Re: Re: Mars: "Rogue" memes and the laughter curtain
Thu, 22 Jul 1999 00:37:12 EDT

Daniel wrote:

>I've stayed out of this debate no so much because of the laughter curtain,
>but because I don't see it as going anywhere. One side will trot its
>arguments, the other its, some names will be called, and then the cycle will
>repeat itself again a few months from now. Recall the Flight 800 stuff a
>few years back???

I'm relatively new to the list, but I can imagine. I agree with you, though. I'm ready to let this drop, so long as the hateful, stupid posts fade out.

>I don't think the alternatives here are either you are with Erik von Daniken
>or you are totally for whatever the current consensus in Established Science
>goes for.

I'm not sure I understand this sentence. Rephrase it and I'll say what I think about it. If you mean that there are a lot of mechanisms in play that help sculpt our viewpoint, then yes, absolutely.

>I don't think it's a matter of certainty, but, in all likelihood, the Face
>is what the recent higher resolution photos have shown it to be, i.e., just
>a artefact of lower resolution imaging.

Thank you for your reasonable comment. Yeah, in all likelihood it's natural...but we need to be sure.

>I don't know about becoming a scholar of the subject... I mean, by the same
>token, should one also examine every case of the Virgin Mary appearing -- on
the >off chance that the latest one might actually be for real?

I'd argue that there's a lot more to the Mars face than BVM sightings, evidence-wise. Particularly _testable_ evidence. This is what seperates the Cydonian question from some of the more dubious, transient phenemena. Although there is a very thin line between the two sometimes.

>It's not a matter of sticking with the status quo... Surely, some people
>who reject your views are doing just that...

Yes, I'd say they are.

>But to use "status quo" is not going to advance this discussion. After all,
if the >polls are correct, there are large numbers of people who do believe in UFOs, >alien abductions, etc. They are part of the status quo too. They have their >magazines, their journals, their experts, their culture, their in group...

No, endlessly claiming "status quo" isn't particularly helpful, but I thought it was warrented. The key word re. UFOs/abductions is "believe." There are _lots_ of people out there who simply don't know of any other way of dealing with strange things other than belief. I suspect this comes from the very pervasive religious/superstitious memes that are thrust on us since birth, coupled with the fact that we appear biologically predisposed to "religious" mind-sets.

Look at the exceedingly few people out there who conduct proper research into UFOs and abductions. Is there a mystery? Certainly. But unfortunately the fanatics get all the limelight.

>From the photo I saw -- published in _Science_ and elsewhere -- this did not
>appear to be the case. The features did not look all that regular.
>Granted, they were not totally irregular, but the bilateral symmetry was
>only rough. Point me to a sight which shows a better photo...

What feature was it (if you remember)? What was "Science's" explanation, or did they offer any? The best images of the Crater Pyramid (one of the most striking crater-rim formations) is given a really good analysis in Mark Carlotto's "The Martian Enigmas," second edition. I'm not aware of a website, to my regret.

>Also, cratering is not the only way to make surface features -- even on
>Mars. Thus, the alternatives aren't either it's a crater or some
>intelligent being(s) made it.

It's been demonstrated that the features in question (Crater Pyramid and Cliff) must have formed after the crater was formed (in fact, it's really obvious in the Cliff's case, since the meteor impacted when Cydonia was wet, or melted enough permafrost to cause a big "splash" of mud). So the impact itself didn't form these (or even scar them). I'm not saying they have to be artificial. But I haven't heard any good argument to explain, say, the proximity of the Crater Pyramid with its neighboring crater. The best I've heard, actually, is "giant crystal growth," which I find quite ridiculous. "Giant" indeed.

>Imagine Martians trying to explain Earth's geology when all they had the
bias of
>first understanding Martian processes (which seem to point to a catastrphic
>era of heavy water erosion followed by a longer drier period of mainly wind
>erosion and, of course, cratering). They might point the lack of craters as
>evidence of intelligence at work...

This is a good argument, but I'm not sure it's spot-on. Remember that Mars and Earth are very, very similar planets. So far we haven't discovered anything on Mars that isn't consistent with the laws of physics as we know them from terrestrial geology. The Tharsis Bulge is unusual, but most evidence points to it being an upwelling caused by the absence of plate tectonics.

>>Fortunately, we're dealing with objects we can demystify _this
>>year_, with the Mars Global Surveyor.

>True. Have any more photos come in on this yet? (And to wake a sleeping
>dog, have any more anamolous ones come in?:)

NASA reimaged the Main City Pyramid on July 8. It's a good close up of a feature that was imaged in April of '98, and from what I can tell it doesn't tell us anything especially new. The alleged pyramid is nicely faceted with some highly unsual geometric "engravings" around the base, and its overall shape and geologic context are strange. Try Carlotto's website at and check out both of his "Cydonia Updates." He has a very good overlay comparing the April MGS image with one of the Viking shots.

>And speaking of which, Cydonia is one of my favorite trance artists.:)

I'll have to look them/he/she up.

--Mac Tonnies