back to article A Hughes failure: Flat Earther rocketeer can't get it up yet again

An American bloke, who reckons Earth is flat as a frisbee, is on a quest to send himself into space to verify his theory. And on Sunday, he failed to even launch a rocket to a few hundred feet. Limousine driver, self-taught rocket maker, and headline generator "Mad" Mike Hughes hoped to blast off his homemade rocket from …

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  1. The Man Who Fell To Earth Silver badge
    FAIL

    1,800 feet

    If he's dumb enough to think that 1,800 feet is enough altitude to tell him anything, he should just ride the elevator up the Burj Khalifa building. That's roughly 2,700 feet.

    1. TheVogon Silver badge

      Re: 1,800 feet

      "Hughes estimated he will need to raise about $2m to bankroll his adventure"

      You can get a round the world plane ticket for less than £1000. Won't that do?

      1. TheVogon Silver badge

        Re: 1,800 feet

        Anyway, how do they explain satellites in orbit, how GPS works, how compasses work, that we can measure our rotation relative to the moon, sun and planets, observe them with telescopes, the phases of the moon, and the above point how otherwise could you sail or fly round the planet?!

        1. Voland's right hand Silver badge

          Re: 1,800 feet

          Anyway, how do they explain satellites in orbit, how GPS works, how compasses work, that we can measure our rotation relative to the moon, sun and planets, observe them with telescopes, the phases of the moon, and the above point how otherwise could you sail or fly round the planet?!

          None of them produces "youtuber ad revenue". Move along.

        2. Rich 11 Silver badge

          Re: 1,800 feet

          Anyway, how do they explain satellites in orbit, how GPS works, how compasses work, that we can measure our rotation relative to the moon, sun and planets, observe them with telescopes, the phases of the moon, and the above point how otherwise could you sail or fly round the planet?!

          Epicycles.

        3. Marco van de Voort

          Re: 1,800 feet

          You are trying to reason with people that have left reason behind. Not a logical thing to do :-)

        4. Prst. V.Jeltz Silver badge

          Re: 1,800 feet

          "how do they explain satellites in orbit, how GPS works, how compasses work..."

          I dont believe there is anyone on the planet who thinks the world is flat. I've looked for their websites before now. Plenty of people might say they are a Flat Earther , but they are just attention seeking.

          I think there is a "society" but its had to radically revise its main policy and ethos to "ok the earth is round , Us "Flat earthers" will now fight for common sense instead, like our name suggests"

          1. Anonymous Coward
            Anonymous Coward

            Re: 1,800 feet

            "Plenty of people might say they are a Flat Earther , but they are just attention seeking."

            You might think, but gullibility (especially in the US) has no apparent physical limits. Just look for instance at # people who believe in religion and / or deny things with overwhelming scientific and directly observable evidence like evolution and anthropomorphic global warming.

            This illustrates it quite well I find: https://www.venganza.org/about/open-letter/

            1. Michael H.F. Wilkinson Silver badge
              Coat

              Re: 1,800 feet

              Rubbish! Everybody knows 1,800 feet isn't high enough to observe the Great A'Tuin in all its majesty

              I'll get me coat. The one with "The Last Hero" in the pocket

              1. 9Rune5
                Pint

                Re: 1,800 feet

                "Rubbish! Everybody knows 1,800 feet isn't high enough to observe the Great A'Tuin in all its majesty"

                That is one way of describing the act of looking up the business end of a turtle to determine its sex (AKA "The Big Bang Theory").

                Oh brutah how I miss the smell of a freshly printed Discworld novel. Today was perfect reading weather and here I am with one less favorite author around. 'Buggrit.

      2. hititzombisi

        Re: 1,800 feet

        (Taps the nose) But how do you know the planes are not taking a circuitous route?

        1. stu 4

          Re: 1,800 feet

          ah... for those unfamiliar with what has now become, like belief it invisible friends, MASSIVE* with our transatlantic cousins - this youtuber is a good summary of what they believe in...

          https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=JgY8zNZ35uw

          *I get comments from the flatards on my paramotor videos claiming it proves you can see the edge, etc... the ignorance is astounding.

        2. Terry 6 Silver badge

          Re: 1,800 feet

          he could just send up a camera on a spaceplane, like wot El Reg did, and observe the curvature of the planet. ®

          Well that's what you say. But I've never seen it.

          1. I ain't Spartacus Gold badge
            Devil

            Re: 1,800 feet

            And remember, the Playmonaut mysteriously drowned. He knew too much...

          2. Anonymous Coward
            Anonymous Coward

            Re: 1,800 feet

            Flat earthers dismiss photographic evidence as lens distortion

            1. Antron Argaiv Silver badge
              FAIL

              Re: 1,800 feet

              35 000 feet on any commercial flight.

              Flat earthers not only can't explain how geostationary satellites work, they have a tenuous grasp of basic mathematics, so spherical trigonometry is a mystery to them. Orbital mechanics, therefore, is "right out".

              1. I ain't Spartacus Gold badge

                Re: 1,800 feet

                so spherical trigonometry is a mystery to them. Orbital mechanics, therefore, is "right out".

                Well, to be fair, trigonometry is a mystery to me as well. What I finally managed to learn at school (not all of it) is now a long-forgotten memory. And so for me, orbital mechanics is also right out.

                I helped with my nephew's homework last year, and realised that I've completely forgotten how to do long division.

                Don't tell anyone that I do water system design calculations for a living...

                1. CrazyOldCatMan Silver badge

                  Re: 1,800 feet

                  Don't tell anyone that I do water system design calculations for a living..

                  I haven't done long division for a long time either. That's what calculators/computers were invented for.

                  After all, you wouldn't have a cat and meow yourself!

                  You would?

                  Oh..

              2. Anonymous Coward
                Anonymous Coward

                Re: 1,800 feet

                Pfft, you know nothing, flying around the 'globe' is obviously impossible because your plane would be upside down by the time you got to Australia if the earth wasn't flat.

                Remember, the moron is strong with the flat earthers, there is an amazing demo of that by a British GP.

          3. CRConrad
            Unhappy

            Re: El Reg camera on a spaceplane

            Seems that effort never quite (sorry:) got off the ground:

            http://www.theregister.co.uk/Tag/lohan

            http://www.theregister.co.uk/2015/10/02/lohan_faa/

            I'm guessing mainly because the driving force behind it, Lester Haines, checked out permanently a little over a year ago: http://www.theregister.co.uk/2016/12/27/the_life_and_times_of_lester_haines/

        3. John Brown (no body) Silver badge
          Coat

          Re: 1,800 feet

          "(Taps the nose) But how do you know the planes are not taking a circuitous route?"

          Ever heard of "Great Circles"? Obvious, innit.

      3. macjules Silver badge

        Re: 1,800 feet

        You can get a round the world plane ticket for less than £1000

        You mean, 'across the world' for him, surely? Mind you, the Flat Earth Society does advertise itself as a truly global organisation.

        1. JLV Silver badge
          Trollface

          >the Flat Earth Society does advertise itself as a truly global organisation.

          Are you so sure?

          globe

          ɡlōb/

          noun

          noun: globe; noun: the globe

          1.

          the earth.

          2.

          a spherical or rounded object.

          1. JLV Silver badge

            Re: >the Flat Earth Society does advertise itself as a truly global organisation.

            To be clear: not a flat Earther, so don't lump me with them.

            But global is probably not a word that would fit them very well, considering that its etymology is derived from precisely what they don't believe to be true. Maybe they'd think of themselves as a `truly flat organization` instead, which has the advantage of fitting corporate jargon. Truly planar?

          2. CrazyOldCatMan Silver badge

            Re: >the Flat Earth Society does advertise itself as a truly global organisation.

            a spherical or rounded object

            Objection yer honour! I think the learned gentleman means "oblate spheroid".

    2. el_oscuro

      Re: 1,800 feet

      ..Or he doesn't even have to leave San Bernardino county. Just drive about an hour west to the Rim of the World Highway. Some of those passes are above 8,000 feet.

      1. ForthIsNotDead Silver badge

        Re: 1,800 feet

        <quote>..Or he doesn't even have to leave San Bernardino county. Just drive about an hour west to the Rim of the World Highway. Some of those passes are above 8,000 feet.</quote>

        Rim of the World Highway. Did you see that, everyone? **RIM OF THE WORLD** HIGHWAY.

        They were hiding it in plain sight all along. Just toying with us. The bastards.

        1. The Nazz Silver badge

          Re: 1,800 feet

          re Forthisnotdead

          I'm somewhat confuddled now.

          A friend of mine, at the actual pub and not facebook, last night said that he'd recently experienced the Rim of the World, nonTM, and yet i'm sure he's also said he's never been outside the UK, certainly not San Bernadino and certainly not by train.

          Surely there must be some other explanation?

          1. onefang Silver badge

            Re: 1,800 feet

            "I'm somewhat confuddled now.

            "A friend of mine, at the actual pub and not facebook, last night said that he'd recently experienced the Rim of the World, nonTM, and yet i'm sure he's also said he's never been outside the UK, certainly not San Bernadino and certainly not by train.

            "Surely there must be some other explanation?"

            How much had your friend been drinking?

    3. SquidEmperor

      Spike Milligan has done it!

      Someone needs to show him the footage from the Irish Space Program...

      https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=esOiB_fanzI

    4. Valerion

      Re: 1,800 feet

      Why does he need to go up?

      Can't he just journey to the actual edge of the earth?

      1. Scroticus Canis Silver badge
        Facepalm

        Re: "Can't he just journey to the actual edge of the earth?"

        They are still looking for it! Anyway lack of proof of an edge does not prove there isn't one.

        Where have I heard that before?

      2. onefang Silver badge

        Re: 1,800 feet

        "Why does he need to go up?

        "Can't he just journey to the actual edge of the earth?"

        Coz that's much further away than going 1,800 feet up.

    5. The Man Who Fell To Earth Silver badge
      WTF?

      The real queston for our age

      Now that the Falcon Heavy launched Musk's Tesla into space, is "How many flat earthers own Tesla's?"

  2. jonathan keith

    Although...

    Of course, when he does return from his historic space-trip with the shattering news that planet Earth is not actually flat after all, the rest of the loony brigade will simply claim that the deep-Feds got to him with their brain rays.

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: Although...

      Alternatively he could just say that he went half mile up and the Earth is flat as a pancake. Then ask for more money to go even further to confirm this. Rinse, repeat. This guy does not seems like he is trying to learn something.

      1. Sorry that handle is already taken. Silver badge

        Re: Although...

        This guy does not seems like he is trying to learn something.

        He's a flat-earther...

        1. Unep Eurobats

          Re: Although...

          Of course he doesn't believe the earth is flat. He's simply discovered that playing the part of someone who does, in his own 24/7 reality show, is fun and lucrative for him and, let's face it, entertaining for the rest of us.

        2. phuzz Silver badge

          Re: Although...

          He didn't used to think the world was flat, but he didn't get any funding until he started playing to that crowd.

          Basically he's found a bunch of gullible people, and a way to exploit that gullibility for free publicity, at the very least.

          1. Dave Hilling

            Re: Although...

            Either that or people are giving him money hoping for his spectacular demise... I vote its more the later than the forme.

        3. Sorry that handle is already taken. Silver badge

          Re: Although...

          He's a flat-earther...

          Alternatively, the suggestion made elsewhere in the comments that he's not a flat-earther himself – he's just milking flat-earthers for funding – warms my heart.

      2. 2+2=5 Silver badge

        Re: Although...

        > Alternatively he could just say that he went half mile up and the Earth is flat as a pancake. Then ask for more money to go even further to confirm this.

        And, if by some miracle, he gets high enough to be able to the whole of the earth's disk is in his field of vision without killing himself, he won't be able to discern any vertical curvature and will triumphantly claim that the earth is a flat disk (with features like continents sliding across it). :-)

      3. HelpfulJohn

        Re: Although...

        <quote>Alternatively he could just say that he went half mile up and the Earth is flat as a pancake. Then ask for more money to go even further to confirm this. Rinse, repeat. </quote>

        This sounds like a very good ploy for getting the gullible and the stupid, who outnumber the wise and wonderful, to pay for flights to Mars.

        "We just need some more funding for the RTG's, the glasshouses and the Lunar Farside telescopes and we'll *finally* outwit the lying NASA/JPL/NSA bastards. Send donations to SpaceX at ..."

      4. mosw

        Re: Although...

        "This guy does not seems like he is trying to learn something."

        Yes, the farce is strong in this one.

  3. PhilipN Silver badge

    "Mad" and "California" (twice) in the same report

    Why am I not surprised?

  4. Christoph Silver badge

    Why repeat the experiment?

    Sending up a steam-driven rocket to check whether the Earth is flat? This was already tried many decades ago and described by the BBC in the report "Wings Over Dagenham" first broadcast on 10 January 1957.

    Flat Earth Society member: Er, could you slow down just a bit here, I want to take that photograph of the Earth.

    Eccles: Oh here. I just saw the Earth through the clouds.

    Flat Earth Society member: Did it look round?

    Eccles: Yeah, but I don't think it saw me.

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: Why repeat the experiment?

      Bit before my time, but isn't that from the Goon show?

      1. John G Imrie Silver badge

        Re: Why repeat the experiment?

        Yep, The BBC used to have a Goon show, but the wheels fell off.

  5. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    I believe the moon is made of cheese and I'm starting a crowd funding page to get the £50bn I need to get there. All donors will be guaranteed to get a piece of cheese, that is if they can find me after I've run off with their money.

    1. MJI Silver badge

      Too late

      But Wallace and Gromit have already proved that

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