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Ear to the Ground

Why Stephen Hawking Is Worried About Aliens

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Posted on Apr 25, 2010

The famed physicist is certain that there is alien life, but he’s not convinced we would get Alf: “If aliens ever visit us, I think the outcome would be much as when Christopher Columbus first landed in America, which didn’t turn out very well for the Native Americans.”

Well, that puts our attempts to say hello to our celestial neighbors in a different light.

The Times via Gizmodo:

He suggests that aliens might simply raid Earth for its resources and then move on: “We only have to look at ourselves to see how intelligent life might develop into something we wouldn’t want to meet. I imagine they might exist in massive ships, having used up all the resources from their home planet. Such advanced aliens would perhaps become nomads, looking to conquer and colonise whatever planets they can reach.”

He concludes that trying to make contact with alien races is “a little too risky.” He said: “If aliens ever visit us, I think the outcome would be much as when Christopher Columbus first landed in America, which didn’t turn out very well for the Native Americans.”

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johnnyfarout's avatar

By johnnyfarout, April 28, 2010 at 10:51 pm Link to this comment

@RenZo… http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=pEeUEntf3g0&feature=related
Those be the words on me mother’s dyin’ lips
so help me god
so i kept’em sacred like
now ye’ know so god help yer’ cathoilic ass if it be so but if it be pagan or protestant…then be the witches fo rye’ the witches…ehehah

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By Inherit The Wind, April 27, 2010 at 8:11 pm Link to this comment

]teadrinker, April 27 at 3:45 am #

I, like others, am surprised about Hawkings statement. Maybe the spooks got to him. It is a gazillion dollar comment, coming from a highly intelligent man. It’s good spin for the State of Fear scenario, and feeds an ever-hungry-for- funding, NSA/CIA, Pentagon, and Military. I would be surprised if Hawking hadn’t read about the two basic mindsets of legitimate UFO investigation. One includes a large scale abduction (Bud Hopkins) scheme all over the world, happening mostly behind the scenes. The other side envisions benevolent or possibly neutral contact ‘some day’.
  I believe aliens exist because I saw a UFO but don’t believe me. This documented testimony is the best evidence of alien presence and knowledge of their technology, so go here: 2001 Disclosure Project video:  http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=7vyVe-6YdUk

Twenty ex high ranking officials, including air traffic controllers, ex secret op. officers, commercial pilots and numerous military defense specialists testify to alien presence and technology and our governments knowledge of it.
************************************************

Me too! I actually SAW Mr. Smith and Mr. Jones fighting real, live aliens! Twice!  (and they won both times!)

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RenZo's avatar

By RenZo, April 27, 2010 at 7:09 pm Link to this comment

@ johnnyfarout
You might be right, (someone) might be crazy
But it just may be a lunatic you’re looking for
(Billy Joel)
PS Who gave you that name?

@ Dystopia Resident
If we were to compare your IQ to Prof Hawking’s IQ, which one would be higher? By how many digits?
Wait…..you’re kidding.
And he’s a fucking dumbass???????
You’re funny, dooooood!
Real funny.

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johnnyfarout's avatar

By johnnyfarout, April 27, 2010 at 6:36 pm Link to this comment

...somebody crazy here!?...

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RenZo's avatar

By RenZo, April 27, 2010 at 6:18 pm Link to this comment

As another has recommended before me, you owe it to yourself to listen to the whole video of a public press conference. The witnesses who spoke are numerous, professional, qualified, and believable. This amount of high quality expert testimony would prove the existence of UFO’s and aliens on Earth in a court of law (even in the US’s political judicial system). 
This is amazing.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=7vyVe-6YdUk

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By don knutsen, April 27, 2010 at 11:04 am Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

We learn absolutely nothing from Hawking’s views on aliens. Of course they exist in varying compositions. The numbers alone, as he states, precludes anything else. He is right to say they may not be manevolent. But they may also be of a higher intellect that has moved beyond the things that drive how we have behaved in earth’s history of colonization. I do know one thing, we humans appear incapable of solving the world’s problems. And if we don’t grab a clue pretty soon, the fate of this planet will become obvious. We will have poisoned ourselves out of existence and rendered the planet a toxic dump that aliens will no doubt avoid wondering how any race could be so stupid as to purposely commit suicide. The biggest obstruction as I see it to us charting a better path for our future on this shrinking planet of ours is to see religion, organized religion, as the problem and not the answer. This mentality that says tall of earth’s creatures and resources were put there from some divine entity to be used up by its inhabitants with no regard for the future.

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Leefeller's avatar

By Leefeller, April 27, 2010 at 10:09 am Link to this comment

Fear motivates me too! Like most Americans and Tea
Baggers, I wear half an tin foil hat so they can’t take
the left side of my brain, though they can have the right
side!

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Night-Gaunt's avatar

By Night-Gaunt, April 27, 2010 at 9:24 am Link to this comment

Actually he wasn’t positing any kind of intelligent life finding us just that it could pose a danger to us & we should keep quiet about it just in case. [Fortunately the signals weaken to noise after about 60 light years.] We have our own history to see that when more mechanically advanced groups meet more primitive ones the primitive ones lose out. Especially if the more technologically developed also believe themselves superior because of it, and have little or no humanism guiding them, they could be devastating to us all. Even if it is just communication and meetings without a shot being fired.

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By RdV, April 27, 2010 at 8:23 am Link to this comment

If he wants to preserve his credibility, he should stick to what he knows instead of wading into the psychology of alien life. Assuming completely human characteristics, he makes himself out to be a crackpot while whipping up star wars paranoia—providing a new rationale for fueling the military industrial complex.

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By teadrinker, April 27, 2010 at 2:05 am Link to this comment

An addition to my previous comment: The 2001 Disclosure Project testimony took place at the Washington Press Club. My personal UFO sighting experience was confirmed by one of the famed Lennon sisters and appeared in the Ojai Valley News (California) in about 1978-79. It was originally reported to the Ojai Fire Dept, then appeared in the newspaper.

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By teadrinker, April 26, 2010 at 11:45 pm Link to this comment

I, like others, am surprised about Hawkings statement. Maybe the spooks got to him. It is a gazillion dollar comment, coming from a highly intelligent man. It’s good spin for the State of Fear scenario, and feeds an ever-hungry-for- funding, NSA/CIA, Pentagon, and Military. I would be surprised if Hawking hadn’t read about the two basic mindsets of legitimate UFO investigation. One includes a large scale abduction (Bud Hopkins) scheme all over the world, happening mostly behind the scenes. The other side envisions benevolent or possibly neutral contact ‘some day’.
  I believe aliens exist because I saw a UFO but don’t believe me. This documented testimony is the best evidence of alien presence and knowledge of their technology, so go here: 2001 Disclosure Project video:  http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=7vyVe-6YdUk

Twenty ex high ranking officials, including air traffic controllers, ex secret op. officers, commercial pilots and numerous military defense specialists testify to alien presence and technology and our governments knowledge of it.

Report this

By uSec's till Doom, April 26, 2010 at 5:54 pm Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

reminder by Blackspeare, April 26 at 3:31 pm #
——“It’s a cook book!”

I expect the first one they will gobble-up will be a French Communist co-ed, since they are so spicy.

In truth, since we are only glorified monkeys, any spacefarers arriving here will be beyond our ability to predict or negotiate. Since the only solar system and planet with which we are familiar have harbored tens of millions of species, it is sensible to expect other and better smart-guys are scattered all over the universe. Imagine the McCain-Palin duo as the focal contacts. After a few hours with these two, the alien would gut himself, signaling his less tolerant staff to incinerate every molecule of earth-evolved dna. Starting with Michelle Bachmann’s noise-box.

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thebeerdoctor's avatar

By thebeerdoctor, April 26, 2010 at 5:54 pm Link to this comment

Hawking’s assertion I do believe, concerning aliens, is accepting the premise of Julian Jaynes book; The Origin of Consciousness and the Breakdown of the Bicameral Mind, where Jaynes asserts that Cortez coming to the new world was a classic example of the clash between people who still heard the one voice in their heads and those who advance to a more clever technological viewpoint.
http://www.julianjaynes.org/bicameralmind.php

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By Jimnp72, April 26, 2010 at 4:11 pm Link to this comment

there is no intelligent life here anyway

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RenZo's avatar

By RenZo, April 26, 2010 at 1:55 pm Link to this comment

Oh by the way, if Hawking (with an IQ of 413, by the way, although I am just guessing) wanted to start thinking about how to produce better milk in Jersey cows, I would believe EVERYTHING he said. With mental capacity like that he can advise me on anything.

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RenZo's avatar

By RenZo, April 26, 2010 at 1:52 pm Link to this comment

No one (well Trekkies excepted) is more of a scifi fan than I, but if we are being controlled and farmed, it is by the aristocracy. We are being groomed into serfdom by the rich of our own species, not aliens. Although I do agree that ancient civilizations bear many stigmata of advanced intelligence that they should not have had…..

Several years ago the French government released a high level study, COMETA (by military intelligence, high command) about UFO/alien visitations to Earth. Then the French government released its archives on UFO investigations. Subsequently the Ministry of Defence of Great Britain did the same with its archives. You can look at these reports online nowadays. See below:

http://www.scribd.com/doc/4338/COMETA-report-part1

http://www.scribd.com/doc/4337/COMETA-report-part2

http://www.cnes.fr/web/CNES-fr/6919-cnes-tout-sur-l-espace.php

http://www.nationalarchives.gov.uk/ufos/

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By Self Wise, April 26, 2010 at 12:58 pm Link to this comment

Why is it that shear mention of the possible or plausible is attacked, anonymously at that?  There is nothing illogical about what Hawking is proposing.  It is a scenario only, and because the possibility of the scenario exists, must be considered when deciding what our policy should be regarding SETI, space travel, etc.

We only have one intelligent life form to evaluate in order to glean some ideas on how intelligent life and their prospective culture could evolve.  It is not inconceivable for a civilization’s technological capabilities to outpace it’s social, cultural, and moral advancement.  Survival has often meant violence, and we see how hard it is to unwire from the classically autonomic response of violence that has bean a common chord in life on this planet. 

There are no guarantees that an advanced civilization would leave behind violent ways that were probably much more relevant to that species survival earlier on in their evolution. 

As Kaku expressed we have to make it out the swamp to become a type 1 civilization. Well just like the saying goes, “you can take the cat out of the jungle, but not the jungle out of the cat”

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By doublestandards/glasshouses, April 26, 2010 at 12:02 pm Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

He’s right.  Just as we aren’t any smarter than the cave men when it comes to taking what isn’t ours, it seems reasonable that a more advanced civilization wouldn’t have evolved much in that respect either.

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Night-Gaunt's avatar

By Night-Gaunt, April 26, 2010 at 11:55 am Link to this comment

I don’t believe in aliens as such just that the problem is for them to come here. The universe is vast and very few planets earth-like. Though they could come from ones inhospitable to us but still it is time and distance that are the factors. Dr. Hawkings is a scientist and he is tackling it from that angle not popular culture but it takes low brows to not think of that and call him “stupid” et al because of it. [Ever thought he may never read fiction books or go see many movies?] Just empty shallow pools for brains. Typical of this culture and very disturbing.

In the TV series “The Invaders” they were very different from us, oxygen is a poison to them and have only attenuated contact with us. They infiltrate to prepare for more to come to set up not just beach heads but actual bases. The major concepts were either adapt themselves to our air or eliminate the oxygen. (They also didn’t want atomic war to break out for that would render the earth useless to them too.] They could not survive in their native form here. Rearranged their atoms into pseudo-human bodies to pass as us. Planets like ours are just too rare to pass up. Xenoforming of it would be their final option.

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johnnyfarout's avatar

By johnnyfarout, April 26, 2010 at 11:35 am Link to this comment

Science fiction books and stories are full of what Dr. Hawking fears. Perhaps he’s just read “Battlefield Earth”, by L. Ron Hubbard? Now that is something to fear, and not the movie, which was stupid and did the book no justice. I also agree that we are already visited and manipulated, perhaps even owned like farm animals. Because these ideas are shocking does not mean they are stupid. Read Zacharia Sitchin’s series called The Earth Chronicles, if you are not shaken from your ‘convinced ignorance’ after those reads, then you are not paying attention.

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Blackspeare's avatar

By Blackspeare, April 26, 2010 at 11:31 am Link to this comment

Yeah, we get——It’s a cook book!

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By EdWatters, April 26, 2010 at 11:30 am Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

I’m worried too. They come in to this country illegally, go to the emergency rooms, send the kids to our schools, drive up our taxes. What’s a tea-bagger to do. Now, I hear in Arizona…what? Oh, sorry. I thought the article was about aliens.

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By johnny19, April 26, 2010 at 11:03 am Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

How could somebody be so smart,be so stupid?

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Night-Gaunt's avatar

By Night-Gaunt, April 26, 2010 at 10:48 am Link to this comment

Remember the film “Independence Day” and what those aliens came here to do? Fits exactly.

DystopiaResident criticism without content is what “dumbasses” write. Got anything positive or specific in there? If so then I shouldn’t have to ask once. To quote you about you, “this guy’s a fucking dumbass,” for all your comment is worth. Now do the “SMART” thing and give us something that has actual thought and depth. Thank you.

By grousefeather  , April 26 at 11:20 am #
(Unregistered commenter)

“We should be flattered that superior beings might show an interest in the little speck of polluted mud called Earth.”

No you wouldn’t if they decided they needed something from us. Even if not their existence and superior technology would destroy us. Humans have done it to other humans for centuries. Just look at the Native Americans living in some of the poorest of reservations forced there & their whole culture ruined. No flattery there I should think. That could happen to us very easily.

A single being for a Type I, II or III culture could overwhelm us or cause a great catastrophe by just being here.

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RAE's avatar

By RAE, April 26, 2010 at 8:28 am Link to this comment

I fully agree with G. Anderson’s posting especially the conclusion:

“It appears that the Aliens, at this point anyway, have more to fear from us then we from them.”

Any “aliens” who choose to get mixed up with us had better be ready for relentless aggression, lies, deceit, renaging on deals and promises and a lot of other skullduggery that I don’t even have words for.

The human race had such potential - like America - but then, like sour cream, the greedy, sneaky and untrustworthy tasted power and the rest, as they say, is history.

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G.Anderson's avatar

By G.Anderson, April 26, 2010 at 7:23 am Link to this comment

After reading Richard M. Dolan’s two volume work UFO’s and the National Secutiry State, the inescapable conclusion is that it’s already to late to worry about that.

We are the ones that have initiated hostility toward contact, using every military means available to shoot down UFO’s, and use their technology to develop advanced weapons systems for military applications.

That a cover up of our military activiies in this regard has exisited since the 40’s is well documented in Mr. Dolan’s work, via freedom of information searches, and also via the release of previously classifed documents by foreign governments.

It appears that the Aliens, at this point anyway, have more to fear from us then we from them.

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By grousefeather, April 26, 2010 at 7:20 am Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

We should be flattered that superior beings might show an interest in the little speck of polluted mud called Earth.

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By NYCartist, April 26, 2010 at 4:33 am Link to this comment

Stephen Hawking is playing the same game as Michio Kaku: sensationalizing science.  But he and Kaku make good points. (Kaku suggested that there are if there are others out in space, they’d want to avoid us.)

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RAE's avatar

By RAE, April 26, 2010 at 4:05 am Link to this comment

I agree with ITW that one (1) is too small a sample from which to generalize… BUT…

yelling… Hey! We’re over here! perhaps is not the wisest method to arrange a meeting with the unknown.

It could be the last greeting we earthlings utter.

Dr. Hawking is suggesting caution and I applaud him for putting his credibility on the line for doing so. I’m sure he knew he’d get the wingnuts stirred up.

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thebeerdoctor's avatar

By thebeerdoctor, April 26, 2010 at 3:42 am Link to this comment

We are the aliens that we have been waiting for.

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By Inherit The Wind, April 26, 2010 at 2:55 am Link to this comment

I’m surprised by Hawking.  When you only have a sample of one (in this case one sentient specie) it is invalid to draw any conclusions about what another example would be like.

Perhaps they, too, would be excited to find another sentient life form.  They could be raiders or they could have their own “Non-Interference Prime Directive”.

I don’t “believe” in alien life.  But I don’t discount the likelihood that with 200 billion galaxies, each with up to a trillion stars or more, with who knows how many Yellow Dwarf stars, that another one could have evolved life, and, therefore, sentient life.  Yet without proof or a way to prove, currently we cannot do anything more than assume it might exist.

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kerryrose's avatar

By kerryrose, April 26, 2010 at 1:50 am Link to this comment

It’s funny.  For such a brilliant scientist his alien predictions come straight out of existing pop culture.

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Not One More!'s avatar

By Not One More!, April 25, 2010 at 11:51 pm Link to this comment

Life as we know it on this planet; with its wars, destruction, and lack of universal peace and justice, certainly excludes the probability that every alien race (if any) we meet would be peaceful.

Of course, life on this planet if observed from space, would show lions killing gazelles and the general cruelty of life and survival. If there was a god, it would truly be a cruel joke.

Humans have proven the Peter Principle, we are the species that have risen to a level of incompetence. If every bug died today, life as we know it would end in 50 years. If every human died, life on the planet would thrive.

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By DystopiaResident, April 25, 2010 at 10:36 pm Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

“I imagine they might exist in massive ships, having used up all the resources from their home planet.”

Riiiight. Because that’s the SMART thing to do, right? Because beings millions of times more advanced than human beings aren’t going to be much SMARTER, right Stephen?

This guy’s a fucking dumbass. He might understand physics, but he doesn’t understand much else.

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