We're on earth, but where is that?

Retro

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It's obvious we're standing on a flat surface and know which way up and down is, right? However, it's not quite so clear cut when looked at in absolute terms in the universe. Even the earth isn't flat, but a sphere, despite the deception when looking at flat ground and things that aren't too far away.

This cutely and beautifully animated video from Kurzgesagt explains it all without hurting your brain too much.

This is something that's conveniently never addressed by time travel sci-fi, since travelling in time will also mean travelling in space due to our motion through it, so you'd always end up in space and, well, die.

Nerd level: moderate.

 

Tiffany

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Funny, I just thought about this the other day, as I was dreaming of a vacation somewhere, anywhere 🙃 and realized that if I went to South America, like Argentina, I would be seriously horizontal, but because of gravity and perspective I wouldn't realize that. Kind of that way anyway in Texas, though..lol!😆
 

Retro

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I like the fact that if we could look through the earth at each other via a telescope, we'd be at a sharp angle to each other. That would really bring home the understanding of the earth's curvature!
 

Retro

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Oh no, flat earth... you should see those buggers on Facebook. Totally mental as the evidence for a sphere is abundant. It's basically a conspiracy theory.
 

Arantor

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That's what's actually interesting about the Flat Earther folks - I know a couple - and they're not *really* Flat Earth people in the way you'd think. It's actually almost more of a label of 'rejecting absolute truthism' and presenting a much more skeptical-by-default view.

The Flat Earth people I've spoken to are less 'the world is flat' and more 'I need more evidence than being told the world is round', which on some level I can actually sympathise with because it's a level of critical thinking being asked for. They want evidence but they're not clear on what the evidence would be, which is where the wheels rather come off it all, unfortunately.
 

Tiffany

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Now that you've explained the flat earther's premise, I rather get that too. I've become annoyingly inquisitive the older I get. It's just not good enough to be told, that's it- that's the way it is, I want to know why "that's it". :geek:
 

Arantor

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There's not even a problem on some level with 'I need more than just being told', but the problem is it very often veers into needing a burden of proof that is unsatisfiable.

The conspiracy theorists work in a lot of the same ways but further down the rabbit hole; if anything their problem is either a surplus of evidence some of which is contradictory, or they fixate on a subset of the evidence to 'prove their conclusion' and choose to ignore the rest of the evidence as unsatisfiably biased.

Take, for example, the moon landing folks. They believe that we have not been to the Moon, that it was filmed on a sound stage, and/or underwater, and they often cite the special effects as demonstrated in 2001: A Space Odyssey as 'proof', as well as fixating on details about the pictures taken by the astronauts such as the + symbols on the film, or calculating trajectories of things to 'prove' the photos must have been edited, movement of the flags, etc. I'm sure you've heard a lot of it before.

And the reason this is relevant is because it ignores the basic evidence of humanity around it and relies on that cherry-picking to make the whole thing work. I put forward the following:

1. It's 1969. Height of the cold war. The Russians will be listening. For such a conspiracy to successfully be pulled off, the Russians must agree, in perpetuity, to lie about their hated opponents beating them to the Moon. For the sake of peace in the 1960s this *might* even have flown, but here we are 50+ years on with governments who have absolutely no reason to maintain the lie for the sake of their enemy.

2. It's been 50+ years and *not a single person at NASA* has admitted to anything? No whistleblowers? No tell-all folks? You might have kept the relatively short number of press outlets muzzled for that time but not a single employee, contractor, family member, pillow-talk companion? Not one? In fifty years? Seriously? That's up there with the man on the grassy knoll levels of everyone toeing the line, and it doesn't really wash.

3. If it were faked, why haven't we faked it since the Apollo 17 days? It would be cheap to put one out every couple of years, keep that big budget flowing in. Could it be that going to the Moon is prohibitively expensive and that having beaten the Russians, there's not *really* much reason to go back any more?


And that's ultimately it: once you start applying a bit of logic to these things, the level of disbelief required to sustain the disconnect becomes too high for many people and they'll grudgingly come around. Just gotta be willing to find a burden of proof that is acceptable and achievable.
 

Tiffany

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"Liking" your above post doesn't do it justice. You are very wise @Arantor

Your range of knowledge on so many topics is also amazing! I love to learn, thank you for taking the time to share your knowledge with us on NZ!
 

Retro

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@Arantor Yup, I agree with all that, well articulated. :cool: I'll just add my tuppence worth.

The conspiracy theorists don't really want evidence that contradicts their world view on whatever it is they believe in and they'll fight tooth and nail to maintain that belief, including exhibiting lots of confirmation bias, ignoring hard evidence to the contrary and outright fraud to maintain that lie.

And that's ultimately it: once you start applying a bit of logic to these things, the level of disbelief required to sustain the disconnect becomes too high for many people and they'll grudgingly come around. Just gotta be willing to find a burden of proof that is acceptable and achievable.

When you get the really hardcore ones that won't budge no matter what, one wonders what's going on in their minds. These are the kinds of people who could potentially go on a gun rampage like we've been seeing.

Another tell is that when these websites have the word "truth" in their names, you just know it's gonna be conspiracy BS and lies all the way. Heck, just look at Trump's Truth Social network... glad it's failing hard. That man is really dangerous.

Those moon landing deniers you talk about are a great example of conspiracy theorists masquerading as skeptics. It's clearly absurd to think that we didn't go to the moon, yet they still believe it. It's just an article of faith with them. One of the hardest evidences (is that a real word??) are the retroreflector mirrors left on the moon in 1969 that have been used to do laser ranging of its distance from earth ever since, yet, that's nothing for them. This is how we know that the moon is spiralling away from us and to such a high accuracy, 3.8cm per year. Over an average distance of 238855 miles as per NASA, that's unbelievable accuracy.

Also, some conspiracy theorists are just outright fraudsters, usually the ones with big followings who manipulate the gullible and perpetuate the conspiracy myth, whatever it might be, for their own ends. They also know the truth, like Alex Jones, but perpetuate the lie because it makes them money. Very cynical and "clever" in all the wrong ways of them. No wonder he's been shut down in various places now.


 

Tiffany

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@Arantor Yup, I agree with all that, well articulated. :cool: I'll just add my tuppence worth.

The conspiracy theorists don't really want evidence that contradicts their world view on whatever it is they believe in and they'll fight tooth and nail to maintain that belief, including exhibiting lots of confirmation bias, ignoring hard evidence to the contrary and outright fraud to maintain that lie.



When you get the really hardcore ones that won't budge no matter what, one wonders what's going on in their minds. These are the kinds of people who could potentially go on a gun rampage like we've been seeing.

Another tell is that when these websites have the word "truth" in their names, you just know it's gonna be conspiracy BS and lies all the way. Heck, just look at Trump's Truth Social network... glad it's failing hard. That man is really dangerous.

Those moon landing deniers you talk about are a great example of conspiracy theorists masquerading as skeptics. It's clearly absurd to think that we didn't go to the moon, yet they still believe it. It's just an article of faith with them. One of the hardest evidences (is that a real word??) are the retroreflector mirrors left on the moon in 1969 that have been used to do laser ranging of its distance from earth ever since, yet, that's nothing for them. This is how we know that the moon is spiralling away from us and to such a high accuracy, 3.8cm per year. Over an average distance of 238855 miles as per NASA, that's unbelievable accuracy.

Also, some conspiracy theorists are just outright fraudsters, usually the ones with big followings who manipulate the gullible and perpetuate the conspiracy myth, whatever it might be, for their own ends. They also know the truth, like Alex Jones, but perpetuate the lie because it makes them money. Very cynical and "clever" in all the wrong ways of them. No wonder he's been shut down in various places now.



@Retro I don't think I ever considered that the moon landing could be a conspiracy ever and to think there are "deniers" out there that truly believe that man never landed on the moon is just a foreign notion to me. I've highlighted your quote below because I thought that was fascinating detail and especially specific data as proof we landed on the moon. How can one deny it? *Thanks for adding that info, enlightening.

@Retro ......retroreflector mirrors left on the moon in 1969 that have been used to do laser ranging of its distance from earth ever since, yet, that's nothing for them.

On Trump, a website created on hate for hate, can only fall hard. Good riddance; may it disappear sooner then later. I've never even looked at it and have zero interest. The premise of the platform is to foment hate and to set the "truth" straight on the "lies". Well, sorry, when anything that is said in the news T-Social claims is false, well then where does the "truth" really lie? The truth is only convenient when it's their truth? Here's the funny part too, as their banning users for discussions about the hearings:
Trump’s Truth Social Is Banning Users Who Post About Jan. 6 Hearings, According to Reports

The Yiddish word for gimmick is "shtick". I've found that far too many people with bad intentions create their "schtick" like Alex Jones and to the determent of all, drive it in, and create a following of people that fall hard for their dogma, and that creates really unstable people. The US has too many unstable people that are just in the wait for the right time to initiate more violence and harm innocent people.
 
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