Wednesday, January 17, 2007

Debunking 9/11 Debunking

I finally got my hands on an MP3 of Monday's interview with David Ray Griffin on Kevin Barrett's GCN radio show. Sycophantic callers aside, the interview was mostly about his upcoming book, now titled "Debunking 9/11 Debunkers". Griffin explained that his editor hated the title, but that he thought it would get him on the same Amazon page as Popular Mechanics' Debunking 9/11 Conspiracy Theories.

For purposes of this book Griffin views 9/11 debunking as limited to 4 sources, Michael Bronner's article in Vanity Fair on the NORAD Tapes, Kean and Hamilton's book Without Precedent, the NIST FAQ on the World Trade Center collapse, and the previously mention Popular Mechanics' book. While those are all good sources of information, the PM book is the only one I would describe as a debunking, but I guess since the 9/11 conspiracy movement has not really been critically examined in the media or academics, those are what he is left with attacking.

He seemed to hold the most contempt for Popular Mechanics, arguing that they were not really scientists. This seemed especially ironic coming from someone who may hold a PhD, but is not really a scientist either. Yes, the editors of the magazine are not really scientists, but they talk to real ones. A quick check of the bibliography of their book will show several times more experts than the Scholars for 9/11 Truths, or their multiple offsprings. Not to mention all the Ivy League engineers involved with the NIST engineering reports.

Griffin then goes on to attack their journalistic standards. I also found this ironic coming from someone who just repeats unsourced urban legends in his books, and then after the fact justifies it with third party anonymous sources. But hey, finding the truth is hard work.

When addressing the Vanity Fair article, which is hardly uncritical of the government, his response was simply that the tapes were altered and faked. It is pretty convenient making an argument when you can just always say that anything which contradicts you is fake. You could "prove" just about anything with truther logic.


At 17 January, 2007 19:40, Blogger The Artistic Macrophage said...

ok...simple...David Ray...Prove the tapes were me one peice of evidence they were fake...if not than shut up you moron.

Scientist...he is the furthest thing, outside of a caveman, from a scientist...he is a theologian for christs sake...Pun intended.


At 17 January, 2007 19:50, Anonymous Anonymous said...


I've been told (most recently by Alex and LD, I think), how I have zero credibility. I know you've not agree with much I've had to say, and I could understand if you thought I was spamming at times. I want to ask, in any case, would you be willing to take up an on-topic conversation with me, or have I failed to earn your respect and interest?

At 17 January, 2007 21:26, Blogger FatOllie said...

I listened to as much of the interview with Griffin as I could tolerate. Quite clearly, unless New Jersey changes its constitution, he will never be allowed to vote there.

Probably the most astounding thing I heard him say was about Oswald and the Kennedy assassination. Apparently, Griffin studied Russian in college and was a poor student of the language. Therefore, according to Griffin, it is not possible that Oswald, being an unwashed hick, was passably fluent in Russian. So, there must have been two of them -- Lee and a doppelganger. As is typical of Griffin, this idea (that Oswald was actually two) does not originate with him. He liberated it from another fruitcake.

Just for jollies, I checked the Houston Public Library's online catalog today and discovered that a 1997 work of Griffin's ("Parapsychology, philosophy, and spirituality") is available for reading. It's really quite amazing to me that the same person who wrote that apologia for spoon benders, mystics, charlatans, and circus side show freaks could possibly be arguing for the laws of physics today.

Here is a summary so that nobody else has to actually read this crap:
in order to satisfy the dictates of science, the laws of physics need to be thrown overboard because they are too restraining and are "spiritually unsatisfying." Reminds me of the famous (though possibly apocryphal) story about the New York Times position in the early 20th century that rockets could not possibly work in the vacuum of space as they would have nothing to push against.

Griffin is an advocate for a mind so open that your brain falls out.

At 17 January, 2007 21:59, Blogger Simon Lazarus said...

I now realize what it is that drives the Troothers.

It comes from the old adage: "When you do not have the law on your side, argue the facts. When you do not have the facts on your side, argue the law. When you have neither on your side, lie through your teeth."

The Troothers have neither facts nor the law on the side. So they have to lie through their teeth.

At 17 January, 2007 22:15, Blogger FatOllie said...

This stuff is easy to ridicule, but it's not an outlier. See here and page down until you find the description of the home experiment with the wheel barrow, kerosene, and coke can. I have no idea what this experiment is supposed to reveal about a large airplane traveling at 500 mph (or so) striking a hardened target such as that area of the Pentagon. The authors don't explain; I suspect because they can't. I honestly hesitate to say that about the authors as one of them (Dewdney) actually has a record as an intelligent, honest, and objective observer and thinker. It's a shame (and I can't explain it) that he has fallen under the influence of superstitious crackpots.

For anyone who hasn't read it, Dewdney's paper claims that if a large commercial airplane had hit the Pentagon, the wings would have broken from the fuselage and bounced out onto the grass perhaps as if the Pentagon were constructed of rubber. The paper's authors have seen no photographic evidence of the wings lying in the grass (splendorously, perhaps), therefore, no large plane hit the Pentagon at high speed.

If these guys actually want to prove something experimentally, I would suggest that they run their wheel barrow into a brick wall after accelerating it to 500 mph (or so).

At 17 January, 2007 22:19, Blogger Alex said...

Ahhhh! Too many roadrunner cartoons! THAT's the explanation for this....

At 17 January, 2007 23:57, Blogger Billythekid said...

"It is pretty convenient making an argument when you can just always say that anything which contradicts you is fake. You could "prove" just about anything with truther logic"

This is what most truthers do when they run out of arguments.

At 18 January, 2007 07:42, Blogger Lying_Dylan said...

I've been told (most recently by Alex and LD, I think), how I have zero credibility.

Please dont forget complete fraud.

Most people on this board are very intelligent and dont need me to say this though, they can figure it out for themselves whenever they read one of your posts.

At 18 January, 2007 18:12, Blogger The Artistic Macrophage said...


I am willing to discuss an ON TOPIC issue with anyone, including yourself.

Begin sir.



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