Half a croissant, on a plate, with a sign in front of it saying '50c'
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Thought experiment

If I'm crazy, blame my girlfriend.
  (+4, -1)
(+4, -1)
  [vote for,
against]

Once, in an unfamiliar city, I tried to make my way back to a distant hotel. Unknown (consciously) to me, my girlfriend had followed behind. Every time I considered making a wrong turn, I could feel the idea somehow blocked.

Here is the idea:

Two people intimate with each other but separated navigate a virtual maze wearing motion headsets. 1 person is trying to navigate the maze cold, while the other sees the path out of the maze and #1's progress.

Will the headsets detect rapid changes in #1's considered direction often enough to be significant?

Note: I suspect this could be tested informally with networked gamers.

Pairs in a control group could be looking at entirely different mazes as the experiment runs.

4and20, Jun 05 2013

Kickstarter: Melon http://www.kickstar...-to-measure-your-fo
Only tangentially related - but link above to a device that measures mental activity - and I think there are plans to add accelerometers too. [zen_tom, Jun 05 2013]

Edgar Cayce Center http://www.edgarcayce.org/
[xandram, Jun 05 2013]

Lizard People. Icke http://www.youtube....watch?v=4M3kxCV6dPQ
Icke breaks down to a conspiracy believer [4and20, Jun 09 2013]

Not quite sure what to make of this. http://www.bing.com...w=detail&FORM=VIRE3
[2 fries shy of a happy meal, Jun 12 2013]

[link]






       [marked-for-title]
FlyingToaster, Jun 05 2013
  

       This is somewhat baked. I participated in a similar experiment with my daughter at the Edgar Cayce Center. He did many kinds of experiments with ESP. [see link]
xandram, Jun 05 2013
  

       This is bringing on my nut allergy.
MaxwellBuchanan, Jun 05 2013
  

       Nuts or not, The Good Fairy Jenny and I have an intuitive connection that defies current scientific explanation. Sometimes it is simply a matter of like-minded persons reacting to something in a similar manner, but it goes beyond that. Perhaps the best example: after my motorcycle crash, Jenny, who was 90 miles away, had a feeling of "wrongness" and called my cell. A stranger answered (the same man who pulled me out of a flooded ditch and called 9-1-1) and told her that I was unconscious and hurt, but alive. Later on he told us that the wheel of my wrecked bike was still spinning when my phone began to ring. Make of that what you will.
Alterother, Jun 05 2013
  

       [Alter] Without specifically trying to belittle your experience, or your SO, how often does she call you routinely while travelling?   

       It's entirely possible for the "feeling of wrongness" to be a retrospective addition, since ours brains just love screwing with out memories.
MechE, Jun 05 2013
  

       Every time I considered posting this exact same notion, I could feel the idea somehow blocked. This proves that I was wearing headphones, and being followed.
xenzag, Jun 05 2013
  

       As I said, [Mech], make of it what you will. I know what's real when I see (experience) it, and I don't need to make a believer out of anyone else. This also makes me a skeptic, since I really have a hard time believing in things that defy explanation until I personally experience them. I know where you're coming from. Also, my memory is screwier than most, so there you have a valid argument as well.   

       I think [Bigs] makes an important point. ESP and related phenomena may be one of those things on the edge of the quantum map, just beyond the ability of the current scientific approach to reduce the mechanics and observe the fundamental forces involved.   

       But just to answer your question, she almost never calls when I'm riding a motorcycle because she knows I won't answer. On that particular day she'd asked me to call her when I arrived home, which wouldn't have been for another 20 min at least.
Alterother, Jun 05 2013
  

       Jeez.   

       [Alterother] If we assume that 10,000 people per day are involved in non-trivial accidents worldwide (I think that's very conservative) and that a typical person is called once a day by a significant other, then there ought to be between 3 and 4 cases _every single day_ in which a person is called within 30 seconds of having an accident.   

       So you can relax - you don't need to believe in loopy stuff.   

       Keeping an open mind is, however, a very public- spirited thing to do, rather like leaving an open dumpster outside your house for people to drop stuff in.
MaxwellBuchanan, Jun 05 2013
  

       I think you assume rather too much, m'lud. Firstly, the motorcycle crash example was just that, an example of non-empiracle evidence of a possible phenomenon, evidence collected for going on twelve years. Second, open-mindedness is not gullibility, nor is it anathema to reasonable skepticism. Rhinoceros, I don't believe in loopy stuff--unless it happens to loop right in front of me, which it has on occasion. We're all inclined to notice different things. Unless you've observed some of the same loopy stuff that I've witnessed, I have no expectation that you should believe me, and I'm cool with that. With that in mind, please continue. I love it when things get all parapsychophilosophical.
Alterother, Jun 05 2013
  

       in hindsight we look for explanations for things we cannot explain. We re-examine our memories looking to understand why we did the things we did, and when we do that we tend to smear back the feeling we are currently having. In a traumatic situation we try to reconstruct anything that might be meaningful about how we got into that situation, and in so doing, muddle the memory of what we actually experienced. In this sort of "intense learning memory" we amplify every aspect of the situation and, if we find nothing, we amplify the baseline noise until we find something. Never do we say, HOLY CATZ I HAVE A PREMONITION, FRIENDS LEND ME A PHONE SO I CAN MAKE A MEANINGFUL PHONE CALL! Which would be evidence of a premonition, instead we discover the premonition when we attempt to recover the memory of how we had the premonition in light of something important (good or bad) happening to us. In that stark light the need to make the phone call, turn on the tv, choose the lotto numbers was a compulsion, an explosive orgasm desperate reconstruction that our brains then record as a memory.   

       The great thing is that we can actually study this sort of conditioned false memory and trick people into feeling this feeling while we watch the activity in their brains; we can watch the brain study the memories leading up to a reward or punishment changing those memories to make them seem more significant.
WcW, Jun 05 2013
  

       \\parapsychophilosophical\\
[marked-for-tagline]
  

       //Never do we say, HOLY CATZ I HAVE A PREMONITION, FRIENDS LEND ME A PHONE SO I CAN MAKE A MEANINGFUL PHONE CALL! Which would be evidence of a premonition//   

       Aw Jeez, here I go...   

       I have had those exact situations... and I do count it as evidence.
Gather 'round kids, I'll tells y'all a little true story.
<ahem>
I was working on a road crew one time. Middle of summer, and it's stinking hot and dusty. We are all having lunch in the minimal shade of the back hoe while some jerk on a dirt bike is racing back and forth at just the right distance upwind for his dust to wash over us in the breeze and make our sandwiches all nice and crunchy.
Nobody is in a good mood at this point.
Suddenly I know without a doubt that this guy is going to wipe-out, and it's coming... it's coming... coming, right, about...
Without really thinking about what I was doing I set my lunch down and picked up my imaginary 30-30. I get the feel of it and settle it into my shoulder as though it were a real shot, I cock the lever, and get a lead on the target.
As the right... about... "now" hits I squeeze the imaginary trigger and feel the non-existent recoil of the rifle just as buddy bites the dirt hard.
I calmly blew the imaginary smoke from the end of the barrel and set the gun down to pick my lunch back up.
  

       Dirt bike-buddy was ok, and everyone got a good laugh out of it, but they didn't treat me the same after that. It was a subtle difference, a nervousness, like maybe I had made it happen or something.   

       I've learned to keep my premonitions to myself unless the compulsion to share them is almost overwhelming.   

       They happen a lot... but I don't think that they would be reproducible under laboratory conditions.   

       Thucydides agreed with [WcW] - except without knowing the neuroscience. Very astute man, that Thucydides.   

       I forget which book it comes in, but the passage in question concerns a prophecy of the plague in Athens.
pertinax, Jun 06 2013
  

       //I don't believe in loopy stuff--unless it happens to loop right in front of me, which it has on occasion.//   

       I have had my share of loopy stuff happen right in front of me, including the usual things (thinking of someone you haven't seen in 10 years, then bumping into them in a coffee shop 5 minutes later; hearing the phone ring and thinking "I bet that's so-and-so", and then it is.)   

       When those things happen to me, my first thought is "wow, that's spooky". My second thought is "gee, that stuff about mathematics and probability and all those hard sums is probably right after all."   

       I seldom if ever think "Wow. Something spooky has happened and, whatever the statistics say, I just intuitively _know_ it couldn't be chance. Maybe I should call the physicists and tell them to go back to the drawing board."   

       I have never been accused of lacking hubris, but perhaps the foregoing demonstrates that I have less hubris than some others.
MaxwellBuchanan, Jun 06 2013
  

       I'm mostly with you there; one instance is not enough evidence to convince me--ever. Usually it takes two or three instances of something weird happening for me to start thinking of it as anything but random chance. When things (like the subconcious connection I seem to have with my wife) happen many times over the course of years, especially if they occur on a fairly regular basis, then I think of them as 'real' because, well, it keeps happening. What I never do is try to offer any scientific evidence to support my claims, because there isn't any, or try to convince others that what I believe is Real, because it might not be.   

       Example: I have mentioned on the Bakery a few times my pseudo-philosophy that I call 'The Great Note'. I even claim to have 'heard' the Great Note a time or three in my life, usually in moments of perfect superconscious clarity when my hands are busy doing something totally unrelated. I'm happy to discuss this philosophy with anyone who wishes to hear it, but I never try to 'convert' anyone; it's not a religion, it's just a jumble of musings from a verified madman. It's not even 'Real' to me, it's simply a theoretical (and largely metaphorical) model of existence that makes sense only to me. Everyone occupies a different reality anyway.   

       One thing I do believe in, very fervently, is balance. The entire Universe depends upon it. There's no point in trying to understand or explain it, because it operates on a scale that is far beyond our comprehension as individuals or as a collective.
Alterother, Jun 06 2013
  

       //Usually it takes two or three instances of something weird happening for me to start thinking of it as anything but random chance....or try to convince others that what I believe is Real, because it might not be//   

       Well, there we go. I'm sure you're approaching the limits of sanity, but I'm no longer sure from which side.   

       You do, however, get a doff of my cap ([Bigs] - I've forgotten my cap; can you doff yours on my behalf?) for reasonable debate.   

       Given the number of potentially weird things out there, wouldn't it be even weirder if some of them didn't happen at least two or three times?
MaxwellBuchanan, Jun 06 2013
  

       I actually believe it impossible for something to happen only once.
Alterother, Jun 06 2013
  

       That very much depends on what you mean by "to".
MaxwellBuchanan, Jun 06 2013
  

       // I'm sure you're approaching the limits of sanity, but I'm no longer sure from which side. //   

       From the other side, most definitely. Not only am I quite insane (defined in this case as 'independantly diagnosed by several psychiatrists as being afflicted with incurable mental illness'), but also it is my habit to avoid coming at things head-on.   

       // what you mean by "to". //   

       Ah, now the ball is in my court. Words are a specialty of mine.
Alterother, Jun 06 2013
  

       //Words are a specialty of mine.// Do you mean speciality?
MaxwellBuchanan, Jun 06 2013
  

       When I was little, my parents who are both mathematicians and Actuaries used to play Bridge as partners for years. They were both very good, but my Mom was better and it drove my Dad crazy because she would regularly play the statistically "wrong" card which was the right card only because she knew what cards he was holding. Every night when they got home I could hear my dad complaints because even though they won, they shouldn't have, because she couldn't have known what cards he had. My scientific minds says it is completely possible that my dad had a series of tells that my mom could read, but I'd also admit the possibility that having eaten together for decades they very well could have digested millions of quantumly entangled particles that would receive data from each other and be integrated into our plastic brains as one other point of data and having been in constant contact for decades, that data could be correlated into a sixth sense of sorts. I've also rolled 18 triple sixes in a row in Risk. Not impossible but wildly unlikely. Weird things happen. Most of them are just normal things that we think are weird, but some are weird.
MisterQED, Jun 06 2013
  

       // I've also rolled 18 triple sixes in a row in Risk.// No you haven't. Not without weighted dice, at any rate.
MaxwellBuchanan, Jun 06 2013
  

       // //Words are a specialty of mine.// Do you mean speciality? //   

       Yes, that is what I meant. What an ironic typographical error, especially so in that it occurred during a debate over happenstance vs. paranormal influence.
Alterother, Jun 06 2013
  

       The Great Note is a metaphoric model of a theoretical quantum structure of the Universe. In essence, I posit that everything in existence is premised upon a collective underlying frequency which I call The Great Note. Each individual thing, be it you, me, a single hydrogen atom, my dog, a rock from your driveway, the Sun, or whatever, is a harmonic derived from The Great Note.   

       It goes on and on from there, but probably you get the point. I've wheeled it out on the 'bakery a few times already, so a search will dredge up further pontification. I typically only go past this introduction by request.
Alterother, Jun 06 2013
  

       Isn't the Great Note directly analogous with the Big Bang?
rcarty, Jun 06 2013
  

       // the subconcious brain can probably pick up on a hell of a lot //   

       This matches my usual understanding of things. Intuition may only seem magical if insufficiently considered.   

       The paradox, however, is that young children, for example, seem to acquire understanding at a rate far faster than most explicit instruction, without appearing to reflect on it or even remember how it happened.   

       It would be a pity if explanation is unnecessary or only slows us down.
4and20, Jun 06 2013
  

       // everyone ... has a model like this and its a personal thing. As soon as someone starts preaching and goats are sacrificed, it becomes a religion. //   

       That's exactly the point I was trying to express earlier. I know what I believe, and I embrace change in my beliefs as I am constantly informed by the world around me, and it doesn't make it any less significant to me if nobody else feels the same way.   

       Now if I could just preach _that_ philosophy, we might make some progress.
Alterother, Jun 06 2013
  

       //The Great Note is a metaphoric model of a theoretical quantum structure of the Universe.//   

       Yeah, but as models go, this one doesn't have many clothes on. Not that that's always a bad thing.   

       I think it's a language-driven model rather than a physics-driven model. I.E., it starts with attractive language ("everything is a resonance of an underlying great note"), and then goes on to ...well, to stop. It doesn't explain anything, it doesn't make any predictions, it's just a linguistically nice phrase.   

       Equally nice phrases might include: "The universe we know is just a shadow of a greater universe."; "Time is a construct to explain the past"; or "All particles in the universe have their own harmony."   

       Now, if you really wanted to dress your model for the catwalk, you'd say what the frequency was, and why. All Great Notes have a frequency.   

       Which brings another problem - is the Great Note affected by Döpplër shïfts and, if so, where do we have to stand in order to receive the True Great Note?   

       Sorry, I don't mean to poke fun. Actually yes, to fess up, I do mean to poke fun because I think "the Great Note" is a phrase rather than a model, and I think models are overworked and deserve more respect.
MaxwellBuchanan, Jun 06 2013
  

       "affect cannot be replicated in a laboratory" -tagline   

       Bullshit is a notion that is true only so long as you do not have to prove it.
WcW, Jun 06 2013
  

       See? All of us believe fervently enough in something to sit down and debate over whether or not each of our individual beliefs matter or even exist. Some of us believe in science. Some of us believe in words. Some of us believe in bullshit. But we all believe, and I love the passion.
Alterother, Jun 06 2013
  

       What about when you're thinking of a plate of shrimp, and suddenly somebody says "plate" or "shrimp"? Or "plate of shrimp"?
bungston, Jun 06 2013
  

       //Bullshit is a notion that is true only so long as you do not have to prove it//   

       You have a suggestion as to 'how' this proof could be provided then?...
If so, sign me up.
Until then, the title of bullshit seems just a bit premature... unless you admit to an existing bias.
  

       //// I've also rolled 18 triple sixes in a row in Risk.// No you haven't. Not without weighted dice, at any rate.// Yes, I did. I've had long strings in the past but that was the longest. When I was a kid we used to have marathon board games sessions right after Christmas playing whatever games we got. We were about 18 hours in when my luck started getting much better. We didn't start counting till the sixth or seventh so there is a margin of error, but the odds are still astronomical. These were the dice that came with Risk, so they are a bit weighted as the dots are hollows, so the one is heavier than the six which alters the odds slightly.
MisterQED, Jun 07 2013
  

       18 triple sixes - odds are 1 in 6^54.   

       I'm not saying I don't believe it. I am only saying that, given fair dice, I would wager my life for $1 against its having happened, without giving it a second thought.   

       I would actually be prepared to wager the continued existence of the universe for $1 against its having happened, were it in my power to do so.
MaxwellBuchanan, Jun 07 2013
  

       Statistically, each roll is treated as an indepedent event, but in reality, how can one compare his rolling the same dice the same way 18 times vs. 18 separate people rolling them?
4and20, Jun 07 2013
  

       Technically the odds are still the same: 6^^54 = (6^^3)^^18, but true that 18 people rolling 54 dice should give a closer fit to the odds due to averaging.
FlyingToaster, Jun 07 2013
  

       [MB] Not a good bet. I'd be willing to make that bet against it happening ever again, but I'd not be willing to bet against someone saying it happened in the past (although I agree memory may be playing tricks). After all, some combination of dice is going to come up and it may have been that one.
MechE, Jun 07 2013
  

       This one time, my best friend Jim decided that his 3rd- level dwarf warrior would attack a venerable age-class golden dragon. The DM allowed it, so Jim passed both the dexterity test for leaping from the stony outcrop and the tumbling skill test for landing successfully on the dragon's head (despite the armor penalty imposed by his chainmail and iron breastplate) before rolling consecutive natural twenties for a critical hit, allowing him to deliver enough subdual damage with his +1 warhammer to stun the beast with a single blow. I know it sounds impossible, but it happened. So yeah, I'll buy eighteen double-sixes.
Alterother, Jun 07 2013
  

       So... I can't be the only one here that has actually experienced premonitions.
They can be scientifically debunked all you like, but that doesn't stop them from occurring, and it does not stop me from knowing that they are real.
  

       It is not lack of demonstration that keeps people from belief in the reality of glimpsing the future, and I have no need to dissemble on the subject... y'all just can't handle the truth.   

       //They can be scientifically debunked all you like, but that doesn't stop them from occurring, and it does not stop me from knowing that they are real.//   

       The defence rests. The world is full of people who just know things are real.   

       //It is not lack of demonstration that keeps people from belief in the reality of glimpsing the future// For the record, I don't have any problem at all with predicting the future. Give me the masses and motions of a star and its planet, and I'll probably be able to predict where it will be tomorrow. However, give me one solid demonstration of precognition in the hookummy sense of the word, and I'll buy it. In the meantime, I will persist with my belief that people who believe in such tombollockry are just thick.
MaxwellBuchanan, Jun 07 2013
  

       I have been in several situations, either emergencies or soon-to-be, in which I correctly predicted what would transpire over the next 5-10 seconds and was able to take action or at least communicate my prediction, but I wouldn't call that premonition so much as just being quick on the draw. I also have the occasional 'hunch' concerning significant events over periods of months or years, and I have had a remarkable rate of those come out the way I expected as well. I think a lot of what people attribute as premonition or sixth sense is just our latent predator's instinct for spotting patterns and trends.
Alterother, Jun 07 2013
  

       // The defence rests. The world is full of people who just know things are real.
give me one solid demonstration of precognition in the hookummy sense of the word, and I'll buy it. In the meantime, I will persist with my belief that people who believe in such tombollockry are just thick.//
  

       nice   

       I find that to be a very convenient dismissal.
One would think that I'd get used to having the things I am able to do with my mind dismissed by people who can not do those same things after all this time...
but nope.
  

       There are many, many, things that I can't do with this stubborn melon of mine, I admit them all freely, and I do not begrudge you a single thing your mind is capable of which mine is not.
Yet when I claim that there are things which I 'can' do...
well, for some reason the admissions are never free, and my capabilities are not only begrudged, but mocked and shunned.
  

       If you've ever wondered why extra sensory perception seems so rare as to be non-existent, your attitude towards the subject, being a near carbon copy of attitudes set forth and pressured into you by your peers, is as far as you need look for an answer.
It is not 'allowed' to exist.
You are taught from the time you are a child that it does not exist and I'd bet dollars to doughnuts that you install this same prejudice in your own children, if you have them, and make damned good and sure it stays installed.
  

       If you were in my life for any length of time you'd have your disbelief whittled away the same as I have.   

       I am not irrational.
You are just wrong.
And because you are wrong, I and others also capable of such things get to live our lives as the Easter Bunny because our abilities have no place in your brow-beat culture.
  

       I-am-not-like-you.   

       I can't do the things you can do.
I honestly don't see why it is so frigging hard to imagine that maybe there are things I can do which you can not.
  

       The prejudice is most unscientific.   

       // The defence rests. The world is full of people who just know things are real. Give me one solid demonstration of precognition in the hookummy sense of the word, and I'll buy it. In the meantime, I will persist with my belief that people who believe in such tombollockry are just thick.//   

       Isn't that a quote from the Inquisition at the trial of Galileo?
lurch, Jun 07 2013
  

       Well, fair point - I retract my "thick" an apologize. However, I will stand by "wrong".
MaxwellBuchanan, Jun 08 2013
  

       I'm thick therefore I'm jam.
xenzag, Jun 08 2013
  

       // The prejudice is most unscientific. //   

       It could be a sampling bias. If you compared the number of times people said that they thought relatives were "still fine" against the probability that they aren't...   

       Taking a joke into the outer limits.
4and20, Jun 08 2013
  

       Some people are more spiritually/paranormally attuned than others, able to perceive things that occur beyond the pale. Other people are configured to understand whiteboards filled with the kind of numberless math that gives me headaches just to look at; not just understand it, but make it get up and dance.   

       "'Magic' is merely technology that we are not yet able to explain." -Arthur C. Clarke   

       "What your people call science, we call magic. I come from a land where they are one and the same." -The Almighty Thor   

       "What wisdom lies in wisdom alone? The only wise man is he who knows that he is ignorant." -Unknown   

       Scientists of various stripes have achieved seemingly miraculous feats of theory and technology that seem impossible to me, yet they hold no quarter for the things that they themselves think impossible. Could it be that the grungy wisdom of the uneducated could produce things as deep and meaningful as the greatest advancements ever to emerge from a laboratory? I ask not that enquiring minds be turned to the pursuit of that which is patently inexplicable, only that the luxury of curiosity be afforded to those of us who practice our magic down in the dirt.
Alterother, Jun 08 2013
  

       Further musings:   

       To the ancient Greek philosophers, an internal combustion engine would look like magic until they had a good long gander at the innards. It smacks of folly to dismiss something as non-existent just because nobody's yet figured out how to pop the hood.
Alterother, Jun 08 2013
  

       No. I don't care how far you want to go back, it is a dark dark day when a person sees a thing that they cannot immediately explain and instead of exploring it, discards all inquiry in the hat of "magic". Even "magic" has workings that the ancients might explore, and the exploration of "mysteries" and "magical phenomena" was the first real physical science. An appeal to respect the notion of "mysteries" simply because they entertain and beguile us more than realities is the path of ignorance. Where there is something to know, let us employ ourselves to knowing it. Where there is the unexplained, let us focus on testing explanations. If magic works, then let us harness it, and if it does not, let us discard it.   

       Reliance on your own impressions, on the partiality and foibles of a single human brain is a kind of madness.
WcW, Jun 08 2013
  

       I think you may have misunderstood my point, since it is essentially the same as yours: let us not dismiss something as magic or nonsense simply because it cannot be scientifically explained.   

       As for myself, I make no claim that anything I believe or observe (or think I observe) is either magical or factual. I don't have to know what something is to know that it exists, but if I don't know what it is I have no business trying to prove its existence to others. Better that I enjoy it within the bounds of my own paradigm than drive myself to tears impressing it upon those who don't want it.   

       And don't talk to me about madness, sir. That is one thing I _do_ know.
Alterother, Jun 08 2013
  

       I will continue to stand (unless someone would be so kind as to fetch me a chair. No? Well, then I shall press on) by "wrong", for example in response to [2 fries] statement regarding his experience, or [MisterQED]'s claim to have rolled 18 consecutive treble sixes with fair dice.   

       The problem here is the David Icke Problem. Let me explain.   

       David Icke is a former UK television and sports presenter. He believes that the world is run by large blue lizards, who disguise themselves as heads of state, such as the British Royal Family, American presidents, and the like. He has written books on this subject, and has quite a following.   

       I would not hesitate to say that Mr. Icke is wrong - not relatively wrong or probably wrong, but wrong period. Wrong to more decimal places than most of our best estimates of natural constants, for example. Just wrong, end of.   

       Like [2 fries] and [MisterQED], Mr. Icke is completely earnest in his claims. I am not accusing him of consciously lying. Like [2 fries] and [MisterQED], he bases his claims on his own personal experience (in his case, revelations and communications).   

       Like [2 fries] and [MisterQED], Mr. Icke knows these things to be true, because _he_has_experienced_them_.   

       So, how am I to differentiate between Mr. Icke's claims and those of [2 fries] or [MisterQED]? I cannot.   

       Probably more people claim to have experienced ESP than claim to have received communications from the ruling blue lizards. On the other hand, very large numbers people have claimed to have been abducted by aliens. Three of centuries ago, many people knew absolutely that they had been meddled with by witches. The knew these things, because they had experienced them.   

       So, again, how am I to give any time or credence to [2 fries]'s or [MisterQED]'s experiences, without having to give equal credence to David Icke and the large blue lizards?   

       What would you actually suggest I do, to differentiate the two types of experience? I am not trying to troll or harangue, but nor am I ready to back down unless someone can help explain what's wrong with the blue lizards.
MaxwellBuchanan, Jun 08 2013
  

       More to the point, who drained the last lot out?   

       And again, what's wrong with the blue lizards that's not wrong with ESP or 18 triple sixes?   

       Actually, the blue lizards are much more likely than the 18 triple sixes. We might reasonably guess that there is a 1 in 10^9 chance that intelligent blue lizards exist in our galaxy. We might also guess that there's a 1 in 10^9 chance of their wanting to rule the Earth. If they did so wish, there's probably a 1 in 10^9 chance that they would do so by stealth rather than by obvious force.   

       Thus, there's a 1 in 10^27 chance that David Icke is right.   

       This is 1000,000,000,000,000 fold better than the 1 in 6^54 (1 in 10^42*) chance of rolling 18 consecutive triple sixes with fair dice.   

       (*and isn't that a spooky coincidence?)
MaxwellBuchanan, Jun 08 2013
  

       //Reliance on your own impressions, on the partiality and foibles of a single human brain is a kind of madness.//   

       Yeah, that's kind of the human condition... What else have I had to rely on?
Science? Doctors? Parents? Teachers?... Government?
  

       Not.   

       I have a lifetime of seriously freaked out people reinforcing the validity of my claims without having to dip into the things I alone have witnessed and don't count as evidence because delusion is always a possibility.
To me, non-reliance on your own impressions, on the partiality and foibles of your single human brain rather than what others think is a kind of madness.
I would go so far as to say that each and every one of you have these abilities latent within yourselves and yet you have embraced its suppression with open arms. It's easier that way.
Baaaa-aa-aa
  

       //So, how am I to differentiate between Mr. Icke's claims and those of [2 fries] or [MisterQED]? I cannot.//   

       So... don't. Just like you were taught.
I am not Mr. Icke.
I don't even care to be believed any more, (I think I gave that up at age nine or ten or so), I just tell it like it is and folks can like it or not as they see fit.
  

       Fill yer boots.   

       I consider my boots duly filled and, again, apologies for the use of "thick". "Thick" is an inappropriate adjective for Mr. Icke and, as far as I know, for yourself and [MisterQED].   

       I am certain, to several decimal places, that you're wrong, but that is a different matter, and I am glad that you agree that it shouldn't bother you - it's not meant to bother you.   

       The odds on ESP are harder to calculate than the odds on 18 triple sixes. There is, I would guess, a 1 in 10^N chance that you're right and I'm wrong, where N is somewhere between 10 and 20. Thus, if I invest one second on considering each of 10^10 equally unlikely ideas, I will be rewarded maybe once. Sadly, that's 317 years spent considering blue lizards and triple sixes.   

       But, all other matters aside, how would you advise me to decide between your experiences and those of David Icke? If I wasn't taught to differentiate, but to merely reject them all out of hand, then teach me - how do I differentiate?
MaxwellBuchanan, Jun 08 2013
  

       There you go with the math again.
I don't do numbers, //a 1 in 10^N chance// doesn't mean anything to me when I read it. What is ^N?... Maybe that has something to do with it. The odds have no meaning for me. I am ignorant of what I'm not supposed to be able to do... so therefore no impediment exists to my being able to.
  

       //how would you advise me to decide between your experiences and those of David Icke? //   

       I don't.
You're your own man. Think for yourself.
I've had to... how hard can it be?
  

       //Without really thinking about what I was doing I set my lunch down and picked up my imaginary 30-30. I get the feel of it and settle it into my shoulder as though it were a real shot, I cock the lever, and get a lead on the target.//   

       I guess I could have just pointed and said, "Hey, watch that guy wipe out in four, three, two..."
But you have to admit that that wouldn't have been nearly as funny, and I was all about the funny back then. The best way to avoid rejection by a new group of people is to make them all laugh. I just hadn't learned to separate the two traits yet.
  

       Would it surprise you to know that I've never harmed a creature bigger than a spider if it wasn't attacking me without provocation? I like marksmanship. I'm a natural when it comes to weapons, for some buggered up reason I don't fathom, and hope to never need the skill.   

       //Rolled 6 treble sixes - 18 dice in total// Still odds of 1 in 6^18, or 1 in 10^14 - every person on earth rolling 18 dice, once every second, for about 4 hours. I still say it didn't happen, though if you knock off a few more dice I might start to consider it possible.
MaxwellBuchanan, Jun 08 2013
  

       Can we quit f'ing over quantum mechanics? Poor science is just trying to get a good start, it's all sorts of wonderful, all sorts of mind blowing, and frankly it just does not need to be treated as the repository for magical thinking. Unless you can actually explain how an entagled pair are actually "collapsed" somehow, don't claim that you think it's doing something; you might as well don a tin foil chapeau.
WcW, Jun 08 2013
  

       //The odds have no meaning for me.//   

       So, if something happened that you considered to be outside the normal range of probabilities, you would have no way to estimate how unlikely it otherwise was? For example, if something unusual happened, you would not be able to estimate whether it was a one-in-a-thousand chance (unlikely, but not impossible) or a one-in-a- thousand-billion-billion chance (requiring some sort of supernatural explanation)? Is that a fair statement?   

       //I've had to... how hard can it be?// [to distinguish between the validity of Icke's claims and your own] It is actually very hard for me, and I'm sorry. If you're happy that it's not possible for anyone to distinguish between different types of controversial claim, then that's OK - I don't mind not being able to distinguish, I just wanted to see if a distinction were possible.
MaxwellBuchanan, Jun 08 2013
  

       Or we could employ the wisdom of a long dead white guy, the ghosts of whom we have already summoned and sullied a bit.   

       "We are to admit no more causes of natural things than such as are both true and sufficient to explain their appearances. Therefore, to the same natural effects we must, so far as possible, assign the same causes."   

       -Sir Issac Newton   

       He meddled in the unexplained things that were not visible and came up with some very useful theories, mostly by contradicting the prevailing notion that some things that happen cannot be explained.
WcW, Jun 08 2013
  

       //So, if something happened that you considered to be outside the normal range of probabilities, you would have no way to estimate how unlikely it otherwise was? For example, if something unusual happened, you would not be able to estimate whether it was a one-in-a-thousand chance (unlikely, but not impossible) or a one-in-a- thousand-billion-billion chance (requiring some sort of supernatural explanation)? Is that a fair statement?//   

       When I was younger this statement would have been entirely accurate. I've seen and known many things I can't explain.
It's not very hard to understand. I've had no mentor. Ever. Oldest sibling, no dad, evil step-dad, neurotic mum, no uncles... yadda yadda- alone, right? Bouncing from town to town, school to school and taking my next small town shit-kicking. My brain does whatever the heck it was made to do because I've had to puzzle it all out from scratch. I was never told what I wasn't supposed to be able to do... so I do what I want.
Everyone in my life was mentally ill growing up... in fact, you're all mentally ill to some degree as far as I can tell.
  

       You're all conditioned.
I may be a dumb-ass but the one thing I am not is conditioned.
  

       I'm me. Period.   

       [2 fries] I'm not disputing any of that, and I appreciate that you have not had an easy ride. I also acknowledge your individuality.   

       But, in the context of the present discussion, my first question was - how should I distinguish between your experiences and the experiences of David Icke? You can; I can't; how should I or anyone else make the distinction?   

       The second question was - if you have no way to estimate probabilities, how can you be sure that the weird stuff that has happened to you is really that weird? (This second question may be irrelevant; for example if you tell me that you have seen a coffee cup levitate, then questions of probability are not easily relevated.)
MaxwellBuchanan, Jun 08 2013
  

       Possible, but unlikelyish.
MaxwellBuchanan, Jun 08 2013
  

       The knowing mind of an edible tropical fruit: I think therefore I yam.
xenzag, Jun 08 2013
  

       // how should I distinguish between your experiences and the experiences of David Icke? You can; I can't; how should I or anyone else make the distinction? //   

       I don't know, I had to give up caring whether anyone else does or doesn't understand.
Honestly it's always kind of felt like I'm trying to explain how I 'can so' see a rainbow to a bunch of color-blind people my whole life.
  

       // if you have no way to estimate probabilities, how can you be sure that the weird stuff that has happened to you is really that weird? (This second question may be irrelevant; for example if you tell me that you have seen a coffee cup levitate, then questions of probability are not easily relevated.)//   

       The things I've seen were not weird to me at the time, only in retrospect and in the reactions and feedback of others.
That's kind of my point.
  

       I've never seen an object levitate... yet... and I can't think of a single instance that would convince you without your own personal experiencing so...   

       Like I said. Don't believe me.
What possible difference could it make to me one way or the other?
I know what I've managed to glean, and you know what you were taught.
That's the long and short of it. Time will tell if you are right or I am right and none of it is going to change the fact that we both have to wipe our own asses.
  

       ................   

       I must say though, I sure am glad that [4and20] posted this.
Thanks!
I've waited a long time for you lot to wade through enough topics to get around to this one...
  

       "differentiating experiences" Predictions from Mr. Icke's experiences can be tested. This is the scientific method. Multiple witnesses agreeing that they saw the same thing may or may not be accepted as proof in a court of law. (logic and facts are irrelevant to the law) In the court of public opinion, otherwise known as society, the majority rules. In the D&D crowd, the opinions may be different than in the stock market traders crowd. We all establish our own heuristic principles that pass for understanding. (understanding is an iffy concept) The thing about these heuristic principles is that they are based on each individual's limited sample set of experiences. Those experiences are filtered as they happen and again when they are remembered. In scientific experiments the usual practice is to limit the variables. This also limits the possible results. Learning from others involves comparing and combining the principles developed from their sample sets with our personal sample set. Combining the experiences of everyone who has ever lived still does not give us a sample set large enough to be 'sure' that we have not missed anything. I suspect that some ESP phenomena will be explained by something that no one has yet published the results of an experiment on. In the instances of 'hunches'; many people testify that a specific hunch 'feeling' is a good indicator of a high probability of the hunch being correct. Our language has a hard time describing the difference between feeling happy and feeling sad. Is it any wonder that it is hard for people to describe this hunch feeling in a way that others can understand? I suspect that delusional experiences and precog or hunch experiences do feel different to the individuals experiencing them. They just don't know how to describe the feelings clearly enough to teach someone else to recognize the differences.   

       If you observe something happen multiple times, then you form a hypothesis and test your hypothesis in a controlled experiment and fail to reproduce the observed event, does that prove that your observation was wrong? The answer is no and yes. Think about it.
AwarmRay, Jun 09 2013
  

       // I can't think of a single instance that would convince you without your own personal experiencing//   

       Well, I dunno. I'm fairly convinced of many things without personal experience (such as the existence of Lithuania, or the existence of atoms). It's a question of thresholds, or as someone once put it "extraordinary claims require extraordinary evidence".   

       I can imagine having a personal experience which would convince me. I can also (being aware of my own limitations) imagine losing my objectivity and falling into the same trap that I think some others fall into, on the basis of personal experience.   

       I think I'd be convinced by 'external' evidence if someone could reproducibly demonstrate precognition or ESP, and if the experiments were controlled and repeated enough to exclude the possibility of either deliberate fraud; of coincidence; or of subconscious cues.   

       My threshold for evidence in this case is probably higher than my threshold in other cases - for instance, if someone tells me that a given drug inhibits a particular enzyme, I'd require less evidence, because a priori it's more likely to be true - ie, the prior odds aren't so formidable.   

       The problem with requiring a high level of evidence, of course, is a greater risk of missing a real phenomenon. Someone might have true precognition 0.1% of the time - this would be very, very hard to prove, despite there being a real underlying phenomenon. Equally, if the phenomenon is abolished by putting someone into a situation where things are properly controlled, then again it would be impossible to prove, whether it exists or not.   

       However, if the phenomenon cannot be proven to exist, then it's a matter of personal preference whether to believe it or not. Given the unlimited number of possible but unproven phenomena, and the a priori unlikeliness of each of them, my own preference is to not believe in them (or to believe in all of them, including the blue lizards).   

       Would I _like_ to be convinced that they exist? Of course! It would be as wonderful as cold fusion (which I really wanted to believe in) - a whole new phenomenon!   

       It would open up endless new possiblities, all open to investigation - for example, if it were ESP, how does it work? Does it depend on electromagnetic waves? Can it go through solid obects? Can it be amplified? Can it be blocked by an earthed conductor? How fast does it travel? Are there structures in the brain that can give out and receive EM to and from other brains? Does it require new physics to explain? Do other animals have it? Is there genetic variation in the ability? If so, what genes are involved?   

       You seem to assume that scientists "don't want" things like ESP to exist. I don't think that's the case - they would love it to exist, every bit as much as physicists would love a new, unexpected particle to turn up. What we "don't want" is to be lured by something just because we or other people "want it" to exist, which is why we set the bar fairly high for evidence. Your experiences might be real and might represent something fantastic and exciting, but we have no way to distinguish them from other, unreal experiences, such as the blue lizards - that's our problem, not yours.   

       I appreciate the frustration of believing in something that some others don't believe in but, as you said, it needn't impact on either of us. It's an interesting problem, though.
MaxwellBuchanan, Jun 09 2013
  

       Rolling long sequences of double sixes might not be quite so unlikely - particularly if the dice are picked up off the board in one hand and immediately rolled again, without using a shaker.   

       This is because the events are not strictly independent; the orientation of the dice in the hand depends on their orientation on the board, and their trajectories are likely to be similar.
spidermother, Jun 09 2013
  

       // I guess most of the other annotators is that you perform scientific work and you have to be sceptical and impartial. Otherwise its far too easy to cherry pick results to prove what you want.//   

       That's over-generous to scientists. We are (by and large) not impartial, are only selectively skeptical, and have the common foible of being tempted to cherry-pick results.   

       Despite how science may advertise itself, it's full of personal desires, pet theories, rivalry and all the other human foibles.   

       What we rely on is: (a) Being taught to avoid these biases and prejudices. This teaching is only partly successful, because of course my bias is correct, and therefore not a bias whereas everyone else's is wrong.   

       (b) Being taught to apply our skepticism to our colleagues ideas. Thus, if I get too carried away, I can ask myself "would my colleagues be convinced by this?" - most scientists relish tearing someone else's pet theory apart.   

       (c) The ultimate safeguard - and it's not at all perfect - is peer review, whether it happens at the end of a seminar, in a grant application, or by paper reviewers.   

       In short, we are tough and mean on eachother, which often (not always) stops each of us running away with our own cherry-picked data and pet theories.   

       The reason a lot of scientists (and I don't completely exclude myself from this) appear hostile to people claiming unusual phenomena such as ESP is that we know how wonderful if it would be if it were true, but we also know how unlikely it is, and how unfirm the evidence is.   

       What tends to happen (not so much here on the HB, where people are pretty smart - but in general) is that people claiming ESP (or whatever) demand that it be given a seal of approval by scientists, but also demand that we lower our standards of evidence in order to be able to do so. So, it's very, very frustrating for scientists and, probably, for the people claiming these unusual phenomena.
MaxwellBuchanan, Jun 09 2013
  

       Tried it. I do not appear to have a deep psychic connection with HTML.
MaxwellBuchanan, Jun 09 2013
  

       // The reason a lot of scientists (and I don't completely exclude myself from this) appear hostile to people claiming unusual phenomena such as ESP is that we know how wonderful if it would be if it were true, but we also know how unlikely it is, and how unfirm the evidence is. //   

       Really?
You'd be entirely comfortable with knowing beyond a doubt that another person could pick thoughts and memories out of your head if they wished? What if I was able to, say, pull the passwords out of your head?
How much do you think government officials would enjoy hanging out with such people?
How much military money has been spent on the subject already? How far have the Soviets come with remote viewing and such now?
  

       How much data has _already been_ gathered?
Where is it?
I'll get a PHD and we can explore its wonderfulness together.
  

       //You'd be entirely comfortable with knowing beyond a doubt that another person could pick thoughts and memories out of your head if they wished?//   

       I wouldn't be _comfortable_, for obvious personal reasons. But I would be absolutely over the moon!   

       If you don't see why I would be over the moon, you're not trying to understand me (or a good proportion of scientists). Any scientist who is actually interested in science would be exploding with happiness if they found (and could reliably observe) some totally new phenomenon.   

       As I indicated above, there are a bunch of things I'd want to look at: does it work through solid objects? Through opaque solid objects? Through metal? Through a Faraday cage? What bits of the brain are active when it's happening? Can we all send? Can we all receive? Is either ability heritable? Or learnable? Do any diseases damage the ability? Do any pharmaceuticals enhance it? A BILLION questions.   

       So no, I'd not be _comfortable_ with having my thoughts read, but I would gladly pay whatever money I can rake together if someone could demonstrate it to me in a way that others would also believe.   

       And I'm quite sure that the Soviets and US Government have put a lot of money into this. If I were in government, and if I thought there was a one in a million chance of finding something useful, I would spend a lot of money on it.   

       Historically, also, a lot of time and money has been invested by the Egyptians, Greeks, Romans and probably every civilisation interested in foretelling the future. This goal has doubtless produced many wise people who are good at making judgements and at using all the available clues.   

       However, unless you want to go down the "The CIA do this stuff all the time" route (and neither of us wants to step into tinfoil-hat territory, I'm sure), then the fact that they haven't succeeded is surely telling?   

       Please, let's avoid the conspiracy theory, for at least two reasons:   

       (a) There is no point in having it, because the less evidence there is for a conspiracy, the bigger and more effective the conspiracy must be.   

       (b) It is boring. It is a hackneyed conversation that you or I can have with any number of people. You don't need to talk to a scientist, and I don't need to talk to someone who believes in ESP, in order to have the standard conspiracy conversation.   

       What we were moving towards here was an interesting and useful discussion, and we don't want to blow it after we've got this far.
MaxwellBuchanan, Jun 09 2013
  

       If the US government has any special talents, it has been doing an exceptional job of hiding them.
WcW, Jun 09 2013
  

       You _really_ think they're blue? Wouldn't a true conspiracy try to put about a counter-myth that was so implausible as to be dismissed? And would not a true conspiracy openly acknowledge this, knowing that believing or not believing it had the same effect?
MaxwellBuchanan, Jun 09 2013
  

       Oh, and a virtual bun for [WcW]'s last annotation.
MaxwellBuchanan, Jun 09 2013
  

       //That does sound implausible.//   

       Yes, it does, doesn't it?
MaxwellBuchanan, Jun 09 2013
  

       // However, unless you want to go down the "The CIA do this stuff all the time" route (and neither of us wants to step into tinfoil-hat territory, I'm sure), then the fact that they haven't succeeded is surely telling? //   

       The subject is kind of hard to think about without at least peeking down that particular rabbit hole though.
All of those questions you asked and more I want to know.
Others have asked the same questions. Still others have designed experiments to test it and if there wasn't some validity to the claims of ESP then all of the data, bought and paid for by our sweat, would be readily available.
  

       Coming from left-field on this stuff as I am, I already know the end results of at least some of these areas of inquiry. That makes me extremely biased when discussing the subject but it also lets me see right through the smoke-and-mirrors bullshit of what the public is told does and does not exist.   

       I had no choice but to hone my intuition. So that's what I did. It exists, and there are levels above the picking-up-on-unconscious clues aspect of it.   

       Preach, brother, preach! Psi power!
Alterother, Jun 09 2013
  

       Whoops - I just read the previous annotations more carefully, and realise I'd inadvertently repeated what [bigsleep] said. What are the odds! (Especially of my agreeing with [bigs] ;))
spidermother, Jun 09 2013
  

       // I already know the end results of at least some of these areas of inquiry.//   

       Well, gosh, fair cop (as we say when we're over here).   

       Indeed, just assume that everything you believe is correct. That's a fair assumption, because it is, as you know.   

       So, if it were true, then it's pretty obvious that people such as yourself would have come to "their" attention, which you have. There are many tens of thousands of people such as yourself on which to be kept an eye, but the economics of the situation make the cost of doing so insignificant. Most of this eye-keeping is done in very mundane ways (for example, monitoring your internet traffic), because that is cheap and can be done by people without their knowing why they are being asked to do it. When the situation calls for it, obviously other means can be used, but this is used as a last resort because the necessary skilled resources are scarce, and it cannot be done well over long distances. You will probably have noticed these interventions, which is fine - it's not necessary that you don't notice them.   

       Clearly, it would obviously also behove "them" to try to prevent such ideas from gaining more of a following than they already have, because of course that can lead to a sort of chain reaction (when you have followers, there are more people to be kept an eye on; the eye-keeping becomes sloppier; more mistakes happen; more messes have to be cleared up; before you know it we're all having to work weekends).   

       One of the simplest ways to keep such ideas at least partially in check is to try to present reasoned arguments as to why they are not correct. Another option is to use ridicule (or, more usually, to innocently fuel ridicule, thereby recruiting dead- hands to the game). In both cases, the aim is not to try to convince _you_ that you are wrong (that is surprisingly hard), but simply to limit the number of secondaries. Both methods work to an extent - at least to a sufficient extent to prevent the sort of chain reaction we just mentioned. By keeping leaky lids on things, a service is actually performed by reducing the number of cases where intervention is needed - in fact, such interventions are really very rare.   

       Now, the best part of all this is that there is actually no need for secrecy, at least on this side of things. I'm not breaking any confidences in telling you this or anything else, nor in letting everyone else know that I've told you. There are a few things that you know (have you wondered why?) which are perfectly correct, but which _are_ kept from the dead- hands and the general population, precisely because of the difficult position which that unprovable knowledge places you in. Equally, there are few things which you alone (or you and a few others) 'know' first-hand, which are actually wrong but not in the way you might think.   

       Strangely, the main reason that all this is possible - easily possible, in fact - is that you and the general population unwittingly conspire to make it easily possible. You all collude, unwittingly, to ensure that the status quo is maintained; society, meanwhile, is comforted and contained by the existence of 'conspiracy theories', thereby ensuring that no serious progress is - or ever will be - made. It is ironic that it's the people who most complain about conspiracies are actually our best conspirators.   

       In any case, enough of this. As I mentioned, discussions on conspiracy theory are boring because they never lead anywhere which is, of course, the plan. This one, for example, hasn't lead anywhere.   

       Now, you know, of course, that I am just messing with your vulnerable head, and it's OK that you know, and OK that I know you know. But you already knew that.
MaxwellBuchanan, Jun 09 2013
  

       There's always more.
MaxwellBuchanan, Jun 09 2013
  

       I would love to believe that there was the human capacity to sustain a massive conspiracy. Instead we seem to have an outstanding capacity for fallibility and mediocrity. If such things exist they contradict all of my experience with the human capacity for keeping secrets. If there are terrifying monster lizards in power they don't seem to be doing any worse than our local zoning board which is about as incompetent and corrupt in function as I can imagine. Frankly I would pity the lizard people, being trapped with us cannot be anything short of torture for such an organized intelligent species.
WcW, Jun 09 2013
  

       But wait... there's more.
Of course there's more.
  

       tsh   

       I'd hoped for a bit more than, //I am just messing with your vulnerable head// and, //we're all out of bunk now//, but I guess I'll take what I can get. Same 'ol same 'ol. (as we say here)   

       If there _were_ watchers watching me, then their watching me would be a huge waste of my tax money, (nothing new there though), and they should quit it.
I'm one of those 'do unto others as I'd have done' guys and wouldn't pluck the passwords from your head even if I could, (which I can't by the way), because;
A) I wouldn't want you in my head any more than you want me in yours... and
B) I was never taught how to use my abilities. I have no focus, it's all instinct and need-to with me.
I'm not preaching and you couldn't pay me enough to have followers... it's all I can do to resist giving up and going hermit as it is.
  

       Feelings and memories which are freely broadcast by people are a little hard to tune out though. 'Those' I pick up on and can't really apologize for at all. People just haven't learned how to protect their privacy in this way yet because they don't know that they can do this.
Which answers one of your questions; yes, everyone can 'send'.
They should be taught how not to.
The decreased noise level would be much more peaceful.
  

       I get how the same could be said if my own noise level were decreased, but that seems to happen all by itself.   

       //quantum entanglement// If there's ever a competition for 'most misused and misunderstood scientific phrase', this would be up there.   

       I think "quantum entanglement" should be set alongside "GM Magic" for halfbaking purposes.
MaxwellBuchanan, Jun 12 2013
  

       Beats me, given that "a quantum leap" would be the smallest possible step forward.   

       I think the general rule for the tinfoil hat brigade is to adopt whatever is sufficiently new that hardly anyone understands it, and then use it as the explanation for all manner of pseudophenomena until the next one comes along.   

       What is interesting, though, is that the pseudophenomena tend to remain the same for long periods of time, even though their entire physical basis changes every few years. (EG, ESP is caused by animal magnetism; by radio waves; by quantum mechanical effects; by quantum entanglement. We can only await the involvement of string theory and the Higgs boson.)   

       Incidentally, whatever happened to crop circles? I liked crop circles. They were very popular in the 80s.
MaxwellBuchanan, Jun 12 2013
  

       The latest on crop circles: [link]   

       ps.
If anyone is wondering on inconsistencies in my past and current statements on this subject... such as how I just said I had no uncles when I technically have four, or how in the past I said I wouldn't hurt a fly even though I just said I've never hurt anything larger than a spider, should consider how these statements, although contradictory, could also be considered true...
or not.
Whatever.
  

       //how I just said I had no uncles when I technically have four// I think we all have as many uncles as we think we have. Unless, of course, they're not your real uncles.
MaxwellBuchanan, Jun 17 2013
  

       ,or they are thousands of miles away in literal or metaphoric distance or, just plain 'ol distant, in which case 'uncle' means no more or less than any other word you've heard...   

       Doesn't matter.
Truth is truth.
Past is past.
Now is now.
Only the future matters.
  

       The now is the only thing which can determine the future.
So... nothing else matters.
  

       Simple.   

       No?   

       No.   

       Like an AW4 transmission, it's one of those things that seems very simple until you look directly at it, but then suddenly becomes ludicrously complicated.
Alterother, Jun 18 2013
  

       For James Randi to test. [+]
pashute, Jul 26 2013
  

       <belatedly notices bungston's Repo Man reference & doffs cap whilst casually tossing another book into the fire>
DrBob, Jul 26 2013
  
      
[annotate]
  


 

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