Wednesday, 15 October 2008

"Close Encounters of the Worst Kind."

Aliens were supposed to land on Earth yesterday. That is, according to an Australian medium called Blossom Goodchild. Goodchild claimed that on October 14th 2008, an alien craft 2000 miles long (or 2000 miles in diameter depending on the shape of the craft) would appear over the southern states of the USA, more specifically above or around Alabama. The belief in this psychic vision was so widespread that bookmakers stopped taking bets on the aliens appearing.

Putting aside practical considerations for a moment, let’s discuss Ms. Goodchild. It is my opinion that all psychics are either deluded or money-grapping liars. I do however appreciate it when psychics are consistent: rather than claiming to be ‘psychic’ it’s better if they specify the reach of their fictitious powers – telekinesis, telepathy, precognition, necromancy, etc. Ms. Goodchild claims to be a “channelling medium working with spirit and cosmic energies”, in other words a necromancer, but principally she channels one Native American chap called White Cloud. Despite White Cloud’s apparent wish to share his message of life and love with the world, Ms. Goodchild has spun out his teachings to three books which she restrictively sells at 20 AUD each. White Cloud told Ms. Goodchild about the coming of the extra-terrestrials – The Federation of Light – back in August. How White Cloud knows about these aliens approaching is unexplained but so is the fact that a Native American ghost appears to an Australian woman.

The preceding is nothing more than an invalid ad hominem argument though. Onto the practical considerations. A 2000 mile long ship would have covered a good deal more of the United States than Alabama. It would have been visible from most of America and would have had damning consequences for the country. A ship that prodigiously large would affect weather systems and thus disrupt the global flow of nature. It would, upon sudden arrival, block the flight paths of or destroy hundreds of planes already in the air; some would most likely crash thus beginning the alien’s message of peace by killing people in the thousands. Due to the ship’s size any microbial life-forms residing on it, for example bacteria from the far reaches of space, would be brought to our planet in quantities of tonnes, as would any alien gases or other substances clinging to the sides of the craft. These, once deployed on an unprepared Earth, would have the potential to create a global endemic or at least negatively affect our environmental balance. Due to these negative consequences and the pall of darkness that would cover all of the United States, I do not imagine that the incumbent Commander-in-Chief of that fair country would have appreciated the ETs dropping in: since he can’t tolerate humans of a different religion, beings from another solar system probably wouldn’t have a chance. Load the nukes!

[Insert obvious picture from Independence Day here]

A further thought is that the aliens message (as seen and transcribed here), aside from displaying a wonderful grasp of English, is packed with ‘Earthian’ references. There are references to the concept of a ‘soul’, to following one’s ‘heart’ (a piece of Earth anatomy), to governments, media, and even to love and trust. Delightful, but it seems strange that beings from another planet would have frames of reference so close to our own. Wittgenstein said that if a lion could talk, we would be unable to understand it. Yet The Federation of Light, beings far further removed from humanity than a lion, are able to commune through Ms. Goodchild so clearly.

The aliens did not come to Earth. Yesterday was a big empirical verification of the falsity of psychic claims. If Blossom Goodchild really does believe that she’s a psychic, she could make more money by submitting to the JREF’s million dollar challenge than by selling New Age kitsch and books that she has (literally) ghost-written for a Native American spirit.


MMP said...

apologies, i really thought you weren't for real on this

until i clicked through

oh my


Simon XIX said...

Sadly some people really believe this stuff...