Teknomancy site is now public

So Teknomancy is up and running now and the new site is ready for the public. Although I will still be focusing on programming behind the scenes, I’ve added Computer repair, data recovery, Linux installation, etc to the list to keep life diverse.

If anyone in the Fargo, North Dakota area needs computer work done, feel free to direct them to the Teknomancy site.

Learn You an Economics for Great Good!

Is forcing income equality bad? Is universal health care bad? Is free education bad? Are people in strong welfare states like those of Scandinavia sacrificing anything worth losing to achieve egalitarianism? As a model, we’ll quickly examine the state of affairs in the countries that follow the Nordic model (Denmark, Iceland, Norway, Sweden, and Finland), to see how miserable their lives must be:

Are they less free than we are? According to the Democracy Index, which rates countries based on numerous indicators in the categories of electoral process and pluralism, civil liberties, functioning of government, political participation, and political culture, you have:

1: Norway
2: Iceland
3: Denmark
4: Sweden:
9: Finland
19: United States

Does free health care equal worse health care? According to Forbes list of healthiest countries , we have:

1. Iceland
2. Sweden
3. Finland
7. Denmark
11. United States

Is free education inferior to private education? According to the Education Index , Scandinavian countries all rank higher than the US and do so without inducing the huge financial strain on their population that our university system does:

1. Finland
1. Denmark
7. Norway
12. Iceland
17. Sweden
20. United States

Does a welfare state mean we have to give up all of our cool technology? While it’s true that some items and services are only available in the US, the main indicator for access to technology is internet connectivity. According to Internet World Stats again the US lags behind Scandinavia:

1. Iceland
2. Norway
3. Sweden
5. Denmark
6. Finland
18. United States

If we lived in a welfare state, would our quality of life diminish? According to the American (and capitalist)-biased business insider magazine – No.

3. Sweden
5. Norway
6. Denmark
7. United States
9. Finland

Will socialism bankrupt our country? Will we all be doomed to poverty? None of the Scandinavian countries are poor, according to the GDP (nominal) we’re not even the highest on the list despite our valiant hoards of profiteers:

3. Norway
7. Denmark
8. Sweden
13. Finland
15. United States
21. Iceland

So bottom line, is there any evidence that we’d be less happy living in a strong welfare state? According to Forbes happiest countries list – again the answer is a resounding no.

1. Norway
2. Denmark
5. Sweden
7. Finland
10. United States
12. Iceland

So the next time someone lashes out at the idea of increasing socialism within the US, or talks about how it will ruin everything, keep in mind that although no country is perfect, very solid models exist that demonstrate that egalitarianism improves a country, and there is no available evidence which would imply that we’d be worse off in any way by increasing socialism.

The Movement for an NC-17 Bible

[[Note:
This is an archive from The Voice of the Underground newsletter. Any contact information or links will be out of date. All Voice of the Underground articles are unedited and appear as originally printed (errors and all).]]

 
Now it’s little secret that I have problems with the people who put censorship or warning labels on our movies and our music. I have vast problems with the theory of it as well as the manner in which they practice it. But in this article I want to address the fact that it’s biased towards material they choose not to agree with. Why is it they feel free to censor non-Christians? I find their bible and their disgusting little brainwashing books utterly offensive, so why don’t I have a right to put my labels on their shit? Can I move to put a shitty, preachy, brainwashing music label on every Christian CD that comes out every year? It’s simply not equality of protection under the law.

Let’s take a look at some of these organizations doing the ratings. The CARA or the Classifications and Ratings Administration started in 1968. It is sponsored by the MPAA or Motion Picture Association of America, this started from the brilliant idea from president Jack Valenti, President of the MPAA. Now it’s undeniable that these laws prevent a 16 year old from experiencing their constitutional right to liberty, as she/he is denied the same forms of entertainment as an 18-year old citizen. This movie rating system was presented as a revolutionary new tool for to help out the parents, totally disregarding the kids, and this is most obviously a case of age discrimination. The ratings are determined by a rating board in New York, that contains 8-13 CARA members. To make this scheme even better, these fucks charge the movie producers to get their movies rated. A very interesting aspect of this board is the membership requirements, which they consider normal. These people have to be part of a married couple with at least one kid. So they have to be parents, because they feel that no one else would understand the viewpoint of the parent. But this shit doesn’t affect parents, it affects kids, so where the fuck is their viewpoint represented?

Parents are the least likely people in the world to give an unbiased opinion on this issue if movies should be regulated in this manner, which they shouldn’t. They say that these people must be intelligent and mature, but by whose standards? To my experience, most people who act “mature” are just carrying out a façade to pretend to be better than they are, and lying to yourself to me is a trait of someone who is truly not well developed mentally. If a movie producer chooses not to undergo this rating system, they say on the MPAA site that they are free to do so. What they don’t tell you, is that they won’t play them at any MPAA sponsored theatres, pretty much dooming the movie to fail as the MPAA has a monopoly on theatres. Then the MPAA forces it’s theatres to ban anyone from the theatre who doesn’t fit the standards, and even has taken to carding, which is utterly disgusting. Another rule that they don’t admit on their site, but I guarantee you that it’s true, is that to be on this board, you are going to be a Christian. The morals represented are based on the churches’ personal ratings. But I wonder how well their own holy texts would hold up to their professed moral standings. The MPAA has decided on that for the purpose of rating a movie, they look at the following: theme, violence, language, nudity, sensuality, drug abuse, etc. Now here’s an overview of the rating levels that they adhere to.

Rated G: Contains no nudity, sex, adult themes. Originally this meant next to no violence as well, but this rating has been slipping a bit. There is also no drug content allowed.

Rated PG: The theme may require guidance of parent’s to understand (yeah right, because you know little kids are so stupid right.). May contain some violence or brief nudity. Again no drug use allowed.

Rated PG-13: This is the beginning section for any sort of drug use (like smoking). It can have nudity, but cannot be sexually oriented. R is the beginning of the sex line. If someone even uses a sexually derived word like fuck or hump, it’s considered in this category. Two sexual references automatically bumps it up to rated R. If the word is used to describe the act of sex, it’s automatically bumped to rated R.

Rated R: May contain hard language, tough or much violence. Nudity and sensual scenes, not even directly sexual, if they feel the focus of the scene is on the sex they often bump it up to NC-17. Also drug abuse may be depicted here as well. Any movie with too many of the previous elements may also be bumped up to NC-17 at their discretion.

Rated NC-17: The bottom of the ratings barrel. Pretty much any movie with this rating is doomed to die in the box office. And if it carries a message, no one will know because hey, the Christians think only adults should see these movies, and it’s considered uncouth by society to take a date to it, and it’s boring to go by yourself, so NC-17 movies bomb. According to the MPAA the reasons behind this rating could be violence, sex, or aberrational use of drugs. So basically I think if there is hard drugs, it sometimes falls into this category.

Now I know most people would automatically assume that the bible being the symbol of morality for so many people wouldn’t even come close to a poor rating on this scale, but then again, you have to look at where the line is drawn. Let’s take a look at some NC-17 movies:

Evil Dead: Now considered a cult classic. Earned this title. Now the reasons for this were scenes of violence, undead creatures, and sexual implications, and foul language.

Assault: Given it’s rating for rape scenes.

Bad Lieutenant: Given it’s ratings for rape, prostitution (adult theme), sex with teenage girls.

Black and White: This movie was essentially given it’s ratings for one of two reasons. Either they didn’t want kids to copycat the actions in the movie, or because it promoted to much unity, and they couldn’t deal with it being good strong Christians who still support slavery. There is a lot of crime portrayal in this movie, as well as sex and drugs. I personally don’t understand how this movie got an NC-17 rating, but we’ll include it as it proves our point.

Kids: Although not by any means a happy movie, this attempt to call out to parents across the world and say hey, this is the shit your kids face every fucking day, was covered up by the ratings commission. Everything in this movie, is about the shit that happens in real life, which is sometimes far scarier than any fictional movie, and no amount of censorship is going to stop that. The movie tries to point out the flaws in society in it’s own unique way, and I consider it a shout out to America to wake the fuck up and pay attention to your kids, stop trying to censor them, and start trying to understand them. Anyway for sex, violence, adult themes, molestation, and for fear of emulation, these great parents of America blindly avoided the point and slapped it with an NC-17 rating.

This of course is a mere slim sample of NC-17 rated movies, most are based NC-17 for severe sexual scenes, which to me is absurd as sex is considered more severe than murder in our society. Don’t you find it amazing that the act of making a life to these people is more horrid than the taking of one? If anything sex scenes act as a form of education, and help kids who are curious learn about it without actually having to go out and have sex to find out what it’s all about. So this is the Christians severe opinions of secular movies, but have you ever wondered what would happen if we applied their own ideals to their own holy book? What would happen if we tried to put a rating on the bible? Well first of all, lets count up all the things that earn a movie this severe NC-17 rating. We have violence, sex, supernatural creatures, foul language, rape, prostitution, sex with a teenager, or young women. Now offhand, I can’t think of any movie that fits all of those criteria, but you may be surprised to find out that our good bible does in fact include all of these elements and more. The biggest crime of the bible of course is in dealing with adult themes, which if presented by the secular media would earn an immediate R or NC-17 rating. So let’s take a look at some examples of scenes from the bible that should be reviewed in our attempt to give it some sort of rating:

So let’s first look at that ever so vile act of violence:

Deuteronomy 7:2 And when the LORD thy God shall deliver them before thee; thou shalt smite them, and utterly destroy them; thou shalt make no covenant with them, nor shew mercy unto them:

So this verse states that God’s people are to hunt down these races, utterly destroy them and show no mercy to any of them. If this isn’t violence, I don’t know what is.

Numbers 24: 8: God brought him forth out of Egypt; he hath as it were the strength of an unicorn: he shall eat up the nations his enemies, and shall break their bones, and pierce them through with his arrows.

So he will break their bones, and pierce them through with his arrows. Hmm sounds like violence to me.

Genesis 6:7 And the LORD said, I will destroy man whom I have created from the face of the earth; both man, and beast, and the creeping thing, and the fowls of the air; for it repenteth me that I have made them. Genesis
7:21 And all flesh died that moved upon the earth, both of fowl, and of cattle, and of beast, and of every creeping thing that creepeth upon the earth, and every man:
22: All in whose nostrils was the breath of life, of all that was in the dry land, died.

Now we all know the story of the flood. But do you know that the in most polls people tend to agree that the worst way they could think of dying is to die from drowning? Have you ever thought about the fact that books are far more full of imagery than movies. Movies are limited by the budget of the movie in what they can show, whereas the human imagination is limitless, some would read this and even imagine it happening to themselves, what kind of imagery do you get when you think of a world full of people drowning? Is this not then violence or at least an adult theme?

Genesis 19:24 Then the LORD rained upon Sodom and upon Gomorrah brimstone and fire from the LORD out of heaven; 25: And he overthrew those cities, and all the plain, and all the inhabitants of the cities, and that which grew upon the ground.

Have you ever wondered what goes through a child’s head when their parents teach them the story of Sodom and Gomorrah? If you tell kids a story, they will try to picture it, this is of no doubt. So what do you think they picture when they read this story? Everyone in these cities is killed in a rain of fire, do you think that this wasn’t done in a horrid and frightening manner? Could you imagine a little girl in the middle of the city trying to get out before it collapsed around her, crushing her to the ground as one more spark of life in the bible is utterly destroyed? Violence, violence, violence.

Genesis 40:19 Yet within three days shall Pharaoh lift up thy head from off thee, and shall hang thee on a tree; and the birds shall eat thy flesh from off thee.

Doesn’t that bring to mind some lovely images? The image of someone having his head cut off and being hanged from a tree for the vultures to slowly eat. Is this not graphic violence? Does this seem to you more grotesque than the Evil Dead? It does to me. Well we don’t have the server space to write a complete list of tales of violence in the bible, but I think you get the point.

Exodus 15:3 The LORD is a man of war: the LORD is his name.

Indeed.

The next issue is sex. Any sign of sex in movies instantly earns at least an R rating, excessive sex would earn it an NC-17. You tell me where you place the bible:

Genesis 38:9 And Onan knew that the seed should not be his; and it came to pass, when he went in unto his brother’s wife, that he spilled it on the ground, lest that he should give seed to his brother.

So Onan went in to commit adultery with his brother’s wife and he had sex with her, he spilled the semen on the ground so as not to impregnate her. Now kids know how babies are made, and they learn what the “seed of” means from Sunday school, they will put two and two together and come up with sex. This is a particularly explicit scene as it even describes the fluids being spilled on the ground.

Leviticus 18:20 Moreover thou shalt not lie carnally with thy neighbour’s wife, to defile thyself with her.

Kids also learn from Sunday school what it means to lie with someone, and for those a bit older they have free reign of the dictionary in which they can easily read what carnal means.

Leviticus 18:22 Thou shalt not lie with mankind, as with womankind: it is abomination.

Although forbidden and punishable by death, the bible still describes the act of homosexual sex.

Judges 16:1 Then went Samson to Gaza, and saw there an harlot, and went in unto her.

Good old Samson porking a whore in Gaza. This is just good old fashioned Christian sexual themes eh. Can you imagine the movie rating on this movie?

Ruth 3:9 And he said, Who art thou? And she answered, I am Ruth thine handmaid: spread therefore thy skirt over thine handmaid; for thou art a near kinsman. Ruth 3:14 And she lay at his feet until the morning: and she rose up before one could know another. And he said, Let it not be known that a woman came into the floor.

Ruthy puts her head under his skirt, and lays at his feet until morning, hmm I wonder what she could be doing under there. Luckily she rose up before they actually had sex, but not before she spilled onto the floor. That’s right, God condones sucking dick, isn’t the bible grand. Just a note, the words come, came, etc. are all from Old English, and they are translated from the Hebrew words for orgasm, spilling of fluids, so our use of cum/come is the same as was used in the bible.

Song of Songs 1:13 A bundle of myrrh is my wellbeloved unto me; he shall lie all night betwixt my breasts.

Hey now, I know a lot of guys that lie in between a girl’s breasts in a non-sexual manner. Right?

Song of Songs 8:10 I am a wall, and my breasts like towers: then was I in his eyes as one that found favour.

Dude this shit is fucking rated X. This woman is describing her large breasts, and commenting in a cheesy porn dialect about how her breasts are so much better than her sister’s. This book of the bible is fucking hilarious, I always get flashback’s of cheesy porn music coming from the TV at our old party house.

Leviticus 15:16 And if any man’s seed of copulation go out from him, then he shall wash all his flesh in water, and be unclean until the even. 17: And every garment, and every skin, whereon is the seed of copulation, shall be washed with water, and be unclean until the even. 18: The woman also with whom man shall lie with seed of copulation, they shall both bathe themselves in water, and be unclean until the even.

Well this again is far from comprehensive, but we will leave on the note that if in the process of having sex based on the bible you happen to come all over yourself, your clothes, and your girlfriend, the bible gives instructions on cleaning it up.

Next we have foul language:

Leviticus 18:23 Neither shalt thou lie with any beast to defile thyself therewith: neither shall any woman stand before a beast to lie down thereto: it is confusion.

Don’t you think that describing sexual activities with an animal would be considered foul to most Christians?

Leviticus 20:5 Then I will set my face against that man, and against his family, and will cut him off, and all that go a whoring after him, to commit whoredom with Molech, from among their people.

God said whore. Look look, God said whore.

2 Kings 18:27 But Rabshakeh said unto them, Hath my master sent me to thy master, and to thee, to speak these words? hath he not sent me to the men which sit on the wall, that they may eat their own dung, and drink their own piss with you?

Describes the act of eating shit and drinking their piss.

Malachi 2:3 Behold, I will corrupt your seed, and spread dung upon your faces, even the dung of your solemn feasts; and one shall take you away with it.

Such crude talk of smearing shit on someone’s face, and from a man of God, tut tut.

Rape is one of the most common themes in the bible:

Deuteronomy 22:25 But if a man find a betrothed damsel in the field, and the man force her, and lie with her: then the man only that lay with her shall die:

So if a man rapes a married woman, then only he shall die, you’ll note that the crime in question here is adultery not rape.

Deuteronomy 22:28 If a man find a damsel that is a virgin, which is not betrothed, and lay hold on her, and lie with her, and they be found; 29: Then the man that lay with her shall give unto the damsel’s father fifty shekels of silver, and she shall be his wife; because he hath humbled her, he may not put her away all his days.

If the man rapes an unmarried woman and is caught, he has to pay the father fifty shekels and then marry her, because he properly humbled her.

2 Samuel 13:11 And when she had brought them unto him to eat, he took hold of her, and said unto her, Come lie with me, my sister. 12: And she answered him, Nay, my brother, do not force me; for no such thing ought to be done in Israel: do not thou this folly. 2 Samuel 13:14 Howbeit he would not hearken unto her voice: but, being stronger than she, forced her, and lay with her.

Ammon rapes his sister.

Sex with youth:

Numbers 31:17: Now therefore kill every male among the little ones, and kill every woman that hath known man by lying with him. 18: But all the women children, that have not known a man by lying with him, keep alive for yourselves.

And what do Israeli men do when they get a hold of women in the bible?

Nudity:

Genesis 2:25 And they were both naked, the man and his wife, and were not ashamed.

Exodus 32:25 And when Moses saw that the people were naked; (for Aaron had made them naked unto their shame among their enemies:)

1 Samuel 19:24 And he stripped off his clothes also, and prophesied before Samuel in like manner, and lay down naked all that day and all that night. Wherefore they say, Is Saul also among the prophets?

Isaiah 58:7 Is it not to deal thy bread to the hungry, and that thou bring the poor that are cast out to thy house? when thou seest the naked, that thou cover him; and that thou hide not thyself from thine own flesh?

This gives a conflicting concept of what the bible thinks about nudity, in some parts it’s a sin to clothe oneself and then in another it’s a sin to be naked, but God’s schizophrenic I guess, so who really knows what he wants, but the nudity is there for all kids to enjoy.

Drugs:

Genesis 9:20: And Noah began to be an husbandman, and he planted a vineyard: 21: And he drank of the wine, and was drunken; and he was uncovered within his tent.

So Noah celebrates the flood by getting drunk and once again naked.

Genesis 19:32: Come, let us make our father drink wine, and we will lie with him, that we may preserve seed of our father.

This is a funny story altogether as there is no way Lot’s daughters could have forced him to drink wine, so in actuality he just got drunk and fucked his daughters, and he of course is blessed of God.

Psalms 104:14: He causeth the grass to grow for the cattle, and herb for the service of man: that he may bring forth food out of the earth; 15: And wine that maketh glad the heart of man, and oil to make his face to shine, and bread which strengtheneth man’s heart.

God tells little children that drinking alcohol will make you happy, and God obviously condones this action.

Proverbs 31:6 Give strong drink unto him that is ready to perish, and wine unto those that be of heavy hearts.

That’s right, let’s teach kids that alcohol is a cure for their problems. Aren’t biblical morals grand?

The point has been made, I could go on this line forever. Every single criteria that the MPAA sets forth in rating a movie, would put their own holy book in the NC-17 genre. The most explicit label a movie can bear. So what does this speak of their morals? This to me shows that the bible isn’t as kind as they pretend it is and also brings us the idea of hypocrisy spewing from their mouths. They can prevent secular kids from going to a movie they are fully well equipped to handle, but then they turn around and hand this shit out to those same kids at school, or expose them to it by putting it in the drawers of hotel rooms, or by teaching it in some schools. This bullshit is absurd, now I personally think that kids are fully capable of handling the contents of the bible, my intent is not to censor, my point is what makes them think that they have a right to label everything secular that is guilty of the same things as their holy manuscript as evil and obscene but they fail to look under their own noses at that which they pretend to interpret to come to these absurd conclusions.

The same is true of parents in the music industry, with their bullshit warning labels, explicit material, what the fuck is that? They need to look at themselves, they claim their morals come from this piece of shit book, but then why the hell is it wrong for us to distribute our own ideas in the form of free speech. They can hand this shit out to kindergarteners and we can’t even put it on the fucking radio? Why is this double standard existent in our society? Why is it that if I have children, they can’t go to the store and pick up music they like, but the little Christian kids can go and pick up music with sick little bible stories? Where is their fucking label? To make things worse, some Christians actually get the bright idea of boycotting or publicly protesting record stores selling these materials. They actually have blockaded record stores for such events as the new release of a Manson CD, to protest the sale of NWA music, forcing a store to either stop selling 2 Live Crew and Judas Priest or be removed from the neighborhood. Shit like that has been common for years. But they can package this bible and give, sell, or slam it down on little kids like it’s candy. Well I say we tell the Christians to either shove their censorship up their ass or accept a warning label on the bible that prohibits anyone under the age of 17 from reading it. This should include the banning of giving out the bible, the banning of bibles in hotel rooms, and most certainly the sale of bibles to anyone under the age of 17. Well I wonder what congress would say about that proposal.

The 14th Amendment

[[Note:
This is an archive from The Voice of the Underground newsletter. Any contact information or links will be out of date. All Voice of the Underground articles are unedited and appear as originally printed (errors and all).]]

 
The 14th Amendment is one of the greatest additions to the constitution. It revised the constitution to include equal rights for everyone who was born in the US. This is a very important revision, and fundamental to our cause.

First lets analyze Section 1. All persons born or naturalized in the United States, and subject to the jurisdiction thereof, are citizens of the United States and of the state wherein they reside. No state shall make or enforce any law which shall abridge the privileges or immunities of citizens of the United States; nor shall any state deprive any person of life, liberty, or property, without due process of law; nor deny to any person within its jurisdiction the equal protection of the laws.

Now the important factors in this section are this. ALL Persons born in or naturalized in the United States includes every single person. That means regardless of age, sex, race, religion, etc. So this section applies to everyone. Then it goes on to state that they are citizens of the US and of their state, and no one can make any law which shall abridge or infringe on the immunities and privileges of being citizens, this means the bill of rights, etc. So it is illegal by the constitution to make laws that would violate anyone’s civil rights that are granted by the constitution. Nor shall a state deprive anyone of life, liberty, or property, without due process of law. Now we all know for a fact that this part of the constitution is broken constantly by lawgivers. Particularly in North Dakota but it’s all over the US as well. For instance…If a minor buys something with his own money, the state says that it’s still his parents property and they can have it taken away for no reason. How the hell is that preserving the youth’s right to property? How is that not an example of the state depriving a person of his/her property? This is so blatantly unconstitutional, but no one fucking cares once they turn 18 because it no longer affects them. This is bullshit. Nor deny to any person within it’s jurisdiction equal protection of the laws: this states the state must protect the minors equally under the law. Well then how the hell does it set laws that only pertain to minors? Why is denying a 14 year old the right to stay out past midnight, not a violation of their right to liberty? If we now quote the Webster’s Collegiate Dictionary. We will note on how many levels this is in fact a violation of the liberty of these individuals.

Main Entry:lib·er·ty
1 : the quality or state of being free:
a : the power to do as one pleases
b : freedom from physical restraint
c : freedom from arbitrary or despotic control
d : the positive enjoyment of various social, political, or economic rights and privileges
e : the power of choice

Alright. Let’s start with a. The freedom to do as one pleases. Now if these citizens had the right to do this, then why are there many punishments for making these choices that don’t affect adults, but affect the minors? This is hardly equality. The fact is, in our society we have theorized as a society that kids are incapable of thinking for themselves, let alone doing as they please. If a youth decides he wants to do something, he/she can’t. They have to get parental permission. If a 16 year old who is quite possibly more mature than your average 30 year old, wants to go see a rated R movie(rated by a christian church, but we’ll get to that at another time.), then we have laws that state that they cannot enter without parental permission. So where do they get off saying that they are abiding by the constitution when it plainly states that they are at liberty to do as they please.

Alright point b: freedom from physical restraint. If this were the case, then minors could not be restrained for doing the same thing that an adult can do without restraint. So if a youth runs away from home, why is it legal for police to detain them? Why is it even illegal to runaway? If an adult decided they wanted to leave the house, no one could tell them different, but why then do youth not have that right? If a minor runs away, aren’t they simply exercising their right to make a choice or do as they please? Aren’t they in fact practicing their constitutionally granted liberty? So why is it legal to detain them for it? Isn’t this another violation of their right to liberty?

Point c: freedom from arbitrary or despotic control: I’m sorry, but this is a prime example of arbitrary control. The laws(which are arbitrary by definition, and unconstitutional by logic) are violating their civil rights. So this is a prime example of unjust arbitrary rule. Arbitrary rule, which this definition is referring to, means absolute rule, but do you see the kids having any say in this? If it’s not arbitrary rule, then the people who it affects should have say in what affects them.

Point d: The positive enjoyment of various social, political, or economic rights and privileges. You want a list of some of the social, political, and economic rights, these citizens are being denied? This is the main definition of liberty that is violated by the constitution. As a society the bill of rights and the constitution grant us all rights, and these are social rights, political rights, and economic rights, and they are not to be infringed upon, but we are infringing on them by making and supporting unconstitutional laws that affect the youth of America.

Point e: The power of choice. By law, we have handed this over to the parents and the state. Children are denied the right to choice. They are punished for every decision they make. They are punished for showing any sign of individuality. They are punished for every free thought they show. By every single definition of liberty….they have been wronged. And as a society we stand by and watch. This is what sickens me. The people who are too afraid to trouble themselves for a cause that doesn’t affect them.

Now some will argue that this law doesn’t affect minors, but when logically confronted they just back away and label you as eccentric, and mock you for fighting for lost causes. The fact is, if you know how to read, it becomes bitterly obvious that in fact this amendment does affect children. It states anyone born or naturalized in the US, and that includes children no matter how you look at it. Every single one of them is just as born here as the adults are, but as they don’t have a vote, no one takes them seriously, so we freely oppress them, and this is utterly disgusting. This is the exact same thing that happened to minorities and women in the past, but someone had to step up for them, even though it was a risk to the people stepping up, and it had little or no benefit to them, they were strong enough and selfless enough to stand up for the rights of others, and now we need to do this again. This cause has been started already by our predecessors, but we must build on it.

To declare something as a constitutional right, generally it only has to prove that it is under the jurisdiction of the constitution and that the person who it involves is also under the jurisdiction of the constitution. So therefore, when blacks were granted civil rights, everyone said yeah the constitution applies to them, and once that was stated, they got all the rights within granted. Same for women, once it was deemed that they were in fact guaranteed the rights in the constitution, they got all of those same rights. In the case of minors however, it has been a long sick battle, we are fighting bill by bill. They didn’t just get the civil rights that they logically should have been granted when someone declared that the constitution involved them as well, but were in fact only granted one bill at a time, and only after they appealed after having that right violated.

For instance…minors were granted a right to an attorney, based on the fact that the constitution granted it’s citizens that right, and it was deemed that they are it’s citizens as well. So why is it authorized then to take away their liberty without just cause? Why have we not decided yet, that the whole constitution applies to them, when we admitted they do have constitutional rights. Basically this is a holdover from politicians who are afraid to pay the piper when an oppressed society gets a hold of rights.

Especially parents, who are so concerned about losing power over their children, they miss the point that power was never the proper issue. If you want your kids to obey you, then you should make them respect you enough to obey you. Parental rights are not granted by law, any attempt to do so violates the constitution. Parental rights are granted by children, if you respect them, they will respect you. I have seen more 16 year olds who have full time jobs and are capable of taking care of themselves than I have 20 year old’s honestly, every year, kids mature faster than ever, and we just aren’t adapting as a society. For sake of this argument, minors are in fact a minority, and are being unfairly treated as minorities in our past were. Why is it possible to have a different set of laws and rights for one group of people? If America decided to take away certain rights of Chinese people and give them a separate court to go to, and a separate state of laws that were unfair, then we would see it in a different light. The people would be faced with the facts….that discrimination of this kind is sick and wrong.

Here is a list of some things based on the constitution that juveniles have equal rights to adults on, based on the fact that they are in fact protected under the constitution equally:

  1. “Beyond a reasonable doubt” standard used in court.
  2. Right against double jeopardy
  3. Right to counsel/attorney
  4. Right to notice of charges
  5. Right against self incrimination
  6. Right to trial by jury(in some states, still denied in others)
  7. Right to cross-examine witnesses
  8. Right to confrontation
  9. Right to criminal evidentiary standards
  10. Right to a bifurcated trial in death penalty cases
  11. Right to discovery(unjustly limited)
  12. Right to appeal(unfairly limited)

Now this list is far from comprehensive yet strong enough to state that these rights have been granted under the premise that juveniles have the same rights as adults under the constitution, but there is still a huge number of rights denied them, even though the obvious implications that state they should have them. Here is some examples of rights denied to minors, that should be granted:

  1. Right to a transcript of court proceedings not granted.
  2. Right to defense counsel not granted
  3. Right to due process not granted
  4. Right to bail not granted(with a few exceptions)
  5. Right to equal protection from search and seizures not granted
  6. Right to a speedy trial not granted
  7. Right to habeas corpus relief in correctional settings not granted
  8. Right to rehabilitation not granted
  9. Right to hearing for parole and probation violations not granted.
  10. Right to a public hearing not granted

Again not a comprehensive list, but solid enough to prove that they are being treated unequally by the law. We have decided that they get constitutional rights, this is the current precedent based on past cases. For instance: Normally if the US Supreme Court overturns a decision based on the complaint that the defendant’s constitutional rights were violated, then it would become precedent and from that point on no one could deny them that, this is how most of our protections were granted to the US people, including the right to indigent counsel etc. Well in the case of Kent vs. United States, Kent was moved to an adult court and denied his due process of law, and the Supreme Court judges overturned the decision, on the grounds that the juveniles Right to due process of law was denied, but then they still didn’t count it as precedent as it normally would. So juveniles still don’t have a right to due process of law, until they beg the supreme court for justice, which isn’t an easy task. The case of In re Gault again resulted in the Supreme Court overturning a conviction of a minor based on the fact that their constitutional right to due process had been violated. In this they did set an actual precedent stating that juveniles did have a right to certain provisions of the due process, but not the whole thing, which makes no sense. Their reason behind giving these precedents was to grant the youth constitutional rights, so why did they stop before they had fully granted them?

This is an injustice in the deepest sense, because they were so close to doing the right thing and stopped short either for fear of the American population’s reaction, or for personal thoughts of losing parental rights by law. But either way it was wrong, and they should have finished what they started. In Breed vs. Jones the lower courts convicted Breed of charges he had been cleared of in another court, and the supreme court overturned it stating that his 5th Amendment freedom from double jeopardy had been violated, and stated specifically that he had constitutional rights. So on numerous occasions, the courts have agreed that minors have the same constitutional rights as adults, yet we are afraid to give it to them, the best progress field in this area so far has been the juvenile justice system, because this is the steadiest ground for appeals, which get attention, but the criminal law rights, are not the only thing our juveniles are being denied.

If you want to become involved in fighting against this atrocity, send an email to voiceoftheunderground@hotmail.com and let me know you care and you want to become involved in public awareness of this issue. I’m sorry if this seems a bit long and drawn out to you guys, but this is a large factor in our fight here, so it’s important to understand the tools you have at your disposal, and to ensure you have enough confidence to utilize them.

A Letter to an Atheist Community

To get straight to the point, this letter is regarding the apparent battlefield between Skeptic Magazine and the 9/11 Truth movement. Largely highlighted by Chris Mohr’s September, 2011 article.

Before I begin, a little about me. I’m an atheist, and have been for most of my life, and I’ve studied theology independently ever since I was old enough to read the bible as a Pentacostal Christian. I’m a computer programmer, system architect, and R&D specialist by trade (not a journalist or writer). I’ve long been a fan of Skeptic magazine and Michael Shermer’s work in particular. But I also consider myself a proponent of the 9/11 Truth movement. Before you start firing up your engines preparing a rebuttal, I ask that you shut off your defense mechanisms for a moment (a stand down if you will) and hear me out, as I care passionately about the well-being of the skeptic community. I’ve been a member of the skeptic community longer than I’ve been a member of the 9/11 Truth movement and I think that the fight on the religious front is more important than the 9/11 front in the grand scheme of things, so when I say ‘we’ in the context of this writing, I mean ‘we skeptics’, not ‘we truthers’. Also, I’m an atheist, and I realize not all skeptics are, but when I address something from the stance of atheists, it’s because that’s the only perspective I can reasonably represent, it’s not meant to be exclusionary.

I know this is long, but please bear with me, it could be crucial to many of the objectives of our community.

Our Attitude

Notably, Mohr’s rebuttals of Gage’s arguments represents a much more respectful stance than I’ve seen previously from members of the community, but in the end it still comes off as a long series of thinly-veiled attacks. When you’re debating someone and you make statements that act to make the other side sound ridiculous right after announcing how much respect you have for them, it brings to question your sincerity. When you include statements referring to the “game these conspiracy theorists play”, it acts to undermine your contention that you respect your opponent. Ending with “the truth is out there and we know what it is” is arrogant and final. Not a stance that should represent a magazine promoting skepticism.

The Debate

I’ve read the debate from both sides. I like Mohr, and I like Gage. I’m open and scientifically minded. I have a solid understanding of math and physics, but I’m not a physicist. And neither are either of them (although Gage’s expertise in architecture is a bit more relevant to the argument at hand). In fact, they’re both appealing to authority. They both quote research from experts who disagree with each other. And they both draw conclusions based on that. Mohr admits that Gage’s arguments “seem” compelling, but then acts as if he’s summarily removed all doubt by the time he’s done because he’s provided alternate theories. This isn’t skepticism. He’s acting as if there can be no rebuttal to what he’s stated. When in fact AE911 did rebut his arguments.

What am I getting at here? Skepticism is supposed to be about being completely open and letting the evidence lead us into places, but not to end there and do no further research. Providing a rebuttal and acting as if it’s authoritative comes off as trying to end the debate. Why should that ever be encouraged by someone who calls themselves skeptical? Debate is healthy, debate should be encouraged, we can make confident movements based on probabilities, but acting as if “this is how it is, and there’s nothing more to it” puts you on a very dubious perch. Doubly so when the person making these claims is appealing to authority in the first place. And I up-voted many of Mohr’s YouTube videos, but I don’t agree that either side has all the answers. I am, after all, a skeptic. But so far, I do find Gage’s arguments more compelling, which isn’t to say that they’re correct, just that the evidence in his claims makes more logical sense to me personally.

Conspiracy

The phrase “conspiracy theory” has been demonized and misunderstood in our society, and has been used as a weapon to condemn all sorts of skepticism. In fact as atheists, the core of our very beliefs is “that which we’ve been told for much of our history was false” and most of us would likely recognize organized religion as concocted by people in power to push an agenda.

If anyone introduces anything radically different than the government or media introduces as information, the people in power utilize this buzz-phrase as a tool to shut down all questions. This was demonstrated by Bush right after the attacks, who immediately condemned any entertaining of “conspiracy theories”, which should have set off alarms in the heads of every skeptic in the country. Because anyone asking people not to put thought into something might have good reason not to want you to think about it (Genesis anyone?). What’s the danger in entertaining a conspiracy theory? If we haven’t entertained a conspiracy theory, then we’re not considering all possibilities. How can we make claims of being skeptics?

In America, it makes even less sense to dismiss conspiracy theorists outright as we have such a deep history of revealed conspiracies (and even False-Flag operations in particular). We have black box organizations like the CIA that we know lie for a living, but we just hope wouldn’t lie to us; despite their history for doing exactly that. As to the illusion that we’d know if they did, we’re talking about people trained to withstand torture, I hardly think they’ll be shaken by a couple internet videos. Daniel Ellsberg warned: “secrets of the greatest import … can be kept reliably for decades by the executive branch, even though they are known to thousands of insiders”.

The largest problem that I have with the skeptical community on this is what I see as a double standard of skepticism. We’re fully willing to apply our skeptical minds to refuting conspiracy theories, but not only are we not putting the same energy into investigating the official story, we aren’t even recognizing that it is a conspiracy theory as well. Bin Laden supposedly denied involvement in 9/11 repeatedly right after the attacks. Most of the evidence presented against him has not been analyzed skeptically (in fact even the FBI admits they have no hard evidence linking Bin Laden to 9/11, they recognize none of this would hold up in court), and we have every reason to be skeptical when it’s presented to us by people with a known agenda.

One conspiracy theory blames Bin Laden, and there is a lot of evidence that indicates that he was actually as bad of a person as the administration paints. The other theory is that PNAC and Bush were behind it or at the very least allowed it to happen. And there is also an overwhelming amount of evidence that paints these people to be as bad as Truthers portray them as. Judging based on the number of times I’ve seen government sources quoted as refutations against the truth movement by “skeptics”, I can only suppose that skepticism has been suspended when it comes to the administration.

It also must be noted that these theories are not mutually exclusive. It can be both Al-Qae’da and PNAC. We know Al-Qae’da at one point acted as our agents, we know that we have some number of CIA agents and informants inside their organization, yet we have no way to determine who or how many there are. Every wire tap, every document, every confession, could theoretically come from a CIA agent who has infiltrated Al-Qae’da. We also can’t rule out the possibility that someone in the administration could have instigated the attacks to further their goals. Complicity has a wide scope, and the full field of possibilities should be considered.

I’ve also heard dismissals of conspiracy based on results of research by various commissions and investigations that were funded and organized by the administration that is being investigated. If you don’t question the results of those findings, please, do not ever attempt to bear the title “skeptic”. This is akin to asking us to blindly support a scientific conclusion that “proves the existence of God” done by a Christian research firm, funded by Templeton.

Which isn’t to say that the researchers aren’t being honest. It’s just that they went into the research with the conclusions already drawn, which skews the science. This parallels with the NIST investigation. Not only were they commissioned by the government, they almost certainly were largely supporters of the official story before they ever started investigating. They admitted they didn’t look into a lot of alternative theories, and they found ways to make the research fit the conclusions they started with. This isn’t to say they don’t believe their findings or they consciously sought to mislead anyone. It’s simply that they were just as sure the government wasn’t lying to them before they started as a Christian researcher is sure the bible isn’t lying to him when he starts his research.

And lastly, I must note that the Bush administration has not been forthcoming. They’ve shown every sign that they’re hiding something(s). It’s indisputable that they had at least some incentive to make a war happen. And they have benefited immensely from these events. They have fought against investigation at every turn, refused to release so much information for no justifiable reason, and completely abused the information classification and “State Secrets Privelege” systems. I think at least on many allegations we’re moving steadily from the realm of “conspiracy theory” to “conspiracy”, and until the end of time (if there is such a thing), we won’t know how far down that spectrum this will lead.

Skeptical Breakdown

I find myself in a troubling position in this debate, because the overwhelming majority of people I consider peers are on the other side. I find myself questioning whether a Mormon physicist is more open minded than an atheist physicist (and I am highly skeptical of his findings as well, but that makes an even stronger case for keeping the debate open). The most prominent member of the movement I’ve attached myself to is an eminent theologian. There are numerous religious leaders within the movement. The leading debater is a Reaganite who voted for Bush. There are a lot of “God Bless this” and “God Bless that” rolling around, and I’m fighting for a proper intellectual trial for a group of Islamic Fundamentalists. I have every reason to be biased against the Truth movement, as it’s seemingly made up entirely of people who I would normally be debating against. But this is where the evidence has led me, and I’ve researched the topic for over 10 years now.

Being in this position, I can understand how easy it is to attack this movement. I see 9/11 being used by atheists in debates to show the dangers of Islamic fundamentalism. I can sympathize with wanting Islamic theocracies to fall. I can see battle lines being drawn with religious fanatics on one side, and rational atheists on the other. But I don’t feel the realities are this black and white.

Shifting Perspectives

I’ve heard some musings on various atheist forums about the 9/11 truth movement being in decline, but we all know how the Mark Twain quote goes. The truth of the matter is that it’s bigger than ever. And I’ve watched it since it’s inception, so I have my finger on the pulse. Every year polls indicate that the percentage of people who think the government allowed it to happen is increasing, and every year the percentage of people who think it was an inside job is increasing.

There is notable growth in all of the 9/11 Truth professional groups as more and more people sign onto these organizations putting their professional reputations on the line, despite the risk of being called crackpots, and even despite cases in the news of people losing their jobs for supporting these theories.

Numerous whistle-blowers have come out now, and the nature of whistle-blowing indicates that this will continue on a fairly steady basis. And the evidence and testimony that’s coming out is almost exclusively indicating that the Bush administration took an active role to cover up “something”.

The Jersey Girls (who forced the original 9/11 commission) created an open letter of support for Gage. The Truth community contains many of the family members, first responders, and soldiers that have been the victims of these attacks.

Overwhelmingly, my (anecdotal) observations of the battle of YouTube reveal clear indications of the popularity and a higher percentage of “thumbs up” on Truther videos. There are vast numbers of well-made and (mostly) well-researched documentaries being distributed, numerous books are being written, and awareness of the Truther perspectives among the general populace is increasing.

The credibility of Truth supporters is increasing. It’s gone from mostly armchair theorists to former Intelligence agents, whistle-blowers, military or former military members (many high ranking and/or highly decorated), even former congress members, parliamentary leaders, and at least one Nobel Prize winner.

The FBI has made a public response that Gage’s theories are interesting and recognize that he has done thorough research and analysis.

Probably most importantly, people like Daniel Ellsberg, who can easily point out the dangers of not giving conspiracy theories the light of day (having revealed illicit government actions himself) have shown support. Ellsberg points out that whistle-blower Sibel Edmond’s case is “far more explosive than the Pentagon Papers”.

My point is that any real skeptic, no matter how probable they feel their stance is, would recognize that they could be wrong, and the tables might turn, and truths could come out that severely compromise their position.

Repercussions of a stance against 9/11 Truth

 

Losing the high ground

In our debates, we often cite things like the Inquisition. These events demonstrate that someone’s beliefs on religion led them to do horrible things. When countered with Stalin, we can easily state that his reasons behind that were not based on his atheism. But I’ve heard prominent members of our community commending the goals of the Bush administration in removing theocracies like those of the Taliban. Disregarding the hatred amongst Islamic countries this has created. Disregarding the immense loss of civilian lives the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan have caused. We constantly note that Pakistan is a nuclear-armed theocracy, and yet we’re condoning actions that serve to ignite them into potentially using that particular lever to attempt to lift an otherwise unbearable load weighing on their people.

If we want to remove an Islamic theocracy, and we’re willing to promote the use of violence to do it, we’re literally letting our beliefs on religion motivate our promotion of activities that lead to the deaths of thousands. A death count which in fact dwarfs 9/11. It seems that some of us are in fact demonstrating that our beliefs on religion will in fact allow us to condone evil actions after all.

Turning away potential allies

We have a lot in common with the Truth movement. Both groups are full of skeptics. Both groups are considered fringe groups by the majority of the population. Both groups have been ridiculed and considered crazy for their beliefs. Both groups seek truth. And in fact they’re largely fighting their battles the same way we do, through the use of the internet, videos, books, presentations, debates, and grassroots movements.

Whether or not we agree with all (or any) of their conclusions. As skeptics; I feel we have a duty to help them meet their universal goal; which is to open up an unbiased, transparent, and open investigation by a group with authority to declassify documents and issue subpoenas (that will actually utilize these capabilities). The truth movement is trying to increase awareness that there are two sides to this story and thus far only one has been widely distributed (at least without the prefix “crazy people think…”). And that it should be debated in the public eye. If there are questions of physics, then as many physicists as we can interest should be involved in that debate. If there is an issue of structural engineering, than as many engineers as possible should debate that. The bias against what is or isn’t crazy should be tossed out, and all possibilities looked at with an open mind. This is exactly the fight we; as challengers of religion; have been fighting for decades.

Many of these people are courageous, persistent, and intelligent. They know how to get their message out. They’re shifting opinions against overwhelming odds. This is exactly the type of people we need on our side. Do we want to build an adversarial relationship with these people?

Hurting our credibility

I think we all need to ask this question: “What happens if I’m wrong?”. Me personally, I have no problem with this question. If I’m wrong, at least I know I sought the truth. But for those of you acting to rebuke the 9/11 Truth movement, even going so far as to publicly discredit them while wearing the banner Skeptic. I ask what the repercussions are if you’re wrong.

I recently watched a debate on Iranian PressTV with Wendy Grossman, who (at least according to the audience poll) was overwhelmingly defeated in a debate by 9/11 Truthers. Whether this was a setup or not I couldn’t be certain, but I certainly did find that the quality and quantity of evidence was provided on the Truther side. And this is seen not only on the internet, but obviously in Iran, a potentially volatile Islamic country. So now our public image in Iran could be “Skeptics (atheists) oppose Truth”.

If it turns out 9/11 was exactly as it appears to be, that’s not a big deal. But what if it’s not? What if the pentagon cameras are leaked and they show a missile? What if a money trail is discovered that links the administration to a demolitions team just before 9/11? However improbable you think this is, consider the repercussions. We will in fact appear as the enemies of truth, we’ll appear as the people who tried to shut down inquiry, and protected conspirators.

This could severely damage the skeptic movement; as one of our biggest strengths is being seen as supporters of science and evidence. If it’s shown that we’re only skeptical of things that we don’t agree with, then how will the Iranian people take us seriously when we try to convince them of the dangers of Islam. How can we show them scientific truth, when we’ve actually tried to actively impede investigations into truth in the past?

A recent study demonstrated that there isn’t an Islamic population in the world where even 30% believe the official story of 9/11. What hope do we have of bringing science to the debate against them if we actually tried to discredit attempts to start an investigation and it turns out an investigation was very much warranted?

I care about the skeptic cause. I am deeply concerned that if the skeptic community takes a definitive stance on this issue other than “we need more facts, and we need a deeper investigation so that we can actually make educated decisions”, then we will in fact cripple future attempts to bring rationality to the masses.

Respectfully,
Cory Withers

Why not let 9/11 Go? (Part I)

So it’s often asked of 9/11 Truthers, “why not just let it go?”. It’s been more than 10 years now. Are we just tearing open old wounds? Are we preventing healing from occurring? Are we disrespecting the troops who are dying daily for this cause? Is it fruitless because we’ll never change people’s minds? All of these questions are based on a long stream of misconceptions, largely spread throughout the American people via the media.

So what about the families that lost loved ones on 9/11? In an attempt to villianize anyone who asks questions, Bush condemned conspiracy theories right off the bat. The administration and the media used common marketing techniques to build an association between “going after the terrorists” and “seeking justice for the families and first responders”. They pushed this so effectively that even the media was afraid to ask questions:

“Now it is that fear that keeps journalists from asking the toughest of the tough questions” (Dan Rather Interview) — Dan Rather

“Anyone who claims the US media didn’t censor itself is kidding you. And this isn’t just a CNN issue – every journalist who was in any way involved in 9/11 is partly responsible” (http://www.freerepublic.com/focus/f-news/734439/posts) — Rena Golden, VP of CNN International

Even congress was cowed into submission: Cynthia McKinney (now a member of the Truth movement) was drummed out of politics for daring to try to force the administration to answer people’s questions. “…in having aroused the ire of establishment circles, have had the distinction of being kicked out of office two times”.

This control of the media allowed the Bush administration to cast any questioning person as a crazy conspiracy theorist. Numerous news outlets were writing them off as “disrespectful”, “nutjobs”, “crackpots”, without ever asking themselves if any of them had a point. This was hammered home repeatedly. But did anyone ask the families what they thought about the 9/11 Truth movement?

Some basic logic could be applied here but wasn’t. 9/11 was the murder of more than 3,000 people and the subsequent death of hundreds of first responders due to government negligence and lies about air quality. If you lost a loved one on 9/11, and you had even an inkling that things didn’t add up – You’d want answers. You’d want an investigation. A real investigation. You’d want to know who really killed your loved ones. And in fact, that’s largely why the government was forced into the 9/11 commission against it’s will. This issue was mostly pushed by the families themselves. And the answers they got didn’t satisfy any of them. The same goes for the first responders. They are all suffering severe health problems now, and hundreds died waiting for congress to help them. Even now, thousands are affected. If you thought you were dying, and there was a chance that the wrong people were blamed for what happened to you, and the people who caused it might get away with it entirely, wouldn’t you want an investigation? Wouldn’t you want justice to be served?

Disrespecting the families?

Here’s the thing that nobody understands about the truth movement. It’s largely started by the family members and survivors. Many of the first responders consider themselves members, and the leader of the largest organization to help first responders (the person behind congress finally giving them benefits) is a vocal member of the 9/11 Truth movement. His name is John Feal (he lost half his foot at ground zero), and he had this to say about the Truthers:

“everybody at Loose Change, you guys rock.”, “I support anyone who seeks the truth and justice”, “You have to voice what you’re thinking, what you’re feeling, and stick to it”

Full video

So many members of the movement are people who lost families in 9/11. In a tear-invoking speech shown in the documentary The Elephant in the Room, Bob McIlvaine (who lost his son in 9/11, and begins speaking at 57:30) states “They investigated one day. They gave us the 19 hijackers and that’s it, story’s ended.” His feelings are hardly remote. The movie goes on to quote numerous other family members, first responders, and survivors, all seeking a new investigation. These thoughts resound throughout the families, as demonstrated in the documentary In Their Own Words. The girls interviewed in that video, coined “The Jersey Girls” support the 9/11 truth movement, and even made an open letter in support of the Architects and Engineers for 9/11 Truth. We’re not disrespecting these people, we’re fighting for these people. They want to know what happened, and they’ve been treated like they’re idiots, and they’re not content with letting people get away with murder, especially not so that some rich scavenger can push his capitalist agenda.

Disrespecting the soldiers?

Clearly some soldiers who love war can go fuck themselves, and I’ll gladly disrespect them (Collateral Damage). But there are a lot of good people in the military who truly believe they’re doing the right thing, truly believe they’re avenging these families. Clearly in the same boat as the Truth movement, but they’re too busy being fed propaganda from above to do the research that we’ve done. The people who’ve found out however, are furious. There are numerous soldiers in the truth movement. Some have put their professional reputations on the line to seek truth, and others have simply been outspoken about it, there are a wealth of sites dedicated to these people (Military Officers for 9/11 Truth, Patriots Question 9/11, Marines for 9/11 Truth, Pilots for 9/11 Truth, Veterans for 9/11 Truth). They’ve either been used as pawns or see the people they respect being used as pawns. They’ve lost friends, relatives, partners to these wars. They’ve been put through hell, only to find out that the people who sent them there lied to them. We’re also fighting for them. This is our battlefield now, the battlefield of research, education, and debate. We’re protecting them as they’d protect us.

Disrespecting the first responders?

These people are dying. And they’re dying because of the Bush administration, whether they were complicit with 9/11 or not. They lied about the air quality and said it was safe, and as a result 50,000 people are now considered to be dying from air contaminants from ground zero. John Feal (as mentioned above) is the figurehead of the first responders, and he’s a highly active Truther. He’s been aiming to consolidate the two communities and educate people on what really happened that day. He has lost many friends and loved ones since that time, and he knows he’ll continue to lose more. These people were on the front lines on 9/11 and they’re still on the front lines trying to get justice for 9/11. We fought alongside them for their rights to get health care, and they fight alongside us in our fight to bring justice.

There are also numerous 9/11 organizations that have members who were first responders, such as Firefighters for 9/11 Truth (http://firefightersfor911truth.org/). Largely because firefighters know that fires are an extremely unlikely cause for the destruction that they’re attributed to, and they have thorough knowledge of the standard operating procedures that were completely circumvented by the administration in investigating the events. Firefighters were some of the first people who came out in objection to destroying the evidence of the world trade center buildings. Firefighters know that things that were supposed to be done were not. (Erik Lawyer on 9/11) – “9/11 was the greatest loss of life and property damage in U.S. fire history. This should have been the most protected, preserved, overtested, and thorough investigation of a crime scene in world history, sadly it was not”.

On top of the loss of life of many firefighters at WTC, they have made up a large portion of first responders who are dying. Do you think that watching your friends die, and knowing the government didn’t do their job to find out why wouldn’t piss you off? Firefighters were also witnesses to explosives going off in the buildings and damage uncharacteristic of what they’d expect from the attacks, and all of their testimony was thrown out by the 9/11 commission. So many firefighters are on our side, despite firefighters typically coming from a very conservative portion of the population (and the ridicule anyone gets for speaking out), you can only push them so far. So we don’t disrespect first responders, we consider them heroes. We fight for their rights, we fight for their families, we fight for the truth behind their conditions.

Every single group that the administration and media wants you to believe we’re harming has every incentive to side with us, and more and more of them are. And in fact, they’re one of the primary reasons we put this passion and energy into this in the first place. So before you heckle someone and call them a conspiracy nut, maybe you should ask yourself were they there? Did they lose someone? Do they know more than you? Because it’s the critics of the movement who are actually attacking the people hurt by 9/11 by trying to stop the truth from surfacing.

The Trial

You’re selected to be a juror at a trial for a man (whom we’ll call Mr. Jones) who may have conspired to have his wife murdered.

Mrs. Jones was found dead in her living room. Which is unusual because the Jones family is wealthy and has an extensive security system. Witnesses say they saw an Arab man walk right in the front door that is normally locked, heard a scream and gunfire, called the police, who find that she has been killed.

Police conclude that the man who killed her was a fundamentalist Muslim named Mohammed, who killed her for being a non-believer, and for exorbitant wealth (none of which he took). Witnesses state that he planned to kill her for just these reasons, but he seems to have disappeared, so he can’t be cross examined or tried.

Mr. Jones is also a suspect, and some evidence has been presented that brings question to his involvement. The prosecution states that they believe he paid the Arab man to kill his wife based on evidence that Mr. Jones had motive, means, and intent.

They present the following evidence:

Exhibit A: Her will. In it she leaves everything she has to him, which is considerable, since their wealth actually comes from her and includes inheriting her family’s company.

Exhibit B: Her life insurance, which he has since cashed out on.

Exhibit C: Testimony of her displeasure with him. She complains about him constantly, saying she wants a divorce.

Exhibit D: There are emails sent back and forth from his friends stating that he’ll never get control of the company unless she dies.

Exhibit E: He actually implements a business plan for the next 4 years as if he was already the sole owner of the company. Plans that would have been fruitless were she still alive.

Exhibit F: It turns out the Arab used to work for him, and actually the gun used to kill her was a gift that he had given the Arab man to “protect himself” from some local thugs.

Exhibit G: Witnesses state that Mr. Jones was warned in advance that Mohammed was planning on killing his wife, but did not alert the police.

Exhibit H: After Mr. Jones explicitly denied hearing these warnings, an email is discovered that demonstrates that he was warned, and he replies with “Well, I didn’t think he’d actually do it.”

Exhibit I: After the investigation begins, Mr. Jones warns investigators that he has connections in high places, and if they value their jobs, they’ll limit their investigation.

Exhibit J: Mr. Jones paid to have the body removed from his house and burned before the police even got there to investigate.

Exhibit K: The fact that none of the alarms in the house went off and the door was unlocked.

Do you the jury find Mr. Jones guilty of conspiracy to commit murder?

Liberals and Conservatives

Liberal: Open to new behavior or opinions and willing to discard traditional values.
Progressive: A person advocating or implementing social reform or new, liberal ideas.
Root word: Progress: Move forward or onward in space or time.
Conservative: A person who is averse to change and holds to traditional values and attitudes, typically in politics.

Look, I don’t mind if people don’t agree with me, but making blanket statements attacking “liberals” and “progressives” is asinine.

Liberal means open minded. We should all be liberal. We should all recognize that we might be wrong, or things could be better. You don’t have to agree with every new idea to be liberal (we who call ourselves liberal certainly don’t), you just have to recognize that the way things are might not be the best possible reality.

Being progressive means trying to make the world better. Admitting that the way the world is today is not perfect. And we should try to find ways to make the world better. We may never create a perfect world. But we should strive to do what we can to make the world as good as we can and constantly fight for that ideal.

Conservative means fighting against that progress and fighting against open minded ideas. Essentially ignorant, stubborn, and (unless you think the world is a perfect place) stupid or self centered. If you think the world could be better, there’s no sense in hindering that progress. And this isn’t just a republican thing, the republican party used to be considered liberal.

As a matter of fact, everything we cherish in America (again I’m not a nationalist) stems from liberal ideas, so if you consider yourself a conservative, before you decide to ignorantly lash out at liberals and progressives, keep in mind, you fucking owe us:

  • The founding fathers were the ultimate liberals and progressives. They actually cut off their ties with what they considered an oppressive regime to bring about change.
  • Democracy was a liberal and progressive idea.
  • Freeing the slaves was a liberal and progressive idea.
  • Letting women vote was a liberal and progressive idea.
  • Deciding gays shouldn’t be killed for being gay is a liberal and progressive idea.
  • Granting people freedom to have whatever religion they want, or none at all was a liberal and progressive idea.
  • The concept of a minority in government is a liberal and progressive idea.
  • Every single freedom in any constitution was a liberal and progressive idea at the time.

Every positive change that’s been made in the history of time was by it’s very nature, liberal and progressive. Without liberalism it wouldn’t have been considered, without progression, it wouldn’t have been implemented. If you’re not a liberal or progressive, you still owe us everything, and regardless of your actual views of which ideas should move forward and which ideas shouldn’t, you should join with us in being liberal and progressive rather than pointing out that you’re just a roadblock on the path to a better world.

The Halo of American Leadership

One thing I find appalling is the halo that we put around our elected officials in regards to 9/11 and all other forms of significant wrongdoing.

We’re fully willing to accept that a state can lie to it’s people: We acknowledge the concept of propaganda used by any other nation in the world. When it’s Hitler, Stalin, Mao, Saddam, Kim Jong-il lying to their people on a daily basis. We accept that. When it comes to believing the historical account of the Reichstag, we accept that. But when it comes to believing an American could do something like that, we suddenly put up this mental barrier, and anyone who crosses that barrier is ultimately considered insane.

One possibility would be if American leaders had never been caught lying to the American people before. But we immediately know that’s not true, they’re politicians. We consider them liars the second they run for office. Choosing between one of two guys that’s looking out for the interest of themselves and the party of rich corporate interests that represent them is a national past-time. We even likely admit that they’re looking to make themselves richer and more powerful, and make their friends richer and more powerful. We know their entire campaigns are paid for by lobbyist groups.

Think about what a lobbyist is for a second. The definition of conspiracy is a secret plan by a group to do something unlawful or harmful. We link this to the idea that a group of powerful people manipulates or has authority over public officials that encourages them to do things in the interest of that group. Americans are largely so ambiguous towards the lobby process that it’s almost a secret in that no American on the street can name off the companies that any given representative actually represents via funding.

So we know fundamentally that corporations give money to politicians to manipulate politics. But is that what the corporations are saying it’s for? Bribing officials is illegal. Bribing people on the campaign trail, is a nice loophole. The spirit of what they’re doing is illegal. And they’re largely secretive about it. Yet the American people almost accept it as fact that they’re conspiring to manipulate politics. Why would this stop once the official they supported is elected?

I could also see drawing a line on how corrupt we’re willing to believe someone is if no public leader or member of the US government had conspired against the best interests of the American people before, or if we at least didn’t know it for a fact. But we do. Richard Nixon’s guilt is fresh enough in our minds to be plastered all over our psyche (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Watergate_scandal). That was far from a remote incident.

But even if we allow that the government lies to us, what about lying to start a war? Roosevelt at the very least knew about the attack on Pearl Harbor and allowed it to happen to get us involved with WW2 (http://video.google.com/videoplay?docid=270975414048677528) allowing the loss of 4,000 lives to help convince the American people to go to war. A lie to the American people is what got us into Vietnam in the first place (http://911blogger.com/node/13307). Even Bush’s claims that there were Weapons of Mass Destruction in Iraq is almost universally accepted as a lie. So why do we feel that the twin towers couldn’t have been used in the same manner?

It it because of the nature of the operation? Operation Northwoods (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Operation_Northwoods) was almost an identical scenario, and were it not for the embarrassment over the Bay of Pigs fiasco, it’s possible it would have been accepted by the president himself. The military has been preparing for an attack where planes hit buildings long before that (Contingency Planning Photos). There was “ironically” and “coincidentally” an exercise scheduled for 9/11 that involved an errant plane crashing into buildings (Plane Exercise). So the nature of the attack isn’t something that the government couldn’t conceive obviously.

So maybe Bush gets special treatment here? Is Bush shown to be demonstrably honest and virtuous? How about his family? His grandfather Prescott was part of a conspiracy (that we know about) to take over the US (Fascist Coup) and instill a fascist dictatorship in line with Hitler. There is significant evidence to implicate George Bush Sr in the S&L scandal (http://rationalrevolution.net/war/bush_family_and_the_s.htm). Other members of the Bush family (Neil) were actually charged with crimes in it.

So why do we think George Bush Jr. could never be guilty of such things? Do we not think he’s willing to break the law? There is convincing evidence that he stole at least the 2004 election (http://freepress.org/departments/display/19/2011/4239 | http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=hDd21pEmP4g) Is it because we think he’s just not willing to sacrifice lives to get what he wants? 100,000+ civilian bodies (http://www.iraqbodycount.org/database/) begs to differ. Is it that he wouldn’t be willing to sacrifice American lives to get what he wants? 12,000+ American soldiers (http://antiwar.com/casualties/) beg to differ. So why do we think he wouldn’t be willing to sacrifice less than 3,000 civilians to get what he wants? Is it a question of motive?

Let’s compare the administrations motives to those of Bin Laden:

Bush administration:
1. Largely members of the Project for a New American Century which specifically lays out motives for a war, including wishful thinking for a “New Pearl Harbor” and stating intent to get involved in both wars and regime changes. (Rebuilding America’s Defenses)
2. Largely tied to both weapons and oil companies. Which have obviously benefited from this war (http://911review.com/motive/profits.html).
3. Gained more power at home via the Patriot act and other laws that gave the government more power and the people less.
4. Increased military budget as called for in Rebuilding America’s Defenses.
5. Involvement with companies like Enron, who were under (are under?) investigation, reputedly all evidence against them was destroyed in WT7 (http://www.wtc7.net/articles/kimball/thirdskyscraper.html).
6. Many more, which can be found in places like this: (http://911review.com/motive/index.html)

Bin Laden (according to various government and neocon conspiracies):
1. Attacking the vague concept of Freedom.
2. Force the US to stop supporting Israel.
3. The US terrorizes them all the time.
4. The US is stealing arab oil.
5. Many more, which can be found here (http://www.guardian.co.uk/world/2002/nov/24/theobserver)

Of Bush’s and his administration’s actions. We have little doubt. Most of it is public information. Of Bin Ladens’, if we take the letter to be actually written by a Bin Laden that the CIA (along with most world leaders) believed dead and who broke a precedent by denying he was involved (Bin Laden’s Denial) – we’re still left with George Bush manipulating motive number one and platforming on it. He wasn’t “attacking our freedom” according to the letter. He was using our democracy as a justification for attacking civilians. Because he supposedly believed that we really get enough say in our choice of leaders that their guilt is ours. So the concept of Democracy makes us all combatants. This certainly would hold true for a real democracy. We’re not. The other motives listed are genuine issues that do actually fuel terrorism in general, and they are not to be answered with war which is actually definitively giving these exact motivations for generations to come.

In weighing motivation; one also has to factor in objectives and the likelihood of success. Which brings us to means. This can come down to who has more power. Who has more power, the Bush family? Or Bin Laden? The American President and his cabinet? Or a guy living in a cave, allegedly in retirement (and according to the taliban, cut off from his network). Examine some of the events, and ask yourself which party would have had an easier time accomplishing the following:
1. Slipping 4 teams of hijackers past security.
2. Preventing any communication from the planes until it was allegedly too late.
3. Known how to avoid being intercepted.
4. Have pilots or equipment capable of flying the planes, let alone in the maneuvers they allegedly pulled off (http://pilotsfor911truth.org/)
5. Had the capability to limit investigations into guilt (by such actions as controlling who has access to the sites, shipping all of the steel off so it couldn’t be examined, etc.). Bin Laden initially denied guilt. So ability to cover it up should be factored in as well.

And finally, how well do the actions of that day reflect the alleged goals of each group. And what were the successes of each party. We can split this into 3 parts: The Pentagon attack, the Twin Towers attack, and World Trade Center 7:

The Twin Towers:
The twin towers attack seems to reflect the goals of the terrorists pretty well. Except for the fact that Indian Point (Indian Point Impact) was practically flown over by both planes, and they instead chose an attack that would only kill a few thousand people, and not really evoke much fear, mostly just anger. The motivations for our administration with this attack seems to be justification for the wars, and it certainly was effective.

The World Trade Center 7:
Bin Laden had nothing to gain here, but that’s not really relevant, as it’s considered a side effect of the attack. The administration has ties to Enron and other companies investigated by the SEC: “So the majority of Enron’s SEC filings were likely destroyed when World Trade Center 7 came down”.

The Pentagon:
Having gone to the Pentagon website the day of the attack I saw numerous ways that the terrorists would have planned their attack. There was a PDF of the parking layout complete with markers indicating the location of various departments, the hellipad, etc, showing a virtual runway of where to attack. There were virtual tours online that allowed you to see the main areas of the pentagon room by room. There were scheduled tours available to the public that would let you see where everything was, and there was a page dedicated to the renovation and stating the section of the pentagon that was under renovation. Even the most inept terrorist would have known all this, let alone a group that methodically hijacked 4 planes. So why was the DoD not significantly damaged. Why didn’t the attacker avoid the protected section, even specifically taking on a dangerous maneuver in order to hit it? Obviously the goal here for terrorists was the DoD, and that failed miserably but could have succeeded by any other means of attack. This attack didn’t benefit terrorists at all. Did it benefit the administration? Definitely. It alleviates guilt. The DoD represents the government, in attacking a government building, one in which several administration members worked, it makes it look far less implicating for them.

Given the evidence on both sides, if you took this case and tried it in a neutral court (foreign country) with *all* of the evidence presented, I imagine George Bush would be in a lot of trouble. So why can Americans not open their minds to these possibilities? How did intellectual analysis become the exclusive property of “crazy” people?

Ultimate 9/11 Conspiracy Theory!

So I’ve come up with this awesome theory that completely explains the events of September 11, 2001, here goes:

Osama Bin Laden, for reasons unknown (likely because he hates Freedom and having no access to the internet, didn’t realize that the United States is actually pretty low on the democracy index) decides to attack America. He cleverly denies making these attacks, but then later took credit for them (apparently after hitting a buffet, and getting a bit of plastic surgery. The Taliban still stubbornly maintain he didn’t do it, and by the time he finally admits to the attacks, most people think he’s probably already dead (http://www.infowars.com/top-us-government-insider-bin-laden-died-in-2001-911-a-false-flag/)). The attacks are mirrored around the media as the New Pearl Harbor (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=GehJCia6Mx0).

To carry out horror upon the American people he figured the best way would be to remove the World Trade Center towers (probably so that residents could see how much smog was actually in the New York sky). He also decided on blowing up the pentagon as well, since it contains the department of defense.

Having a heavy supply of skilled commercial airline pilots, Bin Laden decided to use commercial airliners as missiles to attack these buildings.

Bin Laden sent 19 hijackers to steal 4 commercial airliners, presumably with plastic knives and/or boxcutters, and maybe bombs/guns without anyone noticing anything amiss. Each flight is taken over without a single pilot being able to tap out the 4 digit distress code (it was probably hard to reach, we never use those anyway).

One plane hits the pentagon, guided by the brilliant pilot: Hani hanjour (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=kOUqIb9ORok) who flew flight 77 like a jet fighter, making a 330° turn at 530mph so that he could pick the angle that he wanted to hit the pentagon at. Unfortunately for him, he accidentally flew into the one side of the pentagon that was recently renovated specifically to protect against this (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=u-ovM5ZqQLE), so his attack actually didn’t do anything. Interestingly, if he had flown directly into the building at any other point the damage would have been pretty much total, but he probably doesn’t have the internet, and never took any tours (or virtual tours that were available online), so he didn’t realize that the area was protected and almost empty.

One plane gets shot down (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=jMrF1caOmOw | http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=OB8JE-54Xqc&feature=related), I mean crashed.

The other two fly with precision into the world trade center (Both ignoring the number one terrorist target in the US: Indian Point: http://www.911timeline.net/). One of them hit it so hard you could see all the jet fuel exploding out the other side! (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=eI8u-I0GWs4&feature=related) After a bit all that jet fuel created fires inside which made the buildings super hot. Within an hour, we knew those buildings just had to blow up from something. (And that idiot designer claimed his building could withstand multiple hits from jumbo jets (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=j3Gcv6_lw8U), obviously not buddy!). The planes severed all of the core columns (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=qJ11i6fi7KQ&feature=fvst) creating essentially a tiny building on top of a gigantic (but intact and nearly unharmed) skyscraper. A few floors of jet/office fires weakened all the steel in the building so that it pulled all the beams inwards (even the unharmed beams throughout the other 70+ floors (a vast majority) of each building) symmetrically, simultaneously, and floor by floor, pulverizing all the concrete and bodies in the building (into fine dust) and sending them rocketing out the side of the building, thus removing the buildings mass and allowing it to collapse at free fall speed.

A chunk of debris hit building 7. This building is half the height of the towers, so it only took a few small fires spread throughout the building to cause it to simulate a controlled demolition implosion (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=73qK4j32iuo), also falling at free fall speed. This was even more impressive since it was a landmark event in being only the 3rd steel structured high-rise to ever be brought down by fire (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=teZNcC5IJ8s). The first two incidents occurring on September 11th, 2001.

I’m not sure why some of the flight recorders (black boxes) for these planes didn’t survive. I’m pretty sure that the designers were just exaggerating about them withstanding 1832F (1000C) fires, and the 495F (http://911research.wtc7.net/mirrors/guardian2/wtc/how-hot.htm) degree office/jet fuel fire was probably enough to melt that too since it was obviously enough to slag the flimsy steel they used in the WTC buildings (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=9eltkxYaCOM).

I’m clear why all the passengers died, though I’m not quite sure why all the planes were at 30% capacity…Also I’m pretty sure we’ve identified all the suicide pilots. (although some of them deny being involved, and even claim to be alive (crackpots): http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/1559151.stm | http://whatreallyhappened.com/WRHARTICLES/hijackers.html).

Fortunately our country was led by brave, honorable, prophetic, and very very Christian men who had been prepared to handle just such an event. Most of them had belonged to an ultra-patriotic group known as The Project for the New American Century (18 members having key positions in the Bush administration, including Dick Cheney and Donald Rumsfeld: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Project_for_the_New_American_Century).

These brilliant men, realizing that the world would be a lot nicer if America was in charge of everything stated in their report “Rebuilding America’s Defenses” (Rebuilding America’s Defenses) that America should get into some wars anyway (page 11). These friendly people’s plan for transforming military readiness was sadly being halted by peace, and without a “new Pearl Harbor” (page 63) they’d never even get to use any of their new toys.

Fortunately Bin Laden had provided them their opportunity to act, and so they wisely decided that since Saddam Hussein was known to be a pretty shady guy, he probably had something to do with 9/11. I’m pretty sure he had nukes too. So knowing that Afghanistan “was too remote to make an effective demonstration”, we decided to attack Iraq, which we pretty much won within a few months, but the cleanup took a while because al-qaeda kept posing as Iraqi children.

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