48.) In Mr. Proctor's "Lessons in Astronomy," page 15, a ship is represented as sailing away from the observer, and it is given in five positions or distances away on its journey. Now, in its first position, its mast appears above the horizon, and, consequently, higher than the observer's line of vision. But, in its second and third positions, representing the ship as further and further away, it is drawn higher and still higher up above the line of the horizon! Now, it is utterly impossible for a ship to sail away from an observer, under the, conditions indicated, and to appear as given in the picture. Consequently, the picture is a misrepresentation, a fraud, and a disgrace. A ship starting to sail away from an observer with her masts above his line of sight would appear, indisputably, to go down and still lower down towards the horizon line, and could not possibly appear – to anyone with his vision undistorted – as going in any other direction, curved or straight. Since, then the design of the astronomer-artist is to show the Earth to be a globe, and the points in the picture, which would only prove the Earth to be cylindrical if true, are NOT true, it follows that the astronomer-artist fails to prove, pictorially, either that the Earth is a globe or a cylinder, and that we have, therefore, a reasonable proof that the Earth is not. a globe.
The most commonly accepted explanation of this is that the space agencies of the world are involved in a conspiracy faking space travel and exploration. This likely began during the Cold War's 'Space Race', in which the USSR and USA were obsessed with beating each other into space to the point that each faked their accomplishments in an attempt to keep pace with the other's supposed achievements. Since the end of the Cold War, however, the conspiracy is most likely motivated by greed rather than political gains, and using only some of their funding to continue to fake space travel saves a lot of money to embezzle for themselves.