|There was a strange email in my mailbox this morning. It took me a while to figure out that the writer was talking about my appearance last year on Penn and Teller's Showtime series, Bullshit. (I still have never seen the whole thing). A brief search came up with this clip from the show on ThatsJustStupid.com:
Penn & Teller call BULLSHIT! on factually unsound 9/11 conspiracy claims.
I'll add that I wasn't paid to be on the show and that I am called a few times a year (on average, some years less, some more) to say something about conspiracy theory because I've written about it. I'm not a debunker of conspiracy theories but am more interested in the patterns and styles of conspiracy thinking, on the one side, and the perceived need by more mainstream or dominant sources to pathologize and demonize some ways of thinking as conspiratorial. So, I never say that conspiracy theorists are nut cases, but that their efforts are versions of much more widespread patterns of skepticism and the search for answers, a search that often prefers to find an answer that installs something like a big Other to accepting a harsher, less meaningful possibility. I also emphasize that conspiracy thinking is basic to the democratic public sphere (of which I am critical, but that's another topic)--it relies on questions, not answers.
Here's the email I received (slightly edited):
I do not wish to offend you. In fact all I wish to do is bring to light the shame you have brought to your name. We live in a world where people like you can use their position, status, or title to support the aforementioned production "Stupid 9/11 Conspiracies" in it's goal of quashing the process of full investigation. Please do not refer to the only available official investigation that your government offers, which mentions nothing of the new pertinent evidence brought to light. Those who lost children, friends or parents in the plane crashes or collapses have every right to launch an official complaint- they deserve the air time you had and are denied it.
I am not here to give you my opinion, I am here to make a complaint about your support of the evil men who committed this crime. The propaganda show you appeared on is enough to make your university ashamed, luckily enough this is small scale and you do not frequently speak out against "conspiracy theorists". "Conspiracy theory" is a bad term, 911 clearly needs all the sane and educated investigators possible. This kind of mindset is not paranoid, it is so when all the facts are available to the public, yet the Bush administration incriminated itself when the steel was shipped off and recycled without allowing samples to be taken for forensic investigation.
Before you respond, if you feel it is necessary, I ask kindly that you;
1) Check the following sources.
Professor Jones' homepage, containing a link to his paper.http://www.physics.byu.edu/research/energy/
A presentation by Jones.
An interview with Jones.
A chilling transcript of phone calls from the victims inside the tower. (This is merely to set in your heart the guilt and empathy required to truly be a human). Listen to this man in his final moments, and feel his truly terrifying last moments when he saw the floor on which he stood give way.
Alex Jones July 25, 2001, showing you a recording of him warning of the attacks months before they had occurred.
A film by Alex Jones. "911 A road to Tyranny"...In this footage he sites a particular declassified document, calling for "A new Pearl Harbour...justification for US military intervention in Cuba".
Now look at what the patriot act is doing to your rights, it is against all the true patriots who demand and deserve a thorough investigation. Instead the steel is sent offshore for recycling without any permission for samples. This is because in the steel you will find Thermate, a variation of Thermite, which should not be there. What should be there are the contents of the building only, the contents of the planes, and the contents resulting from the combustion of the jet plane's fuel. Nature always knows the truth, behind it all she coordinated everything. As beings who normally interface with the world far above the nano, micro, molecular and mechanical realms, we cannot peer into this truth without scientifically advanced instruments. These instruments rely on quantum mechanical effects, namely "positron induced x-ray emission". Through this process all of the ingredients of THERMATE, were found. Thermate is a patented explosive mixture which "cuts through cold steel like a hot knife through butter", to quote Professor Jones.
Please accept my apology for the tone of this, but I hate to see people aid in the creation of a willingly ignorant generation. Your show, targeted at young Americans, does this. If the democracy you have over in the states is to be fully effective in the prosperity of your nation, which the entire world benefits from, an informed public is a must. Informed voters are supremely useful voters, compared with highly emotional and uneducated ones. Why could you not have used your TV appearance, used your position of power, to help the future? The importance of historical contextualisation is something you will learn from Alex's film. Instead you have contributed to the degradation of the attention span of your nation's children towards so-called "conspiracy theories". We should instead encourage our children to seek the truth in all aspects of life.
The statements on your television appearance which frustrate me are the following;
"They want to keep going, and keep going, and then they find a more convincing explanation".
"And what makes a conspiracy theorist a little bit different, is they put the facts together in alternative ways which are tinged with paranoia""They would always rather see that, oh yes, there was always a system, there was always an over riding explanation that will let us make sense of the world"In fact, these are perhaps all of the statements you made on the show, and the fact that all of them frustrate me justifies this letter."Convincing" should have been replaced with "credible". You imply that all investigators simply just want to prove a government conspiracy, or at least the show portrays this message. All I want is an explanation or analysis of the collapse, Prof. Jones offers what I think is the most credible to date. When this truth becomes commonly accepted, you will join the ring of evil men who are definitely going to suffer the scarring guilt and shame. As what you have done is support public relations for those who have something to gain from death. The same men who sell Depleted Uranium weapons, which are completely inhumane, against the Geneva convention and devastating to our Earth.You completely ignore logical analysis of the situation at hand and are not dividing the problem up correctly. Are you a structural engineer? Are you a physicist? No, you are a wordsmith, feminist, supposed intellectual, and now criminal. The world perhaps needs people like you, but we don't need you polluting our media. You appear, through your work, to be capable of complex analysis. Yet your statements discourage others "making sense of the world", which is all that any true human wants to do.What you have done is criminal, I wish you to take action in order to repent for your insult towards those who had lost lives on that tragic day.
In short: You are not worthy of making statements in relation to investigation of 911. Veterans fought and died for the freedom you have, and you are supporting the destruction of this...proof is in the successful passing of the Patriot Act, now your police stations are littered with flyers saying to report people repeatedly referencing or defending the bill of rights and US constitution.
If you disagree with this email, then I challenge you to successfully answer ALL of the following questions. With sufficiently detailed analysis!1) Why did the buildings fall at free-fall speed? An effect only observed in controlled demolitions.2) Why was molten steel seen in photographs of ground zero.3) Why is there footage of molten steel pouring out of the building? The burning temperature of jet fuel is FAR below the melting point of steel.4) Why does seismic data show distinct detonations before the buildings collapse.5) Why did you agree to do that show? Was it anything but a personal gain? If not please point out what improvement to society you offered here?