March 17, 2014
This month, a campaign in Canada is challenging the government’s 9-11 story. I am in favor of this, both as a professionally trained historian and as a believer in a general policy of examining official government positions.
Here is a short video on the campaign.
The group wants to get the word out. I am all in favor of getting the word out on 9-11. This could be a hook for getting the word out on other issues. People who finally figure out that they have been manipulated by the spin masters in the U.S. government are probably more prepared to accept the message that there is a long-term pattern of deception here.
The video focuses on Canada. This may work. There is a higher percentage of Canadians who think the U.S. government is willing to lie, than there is of Americans who think this. Anyway, that is my guess.
But the question occurs to me: “Who is putting up the money for this campaign?” Then this question occurs to me: “Why?”
I am a great believer in searching for historical truth. I am also a great believer in the fact that hardly anyone is committed to such a search, and of those who are, most of them don’t have much money.
When dealing with the government’s version of history, always ask this question: “Who is covering up?” But don’t forget this question: “Who is paying for this round of uncovering?” And this question: “Why?”
GETTING THE WORD OUT
Fact: it does no good to get the word out unless you have a very explicit, tightly focused program to mobilize people after you get the word out. The marketing campaign must be an extension of the mobilization plan. It must reinforce this plan. It must ignore everything that is not an aspect of this plan.
We have limited resources. It is very easy to waste resources. This is why a marketing campaign is necessary: to conserve resources. There must be a specific, measurable goal for the expenditures. There must be success indicators. There must be rapid reporting on the results of the expenditures. There must be a way of generating money from the campaign, so that there can be another follow-up campaign.
Until all this is in place, and tested on a limited, statistically representative scale, the money will disappear into the void.
Direct-response marketers understand all this. They live with it. Yet very few people understand this, and fewer still discipline themselves to follow this procedure.
People get on board a project “to get the word out” for many reasons. There is no universal pattern for joining a cause. It is too expensive to devise a separate recruiting campaign for each of these motivations. The budget is too small. The markets are too diversified. The personal motivations are too different.
Those who promote the official version also have multiple motivations. But they have a huge advantage: government money, government power, and the mainstream media, which fear government power and want in on government money.
Most people do not have time to re-think every government position. Even with the big positions, people do not have time to re-think them in detail. They sense the personal cost of such investigations. If they ever figured out that they have been lied to deliberately, they might lose faith in the government. This is like abandoning the religion of your youth. The costs are high. The older you are, the more emotional capital is invested in this “market.” To abandon faith in the official line means admitting that you had previously fallen for a grand deception. You were played the sucker. You were, in Lee Harvey Oswald’s now-famous term, a “patsy.”
There is an old line: “You cannot change just one thing.” When you abandon faith in the broad outline of the government’s official explanation, you then feel as though you must offer a better one. This opens up a huge can of worms. This may take you down rabbit trails. Then this may take you down rabbit holes. You may be like Alice. You may enter Wonderland. You may never re-emerge.
LOSS OF FAITH
My loss of faith in the federal government’s version of American history began in the fall of 1958. I wrote a high school term paper on the Japanese attack on Pearl Harbor. I reached a conclusion: President Roosevelt not only knew that an attack was imminent in the first week of December 1941, he had for a year authorized policies that he believed would provoke such an attack. Secretary of War Henry L. Stimson spoke for Roosevelt when he made this entry in his diary on November 25, 1941: “The question was how we should maneuver them [the Japanese] into the position of firing the first shot. . . .”
I did not know in 1958 that he had been Secretary of War under Taft, Secretary of State under Hoover, and was later known as “the chairman of the American Establishment.” I was young and naïve in 1958. I am no longer young. I trust that I am not naïve . . . not about the U.S. government, anyway.
This week, I read yet another book that purports to explain why the Japanese attacked Pearl Harbor: Operation Snow (2012). It blames Stalin and Harry Dexter White. It does not come close to proving its case. The author explicitly says that President Roosevelt knew nothing of what was about to happen at Pearl Harbor, that he in no way goaded the Japanese into attacking the fleet. Therefore, he says, Harry Elmer Barnes was wrong (p. xx). This book was published by the Henry Regnery Company, whose founder published the most detailed account of Roosevelt’s behind-the-scenes manipulation of these events, Back Door to War: The Roosevelt Foreign Policy, 1933-1941 (1952), by Charles C. Tansill, who in 1952 was one of the two or three most distinguished American historians on American foreign policy. It does not appear in the bibliography of Operation Snow. Neither does Charles Beard’s President Roosevelt and the Coming of the War (Yale University Press, 1948). Operation Snow has not one footnote. Yet Regnery published it.
This is what happens to every movement devoted to rejecting the official government position. Unskilled amateurs get an outlet for their half-baked theories. So do outright crackpots. Then the skeptics must spend more time and money trying to keep the movement on track.
Problem: there is no single track. The government has a single track. The skeptics do not.
This is why there are more books on Kennedy’s assassination than on any other single event in modern history: too many tracks. The government has a single track: the Warren Commission Report.
At the core of every historical revisionist movement there must be a core assumption: “The government’s versions of turning-point domestic historical events are guilty until proven innocent.”
The revisionist history movement is in fact a resistance movement. In the minds of most citizens, it has the greater burden of proof. It must therefore begin the process of recruitment with overwhelming evidence regarding a single central and representative fact in the government’s account of the event. This presentation must prove that whatever the government and the dutiful mainstream media have promoted could not possibly have taken place. This creates the initial seeds of doubt. Plant these seeds. Water them. Nurture them. Then look for more seeds.
Problem: as soon as a prominent skeptic in the camp of the revisionists offers a theory of what did happen, the can of worms gets opened. This will begin almost immediately. It may even launch the revisionist movement.
When you identify what could not have happened, you call the government’s version into question. You also put a “Detour” sign on a rabbit trail.
In the case of 9-11, the skeptics should begin at the crash site of United Airlines Flight 93 at Shanksville, Pennsylvania. There was no debris. Conclusion: it was not a crash site. Whatever happened to the plane, it did not end up at the official crash site.
The on-ramp to the highway of skepticism should begin wherever there can be no counter-argument — preferably an argument based on physics or engineering. Begin where the official report offers zero evidence. Begin where there is self-imposed silence, coupled with ridicule of conspiracy theories.
That will be enough to raise serious doubts.
As soon as the Shanksville investigators get this story out and defend it in multiple media outlets — videos, articles, books — they can go on to Building 7.
Meanwhile, the Building 7 specialists are building their case. “Why does this look like a controlled demolition?”
Pentagon crash skeptics are doing their work, too. “What really hit the Pentagon?”
All of them should keep asking this: “Why have we never been told what was on the ‘black boxes’ — which are in fact orange — that record the flight data that precede a crash?” The government is zero for four.
“It’s just four of those things, four of those crazy things.”
If the goal is to raise serious doubts about the government’s version, this approach will be successful. On the other hand, if the goal is to explain the four plane incidents by means of a coherent narrative, it will take a lifetime of many investigators, and there will be no agreement. The noise will overwhelm the narrative. The irreducible complexity of history will thwart a common story that has sufficient footnotes to sufficiently reliable sources.
For those in search of a theory of why 9-11 happened, here is a good place to start: http://www.garynorth.com/public/12227.cfm
The conclusion of Gödel’s theorem also applies to historiography. It is impossible for human beings to come up with a single narrative of any event that is both consistent and complete, relying on nothing outside of its limited evidence. The more information we have, the less consistency our narrative will have.
This applies to the official version, too. So, let us concentrate our limited resources on persuading intelligent people that the government is not telling the truth, the whole truth, and nothing but the truth.
Then let us take the next step: “The government is lying.”
Then let us follow the confession, follow the money, and follow the organizations involved in the government’s official version. Let us ask this economic question: “Who wins? Who loses?” Then let us ask this political question: “Who? Whom?” That was Lenin’s question, a master of who/whom.
Then let us ask the question that Lenin also asked, stealing it from Cherneshevsky: “What is to be done?”
You cannot come to the truth, the whole truth, and nothing but the truth. The government can’t, either. But you can make a pretty good case that the government will not even make the attempt. Show why and how the government is lying. Show that lying is part of the government’s underlying — with the accent on “lying” — agenda. That should be good enough for anyone.
It will surely be good enough for me.