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Existance of "Mermaids"

06/20/2014 7:20 PM

The TV program the other night tried to prove that Mermaids evolved 6 million years ago from land creatures that went back into the sea and evolved into a creature that is part mammal and part fish. The evidence presented appeared to be authentic. I can't say that I believe it, nor can I say I reject it. If the evidence was fabricated, it would be a very elaborate hoax. Naturally the evidence was presented by scientists and supported by scientists. Just the mention of "scientist" makes the common non-scientist mind accept it. I am always on the fence on such claims. I don't know, so I can't endorse or condemn, but I don't automatically endorse because "scientist" is mentioned. Scientists can sell themselves as "experts", but my definition of an expert is someone who makes a statement without any opposition. When opposed, the expert no longer is an expert.

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#1

Re: Existance of "Mermaids"

06/20/2014 7:46 PM

There are plenty of 'land creatures that went back into the sea and evolved into a creature'...that retains characteristics of the mammal that it is, yet is adapted to the marine environment. Many of these may have contributed to early mermaid myths. Whether or not one finds these various incarnations of 'mermaids' attractive probably depends a little on the particular incarnation and probably more on exactly how long one has been at sea.

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What do you find yourself drawn to?

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A sense of humor

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willingness to voice their own opinion

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a brainiac

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the techno-savvy

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very full figured, more popular in a bygone era

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someone a little nosy

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the fashion conscious

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or someone unwilling to bend to the urging of popular trends and wear their time-earned feather duster with distinction

.

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There seems to be quite a wide selection, whatever your preference in mermaids.

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#2

Re: Existence of "Mermaids"

06/20/2014 7:49 PM
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#45
In reply to #2

Re: Existence of "Mermaids"

06/24/2014 10:23 AM

OK, so who photo-shopped that, and where did you get the picture? I notice there is no reference to vett this photograph. Maybe a yardstick (or a short ruler) in the picture? One of my friends recently showed me a photo close-up of a hammer-head shark he caught, the thing looked pretty big to me, but when he zoomed out, it was about 18" length. Just a point this thing in the sand could be a plastic toy.

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#3

Re: Existance of "Mermaids"

06/20/2014 9:44 PM

No way! With the amount of electronic fish finding gear and the HUGE amount of commercial fishing pressure ( world wide) on stocks....something would have shown up in a catch.

Now there are weird and strange things left to be discovered in the deep .... and as soon as we pollute enough of the oceans with chemicals and plastics....we will get to see these creatures....DOA on some beach.

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#5
In reply to #3

Re: Existance of "Mermaids"

06/21/2014 6:20 AM

So yor also saying there is no loc nest monster, Bigfoot, werewolf, or a politician that actually works for their constituents and not for there own personal greed and advancements?

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#7
In reply to #5

Re: Existance of "Mermaids"

06/21/2014 11:25 AM

There is no "loc nest" monster or even a Loch Ness monster that we know about.

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#4

Re: Existance of "Mermaids"

06/21/2014 1:01 AM

How did you conclude they were scientists? On their say-so, on the say-so of the producers, or some other reason? What sort of evidence, if any, did they give?

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#14
In reply to #4

Re: Existance of "Mermaids"

06/22/2014 1:10 AM

No, most likely because they were wearing white lab coats.

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#6

Re: Existance of "Mermaids"

06/21/2014 7:45 AM

http://insidetv.ew.com/2013/05/28/mermaids-animal-planet-ratings/

http://www.snopes.com/photos/supernatural/mermaids.asp

HOAX all the way. It was pure entertainment....well done and the "scientist" was well played......heck, hand out the Emmy's for fooling 13 million viewers.

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#8

Re: Existance of "Mermaids"

06/21/2014 1:57 PM

It's a hoax. They fished in a lot of people.

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#9
In reply to #8

Re: Existance of "Mermaids"

06/21/2014 2:03 PM

!3 million drunken sailors, no doubt.

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#12
In reply to #9

Re: Existance of "Mermaids"

06/21/2014 7:46 PM

... aw come on.... its always fun to imagine...... haven't you ever heard the Loup Garou on a Full moon.....?????

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#10

Re: Existance of "Mermaids"

06/21/2014 6:19 PM

I'm still on the fence. Just because you categorically dismiss the existence of mermaids, there are things we still do not understand. Aliens is another area where so much supporting evidence and an equal amount of denial has been put forth.

I would propose the following scenario: Some previously unseen creatures have been appearing in the Sea or Cortez. They were the so called Giant squid, a creature that can grow to immense size. They live at very deep depths(the reason why they have not been seen). Contamination of our oceans and over fishing has resulted in more frequent sightings of giant squid. This I'm certain is not fiction. What this indicates to me is, what other creatures that are unknown exist in the depths of the ocean?

I question everything. I don't categorically write them off as a hoax or myth. I want absolute proof one way or the other, not a flat denial. I would think most with an interest in science would think the same way. One could make the statement that "all politicians are corrupt". That would be a stupid statement to make. I am not a gullible person, but I don't automatically accept what anyone says as "the Gospel truth".

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#11
In reply to #10

Re: Existence of "Mermaids"

06/21/2014 7:38 PM

You just hit on my two favorite OTB ( Outside-the-Box) subjects:Aliens and Giant squid (Architeuthis and Colossus).
There are definitely Giant squid in the deep.... as many fishermen as i have spoken with over the years from around the world....the story is the same 25-30 meters as measured against the length for their hulls. eye balls as big as garbage can covers, hooks on their tenacular clubs as large as 15-25cm. The stories all bare a similar overall theme and the descriptions all match up pretty close....and these are from the North Atlantic, through the most southern waters of the Pacific.The squid in the Sea or Cortez are Humbolt squid. They are not as large as the Archi or the Colossus, but they are super aggressive. You would be better off diving with White sharks then to get mixed up in a pod of those animals when they are hungry.Yes, they are moving northward due to warming of water, Oxygen depletion and food source. Overfishing, pollution, the GW thing(?), all could be a contributing factor.
My own opinion off course and I ain't a biologist, is that there are squid in the 30 meter range living in the 3K to 5K depths of both the Atlantic and Pacific.
i also suspect that we may one day see a 15 meter shark come up from those depths if that Equatorial Current ever slows up enough to stop moving the food chain deep enough. It may not be Megaladon but I saw that video of that air sea rescue in the South Atlantic off the coast of Brazil or Argentina and THAT was not a whale travelling under that helicopter. Photo shop??? who knows... Folks say deep water fish can not survive near the surface...hmmm... I build some gear for researchers catching bioluminesent fish that come up from 1500 feet at night , to with a few hundred feet of the surface. Nature can adapt rather quickly. * Asian Carp within 2 miles of the Gulf of Mexico in saltwater)*
As for aliens....look up in that sky at night and truthfully tell me that We are the only ones in the universe.

Just my opinion and you all know I ain't that smart!

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#36
In reply to #11

Re: Existence of "Mermaids"

06/23/2014 9:21 AM

"The universe is a pretty big place. If it's just us, seems like an awful waste of space."

Carl Sagan, Contact

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#13
In reply to #10

Re: Existance of "Mermaids"

06/21/2014 9:43 PM

There is a big difference between giant squids and mermaids. Aliens and mermaids are also very different subjects.

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The thing about mermaids is the classification is too specific for the dearth of hard evidence. I posted pictures of numerous mammals that live in the sea, some highly intelligent, that had ancestors that were land creatures. These are dismissed as 'not mermaids' even though sightings of mammals like those are almost certain to have contributed strongly to the development of the fables.

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What is it exactly that disqualifies a sea lion from being considered a mermaid? What hard evidence is there that we can hold up to compare to say definitively that the old tales are not based on people seeing things like dugongs?

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It seems that people want mermaids to have gills and be closely related to humans, and not covered in fur or non-human like skin over every inch. The other species that are the closest relatives of humans fail that last requirement even without transitioning to somewhere starkly different.

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To my knowledge there is no evidence of any evolutionary back-fitting of gills. If there is, that is very interesting, but I'm guessing it isn't on something quite as complex as a simian.

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If we one day to find evidence of retro-volution to take up gills again in some creature, odds are about as close to a sure thing that it won't be on a aquatic humanoid who has long flowing high drag, vision obscuring hair, the torso similar to humans but fused legs covered in fish scales.

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We have had evidence of giant squid for a long time, and the search area for alien life forms is far too vast and too poorly surveyed to make claims about alien existence. But for the very specific characteristics needed for something to be considered a mermaid, coupled with the utter lack of hard evidence that this very specific form exists, as well as the utter lack of examples that evolutionary convergence happens in that way makes the probability that there are no mermaids swimming in the ocean a near certainty. It is possible, but probability is a far more useful metric.

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#15
In reply to #10

Re: Existence of "Mermaids"

06/22/2014 7:35 AM

What would be absolute proof?

I would start with a biology degree, (or at least a biology technologist's certificate) in order to at least be familiar with the "proof terminology" and the background work which has been done up until now. Familiarity with several fields would then allow some comparison...say, why there are such great grounds for comparison between a seal and a whale and none for human and a whale?. Then you follow a process which involves "collection of evidence, consideration of the evidence, evaluation of the quality of the evidence and its condition, developing a hypothesis...testing the hypothesis, coming up with an alternative hypothesis which fits more of the evidence, then developing a tentative theory and submitting it to peer review".

After which, your "theory" will be torn to shreds because that is what scientists DO. The hallmark of an engineer is "that beam will bend and become useless at this moment", and the hallmark of a scientist is "well, providing the material is pure, but it never is, that beam "might" bend at that moment but you never know for sure...and maybe it won't be totally useless but repairable...." This makes people think they are waffling with the facts, but they are not...scientists try to consider more variables in everything than the rest of us. Makes me wonder how they can decide how to cook their eggs for breakfast most days!

Was ANY of that evidence, and independent peer review done on this show? Even the G. book of Records demands independent observers.

You are a pretty clear thinker over all Ron. There are a lot of smiling snake oil salesmen out there who will salt your gold mine.... as your excellent comments and observations over the years have demonstrated. Nil Carborundum Iligitimus.

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#17
In reply to #10

Re: Existance of "Mermaids"

06/22/2014 10:35 AM

I believe half of what I read, 1/4 what I hear on the radio, and 5% of what I "see" on TV. The more powerful the medium, the more likely you are to be deceived.

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#20
In reply to #10

Re: Existance of "Mermaids"

06/22/2014 12:01 PM

Oh, and also Ronseto, there is something else that these "reality" shows rely on. You CANNOT prove a negative. (I know, since you asked for that to be done, a "negative", or non-existance of any sort can simply never be proven. So you are SOL on that one.) All you need is somebody to prove it to "be so" just once for it to be proven...but I already went into what would be required in my post #15 for it to be proven as to the existence of anything! To provide proof of non-existance would require that you examine every fish in the sea. To prove the non-existance of aliens would mean examining every funny thing that happens on earth. Eliminating all that have other explanations like we did with that fraud Von Daniken. One at a time...and it was great fun! But now HE is dead in the water. But his tv shows still make money for somebody!

Regards.

Clear Thinkers Unite!

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#22
In reply to #20

Re: Existance of "Mermaids"

06/22/2014 2:56 PM

I guess draining the oceans is out of the question.

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#28
In reply to #20

Re: Existance of "Mermaids"

06/22/2014 5:23 PM

Absolute unbounded negatives cannot be proven, but I'm not certain that absolute unbounded positives can be proven either.

.

'There has never been and never will be a rhinoceros playing clair de lune on the bag pipes inside any Mercedes automobile'

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....is just as unprovable

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'A rhinoceros playing clair de lune on the bag pipes, always only occurs outside of any man made structure. '

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....unless of course you can induce a rhinoceros to play clair de lune wherever you desire.

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Some specific bounded negatives and positives can be proven or disproven.

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'There is a great white shark in this swimming pool right now.'

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'There isn't a great white shark in this swimming pool right now.'

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#21
In reply to #10

Re: Existance of "Mermaids"

06/22/2014 12:08 PM

www.aquaticape.org

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#27
In reply to #10

Re: Existance of "Mermaids"

06/22/2014 5:08 PM

The concept of mermaids was a fabrication by man. The only evidence was proven to be faked. Just because this faked evidence caused people to use their imagine does not make it true, no matter how many movies they have been in.

I think Darwin would agree with me on this one.

;)

Aliens is another area where so much supporting evidence

<sigh> Really!! You should stop taking seriously TV shows that dress up and portray ideas as proven facts.

Just because they are on channels called "History" or "Discovery" (etc) does not mean they are true. The same networks also ran documentaries portraying such things as Zombies as fact too!

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#16

Re: Existance of "Mermaids"

06/22/2014 10:01 AM

As I have little positive or nice to say about the former "Learning Channel", I shall offer no comment other than to say you will find more accurate information on the Kardashian show.

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#24
In reply to #16

Re: Existance of "Mermaids"

06/22/2014 4:24 PM

I agree with that, but it's better than most of the other "entertainment" on the tube. If it were not for the learning or history channels, I wouldn't need a TV. The only time I watch TV is when I go to bed. I find it helps put me to sleep.

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#25
In reply to #24

Re: Existance of "Mermaids"

06/22/2014 4:29 PM

'How it's made' is a curious blend of sedative, comic book, elevator music and carbon fiber.

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#18

Re: Existance of "Mermaids"

06/22/2014 11:06 AM

I was totally disillusioned with these "educational channels" back in 2012 when I saw a scientist ( according to his credentials) that had been on these shows for years....telling the audience that 'something' was definitely going to happen on the day of the Mayan calendar ending and that we should be prepared. REALLY? So now when he talks about tsunamis, earthquakes or solar flares I just take it as pure entertainment, nothing more than that.

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#70
In reply to #18

Re: Existance of "Mermaids"

07/24/2014 4:52 PM

Yes, but they happened did they not?

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#19

Re: Existance of "Mermaids"

06/22/2014 11:15 AM

Fossilized or natural bones seem to be the gold standard. Bone Taxonomy is very advanced. That's why most (but of course, not all) people believe that Big Foot, Sasquatch, Mermaids, Aliens, Goat monsters, vampires, are not or have not been inhabitants. In the case of Aliens, I think they probably are'nt all that interested in Earthtown.

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#23

Re: Existance of "Mermaids"

06/22/2014 4:13 PM

You must be some sort of cynic! Not only do I believe in mermaids but also: the Easter Rabbit; Lepricons, Santa Claus, St. Nick, the Loch Ness Monster; Big Foot; Piltdown Man; The balloon boy; The Cardiff Giant; Manti Teo's Girlfriend; Andrew Carissin; Document 12-571-3570; The English Mercurie; Sidd Rinch; Lake George Monster; Alligators in New York City sewers; Grover Mills; King Kong, Godzilla; Bunny Man Bridge; The Phantom; Nancy and Sluggo; Dick Tracy; The gasoline pill; Area 51; Agha Wagar's water-fueled car; The Philadelphia Experiment; Bermuda Triangle; Helltown, Ohio; Jackalopes; The Loveland frog; Kushtaka; The Goat Man of Maryland; The Skunk Ape; The Bunny Man; The Moth Man of West Virginia; Flatwoods Monster; and the Jersey Devil (Mrs. Leed's thirteen child).

I know they all exist because the greatest scientist of all times, Mr. Wizard says so. Put down the slide rules, pocket calculators, PC's and iPads. There are many other things out there besides engineering. The greatest trio of scientists is still on the cable channels: Larry, Curley and Moe!

Good Luck, Old Salt

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#26
In reply to #23

Re: Existance of "Mermaids"

06/22/2014 4:59 PM

Some of these things are not like the others. Some of these things don't belong.

Area 51, the Bermuda Triangle and Aleksandr Solzhenitsyn probably don't deserve to be included because they possess a more factually real quality than most items on the list.

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#29
In reply to #26

Re: Existance of "Mermaids"

06/22/2014 6:09 PM

truth is not a compromise:

Very good comment. Although I don't positively agree about Area 51, having travelled in that area, the Bermuda Triangle, is it truth or coincidence; or Alek....Solz... they could very well be either true or false. I really don't care much since I most likely won't be in a position to be able to care.

My curiosity about legends and especially local legends began when I was travelling past "Jenny Jump". From that point on, during my personal and business travels local legends were always of interest to me. I don't know if any of them are true but it is interesting to learn more about them, the people who started them and those that continued them. Same as many of those I listed. Are they positively true? likely true? maybe true or false? likely false? or positively false? Will you or I ever know? Will we every positively, without question, know that there is or there isn't? What about those Sirens and the sailors, is it true?

It was also to poke some fun at ourselves as scientifically/engineering oriented people. Do we discount things we can't exactly verify even with software? Are we too controlled by ourselves and our approach to various things? When do we call it quits with the infinite decimal?

I certainly believe in Santa Claus. Why? Because any guy who can deliver all those gifts in one night and is tracked by NORAD has got to be the real thing. The Easter Rabbit is so smart he can remember all the changes in when the holiday is held and still get it right. Besides that my grandmother told me when I was a little kid that there is an Easter Rabbit and she was always right! I believe in the Jersey Devil because some very smart people I know there believe in it and read everything they can on the subject. The J.D. was Mrs. Leeds's 13 child. Google it, very interesting.

Will we ever know if there are Mermaids? I don't think so but it is a good subject to discuss. In the mean time I will continue to go down the shore and keep my eyes open for them, among other nice things.

Good Luck, Old Salt

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#31
In reply to #29

Re: Existance of "Mermaids"

06/22/2014 10:22 PM

Old Salt,

I give you a lot of credit for playing it so cool to my reference of Aleksandr Solzhenitsyn. Many people are oddly touchy about even indirect suggestions that they might have written something different than exactly what they did. It makes your statement that you don't care, all the more believable....and that particular statement is one that often raises my suspicions.

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Area 51 is a real place. It is a restricted airspace and with an airport that goes by the airport code KXTA. This does not mean that all the stories about Area 51 are true, any more than the stories about NY sewer alligators are true merely because New York sewers do exist.

.

Similarly the Bermuda Triangle is a real place, even though not officially recognized by a number of authoritative organizations, it is widely recognized by people in general. The exact borders are not even widely agreed upon.

.

Despite these strikes against it, in my book it still qualifies as a real place. Named places, as specific areas within the known real world, have a lower threshold for being real. If the 'known real world' of which these named places are a division, carries the burden of proof for being tangibly real, only the 'is this a real name for this general division' needs to be established.

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Bermuda Triangle is the area roughly inside the three imaginary lines connecting Miami, Bermuda, and San Juan, Puerto Rico.

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I'm going to Google Mrs. Leeds's 13 children, right after I post this reply.

.

By the way, Solzhenitsyn is indeed a real person, though I have never shaken his hand. He probably helped to avert a nuclear holocaust, though in a very indirect and likely unintentional way. You might find him a worthy read.

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#33
In reply to #31

Re: Existance of "Mermaids"

06/23/2014 12:30 AM

truth is not a compromise:

First of all, thank you for the interesting and enlightening correspondence. I hope others get as much from it as we seem to.

As with many things within the realm of my mind and memory, I lived during many of Solzhenitsyn's accomplishments, persecutions, awards, his family, etc. but I haven't spent much thought or time on it lately. I therefore gave it the most abridged reference I could. In his time he was a great man and many of his accomplishments and hardships will not be known for many more years. During some of my more scholarly years he was of great interest to me.

My doubts on something's are a little skewed due to information I had obtained from reliable sources or lack of conclusive evidence. My father once did some avionics work in Area 51. I don't know what but he let it slip once which was unusual for him. I could never figure out why avionics and associated things were there but that was his specialty. I know that some miles north of Area 51 there is the town of Socorro, NM. That town has a whole lot of legends. There is an explosives test area at NM Tech. there. No need to explain further. Also Mercury, NV. where the atomic bomb tests, both above and below ground were held during the cold war. Some more legends.

My "I don't care" viewpoint on legends has increased in recent years. Many of them are enjoyable; many also beyond even the most creative minds and some are probably true but lack that last iota of proof. I have had what I consider to be a couple of Miracles within the last 15 years. After them I don't sweat the small stuff and try to enjoy life to the fullest. That is why I say "Any day on the green side of the grass is a great day; it's those brown root days you have to worry about". That includes legends. If I like them or are interested in them they probably weigh a little more towards the believable, those that aren't don't have much credence to me. Definitely there is a Santa Clause, Easter Rabbit and the Jersey Devil (Mrs. Leeds' 13th child). Let me know your impression of that legend. You would never think that it could happen less than 100 miles from Ben Franklin and the Declaration of Independence! Why waste my time on things I might not be very interested in? There are many other things that are very interesting.

Also, I respect others knowledge and experiences even if I don't see things the same way as they do. I wish more people would follow suit.

Good Luck, Old Salt

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#34
In reply to #33

Re: Existance of "Mermaids"

06/23/2014 1:48 AM

The Jersey Devil story is interesting. I'm not inclined to believe a bat winged goat hoofed horse headed son of a devil that came out of the womb as a normal appearing child has survived cannon and gun fire and flies or occasionally strolls around the Barren Pines in South Jersey, but I do find the reports very interesting.

.

I find it also very curious that at similar latitudes and in an area with similar environment, but years different in time, a big stir was caused by multiple hoof prints in the snow reported many times over a wide area. The areas of the Barren Pines in New Jersey and the Exe Estuary in England share some similarities including at times multiple reports of hoof like marks made by something unknown in the snow.

.

It is interesting to me how even cultures that are widely separated developed similar legends. England and New England aren't really that separated, but there are examples of very similar stories developing in cultures with no known contact.

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#35
In reply to #34

Re: Existance of "Mermaids"

06/23/2014 6:40 AM

It just occured to me that I may have actually witnessed this tracks of this goathoofed creature as well, in our northern outerbanks trips into the 4-wheel drive area. These beach dwelling creatures, legend has it, escaped from Spanish shipwrecks in the 17th century, assuming ghostlike forms in the mist.

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#37
In reply to #35

Re: Existance of "Mermaids"

06/23/2014 9:59 AM

I think it was probably something akin to mild mass hysteria, or story inflation with time, but it might have been a lone goat walking in a weird way, over roof tops and through towns but not witnessed by anyone who lived to tell about it.

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#30

Re: Existence of "Mermaids"

06/22/2014 10:11 PM

How could they ever perpetuate themselves as a species? Did the "scientists" address that?

[Title edit for spelling.]

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#32
In reply to #30

Re: Existence of "Mermaids"

06/22/2014 10:31 PM

Things have been taken so far once scales and gills have been retro-genetically conjured, that throwing in a dash of hermaphroditism probably comes as a complementary gift, free of charge.

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#40
In reply to #32

Re: Existence of "Mermaids"

06/23/2014 4:38 PM

"that throwing in a dash of hermaphroditism probably comes as a complementary gift, free of charge."

Certainly makes Date Night a lot easier, you're not automatically excluding half the people at the bar.

Although how would they determine who does what to whom? Guess it depends on who pays for dinner.

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#41
In reply to #40

Re: Existence of "Mermaids"

06/23/2014 6:08 PM

If they opted for the autogamy option to accompany the hermaphroditism, Date Night might be even easier still, since including that one last individual could make going to the bar optional, but unnecessary.

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#43
In reply to #41

Re: Existence of "Mermaids"

06/24/2014 9:13 AM

Yeah, but it's not as much fun doing it alone.

Besides, wouldn't it be rather embarrassing/egotistical (depending o the societal pressure) to knock yourself up?

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#55
In reply to #43

Re: Existence of "Mermaids"

06/24/2014 5:21 PM

Think of all the fidelity related benefits though. There is very little chance of cheating. The risk of having the kids be involved in a nasty break-up is similarly much reduced. No nagging insecurities/secret fantasies about whether this ungrateful little brat really is the father's progeny. And it will be far more difficult for the kids to play one parent against another. It will also be easy to tell who the favorite parent is, and no one will be upset by that knowledge.

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#59
In reply to #55

Re: Existence of "Mermaids"

06/25/2014 9:09 AM

Big downside though: you get the ultimate in, pardon the phrase, 'inbred rednecks.' It's bad enough when first cousins er, 'mix it up,' worse when a kid's parents are brother and sister. But if Mommy is also Danny, hoo boy, those recessive genes are going to really get their time in the spotlight.

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#42
In reply to #40

Re: Existence of "Mermaids"

06/23/2014 9:39 PM

There once was a queer from Khartoum,
Who took a lesbian up to his room.
They argued all night
Over who had the right
To do what, with which, and to whom.

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#38

Re: Existance of "Mermaids"

06/23/2014 2:06 PM

In spite of all the rhetoric and even my disparaging post, I in fact have met two mermaids. One was on a beach in Cozumel, the other at Sun Bay in Vieques.

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#39

Re: Existance of "Mermaids"

06/23/2014 2:08 PM
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#44

Re: Existance of "Mermaids"

06/24/2014 10:20 AM

Your statements that an expert when opposed is no longer an expert sort of stick in my craw. I suppose Galileo was no longer an expert after the pope told him to shut up? I suppose Keppler and Copernicus were also demoted from "expert", while there was opposition to their theories? My God, man, science has typically been controversial in history simply because new, radical ideas (even with solid proof), upset the existing paradigm, and make those in power tempted to abuse their power to simply hold onto their power. It is a simple equation, you should learn it.

As to these mermaids? I have no particular opinion, but a sea lion or harbor seal could be mistaken as "other" if the lighting is bad, or camera slightly out of focus. Have you ever noticed that on these "documentaries", the footage is never clear and sharply in focus? I could see a hag through a shower curtain, and assume it was a super-model, especially if was salivating for a super-model.

In the past several decades there has been a preponderance of charlatains also posing as scientists. When you start to look into their credentials, what do you actually find?

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#46
In reply to #44

Re: Existance of "Mermaids"

06/24/2014 10:35 AM

I've sat opposite persons in my profession at meetings and had them take pot shots at me for being an "expert". After defending my designs, theories and construction methods, I still left the room as "the Expert".

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#47
In reply to #44

Re: Existance of "Mermaids"

06/24/2014 10:39 AM

Just as there are scientists and Scientists there are experts and Experts. Which category would your place the "experts" in crop circles. Especially after the two culprits gave a tell all after they sobered a bit. Do you recall how the one expert said they couldn't have been made with a board, as the stalks were bent as if crushed from above?

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#48
In reply to #47

Re: Existance of "Mermaids"

06/24/2014 10:48 AM

The best ( expert) aluminum boat builder in our area is a 65 year old Gastrologist who welds for a hobby!

He's got welders coming over on weekends to see his techniques!

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#50
In reply to #48

Re: Existance of "Mermaids"

06/24/2014 11:48 AM

There is a real art to welding active metals. I found a welder here in Lubbock who is proficient in all these, uncluding MagAlloy. He used to weld stuff on Air Force jets at Reese Air Force Base, before one of our "illustrious" Presidents closed a number of bases, including that one.

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#53
In reply to #44

Re: Existance of "Mermaids"

06/24/2014 5:02 PM

"I could see a hag through a shower curtain, and assume it was a super-model, especially if was salivating for a super-model."

And that's exactly why bars are so dimly-lit, so you can't see how homely and stupid the potential prospects are before you get too drunk to care.

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#49

Re: Existance of "Mermaids"

06/24/2014 11:33 AM

The "Maid" in Mermaid infers female gender, therefore, if a man at sea where no one could hear, were to happen upon a mermaid, would he still be wrong?

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#51
In reply to #49

Re: Existance of "Mermaids"

06/24/2014 11:50 AM

Absolutely, if we are talking Mer-maids. If Mer-men, then no so much.

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#52
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Re: Existance of "Mermaids"

06/24/2014 4:12 PM

Mer-person to be politically correct. I find all this to be troublesome. My first thought is, hoax, but why? What purpose? some of these involve lots of money. Sending a deep submersible is not without cost. Some things can easily be written off as hoaxes, but a small handful defy rational explanations. Crop circles have been one of those that have not been explained. They have been reported for a very long time. I might also add that an "expert" loses his credibility, when challenged and cannot retain expert status. There are few real experts and a lot of faux experts. Real experts usually stand the test of time. Maybe I should say "absolute expert" rather than real expert. Then guys like Galieo and Copernicus would be absolute experts.

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#57
In reply to #52

Re: Existance of "Mermaids"

06/25/2014 5:51 AM

Follow the money Ronseto. If it WAS a hoax, the question would be How much money does an article in a peer reviewed publication make? Um... none. How much money does a successful "reality show" make? Up, thousands. Which one would you back to get a return on investment?

If it was NOT a hoax, would the above statements apply? You know, they probably would, in a perfect world. But just as I get a few extra beers at the local pub by embellishing some of my old war stories, there would be a real desire to embellish even a non-hoax until the backers (who get the money!) would get a decent ROI. I think it is human nature.

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#54
In reply to #49

Re: Existance of "Mermaids"

06/24/2014 5:06 PM

Of course, any man within earshot of any female is automatically wrong. The species of the female does not matter.

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#56

Re: Existance of "Mermaids"

06/24/2014 7:13 PM

There is another problem with this story that hadn't occurred to me until now: 6 million years seems like an awfully short time for evolution to complete the changes that seem to be implied.

.

Check out the differences in footprints:

.

.

Now consider the amount of time it took for those relatively modest changes.

.

.

It took 6 to 8 million years for chimp and ape and human feet to morph those differences from common ancestors. It seems logical that it might take a lot longer to fuse two legs into one tail and improve the feet to become webbed fins.

.

.

It is also worthwhile to note that at million years ago, ancestors of humans had not yet developed increase in cranial capacity that is one of the hallmarks of modern humans. It is also unlikely that our ancestors had yet shed their thick fur coats by that time either.

.

Without the bigger brain and nakedness, it seems like you might just be looking for something that looks a lot like a sea lion....except I still am not sure there has been enough time to make changes that drastic. Of course, there is nothing that precludes traits like increased cranium capacity from evolving in other species, but the chances are exceedingly rare, and that just piles on top of all the other things making this highly improbable.

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#58
In reply to #56

Re: Existence of "Mermaids"

06/25/2014 6:18 AM

Ahhh, taxonomy. A science which is always under attack, yet has always succeeded in weathering the storm. Usually the attacks are by people who do not accept evolution. [Which I understand is a huge number of what I consider sadly deluded people.] However, it is hard to argue with the structure., even if there is argument about how LONG or how LARGE the structure is, the taxonomy model still exists. And of course, real scientists spend an inordinate amount of time tweaking that model. It is what they do. But the model is still there, and nope, no mermaids, big foots, or aliens on it. One can presume an ancient dinosaur might be a long lost loch ness monster. But then, it existed at one time, as did a celeocanth fish and likely a host of others we have not found. The dino and the fish fit on the chart just fine. Nobody confuses them for anything but what they are/were. Not so people with gills. Those not only don't fit on the chart, but there is nothing beside the space they would presumably occupy. So therefore, without taxonomic evidence, I must wait until there is evidence of circumstance to assume the reality of what is until now nothing but heresay evidence.

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#60
In reply to #58

Re: Existence of "Mermaids"

06/25/2014 9:31 AM

"But the model is still there, and nope, no mermaids, big foots, or aliens on it."

Of course no aliens, they would gave their own 'tree' since they share no common ancestor with us (unless transpermia is proven to be a viable theory, then bacteria from their world could have seeded life on ours, or vice versa.(1))

There COULD be aliens out there, in the 99% of the sky we haven't looked closely at yet, not saying there ARE, but the 'experiment' of finding extraterrestrial life isn't finished yet.

Footnotes:

1) Thanks to the new Cosmos series, I learned that Earth was doing 'self-transpermia' during the early part of its life as a sometimes-habitable planet. The impacts on the early life-bearing planet threw huge chunks of rock into space when the crust was shattered and the resulting volcanic devastation effectively rendered the planet sterile. Life didn't have to start from scratch, the bacteria on the rocks which were able to survive the time in the high-radiation space between the planets, and happened to hit the Earth again after the planet had cooled down again, just picked up where they left off.

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#62
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Re: Existence of "Mermaids"

06/26/2014 6:11 AM

could be. Could be honest lawyers trading rocks to create life. Who the hell knows! And why bother looking for a pie in the sky? Just because somebody thinks it would be nice? You know, as much as I like pure research for the sake of pure research (SETI does not really cost that much, and keeps a certain fringe element content) the kind of money dropped into some of these reality TV programmes and similar resources can better be placed to deal with real questions like "why are there homeless people living up the street?" and other, real issues. Like, this question.

The cancer which I have is going to kill one in six Americans in the next 30 to 40 years. That is a fact. People in India and Japan do not get this cancer unless they come to North America. That is also a fact. Now do you think there is a better use for the available money and resources which go to stupid searches for aliens and mermaids conspiracy theories which might save BILLIONS of North Americans over the next 30 years by figuring out why the Indian sub-continent, the most populous on Earth does not get this particular cancer? Or am I just pissing into the wind here?

Since I cannot prove a negative, the words "could", "may", and so forth will continue to be misused to justify wasted effort, money and intelligence. Adreasler, you can pick better battles to fight. I am done with this one.

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#64
In reply to #62

Re: Existence of "Mermaids"

06/27/2014 12:21 AM

I'm not sure to which cancer exactly you refer, but I hope you weather it well. Cancer treatments have and continue to improve by leaps and bounds. Cancers that a decade or two ago were near certain sentences of death within a year, can now in many case be brought to effectively into remission that the patient is more likely to die of other causes than return of that cancer. I'm sure I'm not telling you anything new.

.

I am curious about how you have tied the occurrence of this cancer with the physical geography. It would be my guess that the cancer is linked with diet and lifestyle and not so much location. By now, 'westernized' affluent groups eating highly refined foods with high fat, high sugar, preservatives, and hydrogenated oils, should have enough history to begin to see upticks in rates in those groups. I'm curious if you know this not to be the case?

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#65
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Re: Existence of "Mermaids"

06/27/2014 1:33 AM

Not a link... a statistic. Which with enough study MIGHT become a link. (and actually HAS)

I don't want to seem like a whiner or an alarmist, so I am keeping this as OT as possible. I covered much of the relevant data in a previous post.

By using correlational studies to point a direction, the next important thing was to test, test and re-test evidence to determine what evidence applied and what did not apply. Apparently reading Shakespeare every day did not have an effect, nor did eating or not eating chutney. The classic pickle test is (93% of car accidents the driver ate some form of pickle within the last month. That is why such studies are almost worse than useless...no amount of study as to WHAT sort of pickle caused the car accident would be useful. But no doubt somebody was tasked to run such a study. Climate change studies and pipeline enviro studies suffer from the same biases, correlations and anectodal evidence, resulting in a lot of hypotheses being tossed into the scrap heap to the chorteling glee of deniers who have already made up their minds. )

Was it a diet factor at all? It took decades to determine the real link between getting my cancer and not getting my cancer (its tumeric in curry by the way).

(correlational studies are the least useful of the evidence gathering process. Once in a while, they work, of course. It took a test of a correlational study to determine if two cannon balls of different weights would travel at different speeds. And it took a good scientist to notice that in actual fact, they traveled at the same speed. Now, they had some evidence, and the answer is always to "follow the evidence".

Anyway, I hope I aswered your question. Statistical analysis has its place. But it is important to not think it out backwards. That is, to come up with a desired answer, now lets cherry pick the evidence to get the answer we want. Google Tusagee airmen to find out how this method resulted in a deplorable race related series of stupidity.

Five years ago, my widow would be deleting all these posts as part of a general cleanup by now. I got at least an extra year. Hey, a lot can happen in a year!

(Its cancer of the small bowel...the most common cancer of all. It is caused NOT by contaminated hormone laced meat, but by the Archie, Betty and Veronica lifestyle we all miss and are trying to regain along with our lost youth. Less meat, more veg, curry, and fish added even to a diet of cheeseburgers, sugar, fat, grease and alchohol will save your life. Or at least save you from the peculiar hell I am going through at this time. Oh, and if asbestos, cigars, cigarettes and chemical laced beef jerky was part of your life 25 years ago like it was mine...well, too late to complain now. You have a 5% chance of making it. But they are just statistics... ...non correlational stats by now though.)

Thanks for your kind wishes. I did not want to seem like a whiner, it is just I KNOW all the steps which need to be taken to arrive at a conclusion which resembles the asbestos line I used above. It is the same kind of time and effort which has gone into determining how to stop a hundred other kinds of cancers. For instance, don't want lung cancer...quit smoking. Some people STILL don't believe that line...and as far as I am concerned, let Darwin selection take its course.

I got this info from Dr. Beleveau's book about how to change your lifestyle to prevent cancer. Since Dr. Beleveau is the leading oncologist in Canada, when he speaks I listen. His book is not a woo woo publication, it is the real thing by a real scientist. I urge you to evaluate his conclusions on your own hook, don't believe me, Doctor Oz, Doctor Wakefield, or Doctor Hook. The summary of a thousand studies will pay serious dividends in longer and healthier lives for your family, yourself and those important to you. (just as the CR4 members are important to me.)

Regards

Yusef1

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#66
In reply to #65

Re: Existence of "Mermaids"

06/27/2014 1:58 AM

Thank you.

.

I appreciate your reverence for the proper handling and interpretation of what studies provide. I wish comprehension of scientific papers was a course required to graduate high school, or at the very least to obtain an undergraduate degree.

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In practice, I am very careful when I review papers/studies, when not speaking of something specific I sometimes let down my guard. I appreciate the reminder to remain vigilant. Words are important, and having exacting integrity in word, just like deed, isn't something that should be forsaken merely because things are less than formal.

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I'll take a look at Dr. Beleveau's work. Thanks again.

.

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By the way Yusef, you absolutely do not come off with even an hint of being a whiner or an alarmist.... not in any of the hundreds of your comments that I've read. You have always come off very consistently as just about the antithesis of a whining alarmist; pragmatic, insightful, exacting, stubborn/opinionated, and always worth reading.

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#61

Re: Existance of "Mermaids"

06/25/2014 7:07 PM

Yusef1, I have to agree with you that it is a hoax. Hoax's can make money for the perpetrator of the hoax.

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#67
In reply to #61

Re: Existance of "Mermaids"

06/27/2014 9:45 AM

It is worth studying how hoaxes are done. There should be a course in "hoaxology" in junior school, but it would probably be gutted by the vested interests, the politicians and others who make money from keeping people off balance. I don't blame you in the slightest for "keeping an open mind". We need open minds like yours more and more as the century is proceeding. So much is happening in the world, most people simply give up, and let others to their thinking for them. Well, you have to. Think I do an engineering analysis on every bridge I drive over? But if I am offered, say, a gold mine to purchase, I would do what is called "due diligence". comb through the cores and question ones with the wrong stone. Find out why the guy selling me the mine has gold dust in his shot gun shells....

I could tell you stories...but then, we all could. Me...I follow the money.

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#68
In reply to #67

Re: Existance of "Mermaids"

06/27/2014 10:44 AM

We all need to keep open minds. In my opinion the entrenched academics that are so deep in bed with their established theories that they refuse to even acknowledge potentially contrary evidence are just as bad in their own ways as the hoaxers.

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#69
In reply to #68

Re: Existance of "Mermaids"

06/27/2014 7:18 PM

A lot of people believe that, but it is actually not really so. Your mileage may differ, of course, but if you really think that, can you come up with real life examples in your own experience?

Such academics will die on the vine. The phrase is "publish or perish". Lots of people "call" themselves professors, but their credibility is on the line every year when they need to write a position paper, or prove to their bosses that their funding is still worth getting in an increasingly competitive world. And if they actually publish, they will get strips torn off their research, and their credibility may suffer.

The Andrew Wakefields of the world are murdering scum, their spokesmen are merely deluded but also not held responsible, and its a shame Wakefield didn't stand trial as well as having his licence to practice medicine yanked. The Lancet got some well deserved egg on its beard, and they have since cleaned up their act. This was a hoaxer who wanted to push his vitamin pills at the expense of now hundreds of dead children who did not get their proper vaccinations. Strong words? Not strong enough!

However, that being said, sooner or later even the most entrenched of dead headed professors and scientists will get nailed to the cross of publish or perish. The easy example would be the one I used before; the Tuskagee airmen went from "possible replacements in a bad war" to bomber pilots to the finest and most in demand fighter pilots in Italy during WWII. This was in SPITE of dozens of scientists who could "prove" that black pilots were not as good as white pilots. Nobody believes that B.S. any more of course. (turns out they were often washed out for being too big for the cockpits...hardly a critisism of their ability! That's why they ended up in bombers, or so I was told by a survivor I met in Richmond a few years back.) The so called "proof" did not stand up to peer review, and the War Department was told to get their fingers out and recruit on ability, not wishful racist bull shite thinking.

The real scientists are always ready to change their paradigms, their hypotheses, and if necessary, even re-visit some pretty solid theories, especially if they think they can embarrass a collegue or rival. And if they succeed, they end up on top of the pile. Its human nature, and honestly, after 25 years on the fringes and sometimes in the humid middle of the action, I have never actually met a true and honest professor who was not willing to entertain a new idea when it was pitched to her. My ears are still red from a submission I refuse to reveal here...

(Though I do have to admit, TCM gave me a list which gave me pause one time! Made ME challenge myself!)

Have a great day everybody! My smoker worked just fine, and I have a fridge full of my personally smoked supper. Mostly smoked cheese these days...though the smoked almonds should prove interesting.

So the chainsaw becons....I have some apple trees which need trimming...and more smoke needs to be made.

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#63

Re: Existance of "Mermaids"

06/26/2014 11:39 AM

Live Bait

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