New York City activist

February 28, 2008

Richard Gage’s avowed enemy, part 2 – and my thoughts about WTC 7

I’ll now continue my review of Joseph Nobles’s review of Richard Gage’s slide show. I’ll also take the opportunity to voice my current beliefs and questions about WTC 7 in general, and to suggest some research projects for the engineers in Gage’s organization.
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December 14, 2007

“Stand down” feasibility, etc. – Reply to “9/11 Guide,” part 2 (to ref1)

Continuing my review of ref1’s site 9/11 Guide, I’ll now look at some of the items on the Documents & Interviews page.

First on the page is Q&A With 9/11 Boston Center Air Traffic Controller. Unfortunately this interview is anonymous, with the air traffic controller referred to only as “Cheap Shot,” so this interview can’t really be used as evidence. But, for what it’s worth, it is very interesting.
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December 12, 2007

Reply to “9/11 Guide,” part 1 (to ref1)

The owner of the 9/11 Guide site has posted comments here now and then, using the name “ref1.” So, I’ll now post a brief review of ref1’s site.
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December 4, 2007

Fire temperatures and steel temperatures

In a comment on my post Twin Towers demolition hypothesis: Discussion with Pat Curley, anonanonanon posted a link to Cardington Fire Test: The Behaviour of a Multi-storey Steel Framed Building Subjected to Fire Attack on a website called Structural Fire Engineering: One Stop Shop by Professor Colin Bailey, University of Manchester.

When I said I’d respond later today, anonanonanon replied, “Please wait until I’ve got my discussion of the fire protection up, because it may answer some of your questions.”

anonanonanon, please post said discussion (or a link to it, if it’s on another website) here, below this post.
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November 26, 2007

Proposed debate with Jim Hoffman (reply to ref1 and some folks in the JREF forum)

Filed under: 9/11 Truth,demolition hypotheses,Jim Hoffman,reply - JREF — Diane @ 10:48 pm

Today I noticed an incoming link from a thread about Jim Hoffman on the JREF forum, where ref1, a.k.a. ref, relayed my message about a possible debate between Jim Hoffman and a “debunker.”
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November 22, 2007

The 9/11 Truth movement and me: Further reply to Pat Curley

On the Screw Loose Change blog, in the comments on Pat Curley’s recent post about me (to which I replied here), the first three comments were as follows:

They are blatently going to crucify her.
Jon | 11.21.07 – 1:43 pm |

If Diane continues on this path, she will join Mikey Metz in the land of Ex-truthers.
Anonymous | 11.21.07 – 1:59 pm |

Actually I foresee both those things happening, and in that order.
Pat Curley | Homepage | 11.21.07 – 2:13 pm |

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November 20, 2007

Demolition of WTC: Let’s not overstate the case, please

On the Truth Action board, we’ve been having an interesting discussion about the evidence for controlled demolition of the WTC buildings, starting on this page.

There is disagreement about how sure we should be about the idea that WTC 1, 2, and 7 were demolished with explosives and/or thermite. Some, including YT, are 100% sure, while others, such as John Doraemi and Nicholas, believe that it’s likely but not 100% proven. I’m in the latter camp, though not to quite the same extent as John and Nicholas. On the next page of the above Truth Action thread, I voiced some of my own opinions about the need for caution in how we present the case for controlled demolition of the WTC buildings. Below, I’ll voice more of my thoughts on this matter.

In my opinion, we shouldn’t be claiming that the WTC buildings definitely were demolished with explosives and/or thermite. Instead, our claim should be that there’s enough evidence for demolition to warrant a serious and truly independent investigation with subpoena power.

Furthermore, we need to be careful about how we argue for the likelihood of demolition. We need to make sure our arguments are sound; otherwise we risk discrediting ourselves.

To me it seems that a lot of people in the 9/11 Truth movement have overstated the case for demolition and have used some faulty arguments (as well as some good arguments) for the likelihood of demolition. Below is my assessment of various arguments that I’ve seen used:
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October 27, 2007

Agent-baiting, guilt by association, and religious bigotry

When people in the 9/11 Truth movement accuse each other of being government agents, an all too common type of “evidence” is guilt by association. A has some connection to B, who in turn has some connection to C, who in turn has some connection to the CIA or some other spy agency, or perhaps a connection to an elite fraternity such as the Skull and Bones. Therefore, A must be an agent, or at least we should all worry that A might be an agent.

Similar “connections” to the Communist Party were a staple of the McCarthy-era witchhunts back in the 1950’s.

The problem with this kind of “reasoning” is that there are also huge numbers of innocent non-agents who, knowingly or unknowingly, are likely to have indirect connections either to spy agencies or to elite fraternities.
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October 26, 2007

Identifying disinformation agents?

The online 911 Truth movement seems to have gotten caught up in an orgy of agent-baiting, with people on both sides of various divides either outright calling each other “disinformation agents” or, at the very least, insinuating that the leaders of the other side are probably disinformation agents.

The main divide is between what I think of as the saner and wackier branches of the movement. Admittedly my terminology is far from objective and makes clear where I stand.

By the wackier branches, I mean advocates of things like no-planes theories (especially WTC no-planes theories), video fakery, Star Wars beams, etc,. Many (though not all) of these folks also advocate claims about some vast, generations-old conspiracy that controls and micromanages the entire world, usually “the Illuminati.” (See The recent growth of anti-Illuminism: Dreadful ideology about the dreaded Illuminati and More about anti-Illuminism.) Some of their claims are blatant physical impossibilities. For example, a “Star Wars beam” powerful enough to “dustify” the towers would probably also ionize the air, causing the beam itself to glow like a lightning bolt. Obviously we didn’t see anything like that on 9/11.

By the saner branches, I mean those who (at least for the most part) reject stuff like the above, and who recognize the need for critical thinking and careful research.

But even some people in the saner branches seem to me to be way, way, way too quick to think of people on the other side as “disinformation agents.”

Now, it is indeed likely that there are government agents of various kinds among us, given the past history of COINTELPRO, and given more recent legislation such as the PATRIOT act. But, it seems to me, some of the kinds of behaviors that have been identified as “agent-like” behaviors are very commonplace among other people too, with other, more commonplace motives. So, it seems to me, these behaviors are far from a reliable way to spot an agent, although many of them are bad behaviors in their own right.
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October 4, 2007

Pentagon no-757 theories: debunkings from within the 9/11 Truth movement

Filed under: 9/11,9/11 Truth,Jim Hoffman,no-planes theories,Pentagon — Diane @ 1:42 pm

The claim that American Airlines Flight 77 did not hit the Pentagon has been widely promoted, e.g. in the video Loose Change, but has been hotly disputed within the 9/11 Truth movement. The larger of the two scholars’ groups, headed by Steven Jones, rejects it. Below is a collection of links to writings by people in the 9/11 Truth movement who oppose the Pentagon no-757 theories.
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September 22, 2007

Straight-down collapse of WTC 7 – what do “debunkers” say?

In my opinion, one of the strongest pieces of evidence against the official story of 9/11 is the straight-down vertical collapse of World Trade Center Building 7, which was located north of the main World Trade Center complex. See Jim Hoffman’s collection of WTC 7 Collapse videos (downloadable MPG files). It is extremely unlikely that a building could collapse in such a symmetrical, straight-down manner due to any cause other than controlled demolition. A building collapsing for any other reason would almost certainly tilt toward whichever side or corner had been weakened the most.

WTC 7 was hit by debris from the North Tower. It then caught fire, for reasons unknown, although not surprising, since WTC 7 contained fuel tanks and was built over an electrical substation. The fires were not fought, presumably due to a lack of sufficient water pressure. The extent of the fire has been disputed, but there were at least a few small fires in the building for seven hours before the building finally came down in the late afternoon.

According to the official story as explained in Chapter 5 of the FEMA report, WTC 7 collapsed primarily due to fire. However, as even the FEMA report itself admitted, “the best hypothesis” along these lines “has only a low probability of occurrence.” For more about the FEMA report, see this HTML copy of Chapter 5, annotated in red by an advocate of the controlled demolition hypothesis. (P.S., 10/19/2007: Please note that I do not necessarily agree with or endorse all the annotations in red.)

Since the straight-down collapse of WTC 7 seems to be such strong evidence against the official story, how have defenders of the official story tried to refute it? Let’s take a look.
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