Blink and you missed it. NASA uploaded a 300+ book to the intertubes by the SETI Institute’s Douglas Vakoch. Mainstream bloggers latched like a pit bull on the following passage.
We can say little, if anything, about what these patterns signify, why they were cut into rocks, or who created them. For all intents and purposes, they might have been made by aliens.
William Edmondson, late of the University of Birmingham, authored that gem, and now he’s being painted as the second coming of Giorgio Tsoukalos.
Take the full text in context:
Consider again, therefore, the desirability of establishing symbolic/linguistic communication with ETI. It is helpful to review some parallels from human existence that pose problems for us today. One of these is “rock art,” which consists of patterns or shapes cut into rock many thousands of years ago. Such ancient stone carvings can be found in many countries, and the example in Figure 15.1 is from Doddington Moore, Northumbria, England. We can say little, if anything, about what these patterns signify, why they were cut into rocks or who created them. For all intents and purposes, they might have been made by aliens. Unless we find a readable exegesis of them produced at the same time they were made, we will never be able to say with certainty what the patterns mean.
The line ending in ‘aliens’ from the original manuscript is noted, “One need only think of books by Immanuel Velikovsky or Erich von Däniken to see where that line of thinking can end up.”
Don’t believe me? Read the book for yourself, rather than having someone read it and formulate opinions for you.
There’s absolutely nothing wrong with von Däniken, Velikovsky, nor their theories. Cynical skeptics are so swift to bite anything approaching their hivemind’s definition of ‘woo’, rather than engaging the other side in reasonable debate. How else can debunkers celebrate their euphoria, except by arguing facts, rather than opinions?
Now if you’ll excuse me, I need to reacquaint myself with SETI. In the meantime, what’s your take? Send your message to us between the 18 and 21 centimeter bands, or shoot your mouth off on our Facebook page, at Twitter, or in the comments below.