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Author Topic: Ok, maybe The Aristocrats is too obscure a reference
MattP
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"You guys said that we did this for the show"
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Frisco
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Poor kid, I hope he doesn't find out that he just ratted out his parents.

Wonder how much they'll get sued for. How many different organizations were involved in the rescue?

(yes, I realize this is jumping to conclusions, but watching the father say "Man" and then stammer out some wtf-inspiring smokescreen just feeds into my preconceived notions about this story. [Razz] )

[ October 16, 2009, 05:32 AM: Message edited by: Frisco ]

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Bella Bee
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Of course, if they had been really, really bad parents, they would actually have put the kid in the balloon.
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Lisa
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quote:
Originally posted by J-Put:
Anybody else think of 12 monkeys?

God, yes.
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Uprooted
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I don't know if it's the same story linked to above, so sorry if it's repetitious, but a neighbor who observed them running around in a panic looking for the kid said he was convinced they really didn't know where the child was, and if it was a scam then they were way better actors than he thought.

Weren't they on some kind of reality show at one point? If that's the case I can't blame a 6-year old kid for getting confused and saying something about a show.

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BlackBlade
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Right, but after the child said that, the father then proceeds to explain that Falcon hides all the time whenever he is asked to do something or when he feels he is going to get in trouble.

I'm not totally sold that this was all an act but that definitely makes me very suspicious. I feel like the father's response after his son's comment really only made the situation worse.

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kmbboots
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It also could have made that the balloon was made for some show, or just being on TV could feel be refered to as a show by a jukid.
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rivka
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quote:
Originally posted by BlackBlade:
I feel like the father's response after his son's comment really only made the situation worse.

Sure. But if the kid said something that actually makes little sense, the parent knows it sounds bad, and is being asked on national TV to explain . . . well, getting flustered and upset is not unreasonable. Especially since the cops had also asked initially if this was a publicity stunt (and STILL seem convinced it was not).
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Bella Bee
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Someone sent me a link to the family's 'Wife-Swap' episode. Having seen a clip (couldn't watch the whole thing - too horrible) in which the screaming father poured milk over the 'wife' while the kids laughed, I can believe anything of these people.

Yes, the show is staged, but these people are clearly somewhat deranged and desperate for attention. Or, as the family would apparently rather have it, descended from aliens.

And now they have the kid throwing up on live TV every time the 'for the show' comment is mentioned.

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rivka
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quote:
Authorities are currently investigating whether the Heene family was involved in a hoax. If they were, that is certainly a story. But until that’s proved, maybe the media should back off just a little and not punish a family that may well have just survived the worst day of their lives.
Amen.
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The Rabbit
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quote:
Originally posted by scifibum:
quote:
Originally posted by Bella Bee:
*shudder*

I can't imagine how terrified those parents must have been. Yay for happy endings, though.
Typical kid, thinking they'd be more freaked out about the balloon flying off than that he was missing.

I think he successfully deflected any wrath that might have been forthcoming. Smart kid? [Wink]
Deflected wrath? -- maybe. Avoided punishement? not if his parents are at all like any of the parents I know.

All you parents out there, what would you do? (Assuming of course that this wasn't a hoax). Of course you'd feel the sense of relief at finding him and initially that would be overwhelming. But the next morning, what would you do? Would grounding him for life be too severe?

Clearly this kid did something very seriously bad, most likely to avoid being punished, and the kid needs to be taught that this wasn't acceptable. I don't no the punishment is the proper response, but something needs to be done to make this kid understand. Maybe having him write letters to all the people involved in the man hunt, apologizing for what he did would be a good start.

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scifibum
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Tough question, Rabbit.

On the one hand, I don't think he should have to pay for the arbitrary size of the consequences of a very common and usually minor childish mistake (hiding). In other words, I don't think he did a "very seriously bad thing", I think he did a slightly bad thing that happened to turn into a big deal for reasons outside his control.

On the other hand, there's a reasonable chance that if he doesn't learn not to hide like that, it could lead to further worry and expense.

Writing a letter and then getting help from Mom and Dad to read it over a few times and then distribute copies seems like a good idea. Working through imaginary scenarios and reinforcing the right responses to stressful situations seems like a good idea. I wouldn't be inclined to extend any additional punishment.

At six he's going to need a lot of encouragement to do better next time, and not a lot of accountability for what went wrong, IMO. *shrug*

Oh, and grounding for life is too severe, definitely. [Smile]

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scifibum
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(Just to be clear, I think the kid initially hid in a very normal and slightly naughty way, and then was probably overwhelmed by a very scary ruckus which I think exceeds a six year old's ability to properly cope with. All of this is assuming there is no hoax.)
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rivka
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I agree entirely with sfbum. (In fact, it's starting to get a tiny bit scary. [Wink] )
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scifibum
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It's OK. I remember some stark disagreements. [Wink]
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rivka
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Right. That's why this is scary.
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dkw
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Assuming no hoax, it is primarily the parents' fault for creating a potentially deadly situation in their backyard and failing to adequately supervise or restrain their 6 year old.

But assuming no hoax, the terror they went through is more punishment than anything anyone else could do to them.

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BelladonnaOrchid
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quote:
Originally posted by The Rabbit: . Of course you'd feel the sense of relief at finding him and initially that would be overwhelming. But the next morning, what would you do?
I don't know. I think that repeated television interviews causing him so much stress that he throw up during one is probably not the right answer, though. I'm sure it does go a long way towards getting him to say 'no' the next time that his parents want to involve him in a hoax (assuming it is one). It would also discourage him from behaving in that fashion on a regular basis, too (assuming it's not a hoax).

Just sayin'.

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Samprimary
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Normally I would say that the chance of this being a hoax are pretty low, but after reading up on the family?

yeap, they're kinda bonkers. I wouldn't put it past them.

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aspectre
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http://gawker.com/5383858/exclusive-i-helped-richard-heene-plan-a-balloon-hoax
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Chris Bridges
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'Balloon boy' incident was 'hoax,' sheriff says

"The case of a giant Mylar balloon, which ascended into the sky late last week amid fears a 6-year-old boy was aboard, has been determined to be a "hoax" and a "publicity stunt," Larimer County, Colorado, Sheriff Jim Alderden said Sunday.

"The family of the Fort Collins boy, Falcon Heene, engineered the incident in order to better market themselves for a reality television show, Alderden told reporters at a news conference."

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Glenn Arnold
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What a world we live in. So what happens now?

Funny thing is, I used to make hot air balloons by ironing garbage bags together, and now I can imagine people building huge Mylar helium balloons, just to be copycats. In fact, this has gotten my old "I want to build a radio controlled dirigible" juices flowing.

But why do people have to turn cool hobby stuff into creepy attention getting weirdness?

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scifibum
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OK, parents. If your kid spoiled a hoax (that was otherwise likely to succeed and further your television career) by failing to contain his cognitive dissonance on national television, what is the appropriate punishment?

(I decided to make a joke rather than attempt to express what I think of the parents. Assuming hoax, now.)

[ October 18, 2009, 03:11 PM: Message edited by: scifibum ]

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scifibum
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How can you even begin to express the disappointment you feel in that situation?

"Falcon, all we asked was one simple thing: consistently stick to a complicated lie, even when people are asking you questions about your motivation for things you did not do. It makes us very sad that you decided not to be a team player."

or

"Daddy just wanted to be famous. But he didn't want to be famous for being a soulless fraudster and horrible parent."

I guess that doesn't work. He probably doesn't mind being famous for those things.

Maybe this:

"Next time, Falcon, when the family is perpetrating a massive abuse of public trust and resources, you won't get to play."

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dabbler
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Now imagine if the whole thing wasn't a hoax and the kid just said something from a confused sense of what was going on. Everyone's suspicions go crazy and they decide it's a hoax. Dad goes to jail and gets a huge fine, legal fees, glares at the supermarket.
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CT
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[Edit #2: I reread this and realized it could be misread. I'm not replying to any of the above posts -- just have been trying to give the benefit of the doubt whenever I can. It's been a hard slog with this one, though. I find myself unusually pissy about the likely manipulative aspects underlying this particular series of self-presentations.]

---

It sounds like the sheriff may have made reference to a confession by one of the parents. If so, certainly people confess under duress to things they may not have actually done, but we'd be getting to the spindly level along the branch of implausibility here.

----

Edited to add reference:

ABC news site

quote:
Alderden said the sheriff's office had possibly misled the media by appearing more credulous than they actually were.

"The only way that we were able to bring this to a successful conclusion is if we got a confession," Alderden said. "We developed a strategy to do that. It was very important during this time that they maintained their trust with us."



[ October 18, 2009, 04:52 PM: Message edited by: CT ]

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BlackBlade
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quote:
Originally posted by dabbler:
Now imagine if the whole thing wasn't a hoax and the kid just said something from a confused sense of what was going on. Everyone's suspicions go crazy and they decide it's a hoax. Dad goes to jail and gets a huge fine, legal fees, glares at the supermarket.

This is actually what I'm worried about most right now. That expose by an "acquaintance" did surprisingly little to convince me that it was a hoax. But perhaps the police have conducted interviews where one or more family members admitted to perpetrating a publicity stunt.
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The Rabbit
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quote:
Originally posted by scifibum:
OK, parents. If your kid spoiled a hoax (that was otherwise likely to succeed and further your television career) by failing to contain his cognitive dissonance on national television, what is the appropriate punishment?

(I decided to make a joke rather than attempt to express what I think of the parents. Assuming hoax, now.)

Unless anyone is confused, my original question was based on the presumption that this wasn't a hoax. If one of the parents has now confessed that it was a hoax, that changes the entire picture.

Assuming that it was a hoax, the parents should at a minimum be required to pay for the full cost of the search and rescue operation. Some jail time is probably also in order. And quite frankly, I think there is a definite call for a further investigation by child protective services with the possibility of removing these kids from their parents custody. That may be over the top, but involving a six year old in this sort of a scam certainly borders on child abuse. The little boy was clearly so stressed by this he was throwing up. I'm not saying this incident alone would justify removing the children from the home, just that it warrants further investigation into the home situation.

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James Tiberius Kirk
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I feel embarrassed for them, more than anything else.

--j_k

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Rakeesh
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Even if I didn't think using the kinds in a scam was grounds for some serious scrutiny by child protective services, I think their continuing involvement of the kids especially when it was so distressing certainly does.

That assumes there was a hoax, which hasn't been proven but sure seems likely to me.

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Nighthawk
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Maybe it's me, but I fail to see how an event such as this, regardless of whether it was real or a hoax, would serve to "better market themselves".
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Rakeesh
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Fame is its own reward? It would certainly drum up interest, however temporary, in whatever project they were working on at the time-whether it be chasing storms, cleaning gutters, reality television, or experimental balloons.
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rivka
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Or maybe they're good actors but lousy marketers. [Razz]
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Frisco
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They doubled CNN and Fox's ratings for what, 6 hours? I wonder if they saw any of this money.
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Samprimary
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quote:
Originally posted by Nighthawk:
Maybe it's me, but I fail to see how an event such as this, regardless of whether it was real or a hoax, would serve to "better market themselves".

They really wanted their "psychic detectives" reality tv show and wanted to get the publicity necessary to spark a base of interest in it. This could have worked, easily, had it not been such an apparently flimsy lie.

Plus, they're crazy. Rationally reasoning what would have better marketed themselves may have been completely irrelevant to their thought process.

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Frisco
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quote:
By DAN ELLIOTT, Associated Press Writer Dan Elliott, Associated Press Writer – 27 mins ago...Documents show that a media outlet has agreed to pay money to the Heenes with regards to the balloon incident, Alderden said. He didn't name the media outlet, but said it was a show that blurs "the line between entertainment and news." It wasn't clear whether the deal was signed before or after the alleged hoax, or whether that media outlet was a possible conspirator.

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Rakeesh
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It's difficult to imagine a business with juicy, sue-able assets would sign such a deal.

ETA: Or rather, that they would do so ahead of time.

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Frisco
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Sign?
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Rappin' Ronnie Reagan
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I think it's pretty funny that commentators on CNN were criticizing the family for appearing in interviews on... CNN. It's pretty hypocritical to criticize something that you helped create, CNN people.
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BlackBlade
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quote:
Originally posted by Rappin' Ronnie Reagan:
I think it's pretty funny that commentators on CNN were criticizing the family for appearing in interviews on... CNN. It's pretty hypocritical to criticize something that you helped create, CNN people.

I don't follow. CNN invited the family over to discuss the incident in good faith that the news of the ordeal would be broadcast to the world. Upon finding out that the incident was a hoax the news analyst are certainly justified in haranguing the family for attempting to use CNN to spread lies.

It was in part thanks to CNN that the truth is becoming revealed as it appears the sheriffs dept indicated that as part of their investigation they did not hint about false motives, and that subsequent testing and TV appearances have confirmed their suspicions.

As an analogy if bars owners become proactively engaged in discouraging drunk driving, I would not say that that was hypocritical.

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sndrake
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Best coverage so far (IMO, of course):

Weekly World News - Balloon Boy Hoax

quote:
DENVER, CO – Richard Heene has admitted the balloon fiasco was a hoax; his child is really an alien they were trying to send home.

***

Richard Heene has since come forward saying this was an attempt to get his alien child back home that went spiraling out of control. Richard and his wife say that young Falcon fell to earth a little over a year ago. They found him in a small crater in their back yard in his natural alien form, which resembles a large mollusk. Richard was halfway to the taxidermist when the creature finally woke up and spoke.

Falcon’s real parents are political exiles barred from entering Earth’s atmosphere. Since losing their child they have been in geosynchronous orbit over Colorado and in good contact with the Heene parents. Falcon has helped Richard with his career in storm chasing, since Richard only has a high school diploma and never really understood the science behind what he was doing.

I am grateful "the world's most reliable news source" still maintains an online presence to offer a dose of objective and rational reporting at a time like this. [Smile]
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Rakeesh
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I've been waiting to get the real story here!
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dkw
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It makes as much sense as any other motive that's been suggested.
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Rappin' Ronnie Reagan
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quote:
Originally posted by BlackBlade:
quote:
Originally posted by Rappin' Ronnie Reagan:
I think it's pretty funny that commentators on CNN were criticizing the family for appearing in interviews on... CNN. It's pretty hypocritical to criticize something that you helped create, CNN people.

I don't follow. CNN invited the family over to discuss the incident in good faith that the news of the ordeal would be broadcast to the world. Upon finding out that the incident was a hoax the news analyst are certainly justified in haranguing the family for attempting to use CNN to spread lies.

That's not what they were doing, though. They were saying they thought it was wrong for anyone in that situation to appear on national television after the event.
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scifibum
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Yeah, I heard the guy criticizing the family for doing interviews in that situation. I think he was ad libbing, mad about the hoaxiness, and probably didn't think too hard about what he was saying.
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Samprimary
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ahahahahaha

these people just keep getting better and better

http://gayrights.change.org/blog/view/the_anti-gay_twist_of_the_balloon_boy_saga

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Glenn Arnold
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At this point I think I should change the name of this thread. Any suggestions?
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rivka
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The Heene Family Reality Show
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BlackBlade
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Falcon is a Flying Rat.
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Glenn Arnold
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I thought this was a great line:

quote:
And yet, while one infamous set of parents could face criminal charges for pretending their son was in a balloon, other parents think nothing of keeping their kids in a bubble.
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