Tuesday, September 9, 2014

9/11 Truthers versus Anthrax Truthers

Here is how Anthrax Truther Lew Weinstein describes the Amerithrax evidence:
 
The FBI’s case against Dr. Ivins is clearly bogus: no evidence, no witnesses, an impossible timeline.

Here's how 9/11 Truther Elias Davidsson describes the 9/11 evidence:

 
There's no evidence whatsoever that the 19 people accused of mass murder boarded the planes on 9/11.

That quote from Davidsson can be found on a YouTube video by clicking
HERE and going to the 33 minute mark.

A similar quote can be found on another Davidsson video at the 21 minute mark by clicking HERE:


There is not a single item of evidence pointing that these attacks were perpetrated by people coming from abroad.  ... There is no single proof that any foreigners committed these acts.  No proof that any Arabs went into these planes.  And, so if these Arabs did not go into these planes, then the official story must be a lie.  ... The truth is that there were no Muslims involved in this crime.

Interestingly, Davidsson explains what he finds impossible to believe about the official version of what happened on 9/11.  At about the 37 minute mark in that same video, Elias Davidsson says,

We cannot state that the passengers died in these crashes.  We have full reason to suspect that the passengers were murdered somewhere else. Murdered in cold blood by the U.S. Government.  ... It's impossible to believe for most people.  But, the fact that we don't have evidence that people died in the crashes - we don't have evidence - and it forces us to consider that they were killed somewhere else.  These people do not exist anymore.  They have died.  There is no question about that.  Their families mourn them, and there are many people participating in the mourning.  ... These people are certainly dead, and somebody murdered them.  And, I don't believe personally that they were in these planes, because if they were in these planes, then somebody would have piloted these planes.  And nobody in his right mind would pilot these planes to crash these planes -- even a Muslim --- even a Muslim.  I'm sorry.  Nobody in their right mind would do that.  Even absent all that I told you about the lack of evidence, just the thought that somebody would have piloted - with a pilot's license - would be capable of piloting a civilian aircraft - which the alleged hijackers did not have - ....

Even beyond the fact that there is no evidence, the official story is so fantastic - it is so science fiction - to believe that anybody in his right mind had ... the capability and the wish to fly a plane like this is so outrageous that to believe anybody would have crashed the planes with these passengers - and kill themselves at the same time - is itself implausible to the extreme.
Click HERE for a 5-part video talk by Graeme MacQueen, the author of a new book titled "The 2001 Anthrax Deception."  

Click HERE for a talk by conspiracy theorist Barbara Honegger.  It has some truly screwball comparisons between Pearl Harbor and 9/11.  (Her slide show is HERE.)  She believes that neither Pearl Harbor nor 9/11 were surprise attacks.

Click HERE for a truly weird talk about the anthrax attacks by conspiracy theorist Barry Kissin. 

Click HERE for an interview with conspiracy theorist Elizabeth Woodworth where she rationalizes that disputing the official version of 9/11 doesn't require any attempt to prove any alternative version.  She also believes Osama bin Laden had nothing to do with 9/11.


It appears that the beliefs of all the 9/11 and the anthrax conspiracy theorists can be summarized as follows:
They find it impossible to believe the government's version of what happened.
They believe the government officials must be either incompetent or lying.
The government will not give them the evidence needed to prove a conspiracy.
They do not have the power needed to force the release of the "truth."
Therefore, they want a new investigation to find a "truth" they can believe.
And they are trying to convince the public to demand a new investigation.

Therefore, a conspiracy theorist might be defined as follows:
Someone who cannot believe the official version of events, who wants the government to provide him with facts to disprove the official claims, who considers any failure to provide complete and comprehensive facts to be proof of a conspiracy, who wants a new official investigation to prove what he believes to be true, and who is out trying to get other people to help him force the government to start a new investigation.    
People who have knowledge of actual conspiracies aren't "conspiracy theorists" because they will provide the evidence they have of the criminal conspiracy.  They don't ask the government to provide the evidence, nor will they consider it proof of a criminal conspiracy if the government doesn't do as they ask.
 
Ed

71 comments:

  1. For a number of years now I have been convinced that many of the crazier 9/11 "Truth" conspiracy theories are deliberate disinformation intended to poison the discussion. If you have questions, you are lumped in with the crazies and dismissed as a kook.

    It appears the same thing is happening with the anthrax investigation. I think the government got the right guy, but I wonder if they got ALL the right guys?

    ReplyDelete
  2. Anonymous wrote, "If you have questions, you are lumped in with the crazies and dismissed as a kook."

    If you are standing in the middle of a bunch of crazies when you ask your question, you will probably be "lumped in with the crazies." That's just human nature.

    The "trick" to asking questions seems to be to ask the right question of the right person at the right time.

    "DXer" on Lew Weinstein's blog, for instance, is constantly asking apparently meaningless questions of no one in particular. The only thing to do is ignore him.

    Are there people who are deliberately disseminating "disinformation to poison the discussion"? Probably. They call them "trolls" on the Internet. But, they don't seem to be a major problem in most Amerithrax discussions.

    Could there be people who - through negligence - enabled or allowed Bruce Ivins to do what he did? Yes. But, should we hunt down and prosecute the senior officials at USAMRIID who allowed Ivins to leave bags full of anthrax laying around in his lab for weeks? I dunno. It apparently wasn't "criminal negligence." Should we prosecute the senior officials who allowed Ivins to work alone and unsupervised in his lab for long hours at night? That wasn't a crime at the time.

    If you have questions to ask, ask them. I'll try to answer them. If I can't answer them, I'll try to explain why I can't.

    Ed

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  3. Elias Davidsson:

    "Their families mourn them, and there are many people participating in the mourning. "
    ====================
    What is left out is 'There were many people participating in the boarding'. By that I mean: When dozens to over a hundred persons board 4 commercial aircraft for 4 separate flights, there are, for a lot of them, friends and relatives involved before they board the planes:

    reservations to be made, tickets to be bought, these generally before the day of the flight, then there is the drive to the airport (sometimes, granted, done alone in a taxi , but other times being driven by the friend/relative). Few of the in-flight victims would not have had SOMEONE in their lives knowing that they were going out of town/returning from out of town. By plane. And that doesn't even include numerous in-flight telephone calls made from flight 93, whose delay in taking off meant that
    they were the last to crash and that the crashes of the prior flights were relayed to them by telephone interlocutors. Frequently by relatives. The very relatives who would mourn them.

    None of this--------the knowledge that these persons were to fly commercially------depends in any way on 'government sources'. On the ground you have something analogous: firefighters and other rescue personnel who saw the damage done by the planes. And THEIR relatives would have known that the personnel were either scheduled to work that day or had been called in specially for the purpose of helping during the disaster. All this knowledge ('evidence' in some generic sense)
    independent of what they were told by government/airlines representatives.
    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/United_Airlines_Flight_93#Passenger_revolt

    I see no analogous-to-this evidence in Amerithrax: independent evidence that Bruce Ivins alone did the crimes.

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    1. Mr. Rowley,

      The 9/11 Truthers believe all the details about the planes and the passengers were staged and faked by the U.S. Government. If there's a witness who talked to a relative aboard flight 93, the Truthers believe that "witness" is just some government stooge lying to the public.

      You may believe otherwise (and I may also believe otherwise), but how do you convince a 9/11 Truther that you and I aren't also government stooges -- or just plain gullible?

      Ed

      Delete
  4. R. Rowley wrote: "I see no analogous-to-this evidence in Amerithrax: independent evidence that Bruce Ivins alone did the crimes."

    No one said there was any such "analogous-to-this evidence." The subject was the Truther's inability to believe the facts - no matter how clear cut those facts are. Davidsson finds it IMPOSSIBLE TO BELIEVE that anyone would do such a thing as fly an airliner into a building (except for the U.S. Government).

    An "analogous-to-this" impossible to believe situation in the Amerithrax case would be the Truthers inability to believe that the FBI could clear everyone who had access to spores from flask RMR-1029 except Bruce Ivins.

    Both seem totally reasonable and understandable to other people, but the Truthers inexplicably seem to find them impossible to believe.

    Ed

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  5. "Davidsson finds it IMPOSSIBLE TO BELIEVE that anyone would do such a thing as fly an airliner into a building (except for the U.S. Government)."
    =============================================
    That's an inability to believe even in the possibility of such a crime. An inability to
    believe in the possibility of a crime OF THAT NATURE.
    Therefore(!) the buildings themselves must have been felled by munitions.

    NO 'truther' of Amerithrax, to my knowledge, thinks it impossible that anthrax was sent through the mail in the fall of 2001. The only true controversy in the Case is about who did it. Person or group? This person(group) or that?

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    1. R. Rowley wrote: "The only true controversy in the Case is about who did it."

      You fail to understand. "Who did it" is the controversy in the 9/11 "case," too. Davidsson argues that the Muslims who were blamed could not have done it, therefore it must have been done by the U.S. Government.

      Conspiracy theorists use the same logic to argue that Bruce Ivins couldn't have sent the anthrax letters, therefore their favorite suspect must have sent the letters.

      Same argument. Different case.

      Ed

      Delete
    2. You fail to understand. "Who did it" is the controversy in the 9/11 "case,"
      -------------------------------------------------------------------------
      Don't really think there's such a controversy*; to convince me, show me op-eds/editorials from the NEW YORK TIMES, WALL STREET JOURNAL etc saying that there's doubt about 9/11. Or, for that matter, from ANY mainstream US newspaper(s). Don't think you can do that.
      Because there's no true controversy. And even Bin Laden himself acknowledged in a backhanded sort of way that his organization was behind Sept 11th:
      http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=qloshSGAJ1s
      -------
      Here's an Op ed from the WSJ expressing such doubt about Ivins' guilt.
      http://online.wsj.com/articles/SB121789293570011775
      It's entitled clearly enough "Bruce Ivins wasn't the Anthrax culprit". Granted that's from August of 2008.

      And an editorial (not an op-ed piece) from the NEW YORK TIMES in 2011.
      http://www.nytimes.com/2011/10/18/opinion/who-mailed-the-anthrax-letters.html?_r=0
      (partial)

      Independent inquiries this year have raised questions both about the genetic analyses that traced the anthrax to Dr. Ivins’s laboratory and a web of circumstantial evidence. There needs to be a new independent evaluation of the findings.
      -------------------

      *Besides, the person you were QUOTING and to whose 'ideas' I was responding, Elias Davidsson, apparently believes that NO ONE crashed those planes(!) and that the murders of all the passengers took place somewhere else. Meaning that FOR HIM 'who did it' isn't about the crashes, since, again, there WERE no(!) crashes. He apparently thinks the 'pseudo-crashes' (my coinage to register what he seems to be saying) were just a diversion and the 'true crimes' (the 2 to 3 thousand murders) were done elsewhere. There's no analogue to that in the Amerithrax Case among mainstream skeptics.

      Delete
  6. An "analogous-to-this" impossible to believe situation in the Amerithrax case would be the Truthers inability to believe that the FBI could clear everyone who had access to spores from flask RMR-1029 except Bruce Ivins.
    ====================================================
    What's impossible, not merely impossible to 'believe', is to be 100% sure you have a comprehensive list. There were people, LIKE Steve Hatfill, who had access to building 1412, and thus to the right substrain, in the 1997 to 2000 period. Some may not even been scientists. Some perhaps not even USAMRIID employees.

    But of what value is such clearance(clearance of other potential perpetrators) if it WAS* a group action?
    0% value. As the person with access to the anthrax could then have had a confederate do the mailing(s) themselves.

    So, is it far-out-of-it hypothesizers alone who have posited one or more such accomplices? Consider just one possible scenario:

    "The unidentified "anthrax terrorist" is most likely two people: the "supplier" who obtained the Ames anthrax from a government lab and the "refiner/mailer" (plus, perhaps, an uninvolved child)."
    --------
    The above was written sometime in 2001-5 by.......Mister Ed Lake.
    (Alas, I find that most of his best work on Amerithrax was done in those early years).
    It doesn't take a genius to observe that, in the above scenario, the 'supplier' would have had a alibi and would have been cleared by the Task Force/FBI investigation.
    So, now we get to watch Mister Lake repudiate his own hypothesis (It's as valid today as the day it was written).

    As it happens the MAIN perpetrator of Amerithrax likely never was in New Jersey in Sept-Oct 2001 and thus WOULD HAVE had an alibi. "Would have" because he would never have been on any must-be-eliminated list of the Task Force. Flew under their radar. Completely.

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    1. In re-reading the entirety of my above post of September 14, 2014 at 2:13 PM
      I now see that NOWHERE did I use the word "theory". I did use "hypothesis", "scenario" and "hypothesizers". The only place "theories" appears is as part of the link I gave in my post of September 14, 2014 at 2:15 PM.
      Sorry, but the contents of a link string are not my responsibility.

      Delete
  7. Link for previous post:
    http://www.anthraxinvestigation.com/index.html#theories

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. When I wrote that page, I should have used the term "hypothesis" instead of "theory."

      Scientists and science writers have a disturbing tendency to misuse these two words. In the vernacular, "hypothesis" and "theory" can be used interchangeably. However, in the scientific literature, scientists and science writers must be careful to distinguish between these two terms. A hypothesis is a tentative explanation that can be tested through investigation; a theory is an established set of ideas that can be used to make predictions.

      SOURCE

      Ed

      Delete
    2. When I wrote that page, I should have used the term "hypothesis" instead of "theory."
      ===================================
      Well, if YOU 'should have used the term "hypothesis" instead of "theory"',. then how come you didn't write it up that way in the comment for today? (Lake's comment from "thoughts and comments")
      --
      September 15, 2014 (C) - If anyone is interested, on my interactive blog I'm currently engaged in another debate with a conspiracy theorist who doesn't seem to comprehend the difference between a belief and an hypothesis.
      ==================
      So, in YOUR formulation in 2001-5, you used the word "theory" when (now according to you) you should have used "hypothesis" and my copy and pasting of YOUR WORDS is evidence that I don't understand the difference?!?!?!? What was I supposed to do, change your words within the quotation? That would, based on past experience, be a Lakean approach, but it would be totally at odds with the very concept of a quotation.

      Your (C) comment, once again, was a distortion of the actual situation.
      And all such distortions are geared to making Lake look "good", whereas when the distortions are pointed out, he looks worse than ever.

      Delete
    3. And in fact, in MY own words, I switched from Lake's term ("theory") to
      "hypothesis": (from my post of September 14th 2014 2:13 PM, next to last paragraph):

      So, now we get to watch Mister Lake repudiate his own hypothesis (It's as valid today as the day it was written).
      ------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
      So, if Lake in 2001-5 'should have' used the word "hypothesis" instead of "theory" and I, when I'm no longer bound by the word-for-word format of a quotation, switch to "hypothesis", how does this establish that I don't know the difference between the two words?!?!?!?!!? It makes no sense.

      Delete
  8. R. Rowley wrote: "It doesn't take a genius to observe that, in the above scenario, the 'supplier' would have had a alibi and would have been cleared by the Task Force/FBI investigation.
    So, now we get to watch Mister Lake repudiate his own hypothesis (It's as valid today as the day it was written)."


    You again fail to understand. An HYPOTHESIS is just one possible answer to a question. It is in NO WAY a "belief" or even a "theory."

    The purpose of an HYPOTHESIS is to pick it apart to see if it holds water. It's fully recognized that it could be totally wrong. But it SEEMS to explain the known facts. The objective is to find NEW facts which either confirm or debunk the hypothesis.

    People with unshakable beliefs never seem to be able to understand this. They think an "hypothesis" is a belief. And if the hypothesis is wrong, then the person who "believed" that hypothesis was wrong and is probably wrong about everything.

    That is nonsensical thinking from conspiracy theorists.

    I fully stated that the hypothesis could be wrong and that it was based on very limited information. NEW FACTS showed it to be wrong. No problem.

    Conspiracy theorists like yourself seem to find this incomprehensible. But, it's the way scientists and analysts work every day. There is nothing wrong with putting together an hypothesis that falls apart when new facts are found. What is WRONG is sticking to an hypothesis after new facts are found which show it to be wrong. If you stick to an hypothesis which the facts say is wrong, you need to satisfactorily EXPLAIN why the new facts do not disprove the hypothesis but only alter it in some way.

    Conspiracy Theorists just believe what they want to believe, no matter how much evidence there is which shows them to be wrong. They do not start with an "hypothesis" based upon the known facts. They start with a BELIEF that has nothing to do with the known facts. So, the addition of new information has no effect on their beliefs.

    Don't confuse an hypothesis with a belief. They are not comparable. And any argument that "hypothesis A" is similar to "belief B" is meaningless. An hypothesis cannot be logically compared to a belief.

    Ed

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    1. What is WRONG is sticking to an hypothesis after new facts are found which show it to be wrong.
      ------------------------------------------------------------------------------
      Well, YOU, Mister Lake, and the DoJ stuck to the (sub-)hypothesis that Ivins could have used that lyophilizer (you know, the one without the protective hood, the one that wasn't in his suite, the one as big as a refrigerator making it impossible for him to move it without assistance) to make the anthrax. You collectively stuck to that hypothesis from August 2008 to July 2011. And what made the DoJ finally admit the 'mistake'? The prospect of going to court against plaintiff Maureen Stevens and having it exposed in court that that lyophilizer was unusable. THOSE facts were available to the Task Force (and therefore to the DoJ) from the get-go (ie in the summer of 2008), but they refused to face them.

      Same deal with the PROFESSIONAL assessment of Ivins' printing in comparing it to that of the Amerthrax texts. The results were: probable non-match. And they buried that information. They buried court-admissible facts which bore directly on the issue of guilt/innocence. Buried them precisely because they realized that publicizing those facts would undermine the impression that they were trying to make: that Ivins was the culprit, the sole culprit (once again, an accomplice doing the printing would explain the non-match to Ivins' printing, but even the possibility of an accomplice was
      an impediment to what they were really after: closing the case).

      So, by my lights, the score is:
      'truthers' (collectively) 2 (lyophilizer and printing comparisons)
      the two Ed's (Montooth and Lake) 0 (same items).

      It's one thing not to know something. It's another to know it and to ignore/conceal it from the public.



      http://www.infowars.com/anthrax-attacks-justice-dept-destroys-fbi-case-then-does-a-180-reversal-days-later/

      Delete
    2. R. Rowley wrote: "Well, YOU, Mister Lake, and the DoJ stuck to the (sub-)hypothesis that Ivins could have used that lyophilizer...."

      You are just demonstrating that you do not understand anything. You are arguing nonsense.

      I've been saying all along that the attack spores were most likely AIR DRIED. I NEVER said Ivins dried them in a lyophilizer.

      The DOJ doesn't say that Ivins dried them in a lyophilizer. They say that there are MANY ways Ivins could have dried the spores and gotten the same results. ONE way is with the lyophilizer.

      They do NOT claim that Ivins pushed the lyophilizer into suite B3 to use it there. They say - more or less - that they cannot prove that Ivins did NOT dry the spores in Suite B5 where the lyophilzer was located. They say - more or less - that the people who say it can't be done without contaminating the entire building are full of crap. Ivins was an expert microbiologist and knew how to avoid contamination, and he knew how to clean up after himself.

      The fact that some lawyer working on the Maureen Stevens case didn't understand the facts about the lyophilizer doesn't mean "the DOJ" changed its mind. It just means that ONE PERSON got things wrong. The mistake was later corrected after the McClatchy newspaper chain tried to make it look like the entire DOJ got it wrong. That was just YELLOW JOURNALISM. It had nothing to do with reality.

      The writing evidence is that the handwriting doesn't match Ivins' NORMAL handwriting. No one has stated that it would be impossible for Ivins to have DISGUISED his handwriting in order to write the anthrax documents. The government witnesses say the the writing on the anthrax documents LOOKS like the handwriting Ivins used when he was disguising his handwriting.

      If you want to argue this case, you should get your facts right. Making up nonsensical crap doesn't work here.

      Ed

      Delete
    3. They do NOT claim that Ivins pushed the lyophilizer into suite B3 to use it there. They say - more or less - that they cannot prove that Ivins did NOT dry the spores in Suite B5 where the lyophilzer was located
      ========================================
      You STILL don't get it: the lyophilizer was unusable BY ANYONE (not just Ivins): the lack of a protective hood would make such use suicidal.
      Not to mention leaving a mess of spores all over the place.
      THAT'S an example of 'deductive reasoning', the thing you claim to be so good at and which you claim we 'truthers' are so bad at. How come, after YEARS of thinking about it:

      1) you still (as of September 18, 2014 at 6:56 AM) can't admit what the DoJ tacitly admitted in July of 2011: that the lyophilizer in that building was unusable, therefore it played no role in Amerithrax? Therefore it plays no role in determining the probability of Ivins' guilt.

      2) you still can't admit that the Task Force/DoJ misrepresented this repeatedly to the American people? (August 6th press conference, Amerithrax Investigative Summary)?

      I submit it's because in those early years of the case (2001-2007) you
      became too cosy with law enforcement types and that you would therefore view either criticizing them or endorsing the criticism of others as a sort of 'disloyalty'.

      Back to Lake:
      If you want to argue this case, you should get your facts right. Making up nonsensical crap doesn't work here.
      ---------------------------------------------------------------------
      You cited no facts that I got wrong. "Crap"? Have we descended to that level?

      Delete
    4. R. Rowely wrote: You STILL don't get it: the lyophilizer was unusable BY ANYONE (not just Ivins): the lack of a protective hood would make such use suicidal.
      Not to mention leaving a mess of spores all over the place."


      NONSENSE. That was just a claim by some of Ivins' friends. It has nothing to do with reality.

      This is another situation where "experts" disagree with "experts." But on one side we have "experts" who are friends of Bruce Ivins who are arguing their beliefs and opinions. On the other side we have IMPARTIAL experts who are just looking at the facts and evidence.

      The idea that using a lyophilizer to dry spores in a BSL-2 lab is "suicidal" is just plain ridiculous. The idea that a lyophilizer is going to "leave a mess of spores all over the place" is JUST PLAIN STUPID.

      Yes, it would be DANGEROUS to dry anthrax spores in a lyophilizer in a BSL-2 lab, but it is certainly not "suicidal." It just requires extra care and taking precautions. It is not recommended, and it was against the rules. But there is NO reason to believe it was impossible for Ivins' to have done it.

      If you "leave spores all over the place" when using a lyophilizer, that would mean that whenever they dried ANY BACTERIA in the lyophilizer they would leave bacteria "all over the place." That's STUPID.

      Who is going to make or buy or use a machine that dries bacteria and leaves dried bacterial all over the place?? Who is that STUPID??

      And your argument that I'm "cozy with law enforcement types" is absurd. It appears that you have no intelligent arguments, so you accuse me of acting out of some kind of loyalty to the FBI. You cannot discuss or argue the facts, so you launch a PERSONAL ATTACK.

      I got involved with this subject because it was EXPERTS arguing with EXPERTS. I found that to be fascinating. Experts arguing with experts is ALWAYS fascinating to me. So, what I've been doing for the past 13 years is trying to determine which experts are correct. To do that, I look at the FACTS AND EVIDENCE and decide for myself who is correct.

      Both sides in the debate claim to be looking at the facts and evidence, but an IMPARTIAL look at the facts and evidence quickly shows that one side is TOTALLY BIASED and the other side is LARGELY IMPARTIAL.

      I side with the IMPARTIAL experts. But, you seem to have some kind of BELIEF that the FBI and DOJ are not impartial simply because they do not believe what you believe - or because they are "the government."

      If all you are going to do is claim that anyone who disagrees with you is biased and "loyal" to the government, then we have no basis for discussion. You are arguing your OPINION, and you make it clear that nothing I can say will change your opinion.

      I'm here to discuss and argue FACTS and EVIDENCE. I have no interest in arguing opinions.

      Ed

      Delete
  9. Hmm. There were FOUR posts to this blog by Mr. Rowley overnight. They all just seem to be argumentative ramblings about the meanings of words.

    In the first post he doesn't think the word "controversy" is the right word to use to describe the disagreement over who was behind 9/11. The fact that there are many people who endlessly argue that the CIA and the U.S. government were behind the 9/11 attacks while others argue that Muslim terrorists were behind the attacks evidently isn't a "controversy" to Mr. Rowley.

    con·tro·ver·sy : argument that involves many people who strongly disagree about something : strong disagreement about something among a large group of people

    His next post is some incoherent ramblings about the word "theory" and the fact that he didn't use the word, but I did.

    His third post is again about the word "theory" and how I say I used that word back in the early days of the case when I should have used the word "hypothesis." All he is doing is showing that he doesn't understand the difference between an "hypothesis" and a "belief."

    The fourth post contains this:

    "So, if Lake in 2001-5 'should have' used the word "hypothesis" instead of "theory" and I, when I'm no longer bound by the word-for-word format of a quotation, switch to "hypothesis", how does this establish that I don't know the difference between the two words?!?!?!?!!? It makes no sense."

    The fact that it doesn't make any sense to him DEMONSTRATES that he doesn't understand the difference between an hypothesis and a belief.

    An HYPOTHESIS is a TOOL or EXPERIMENT. It's something used to try to figure out the truth.

    You take the known facts, put them together and try to come up with what they MIGHT mean. An "hypothesis" is one possible meaning that fits all the known facts. It is NOT accepted as true. It is NOT BELIEVED. It is just an answer that seems to fit the facts. Often there can be MULTIPLE hypotheses that fit all the known facts.

    The purpose of an hypothesis is to provide something to TEST. Investigators then try to find further evidence which will either confirm or disprove the hypothesis.

    A BELIEF is a conclusion reached without facts.

    The hypothesis I had back in 2002 was NOT a belief. It was just one interpretation of all the known facts. I was looking for MORE FACTS to either prove or disprove the hypothesis. The FACTS showing Bruce Ivins to be the anthrax killer totally shot down my hypothesis. Since it was just an hypothesis and NOT a belief, I had no problem whatsoever in adjusting to the new evidence.

    People with beliefs, however, still believe what they originally believed without any concern that the facts about Bruce Ivins say they are wrong.

    An hypothesis is a tool used to try to evaluate the known facts.

    A belief is a conclusion reached without regard for facts.

    There is no comparison. So, arguing that I had an hypothesis back in 2002 that was shown to be wrong by new facts means NOTHING. That is what hypotheses are for. To be proved or disproved. It wasn't a conclusion or belief. It was a tool or experiment. It served its purpose.

    Ed

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    1. Hmm. There were FOUR posts to this blog by Mr. Rowley overnight. They all just seem to be argumentative ramblings about the meanings of words.
      ==================================
      Cue Mister Lake, English-mangler extraordinaire to write a very long post, dealing with 'the meanings of words'.

      Typical.

      Delete
    2. The fact that there are many people who endlessly argue that the CIA and the U.S. government were behind the 9/11 attacks while others argue that Muslim terrorists were behind the attacks evidently isn't a "controversy" to Mr. Rowley.
      -----------------------------------------------------
      Maybe people endlessly argue about that stuff in the places (on the Internet) where YOU hang out. But whose fault is that?!?
      I certainly, in 13 years on the Internet, have never met a single person who argued that.

      All 'controversies' aren't the same. If they were, then people convicted of crimes would never be subsequently vindicated. And sometimes they are.

      Delete
    3. A BELIEF is a conclusion reached without facts.
      =======================================
      Actually, belief is a word that holds a plethora of meanings, and, as always it varies with the context. Note that Lake's authority on that definition is: Lake. Long-time readers may see a pattern there.

      Here's one of Merriam-Webster's definitions (one of three) Belief:

      3 : conviction of the truth of some statement or the reality of some being or phenomenon especially when based on examination of evidence
      --------------------------------------------------------------------
      Hmmm, that "especially when based on examination of evidence" part seems to be opposite Lake's take.

      http://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/belief

      Delete
    4. An HYPOTHESIS is a TOOL or EXPERIMENT. It's something used to try to figure out the truth.
      ==========================================
      I have no problem with you hypothesizing. I do it myself. What I do have problems with is: your (implicit) repudiation of: observations, hypotheses, summaries made by you simply in order to align yourself with whatever the government's current line is.

      Delete
    5. R. Rowley wrote: "Maybe people endlessly argue about that stuff in the places (on the Internet) where YOU hang out. But whose fault is that?!?
      I certainly, in 13 years on the Internet, have never met a single person who argued that [the CIA and US government were behind 9/11]."


      Are you saying you are totally ignorant of all the books and articles and seminars and presentations by the THOUSANDS of 9/11 Truthers?

      Or are you saying that you haven't "met" any of those people, so you do not believe the exist? On my web site I provided links to videos of 9/11 Truthers arguing their beliefs. Do you think those are all faked?

      R. Rowley also wrote: "Here's one of Merriam-Webster's definitions (one of three) Belief:

      3 : conviction of the truth of some statement or the reality of some being or phenomenon especially when based on examination of evidence"


      In the above definition, a belief is a conviction of the truth based upon "examination of evidence."

      What is the definition of a "conviction"? It's "a strong belief."

      So, one person can look at "evidence" and develop a STRONG BELIEF, and another person can look at evidence and see that it is far from sufficient to argue a case in court.

      Maybe I should have written, "A belief is a conclusion reached without sufficient facts." When writing in a blog, we don't always have the time to examine every word in every sentence to make sure it says exactly what we intend to say.

      Mr. Rowley also wrote: "What I do have problems with is: your (implicit) repudiation of: observations, hypotheses, summaries made by you simply in order to align yourself with whatever the government's current line is."

      And I have a problem with you ignoring the facts and evidence and just arguing that I'm some kind of government spokesman.

      I'm on the side of whoever has the BEST EVIDENCE. I agree when a side has good EVIDENCE and disagree when that side has UNCONVINCING EVIDENCE.

      You may have a different OPINION, but I'm not interested in arguing opinions versus opinions, which appears to be the only thing you are interested in doing. Arguing opinions against opinions is POINTLESS. It accomplishes NOTHING.

      Ed

      Delete
    6. I'm on the side of whoever has the BEST EVIDENCE. I agree when a side has good EVIDENCE and disagree when that side has UNCONVINCING EVIDENCE.
      =========================================
      Well, the 'evidence' of August 6th 2008 as presented by Jeff Taylor
      had 6 elements:

      1) one of those elements was Ivins' knowledge of and the availability of the lyophilizer discussed ad nauseam in this thread and for a few years now. TOTALLY bogus 'evidence'.

      [Jeff Taylor at the press conference: " The affidavits allege that, not only did Dr. Ivins create and maintain the spore batch used in the mailings, but he also had access to and experience using a lyophilizer. A lyophilizer is a sophisticated machine that is used to dry pathogens, and can be used to dry anthrax. We know others in Dr. Ivins’ lab consulted him when they needed to use this machine."]

      2) another element was Ivins' 'unexplained time' at his lab (you know, the lab WITHOUT a lyophilizer). Turns out not so much unexplained about it, if you go over the full range of animal trials being conducted in September and October of 2001. Also turns out that the Task Force refused to turn over to Ivins (a?) confiscated notebook(s) with which he could have reconstructed what work he was doing at that time. Not something you would do, if you were really trying to get at the truth. Never explained.(Also turns out that Montooth admitted he had no idea WHEN Ivins purified/dried the anthrax, so the 'evidence' presented is actually irrelevant: see this thread on Montooth's admissions in WIRED article: http://anthraxdebate.blogspot.com/2014/05/subject-conspiracy-theorist-psychology.html

      [Jeff Taylor: "Third, in the days leading up to each of the mailings, the documents make clear that Dr. Ivins was working inordinate hours alone at night and on the weekend in the lab where the flask of spores and production equipment were stored"]
      Again misleading.

      3) Bad psychology:
      [Jeff Taylor: "Fourth, the affidavits indicate Dr. Ivins had engaged in behavior and made a number of statements that suggest consciousness of guilt. "]
      Since he was a certified paranoid of some subtype his behavior is better explained in those terms than by 'consciousness of guilt'. Mindreading.
      And bad mindreading at that (since they knew about his paranoia, had both medical reports about it and emails written by Ivins complaining about his paranoia).

      Delete
    7. part 2)

      4) 'Ivins was mentally ill'. Undisputed but not evidence of a crime. ANY crime. Illogic on the part of the Task Force/DoJ. Appeals to both irrational fears on the part of the general public and the public's willingness to defer to authority (here both medical and law enforcement).
      [Taylor: "Fifth, as reflected in the court documents, Dr. Ivins had a history of mental health problems and was facing a difficult time professionally..."]
      I see a man two years away from being given the highest DoD award, not someone who was 'facing a difficult time'. Misleading.

      That reduces the valid anti-Ivins 'evidence' of Aug 6th 2008 to two items: possession of the flask (RMR 1029), which speaks only to potential, and 'Ivins liked to drive at night and sometimes mailed stuff from different locations'. That doesn't speak to whether he drove anywhere on Sept 17-18th 2001, so it isn't evidence that Ivins did the crimes alleged.

      The subsequent 'evidence' of Feb 2010, mostly the 'amino-acid code', I find laughable, and not in a good way. So, no, there's no real case against Ivins. As much as I like Willman's book, it too is full of (bad) psychology, albeit fascinating from a human-interest standpoint.
      -----------------------------------------------------------------------
      and then there's the pro-Ivins 'evidence' (here I mean of the generic type, since some of it, like the above, would have been inadmissible) that was purposely overturned, ie the results of the polygraph tests, or concealed from the public: the evaluation by a professional of Ivins' printing in comparison with the Amerithrax printing. Concealed from the public from August of 2008 till a document dump years later. Again, not something a confident Task Force/DoJ would do in the matter if they had a strong
      case.
      (It bears mentioning that one news outlet, but apparently one only, reported on the printing non-match back in August of 2008, apparently from someone close to the investigation: http://www.wnd.com/2008/08/71721/

      Delete
    8. R. Rowley wrote: "TOTALLY bogus 'evidence'.

      In your OPINION. In any court of law in this country it would be totally VALID evidence that Ivins was trying to mislead the investigation and was LYING about his knowledge of how the lyophilizer works.

      Turns out not so much unexplained about it, if you go over the full range of animal trials being conducted in September and October of 2001.

      Ivins could not explain his hours in BSL-3. That's evidence. The fact that YOU and DXer can DREAM UP things he could have been doing is NOT evidence.

      "Bad psychology"

      In your OPINION. A jury would almost certainly see things differently.

      "Misleading."

      In your OPINION. It's all VALID evidence in court.

      R.Rowley also wrote: "That reduces the valid anti-Ivins 'evidence' of Aug 6th 2008 to two items: possession of the flask (RMR 1029), which speaks only to potential, and 'Ivins liked to drive at night and sometimes mailed stuff from different locations'. That doesn't speak to whether he drove anywhere on Sept 17-18th 2001, so it isn't evidence that Ivins did the crimes alleged."

      All you are doing is demonstrating for the UMPTEENTH time that you do not understand evidence and how it works in court. The items you list do not by themselves prove Ivins was guilty, but when viewed together with all the other evidence, there is no reason to believe that a jury would not find Bruce Ivins guilty of mass murder.

      You need to try to understand how evidence works in court instead of repeatedly making a fool of yourself by arguing over and over and over that some specific item of evidence does not by itself prove guilt.

      Ed

      Delete
  10. For what it's worth, I'm also trying to break my habit of taking about "what the facts say." I'm trying to use the term "what the evidence says" instead. It's more accurate.

    Facts don't really have any meaning until they are used as evidence in support for some argument or claim.

    The EVIDENCE says Bruce Ivins was the anthrax killer. The EVIDENCE consists of FACTS, witness testimony, expert testimony, documents, objects, photographs, public records and whatever else that would be allowable in court.

    The problem is, of course, that Truthers endlessly argue that "there is no evidence" against Bruce Ivins (or that Muslim terrorists were behind the 9/11 attacks). They do not seem to comprehend the concept of "evidence." But, they seem to understand the word "facts," so, I got into the habit of talking about facts as if facts are the same as evidence.

    Ed

    ReplyDelete
  11. One thing that I don't think I ever brought out, either at this venue or at any other, is:
    Mister Lake is in a minority among Amerithrax-book authors in concurring publicly that Ivins, acting alone, did the crimes. I'm unaware of any other author besides David Willman who holds that position, and even Willman won't take it to the it's-been-proven-beyond-a-reasonable-doubt level, as Mister Lake does.

    So, Marilyn Thompson, Leonard Cole*, Robert Graysmith, Jeanne Guillemin, to name the persons who come readily to mind, have not endorsed even tentatively (TO MY KNOWLEDGE) the findings of the Amerithrax Investigative Summary. Given the lapse of time, I seriously doubt that they ever will(no pun intended but I'll take it anyway!).

    (I leave out Richard Preston because his book THE DEMON IN THE FREEZER is only partially about Amerithrax, though that part is grippingly told. Laurie Garrett's book I HEARD THE SIRENS SCREAM is likewise about more than Amerithrax).

    *Cole's book had a second edition or update in late 2008 and he remained noncommittal on the subject of Ivins' guilt.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. R. Rowley wrote: "Mister Lake is in a minority among Amerithrax-book authors in concurring publicly that Ivins, acting alone, did the crimes. I'm unaware of any other author besides David Willman who holds that position"

      True. But that's not an indicator of how many people believe Ivins was guilty or innocent, it's a illustration of how the book business works.

      If I wrote a book arguing that Ivins was innocent, it would he VASTLY easier to get a publisher to publish it than any book showing Ivins to be guilty. The FBI and DOJ found Ivins to be guilty. No one needs some outsider to say the same thing - even if I have a lot of additional details.

      However, a book arguing that Ivins was innocent would be CONTROVERSIAL. Controversy sells books.

      That's why you don't see many books supporting the official findings about 9/11. Who needs or wants to read such a book?

      But there are DOZENS of books arguing that 9/11 didn't happen the way the government said it happened. People line up to buy books that are CONTROVERSIAL - even if the authors are total idiots or hucksters.

      That's just the way the publishing business works - unfortunately.

      Ed

      Delete
    2. However, a book arguing that Ivins was innocent would be CONTROVERSIAL. Controversy sells books.
      ==========================================
      So, Ivins was fingered in 2008, this is 2014. Six years later. Why haven't the aforementioned (Graysmith, Cole, Thompson, Guillemin, Garrett) cashed in on that? Only the latter two have even written books since 2008, and their books don't offer the type of controversy (ie naming of other suspects, characterizations of the likely group(s)/person(s)) that you are referring to. I gather that the (very recent)
      book by Graeme McQueen DOES offer a counter-interpretation (ie the very thing the above mentioned authors don't provide).

      Delete
    3. R. Rowley wrote: "Why haven't the aforementioned (Graysmith, Cole, Thompson, Guillemin, Garrett) cashed in on that?"

      I'm no mind reader. Maybe they didn't have anything worthwhile to say.

      Ed

      Delete
  12. In connection with my prior post (ie in order to check which author(s)/book(s) I left out), I did a google search with terms like 'author of book on anthrax attacks' and stumbled onto something (relatively) new:
    http://www.washingtonsblog.com/2014/09/review-2001-anthrax-deception.html
    At that blog there is a link to a book description:
    http://www.amazon.com/2001-Anthrax-Deception-Domestic-Conspiracy/dp/0986073121/ref=sr_1_1?s=books&ie=UTF8&qid=1409015199&sr=1-1&keywords=MacQueen%20the%202001%20Anthrax%20Deception&tag=viglink20513-20

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Mr. Rowley,

      There's nothing new there. The review is the same review I provided on my web site, except that it's from a different link. Your link is the original. My link HERE appears to have simply copied the article from your source.

      And I've probably showed the link to Amazon.com a half dozen times on my site.

      What IS new, however, are the comments following the washingtonsblog.com article.

      Note that the first reader comment argues that it was Jews who did it.

      The second reader comment seems to argue that the ebola outbreak could be a conspiracy, too.

      Another reader comment says, "The Anthrax atacks were needed to justify interception of all mails that reached Congress. Pure and simple."

      Some of the other reader comments are interesting, too. They illustrate that that everyone seems to have his or her own personal theory, and they all view the same things from different angles.

      Ed

      Delete
  13. Hmm. This morning I got a junk mail ad from Amazon.com about "The 9/11 Toronto Report," which argues in favor of the conspiracy theory that the US government was behind 9/11.

    http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/1478369205/ref=pe_397970_123718230_em_1p_0_ti

    Checking that link, I found a book I'd never seen before. It's titled "Planes without Passengers: The Faked Hijackings of 9/11 (2nd Edition)"

    http://www.amazon.com/Planes-without-Passengers-Hijackings-Edition/dp/1478339748/

    And that led to another book titled "Another Nineteen: Investigating Legitimate 9/11 Suspects." (The "legitimate suspects" are Dick Cheney, George Bush et al.)

    http://www.amazon.com/Another-Nineteen-Investigating-Legitimate-Suspects/dp/1489507833/

    And that led to another book titled "The Big Bamboozle: 9/11 and the War on Terror."

    http://www.amazon.com/The-Big-Bamboozle-War-Terror/dp/1468094580/

    Here's what the description of that book says,''

    "The book disputes the video and media confession of Osama bin Laden and points out that none of the accusations by the Bush Administration could be proved. Marshall asserts that the Saudi government was the true executioners of the 9/11 attack and framed their enemies while CIA special operations set up an elaborate decoy named Osama bin Laden to divert attention away from the Saudi operation."

    I could go on and on. By Mr. Rowley's argument, the number of books that say 9/11 was NOT perpetrated by Muslim terrorists should outweigh the one or two books which support the official findings.

    Ed

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. By Mr. Rowley's argument, the number of books that say 9/11 was NOT perpetrated by Muslim terrorists should outweigh the one or two books which support the official findings.
      =============================================
      Once again, you did not follow. I talked about the AUTHORS (primarily).
      Cole's book first came out in 2003, so did Thompson's, so did Graysmith's (so, for that matter, did Mister Lake's first). THINK! Was Ivins even a suspect in 2003? No, he was not. He was at least 2 years away from being even a minor suspect. So those authors did NOT write books dissing the case against Ivins (which would be the rough equivalents of the books you list which give alternate explanations about Sept 11th). Rather I cited those persons because your standard fall-back position(s) are:

      1) person has their own agenda/own theory and that's why they don't buy the case against Ivins. That doesn''t seem to be true for: Cole, Thompson, Graysmith, Garrett, Guillemin. NONE seem to have their own theory, their own agenda.

      2) person 'knows nothing' about Amerithrax. Unlikely in the extreme in the persons(authors) previously mentioned. On account of the books they wrote (and in Thompson's case, the day to day reporting). Chances are they kept up on Amerithrax in the subsequent years too (2003-2010).

      Yet, again, except for Lake and Willman, none seems to have endorsed the government's case against Ivins. It's a sign something's wrong with that case.

      Delete
    2. R. Rowley wrote: "That doesn''t seem to be true for: Cole, Thompson, Graysmith, Garrett, Guillemin. NONE seem to have their own theory, their own agenda."

      Oh? Have you read any of those books? I have copies of Cole's book, Thompson's book, Guillemin's book, and Graysmith's book. They ALL have their own agendas. Garrett certainly had her own screwball agenda. That's the reason they wrote their books.

      As you say, all but Garrett's book were written before Ivins was identified as the anthrax killer, so they don't have anything to say about the case against Ivins. They just have THEORIES about the case. I don't have the time to go through them one by one, particularly since you'll just argue over my wording anyway.

      R. Rowley wrote: "Yet, again, except for Lake and Willman, none seems to have endorsed the government's case against Ivins. It's a sign something's wrong with that case."

      NONSENSE. It means there isn't much more to say. No one has anything additional to add.

      David Willman wrote his book because he could INTERVIEW just about everyone involved with the case and everyone who knew Ivins. So, it's basically a summary of the interviews.

      I wrote my book to explain what MOST LIKELY happened in the order that they happened, and to show things from Bruce Ivins' point of view, using his emails to show what he was thinking.

      I understand there's a book in the works by an FBI agent who will write about his work on the case.

      You can't just decide to write a book about the case and get it published. You have to have something NEW and DIFFERENT to say.

      The conspiracy theorists have what they think is something "new and different" to say, so they're writing books.

      But, what new and different things can people write about in support of the FBI's findings?

      Ed

      Delete
  14. From the comment of today:
    ----------
    Meanwhile, an Anthrax Truther on my interactive blog seems to be arguing that the number of books supporting anthrax conspiracy theories seem to outnumber the books which agree with the government findings, and that somehow means that the official government findings must be wrong:
    ==============================================
    The last part has nothing to do with anything I wrote. Rather, my point is that you have repeatedly, if somewhat sporadically, made it out that skeptics toward the case against Ivins were 'fringe' thinkers, sometimes using the very word 'fringe'.
    So, how does one determine whether something is truly 'fringe' or not?

    No method is going to be 100% accepted or acceptable. In the case of the case against Ivins we have among the SKEPTICS:

    1) the long-time member and present chairman of the Senate Judiciary Committee (and addressee of one of the Amerithrax letters), Patrick Leahy. (Note: Senator Daschle, a non-attorney, has expressed more confidence in the results of the Task Force's work. I submit that might be because he's never had to evaluate evidence as an attorney).

    2) All those mainstream newspapers (I haven't compiled a comprehensive list but the NY TIMES editorial and the WSJ op-ed already cited by me indicate that skepticism toward the Task Force's findings is widespread and mainstream).

    3) the backgrounds and credibilities of the authors already mentioned:
    (These aren't people who have specialized in perversely championing one or more
    arcane cause(s), like we could say Mark Lane has vis-a-vis the Kennedy Assassination):

    a) Marilyn Thompson's a long-time journalist (mostly with the WPost) who covered Amerithrax as a breaking day-to-day story and who parlayed that into a book.
    http://jimromenesko.com/2012/06/18/marilyn-thompson-named-reuters-washington-bureau-chief/

    b) Leonard Cole's had a many-year's interest in and connection to BW and similar security issues.
    http://www.leonardcole.com/bio.htm

    c) Robert Graysmith's written several books, concentrating on officially-unsolved and 'controversial' cases. A true-crime specialist.
    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Robert_Graysmith

    d) Laurie Garrett's a science journalist, she's got a wonderful background in public health issues, especially infectious diseases. Author of three books dealing with those very things.
    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Laurie_Garrett

    d) Jeanne Guillemin's someone with a decades-long interest in anthrax, and the author of a book on the 1979 anthrax outbreak in Sverdlovsk.
    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Jeanne_Guillemin

    Three of these--------Guillemin, Graysmith, and Garrett---------were known to me (I read their books!) before the fall of 2001. Substantial people, all.

    Perhaps more on 'fringe vs mainstream' later.

    ReplyDelete
  15. At the head of the thread (partial):
    ---------
    People who have knowledge of actual conspiracies aren't "conspiracy theorists"[...]
    ===========================================
    The problem with this formulation is: it makes an assumption about the very thing under dispute: 'this is an actual conspiracy' vs. 'this is NOT an actual' conspiracy.
    If Oliver Stone thinks a conspiracy killed JFK, then he doesn't think he's a conspiracy theorist if he's going by Mister Lake's formulation.

    ReplyDelete
  16. People who have knowledge of actual conspiracies aren't "conspiracy theorists" because they will provide the evidence they have of the criminal conspiracy. They don't ask the government to provide the evidence,[...]
    ==============================================
    As it happens, I don't think anyone but Oswald shot at/killed JFK. But if I DID think that, then all my efforts in that regard would be geared toward getting an official reexamination of that assassination. History and justice would demand no less.

    ReplyDelete
  17. R. Rowley wrote: "So, how does one determine whether something is truly 'fringe' or not?"

    That's not the right question. Being on the "fringe" doesn't necessarily make someone right or wrong.

    Neither does having impressive credentials. Most of the key people who argue that 9/11 was staged by the US government have impressive credentials. They are lawyers, college professors, billionaire businessmen, pilots, scientists, etc.

    Just look at their credentials.

    People with impressive credentials can be just as IGNORANT as some guy who sweeps floors at McDonalds.

    Being right or wrong is determined by what the facts and evidence say, not by what kind of credentials you have or how many followers you have.

    Some Truthers with very impressive credentials are just plain WRONG --. LAUGHABLY WRONG.

    R. Rowley also wrote: "If Oliver Stone thinks a conspiracy killed JFK, then he doesn't think he's a conspiracy theorist if he's going by Mister Lake's formulation."

    I don't understand what you mean. If Oliver Stone has a theory that a conspiracy killed JFK, he's a "conspiracy theorist." If he has SOLID EVIDENCE that a conspiracy killed JFK, then he's an investigator, not a theorist. It doesn't make any difference what he considers himself to be.

    Regarding your third post, I wrote in the text at the top of this thread:

    They do not have the power needed to force the release of the "truth."
    Therefore, they want a new investigation to find a "truth" they can believe.
    And they are trying to convince the public to demand a new investigation.


    There's no point in any NEW investigation just because some people don't like or believe what the old investigation said. If you want a NEW investigation, provide NEW EVIDENCE that would FORCE rethinking of the old investigation, which will, in turn, force a new investigation to see what other evidence may have been missed.

    Ed

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. R. Rowley also wrote: "If Oliver Stone thinks a conspiracy killed JFK, then he doesn't think he's a conspiracy theorist if he's going by Mister Lake's formulation."

      I don't understand what you mean[...]
      ------------------------------------------------------------------
      The rest of your post makes clear that you don't know what I mean, so I'll simplify it.

      Your criterion was this (quotation from Mister Lake):

      "People who have knowledge of actual conspiracies aren't "conspiracy theorists"
      ----------------------------------------------------------------------------------
      You are saying there(in your 'definition') that the way to determine whether the LABEL "conspiracy theorist" applies is: to FIRST determine whether the conspiracy is "actual" or not. But that's putting the cart before the horse.

      EVERY person who really believes in conspiracy X, by that very fact thinks that conspiracy X is 'actual'.

      So the logical premise an Oliver Stone would use if he were following Mister Lake's definition would be as follows:

      Premise #1 "People who have knowledge of actual conspiracies aren't "conspiracy theorists""

      Premise #2 The military-industrial complex conspiracy to kill JFK is 'actual' (ie it really occurred)

      Conclusion: I, Oliver Stone, am not a conspiracy theorist in Lakean terms because I believe in a conspiracy that's actual.
      ==============================================
      The rest, what constitutes 'solid evidence' is a judgement call too.......

      Delete
    2. R. Rowley wrote: "EVERY person who really believes in conspiracy X, by that very fact thinks that conspiracy X is 'actual'."

      As usual, you fail to understand. It's NOT about what someone believes.

      If Oliver Stone has a theory about a conspiracy, he's a "conspiracy theorist."

      If Oliver Stone has evidence of an actual conspiracy, he's an "investigator" or a "reporter."

      Oliver Stone may consider HIMSELF to be an "investigator, but that's not the issue. No one cares what he thinks of himself.

      The issue is who should be CALLED a "conspiracy theorist"?

      Stone should be called a "conspiracy theorist" because he has a conspiracy theory, and he does NOT have convincing evidence of an actual conspiracy.

      Ed

      Delete
    3. My post which you are apparently responding to was an exercise in logic:
      whether your formulation, "People who have knowledge of actual conspiracies aren't "conspiracy theorists", would truly get us somewhere. Or whether it was just further question-begging. It is clearly the latter.

      You, in responding, had no qualms about Premise #1 which was your formulation. You said nothing at all about Premise #2, which just about ANYONE would say if they genuinely believed in a conspiracy NOT JUST OLIVER STONE(! I can't believe I have to point this out).

      So, your non-response response was to ignore the logic of it entirely and attack Oliver Stone:

      Oliver Stone may consider HIMSELF to be an "investigator, but that's not the issue. No one cares what he thinks of himself.
      --------------------------------------------------------------------------
      Premise #2 says nothing about what Oliver Stone thinks of himself, it says "The military-industrial complex conspiracy to kill JFK is 'actual' (ie it really occurred)". It's a point of logic (that is, it is valid WHETHER TRUE OR NOT). The conclusion inexorably follows:
      " I, Oliver Stone, am not a conspiracy theorist in Lakean terms because I believe in a conspiracy that's actual."

      This, the conclusion within the syllogism, again has nothing to do with Stone's image of himself etc.

      All you've proven here is: you're a complete stranger to logic and an eternal one at that.
      http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Syllogism#Basic_structure

      Delete
    4. Mr. Rowley, you are twisting things and arguing nonsense.

      If someone has a theory about a conspiracy, that person is a "conspiracy theorist." PERIOD.

      If someone has actual meaningful PROOF of a conspiracy, that person is an investigator or reporter or witness. He is NOT a conspiracy theorist. He doesn't have a theory, he has EVIDENCE to be weighed and evaluated by others.

      All you are proving is that you are incapable of understanding logic. For example, you wrote:

      "It's a point of logic (that is, it is valid WHETHER TRUE OR NOT)."

      ABSOLUTE NONSENSE. If it is not true, it is NOT VALID. To be "valid," something has to be well grounded in evidence and shown to be true.

      You and Olvier Stone put 2 and 2 together and get 735 and believe it is logical. But to others it is ILLOGICAL. What you consider to be evidence fits together ONLY IN YOUR MIND. An objective outsider may see nothing that fits together.

      You clearly do not understand syllogism, just as you do not seem to understand half the words you use to argue your beliefs.

      From the link you provided:

      Major premise: All humans are mortal.
      Minor premise: All Greeks are humans.
      Conclusion: All Greeks are mortal.

      The two premises are true, therefore the conclusion is true.

      Oliver Stone's version:

      There is a military industrial complex. (True)
      JFK was assassinated. (True)
      Therefore, the military industrial complex assassinated JFK.

      That is not logic or syllogism. To be logical it would have to be:

      ALL presidents are killed by the military industrial complex.
      JFK was a president who was killed.
      Therefore, JFK was killed by the military industrial complex.

      But all presidents are NOT killed by the military industrial complex, so the premise is false, which makes the conclusion false.

      A conspiracy theorist may BELIEVE that his theory is logical. But, it may be logic based upon FALSE PREMISES and his subjective BELIEFS, not upon actual evidence or objective logic.

      No one cares if a conspiracy theorist believes his theory is logical. It appears they ALL believe their theories are logical, even when they are in direct conflict with thousands of other "logical" theories.

      The only important thing is whether a conclusion is TRULY logical by objective reasoning.

      Ed

      Delete
    5. From the link you provided:

      Major premise: All humans are mortal.
      Minor premise: All Greeks are humans.
      Conclusion: All Greeks are mortal.

      The two premises are true, therefore the conclusion is true.
      ============================================
      As it happens, yes. But logic isn't ipso facto concerned with truth. It's concerned with validity, which is something else:

      Premise #1 All people named Vladimir are 7 feet tall.
      Premise #2 Vladimir Putin is named Vladimir.
      Conclusion: Vladimir Putin is 7 feet tall.

      That is a valid conclusion, for logic isn't (once again) concerned with the truth of a syllogism. Valid, despite the fact that Putin and a great many people named Vladimir are MUCH shorter than 7 feet tall.

      What you're REALLY doing is:

      1) determining whether you agree or disagree with someone.

      2) if the latter and the person's hypothesis includes a 'group' effort, you are labeling that (pejoratively) 'conspiracy theory', the persons 'conspiracy theorists'.

      3) if you were consistent, you would label what you yourself held in 2005 (ie that there was a 'supplier' in Amerithrax and a 'mailer') to have been a 'conspiracy theory', yourself a 'conspiracy theorist'.

      But you don't do that. Both illogical and self-serving.

      Delete
    6. All men are mortal.
      Socrates is a man.
      Therefore, Socrates is mortal.

      What makes this a valid argument is not that it has true premises and a true conclusion, but the logical necessity of the conclusion, given the two premises.
      ---------------
      Etc,
      http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Validity#Validity_of_arguments

      Delete
    7. R. Rowley wrote: "But logic isn't ipso facto concerned with truth. It's concerned with validity, which is something else"

      Another !@)(%&$&$$ word game!

      LOGIC IS CONCERNED WITH THE TRUTH.
      VALIDITY IS ALSO ABOUT THE TRUTH.

      But I think is see where you are getting your screwball ideas from. After your Vladimir syllogism you wrote:

      That is a valid conclusion, for logic isn't (once again) concerned with the truth of a syllogism.

      Totally WRONG. It is NOT VALID. You are mixing up syllogism and logic. They are not the same.

      Definition of "Syllogism":

      "an instance of a form of reasoning in which a conclusion is drawn (whether validly or not) from two given or assumed propositions (premises), each of which shares a term with the conclusion, and shares a common or middle term not present in the conclusion (e.g., all dogs are animals; all animals have four legs; therefore all dogs have four legs ).

      Definition of "Logic":

      "reasoning conducted or assessed according to strict principles of validity"

      So, a syllogism doesn't have to be logical. It's just a (^*$&%^ word game.

      Definition of "Valid":

      "(of an argument or point) having a sound basis in logic or fact; reasonable or cogent."

      I try to use logic to determine if some argument is valid or not. You evidently use syllogism without any concern for whether what you argue is valid or not. Do you use syllogism purely to be argumentative?

      Ed

      Delete
    8. R. Rowley also wrote: "3) if you were consistent, you would label what you yourself held in 2005 (ie that there was a 'supplier' in Amerithrax and a 'mailer') to have been a 'conspiracy theory', yourself a 'conspiracy theorist'."

      Again you have problems with "consistency." It is NOT inconsistent to change one's mind if you are consistently trying to be logical and correct.

      In 2005, I had an hypothesis that the FBI was looking at two different people in the Amerithrax investigation, a "supplier" and a "mailer." Would such a combination constitute a "conspiracy"? Of course.

      Would that make me a conspiracy theorist? Technically, it was a hypothesis NOT a theory. I was looking for evidence to prove or disprove the hypothesis. But if you want to say I was a "conspiracy theorist" at that time, that's up to you.

      The point is: I was provided with NEW EVIDENCE which showed that the FBI was NOT looking where I thought they were looking, and that NEW EVIDENCE very clearly showed that my hypothesis was totally wrong. So I dropped that hypothesis in favor of what the new facts and evidence said: That Bruce Ivins was the anthrax killer.

      So, I no longer have a "conspiracy theory" OR a "conspiracy hypothesis."

      Ed

      Delete
    9. Mr. Rowley,

      It seems clear that you are misunderstanding the word "syllogism" and think it means the same as "logic," just as you seem to misunderstand the word "hypothesis" and think it means the same as "belief."

      Looking around the internet, I found this link:
      http://www.wikihow.com/Understand-Syllogisms

      It says,

      "A syllogism is valid if and only if the conclusion necessarily follows the premises"

      However, a "valid syllogism" isn't the same as "valid logic." It appears that a "valid syllogism" is a syllogism that follows all the formatting rules. "Valid logic" is logic that uses valid arguments to reach a valid conclusion. BIG difference.

      The link above show all the rules. It's comparable to poetry. It's a format for making a point or a claim or for stating an idea.

      Other sources indicate that, whether the syllogism is right, wrong, logical, illogical, nonsense, lunacy or brilliant, it apparently makes no difference. It's still a syllogism if it follows the syllogism (or syllogistic) rules and format.

      Logic, however, is "reasoning conducted or assessed according to strict principles of validity." The format doesn't make much difference. The only thing that is important is that the logic proceeds through VALID arguments or steps and reaches a VALID conclusion. If it doesn't, it is NOT logical.

      Note that you would refer to a syllogism just like you would refer to a poem.

      To say a logic is meaningless.

      Yet both are nouns.

      There is probably some web site somewhere that explains the difference between syllogism and logic better than what I've written above, but I can't find it.

      Ed

      Delete
  18. Just one quick point about 'credentials' which Mister Lake is dealing with currently in his comments section:

    Being an FBI (special) agent and/or a postal inspector is also a 'credential', so if we are going to be super-skeptical of credentials, in Amerithrax or anywhere else, that cuts both ways: you can't just say that a Task Force of experts determined that person X committed crime Z, and anyone who doubts that is thereby discredited.

    ReplyDelete
  19. R. Rowley wrote: "Being an FBI (special) agent and/or a postal inspector is also a 'credential', so if we are going to be super-skeptical of credentials, in Amerithrax or anywhere else, that cuts both ways: you can't just say that a Task Force of experts determined that person X committed crime Z, and anyone who doubts that is thereby discredited."

    You are just being argumentative. And that is a SILLY argument.

    My point was that "credentials" do not automatically make you "correct" or "right."

    I got into this debate 13 years ago because it was EXPERTS ARGUING WITH EXPERTS. Both sides had impressive credentials. So, who is most likely right?

    The answer: The side with the best EVIDENCE.

    When I look at the EVIDENCE presented by the different sides, I see that the Anthrax Truthers have NO EVIDENCE. They just have opinions and beliefs. They inexplicably argue that the government has "no evidence," possibly as a way to avoid discussing evidence. When anyone tries to explain the evidence to them, they just argue that it isn't the KIND of evidence that they require.

    I can see that, based upon the evidence, the government has a VERY GOOD case against Bruce Ivins. I think it would easily get a conviction in court.

    People with "impressive credentials" may disagree, but that doesn't mean they are right -- or even that they know what they are talking about. They cannot make any kind of intelligent argument based upon EVIDENCE to support what they say.

    So, for 13 years we have had "experts" with opinions and beliefs arguing with experts with solid facts and evidence.

    It's not about "credentials." It's about facts and evidence.

    Anthrax Truthers just don't seem to be able to understand that.

    Ed

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. It's not about "credentials." It's about facts and evidence.
      ------------------------------------------------------------------------------
      Oh, sure, a non-scientist is going to be able to understand IN DETAIL about the genetic subtyping. NOT!
      Which is why the NAS panel was composed of scientists:

      http://abcnews.go.com/Politics/anthrax-letters-sept-11-attacks-national-research-council/story?id=12922509
      (just the beginning):
      It's a case that's been marked by controversy and mystery for nearly a decade: who was responsible for the deadly anthrax-laced letters sent after 9/11?

      Today, the National Academy of Science raised more questions.

      A review panel said that the FBI overstated the scientific evidence that linked the anthrax flask controlled by Dr. Bruce E. Ivins to the anthrax used in the 2001 attack letters. Dr. Ivins, a researcher at Ft. Detrick, MD., was identified by the FBI as the primary suspect in the case. He maintained his innocence until his suicide in 2008.

      The cornerstone of the FBI case against Dr. Ivins was that the anthrax in the flask to which he had access -- labeled RMR-1029 -- had a unique make-up that identified it as the parent material for the anthrax in the attack letters. It took years of research for the FBI to conclude that the anthrax in the letters came from Dr. Ivins' flask, and they cited it as "powerful evidence" against him.

      The NAS has reviewed the FBI's scientific work on the anthrax, and today, Dr. David A. Relman, the vice chair of the NAS panel, said, "One cannot arrive at a definitive conclusion about the origins of the anthrax."
      --------snip------------------------------------------------------------------------

      Delete
    2. R. Rowley wrote: "The NAS has reviewed the FBI's scientific work on the anthrax, and today, Dr. David A. Relman, the vice chair of the NAS panel, said, "One cannot arrive at a definitive conclusion about the origins of the anthrax.""

      Definition of "Definitive":

      not able to be argued about or changed : final and settled"

      So, a scientist argued that it was possible for there to be some other explanation, while legal experts would argue that the case against Ivins should be conclusive beyond a reasonable doubt.

      Different standards. Dr. Relman's standards are not the standards use in any COURT in this country (or probably any other country). But, who cares what Dr. Relman wants? The courts don't. To try to meet Dr. Relman's standard in a court trial would be STUPID.

      Ed

      Delete
  20. I probably should also have mentioned that when Anthrax Truthers attempt to discuss the evidence supporting their arguments, we end up with Mr. Rowley arguing that some criminal mastermind did it, while DXer argues that Muslim terrorists did it, while people like Barry Kissin argue that the U.S. government did it, while others argue that Saddam Hussein did it, while others argue that Jews did it, while others argue that their next door neighbor did it, etc., etc., etc.

    They can't all be right. So, which one has the best facts and evidence?

    Answer: NONE. The ONLY side with solid facts and evidence is the side they all argue against: the FBI and DOJ.

    Ed

    ReplyDelete
  21. "Anonymous" (a.k.a. "DXer" on Lew Weinstein's blog just tried to post a message to this blog. I deleted it, since it says nothing new and is mainly just another personal attack. But, maybe it is worthwhile to show how DXer thinks.

    He wrote "Why do you think when he [El Shukrijumah] called his mom on 9/11 or 9/13 and said that he was coming that he didn't get on the plane?

    You are what you call a truther and true believer -- fixed on your view that the Al Qaeda operative didn't get on the plane"


    Am I fixed on the idea that El Shukrijumah didn't get on the plane just because I've seen no proof, and it makes absolutely NO SENSE that he mailed the anthrax letters.

    DXer wants people to believe that just because El Shukrijumah called his mother saying he was returning to the US, that he would have absolutely no problem doing so in the days immediately after 9/11.

    Not only that, if DXer is to be believed, the only reason El Shukrijumah returned to the US (other that to visit his mother) was to mail the anthrax letters that Mohammed Atta had written. Who had the letters between the time Atta committed suicide on September 11 and the time of the first mailing on or around September 18? Why couldn't that person mail the letters? Why did El Shukrijumah have to fly all the way from Afghanistan to do it?

    And why did he mail the two batches of letters three weeks apart? Does that make any sense at all? It makes sense for Ivins to have done it, since the first batch didn't cause the panic he wanted to create, and he had to prepare a new batch. But, DXer seems to be arguing that both batches of letters were already prepared. Al Qaeda just needed an expert letter mailer to fly in from Afghanistan to put the letters in the mailbox.

    A "True Believer" is someone who believes something regardless of what the facts say and no matter how preposterous the belief is.

    There are NO FACTS which say that El Shukrijumah mailed the anthrax letters. There is NO EVIDENCE that El Shukrijumah mailed the anthrax letters. It makes NO SENSE that he flew to the US to do it.

    The only "evidence" DXer has is some news reports which quote anonymous sources as saying that "El Shukrijumah was known to have been in the United States since the terrorist attacks of Sept. 11."

    That may be enough for a True Believer to believe something so unbelievable, but anyone in their right mind would want a little more in the way of evidence.

    Ed

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Overnight, DXer (a.k.a. "Anonymous") tried another post to this blog, and he also sent me an email. The email said only, "you appear not to know where Adnan El-Shukrijumah stayed in New Jersey while casing the NYC and DC targets"

      DXer doesn't seem to realize it doesn't make any difference where El-Shukrijuma stayed MONTHS BEFORE 9/11. It's KNOWN that he left the US in mid-2001. So, where he was many months BEFORE the mailings doesn't prove in any way that he was in the US at the time of the mailings, much less that he mailed the letters.

      DXer's attempted post to this blog was just more of the same kind of irrelevant blather. He concluded with this:

      "I have posted the message on Lew's blog to illustrate that the reason you are so confused is that you intentionally avoid the merits."

      Checking Lew's blog, I found a post at the link HERE that begins with this:

      "To summarize for all those lost souls who think either Tara O’Toole or a First Grader was involved for the Fall 2001 anthrax mailings,
      Adnan El-Shukrijumah was living with KSM when he called his mom from Kandahar upon 9/11 to say he was coming to the US (over her protests). "


      Then it's just more irrelevant blather saying that al Qaeda was interested in using anthrax, which we all know. But it proves nothing.

      Does someone think Tara O'Toole was involved in the mailings? Who? That's something I've never heard before. But, of course, DXer doesn't explain anything.

      In another post in the same thread he repeats some information about what El-Shukrijumah was doing BEFORE 9/11 and before he left the country:

      1. El-Shukrijumah, after casing targets in March 2001 or so, he travelled to Afghanistan via Trinidad and London, arriving in Afghanistan by June 2001. ....

      2. While casing targets in New York, he stayed with Barot’s aunt in New Jersey.


      Since DXer appears to be totally incapable of explaining anything, he doesn't explain what the information that El-Shukrijuma LEFT THE US months before 9/11 has to do with the mailings.

      There is just post after post of IRRELEVANT BLATHER. No explanations. No meaningful information. Nothing that proves anything.

      What he does mostly is illustrate why I block his posts here. He cannot explain anything. He cannot answer simple questions. He has no facts or evidence to support his beliefs. So, all he can do is post an endless stream of meaningless blather.

      Ed

      Delete
    2. "DXer" a.k.a. "Anonymous" just tried to post another message to this blog. It has nothing offensive in it, but rather than just let it go through (and have DXer call me a liar because I said I was going to block ALL of his posts), I'll simply quote it in it's entirety:

      -----------------------
      Ed writes:

      "The only "evidence" DXer has is some news reports which quote anonymous sources as saying that "El Shukrijumah was known to have been in the United States since the terrorist attacks of Sept. 11."

      That may be enough for a True Believer to believe something so unbelievable, but anyone in their right mind would want a little more in the way of evidence."

      In Sarasota investigation, who was the person associated with the hijackers’ flight school who was discovered to have re-entered the country after 9/11?
      Posted by Lew Weinstein on September 21, 2014
      http://caseclosedbylewweinstein.wordpress.com/2014/09/21/in-sarasota-investigation-who-was-the-person-associated-with-the-hijackers-flight-school-who-was-discovered-to-have-re-entered-the-country-after-911/

      ---------------------

      Note the total lack of understanding of what constitutes a "True Believer." He's arguing that because I do NOT believe what he believes, that makes me a "true believer." I've been asking for more evidence, and he says that I should "want a little more in the way of evidence." It's like an absurd Monty Python skit.

      Then, instead of providing more evidence, he asks a bizarre question:

      "In Sarasota investigation, who was the person associated with the hijackers’ flight school who was discovered to have re-entered the country after 9/11?"

      Questions seem to be his idea of "evidence."

      The link he provides goes to a document that seems to be about someone who was "determined to have departed the U.S. in haste following the 9/11 attacks." El-Shukrijumah departed the U.S. in June or July prior to the attacks.

      The FBI document is dated 02/02/2012 and is apparently about someone who just re-entered the US around that time. "DXer" is arguing that El-Shukrijuma entered the US eleven years earlier, sometime between Sept. 11 and Sept. 18, 2001.

      Arguing with "DXer" is like arguing with random thoughts dropped out of a window in a nuthouse. Nothing he says fits with what he's arguing. He cannot answer questions. He cannot explain anything. And nothing nothing he says makes any real sense.

      Ed

      Delete
  22. One sentence from today's comment:

    "It's the same kind of problem "outside experts" have with the Amerithrax case."
    ------------------------------------------------------------
    As was established some time ago when I quoted copiously from that WIRED article, those who have 'a problem' being confident that Ivins did it include: Paul Keim and Claire Fraser-Liggett. Either that article or a similar one by Noah
    Shachtman:
    http://www.wired.com/2011/03/anthrax-redux-fbi-admits-to-holes-in-its-biggest-case-ever/
    --------------
    And Montooth isn’t alone. The scientists who developed the most convincing evidence against Ivins have even deeper reservations. Paul Keim, who identified the anthrax strain used in the attacks, now tells WIRED, “I don’t know if Ivins sent the letters.” Claire Fraser-Liggett, who used DNA sequencing to tie the killer spores to an anthrax flask in Ivins’ possession, concedes that “there are still some holes.”
    -----------------------------------------------------------------------------------
    So it just isn't "outside experts", it's also the most inside of inside experts.
    The other WIRED article, the one I quoted previously, is here: (longer article)
    http://www.wired.com/2011/03/ff_anthrax_fbi/all/

    ReplyDelete
  23. R. Rowley wrote: "So it just isn't "outside experts", it's also the most inside of inside experts."

    Yeah, but you are just looking at some magazine reporter's spin on things. This is a quote from the article about Montooth:

    Edward Montooth, who headed up the anthrax investigation, acknowledges that he’s still unsure of everything from Ivins’ motivation to when Ivins brewed up the lethal concoction. “We still have a difficult time nailing down the time frame,” Montooth says. “We don’t know when he made or dried the spores.”

    That means nothing. That sort of thing is COMMON in criminal cases. If Ivins had ten possible motives, how can anyone be sure of exactly which motive drove him to do what he did? If Ivins could have "brewed up" the spores and dried them at any time in the year prior to the attacks, it isn't necessary for the FBI to say "He did it at 5:27 p.m. Eastern Time on August 27, 2001."

    All that the prosecutor needs to do is show that Ivins had the means, motive and opportunity. Combined with all the evidence that shows he tried to hide evidence, that he tried to mislead the investigation, that he was mentally unstable, that the crimes fitted a pattern of OTHER CRIMES he committed in the past, that he had connections to the crime scene, that he had NO ALIBI for the times of the mailings, that no one else could be found with means, motive and opportunity, etc., etc., etc., that is enough to convict in any court in America.

    Paul Keim and Claire Fraser-Ligget were NOT - REPEAT NOT - "insiders" in the criminal investigation. They were merely experts who assisted the FBI in scientific matters. They clearly had NO IDEA that Ivins was even a suspect until the FBI announced it.

    You can try to spin things all you want, but the evidence still says that Ivins was the anthrax killer. And you CERTAINLY don't have better evidence showing that your suspect did it. DXer's evidence that al Qaeda operatives did it is a JOKE. All Anthrax Truthers do is argue that they do not BELIEVE the evidence. They have no meaningful evidence of their own that conclusively points to their own various and sundry suspects.

    Ed

    ReplyDelete
  24. Paul Keim and Claire Fraser-Ligget were NOT - REPEAT NOT - "insiders" in the criminal investigation.
    ========================================
    No they were the insiders in the heart of the scientific work(the genetic subtyping), the single most valid and reliable skein of evidence in the case (NO MATTER WHO THE SUSPECT/PERPETRATOR WAS/IS).

    It matters not at all that they didn't know Ivins was a suspect, since that played no role in the scientific work.

    A (very) rough equivalent would be the ballistics experts in the JFK assassination case doubting that the rounds were fired from Oswald's weapon. It matters not what THEY knew about the OTHER aspects of the case. Keim and Fraser-Liggett have certainly informed themselves on those other aspects in the case of Ivins.
    ----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
    DXer's evidence that al Qaeda operatives did it is a JOKE. All Anthrax Truthers do is argue that they do not BELIEVE the evidence.
    -----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
    Since DXer (apparently) thought prior to 2008 that al Qaeda operatives were the culprits, I see him as being consistent. And consistently sceptical towards half-baked 'evidence' (ie lyophilizer, handwriting comparisons etc.). I don't know the full range of DXer's evidence, but it's hard to believe it could be weaker than that against Ivins.

    ReplyDelete
  25. R. Rowley wrote: Keim and Fraser-Liggett have certainly informed themselves on those other aspects in the case of Ivins."

    They have NOT said that they think that Ivins was innocent. All they have said is that they do not KNOW that Ivins was guilty. In other words, they have NOT seen enough evidence to be fully convinced. We don't know what evidence they've seen, so it's understandable that they may not yet be convinced.

    Plus, they are scientists, so they tend to think it terms of absolutes. In science, unless it is the only POSSIBLE answer, then there is still doubt. In courts of law, all that is needed to reach a conclusion is to prove that there is no reasonable doubt.

    R. Rowley also wrote: "I don't know the full range of DXer's evidence, but it's hard to believe it could be weaker than that against Ivins."

    Yes, to you it's all about what you believe, and evidence is irrelevant. I think everyone understands that.

    You seem to believe that being "consistent" is equivalent to being right. Anthrax Truthers are consistently WRONG. No amount of facts or evidence can change their minds. They just believe what they want to believe.

    And they seems to think that someone who evaluates new evidence and changes their mind is "inconsistent" and therefore untrustworthy and wrong. That belief is just plain STUPID.

    Ed

    ReplyDelete
  26. "DXer" (a.k.a. "Anonymous") just attempted to post another message to this blog. There's nothing offensive in it, so here it is in its entirety:

    -----------------------
    Ed, the FBI formally announced in June 2003 that they believed Shukrijumah illegally entered the United States after September 1, 2001. That belief was pretty sound.
    -----------------------

    But DXer has been arguing that El-Shukrijuma was in Afghanistan on September 11, 2001.

    Assuming that "DXer' meant "illegally entered the United States after September 11, 2001," the question is still: WHEN did he enter.

    The articles "DXer" cites seem to indicate that El-Shukrijuma entered sometime around March 2003 - if he entered at all.

    It doesn't appear to be logical to believe that just because El-Shukrijuma told his mother on 9/11 that he would be returning to the US, that he immediately did so without any difficulty or delays.

    It seems totally NUTS to believe that the only reason he returned was to mail the anthrax letters (and maybe visit his mother). If the letters were already in the U.S., couldn't they have been more easily mailed by someone else?

    And if El-Shukrijuma brought the anthrax letters with him from Afghanistan, doesn't that also argue that the 9/11 hijackers couldn't have been contaminated or infected by them?

    "DXer" has no meaningful evidence of anything. He cannot explain his own theory. He cannot even put together any kind of logical argument. It's all just random ideas and irrelevant documents.

    Ed

    ReplyDelete
  27. Here's the full text of another attempted post from "DXer" (a.k.a. "Anonymous") which doesn't get insulting or attempt to post irrelevant materials (he just refers to them):

    ----------------------------
    Ed,

    As I have explained on numerous occasions, the hijacker with the leg lesion came from Kandahar, which is where the anthrax lab was located.

    As for what the FBI said about the date of travel, the FBI said they believe he came sometime after September 1. As I have explained on numerous times, El-Shukrijumah was seen at KSM's house on September 13. On either September 11 or September 13 is when he called to tell his mom he was coming. KSM's house was also where Al Qaeda anthrax lab director Yazid Sufaat was staying, after having worked at the Kandahar lab since May 1, 2001 (and before that he and his assistants worked on anthrax at Omar Hospital). Former US Senator Bob Graham in the WMD Commission report says that the Al Qaeda anthrax program was much further advanced than had been realized.

    I have uploaded the official government documents and statements on these points. Some were secret but were leaked by Wikileaks. Some are secret at a compartmentalized level and were not leaked. (For example, there is a tippy top secret attachment to the detainee statement of the El-Shukrijumah associate who helped set up the anthrax lab in Kandahar for Yazid Sufaat).

    The information was marked SECRET and TOP SECRET. Of course, such compartmentalization and failure to share information is what led to 9/11.

    ----------------------------

    Okay, let's start with this comment: "As I have explained on numerous occasions, the hijacker with the leg lesion came from Kandahar, which is where the anthrax lab was located."

    Yes, but that's just another idea that isn't supported by anything and is probably disputed by countless other facts. Like when was he in Kandahar? If it was too long prior to visiting the doctor, then he couldn't have been infected there. He'd have been DEAD by the time he got to the doctor. (Plus, of course, the Doctor's official diagnosis was that it was a gash in his leg from bumping into a suitcase. Only after being questioned did he agree that it COULD HAVE BEEN anthrax. Others say that is totally unlikely.)

    Besides, there are facts which say that there was no anthrax in the lab in Kandahar. There was only ONE FALSE POSITIVE reading. And you cannot credibly explain how that lab could have anthrax with the morphs from flask RMR-1029.

    DXer also wrote: "As for what the FBI said about the date of travel, the FBI said they believe he came sometime after September 1. As I have explained on numerous times, El-Shukrijumah was seen at KSM's house on September 13."

    Don't you see anything wrong with what you wrote? You're saying that the FBI said he came [to the U.S.] sometime after September 1. But you also say that he was at KSM's house in Afghanistan on September 13.

    Yes, September 13 is after September 1, but getting from Afghanistan on September 13 to New Jersey to mail some letters on September 18 requires some extraordinary PROOF to be credible. You have nothing.

    Your documents on Lew's blog say nothing of value. They're just the kind of irrelevant material I won't let you post here. Other documents you've posted to Lew's blog seem to suggest that El-Shukrijumah didn't get to the U.S. until around March 2003 (which is ALSO after September 1, 2001).

    Ed

    ReplyDelete
  28. Yesterday evening, instead of attempting to post to this blog, "DXer" (a.k.a. "Anonymous") sent me an email continuing the above debate. The subject of the email was "you have no support or citation for this", and the text was:

    --------------------------
    http://www.anthraxinvestigation.com/The-al-Qaeda-Theory.html

    " In a laboratory in Kandahar, Afghanistan, al Qaeda scientists used the sample of Ames to make hundreds of pounds of new anthrax powder."

    I've never suggested that Yazid Sufaat made hundreds of pounds of anthrax powder.

    You perhaps misunderstand the bit about the luggage the hijacker from Kandahar mentioned. He said that the luggage led to a gash. A gash upon exposure to anthrax then leads to a lesion.

    Please correct the item.

    I've explained that the lab was up and running in May 2001 and the process contemplated took a month. So he and his two assistants had time in the four months available to them. They had started work at Omar Hospital prior to May 2001 but we can run the clock from May 2001 if you like.

    ------------------

    The link is to a page on my web site where I comment about how, if the 9/11 hijackers planned to spray anthrax from a crop duster, they would need hundreds of pounds of anthrax. I said nothing about DXer making any such claim. It's just what is needed if you want to spray anthrax from a crop duster. A dozen grams of anthrax wouldn't accomplish much of anything.

    DXer then says, "You perhaps misunderstand the bit about the luggage the hijacker from Kandahar mentioned. He said that the luggage led to a gash. A gash upon exposure to anthrax then leads to a lesion."

    That's a VERY silly argument I'd never heard before.

    Generally, anthrax gets into a small cut or sore, like a scratched pimple. Then it spreads and spreads and creates a large lesion that looks something like a SCAB.

    DXer is apparently saying that the 9/11 hijacker scraped his leg on the corner of a suitcase which resulted in a nasty gash. Then somehow anthrax got onto his leg and IN ADDITION to a scab forming over the gash, an anthrax lesion ALSO formed.

    The argument is just plain silly, of course. If a gash was infected with spores, it should have spread into a MASSIVE lesion. Maybe he's arguing that a scab formed, but part of the scab was actually an anthrax lesion started by a single spore. Either way, it's an amusing piece of speculation that cannot be totally disproved. So, if DXer wishes to believe such nonsense, that's his problem.

    I'm not sure what the last part of his email is about. He seems to be arguing that al Qaeda scientists had plenty of time to create enough anthrax. I don't know of anyone who argued that they didn't. The only argument I had was: How did they get a sample from Flask RMR-1029? Plus I'd ask the questions: (1) Why didn't they just use a local strain? (2)If they needed it to be Ames for some reason, why didn't they use Ames from some readily available source? Why pick RMR-1029? There were over a thousand other sources for Ames. (3)Does it make any sense at all that they took a sample from Ivins' flask, transported it to a lab in Afghanistan, made two different qualities of anthrax there, put a crude form in one batch of letters, put the sophisticated form in two other letters, transported all the letters back to the US, and then mailed them on two different dates? How can that make sense to anyone?

    The "al Qaeda sent the anthrax letters" theory is absurd on its face. That is undoubtedly why "DXer" cannot explain his theory. He can only post irrelevant and disconnected material and argue that others should be able to put things together the way he puts things together.

    Ed

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. "DXer" (a.k.a. "Anonymous") just attempted to post this comment (shown in its entirety):

      Ed, if Yazid Sufaat and his assistants had not been working with virulent anthrax, they would have had no reason to be vaccinated. See uploaded document. See also former Senator Graham's WMD Report for learning on Al Qaeda's anthrax program. "

      What this had to do with anything is a mystery. It's just meaningless blather. But, it appears that "virulent anthrax" has some meaning to DXer that he cannot explain.

      If someone PLANS to work with anthrax, the first thing you'd do is get vaccinated. Being vaccinated doesn't mean you actually produced some anthrax.

      In another attempted post, "DXer" wrote:

      "On the lesion, it is the head of Homeland Security biosecurity Tara O'Toole who wrote the memo on the subject."

      Yes, she's one of the people who convinced Dr. Tsonas to say that it could have been an anthrax lesion. (She was NOT head of Homeland Security biosecurity at the time.)

      Other experts, however, say that there is no reason to believe what she managed to get Dr. Tsonas to say was true.

      "Although law enforcement officials said they have not ruled out anthrax as a possibility, they said there was not enough information to draw a specific conclusion. That view was shared by Thomas W. McGovern, the leading authority on anthrax for the American Academy of Dermatology's bioterrorism task force, who said it was "highly unlikely" for someone to contract cutaneous anthrax on his lower leg.

      "McGovern said Al Haznawi's infection -- described as a one-inch black lesion with raised red edges -- could have been anything from an encrusted boil to a common scrape that received improper medical attention."
      SOURCE

      Again it is experts versus experts. O'Toole had a belief or opinion, McGovern looked at the facts and disagreed.

      Ed

      Delete
  29. "DXer" (a.k.a. "anonymous") attempted two more posts to this blog, plus he sent me a long email. It's all very repetitious and ultimately meaningless, but I'll post one of his attempted posts here in its entirety. The others are just more of the same.

    ----------------------
    Ed,

    You suggest that Al Qaeda would have just used a strain found in Afghanistan rather than obtain one from a Western lab.

    You may not know why Ayman Zawahiri sent a scientist to infiltrate the annual anthrax conferences sponsored by Porton Down (attended by the USAMRIID scientists we have come to know so well) and to a (yet unidentified) B3 lab to obtain anthrax, but that is what the documentary evidence confirms he did in 1999. See also authorized history of MI5. That lab should be identified.

    Your argument that Zawahiri would not seek to obtain the strain from a Western lab is foreclosed by the documentary evidence.

    Indeed, Rauf Ahmad specifically filled out paperwork in obtaining virulent anthrax for Ayman at the second lab he visited in 1999 for that purpose. I have uploaded the documents on Lew's website that DIA declassified and provided to me.

    -------------------------

    Okay. Logically, they could more easily have used a local strain. But, assuming that they wanted to create weaponized anthrax, they might try to get a sample from somewhere else.

    DXer seems to be saying that they obtained a sample of anthrax from Porton Down. But he doesn't say what strain it was.

    Logically, if they were looking to create weaponized anthrax, they would have obtained the Vollum strain. It is the strain commonly used for weapons, and Porton Down would be a very good place to get it.

    The Ames strain has never been "weaponized" (although it was arguably used as a "weapon" in the anthrax attacks of 2001. It does not make a good weapon, since just about any antibiotic will kill it.

    Furthermore, there is evidence that the Porton Down version of the Ames strain was serially cultured so many times that its DNA no longer matched the "Ames ancestor" variety of Ames, which was the variety in the anthrax letters.

    So, while "DXer" can argue that some Muslim obtained anthrax from Porton Down, (1) he has nothing to show that it was the Ames strain, (2) he has nothing to show that it was actually turned into a weapon, (3) the facts say that Porton Down Ames has different DNA from the attack spores, (4) and DXer CERTAINLY doesn't have any meaningful evidence that anything al Qaeda did had anything to do with the anthrax attacks of 2001.

    Ed

    ReplyDelete
  30. "DXer" (a.k.a. "Anonymous") sent me FOUR (4) emails overnight. They illustrate why I no longer allow him to post here.

    The first three are about the Mosque where Padilla and El-Shukrijumah worshipped in Florida. "DXer" is changing the subject for some reason, and he's apparently trying to restart some obscure argument from years ago. It doesn't seem to have anything to do with anything, and it's just endless ranting. I'm not even going to try to figure out what he's so upset about.

    The fourth email has this subject: "the DNA detected was Ames, not Vollum - please correct your mistake". The text of the email begins with this:

    "The DNA detected was Ames, not Vollum - please correct your mistake. You have failed to correct your mistakes and proliferate additional mistakes daily that then go uncorrected."

    There's no indication of what instance of "detecting" Ames he's talking about, or why he's bringing it up. The rest of the email is just gibberish. It's a rant about something Dr. Relman supposedly said. A link provided by "DXer" is just to typically irrelevant blather. Click HERE to go to the link.

    In the part where DXer talked about detecting Ames, I can make a guess and assume he is putting 2 and 2 together and getting 793.

    He could be combining what I wrote earlier in this thread (about not knowing what strain of anthrax al Qaeda obtained from Porton Down) together with the false positives detected when FBI investigators thought that they had found pieces of DNA unique to the Ames strain in an al Qaeda lab in Kandahar.

    But, that "finding" was almost certainly a problem caused by contamination of the samples in the U.S. lab. To make certain, the FBI went back to the lab in Kandahar and took 1254 additional samples. ALL the samples were negative for anthrax.

    So, we don't know what strain they obtained from Porton Down. It was most likely Vollum.

    And there was NO anthrax of any kind found in the lab in Kandahar.

    "DXer" is putting 2 and 2 together to create a belief that this is "evidence" of something. But, he can't explain what he's talking about.

    Ed

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. In another demonstration of how he cannot explain anything, "DXer" attempted to post a message here in response to the above post. The message in its entirety reads as follows:

      ------------------
      Ed, I was pointing out the mistake on your webpage from your Al Qaeda page about "Franklin Park". Again, you haven't corrected it. You don't correct your mistakes. I have posted the same material on Lew's webpage to demonstrate how you don't correct your mistakes even when pointed out.
      --------------------------

      My al Qaeda page doesn't contain the word "Franklin." Click HERE. But it is mentioned on my page about "The Al Qaeda Theory." Click HERE. It says that on the web page HERE, Ross Getman wrote:

      On the return address, Greendale School purported to be in Franklin Park where fugitive Adnan El-Shukrijumah worshipped along with others who now have been indicted. The pilot El Shukrijumah is said to be at the level of Mohammed Atta and is thought to have been associated with Aafia Siddiqui, an MIT-trained biologist. Mohammed Atta lived 11miles away from this mosque across from Franklin Park.

      And I wrote this comment on my "al Qaeda page":

      "This muddle of misinformation fails to point out that the "mosque across from Franklin Park" was actually a mosque (B) 13.7 miles from Franklin Park (A) in Ft. Lauderdale, FL. It has nothing to do with the town of Franklin Park in New Jersey."

      There's nothing wrong with what I wrote. The "mosque across from Franklin Park" is just as I wrote: It's 13.7 miles from the TOWN of Franklin Park in Florida. And, also as I wrote, there is a park called "Franklin Park" across the street from the mosque. And it has nothing to do with Franklin Park, NJ.

      The error is Ross Getman's. El-Shukrijuma did NOT worship IN Franklin Park in New Jersey OR in Florida.

      He should correct his error.

      But, I would hope that both "DXer" and Ross Getman someday come to realize that this argument is a TOTAL WASTE OF TIME. Resolving it accomplishes NOTHING. It has absolutely NOTHING to do with the evidence in the case. It's just the result of some muddled writing by Ross Getman.

      Ed

      Delete
  31. "DXer" (a.k.a. "Anonymous") attempted two more posts overnight. Instead of responding to them here, I started a new thread titled "The absurd al Qaeda anthrax theory."

    The posts and my responses are in that thread.

    Ed

    ReplyDelete