Sunday, July 22, 2012

July 22 - July 28, 2012 Discussions

I'm finding myself to be very curious about what motivated James Holmes to go on that shooting rampage in Aurora, Colorado.  He'd been planning it for months.  He was out of work, which may have been part of his motivation, but he didn't kill himself, which seems to be the pattern for people who go on killing rampages as a result of being out of work.

Holmes appears to have been an active church goer, which generally indicates Right Wing leanings.  But, he didn't start buying his guns until a few months ago, so he apparently wasn't a life-long gun nut.  He was gifted, intelligent, and somewhat of a recluse.  But, he also once reportedly worked as a camp counselor for underprivileged children.  These aren't inconsistencies, they're parts of a complex puzzle.  Like Bruce Ivins, Holmes is a scientist who was socially inept, who appeared "nice," but who had an evil "dark side" that no one seemed to know about.  Ivins talked about going out "in a blaze of glory."  James Holmes wore body armor when he shot up that theater, and he surrendered peacefully.  That seems to say that he has a story he wants to tell -- when the time is right.

The bulk of my Sunday comment was about the task of finding a literary agent.  If the query letter I sent out on Thursday fails, I'm going to try a change in tactics.  But the new "tactic" only applies to a few agents.

Ed     

34 comments:

  1. Susan's webpage states:

    "She continues to look for well-researched, topical books written by fully credentialed academics, journalists, and recognized public intellectuals with the power to ..."

    Ed, if you want to be published, I recommend you drop your argument that a First Grader wrote the anthrax letters. No agent would represent such an argument because there is no credible support for the argument.

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  2. Anonymous wrote: "No agent would represent such an argument because there is no credible support for the argument."

    My book PROVIDES totally convincing and undeniable support for that hypothesis.

    Besides, if anyone disagrees, I'd like to see them show evidence that a child did NOT write the letters. And, if the subject is "controversial" because people with their own theories about the case cannot believe that a child wrote the letters, so much the better. Controversy helps sell books.

    Ed

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  3. Ed,

    If someone argues a martian wrote the letters, that is not controversial -- just stupid.

    If someone argues a First Grader wrote the letters, that is not controversial -- just stupid.

    There would be no reason to ask the martian to write the letters. One can just disguise their handwriting using block letters (and not unnecessarily let someone in on the secret).

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  4. Anonymous wrote: "One can just disguise their handwriting using block letters (and not unnecessarily let someone in on the secret)."

    Or so you believe. But, Ivins evidently didn't see things that way. Perfectly disguising one's handwriting isn't as easy as you fantasize. If it was that easy, as you say, Ivins probably would have done it that way.

    Experts can generally tell if someone wrote with the "wrong hand" or not. And if Ivins was asked to write samples with his "wrong hand" for matching purposes, it could still convince some "expert" that it was a match. The same with many other forms of "disguising" one's handwriting.

    Ivins probably saw having a child do the writing as the perfect way to avoid any chance that anyone would match the letters to his own handwriting.

    After all, most people would probably believe as you believe -- that no one would ever ask a child to do such a thing. But, a sociopath like Ivins might. And a person who supported pedophilia - like Ivins - might. And a person wanting to get back at his wife without her knowing it - like Ivins - might.

    Plus, the facts clearly say that Ivins DID persuade a child to write the letters.

    Your beliefs about what is "stupid" are just your baseless (a.k.a. "stupid") beliefs.

    Ed

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  5. Ed,

    Have you noticed how no one bothers to prove a martian did not write the letters?

    You are mistaken about what constitutes being "controversial."

    The controversy relates to the whodunnit, not your insistence a First Grader wrote the letters.

    Among those informed about such matters, the focus now is on the validation of the methods used. "I know when I see it" -- such as you rely upon -- is not a validated method. Indeed, at best, your argument goes to point to someone just having learned to write English.

    If you want to have a chance to be published, you will need to drop your First Grader Theory.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Anonymous wrote: "The controversy relates to the whodunnit, not your insistence a First Grader wrote the letters."

      Whodunnit relates to who wrote the letters.

      There is no current controversy over whether or not a child wrote the letters because the general public doesn't even know the subject is in dispute. My book will create that controversy. Currently, the public thinks that, if the handwriting doesn't match Ivins' handwriting, then Ivins must have disguised his handwriting in some way. When you ask people, they usually assume that Ivins used his "wrong hand" to write the letters.

      Click HERE to go to a USA Today article where an expert talks about the handwriting and how they are all written by the same person.

      Click HERE to go to a Washington Post article where every disagrees with everyone else about the handwriting in the letters.

      Click HERE to go to an article from The Trentonian where some expert says that the writer used some kind of "template" to create each character in the letters.

      Click HERE to go to a handwriting "expert's" web site where the "expert" argues:

      "Writer writes the word "GREAT" when saying "ALLAH IS GREAT" yet the "G" in "GREAT" is no larger than other letters in the word. For this writer, that is unusual, suggesting that the author does not really believe that Allah is great, otherwise the "G" in "GREAT" would have been taller than other letters in word as found in remainder of writing."

      and

      "Disguised handwriting . . . likely written with wrong hand"

      Click HERE to view another "expert's" opinion about the handwriting in the anthrax letters.

      And Click HERE to go to a web site where a "handwriting expert" says, "The envelopes are written to appear to be a young child, they are not."

      What these sites say is that the experts disagree with one another. Each has his own unique view of the letters. So, if you want to cite an "expert," you can pick whichever one most closely matches your own beliefs.

      NONE explains why the writing in the second mailing is half the size of the writing in the first mailing. They probably didn't even notice that.

      NONE explains why the writer wrote R's one way in the Brokaw letter and a different way on the Brokaw envelope. They probably didn't even notice that.

      NONE explains why there is punctuation in the second letter but not in the first.

      If handwriting experts don't know about or can't explain the facts, their opinions are worthless.

      The FACTS say that a child wrote the anthrax letters.

      Anonymous also wrote: "If you want to have a chance to be published, you will need to drop your First Grader Theory."

      So, you feel it is more important to get published than to explain the facts? I don't. The purpose of my book is to explain the facts. If no publisher is interested in the facts, then I'll just self-publish.

      Ed

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    2. You appear not to understand the concept of validation and why it is important.

      Delete
    3. Anonymous,

      You appear not to understand the concept of validation nor the concept of developing an hypothesis.

      I look at the facts and create an hypothesis that explains all the facts. Then I wait for others to challenge the hypothesis by providing a better explanation for all the facts.

      If they cannot disprove the hypothesis, that is a partial validation of the hypothesis. (Beliefs and opinions are irrelevant and meaningless.)

      However, the hypothesis also urges people to find more facts which will totally validate the hypothesis.

      I look forward to that day.

      Ed

      Delete
  6. Consider the press. The press concerns the whodunnit -- not an unsupported assertion that a First Grader wrote the letters.

    NYT editorial, showing no confidence in the FBI’s unraveling case investigation to assure that the culprits are not still at large
    Posted by Lew Weinstein on October 18, 2011

    http://caseclosedbylewweinstein.wordpress.com/2011/10/18/the-nyt-calls-for-an-independent-review-of-the-fbis-anthrax-investigation-lmw-it-is-long-past-time-to-hold-director-mueller-accountable-for-the-fbis-investigative-failures-and-for-the-fbi/

    NY Post editorial: a group of eminent scientists have found that the FBI’s Amerithrax conclusions may be shockingly wrong … (the FBI) clearly can’t be trusted to judge cases that reflect badly on its own conduct

    Posted by Lew Weinstein on October 24, 2011
    http://caseclosedbylewweinstein.wordpress.com/2011/10/24/ny-post-editorial-a-group-of-eminent-scientists-have-found-that-the-fbi%E2%80%99s-amerithrax-conclusions-may-be-shockingly-wrong-the-fbi-clearly-can%E2%80%99t-be-trusted-to-judge-cases-that-r/

    Washington Post editorial (10/21/11) calls for independent review of FBI investigation of Dr. Bruce Ivins in 2001 anthrax attacks
    Posted by Lew Weinstein on October 22, 2011

    http://caseclosedbylewweinstein.wordpress.com/2011/10/22/washington-post-editorial-102111-calls-for-independent-review-of-fbi-investigation-of-dr-bruce-ivins-in-2001-anthrax-attacks-lmw-it-is-long-past-time-to-hold-fbi-director-mueller-accountab/

    ProPublica & Frontline … the FBI disputes our report … here’s what we reported vs what FBI Assistant Director for Public Affairs Michael P. Kortan wrote

    Posted by Lew Weinstein on October 29, 2011

    http://caseclosedbylewweinstein.wordpress.com/2011/10/29/propublica-frontline-the-fbi-disputes-our-report-what-we-reported-vs-what-fbi-assistant-director-for-public-affairs-michael-p-kortan-wrote/

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Your links are irrelevant to the discussion about handwriting. They are just opinions from people who have their own theories about the case. You're just posting them here to repeat the crap you post to Lew's site.

      I'll delete any further posts which include such crap.

      Ed

      Delete
  7. For example, you have examined the handwriting of children known not to have participated in the anthrax mailings and yet failed, for examine, to examine the handwriting of Jdey known to have been part of a planned second wave. Nor did you examine the handwriting of the hijackers who had just been taught English by KSM.

    Indeed, Atta's handwriting looks a lot more like the letters than any of the exemplars of the children you link.

    http://caseclosedbylewweinstein.wordpress.com/2012/01/22/gao-should-obtain-a-copy-of-the-fbis-handwriting-analysis-comparing-the-letters-to-attas/comment-page-1/#comment-19776

    Thus, for someone who thought the handwriting looked like it was written by someone who had just learned to write English, your research was staggeringly deficient. That does not make your assertions controversial. Just unsupported, uninformed and foolish.

    According to a 2010 Harvard report on al Qaeda by a former CIA officer, Jdey was detained in summer 2001 together with Zacarias Moussaoui. Moussaoui was carrying textbooks on cropdusting; Jdey was carrying textbooks on biology. Jdey was released. He had trained with the hijackers that the CIA and FBI foolishly let in the country after their meeting at the condo of anthrax lab tech Yazid Sufaat.

    In developing your "it is nearly certain a First Grader wrote the anthrax letters" theory, you examined the handwriting of someone that was in jail and someone who was dead. Given it had already been announced that Jdey's video had been found in November 2001, it was just poor research on your part that set you off on your "First Grader" theory. Jdey was repeatedly pointed out and yet you never bothered to examine his handwriting.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. If you have PROOF that someone other than a child wrote the anthrax letters, POST IT. Don't just waste my time by arguing that I haven't proved the negative -- that it is impossible for some Muslim to have written the letters.

      The FACTS say that a child wrote the letters. I don't care about uninformed opinions. I don't care about uninformed beliefs. The only way to challenge what the FACTS say is with better facts. You have no better facts. You just have uninformed beliefs and opinions.

      Ed

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    2. Ed, you are what you call a True Believer.

      Delete
    3. Hmmm. I wonder which "Anonymous" posted that comment. They all seem to think that anyone who does not accept their beliefs is a "True Believer," even if the facts say otherwise.

      Ed

      Delete
  8. Anonymous wrote: "Indeed, Atta's handwriting looks a lot more like the letters than any of the exemplars of the children you link."

    1. NONSENSE. Atta's handwriting is VERY DIFFERENT from the handwriting in the letters.

    2. The argument that the child's handwriting in the letters doesn't match some random child's handwriting is just plain ridiculous. Of course it doesn't. It's a different person's handwriting.

    Atta's M's are totally different.
    Atta's R's are different.
    Atta's E's are drawn with 3 strokes, not 4.
    Atta's L's are drawn with 1 stroke, not 2.
    Atta's N's are drawn with 2 strokes, not 3.
    Atta draws open 4's not closed 4's.
    Atta sometimes doesn't draw serifs on his 1's.

    Atta's G's are different from the G's in the anthrax letters, even though the graphic indicates they are similar. And the graphic on Lew's site compares a 6 drawn by Atta to another 6 drawn by Atta. The 6 on the New York Post envelope is very different from Atta's 6's.

    In handwriting analysis, differences are usually more important than similarities, since you can probably find similarities between any two samples from different individuals writing in block letters. There aren't that many different ways to draw a T or an O or an H.

    Ed

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    Replies
    1. Oops. Upon closer examination, it appears that Atta drew his E's with TWO strokes, not three.

      The anthrax letter writer used four.

      Ed

      Delete
  9. Ed you are an asshole!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. And you just proved that you cannot discuss this subject intelligently.

      Ed

      Delete
  10. BTW, Atta's 1's are very unusual. He drew them with one stroke, first upward to create the serif, then downward to create the vertical line. He didn't draw the serif across the bottom, the way the anthrax writer ALWAYS did.

    Atta's R's are also very different from the R's on the anthrax letters. Atta drew his R's with two strokes, first the vertical line, then the arc and backtracking over part of the arc to draw the diagonal line. That is NOTHING like the way the anthrax letter writer wrote.

    Ed

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  11. Since my own evaluation of the Brokaw letter doesn't match up with either Mister Lake's or that of Anonymous, I'll try to change the subject.
    The latest activities of the 'anthrax gang': boat hoaxes:

    http://www.nj.com/news/index.ssf/2012/06/coast_guard_cost_for_boat_expl.html
    That was in the first half of June. Before that the 'gang' struck in the same way in off Texas:
    http://www.nbcnewyork.com/news/local/Coast-Guard-Boat-Hoax-Calls-Investigation-Link-Sandy-Hook-NJ-Galveston-Texas-159667095.html
    -------------------------------------------------------------
    Just stumbled on this one in Canada so it might be unrelated:
    http://www.cbc.ca/news/canada/montreal/story/2012/07/04/montreal-prank-calls-boat-capsized.html

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Richard,

      I imagine your posting makes sense to you. It makes no sense to me.

      Ed

      Delete
  12. On the merits, all one needs to do is to turn to the graphic showing Atta's handwriting and turn to your exemplars. But an agent will not need to do that to know that your theory has no credibility. By all means, hyperlink the Atta exemplar and the actual letters.

    In assessing such an issue, you should be relying on a validated method. That will be GAO's theme.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Anonymous wrote: "By all means, hyperlink the Atta exemplar and the actual letters."

      In my January 25, 2012 comment I showed an example of Atta's handwriting and how it is VERY different from the handwriting on the anthrax letters.

      At that time I also found an unmarked copy of the visa form used on Lew's site. But, I see I never uploaded it, so I apparently never commented on it.

      I doubt that there are more than 3 or 4 people in this world so uninformed that they believe that Atta wrote the anthrax letters. So, I'm not sure it would be worth my time to show differences between his handwriting and the handwriting on the anthrax letters - item by item.

      I'll think about it. I am running out of things to keep me busy while waiting for responses from agents.

      Ed

      Delete
  13. Congratulations to FRONTLINE, ProPublica and McClatchy for their much deserved Emmy nomination For "Outstanding Investigative Journalism"!

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  14. Ed falsely attributed the "a---hole" post to me and then did not approve my post noting that I had not said it. I do not post such things. Ed has access to IPs and he has failed to correct himself. As moderator, he has a responsibility that he has failed -- a trust that he has violated.

    It is a simple matter to determine the origin of a post.

    In the meantime, I need to stop posting given his failure to correct himself and his misrepresentation of the origin of the post.

    As for whether an agent will undertake to represent him in arguing that a First Grader wrote the anthrax letters, we can wish him the best of luck on that!

    Serious students of Amerithrax will be focusing on document discovery and validated science.

    ReplyDelete
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    1. Anonymous wrote: "Ed has access to IPs and he has failed to correct himself."

      I do NOT have access to IP addresses for this blog. This blog is operated by Google. THEY have access to the IP addresses.

      I have no way of telling one "Anonymous" from another. So, it's your fault for posting as "Anonymous," since I've pointed out many times in the past that it causes problems when multiple people are posting as "Anonymous."

      And, calling me an ass hole certainly seemed like the type of thing you'd do. So, for all I know, you could have said it and are now denying it.

      And my comment applies to the other "Anonymous" as well as it does to you, so why don't you simply consider it addressed to him and not to you?

      Ed

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    2. And, you'll note that my response above was posted just 11 minutes after your posting. It takes time for Google to send me an email telling me that there's been a posting that needs moderating. My email system only checks every 5 minutes to see if there are emails waiting. And, it takes time for me to compose a response.

      So, sending me an email saying "Ed then failed to approve my post noting that I hadn't said it." just shows how irrational you are and how immune to facts you are.

      Ed

      Delete
  15. Regarding the "question" as to whether Syria has biological weapons and why the NY TIMES retracted a statement about same, I think this is a sort of journalistic backlash to the criticism the NY TIMES received about its coverage of the build-up to the 2nd Iraq War: when, after the invasion, no WMDs were found in Iraq, the TIMES was cited as a media outlet that had played a cheerleader role, rather than a skeptical one. Judith Miller in particular took some heavy hits at that time. So now, and for a considerable time, the TIMES has bent over backwards to show skepticism in this area. Even to an almost absurd degree. Why absurd? Because none of the organizations that study unconventional weapons and their proliferation on a global basis thinks that Syria LACKS biological weapons. The only questions are those of numbers, delivery systems etc.
    (End of Part I)

    ReplyDelete
  16. Richard Rowley posted two long messages which I just deleted. They quoted long passages from an article HERE that people can read by going to that link. There's no need to put me in risk of a copyrights violation by posting such large passages.

    That is doubly true since Mr. Rowley didn't comment on the information. He just copied and pasted it. There is no valid reason for doing that.

    Ed

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  17. Well the comment was in my first post. The passages were for illuminating the extreme degree of generally acknowledged information about the Syrian Bio-weapons program possesed by people in 2007 (and undoubtedly long before). The TIMES wasn't merely being 'cautious' here, it was being silly.

    ReplyDelete
  18. Richard Rowley wrote: "Well the comment was in my first post."

    Your first post was a comment, but your comment had no clear connection to the long passages you copied and pasted. Either way, it's not a good idea to quote so much material from a copyrighted site.

    Ed

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  19. Richard Rowley wrote: "The TIMES wasn't merely being 'cautious' here, it was being silly."

    In your opinion. I wouldn't be a bit surprised if it didn't turn out that the Times was right.

    This looks very much like another case where "experts" with nothing but beliefs and opinions state those beliefs and opinions to anyone who will listen, while real experts with solid facts just go about their business, because they don't want to get involved in debates with people who argue only opinions.

    Ed

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  20. Hello from Spain.

    The chemical and biological weapons do not worry me.

    From what I read about the use of these weapons in the First World War and northern Iraq against the Kurds, these weapons are only useful if used in a small area, with well-trained military personnel and weather favorable for their use. If any of these conditions fails, then all else fails. Weapons are terrorizing all soldiers, no matter the side they belong.

    The problem of biological weapons is that organisms mutate and adapt to new conditions, but a chemical weapon can be diluted or fade over time. These weapons are difficult to control.

    An epidemic of cholera, influenza, typhoid, lead poisoning or Montezuma's revenge does concern me.
    Bye.

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  21. Joseph from Spain,

    I don't "worry" about biological and chemical weapons, either. It would be like worrying about being hit by a meteorite. I can happen, but it's not likely to happen.

    However, while I don't worry, I know that terrorists aren't like soldiers in some army. Terrorists often kill themselves along with their enemy. So, I know there's a possibility of some terrorist organization infecting a bunch of its members with smallpox or plague and then sending them into some country to do maximum damage. But, they'd more easily get into a European country than into the U.S. So, I'd expect that they'd go after you before they'd go after me.

    Ed

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