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The Ultimate 9/11 'Truth' Showdown: David Ray Griffin vs. Matt Taibbi (51 posts)

  1. truthmod
    Administrator

    http://www.alternet.org/rights/100688/the_ultimate...

    The two writers lock horns over the accuracy of Griffin's recent book, 9/11 Contradictions.

    A poll of 17 countries that came out September of this year revealed that majorities in only nine of them "believe that al Qaeda was behind the 9/11 terrorist attacks on the United States." A Zogby poll from 2006 found that in America, 42% of respondents believed the US government and 9/11 Commission "covered up" the events of 9/11. It's safe to say that at least tens of millions of Americans don't believe anything close to the official account offered by the 9/11 Commission, and that much of the outside world remains skeptical.

    Over the years, AlterNet has run dozens of stories, mostly critical, of the 9/11 Movement. Matt Taibbi has taken on the 9/11 Truth Movement head on in a series of articles, and most recently in his new book, The Great Derangement.

    Posted 7 years ago #
  2. truthmod
    Administrator

    Why does DRG take like 3 pages to answer Taibbi's first question?

    From what I've seen of this conversation, it does not serve to legitimize the 9/11 TM. DRG wanders far afield of the facts into the rhetorical, epistemological backwoods.

    Posted 7 years ago #
  3. truthmod
    Administrator

    DRG:

    Even Popular Mechanics, which I had always considered the gold standard for reckless statements in support of the official theory, claims only that "hundreds of witnesses saw a Boeing 757 hit the building." The most extensive list of alleged witnesses of which I am aware contains only 152 people, and only some of them claim to have seen an airliner hit the Pentagon. A study of these, moreover, found that only 31 of them provided "explicit, realistic and detailed claims," that 24 of these 31 alleged witnesses "worked for either the Federal Government or the mainstream media," and that 21 of these testimonies contained "substantial errors or contradictions." Witness testimony, therefore, cannot establish the claim that Flight 77 or any airliner struck the Pentagon.

    This is especially the case when we add the testimony of witnesses from inside the Pentagon. Captain Dennis Gilroy, the acting commander of the Fort Myer fire department, "wondered why he saw no aircraft parts." Captain John Durrer thought, "Well where's the airplane, you know, where's the parts to it? You would think there'd be something." Army officer April Gallop, who escaped from the building after being injured, said: "I don't recall at any time seeing any plane debris. I walked through that place to try to get out before everything collapsed on us . [S]urely we should have seen something?" ABC's John McWethy reported: "I got in very close . I could not, however, see any plane wreckage."

    The authorities could have provided such evidence by showing reporters the various airplane parts that have unique serial numbers, including the flight data recorder, but they did not. They could have shown some of the 85 videos from cameras trained on the Pentagon, which the Justice Department admits having, but they have refused. One of the pieces of evidence offered by Rumsfeld in the first week was that the nose of Flight 77 was sticking out of the hole made in the Pentagon's C ring. But this claim, being ridiculous (the fragile nose could not have survived the impact with the reinforced outer wall), has been quietly dropped. In light of all this, plus the reported absence of airliner debris, I'm puzzled as to what hard evidence you believe exists.

    Posted 7 years ago #
  4. Arabesque
    Member

    A study of these, moreover, found that only 31 of them provided "explicit, realistic and detailed claims," that 24 of these 31 alleged witnesses "worked for either the Federal Government or the mainstream media," and that 21 of these testimonies contained "substantial errors or contradictions." Witness testimony, therefore, cannot establish the claim that Flight 77 or any airliner struck the Pentagon.

    Has Griffin read most of the eyewitness statements? For some reason, I doubt it. And there are actually more than 100 accounts of the impact. Not to mention, people who were literally beside the Pentagon as it was attacked.

    Posted 7 years ago #
  5. Arabesque
    Member

    Even Popular Mechanics, which I had always considered the gold standard for reckless statements in support of the official theory, claims only that "hundreds of witnesses saw a Boeing 757 hit the building." The most extensive list of alleged witnesses of which I am aware contains only 152 people

    Griffin is also confusing "documented accounts" with the total amount of actual witnesses. Whereas there are over 100 documented accounts of an impact at the Pentagon, we can rightly assume that for every single documented account, there are several undocumented accounts. I cannot guess the ratio, but it would not surprise me if it were as high as 10-1. Traffic was at a stand-still beside the Pentagon, for example. There is another highway just south of this in good view. Accounts of the low flying plane are extremely easy to find if you visit the area and ask people, for example.

    To be fair, Griffin admits:

    As to what really happened, I do not know.

    I don't have a problem with this position, but it's not fair to distort the actual evidence itself.

    Posted 7 years ago #
  6. Arabesque
    Member

    Griffin on cell phones and voice fakery (again):

    In any case, if you accept the FBI's report, then there are two options: Either Ted Olson lied or else he, like many other people that day, was fooled by fake calls based on voice morphing technology... You may, incidentally, doubt the feasibility of voice morphing, in spite of my earlier reference to William Arkin's 1999 article (in which he reported that he heard the voices of Colin Powell and another general perfectly rendered). So let's look at the alleged cell phone calls from United Flight 93. According to news reports at the time, of the 37 reported phone calls from this plane, over a dozen were made on cell phones. A leading British paper, for example, said: "The phone calls began, 23 from airphones, others by mobile." Four of those mobile or cell phone calls were reportedly made by Tom Burnett to his wife, Deena Burnett. She knew he had called from his cell phone -- she reported to journalists, in a book, and on national TV -- because her Caller ID showed his cell phone number. When the FBI presented its phone report to the Moussaoui trial, however, it said that of the 37 calls made from this flight, only two of them -- both of which occurred at 9:58, after the plane had descended to 5,000 feet -- were made from cell phones. (Members of the 9/11 truth movement had argued that successful cell phone calls from high-altitude airliners would have been impossible in 2001 [prior to the invention and installation of pico-cell technology].) All of Tom Burnett's calls were said to have been made on passenger-seat phones. Assuming that you accept the FBI's report, Matt, do you have a theory as to why Deena Burnett reported recognizing the number from her husband's cell phone? Believing that we surely cannot accuse her of either lying or misremembering, I myself have suggested a theory -- that the calls were faked by means of a device, at least one of which can be purchased on the Internet, that allows callers to fake other people's phone numbers as well as their voices.

    If Deena Burnett was tricked, then it's possible that Ted Olson was, too. My own hunch, however, is that he simply invented the story. For one thing, he was very much an insider in the Bush-Cheney administration, being the attorney who successfully argued before the Supreme Court that the Florida recount in 2000 should be stopped (thereby making Bush president) and that Cheney did not have to reveal the participants at his secret energy-policy meeting in 2001. Also, if the calls really came to the Department of Justice, Olson could have provided evidence of this fact when the veracity of his story was challenged, but he never did. http://www.alternet.org/rights/100688/the_ultimate...

    Posted 7 years ago #
  7. NicholasLevis
    Member

    Forget it. Back in '06, Loose Change Boys vs. Popular Mechanics on Amy was already the kill shot for the hope of a debate on a "left" platform among the moderately well informed proceeding from best premises and research. This is just an extended footnote.

    We're a bunch of Hamlets, and Polonius has the stage.

    But my inner Met fan says: Wait til next year!

    Posted 7 years ago #
  8. truthmod
    Administrator

    Yeah, speaking of divide and conquer, I'd rather associate with "moderately well informed" lefties who understand the large political, economic, and environmental issues but who aren't necessarily convinced of or interested in the inside-jobness of 9/11 than what has become the blatantly irresponsible, misinformed, paranoid, and ignorant 9/11 Truth Movement.

    Still though, it is nice when you meet someone who's ability or willingness to explore 9/11 complicity isn't mutually exclusive with them being informed and reasonable.

    Matt Taibbi, though, is just a plain scoundrel.

    Posted 7 years ago #
  9. chrisc
    Member

    Isn't it absurd that DRG casts doubt on witnesses who saw a plane because they "worked for either the Federal Government or the mainstream media" however he takes witnesses who didn't see any plane parts who also worked for the government or media as being trustworthy...

    Posted 7 years ago #
  10. truthmover
    Administrator

    Some of the more skeptical among us have been putting a fair amount of energy into questioning specific things that prominent people in the 9/11 truth movement have been advocating or doing. I've felt somewhat optimistic about the dialog we've opened up about disinformation.

    Kevin Barrett has done a great deal to marginalize himself. But Griffin is viewed by the vast majority of 'truthers' as a grandfather of the movement. If we were to begin to challenge Griffin with the assertiveness we have demonstrated questioning people like Barrett, I'm not sure that the outcome would be positive. The division resulting might very well be an intended distraction.

    I'm feeling like the 9/11 truth movement has been quite effectively sabotaged. Not futile, but highly inefficient. We are few here going up against a well funded, staffed, and planned operation. But I would argue that our fundamental goals need not be hampered by all of that madness. We can literally just step around the whole mess and still be working toward most of the same basic goals.

    I think most of you would say that you are more invested in the basic values that motivate your action around 9/11 truth than you are in any objective view of what this movement has become in practical terms.

    The TruthMove perspective on this would be something having to do with the fact that those who invest time in deeply investigating what is historically valid have a much more important message for the world than our concern for one false-flag operation.

    I care more about informed consent by ensuring access to valid history and independent journalism than I do 9/11 truth. I care more about environmental collapse, and Full Spectrum Dominance, and the casualties of our imperialism, than I do about 9/11 truth. It was 9/11 truth that inspired many of these concerns. And yet myopic focus on the issue has lead me to paralysis at times.

    Maybe we have been spending our time defending a very effective bridge to our more essential priorities. Perhaps advancing those priorities in a manner that allows us to step around many of the hurdles we have faced would be more productive.

    Posted 7 years ago #
  11. JohnA
    Member

    my opinion will not even get you on the subway for free. but it is my sad opinion that we were set up from the very start. i can no longer believe that intelligent men like DRG are incapable of seeing the forest for the trees.

    Posted 7 years ago #
  12. truthmod
    Administrator

    This is garbage. Whatever happened to facts, focus, and substance? Taibbi isn't interested in a real dialogue and DRG is either senile or otherwise mentally/rationally unsound, or deliberately obscuring the most effective evidence. What you get is big pile of garbage so the left establishment over at Alternet can laugh at the illegitimacy of the 9/11 TM.

    http://www.alternet.org/story/101703/the_ultimate_...matt_taibbi--_part_ii/

    http://www.alternet.org/story/101704/the_ultimate_...matt_taibbi--_part_iii/

    Does anyone remember a guy named Paul Thompson and a website called Cooperative Research?

    Sept. 11's Smoking Gun: The Many Faces of Saeed Sheikh
    http://www.historycommons.org/essay.jsp?article=es...

    Alhazmi and Almihdhar: The 9/11 Hijackers Who Should Have Been Caught
    http://www.historycommons.org/essay.jsp?article=es...

    They Tried to Warn Us: Foreign Intelligence Warnings Before 9/11
    http://www.historycommons.org/essay.jsp?article=es...

    The Failure to Defend the Skies on 9/11
    http://www.historycommons.org/essay.jsp?article=es...

    Posted 7 years ago #
  13. NicholasLevis
    Member

    Yup.

    The next impetus will come, but not from within the movement as presently constituted. A change of government, superficial as it is on so many policies, is likely to loosen up information flow. The 9/11 Commission records are supposed to be released in January. Most of this stuff will be under the demolitions-led radar of the present movement, mere "LIHOP" to the case-closed crowd most of whom probably haven't even read the Timeline or the Commission report. People who know little bits will change jobs. There will be new whistleblowers and revelations. A lot of active obstructers and likely perpetrators with a stake in the coverup will leave the government or lose immunity. Occasions may come for rebooting an entirely new move, unencumbered by AJ and DRG, around the premise of accountability and real investigation, the fraudulence of the investigations to date. It may all seem like the distant past to a people in the grip of a depression (not to many of the relatives). Or it might be bad enough that you will see a real popular bloodlust to hold especially Bush regime members to account, which opens the way for more. 9/11 still provides a narrative for explaining the disaster of not just the last eight years, but the last thirty or more. Don't know what or if I'll be doing in any of this, but my participation has been basically over for two years plus now.

    Posted 7 years ago #
  14. Victronix
    Member

    From what I've seen of this conversation, it does not serve to legitimize the 9/11 TM. DRG wanders far afield of the facts into the rhetorical, epistemological backwoods.

    Yes. Its more than just the no planes issue.

    The question is not how marginalized we are (one could also say that ANSWER destroyed the peace movement, etc), but the question is really what the best strategy is to do something about it.

    It's not hard to imagine a number of scenarios to start to focus on putting the no plane hoax to rest. And other scenarios to deal with the primary issue of this thread . . . But the no planes hoax is the core of keeping our work bogged in nuttery.

    Threads like this are real -- they show what activists are thinking, and that's not nothing.

    Posted 7 years ago #
  15. Victronix
    Member

    Most of this stuff will be under the demolitions-led radar of the present movement

    Creating a post to alert people would be a start. But merely using every opportunity to bash demolitions helps no one.

    Posted 7 years ago #
  16. chrisc
    Member

    truthmover said:

    Griffin is viewed by the vast majority of 'truthers' as a grandfather of the movement. If we were to begin to challenge Griffin with the assertiveness we have demonstrated questioning people like Barrett, I'm not sure that the outcome would be positive. The division resulting might very well be an intended distraction.

    And then truthmover said:

    I care more about environmental collapse, and Full Spectrum Dominance, and the casualties of our imperialism, than I do about 9/11 truth.

    So do I, and my problem with DRG isn't only with his emphasise on some far-out 9/11 ideas but with the rest of his politics:

    I am also impatient for the truth about 9/11 to be exposed, mainly because if civilization is to be saved, the policies that have been based on the official account need to be reversed.

    How radical a change does he want to see?

    Posted 7 years ago #
  17. truthmover
    Administrator

    Victronix said:

    The question is not how marginalized we are (one could also say that ANSWER destroyed the peace movement, etc), but the question is really what the best strategy is to do something about it.

    When I said that "we are few here" I was referring primarily to those of us who recognize 9/11 in it's historical context, respect the scientific method, have some awareness of the counter-intelligence we face, and appear to appreciate that the global significance of this movement implies that our highest principles come before resulting group affiliations and loyalties.

    It seems that many of these people envision a movement very different from the one we have. And yet it has become increasingly difficult for these people to differentiate any clear strategic vision of theirs from the general approach of so many others. Can we draw wide support in the existing movement for a strategic approach that excludes many of the movement's most popular voices?

    Can we get it done in the middle of a total mess? Or does the most effective strategy take us outside the confines of the 9/11 truth movement?

    Posted 7 years ago #
  18. truthmover
    Administrator

    I think Arabesque handles this in a diplomatic fashion over on TA:

    David Ray Griffin has made very important contributions to the 9/11 truth movement and I value his work greatly in many respects but his judgment should be questioned for putting cell phone voice morphing in a DEBATE situation. In a venue where we should be making new converts to the truth movement? We should be using this opportunity to grow the movement by presenting the best case that we have. I no longer have faith in DRG to put the "best foot forward" for the 9/11 truth movement, and I say this with great disappointment.

    http://www.truthaction.org/forum/viewtopic.php?p=2...

    But who will get the message? Who will appreciate that it is fair? Who will agree?

    Do we have an audience? Do we have a constituency?

    Am I poking at the wind here? Anyone else concerned about how few people share the concerns expressed above?

    Anyone think I'm missing something? I hope so.

    Posted 7 years ago #
  19. JohnA
    Member

    We are few here going up against a well funded, staffed, and planned operation.

    The irony is that, in our efforts to reach out and awaken people to the dangers of misinformation / disinformation, some of us have actually been labeled as disruptors ourselves. attempts to question the wisdom of including certain research or researchers at 9/11 events has been interpreted as 'attacks' or 'jealousy' - and i just do not see any meaningful initiatives by more sober members of this community to create an alternative plank to the 9/11 truth movement platform.

    i am sickened by the email responses i have seen from DRG and Zwicker on this subject. they just don't seem to get it. (or they won't get it)

    Posted 7 years ago #
  20. Victronix
    Member

    It seems that many of these people envision a movement very different from the one we have. And yet it has become increasingly difficult for these people to differentiate any clear strategic vision of theirs from the general approach of so many others. Can we draw wide support in the existing movement for a strategic approach that excludes many of the movement's most popular voices?

    What I have found fascinating is how fast points of view can shift when disinformation is exposed. What happened with Fetzer was a good example. Look at how popular he was early on and how ubiquitous, his voice was -- that vanished, probably over a period of weeks, once he went too far. Most of these guys step over a line in the game is over. Virtually everyone gets it, even if there's the cheerleading buffer of fans around them. Right now, I would say our biggest problems are the people in charge of the 9/11 truth groups who steer everyone into no planes media continuously. They fund those who advocate for no planes, they make media about no planes, and they promote no planes, constantly.

    My guess is that Arabesque will come up with a good solution for the topic of this thread. The challenge for the rest of us will be to help amplify that, respectfully, regardless of who does it.

    My understanding is that Alex Jones has been promoting David Icke. This is his 'step too far', and now can always be used in the future to discredit him.

    I don't think people should take the voices of 9/11 blogger as reality. There are probably a number of people on there who have dual or triple identities and many who post on their cheerlead particular issues intensely, such as no planes and CIT.

    What has been amazing to me, is how easily people understand strong from hoax stuff once the case is clearly made to them. Even people I've known who are schizophrenics . . . they get it.

    Can we get it done in the middle of a total mess? Or does the most effective strategy take us outside the confines of the 9/11 truth movement?

    I think any effective strategy depends primarily on what it is that's most important to you personally, what you are drawn to, what you want to work on everyday. if every time you look at 9/11 stuff you're frustrated and find yourself working on other things, that becomes pretty clear. On the other hand, the goal of the disinformationists, is to turn us away.

    One problem in general, is that some people have 24 hours a day of free time. And some of us have to work jobs and have little time.

    Ralph Nader's talk at the Commonwealth Club recently stressed the idea that if we could find, in each congressional district, 2000 people to fund just three people working full time to pressure Congress, we could turn everything around 18 months. That's a very carefully considered strategy by someone who has spent their entire career pressuring Congress, and it probably would work.

    But that's the kind of thinking we need to be doing around everything, be at 9/11 or anything else. And there isn't much room to consider strategy when we're always focused on coping with disinformation. There needs to be a balance of defense and offense.

    Posted 7 years ago #
  21. Arabesque
    Member

    My response on 9/11 blogger: http://911blogger.com/node/18066#comment-198951

    DRG: "In defending you, your attorney, having pointed out that the water bottle could have been planted, then argues that, since you did not make that call and never went into that building, the police must have fabricated evidence by using digital (voice and video) morphing technology. When the prosecutor rolls his eyes, your attorney cites William Arkin's 1999 Washington Post article, "When Seeing and Hearing Isn't Believing," which points out that voice morphing, like photo and video manipulation, is now good enough to fool anyone. With regard to why the police would have tried to frame you, your attorney suggests that the FBI may have asked the local police to put you away because of critical things you had written about the White House." http://www.alternet.org/story/100688?page=2

    This is from DRG's FIRST response to Taibbi. It's not even the last time he mentions voice morphing in the debate.

    My simple question is this: who else in the 9/11 truth movement starts their debate by creating a story involving the use of voice morphing? In an attempt to make a point about "conspiracy theories" being plausible?

    The answer should be nobody does this, but unfortunately this is apparently not the case.

    It's not even the first time DRG promotes phone "morphing" as one of the first claims in radio interviews and presentations. This has happened before, and everyone who takes the credibility of the 9/11 truth movement seriously should be challenging him for doing this. Isn't it obvious that such an approach discredits his work?

    When we should be building the 9/11 truth movement? When we should be presenting our best case? On a website where the 9/11 truth movement is consistently attacked? In a DEBATE with someone like Taibbi whose only "weapon" is ridicule?

    Is this hard to figure out?

    Posted 7 years ago #
  22. truthmod
    Administrator

    Unless there are any legitimate objections, I plan to remove general recommendations of David Ray Griffin's books from the TruthMove site...

    David Ray Griffin:
    still promotes "no plane" hoax, promotes Holocaust deniers as credible sources distrusts the hundreds of eyewitnesses who saw Flight 77 hit the Pentagon or cleaned up the plane parts afterwards
    http://www.oilempire.us/griffin.html

    Posted 7 years ago #
  23. truthmover
    Administrator

    Victronix said:

    And there isn't much room to consider strategy when we're always focused on coping with disinformation.

    As you suggest, people are drawn to the concerns that interest them most. And that includes responding to disinformation.

    However, as disinformation is endemic to this movement, any effective strategy has to address the issue.

    There needs to be a balance of defense and offense.

    I know that they want to overwhelm us with crap. And I think they are doing a fine job. What I've been wondering here is just how gummed up the whole thing can get before there's so much defense necessary just to stay afloat that the 9/11 truth movement is no longer able to effectively foster the promotion of 9/11 truth. What then?

    At times it is wise not to budge because they want us to. At other times it is unwise not to budge when we really should. As I said, we need to step around many of these hurdles rather than trying to jump them all.

    I'm not sure how to do that.

    Posted 7 years ago #
  24. Arabesque
    Member

    know that they want to overwhelm us with crap. And I think they are doing a fine job. What I've been wondering here is just how gummed up the whole thing can get before there's so much defense necessary just to stay afloat that the 9/11 truth movement is no longer able to effectively foster the promotion of 9/11 truth. What then?

    At times it is wise not to budge because they want us to. At other times it is unwise not to budge when we really should. As I said, we need to step around many of these hurdles rather than trying to jump them all.

    I'm not sure how to do that.

    Important points. I would much rather spend no time on disinformation, but disinformation is a reality. The MSM specializes in disinformation, the government cover-ups about 9/11 are disinformation, and we have other people who spread disinformation; the problem is here to stay.

    I'd like to see more leadership from 9/11 truth leaders on this issue.

    I'd like to see more critical thinking and more people taking on the issue.

    I agree with the statement above that it appears that there are a handful of honestly critical people in the 9/11 truth movement. If it's just a handful of people confronting the problem, it's a burden. If the problem is not being addressed effectively, we also lose. If it's responsible activism by a collective approach, it's immunization.

    Posted 7 years ago #
  25. NicholasLevis
    Member

    This thing with the kids running around screaming at often random politicians and mixing up right-wing mythology with unlikely 9/11 plot scenarios and worship of the biggest loudmouths is going to run its own course. My experience is that many of the self-appointed, usually male foot-soldiers for "truth" do figure out disinformation, but years too late, and then they still adhere to some naive inclusive philosophy that opens them to new deceptions from (often) exactly the same sources. (Ooo, watch out, this time Guru Schmoo* has figured out something real! And hell, maybe s/he has, why evaluate it before you pitch it straight to the world? We must throw it all out there, it's too urgent!!!)

    Look at how long it took for so many to see through pod theory, and how many still want to "see" it, or some other blurry-JPEG distraction. Then you get these dilettantes during fundraising season at Pacifica who want to tap some dollars out of that 9/11 passion rediscovering Von Kleist and causing a new surge of excitement among the LC-WAC-AJ kids. Now a lot of them may have rejected Von Kleist, but rejoice that anyone's saying the government "did it" on a "major" alternative media outlet, and they'll argue we shouldn't show disagreements openly, the general idea gets out there and wins new converts, blah blah blah.

    There is no stopping this - if you can find a different place to strike a new flag and start a different movement of other people, that might work. If you can find platforms for speaking the real issues to any public, that's always good. But there is little one can do to affect the dynamics now, except to stick with rigorous skepticism and let those who figure out they've been had come to you.

    Meanwhile: I think there's only ever been one possibility for breaking it open in the public in a way that prompts a popular press for full disclosure and justice: and that is to cause the peripheral perpetrators, facilitators and obstructers to fear that they're going to face an indictment some day and start moving to protect themselves. The approach exemplified by Paul Thompson might serve that; and to most of the current "truther" crop he's either a nobody or a traitorous limited hangout guy.


    *note - Fill in your favorite BS artist.

    Posted 7 years ago #

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