• We have updated the guidelines regarding posting political content: please see the stickied thread on Website Issues.

Prof. Brian Cox On Ghosts

MorningAngel

Justified & Ancient
Joined
May 14, 2015
Messages
3,296
https://www.google.co.uk/amp/www.wa...ox-slates-believers-1820571.amp?client=safari

This has annoyed me since he said it. I used to like him. But to saying anyone who believes in ghosts is a 'knobber' has really peed me off. Millions of people have seen ghosts. Something is happening and just to deny it completely is ridiculous especially for a scientist. What we don't know is what they are. If he denied they are dead people then I could understand but to just deny it happens at all really gets on my mammaries :fckpc:
 
Last edited:
https://www.google.co.uk/amp/www.wa...ox-slates-believers-1820571.amp?client=safari

This has annoyed me since he said it. I used to like him. But to saying anyone who believes in ghosts is a 'knobber' has really peed me off. Millions of people have seen ghosts. Something is happening and just to deny it completely is ridiculous especially for a scientist. What we don't know is what they are. If he denied they are dead people then I could understand but to just deny it happens at all really gets on my mammaries :fckpc:
Ha, I was going to ask if you had ever heard The Infinite Monkey Cage in which Brian Cox goes directly into Smug Mode. Then I read the article and found that is where he said it. Figures.
 
Ha, I was going to ask if you had ever heard The Infinite Monkey Cage in which Brian Cox goes directly into Smug Mode. Then I read the article and found that is where he said it. Figures.
I used to like T.I.M.C. but it seems now that Cox has abandoned his scientific credentials in the search for a cheap laugh.

Shame on you!
 
Were I never to have seen or heard Cox, and only to have had his initial credentials outlined to me, I probably (in principle) would've been relatively relaxed about him. If he had been nothing but his previous reputation and reported scientific perspectives.

As it is, I find him (in persona) to be a disproportionately-objectionable entity, an embodiment of patronising smugness who exudes such a sense of mocking superiority, he is completely off the scale of grinning polite unpleasantness.

He reminds me physically of a cross between two Tonys (Blair and Curtis), emitting his well-rehearsed pop-sci quips. I am incapable of watching or listening to anything that he's involved in: which is probably a ridiculous reaction, but I find him utterly unbearable.

On the periodic table of telescientists, he is the elemental antithesis of Sagen, Bronowski, Asimov, Dawkins or Attenborough, representing instead a slick pseudo-yoof superficiallity.
 
I find his documentaries a tad lacking in content. That seems to be the trend with science documentaries now though - explain everything really slowly and don't include anything too technical that might require some brainwork to understand. The result is that everyone thinks they understand quantum physics because they once saw an animation of the double slit experiment.
 
There's every reason to believe Coxy DID listen to Joy Division. Joy Division were a Salford band, and as Cox is from Oldham he'd probably have been aware of them quite early. He might even have known them at some point as he was a rock musician himself before and during his physics first degree at Manchester University.

Cox was on TV and radio for years before getting his own shows. For example, he coached thousands of kids, including our own Escet, for their Maths GCSEs with his revision programmes. I used to record them in the early hours for him to watch later. (Well, back in the day it was probably Escet setting the video.)

I'm a fan, for the same reasons that I admire Dawkins. Science is the study of nature. There's enough material there to keep us in wonder for the next thousand years, or however long we humans have left before we wipe ourselves out.

Superstition is the expression of the human desire for the external locus of control - we can't take full responsibility for our own lives: it's just too big a burden. Someone or something else MUST have a hand in it. It's hard to accept that there's nobody up in the sky watching out for us.

Even NASA has its superstitions. On the morning of a launch, doughnuts are served and all employees present are expected to eat one or risk jinxing the mission. It's supposed to represent the wheels of the rocket transporter turning smoothly.
 
By telling you that he listened to Joy Division as a youngster...

I can definitely see the Joy Division influence on his first band DARE -

1.jpg



Ahem.
 
Superstition is the expression of the human desire for the external locus of control - we can't take full responsibility for our own lives: it's just too big a burden. Someone or something else MUST have a hand in it. It's hard to accept that there's nobody up in the sky watching out for us.

Huge amount to unpack and challenge there!

:D
 
I used to be very interested in Ghosts but the noise to information ratio has put me off, same with UFOs. Still engaged though. You don't have to believe the phenomena is supernatural to accept that something unexplained is occurring in some cases.
 
I feel a certain affinity for blokes of a certain age with Northern accents, who received their degrees from Northern universities. That said, I had to stop following Prof. Cox and his partner Gia Milinovich on Twitter, as I found them to be the centre of a nexus of self-described skeptics that seemed to possess not a single shred of empathy between them. Deeply unattractive.
 
It gave me little pleasure (indeed, a touch of cramp) to have to 'like' all the above posts, but in a way I'm reassured that so many share my aversion to Prof. Cox, especially in the Ince double-act configuration. My mum can't stand him, so it might be genetic. But I doubt it.

Veering off at a tangent from the world of science, I sometimes enjoy Richard Herring's Leicester Square Theatre Podcasts (unstructured YouTube interviews with fellow comedians), but there's usually a segement of fallback 'Emergency Questions' (often embarassingly puerile) including the question 'have you ever seen a ghost?' The expected response is "Well, no... because they don't exist!", whereupon both parties fall about pulling faces and chortling smugly, as do the audience.

Now, quite possibly ghosts don't exist, but it's the snarky self-satisfaction that pisses me off; there's no real reason for the question to come up in the show except to provide an opportunity to look clever without having an original thought, or making any kind of effort at all. This was particularly distasteful when the guest was the producer / writer John Lloyd, who was his usual polite and thoughtful self throughout. When it came to the Ghost Question and he took the trouble to try to answer the question carefully and wouldn't totally dismiss the idea RH more or less just made fun of him.

I'm not really having a pop at Herring - I've paid to see him - but this sort of thing is just plain nasty, and there's a lot of it about.
 
I sometimes enjoy Richard Herring's Leicester Square Theatre Podcasts (unstructured YouTube interviews with fellow comedians), but there's usually a segement of fallback 'Emergency Questions' (often embarassingly puerile)...

Been listening to these podcasts for the last few days and enjoyed them a lot. However- glad it's not just me that the "emergency questions" grate on. "Have you ever sucked your own cock?"...I mean, c'mon...I know it's for a giggle but still...

I appreciate a lot of Herring's stuff is based on "I'm a total dick", but...I dunno...guess I wish he was better than that. But there's a reason Stewart Lee is so much more respected and valuable as a comedy artist.
 
Yes, being a dick is his stchick alright, up to and including being colosally self-righteous on matters of political correctness, then saying the most appalling things to women in the audience - one time repeatedly screaming at a sixteen year old girl that she was a filthy whore who wanted to have his single sperm 'the size of a trout' thrashing around in her vagina...when she was sitting next to her mother. And leaving it in the DVD release complete with close-ups of his victims. Nice.

Stilll...RHLSTP!

Going off-thread here, but for anyone who's interested the recent Simon Munnery episode was quite odd. Either SM was quite amazingly drunk, or (knowing him) he was just acting in order to make things difficult for RH.

Back to Coxy then.
 
saying the most appalling things to women in the audience - one time repeatedly screaming at a sixteen year old girl that she was a filthy whore who wanted to have his single sperm 'the size of a trout' thrashing around in her vagina...when she was sitting next to her mother. And leaving it in the DVD release complete with close-ups of his victims.

Sounds a right tosser.
 
Could be the girl and her mum were stooges. Who knows? I shouldn't have wandered that far off-topic anyway. But while we're at it, this began as right-on observation that if men produced a single spermatazoa the size of a trout once a month, as opposed to the system we're all familiar with, they'd think twice about being promiscious. Or something.

There are things I like about Richard Herring's comedic imagination, but I'll bet he's a massive fan of Coxy. So there.

How's that for getting back on thread?
 
There is (no, was) a curious programme trailer broadcast on UK tv, of Cox speaking with someone else sitting beside him in the front of a car. This segment was repeated ad infinitum pro nauseum for weeks, a strangely-filmed quasi-comedic piss-take about ghosts and the mindset of people that 'believed in them'.

It was very much a black:white/on:eek:ff/belief:disbelief "what are these superstitious fools like, those that believe in ghosts?"

My key point here (and without it, we might as well close the forum) is that whilst some people might believe in ghosts (ie trust without evidence) I'm confident that larger numbers of humanity believe in the possibility of ghosts.

And I'm not convinced that a superior sniggering certainty, predicated upon the shaky reductionist perspective that absence of evididence constitutes an absolute, universal and eternal evidence of their absence in any and every context, is either reasonable or scientifically-justified.

Note that the modern church of 'yoof science' permits countenancing a whole range of once-fringe Fortean staples. Alien life, Check. Time travel, Check. Artificial Intelligence becoming sentient, Check.

Ghosts.....absolutely not, and anyone who wonders as to their confirmable presence is certifiably insane.

Why is this a totemic step-change too far? Dear Professor? Resonances with religion? Ghosts as souls? Or what?
 
Last edited:
Yes, being a dick is his stchick alright, up to and including being colosally self-righteous on matters of political correctness, then saying the most appalling things to women in the audience - one time repeatedly screaming at a sixteen year old girl that she was a filthy whore who wanted to have his single sperm 'the size of a trout' thrashing around in her vagina...when she was sitting next to her mother. And leaving it in the DVD release complete with close-ups of his victims. Nice.

Stilll...RHLSTP!
Eww, I thankfully haven't heard/seen that exchange. I'm a fan of RHLSTP! too, so am down with the cool kids ;) I'm currently listening to Richard Osman running absolute rings around Herring. In the latter's defence, whether it's his willingness to act dumb or some other thing going on, he does manage to draw interesting responses out of his guests (of course, it could also be that all his guests are such raving egomaniacs, what with being slebs, that they'd hold forth to a lamp post...). He's also willing to tolerate quite a lot of awkwardness, as the episode with Limmy demonstrates. I'll have to look up the Simon Munnery one.

Anyhoo, to wrench this digression back on Fortean if not thread topic, the Vic Reeves episode is a good listen, with non-dismissive answers to the Bigfoot and Ghost emergency questions, his propensity to encounter serial killers before they were famous, plus some very entertaining stuff about Tom Baker - and that's just the things he can tell us o_O
 
Yes, being a dick is his stchick alright, up to and including being colosally self-righteous on matters of political correctness, then saying the most appalling things to women in the audience - one time repeatedly screaming at a sixteen year old girl that she was a filthy whore who wanted to have his single sperm 'the size of a trout' thrashing around in her vagina...when she was sitting next to her mother. And leaving it in the DVD release complete with close-ups of his victims. Nice.

He doesn't seem to have figured out that to be transgressive, you need to be really, really good and really, really clever.
 
Back
Top