November 10th, 1919, the New York Times (known globally for their unquestionable authoritative voice) announced that Einstein’s theory of light had been “proved” by an eclipse expedition. A century later, it is empirically observable that Author Eddington’s data cannot confirm light bending around the Sun. Had the observation been authentic, it still wouldn’t prove anything, and an extremely robust study by a NASA engineer demonstrates that gravity does not affect light.
Scientific review of Arthur Eddington’s work shows that valid data was discarded that would have invalidated the observation. Essentially he cherry picked the data points that fit and dismissed the rest. Subsequent studies do validate the observation. However, the cause of light bending around the sun underscores how disingenuous it was for anyone to suggest that anything had been “proven.”
Laboratory experiments show that plasma causes light to refract. It turns out that the Sun is surrounded by an enormous atmosphere of invisible plasma known as the corona. That means the corona will deflect light. Therefore, to determine if gravity bends light, you can’t just have one observation of light bending around the Sun and consider the matter “proven.” Empirical testing must occur to ensure the plasma is not 100% responsible for the effect.
Saying that one observation of light bending around the sun “proves that gravity bends light” is the formal logical fallacy “affirming the consequent.” My favorite example is:
"If Bigfoot is real, we might hear him cracking twigs as he walks in the forest. I hear twigs breaking. Bigfoot is real."
That is the same disingenuous logic the New York Times used when suggesting Relativity had been “proven,” and it’s as fraudulent and dishonest as cherry-picking data.
Sadly, other deceitful press releases have also suggested that “gravity lensing” has been observed with zero effort to test if plasma is causing the effect.
Some papers indicate they detect deflection after subtracting for the plasma around the Sun. However, the theorized gravitational effect drops off quickly, making the results incredibly difficult to discern from the effects of plasma. Dubiously, the error bars are more significant than the effect they are trying to detect. They didn’t say, “we detected gravitation lensing with a p-value of < 0.2” It’s not a definitive answer.
Fortunately, Dr. Edward Dowdye, former NASA engineer, university professor of mathematics, and internationally recognized expert in Atomic Physics, Optics/LASERs/Satellites, thought of a way to make a definitive distinction between plasma and gravitational effects.
He examined the “collected images and the astrophysical data of the stars orbiting about Sagittarius A*, a region thought to contain a supermassive black hole.” It’s the most rigorous study into the question that I know and soundly definitive. The expected results from Relativity do not exist.
Dowdye had some great graphics explaining the observations on his website extinctionshift.com which unfortunately no longer exists since his death, but can be found on the Wayback Machine. You can read his paper, “Gauss’s Law for Gravity and observational evidence reveal no solar lensing in empty vacuum space,” which tediously and thoroughly lays out the facts.
I see nothing but fraud, quack logic, and gaslighting from those asserting that Relativity has observational support. They’re the same people that would attempt to fraudulently gaslight you out of $100. Those behaviors are immoral, and they’re turning our society into irrational idiots.
People no longer understand the distinction between shaming people into wrongness and intellectually explaining. I’m incredulous over the number of college graduates, scientists even, who don’t understand that logical proofs are not confirmed or invalidated by experimental evidence. Same with thinking observations can confirm mathematical principles.
People have a moral obligation to have some discernment to protect their brethren from being infected with bogus information. I feel that it’s part of my job to understand and discern how basic scientific principles apply to my work. I think of it as having integrity.
I recommend that people review all the basic logical fallacies, but maybe start with these:
- Ad Hominem (“conspiracy theorist”)
- Straw Man (“you’re suggesting this…”)
- False Dichotomy (“are you going to buy my bullshit today or tomorrow”)
- Appeal to Authority (“DOD says Swamp Gas.”, “Scientists say…”,) etc.
Then practice identifying them. The enemy is tearing away away at you, so you have to pump your own iron. You can build your muscle of discernment and become bulletproof to absurd lies.