Velikovsky and Modern Science

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Walter D Morris

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Mar 30, 1994, 10:39:34 PM3/30/94
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I would like to inquire into the possibility of starting up a Velikovsky
newsgroup. All those interested in such a group are asked to e-mail me
their opinion and area of interest at e...@eai.com As envisioned, the
group would address various aspects of Velikovsky's theory including
planetary science, archaeoastronomy, historical reconstruction,
cataclysmic extinction and evolution, and the socio-cultural implications
of the attempted suppression of his work by academics.
--
Walter D Morris
wdmo...@iastate.edu

Chris Brown

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Mar 31, 1994, 2:27:13 AM3/31/94
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Walter D Morris (wdmo...@iastate.edu) wrote:
: I would like to inquire into the possibility of starting up a Velikovsky

I wouldn't say that I was pro or anti Velikovsky but any attempt at
suppression I am against.
Wegner back in the '20's proposed Continental Drift. But he suppressed
by scientific narrow mindedness. So an undergradute at UEA can up with the
evidence in the mid '60's
Without the likes of Wegner, Velikovsky and Arp science is diminished

--

Chris Brown
============================================================================
| Cardiac Unit, R.L.C.H., Alder Hey, Eaton Rd, Liverpool, L12 2AP |
| chr...@liverpool.ac.uk |
============================================================================

Bruce d. Scott

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Mar 31, 1994, 4:38:26 AM3/31/94
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As long as the proposed newsgroup is to be unmoderated, I would
support it.

--
Gruss,
Dr Bruce Scott The deadliest bullshit is
Max-Planck-Institut fuer Plasmaphysik odorless and transparent
b...@spl6n1.aug.ipp-garching.mpg.de -- W Gibson

Thomas Kettenring

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Mar 31, 1994, 7:44:02 AM3/31/94
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Up to now Velikovsky has been discussed in talk.origins. The folks there
are qualified enough to show that Velikovsky didn't know much of geology,
astronomy, physics, biology, chemistry, mathematics, and logic. His
history and archaeology has been handled too, but I skipped that.

--
thomas kettenring, 3 dan, kaiserslautern, germany
Writing a spelling flame on Internet is like going to Athens and complaining
about all the owls.

William VanHorne

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Mar 31, 1994, 8:00:38 AM3/31/94
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In article <CnIq1...@liverpool.ac.uk>,

Chris Brown <chr...@liverpool.ac.uk> wrote:
>I wouldn't say that I was pro or anti Velikovsky but any attempt at
>suppression I am against.
>Wegner back in the '20's proposed Continental Drift. But he suppressed
>by scientific narrow mindedness. So an undergradute at UEA can up with the
>evidence in the mid '60's
>Without the likes of Wegner, Velikovsky and Arp science is diminished

Where did you ever get the idea that Wegner was "suppressed"? His theory
of continental drift was treated just like Alpher & Gamow's "Big Bang"
theory; that is, it was considered simply an interesting idea with no
evidence to back it until evidence was found (mostly due to the IGY).
Science is full of lots of interesting theories that will not become
"mainstream" until some sort of evidence for their validity becomes known.

---Bill VanHorne

Tero Sand

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Mar 31, 1994, 8:39:41 AM3/31/94
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In article <2ne5mi...@sat.ipp-garching.mpg.de>,

Bruce d. Scott <b...@uts.ipp-garching.mpg.de> wrote:
>As long as the proposed newsgroup is to be unmoderated, I would
>support it.

Frankly, I'm against it. Not enough to vote no, but against
nevertheless. IMO, this is the place to discuss Velikovsky's "theories".

>Dr Bruce Scott The deadliest bullshit is

--
Tero Sand, 2 kyu ! Science is a process of enlarging one's
! ignorance to dizzying heights.
EMail: cus...@cc.helsinki.fi ! - D.C.Lindsay in talk.origins
cus...@cc.helsinki.fi !

Tero Sand

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Mar 31, 1994, 8:41:52 AM3/31/94
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In article <2nejqt$2...@plootu.helsinki.fi>,

Tero Sand <cus...@plootu.Helsinki.FI> wrote:
>In article <2ne5mi...@sat.ipp-garching.mpg.de>,
>Bruce d. Scott <b...@uts.ipp-garching.mpg.de> wrote:
>>As long as the proposed newsgroup is to be unmoderated, I would
>>support it.
>
>Frankly, I'm against it. Not enough to vote no, but against
>nevertheless. IMO, this is the place to discuss Velikovsky's "theories".

Sorry, didn't notice the crosspostings. By "this" I mean talk.origins.

Ethan Vishniac

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Mar 31, 1994, 9:32:58 AM3/31/94
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Chris Brown <chr...@liverpool.ac.uk> wrote:

>Wegner back in the '20's proposed Continental Drift. But he suppressed
>by scientific narrow mindedness. So an undergradute at UEA can up with the
>evidence in the mid '60's

This is something of an urban myth, with just enough truth to keep it
going indefinitely. Alfred Wegener was a distinguished meteorologist
and geophysicist. Although his ideas received a hostile reception they
were neither forgotten nor ignored. In fact, he had his champions
throughout the period in which he was *suppressed* (your word,not mine).
A major problem with his theory was the theoretical underpinning, which
was indeed ridiculous for the reasons that people pointed out. You
need to read a good history of this episode.

>Without the likes of Wegner, Velikovsky and Arp science is diminished

.....or at least less amusing. In any case, Arp, like Wegener, has made
real contributions to science.

--
"Quis tamen tale studium, quo ad primam omnium rerum causam evehimur,
tamquam inutile aut contemnendum detractare ac deprimere ausit?"-Bridel
Ethan T. Vishniac, Dept. of Astronomy, The University of Texas at Austin
Austin, Texas, 78712 et...@astro.as.utexas.edu

DaveHatunen

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Mar 31, 1994, 10:30:24 AM3/31/94
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In article <CnIq1...@liverpool.ac.uk>,
Chris Brown <chr...@liverpool.ac.uk> wrote:

>I wouldn't say that I was pro or anti Velikovsky but any attempt at
>suppression I am against.
>Wegner back in the '20's proposed Continental Drift. But he suppressed
>by scientific narrow mindedness. So an undergradute at UEA can up with the
>evidence in the mid '60's
>Without the likes of Wegner, Velikovsky and Arp science is diminished

Do you handle cardiac science this way?

Wegener was NOT suppressed. He postulated an idea, but there was
insufficient evidence to support it at the time. He was frequently
mentioned in the geology texts, and in science popularizations. And he
was a known geologist.

Once the evidence was finally obtainable, through such previously
impossible tasks as localized measurement of the paleomagnetism of the
underlying rock on the floor of the Atlantic Ocean, it took very little
time for the theory of continental drift to be accepted.

Putting Wegener and Velikovsky together is ludicrous. And typical of
crankism.


--
********** DAVE HATUNEN (hat...@netcom.com) **********
* Daly City California: *
* where San Francisco meets The Peninsula *
* and the San Andreas Fault meets the Sea *
*******************************************************

Bill Gascoyne

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Mar 31, 1994, 12:51:28 PM3/31/94
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In article I...@liverpool.ac.uk, chr...@liverpool.ac.uk (Chris Brown) writes:
[deletia]

> Without the likes of Wegner, Velikovsky and Arp science is diminished

They all laughed at Albert Einstein. They all laughed at Columbus.
Unfortunately, they also all laughed at Bozo the Clown.
WILLIAM H. JEFFERYS

---

Bill Gascoyne -----
LSI Logic Corp. LSI |LOGIC|
1501 McCarthy Blvd. | |
MS E-197 -----
Milpitas, CA 95035 addr: gascan@asic internet: gas...@lsil.com

Matthew P Wiener

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Mar 31, 1994, 12:55:16 PM3/31/94
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In article <2ndglm$g...@news.iastate.edu>, wdmorris@iastate (Walter D Morris) writes:
>I would like to inquire into the possibility of starting up a Velikovsky
>newsgroup. All those interested in such a group are asked to e-mail me
>their opinion and area of interest at e...@eai.com.

Talk.origins has been the home of Velikovsky discussions since before
the Great Renaming.
--
-Matthew P Wiener (wee...@sagi.wistar.upenn.edu)

DaveHatunen

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Mar 31, 1994, 2:25:45 PM3/31/94
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In article <1994Mar31.1...@rhrk.uni-kl.de>,
Thomas Kettenring <kr...@physik.uni-kl.de> wrote:

>Up to now Velikovsky has been discussed in talk.origins. The folks there
>are qualified enough to show that Velikovsky didn't know much of geology,

>astronomy, physics, biology, chemistry, mathematics, and logic. [...]

That, of course, is why some are interested in setting up a separate
Velikovsky newsgroup. The Velikovsky fans are hoping that everyone else
will stay away and they can chatter affirmatively to each other without
ugly things like facts intruding.

Andrew Solovay

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Mar 31, 1994, 2:29:30 PM3/31/94
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In article <2ndglm$g...@news.iastate.edu>,

Why a new group? Isn't talk.bizarre good enough?
--
Andrew Solovay [PGP public key available on request]

"Cottleston, cottleston, cottleston pie."
-- Pooh

Wade Hines

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Mar 31, 1994, 2:32:31 PM3/31/94
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kr...@physik.uni-kl.de (Thomas Kettenring) writes:

>In article <2ndglm$g...@news.iastate.edu>, wdmo...@iastate.edu (Walter D Morris) writes:
>>I would like to inquire into the possibility of starting up a Velikovsky
>>newsgroup. All those interested in such a group are asked to e-mail me
>>their opinion and area of interest at e...@eai.com As envisioned, the
>>group would address various aspects of Velikovsky's theory including
>>planetary science, archaeoastronomy, historical reconstruction,
>>cataclysmic extinction and evolution, and the socio-cultural implications
>>of the attempted suppression of his work by academics.

>Up to now Velikovsky has been discussed in talk.origins. The folks there
>are qualified enough to show that Velikovsky didn't know much of geology,
>astronomy, physics, biology, chemistry, mathematics, and logic. His
>history and archaeology has been handled too, but I skipped that.

I propose talk.origins.loki.trickster for Velikovsky discussions. Now let's
see, who else posts from iastate.edu?

--Wade

Robert C. Merritt <rcmerrit>

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Mar 31, 1994, 4:04:12 PM3/31/94
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In article <hatunenC...@netcom.com> hat...@netcom.com (DaveHatunen) writes:
>In article <1994Mar31.1...@rhrk.uni-kl.de>,
>Thomas Kettenring <kr...@physik.uni-kl.de> wrote:
>
>>Up to now Velikovsky has been discussed in talk.origins. The folks there
>>are qualified enough to show that Velikovsky didn't know much of geology,
>>astronomy, physics, biology, chemistry, mathematics, and logic. [...]
>
>That, of course, is why some are interested in setting up a separate
>Velikovsky newsgroup. The Velikovsky fans are hoping that everyone else
>will stay away and they can chatter affirmatively to each other without
>ugly things like facts intruding.
>

Just out of curiosity, just WHAT does this Velikovsky guy believe in
that makes him so contraversal?
Since this seems to be a no-no topic, could someone please email me the
info instead of a public post? thanks,

Robert Merritt email: rob...@magnus1.com OR rcme...@cbda9.apgea.army.mil
-----------------------------------------------------------------------------
my opinions are my own,|"Call me old fashion, but I believe | "Give me OS/2
not of my employer. | in the one true god. His name is | or give me DOS!"
| Orgo and he lives in this lake" | -me
| -- The State |
----------------------------------------------------------------------------

Karl Kluge

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Mar 31, 1994, 5:03:09 PM3/31/94
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In article <hatunenC...@netcom.com> hat...@netcom.com (DaveHatunen) writes:

> Wegener was NOT suppressed. He postulated an idea, but there was
> insufficient evidence to support it at the time. He was frequently
> mentioned in the geology texts, and in science popularizations. And he
> was a known geologist.

There was ample evidence to support it, and with hindsight the attempts to
deal with that evidence in a non-drift framework look pretty lame -- an ad-hoc
set of land bridges rising and sinking as needed. There wasn't a plausible
*mechanism* for drift, which was the key objection. (deCamp's _Lost
Continents_ gives an account written during the time drift was still in
question, S. J. Gould wrote an essay on the subject in [I think] _Ever Since
Darwin_.)

Karl

James G. Acker

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Mar 31, 1994, 6:15:06 PM3/31/94
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Robert C. Merritt <rcmerrit> (rcme...@apgea.army.mil) wrote:

: Just out of curiosity, just WHAT does this Velikovsky guy believe in


: that makes him so contraversal?
: Since this seems to be a no-no topic, could someone please email me the
: info instead of a public post? thanks,
:
: Robert Merritt email: rob...@magnus1.com OR rcme...@cbda9.apgea.army.mil

Coming from a Merritt, this is STUNNINGLY ironic.

(James Merritt (sp?) was and is one of the chief debunkers of
Dr. V on t.o., and has a special relationship with V.'s main proponent,
The Inimitable One.)


===============================================
| James G. Acker |
| REPLY TO: jga...@neptune.gsfc.nasa.gov |
===============================================
All comments are the personal opinion of the writer
and do not constitute policy and/or opinion of government
or corporate entities.

Henling, Lawrence M.

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Mar 31, 1994, 10:20:00 PM3/31/94
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In article <CnIq1...@liverpool.ac.uk>, chr...@liverpool.ac.uk (Chris Brown) writes...

>Wegner back in the '20's proposed Continental Drift. But he suppressed
>by scientific narrow mindedness. So an undergradute at UEA can up with the
>evidence in the mid '60's

You may want to look at Great Geological Controversies by A Hallam
(Oxford Press), chapter 5 on 'continental drift' for a more
accurate recounting.

[I have a pamphlet written in the '30's by Wegner somewhere at home;
unfortunately it is in German.]


larry henling
l...@shakes.caltech.edu

bob dick

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Apr 1, 1994, 12:17:47 AM4/1/94
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rcme...@apgea.army.mil (Robert C. Merritt <rcmerrit>) writes,
about Velikovsky:

> eheheheh.. I guess that IS funny.. But really I had no idea who he was.
> After 20 or so responces emailed to me, I now know that Velikovsky is
> a nut case that tried to link biblical events with things like venus was
> a split of the eye of jupiter or some other thing like that.

Before you treat as gospel the stories you hear about Velikovsky,
you might find it interesting to read "The Velikovsky affair" by
Alfred de Grazia. He provides a sociological analysis of the sad
business. Velikovsky may have been very wrong. But it may be
that what really earned him the reputation as a "nut case" was the
way he didn't follow the rules about how scientists are supposed to
behave.

-- Bob


> >
> >
> Robert Merritt email: rob...@magnus1.com OR rcme...@cbda9.apgea.army.mil

> -----------------------------------------------------------------------------
> my opinions are my own,|"Call me old fashion, but I believe | "Give me OS/2
> not of my employer. | in the one true god. His name is | or give me DOS!"
> | Orgo and he lives in this lake" | -me
> | -- The State |
> ----------------------------------------------------------------------------

--

|||| Bob Dick Psychology Univ of Queensland 4072
|||| b...@psych.psy.uq.oz.au voice +617 365 6421

Carl J Lydick

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Apr 1, 1994, 2:05:37 AM4/1/94
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In article <31MAR199...@celia.caltech.edu>, l...@celia.caltech.edu (Henling, Lawrence M.) writes:
=In article <CnIq1...@liverpool.ac.uk>, chr...@liverpool.ac.uk (Chris Brown) writes...
=>Wegner back in the '20's proposed Continental Drift. But he suppressed
=>by scientific narrow mindedness. So an undergradute at UEA can up with the
=>evidence in the mid '60's
=
= You may want to look at Great Geological Controversies by A Hallam
=(Oxford Press), chapter 5 on 'continental drift' for a more
=accurate recounting.
=
= [I have a pamphlet written in the '30's by Wegner somewhere at home;
=unfortunately it is in German.]

Remember: To the lunatic fringe (of which Chris seems to be a member),
"suppresssion" means "anything other than uncritical acceptance."
--------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Carl J Lydick | INTERnet: CA...@SOL1.GPS.CALTECH.EDU | NSI/HEPnet: SOL1::CARL

Disclaimer: Hey, I understand VAXen and VMS. That's what I get paid for. My
understanding of astronomy is purely at the amateur level (or below). So
unless what I'm saying is directly related to VAX/VMS, don't hold me or my
organization responsible for it. If it IS related to VAX/VMS, you can try to
hold me responsible for it, but my organization had nothing to do with it.

Boucher David

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Apr 1, 1994, 9:37:10 AM4/1/94
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In article <solovayC...@netcom.com> sol...@netcom.com (Andrew Solovay) writes:
#In article <2ndglm$g...@news.iastate.edu>,
# Walter D Morris <wdmo...@iastate.edu> writes:
#>I would like to inquire into the possibility of starting up a Velikovsky
#>newsgroup. All those interested in such a group are asked to e-mail me
#>their opinion and area of interest at e...@eai.com As envisioned, the
#>group would address various aspects of Velikovsky's theory including
#>planetary science, archaeoastronomy, historical reconstruction,
#>cataclysmic extinction and evolution, and the socio-cultural implications
#>of the attempted suppression of his work by academics.
#
#Why a new group? Isn't talk.bizarre good enough?

I think they should put it on alt.sex.masturbation ;)

- db

--
****** "It is a capital mistake to theorise before one has data. ******
****** Insensibly one begins to twist facts to suit theories ******
****** instead of theories to suit facts." - Sherlock Holmes ******
*************************************************************************

Warren vonRoeschlaub

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Apr 1, 1994, 10:41:22 AM4/1/94
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In article <hines.7...@cgl.ucsf.edu>, hi...@socrates.ucsf.edu (Wade Hines)
writes:

 Hey, it wasn't me. And Dan hasn't been reading the group for over a
month now. I just checked, and he is a real person (the new system
makes forging posts difficult enough so I haven't been able to figure
out how to do it myself) but there is no plan to let on whether it was
or wasn't Ben "borrowing" a friends account.
--
***********************************************************************
* Warren Kurt * "Consequences shmonsequences, as long as I'm *
* vonRoeschlaub * rich." -Daffy Duck *
***********************************************************************

James G. Acker

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Apr 1, 1994, 11:10:16 AM4/1/94
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Robert C. Merritt <rcmerrit> (rcme...@apgea.army.mil) wrote:

: eheheheh.. I guess that IS funny.. But really I had no idea who he was.


: After 20 or so responces emailed to me, I now know that Velikovsky is
: a nut case that tried to link biblical events with things like venus was
: a split of the eye of jupiter or some other thing like that.

: But Now I seem to remember seeing something in Cosmos TV show about it.

Actually, considering some of the other threads I've
been answering today, I think it's harsh to call V. a "nut case".
He just conducted woefully inadequate research in fields outside
of his own specialty, and wove pseudo-scientific explanations around
the results of his inadequate research. But he seems on all
counts to have been pretty intelligent. Just because someone is
intelligent doesn't meant they can't be really, really wrong on
a particular subject.

Robert Parson

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Apr 1, 1994, 12:53:45 PM4/1/94
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In article <2nhfb2$7...@news.iastate.edu>,

Warren vonRoeschlaub <kv...@iastate.edu> wrote:
>
>Hey, it wasn't me. And Dan hasn't been reading the group for over a
>month now. I just checked, and he is a real person (the new system

Ashlock is a real person?

Where the heck is he, anyway?

-----
Robert

Robert C. Merritt <rcmerrit>

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Apr 1, 1994, 12:53:52 PM4/1/94
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In article <2nhh18$h...@paperboy.gsfc.nasa.gov> jga...@news.gsfc.nasa.gov (James G. Acker) writes:
>Robert C. Merritt <rcmerrit> (rcme...@apgea.army.mil) wrote:
>
>: eheheheh.. I guess that IS funny.. But really I had no idea who he was.
>: After 20 or so responces emailed to me, I now know that Velikovsky is
>: a nut case that tried to link biblical events with things like venus was
>: a split of the eye of jupiter or some other thing like that.
>: But Now I seem to remember seeing something in Cosmos TV show about it.
>
> Actually, considering some of the other threads I've
>been answering today, I think it's harsh to call V. a "nut case".
>He just conducted woefully inadequate research in fields outside
>of his own specialty, and wove pseudo-scientific explanations around
>the results of his inadequate research. But he seems on all
>counts to have been pretty intelligent. Just because someone is
>intelligent doesn't meant they can't be really, really wrong on
>a particular subject.
>

Naa.. I use the term "nut case" in an affectionate way. :).
(For example, I believe in big foot, so i'm probably a nut case to
someone else.)

However, some of Velikovshy's theories are just too far out there. Plus using
them to explain the bible is complete non-sence.
He might be (have been) VERY intelligent, but he is still a nut case.

Owen M. Hartnett

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Apr 1, 1994, 2:15:12 PM4/1/94
to
In article <1994Apr1.1...@apgea.army.mil> rcme...@apgea.army.mil (Robert C. Merritt <rcmerrit>) writes:
>In article <2nhh18$h...@paperboy.gsfc.nasa.gov> jga...@news.gsfc.nasa.gov (James G. Acker) writes:
>>Robert C. Merritt <rcmerrit> (rcme...@apgea.army.mil) wrote:
>>
>>: eheheheh.. I guess that IS funny.. But really I had no idea who he was.
>>: After 20 or so responces emailed to me, I now know that Velikovsky is
>>: a nut case that tried to link biblical events with things like venus was
>>: a split of the eye of jupiter or some other thing like that.
>>: But Now I seem to remember seeing something in Cosmos TV show about it.
>>
>> Actually, considering some of the other threads I've
>>been answering today, I think it's harsh to call V. a "nut case".
>>He just conducted woefully inadequate research in fields outside
>>of his own specialty, and wove pseudo-scientific explanations around
>>the results of his inadequate research. But he seems on all
>>counts to have been pretty intelligent. Just because someone is
>>intelligent doesn't meant they can't be really, really wrong on
>>a particular subject.
>>
>
>Naa.. I use the term "nut case" in an affectionate way. :).
>(For example, I believe in big foot, so i'm probably a nut case to
>someone else.)
>
>However, some of Velikovshy's theories are just too far out there. Plus using
>them to explain the bible is complete non-sence.
>He might be (have been) VERY intelligent, but he is still a nut case.
>

I don't believe Velikovshky's theories hook, line and sinker; but neither
do I believe anyone else's infallibility, including the Greenhouse effect,
nuclear winter, et al. It seems however, that some people's whacko theories
are given more credibility than others whacko theories. I don't think
that anyone would give total credence to V's complete thesis, but I look
at Worlds in Collision as the opening question: Could there be astronomical
reasons for phenomena in the Bible and other early texts? Others seem to
consider it a blueprint for what happened and try to discredit it point by
point. A Velikovskian tragedy now seems to be science's current reasons
for the disappearance of dinosaurs.

What I find interesting is the sheer vituperation that arises whenever
V is mentioned, like heresy has been committed.

-O


--
Owen Hartnett o...@cs.brown.edu
"FAITH, n. Belief without evidence in what is told by one who speaks
without knowledge, of things without parallel."
-Ambrose Bierce - The Devil's Dictionary

Benjamin T. Dehner

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Apr 1, 1994, 2:17:50 PM4/1/94
to
In <2nhfb2$7...@news.iastate.edu> kv...@iastate.edu (Warren vonRoeschlaub) writes:


>In article <hines.7...@cgl.ucsf.edu>, hi...@socrates.ucsf.edu (Wade Hines)
>writes:
>>kr...@physik.uni-kl.de (Thomas Kettenring) writes:
>>>In article <2ndglm$g...@news.iastate.edu>, wdmo...@iastate.edu (Walter D
>>Morris) writes:

[pro-Velikovsy newsgroup]

>>>Up to now Velikovsky has been discussed in talk.origins. The folks there
>>>are qualified enough to show that Velikovsky didn't know much of geology,
>>>astronomy, physics, biology, chemistry, mathematics, and logic. His
>>>history and archaeology has been handled too, but I skipped that.
>>
>>I propose talk.origins.loki.trickster for Velikovsky discussions. Now let's
>>see, who else posts from iastate.edu?

> Hey, it wasn't me. And Dan hasn't been reading the group for over a
>month now. I just checked, and he is a real person (the new system
>makes forging posts difficult enough so I haven't been able to figure
>out how to do it myself) but there is no plan to let on whether it was
>or wasn't Ben "borrowing" a friends account.

I don't know who Walter Morris is, but e...@eai.com is the email
address of Ev Cochrane, who is currently the publisher of Aeon magazine,
a pro-Velikovsky journal. I think his office is locate about a mile
from the physics building. Anyway, the suggestion for a Velikovsky news-
group is probably a sincere one. As for Mr. Cochrane, I have spoken to him
on the phone and communicated with him via email, and he seems like a
nice enough fellow. (Your mileage, of course, may differ.)

Oh, and as to the fellow who asked about Dan (Ashlock), well, he's
been kind of busy lately. He just got back from a conference in Florida
a short while ago, and he's had teaching and several collaborations to deal
with. Not to mention a pregnant wife due in a couple of weeks. I'm sure
he'll be back as time and workload permit.

Ben

--
-----------------------------------------------------------------------------
Benjamin T. Dehner Dept. of Physics and Astronomy
b...@iastate.edu Iowa State University
Ames, IA 50011

Warren vonRoeschlaub

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Apr 1, 1994, 2:18:18 PM4/1/94
to

In article <CnLDp...@cnsnews.Colorado.EDU>, rpa...@rintintin.Colorado.EDU

Right now he is 30 feet due East and 15 feet due South of
my position. In other words, he is in his office answering
e-mail.

He has been working on a couple of papers (gotta get that
tenure thingy) and by cutting news out of his schedule he
actually ended up with something called "free time".
Personally, I haven't the slightest idea what that is.

Alan Morgan

unread,
Apr 1, 1994, 3:14:19 PM4/1/94
to
In article <2nhh18$h...@paperboy.gsfc.nasa.gov>
jga...@news.gsfc.nasa.gov (James G. Acker) writes:

> Actually, considering some of the other threads I've
>been answering today, I think it's harsh to call V. a "nut case".
>He just conducted woefully inadequate research in fields outside
>of his own specialty, and wove pseudo-scientific explanations around
>the results of his inadequate research. But he seems on all
>counts to have been pretty intelligent. Just because someone is
>intelligent doesn't meant they can't be really, really wrong on
>a particular subject.

Just because someone's intelligent doesn't mean they can't be
a nutcase either. V. certainly qualifies as a crackpot along
with L. Ron Hubbard and Ludwig Plutonium (he of the inadequate
scansion).

Alan
----
EFI agrees with me 100% on matters of fact. The above aren't even close.

-----> Mail abuse to: al...@efi.com <-----

Keeper of the alt.tasteless theme song and part time evil genius.

Robert C. Merritt <rcmerrit>

unread,
Apr 1, 1994, 3:14:40 PM4/1/94
to
In article <1994Apr1.1...@cs.brown.edu> o...@cs.brown.edu (Owen M. Hartnett) writes:
>>
>>Naa.. I use the term "nut case" in an affectionate way. :).
>>(For example, I believe in big foot, so i'm probably a nut case to
>>someone else.)
>>
>>However, some of Velikovshy's theories are just too far out there. Plus using
>>them to explain the bible is complete non-sence.
>>He might be (have been) VERY intelligent, but he is still a nut case.
>>
>
>I don't believe Velikovshky's theories hook, line and sinker; but neither
>do I believe anyone else's infallibility, including the Greenhouse effect,
>nuclear winter, et al. It seems however, that some people's whacko theories
>are given more credibility than others whacko theories. I don't think
>that anyone would give total credence to V's complete thesis, but I look
>at Worlds in Collision as the opening question: Could there be astronomical
>reasons for phenomena in the Bible and other early texts? Others seem to
>consider it a blueprint for what happened and try to discredit it point by
>point. A Velikovskian tragedy now seems to be science's current reasons
>for the disappearance of dinosaurs.


Good points. Sometimes I'm amazed at some of the theories that get support in
the science community. (ei greenhouse) And if WIC is taken as an open question
(ei like Mounments of Mars) and NOT fact, then it has some merit I guess.
But then I haven't read WIC so I am generalizing..

>
>What I find interesting is the sheer vituperation that arises whenever
>V is mentioned, like heresy has been committed.
>
>-O
>
>
>--
>Owen Hartnett o...@cs.brown.edu
>"FAITH, n. Belief without evidence in what is told by one who speaks
> without knowledge, of things without parallel."
> -Ambrose Bierce - The Devil's Dictionary

Robert Merritt email: rob...@magnus1.com OR rcme...@cbda9.apgea.army.mil

Carl J Lydick

unread,
Apr 1, 1994, 3:30:51 PM4/1/94
to
In article <1994Apr1.1...@cs.brown.edu>, o...@cs.brown.edu (Owen M. Hartnett) writes:
=I don't believe Velikovshky's theories hook, line and sinker; but neither
=do I believe anyone else's infallibility, including the Greenhouse effect,
=nuclear winter, et al. It seems however, that some people's whacko theories
=are given more credibility than others whacko theories. I don't think
=that anyone would give total credence to V's complete thesis, but I look
=at Worlds in Collision as the opening question: Could there be astronomical
=reasons for phenomena in the Bible and other early texts? Others seem to
=consider it a blueprint for what happened and try to discredit it point by
=point. A Velikovskian tragedy now seems to be science's current reasons
=for the disappearance of dinosaurs.

Hell, what's a few orders of magnitude between crackpots, right? The
so-called "dinosaur killer" is not even close to being a Velikovskian
catastrophe. Comparing the two is very much like saying, "Well, this `psychic'
predicted that a close friend of mine was going to die today. I happened to
notice that a total stranger I passed on the street had a hangnail. The
psychic was right."

=What I find interesting is the sheer vituperation that arises whenever
=V is mentioned, like heresy has been committed.

Well, perhaps if you were a bit less ignorant, you'd under the vituperation
more.

Carl J Lydick

unread,
Apr 1, 1994, 3:48:28 PM4/1/94
to
In article <1994Apr1.2...@apgea.army.mil>, rcme...@apgea.army.mil (Robert C. Merritt <rcmerrit>) writes:
=>I don't believe Velikovshky's theories hook, line and sinker; but neither
=>do I believe anyone else's infallibility, including the Greenhouse effect,
=>nuclear winter, et al. It seems however, that some people's whacko theories
=>are given more credibility than others whacko theories. I don't think
=>that anyone would give total credence to V's complete thesis, but I look
=>at Worlds in Collision as the opening question: Could there be astronomical
=>reasons for phenomena in the Bible and other early texts? Others seem to
=>consider it a blueprint for what happened and try to discredit it point by
=>point. A Velikovskian tragedy now seems to be science's current reasons
=>for the disappearance of dinosaurs.
=
=Good points. Sometimes I'm amazed at some of the theories that get support in
=the science community. (ei greenhouse)

Oh? What do you find amazing about greenhouse warming? I take it you've never
done infrared absorption spetrocospy.

=And if WIC is taken as an open question
=(ei like Mounments of Mars) and NOT fact, then it has some merit I guess.

Well, there is, of course, the minor detail that WIC is in extreme conflict
with a hell of a lot of evidence in favor of Newton's laws of motion and
gravitational attraction (for non-relativistic cases; and Velikovsky's
"theories" aren't helped any by considering relativistic effects).

Tim Thompson

unread,
Apr 1, 1994, 3:54:06 PM4/1/94
to
In article 28...@cs.brown.edu, o...@cs.brown.edu (Owen M. Hartnett) writes:
[ ... ]

>
>I don't believe Velikovshky's theories hook, line and sinker; but neither
>do I believe anyone else's infallibility, including the Greenhouse effect,
>nuclear winter, et al. It seems however, that some people's whacko theories
>are given more credibility than others whacko theories. I don't think
>that anyone would give total credence to V's complete thesis, but I look
>at Worlds in Collision as the opening question: Could there be astronomical
>reasons for phenomena in the Bible and other early texts? Others seem to
>consider it a blueprint for what happened and try to discredit it point by
>point. A Velikovskian tragedy now seems to be science's current reasons
>for the disappearance of dinosaurs.
>
And ...

In article 16...@apgea.army.mil, rcme...@apgea.army.mil (Robert C. Merritt <rcmerrit>) writes:
[ ... ]


>
>Good points. Sometimes I'm amazed at some of the theories that get support in

>the science community. (ei greenhouse) And if WIC is taken as an open question


>(ei like Mounments of Mars) and NOT fact, then it has some merit I guess.

>But then I haven't read WIC so I am generalizing..
>

First, with fond memories of days gone by, I can't help but ask why
y'all are so suspicious of "greenhouse" theory? I shall be only too happy
to answer queries on the subject.

Second, I would like to quibble with the comparison of an asteroid
strike being a "Velikovskian" catastrophe. Velikovsky did not invent
catastrophism, and wandering asteroids are now well understood. Here at
JPL, we have a team that specializes in discovering Earth-orbit-crossing
asteroids, just after they whizzed by (has to do with phase angle of the
sun, or at least, that's their excuse). Dr. V, on the other hand had
everything whiz by, from meteor(ite)s to cometary planets. I think that
his catastrophes are in a class by themselves.

And, thirdly, I really do not consider Worlds in Collision to be any
kind of open question, and this is not dogma. The door has been slammed
shut hard on Velikovsky's ideas, they aren't worth a dime at any rate
of inflation. This does not mean there isn't plenty to learn about solar
system dynamics, witnessed by the recent trend towards applying chaos
theory to planetary motions. However, even here, ther is no solace. The
poor old guy was just plain wrong all the way.

Could there have been astronomical causes to events in the Bible, or
in various legends? Yes, but ordinary comets, or planetary conjunctions,
and the host of normal astronomical explanations are a far cry from the
ideas of Velikovsky. Could there have been a astro-catastrophic origin
for some of these tales? Perhaps, Earth getting whanged by big rocks
is not news, but they don't sneak. They announce their presence, and
they leave calling cards behind. And, they don't provoke Human-wide
amnesia.

Just one guy's opinions, of course ...

---
---------------------------------------------------------------
Timothy J. Thompson, Jet Propulsion Laboratory.
Earth & Space Sciences Division ...
Advanced Spaceborne Thermal Emission and Reflectance Radiometer
Board of Directors, Los Angeles Astronomical Society ...
Vice President, Mount Wilson Observatory Association ...

INTERnet/BITnet: t...@lithos.jpl.nasa.gov
NSI/DECnet: jplsc8::tim
SCREAMnet: YO!! TIM!!
GPSnet: 118:10:22.85 W by 34:11:58.27 N

James G. Acker

unread,
Apr 1, 1994, 3:58:29 PM4/1/94
to
Benjamin T. Dehner (b...@iastate.edu) wrote:

Regarding Dan Ashlock's activities:
: with. Not to mention a pregnant wife due in a couple of weeks. I'm sure

Who handles the shipment of pregnant wives these days? Is
Federal Express appropriate? :-)
(Congrats to Dan and the mother ahead of schedule.)

Richard A. Schumacher

unread,
Apr 1, 1994, 7:09:37 PM4/1/94
to
Mentioning a crank like Velikovsky in the same breath
as scientists like Wegner and Arp is slander. This is
not a matter of dogma: Wegner's theories are now accepted
because evidence and mechanism supporting them were
eventually found, while the same is not true of Arp's
cosmology.

Richard A. Schumacher

unread,
Apr 1, 1994, 7:32:12 PM4/1/94
to
In <1994Apr1.1...@cs.brown.edu> o...@cs.brown.edu (Owen M. Hartnett) writes:


>I don't believe Velikovshky's theories hook, line and sinker; but neither
>do I believe anyone else's infallibility, including the Greenhouse effect,
>nuclear winter, et al. It seems however, that some people's whacko theories
>are given more credibility than others whacko theories. I don't think
>that anyone would give total credence to V's complete thesis, but I look
>at Worlds in Collision as the opening question: Could there be astronomical
>reasons for phenomena in the Bible and other early texts? Others seem to
>consider it a blueprint for what happened and try to discredit it point by
>point. A Velikovskian tragedy now seems to be science's current reasons
>for the disappearance of dinosaurs.


Oooh, now you've done it! You've mis-spelled His name! Ev Cochrane
will be down on you like a ton of bricks, boy...

Seriously: there's nothing the slightest bit wacko about the greenhouse
effect. Without it you and I would not be here, and Earth's oceans would
be frozen down to their bottoms. (Whether a nuclear war would result in
a "nuclear winter" is another matter altogether.) The point is that this
is not a matter of personalities, it's a matter of evidence. Velikovsky's
notions are wrong sixty ways from Sunday. His scenario simply cannot
have happened in the universe we live in.

The Alvarez hypothesis for the Cretaceous-Tertiary extinctions is
"Velikovskian" only in that it is was a catastrophe. But it is a
catastrophe of evidence and physical priciples, whereas V-ism is
a catastrophe of bad scholarship and religious mania.

Robert C. Merritt <rcmerrit>

unread,
Mar 31, 1994, 10:09:27 PM3/31/94
to
In article <2nflhq$6...@paperboy.gsfc.nasa.gov> jga...@news.gsfc.nasa.gov (James G. Acker) writes:
>Robert C. Merritt <rcmerrit> (rcme...@apgea.army.mil) wrote:
>
>: Just out of curiosity, just WHAT does this Velikovsky guy believe in
>: that makes him so contraversal?
>: Since this seems to be a no-no topic, could someone please email me the
>: info instead of a public post? thanks,
>:
>: Robert Merritt email: rob...@magnus1.com OR rcme...@cbda9.apgea.army.mil
>
> Coming from a Merritt, this is STUNNINGLY ironic.
>
> (James Merritt (sp?) was and is one of the chief debunkers of
>Dr. V on t.o., and has a special relationship with V.'s main proponent,
>The Inimitable One.)

eheheheh.. I guess that IS funny.. But really I had no idea who he was.


After 20 or so responces emailed to me, I now know that Velikovsky is
a nut case that tried to link biblical events with things like venus was
a split of the eye of jupiter or some other thing like that.
But Now I seem to remember seeing something in Cosmos TV show about it.

>
>

Walter D Morris

unread,
Apr 1, 1994, 10:48:30 PM4/1/94
to
I have now read some twenty posts in sci.astro tonight having to do
with my suggestion last night of starting up a newsgroup specializing
in the theories of Immanuel Velikovsky, author of Worlds in Collision.
Folks such as Alan Morgan, Warren von Roeschlaub, Jim Merritt, Richard
Schumacher and Carl Lydick have all expressed themselves in a manner
which illustrates the need for such a group. Not one of these men cited
/home/wdmorris/.article (Modified) Hit Ctrl-K H for
help
one single example of an error on the part of Velikovsky (and believe me,
Velikovsky, like most scientists, was susceptible to error), they merely
railed away against him as if he was John Windsor or Alexander Abian.
One of these folks has the balls the advertize his ignorance as follows:

"My understanding of astronomy is purely at the amateur level (or below)"
Really Sir, you needn't have confessed. We knew it already! And this
clown criticizes Velikovsky, the man who anticipated countless findings
of modern space probes since 1950? Those of us who seek a rational and
fairminded discussions of the issues raised by Velikovsky's writings
would like to start our own newsgroup where evidence and facts receive
the attention, not namecalling and maladept attempts at humor. Certainly
it is ironic that on the very night that I proposed the formation of
a Velikovsky-newsgroup there must have been several dozen posts regarding
the possibility of Martian meteorites landing on the Earth. A typical
response was "Gosh, I wonder how they could have gotten here." If these
folks would care to check into the Velikovsky-newsgroup perhaps they'll
learn the answer (Mars was much nearer the Earth within the memory of
man, and ancient records from around the world describe in unmistakeable
terms the spectacular cataclysms which ravaged the red planet, sending it
to its current orbit and leaving it in the pitifully scarred condition
it is in today). For the record, my name is Ev Cochrane and my address
is e...@eai.com My news poster is currently on the blink and I have been
posting courtesy of a friend's account, the good Doctor Morris.
--
Walter D Morris
wdmo...@iastate.edu

Owen M. Hartnett

unread,
Apr 1, 1994, 11:47:20 PM4/1/94
to
In article <2ni09r$o...@gap.cco.caltech.edu> ca...@SOL1.GPS.CALTECH.EDU writes:
>Hell, what's a few orders of magnitude between crackpots, right? The
>so-called "dinosaur killer" is not even close to being a Velikovskian
>catastrophe. Comparing the two is very much like saying, "Well, this `psychic'
>predicted that a close friend of mine was going to die today. I happened to
>notice that a total stranger I passed on the street had a hangnail. The
>psychic was right."
>
Around Velikovsky's time, the disappearance of dinosaurs was attributed
to many reasons, but generic science scoffed at the idea of their being
snuffed out by cosmic events. Now, the preferred theory is that they
were destroyed by a collision with a comet. At least this is the theory
of the week. If that isn't Velikovskian than I don't know what is.

>=What I find interesting is the sheer vituperation that arises whenever
>=V is mentioned, like heresy has been committed.
>
>Well, perhaps if you were a bit less ignorant, you'd under the vituperation
>more.

See the above comment.

-Owen

Tero Sand

unread,
Apr 2, 1994, 2:56:56 AM4/2/94
to
In article <1994Apr2.0...@cs.brown.edu>,

Owen M. Hartnett <o...@cs.brown.edu> wrote:
>In article <2ni09r$o...@gap.cco.caltech.edu> ca...@SOL1.GPS.CALTECH.EDU writes:
>>Hell, what's a few orders of magnitude between crackpots, right? The
>>so-called "dinosaur killer" is not even close to being a Velikovskian
>>catastrophe. Comparing the two is very much like saying, "Well, this `psychic'
>>predicted that a close friend of mine was going to die today. I happened to
>>notice that a total stranger I passed on the street had a hangnail. The
>>psychic was right."
>>
>Around Velikovsky's time, the disappearance of dinosaurs was attributed
>to many reasons, but generic science scoffed at the idea of their being
>snuffed out by cosmic events. Now, the preferred theory is that they
>were destroyed by a collision with a comet. At least this is the theory
>of the week.

Whether the asteroid destroyed the dinos is far from accepted. That
there was a large impact at that time, OTOH, seems more certain.

If that isn't Velikovskian than I don't know what is.
>

Then obviously you don't. V. surmised that something (what?) caused a
biggish blob of material to be ejected from Jupiter; that blob zoomed
past Earth several times causing major havoc, and ended in a nearly circular
orbit around the Sun and is what we now call Venus. Aside from the fact
that all evidence speaks against this - yes, this is in my books a
*much* larger catastrophe than a measly 10-15 km meteor hitting Earth.

>-Owen
--
Tero Sand, 2 kyu ! Science is a process of enlarging one's
! ignorance to dizzying heights.
EMail: cus...@cc.helsinki.fi ! - D.C.Lindsay in talk.origins
cus...@cc.helsinki.fi !

Donald Lindsay

unread,
Apr 2, 1994, 1:40:51 PM4/2/94
to

In article <2nipue$r...@news.iastate.edu>,

Walter D Morris <wdmo...@iastate.edu> wrote:
>I have now read some twenty posts in sci.astro tonight having to do
>with my suggestion last night of starting up a newsgroup

> Not one of these men cited


>one single example of an error on the part of Velikovsky

Poor baby. You've been on the net for an entire day or two! Such
impatience!

FYI, we trash Velikovsky, in detail, only about 4-6 times a year.
Usually when someone asks.

>Velikovsky, the man who anticipated countless findings
>of modern space probes since 1950

That's a flat falsehood. A truly generous interpretation of his
writings gives him about two predictions. Hardly "countless". A more
rigorous interpretation gives him no predictions.

>perhaps they'll
>learn the answer (Mars was much nearer the Earth within the memory of
>man

And perhaps you'll learn that that's 100% ruled out by solid
astronomical evidence. If you are as rational and fairminded as you
proclaim, you will want to know more about this evidence, yes?
--
Don D.C.Lindsay Carnegie Mellon Computer Science

Warren vonRoeschlaub

unread,
Apr 2, 1994, 2:01:39 PM4/2/94
to
In article <2nipue$r...@news.iastate.edu> wdmo...@iastate.edu (Walter D Morris) writes:
>I have now read some twenty posts in sci.astro tonight having to do
>with my suggestion last night of starting up a newsgroup specializing
>in the theories of Immanuel Velikovsky, author of Worlds in Collision.
>Folks such as Alan Morgan, Warren von Roeschlaub, Jim Merritt, Richard
>Schumacher and Carl Lydick have all expressed themselves in a manner
>which illustrates the need for such a group. Not one of these men cited
>one single example of an error on the part of Velikovsky

Hey, all I did was point out that you were a real person and it wasn't a
prank. Since at least three t.o regulars are from Iowa State it was a
non-trivial possibility.

However, since you asked, care to explain how the change in rotation rate of
the Earth was effected so as to violate the requirement for the momentum of
those living on the surface to remain the same?

> (and believe me,
>Velikovsky, like most scientists, was susceptible to error),

A master of understatement.

> they merely
>railed away against him as if he was John Windsor or Alexander Abian.
>One of these folks has the balls the advertize his ignorance as follows:
>"My understanding of astronomy is purely at the amateur level (or below)"
>Really Sir, you needn't have confessed. We knew it already! And this
>clown criticizes Velikovsky, the man who anticipated countless findings
>of modern space probes since 1950?

The count, at last tally, was 1. Care to add more than the "prediction"
Venus was hot (which was already known)? And what about the findings that
contradict him? Would you still argue that the polar caps of Mars are not
ice?

[...]


>it is in today). For the record, my name is Ev Cochrane and my address
>is e...@eai.com My news poster is currently on the blink and I have been
>posting courtesy of a friend's account, the good Doctor Morris.

Nonetheless, Ted Holden had no problem presenting his ideas here in t.o. I
think it is the ideal forum, especially since Velikovsky is about 100x more
scientific than the best of the Creationist stuff, and it would be nice to
hear something that, at the very least, actually makes predictions.
--
Warren Kurt | By virtue of being correct, the opinions expressed
vonRoeschlaub | above could not conceivably be those of ISU.

Walter D Morris

unread,
Apr 2, 1994, 5:29:15 PM4/2/94
to
In a recent post Don Lindsay labeled as "flat falsehood" my statement that
Velikovsky anticipated "countless findings" of modern space probes,
crediting
the author of Worlds in Collision with at most one successful prediction.
Either Mr. Lindsay is ignorant of the issue in question or he is suffering
a serious lapse of memory. That Velikovsky correctly anticipated numerous
findings of recent space probes is well-known and well-documented if not
always properly credited (see the American Behavioral Scientist, Sept. 1963;
Pensee 2:2, 1972; or Velikovsky and Establishment Science, by W. Sizemore &
L.M. Greenberg for dozens of examples in addition to those which follow).
In the December 21, 1962 issue of Science, two distinguished scientists, one
an astronomer (Lloyd Motz of Columbia), published a letter in which they
credited Velikovsky with successfully anticipating the high heat of Venus,
radio noises emitted by Jupiter, and the existence of a magnetosphere around
the Earth. At the time, these scientists added: "Although we disagree with
Velikovsky's theories, we feel impelled to make this statement to establish
Velikovsky's priority of prediction...His predictions should be recognized
and...his writings...carefully studied and analyzed because they are the
product of an extraordinary and brilliant mind, and are based on some of
the most concentrated and penetrating scholarship and research of the
period." Of course, it goes without saying the just because Velikovsky
correctly anticipated numerous findings of recent space probes this does not
make him right. But it does give you food for thought and room for doubt.
Is
it perchance possible that he knew something which conventional astronomers
had dismissed or ignored? In addition to his many successes in scholarship,
one of the real legacies of Velikovsky is that he calls attention to the
possibility that all is not right with the conventional understanding of
the recent history of the solar system.

Benjamin T. Dehner

unread,
Apr 2, 1994, 5:34:29 PM4/2/94
to
In <2nkrjr$e...@news.iastate.edu> wdmo...@iastate.edu (Walter D Morris) writes:

>In a recent post Don Lindsay labeled as "flat falsehood" my statement that
>Velikovsky anticipated "countless findings" of modern space probes,
>crediting
>the author of Worlds in Collision with at most one successful prediction.
>Either Mr. Lindsay is ignorant of the issue in question or he is suffering
>a serious lapse of memory. That Velikovsky correctly anticipated numerous
>findings of recent space probes is well-known and well-documented if not
>always properly credited (see the American Behavioral Scientist, Sept. 1963;
>Pensee 2:2, 1972; or Velikovsky and Establishment Science, by W. Sizemore &
>L.M. Greenberg for dozens of examples in addition to those which follow).

If you are going to mention such examples, PLEASE post the examples.
I had one hell of a time getting ahold of a Pensee issue that had Robert
Bass's articles in them; they were sent to me by another kind netter who got
them from Ted Holden (I think.) Further, I inherently distrust any claim
about "numerous prediction" without something more solid to back them up.
I will credit that you do give some precise (if hard to locate) references
instead of vague "there are lots".

>In the December 21, 1962 issue of Science, two distinguished scientists, one
>an astronomer (Lloyd Motz of Columbia), published a letter in which they
>credited Velikovsky with successfully anticipating the high heat of Venus,
>radio noises emitted by Jupiter, and the existence of a magnetosphere around
>the Earth.

These are common half-truths mentioned about Velikovsky's so-called
"scientific" predictions. I call them half-truths because there is truth
involved in that Velikovsky did make these claims that later were shown
to be correct; the "half"-truth comes in bacause THERE IS NO WAY TO
SCIENTIFICALLY CONCLUDE THESE OBSERVATIONS FROM VELIKOVSIES THEORIES.
Velikovsky presents NO physical model from which it is ever possible to draw
any type of *quantitative* conclusion. For your three examples:

1) high temperature of Venus: Velikovskies *specif* prediction, I believe,
is the claim "Venus is hot". How hot? Hot compared to what? If you
compare the earth (T ~ 270K) to an asteriod (T ~ 50 K?) you could also say
the earth was "hot". Rupert deWildt (I think) gave the first mathematical
description of Venus in ~ 1947 (I don't have the reference handy, I believe
it was in an Astrophysical Journal) describing the greenhouse effect. Now,
while it turn out the deWildt was way off in his estimate, at least he
presented a physical model to explain his conclusions.

2) radio wave from Jupiter. Velikovsky's claim in this instance was
something to the effect of "Jupiter should emit radio waves like the sun
and stars". What does this mean? i) jupiter should have a radio spectrum
the same as a star? This is patently wrong. Most stars have a *thermal*
radio spectrum. ii) jupiter emits radio wave using the same mechanism as
stars? Again, wrong. iii) stars emit radio waves, and so does jupiter?
This is so vague as to be worthless. Without a model as to *how* and *why*
Jupiter emits radio waves, this is a crap shoot that tells us nothing.

3) magnetosphere of earth. I'm afraid the earth's magnetic field was known
of long before Velikovsky. What specific prediction did Velikovsky give
that somehow enhanced knowledge of it?

>At the time, these scientists added: "Although we disagree with
>Velikovsky's theories, we feel impelled to make this statement to establish
>Velikovsky's priority of prediction...His predictions should be recognized
>and...his writings...carefully studied and analyzed because they are the
>product of an extraordinary and brilliant mind, and are based on some of
>the most concentrated and penetrating scholarship and research of the
>period."

They were crediting the fact that Velikovsky was the first to predict
"radio waves from Jupiter". Again, without a more physical explanation,
Velikovsky's prediction was worthless.

>Of course, it goes without saying the just because Velikovsky
>correctly anticipated numerous findings of recent space probes this does not
>make him right. But it does give you food for thought and room for doubt.
>Is it perchance possible that he knew something which conventional astronomers
>had dismissed or ignored? In addition to his many successes in scholarship,
>one of the real legacies of Velikovsky is that he calls attention to the
>possibility that all is not right with the conventional understanding of
>the recent history of the solar system.

Unfortunately, Velikovsky has contributed *nothing* to the
understanding of anything. He made predictions of cosmic billiard which
are in conflict with dynamical systems. He postulated a mysterious explosion
on Jupiter with enough energy to eject Venus, yet which somehow managed to
remain self gravitaing. He invented "electromagnetic" forces which behave as
to however required, with no demonstration (and very little plausibility)
that electormagnetic interaction could operate in such a manner.
Further, he based all of the violations of physcal law on a question-
able and occaisionally misleading intperpration of vague and incomplete
historical religious documents. He postulated that such an impossible cosmic
scenario did occur, so that writings from different cultures, rulers, times,
and writing styles must both somehow refer to the same person, and therefore
supplied evidence that his scenario did occur.

In short, Velikovsky did no science whatsoever. He piled postulate
upon assertion, backed by poetry and selective interpretation. He never
attempted to understand the first bit about the science he was contradicting,
and used dismissal instead of critique.

Owen M. Hartnett

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Apr 2, 1994, 6:12:32 PM4/2/94
to
In article <1994Apr2.1...@sarah.albany.edu> pn8...@thor.albany.edu (NICHOLLS PHILIP A) writes:
>> o...@cs.brown.edu (Owen M. Hartnett) writes:
>
>>Around Velikovsky's time, the disappearance of dinosaurs was attributed
>>to many reasons, but generic science scoffed at the idea of their being
>>snuffed out by cosmic events. Now, the preferred theory is that they
>>were destroyed by a collision with a comet. At least this is the theory
>>of the week. If that isn't Velikovskian than I don't know what is.
>
>The impact in question occurred 70 million years ago. The object in
>question was most likely a large astroid. This impact was proposed on
>the basis of an observations: high concentrations of Iridium in strata
>associated with the K/T transition. Iridium is rare in the earth's
>crust but seems to be more common in meteor debris. This hypothesis
>has been gaining support for several years now. There is no tie to
>biblical events and there is no attempt to explain the asteroid in
>question as arising from any of the planets in responses to near misses
>by comets.

Not surprising as it predates biblical times.

My point is that, up until very recently, scientists were maintaining
that there have been no interactions in our solar system. Velikovsky
suggested planetary or cometary interactions well in advance of
todays theories.


> Velikovski does not go for impacts. He goes for near misses
>because impacts would be too destructive.

You mean V actually used some logic in his writings, he wasn't a total
nutcake?

>His "theory" is based on
>interpretations of ancient legends and myths and the mechanisms he has
>proposed have been repeatedly shown to violate basic laws of physics.
>
>Based on the above, I think we must conclude that "you don't know what is."
>

His theory was that ancient legends and myths could possibly be
correlated to show evidence that something astronomical could possibly
be an explanation for these historical observations. I don't doubt that
his explanations sometimes border on the fanciful, I agree with you there.
Unlike you, I'm unwilling to throw the baby out with the bath water and
think that there might be a grain of truth in his work which might bear
further investigation.

What still amazes me is the high dudgeon people get into over him. It's
the astronomical version of the "Yo Mama" jokes on "In Living Color."

>
>>>=What I find interesting is the sheer vituperation that arises whenever
>>>=V is mentioned, like heresy has been committed.
>>>
>>>Well, perhaps if you were a bit less ignorant, you'd under the vituperation
>>>more.
>>
>>See the above comment.
>

>See above comment

Carl J Lydick

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Apr 2, 1994, 6:22:12 PM4/2/94
to
In article <1994Apr2.2...@cs.brown.edu>, o...@cs.brown.edu (Owen M. Hartnett) writes:
=My point is that, up until very recently, scientists were maintaining
=that there have been no interactions in our solar system.

Huh? What do you think they considered the explanation of lunar craters? How
about known meteor craters in, e.g., Arizona? What about Tunguska? Just how
ignorant *ARE* you?

=Velikovsky
=suggested planetary or cometary interactions well in advance of
=todays theories.

Bullshit!

=What still amazes me is the high dudgeon people get into over him. It's
=the astronomical version of the "Yo Mama" jokes on "In Living Color."

Well, considering that you don't have a clue about the things you're talking
about, your amazement is not surprising.

Donald Lindsay

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Apr 2, 1994, 10:39:27 PM4/2/94
to

In article <2nkrjr$e...@news.iastate.edu>,

Walter D Morris <wdmo...@iastate.edu> wrote:
>In a recent post Don Lindsay labeled as "flat falsehood" my statement that
>Velikovsky anticipated "countless findings" of modern space probes,
>crediting
>the author of Worlds in Collision with at most one successful prediction.

Apparently you can't read. I said two.

>successfully anticipating the high heat of Venus,
>radio noises emitted by Jupiter, and the existence of a magnetosphere around
>the Earth.

These are your three best?? I notice that someone else has already
trashed them. To recap, the magnetosphere had already been predicted,
calling Venus "hot" is toothless, and he got the radio noise wrong.

>it perchance possible that he knew something which conventional astronomers
>had dismissed or ignored?

Well, to give him credit, he *did* know that you can explain anything
if you only postulate unknown forces which manifested themseves just
once, and then vanished. Conventional astronomers dismiss or ignore
this idea. Possibly because they aren't brain dead.

Oddly, you failed to quote this part of my post:

|And perhaps you'll learn that that's 100% ruled out by solid
|astronomical evidence. If you are as rational and fairminded as you
|proclaim, you will want to know more about this evidence, yes?

Should I conclude that you don't want to know?

DaveHatunen

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Apr 3, 1994, 1:02:59 AM4/3/94
to
In article <1994Apr2.2...@cs.brown.edu>,

Owen M. Hartnett <o...@cs.brown.edu> wrote:

[...]

>My point is that, up until very recently, scientists were maintaining
>that there have been no interactions in our solar system. Velikovsky
>suggested planetary or cometary interactions well in advance of
>todays theories.

I beg your pardon? Which scientists refused to accept such evidence as
craters on the moon or Diablo Crater in Arizona? And weren't the
asteroids of the asteroid belt thought to be a smashed up planet
filling in the apparent gap between Mars and Jupiter? Every time a
bolide is seen there's evidence of such interactions.

>> Velikovski does not go for impacts. He goes for near misses
>>because impacts would be too destructive.
>
>You mean V actually used some logic in his writings, he wasn't a total
>nutcake?

The logic is that impacts would have created evidence that no one could
deny. Since his theory involves events within the last 6000 years or
so, the lack of same would have been very inconvenient to him.

>His theory was that ancient legends and myths could possibly be
>correlated to show evidence that something astronomical could possibly
>be an explanation for these historical observations. I don't doubt that
>his explanations sometimes border on the fanciful, I agree with you there.
>Unlike you, I'm unwilling to throw the baby out with the bath water and
>think that there might be a grain of truth in his work which might bear
>further investigation.

Unfortunately, he showed no actual evidence of such. Instead he invented
such devices as the tail of the comment being composed of edible
hydrocarbons so that the members of the Exodus could have manna falling
from the sky.

Guess what? There's no baby in the bathwater.


>What still amazes me is the high dudgeon people get into over him. It's
>the astronomical version of the "Yo Mama" jokes on "In Living Color."

The vituperation is no worse than for other inanities that have
appeared here. But when it's your ox being gored...


--
********** DAVE HATUNEN (hat...@netcom.com) **********
* Daly City California: *
* where San Francisco meets The Peninsula *
* and the San Andreas Fault meets the Sea *
*******************************************************

DaveHatunen

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Apr 3, 1994, 1:06:40 AM4/3/94
to
In article <2nhvar$1...@outage.efi.com>,
Alan Morgan <al...@gateway.efi.com> wrote:

[...]

>Just because someone's intelligent doesn't mean they can't be
>a nutcase either. V. certainly qualifies as a crackpot along
>with L. Ron Hubbard and Ludwig Plutonium (he of the inadequate
>scansion).

I wouldn't lump Hubbard in the "nutcase" category. He was not only
intelligent about what he intended to do, he executed it with
breathtaking skill. Now, "charlatan"......

Walter D Morris

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Apr 3, 1994, 1:25:04 AM4/3/94
to
>it perchance possible that he knew something which conventional astronomers
>had dismissed or ignored?

Well, to give him credit, he *did* know that you can explain anything
if you only postulate unknown forces which manifested themseves just
once, and then vanished. Conventional astronomers dismiss or ignore
this idea. Possibly because they aren't brain dead.

Oddly, you failed to quote this part of my post:

|And perhaps you'll learn that that's 100% ruled out by solid
|astronomical evidence. If you are as rational and fairminded as you
|proclaim, you will want to know more about this evidence, yes?

Notice here that Mr. Lindsay is careful not to cite any sources for his
outlandish and foolish claims, presumably because he prefers handwaving
and namecalling to a rational discussion of the evidence bearing on the
matter. As I said earlier, it is a matter of record that Velikovsky
anticipated the aforementioned findings together with a host of others.
If Mr. Lindsay can tell us who had anticipated Velikovsky in predicting
the magnetosphere, why calling Venus hot is toothless, and how he got
the radio noises emitted by Jupiter wrong, I'm sure the readers of this
newsgroup, not to mention the editors of Science (where the astronomer
Motz registered the priority of Velikovsky on these matters) would like
to know.
As for the last paragraph of Mr. Lindsay's post, where he claims that the
possibility that Mars once moved upon a different orbit is 100% ruled out
by solid astronomical evidence, I ignored it for the simple reason that it
was irrelevant to the subject matter of my previous post. Besides, that
aspect of a previous post was more related to my own work in this area
rather than Velikovsky's. But if Mr. Lindsay is intent upon pressing
the point, I'll indulge him. Come on, tell us what solid astronomical
evidence absolutely rules out the possibility that the orbit of Mars has
changed in recent times. I'm betting that your evidence on this score
rings as hollow as that with regards to Velikovsky's predictions.


Should I conclude that you don't want to know?
--

Walter D Morris
wdmo...@iastate.edu

R. Day

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Apr 3, 1994, 8:55:41 AM4/3/94
to
DaveHatunen (hat...@netcom.com) wrote:
: In article <2nhvar$1...@outage.efi.com>,
: Alan Morgan <al...@gateway.efi.com> wrote:

: [...]

: >Just because someone's intelligent doesn't mean they can't be
: >a nutcase either. V. certainly qualifies as a crackpot along
: >with L. Ron Hubbard and Ludwig Plutonium (he of the inadequate
: >scansion).

: I wouldn't lump Hubbard in the "nutcase" category. He was not only
: intelligent about what he intended to do, he executed it with
: breathtaking skill. Now, "charlatan"......

There is considerable evidence that, while Hubbard was quite a clever
con man as a younger man, he really did lose it later in life and
was quite mentally ill for many years before he died. Check out the
book "Bare-faced Messiah," by Russell Miller.

R. Day
Vice-chair, Alberta Skeptics

Don Harlow

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Apr 3, 1994, 2:57:57 PM4/3/94
to
ca...@SOL1.GPS.CALTECH.EDU skribis en lastatempa afisxo <2nkun4$8...@gap.cco.caltech.edu>:

>In article <1994Apr2.2...@cs.brown.edu>, o...@cs.brown.edu (Owen M. Hartnett) writes:
>=My point is that, up until very recently, scientists were maintaining
>=that there have been no interactions in our solar system.
>
>Huh? What do you think they considered the explanation of lunar craters? How
>about known meteor craters in, e.g., Arizona? What about Tunguska? Just how
>ignorant *ARE* you?
>
Volcanoes, son, volcanoes. I've heard the lunar craters described as volcanic
in nature even as late as post-July 20, 1969.

On the other hand, the meteor theory of lunar crater formation (and of
Barringer Crater in Arizona, as well) was introduced well before
Velikovsky. "Very recently" in the original posting should apparently be
taken to mean "late 19th or early 20th century."

--
Don Harlow do...@netcom.com
Esperanto League for N.A. el...@netcom.com (800) 828-5944
ftp://ftp.netcom.com/pub/elna/elna.html Esperanto
ftp://ftp.netcom.com/pub/donh/donh.html

Walter D Morris

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Apr 3, 1994, 5:46:54 PM4/3/94
to
In a recent post David Hatunen commented as follows regarding Velikovsky's
discussion of the universal tradition of manna falling from heaven:

Unfortunately, he showed no actual evidence of such. Instead he invented
"such devices as the tail of the comment being composed of edible
hydrocarbons so that the members of the Exodus could have manna falling
from the sky."
In addition to being a poor speller, Mr. Hatunen seems to be an even
worse reader. In fact, Velikovsky made a very reasonable suggestion that
hydrocarbons might under certain circumstances be converted to edible
carbohydrates (by the action of bacteria, for example). This suggestion,
like so many others in Worlds in Collision, drew ridicule from leading
figures of science in 1950. And, like many other suggestions in W.in C.,
Velikovsky's suggestion with regard to hydrocarbons has since been
confi
confirmed by mainstream researchers, who converted hydrocarbons to
edible products by bacterial action (see K. Wong, "The Synthesis of Manna"
in Pensee III, 1973, pp. 45-46).
In the future it would be nice if Mr. Hatunen would think or do some
research before he posts regarding the theories of Dr. Velikovsky.
Nearly everything he has posted recently on the subject has been

Donald Lindsay

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Apr 3, 1994, 7:48:29 PM4/3/94
to

In article <2nndge$3...@news.iastate.edu>,

Walter D Morris <wdmo...@iastate.edu> wrote:
>Nearly everything he has posted recently on the subject has been

Been what? Your posts could be more readable, I'm afraid.

>In fact, Velikovsky made a very reasonable suggestion that
>hydrocarbons might under certain circumstances be converted to edible
>carbohydrates (by the action of bacteria, for example).

Well, no, it isn't reasonable. The scenario here (manna from Venus)
is not in the slightest condusive to bacterial action: we are, after
all, talking about compounds entering the earth's atmosphere and
coming to ground. Bacteria require rather specific conditions under
which to grow and flourish - temperature and oxygenation being among
them. Travel between planets would not provide such conditions.

Alternatively, the bacteria could have been from the Earth. (In
fact, no extraterrestrial bacteria have been detected. All bacteria
ever measured appear to have common descent.) This means that the
hydrocarbon would have to be converted after the droplets came to
land. Why is this not seen today? What would happen if I sprinkled
oil on the desert? Didn't Saddam Hussein do that recently in Kuwait,
with no such result?

Nor are bacteria some kind of magic box, which can work miracles.
No more than a percentage of the hydrocarbons would have turned to
carbohydrates. Doesn't sound edible to me.

You said "bacteria, for example". Care to produce a better example?

Furthermore, in order for the fall to have been enough to feed a
people, we are talking about large quantities. If the fall was from a
comet's tail, then the fall should have occurred worldwide. Ice cores
drilled from the Greenland icecap show no trace whatsoever of a manna
fall. Frozen oil does not rot and would not disappear.

Furthermore, your scenario requires a comet tail which is very dense,
quite unlike the tail of any comet ever observed. Comets have tails
because of the action of sunlight: sunlight is rather too tenuous to
have made a dense cloud into a dense tail. Even in the whacko
universe of it-exploded-out-of-Jupiter-don't-ask-how speculations, I
fail to a scenario where this would be reasonable.

Furthermore, your scenario requires hydrocarbons, despite the
fact that modern-day Venus possesses no such thing.

Furthermore, your scenario requires Venus to have passed very close
to the earth, something which tidal calculations prove could not have
occurred at any time in the last several hundred million years.

Doesn't sound very reasonable to me. In fact, on the evidence, I'd
call it utterly disproven.

Richard A. Schumacher

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Apr 3, 1994, 8:04:11 PM4/3/94
to
Of course, there is the little problem of there being no detectable
hydrocarbons in Venus' atmosphere, and so no raw material for these
miraculous bacteria to convert into "manna". Maybe Velikovsky wrote
"hydrocarbons" but meant "sulfuric acid". A natural error.

And we're still waiting for evidence that Velikovskyism is not a
religion. Even a single example of Velikovsky correcting or
retracting any of his "many mistakes" (Ev Cochrane's phrase) would
be a start. For that matter: can anyone come up with an example of
any follower of Velikovsky admitting that any particular Velikovsky
position is an error? Cochrane talks of these "many mistakes" but
so far has not said which positions he recognizes as mistakes.

John McDonald

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Apr 3, 1994, 8:14:13 PM4/3/94
to
Walter D Morris (wdmo...@iastate.edu) wrote:
: In addition to being a poor speller, Mr. Hatunen seems to be an even

: worse reader. In fact, Velikovsky made a very reasonable suggestion that
: hydrocarbons might under certain circumstances be converted to edible
: carbohydrates (by the action of bacteria, for example). This suggestion,
: like so many others in Worlds in Collision, drew ridicule from leading
: figures of science in 1950. And, like many other suggestions in W.in C.,
: Velikovsky's suggestion with regard to hydrocarbons has since been
: confirmed by mainstream researchers, who converted hydrocarbons to

: edible products by bacterial action (see K. Wong, "The Synthesis of Manna"
: in Pensee III, 1973, pp. 45-46).
: In the future it would be nice if Mr. Hatunen would think or do some
: research before he posts regarding the theories of Dr. Velikovsky.

You are avoiding a key issue here:

Yes, Velikovsky has made some predictions that have been verified by
observation, but can you give me ONE SINGLE reason why i should
subscribe to his explanation when i have a perfectly decent explanation
for ALL of these phenomena, NONE of which appeal to unknown and
transient forces and dynamics? One reason, besides the idea that
Velikovsky would prove the Bible is a historical document.

John

Walter D Morris

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Apr 3, 1994, 10:22:59 PM4/3/94
to

In recent posts Mr. Stark and others have raised the issue of whether
Velikovsky's religion colored the way he approached science. Thus
Stark wrote: "In my opinion, Velikovsky's devout religious
belief pervaded his entire life and all his actions - like the creationists,
he could not even begin to understand what science is about or how it
is done, because his religious beliefs would not allow him to critically
examine his own theories. In his own eyes, his theories were not
falsifiable
under any circumstances, because they were consistent with the Bible.
"
If there were any truth to this statement it might be worth discussing.
Unfortunately, as with most posts having to do with Velikovsky's work,
Mr. Stark has not done his homework. Thus there is no evidence whatsoever
that Velikovsky was a religious man (indeed most estimates are that he was
an agnostic). Velikovsky, like myself, was deeply opposed to fundamentalism
and creationism and tried hard to distance his work from such camps even
though it was obvious that they were drawn to Worlds in Collision. On
more than one occasion Velikovsky reiterated his belief that the Bible
is to be approached as any other historical document; i.e., with a critical
eye. Like Freud and Einstein, whom he knew and had correspondence with,
Velikovsky was very proud of his Jewish heritage but there is no evidence
that religious feeling formed a part of his intellectual make-up.
Would that one of these days we'd get around to discussing the issues
raised by Velikovsky and get off of these stale old arguments about
Velikovsky's supposed fundamentalism and ignorance of general principles

Walter D Morris

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Apr 3, 1994, 11:15:32 PM4/3/94
to

In a recent post Mr. Schumacher writes: "And we're still waiting for

evidence that Velikovskyism is not a
religion. Even a single example of Velikovsky correcting or
retracting any of his "many mistakes" (Ev Cochrane's phrase) would
be a start. For that matter: can anyone come up with an example of
any follower of Velikovsky admitting that any particular Velikovsky
position is an error? Cochrane talks of these "many mistakes" but
so far has not said which positions he recognizes as mistakes."
Having discussed this compulsion of Schumacher's via the need for
Velikovsky to recant his mistakes (when none have been demonstrated
although it is certain that many have been committed, as with any body
of serious research), and having corrected him in private on several
occasions when he brought forward a supposed error (I was trying to
save him the public embarrassment), I find the need to answer him now
that he has mentioned my name in print. For the record: Velikovskyism
is not a religion; I am not a Velikovskian; I subscribe to certain theories
original with Velikovsky (the recent cataclysmic history of Saturn, Venus
and
Mars; the idea that ancient myths encode numerous events associated with
the respective planets; the idea that ancient history is in disarray and
in desperate need of reconstruction; the idea that extraterrestrial
cataclysms have played a prominent role in the history of life on this
planet; etc.); and I have published numerous articles criticizing one or
another aspect of Velikovsky's work. Since Mr. Schumacher asked, I
disagree with Velikovsky's identification of Akhnaton as the historical
prototype of Oedipus; I see no evidence for the view that Mars was
associated with catastrophes as recently as the seventh and sixth
centuries BCE; I see no reason to assume Venus was of recent birth from
Venus (other interpretations of the mythical evidence are more plausible,
such as Venus's dislocation -apparent "birth - from the near vicinity of
one of the gas giants, an idea which finds a great deal of support in
ancient pictographs from both the Old and New World); etc.
From my vantage-point, separating the wheat from the chaff in Velikovsky's
work is part of the scientific process. Schumacher and many others who
have written in to this newsgroup search and search for some little error
in Velikovsky's work as if such would invalidate the whole of Velikovsky's
theory of planetary catastrophism. This if very faulty logic. Just
because Darwin thought heredity proceeded by a process of pangenesis (a
laughable idea, given the hindsight of 100 years), this doesn't mean
that we deny him credit for defending the thesis of biological evolution.
On the contrary, although Darwin committed many monumental blunders, he
still deserves great credit for pointing us in the right direction.
My approach to Velikovsky is similar: I think him wrong on many specific
issues but regard him as right on the fundamental thesis defended in
Worlds in Collision; namely, that great cataclysms have distinguished the
recent history of our solar system. On this last score the evidence is
every day becoming more obvious and is actually much more substantial than
Velikovsky ever imagined.

Richard A. Schumacher

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Apr 4, 1994, 12:34:09 AM4/4/94
to
A splendid start, sir! Now you, or some Velikovskyian, must
reconcile the remainder of these cataclysmic notions with
what the rest of the rest of the world understands of history,
chemistry, astronomy and physics. What forces do you calculate
are responsible for circularizing Venus' orbit? How do you
pulverize the surface of Venus with craters without similarly
pulverizing the surface of Earth? And what about those pesky
hydrocarbons?

Tom Horsley

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Apr 4, 1994, 8:20:26 AM4/4/94
to
You know, I was afraid of this. The last time a Velikovsky thread got started
in sci.astro, it took a a nearby (relatively speaking, that is) supernova
to blow it off the group.

I hope we don't have to wait for the next supernova before this thread dies...
--
=============================================+======================
Tom Horsley email: taho...@csd.harris.com | Could God bake a
Harris snail: 511 Kingbird Circle | fruitcake he couldn't
Computer Systems Delray Beach, FL 33444 | eat?

Boucher David

unread,
Apr 4, 1994, 10:28:41 AM4/4/94