The Instigator
Karoz
Pro (for)
Losing
15 Points
The Contender
evilkillerfiggin
Con (against)
Winning
20 Points

Some UFO's ARE from another planet.

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Voting Style: Open Point System: 7 Point
Started: 7/20/2008 Category: Technology
Updated: 9 years ago Status: Voting Period
Viewed: 3,016 times Debate No: 4744
Debate Rounds (3)
Comments (12)
Votes (11)

 

Karoz

Pro

To clarify the definition of UFO's before the debate: UFO's are unidentified flying objects, even if something is not an alien spacecraft it can still be a UFO. But just because some UFO's may not infact be alien spacecraft this does not mean the rest aren't which is what this debate will be about.

My first point is that life on Earth is most likely not unique. With a universe as infinite as ours and with the building blocks of life littered across the galaxies you would be foolish to think Earth is the only planet to support life. Logic and reason can tell us that there are most likely other worlds with life, however this is not the subject of this debate. The subject of this debate is whether or not life forms from these other planets are developed enough to travel the vast distance of space to Earth and whether or not their spacecraft have been spotted by humans on occasions.

Spanning back to the start of human records, there have been several sightings of strange objects in the sky. Cave drawings and old paintings have even shown rather familiar objects hovering in the sky(Ie. The cigar shaped UFO and flying saucers).

But it wasn't until 60 years ago that sightings became more common, and within the last 10-15 years where sightings and actual video footage have reached record levels. The largest encounter being in Phoenix, Arizona(March 13th, 1997) where several strange lights were seen flying in formation over Phoenix by thousands and the same night a giant V shaped object a mile wide flew over(Close enough to the ground some people say they could have thrown a rock at it and hit.).

I want to hear my opponants side of the debate before I explain why some UFO's are probably from another world instead of our own technology or natural phenomenon.
evilkillerfiggin

Con

As an explanation for strange phenomena, UFOs bear some relation to God: It's very difficult to accurately attribute any given piece of evidence to them, just because so little is known about them.

And this is why aliens are great fun, and it saddens me that I'm arguing against their existence: we can make them up to be whatever best fits with the evidence - we have total creative freedom. When something unreal, unexplainable has happened, we can charge straight in with an explanation far more satisfying than the tenuous offerings of physicists - we're not slowed down by tedious natural laws, we can ascribe anything we want to superior technology.

Unfortunately, this is all the work of the human mind, leaping from conclusion to excited conclusion. The result is an emotionally intense fantasy. Even when the scientists expect us to believe the most preposterous of freak weather circumstances, even when they break down and admit, "We just don't know,", that does not validate our wild imaginations into becoming reality. We not allowed to say, "Well, no one can think of a better idea, it must be the aliens." Aliens are a brilliant story, but they aren't concrete enough to be a scientific theory.

Note that I've refrained from directly addressing the substance of the evidence you presented, because a 3-round debate can't afford to get bogged down in arguing through the details of each little scenario. Instead, I have to attack the nature of your evidence overall: it's anecdotal, it's all stories, not a controlled trial. Which is why it fits in so nicely with aliens - they're a story too, and a very appealing one.

Your first point was about the possibility (or the inevitability) that aliens will evolve on another planet. Logic and reason do indeed tell us this is possible, but only a little investigation is needed to tell us how horrendously unlikely it is. There's a lot of stars out there, and between them, an awful lot of space. Not to mention, an even larger amount of time separating us - they may be long dead, or still bacterium.

If the Universe isn't infinite, that's very unlikely two civilisations will arise at the same time. If the Universe is infinite, and the Law of Typewriting Monkeys requires that two civilisations do indeed exist at the same time, they're still going to be a hell of a long way apart.

In a strictly pedantic sense, I have to concede the debate now. You said, "Some UFO's ARE from another planet." And I agree. However, I'm going to assume that for the rest of the debate, we're talking about aliens, and not chunks of rock knocked off Mars.
Debate Round No. 1
Karoz

Pro

Whether or not the universe is infinite or not doesn't entirely matter. It is seemingly infinite; with trillions of solar systems within several galaxies. Science has shown Earth is billions of years old. If the Earth is billions of years old, then there must also be planets and solar systems much older.

In so many years, over so many trillions of planets, life had to have evolved somewhere to the point where the life forms became advanced enough to travel to different stars, and once a species has reached into the stars they become immune to being destroyed by a natural disaster such as a meteor. This would mean that their race would exist forever, with the only threat being another more advanced race tracking them down and killing them all(In that case there would still be other advanced aliens, and my point would stand.).

Any race that exists for thousands or millions of years would probably be able to easily search for other planets containing life.

Then the only issue would be about how they get here in the first place. Einstein believed it was impossible to go faster than light, but that doesn't mean he was right. Besides, I'm not even going to try to guess how they did it but for the sake of the argument lets say these aliens watching us know of some way to travel to other planets faster than light or perhaps they spent thousands of years travelling to Earth at sub-light speeds. It doesn't really matter how they do it though because if we knew how they did it we would already be travelling to other far off planets ourselves.

So lets just take a look at some of the evidence that points towards it being technology over unknown natural phenomenon.
- Many UFO's have evenly sized lights or an even shape. Things in nature are generally more uneven looking.
- Signs of intelligence. Some UFO's have chased or flown next to aircraft for a given period of time. There have also been several documented cases where some UFO's have shot beams of energy at nuclear warheads and disabled them.
- Most legitimate UFO's that have been captured on film appear to have a mass, and yet they still can hover without making noise or succumbing to Earth's gravity.

Unless some military or government has had the technology to hover(without making any noise) and to travel faster than any of our fastest aircraft today for the past 60 years(Or much longer), and for some reason have kept it secret for the past 60 years, then the most simple solution would be that it is infact alien.

The only other three explainations that seem reasonable are: Raptors evolved to the point where they could travel into space and avoided the meteor that killed all other dinosaurs and now they're watching humanity grow(Where are the ruins of the great raptor cities?), UFO's are actually time machines and we are being watched by ourselves from the future(You'd figure they'd be more careful hiding themselves to avoid timeline contamination though), there is a secret underwater Atlantian nation that has technology hundreds of years beyond our own and they don't want to make direct contact with the primitive natives. These three explainations really make aliens seem more possible, don't they?
evilkillerfiggin

Con

Your first point: I've already spoken about the size of the Universe - and I think you're being a tad optimistic. Further debate can't settle this disagreement; instead, I urge you to go away and learn about the spaces and sizes and numbers involved, and compare that to the complexity of the life we're talking about. It's a much, much longer shot than you're making it sound.

Not that I'm saying life won't evolve anywhere else in the Universe - on the contrary, it's not all that unlikely. But the kind of life we're talking about has got to do more than just evolve; it has to reach a level of complexity unimaginable to us, and don't underestimate the problems such a civilisation will have to overcome along the way - global resource and climate regulation is a hellishly complicated affair - I'm not even sure it's doable. And then, minimising the whole process to enable a spaceship to travel to a new solar system, in the face of all the laws of entropy.

Scifi makes this stuff look easy. The sheer wrongness of this impression is comparable to the interstellar distances we're talking about: it may be that such a task is simply physically unattainable. It may be that several of these freakish cultures of bacteria spontaneously evolved out there, and that none of them made it off their planet before the meteorite struck, or away from their sun before it went nova.

I'm not even going to start on faster-than-light travel. I damn well hope it's possible, but I'm not holding my breath. But why any civilisation advanced enough to use it would still be using spaceships, or indeed any physical equipment at all that was big enough to be a UFO, I can't imagine.

So the general point of the above four paragraphs was that the odds of your average UFO being an alien are not big. Impossible to quantify, perhaps, but certainly not big. Small enough to make the tenuous localised-freak-weather-phenomenon alternatives a much more likely (though unsatisfying) explanation.

So what of the evidence to the contrary?

Well, it seems to me that when something happens that's completely outside our daily experiences - take any given reporting - there's a definite double standard when it comes to explanations.

Unfortunately, to an unlucky majority, science is boring. Scientific explanations tend to make everything mundane again - while reminding us how stupid we are because we didn't really understand them. Here's a fantastic occurrence, like nothing we've seen before, and science will explain it. And that will make it dull again, because we didn't really want it explained. We wanted something genuinely significant to have happened.

So, a scientist must obey strict principles when coming up with his explanation. Once he has, he must then face down a barrage of criticisms from people who do not want to hear it. And often, given that he was forced to build his theory on unrepeatable, anecdotal and often very dubious data, his theory will indeed come crashing down.

And so the ufologists congratulate themselves. Because after all, noone wants to nitpick their explanation. And noone can: anything that doesn't add up is simply scary advanced alien technology. It may as well be the Holy Spirit, because it can be as mysterious and all powerful as needed.

Given that situation, you'll forgive me for ignoring your own alternative explanations. They're awesome, every one, especially the space raptors. I'm also going to have to be a skeptic and discount the evidence you provided - unless you can provide sources. Anecdotes and rumours do not a good study make.

The difficulty here is that objective reality is composed of things happening, while the human mind is programmed to think in stories. Aliens and space raptors are stories. Regrettably, until the quantum physicists tell me otherwise, I have to assume that reality takes precedence over stories.
Debate Round No. 2
Karoz

Pro

Back to Space Raptors for a moment though. If Raptors did indeed escape the destruction of Earth, then they also most likely have been living on another planet(Mars perhaps) and building new spaceships on that planet. So any Space Raptor spaceship would still be from a different planet, even though the race isn't. But on with the debate!

Evidence time!

Actual footage of the phoenix lights- http://youtube.com...
Flares? Very unlikely. Notice the clearly visibile trail of smoke on flares: http://newsimg.bbc.co.uk...
Former Arizona Gov. admits he saw the lights: http://www.prescottdailycourier.com...

Here is evidence relating to one of the Missile Silo incidents: http://www.ufoevidence.org...

What natural phenemenon targets missiles and deactivates them? There were no invasions or attacks during all these missile silo's being deactivated either.

The Russian, French, British and Mexican governments have all made other evidence available to the public as well.

Released by Mexican Military - http://youtube.com...

That should be more than enough proof.
evilkillerfiggin

Con

Sorry, but all that evidence tells me is that UFOs definitely exist. That was never in debate: the question was, are some of these UFOs alien spaceships from other planets?

There is nothing in any of those videos that suggests extraterrestrial involvement. Neither is such involvement a reasonable conclusion to reach: just because an explanation leaps to mind first does not make it good science.

Sherlock Holmes famously said, "Once you have eliminated the impossible, whatever remains - however improbable - must be the truth."

If you've ever studied deductive logic, you'll know that the above statement is complete nonsense. Just because we can't immediately see how something happened does not give us license to fly off on fanciful tangeants, and then claim they must be true because no one else can think of a better explanation.

In conclusion, although my opponent has advanced interesting speculations on the nature of extraterrestrial contact, and has shown me some pretty pictures of unexplainable phenomena, he has failed to satisfactorily link the two. So I'd urge you all to vote CON.
Debate Round No. 3
12 comments have been posted on this debate. Showing 1 through 10 records.
Posted by Xera 9 years ago
Xera
it was the word ARE in all caps, presumably for emphasis that led me to believe that the intent was a conclusive assertion. I'm sorry that I misinterpreted your intent.
Posted by evilkillerfiggin 9 years ago
evilkillerfiggin
This is what happens if we don't agree on the burdens before we set out - I too was thinking along Xera's lines.

Karoz: No, it's really not: Sherlock Holmes' logic works precisely because there's an author behind it who decides that it works.

What you may be thinking of is inductive reasoning; however, inductive reasoning still does not let you exercise that much sheer creativity. It might be reasonable to suppose that the sun will rise tomorrow, but that is quite a different league from UFOs being alien encounters.
Posted by Karoz 9 years ago
Karoz
You're mistaken Xera. My burden was to show that it was logically the most probable conclusion. By your logic the only way I could have won was by showing up at your front door with a flying saucer and an alien(But for some people even that wouldn't be enough.).

Believe it or not, but Sherlock Holmes style logic is rather important - despite what con said. It might not be conclusive with the whole Matrix paradox(Ie. There's no way to be sure if everything you know really is real or not.), but it's by far the best way to deduce the most probable conclusion. If you rely entirely on the Matrix paradox the "con" in every debate will always win no matter what.
Posted by Xera 9 years ago
Xera
I am voting CON on this one because PRO's burden was to prove, conclusively, that there are definitely UFO's that were from another planet visiting Earth, and he did not. He did provide some evidence that it might be possible, but nothing that said it is conclusively proven.

I had said I would post on what it was we were told about the phenomenon about the lights in Phoenix when I lived there. It took over a week for the Government to tell us all that it was flights from Luke AFB. Apparently no one at the base knew there was a big deal about all the lights and they were target shooting or something ridiculous like that. Now I have never really believed that story, it just seemed very odd it would take that long to report on something that they knew they were doing. I've always thought it was some secret military air craft, but who knows?
Posted by Karoz 9 years ago
Karoz
We're even. My last argument was rushed too because I was in class and my class was about to start.
Posted by evilkillerfiggin 9 years ago
evilkillerfiggin
Karoz: Sorry - my last argument was a tad rushed as I'm supposed to be running out the door now.

Just wanted to say, cheers for the debate and may the best man win.
Posted by Rezzealaux 9 years ago
Rezzealaux
"Unless some military or government has had the technology to hover(without making any noise) and to travel faster than any of our fastest aircraft today for the past 60 years(Or much longer), and for some reason have kept it secret for the past 60 years, then the most simple solution would be that it is infact alien."

LADIES AND GENTLEMEN, I GIVE YOU:

http://www.popsci.com...
Posted by Karoz 9 years ago
Karoz
Also Xera I have heard about the so-called flares(If that's what you were refering to.). But the thing is it's easy to tell the difference between several flares and several orbs of light flying in perfect formation.
Posted by Karoz 9 years ago
Karoz
"In a strictly pedantic sense, I have to concede the debate now. You said, "Some UFO's ARE from another planet." And I agree. However, I'm going to assume that for the rest of the debate, we're talking about aliens, and not chunks of rock knocked off Mars."

I'm pretty sure in the opening paragraph I made it rather clear. I hope you're not getting your talking points from Bill Nye and trying to make witty off-topic remarks despite the actual topic being rather clear..
Posted by Rezzealaux 9 years ago
Rezzealaux
"the Law of Typewriting Monkeys"

hurr hurr hurr. I saw that in a biology video once in my freshman year, but I didn't think it'd be seen ever again in my life xDDD
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