Debunking Flat Earth

 
Chaz
 
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Chaz
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07 April 2018 00:18
 

I got stuck in this rabbit hole on YouTube, and I have to get it out of my head, and I have to share it to do that. A lot of people don’t need to hear these things but some obviously do. I’ll be direct and maybe a short word for each question I answer.

First one is about the oceans. They point out the fact that water always finds it’s level, and that it can’t form to the outside of an object. If you haven’t noticed, most of the arguments are about gravity. The reason the water in the oceans can curve with the earth, is because the water never settles to find it’s level. Yeah, the lack of common sense has gotten that bad. Flowing water is never level.

Second one has to be about the map. They say it’s like a view of a globe from the north pole, but flat. Antarctica is going around the outside as a wall. This is held up by the claim of plains/jets not having to put their nose down for the curvature of the earth. This is overly frustrating, because the logic is there, just applied wrong. The pilots would need to keep turning to the left/right if it was flat. Gravity wins again.

Third one has to be about the ship in the distance. Why can you use a telescope to see a ship that’s disappeared in the distance? For the same reason a laser doesn’t leave the planet, when it’s not pointed at space. Light is subject to gravity. That’s how they proved the theory of relativity, by watching the light from stars bend around the sun during an eclipse.

Alright that’s 3 arguments defeated by gravity and common sense. If I didn’t debunk this for you feel free to say so.

 
Nhoj Morley
 
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Nhoj Morley
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07 April 2018 06:44
 

I am baffled by why you would choose to park this in the science department. As science or critical thinking, it is not interesting enough to shred.

If your intention is to amuse, we have The Forum Funway for all sorts of amusing stuff.

If you think you can convince us of this explanation, you can start in The Hall of Holy Grails where you are welcome to try.

How may I re-direct you?

 
 
Chaz
 
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07 April 2018 09:12
 

Holy Grail by those options. I assumed that because the flat earth idea was a result of a lack in understanding science, and a lack of critical thinking, that this was appropriate, but I beg forgiveness for my ignorance.

 
SkepticX
 
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SkepticX
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07 April 2018 09:23
 
Chaz - 07 April 2018 12:18 AM

I got stuck in this rabbit hole on YouTube, and I have to get it out of my head, and I have to share it to do that. A lot of people don’t need to hear these things but some obviously do. I’ll be direct and maybe a short word for each question I answer.


I think that sums up the merit of the OP. Sure, it’s limited, but it’s not like page space on the Sam Harris Forum is worth it’s measure in gold or something. By all means, I’d say you’re more than welcome to post in order to get something “out there” and maybe clear whatever hold it’s got on your mind—like purging a Tom Jones ear worm.

All I think is warranted or needed in order to address the flat earth concept is that none of the arguments in favor of it ever actually make it out of the gate to get into the race. IOW it’s not even wrong—doesn’t ever form even a single argument that survives even slight scrutiny. You have to rather invested in believing it and have a pretty impressive ability to compartmentalize in order to really succeed. It’s a belief firmly grounded in denial. As you’ve clearly noticed, it’s fundamentally about denying gravity and trying very hard to “misunderstand” it in a way that sounds good enough to those sufficiently invested in the same “misunderstanding” for whatever reason.

I think that pretty much sums it up the flat earth arguments that come closest to resembling something that could be mistaken for substance. So it’s a case of; they clearly didn’t reason themselves into believing the flat earth concept, so it’s not likely at all that anyone’s going to divest them of if through reason either. That’s not what their belief is about. You have to understand the investment—the psychology and sociology that’s corrupting their thinking. That’s both a group and an individual thing.

I looked into the Flat Earth Society back in the mid ‘90s when I happened to live fairly near their HQ (Lancaster, CA) and was a rookie apostate of Christianity. I think either Skeptic Mag or Skeptical Inquirer covered them when I was subscribing to both. I personally find them somewhat interesting in terms of psychology and sociology—the psychology and sociology of belief.

 
 
Chaz
 
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Chaz
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07 April 2018 10:12
 
SkepticX - 07 April 2018 09:23 AM
Chaz - 07 April 2018 12:18 AM

I got stuck in this rabbit hole on YouTube, and I have to get it out of my head, and I have to share it to do that. A lot of people don’t need to hear these things but some obviously do. I’ll be direct and maybe a short word for each question I answer.


I think that sums up the merit of the OP. Sure, it’s limited, but it’s not like page space on the Sam Harris Forum is worth it’s measure in gold or something. By all means, I’d say you’re more than welcome to post in order to get something “out there” and maybe clear whatever hold it’s got on your mind—like purging a Tom Jones ear worm.

All I think is warranted or needed in order to address the flat earth concept is that none of the arguments in favor of it ever actually make it out of the gate to get into the race. IOW it’s not even wrong—doesn’t ever form even a single argument that survives even slight scrutiny. You have to rather invested in believing it and have a pretty impressive ability to compartmentalize in order to really succeed. It’s a belief firmly grounded in denial. As you’ve clearly noticed, it’s fundamentally about denying gravity and trying very hard to “misunderstand” it in a way that sounds good enough to those sufficiently invested in the same “misunderstanding” for whatever reason.

I think that pretty much sums it up the flat earth arguments that come closest to resembling something that could be mistaken for substance. So it’s a case of; they clearly didn’t reason themselves into believing the flat earth concept, so it’s not likely at all that anyone’s going to divest them of if through reason either. That’s not what their belief is about. You have to understand the investment—the psychology and sociology that’s corrupting their thinking. That’s both a group and an individual thing.

I looked into the Flat Earth Society back in the mid ‘90s when I happened to live fairly near their HQ (Lancaster, CA) and was a rookie apostate of Christianity. I think either Skeptic Mag or Skeptical Inquirer covered them when I was subscribing to both. I personally find them somewhat interesting in terms of psychology and sociology—the psychology and sociology of belief.

I absolutely agree, and thank you for pointing out my summary was sufficient. I think the main reason it bothered me was all the videos of people who said they were wrong and convinced of it by the questions they couldn’t answer. I’m not talking about children, I mean full grown adults that were bald or going grey. This forum is worth more than gold to me because some people might be rude at times but they’re still somewhat reasonable. The rudeness is just an emotional response from the subject, which is the main reason I say being offended isn’t a valid complaint. It happens to everyone and the list of reasons include everything.

[ Edited: 07 April 2018 10:16 by Chaz]
 
unsmoked
 
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unsmoked
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07 April 2018 11:17
 
Chaz - 07 April 2018 10:12 AM
SkepticX - 07 April 2018 09:23 AM
Chaz - 07 April 2018 12:18 AM

I got stuck in this rabbit hole on YouTube, and I have to get it out of my head, and I have to share it to do that. A lot of people don’t need to hear these things but some obviously do. I’ll be direct and maybe a short word for each question I answer.


I think that sums up the merit of the OP. Sure, it’s limited, but it’s not like page space on the Sam Harris Forum is worth it’s measure in gold or something. By all means, I’d say you’re more than welcome to post in order to get something “out there” and maybe clear whatever hold it’s got on your mind—like purging a Tom Jones ear worm.

All I think is warranted or needed in order to address the flat earth concept is that none of the arguments in favor of it ever actually make it out of the gate to get into the race. IOW it’s not even wrong—doesn’t ever form even a single argument that survives even slight scrutiny. You have to rather invested in believing it and have a pretty impressive ability to compartmentalize in order to really succeed. It’s a belief firmly grounded in denial. As you’ve clearly noticed, it’s fundamentally about denying gravity and trying very hard to “misunderstand” it in a way that sounds good enough to those sufficiently invested in the same “misunderstanding” for whatever reason.

I think that pretty much sums it up the flat earth arguments that come closest to resembling something that could be mistaken for substance. So it’s a case of; they clearly didn’t reason themselves into believing the flat earth concept, so it’s not likely at all that anyone’s going to divest them of if through reason either. That’s not what their belief is about. You have to understand the investment—the psychology and sociology that’s corrupting their thinking. That’s both a group and an individual thing.

I looked into the Flat Earth Society back in the mid ‘90s when I happened to live fairly near their HQ (Lancaster, CA) and was a rookie apostate of Christianity. I think either Skeptic Mag or Skeptical Inquirer covered them when I was subscribing to both. I personally find them somewhat interesting in terms of psychology and sociology—the psychology and sociology of belief.

I absolutely agree, and thank you for pointing out my summary was sufficient. I think the main reason it bothered me was all the videos of people who said they were wrong and convinced of it by the questions they couldn’t answer. I’m not talking about children, I mean full grown adults that were bald or going grey. This forum is worth more than gold to me because some people might be rude at times but they’re still somewhat reasonable. The rudeness is just an emotional response from the subject, which is the main reason I say being offended isn’t a valid complaint. It happens to everyone and the list of reasons include everything.

Chaz, if you haven’t already, check out the book, FANTASYLAND - How America Went Haywire - A 500-Year History by Kurt Anderson.  You can read reviews here -  https://www.amazon.com/Fantasyland-America-Haywire-500-Year-History/dp/1400067219

What is truly weird is that today millions of people, possibly a majority of Americans, believe things that are even more preposterous than believing that the earth is flat. 

preposterous  adj  :  contrary to nature, reason, or common sense :  ABSURD -  (Webster)

 
 
Chaz
 
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Chaz
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07 April 2018 13:17
 
unsmoked - 07 April 2018 11:17 AM

What is truly weird is that today millions of people, possibly a majority of Americans, believe things that are even more preposterous than believing that the earth is flat. 

preposterous  adj  :  contrary to nature, reason, or common sense :  ABSURD -  (Webster)

I have had the urge recently to find those things and sort them out. Becoming a father and trying to figure out how to teach my kids has had a profound effect. I know that I don’t want to teach them what to think, rather than how to think. This is unpleasant for me, as I’m forced to take a position of caring about things that I simply don’t care about, because I have to have an answer I find acceptable, to questions that may never arise. It’s a genuine fear of mine that my kids can be taken advantage of because I didn’t teach them the proper way to question everything. That fear alone has me running from socialism screaming from the realization that in order for my kids to be able to live like kings their neighbors have to be able to, and their neighbors need to be viewed as examples of good or bad ways to live instead of perpetrators of sins inherited from their fathers.

 
EN
 
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EN
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07 April 2018 18:58
 

Are we sure anyone actually believes in a flat earth?  Isn’t it all a joke/parody?

 
Jan_CAN
 
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Jan_CAN
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07 April 2018 19:09
 
EN - 07 April 2018 06:58 PM

Are we sure anyone actually believes in a flat earth?  Isn’t it all a joke/parody?

That’s what I thought too!  I assumed that it was a sort of ‘straight joke’, to show how an argument can be made for even the silliest idea.

 

 
 
Skipshot
 
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Skipshot
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07 April 2018 21:59
 
Jan_CAN - 07 April 2018 07:09 PM
EN - 07 April 2018 06:58 PM

Are we sure anyone actually believes in a flat earth?  Isn’t it all a joke/parody?

That’s what I thought too!  I assumed that it was a sort of ‘straight joke’, to show how an argument can be made for even the silliest idea.

 

People actually believe in Big Foot, ghosts, and the Earth is 6,000 years old.  I’ll bet if we push the Butt Fairy enough that someone will come along and really believe it.  I’ll bet that you may say anything you would like and as long as you present yourself well and speak with fortitude and conviction that you will be able to start a new cult.  Scientology?  Mormons?  President(?) Trump?

 
proximacentauri
 
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proximacentauri
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08 April 2018 05:07
 

One would hope that these people must be brain damaged. But flat earthers abound in many more realms than just a flat earth belief. That it’s still so easy in the 21st century for people to convince themselves of nonsensical beliefs doesn’t bode well for the future of the human race.

 
unsmoked
 
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08 April 2018 12:13
 
EN - 07 April 2018 06:58 PM

Are we sure anyone actually believes in a flat earth?  Isn’t it all a joke/parody?

https://www.livescience.com/24310-flat-earth-belief.html

quote: “The belief that the Earth is flat has been described as the ultimate conspiracy theory. According to the Flat Earth Society’s leadership, its ranks have grown by 200 people (mostly Americans and Britons) per year since 2009. Judging by the exhaustive effort flat-earthers have invested in fleshing out the theory on their website, as well as the staunch defenses of their views they offer in media interviews and on Twitter, it would seem that these people genuinely believe the Earth is flat.”

https://www.amazon.com/Fantasyland-America-Haywire-500-Year-History/dp/1400067219

quote:  “NEW YORK TIMES BESTSELLER • “The single most important explanation, and the fullest explanation, of how Donald Trump became president of the United States . . . nothing less than the most important book that I have read this year.”—Lawrence O’Donnell

How did we get here?

In this sweeping, eloquent history of America, Kurt Andersen shows that what’s happening in our country today—this post-factual, “fake news” moment we’re all living through—is not something new, but rather the ultimate expression of our national character. America was founded by wishful dreamers, magical thinkers, and true believers, by hucksters and their suckers. Fantasy is deeply embedded in our DNA.

Over the course of five centuries—from the Salem witch trials to Scientology to the Satanic Panic of the 1980s, from P. T. Barnum to Hollywood and the anything-goes, wild-and-crazy sixties, from conspiracy theories to our fetish for guns and obsession with extraterrestrials—our love of the fantastic has made America exceptional in a way that we’ve never fully acknowledged. From the start, our ultra-individualism was attached to epic dreams and epic fantasies—every citizen was free to believe absolutely anything, or to pretend to be absolutely anybody. With the gleeful erudition and tell-it-like-it-is ferocity of a Christopher Hitchens, Andersen explores whether the great American experiment in liberty has gone off the rails.

Fantasyland could not appear at a more perfect moment. If you want to understand Donald Trump and the culture of twenty-first-century America, if you want to know how the lines between reality and illusion have become dangerously blurred, you must read this book.”

 

 
 
SkepticX
 
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09 April 2018 06:06
 
proximacentauri - 08 April 2018 05:07 AM

One would hope that these people must be brain damaged. But flat earthers abound in many more realms than just a flat earth belief. That it’s still so easy in the 21st century for people to convince themselves of nonsensical beliefs doesn’t bode well for the future of the human race.


What we all need to understand is that their brains are damaged in the same exact way all human brains are, they’re at most just in a deeper and probably more proactive state of denial than most. Until we can embrace this fact we’re enabling some degree of the exact same kinds of problems.

 
 
Chaz
 
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09 April 2018 10:26
 
unsmoked - 07 April 2018 11:17 AM

Chaz, if you haven’t already, check out the book, FANTASYLAND - How America Went Haywire - A 500-Year History by Kurt Anderson.  You can read reviews here -  https://www.amazon.com/Fantasyland-America-Haywire-500-Year-History/dp/1400067219

What is truly weird is that today millions of people, possibly a majority of Americans, believe things that are even more preposterous than believing that the earth is flat. 

preposterous  adj  :  contrary to nature, reason, or common sense :  ABSURD -  (Webster)

I wanted to read some of that Fantasyland before saying anything, and honestly I want to thank you for the recommendation. Sincerely.

 
Chaz
 
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09 April 2018 10:31
 
EN - 07 April 2018 06:58 PM

Are we sure anyone actually believes in a flat earth?  Isn’t it all a joke/parody?

I am genuinely convinced that Eddie Bravo’s belief in the flat earth is real and it’s because he can’t find anyone that can actually answer the questions I did in the op and I think that’s a result of people who don’t take it seriously, like yourself, and people who do take it seriously don’t understand how gravity works.

 
SkepticX
 
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09 April 2018 13:37
 
Chaz - 09 April 2018 10:31 AM
EN - 07 April 2018 06:58 PM

Are we sure anyone actually believes in a flat earth?  Isn’t it all a joke/parody?

I am genuinely convinced that Eddie Bravo’s belief in the flat earth is real and it’s because he can’t find anyone that can actually answer the questions I did in the op and I think that’s a result of people who don’t take it seriously, like yourself, and people who do take it seriously don’t understand how gravity works.


I agree the beliefs of at least some/probably most flat earthers are real (i.e. sincere), but it most certainly not because they can’t fond anyone who can actually answer their questions. The answers to their questions (“questions”) are easily answered, as you demonstrated,, and if they were sincere in their questioning of their beliefs they would be proactively interested in the actual answers rather than in avoiding and dodging them. They’re proactively “misunderstanding” gravity, or at the very kindest, they’re being intellectually negligent about it. That’s why it’s about psychology and sociology rather than reason and evidence.