Tuesday, May 17, 2011

9-11 Truthers Are a Staple of the Purported Vermont Secessionist Movement

Part of the problem with the Vermont secessionists' leadership is that they seem to believe that if their ideological inspirators get away with peddling lies, they can peddle the same lies as true because, you know, someone says so and no one's going to challenge their junk.

The "Vermont Commons" publisher, an exporter of boutique meats of the non-native sort, a campaign advisor to failed secesher gubernatorial candidate, Connecticut native Dennis Steele, and a lead propagandist for the supposed Vermont secession "movement," Rob Williams, is a good example of this sort of secesher self-delusion.

It's kinda like when Williams bragged last year on his "super-secret" (until exposed on this blog [1] [2] ) listserv regarding this blog's revelations regarding his secesher movement's cozy relationship with the racist, white supremacist League of the South:
"I have spent 4 years defusing the SVR/(League of the South) nonsense and it is finally done, even in the blogosphere."
Spoken too soon, eh, Rob?

Not only do Vermont seceshers continue to maintain ties to the racist LoS, they also keep in their ranks racists and homophobes like Steele's largest out-of-state campaign contributor and Second Vermont Republic essayist, James Duncan, and VTCommons anti-Semitic blogger, Carol Moore.

In a wordy, overwrought and insipid come back, Williams relies on the "exhaustive research and writings," better described as troofer nonsense, of known 9-11 Truther, David Ray Griffin.

Grifter, er, Griffin is well-known for his tin-foil hat conspiracy representations, so much so that he is a featured crank in Jonathan Kay's (the managing editor and columnist at Canada's National Post newspaper) Among The Truthers: A Journey Through America's Growing Conspiracist Underground. Jacob Heilbrunn, a regular contributor to The New York Times Book Review and a senior editor at The National Interest wrote of Kay's recent book:
"Some of Kay’s most illuminating passages center not on what conspiracy theorists believe — even to dignify it with the word “theory” is probably to grant them more legitimacy than they deserve — but on why they are attracted to such tedious rubbish in the first place. He divides them into different camps, including the “cranks” and the “firebrands.” Cranks are often reacting to male midlife crises — combating conspiracies, Kay says, offers a new sense of mission. Cranks, he adds, are frequently math teachers, computer scientists or investigative journalists."

"A leading case, according to Kay, is David Ray Griffin, a former professor at the Claremont School of Theology who has devoted his retirement to writing no fewer than 11 books that examine each minute of the 9/11 timeline. Then there is Paul Zarembka, a professor of economics at the State University of New York, Buffalo, who has scrutinized “such arcane subjects as the price of individual airline stocks in the run-up to 9/11, and the tail numbers of the hijacked 9/11 aircraft.” And Barrie Zwicker, a mainstream Canadian journalist turned truther, insisted on interviewing Kay while Kay was interviewing him, hitting buttons on a chess clock to regulate the amount of time each had."

"Once upon a time such people would most likely have operated in relative anonymity. But with the emergence of the Internet, Kay says, they have established their own cult followings, along with the sense of superiority that is created by seeming to enjoy direct access to what actually makes the world tick. Kay writes: 'Many true conspiracy theorists I’ve met don’t even bother with Web surfing anymore. . . . From the very instant they first boot up their computer in the morning, their in-boxes comprise an unbroken catalog of outrage stories ideologically tailored to their pre-existing obsessions.' ”
Heilbrunn's complete review may be read here. See also the Publisher's Weekly review here.

A quick search of the VTCommons website revealed more than a score of references to Griffin's "cogent" research by various inhabitants of the VTCommons blog nutsack. Six other references can be found on the website for Griffin's 9-11 "exposé" The New Pearl Harbor: Disturbing Questions About the Bush Administration and 911. Here's what Chip Berlet, a noted investigative journalist who studies the spread of conspiracy theories in the media and on the Internet, as well as white supremacists, homophobes, political cults and anti-Semites, has to say about Griffin's book:
"This book by David Ray Griffin is largely a compilation and restatement of materials from a variety of print and electronic sources, as the author points out in his Introduction and Acknowledgments. Griffin’s book reflects a relentless disregard of substantial evidence from multiple sources that contradict the claims he is making. Griffin repeatedly uses classic Fallacies of Logic (a Wikipedia article in progress on Fallacies of Logic may be read here) in his presentation rendering whole sections of the book refutable on this basis alone..."


"Griffin is constantly stating that he does not know what actually happened, but that he is just analyzing possible scenarios that need to be investigated. This is disingenuous at best. While Griffin repeatedly refers to the “claims” of “critics” of the “official” account of the events of 9-11-01, he is clearly endorsing these views. In a number of cases Griffin becomes an apologist for authors (such as Thierry Meyssan or Illarion Bykov and Jared Israel) whose assertions have been thoroughly demolished by an armada of writers across the political spectrum. Griffin accomplishes this by selectively highlighting certain aspects of their work while sidestepping their most lurid and outlandish conclusions in which they claim the functioning of vast conspiracies on the flimsiest of evidence..."


"Many of Griffin's cites track back to unsubstantiated claims..."
The complete, lengthy review of Griffin's paranoid hodge podge of conspiracist "pyramiding, a process used by conspiracists whereby an unproven allegation in a prior section is converted into a factual basis to introduce a following section" may be read here.

'Course, there's nothing that prevents conspiracist whackjobs like Griffin, Rob Williams and Vermont secesher Jim Hogue from churning these unsubstantiated tall tales. Where it does become truly vile is when Griffin suggests that the cell calls received by family members of the passengers were faked and that somehow multiple call receivers, including Ted Olson, a United States Solicitor General at the time who had been married for five years to Pentagon Flt 77 victim Barbara Olson, were fooled into thinking a faked electronic voice was a loved one. You'd think that the Vermont seceshers would be capable of some modicum of decency and would not give the improbable claims of Griffin such prominence in their endeavours. You can read more on this mean-spirited, vile act by 9-11 Troofers at VTCommons here.

Some of Griffin's conspiracist crap is based on French conspiracist, Thierry Meyssan, "work," neatly disposed of by Snopes.com here.

I look forward to reading in future VTCommons journal issues and blog post updates from Rob on the Lindbergh Baby Kidnapping Hoax, the Apollo Moon Landing Hoax, the Real story behind the death of Diana, Princess of Wales, the Illuminati Freemason Conspiracy, as well as something new on the Lincoln Assassination Hoax. Some guy says that he saw Lincoln shot but he's dead now so the assassination is unconfirmable - prob'ly just another gubmint plot, no?

"And as for "defusing the SVR/LOS nonsense" as being a "finally done" deal, "even in the blogosphere," well, not by a longshot, Rob, not by a very long shot. I never can say goodbye, boy."

(Editor's Note: David Ray Griffin is not to be confused with another contributor to the VTCommons journal, Robert S. Griffin, a white supremacist author ["Rearing Honorable White Children" published in the racist journal American Renaissance], a "professor" at University of Vermont and who has written for the racist journal, The Occidental Quarterly [3 - scroll way down]

Additionally, VTCommons publisher and all around douchebag, Rob Williams, incorrectly asserts on his blog that I have called him a "stoopid moron." In fact, I called Peter Garritano a "moron."

One need only read Garritano's barely comprehensible blog posts for confirmation that this secesher, political wannabe operates largely in the conspiracist realm, with a distinct fixation (or hatred, really) for members of today's Vermont National Guard. Maybe it's an effort to increase his cred among the small community of Vermont sovereign citizen and Oath Keeper types.

I'd described their conspiracist nonsense as "stoopid." Ya'd think Williams, a so-called publisher, would be capable of fact checking and proofing his own post. Maybe he's just incapable of "read(ing). Or just (is)n't thinking clearly."

I'd also suggested that "Williams and Garritano (were) locked in contest with Douglas Feith to see who'll be "the fucking stupidest guy on the face of the earth."

Clearly, Williams is the hands down winner in that contest with his fellow political bottom feeder, Garritano. His promotion of inexcusably hurtful jerks like Griffin [either one] puts him over the top with that sort of vile, conspiracist, racist douchebaggery.)

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