Archive for September, 2012

Sock Puppetry

Posted in Uncategorized on September 30, 2012 by Jay Howard

Why am I skeptical?  In World Hypothesis, Stephen Pepper proposes a (non-obvious, but common sense) way to look at how we formulate hypotheses.  It’s one of those brilliant works that elucidates a process that we kinda already do, but makes it explicit.  The big take-away is what he calls “danda corroboration” as opposed to “data corroboration.”  Danda is the term for over-arching coherencies in data sets.  It is one of the reasons the truthers will never go away.  The over-arching sets of information lead to a coherent conclusion that is not readily explained by the official version of events.

So, while perusing the interwebs for interesting tidbits about scanning electron micography, I came across yet another discussion board.  This topic was about 2 years old and only 3 pages long, so it wasn’t hard to get through the discussion.  The flavor of this group leant decidedly towards the official version, but only if you count the following entries as separate individuals.

From the website: http://forums.somethingawful.com/showthread.php?threadid=3297991.  (Of note: this is a PAYED MEMBER SITE.  I tried to look at one of the profiles and it directed me to a $9.95 shopping cart price.)  Sir Tonk (member since April 2006) says on April 29, 2010 at 02:53,

SIR TONK

“I thought the truther thing had died down and then the host on one of the Pacifica shows I engineer for decided to do a truther episode Tuesday since she just found about all this “amazing evidence” and had to get it to the people stat. It was embarassing as hell and then we started taking calls and almost all of them supported it. What the gently caress is wrong with people?

I can see not believing the story on JFK’s assassination, but the 9/11 theories are loving ridiculous. I saw Loose Change back when it first came out and was curious, but it was all proven wrong and here we are still thinking the government was able to do this poo poo and keep everyone involved quiet.”

And 4 posts later, Crackpipe, (member since July, 2001) says

CRACKPIPE

“Most conspiracies are “X or Y happened because of Z.”

Truthers have worked their way back to A and beyond. One day its remote-controlled planes. The next its thermite, the day after is absolutely, positively explosive charges, then it’s something else. Every aspect of every “rock-solid” theory is routinely disposed of and re-imagined. No amount of corroboration of any fact will make any bit of the “official story” true. Eyewitnesses on the ground are unreliable. People in the towers are unreliable. The planes were empty. What happened to the passengers on the planes? Doesn’t matter. Secret captivity bases. Robots man, robots. Drone planes. Until next week when it’s something else, or a combination of theories. No matter what the truth is this week, it’s still the truth. THAT is some ‘1984’ poo poo.

The very basic, simple fact that “Flying a fully-fueled commercial airliner into a building is an effective way to destroy the structure.” eludes them should be the first sign that people should run as far from them as possible.

Even if it were a government conspiracy, there really is no reason why “Flying a fully-fueled commercial airliner into a building” wouldn’t be a believable way for the buildings to be attacked. But it doesn’t work for the Truthers for the sole reason that’s the official story. So it automatically has to be false. They need to concoct elaborate destruction plans that don’t make any sense from a logistical perspective. And these theories will change like the weather. Not evolve, but completely change, but always be true.

If you had unlimited resources and were an evil person determined to bring the towers down, sneaking in teams to plant enough explosives throughout the World Trade Center to destroy them would be the least-effective means of doing so. Even if you could assemble a team of people to do it, get the materials, get the nitty-grittty engineering information on the towers and get your pack of followers in there, it still wouldn’t make any sense whatsoever. At all. Ever. Even if that were your one goal in life. Still wouldn’t make sense.

That poo poo takes time. Lots and lots of it. Go watch some documentary on demolition teams. They have to rip buildings apart before they can even plant explosives. And working all day, it can take months to accomplish. Even then you’re talking about a really, really obvious operation. Wires and poo poo everywhere. And when the explosives go off they don’t send huge loving fireballs in every direction. Where the gently caress is your thermal energy coming from Truthers?

WTC7 was built over a huge utility vault for the World Trade Center complex, and the whole thing had to be knitted together around that. So you had a complex system of beams transferring loads over and around it. There was a lot less redundancy in the design for that reason. Then the whole thing got slammed by two 110 story buildings dropping debris on them from the initial explosion, then the whole center falling outside the front loving door.

If 220 stories of flaming buildings drops 1300’+to my front door in ten seconds, I’m not going to blame any damage to my house on the loving Illuminati / CIA.

If you really want to nerd out on the World Trade Center, read all of this and then come back and prove what’s wrong with it if you have any issues.”

Apparently they don’t monitor or care about duplicate account holders.  Any dumbass with the memory of a cat could tell these are the same people posting multiple arguments.  And then there’s this a few posts down from a member named Kamel (since April, 2010):

KAMEL

“These kinds of nebulous goals are great if your a terrorist organization who wants to gently caress poo poo up, but not so much for corporations, governments, etc.”

Not even sure what that last sentence means.  But unless the posters here have absolutely no imagination or look to each other’s posts for writing tips, I believe we have a triple sock puppet here.  And now here’s Vera, (member since March, 2007):

VERA

“You know what I learned from 9/11 and most definitely WTC7? That our buildings are poo poo. I think there’s some romanticized feelings about American ingenuity to the point where people are in disbelief when something fails. The next couple of decades are going to seem shocking to many as our infrastructure finally starts to cave in and nobody understands why.”

Just because someone uses the same phrase doesn’t mean they’re the same person, HOWEVER, the undeniable tendency of one member to create multiple accounts and use these phrases makes it difficult to deny the possibility.  And here’s Johnny B. Goode (member since April 2004–which makes me think this guy was really thinking ahead):

JOHNNY B. GOODE

“These people aren’t scientists. They’re loving hacks. Why is this thread even a discussion?…

lol. Guys! Stop being better at stuff than me I don’t like looking like a loving moron!

Who talks like thiat?  Hopefully not many people.  And here’s konna, (member since August, 2005):

KONNA

“2) Drawing a conclusion of conspiracy by linking these coincidences you commit the Texas sharpshooter fallacy. A cluster of weird poo poo does not mean they are causally linked and in fact most of the time you need several improbable and unrelated things to happen simultaneously for the event to take place.”

It would be easier to swallow that these are NOT the same person if at least one of them shared a different opinion than any of the others, but alas, they are all in agreement.  Not a damning coincidence given the tendencies of internet folk, but really, are we to believe that all these disparate individuals use the same weirdly similar euphemisms in similar contexts?  Given what’s at stake, (several trillion dollars doled out to a number of people in various places), it’s not far-fetched to imagine there’s a little extra to go around creating some doubt, and casting scorn on the questioning masses.  Is it from the department of information control?  I couldn’t say, but what I can say for certain is whoever duplicated accounts, then responds to his own posts is going through an awful lot of juggling just to give the appearance of separate individuals.  But then, why repeat the strange euphemisms?  Perhaps they are not all the same person, but they certainly are not all different.  As for motivation?  Who knows?  What do you think?

The Case from Economics

Posted in Uncategorized on September 14, 2012 by Jay Howard

By now, the “red-gray chips” have become infamous pieces of evidence in the publics’ case to open an independent review of the WTC collapses.  Proponents of the Official Conspiracy Theory (OCT) have devised several arguments for the purpose of dismissing the chips as the smoking gun pointing to a high-level organizational effort to destroy the towers on 9/11/2001.

“They’re paint chips.”

We’ve heard this refrain from the OCT camp from the moment Harrit, Jones, Farrer, et al. first published their paper on the chips.  It’s a fair hypothesis to make since the steel structure was indeed coated with anti-corrosive paint which did contain a number of similar components to the red-gray chips.  So it’s worth distinguishing between the properties of Fe2O3 pigment particles found in paint and the Fe2O3 particles found in the red-gray chips.

Since both the OCT camp and the “truther” camp agree that the faceted iron-and-oxygen containing particles in the substrate are indeed iron oxide III, they can be used to compare with industrial grade iron oxide used in paint production.  If production-grade paint uses particles that look similar to the particles in the chips, we cannot rule out the possibility that the red-gray chips are just standard paint flecks.  If they are qualitatively different, then another hypothesis must be explored.

This composite material was found in relative abundance of the WTC dust:

Taken from “Active Thermitic Material Discovered in Dust from the 9/11 World Trade Center Catastrophe” published in The Open Chemical Physics Journal, 2009, 2, 7-31

The red material is composed of at least 3 parts: alumino-silicon crystals of relatively uniform size of about 1000nm at the longest point, iron-oxide III crystals of relatively uniform size of 100nm, mixed in a hydrocarbon-gel substrate as if to provide for an absolute maximum of surface area—far beyond any obvious commercial application.  When it comes to nan0-energentic materials, increased surface area is the name of the game.

These pieces have been analyzed using X-ray energy-dispersive spectroscopy to determine the relative ratio of elemental concentration. With a statistically significant study, the likely compounds can be determined. The methods are sound. There isn’t anything to “make up” about this stuff because it’s way more interesting than anything that could’ve been planted.

Now keep in mind that this stuff is ubiquitous in the samples tested. There are people who have samples of the dust who claim they have not found this substance, but regardless, it was found in the dust and it does appear to be exotic.  Below we see the iron-oxide particles as whitish flecks below:

Backscattered Electron Image of a cross section of the red material

And by “exotic” I mean high dollar. You see, here’s the clincher: 1 gram of Iron Oxide III in relatively uniform 100nm cost in 2006 cost about $58 USD. Imagine if a gram of metal oxide pigment cost $60, and you need 20 grams per gallon of paint. That gallon would cost $1200 just for the pigment! No, this stuff is not paint nor is it a component of paint.  Nano-scale iron oxide has been in production for a number of years, but the technology required to make it has only reduced in price.  Even if we cut the price in half or by a quarter, it’s still cost prohibitive by orders of magnitude.  No contractor on the planet would or could spend $300/gallon on corrosion resistant paint for structural steel.  Before any contractor spent that kind of cash, he’d find an alternative.  Period.

Below we see an SEM image of the red substrate.

Scanning Electron micrograph (SE)

This stuff was engineered. It’s exotic, cutting-edge materials technology on the cusp of research. The Lawrence-Livermore National Labs has produced a few notable papers about nanocomposites, particularly, sol-gel explosives whose applications have not been fully defined. These sol-gel substances consist (sometimes) of a hydrocarbon matrix (gel) and often a binary reactant system (solid), like aluminum and iron oxide, for instance.

It can be mixed to produce varying rates of energy-release—from relatively slower (for melting and cutting steel and concrete) to relatively fast (explosives). As Danish materials engineer and professor, Nails Harrit said in reference to the samples found in the WTC dust, “It is the bitches brew of nanothermitic explosives.”

This stuff is EXPENSIVE!

The creation of this stuff requires much highly-calibrated and technical equipment that is only run by highly educated and trained professionals in the most advanced laboratories in the world. This stuff was not made in a paint factory or a paint-precursor laboratory, much less by anyone in an Afghan cave.

Production at this level of cost-per-gram is absolutely cost-prohibitive for construction purposes.  As to what it was doing in such quantities in the WTC dust leaves at least some room for speculation.  The cost of uniform size nanoparticulate iron oxide III leaves little doubt that it was not used for paint pigment nor any construction material.

We know without doubt it was not pigment.  We also know there were no registered research labs which specifically used this material in the WTC center.  So what was it doing there?  Why does it appear to explode?  Why does it appear to leave iron microspheres as a by-product of ignition?  Are they the same iron microspheres studied by S. Jones in his previous papers on the WTC dust?

Without being much of a sleuth, these questions all seem to coalesce into an uncomfortable hypothesis about the nature of the collapses on 9/11/2001.