Thursday, November 12, 2015

Zany pranksters!

        This blog got a mention during Richard Hoagland's disastrous "open lines" digital radio show in the early hours of Wednesday 11 November. I say disastrous because his callers were by no means Hoagland sycophants, and several of them gave him a hard time. Some of the pranking was pretty juvenile, but in the end he was forced to apologize for having said, the previous night, that many of his listeners were "useless eaters" because they fell asleep leaving their devices connected. This, to Hoagland, is stealing his precious bandwidth -- bandwidth he now has to pay for to the tune of a grand a month. Personally I highly doubt that a largely sleeping audience makes a ha'p'orth of difference to his bandwidth bills, but it's a lovely thought.

        Anyway, this blog was mentioned by one of the early callers, and Hoagland jumped in immediately with this:
"That is not my book. That is a spoof run by a couple of really zany pranksters, one from Europe and one from the United States, who are pretending it's my book."
        Now look. I shouldn't have to write this, and I'm sure I don't for 99% of my readers, but I make no pretense that this is a book. It's a blog taking pseudoscientists like Hoagland to task for their manifest dishonesty. The title is a satirical reference to the fact that the likes of Hoagland & Bara have made some pretty nice coin, in their time, from telling lies about the planet Mars. I imagine all that money is long gone now, however. Hoagland is reduced to worrying about whether he can pay for bandwidth, with his audience nodding off all around.

Hoagland, we know you're a dog
        I'm not going to write a full review of the show, but a couple of items really stood out for me. One was a wonderful example of Hoagland's habit of taking credit for other people's creative work. He said this:
"Back when Art and I were doing shows, a long time ago, I actually said on the air, coined the phrase, On the internet nobody knows you're a dog."
        Well, he didn't. Cartoonist Peter Steiner did, in a famous New Yorker cartoon published on 5 July 1993.

source: wikimedia (fair use)

Some other examples of Hoagland's mental disorder:

* "The hammer and feather stunt on Apollo 15 was my idea." He said that on 2 July 2013, on C2C-AM. The stunt was, in fact, dreamed up by Dave Scott, Jim Irwin, and Joe Allen.

* "I was the co-creator of the Pioneer 10 message to extraterrestrial life." This claim is part of the welcome message on his terrifyingly bad web site (scroll all the way to the end.) On 13 July 1990 he said "Carl [Sagan] for many years has been taking public credit for the Pioneer plaque which, of course, Eric Burgess and I conceived." In fact he had no part in the design of the plaque, which was done by Sagan, his then wife Linda, and Frank Drake. Hoagland was merely present when Eric Burgess made the original suggestion to Sagan.

public domain

Pluto and mendacity
        The other Hoaglandism that was salient for me in Wednesday morning's show was his breathtaking statement about the results of the recent New Horizons survey of Pluto. "I'm the only guy who got it right," he said as if butter wouldn't melt in his mouth. So what did he get right? His vision was and still is of a previously-inhabited planet with moons that are not really moons but abandoned space stations. He got it WRONG, in other words. Stuart "astroguy" Robbins, who is actually on the New Horizons science team, commented "There are not words to describe the disgust when he says this."

Hoagland, you're a DOG.


THE Orbs Whiperer said...

How can we possibly know that Pluto's moons aren't deserted Space stations? Have our probes drilled deep enough into the surfaces of them yet to penetrate and how deep would be deep enough to say for sure? Granted, Dr Hoagland can't know for sure either, unless he's getting inside information from members of the US Naval, Black Spacecraft Fleet, which is a distinct possibility. Astroguy is a troll. He probably is one of the prank callers to Hoagland's silly show.

Chris Lopes said...

The complaint about useless eaters tells me he's not getting many folks to sign up for the archive. That's to be expected, as Hoagland was never any good at getting people to actually pay for his BS. Also to be expected is Hoagland compaining about it. He's been ranting about freeloaders since his FB days and probably before that.

expat said...

To Nowak/Theadora:

- Hoagland does not have a doctorate.
- Stuart Robbins does have one, and he's not a troll.

Dee said...

Captain "How can we possibly know that Pluto's moons aren't deserted Space stations? "

We cannot know they definitely not have any secret like that.
They can always hide further, deeper. The conspiracy can always morph and shift in something even more complex and elaborate...for ever dancing beyond our peripheral, limited vision.

But we can find out a few things about those moons nevertheless. Positive knowledge instead of those impossible to prove negatives (eg: that something is NOT there hiding).

It's really matter of flipping ones whole mind around and decide where to focus on. Instead of trying to find certainty, think of probabilities and fairness of estimating what's reasonable or not. A way more modest type of thinking... but also way more fair!


THE Orbs Whiperer said...

Very good, Dee. You see, all Astroguy does is to characterize Hoagland's assertions as indescribably disgusting, while trolling behind a ghost profile. If he had a doctorate, you'd think he'd be proud to proclaim his prejudicial opinions with disclosed identity and credentials, instead of having to be outed by Patrick.

expat said...

Novvak/Theadora: I don't think you know the meaning of the word "trolling." If using a nickname to post comments on a blog counts as "a ghost profile" then it seems to me you are equally guilty.

Anonymous said...

Wondered what that stupid noise was, now I know the loons must be migrating when novvak comes back on her rounds

GFP2216 said...

My acquaintance with Astroguy may not go as far back as you all. I first communicated with him briefly on Bellgab in May 2013. In that time I have never known him to conceal his true identity. He created his podcast thread on Bellgab January 3rd, 2013, where he directed anybody interested to his site. He he has been podcasting on exposing pseudo-astronomy there since 2011. Currently, at the very least, that site has a link to his personal credentials including CV, education, and a list of his academic publications (with links). I have found he speaks in terms of established scientific research and verifiable knowns rather than speculation, and clearly lays those things out to back up his arguments.

Maybe I was late to the party, but I don't see how someone could dispute his credibility.

expat said...

I think Theadora is most likely trying to wind us up -- posting comments that he/she doesn't sincerely believe, just to be annoying.

Wait a minute -- isn't that the definition of trolling?

expat said...

Ridiculous comment from Novvak/Theadora disallowed

Anonymous said...

Once more.....Ripley is at it again :-)


Repulsed by Stupidity said...

Captain Novak, I have NEVER posted on a blog like this before, and therefore, am not a 'troll' or 'conspirator', or anything else. Congratulations - your textual outgassings have pushed me to make my virgin post, to simply say this: I believe you are a complete waste of skin.

I am violently uninterested in anything you have to say in return, you vacuous, credulous, argumentative, ignorant, smug, paranoid, piece of wombat dropping. You have repeatedly demonstrated that your mindless input is of far less worth culturally then 'enlarge your penis' spam, and clickbait on pornsites. FAR less.

Please feel free to improve the quality of life for of all readers of Expat's excellent blog, by ceasing to post your putrid, deranged, pus-filled defenses of liars, cranks, and cynics, while simultaneously questioning the integrity of decent people with actual qualifications and sense (people, whose boots, even if covered in copious excrement of your own issue, you are not worthy of licking). Go back on your meds you furtive, disingenuous, intellectually dishonest, thoroughly repugnant reprobate.

Thank you, and have a safe driving day.

expat said...

I'm not too keen on this blog being used for flaming. I'll allow one riposte from Theadora, then no more.