Ok, I feel I kinda hijacked Ivan's crop circle thread, so I'll start my own on a more general subject of ideas that I describe as (to be as diplomatic as I can) off the mainstream. These ideas would include (but are not limited to) crop circles, etufos, cold fusion, zero point energy, hydrogen economy, yeti, etc. Of course these issues also vary in how far off the mainstream they are. Cold fusion for example was briefly (about a week and a half) very much mainstream. I'm a big picture kinda guy and I see people's worldview or bias (if you are comfortable with that word) on the matter as falling into a spectrum. Seen left to right (for the purpose of annoying Zero) it goes like this: 1. True believers. These are people who believe virtually anything that is off the mainstream because they see the mainstream as a big conspiracy. The fact that something is off the mainstream confirms the conspiracy and is evidence that its true. This is of course, a self-reinforcing and circular belief. These are the guys who create the conspiracy theory websites. Often you will see a crossover between issues, as the main issue isn't the individual conspiracies, its the overall conspiracy. So along with scientific ones, on the same site you will see political, economic, etc conspiracies. 2. "I want to believe." Fox Moulder. These are people who want to beleive that "something is out there." They look specifically for evidence that will confirm the off the mainstream ideas. When evidence is thin or nonexistant they will tend to err in the favor of 'being open minded' and keep the issue open or jump to a positive conclusion. 3. 'I don't know." These people are for the most part uneducated or undereducated on the issues at hand. Thats not inherrently good or bad, but it tends to make them more gullible. In any case, they just don't have an opinion on such issues. 4. 'Show me the evidence.' These people are what I consider skeptics. They want hard - REALLY HARD - evidence before they will consider ideas that are off the mainstream. They are governed by the principle that "extrodinary claims require extrordinary evidence," with extrordinary relating to both quantity and quality. 5. 'I won't believe it unless 90% of scientists accept it.' These people would be considered 'dogmatically scientific.' Thats a contradiction in terms but is nevertheless real. So, where do you stand? I will of course go through my rationale later, but feel free to give yours or even attack the structure of my spectrum. (no Zero, I won't reverse it).