Wednesday, December 23, 2009

What's Worse Than Debating the CIT-Heads?

Debating the CIT-heads and losing. John Bursill takes on Craig Ranke in a 2-1/2 hour slug-fest (in the sense that both debaters are slugs), and admits that he lost.

This is a debate no one else would have, so once again I get left carrying the bag:) By the way Craig will be viewed the winner (congratulations)....but I hope all are benefited by this sometimes painful process. I do not represent any others in this debate, and strongly defend the work of Michael Wolsey and Jim Hoffman et al as important and valid although I accept it could of been done better.

Adam Syed, a CIT-head himself, engages in a little victory dance at 9-11 Flogger, and reveals himself as a pinhead. For instance:

Craig explains his line of reasoning and uses one of Richard Gage's lecture points as an analogy. This lecture point concerns statistics and probability. With the controlled demolition proof: There are 10 (or more) characteristics of the 'collapses' that are characteristic to only controlled demolition. Gage makes the point that: Let's just say that ONE of those characteristics MIGHT have a (generous) 1 in 100 chance of occurring in a "natural" collapse without explosives. Well, for TWO of those characteristics to occur without CD would already be a 1 in 10,000 chance, meaning quite low indeed. But for ALL TEN of these features to occur without CD is 1 in 100^10 (more correctly spelled 1 x 10^20). In other words, zero, for all practical purposes.

Similarly, at the Pentagon we have 13 eyewitnesses who independently corroborate each other in placing the plane on the north side of the gas station. Of these 13, let's say there's a 1/100 chance of one of them being wrong. But the odds of two of them both being wrong about the plane's location w/r to Citgo is 1/10,000, etc. The probably that all 13 witnesses are wrong about the plane being on the north side is, for all practical purposes, zero.

So much nonsense in those two little paragraphs! Gage always ignores that there are many, many characteristics of controlled demolition that were not present at the World Trade Center. For starters, there were no loud explosions.

Second, there is no way that saying there is only a 1 in 100 chance of any individual North of Citgo witness being wrong is generous. Eyewitnesses are notoriously unreliable, which is why the essential message of every episode of CSI is that when the physical evidence contradicts the eyewitnesses, go with the physical evidence.

And playing the "what are the odds" game cuts against the CIT-heads anyway, as I pointed out months ago. Let's really be generous and say that the odds are 70% that each witness is right and 30% that he is wrong. Adam and Craig would like us to focus on the idea that the odds of them all being wrong are vanishingly small; 30% to the 14th power, which works out to be about 1 in 20 million.

But let's flip that around and ask, what are the odds that they are all right? That's 70% to the 14th power, which may not be vanishingly small, but it's about 0.6% or about 1 in 150. And that's before we get into questions like whether Edward Paik's flight path is significantly different than the "official story" or whether Officer Legasse was playing games with the Troofers.

Note as well this key point in Bursill's post:

Even though it was my understanding that all 13/14 witnesses CIT site believe a plane hit the Pentagon, Craig also now disputes this but would not be drawn on the number...

Of course Ranke disputes that, because if he admits it, his whole "what are the odds" game can be played against him. What are the odds that the eyewitnesses were wrong about the plane hitting the Pentagon? Obviously an order of magnitude or more lower than whether they're wrong about the plane's position vis-a-vis the Citgo station.

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