Ridicule Stupid Celebrities

I liked “Two and a Half Men”. I didn’t believe Charlie Sheen was as dumb and shallow as his character. I never liked “the View” and had no illusions about Rosie. I know celebrities can be dumb as stumps and still make big bucks . Good looks and charm trump good sense and intelligence. That explains Charlie at least.

BTW - read how the experts know Rosie is wrong

Stupidity is not crime and shallowness may be a virtue in today's entertainment industry, but both these cognitively challenged individuals move from the harmlessly bumbling to the actively pernicious when they spread their 9/11 conspiracy theories. I believe THEY believe what they say. People with shoe sized IQs are easy to fool. They are beguiled by the verbal equivalent of shinny objects. But we really should stop listening to them and we should do our best to kick their soapboxes out from under them. Let them spew their hatred of America w/o us.

I have pondered the causes of anti-Americanism for more than 20 years. For those of you who have short memories or do not get around very much, the problem did not start with George Bush and will not end when he leaves. Politicians come and go. Anti-Americanism abides. Way back in the 1700s, the French naturalists Georges-Louis Leclerc wrote that powerful animals were absent in America and even people were degenerate there. Georges-Louis was a small man who never visited America, but he was articulate in his opinions even when they were ridiculously silly. Today he would be invited to be a guest on "the View".

There are practical & logical reasons to be anti-American. I wrote a series of posts about that a while back. They are in the archives if you want to read them. In the last generation, however, we have had another permutation - crass celebrities. Celebrities of earlier times often led dissolute private lives, but them tended to behave better in public and were at least ostensibly patriotic. The ones that acted like pigs or embarrassed themselves too often ended up marginalized. Today the grossest celebrities are the ones that get the most attention. They say and do the most outrageous things with absolute impunity and while most claim to love their country, few can think of many good things to say about any particular aspect of it.

I think this is the result of a power shift from eminence to celebrity and from institutions, such as studios, to individual stars. Celebrity, unlike eminence, usually results from some superficial traits, such as looks, flamboyance or inherited wealth. It is possible for a celebrity to be smart and well-rounded, but there is nothing about being a celebrity that requires it and the very fact of being adored by others tends to corrupt average people.

Many ordinary folks go rotten w/o the institutions and people around with the power to keep it real. There is no effective check on the likes of Rosie & Charlies. They are not smart enough to know they are not smart and they feel no shame for being what they are. They have the celebrity power to get away with being unattractive in word & deed and the celebrity power to get people to listen to their groundless opinions. Without celebrity power, they would be pushing a shopping carts full of their worldly possession and ranting about the world. It would be the same quality discourse you hear on "the View", but only the birds and squirrels would have to endure it.

We are too tolerant and respectful of celebrities. Everyone has the right to speak but we have no obligation to listen or take them seriously. We should be more judgemental. We have right, maybe the duty, to ridicule them. If you use big words, they probably will not even be able to tell you are doing it. Rosie may be bigger than most people but together we can balance the scales with good sense.

Posted by Jack at March 30, 2007 9:38 PM
Comments
Comment #214492

Change the channel!

How is speaking your mind un-American? But, when Bush stands up there a flat out lies to us, that’s American as apple pie right?

You’re correct, we are too tolerant. Too tolerant of the Bush administration and their friends. Maybe people should be even more tolerant, afterall that’s what this country is about…It’s intolerance that leads to anti-social behavior.

Posted by: chuck at March 30, 2007 10:06 PM
Comment #214494

Chuck

I did not watch “The View” even before. I am not dumb enough to be in its target audience. But you cannot help hearing about these dumb idea. She is not un-American, just unpatriotic or very stupid. She has a right to speak; so do I. More people listen to her, unfortunately, so they are misinformed.

I think I may have misused the word tolerant. I am tolerant of Rosie. I just am not accepting.

Posted by: Jack at March 30, 2007 10:10 PM
Comment #214495

Jack,

Of course you are right.

Entertainment today celebrates the stupid, the insipid, the banal.
Perhaps in our endless quest not to offend anyone, we have bred out the intelligence.

Where are the protesters of our youth?
Tom Hayden, Abbie Hoffman, Jerry Rubin, those were dissidents you could hang your hat on.

Posted by: Rocky at March 30, 2007 10:51 PM
Comment #214497

Jack, Barbra Walters makes money with the controversy stirred up by Rosie and The Donald, and Rosie voicing her opinion, just like Murdoch makes money on Hannity and O’reiley. Its all mind numbing trash but they do have that right. The real shame is it makes then news, as if its news. For that we have the Corporate controlled Media to thank.
Anti Americanism is,to me, much more than some one like Rosie expressing an opinion no matter how dumb it might be. The constant propaganda of Limbaugh has led many loyal and good Americans down the path of devisivness, which to me is much more anti American than anything Rosie mutters.

Posted by: j2t2 at March 30, 2007 11:01 PM
Comment #214499

Have you seen Charlie Sheen in “The Arrival”? It is a terrible but strangely compelling Sci Fi B movie, 1996. I recommend it highly. It also stars Ron Silver, by coincidence; one of the few Hollywood types who backs conservative candidates and causes.

Posted by: charles Ross at March 30, 2007 11:04 PM
Comment #214502

Geeze Jack, who pissed in your cheerios?

Celebrities who voice an opinion that differs from yours are unAmerican, anti-American or stupid?

If you never had any illusions, why so upset?

People who believe/endorse things that go against what you believe are bad, but celebrities that do it are worse? I bet if you looked you could find some that believe as you do, who probably look as dumb and unAmerican to others as these do to you.

Could it be?

And what’s this anti-American crap? Since when is disagreeing or holding a different opinion unAmerican or anti-American? Dissent and the right to express ideas is as American as apple pie.

If I say get over yourself will the watchblog manager ban me?

Posted by: womanmarine at March 30, 2007 11:24 PM
Comment #214504

Celebrities by and large are simply insulated from reality.

And when that happens to you, when other people take care of the details of your day-to-day existence, you just don’t HAVE to look at the world and its problems as they actually are. You can just imagine the world as you’d like it to be.

In general, conservatism requires a much less sentimental and idealistic mindset than liberalism, so so it’s no suprise that most celebrities would gravitate toward liberalism’s utopian schemes.

If our society valued somebody who was good at say, policing a rough neigborhood instead of somebody who is good at playing a guitar or pretending to be a person they’re not on the silver screen, we’d probably see celebrities espousing very different values.

Posted by: Loyal Opposition at March 30, 2007 11:34 PM
Comment #214505

I know I asked myself today “What does Rosie O’Donnell think?”.

Seriously, and with all due respect to the woman, I think we mutually don’t give a damn. I think you should do yourself the favor of not giving a damn yourself, at least not in calling for people to pre-empt what they have to say. It’s called the marketplace of ideas.

Which leads me to the question: When is the Republican party going to stop focusing so much on how poorly everybody else’s ideas should sell, and admit how poorly their own are selling at the moment.

Posted by: Stephen Daugherty at March 30, 2007 11:35 PM
Comment #214506

Woman

You can say it. I believe in letting people say what they want. The Watchblog manager just goes after name calling and I do not think you did that.

The reason I think Rosie is anti-American is her exceedingly stupid idea that somehow we bombed ourselves on 9/11. I saw the clip. She said that fire cannot melt metal. I guess she missed the part in grade school where they showed molten steel.

She is just such a nasty woman who seems to hate almost everyone. Her perpetual scowl just annoys me. That is my own opinion, of course, but I just do not like such negative people. She also does seem very stupid. I think she may have given so many people a piece of her mind that she has nothing left.

Stephen

I am not calling to prempt her, just judge her for what she is. We cut too much slack to stupid celebrities.

I am not saying her idea sell poorly. Unfortunatley she appeals to the half wits, some of whom vote. I dislike the way she hates our country. If smarter people do not react, the dummies think what she says must be true.

Posted by: Jack at March 30, 2007 11:46 PM
Comment #214507

LO-
Both political parties have their utopian tendencies. The Democrats have already been punished for theirs. The Republicans are in the process of being punished for theirs. Your party has no room to talk about how much more realistic it is. It would not be losing a war, running massive deficits, and facing corruption charges of bewildering variety.

As for valuing people? I think part of that has to be a shift way from materialism as the way to define everything. When we refuse to face global warming or crack down on financial cheating and fly-by-night accounting because it could cause trouble for the economy, we’re screwed up in our priorities. The truth is, the economy is not a thing by itself. It’s a part of society, and the evil we accept can feedback to make a poor illusion out of our supposed gains.

Respect for authority will return when people can trust their elected officials not to sell them out. Respect for authority will return when fear of the poor doesn’t drive people to try and show them whose boss. They in turn remember the pride at being better than their circumstances, rather than living down to the expectations of those taught to fear them.

The Republican Party has supported an anti-authoritarian streak in its ranks, but somehow doesn’t draw the line between that and the disrespect for authority in the general public, and for the law.

The Republicans should get their heads straight about what they want before they come complaining to us.

Posted by: Stephen Daugherty at March 30, 2007 11:52 PM
Comment #214510

Stephen

I do not think respect for the authorities will ever return. We expect too much from them and we ask government to give us the happiness we cannot achieve. I do not think it is a Dem/Rep thing.

Our whole society is set up to bring down anybody who seems to rise above the herd. That is why you are left with celebrity.

We have become a society of trash lovers. We refuse to judge and so deem all opinions, behaviors and lifestyles equal. So we treat a pig like Anna Nicole as a tragic case and the media devotes many hours to studying the sorid details of her wasted life. That would be great if it was a morality play about what NOT to be, but you know thousands of young women want to be her and thousands of young men want to be with people like her.

Posted by: Jack at March 31, 2007 12:04 AM
Comment #214512

Jack,
Just because a crazy person said it, doesn’t mean that it is wrong. Albeit that Rosie and Charlie Sheen are a bit cuckoo, but what they say, such as about possible holes in the 9/11 story, do bring up some good points.

It’s funny how as soon as someone even questions the possibility that MAYBE something about the 9/11 story doesn’t add up, people start yelling, “WHAT THE HELL ARE TRYING TO SAY!!??, DO YOU HAVE ANY IDEA ON HOW MANY PEOPLE WOULD HAVE TO BE INVOLVED!!?? ARE YOU ANTI AMERICAN, ANTI BUSH!!??”

No, I am not anti American or even saying that I’m anti Bush; I’m just thinking critically about how there are some holes within the events of 9/11. Now unless you have some real answers for me, stop freakin criticizing me!!!

Posted by: greenstuff at March 31, 2007 12:07 AM
Comment #214514

Greenstuff

Asking question is okay. But you need a reasonable basis. That is exactly the problem with this whole idea. There ARE stupid questions as well as stupid answers.

What “questions” do you have? Let me supply a couple. Do you really think Americans blew up the towers and the pentagon? Do you believe those 19 guys were not involved? Do you believe a vast conspiracy made this happen? Why? So we could invade Afghanistan?

If you have a reasonable doubt, mention what that is. If you have a unreasonalbe doubt, so what? Do not fall into the sophomore wisdom of doubting everything just because you cannot understand all the details.

I know we did not land on the moon and there is no credible proof that the earth is round. We may well be living in the matrix. Try to prove these things are wrong.

Posted by: Jack at March 31, 2007 12:29 AM
Comment #214519

Jack,

I, too, remember the good old days when celebrities thought it helpful and their duty to support their country, especially in time of war. The famous ball players, movie stars, etc., that traded the sport uniform and tuxedoes for the military uniform were too many to mention not too long ago. Why, even the King of Rock, Elvis Presley gave up the sparkling, high-collared shirts of his fame to wear the drab greens of the military in the sixties.
Could you imagine any rock star actually putting on a military uniform these days, unless he was going to purposely “mess himself” on stage in it to make a statement?
Let’s face it! Celebrities today don’t even the have the balls that Elvis Presley had just forty years ago.
I think though that today the celebs just go where the money is for the most part. They know nothing about real life or world issues, but if spouting off against the war can land that lead role, or Anti-war gig, or Grammy award, bring on the fat mouths of the Dixie Chicks. That’s Hollywood. Anything for a fast buck!

JD

Posted by: JD at March 31, 2007 1:12 AM
Comment #214520

JD, Didnt the Dixie Chicks suffer through hard times, for their stance on Bush’s folly,at the hands of Country music fans. Whilst the “super patriotic” Toby Keith was rewarded for his wrong headed stance on Iraq and Bush. Of course that was a few years, many lost lives and a few billion dollars down the drain ago.

Posted by: j2t2 at March 31, 2007 1:32 AM
Comment #214522

Jack,
I am no conspiracy theorist, however, there are some serious issues that are raised with the mainstream account of 9/11. Now of course I could post these questions but I’ll probably be lampooned as some nut if I do; so I will. The following assertions have been made by experts in the fields of science and various academics; generally by people who think critically and aren’t afraid to question the status quo.

A once respected physicist from Brigham Young University, Steven E. Jones asserts that the molten steel found within the debris of the Twin Towers could in no way be melted by jet fuel alone. He also states that gravity is not an efficient enough force to bring down the Twin Towers without the use of explosives. How verifible this is I do not know, but previous to 9/11, Jones was a renowned scientist within his field, especially for his work in cold fusion.

Now just because I have some issues with the mainstream account of 9/11 doesn’t mean that I believe LBJ orderd the assasination of JFK or that Tupac and Elvis are still alive; all I am saying is that there are some serious holes within the mainstream account.

Once again, just to get it clear, I am in no way jumping to any conclusion of “whodunit?” or whatever; I’m just raising some interesting points, and in no way am I being anti American or anti Bush by doing so…jeez.

Posted by: greenstuff at March 31, 2007 2:34 AM
Comment #214524

Jack,

A few points.

One way to make yourself feel smarter is to surround yourself with people who are not as intelligent as you. If you sit home all day watching TV, Rosie just might fit that requirement.

At some point in the last 50 years, the media went from actually doing what we thought they were doing, telling the news, to being publicly traded companies that became focused on making money. Rosie and Charlie sell, which is obvious cause you spent all this effort in this post.

Watchblog censors name calling. What if Rosie were one of the posters here, then would this whole topic be deleted? All you have done so far is call her names. This post is basically drawing more attention to her, and subsequently supporting her continuation in media.

Like Stephen said:
“When is the Republican party going to stop focusing so much on how poorly everybody else’s ideas should sell, and admit how poorly their own are selling at the moment.”

Admitting you are wrong is a strength, not a weakness.

-Dutch_expat

PS - As has been pointed out before, the simple solution to the Rosie problem is this…..don’t watch!

Posted by: Dutch_expat at March 31, 2007 5:23 AM
Comment #214529
We are too tolerant and respectful of celebrities. Everyone has the right to speak but we have no obligation to listen or take them seriously.

I agree. Why Republicans and other Californians wanted a horny action hero as their governor is beyond me. Now Republicans want Fred “that guy on Law and Order” Thompson to run for President. Democrats should get Martin Sheen to run for President. He played the President on TV, so he outranks Thompson who is just a DA. While I am at it, I’d also like to give a shoutout to that old racist windbag Charlton Heston. (How’s THAT for disrespectful!) Let’s who am I missing here? Ron Silver. He spoke at the GOP convention and said what a brilliant military leader Bush is. I’ll remember not to take anything he says seriously…


Posted by: Woody Mena at March 31, 2007 8:24 AM
Comment #214530

“who am I missing here?”

Woody,

Patricia Heaton? I wonder if she really did “fast” over the removal of Terri Schiavo’s feeding tube. Everybody Loves Raymond is still just as enjoyable to watch, as is Two and A Half Men.

Celebs are just people, talented people, but still just people like everyone of us.

Posted by: KansasDem at March 31, 2007 9:09 AM
Comment #214532

greenstuff,
Jones also claims that the damage to the Pentagon couldn’t have been caused by an airliner, despite the pictures showing the plane hitting the building.
As for the WTC, the molten steel can easily be accounted for by the blast furnace effect caused by air flow in the impact area and other factors. The impact itself carried enough energy to melt steel.
However, melting of the steel isn’t necessary to bring the buildings down. The steel was tempered to give it the strength to support the weight. The burning fuel was plenty hot enough to remove the temper from the steel.
Combined with the removal of many of the structural elements in the impact area that was enough to make that section of the building unable to suport the thousands of tons of material above it.
Being an expert in fusion physics doesn’t make Jones an expert in structural engineering or in demolition. He obviously isn’t.
Gravity doesn’t have to be an efficient force, (it is) it just has to be enough (it is). No explosives were needed in the buildings. The planes were carrying thousands of pounds of explosive material.

Posted by: traveler at March 31, 2007 10:11 AM
Comment #214533

Jack,Woody et al
And lets not forget Saint Reagan! One of the worst presidents we have had but remembered fondly because of his acting abilities. Of course even the worst look good in comparison to the present regime.
They are wrong but I do understand the conspirist. Problem they have is they underestimate the callous incompetence of W. Hard to belive his apoligist give him a pass on being asleep at the switch in the face of clear warnings. Another detail is the obvious delight the military industrial complex had. “Put on your black dress!Peace has broken out!”Brect,Mother Courage.

Posted by: BillS at March 31, 2007 10:12 AM
Comment #214534

Woody Mena,
Charlton Heston an old racist windbag?
That’s not a disrespectful statement, it’s an utterly ignorant one. I guess you’re not aware of Heston’s involvement in the civil rights movement in the sixties, including his marching beside MLK.

Posted by: traveller at March 31, 2007 10:31 AM
Comment #214536

Patriotism is a love of one’s country. Do we have to approve of everything a spouse, a child, or a sibling does to love them?

America is not a culture built on being that submissive, that apologetic. I love this country, but I hate the policy that’s been forced on it.

I took a quick glance at what Rosie said, and it doesn’t seem anti-American to me. Just because she criticizes the direction of American foreign policy doesn’t mean she hates America. You can only take that view if your assumption is that only hatred of one’s country could motivate such a criticism.

I think it’s perfectly possible not to like war period, and still love this country. It’s not a view I agree with, but I can plainly state that I think that real life doesn’t follow the ideals of pacifism all the time. I don’t have to render a moralizing verdict on these people to disagree.

I think that’s been one of the sad things about how the Republican party has gone about its politics, and one of the reasons the party is in such decline.

No party, not the Democrats or the Republicans, is monolithic in its opinions. There’s always a spread, a mix of folks with different combinations of views. The Republicans, in their drive to create an extraordinary amount of party discipline generated that rigid unity at great cost. They used the kind of perjorative attacks now directed at Rosie to criticize any deviation from the central platform, from support of the war, and support of the president.

As they divided themselves sharply from those who disagreed with them, as they used the harsh, demeaning rhetoric, they carved away the margins of their own support, alienating their own moderates, and many of the independents who had allied with them over the last decade.

I remember watching this Anime called Tsubasa Chronicles, where this swordsmen warned his new student against unsheathing his sword too early, saying that an careless, untrained swordsman could cut things with the sword he didn’t want to cut- himself, and perhaps even the one he wanted to protect. Well, the Republicans have taken out their swords for ideological battle too often and too carelessly, and have ended up cutting themselves, their support, and what they sought to protect in the process.

They have preserved their own sense of superiority at the cost of convincing others that this self-confidence is considerably unwarranted. Thus, the election results.

The problem with beating up on Rosie at this point, is people would buy more of what she says than what her adversary in the debate would say. The reflexive rage of the Republican party is sadly predictable, and mostly counterproductive. The Republicans need to relearn how to come out on top in a civil, respectful debate. They need to reconcile their policy and their ideology to the real world, and to the times they are in.

Posted by: Stephen Daugherty at March 31, 2007 10:49 AM
Comment #214537

BTW - read how the experts know Rosie is wrong

J2t2

Hard times? It is a very interesting case study. The country music fans rejected them, but for the same political reasons the pop crowd took them in.

Greenstuff

People can think up questions on anything. There is still a dispute about the assassination of Julius Caesar. At some point (as in the Kennedy assassination or Elvis living too) you have to just go with the evidence. Some theories are loony and we really do not need to go there.

I think the whole idea of a 9/11 conspiracy is as fundamentally anti-American as it is wrong. You would have to believe that American authorities on the Federal, state and local level colluded to murder their own people. It would be a much more complicated plot than burning the Reichstag. Terrorists actively promulgate the idea while at the same time taking credit for doing it. Among the weak minded the CAN have it both ways. If they can find fellow travelers or useful idiots such as Rosie, they are very happy.

I am also not an expert, but I read this article addresses all reasonable doubts.


Dutch

I considered the possibility that writing would amplify her reach. But have been studying how rumor and disinformation works for years now. If disinformation is not countered, many people say, “there must be something to that because they let it go.” As I wrote to Greenstuff, there are people actively promoting an agenda designed to demoralize Americans and discredit the things most of them value.

Woody

Charlton Heston has Alzheimer’s. There are fewer conservative celebrities, so I agree with you that it is a smaller universe to choose from. You guys certainly jump on Ann Coulter enough. I think she goes over the line on many occasions, but never as far as Rosie.

Celebrities can hate our president. I treated the Dixie Chicks as anyone participating in the political process. I have always been suspicious of the celebrity effect. Entertainers may or may not be competent in politics. Their celebrity magnifies both their faults and virtues. I can take that, but when it spills over into hating our country and what it stands for, then I object.

BillS

Brecht is an excellent example of someone who manipulated words and images in the service of an evil system. He was smarter than Rosie or Charlie, but he was in the same business.

Posted by: Jack at March 31, 2007 11:06 AM
Comment #214539

Jack and traveller,

I did not know about Heston’s support of the civil rights movement, so yes I was ignorant in that sense. I was reacting to his comments in Bowling for Columbine. It is true that he was later diagnosed with Alzheimer’s disease, but I don’t think that erases the historical record. He was the president of the NRA when Moore interviewed him.

I don’t think of Ann Coulter really fits the category we are talking about, since she is famous entirely for her political rants.

Posted by: Woody Mena at March 31, 2007 11:23 AM
Comment #214540

But since you brought Coulter up, I don’t see how you could argue that Rosie is worse. Coulter has “joked” at various times about assassinating a US senator, assassinating a liberal Supreme Court justice, and blowing up the New York Times. Not to mention accusing widows of enjoying their husbands deaths, calling John Edwards a “faggot”… Yeah, we do jump on her a lot, because she deserves it.

Posted by: Woody Mena at March 31, 2007 11:27 AM
Comment #214543

I agree with Jack that stupidity among celebrities should be ridiculed. They have every right to express their opinions. I have every right to ridicule their stupidity.

Rosie, in particular, is expressing her opinion in a dangerous forum (a supposed “serious” talk-show). If she were doing comedy, or running a clearly political show like “Politically incorrect” it would be different. I would ignore statements made as part of comedy or a political show. But the audience of “The View” should not expect to be treated with such clear and uneducated venom as part of that show.

She should be ridiculed off the show. (And not because of “her message”, but because of her ignorance and because it is the wrong forum for such blather.)

Maybe they could change the name of the show to change the forum to match her tirades: “The Liberal View”.

Posted by: Don at March 31, 2007 12:26 PM
Comment #214545

Jack

Rosie is an entertainer, and imo not a particularly good one. You are serving her needs just by giving her recognition. I think she is probably more of an oppurtunist than just another angry over opinionated big mouth with not enough good sense to keep her mouth shut. Just like Limbaugh, Hannity, O’Rielly, Coulter and the likes she has no real talents and relies on controversy to keep her career going.

I suppose there may be a faction of people who take to heart what celebrities have to say on national matters. But I really can not imagine that anyone who is really concerned with the state of affairs of our nation gives these people a serious listen. Anyone with even just half a brain realizes that they lead superficial lifes not in keeping with the norm and that their concerns for humanity are generally hollow and a means of self justification. However this does not necesarily make them stupid or idiots. It merely places them in a reality beyond the everyday concerns of the rest of us. Some I am sure are very well educated and well meaning, but even the best education does not guarantee a person of substance. One need look no further than our current president for evidence of the latter.

As you can probably tell I do not look favorably on your simplistic generalization of someone without a formal education or of differing views as not being worthy of having an opinion. I have no education beyond high school and I am sure it shows. However I do not consider myself stupid or not capable of having an intelligent thought. You are using education to make class distinctions and somehow deem yourself a more valuable citizen than the rest. This shallow generalization makes you no better than the idiots you are so quick to look down on.

Posted by: ILdem at March 31, 2007 12:47 PM
Comment #214548

Greenstuff, Traveller,

I never thought I would say this but Traveller is right on about the nonsense conspiracies on 911. In addition, you don’t have to melt steel to get it to fail, that’s why we are required to fireproof it by building codes.

What was the name of that crap conspiracy movie on the internet, “Loose Change”? A perfect example of how you can string photos, figures, and music to prove anything or nothing. The whole steel melting argument is a another example of idiots trying to sound knowledgeable to the, let’s face it, uneducated public. The whole movie never even mentions what really happened to the people who died in the plane that supposedly couldn’t possibly have crashed into the Pentagon. Talk about holes in one’s argument.

Of course, we all know how the Clinton’s have had people killed who got in their way, too. But the nutjobs who threw that one around knew they were playing at a game of character assassination.

Posted by: chris2x at March 31, 2007 1:40 PM
Comment #214550

IlDem

I said nothing re Rosie’s education. I do not know if she has one or not. I ridicule stupid. That she has thick as flies on horse manure.

For the record, I have known many smart but less educated people and there is nothing worse than an educated fool.

Woody

Moore took advantage of a confused old man and then strengthened his advantage by clever editing. I did not mention the Moore thing, because I was just talking about Heston. But since you brought it up, Moore is also dispicable.

Re widows - there is a general problem I have with such situations too. We have declared certain types of people above criticism. If you suffer a tragedy, you are qualifed to speak about your feelings, but it gives you no special insights into events you have not experienced. A widow has no special standing to speak about 9/11 or Bush policies. It is the same principle as in celebrity.

My mother died of cancer, but you would be foolish to take my advice re cancer treatment or the causes of the disease, no matter how heartfelt or sincere.

Posted by: Jack at March 31, 2007 2:02 PM
Comment #214551

Jack is right about pointing out stupid or damaging comments by those with oversized soapboxes. Controversy and feuds as others have pointed out does sell. Rosie doesn’t feel the need to do her research on as important item as ‘911’ before shooting her mouth off. Of course, that hasn’t stopped Bill O’Reilly or Limbaugh either and their soapboxes are arguably bigger.

In addition to pointing out ignorant comments we should probably focus on why this stuff flies in the first place. Educating our children to be critical thinkers is more important than ever. The entertainment industry is a formidable foe but a nation founded on Enlightenment principles of reason and rights must fight and pay to keep those foundations.

Something must be wrong when an industry with disproportionate power can get rich off the 14 to 24 year-old market. Maybe we should hit the entertainment industry with an education tax. There is more good entertainment and media out there today than there ever was but it doesn’t seem to make the money.

A sometimes brilliant if poorly executed comedy is the movie “Idiocracy” by the creator of “Office Space” and “King of the Hill”, Mike Judge, now out on DVD. Essentially, it depicts a wealthy and successful society now consumed with the most basic human preoccupations of sex and celebrity not becoming smarter, but dumber in the future, much dumber. It’s concepts are brilliant but the writing and direction fall short. I only recommend it because just thinking about it makes me laugh. A warning, Mike Judge also created “Beavis and Butthead”.

Posted by: chris2x at March 31, 2007 2:10 PM
Comment #214553

Jack said,

For the record, I have known many smart but less educated people and there is nothing worse than an educated fool.

This sounds awfully anti-intellectual, Jack. I’m sure you can find many worse things or types of people than an educated fool.

Of course, didn’t we sort of elect one of those President? Talk about dangerous.

Posted by: chris2x at March 31, 2007 2:16 PM
Comment #214554

Rosie’s wrong about the 9/11 stuff, but there is a more civil way to disagree with her.

The Republicans have taken up ridicule and ad hominem attacks as their main way of confronting critics and rivals in debates. It has the benefit of not having to keep up with facts or make a lot of concessions on issues, but there’s a problem.

People judge their positions on a combination of emotional feel, and logical coherence. You can get far on emotional feel, but if the problem in logical coherence are strong enough, people will depart from your support, and once their feel for things changes, you’ve lost that too.

The Republicans achieved dominance just long enough to discredit themselves. It’s not that they were all wrong. It’s just that in the places where they were, they stubbornly refused to admit it, and just kept on trying to make things work their way.

The Republicans can ridicule the Democrat’s proposals, but their alternatives have proven not to work. To be wrong and obnoxious towards those that disagree with you saddles you with twice the problem in persuading those outside your party, and those at the margins of it.

My suggestion to the Republicans? Calmly point out her errors, and don’t just repeat party line stuff. Acknowledge how people see things, and that certain points are debateable. Don’t try and win everything, just what you got the facts to win solidly.

Posted by: Stephen Daugherty at March 31, 2007 2:25 PM
Comment #214556
Moore took advantage of a confused old man and then strengthened his advantage by clever editing. I did not mention the Moore thing, because I was just talking about Heston. But since you brought it up, Moore is also dispicable.

Re widows - there is a general problem I have with such situations too. We have declared certain types of people above criticism…

Jack,

Your double standard here is incredible! Moore was making a documentary about gun control, and he sought an interview with the (then) current President of the NRA. Heston chose to talk to Moore, and made an ass of himself. And you try to cast him as a victim. Amazing. Whatever happened to personal responsibility?

Now for the other side. Widows of men who died in terrorist attacks are not “above criticism” (=subject to vicious insults) after they criticize Bush, but elderly conservatives should apparently not be bothered and asked for an interview. Obvious ideological bias here.


Posted by: Woody Mena at March 31, 2007 3:16 PM
Comment #214557

Jack,

I have to agree with Woody.

While I won’t defend Moore’s actions, Heston is/was the president of the most powerful lobby in the United States.
That he looked like a fool wasn’t Moore’s problem.

“Bowling for Columbine” wasn’t Moore’s first movie, and it’s not as if the guy is invisible.

Posted by: Rocky at March 31, 2007 3:25 PM
Comment #214558

Jack, are there any loonies on the right you’d care to criticize, or do they only exist on the left? Wait, you did say that Coulter goes over the line occasionally (nice way to wave her extreme hatred aside, good grief), but not as bad as Rosie. Huh? Talk about ideological blindness. Rosie’s just ignorant on 9/11, in my view. Coulter is a highly educated political hack who choses to be as offensive and misleading as possible, perhaps because it’s been so profitable. What’s worse? Stupidity or willful evil?

Posted by: Gerrold at March 31, 2007 3:32 PM
Comment #214560

Jack,

Unfortunatley she appeals to the half wits, some of whom vote.

As opposed to the half wits who voted for George Bush?

Posted by: gergle at March 31, 2007 4:04 PM
Comment #214561

It has been over 40 years since the Kennedy assassination, yet the conspiracy theory still exists and will as long as history is available. This is no different and it doesnt mean that anyone has the right to impugn another’s beliefs if they don’t fall in line with yours. Does it make you feel, big, important or superior to attack Rosie for having the guts to shout her beliefs through the media?? She is harming no one…side with her or not….if you don’t want to hear her, then change the flipping channel !!! She has not attacked an individual, or a group, she has attacked a theory.

Posted by: Sandra Davidson at March 31, 2007 4:28 PM
Comment #214563

Chris

I am just saying that being educated and being smart are not always the same.

Stephen

Civil? Read some of the comments associated with Bush.

Woody

It depends on what you are trying to show. If you choose to prove your point by cleverly outwitting a man with Alzheimer’s that shows the sort of person you are. Heston was not above criticism. It just that defeating him in an argument is like beating the one legged man in an ass kicking contest.

I do not think anyone should have attacked the widows’ personally and Ann Coulter was as wrong as Michael Moore. On the other hand, the widows’ OPINIONS deserve no special respect.

Gerrold

It is not my business to make a comprehensive list of weirdoes right and left. When the blue side lists Republican mistakes, I do not see them making a similar list of Democratic ones. In fact, I have read criticism of Coulter that did not include comparisons to Rosie or Michael Moore.

Posted by: Jack at March 31, 2007 4:34 PM
Comment #214564

Moore showed he is the kind of person who can outwit the NRA.

Posted by: Woody Mena at March 31, 2007 4:44 PM
Comment #214566

Outwit an old man. Win a prize fight with an octogenarian.

Moore is the kind of guy you might want to laugh at or use, but he is not the kind you admire.

Posted by: Jack at March 31, 2007 5:08 PM
Comment #214568

Stupid Celebrities, oh you mean like the Govinator of Caleeforeneeya Arnold Schwarzenegger

Posted by: Richard Rhodes at March 31, 2007 6:22 PM
Comment #214569

Sandra

Rosie attacks a variety of people, she does not attack theories only. Reference the Presicent, Donald Trump, I think you get the drift.

Posted by: tomh at March 31, 2007 6:48 PM
Comment #214570

“there is nothing worse than an educated fool.”

Jack,

I know I’ve already been beaten to the punch here but WOW! How many politicians fit that bill on both ends of the spectrum and everywhere in between.

President “One Veto” Bush displayed his “celeb” stupidity again today complaining about “pork” in his war spending bill that obviously should have been included in the last two fiscal year budgets but the “do-nothings” chose to eliminate that from the Pentagon budget. Why? Because things were going so well it wouldn’t be needed?

There are different classes of celebrity. It seems that you’d prefer to avoid mentioning the celebrity status of those in elected office. McCain recently showed just how stupid he could be with a statement regarding how safe it is for Americans to walk certain streets in Bagdad. Of course he later said he didn’t say what he said.

So, which is more crazy? Charlie Sheen’s conspiracy theory or the Bush-Cheney theory that we’d be greeted by the Iraqi’s as liberators? Rosie’s conspiracy theory or Cheney’s statement that the insurgents were in their last throes?

I personally think that Bush, Condi, and Company were just incompetent for not taking the “Bin Laden plans attack” memo serious. Maybe I’m wrong. Whether it was incompetence or treason, Bush was not deserving of reelection but he was reelected.

That was largely the result of his celebrity status. That is not his fault. That’s the fault of the voter. As voters we shouldn’t be influenced by celebrity, but by substance. That’s where d.a.n. and David Remer really make sense. It’s not the party or the individual.

If we’re stupid enough to vote based on what a “celeb” says then we are downright stupid and we get just what we bargained for. As much fault as I find in George W. Bush I can’t say he lied when he ran for office the first time. The only promise he failed to deliver on was privatizing Social Security, thank goodness, but he sure tried.

Just “on the side” if we were smart we’d all vote for either Richardson or Huckabee, but we won’t, we’ll let ourselves be swayed by celebrity because we love the “shining star”. Thus the popularity of reality shows.

Posted by: KansasDem at March 31, 2007 6:54 PM
Comment #214572

Well folks, here we go again……is this what he has been waiting for??


http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2007/03/31/bush-brings-us-into-iran_n_44698.html

Posted by: Sandra Davidson at March 31, 2007 9:21 PM
Comment #214573

Jack-
Why does the public spokesman for one of America’s most powerful lobbying groups get to be let off easy?

A person should not take advantage of somebody’s neurological disability or condition to humiliate them, but I doubt Moore was in a position where he could have or should have known better. The Heston I saw did not seem lost in senility. He had not been diagnosed at the time, and was then a public figure of a very powerful public organization. It was his role to get up in front of people and make a good impression.

Could he have been suffering from that at the time? A touch of it perhaps. That said, the NRA had hired him and had to that point retained him to be their spokesman. This was a man who was functional enough to go on stage and yell “You can have this gun when you take it from my cold, dead hands!”, to do all the talk shows, interviews and debates that would come with that position. Why should anybody treat a man expected to be the public face of one of the most combative and unrepentent lobbies with kid gloves?

Are Republicans here trying to create a double standard?

I think they are. They want to get away with dripping acid on the Widows of 9/11 who did nothing worse than to call for a bipartisan, independent commission to investigate on America’s worst terrorist attack ever. They want to get away with exposing and smearing a person who risked her life to learn the secrets of America’s enemies. I have been continually astonished the lengths this administration and others have gone in their quest to win the game against us liberals.

It’s not been without ill effect for the Republicans. How many people have been alienated by the willingness of the party to justify just about any comment, any mistake or policy, no matter how unpopular?

Posted by: Stephen Daugherty at March 31, 2007 9:22 PM
Comment #214575

I’ve got a few questions about 9/11, though I’m not what you would call a conspiracy theorist — just someone who is a news junkie, and who lost someone I cared a lot about on 9/11.

1. I’m afraid I couldn’t help but be suspicious when I learned that Marvin Bush, the president’s brother, Wirt Walker III, the president’s cousin, and Mishal Yousef Saud al Sabah, a member of the Kuwaiti royal family were in business together — in the company that provided security for the World Trade Center.
That just seems like such a jaw dropping coincidence to me — yet I don’t recall the 9/11 Commission report talking about this fact. (If there is a mention of it that I just happened to miss, I hope someone will draw it to my attention to it. And a page number of it from the report would be great, too.)

2. Another has to do with the fact that The Pentagon seems to have lied a lot to the 9/11 Commission yet nothing was ever done about that.

3. While I know nothing about structural engineering, I was still very surprised to read that in the entire history of structural engineering, no other steel-frame high-rise buildings have ever been brought completely down due to fire — either before or since 9/11 — yet fire brought down three of them that day. (WTC Towers 1&2, and WTC Building #7) Now this may very well may have to do with the jet fuel in the planes, and with the diesel fuel that was stored in the basement of Building 7 (which was located a distance of roughly one city block away from the WTC towers) due to the fact that Guiliani stupidly ordered the emergency command and control center to be located there, but it still seems very noteworthy — perhaps strangest of all is the fact the tower with the least structural damage and smallest fire was the one that collapsed first.
Since 9/11 I’ve read about how the tallest steel frame office building ever built in Venezuela (twin towers, 56 stories each) burned for over 24 hours in 2004. It started on 34th floor of one of the towers and the flames ended up reaching the 44th floor of the building. Except for partial collapse on two floors, that office building itself never collapsed. It also had spray-on type fire proofing exactly like the WTC Towers did, and things were complicated because the firefighters had poor water pressure, and a lack of a equipment to fight the fire. They even tried pouring water from above from helicopters to put the fire out but obviously that didn’t work very well since the building did continue to burn for over 24 hours. Wouldn’t 24 hours of everything burning in the central portion of a such a tall steel frame building with spray-on fire proofing add up to something very like the temperatures generated by the jet fuel at the WTC? Why didn’t that building collapse in a scenario similar to what happened in either of the Twin Towers, and in Building #7?
Anyway, I’ll tell you this much, were I a structural engineer, especially one who designs or builds high-rises, I’d no doubt want to study and try to understand every detail about what happened at the WTC that day since it was so unique in structural history. After all, they keep talking about the inevitability of more terrorist attacks, so this should automatically become a new and very important consideration.

4. I would like to know why the president so fought the idea of having an independent commission study 9/11? And I’d also like to know why whenever those who dare to ask questions about some of the strangeness or uniqueness of the circumstances open their mouths, they are immediately labeled nutcases and/or conspiracy theorists? I mean, 9/11 has changed absolutely everything in this country, has it not? So why isn’t considered perfectly all right to want to thoughtfully and agressively investigate every single detail? I just don’t get it.

Posted by: Adrienne at March 31, 2007 9:40 PM
Comment #214580

Adrienne, what an eye-opening link. That is one I certainly don’t remember reading, and the connections really aren’t surprising. I’ve almost become complacent any more when things regarding Bush surface
I’m sorry to hear of your loss !

Posted by: Sandra Davidson at March 31, 2007 11:17 PM
Comment #214582

Without discussing the merits of the argument put forth, if you’re going to call other people stupid YOU SHOULD CHECK YOUR SPELLING AND YOUR GRAMMAR.

Posted by: EdB at April 1, 2007 12:06 AM
Comment #214584

Adrienne-
Number three deserves the most care.

How many buildings do you know that ever got hit by nearly fueled jumbo jets? It’s not the world’s most common occurence. The building in Venezuela wasn’t hit by any jet, I’ll wager. That’s one of the critical elements.

The crash did a number of things. It weakened structural support, knocking out columns in both buildings. Each had been designed with outer and inner rings of columns, which concentrated support for the building in the inner core and outer skin of the building.

It caught a lot of things on fire at once, and with each building and compacted the fuel together. That meant it burnt real hot. That matters later.

The third thing reflects part of what saved that high rise: they found, looking through the wreckage, that the impact of the plane blew much of the fireproofing foam off. This meant that uninsulated metal was being exposed to the intense fires within the affected floors.

The fires caused the metal of the girders supporting the floors above to soften, which then led them to buckle under their own weight. When they failed, what was on top of them failed. When enough of the support to the floors above failed, gravity was all that was necessary to bring the buildings down in a progressive collapse, or as it’s more indelicately but more vividly described, pancaking.

Those who believe that 9/11 was a controlled demolition have a problem: it would have taken an inordinately long time to prepare such a demolition. It would have been noticed, since what those doing such demolitions often do is strip out the walls. I’m not even sure they have the explosives available to cut through the thick girders that bore the weight of the building. These are not casual things. They cite the way that blasts of dust come out of the windows below the progressively collapsing floors above as proof of the blowing of these charges, but forget that as any building collapses, air gets blasted out.

As for how Building Seven got compromised?

A lot of buildings got compromised around the Twin Towers, because of the sheer magnitude of the collapse. If you can bear to watch it, look at the video of the collapse, the way the debris falls outwards. There are some substantial girders and chunks of concrete flying out from those buildings, and many of the buildings around were damaged or even demolished by it.

As for coincidences and what must be done? I think the coincidences are largely that. As for what must be done? It’s already been done. There’s considerable technical information about how the buildings came down. It’s quite illuminating, really.

I think we must do our best to moderate what we choose to believe and why. The Bush administration is a prime example of what happens if you let suspicions carry the weight of proof, beliefs carry the weight of evidence. We can commit that mistake too. We’re not immune. It’s only natural to proceed in a spirit of inquiry. Its for the best, though if we proceed with discipline, letting logic and evidence guide our feelings rather than letting our beliefs steer us towards the logic and evidence that best suit them.

Posted by: Stephen Daugherty at April 1, 2007 12:33 AM
Comment #214585

EdB

You are not the first person to put pedantry above the merits of the argument, but most people do not admit it so readily. Perhaps you will be invited onto “The View.”

Posted by: Jack at April 1, 2007 12:39 AM
Comment #214586

Adrienne-
An additional note: when any building collapses, gravity is what does most of the work. Every high rise holds great potential energy in the form of the weight of the floors, their distance from the ground, and the potential acceleration that all that massive concrete and steel has due to its height above the ground.

A controlled demolition is one way of doing this. The charges usually go off first, the flashes you see in the windows going up. That part usually happens quickly, and the rest of what you see is simply gravity yanking down the now unsupported materials.

Bombs and intentionally crashed jets can initiate the same sort of collapse. All you need to do is cut the supporting columns out from under their loads. Again, the potential energy of the floors above become important, as they become freed of their support. We saw this in the Murrah Building in 1995, and the Marine Barricks in the eighties.

The Jets and the fire they caused worked together to create the initial collapse of the top floors of the Twin Towers. Once those top floors started dropping, the bottom floors couldn’t bear the extraordinary loads, and pancaked as well.

Posted by: Stephen Daugherty at April 1, 2007 12:43 AM
Comment #214587

Sandra:
“Adrienne, what an eye-opening link.”

It is a extremely suspicious little fact. And I don’t believe it was ever mentioned by the 9/11 Commission.

“That is one I certainly don’t remember reading, and the connections really aren’t surprising. I’ve almost become complacent any more when things regarding Bush surface”

Since I know there are people who are going to challenge the link, here is another source speaking of Marvin Bush’s involvement with that company, before 9/11/01:
Influence and bailouts a business tradition in Bush family

“I’m sorry to hear of your loss !”

Thank you. He was a very old friend of mine.

EdB:
“if you’re going to call other people stupid YOU SHOULD CHECK YOUR SPELLING”

FINE!: GIULIANI! AGGRESSIVE!

“AND YOUR GRAMMAR.”

STICK YOUR GRAMMAR WHERE THE SUN DON’T SHINE!

Stephen,
I can agree that the design of the building and the jet fuel makes the whole scenario seem a bit more plausible, but that doesn’t explain Building #7 falling down the way it did. Nothing does. There were buildings that were even closer to the towers that didn’t fall like that one did (like I said, the distance to #7 was about a city block away). And even if the diesel fuel was burning in that one section of the basement, it’s still very odd how it fell in on itself so perfectly. Building #7 wasn’t as old as the WTC, it wasn’t designed like the WTC, and it’s fire proofing was not the spray-on variety, so it simply doesn’t make sense to me.

PS. Any comments from you on my other remarks/links?

Posted by: Adrienne at April 1, 2007 1:25 AM
Comment #214589

Sandra, Adrienne, and all,

Remember this little jewel from the Kuwaiti News;

“US military strike on Iran seen by April ’07; Sea-launched attack to hit oil, N-sites”
http://www.arabtimesonline.com/arabtimes/kuwait/view.asp?msgID=9548

“they have chosen April as British Prime Minister Tony Blair has said it will be the last month in office for him. The United States has to take action against Iran and Syria before April 2007.”

Sheesh, just another conspiracy theory.

Posted by: KansasDem at April 1, 2007 1:54 AM
Comment #214594

Jack,
I have a couple of questions for you.
1. If you don’t like celebrities and their ‘ideas’ why did you devote an entire post to them?

2. Did you vote for Ronald Reagan? He was of course one of the the most noted celebrities of all….

3. Please don’t tell me that any one here actually gives a hoot about what Rosie says, does, or attempts to do.

Posted by: Linda H. at April 1, 2007 12:04 PM
Comment #214596

Jack

I said nothing re Rosie’s education.

My apologies Jack. I stand corrected on this point. I have reread your article and I guess I let my thoughts get away from me on this one. My views stand but it was not proper to present them here.

Posted by: ILdem at April 1, 2007 12:26 PM
Comment #214597

Adrienne-
The buildings collapsed in a way that sent debris like steel beams going in all directions 6 WTC was basically crushed by just that, and just across the way lies 7 WTC. A major gouge was taken out of the building, and fires were not fought there.

Additionally, the article says that the building was unusually structured. That affects how it would fall.

The trick with controlled demolitions is that you don’t do one overnight. It’s a complex process that has to calculated. Where are the flashes from the explosives, the evidence of severed column, cut in two by the explosives. I’ve seen documentaries on the subject, and they have to do all kinds of stripping out and wiring to do this. The whole shebang would have to be done in secret, with nobody noticing it, or the removal of construction debris.

I imagine that a collapse owing to structural damage and fire is more likely than a controlled demolition set up far in advanced without all these people working there noticing a thing.

I think it helps to understand that whenever one posits an explanation, that explanation would create certain implications that could indicate the validity of the theory, things that would need to happen for it happen, things that would come as a consequence of that happening.

I don’t see the things before or after the events that would back these explanations.

Posted by: Stephen Daugherty at April 1, 2007 1:01 PM
Comment #214598

Stephen:

The trick with controlled demolitions is that you don’t do one overnight. It’s a complex process that has to calculated. Where are the flashes from the explosives, the evidence of severed column, cut in two by the explosives. I’ve seen documentaries on the subject, and they have to do all kinds of stripping out and wiring to do this. The whole shebang would have to be done in secret, with nobody noticing it, or the removal of construction debris.

Stephen I realize that controlled demolitions are something that take a lot of time to set up, but if Building 7 wasn’t a controlled demolition, then why did Larry Silverstein say that he was informed by the fire dept that they were going to “pull” Building 7 on PBS?
This video is about ten minutes long, and the guy is clearly a conspiracy theorist, but please watch it.

BTW, did you know that a BBC reporter was reporting the collapse of WTC Building 7, also called the Solomon Brothers Building, a full twenty minutes before actually it fell? You can actually see the building standing right there behind her in that video, while they are telling us that it had already collapsed.
Very strange and suspicious, don’t you think?

Posted by: Adrienne at April 1, 2007 1:53 PM
Comment #214599

Stephen Daugherty,

“Why does the public spokesman for one of the most powerful lobbying groups get to be let off easy?”

For once we agree! Now, you libs can apologize to Rush Limbaugh for so vehemently criticizing his attempt to go after Michael J. Fox for his obviously fraudulent 2006 TV campaign ads in Missouri and Virginia, right?

JD

Posted by: JD at April 1, 2007 2:02 PM
Comment #214601

JD:

The Fox ads were not fraudulent. And he made ads for both Republicans and Democrats. Get your facts from a reliable source.

Posted by: womanmarine at April 1, 2007 2:53 PM
Comment #214604

Womanmarine

Let me first stipulate that celebrities have as much right to any opinion as anyone else and there is not reason to believe their opinion will be less valuable than others. There is also no reason to believe it will be more valuable. I think this addresses your questions, but let me be more specific.

1. If you don’t like celebrities and their “ideas” why did you devote an entire post to them?
Because people listen to them only because of celebrity. I think if you took Rosie’s ideas and just posted them w/o benefit of celebrity, they would be completely ignored and ridiculed. She gains access and status from celebrity. That is why we have to pay attention to her.

2. Did you vote for Ronald Reagan? He was of course one of the most noted celebrities of all.
As above, if Reagan had been only an actor, I would not have voted for him. His celebrity got him in the door. But then he proved his worth.

3. Please don’t tell me that any one here actually gives a hoot about what Rosie says, does, or attempts to do.
I do not know if you give a hoot about what Rosie says. But she gets to address millions of people. We ignore the prominent fools at our peril.

Il Dem

I agree with you re education. In fact, our society has drifted way too much into credentials. I would make a distinction between formal education and education in general. There are lots of ways to educate yourself and lots of ways to avoid being educated when passing through college.

Stephen & Adrienne

Read those Popular Mechanics links. They address all your issues.

Questioning is good, but should be reasonable.

I can recommend a very good (and short) book called “Fooled by Randomness”. The author talks about how we humans like to fit facts to patterns and that is why we come up with all sorts of stories. I am currently reading another book called “Make it Stick” I am only at the start, but it talks about why conspiracy theories are so popular. Fiction usually sounds better than the truth.

Posted by: Jack at April 1, 2007 3:50 PM
Comment #214605

Adrienne-
If the context of a controlled demoliton requires obvious and extensive work to be pulled off, such they were tearing the structure apart for weeks before, then without evidence of such an effort, or any plausible alternative explanation, then a controlled demolition gets ruled out.

The problem with the two examples is that you’re relying on what people say. People garble their words. People leave words out.

What does a person mean when they say they’re going to pull a building? Well you can pull people out of a building, as well as pull it down. In the absence of serious evidence of a Demolition effort going on, the notion that they mean they’re evacuating a building to avoid people being trapped in there becomes the more likely correct interpretation. Recall that on that day, hundreds of firefighters were caught in the collapse of the twin towers. The eventual collapse of WTC was anticipated well in advance.

This also yields a likely explanation for what the reporter said. It is more likely that she mispoke herself as to the tense of her verb than that she accidently let slip a secret plan for demolition that there is little evidence for. Why would they be telling reporters anyways, if they were trying to covertly do this?

I used to be big on mysteries of the unknown, big on UFOs and conspiracy theories when I was a teenager. What I found as I grew up was that these people were always pointing out evidence in very subjective realms, like interpretations of images, hypnotherapy, and supported their beliefs anecdotally. When challenged as to why hard evidence did not show up, they always cited cover-ups or other faults in the ability to gather information.

Too convenient. We’ve seen what’s happened with many of the cover-ups with this government. It’s difficult in complex situations to keep information under control. Additionally, how do you keep control of evidence, when the site is like that of the WTC?

We have to address our suspicions and our beliefs critically, asking the questions others ask before they ask them.

JD-
Obviously Fraudulent? On what grounds?

He was known to have the disorder, and that behavior was a known consequence of the medicine he takes not to freeze up:

Another side effect of levodopa treatment is chorea, the neurological term for a series of jerky, involuntary movements. The severity of the chorea increases with levodopa levels, but cutting back on the dosage results in the reappearance of parkinsonian symptoms. A compromise must be made, which is a major drawback of levodopa therapy. [emphasis mine]

Did Rush base this accusation on statements from folks on the set, who saw him just switch back to normal motor coordination the moment the camera’s stopped rolling? No, Dr. Rush Limbaugh, M.D. Ph.D. made the diagnosis looking at a commercial. He didn’t provide medical sources that would conform his opinion, he just said what he believed. At least Bill Frist had the benefit of a medical degree when he misdiagnosed Terri Schiavo from a tape.

Michael Moore, you say, was supposed to diagnose Charlton Heston with Alzheimers, and only give softball questions to an old man who had the mental capacity to be hired and kept on as a spokesman for what is perhaps the major, pre-eminent lobby in the country. I don’t know about you, but when I pick a spokesman, I would choose and keep on only a person with the cognitive function to handle the job.

I would not put a person with a less than forceful personality, poor memory, and diminished thinking skills on the front line of my media offensive. Alzheimer’s is a degenerative condition that affects cognitive ability directly.

If they knew, either Heston and his people or the NRA, that Heston was suffering from a degenerative condition along those lines, they should have asked him to step down, or he should have volunteered to do that. It was not Moore’s job to ensure that the NRA was only represented by the sharpest shooter in the posse.

Michael J. Fox was not defrauding people. This was the real nature of his condition. The real question is why do folks like you continue to back folks like Rush and Coulter everytime they stick their feet in their mouths? You’re not fooling anybody else.

The willingness to defend the things people like that say, regardless of how stupid, ill-mannered, or just plain wrong what they’re saying is, has contributed greatly to the downfall of the right and the Republicans.

You folks have to re-learn a sense of shame when it comes to what your people say or do. Without shame, nobody mends their ways, because the motivation is not allowed to come into being. You have to acknowledge you did wrong to bring yourself back right.

Posted by: Stephen Daugherty at April 1, 2007 4:20 PM
Comment #214606

Stephen,
Just because I’ve become distrustful over how many clannish links can be found within the Neocon crowd, and just to appease my own curiousity, I decided to do a little looking into what others have been saying regarding that Popular Mechanics “9/11 Debunking” article you linked to earlier. This might be interesting to you or perhaps not, but it is being said that the guy who did the main research and writing on that article (attribution located on page 8 within that link), Benjamin Chertoff — is a cousin to Homeland Security Chief Michael Chertoff.
So, perhaps we might want to leave open the possiblitiy that the info being presented there has been slanted toward upholding the accepted government line regarding what occurred on 9/11?

Posted by: Adrienne at April 1, 2007 4:37 PM
Comment #214607

I can’t believe some people are trying to lend credence to conspiracy hypotheses (they should not even qualify as theories) regarding the dreadful attacks of September 11, 2001. The PBS show, NOVA, did an entire show on how the towers fell here. It is pretty clear that these “conspiracy hypotheses” are nothing more than superstition.

Posted by: Warren P at April 1, 2007 5:27 PM
Comment #214612

Adrienne-
I like to keep my theories simple. First, I’d go and establish whether they’re really related. I’ve seen nothing beyond the claims of a researcher who believes that the world is run by Zionist Occupational Government (ZOG for those who are into the brevity thing) to support that assertion.

Then we have to figure out, if the above is proved true, whether or not these two people know each other well, much less like each other. Can we even confirm that these two have ever met, much less have the kind of cozy relationship that would motivate a slant?

As for the slant itself, I’m not going to buy an argument from ignorance. The distortions these people claim must be proven, not simply laid out to poison the well. I’m all too experienced with the way conspiracy claims work. It’s always a question of generating uncertainty based on a claim of bias. I don’t want uncertainty, I want a definite idea of what’s being hidden. That’s rarely given, so I rarely accept the argument.

Posted by: Stephen Daugherty at April 1, 2007 6:27 PM
Comment #214613
Now Republicans want Fred “that guy on Law and Order” Thompson to run for President.

Unlike the other ‘celebrities’ mentioned, Fred Thompson actually started out as a representative first and only entered acting after he retired. Hardly seems the same thing to me…

Posted by: Rhinehold at April 1, 2007 6:34 PM
Comment #214615

Stephen:
“What does a person mean when they say they’re going to pull a building?”

In my opinion: Demolition.
Silverstein said:
“I remember getting a call from the, er, fire department commander, telling me that they were not sure they were gonna be able to contain the fire, and I said, “We’ve had such terrible loss of life, maybe the smartest thing to do is pull it. And they made that decision to pull and we watched the building collapse.”

Sounds extremely straightfoward to me.

“Well you can pull people out of a building, as well as pull it down. In the absence of serious evidence of a Demolition effort going on, the notion that they mean they’re evacuating a building to avoid people being trapped in there becomes the more likely correct interpretation.”

It seems as though you are truly torturing logic here to fit into what you already believe. Since the building came down after five o’clock in the evening and because they had completely evacuated that building in the morning just after the first plane had flown into the first tower, the most reasonable explanation is that Silverstein was referring to the demolition the building with his comment.

Believe me, I’m not a wild-eyed conspiracy theorist, but there are quite a few things concerning Building 7’s perfect free fall into it’s own footprint that raises serious questions. And after all we are talking about a building built in 1984 that had had billions of extensive reinforcement done on it to make it able to withstand almost anything. Silverstein’s possibly inadvertent comment in that documentary is just one of many things that I believe leaves a valid question mark behind.
The problem with 9/11 is that even the idea of addressing any questions about things that don’t seem to add up, or not automatically buying into what government agencies have been claiming is the only explanation that can possibly be, is automatic grounds to dismiss people as crazy conspiracy theorists.
I consider this wrong.

Posted by: Adrienne at April 1, 2007 7:09 PM
Comment #214620

Stephen D.

In reading the above posts by you a thought entered my pea brain. Have you read anywhere where the comparison of the airplane wingspan and the windth of the building was compared? If my memory serves me correctly one of the planes wings took a pretty close shot at one of the corners of the building.

Posted by: tomh at April 1, 2007 7:38 PM
Comment #214621

Jack,
you are right, respect for our leaders is extinct. It will not stop when Bush leaves office republican or democrat doesnt matter the name calling and hatred of Bush by the left has lowered the bar. Also as far as the celebrities comments against our president, troops and country what would have been deemed tratorious 50 years ago is considered quite acceptable to the left today. Times change, only the future will tell if the country can survive fighting the war on terror by commities and polls as the democrats seem to disire.

Posted by: dolan at April 1, 2007 8:17 PM
Comment #214625

Stephen:
“If the context of a controlled demoliton requires obvious and extensive work to be pulled off, such they were tearing the structure apart for weeks before, then without evidence of such an effort, or any plausible alternative explanation, then a controlled demolition gets ruled out.”

You’ve set up an either/or situation with this comment, as though there is no other plausible alternative explanation, but that really isn’t true. Consider this: what if it isn’t that the building was pre-rigged to be brought down, but that it was badly damaged? Perhaps not enough to have fallen completely down on it’s own, but that only needed a bit of a push to help it come down? And what if doing so was Silverstein or the fire dept commanders idea?
Look again at Silverstein’s oddly chosen words from that PBS documentary:

“We’ve had such terrible loss of life, maybe the smartest thing to do is pull it. And they made that decision to pull and we watched the building collapse.”

Doesn’t that sound like either he or “they” were basically making a decision to bring Building 7 down? Now if this was the case, we then have to consider why they would now wish to distance themselves from the very idea of their helping to demolish a damaged building that truly was beyond saving. One reason might be because Silverstein wouldn’t have collected his insurance on that building if it was his idea. Another would be that the public might question why the fire dept. wouldn’t try to put out the fire and then attempt to reinforce the building enough to try save so many of the important govt. documents that were inside that building before it was demolished.

Seriously, there is a lot of things that might be considered about 9/11. Many question marks and things that for some reason never were and still aren’t being looked into through the official channels. I don’t understand that. I don’t want to be someone who jumps to insane or illogical conclusions without evidence, but I do happen to think we need to try to consider that there is more than meets the eye here — and little reason to instantly take the official line as gospel. Especially since we know we are dealing with an administration and a party who has clearly not always been honest with the American people, who doesn’t like to admit to some very grave mistakes, and likes to constantly control the message, but who had 9/11 happen on their watch.
If that sounds like paranoia, well, so be it. I think they’ve given us plenty of reasons not to automatically trust everything they say.

Posted by: Adrienne at April 1, 2007 8:56 PM
Comment #214630

Adrienne,

Pancake collapse of structures is perhaps not common, but a definite risk…during construction or massive structural element failure. The reason its difficult in demolition is that pouring jet fuel over the structure and letting it burn won’t be approved. In demolition you have to distribute minimal charges at key locations across the structure to insure the structure doesn’t tilt. If you don’t care what you damage or who you kill, it’s not difficult. The elements of the heat bringing structural steel elements to their failure points is not bizarre or unexpected. Being 70 stories up in a building carries with it inherit risks. A massive fire is much more likely to kill you there. The larger the building, the more potential energy is stored in the structure. There was massive analysis of the failure by engineers…it wasn’t magic or conspiracy. Please don’t try to make something out of wild guesses and conspiracy nut talk. If you want to be safe, live in a thatch hut on flat terrain. Then hope a tornado or lighning doesn’t strike.

There was no conspiracy to collapse the world trade center. It’s a paranoid and silly theory. There was a sytemic failure to heed warning signs of the attack. There was also a conspiracy of greed to allow lax security on Airlines.

Posted by: gergle at April 1, 2007 9:46 PM
Comment #214633

To all who have doubts about the 9/11 twini towers:

There is a lot of guess work and doubts about much on that date. To those who question the structural approach to the problem, you should search out the criteria for building the buildings. This would answer a lot of questions about those theories bouncing around. The building was constructed to make it nigh impossible to bring down. Of course nobody thought about a commercial airliner parking there.

Posted by: tomh at April 1, 2007 9:52 PM
Comment #214634

Gergle,
I disagree with you politicaly but here you are right on the money.

Posted by: dolan at April 1, 2007 9:54 PM
Comment #214635

Dolan, nice try. The bar was lowered by the repubs during the Clinton administration to the current level. The rise of Limbaugh and his ilk caused the lower standards we see today. The right demonized both Clintons for years.

Posted by: j2t2 at April 1, 2007 10:00 PM
Comment #214638

tomh,

They could have parked it there, just not let it burn….that’s what sealed the deal. Why after 9-11 they haven’t required jell systems or foam systems to supress fire to be installed on jet liners is what amazes me. Greed wins again. I’m glad that take nailclippers away from everyone. They are, after all, flying napalm bombs..big ones.

I work in civil engineering and have been hesitant more than once to enter a structure that was poorly braced. I’m well aware of the dangers of a structure collapsing and know of many structures that have pancaked. I wonder why there are no conspiracy theories about the freeway collapse in San Fransico/Oakland. I fight everyday with contractors who screw up the reinforcemnt in concrete structures.

Posted by: gergle at April 1, 2007 10:21 PM
Comment #214639

BTW,

You should hear the horror stories of inferior welds and the lack of inspection process in the thrill ride industry… think about that the next time you take a thrill ride…and make sure your insurance is paid up.

Posted by: gergle at April 1, 2007 10:23 PM
Comment #214640

Adrienne-
First, Silverstein talks about getting a call from the fire chief saying the fire is out of control. Silverstein says there has already been a terrible loss of life. He’s talking to the fire chief now, right after hundreds of firefighters had died in the other buildings. One can pull an operation, pull a product. It can mean to demolish a building, but also to remove folks from one.

The alternative is sending crews carrying high explosives into a towering inferno, and somehow, in the midst of an uncontrolled fire, managing to place the explosives around the correct columns and prevent their premature detonation.

Crews doing controlled Demolitions typically tear out much of the structure, using the explosives to take out the large scale structure. They plan these things out, they don’t just do it on the spur of the moment. They don’t do these things in five hours, especially not on buildings of this size. An evacuation is a hell of a lot easier, and much more plausible, given the conditions. The alternative is to believe that either a hasty demolition was set up in hours with explosives in a burning building, or that somebody preplanted them, and they somehow didn’t go off during fierce fires.

The more I approach many of these theories, the less plausible they seem. All kinds of exceptions have to be granted, all kinds of people have to keep their mouths shut, all kinds of evidence has to be ignored or removed- in my experience, people simply aren’t that all powerful, all-knowing.

I’m also a writer, one who likes to specialize in science fiction and fantasy, which means learning how to push the “facts” of a story far enough to where one doesn’t need to push them any further. The very genres I like best can enthrall people and bring visions of the physically impossible to life in people’s eyes. We can make it bewitchingly easy for people to believe that people can fly, punch through concrete walls, stop bullets with their mind, and come back from the dead. In the end though, much of it is just cleverly arranged and justified B.S..

I think to ascribe the conspiracy theories to these people that the Loose Change crowd does is to give the figures involved too much credit. If Bush and the other people were so good at arranging conspiracies, then I doubt they’d be capable of screwing up a war like Iraq. They’d arrange something equally clever, and snooker us all again.

If you want to know the way real conspiracies go down, look at Watergate: everything is screwed up by a bunch of third-rate burglars. Look at the case for war. Look at the firings of the United States Attorneys. Look at what a cluster-f*** that is!

Human beings are flawed creatures, whether they seek to do good or ill. That is the way I deal with conspiracies.

Posted by: Stephen Daugherty at April 1, 2007 10:27 PM
Comment #214641

Stephen:
“The alternative is sending crews carrying high explosives into a towering inferno, and somehow, in the midst of an uncontrolled fire,”

There is no absolutely no proof that Building 7 was a “towering inferno”, or an “uncontrolled fire”. None. Even the firefighters know, and have acknowledged this. In fact, they were ordered to leave the building and stop trying to put out the few fires that were burning there.
In all the pictures and videos that were being taken that day there were no pictures of Building 7 experiencing anything like widespread fires throughout the entire building.
Since the perfect, impossible, straight-down collapse happened after five o’clock, long after the twin towers had already fallen, there were even more people there on the scene documenting what was going on at the perimeter of the collapsed twin towers, but none show Building 7 to be engulfed in flames.
If you know of any pictures that show that this was the case, please feel free to share them, because I haven’t seen any.
The way I see it is this: When it comes to Building 7, the official line has to be the one that is the conspiracy theory — because a gouge carved out of one side of that large building, and a bunch of diesel fuel burning here and there would not have been enough to cause the total and complete collapse of that modern steel frame building that had had billions poured into it in order to make it impervious to bomb attacks. Furthermore, Sliverstein’s bizarre comments only reinforce my belief that what we are seeing in every video of the destruction of that building that exists, is an obvious and intentional event — a controlled demolition.

Posted by: Adrienne at April 1, 2007 11:10 PM
Comment #214642

gergle,
I suppose I’m willing to take your and other peoples word about the collapse of the Twin Towers making sense, since jet fuel being rammed into buildings has never been road tested on giant, high-rise steel framed buildings before. However nothing about how Building 7 fell straight down at free fall speed into it’s own footprint makes sense to me. The fire scenario with the WTC towers can’t apply there since diesel fuel wouldn’t have burned hot enough to explain fire bringing it down that way, and the gouge on one side of it wouldn’t have done so either. Also, I find it rather interesting that neither the 9/11 commission (who didn’t bother to mention it), nor any government funded studies have never been able to come up with a logical or thorough explanation of what occurred with WTC #7.

Posted by: Adrienne at April 1, 2007 11:40 PM
Comment #214643

j2t2 ,
acctually I did not agree with the impeachment of Clinton. You are to an extent right though. I do believe that the hate from the left toward Bush and the republicans is you have to admit higher than anything you can refer to in recent history.I do stand by what I said the disrespect shown by the left to the office of the president of the united states will taint all future presidents regaurdless of party.

Posted by: dolan at April 1, 2007 11:48 PM
Comment #214644

gergle:
“I’m well aware of the dangers of a structure collapsing and know of many structures that have pancaked. I wonder why there are no conspiracy theories about the freeway collapse in San Fransico/Oakland.”

Perhaps because earthquakes have brought down both buildings and freeways many many times before in modern history. In fact, earthquakes and controlled demolitions were the only two ways that had ever brought down such large steel structures before, or since 9/11. That date is now unique in structural engineering history because fire is claimed to have demolished three that day.

Posted by: Adrienne at April 2, 2007 12:01 AM
Comment #214654

Adrienne-
1) It was not an perfect collapse. Other buildings were damaged.

2) It was not impossible, it happened.

3) Most collapsing buildings go pretty much downwards, because gravity is by far the most powerful accelerating force.

As far as a few small fires goes, do you mean these?

I don’t have much time to go through the rest, so here’s the link to the site that came from. It’s not the kindest debunk, but it hits upon many of the issues I’ve talked about.

One of the big problems with conspiracy theory thinking is that every argument becomes about the unsolveable issue of who to trust, rather than what to trust. If you stick to the hard science, as far as you can determine it, things become much clearer, and the question of who to trust becomes resolved by who has their facts straighter and their case more coherent in its theory. The theorist on 9/11 rely too much on “isn’t this suspicious”, or ill-informed claims of impossibility.

I can understand that people have an emotional investment in these theories. I remember being that attached myself. However, everything was just too free floating. Nothing really sat down and let itself define itself. That’s my problem here.

I’ve long grown past the need to have the world’s evil purely explained by willful conspiracy. There’s plenty of pride, stupidity, good intentions gone bad among other human frailties to explain why we’re in the pickle we are in now.

Also, I realized something: A politician doesn’t have to create a problem to be a bastard about how he exploits it.

Evil is not so simple or easy to pin down. However, it is human, rather than imposed upon us by men acting with the powers and foresights of God. And that gives me hope. The wicked folk of the world are just as human as us. They all screw up, sooner or later.

Posted by: Stephen Daugherty at April 2, 2007 1:37 AM
Comment #214655

Adrienne,

It is news to the world of fireproofing that no building has ever collapsed from fire. I wonder why they bother with the expense of fireproofing steel members in building since none have collapsed? I actually do inspections for sprayed on fire resistant materials. The idea is to delay the collapse of a building, so that people can get out. Fire proof applications are rated in 1, 2 hour and 3 hour ratings. Just last week 3 people were killed in Houston in a six story building which involved the upper two floors. They have delayed investigating the fire in order to shore up the upper two stories for safety.

If you understand the properties of steel, it’s yield strength is greatly diminished when heated. Steel is molded by heating it. Most buildings are designed with safety factors of 2 or 3, it doesn’t take a big fire to reduce those to zero. If there is a structure over your head on fire, my advice is to get the hell out, quickly.

A demo expert that was onsite during 9-11 posted this

In engineering we don’t worry too much about things on the ground, but when you put things over people’s heads, engineers get very cautious. But money dictates that risks are taken. That’s why there are standards and codes. Unfortunately, not all contractors follow them.

What collapseed the WTC was the failure at aproximately 10 floors below the top. As it began to fail, the entire weight of the upper ten floors was transfered while accelerating (due to gravity)to the floors below. It was classic pancake type failure….. a VERY COMMON failure mode. WTC was severly damaged by the falling debris from these towers and the fire in that building. It finally collapsed. The reason the building in Houston was shored was because the damaged WEAKENED the structure to where collapse was likely. Most structural failures are not catastrophic (meaning collapse). The damage on 9-11 was not like most damage anticipated in structures. There is not an engineer I’ve ever talked to that believes 9-11 was an unusal type failure, not to mention that no engineer in the world would approve or shut up about some nefarious plot to destroy an occupied building…There’s too many people that would know. It would take massive amounts of charges (not big charges)..You couldn’t keep it secret.

It was obvious to anyone with engineering background that any building in the vincinity of the tower collapse was likely to collapse.

Posted by: gergle at April 2, 2007 3:06 AM
Comment #214657

oops.. second WTC should have read WTC-7 in the second to last paragraph.

Posted by: gergle at April 2, 2007 3:12 AM
Comment #214659

Stephen:
“1) It was not an perfect collapse. Other buildings were damaged.”

It was near perfect, and went down in about 6 seconds.

“2) It was not impossible, it happened.”

No sh*t. The question remains: HOW exactly did it happen?

“3) Most collapsing buildings go pretty much downwards, because gravity is by far the most powerful accelerating force.”

Wrong. Buildings that collapse by themselves do not fold in on themselves like that building did, nor do they fall perfectly, symetrically and rapidly straight down with seemingly no resistance. However when the central portion of a building is made to fail, when the many columns of it’s steel core are destroyed with small charges all along it’s base and on every floor in a timed sequence — as in a controlled implosion-type demolition — everything is pulled in toward the center and the building falls straight down, free fall style, very rapidly.

“As far as a few small fires goes, do you mean these?”
I see a lot of smoke in that photo, but that could have been from the burning towers.
Here is a video that shows the actual fires that were burning in WTC #7.

“One of the big problems with conspiracy theory thinking is that every argument becomes about the unsolveable issue of who to trust, rather than what to trust.”

When it comes to WTC #7, I trust my eyes that tell me that no steel building, even one that has been badly damaged and burned could just fall down symetrically like that in a few seconds time with seemingly no resistance. It simply defies the laws of physics.

“If you stick to the hard science, as far as you can determine it, things become much clearer, and the question of who to trust becomes resolved by who has their facts straighter and their case more coherent in its theory.”

Actually, I don’t see you sticking to hard science at all. You are basically demanding that everyone must automatically leave out all possibility of controlled demolition from the hypothesis of why Building #7 fell down the way it did because you consider it a nutty conspiracy theory. But cutting off the debate like that goes completely against the way that scientific inquiry actually works. And you are doing so despite the fact that FEMA and NIST reports regarding it’s destruction were not especially logical or thorough. I on the other hand have been using my eyes, making a rational observations about the strangeness of how that building fell, and saying that the official theory that is being sold just doesn’t add up.

Posted by: Adrienne at April 2, 2007 3:42 AM
Comment #214660

Okay, some highly trained monkeys claim that my link isn’t working.
Here is footage of the collapse.
I’ll try to find some decent pictures of the fires tommorrow.
It’s late, so, good night.

Posted by: Adrienne at April 2, 2007 4:02 AM
Comment #214663

Adrienne-
A perfect demolition doesn’t hit two other buildings on the way down. That’s the point of a controlled demolition. You don’t want to put girders and other materials through the brainpan of the surrounding buildings.

Also, it doesn’t happen overnight. On the tallest building ever brought down in a controlled demolition, it took 24 days to place the explosives

When they talked about pulling 6, 5 and the other buildings, they literally meant that- they pulled the buildings down with cables. There was no way anybody was going to get into that area to pull 7 that way, so This is what more likely happened. There’s more about that here.

Additionally, here is some pre-collapse video of what looks like a huge gash down the back of the building

One additional thing you should consider about the 1 and 2 WTC buildings is that they collapsed from above, not from below. Controlled Demolitions start from below, making use of gravity to not only bring towers down, but to keep the debris within the footprints of the buildings, and not cascading to the sides, Which they did. They hit virtually every building around them.

Also, if it were controlled demolition, you would have heard the explosives go off! These charges are very loud. Here’s a video of one of the tallest buildings ever imploded. Notice The loud explosions and the fire coming from the bottom, where the collapse begins, not from the top.

You don’t collapse from the top, because then everything drops on top of the part of the building that’s still there, and tumbles outwards, just like in 9/11. If we take the figures above, then it would take months to wire up the WTC’s for demolition, and the fact remains, both towers would have been done in reverse from the way demolitions like that are actually done.

The WTC collapse offered many firsts, but it was not entirely unprecedented. Other steel frame structures have actually collapsed. Thought WTC is unique for several reasons, it’s not too bizarre a collapse to happen for reasons other than controlled demolition.

Really, it’s just a matter of physics. No building, no structure that’s economically made can withstand any and all forces. The right combination can bring down any building. The Twin Towers were strong, but the continuation of their standing depended on the weights and loads of the building being properly supported, like any other building. In fact, that’s what a controlled demolition is mean to do: exploit how a building supports itself in order to more safely bring them down.

You keep on telling me what doesn’t add up. Frankly, I don’t think the conspiracy theorists story holds up. It’s all ad hoc reasoning. There is self-consistent evidence for collapse brought on by the impact of the jetliners, the subsequent fire, and the failure of the steel brought on by high temperatures.

Posted by: Stephen Daugherty at April 2, 2007 8:43 AM
Comment #214675

Jack ,
I think you were addressing me with this post.

1. If you don’t like celebrities and their “ideas” why did you devote an entire post to them?
Because people listen to them only because of celebrity. I think if you took Rosie’s ideas and just posted them w/o benefit of celebrity, they would be completely ignored and ridiculed. She gains access and status from celebrity. That is why we have to pay attention to her.

2. Did you vote for Ronald Reagan? He was of course one of the most noted celebrities of all.
As above, if Reagan had been only an actor, I would not have voted for him. His celebrity got him in the door. But then he proved his worth.

3. Please don’t tell me that any one here actually gives a hoot about what Rosie says, does, or attempts to do.
I do not know if you give a hoot about what Rosie says. But she gets to address millions of people. We ignore the prominent fools at our peril.

She is not the only one who addresses millions of people. Rush, Hannity,O’Reilly,60 minutes, Dateline, 20\20, Meet the Press, etc, all address millions of people everyday - and they really talk about politics. As for Ronald Reagan - getting in the door is 90% of the battle, don’t you think?

As for how the building collapsed - I admit total confusion. I never actually saw the towers once they were built, so I can’t create an image of how they went down. All I am reasonably assured of is that the went down. And thousand of lives were lost, and it appears more causalities are coming from those who were exposed to the debris. And I want justice for all of them - and I don’t mean in Iraq.

Posted by: Linda H. at April 2, 2007 12:49 PM
Comment #214678

Linda H

Getting in is 90%, but it is that last 10% that separates the great from goat.

Re addressing millions, yes those other people you mention do too. I have not noticed a lack of criticism for Rush, Hannity, O’Reilly etc.

The Rosie type is trickier. We know that Rush is a partisan. That is how he made his reputation. That is WHY people listen to him. Rosie came up through acting and standup commedy. I do not think “the View” is marketed as a voice for leftwing politics (as Rush is for conservatives, for example). So when she makes a stupid comment, we can just brush it off. That’s just old Rosie. But when she makes a stupid political comment, she enters a different arena.

Celebrities often play this kind of double game. They say some very serious things, and when they get caught, they say it is all just humor or entertainment.

It is like the guy at the office who is always saying nasty things to undermine his coworkers and they catch him, he puts on the surprised look and claims he was only kidding.

Posted by: Jack at April 2, 2007 1:03 PM
Comment #214686

Adrienne-
I have to honestly tell you, I get annoyed when I read the phrase “It doesn’t add up” or read stuff about “official theories” Do my explanations automatically get discounted without a clear examination of the facts just because they fit the official story?

I get the feeling you’re getting a lot of your information off that Loose Change movie. Video is a powerful promoter of ideas. I’m pretty sure the people making the movie either believe a lot of what they say, or think it could be true. People glue together their notions of the world, and if they’re skilled enough, they can be quite convincing.

However, the camera always lies. If we rely on video images alone, a number of things can confound our understanding, and give us illusions about what we see.

Camera angle, for one. The shot in the video is taken from a moderate angle, with Buildings blocking our view of the bottom of 7 WTC. It’s impossible to determine whether a building fell into its own footprint if you can’t see exactly how it managed that. The occlusion of objects in the frame can hide all manner of sins in a shot.

The angle also blocks our persective on the smoke, so it’s easy for some to claim their are just a few fires. This shot makes that a harder sell.

The narrow angle of the lense brings in other problems, especially in analyzing the part of the collapse we do see. Namely, a narrow angle lense poorly portrays z-axis movement- fowards and backwards in relation to the camera. If you remember The Graduate, there’s a shot in the final part of the film, where Dustin Hoffman is running towards the church, where he just seems to run forever without getting anywhere.

The lens compresses depth, so everything looks like it’s happening in one layer, not moving back and forth so much. The best way to judge the extent of the fall beyond the footprint is from above. In this photo, we see that the collapse extended across the street, with buildings damaged to the left and right by the falling debris. The debris neither fell straight down, nor remained contained. This photo amply demonstrates how the camera position Loose Change showed did not tell the whole story.

I have a big problem with conspiracy theories that require me to ignore known physical effort. People talk about thermite charges being used to blow up the building, despite the fact that they’re incendiary rather than explosive, and chaotic, rather than directed. It wouldn’t burn a neat cross cut, it would slag the whole thing.

Just about every Demolition I’ve ever seen started from the bottom, and worked it’s way to the top, to use the weight of the building to create the most force to demolish the floors at the base.

When Demolitions are being prepared, walls are ripped out, and the charges are put right around the beams, to maximize control, and minimize the amount of explosives.

An additional bit of evidence is that nobody saw any of the kind of sequential flashes or heard any of the bangs that would be associated with a demolition. These would have been heard. You can’t hide the noise. These charges have to pack quite a punch to cut through the columns, especially the kind of columns that buildings this massive would be built with.

For me, one of the clues that a hypothesis is poor is that the information integrates poorly together.

The bangs associated with explosives would make any controlled demolition blindingly obvious. Uncontrolled fires, as reported by the firefighters, would make access to the structure of the building impractical, and explosives unreliable to handle; before that time, occupancy of the building and the obviousness of crews going in and out to arrange charges, tear out walls, etc. would function to do the same.

Other facts, including fires on multiple levels including the ground floor, , the irregular footpring of the debris and a documented vertical gash down the side of the building facing the Twin Towers indicates a different explanation- that debris from the Twin Towers, these thousand foot tall buildings only a few hundred feet away, damaged the building, started fires, and pre-weakened the building in certain spots.

That explanation sticks together, and doesn’t require an elaborate conspiracy that somehow manages to get everybody to ignore things that otherwise would be blindingly obvious to the observer- like the loud crack of demolition charges.

Posted by: Stephen Daugherty at April 2, 2007 2:45 PM
Comment #214693

Jack,

Getting in is 90%, but it is that last 10% that separates the great from goat.

While Reagan was old and senile, I don’t think it’s fair that you refer to him as a goat:)

Adrienne,

I don’t know if you read the pdf link I provided, but buildings actually do tend to fall straight down, unless other forces cause them not to. Careful effort is put into building a structure that is vertical. If you knock out one side it will tend to collapse inward, because some elements are still resisting collapse, and then pull the rest of the structure into that area. The difference between this collapse and demolition, is that they would make sure ALL the elements fell inward to protect adjacent property. I think Steven’s picture shows the debris that fell around
this entire area.

Without knowledge of the design of the structure and the failure modes that were present…no one can really analyze this collapse. I have my doubts that you have witnessed numerous building collapses. This is the problem. You’re trying to analyze something that I doubt you have the background to accomplish. Why do you keep saying it’s impossible? The speed of the collapse is controlled by an accelerating force of 9.8 meters per second squared(gravity). For a 46 story building (aprox 210 meters) that would take…about 6 seconds. It doesn’t take long to hit bottom, I know from experience..I’ve bungy jumped! That applies to whether the building was demolished or collapsed on it’s own. What is your knowledge and evidence about collapse and demolition? I think Stephen debunked your video theory.

You well know I think the Bush administration is a lying bunch of creeps, but they couldn’t pull this off anymore than they can stop lying. It was a horrible, traumatic event, but not a mastermind plot. Your right to question Bush’s motives, your wrong to read conspiracy into these buildings collapsing.

Posted by: gergle at April 2, 2007 3:47 PM
Comment #214696

BTW, Jack,

If you think the View is not entertainment, did you catch “the Donald” on the WWE? Rosie, Donald, and Barbara are laughing all the way to the Bank.

Posted by: gergle at April 2, 2007 4:05 PM
Comment #214697

How do you guys discount or discredit eye witness testimony?
And how do you pick and choose which experts in the related field that you believe?

Posted by: kctim at April 2, 2007 4:07 PM
Comment #214702

kctim,
I choose engineers when talking about structure collapse…which experts do you choose?

Posted by: gergle at April 2, 2007 4:48 PM
Comment #214703

Gergle
Not all “experts” agree though. How do you tell which ones are credible and which are not?

And what about eye witnesses whose testimony disagrees with the “official report?”

Posted by: kctim at April 2, 2007 4:57 PM
Comment #214705

Kctim,

I’m aware you like conspiracy theories, but when you say not all experts agree, other than Steven Jones, or Alex Jones, who are you citing?

I side on plausible explanations. Perhaps aliens came from another dimension and coordinated the collapse of WTC, but I prefer to use reason rather than fantasy. Please look at my link by Protec Demolition in my previous posts. Eyewitness accounts from untrained an uniformed people do not impress me. Eyewitness accounts are classically unreliable. It depends on which end of the elephant you were on, and if you know anything about elephants.

Posted by: gergle at April 2, 2007 5:17 PM
Comment #214707

Gergle
First, as Adrienne said, there are unanswered questions, asking those questions does not mean one is pro or con.

As far as experts, what about Frank A. DeMartini, Manager, WTC Construction and Project Management?
He discussed the fact that the WTC towers were designed to take multiple hits from airliners and not collapse, comparing it to poking a pencil through fly netting, and was adament that the towers would not collapse. He said this in Jan of 2001.

Or Van Romero, an explosives expert and former director of the Energetic Materials Research and Testing Center at New Mexico Tech?

Is it reason or fantasy which made these guys say what they did?

Posted by: kctim at April 2, 2007 5:35 PM
Comment #214709

kctim,

Have you seen this?

http://911research.wtc7.net/disinfo/retractions/romero.html

Posted by: Rocky at April 2, 2007 5:59 PM
Comment #214710

kctim-
People can be wrong. After all, somebody said the titanic was unsinkable. Little did many of the people know that the steel and the rivets on that ship were crappy, even by the standards of the day.

Also, It’s quite obvious from what happened to the WTC that the jets crashing into the building were more than just pencils going through paper. The building held up, but it was designed to handle smaller, slower planes, and nobody considered what would happen to the critical insulation when the planes hit it.

You stick to the physical evidence as much as possible, because that tells you what really turned out to be the case. People can fail to consider all relevant factors in their analysis, especially if they’re not competent in the field or properly critical in their thinking at that time. It also doesn’t help if you automatically discount the official story.

Posted by: Stephen Daugherty at April 2, 2007 6:02 PM
Comment #214712

To all:

An excellent site for debunking this conspiracy nonsense is this one

It’s fun to fantasize, but more educational to think critically.

Posted by: gergle at April 2, 2007 6:09 PM
Comment #214715

The towers did take a direct hit from the airliners and stood. The reason they collapsed is the fire that followed. Had there been no fire the structure would probably have stood, albeit with major damage.

Posted by: tomh at April 2, 2007 6:45 PM
Comment #214716

KCtim,

I have no problem with anyone asking questions. I do have a problem with people profiting from others ignorance.

Posted by: gergle at April 2, 2007 7:07 PM
Comment #214735

Usually people who offer crazy or uninformed opinions have a short run, and then eventually die out. What keeps them alive is controversy. The networks don’t care if you like them or not, as long as you keep tuning in.
Rosie and Barbara Walters understand this, as do Hannity and O’Reilly. The more ire they can stir up; the more viewers will tune in. It’s calculated and effective.
As to the conspiracy theories? A huge tragedy just isn’t complete without them. They make for great entertainment and even generate revenue. But they’re also rarely correct. The truth is that people are not that good at keeping secrets. The 9/11 theory is a “doozie”. It would take so many people on so many levels to keep it quiet that it’s just not humanly possible.
BTW; I especially liked the part about the explosives planted all through the twin towers, just waiting for the plane crashes.

Posted by: Cole at April 2, 2007 9:37 PM
Comment #214758

Cole,
Me too. I have senior sources that tell me that there are explosives imbedded in every building in the U.S. awaiting instructions to blow them when needed. Sleep well.

Posted by: gergle at April 3, 2007 1:33 AM
Comment #214764

Stephen:
“Adrienne-
I have to honestly tell you, I get annoyed when I read the phrase “It doesn’t add up” or read stuff about “official theories””

Do you know what annoys me? When people try to paint me as a nutcase because I’ve got questions about what happened both before 9/11 (Bin Laden Determined to Strike in US), during 9/11 (WTC #7), and after 9/11 (War in Iraq). I’ve read a lot about the official government agency supported theories, because I lost someone that day. Perhaps you would too if you were in a similar situation.

The problem with too many aspects of the offical theories is that they aren’t very thorough and they don’t do a very good job of explaining how they arrived at their scientific modeling. Indeed, what has been released often seems half-hearted, thrown together, and based on eliminating valid factors, rather than attempting to be truly and fully comprehensive.
The sad truth is, more study, more digging up of facts, more investigation (the often tedious work of combing through the information and footage), has been done by ordinary Americans (some professional, some not, some nutcases), than our own government who claims to be fighting “the war on terror”.
I happen to have a serious problem with that fact, since 9/11 has changed so many things about our country so drastically. I also have a problem with the fact that people want to automatically label the majority of those who are trying to figure out what happened as nutcases and immediately talk down to them. I’m aware that I’m only getting a small taste of this treatment, because I have a friend who has received a lot of disrespect over the years for being a 9/11 truthdigger. (Even though he is a highly intelligent, and very nice guy with an extremely successful professional career.) I’m grateful to know my friend, because he always alerts me to the work that is being done on that front. People such as him aren’t confortable with shoddy explanations when there seems to be a grassy knoll staring them in the face. And the fact is, as a result of my knowing this friend, I didn’t need to become a 9/11 truthdigger myself.


“Do my explanations automatically get discounted without a clear examination of the facts just because they fit the official story?”

How have I discounted your explanations? By not agreeing? By having my own thoughts — ones that don’t jibe with yours, or the offical theory? All I have done in this thread is share some info that I think people should think about and see, and floated my own opinion that there is a lot that doesn’t add up or make sense — that is still allowed here, isn’t it?

“I get the feeling you’re getting a lot of your information off that Loose Change movie.”

I have not seen that movie, though I’m aware my friend has a rather low opinion of it. I’ve also noticed that a lot of people like to attack this film and the people who liked it on the internet, so I assume it must have been a very popular film that a lot of people saw.
I have watched only one film that could be classified as a “conspiracy” movie at my friends recommendation: ‘9/11 Press For The Truth’
I thought it raised some very good points, even though I was pre-warned not to buy everything in it wholesale.

“Video is a powerful promoter of ideas.”

Please. Don’t patronize me, Stephen. I’m am an artist after all — one who has several friends who are film makers, and knows others who work at jobs directly connected to the film industry. You don’t need to tell me about the power of the image, or the ways in which imagery can convey ideas.

“However, the camera always lies.”

What an absurd generalization! I strongly disagree. Sometimes the camera lies, sometimes it obscures, and sometimes it tells the truth. And, sometimes it depends on who is holding the camera, and what they have chosen to focus on.

“Camera angle, for one. The shot in the video is taken from a moderate angle, with Buildings blocking our view of the bottom of 7 WTC. It’s impossible to determine whether a building fell into its own footprint if you can’t see exactly how it managed that. The occlusion of objects in the frame can hide all manner of sins in a shot.”

I gave you that shot to look at so you could see some actual fire burning in that building, not just a lot of smoke. The truth is, with WTC #7 it is often hard to determine what constitutes smoke from the burning wreck of the fallen towers and what is coming out of the building itself.

“The angle also blocks our persective on the smoke, so it’s easy for some to claim their are just a few fires.”

The fire fighters were still in that building trying to fight the fires until at least four o’clock — this is common knowledge. That is why I must insist that it couldn’t have been a “towering inferno” or a totally “uncontrolled fire” — especially at the ground level, since they were able to leave when they were told to quit fighting the fires that were there.

Btw, here is a bunch more footage from ground level at WTC #7. Yes, I know this film was made by a conspiracy theorist — but don’t let that keep you from looking at it. The opinions expressed needn’t necessarily become attached to me, or to you, for both of us to learn something from them. Personally I’d love to know why that cop in this video seems so damn sure that “the building is going to blow.”

“The best way to judge the extent of the fall beyond the footprint is from above.”

I find it hard to believe that you think this proves YOUR point rather than mine! That is an incredibly small footprint for a completely and totally collapsed building of that size. We are supposed to believe it just fell down into that all by itself, after burning for just seven hours? (Again I must stress what a unique event this was the remnant of: a modern steel-frame building that was brought completely down by a gouge on one side, and some fire — things which have never occurred before or since 9/11.)

“In this photo, we see that the collapse extended across the street, with buildings damaged to the left and right by the falling debris. The debris neither fell straight down, nor remained contained.”

Ah, I see you’re back to an either/or mindset here. What you’re saying is because it wasn’t a perfectly controlled collapse, it couldn’t have been controlled in any way at all.

“This photo amply demonstrates how the camera position Loose Change showed did not tell the whole story.”

I didn’t see the film, but I think that all the photos of WTC #7 say a lot, tell a lot, and should be comprehensively studied.

“I have a big problem with conspiracy theories that require me to ignore known physical effort.”

So do I. Hence, my belief that we don’t know the whole story — and that it should be carefully and thoroughly studied.

“People talk about thermite charges being used to blow up the building, despite the fact that they’re incendiary rather than explosive, and chaotic, rather than directed. It wouldn’t burn a neat cross cut, it would slag the whole thing.”

Thermite isn’t the only thing that is being floated — there are a whole host of other types of charges that many people are looking at and trying to learn more about.

“Just about every Demolition I’ve ever seen started from the bottom, and worked it’s way to the top, to use the weight of the building to create the most force to demolish the floors at the base.”

So then you disagree with gergle, who said earlier that he thinks it started ten floors below the top?
Looks like we have three different opinions here. You with the bottom theory, gergle with the top theory, and me with the controlled demolition theory. Good thing we’re all liberals, eh? :^)
Btw, mine has Occams Razor going for it — as it hits upon all observable factors about the collapse, and correlates to what has happened in the modern world with steel structures before and after 9/11.

“When Demolitions are being prepared, walls are ripped out, and the charges are put right around the beams, to maximize control, and minimize the amount of explosives.”

There are quite a few compounds that can weaken or melt steel. There are charges that don’t have to be large to cause massive damage when they detonate. There are many things that could be considered about what might have been used, but unfortunately within a short time they had quickly removed and sold off all the steel from the WTC buildings and had it shipped it to Asia. Almost like they didn’t want any forensic testing to be done on it.

“An additional bit of evidence is that nobody saw any of the kind of sequential flashes or heard any of the bangs that would be associated with a demolition. These would have been heard. You can’t hide the noise. These charges have to pack quite a punch to cut through the columns, especially the kind of columns that buildings this massive would be built with.”

Wrong. There are massive amounts of people who heard and saw flashes and explosions, and there were an enormous number of interviews with these people — but the government tried to keep these comments and interviews from going public (wonder why?), but the NYT took that to court and won. They did do a big feature on these comments — just tons of quotes from folks who were right there. I just tried to search for it, but I can’t remember what the title of it was called. I’ll have to ask my friend about this, and when I get the info, I’ll try to post the link to it here.

“For me, one of the clues that a hypothesis is poor is that the information integrates poorly together.”

In my opinion, there is not enough information to discount or rule out controlled demolition. But all the info we do have has never been gathered together in one place, and then carefully and logically and exhaustively studied the way it should be. The NIST and FEMA reports contained facts that were wrong, and they admitted that their findings were inconclusive about WTC #7.

At this point I feel the need to make a note to gergle:
You are claiming to know more about how WTC #7 fell than the people in NIST and FEMA who worked on the official reports. What these agencies produced was pretty murky and contained a lot of things that they knew they couldn’t explain with fire as the basis for the total collaspe of #7, so they simply glossed over certain areas. If you’re an expert in studying such things, I think you need to go work for the government, because it seems like they could really use some good people.
I’m not being sarcastic either, I mean this sincerely.


“That explanation sticks together, and doesn’t require an elaborate conspiracy that somehow manages to get everybody to ignore things that otherwise would be blindingly obvious to the observer- like the loud crack of demolition charges.”

You seem to only want to accept explanations that don’t involve the idea that people — including terrorists, mind you — didn’t actually plan to bring down any of those buildings with explosives.
Personally, I’m amazed that anyone would take this attitude when there are so many unanswered questions. Most especially since these events were unprecedented, and when we acknowledge that there was plenty of planning that we KNOW went into flying the planes into the buildings.
I also suspect that because almost everyone who dares to question the official theory is sure to meet with mockery and/or hostility, folks have actually become afraid or nervous to discuss alternative theories.

gergle:
“Without knowledge of the design of the structure and the failure modes that were present…no one can really analyze this collapse.”

You never addressed something I’ve mentioned several times here — the fact that Building #7 had billions of dollars worth of retrofitting poured into it in order to specifically withstand terrorist bomb attacks. That means are people who had plenty of knowledge of the structure and who must have studied various failure modes — indeed it would be very interesting to see what these people wrote about WTC #7 before 9/11. I wonder if anyone has ever looked into that…? (Definitely something to ask my friend about.)
But I agree there many ways in which this collapse was never really analyzed — and likely never will be. Selling off all the steel before forensic analysis could be done is just one example of this.

“I have my doubts that you have witnessed numerous building collapses.”

Before 9/11, none. After 9/11, I’ve studied many in order to try to understand what took place, and to try to discern what is possible and what is impossible. I’ve come away thinking that the way the towers fell might make sense because of the jet fuel, but that nothing satisfactorily explains the complete and total collaspe of WTC #7. Nothing.

“This is the problem. You’re trying to analyze something that I doubt you have the background to accomplish.”

I have already freely admitted that I am nothing close to a stuctural engineering expert. But even so, I’m not stupid, and I don’t think I should have to have a background in structural engineering in order to be allowed to ask questions, or speak out when something doesn’t seem to make sense to me. All you have talked about in this thread thus far is what you know about how buildings you’ve seen have fallen, but you have been leaving other factors out (such as the billion dollar retro-fit for example). It’s almost as though you don’t want to think about anything you don’t already have a firm grasp on.

Anyway, I’m afraid I’m not going to hold my thoughts in silence just because I’m not an expert. I believe that people who aren’t experts on a subject can sometimes ask very pertinent questions that experienced people might have never even thought of.

“Why do you keep saying it’s impossible? The speed of the collapse is controlled by an accelerating force of 9.8 meters per second squared(gravity). For a 46 story building (aprox 210 meters) that would take…about 6 seconds.”

Isn’t that for a free fall only? If resistance is factored in, wouldn’t it be slower? And what about the core columns located in the center of the building? None were left standing — after all that retrofitting? Sorry, I don’t get how that whole building just glided all the way down to the ground that way — and in six and a half seconds.

“It doesn’t take long to hit bottom, I know from experience..I’ve bungy jumped!”

Yes, a free fall.
I would really like to understand how a building that had so much work put into it to withstand bombs could have behaved like a building in free fall when it came down.

“I think Stephen debunked your video theory.”

Now I have a video theory? I’m just asking questions and sharing video and airing my own opinions. What is wrong with that?

I guess I’m being asked to shut up.
Perhaps I should.

Posted by: Adrienne at April 3, 2007 2:52 AM
Comment #214783

Rocky and Gergle
I have seen both of those links and I thank you for them.

Stephen
“People can fail to consider all relevant factors in their analysis, especially if they’re not competent in the field or properly critical in their thinking at that time. It also doesn’t help if you automatically discount the official story”

A person is not being “properly critical in their thinking” if they automatically discount all possibilities either.
People, especially govt, tend to create an official story and then find the evidence to support only that conclusion.

I’m not claiming some NWO was responsible or trying to demean the deaths of my fellow Americans. I’m just saying alot of stuff does not add up.

Posted by: kctim at April 3, 2007 9:13 AM
Comment #214793

Adrienne,

Yes, 6.0 seconds is freefall. Again, my point was that the collapse rate would not be significantly different for demolition than failure from damage. Demolition does not dissolve buildings, it accomodates gravity.

This fall rate is disputed by this link and this link. My other point is that the theory of demolition is not put forth by qualified experts, subjected to peer review, but by those who stand to profit from creating controversy.

As to retrofits, these buildings are not bunkers. It is simply not cost effective to build a building that can withstand massive structural damage. The entire idea of high rises is the use of thinly sectioned materials to create a relatively safe structure. They were not practical until the development of modern materials. The materials work together to create stability in the structure. If you remove significant portions of the structure, it is likely to collapse, otherwise why not build them even less stout? I used to look a concrete bridge built in the 20’s or 30’s near my grandparent’s and marvel at how thick the beams and decking were. Engineering allows us to build them with much thinner sections today. The Tacoma Narrows Bridge is an example of where design got a little too thin.

You have every right to ask questions, but when groups such as ASCE, which is the largest group of structural engineers, don’t buy into these theories, I am inclined to agree. It stretches credibility, in my opinion, to believe they would participate in a conspiracy of silence. If there were credible differences, numerous engineers would back those differences, they simply haven’t. The jump from the rather obvious signs of building damage and fire to explosive charges seems rather unlikely and a bit fantastic to me. Again, you have valid reasons to question people like Bush and even Julianni, but this is a rather large leap of faith, in my opinion.

KCtim, what specifically, doesn’t add up?

Posted by: gergle at April 3, 2007 10:23 AM
Comment #214805

Gergle
For me, the eyewitness accounts don’t add up with the official story. I know its easy for you to discount them, but I like to look at entire pictures.

Another thing that makes me wonder is how the two planes could hit in a different part of each building but have the same end results.
What are the odds that one plane could hit almost center and the other on a corner and both result in an almost identical, near perfect “demolition” type ending?

Posted by: kctim at April 3, 2007 11:41 AM
Comment #214822

Adrienne-
When dealing with science, you have to be willing to kill your darlings, as writers like myself would say. Being invested in a theory emotionally can cloud your judgment on whether it’s well-constructed, well-founded.

Nobody’s immune. That’s why scientists need a method. The method ties together the facts in a way that requires the implications to work throughout.

This was an event filmed on live television, with microphones all over the place.

The kind of high explosives used to bring down buildings have a fairly sharp signature, that wouldn’t be confused with the rumbles and explosions of other kind. They would be repeated, as the explosives were set off in sequence. Not one bang, but several, and very sharp, very loud. Windows would have likely been blown out on every story, since they hadn’t been removed, as usually is done in demolitions work. We didn’t see this happen until after the collapse started, when the charges would have already gone off.

Each fact we know of tell us something logically. The chaotic characteristics of thermite when it burns tells us that a straight cut is unlikely. The directed nature of an acetylene torch, would not make such a straight cut unlikely. Facts aren’t neutral- they favor one explanation and eliminate others. You can’t consider all explanations equally valid, because not all will fit the facts.

True, all kinds of explosives could be used, but not all would do the job, and any exposive used would have to have had force enough to cut through the steel, force that will inevitably create noise. Something along these lines.

Now, here’s another, perhaps more humorous video, but nonetheless very insightful. Note:

1)The windows are rattled by the charges. The sound from this would not be insubstantial, it’d be practically palpable.

2)The blasts preceded the collapse

3)The footprint of this collapse is much tighter.

Again, with the StardustWith the Stardust implosion, we se the same pattern: A sequence of charges, then explosives strategically placed at the bottom to blow the whole thing. Same thing with this North Carolina demolition.

We can talk about what people said, but mixed messages are inevitable during disasters. Additionally, firefighters and police, and folks nearby can see when structures are weakening, when damage is severe. People inside the buildings an see much better than those outside the fires burning. There was undoubtedly a whole lot of smoke. Where there’s smoke, there’s fire, right? You might not have seen fire leaping out of every window, but you didn’t see that with the Twin Towers, and those things burned damn hot.

I’m going to post this, then post for you video of a high-rise building getting demolished.

Posted by: Stephen Daugherty at April 3, 2007 1:01 PM
Comment #214838

Adrienne-
Here is that other footage I promised you, The demolition of the Landmark Tower in Fort Worth.

Notice again: loud, sequential explosions, detonations at the base, and collapse only after these explosion. Additionally, no windows. Any windows here would have blasted outwards and sent shards everywhere. Before 7 WTC and the other towers collapsed, there were no windows shatterned beyond where it could be expected- points of damage, where airliners and falling debris had already done their worst.

Additionally, here is a link to a comment I had above whose publishing was withheld by the system until this point.

Posted by: Stephen Daugherty at April 3, 2007 2:22 PM
Comment #214876

Stephen D.

For the most part I disagree with you on most subjects. When you do post something I agree with, it is incumbent that I mention my support. You have done an excellent job on the subject of buildings and demolition.

Posted by: tomh at April 3, 2007 7:19 PM
Comment #214877

And now ladies and gentlemen, may I present Rosie O’Donnell and the Spew Crew.

Posted by: tomh at April 3, 2007 7:20 PM
Comment #214898

Wearie Willy-
We’re talking sharp, precisely sequenced detonations here, detonations that show up nowhere in videos of the Trade Towers or 7 WTC. These would be heard, especially if they’re breaking through the supports that have the size necessary to hold up the towers.

I showed you guys several examples of controlled demolitions, including a number of high-rises. Always, the windows are missing. Always we get a precise sequences of sharp, high pressure detonations that can rattle windows distantly, probably shatter them if they’re nearby, and the detonations ALWAYS precede the collapse, and ALWAYS break the building at its base.

Now, you can drag out an individual account that talks about explosions, but there is plenty of live video taken that does not picture that, nor feature the distinct, sharp cracks of the high explosives detonating around the columns.

I know people are going to come back and say that I’m discounting people telling the truth, that I’m trying to get out of admitting what happened, but eyewitness accounts, transmissions in the middle of a disaster, and other oral histories can be, on the individual level unreliable as the sole source of an event.

These are unimaginably huge events, that we have the benefit of standing back from, rather than directly experiencing. These people are reporting things with very partial information. Such anecdotal evidence is valuable, but it must be intepreted in proper context, with proper respect for the subjective nature of experience, and the confusion that can come from unimaginable events like this. They say in journalism that first reports are often misleading in a disaster, for these very reasons.

One thing it helps to do is gather together different accounts from the same area and try to square them. It also helps to go to physical evidence first to establish the baseline, because that can tell you whether people got the wrong impression.

Unfortunately, the approach taken by many 9/11 skeptics, well-intentioned as it may be, is to raise questions without fully understanding the implications, to base very strong critiques of conclusions on evidence that doesn’t necessary necessitate that conclusion.

As for the quote? This is what Firefighter Craig Carlsen said:

I guess about three minutes later you just heard explosions coming from building two, the south tower. It seemed like it took forever, but there were about ten explosions. At the time I didn’t realize what it was. We realized later after talking and finding out that it was the floors collapsing to where the plane had hit.

This guy clearly understands the cause: floors collapsing. Moreover, the man’s underground from what I can understand. He’s describing what he’s hearing, what he understands to be collapsing floors.

As for the three thousand degree melting temperature? Better go out and tell the blacksmiths they’re doing it all wrong. You don’t need to heat something to the melting point to make it incapable of supporting things. As steel softens in heat, it becomes less and less capable of bearing it’s own weight, and it begins to droop under it. As it does that, it eventually breaks its connection to the outer wall, leaving the wall free to bend outwards under the strain of the weight above it.

The people offering these theories are awful picky about what it takes to bring a building down, or to compromise a structure. You can blame folks. They’re not trained to these fields, so they make judgments by what they do know. They’ll know or hear that thermite charges can melt steel, so they’ll raise that possibility, irregardless of how it melts steel. They’ll show a photo of firefighters with their faces in a glowing patch of something, and they’ll say, “ah, melted metal!”, without considering the fact that a firefighter that close to molten metal would be getting his face burned by the radiated heat alone, from that molten steel. They look at controlled demolitions, with their structure collapses and dust plumes, and see similar things in the way the buildings on 9/11 collapsed, but they don’t note the differences, or if they do, it’s an intellectual note, and they come up with some elaborate reason why obvious dissimilarities in what we see or hear don’t add up to an obvious strike against the theory.

If you’re really approaching these studies well, the facts feedback with each other, creating a system of mutual support. One reason I buy the “official” explanation of the collapses, is because the hard evidence makes sense together as a whole. There are too many inconvenient questions that the assertions of the 9/11 truth movement don’t address, which some of them (thankfully not all) cover for by being hostile to the people who ask them.

I played this game when I was a teenager, talking about official explanations. The only trouble was, it was all just never-ending questions, everything looping back on the credibility that came from being a questioner of the official version of events.

Now I don’t mind question an official version of events, but I much prefer that it starts from verifiable facts, not simply intellectual givens backed only by the faith that the truth is out there. I’m hard on these kinds of theories, because I long ago recognized the hollowness of unchecked, uninformed perception. I believe true, functional skepticism does not allow one to simply hold a theory because one feels it’s right. Real skepticism comes from taking nobody’s beliefs for granted, not even your own. That is not what the 9/11 skeptics do. They believe firmly in the conspiracy to hide the true nature of the disaster.

The Iraq war is one example of what happens when true believers don’t let contradictory evidence get in the way of what they consider given. The Vietnam war is another. I don’t see good things coming of any movement that will not allow its beliefs to be put to the test.

Posted by: Stephen Daugherty at April 3, 2007 9:34 PM
Comment #214909

Weary Willie,

Noone has claimed 3000 F temps. The reason she was standing at the window and lept is the same reason people in all tower fires do. Smoke and heat.

What these theories fail to do is combine the deformation from heat with major structural damage at a level supporting more than a 10 story building above it. Once these floor failed the entire weight of that 10 story section was in free fall. F=m*g. It’s Newtonian mechanics at work. The dead and live loads on the structure were exceeded and it then proceeded to fail with each floor adding it’s mass to the falling wrecking ball.

A falling building will generate very loud sounds, it will shake the earth. Siesmographs recorded this and were reviewed by explosives experts and publicly reported. No credible expert has come forth. Quite a conspiracy, that.

I’m open to hearing how eye witness accounts can contradict scientific analysis of the failures, but what I keep hearing is conspiracy theorists ignoring proofs given to them. If your ears and eyes are closed, I cannot make you see or hear.

Posted by: gergle at April 3, 2007 10:02 PM
Comment #214924

Weary Willie-
You’re assuming the floor slabs stay in one piece as they fall. If they don’t, neither do the bodies. or anything else. It’s like tearing a thick book between your hands.

Also consider: These bodies would be in a mixture of torn metal, pulverized concrete and gypsum wallboard, then baked in a very hot pile for sometimes months. Hell, from the accounts you’re linking to, falls from that height alone would be enough to dash people to be pieces, only many of these people are falling through a pulverized cloud of debris running into God knows what of the structure on the way down. That’s how you only get fragments for most people.

Posted by: Stephen Daugherty at April 3, 2007 11:02 PM
Comment #214934

Weary Willie
Gergle, why are you such a dude? Where is the smoke and the heat?

If you’d like to translate that into english that is understandable I’d be glad to respond. It’s catchy, but I can’t dance to it. Just tell ‘em Willie boy was here. And that’s the name of that tune:)

Posted by: gergle at April 3, 2007 11:36 PM
Comment #214992

Gergle and Stephen, let’s look at all the Collapse Theories that are being used to Explain the Unexplainable. In all these theories of
Collapsing Skyscrapers, 9-11 “Changed Everything”, Including the Laws of Physics

Sorry, I still don’t buy them. Too many unanswered questions.

From the same website: Here are the quotes from the emergency workers at 9/11 which I mentioned earlier.

Posted by: Adrienne at April 4, 2007 12:22 PM
Comment #215020

gergle, Stephen, also check this out:

Steven Jones’ Paper: Why Indeed Did the WTC Buildings Collapse?

Posted by: Adrienne at April 4, 2007 2:11 PM
Comment #215026

Adrienne,

The only problem is that no one with any credibility supports Steve Jones…. not even the engineers at his former school. The link in post #214712 does a good job of refuting him and his so called experts.

I personally think he ran out his cold fusion flop and is looking for new ways of making money. Who knows? Perhaps he believes it. Scientists can be nutty, too.

Thank you so much for this discussion, I’ve enjoyed it. Keep questioning, but beware the BS artists.

Posted by: gergle at April 4, 2007 2:50 PM
Comment #215038

Gergle, did you even bother to read the paper? Or just that website’s criticism of it? I see a lot of name calling there, and a lot of lumping of Jones (and a few other credible people writing about the officially unanswered or glossed over questions) with a bunch of the nutcases.
Yes, Jones was fired for writing about the possibility of demolition being the reason that three steel high-rise buildings were somehow completely and totally demolished by fire for the first time in modern history, but it’s strange how the engineers at his former school, or those elsewhere have never bothered to tell anyone WHY they don’t agree, or why everything he wrote is scientifically inaccurate, silly and wrong. If Jones has gotten so much unworthy attention for what he has written, you’d think that some structural engineering, metalurgy, and demolition experts would wish to take that paper on paragraph by paragraph and expose every single inaccuracy in order to discredit the paper, and Jones.

Posted by: Adrienne at April 4, 2007 3:47 PM
Comment #215039

I want to add this bit:

The difference seems to be our peception of structures. I see high rises as largly frail structures that balance the forces applied to them to remain standing.

When you see a large member, I believe you think of of it as rigid and heavily reinforced. I think of it as a very thin link in a house of cards. Building materials are imperfect and construction techniques are full of flaws. I’ve seen large cranes collapse under too much weight applied to them and structures twisted and bent.(I try never to stand under a crane) I have seen unsafe work done by contractors and am amazed when no one is killed. Construction is one of the deadliest professions, ranking alongside firefighters.

On 9-11, I was amazed the towers remained standing as long as they did. I was amazed that so many people escaped and awed at the courage of the firemen that raced to the top. I have always been nervous in high rises, because of the impossibility of ecaping a fire in one. I worry daily when inspecting construction that I will miss some detail that will cause a catastrophic failure and kill someone. I remember the engineers who went to jail for the collapse of a sky bridge in a hotel in Kansas City because they improperly designed a critical connection. The way a bolted connection was designed allowed a shearing force to shear off bolts causing the entire bridge to collapse when dancing partiers overloaded the bridge. It was only a matter of moving the connecting point a few inches.

One of the arguments made by the 9-11 conspiracists struck me because they explained how the plane was similar to a pencil poked through a wire mesh screen. Actually, it’s more like a grid of hair strands glued together, supporting it’s own weight, being attacked by a june bug.

Fire in steel supported structures is deadly, because they are too tall to adequeately fire fight, and most fire suppresion systems are woefully inadequate. Large spans are what lease holders want, which make steel beams very vunerable to deformation in fire. Fire proofing, in general, is a joke, in my opinion. It’s purpose is to delay deformation, but it’s a thin bet. These insulated layers are usually 3/4” to 1.5” thick. In a raging fire, assuming that they stay bonded to the beam, it’s putting hope against hope that A: an extra hour will give you time to get out, and B: that this will actually give you an extra hour. Shear walls are used to stabilize and resist pancaking problems, but expecting one wall on one side of a structure assumes damages of a limited nature.(this doesn’t apply to WTC)

Cost and weight do not allow tall structures to be that stable.(BTW, you stated billions were spent retro fitting WTC7…I doubt it. A 47 story building isn’t worth billions, even in NYC.) It’s a risk we take in high dollar real estate.

Also, engineers constantly disagree with one another. They are an arrogant lot. They are critical of each other. The major science they all agree on, but they constantly see flaws in each others designs and techniques. That’s why a conspiracy of silence is impossible in my eyes.

Posted by: gergle at April 4, 2007 4:03 PM
Comment #215042

Adrienne,
Yes, I did read his paper. There was no molten steel. He never offered his paper for peer review. His claims of peer review were in philosophy journals, not engineering or science journals.

If you’d read the rebuttal piece, you’d know that.

Engineers don’t liable other engineers, it costs too much in court, but real scientists offer papers for real peer review.

If you don’t know the story behind cold fusion, you might think Steve Jones is credible. In the 80’s, a lot of scientists got grants pursuing this. It was quackery. Physicists knew long before this that it was an energy consuming process. Texas A&M embarassed itself by allowing chemists to claim they had produced a net gain in energy, that was quickly proved a hoax. They have yet to live that down.

Posted by: gergle at April 4, 2007 4:14 PM
Comment #215044

“There was no molten steel.”

With this comment you have just revealed that you have read next to nothing about the investigations of 9/11. Even the FEMA and NIST reports mention the molten steel found beneath the wreckage WTC 1, 2 and 7.

The rebutal piece I just read on that website did not attack the scientific aspects and claims in Jones’ paper, just him. Perhaps I read the wrong piece? Maybe you could give me direct link so I’ll know what you’re talking about.

Posted by: Adrienne at April 4, 2007 4:41 PM
Comment #215054

Adrienne,

The only mention of molten steel is eyewitness accounts of firemen and others, not metallurgists.

“NIST concluded that the source of the molten material was aluminum alloys from the aircraft, since these are known to melt between 475 degrees Celsius and 640 degrees Celsius (depending on the particular alloy), well below the expected temperatures (about 1,000 degrees Celsius) in the vicinity of the fires. Aluminum is not expected to ignite at normal fire temperatures and there is no visual indication that the material flowing from the tower was burning.

Pure liquid aluminum would be expected to appear silvery. However, the molten metal was very likely mixed with large amounts of hot, partially burned, solid organic materials (e.g., furniture, carpets, partitions and computers) which can display an orange glow, much like logs burning in a fireplace. The apparent color also would have been affected by slag formation on the surface.”

”>http://wtc.nist.gov/pubs/factsheets/faqs_8_2006.htm

clearly, it’s you who have not read or considered any contrary evidence to your already formed ideas.

The issues regarding fall times as well as other issues were dealt with as well as credentials of so called experts. If you choose not to read them, what can I say?

Posted by: gergle at April 4, 2007 5:28 PM
Comment #215055

I’m not sure you are looking at the same rebuttal I am.

This is the rebuttal of the molten steel

Posted by: gergle at April 4, 2007 5:34 PM
Comment #215058

Adrienne,

I agree that Steve Jones and others have made very slick presentations that give the sheen of science behind them. But they prey upon the ignorance of actual science to draw their conclusions.

There will always be unanswered questions in any scientific endeavor. Religion is the only pursuit that claims to answer eveything.

To me, without reasonable doubt to lead me into a massive conspiracy, it’s a mistake to buy into these.

One thing smoking dope and dropping acid in the 70’s taught me is that perception is very subjective. You can’t always trust your eyes and ears. And no, I’m not high, now.:)

My father was a very intelligent man, who could rarely be challenged, but sometimes he allowed the fact that he was usually far ahead of others, to make logical leaps that led him to very twisted ideas. I wondered if the loss of his mother caused him to feel no one could challenge him. He dimissed what others told him, and it resulted in him sometimes being delusional about events.

Sometimes the truth is more boring than what our minds construct.

It’s good to question authority, but it also good to use it as a sounding post or you can find yourself on quicksand.

Posted by: gergle at April 4, 2007 6:01 PM
Comment #215076

gergle
When I was in my mid twenties I worked for a company that took rolled steel and made it into structural steel. My job was to test the steel for tensile strength and for elongation percentage. The standard for the steel was A-500, A-35, MLX-50, 55, and 60. I have an understanding of what you have written which is very elementary. But I have also studied a little bit about the things that were discussed above. I agree with what you have written and would not rebut a single point. You did a good job. Thank you

Posted by: tomh at April 4, 2007 8:14 PM
Comment #215087

Gergle, am I supposed to be impressed with that rebuttal on that website? A guy who obviously writes with a giant chip on his shoulder against Jones, says things like “Now, I’m no “Professor”” because unlike Jones he doesn’t have a PHD in Physics, and who then goes on to thank bloggers with names like ScottS, Shagster, Arthur, and NEU-FONZE for all their research?

Posted by: Adrienne at April 4, 2007 9:19 PM
Comment #215090

“The only mention of molten steel is eyewitness accounts of firemen and others, not metallurgists”

Then you must ask yourself why metalurgists were never employed for that NIST report? And why the federal govt. allowed the city to sell off the steel and ship it to China and other places before forensic testing could be done on it? NIST’s mission was to find out how and why those buildings fell — and they failed. While I’m not saying that everything that Jones has written is correct, at least he seems to be scientifically searching for answers to the questions that remain.

Posted by: Adrienne at April 4, 2007 9:35 PM
Comment #215095

Adrienne-
You should check this out. This paragraph is particularly illuminating:

Because of the height of the structure and the extent of the blaze, firefighters could only mount a containment operation and ensure that neighbouring buildings were protected. The fire eventually finished 26 hours later, leaving a complete burn-out above the fifth floor. The steel-glass façade was completely destroyed, exposing the concrete perimeter columns. The steel columns above the 17th floor suffered complete collapse, partially coming to rest on the upper technical floor. The insurance value of the total damage caused was €122 million.

Nor is it impossible for a steel frame building to completely collapse, as this photo demonstrates.

Steel-frame buildings are not impervious to fire, they are especially vulnerable to it! Of course, knowing this, people spray insulation and put in fire retarding systems like sprinklers into the building. If this had just been some office fire, your skepticism would be merited.

This was not a mere office fire. The impact of the plane destroyed much of the systems that were designed to slow and stop fires. They also set a huge among of area on fire all at once, making firefighting efforts more problematic. The fuel, like lighter fluid on charcoal bricquets, was consumed quickly, but served to start fires, especially as the impacts pushed flammable debris together.

It also, most importantly, stripped the sprayed-on insulation off, which was critical to protecting the steel from the effects of the fire.

Steel doesn’t need to melt to structurally fail, any more than a blacksmith needed to re-melt iron to make horseshoes and nails, or a swordsmith needed to do so to forge a blade. Each of those processes depend on heat’s ability to make steel more ductile, better able to be shaped by forces around it.

Without the insulation, the fires could soften the metal. They found these floor girders bent, the connections that were supposed to connect them to the outside columns broken.

Among the things that structural elements support are themselves. Each structural element has a point at which it bends past its ability to bend back, and a point at which it snaps instead of bending. Reach those points, and a steel frame can bend out of shape and break apart.

The heat on the girders supporting the floors was enough to cause them to bend under their own weight. As the girders sags, it pulls on what it’s attached to. If it pulls too hard, it can snap the joint or pull what it’s attached to inwards. It’s a question of what gives way first.

As each girder gives way, each remaining girder, especially the ones already in the process of being compromised by the fire, will be put under added strain. Also, as tension from the girders is removed on the sides, it frees the columns there to buckle outwards.

Once the collapse started, you have the weight of the floors above coming down on the floors below. These buildings are designed to support them, but at rest, not accelerated by a drop. If somebody’s ever tossed you a bag of potting soil, you’ll understand the difference between something dropped and something laid on a supporting element in terms of force.

More force was coming down than these structural elements were designed to carry. Every floor that came down added to what was coming down on top of the next.

They talk about how only demolitions do this, but they forget that much of a building remains standing before they take out the bottom. The point there is to cause a pancaking collapse by severing columns, then blasting the columns out at the foundation. No law of physics requires that a progressive collapse come only as the result of a demolition. Anything that causes one floor to drop on top of another, any force that over comes the resistance of the material to strain can collapse a building as such.

Why are we even arguing about the uniqueness of this event. Even if the towers had never collapsed, the attack would be unique in and of itself. That it is improbable is quite obvious. The real question is what’s more improbably, more technically feasible: that a terrorist group with a long track record of technically sophisticated attacks manages to crash planes to buildings, causing a catastrophic series of failures in them and the surrounding buildings that are damaged by their debris…

Or that somehow an administration as patheticially incompetent as this one manages to pull off three controlled demolitions without anybody noticing the pattern of detonating charges, without anybody noticing them being setup over a matter of months, doing it ass-backwards in comparison to just about every other known hi-rise demolition, without creating a preliminary shower of broken glass prior to the collapse, and doing so in unison with the exact positions of jet airliners that were supposed to be aimed at precise spots on the building frame by jets going hundreds of miles per hour, including one that was going so fast that it was going to break up had it not crashed into the tower?

My God! How many damn things would you have to get right to make that happen? How many factors would they have to consider, how many people would have to remain silent? The Bush administration can’t even run an illegal wiretapping operation without getting the cover blown when NSA officials got antsy about the constitutional implications! How is the mass murder of thousands of American citizens going to go off without any hitch?

This is why I don’t like conspiracy theories: they too often require people to be much smarter, much more perfect than they are in real life. They also don’t let themselves get knocked down. The people investigating this went through a number of theories before they came up with the ones that now compose the official story.

It seems simpler, and more plausible to some that this was an intentional act of a deceptive government, but knowing the science behind the explanations, and behind things like controlled demolitions and thermite incendiaries, they don’t seem that way to me. They seem like poorly founded speculation.

What’s more, it seems unnecessary to me. The Bush administration doesn’t need to be responsible for 9/11 to have shamefully exploited it. It doesn’t need to be a hoax for the Bush administration to have lied and cheated far too much about the War on Terrorism for this country’s good.

And most importantly, our government doesn’t have to be in on destroying the towers for it to be responsible for the failures that allowed it to occur. For me, the danger in this unchecked speculation is that in the name of blaming the attack on Bush, we will underestimate the need for good counterterrorism policy. If it wasn’t them, why do we need it?

That to me would be dangerous, because the truth is, al-Qaeda is real, and it did attack us on several occasions It was known for technically sophisticated attacks, with the Cole attack involving them putting explosives into the hull of their ship in order to avoid detection.

Should we go in Bush’s direction with our counterterrorism? No. Hell no. Should we believe that Bush somehow managed to pull the con game of the century, yet can’t plan his way out of a war, instead of simply saying that he exploited America’s reaction to gain consent for abominably poor policy?

If 9/11 was such a success as the Truth movement would have it, Why did Bush fail to find someway to link Iraq and an attack here concretely? If it succeed once, why not try it again? If Iraq appeared to attack us on our own soil, there would be no question of the rightness of it.

If Bush was remorseless enough to do it once, he would not blink an eye at doing it whenever things were looking down.

Bush is a terrible president. He’s gotten us into a rotten war, and he is one of the most immature, overly-political presidents of modern times. But nothing about what he’s done in his presidency indicates to me that he was ever capable of pulling something like this off.

Could it be somebody else, could it be this or that? There’s more questions raised than factually consistent explanations offered.

I’m the last person to want to ascribe anything to anger at Bush, but I think the conspiracy theories feed off of that. I think people want him to be entirely responsible for what happened, because then we can utterly reject the work of this administration, throw the baby out with the bathwater without remorse. If we weren’t attacked, then these last few years are just a shadow of things that will pass when everybody knows the truth.

Oh, for things to be so easy. But this is how it was easy for the Republicans all these years, America’s troubles the fault of a pernicious liberal conspiracy, and everything would be alright when the liberals were suppressed once and for all.

What makes a lot of this supremely ironic is that many of the same people who stirred up conspiracy theories with Clinton and the “jack-booted thugs”, are the same people doing all the theorizing here.

They want there to be a clear villain, no misguided folks thinking of themselves as good guys, no people who simply have honest disagreements. They want a serpent in the garden, a reason that history doesn’t seem to move with innocent simplicity towards a better future.

But the real world is a vale of tears, a place where we struggle, where we cannot and will not know all things, and where complete understanding is never forthcoming.

The world’s imperfect. We will be decieved. There will be people who respond to a real crisis in an unworthy fashion. Our leaders and our adversaries are human, are imperfect. When we act as if they can do anything and make anything happen, we mistake the true nature of reality.

Most of the power these people wield is an illusion, and paranoia only increases the power that these kinds of folks have over others. Fear is all too often used to manipulate people, and from top to bottom, conspiracy theories like this are about the fear of being used by one’s government.

Before you say, what does that matter, recall that for the last twelve years, our congress was controlled by those who used a fear of government as a means to both cloak and justify the extent of the things they did.

What we need to be are better skeptics, and buying speculation without solid backing is not good skepticism.

Posted by: Stephen Daugherty at April 4, 2007 10:27 PM
Comment #215115

Adrienne,

I don’t think the website author has a chip on his shoulder. I think he is offended when someone undermines science by using the appearance of science to foist a hoax on the public, as I am. I don’t like con-artists. I don’t think that makes me guilty of having a chip on my shoulder.

I think NIST adequately explained the failure of these buildings. Did they exhaustively study every aspect? No. Was it necessary to draw their conclusions? In my opinion, and most engineers, no.
Bin Laden is squarely the person to blame. It is sad that the CIA and NSA knew this immediately. It speaks to the lack of diligence in eliminating this threat. That we haven’t concentrated on killing him more than we have, is frustrating and engenders my anger. That is sufficiently a conspiracy, to me, that deserves my anger.

Posted by: gergle at April 5, 2007 1:01 AM
Comment #215196

Stephen and gergle,

I have never said that I believe that Bushco pulled off what happened on 9/11. However, I think it would have been possible for them to have done so if they had wanted to — and after all, Bush’s own brother and cousin’s company were in charge of the security for all of those buildings. But I’d never go that far out on a limb to claim that I know that is what happened. And I agree that many people would have needed to be in on such a thing, and that this administration isn’t known for any measure of competence, despite the insane Nixon-like level of secrecy they have imposed during their tenure.

That being said, I do know that the Neocons had written years before that having another Pearl Harbor would be the perfect opportunity for them to go ahead with their plans to remake the Middle East, and to usurp more executive power than any US president has ever known before. And, I know that when they seized power they didn’t bother to address the problem of Al Qaeda even though they were warned about it by the outgoing administration and Richard Clarke. We must also remember that they totally ignored the “Bin Laden Determined To Strike In US” memo. Finally, we must consider the fact that they fought tooth and nail NOT to allow an independent investigation to go forward, but that when the public pressure was so great, they wanted Henry Kissinger to be the one to head it up. When the outcry over that was so great, they finally settled for a guy who had worked for the NSA who was a close friend of Condi Rice. That is a lot of factors that might suggest that they simply allowed what happened to happen — but again, I’m uncertain, and would never claim I know for sure.

Is it wrong to even entertain such thoughts? I’m sure some will scream that it is, but I don’t think so — after all we KNOW they are LIARS who believe the ends justify the means, even when that means that Americans will lose their lives. The sad fact is, people don’t trust Bushco because in so many ways they’ve proven utterly untrustworthy.

I look at the three official reports (9/11 Commission, FEMA and NIST) that were made to try to understand what happened on 9/11 and I notice that they gloss over many things, that they got certain facts wrong including using accurate blue prints of the buildings, and I see that the end results utterly conflicted each other. I note that little money was allotted to them even though it was the first time since our Civil War that that many Americans died at one time on our own soil. I see that many factors were never looked into at all (either because they didn’t have enough money, or because they just didn’t think to hire certain experts, who knows?) even though these rank amongst the greatest of structural failures in the nations history, and certainly caused the greatest number of deaths. I see that forensic tests were never done on the raw materials of the wreckage to make absolutely certain that there wasn’t also bombs in the towers since so many people inside the buildings claimed to have witnessed such things, while others heard explosions or saw flashes. I find it amazing that the plane that crashed in Lockerbie, Scotland recieved more lengthy, careful, and scientifically precise scrutiny than 9/11 did.
Which leads me right back to the cronyism and incompetence of this adminstration. Making me ask how were the people who headed up these investigations, or the scientists who participated in them chosen? Why was the power to requisition the steel for further testing never given when the City of New York quickly moved to sell it off and send it out of the country?
The way I see it, the 9/11 Truth Movement was inevitable, and that conspiracies of all sorts would spring up surrounding the events. Not because the majority of these people want to distrust their government, but because their government gave them so many reasons to do so.
Thanks for the discussion.

Posted by: Adrienne at April 5, 2007 12:45 PM
Comment #215250

Adrienne,

For the most part I agree with your last post. I doubt anyone “let” the events happen intentionally. I do think that focus and money was taken from the FBI and CIA investigations.

I think the Bush administration was focused on it’s own political agenda, as it continues to be, and in that light was complicit in the events. What is worse is their continued use of the emotions of 9-11 to pursue stupid policies.I think they would have made any event their “pearl harbor” to go into Iraq.

That they have done little to reduce our exposure to terrorism should be criminal. The continued profiteering of their financial backers that is accommodated by an administration bereft of moral imperatives was not surprising to me(having watched W rise in Texas), but continues to disgust me. It is hard for me to call their cavalier policies just incompetent, when intelligent people have left this administration in frustration over policies that further erode our power, treasure and treats our military as their personal fodder.

I have learned a lot that I didn’t know about the WTC events, thanks to this discussion. Thank you for that.

Posted by: gergle at April 5, 2007 4:28 PM
Comment #215271

Adrienne-
I believe that however incomplete the findings of the various commissions and investigations are, they are much less incomplete than the explanations provided elsewhere by the 9/11 Truth movement.

I can understand how the frustration with Bush plays into this, but I think those who approach 9/11 with the often pseudoscientific and pseudo-skeptical approach of those who identify with the movement are merely repeating Bush’s real error: the failure to question their own beliefs in addition to others.

My feeling about Bush is that he is the product of a situation where people have bought entirely into the party dogma, and really have little independent knowledge of their own concerning the subjects at hand.

The Administration, like the groups who believe they intentionally set up 9/11, is full of people who generalize whole worlds of significance from a few details, seeking out the facts that confirm their points of view, and dismissing those that do not. The Laurie Mylroie allegation that Saddam was the figure behind al-Qaeda is one such belief. Another was the belief that Saddam was going for Yellowcake in Niger.

As sure of their beliefs as they are, they make mistakes that look to the rest of us like stupid mistakes, mistakes so stunning in their depth that many people just cannot accept that anybody could do this and not know what they were doing.

Stupidity and incompetence is more disturbing than malice and ulterior motives. Bush hasn’t helped much by being so secretive, I agree. But what happens if the 9/11 truth movement gets any significant toehold in terms of getting new investigations? I fear it will be the same song, just with different singers.

It is disturbing to us as well not to know everything there is to know about an event like 9/11, or to find the length of time it takes to get answers to go on for years. Truth is, though, many investigations do go on for quite some time, and not all come to any real conclusion. There are still mysteries in this world, and our means of piercing them are often imperfect, our supply of meaningful evidence either deficient, or not yet made known to us.

I’ve read about airline disasters, about building collapses, watched documentaries on the subject. TV and the movies compress the timeline and overplay the completeness of the picture in investigations in the name of dramatic necessity, but many people assume that these investigations are much quicker and much more productive than they actually are.

Not all information is recoverable from the world around us when an event happens, and sometimes our perceptions can lead us to misinterpret things.

However flawed the pursuit of real world evidence and however slow the pace of real world investigations are, however confounded these things can be by official carelessness and other unfortunate factors, such efforts are still superior to the mountain-out-of-a-molehill approach taken by many in the conspiracy theory community.

It’s alright to raise questions, but in the real world, not every question has answers that make sense or that flatter our biases. Sometimes, our only answer is silence, unfortunately.

The impulse to know, to find out, of course, is strong, and nobody likes to be frustrated as such, especially when it’s personal. What I’ve learned over the years, though, is that we’re imperfect students of the truth, no matter how much belief we put into things. As President Bush has so tragically, and so foolishly demonstrated again and again, confidence in one’s own beliefs is no real indication of the quality of those beliefs. We can put our money on the wrong horse.

The key is to practice intellectual discipline.
We must:

1) Learn the facts and the nature of the things we’re talking about. In terms of Demolition, it’s important to know what causes what, and how the dynamics of the collapse work.

2) It’s important to know what the mutually exclusive truths of a problem are. In terms of demolition, There have to be some pretty noticeable blasts going off, unlike anything else heard that day, which simply were not caught by the majority of Cameras. Additionally, demolition charges would create a pressure wave that would blast out windows on any floor they were on, yet nobody saw these blasts during the stage during which this supposedly controlled demolition was going on.

3) While raising questions about what occured is legitimate, one must be careful not to argue a not otherwise proven possibility with an argument from ignorance. Real world investigations often reach conclusions that bear some degree of uncertainty. Gaps in the official explanation may present the possibility that some other explanation is true, but they do not imply it by necessity. A case such as that which is made in an investigation is made by a combination of eliminated factors and the preponderance of evidence for existing factors. The weight of the case is as important as the completeness of it. We know few things in the real world with 100% certainty, so we can’t wait for complete knowledge forever. It’s best if we do our best, and then accept the human limitations of gaining knowledge and understanding things.

We have to build our conclusions, our suspicions, and our policies on the best founded information we can. We need to resist the lure of easy answers, easy closure, easy certainty and figure out the world on a more active basis.

Posted by: Stephen Daugherty at April 5, 2007 7:00 PM
Comment #215355

Adrienne,Stephen Daugherty, and gergle,

Thank you for such informative posts. I truly had never thought in terms of a conspiracy, and know virtually nothing about structural engineering. All three of you have educated me in both.

d.a.n - this is what my idea of a blog should be - educational and informative. Thank you for sponsoring it.

Posted by: Linda H. at April 6, 2007 2:18 PM
Comment #215370

Weary Willie-
If we don’t work out a robust consensus that has a strong basis in reality, if we’re just arbitrarily asking people to just agree with us for the sake of outward unity, then all we’re doing is creating another counterproductive example of groupthink for the history books.

America is a Democratic Republic. That means our course of action is supposed to be argued out, not imposed by one group on another. America becomes the real prison when the groups not in power are kept ignorant and powerless, and those in power become possessed by the need to continue their power at all costs.

America is free as long as we recognize that our people must rule by informed consent. Nobody has the privilege of basing the general policy of this country, here and abroad, on deception of the people and the frustration of their will.

Posted by: Stephen Daugherty at April 6, 2007 6:32 PM
Comment #215457
That was largely the result of his celebrity status. That is not his fault. That’s the fault of the voter. As voters we shouldn’t be influenced by celebrity, but by substance. That’s where d.a.n. and David Remer really make sense. It’s not the party or the individual.
KansasDem, Thank you very much! You are 100% correct … the government won’t become responsible until the voters do too! We are all culpable. While too many voters are wallowing in the circular, divisive, distracting partisan warfare (fueled by many politicians and their hacks), the nation continues a gradually decline. While most people within the two-party duopoly spend all their time pointing fingers at each other (and accomplishing litte, if anything), a few of us (far too few) are doing somehthing unusual … we are pointing fingers at the voters themselves! Because the politicians have no power but what the voters give them. What we have is what the voters have given them. And as long as we continually reward politicians for being irresponsible, the MORE irresponsible they will become.

The incessant, circular, divisive partisan warfare just perpetuates our decline and distracts voters from more substatnive issues, that Congress refuses to adequately address, allowing them to grow in number and severity, threatening the future and security of the nation.

Linda H. wrote: d.a.n - this is what my idea of a blog should be - educational and informative. Thank you for sponsoring it.
You’re welcome. And, Thank You!

As far as movie stars go, they are not that much different than the rest of us.
That does NOT mean that we are the same as the generations before or after us.
In my opinion, these things run in cycles.
We are NOT the Great Generation.
We are too selfish and lazy.
Here are some of movie stars of the Great Generation.
Compare them to today’s movie stars.
The question that I ponder often is …
Are they a product of the times?
Or, are the times a product of them?

Regarding Iraq …
Should our brave troops risk life and limb for nation building?
Should our troops risk life and limb to baby sit the Iraqis’ civil war?
The Iraqis are gonna have their civil war with or without us.
Is Al Qaeda really that numerous in Iraq, and even if they are, so what?
It’s about time Iraqis decide if they want to fight for their own freedom, or prefer to keep killing each other for no good reason.
Are we really making the U.S. safer?
Have we really made the U.S. safer?
Should the U.S. be the world police?
Do the Iraqis appreciate our sacrifices?
It appears NOT, since a poll shows most Iraqis want us to leave now, 82% of Iraqis “strongly oppose” the continuing occupation, and 45% of Iraqis feel attacks against coalition troops are justified!
Why should we be nation-building when our own problems, growing in number and severity?
Knowing what we know now, should we have invaded Iraq?
Did most Americans know this would be the probable result, and if they had, do you think they would have approved? Because they don’t approve of it now (i.e. no WMD).
Do you think our continued occupation might have something to do with oil? After all, there are other nations where millions are dying due to genocide and other causes, but we appear to be acutely interested only in the middle east (where the oil is).
Shouldn’t our troops be able to get adequate medical attention and promised benefits?
After all, Congress just gave itself another raise (the 9th raise in the last 10 years).
Based on actions (not rhetoric), does that portray a Congress that really gives a damn?
Actions speak louder than words.
What does the administration’s and Congress’ actions say about them?
While our troops risk life and limb, Congress votes itself cu$hy perks and more raises every year, but carefully scrutinizes (and often denies) any raises or benefits for veterans and our troops.
The big picture reveals a Congress and Executive Branch that is severely arrogant, greedy, FOR-SALE, bought-and-paid-for, and only interested in making their cu$hy incumbencies more secure, while refusing any badly-needed, no-brainer, common-sense, responsible reforms that may even remotely limit their power, opportunities for self-gain, and the security of their cu$hy, coveted incumbencies.

Yet the voters keep rewarding these same politicians by repeatedly re-electing them; giving them a cu$hy 90% re-election rate.

The voters are culpable too.
In view of this administrations myriad of blunders and Congress’ displays of unchecked greed, We SHOULD be questioning what they are doing (or not doing).

Government IS irresponsible because the voters are too.
Government will NOT become responsible until the voters do too!

Does questioning these things makes people unpatriotic, or cowards, or hypocrites, or bad people?
We ALL want to be successful.
Portraying people as quitters and cowards because they don’t support the continued occupation of Iraq does not make them bad people.
Personally, I think we have already been successful enough and it is time to start leaving.
It’s not our job to be the world police.
We removed Saddam.
We sacrificed plenty already.
It’s time to let the Iraqis decide if they want freedom, or if they want to keep killing each other for no good reason. If so, that’s their problem, and it ain’t worth the life of our troops.

Posted by: d.a.n at April 7, 2007 1:42 PM
Comment #215460

Adrienne, I want to add your name to the list of people already thanked for this entire discussion. A personal and significant loss usually gives us the strength to fight for our beliefs. I will admit to having so many questions, and found myself leaning towards the conspiracy theory. Admittedly, my reasons were instantly directed towards Bush specifically, and most of his administration. I haven’t changed my mind in thinking that “he” is just not above doing anything that helps him achieve his own personal goals.
Again, thank all of you for your contributions on here………, now Adrienne, come join some of the other posts.. miss your input there.. ;)

Posted by: Sandra Davidson at April 7, 2007 2:11 PM
Comment #215488

Weary Willie-
America is not bound by war, but war is bound by it. The Founding Fathers did not intend the President to become a dictator. He is the head of the armed forces. His summary powers in that respect are not given to the Congress, nor to the Judiciary. No judge or senator can give orders to the army.

However, a Judge can rule on whether military matters are legal, as to the nature of conduct by our forces. Gitmo shows this. Senators and Representatives can vote on both the authorization to go to war and the money to fund that war, and by denying those, remove the President’s authority to take those actions. The Presidency is not meant to become a dicatorship, especially in an undeclared war like this.

You will not get 10 years. The president hasn’t earned that kind of committment from the American people. He hasn’t even logistically prepared for it. Our soldiers cannot remain in Iraq with decent levels of readiness and reinforcement much longer than year, much less stay a decade as things are now. The President has not put his money where his mouth is, and either asked for a draft, or for the additional tens of thousands of volunteer troops that could keep things going. He has not resolved other commitments to allow more troops to be brought in, nor done much of anything else to ensure that he would have the troops he needs.

The bombs have already had their effect, but it’s not our confidence they were meant to shake, but the Iraqi people’s. Their confidence in us is pretty much shot. That sort of confidence could not have been preserved by anything else than a successful strategy for securing Iraq. Both the Iraqis and the American people have lost faith in this war because of that failure.

And who’s responsible for that? No question, Democrats have used Iraq to their political advantage. However, it is not a bad thing in a Democracy for one party to compete to defeat another when it’s falling down on the job. The incompetence of the Bush Administration, and the unwillingness of the Republican Congress to check that stupidity is what motivated Democrats to become more aggressive in courting the people, and the people more open to that approach.

The media is concentrating on what the story is. Improvement in Iraq could have been the story, if that had actually happened. In fact things have not gotten better.

Your president and his party have forgotten that the power they were given was loaned to them by the people, and that their retention of that power depended on them doing the people’s will. The time to win the war was long ago, not after years of decline put their imprint on the attitudes of Iraqis, and exposed them to years of chaos.

Now’s the time to stop shooting ourselves in the foot.

Posted by: Stephen Daugherty at April 7, 2007 6:59 PM
Comment #215509

Stephen, believe or not, I agree with that.
Unfortunately, you want to make partisan points.
What we realy need is voters of BOTH parties to stop blindly pulling the party lever.
Most politicians don’t give a $#!+ about the average American.
Why the average American keeps rewarding them for that is amazing!
Stop Repeat Offenders.
Stop Re-Electing Them.
Stop Rewarding Them.

Posted by: d.a.n at April 8, 2007 12:11 AM
Comment #215753

Dan-
I want to make points that have a grounding in reality on behalf of my party. I side with my party not because I believe they should be given a pass on everything, but rather, because I agree with many of the basic principles.

Of course, your standard doesn’t distinguish that, or even ask the question. Rather impractical, really. You’re asking people to be non-partisan, but many people start from non-partisan principles when deciding what they stand for. If you can’t propose a non-partisan way of coming to terms with those disagreements, then you will find it hard to convince people that siding with the party in a particular instance is bad.

You keep on coming back to the politicians, but the politicians are kept in office by a feedback loop of people’s beliefs and how the party motivates people to act on them. You need to interrupt that loop, and get people going in another direction. One way to do that is to provide an alternate structure or approach. The other is to lessen the person’s motivation at hand by bringing them to reconsider where that motivation is taking them, or where it can take them.

In some other thread, you actually did what I suggested you do, to some extent: you provided some specific detail. Don’t underestimate the power of that. Stop taking on general targets, repeating the same general statements. Use the subjects to expand on what you know to be going on.

Weary Willie-
There is a legitimate concern for the legality of this war, since the Bush administration gave up on justifying things on an actual threat to this country. He started saying that we did this to prevent Saddam from becoming a threat.

Pre-emptive war is legal. Preventative war is not. All countries have the right to bring a first strike against an enemy who is about to attack them. No country has the right under international law to invade another country to take down a future, non-actual thread.

With no WMDs and no real al-Qaeda presence prior to our invasion, we have a poor time arguing that the war in Iraq was justified on its original grounds.

As for the rest? Google results are decided on arbitrary data that do not pertain to the legitimacy of any position.

If Bush had not posited the war as a pre-emptive effort, he would have had a hard time justifying it to the American people. That he started out this way indicates that even he was worried about what looking like an unjustified aggressor would do to his standard here and elsewhere.

On Wiretaps and the other things, the legislature and the courts are clear: FISA is the go-to law. Bush should have sought new authority, rather than break the law.

As for the number of hits for stupidity? Well, stupid is as stupid does, and no president was impeached for being stupid. having no impeachment is not a guarantee of positive reputation. Nixon, after all, was never impeached, though he came close.

Those numbers ad up to a partisan, biased, and ultimately fallacious argument on your part.

Posted by: Stephen Daugherty at April 9, 2007 6:09 PM
Comment #215871
Stephen Daugherty wrote: d.a.n , I want to make points that have a grounding in reality on behalf of my party. I side with my party not because I believe they should be given a pass on everything, but rather, because I agree with many of the basic principles.
Stephen,

I understand your party loyalty perfectly.
I used to be the same way.
Then, the OTHER party was the problem (so I thought).
So you stil think.

But, it is false.
The real problem is much, much, much more simple.
The real problem is NOT just one group.
NOT only the Democrats.
NOT only the Republicans.
NOT only the Third Party and Independents that the two-party duopoly despise for occassionally upsetting their duopolous two-party stranglehold.
NOT only the politicians.
NOT only the voters.
The real problem is ALL of us.

Stephen,
In the last election, did you pull the party-lever?
Did you vote for ONLY Democrats?
Can you honestly say?

If so, that is how you give power to YOUR party to keep being irresponsible.
It is easier to blame the OTHER party, then entertain the fact that BOTH are irresponsible.

I understand your loyalty.
You are not alone.
I used to be the same way (for many decades).
But not any more.

NEITHER party is responsible and accountable.
That includes politicians and their electorate.
Politicians of BOTH parties are simply too irresponsible, unaccountable, FOR-SALE, and look-the-other-way.
What is the proof?
Just look objectively at the numerous things and reasons they ignore those things, as the problems grow in number and severity.
Aren’t you yet wondering when Congress is going to start addressing some important issues?
Aren’t you yet getting a little upset at their constant bickering and giving themselves another raise?

Look at all the important things they BOTH ignore, but incessantly try to blame the OTHER party for (such as illegal immigration, campaign finance reform, election reform, Gerrymandering, or anything that may even remotely reduce their power, opportunities for self-gain, or reduce the security of their cu$hy, coveted incumbencies).

It’s not just Republicans.
It’s not just Democrats.
The reason Democrats lost their 70 year majority was because they used to be the slightly more irresponsible.
Then the Republicans got their turn, and they abused their power.
They simply take turns, and voters are tricked into playing the game.
If you want to be truly objective, you would admit that Congress is still much too irresponsible.
But you are fearfull of Republicans winning seats.
That is how the two-party duopoly maintains its stranglehold.
People are more fearful of the OTHER party than the fact that politicians of BOTH are abysmal.
The vast amount of facts and evidence of it are staggering.
The main party loyalists in BOTH the blue and red columns hate it.
But they have trouble arguing the logic.
They try, but it always falls short, because the evidence that most (if not all) politicians of BOTH parties are irresponsible is overwhelming.
Now, this minute, in the red column, someone is praising the integrity of John McCain, Romney, and Giuliani.
They conveniently ignore the facts to the contrary … especially as their abmitions for the presidency warps and clouds their judgement. And I used to have more respect for John McCain, but he’s blown it now.

Stephen Daugherty wrote:
Of course, your standard doesn’t distinguish that, or even ask the question. Rather impractical, really.
Sure it distinguishes the difference.

There’s nothing impractical about wanting sooner than later what is inevitable.
I’m well aware that people think THEIR party looks out for them.
I used to be the same way.
However, the sad fact is that most (if not all) politicians of BOTH parties prove year after year that they care more about their own self-gain, giving themselves more cu$hy perk$ and raises (9 times in the last 10 years), and making their cus$hy, coveted incumbencies more secure than solving the nation’s pressing problems. The proof is in the pudding. They are simply ignoring the nation’s most pressing problems. BOTH Democrat and Republican politicians. Want proof of it? Just start here.

Stephen Daugherty wrote: You’re asking people to be non-partisan,
That’s exactly right.

Why? Because the partisan bias and partisan warfare is a clever tool used to manipulate voters. Of course, the main party loyalists won’t admit it, but the bias is obvious. It’s funny how the main-party loyalist can see the partisan bias of the duped members of the OTHER party, but can’t see their own bias. It’s funny to watch each getting all twisted every which way trying to rationalize the irresponsible behavior of THEIR party.

I’ve seen you (and others) in the blue column fueling the partisan warfare, and I’ve seen many in red column doing the same. While ya’ll are preoccupied with fueling the circular, divisive, distracting partisan warfare, the nation continues it’s gradual demise.

If you want more credibility, don’t fuel the petty partisan warfare.
There are some in the blue column and the red column that are so blindly loyal to THEIR party, it’s absolutely ridiculous. They are blind to THEIR own party’s faults, but all too quick to see the OTHER party’s faults.

But, eventually, most (not all) will … some day.
It is inevitable.
History repeats itself and only a fool thinks it won’t.
Every once in a great while, humans learn from history, and make a tiny step forward, and there is finally progress.
I hope for the day (perhaps not in my lifetime) when voters finally see how they are being manipulated and controlled by greedy, bought-and-paid-for, look-the-other-way policians, and finally do what they were supposed to be doing all along … which is quite simply:
Stop Repeat Offenders.
Don’t Reward them.
Don’t re-elect them.
Elect challengers until they get the message.
Then, we will have more responsible government when the voters finally become responsible too.
And repeatedly rewarding bad politicians by repeatedly re-electing them will never accomplish anything but to make irresponsible politicians MORE irresponsible.

The logic is sound and irrefutable.
Yet, most people, at the moment, still reject it.
They do so at their own risk.
They, themselves, will suffer the painful consequences; many of which are already in the pipeline.
They will get their education one way or another, but they will get it.
History proves it.
Nations rise, flourish, struggle, and then perish … over and over and over.
The nations that flourish and struggle the longest are those that adapt and change quickly enough.
I don’t think we will perish any time soon, but I think we will struggle a while longer.
It will be painful as the consequences of the last 30+ years of fiscal and moral bankruptcy approach.
There will be consequences for so much massive debt, borrowing, spending, waste, excessive money printing, and other manifestations of unchecked greed.

Stephen Daugherty wrote: You’re asking people to be non-partisan, but many people start from non-partisan principles when deciding what they stand for. If you can’t propose a non-partisan way of coming to terms with those disagreements, then you will find it hard to convince people that siding with the party in a particular instance is bad.
You’re absolutely correct.

I am asking people to be non-partisan.
I never said it would be easy, or even possible any time soon.
Cracking the very deeply engrained partisan brainwashing is extremely difficult; impossible with many people.
We may have to wait until enough voters suffer the painful consequences of their blinding partisanship.
Pain is a good motivator and educator.
Often, things must get worse before they can get better.
That is most likely what we’re headed for now, because I have no confidence that our pathetically FOR-SALE, bought-and-paid-for, look-the-other-way, childish, incompetent, greedy, selfish Congress persons will ever address the nation’s pressing problems as fast as they give themselves another raise (i.e. 9 times in the past 10 years). They are truly pathetic. That is partly why NO one has ever been able to provide a list of 10, 20, 50, 100, or even at least 268 (half of 535) in Congress that they believe are responsible and accountable. They know better. They avoid the question. Many say they know lots of honest, responsible Congress persons, but refuse to give names. Especially if their choices are from THEIR party. They don’t want to face reality. They don’t want it to be known that they voted for a crook. They do not want to admit they are wrong. They are blindly loyal. And that is how some politicians (cheaters) tap into their laziness. It’s easier to take THEIR party’s word for things and demonize the OTHER party, rather than think for themselves; rather than research things themselves; rather than risk the anguish of admitting a mistake.

Stephen Daugherty wrote: You keep on coming back to the politicians, but the politicians are kept in office by a feedback loop of people’s beliefs and how the party motivates people to act on them.
Not true. It’s NOT just the politicians.

In fact, unlike most here that point fingers at the OTHER party, I do not just attribute our pressing problems only irresponsible incumbent politicians.

I also make it VERY clear that voters are the other half of the problem, because the voters keep rewarding irresponsible incumbent politicians by repeatedly re-electing them. But, voters will learn eventually … most likely the hard way, but they will learn one way or another. It’s sort of a self-correcting system. That’s how improvements come about. Pain is a strong motivating factor. However, success and adaption is not always guaranteed.

As this planet becomes more densely populated, the chances for world war increase significantly.
The world population is increasing by 249,000 per day!
We may not adapt in time.
We now have the real potential to make a mistake from which recovery is impossible.
We now have the ability to destroy ourselves.

Also, for all those politicians that seem to think we are in some sort of population race, they need to re-examine their logic. When did over-population ever help anything. Ask China. Ask India. Over-population exacerbates and amplifies most (if not all) problems. It is despicable the way politicians are pitting American citizens and illegal aliens agianst each other in their quest for cheap labor and votes.

Stephen Daugherty wrote: You need to interrupt that loop, and get people going in another direction. One way to do that is to provide an alternate structure or approach. The other is to lessen the person’s motivation at hand by bringing them to reconsider where that motivation is taking them, or where it can take them.
That’s what we’re doing. Some are receptive. Actually, the numbers are increasing, but it will take many more. But one thing is for certain. It will come about eventually. The motivation will be the painful consequences for so much apathy, complacency, selfishness, and ignorance will finally catch up with us. It is inevitable. I’m merely trying to help it happen sooner than later, because it will be more painful later. People have to choose. People won’t choose without motivation. That motivation is often a result of pain. Eventually, pain trumps lazy.
Stephen Daugherty wrote: In some other thread, you actually did what I suggested you do, to some extent: you provided some specific detail. Don’t underestimate the power of that. Stop taking on general targets, repeating the same general statements. Use the subjects to expand on what you know to be going on.
I have and do provide tons of details, subjects, solutions, analysis, and sources.

If you look at the many hundreds of links and web-pages, you’d see that. You’d also see that it grows and changes daily; more information, more sources, and more pages. No one knows what the future holds. My efforts may all prove to be a waste of time, but since no one knows for certain, there is no sense in resigning to futility. Like many here, despite the majority of main-party loyalists that are threatened by it, I will continue to assert the problems and solutions to the circular, distracting partisan warfare, blind party loyalism, and the painful consequences of it, in the hope that it will eventually reach enough voters to finally remember what voting was supposed to be about … and it was NEVER supposed to be about rewarding irresponsible incubment politicians by repeatedly re-electing them. Government won’t become responsible until the voters do too.

Posted by: d.a.n at April 10, 2007 12:48 PM
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