Doug's Darkworld

War, Science, and Philosophy in a Fractured World.

UFOs Over Texas

with 28 comments


I was asked recently why there are so many UFO reports from Texas. While I am sure I could make some great jokes based on that question, there is actually a perfectly reasonable explanation that doesn’t involve the Bush’s Crawford Ranch in any way. Since this is about the only time I can answer a UFO question with assurance, here goes. Texas is a really big state with a lot of people living in in. And Texas has a huge amount of air travel both military and civilian due to its central placement in the USA. Since the majority of UFO sightings are mistaken identifications of normal aircraft, usually blimps, a big state with a large population and lots of air traffic is going to generate a lot of UFO reports.

This question was generated by the spate of UFO sightings over Stephenville, Texas. Dozens of people have reported seeing a huge UFO morphing across the sky, with shining lights and all sort of other details. The description of the object seems to vary considerably from person to person, and unfortunately no one has yet managed to capture the object on film. What are these people seeing? Who knows, scientists long ago got really bored with tracking down witnesses like this and going through the trouble of figuring out what exactly they misidentified as a UFO. Assuming they saw anything at all, even sober headed people are very suggestible at times, and if you are watching the skies looking for something unusual, there’s a good chance you might see something.

The other thing that annoys me with this sort of sighting is all sorts of folks report on the size of the object. We can only judge the size of an object by comparing it to objects we know the size of, that especially goes for objects in the sky. So estimates about how big some unknown object in the sky is aren’t even estimates, they are wild guesses and have no bearing on reality. For God’s sake the planet Venus is the most commonly object misidentified as a UFO, if people mistake a goddamn planet millions of miles away for an object flying through the air…it’s easy to see how ridiculous reports of a “mile long” UFO are. Unless the UFO was flying tandem with a 707 or some such, size estimates are silly.

Until one touches down somewhere I recommend taking UFO stories with a sack of salt. The hucksters and true believers have so muddied the water that this is an area almost devoid of normal scientific enquiry. And, frankly, there’s been nothing to study. If visitors have arrived they haven’t left any proof, even the smallest artifact or pebble from another star system would have unmistakable chemical signatures that would scream extraterrestrial origin. None have shown up yet. And the idea that the government is secretly holding and researching alien technology also doesn’t really hold water. If true, it would be the most remarkable discovery in world history, not to mention being valuable beyond all belief. People have a hard time keeping secrets like that, the idea that dozens or hundreds of scientists could investigate alien technology without the news leaking out is hard to swallow. Or as a wise person once pointed out, if you think the government really is hiding UFOs, call the Air Force and say one landed in your yard. They will tell you to call the police and hang up on you, not rush out to make sure their secret was still safe.

From UFOs we segue neatly into flying rods. What the heck are flying rods? They are mysterious flying creatures darting through the air all over the world that on film look remarkably like a rod with several sets of wings. They have also been called skyfish, and so far attempts to capture them have turned up nought. There’s tons of rod footage available to view, here is a lovely news segment with footage galore. Amazing stuff, eh? If fact, anyone can become a rod researcher. All it takes is a video camera, a location where bugs are flying, a voila, perfect rod videos will soon be your reward. One can even set up nets to try and catch them, however one will be saddened to discover that the flying rods are merely normal moths and flies. The only thing scientists are baffled about is why anyone takes this sort of nonsense seriously. Rods are merely an artifact of how video cameras record images, this non story has gotten far more attention than it deserves.

I wish I had some truly mysterious UFO or UFO related story to relate, but sadly I’ve never heard one. From rods it goes on to such lunacy as cattle mutilation and chemtrails. Frankly people believe so many ridiculous theories for which there is zero empirical evidence says something about the gullibility and general level of logical thinking in the human race. Its no wonder the aliens haven’t contacted us…and certain politicians get re-elected.

(The above image of flying rods are from the footage shot by filmmaker Jose Escamilla in 1994 that brought the whole phenomena to public attention. I am claiming it as Fair Use under US copyright law, it’s central to illustrating the post, it’s not being used for profit, and it in no way interferes with the esteemed Mr Escamillo’s marketing of his images. The object pictured under the flying rods is just what it appears to be, a falling fool.)

Written by unitedcats

January 16, 2008 at 1:13 pm

Posted in Paranormal, Science

28 Responses

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  1. Aliens have never visited this planet and never will. The nearest star system is four and a half light-years away; the center of our own little galaxy is 10,000 light years away.

    That means, if there happened to be a planet with life on it on the (second) NEAREST star in our galaxy–the odds against which are almost inconceivable–but, for the sake of argument, we’ll say OK, there is; they must have a ship which can travel near the speed of light at 186,000 miles per second and be on it for more than four years.

    So you are telling me these visitors have the technology to buld that kind of ship, but can’t hide it from sky-gazing Texans? I doubt it!


    January 16, 2008 at 4:57 pm

  2. Aliens may very well never visit earth, the idea of sending shiploads of people through space isn’t practical for any number of reasons. (And if it is practical for some as yet undiscovered reason, where are the shiploads of sightseeing aliens?) Unmanned probes would however be perfectly feasible, in fact children living today may see the first pictures sent back from nearby stars if they live long enough. No alien probes have been found yet, though since we have no clue what they would look like they may have gone unnoticed.


    January 16, 2008 at 8:36 pm

  3. How are unmanned probes feasable? They would most likely have to travel near the speed of light for tens of thousands if not hundreds if not millions or billions of light years away to reach us!


    January 17, 2008 at 11:33 am

  4. Forty year flight times to nearby stars are feasible with current technology, and then a few years for the pictures to be sent back. It’s not at all unreasonable to think we could build probes that had some chance of functioning for a few centuries. Still, that limits exploration to a sphere of about 40-50 light years across, not exactly exploring the cosmos. Aliens further than that would have a much harder road to hoe, though probes that could last thousands of years are not inconceivable. And they don’t have to travel at the speed of light, what’s the hurry?


    January 17, 2008 at 12:09 pm

  5. 40 years for a man-made object to visit Alpha Centauri? I’ve never heard of this. I looked it up and all I saw was an article from 1999 quoting a physicist saying travel to Alpha Centauri at 20,000 MPH–our fastest rocket technology–would take 137,000 years and is virtually impossible.

    Voyager 1 launched in 1977 is only 14 light-hours away.


    January 17, 2008 at 12:52 pm

  6. Interesting, but better information from NASA.


    January 17, 2008 at 3:11 pm

  7. No benevolent species would land on earth right now because if they did, all our religious factions would use it as a reason to kill each other.

    Blayze Kohime

    January 18, 2008 at 6:17 am

  8. I am not a physicist, but consider that the greatest engineering minds can’t even come up with a viable alternative to the combustible engine to propel our little automobiles right now.

    It sounds like we are still quite a long ways away from interstellar travel.

    That was a great page from NASA though.


    January 18, 2008 at 9:33 am

  9. I bet you guys get all the ladies.

    Not a Geek

    January 20, 2008 at 10:12 pm

  10. Why yes, we do, nerds are in fashion these days. Sorry though, we can’t spare any, you will have to find your own. :P


    January 20, 2008 at 10:26 pm

  11. Ha! Actually my girlfriend is really good-looking.

    I have to say, though, once you start thinking about space, astronomy, physics, I don’t see how you can *not* be interested in them.

    If you aren’t interested in these things, it’s because you haven’t thought about them.

    You’re talking about the nature of reality itself!

    To paraphrase James Van Allen, certainly one of the most exciting aspects of the human experience is the knowledge that we are surrounded by an inifinite universe.

    I recommend starting with “A Brief History of Time.”


    January 21, 2008 at 4:42 pm

  12. Unitedcats wrote:
    (And if it is practical for some as yet undiscovered reason, where are the shiploads of sightseeing aliens?)

    The skies over Texas, apparently.


    January 21, 2008 at 8:16 pm

  13. Nice posting. And, you seem to have much more reasonable people commenting than I did on my posting about the Stephenville UFO. It amazes me how challenging the idea that an Unidentified flying object can be identified as an alien spacecraft without any shred of evidence seems to generate attacks from people who really want to believe that aliens are visiting us.


    January 23, 2008 at 9:40 am

  14. It is all about nuclear weapons and the plans to use them.

    Texas with a large amount of military activity is also producing a large amount of ET activity.

    The ET could be “Marking” something for us to look at and consider.

    Can you say “Nuclear war fighting elite?”

    Repeat this a few times: “The LIVING DEAD.”

    Patrick Sullivan

    April 6, 2008 at 8:38 pm

  15. Great work sir
    first i would ask you weather you ever sighted this funny little craft
    second i stand with every opinion as read the above comment i feel that we are mistaken some where because we never know the birth of the star immidiatly but takes round about 5 million years
    in same way why dont this funny craft get into our solar system through teleportion?
    third sir you have mention only about the sighting near the texas what about around the eastern countries ???? i alwys wonder why only your states sight such abnormal things .
    THANK YOU………..


    October 7, 2008 at 7:19 am

  16. good work sir
    would you answer my qustion????????????//


    October 7, 2008 at 7:22 am

  17. I suppose I can do a post on teleportation and UFO sightings in Eastern Europe, it would be a nice break from the economy collapsing. :)


    October 7, 2008 at 7:34 am

  18. Aliens CAN and DO Travel FASTER then the SPEED of Light, MUCH MUCH Faster, they can even TELEPORT and go through WORMHOLES, and all other such wonder things, that we have no clue about it with out PEA SIZE BRAINZ. PWND!


    October 26, 2008 at 11:36 pm

  19. Rods are now getting to be more commonly videoed on youtube with infrared videos. How can they be insects if many of the videos were shot in the dead of winter?


    February 22, 2009 at 8:52 am

  20. Depends on what the ambient temperature was. Some insects can fly at temperatures just above freezing. Do you have any links? And even if videos show flying rods at sub-freezing temps, insects capable of sub-freezing flight are a more likely explanation than hypothetical … what? Interesting if true though, and a nice illustration of how paranormal research and conventional research can overlap. I hope these IR films are investigated properly.


    February 24, 2009 at 10:14 pm

  21. How arrogant and unintellect those comments opposing with this postings…whether most of you are mis and dis info agents to suppress knowledges in order to sheeple humanity to your level. Hubble alone had taken billions of galaxy in one sector of its view, and it seems the universe is seen as infinite. Far too many possibilities to equate the ratio of more develop civilization than us, all you have is text book knowledge, far too many phenomena in physics alone is occuring and defying the law of physics in your text book.


    December 13, 2009 at 8:34 pm

  22. Actually, I discuss the possibility of aliens in a subsequent post:

    Billions of galaxies means nothing if the odds against something are enormous, and there’s no reason to believe that humans (intelligent self-aware tool using life) are an unlikely accident that may very well have only occurred once. -Doug


    December 13, 2009 at 8:46 pm

  23. Oh really once??? as much as anything you are trying to dismiss without evidence to a fact that all other things are not possible besides the things we are thought, can you confirm anything other than but skeptic reality….


    December 13, 2009 at 11:00 pm

  24. Well, the person making the claim that UFOs are extraterrestrial visitors has the burden of proof, and aside from some interesting anecdotal evidence, there hasn’t been a whole lot of empirical evidence. And I’m not trying to dismiss the topic, I’m a big advocate of SETI, it can’t hurt to look. I’m just saying that the “there are so many stars, there have to be others” is a weak argument. — Doug


    December 14, 2009 at 12:42 am

  25. Weaker still is to contort the facts in this case the universe and our technology. To which end have we reached with our conventional technology to another planet?
    The old catch-22
    Proving a conspiracy when you’re barred from the truths arguably is a proof of conspiracy but since you can’t confirm the facts it is all but a theory.
    In the same token, for example the military applies serious scientific investigation to an event or cases of situations. Everything they get in evidence is being filtered through eliminations of national security threats, public relations concern and then the control agenda of powers that be (military complex, political oversight, etch).
    But still there are official conclusions within their own need to know basis of information within the protocol of privy of information are numerous cases after shifting in their volume of cases resulting in a ratio of 10% out of 100%, are far inconclusive when weighing evidence and outcome that defy any kind of explanations.
    In evidence of a cover-up or of a foul-up it still warrants a sufficient investigation.


    December 14, 2009 at 8:56 pm

  26. TANG_iNA nio

    grace nepomomoceno

    May 10, 2010 at 10:57 pm

  27. i think flying rods is just an insect that not discover Yet!

    grace nepomomoceno

    May 10, 2010 at 10:58 pm

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