More Popular Mechanics
James Meigs expands on an article he wrote a few weeks ago in the New York Post.
One of the chilling things about 9/11 denial is how blithely its adherents are able to accuse their fellow citizens of complicity in evil. They think nothing of suggesting that Romero would keep silent about an enormous crime, that hundreds of researchers involved in 9/11 investigations were participants in a cover-up, or that journalists from Popular Mechanics, The Nation, the New York Times and hundreds of other publications would willingly hide such a plot. Many critics of Popular Mechanics complained that some of the sources we quoted work for the U.S. government. The assumption—explicitly stated by many—was that anyone connected with the government should be seen as implicated. Point of reference: Not including the U.S. Post Office, the federal government has more than 1.9 million employees.
Those barricades are getting crowded. The documentary Loose Change, a messy grab bag of thinly sourced conspiracy claims, became a campus and Internet sensation in 2005. Conspiracy groups recently began hosting conventions where hundreds of like-minded “skeptics” gather to compare notes. And conspiracy literature has become commonplace at antiwar marches and other political events. Most of those embracing the conspiracist mindset probably believe they are espousing a left-wing view. But dig deep enough in the “9/11 Truth Movement” and you come to a place where left and right collide.
The movie Loose Change, for example, frequently cites the American Free Press (AFP) as a source. According to the watchdog group, Center for Media and Democracy, AFP has its roots in the now defunct Liberty Lobby, a group associated with racism, anti-Semitism, and Holocaust denial. (Its founder,Willis Carto, was once described as “America’s most successful professional anti-Semite and racist.”) The award-winning liberal news site www.alternet.org says “the ability of the right-wing media apparatus to dominate public discourse is at the expense of liberal and progressive values.”
The site’s mission statement concludes: “This is what we are fighting against.” Yet, when the Web site offers a roundup of conspiracy theories, it lists www.rense.com as a source.