Monday, July 06, 2009

The Credulity of Some Reporters Beggars Belief

Check out this amazing article on a 9-11 fruitcake. Not so much for the idiocy he espouses, but for the credulity of the reporter, Dave Rasdal:

To be sure, this is a complicated matter that can’t be fully explained in a column like this or in a two-hour presentation/question/answer session I had with Russ. But, as you listen to Russ and see supporting data, you can’t help but shake your head. A lot of “facts” don’t add up, primary among them:

The speed of collapse. One video shows a building collapse in 8 seconds, which defies the laws of physics. Gravitational pull would require 9.2 seconds. The resistance of concrete and steel would at least double that.

The volume of debris. Sure, dust floated everywhere, indicating the buildings were pulverized. But that doesn’t explain how most of the concrete and steel from a 110-story building could become two or three inches of dust on the ground.

Yes, you can't help but shake your head at a reporter who somehow times "a building collapse" (which building is not specified) at 8 seconds. Of course, as I am getting doggone tired of pointing out, neither tower collapsed in 8 seconds (more like 15-18 seconds), and they did not come down faster than they would have due to gravity, as can be seen by the fact that the debris around them was falling faster than the buildings themselves. Indeed, aside from, say, rocket engines pushing the buildings down, how could they fall faster than gravity, even if we were to accept the Troofer nuts claims of controlled demoltion?

And the volume of debris question is Judy Wood "dustification" zaniness, although she at least has the sense to claim it was the most of the concrete turned to dust, not most of the steel. And indeed Judy comes up:

Wood, a former mechanical engineering professor at Clemson University, examined thousands of photographs and videos of the tragedy from every possible angle. She applied her knowledge to the physical evidence, letting that determine her findings, Russ says.

More moronic musings:

As Russ talks, you wonder along with him. If an airplane crashed into the tower with enough force to bring it down, why didn’t the plane come out the other side? How could the towers collapse so cleanly, spreading only minimal debris over nearby undamaged buildings? If underground fire contributed to the destruction, how could people like Gov. George Pataki walk on the debris without getting burned? Why did Hurricane Erin mysteriously turn away just before the collapse?

I cover these nutters every day, and that is the first I've heard Hurricane Erin brought up as part of the evidence. Why didn't the plane come out the other side? Small bits of it did, but it was largely broken up into small pieces by the impact with the building. How could Pataki walk on the debris without getting burned? Because the fires were underground, duh; there are literally dozens of reports of workers' boots melting from the heat. The towers did not collapse "so cleanly"; indeed many buildings in the area were either completely destroyed by the collapse or suffered major damage, including WTCs 3-7, World Financial Center 2&3, the Winter Garden, Deutsche Bank Building, St. Nicholas' Greek Orthodox Church, etc.

I guess the moral of the story is that the Troofers have gotten good enough at their nonsense that they can fool some particular gullible reporters. One would think he'd at least do some checking around.

Hat Tip: Rich in Iowa, in the comments. Great find!

Update: Check out this timeline by Gerst, if you have any doubts that this reporter should have been hearing "Cuckoo! Cuckoo!" every time Gerst opened his mouth.

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