Exposing PseudoAstronomy

March 16, 2013

Podcast #68: Expat in Hoaglandia – A Fantasia of NASA Conspiracies

This episode is just 6 seconds short of a full hour. I interview Expat – who was my first guest ever back in Episode 10 – about numerous political and technological conspiracies of Richard Hoagland as generally applied to NASA. I learned quite a bit during this interview, and I hope that you do, too, and find it interesting as well.

There’s a quick New News item at the end, but all the other segments are skipped so as not to detract from Expat.

Upcoming episodes that I mentioned at the end include: the True Color of Mars, the Ringmakers of Saturn, 2012 Doomsday Revisited, a Young-Earth Creationist suing NASA, and a Nancy Leider clip show.



  1. Excellent episode. Many thanks to Expat for sharing his deep knowledge. It was amazing how he was able to identify—and recall obscure details about_events Stuart just hinted at. I’ll be recommending this episode to a few friends and to my young son.

    Thank You.

    Comment by Johan™ Strandberg — March 16, 2013 @ 2:11 pm | Reply

    • Thank! And glad you liked it. As I said, I definitely learned stuff, too.

      Comment by Stuart Robbins — March 16, 2013 @ 2:12 pm | Reply

  2. PS Don’t forget to post the link to Expat’s blog. Thanks.

    Comment by Johan™ Strandberg — March 16, 2013 @ 2:12 pm | Reply

    • It’s in a few places, but I’ve now linked his name to his blog in this post.

      Comment by Stuart Robbins — March 16, 2013 @ 2:35 pm | Reply

  3. There was a limited edition Bulova Accutron Spaceview 214 50th Anniversary Watch in 2010. I love electro-mechanical watches they are fun relics of the pre-quartz age.

    Comment by Heikki — March 17, 2013 @ 3:20 am | Reply

    • Does anybody know how Hoagland claims to measure the actual speed of his Accutron? I’m toying with the idea of using an Arduino to instrument one and compare with a GPS timebase (i.e., an UTC0 derived clock). An acoustic pickup appears to be optimal[1], as an electromagnetic could [theoretically] interfere and an optical one (i.e., observing the dial with a camera) has a low accuracy.

      The idea would be to keep the watch thermally stable, and to be able to use servos to rotate the watch in a controlled manner to make the measurements in different orientations. I don’t expect to see much of a signal, but solid data would be fun, regardless of what it shows.

      Thinking about it, if Hoagland measures the speed of the watch by looking at it, how the heck can he tell variations over so small time intervals as _parts_ of the transit of Venus with any accuracy? And if he can see it with that resolution, is he counting the ~499 seconds it takes for the light from the sun to reach here (or the somewhat shorter time from when those photons sneaks by Venus)?

      The bogon radiation here is high. Dangerously so, as it might make me waste a bunch of time trying to refute it.

      [1] “The true accutron, instead of ticking, had a faint, high pitch hum which came from the vibrating tuning fork.” — http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Bulova

      Comment by Johan™ Strandberg — March 17, 2013 @ 7:50 am | Reply

      • I think he uses something from the manufacturer that was made for diagnostics.

        That said, one of my (numerous) issues is that I expect there’s electronic noise from his jiggling of the cable itself. He had the audacity to claim significant readings from Chitzen Itza when the watch was in his bag and he was walking around, the cables going all over the place and he’s always fiddling with them. By his own model, he should have just been getting noise from that.

        Comment by Stuart Robbins — March 17, 2013 @ 8:00 am

      • Do you have a link to the general area where he describes this (assuming it is on his website(s) and not just on Coast to Coast). If I can avoid reading _all_ his claims…

        Comment by Johan™ Strandberg — March 17, 2013 @ 8:07 am

      • Not that I know of. I’ve asked Expat.

        Comment by Stuart Robbins — March 17, 2013 @ 8:10 am

      • _Thank_You_

        Comment by Johan™ Strandberg — March 17, 2013 @ 8:14 am

      • According to http://www.enterprisemission.com/Von_Braun2.htm they were using a Microset 3 w/inductive sensor http://www.bmumford.com/mset/model3.html during the “Venus Transit Experiment”.

        Favorite quote of the von_braun2: “For a watch normally rated (by Bulova) as “… accurate to a minute a month.””
        Maybe when it was new. When was this watch last serviced etc?

        Comment by Heikki — March 17, 2013 @ 9:35 am

  4. Hoagland’s description of the “experiment,” and presentation of the Coral Castle “result,” are here:

    It’s a humungous long article and the material you want is not at the top (I make it 30 hits to the PgDn button).

    There’s also a pretty good summary, with links to all his “data,” on the wikipedia page:

    The MicroSet™ timer device isn’t made by Bulova — it’s from Mumford Micro Systems. Bryan Mumford himself is a very helpful guy. He’s answered all my e-mails promptly, and he himself is highly sceptical that Hoagland is showing us anything real.

    Your point about strolling around Chichen Itza with the setup is a good one, too. Whatever he comes up with (at the next Awake & Aware conf, he says) should be discounted on those grounds alone, in my NSH opinion.

    Comment by Expat — March 17, 2013 @ 8:23 am | Reply

  5. Let me add something here, too. In the case of the transits of Venus, and the annular eclipse last May, it’s fairly obvious what it is that he claims is causing the torsion field by spinning. But Chichen Itza (and Stonehenge etc.) were not associated with a specific celestial event, so what is it that he thinks is generating the field on those occasions? The same would apply to his readings at Tikal, where he showed the astounding range of frequencies from 14.531 Hz – 949.586 Hz. It was that which made Bryan Mumford suggest that perhaps the watch was broken.

    Comment by Expat — March 17, 2013 @ 8:33 am | Reply

  6. I will digest this and then return. Thank you both.

    Comment by Johan™ Strandberg — March 17, 2013 @ 8:35 am | Reply

  7. I’ve just finished listening. That was a very interesting episode. A few things there I didn’t know about. I’ve been persuing my own query on another forum, but most of the responses have been of the “He’s nuts, why bother?” kind.

    As for why, I’m just curious to know whose good idea he stole/rubbished for that 1977 article. I’ll leave you with one speculation I cannot prove, but suspect may be a partial answer to his actions. I think Hoagland chose to back the Face on Mars to ‘goad’ NASA into sending a Manned Mars Mission in much the same spirit that cranks send pamphlets full of wild ideas to scientists with requests to ‘prove me wrong’.

    Looking forward to the Ringmakers article/podcast, I’m hoping that the author of that book does not try and claim that Mimas is the Death Star…

    Comment by Graham — March 18, 2013 @ 5:09 am | Reply

  8. There are many, many reasons why his accutron experiment is pure junk science. Not least of which are his lack of baseline and controls. The whole set-up is simply a mess. Are his cables shielded, does he get the same reading using the same set-up on a different laptop, does he get the same readings on at LEAST two other systems which would be unaffected by whatever he is trying to measure using his main system. I could go on for a page or three here. It’s just so much rubbish.


    Comment by Derek James Eunson — March 20, 2013 @ 4:12 am | Reply

    • Note, too, that he somewhat blew his whole theory by noting, on Coast to Coast, that the Accutron “went nuts for 12 hours non-stop” during the summer solstice last year. That was when it was nowhere near any pyramid.

      Comment by Expat — March 20, 2013 @ 10:30 am | Reply

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