Bara's response to my response, dated December 28th, 2000. Note that the indented passages are excerpts from my response. I have written a response to Bara, dated January 27th, 2001. A link can be found at the bottom of this page. As the reader will see, it is the first of a number of messages that I intend to post on this website. Any responses that I receive from Bara will also be posted.


Sorry I have not gotten back to you on this before now but I have been distracted by a number of personal issues which have consumed my time. Now, as to the issues you raise.

6. I must say something about your appropiately titled article "Orwell and
the Internet," which you refer to in your rebuttal.  At the end of that
article, you refer to my criticism of Hoagland as "poison" and as
"mendacities." Juxtaposed with those statements, you have put a picture of
Goebbels and Hitler.  Why did you do that? I am astonished that you would
even dream of making such an offensive association. I am astonished that
Hoagland would allow that on his website. Were you trying to frighten me?
Or possibly just to inflame your loyal readers?  I once asked you to
apologize for that lapse of judgement on your part, and will ask you
again. Making such an association is unconscionable!

Now let me explain the above points more carefully.

1.  Here is what you have written in your rebuttal:

"Cassen et al. for instance, make no mention of the "earlier" work by
Lewis that Greenberg is so enamored with; they do not cite him in their
paper at all. The reason for this is simple: Lewis' ideas, based on the
then extremely limited terrestrial knowledge of the Jovian satellites, was
simply wrong. He ascribed the possible internal heating as being from
radioactive decay (an idea that was later emphatically disproven by the
actual Voyager fly-bys). Obviously, Cassen et-al. did not reference Lewis'
work because it has no bearing on their (almost now certainly correct) later
model of internal heating due to tidal stresses."

     You are completely right when you say that I admire the work of John
S. Lewis. His papers written in 1971 (a short one published in Science and
a longer one published in Icarus) are based entirely on theoretical
considerations about the origin and composition of the Solar System. These
considerations led him to a picture of the Galilean satellites which no
one before him had even dreamt of:  deep, deep oceans - even possibly
hundreds of miles deep - of liquid water under the icy crust and
above a rocky core. Even the possibility that these bodies might be
differentiated (i.e. a layer of water, liquid and/or ice, above the
rocky core) was new. As I was writing my historical article, it became
clear to me how influential his work was. All the subsequent work is based
on the same kind of mathematical and compositional analysis which is found
in his 1971 papers, although with significant variations. In particular,
this includes the Cassen, Peale, Reynolds paper of 1979, which brings the
marvelous idea of tidal heating into the picture.

   Mr. Bara, contrary to what you write, the 1979 paper of Cassen et al.
actually cites two papers of Lewis - one of his 1971 papers on the
subject and also his 1976 paper (written with his collaborator Guy
Consolmagno.) That second paper is an elaboration and refinement of the
ideas from Lewis' 1971 papers.

This may be correct. I confused "Is there Liquid Water on Europa" with "On the Habitability of Europa." If you send me a citation link or a page from the paper or citation index by fax I will correct the error as soon as I can. Contrary to your assertions about Mr. Hoagland, he always insists that errors be immediately and publicly corrected when we make them. You may fax the pages to ***-***-**** (please do not publish this number).
   As far as Lewis' theory that radioactive decay would be sufficient to
maintain liquid water oceans on the Galilean satellites, you are right
that this theory was put into serious question in the late 1970s. I
emphasize this fact in my historical article. But things have turned
around since then. There is now strong evidence that Callisto may have a
substantial, subsurface ocean. Since Callisto's orbit has an extremely
small eccentricity, tidal forces could not explain the existence of such
an ocean. Ganymede may also turn out to have an ocean.  In fact, the
theories expounded by Lewis in 1971 are actually looking pretty darn good
now. Concerning Europa, it may be that both radioactive decay and tidal
heating are important as energy sources both for maintaining an ocean and
for nurturing Life.
    So I would say that what you refer to as my "revisionist" version of
history is right on the mark.
Or, more likely, it may still prove to be completely wrong concerning Europa. Tidal forces would still seem to be the most likely source for heating an ocean on Europa. And again, this debate is wholly irrelevant since it has no bearing on any claim made by Mr. Hoagland, now or in the past.
2.  You write:

"In the first major journal paper on the subject (On the Habitability of
Europa, Squyres, et al.) the earliest prior reference is Hoagland's paper,
"The Europa Enigma." Just as obviously as with the question of an ocean,
the authors did not consider the other possible "prior works" now cited by
Greenberg as relevant. This isn't too surprising, since most of the
Greenberg "anti-Hoagland references" are from obscure lectures or
conference presentations, which are generally not considered appropriate
forums for scientifically credited work. Beyond that, simply mentioning
life in a certain place, without putting forth a specific (and ultimately
correct) model is not a valid claim to ownership of a specific theory. If
it was, then "credit" for the microbes ostensibly found by NASA
researchers in the "Martian meteorite" in 1996 would have gone to Percival
Lowell -- who asserted over a hundred years ago that there was "life on Mars,
" when he gazed through his telescope and thought he saw canals. And, he
even published!"

    Mr. Bara, I first informed Mr. Hoagland, Art Bell, and others about
the work and ideas of Benton Clark, of Gerald Feinberg & Robert Shapiro,
and the brief but very insightful remarks of Duncan Lunan in June,
1997. At that time, I hoped and asked for some fairness on the part of
Hoagland. I tried for more than one year to get something to happen.
I failed. Even some simple, but sincere, gesture of fairness would have
meant a great deal. I do not understand why he refused then and continues
to refuse to give fair credit to those individuals. It is not at all
justified by the content of their work and ideas in comparison to his.

       My historical article discusses Hoagland's 1980 article about
Europa in some detail. I devote several paragraphs to explaining the
interesting and imaginative ideas contained in it. I feel that I have
treated it quite fairly. But I also discuss in detail the extremely
insightful ideas of Clark and also those of Feinberg & Shapiro, devoting
several paragraphs to each.  Both of these contributions are inspired by
the possible existence of oceans on the Galilean satellites and also by
the 1977 discovery by Robert Ballard of the deep-sea abodes of Life here
on Earth. The speculations presented by those scientists are rather close
to those suggested by scientists today. I also discuss the ideas of Lunan
and his associates at ASTRA, which are condensed to just two pages in one
of Lunan's books. But even that does not deserve to be dismissed as
"simply mentioning life in a certain place." In fact, as far as I have been
able to document it, Lunan and his associates were actually the first to
offer substantial speculations about Life developing on the Galilean
moons, and that was even pre-Ballard. In certain respects, their
speculations are similar to those of Hoagland.

        I make no comparisons between these various contributions in my
historical article, although I am in a rather unique position to do so. It
seemed to me in writing that article that my own opinions about the
relative importance, the completeness, the  plausibility, or the depth of
the insights that each contribution displays would have been out of place.
It would also be rather difficult to make such a comparison fairly, almost
like comparing apples and carrots.

    I want to emphasize this fact. You will not find any critical comments
about Hoagland's 1980 article on my website. The four contributions which
I mentioned above are all quite different. I certainly learned more from
some than from others about the question of Life developing in oceans on
Europa. The plausibility of the theories presented and the
depth and thoroughness of the discussions are not equal. I view Hoagland's
article on Europa as a positive contribution and have no desire to detract
from it. Can we leave it at that?

    Let me add that scientific conferences are considered as an extremely
important method of communication in the scientific community. Generally
speaking, lectures at such conferences are aimed at a wider scientific
audience than journal papers. They are an ideal forum for a more
speculative type of topic. The Proceedings from such conferences, and, in
particular, the 1979 "Life In The Universe" conference where Benton Clark
lectured, often become important reference works and are available in
almost every university library.

    By the way, you might find it interesting that it was Carl Sagan who
is indirectly responsible for the citation of Hoagland's article in the
1983 paper "On the Habitability of Europa" by Squyres, Reynolds et al. I
learned how this came about from Ray Reynolds. He called me soon after
receiving my letter summarizing the Europa history in 1997.  After
praising the thoroughness of my research, he told me that it was an
unfortunate error to have overlooked Benton Clark's article in their
reference list. (He singled that article out for some reason.) He then
told me that after their article was finished, Squyres showed it to Sagan,
who suggested that it might be good to reference Arthur C. Clarke's
then recent novel "2010,"  which pursues the theme of Life on Europa.
Looking at Clarke's novel led Squyres to Hoagland's article. The authors
decided to also include that as a reference.

      Mr. Bara, the conflict between Mr. Hoagland and myself over the
Europa issue will not be resolved by the kind of approach that you take.
You make matters worse by trying to denigrate, dismiss, or diminish the
work and ideas of various individuals in order to make Hoagland's article
seem more important. What is needed is some sense of fairness.

Fairness is a relative term, Ralph. Again, as an American you are entitled to your opinions about the quality of previous references to life on Europa, but they do not bear any resemblance to the facts. You have engaged in a very personal and nasty little vendetta against Hoagland for reasons I can only guess at, but please do not try to couch them as some sort of scholarly discourse. You have continually misrepresented Hoagland's position on Europa, claiming that he has taken credit for the tidal force ocean theory when he has done no such thing. You have continued to split hairs and use semantics (as you do below) to try to convince many members of the scientific community that Hoagland has lied about this, with unfortunately some success. The simple fact is that Hoagland has only made claim to a specific theory for life, not for the ocean theory, despite your best attempts to put words in his mouth. His theory is his own, and one that he took a lot of heat for at the time.

I have no need or desire to "denigrate, dismiss, or diminish the work and ideas of various individuals in order to make Hoagland's article seem more important." Hoagland's article stands on it's own for its completely unique place in the history of exploration. It is you who have attempted to minimize Hoagland's contribution, not the other way around.

You have attempted to imply that the idea that there might be a life bearing  ocean on Europa was common knowledge at the time, and that Hoagland somehow "stole" the idea and made it his own. The truth is exactly the opposite. No one had any idea that Europa would look as it did, and until Hoagland's article came along no one could understand what the dark cracks might be or how they might relate to life. All of this is borne out by the news accounts of the day, which clearly show that people like Clarke and NASA director Bob Jastrow had never heard of the notion that Europa might harbor life. This is because the references you cite were obscure and general, as I have characterized them. Don't you think if Europa was considered a likely location to find life that the NASA director might have heard of the concept before Hoagland came along?

And please don't think you can tell me anything about Carl Sagan's involvement in all of this. I can tell you a number of stories about Carl's private opinions about Cydonia and the Face. The role he played in public and the actual beliefs he held in private are diametrically opposed.

3. You write:

"These next couple of paragraphs are pure CSICOP-serving pap. Posner makes
it sound like Greenberg is some sort of independent entity, who "just
happened" to come to his attention, when I know for a fact that Greenberg
is in frequent contact with CSICOP members, if not a member himself."

    Mr. Bara, I have a subscription to The Skeptical Inquirer magazine.
Also, in late 1997,  I exchanged a few e-mail messages with Dave Thomas
about an article in Skeptical Inquirer that he had written concerning "The
Bible Code." At that time, I sent him information about my closely-related
"Telephone Number Experiment." Sometime later, after writing the relevant
articles for my website, I informed him of their existence.

    Then, about a year ago, you sent an e-mail message to Dave Thomas and
Kendrick Frazier making some disparaging remarks about me. Thomas
forwarded that message to me. I then wrote a long message to you
correcting the nonsense that you had written, and sent a copy to
Thomas and Frazier. Thomas wrote back to me, saying that he would have
liked to see your reaction when you received my message.

    Gary Posner got in touch with me by e-mail in August. His article was
already on the internet then and he asked me to comment on the accuracy of
what he had written about the Europa issue. I was happy to do that. He did
not tell me how he found my website. I had no contact with him before
receiving his message.

    In addition, looking down the list of CSICOP Fellows provided in your
rebuttal, I find that I have had contact with some of them. I do know
John Paulos slightly. He is another mathematician, and we actually have a
mutual friend. I exchanged a few e-mail messages with Jill Tarter in 1997
about the LITU Conference. (As you may know, she is the person who the
Jody Foster character in Contact is based on.)  I also exchanged one
message with Scott Lilienfeld back in 1996.

That is the extent of my connection with CSICOP.

Ok, I see no conflict with what I wrote at all. And the fact that you are a subscriber to SI shows me clearly where your biases lie, as if I did not already know.
    But you might find the following fact interesting. Since 1997, I have
had an extensive correspondence with Horace Crater - perhaps fifty or so
e-mail messages from him to me, and vice versa. There have also been
some letters, and a package or two. As you certainly must know, Crater is
the President of the Society for Planetary SETI Research (SPSR). Our
correspondence has been about Cydonia.

   Now, Mr. Bara, what do you make of that? Perhaps I am a member of SPSR,
and not CSICOP.  Or, perhaps, I am an individual like Vince DiPietro who
has a passionate interest in getting NASA to take more and better
photographs of Cydonia and who is deeply bitter about the damage that
Hoagland has done to achieving that goal. Maybe that is why I have been so
critical of Hoagland all along.

Maybe. Or maybe you are just a passionate Hoagland basher, blinded by your desire to find anybody who will take a potshot at him to further your crusade.

And please, the idea that Hoagland has somehow has "damaged" attempts to get more images of Cydonia is laughable. If it were left up to the SPSR crowd, we'd have never had any images of the Face (poor as it was) or Cydonia at all from MGS. I know they continue to delude themselves into thinking that their little clandestine meeting with Carl Pilcher had some effect on the decision to take the new Face image, but this is ridiculous. Pilcher later said that he only took the meeting to humor the SPSR boys, get them of his back as it were, and that NASA policy would not change because of it.

It was not until Hoagland and Art Bell started a fax and e-mail campaign to congress and the media in early 1998 that NASA began to listen. Within ten days of the campaign, NASA suddenly announced that they would take the pictures. Then, over a year and a half later, a similar campaign aimed at John McCain of Arizona resulted in some harsh questioning of NASA officials at Senate hearings by McCain. Less than a week later, Malin suddenly releases 9 new images of Cydonia, some of which he had been withholding for over a year in violation of NASA policy on Cydonia.

If DiPietro wants to delude himself into thinking that SPSR has had something to do with these very reluctant image releases, that is his prerogative. But it is patently obvious to anyone with brains that Hoagland and Bell are primarily, if not solely, responsible for the few images we do have. Not the other way around.

And spare me the idea that you are upset with Hoagland because he has in some twisted logic "prevented" more images of Cydonia being released. You're only aligning yourself with DiPietro on this issue because he willing to criticize Hoagland publicly (which seems to be your only qualification for making someone your buddy).

   But the actual reasons are somewhat different. I certainly detest his
anti-intellectual attitude concerning the "Geometry of Cydonia," as
indicated by his refusal to respond to the challenging arguments that I
present on my website concerning that topic. But I also detest the
irresponsibility of his behavior on Coast-To-Coast. Hoagland has a
privileged forum on that show. In my opinion, he has repeatedly abused
that forum. I have been vocal about some of the things that he has done
which have disturbed me, but, in fact, not all of them.
The only one who has displayed an "anti-intellectual attitude" is you. When you first proposed a "debate" with Hoagland on the Cydonia geometry, you sought to exclude the mound data because you thought it would weaken your argument. Where is the intellectual honesty in that? To refresh your memory from our exchanges in the Art Bell BBS:
Let's be clear here. In your initial challenge to Hoagland, you sought to exclude the mounds, not include them. Your reason was that they might provide "interesting evidence." In other words, you wanted to debate Hoagland only on those issues you thought you could "get" him on, and sought to exclude data which would render your arguments meaningless. You changed your tune only after Bell brought it up to Hoagland on the air, and Hoagland pointed out your transparent attempt to restrict the "debate" to those issues which favored your perspective ...

... Hoagland has always welcomed a "peer review" of his claims, as long as they were honest. He fully cooperated with McDaniel and the Lunar Artifacts Research Group. But your challenge, seeking to corner him into a debate only you could win, showed your bias and intent. He was quite right to ignore you ...

This is still my position today.

The reason that you have been ignored by Hoagland is because from the beginning, you signaled that you were a person not to be taken seriously, or considered intellectually honest.

As to specifically responding to your arguments vis-a-vis Cydonia, I am working on an article in my spare time which does just that. But I have withheld finishing and publishing it for two reasons. First ,because we have a policy here that loosely translates as "Don't get into pissing matches with idiots." Mostly, this means that when someone just won't see the light, why bother with them? There are now numerous predictions made by Hoagland and Torun on Hyperdimensional physics that are in the process of being confirmed. And we will shortly make some more specific predictions regarding Pulsars that can be tested from existing data. Yet I am certain that no matter how many predictions we make -- based on the "fallacious" geometry of Cydonia -- that are subsequently confirmed, you'll always say that it is not enough. If you won't set some standard of proof -- how many correct Hyperdimensional Physics predictions are enough to make you say you're wrong? -- why should we even bother to respond to you?

Which brings me to the second reason I have not finished it. For some reason, despite your mean personal attacks and single minded hatred of Hoagland, I see something potentially good in you. Normally, Hoagland's critics fall into one of two categories -- liars or idiots. At one time or another, you have had the distinction of being both. Yet you persist in trying to make contact, to address us directly instead of just hammering from afar as is the habit of most debunkers. I'd like to believe that you are reachable, because I will warn you now that you will lose this war if you continue it. You are on the wrong side of history on this one, and it would be a shame to see someone with the brains to know better give in to his ego and peer pressure and wind up looking like the class fool in the end.

You seem to be in desperate need of some sort of acknowledgment from Hoagland, and you are constantly whining that we don't take you seriously. Yet, from the beginning, you made it clear that your intent was not to have a rational, open discussion of the issues, but rather to destroy ideas that somehow threatened you or that you did not agree with. For your own sake, I hope that you will open your mind just a crack and stop this nasty little war.

   In 1997, I wrote to Hoagland asking him to apologize for something he
had done on the Art Bell Show in 1996. I told him that a sincere apology
for that specific incident might change my opinion of him significantly.
It was just a one-time incident, but an extremely serious and also an
extremely revealing one in my opinion. If you wish to understand me a
little better, perhaps, you should ask Hoagland about that letter.
See above. Why do you think I do not already have it?
4. You write:

" And the notion that Greenberg in turn "just happened" to find an article
on Europa is pure nonsense. By his own admission, after hearing that Hoagland
had a preeminent claim to the model for life on Europa, Greenberg spent
"dozens and dozens of hours" trying to find any references to overturn
Hoagland's claim. He has continued to push the idea that Hoagland is
claiming to be the first to propose a liquid water ocean there, when in
fact this has never been Hoagland's claim."

     Europa was in the news quite a bit during 1996-97.  I read various
articles about Europa. It was in January or February, 1997 that I came
across the article in Science News. It was actually from several
months back, but another article I had read referred to it, and so I
looked it up. The Science News article had just one brief sentence
saying that the idea of an ocean on Europa had been proposed by John S.
Lewis in 1971. Now, I had heard Hoagland talk about Europa quite a few
times on the Art Bell Show and realized that something was mixed up here.

Yes. You are mixed up. See above.
    I did not know how to find the article by Lewis at first, but got the
idea of looking for books that he might have written. In fact, Lewis has
written an encyclopedic volume entitled "Planets and Their Atmospheres."
That book has an extensive bibliography (of some 25-30 pages, as I recall)
and led me quickly to the papers of Lewis. Later, I found a reference to
the paper of Cassen, Peale, and Reynolds.

   I also found some discussion of Life on Europa, although I cannot
remember which one. It might have been Clark's article because that would
be the easiest to find. (In fact, it would be quite easy, since the volume
Life In The Universe has an index.) In March, Jay Ingram's article
about Hoagland and Europa (from the Toronto Star) was read on the Art Bell
Show. That prompted me to write to Ingram to tell him that his article was
incorrect. Ingram responded quickly, telling me that Terence Dickinson was
also writing an article that would soon appear and would be especially
interested in my information. Ingram urged me to send more details. But
I didn't do that right away.

   There were two more incidents that occurred in April, 1997 - a news
release on the Enterprise Mission website and Hoagland's behavior when Art
Bell read Dickinson's misleading article on the show. Those rather blatant
incidents added considerably to my motivation to pursue this. But rather
than sending Ingram what I knew at that time, I decided to look into
things as thoroughly as I could. Most of the dozens of hours that you
refer to were during April and May, 1997. My six-page letter was sent to
Ingram, Hoagland, Art Bell, Dickinson, and others at the beginning of

     That letter criticized Hoagland for his misleading statements
concerning the idea of an ocean on Europa. I had hoped that he would
respond to such criticism by at least making a simple statement on
the air, and on his website, clearly attributing the ocean idea to those
who actually came up with it. Nothing like that happened. I recall one
night when Hoagland happened to mention John S. Lewis on Coast-To-Coast,
referring to Lewis as his friend. That startled me, and I thought that
finally he would say something to clarify things. It would have been so
easy. But he said absolutely nothing about Lewis' work from 1971.

Again, see above. Lewis's work would be irrelevant even if Hoagland had clammed to have first proposed the idea that there was an ocean on Europa.
     In my letter, I pointed out the contributions of Lunan, Clark, etc
concerning the question of Life on Europa. I wrote that Hoagland probably
didn't know about those contributions before, and I raised the question of
whether he would respond to that information with the fairness that those
other individuals deserved. One night on Coast-To-Coast, Hoagland
mentioned his "friend" Duncan Lunan. Again I was startled by that (since,
as with Lewis, I had never heard him mention that name before) and
thought something more would be coming. It would have been a golden
opportunity to make one simple gesture of fairness, but Hoagland decided
to say nothing concerning the speculations of Lunan and his associates at
ASTRA about the Galilean moons.
Because they have nothing whatsoever to so with his theories.
     Let me remind you of the incident that occurred when Hoagland
appeared on Coast-To-Coast one night in early December, 1997. That
afternoon, I had sent Art Bell a fax summarizing the history of ideas
about Europa. It was very polite and said nothing critical of Hoagland.
I had been raising this issue for six months and thought that it was about
time to resolve it. I have no doubt that Bell sent Hoagland that fax. This
was another golden opportunity. It would not have been necessary to read
the fax, but Hoagland could have easily briefly summarized it. I felt that
he had an obligation to clearly state that the idea of an ocean on Europa
had been proposed before he wrote his Europa article in 1980 and that, in
addition to himself, other individuals had also offered substantive
speculations about Life developing in such an ocean.

    Instead, this is what happened as soon as Bell introduced Hoagland:

 ART BELL: Richard, you are I believe originally noted for your
investigation into the monuments of Mars, and then, following that,
artifacts that you have shown on the moon.

 RICHARD HOAGLAND: Well actually, even before that, back in the 1980's I
was looking very hard at a little moon of Jupiter called Europa, and when
I was covering the Voyager story out at JPL in the Summer of 1980,
actually the Spring of 1979 and the Winter of 1980, we flew this
extraordinary spacecraft, NASA did, by Jupiter for the first time and
encountered the four moons, you know, Io, Ganymede, Europa, Callisto, and
Jupiter itself, and it was as part of that observation that I began work
on essentially what turned out to be the first scientific paper, which
ultimately appeared in Star and Sky Magazine in the beginning of 1980,
which was a prognostication, pulling all the data together, that there
might be a global ocean under the ice cover that Voyager had revealed and
that in that global ocean there actually might be some extant living life
forms. Well, they used to say that if you wait long enough sometimes
things come around, well this last year, with the Galileo Mission, in
orbit around Jupiter, some 17 years after that set of predictions, it
turns out that probably we are correct.

    Mr. Bara, that was not at all what I had hoped for. Richard Hoagland
made a critical decision that night - to continue the pretense. I do not
understand what was going on in his mind when he made that artfully
worded statement. Perhaps he just thought that if he were ever embarrassed
over his continued pretense, he could just point to the discussion of the
work of Cassen et al in his 1980 article, and get out of it unscathed.
The fact is that his pretense over the years has cost him a lot.

There is no pretense. His statement is absolutely factually correct. When asked to cite examples of Hoagland's supposed "pretenses" in the past, you have continually referred to this one statement, out of thousands made on hundreds of appearances on the radio over the years, as some sort of "proof" of Hoagland's dishonesty. But clearly, you are just playing semantic games here, trying to find some angle to "get" Hoagland.
    You should read what Lars-Jonas Angstrom has to say:

"The Angstrom Foundation AB wants to support and promote excellence in all
of the natural sciences.

The Foundation is aware of the fact that through out history it has
happened that researchers and scientists have "borrowed" other researchers
and scientists ideas, theories, discoveries and contributions pretending
it to be their own discoveries and claiming credit for themselves.

To do so knowingly -- without an immediate correction -- is far from
showing excellence in science and is, in our opinion, nothing less than a
disgrace. A person doing so is disgraceful and is also bringing disgrace
to a field of science in which he/she definitely does not belong. The
Angstrom Foundation AB would never knowingly promote such an action."

Mr. Bara, who do you think that Mr. Angstrom has in mind?

I have no idea, and neither do you. And even if, as you imply, it is aimed at Hoagland, it not because of the facts, but rather because of your single minded smear campaign against him. I would dearly love to have Mr. Angstrom's and Arthur Clarke's e-mail addresses to set the record straight. But I frankly don't have time to spend searching for their addresses, or going to the university book stacks. And why should I spend the time just to refute what is so obviously the ragings of an obsessed man? Ralph, if you can't see how desperately you are twisting the "facts" to make them fit your preexisting notion of Hoagland, I certainly can't help you. You need a therapist.
5. You write:

"Next, Posner turns his attention to Europa, repeating the now tiresome
intimation that Hoagland has tried to take credit for the work of Cassen,
Reynolds and Peale on a liquid water ocean under the ice crust of Europa.
In this he cites once again the obsessive campaign of Ralph Greenberg, a
mathematician at the University of Washington with CSICOP ties who has
made something of a second career out of pushing this idea.  The problem
of course is that Hoagland has never claimed any such thing, and he has
cited Cassen, Reynolds and Peale in his original paper on the Enterprise
web site and frequently in his on air appearances. So again, we raise the
question, if Hoagland were trying to take false credit, why would he cite
the work of Cassen, Reynolds and Peale, and then put it on his own web
site for all the world to see?"

      Mr. Bara, if Hoagland had acted with some integrity and a sense of
fairness after receiving my letter in June, 1997, then this whole matter
would have been settled long ago. There would have been minimal, if any,
embarrassment to him. My persistence in this matter is a direct
consequence of Hoagland's stubborn intransigence. I really do not
understand why being known as ONE of the first individuals to have
speculated about Life on Europa is not good enough for him.

He has not speculated. He has put forth a very specific model, unlike the earlier citations which you correctly label as "speculation." He has only sought to have the correct historical perspective on his ideas, which many people have sought to distort, including you.
      If Hoagland has frequently cited the work of Cassen, Peale, and
Reynolds on Coast-To-Coast, as you say, then that must be relatively
recently. I have been abroad most of the time since May, and have not
heard the show. But I did see your posting in September which acknowledges
the paper "Is There Liquid Water on Europa?" by Cassen, Peale, and Reynolds
(written, by the way, in 1979, not 1977). That posting appeared
(coincidentally?) soon after Posner's article appeared on the internet
(which was already there in August).  I myself have never heard Hoagland
mention those names. He rarely even talked about his Europa article
on Coast-To-Coast after that December, 1997 episode that I discussed

      It is true that Hoagland cites Cassen, Peale, and Reynolds in
The Europa Enigma. It is true that this article is on his website for
everyone to read. As I've said before, an attentive reader of that article
should realize that the hypothesis of an ocean existing on Europa is not

So what is the problem? The reality is not that Hoagland has "stolen" others ideas, or that he has misrepresented any facts about Europa, or even that he has failed to mention the contributions of others. The problem seems to be in his treatment of YOU, not the the facts. You want him to say what YOU want him to say in exactly the way you want him to say it. Every time. Why should he? Because if he does not, you'll go behind his back and say nasty things about him?
      It is also true that an article written by Steven Squyres and three
other scientists in 1983 has a clear citation of Hoagland's The Europa
Enigma and Clarke's novel 2010. As I mentioned before, according to Ray
Reynolds, it was Squyres himself who is partly responsible for those
citations. Since this was a scientific conference, it is likely that some
of the members of the audience had previously read that paper. I would add
that everyone probably knew of Clarke's novel. Many had probably also
heard about Hoagland and his well-publicized article about Europa.

     In July, 1996, Hoagland decided to go on Coast-To-Coast and accuse
Squyres of trying to steal credit from him. He referred to it as "some
kind of plagiarism." At the time,  Hoagland made a big deal out of this,
not just on Coast-To-Coast, but on another program where he gave an
interview about it, and in a news release dated July 23, 1996. He stated
that Squyres and he had known each other for years and that Squyres must
have been familiar with Hoagland's 1980 article. He did not bother to
mention the citation in a paper which Squyres himself had co-authored.

    Perhaps you see what I mean when I refer to the hypocrisy of your
argument that something Hoagland wrote in 1980 has any bearing on his
behavior in the 1990s. If that argument applies to Hoagland, why does it
not apply to Squyres too?

Because Squyres implied that the ideas were his. Hoagland has never attempted to take credit for any ideas that Squyres has had. By the way, can you think of any original ideas that Squyres has had?
      What is the difference between the two cases?  In fact, there is one
great difference. Hoagland did make misleading statements concerning the
ocean idea. Some of those statements are documented on my website. But did
Squyres make misleading statements? I have seen no evidence that he did.
All that Hoagland provides in the way of evidence is a news report by an
individual named Nick Flowers.

     Mr. Bara, can you explain to me why Richard Hoagland never even
bothered to contact Nick Flowers? Obviously, brief news reports can be

     I recently did contact Flowers. In reply to my query, he informed me
that, except for myself, no one ever contacted him about his interview
with Squyres. He also told me that Squyres said nothing which could be
construed as taking personal credit for either the idea that an ocean
might exist on Europa or that Life might exist there.  Flowers told me
that he was familiar with all the ideas about Europa, and had read
Clarke's novel 2010, and so he would have known if Squyres were taking
false credit.

    It seems to me that Hoagland's accusation against Squyres was nothing
but a cheap publicity stunt - a way of promoting himself at the expense
of someone else.

It seems to me that this whole notion that Hoagland has intentionally misled anybody about Europa is totally in your mind and not supported by the facts. Even the "facts" that you cite as "proof."
6. I will take this opportunity to comment on your article "Orwell and the
Internet," posted on the Enterprise Mission website in September, 1998.
In your rebuttal to Posner's SI article, you recommend it to your readers,
but, in my opinion, it is something that you should be ashamed of. And
Richard Hoagland should be ashamed for allowing it to be posted on the
Enterprise Mission website.

   In that article, you lash out at Steven Squyres. You revive
Hoagland's accusation about plagiarism. You twist what Squyres wrote in
his letter (defending himself against that accusation) to suit your
purpose, which is, of course, to make him seem like a liar. You try as
well as you could to bolster the charge of plagiarism. But, as before, you
simply discredit yourself and make it even clearer how baseless the
accusation against Squyres really is.

   But worst of all is what you do at the end of your article. In May,
1998, I challenged Hoagland to a debate. Art Bell confronted him with my
challenge on the air, and so finally Hoagland realized that ignoring my
criticism would not work. He refused my challenge, and did so in a very
insulting way. Then, several months later, your article "Orwell and the
Internet" appeared. I am sure that Art Bell would not have tolerated on
his show the kind of vilification that is contained in that article.

    You write (referring to my challenge to a debate): "Perhaps Mr.
Greenberg was hoping that Hoagland would check his brain at the door and
give him a forum for his poison. Or maybe he had another line from Hitler
in mind -  "The victor will never be asked if he told the truth"."

    On the other side of the page, you write: "If crusaders like Squyres
and Greenberg are allowed to spread their mendacities unhindered, the
victory will surely go them."

    And, in between your insults to me (and also Squyres), you juxtapose a
photograph of Goebbels and Hitler.  That baffles me completely. Perhaps it
is about time for you to extend an overdue and sincere public apology to
me for making such an unconscionable association.

I tell you what, I'll make you a deal. You cancel your subscription to Skeptical inquirer, completely and publicly denounce their unscientific methods and ruthless character assassination, repudiate their members for being part of such an unethical and unscientific organization, publicly acknowledge that you are satisfied that Hoagland has never intentionally tried to mislead anyone about Europa, admit that your dispute with us about the proper credit for the idea of life there is a matter of scientific debate that remains to be confirmed pending further data, set a clear standard for what you would accept as confirmation that the Cydonia alignments are not just coincidence, and admit that maybe your initial approach regarding the alignments could have conceivably led Hoagland to assume your motives were anything but pure, and we can talk. In fact, if you do that, I'll publicly take back everything I've ever said about you and declare that this whole thing has been a big misunderstanding on both our parts, that you are an honest individual just seeking the truth rather than the arrogant, mean spirited, obsessive, dishonest person I have assumed you to be. I'll try to drop by and bury the hatchet at my next visit home to Seattle, and arrange for you to get in contact with Hoagland so you can talk out your differences with him.

So, how about it? How seriously would you really like to resolve this dispute?


My response, dated January 27th, 2001.