Improving RationalWiki.org Entry for The Electric Universe

Many Internet forums have carried discussion of the Electric Universe hypothesis. Much of that discussion has added more confusion than clarity, due to common misunderstandings of the electrical principles. Here we invite participants to discuss their experiences and to summarize questions that have yet to be answered.

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Re: Improving RationalWiki.org Entry for The Electric Univer

Unread postby Giffyguy » Wed Nov 04, 2015 5:54 pm

BecomingTesla wrote:@David: Thornhill should never be allowed to speak for the EU paradigm as a whole, particularly because he spouts this kind of freaking nonsense. No peer-review? Literally every person that I mentioned has published material from a wide-variety of journals like IOP, the IEEE, the AIEE, various treatises' like Birkeland's, etc. Suggesting that there is no peer-reviewed material is completely baseless - there are dozens of papers written and published by Alfven alone. What Thornhill meant to say was that his own theories, which bare no empirical evidence whatsoever, have not been peer-reviewed. Which even *this* is incorrect - Wallace has published a couple of papers of his own on electric star hypotheses in the IEEE. He's talking completely out of his ass.


@BecomingTesla Do you have titles or URLs handy, for any of those peer-reviewed publications?
Or is there a good way to search those journals? (I don't have prior experience doing this type of research.)

I'd like to start compiling a list for the peer-review section of the Wikipedia article - my current draft includes a pet-theory section as well, to help distinguish the good peer-reviewed EU stuff from any actual BS.

(I might possibly use these lists for RationalWiki as well, to they extent that I can do it without causing trouble.)
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Re: Improving RationalWiki.org Entry for The Electric Univer

Unread postby David » Thu Nov 05, 2015 12:00 am

BecomingTesla wrote:
Thornhill should never be allowed to speak for the EU paradigm as a whole, particularly because he spouts this kind of freaking nonsense… He's talking completely out of his ass.

Are you suggesting that Thornhill be ousted? Or just muzzled and silenced?
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Re: Improving RationalWiki.org Entry for The Electric Univer

Unread postby BecomingTesla » Thu Nov 05, 2015 4:51 am

Whoa boy, well, when you're talking about anything involving an electromagnetically-dominated astrophysical model, you need to start with the study of vacuum chambers and discharge phenomena. That's the basics, and that's what's going on in our solar system. So, in terms of where to begin with references, this is from my own library of volumes and papers that I have to read to through:
- 1704, "Experiments on the Production and Propagation of Light from the Phosphorous in Vacuo, Hauksbee
- 1881, "Radiant Matter, A Resume of the Principle Lectures and Papers", William Crookes
- 1891, "Experiments with Alternate Currents of Very High Frequency and Their Application to Methods of Artificial Illumination", Nikola Tesla
- 1893, "The Inventions, Researches, and Writings of Nikola Tesla", Nikola Tesla
- 1893, "On Light and Other High Frequency Phenomena", Nikola Tesla
- 1898, "Electricity, the Universal Force", Henry R Rogers (not peer-reviewed, independently published)
- 1903, "The Norwegian Expedition Vol. 1", Kristian Birkeland
- 1904, "Electricity and Matter", JJ Thomson
- 1906, "Conduction of Electricity through Gases", JJ Thomson
- 1911, "Origin of Magnetic Storms", Arthur Schuster (British i.e. mainstream astrophysicist who mathematically, and incorrectly, proved that Birkeland's auroral theory was impossible)
- 1912, "Rays of Positive Electricity", JJ Thomson
- 1941, "On the Cosmogony of the Solar System Pt. 1-3", Hannes Alfven
- 1950, "Cosmical Electrodynamics", Hannes Alfven
- 1958, "Interplanetary Magnetic Fields", Hannes Alfven
- 1961, "On the Origin of Cosmic Magnetic Fields", Hannes Alfven
- 1961, "Origin of Cosmic Rays", Ginzburg and Syrovatsky
- 1963, "On the Filamentary Structure of the Solar Corona", Hannes Alfven
- 1967, "Currents in the Solar Atmosphere and a Theory of Solar Flares", Hannes Alfven
- 1967, "On the Importance of Electric Fields in the Magnetosphere and Interstellar Space", Hannes Alfven
- 1970, "Jet Streams in Space", Hannes Alfven
- 1976, "Evolution of the Solar System", Alfven and Arrhenius
- 1977, "Electric Currents in Cosmic Plasmas", Hannes Alfven
- 1978, "Interstellar Clouds and the Formation of Stars", Hannes Alfven
- 1979, "Electric Current Model of the Magnetosphere," Hannes Alfven
- 1982, "Paradigm Transition in Cosmic Plasma Physics", Hannes Alfven
- 1985, "Laboratory Experiment on Magnetic Reconnection and Turbulence, Stenzel, Gekelman and Urrutia
- 1986, "Double Layers and Circuits in Astrophysics", Hannes Alfven
- 1991, "Physics of the Plasma Universe", Anthony Peratt
- 1992, "Alfven's Programme in Solar Physics", Stephen G. Brush
- 1993, "Filamentary Double Layers", Theisen, Carpenter and Merlino
- 1995, "Alfven Waves and Birkeland Currents", Thomas A Potemra
- 2001, "On the Global Electric Charge of Stars", Neslusan
- 2005, "Magnetospheric Plasma Boundaries: A Test of the Frozen-In Magnetic Field Theorem", Lundin, Yamauchi, Sauvaud and Balogh
- 2007, "Real Properties of Electromagnetic Fields and Plasma in the Cosmos", Donald Scott
- 2011, "Measurement of Electric Current in a Kpc-Scale Jet, Kronberg, Lovelace, Lapenta and Colgate
- 2014, "JMP and SAFIRE: What Makes the Sun Shine?", Anderson, Childs, Clarage and Onderco
- 2015, "Birkeland Currents: A Force-Free Field-Aligned Model", Donald Scott
- 2015, "Study of Striations in a Spherically Symmetrical Hydrogen Discharge", Morgan and Childs

So, start with those lol. I'm very interested in bringing these works together. You'll see me posting notes here on the forum for free, and I'll continue to do so with all of these texts as I move through and understand them.

@chrimony: Wallace Thornhill, in no way, coined the phrase "electric universe". As you can see from my list, 1898 is the earliest example that I've been able to find thus far, explicitly discussing the electric universe in name and in concept.

@David: Neither, I'm suggesting that if Thornhill continues to go to conferences talking this kind of crap, that he's going to lose a large majority of the community simply through them walking-away. I'm a studying amateur who wants to become a legitimate astrophysicist and electrical engineer, and I love the potential of an electromagnetically-dominant astrophysical model. But I will also never advocate for the craziness that comes out of his mouth, and if it keeps happening, I'll continue to remove myself association with TB.
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Re: Improving RationalWiki.org Entry for The Electric Univer

Unread postby Webbman » Thu Nov 05, 2015 5:14 am

why so quick to bring down Wal?

its just an idea where really few ideas exist. He's allowed to be wrong if that is the case. It doesn't invalidate anything else.

the mainstream will never accept an electric universe and not because of the ideas posted here, but because they are liars and con men whose only real interest is to keep you in the dark. Everything they do stinks of it. These people would never share anything of real value with you.

They are not Tesla and I for one respect those who willing to share their ideas despite the risk of failure or unpopularity.

figure out where you are before you try to figure out the universe.
The secret to the universe is a rubber band.
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Re: Improving RationalWiki.org Entry for The Electric Univer

Unread postby jacmac » Thu Nov 05, 2015 7:25 am

Becoming Tesla, You will want to read and add to your list the published papers of C. E. R. Bruce; Easy to get on the net. He was the leading lightning expert in his day in England and became aware of the electric nature of the solar surface and atmosphere. He published many papers and was ignored by the mainstream.
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Re: Improving RationalWiki.org Entry for The Electric Univer

Unread postby BecomingTesla » Thu Nov 05, 2015 7:39 am

First, I think you're trying to point out that I'm being too harsh, and you're right. That's a bit more aggressive than I should have been. That said, this is what I consider my legitimate issue with Thornhill. He's perfectly allowed to be wrong in this case, and of course he's welcome to propose a new hypothesis, however radical it is. I've done the exact same in many threads on this forum. But if that is what you're going to propose - a radical, possibly fringe, hypothesis - then that is exactly what you should present it as. Presenting your idea as a legitimate theory, one which has been tested vigorously enough to assert certainty of validity, when that is extraordinarily far from the case is scientifically dishonest.

At this year's conference Wal not only asserted that General Relativity is wrong, but also imposed that the EU community has the correct answer for gravitation as a pseudo Van der Walls force phenomena. To me, as someone who posts here and publicly on science news websites as an advocate for electrical astrophysics, that was an enormous embarrassment. General Relativity is not wrong - even calling it "wrong" is a complete oversimplification of what it means to be a valid scientific theory. GR has been used, successfully, to predict celestial phenomena within the scope of our solar system with a extremely high degree of efficiency. GR and Newtonian gravitation are the reason, according to NASA engineers, that New Horizons just passed across Pluto. As a mathematical heuristic for modeling the force of gravity, GR is perfectly valid in a utilitarian sense, and is not wrong. Certainly not within the scope of the solar system. If you want to go above that scope and talk about galaxy rotations and dark matter, then the most that you could say, within reason, is that GR is limited in its ability to describe the force of gravitation without any additional parameters beyond a certain scale in size. Not only does Wal ignore GR's undeniable success at one scale, but he lumps the failure of GR at larger scales together with his ultimate issue with GR - the fact that it relies on field theory, which is non-mechanical. What he doesn't realize is that this is not an empirical argument about a theory's scientific validity, it is a philosophical argument against mathematical formalism. It's one that he's allowed to make, but the context of calling GR "wrong" in this sense is a *completely* separate argument as to whether GR works.

Then there's the dipole gravity. In all of the time that Wal has promoted this idea, I have yet to see any mathematical formalism to the idea that would allow for predictive testing. Can I use dipole gravity to predict the orbit of Mercury? Or the path a comet will travel as it passes across the Sun? Can I use it to accurately predict the rotational curves of galaxies? What legitimately takes the idea beyond being literally just an idea? And worse, even if this formalism has taken place, and predictions were made, and even if those predictions proved to be correct, then Wal's idea will literally be in the exact same place that GR is in now because it will have the same mathematical efficacy. The only possible way that he could know that his model is genuinely the correct model would be to do exactly what he always promotes - approximate the model, and test it in a lab. Run an experiment and prove that *this* genuinely is the reason for gravity. He constantly upholds Birkeland and Alfven for their dedication to experimentation, and suggests that experimentation should be the true criteria for validating theory, and yet I haven't seen anything even close to a proposal that could test his theory of gravity. Yet, he promotes it with complete certainty.

I think Don Scott has been a tremendous help to the EU framework. The same is true for Childs and the SAFIRE team. I think a few other people at this years conference presented interesting work. But Thornhill wasn't one of them, and I think he's a very poor representative for the community. In all of the time he's been leading the charge, he's spent vastly more time as a side-line critic against mainstream science than an actual scientist, pushing the framework forward.

@jacmac: Much obliged, will definitely go hunt those down as well ;)
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Re: Improving RationalWiki.org Entry for The Electric Univer

Unread postby Giffyguy » Thu Nov 05, 2015 10:41 am

@BecomingTesla @jacmac @Lloyd Thanks for providing this information - it's very helpful.
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Re: Improving RationalWiki.org Entry for The Electric Univer

Unread postby Zendo » Sun Nov 08, 2015 5:33 pm

BecomingTesla wrote:[...]
I think Don Scott has been a tremendous help to the EU framework. The same is true for Childs and the SAFIRE team. I think a few other people at this years conference presented interesting work. But Thornhill wasn't one of them, and I think he's a very poor representative for the community. In all of the time he's been leading the charge, he's spent vastly more time as a side-line critic against mainstream science than an actual scientist, pushing the framework forward.
[...]


This really needed to be said. I agree with what you mentioned before that as well. I think the only legitimate way of bashing relativity comes from disproving it using scientific scrutiny, as with all things.

Although I would like to point out that I don't think relativity have been much of a help for getting us to places like Mars and Pluto when they still use Newton and a bunch of other considerations (like solar plasma etc.) Source: http://fti.neep.wisc.edu/~jfs/neep533.l ... es.99.html . I know the source is from 1999, but things have not changed THAT much for engineers between then and now, trajectory correction thrusts are still needed so and so forth. A quick google source can also point to other considerations used by engineers. I almost see no mention of relativity in their source material.

Relativity is very minute for problems not involving things going close to the speed of light. Even if they did use it in space travel, and it is at fault, it would most likely just show up as a very small parameter error in need of correction.

There is other problems concerning the practical uses of relativity as well. In this post he makes a very convincing argument, using mathematics and official GPS source material to point out problems with their use of relativistic correction models:
http://www.alternativephysics.org/book/ ... ology2.htm -- I'll let his results speak for it self.

I'm not afraid to say I don't respect relativity as a theory, it does not makes sense conceptually and it's predictive power, I think, is often misattributed to other phenomenon; it's just that we try to force fit it into everything, and every new data set somehow has to somehow "conform to relativity" or else it is a high probability that it is wrong.

We see that conforming to it has already gotten us into dark energy, dark matter, black holes, missing mass in beta decay leading to the neutrino particle conception (new flavors crop up every other month it feels like). These just look more and more like corrections to a models gone awry. We have not found gravitational waves, gravitational lensing can be explained classically, GPS can be explained classically, dark matter has not been found, dark energy has not been found, neutrino results from these large experiments are questionable. Quantum electro dynamics ignores relativity and goes on with it's life without taking it even into account. They can't even find a connection between gravity and quantum mechanics, they can't find super symmetric particles to explain gravity and according to Prf. Nima Arkani-Hamed time and space is an emergent property of a volume of a higher dimensional geometric object called the amplituhedron. It's a mess.

For stellar models it's a fact that even Modified Newtonian mechanics (MOND) has also had more success at predicting galactic motions etc. as well. I just see more and more evidence is just chipping away at the assumptions made by the introduction of relative reference frames because of, initially, the application of Lorentz transformation calculations.

I can't wait till the announcement comes: "Damn, light speed is not constant and gravity is just a pseudo force, 100 years of science just went down the drain everybody; the good thing is though: we no longer need a quantum theory of gravity!".
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Re: Improving RationalWiki.org Entry for The Electric Univer

Unread postby Pi sees » Tue Nov 10, 2015 5:15 pm

Zendo wrote:I can't wait till the announcement comes: "Damn, light speed is not constant and gravity is just a pseudo force, 100 years of science just went down the drain everybody; the good thing is though: we no longer need a quantum theory of gravity!".


Don't hold your breath. The current status quo is deeply entrenched in their worldview, as is demonstrated by their willingness to invent all kinds of ridiculous fantasies to prop it up. It looks like it's going to take some sort of major cultural upheaval, comparable to the fall of Rome or the Renaissance, to free physics from this intellectual mire.
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Re: Improving RationalWiki.org Entry for The Electric Univer

Unread postby Pi sees » Thu Nov 12, 2015 11:11 pm

Instead of making a ludicrous futile attempt to commandeer a key propaganda mouthpiece of EU detractors, how about we write a point-by-point refutation of their rubbish? Here’s one I prepared earlier...

(Note: the below refutation is in respect to the RationalWiki Electric Universe article as it was on 13 November 2015).

“In an interdisciplinary science like the Electric Universe, you could say we have no peers, so peer review is not available.”
—Wallace Thornhill

Before the article even begins, RationalWiki make it clear that they aren’t even remotely interested in offering an objective critique of the Electric Universe. Thornhill’s comment was blunderiffic to be sure, but not because it provides any genuine insight into the EU paradigm’s credibility or lack thereof; rather, it is because the comment lends itself so readily to being taken out of context by dogmatic “rationalist” ideologues such as RationalWiki and Michael Shermer.

What Thornhill was trying to say is that the standard mainstream academic notion of peer review is not presently compatible with the Electrical Universe. This is because the EU community:
*is small and under-resourced;
*is busy enough as it is defending itself from underhanded attacks by pseudosceptics; and
*prefers to adopt a multi-disciplinary approach to investigating and understanding reality, as opposed to the narrow territorial compartmentalist approach which so completely dominates contemporary mainstream science.


"Electric Universe" (EU) is an umbrella term that covers various pseudo-scientific cosmologicalideas built around the claim that the formation and existence of various features of the universe can be better explained by electricity and magnetism than by gravity alone.

RationalWiki promptly erects a Straw-Man version of the Electric Universe in the first part of the first sentence of their article. They do this because: 1) it paves the way for all the other snide irrelevant criticisms which comprise the bulk of the article; and 2) because they are unable fault the actual key premise of EU (as stated in the second part of their opening sentence), and they want to distract you from this inconvenient state of affairs as much as they possibly can.

As a rule, EU is usually touted as an aether-based theory…

No it’s not. The EU paradigm does not assume or rely on the existence of any sort of aether - not even the aether-in-relativistic-drag otherwise known as “space-time”.
…with numerous references to tall tales from Mythology.[2]

Now this is just downright sneaky. Not only does RationalWiki cite one solitary reference to substantiate its claim that the EU makes “numerous references” to mythology, but they structure the sentence in such a way as to mislead the reader into thinking that the same solitary reference verifies the fallacious claim that the EU is “usually touted as an aether-based theory”!

Furthermore, who are RationalWiki to say that ancient myths are “tall-tales”? By what criteria do they make such a breezy dismissal? What we have here is the article’s second Straw Man, which acts as a subsidiary Straw-Man to the primary Straw-Man that was erected in the very first sentence of the article. In other words, what we have here is a case of Straw Matryoshka Men! Credit where credit is due though: at least RationalWiki strive to be innovators when it comes to fallacious argumentation.

However, the exact details and claims are ambiguous…

No more ambiguous than this claim, or the claims of modern mainstream physics for that matter.
…lack mathematical formalism

What the EU lacks is mathematical fetishism.
…and often vary from one delusional crank to the next.

More of that trademark RationalWiki objectivity, this time in the form of a cheap ad-hominem! Evidently the pseudosceptics at RationalWiki don’t realize that variation of opinion within in a scientific field of study is actually a GOOD thing. If the fine folks at RationalWiki prefer it when everyone sings from the same hymn sheet, then I suggest they go join a church…

EU advocates can be roughly split into two groups: garden-variety physics cranks who are convinced that they have a legitimate revolutionary scientific theory…

Hey, they just used that ad-hominem a moment ago! I guess making those Straw Matryoshka Men depleted RationalWiki’s creative juices.
…and various woo-peddlers who use EU claims to prop up their main ideas (because mainstream physics would blow them apart).

Yep, they’re all puffed out, because now they’re rehashing the original Straw Man. What woo-peddlers would those be, exactly? Do they actually use EU claims to prop up their main ideas, or do they just use the EU community as a vehicle to promote ideas that have no scientific bearing on, or relation to EU whatsoever? By RationalWiki’s logic, mainstream physics deserves scorn and castigation for the woo-tastic claims of Deepak Chopra, Michio Kaku, and Dean Radin.
One subset of the latter comprises some of the more loony global warming deniers (such as Vault-Co), who try to use it to "prove" that climate change is being caused by some process outside human control.

Never heard of them, but then why would I have? After all I’m involved with the EU crowd, not the AGW denier crowd. It would seem that RationalWiki have rejuvenated their creative juices at this point, because they manage to seamlessly merge Straw Man with guilt by (questionable) association. The reality is that EU is no more related to AGW denial than Darwinian Evolution is to Eugenics.

That said, why is RationalWiki averse to the idea of climate change being caused by “some process outside human control”? Doesn’t the geological record provide an abundance of evidence that the global climate can be affected by non-anthropogenic factors?? In the last 20,000 years alone the world has experienced climate change by “some process outside human control” to an extent which far surpasses even the direst predictions of AGW proponents. If RationalWiki’s objection to non-AGW is based on political ideology rather than actual science, then they should have the decency to explicitly admit this.

Each year the Electric Universe holds their annual EU conference, where a seemingly endless parade of misguided fools take to the stage and discuss mythology, homeopathy, numerology, dipole gravity, and other equally absurd nonsense.


…and so we circle back to ad-hominem and guilt-by-association. It is true that a number of purveyors of highly questionable ideas have attached themselves to the EU like so many parasites to the body of an unfortunate host, but few if any of those ideas has any substantive scientific connection to, or implication for the EU. I wonder, does RationalWiki count Michael Shermer as part of that “endless parade of misguided fools” who discusses “absurd nonsense”? I mean, Michael Shermer *did* speak at the 2015 EU Conference, so by RationalWiki’s logic the EU is no less affiliated with Michael Shermer than it is with numerology and homeopathy.
The only common thread is the notion that a conspiracy is afoot to suppress their oddball beliefs.

Notice that RationalWiki provides no references for this claim. Who exactly is crying conspiracy, and when and where have they done so? They very fact of the existence of the Thunderbolts website and their Youtube channel proves that no such conspiracy exists! At any rate, it doesn’t take a conspiracy theorist to see the mainstream physics community is beset by a number of serious cognitive and political dysfunctions.

The conferences are open to the public, provided you cough up the $395 price of admission.[3]

Or you can wait a little while and watch them on Youtube FOR FREE.

Immanuel Velikovsky was an enthusiastic early adopter of electric universe ideas…

More guilt-by-association, plus a failure to mention that Velikovsky a) actually did make a number of successful predictions that eluded the mainstream astronomy community and b) was taken seriously by supporters and detractors alike prior to his death.
…seeing in them a possible mechanism to explain his scenario of planetary billiards…

I presume that RationalWiki is referring to different “planetary billiards” than those that mainstream astronomy and physics utterly relies on to ‘explain’ planetary and solar system formation?
…cosmic thunderbolts, and the notion that Earth was previously a satellite of Saturn.

Since when has either of these notions been disproved? Mainstream astronomy’s version of the Solar System’s history is nothing but guesswork resting on a foundation of questionable assumptions.
Velikovsky’s influence still looms large and has become an integral part of the current Electric Universe orthodoxy.

“Electric Universe orthodoxy”?! A few sentences ago, RationalWiki was telling us that the details and claims of EU are “ambiguous” and “often vary from one delusional crank to the next”! So is the EU ambiguous and variable, or does it have an orthodoxy? You can’t have it both ways guys. Nevertheless the EU paradigm does not depend on the claims of Velikovsky; it just happens to be the case that there is some degree of compatibility between Velikovsky’s ideas and EU ideas.
EU figureheads Wallace Thornhill and David Talbott are staunch supporters of Velikovsky’s mythological-based fairy tales and often pay tribute to the enormous influence he has had on shaping their own far-fetched theories.

“Figureheads”?? Don’t you have to have an organised hierarchy in order to have a figurehead? Here we see RationalWiki attempting to have it both ways (an ambiguous variable orthodox hierarchy!) while simultaneously piling on more guilt-by-association. It would seem that RationalWiki’s definition of “fairy tale” is something along the lines of “a speculation which is not (currently) endorsed by mainstream scientific institutions”.
Claims
 Einstein's postulates are wrong.[4]

They are wrong. But I guess it’s hard to see that when you’re so preoccupied looking for non-existent gravitational waves and dark matter…
 The electric force travels faster than the speed of light with near infinite velocity.[4]

This belief 1) is held by some members of the EU community, and 2) has not been disproven.
 Gravity has two poles like a bar magnet; dipole gravity.[5]

This is Wallace Thornhill’s pet theory. However if the RationalWiki editors ever actually bothered to find out what the wider EU community has to say about dipole gravity, then they would quickly realize that it is far from being an accepted or integral part of the EU paradigm. At the very least Thornhill’s dipole gravity idea is no less preposterous then having TWO mutually incompatible theories of gravity, one of which involves the magical distortion of a non-thing and the other of which proposes an exchange of never-observed subatomic particles that somehow ‘carry’ a pulling force!
 A plenum of neutrinos forms an all-pervasive aether.[4]

As previously mentioned the EU paradigm does not require an all-pervasive aether, neutrino-based or otherwise.
 Planets give birth to comets.[6]

And this is impossible because….?
 Stars do not shine because of internal nuclear fusion caused by gravitational collapse. Rather, they are anodes for galactic discharge currents.[citation needed]

Correct, with the additional note that the EU does not rule out fusion taking place in the corona as a result of the star’s intense electrical activity. We are more than happy for someone to empirically demonstrate how nuclear fusion can be caused entirely or even primarily by gravitational collapse, but so far human attempts to emulate the sun’s (alleged) internal fusion processes have been utterly reliant on electromagnetic confinement of plasmas. Funny that.

 Impact craters on Venus, Mars and the Moon are not caused by impacts, but by electrical discharges.[7] The same applies to the Valles Marineris (a massive canyon on Mars) and the Grand Canyon on Earth.[8]

How is this any less plausible than the mainstream’s version of cosmic billiards? How many times have we actually witnessed so-called impact craters being created by impacts on other celestial bodies?
 The Sun is negatively charged, and the solar wind is positively charged -- the two systems forming a giant capacitor (this isJames McCanney's particular erroneous belief.)

That the Sun (and other stars) acts as an interstellar electrode in some way is widely agreed upon amongst the EU community. Whether stars are positively or negatively charged, or some combination of both, is still a matter of debate.
 EU proponents from the Thunderbolts Project claim to have predicted the natures of Pluto and Comet 67P more accurately than NASA or ESA.[9][10]

After all the vilification and slander, we finally get to see Giffyguy’s Mad PR Skillz in action! This sentence should say that the Thunderbolts Project DID predict those things, but Giffyguy wanted to exercise utmost caution in his attempt to put lipstick on a pig. Unfortunately the placement of this sentence is as underwhelming as its wording, and these two drawbacks synergistically manage to make the EU community look like nothing more than a bunch of pathetic, desperate, delusional fools. The moral of the story here is that it does little good to put lipstick on a pig, particularly if the lipstick ends up going on the pig’s anus.
[edit]Evidence
Most Electric Universe proponents claim some kind of relation to the "plasma cosmology" of the Nobel Prize laureate Hannes Alfvén. Too bad his model was rendered obsolete by the missing observations of the radio emission predicted by his cosmology.[11]

At long last, we finally encounter something that vaguely resembles a substantive criticism! But why is RationalWiki so eager to move right along with nothing more than a reference? Where’s the discussion of *how* Alfven’s model was rendered obsolete and how exactly this is supposed to impact on the EU paradigm? Once again, RationalWiki is attempting to have it both ways: first they make a vague assertion about how EU proponents claim “some kind of” relation to plasma cosmology, and then they suggest that this “some kind of relation” invalidates the EU owing to the referenced paper (which, I presume, the “sceptics” at RationalWiki are not in any great hurry to critically analyse).

A common motif is the insistence that all science should be done in a laboratory — an attempt to throw away gravity from the very beginning, because one can't put a solar system or a galaxy in a laboratory.


This is my favourite line in the article. Science ought to be done in a laboratory?? You mean, in an actual empirical setting?! Now that’s just cray-cray!

RationalWiki raises a fatuous objection to attempting to “put a solar system or a galaxy in a laboratory”, yet they apparently have no problem with mainstream cosmologists ‘testing’ their theories by modelling the universe with computer simulations! Pray tell, how can you “throw away” gravity when no one even knows what gravity is in the first place?? RationalWiki fails to appreciate that “gravity” is as much a theoretical gap-filler as dark matter and dark energy. When Newtown devised his Law of Universal Gravitation, scientists weren’t even aware of the most basic principles of electromagnetism, let alone the existence of electromagnetic phenomena in space such as the solar “wind”, magnetospheres and Birkland currents. For RationalWiki’s information, the EU does not “throw away gravity from the very beginning”. What the EU says is that electromagnetism plays a much greater role in the cosmos than gravity, a contention which is very much consistent with the relative strengths of these forces.

Incidentally, although this line is (pathetically) one of the most germane criticisms of EU that RationalWiki offers, it used to occur much earlier in the article and was only moved down to the end very recently. Perhaps the folks at RationalWiki are torn between the desire to get rid of such an asinine anti-scientific objection, and the desire to have an article composed of something other than irrelevant bile.
[edit] SAFIRE Project
The International Science Foundation, a group which claims to neither support nor oppose[12] the Electric Universe hypothesis, has provided $2,200,000 USD to fund an unprecedented laboratory experiment to test the Electric Universe claims regarding the nature of the sun.[13] The intent is to compare the results of this experiment to the results of NASA's Solar Probe Plus mission[14], and thereby demonstrate whether the EU solar model has any grounding in reality.[15]


Giffyguy works his PR magic once again, and this time it’s buried at the very bottom of the article ! This particular section also used to occur much earlier in the article until very recently. I wonder why that is? It’s not exactly a spirited defence of EU (“a group which claims to neither support nor oppose” the EU, “demonstrate whether the EU solar model has any grounding in reality”). Perhaps it’s buried at the bottom of the article because the totally objective and not-at-all-political folks at RationalWiki would rather not draw attention to the fact that a respected scientific organisation takes EU ideas seriously enough to consider them worthy of empirical testing?

In summary, RationalWiki’s article on the Electric Universe amounts to nothing more than a putrid pile of ad-hominem, Straw Man, guilt by association, double-standards, childish name calling, calculated misrepresentation, and worst of all blatant ideological bias. It is a piss-poor effort, even by RationalWiki’s sophomoric standards.
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Re: Improving RationalWiki.org Entry for The Electric Univer

Unread postby Aardwolf » Wed Dec 02, 2015 10:47 am

BecomingTesla wrote:GR and Newtonian gravitation are the reason, according to NASA engineers, that New Horizons just passed across Pluto.
Totally wrong. All craft are actively steered towards their target with Newtonian generalisations.

http://www.wired.com/2015/11/how-nasa-is-steering-new-horizons-toward-a-tiny-space-rock-in-the-kuiper-belt/
"If the target’s in sight, it’s easier to steer toward it."
Line of sight apparently better than GR.
“We have a very good understanding of where New Horizons is, especially after Pluto,”
Not even 100% certain where it is yet they use GR to steer it?
“We allowed more time between three and four to be able to assess the performance and readjust as necessary,” says Pelletier. But on November 2 he and his team determined that everything went so well with the first three burns that they decided to leave the parameters untouched from the original calculations. “This is quite amazing,” he says.
Sounds good. Maybe their burns are calculated accurately.
Even with that success, Pelletier estimates the team may be more than 300,000 miles off target. Sometime between summer and winter 2016, he expects to do more corrections based on Hubble observations of MU69.
Oops. Maybe not.

It's essentially an excercise of trial and error. They use about as many GR calculations for Horizons as I'll use driving my car home.
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Re: Improving RationalWiki.org Entry for The Electric Univer

Unread postby Elder » Tue Dec 15, 2015 6:38 am

I really admire Mr. Thornhillś hard work at trying to straighten out the delusional cranks at the RationalWiki. I don´t think they even deserve the attention of someone with his intelligence. Anyone with half a brain can see the promise and importance of the ideas, which have brought about the Electric Universe theory. Unfortunately mainstream academics and scientists seem to have far too much influence on the ordinary personś perception of reality, the universe and even worse on a child´s education. Things which are taken as facts are put into text books, which the child assimilates without question, even though they may be hopelessly wrong. I remember when I was at school studying physics, somebody by the name of Nicholas Tesla never got a mention at all. Absolutely nothing. Even now he is not well known. Probably due to criticism and suppression of his ideas, much in the same way that the electric universe is criticised and suppressed. Knowledge and wisdom are like a tree which if allowed to grow properly will give untold benefits to people of all ages. If it is always nipped in the bud, the result is a small deformed specimen, which can be likened to the society we live in today. This may sound extreme but is probably true in some parts of the world, especially where the governments are dominated by monopoly businesses or religious extremism. Knowledge and wisdom which is carefully nurtured can be a tremendous boon to everybody. All hail Mr. Thornhill and his efforts.
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