Author Topic: My personal experience with Hoax claims vs. Reality  (Read 1878 times)

Offline bknight

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Re: My personal experience with Hoax claims vs. Reality
« Reply #15 on: April 08, 2019, 08:38:06 AM »
Hi Apollo Enshusiast, and even if you;'re a long time lurker, welcome anyway

One of the key things for me that brings me to understand that the Apollo Programme was real (apart from the fact that I was 14 at the time of Apollo 11 and experienced A11 to A17 over the course of my early teens) is that fact that no matter what you investigate, everything, and I mean everything is self consistent. All aspects of Apollo spacecraft design, development and construction adhere to well understood and well tested engineering principles. There are no no gaping holes in the technology.

However, on the other side of the argument, this is not so. Hoax Believers' entire basis for the hoax is based on the failure of reality to match their personal expectations. Certain things, they say, "don't look right" or "shouldn't act that way", and big part of that this down to their own failure to properly understand that they have spent their entire lives living on a planet with an atmosphere and 1G of gravity, and they can't make the transition to understand that what they are looking at is how things look and act on a planet with 1/6G and a no atmosphere. jrknowing's latest nonsense about lunar regolith is a prime example of that failure to make the transition of understand what you are looking at.

However, there is another issue here, and that is, even if NASA had wanted to perpetrated a hoax, there are certain key aspects of such a hoax that would have been impossible to fake. One of those was filming the lunar surface operations. While you might think that this would be relatively simple it would have been utterly impossible in 1969, in fact, it is still impossible today, even with modern CGI techniques. The 2009 movie "Moon" and the 2011 movie "Apollo 18", despite both having pretty damned advanced CGI techniques available to them, utterly failed to show the low-g/vacuum environment correctly. In fact, there is really only one way to film shots that look like 1/6th G/vacuum, and that is to shoot it in 1/6G/vacuum. HBs would have you believe it was shot on a sound stage at Area 51 in NV, and then slowed down to fake the moon walking. Uh Uh. It doesn't work.  It would take 100% CGI to fake lunar surface operations... and they didn't even have anything remotely like CGI at all in the late 1960s.

Furthermore, the lunar surface operations were shown around he world live, as they happened. Much of it ran uninterrupted for hours; there are reasons why that was impossible too, but I'll let an expert explain why...



That video along with its follow up, a rebuttal to the blunder are great examples of what the HB crowd ignores.
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Offline mako88sb

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Re: My personal experience with Hoax claims vs. Reality
« Reply #16 on: April 08, 2019, 12:19:28 PM »
Yes, both great videos by Collin's but I'm very surprised at the ridiculously lower viewer count of the "For Jarrah" video vs "Moon Hoax Not". Especially since it goes into much greater detail about the topic.

Edit: Oops! I didn't realize he took down his original "Moon Hoax Not" video and replaced it with a "Comments Disabled" version. Much less viewer count than the original. Too bad, I loved pointing out to Hunchedbacked and Blunderboy about how that one video of Collins had more views than all of theirs combined in no time at all. Really helped to put into perspective how the moon hoax theory isn't as highly thought of as they and other hoax believers claim.
« Last Edit: April 08, 2019, 12:25:32 PM by mako88sb »

Offline JayUtah

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Re: My personal experience with Hoax claims vs. Reality
« Reply #17 on: April 08, 2019, 01:26:41 PM »
I invited him to come here, but he said, he had "done his bit for queen and country". Exact quote.

Yeah, that sounds like him.  Last I talked to him in person (last summer), then sentiment was that I and others with engineering backgrounds do a far better job than he of addressing this particular fringe theory.  "I would rather stick my head in a beehive than debate JayUtah," is also an exact quote.  He's more interested these days in less controversial outreach efforts.  And raising goats.  I don't blame him.  Each of those activities is ultimately more rewarding and less stressful.
"Facts are stubborn things." --John Adams

Offline Matt D

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Re: My personal experience with Hoax claims vs. Reality
« Reply #18 on: September 06, 2019, 01:57:18 PM »
I've also been lurking here for several months, and this thread inspired me to sign up because my story has a lot of similarities to what the OP described. 

It has taken me a long time to get my account approved and activated, but here we are.  Professionally, I'm an engineer, working in the field of powertrain R&D.  I'm also a hobbyist musician, photographer, cook, and homebrewer.  :)  Ontario, Canada is home. 

My introductory tale will be a confession.  There was a period of time when I strongly suspected that the moon landings were faked.  I saw that Fox television special in 2001 when it first aired, and my mind was blown.  I was CONVINCED.  I'd argue with people about it at the bar or around the campfire.  Heck, I even managed to convince a few people who to this day probably still believe it (shame on me).

The problem, of course, was that I was introduced to the superficially-compelling hoax idea at a time when my technical/historical understanding of Apollo was effectively nil.  My engineering background definitely played a role in eventually snapping me out of it, but at the time that background consisted of school only (i.e. no real-world professional experience) with only rudimentary treatment of directly relevant topics.  Not only that, but I hadn't yet developed a solid working knowledge of the technical side of photography, knowledge which would eventually play a large role in helping me spot the gaping flaws in photo analysis for which hoax believers are world renowned.  Lastly - and this is a big one - I was definitely going through a phase in my early 20s where I found conspiracy theories "entertaining" for some reason, so there was this weird tendency to almost "prefer" them to be true rather than honestly arrive at the conclusion that they are.   

Anyway, following the Fox special, I was extremely excited and intrigued to learn more, so, like ApolloEnthusiast, I turned to the pre-Youtube internet to see what I could dig up.  I was fully expecting that the more and more I "researched" the fakery of Apollo, the more and more mind-blowing stuff I'd uncover. 

But the hoax story never came close to living up to that promise.  In retrospect, the Fox special might be the most misleading movie trailer I've ever seen. 

After a period of searching, I was disappointed to find what amounted to - at best - a hollow shell of a narrative for the hoax idea.  Actually, it would probably be more accurate to say I found multiple disjointed hollow shells.  Conspicuously absent at every turn was any sense of cohesiveness or self-consistency tying it all together.   

Still, I couldn't let it slide without being certain.  If a decisive evisceration of the "official narrative" were possible, I wanted to find the pieces and assemble it.  But it wasn't to be.  It gradually became clear that the hoax case would never get any better or stronger, only more scattered and desperate. 

I hopped on the tour bus to Hoaxtown expecting to behold a ponderous, ever-growing snowball of mutually consistent evidence barreling forth in support of a hoax, but what I found would more accurately be described as a disparate smattering of discrete snowflakes that would instantly melt on contact with the warmth of logic and facts.

Not only that, but that whole seedy underbelly of the internet where the rabid conspiracists lurk started to take on a superficial likeness to a cult, with everybody treading water on the same old tired points, and shamelessly dodging strongly-developed counterarguments without even attempting to take them head on.  This irked me a lot.

The proverbial straw that broke the camel's back was probably the first time I saw a detailed technical rebuttal of some hoax claim (heck, it could have been from a member of this site for all I know), and the hoax believer's response was to completely ignore the technical rebuttal and accuse the other guy of being a "paid government operative" or something along those lines. This moment was very instructive; an apt demonstration not only of how readily "superficially compelling claims" can shatter like brittle glass with just a little bit of qualified critique, but it also underlined the ridiculous levels of desperation inherent in conspiracist debate tactics.  To quote a tired internet meme, it's one of those things you can't "unsee." Following that incident it became very conspicuous just how often capricious expansion of the conspiracy was invoked in an attempt to nullify and parry attacks against it, and I think that was when my disillusionment with the hoax believer ethos crossed into a state of thermal runaway. 

Thankfully, I was able to muster the wisdom to realize that paranoid speculation, denial, and conspiratorial innuendo can be fun to BS about, but they're not evidence of any sort, nor are they a rebuttal of any sort.  If these things are the foundation of the case against the historicity of the moon landings - and they are - then, at least for the purposes of debate and discourse, the historical record stands.  Period. 

With the acquired wisdom of many more years, I look back with mild embarrassment at that time period.  I can see now that it is absolutely impossible for intellectual honesty to co-exist with Apollo hoax belief.  It just cannot be done; these two things are completely incompatible.  On its face, it is highly irrational to disregard the warehouses full of documentation, testimony, photos, videos, and corroborative evidence for Apollo in favor of a disjointed hodge-podge of spurious claims set forth by hopelessly unqualified ignoramuses and predatory grifters.     

Fringe ideas are not new, but if conspiratorial thinking is like a strain of bacteria, then Youtube has been a petri dish of historic fertility.  It is the de facto architect of the rabbit hole.  One cannot have an informed position when their intellectual diet consists primarily of unvetted conspiracy claims being piped into their swiveling eyeballs by Youtube's recommended videos algorithm.  It is becoming increasingly clear that some people are hopelessly ill-equipped to sift through such a torrent of raw, unchecked information and process it in a responsible way.  Throw in a climate where distrust in authority is at all-time high levels and boom, Apollo was filmed in a studio and the earth is flat. 

An honest researcher needs to look at everything he or she encounters, even the dry details, both technical and historical, and make it a point to account for all of it.  That which is beyond the understanding of the researcher must be acknowledged as such; for the relevance of such things is not contingent upon who understands them and who doesn't.         

The "Apollo truther" mantra is always some variant of "Open your eyes!  Do your research!"  That is very funny, and here's why: like intractable 4 year-olds throwing tantrums when they're expected to eat their broccoli, the defining trait of the Apollo denier is his or her embarrassing and obstinate refusal to research anything at all.  To wit, I present to you Exhibit A: the fool who believes that an astronaut making a single quote about "destroying the technology" constitutes a compelling argument in favor of the entire program being fake.  The level of understanding needed to debunk this crap is laughably shallow, yet the deniers somehow manage to avoid obtaining it, despite all their claims of "doing research."   

Lots of truthers like to say things along the lines of "I believed in the moon landings for decades, and I really want to believe they happened!  But the evidence I have uncovered is overwhelming!"  Presumably, this is an attempt to lend an air of innocence and wide-eyed curiosity to their pathological denialism and scientific illiteracy.  But, transparently, it's just crank magnetism masquerading as intellectual honesty.  Absolutely nobody who actually has any depth of knowledge on Apollo suddenly starts believing it was a hoax, based on Youtube videos and memes.  In other words, only clueless people are susceptible to falling for that stuff, like I did in 2001 when I was clueless about Apollo. 

That's why, before going on the internet to belligerently spread trivially debunkable trash, I wish Apollo deniers would make an honest effort to learn some of the finer details about what the "official story" even says.  It's downright alarming how many of them don't even seem to understand that "the moon landing" wasn't just a single, isolated event; we also have the vast history of Mercury, Gemini, Ranger, and the earlier Apollo missions that all culminate in the historical achievement of Apollo 11, which is then followed up by FIVE MORE successful landings, each replete with their own swaths of corroborative evidence, data, videos, photos, recordings, artifacts, rock samples, documentation, and testimony.       

Don't get me wrong, it's very easy to see why many conspiracists can't be bothered to learn such details, no matter how readily available they are.  The amount of Apollo information freely available might as well be bottomless, which is a great thing, but it necessarily means that it takes a certain level of curiosity and patience to wade through all of that information, process what you can, and begin to develop a nuanced appreciation for the story that it tells. 

In contrast, hoax belief requires no such effort or time investment.  The staying power of the hoax fairytale derives from the fact that its claims are typically understandable at a glance, and consumable in an "a la carte" fashion by the lazy-minded.  There are no pre-requisites to understanding any of it; just click on the video with the most intriguing title, and enjoy. 

The hoax talking points are figurative islands that need not respect the constraints imposed by co-existing claims and evidence.  Thus, the feckless conspiracist is seduced by a mirage of effortless enlightenment.  Whereas the honest Apollo researcher might spend several months - years, even - developing a decent "space-nerd-level" understanding of the Apollo technology and history, it is possible to become a veritable expert on the history of faking space missions simply by watching a few Youtube videos on your phone while riding the bus to work. 

Just like a toddler picking through a box of Lucky Charms and only eating the marshmallows, the truther can summarily bypass that which is not palatable and devour only the tastiest zingers like the little morsels of intellectual junk-food that they are.

These days, I argue with people all the time on the internet about Apollo, this time on the side of verifiable reality.  I'm not sure it brings out the best in me, and I often question whether it's good for my mental health, but I get so frustrated with the abject nonsense that I see and can't help myself. 

With Apollo falling further and further into the rearview mirror of history, and with more and more people coming of age who can't recall a pre-Youtube world, I firmly believe that fighting against such misinformation is worth doing, and why sites like this need to exist.

Offline Abaddon

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Re: My personal experience with Hoax claims vs. Reality
« Reply #19 on: September 06, 2019, 04:22:57 PM »
Welcome to the board, Matt And well written.

Offline JayUtah

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Re: My personal experience with Hoax claims vs. Reality
« Reply #20 on: September 07, 2019, 12:25:41 AM »
Hey, you got here.  I'm glad you got your account approved.
"Facts are stubborn things." --John Adams

Offline onebigmonkey

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Re: My personal experience with Hoax claims vs. Reality
« Reply #21 on: September 07, 2019, 03:03:28 AM »
Great post Matt, and welcome.

I've lost count of the number of times I've had 'Shill' shrieked at me, a bit like this:



as if the source of the facts somehow negates the facts. It wouldn't matter if I was being paid by NASA (I wish!), what matters if whether the facts I present are true or not.

I also see quite regularly people posting stuff like "I looked closely at the photos..." or "when I really looked into it.." before posting some ill-informed claim. My response is increasingly "Well, I also did that and...".

Offline gillianren

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Re: My personal experience with Hoax claims vs. Reality
« Reply #22 on: September 07, 2019, 10:52:07 AM »
Man, can you imagine how much NASA's shill budget would have to be?  They wouldn't be able to afford to do any actual science!  Or even the fakery!
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Offline bknight

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Re: My personal experience with Hoax claims vs. Reality
« Reply #23 on: September 07, 2019, 10:59:57 AM »
Man, can you imagine how much NASA's shill budget would have to be?  They wouldn't be able to afford to do any actual science!  Or even the fakery!

Military Black Ops Funds.  ::)
Truth needs no defense.  Nobody can take those footsteps I made on the surface of the moon away from me.
Eugene Cernan

Offline NthBrick

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Re: My personal experience with Hoax claims vs. Reality
« Reply #24 on: September 07, 2019, 05:27:30 PM »
I also see quite regularly people posting stuff like "I looked closely at the photos..." or "when I really looked into it.." before posting some ill-informed claim. My response is increasingly "Well, I also did that and...".

One of my favorite examples of this is the "fake Netherlands moon rock" story that made the rounds a few years back, and still gets dredged up uninformed HBs to this day. They either watch a YouTube video or read one article, and think they know the full story. Meanwhile, you've got Phil Webb examining the rock itself and the placard accompanying it, observing that both are radically different from formal gift moon rocks given out by the US, and also asking the question of why the US would give such a large lunar sample to the ex-PM of the Netherlands, rather than more contemporary high-level dignitaries. When all the facts are known, it doesn't make any sense to claim this as "moon hoax proof".

Offline Obviousman

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Re: My personal experience with Hoax claims vs. Reality
« Reply #25 on: September 07, 2019, 06:58:24 PM »
I think we might find a lot of people have similar 'origin' stories. I never have doubted Apollo but used to be right into UFOs, telepathy, etc when I was growing up. I mean, really - who wouldn't want that stuff to be true? Imagine it! It was only when I started to research, to reference and verify, that I found out how much of it was simple bull. I think for me it started when I read the book 'Alternative 3' and it mentioned an astronaut named 'Bob Grodin'. Now, I had details of NASA astronauts all the way from the Original 7 and had never heard of this guy. Mind you, the book was still very entertaining....

And yeah, of course I am a 'shill'. I have spent the majority of my life in the military and am now a Defence contractor, so I must be 'in on it', right? No way I could be telling the truth....

Offline Matt D

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Re: My personal experience with Hoax claims vs. Reality
« Reply #26 on: September 10, 2019, 02:18:38 PM »
Great post Matt, and welcome.

I've lost count of the number of times I've had 'Shill' shrieked at me, a bit like this:



as if the source of the facts somehow negates the facts. It wouldn't matter if I was being paid by NASA (I wish!), what matters if whether the facts I present are true or not.

I also see quite regularly people posting stuff like "I looked closely at the photos..." or "when I really looked into it.." before posting some ill-informed claim. My response is increasingly "Well, I also did that and...".

What I've always found interesting about arguing with delusional conspiracy theorists is how they not only use a common "template" for their arguments regardless of which conspiracy they're advocating, but they also have certain groupings of words that they all use in the exact same way, almost as if it's a script. 

Anecdotally, I've found that the words "look into it" is one of those pervasive word groupings.  Flat earth, 9/11, Apollo... doesn't matter which, you will find those YouTube Dunning-Krugerites who have "looked into it" to the point they feel they have successfully unraveled some of history's greatest deceptions. 

More generally, one of the fundamental things that distinguishes typical conspiracy loons from people who actually understand the relevant topics is that the former group must, necessarily, stick to parroting a script because they can't assemble any argument on their own, whereas the latter group is able to leverage an understanding of a topic to craft arguments specifically directed at a given situation.  This is why points always get made by conspiracists and abruptly abandoned (as we're seeing in an ongoing thread right now) - once the soundbite from the script is spent, there's nothing left in the tank to continue the discussion or provide any elaboration.  It's hit-and-run incredulity, basically. 

PS - I absolutely love your website. So much great work you've done there, which I have gleefully thrown in the face of many a conspiritard.  I've spent hours going over CATM and the other analyses you've presented.  Cheers!



   

Offline Abaddon

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Re: My personal experience with Hoax claims vs. Reality
« Reply #27 on: September 10, 2019, 06:54:32 PM »
Great post Matt, and welcome.

I've lost count of the number of times I've had 'Shill' shrieked at me, a bit like this:



as if the source of the facts somehow negates the facts. It wouldn't matter if I was being paid by NASA (I wish!), what matters if whether the facts I present are true or not.

I also see quite regularly people posting stuff like "I looked closely at the photos..." or "when I really looked into it.." before posting some ill-informed claim. My response is increasingly "Well, I also did that and...".

What I've always found interesting about arguing with delusional conspiracy theorists is how they not only use a common "template" for their arguments regardless of which conspiracy they're advocating, but they also have certain groupings of words that they all use in the exact same way, almost as if it's a script. 

Anecdotally, I've found that the words "look into it" is one of those pervasive word groupings.  Flat earth, 9/11, Apollo... doesn't matter which, you will find those YouTube Dunning-Krugerites who have "looked into it" to the point they feel they have successfully unraveled some of history's greatest deceptions. 

More generally, one of the fundamental things that distinguishes typical conspiracy loons from people who actually understand the relevant topics is that the former group must, necessarily, stick to parroting a script because they can't assemble any argument on their own, whereas the latter group is able to leverage an understanding of a topic to craft arguments specifically directed at a given situation.  This is why points always get made by conspiracists and abruptly abandoned (as we're seeing in an ongoing thread right now) - once the soundbite from the script is spent, there's nothing left in the tank to continue the discussion or provide any elaboration.  It's hit-and-run incredulity, basically. 

PS - I absolutely love your website. So much great work you've done there, which I have gleefully thrown in the face of many a conspiritard.  I've spent hours going over CATM and the other analyses you've presented.  Cheers!
   
That would be because it is a script. Notice how JR has not in any way acknowledged his previous abject failures. This is a decades old tactic.