Thursday, February 02, 2006

mormons and conspiracy

last night steven jones from byu was at uvsc arguing that the world trade center towers collapsed on 9/11 because of explosives at the base of the towers and not because of fires from the planes that hit them. though it was pretty interesting, it lacked the rigorous scientific arguementation that i was hoping for. he further argued that 9/11 was a result of a conspiracy (or secret combination) involving bush and his neo-conservative cohorts. the lecture hall was completely packed and seven overflow rooms were filled. you can read about last night's presentation here and read a more detailed version of his explosives theory here.

this morning, i sat down with a documentary film crew from los angelas for a forty minute interview and explained why utah county, while being so conservative, was also over-flowing with so many people interested in a conspiracy in the government. they seemed to like a lot of what i had to say. now i just get to wait and see if i make it into their dvd. they should have a website up in the next week or so with some of the footage. i'll update ya'll if that ever happens.


  1. I've lived all over the place and I've never noticed that Utah County was any more 'conspiracy oriented' than anywhere else. If you want to hear some crazy conspiracies, come down to Louisiana and talk to some people about how there were bombs planted in the levies by the Governement.

  2. the interviewer was asking me why utah county ended up having so many people show up to the lecture wednesday night. in my view, steven jones' lecture was religiously motivated. i pointed out that many mormons (especially those of the benson era) feel they have a religious duty to discover and remove conspiracies (secret combinations) from the government and protect a constitution that they believe will one day "be hanging by a thread".

  3. Did the good professor give a reason for why Bush and Co. would want to bomb the WTC, particularly the oft-neglected Building #7? I'm really curious, because in all my discussions of said conspiracy theory, I have yet to hear rationale behind it.

  4. russ. watch bush and look at every act he justifies with "9/11".

    the motivation for the supposed act has been touted long before theories of explosives and such were coming out. the main reason was to get a heavy military presence into the middle east through iraq. the whole plan is laid out in the wolfowitz/bush doctrine.

    it's widely accepted (not just by quack conspiracy theorists)that bush and his neo-con buddies doctored up supposed evidences for wmds and an al-qaida-hussein link to use along with 9/11 as justification for attacking the innocent iraqis. the theorists are now just adding 9/11 into the mix of neo-con orchestrations for putting the doctrine into effect.

    if the idea that bush and his buddies were willing to fake evidence for wmds and al-qaida, and kill hundreds of thousands of innocent iraqis to put their plan into effect...why would they really care about a few thousand americans.

  5. Thanks for the summary of the argument for why the gov't may have placed explosives in our own buildings, to kill our own citizens (granted, it was the U.N., so maybe Bush & the Neo-cons wanted a good excuse to kill a copula Frenchies too). While that rationale is definitely possible, it seems a lot less plausible than: "the building fell down because a plane crashed into it." But maybe I'm not so cynical because I'm not a "benson era" mormon.

    Lloyd, I'm glad we can argue without being angry or hurtful. I really enjoy a good friendly debate.

  6. Also, I'm not very familiar with the arguments for "Bush Lied: al-Qaida Edition" but didn't the whole world believe that Saddam had WMD's? Wasn't that what all of these U.N. resolutions were about? Aside from our own "intelligence" agencies, didn't MI6 and the Russians corroborate that opinion? If Bush can fake evidence well enough to dupe the world's leading intel ops, maybe he's a little smarter than most people give him credit for. Not too mention the fact that Saddam himself claimed to have WMD's or at least refused to prove that he didn't so as to maintain some sort of megalomanic statement: "I've got the power!"

  7. russia and others' corroboration was largely due to the cia's evidence which bush himself recently admitted was false.

    according to the lead interrogator of saddam hussein, hussein believed the US knew for a fact that he had no wmds, and that the US understoof his defiance for showing proof that he didn't have them was an act understood by the US as a defense against the country he really feard, iran.

    as far as if bush was smart enough to pull all of this off (hell, he choked on a pretzel and passed out), i think the stupid bush image has largely been orchestrated by karl rove to capture the hearts of stupid america, and perhaps as a defense of bush's actions.

  8. A lot of Jone's so-called "evidence" is nothing more than speculation, selective data, already-debunked data, and clearly his paper is designed with a clear political motivation.

    No one, of course, should accept what I just wrote on face-value.

    Should anyone accept Jones when the majority of us are dealing with subjects that we may only have a scant knowledge of: physics, structural engineering, forensic science and a unique situation never seen before?

    I don't think so. Why should we?

    I want to see Jones et al actually rule out ALL other possibilities, including the very physics that others without an ax to grind say can easily explain the collapses of both towers without the need to introduce explosives into the equation.

    This, for instance:

    I've passed this paper on to Jones through Fetzer to address it. I would encourage all of you to do something similar and look at the claims of these "scholars" with a healthy dose of skepticism and critical thinking.

    S. King

  9. thank you very much s. king. the more i read of and about jones, the less competent he seems. i would really like to see how he as an astronomical (and nuclear) physicist would respond to a rigorous analysis such as this. i've only skimmed over greening's paper, but it is definitely more rigorous than jones's "let's see what comes up on google" scholarship, though i hardly have the skills to assess it.


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