at 240°. They define Mars's orientation in relation to the claimed parent planet. And it's tidally locked, too, so Tharsis is always on the planet side. But then, what happens when the parent planet explodes? Van Flandern observes, correctly, that one hemisphere of Mars is much more heavily cratered than the other. So logically that would be on the Tharsis side, the equatorial west.

        Except it isn't. It's the entire Southern hemisphere that got preferentially splatted. The hemisphere that was not pointing at the planet when the biggie went down.note 2 Oops...

"Wait... you mean planets can explode?"
        Kudos to George Noory, for once, for asking Mike a very direct question -- Why would NASA want to cover up evidence? -- and refusing to accept the tired old Brookings Report as the answer. It had Mike scrambling a bit before he came up with what he thought was a scary scenario. A NASA press conference at which they announce that, yes, they have definite evidence that the parent planet of Mars once exploded and wiped out a civilizationnote 3, all other life, several oceans and an entire atmosphere. Mike seemed to think there would be panic in the streets. Is it me, or is that an incredibly weak argument?

Sexy FB messaging
        Mike reiterated his accusation that his critics (and I assume he includes me) have been sexually harassing his FBgfs. I take exception to that. I say this: Mike Bara, put up or shut up. James Concannon has posted a specific and detailed example of reverse sexual harassment directed at him. Let's see a specific example of a sexual message from any of us. If you can't come up with one, stop saying that. And apologize.


[1] In the course of the whole four hours, Mike managed to avoid mentioning Hoagland even once. Considering how much of his new book is recycled Hoagland material, I'd say that's remarkably ungentlemanly of him. But then, we know Mike is no gentleman even though he may spend plenty of time in "gentlemen's clubs" in Las Vegas.

[2] Arabia Terra and Tharsis Montes are in fact both in the Northern hemisphere, just to make things  worse for the theory. Tharsis at about 2°N, Arabia at 20°N.

[3] Although according to Hoagland mythology, the civilization had prior knowledge of the impending catastrophe (just like I have prior knowledge of the impending catastrophe of Mike's new book) and escaped unharmed. So it really isn't such a scary proposition after all.

Friday, October 25, 2013

You didn't think Mike Bara was going to get this right, did you?

        ...No, of course you didn't. I'm surprised he's still alive -- you might think he'd make mistakes every time he tries to feed himself.

        Today he proudly announced a Picasa gallery which we can all admire -- the 223 figures from his new book, plus the front cover. I have a few comments. Numbers are his frame numbers.

4. I think his numbers are correct. It pains me to see a mixture of kg and miles. Perhaps I'm over-trained.


    This illustrates opposition, but not perihelion. Perihelion and opposition are totally unrelated.


   This illutrates conjunction, but not aphelion. Aphelion and conjunction are likewise totally unrelated.

Dr Stuart Robbins has hit his keyboard about this, producing a very informative blog making this terminology clear. Bara's snarky comments to Robbins in the captions to 7, 8, and 9 are so childish they make me reach for the vom-bag.

Let's be perfectly clear about this: If the orbit of Mars were perfectly circular, its  distance from Earth would still be variable from 47 to 236 million miles. Bara is totally wrong.

30. I think I understand the intent of this diagram (stolen from Hoagland,) but lunar gravity is not shown by blue arrows anywhere. I guess it's the arrow labeled 12 micron/s/s but lunar gravity should also be shown on the opposite side. Centripetal acceleration should be the same on both sides. I hope his text makes this a lot clearer.

37. I like this one because it neatly falsifies Bara's contention that large eccentricities are common in the solar system. He takes this as support for the solar fission model, but it isn't true. If Pluto is disregarded, only one planet has eccentricity >0.1.

41. Much of Bara's artwork has copyvio problems, none more than this one. It's ripped off from solstation.com -- a site that clearly states that its data is free for personal use. NOT for commercial use, Mike Bara.

43. More flagrant copyvio.

63. Isn't this a perfect example of the pareidolia that Bara says doesn't exist?

74. A perfect match? No way.

77. Carl Sagan mis-spelled.

79. Nice to see Gil Levín getting some exposure, he deserves it. IT IS TOTALLY UNTRUE that NASA suppressed his findings. What part of "The Labeled Release data has been publicly available in its entirety on a NASA-sponsored web site for 30 years" doesn't Bara get?

82. Incorrect sky color. The best description of the color is "butterscotch."

86. Ridiculous. Just because the discoloring on the Mars rock reminds Bara of lichens, it doesn't mean it actually is lichen. More pareidolia.

90. Bad sky color again.

97. Extremely unconvincing.

101. The gentleman on the left is Jim Martin, Viking Project Manager, not Arden Albee.

NOTE: Bara has now (2nd Nov) removed Arden Albee's name in the online version.

114-117, and 128-133. This fantasy has been well debunked by better men than me.

124. I hope his text doesn't claim that Neptune's dark spot is at 19.5°. It isn't. It appeared at about 25°S then wandered north before disappearing completely. Then a new one appeared in the Northern hemisphere.

125. Olympus Mons isn't at 19.5° either. It's centered at 18.65°N.

153, 168. No, it doesn't look like a sphinx. It isn't a sphinx.

212. No, these don't look like structural ruins.


Thursday, October 17, 2013

Mike Bara: As wrong as it's possible to be

James Concannon guest-blogs:

        Well, that was pretty funny.I've been contributing to a lively discussion about the so-called "Face" on Mars, on the Final Frontier Farcebook page. My posts today amounted to the following:

Features claimed by the gullible, when the resolution was 125 m/px:

- Headdress
- 2 eyes
- A tear duct in one eye
- Nostrils
- Teeth
- Lateral symmetry

Now that the resolution has improved to 0.3 m/px, all those have gone away. All they have left is lateral symmetry of the BASE, which is striking but not too unusual.

You'd have to be really, really gullible or really, really obstinate to persist in claiming artificiality.
Mike Bara's new book "Ancient Aliens on Mars" is due out 1st November. We can confidently expect fresh claims that this is a large artwork made by ancient aliens, since Bara falls into both categories "really, really gullible" and "really, really obstinate." He also belongs in the categories "really, really inaccurate" and "really, really obnoxious."

        Well, behold, just minutes later Mike Bara posted this utterly wrong, utterly hilarious essay to his blog.

How wrong is Mike Bara? Let me count the ways...

º "In recent years, as better and better images of the Face on Mars and other anomalies on the Red Planet have become increasingly recognized as artificial..." No, Mike, the "Face" is increasingly recognized as just an eroded mesa. See my text from FB.

º "Debunkers ... never ... use the far more accurate and more directly overhead views, of which there are now many. " Oh yes we do, oh yes we do. In fact, the excellent image taken in 2007 by the HiRISE camera on Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter is the very first thing I would use if explaining this controversy to someone who didn't already know about it.

credit: NASA/JPL/Univ. Ariz.
        That's the one whose resolution is 0.3 m/px. The full version is here. Anyone see any tear-ducts or teeth? Headdress? By the way, it's upside down. They did that to annoy George Haas.

º Bara states, emphatically, that no scientific or medical literature exists authenticating pareidolia. Oh yeah??

Hadjikhan et al. "Early (M170) activation of face-specific cortex by face-like objects" in Neuroreport 2009 Mar 4;20(4):403-7. doi: 10.1097/WNR.0b013e328325a8e1

Uchiyama et al. "Pareidolias: complex visual illusions in dementia with Lewy bodies" in Brain 2012 Aug;135(Pt 8):2458-69. doi: 10.1093/brain/aws126. Epub 2012 May 30.

Maranhão-Filho et al. "Neuropareidolia: diagnostic clues apropos of visual illusions" in Arquivas de neuro-psychiatria 2009 Dec;67(4):1117-23.

º Bara cites prosopagnosia as a well-documented and medically-established disorder, "unlike pareidolia." He should have followed his own hyperlink, and actually read the text. It reads, in part,

"The specific brain area usually associated with prosopagnosia is the fusiform gyrus,[2] which activates specifically in response to faces. Thanks to this specialization, most people recognize faces much more effectively than they do similarly complex inanimate objects."

º Bara might usefully have followed, and read, the hyperlink in his own footnote.

"In 1978, some 8,000 people made pilgrimages to the home of a New Mexico woman who discovered a picture of Jesus in a burned tortilla. And in 2001, thousands saw the face of Satan captured in a CNN video and Associated Press photos of smoke billowing from the World Trade Center."

        Bara cited this article from Wordspy to establish that the earliest citation was from Skeptical Inquirer 1994. True. But it also establishes that, regardless of what you call it, it's REAL.

º One final point: If the ancient aliens built a 2 km long sculpture to resemble a face, weren't they relying on pareidolia (regardless of what they called it) for us to recognize it as a face?

--James C (thanks to Chris Lawrence for speedy research and Photoshoppery)


This just in from Mike Bara to me:

"As to the papers you cite (we all know there is no "James Concannon") the first only measures how fast a portion of the brain responds to visual stimuli, and nothing more. The 2nd only makes subjective conclusions about patients with dementia, and the 3rd is a study of animals. None of these establishes that there is any such thing as "pareidolia" in humans. So once again, you have nothing to stand on. Good luck finding a real medical study on the subject. There isn't one. It doesn't exist.

Nice touch turning the image of the Face upside down. All it does is prove how desperate and pathetic your arguments are.

Not that anybody's paying attention to you anyway."
A study of animals??? Yes, the pareidolic images of animals IN THE HUMAN BRAIN. Sheesh...

Sunday, October 13, 2013

"Ritual Alignment Model" falsified

        To put it simply, Richard Hoagland and Mike Bara have long made the claim that NASA preferentially times mission events when certain stars are at certain elevations as seen from some relevant vantage point. In November 2009 Mike Bara said "NASA always seems to want to land or launch when the stars are in favorable positions, at least according to their mythology." 

       This blog has commented many times, starting with this post in December 2010 and continuing with this one and this one. I pressed Hoagland & Bara further on 16 September this year:

From: expat
Date: 16 Sept 2013
Subj: Ritual Alignment Model


I've been asked to do further analysis on what you have called NASA's "obsessive, relentless"[1] drive to pay homage to the Egyptian Gods Isis, Osiris and Horus. The idea would be to either confirm or falsify your proposition.

I need to know what tolerance you allow on the times of alignment. Also, please confirm that it's the launch and landing times as planned, rather than as occurred, that should be considered. I believe you said that at the time of the final Shuttle mission.

The latter point is extremely important, given that only 55 of 135 Shuttle launches were on time. However you do seem to have been inconsistent with this, since you cite the landing of Apollo 16 at a time when Sirius was at 33°. As you know, the landing was delayed 6 hours and the entire mission was delayed a month.

That assumes great importance since 16 was one of only two Moon landing you cite in Ritual Alignment. If you are forced to abandon that one, your "hit rate" reduces to one in six -- hardly "relentless" or "obsessive."

Please provide the information I need to confirm your work. Thanks.


[1] Caption to Fig. 5-10, Dark Mission

From: expat
Date: 11 Oct 2013
Subj: Ritual Alignment Model
Let me try one more time, perhaps you're in a co-operative mood today:

- What tolerance do you allow on the star elevation?

- Do you take the time of an event as planned, or as occurred?

If you refuse to provide this information, how do you expect other researchers to confirm or falsify your work?


From: expat
Date: 13 Oct 2013
Subj: Your Ritual Alignment Model falsified

In the face of your steadfast refusal to give the information that would be needed to confirm or falsify your so-called Ritual Alignment Model, I have done some research and found the answer to one of the questions.

On 19 April 2011 you posted to Facebook as follows:

    "You're forgeting[sic] one important detail ... regarding "symbolic rituals":

    It's NOT when they "eventually" happen ...; it's when (and how) they're first PROPOSED (birthed) that's critical. :)"

I also notice that you refer to a "two-minute window" in association with a few of your events, and that is perhaps the answer to the other key question.

Accordingly, I have re-analyzed your Table of Coincidence. My guide is the following passage from p.14 of "Dark Mission" 2nd edn:

    "only five stellar objects ... have any significance ...: the three belt stars of Orion, ...Sirius, ... and Regulus. And only five narrow bands of stellar altitude (19.5° above and below the horizon, 33° above and below the horizon, and the horizon itself) have any significance."

I find the following errors in the table:

1. Inauguration of George Washington

    New York inappropriate as vantage point

2. Newt Gingrich's resignation

    EQ Pegasi, Comet Encke not allowable

3. Launch of Ranger 7

    Moon not allowable

4. Landing of Surveyor 3

    Moon not allowable

5. Launch of Freedom 7

    51° not allowable

6. Launch of Friendship 7

    Encke not allowable

7. Apollo 13 planned landing site/time

    Pegasus not allowable

8. Apollo 16 landing

    Landing 6 hours late, not "as birthed"

9. Apollo 16 landing seen from Houston


10. Ascent of Apollo 17

    Apollo 12 site irrelevant

11. Mars Pathfinder landing

    Earth not allowable

12. MGS imaging Owen Mesa

    Giza plateau irrelevant

13. Release of MGS Viking 1 landing site image

    Giza plateau irrelevant

14. Launch of STS-88

    Encke not allowable. Mars not allowable. -3.33° not allowable. Phoenix irrelevant. Launch not "as birthed"

15. Docking of Zarya and Unity

    Mars not allowable. Encke not allowable. Phoenix irrelevant. Apollo 11 landing site irrelevant

16. STS-88 EVA-1

    3.33° not allowable. Not "as birthed". Mars not allowable. Apollo 11 landing site irrelevant. Encke not allowable. Viking landing site irrelevant

17. ISS activation

    EQ Pegasi not allowable. Phoenix irrelevant. Apollo 11 landing site irrelevant

18. Loss of contact with SOHO

    Mars not allowable. Giza plateau irrelevant

19. Closest approah of J1 comet

    Giza plateau irrelevant

20. World premiere of Armageddon

    Totally irrelevant

Twenty errors in a table of that size is unacceptable. I am now declaring your "model" falsified and void.


To: expat
From: RCH
Date: 13 Oct 2013
Subj: Your Ritual Alignment Model falsified

You REALLY need psychological help for your (obvious) continuing pathological obsession; and, the idea that you "declaring" ANYTHING "falsified and void" ... means ANYTHING -- is only final confirmation of your sad pathology.

One obvious example:

Your "definitive" statement that "New York is inappropriate" as the optical "vantage point" for celestial alignments around Washington's First Inaugural -- thus revealing a (apparent) TOTAL LACK of basic knowledge, that George Washington was sworn in as the First President of the United States, April 30, 1789--


NOT ... Washington, DC (which didn't EXIST yet!).

With this as a RANDOM example of your "careful scholarship" and "research rigor" in trying, relentlessly and obsessively, to attack every aspect of this work, your continuing delusion -- that your prejudiced opinions on our research MATTER in the slightest -- is only further evidence for just how "separated from reality" you really are.

NO ONE'S listening.

Enterprise "out."



From: expat
Date: 13 Oct 2013
Subj: Your Ritual Alignment Model falsified

I apologize. I certainly didn't know about George Washington's inauguration. I withdraw that one, reducing the number of errors in your table to 19.

This is not, however, a RANDOM example as you claim. It's one mistake made by me, for 19 made by you. My analysis of your research is not opinion, Richard, it is fact.


Update 1:
From: expat
Date: 14 Oct 2013
Subj: Your Ritual Alignment Model falsified

You quite rightly took issue with the first of my error list yesterday. My mistake.

So that's one down, 19 to go. In a table whose total entries are 42. CAN THERE BE ANY DOUBT that this belief of yours is false? CAN YOU POSSIBLY justify your contention that NASA has an "obsessive, relentless" preoccupation with Egyptian ritual?

Regards, etc.

Update 2:
From: expat
Date: 15 Oct 2013
Subj: Failure of your Ritual Alignment Model, by program

Ranger: Zero hits of a possible 18 (9 missions, events are launch and lunar impact)
Surveyor: Zero qualified hits of a possible 28 (7 missions, events are launch and lunar landing, vantage point either The Cape or JPL)
Lunar Orbiter: Zero hits claimed of a possible 20 (5 missions, events are launch and lunar orbit insertion, vantage point either The Cape or JPL)
Mercury: Zero qualified hits of a possible 14 (7 missions, events are launch and splashdown)
Gemini: Zero hits of a possible 48 (12 missions, events are launch and splashdown, vantage point either The Cape or Houston)
Apollo: 2 hits of a possible 94 (11 manned launches, 6 lunar landings, 6 lunar takeoffs, 9 Lunar Orbit Insertions, 9 Trans Earth Insertions, vantage point either The Cape or Houston, or the lunar landing site where applicable)
Shuttle: Zero qualified hits of a possible 536 (135 launches, 133 landings, vantage point either The Cape or Houston. NOTE: If -- as in your Table of Coincidence -- events could include EVAs, possible hits would be in the thousands)

Aggregate: 2 hits of a possible 744.

If you have any integrity at all you will withdraw the Table of Coincidence in addition to Von Braun's Secret.

Regards, etc.

Tuesday, October 8, 2013

Mike Bara plays "My gf is prettier than yours"

Part 1

        He cheated!! His "girl" is Shana Eva, a married actress he met at Conscious Life Expo. I don't believe she's ever been a girlfriend in any truly satisfying sense. What does it say about a man that he attempts to rebut a Ph.D. astronomer with this drivel, and then cheats into the bargain??

There's more...

Part 2
Part 3
Part 4
Part 5

        Amazingly, Bara allowed two of my comments to appear, and counter-commented with what look like death threats. I'm not sure if Google's ToS cover those...

Two more comments of mine were suppressed:

You write that your statement about the eccentricity of the orbit of Mars is FACTUALLY CORRECT. However, it is not. The reason is that the disparity between closest and furthest approaches to another planet IS NOT A MEASURE of eccentricity.

You may have forgotten that, on 12th November 2010, you made it FAR WORSE by writing this:

"I was simply using the example of the wildly varying distance between the Earth and Mars as an example of how eccentric, meaning eliptical [sic], Mars orbit is. If both orbits were circular, there would be no such variation. They would maintain basically the same distance relative to each other. It is Mars' orbital eccentricity which creates this 200 million mile variation."

It's good that you showed the histogram of planet eccentricities. It makes the point that, discounting Pluto, ONLY ONE planet has eccentricity > 0.1. That falsifies your opinion that high eccentricities throughout the solar system are good evidence for solar fission.

You write here that orbital eccentricity "has nothing to do with the Solar fission theory." Please re-read The Choice, pp.33-37 from "The problem we face today..." to "....got there in the first place."


Derek Eunson's comment was also suppressed:

Why won't you allow a discussion on your blog regarding your attempted rebuttal of Dr Robbins' critique? You are exercising extreme moderation.

Why do you refuse to debate me 1v1 ?  Instead you tuck tail and run like a chickenshit, yellow bellied wee pansy. What's up Mike, scared of engineers ?
        All readers are encouraged to post comments themselves. Ya never know, ya might get lucky.

        I sent Mike another message informing him (politely) that If Mars' orbit were perfectly circular its distance from Earth would still vary from 47 million miles to 236 million. His reply was as follows:

"You're a complete fucking idiot."

        I'm seeking clarification. That's where we stand for the moment.