Jun 30 2014

9/11 Conspiracy Debate – Part III

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384 Responses to “9/11 Conspiracy Debate – Part III”

  1. mumadaddon 30 Jun 2014 at 9:03 am

    Unsupported pronouncements like these are called bare assertion fallacies.

    Oh. How about this:

    The official Twin Tower collapse story has absolutely no supporting evidence to this day and certainly had none when it was first concocted on the day of the disaster.

    Further, the lack of any observable deceleration when the upper blocks hit the lower buildings below proves conclusively that no Vérinage-like techniques were used on the Twin Towers.[10]

    So let me get this straight: in part one you argue that the collapse was a controlled demolition because it looked like a controlled demolition, linking to videos of verinage demolitions to back this up. Verinage was, I believe the only demolition technique you mentioned by name:

    The Vérinage technique used in France, for example, typically removes a single floor of support about half way down the building.[3]

    Are you now disavowing yourself of that position?

  2. Ori Vandewalleon 30 Jun 2014 at 9:07 am

    Yeah, Fullerton ignored one of Novella’s main arguments, which is that Fullerton needs to show why rapid, symmetric falls are indicative of controlled demolition (and not indicative of other types of falls). Without doing this, he has essentially no evidence in favor of a controlled demolition.

    Additionally, his theory (like most conspiracy theories) falls prey to Occam’s razor. Occam’s razor doesn’t say anything about what’s more likely to be true, but it does tell us where the burden of proof lies.

    The “official” theory posits that the planes hit the towers and caused the collapse of the towers. To support such a theory, there must be evidence demonstrating that such an impact could cause such a collapse. That’s it.

    The controlled demolition theory, on the other hand, needs evidence demonstrating that explosives (or some other controlled demolition device) were placed, that such devices could produce the fall observed, that such devices could survive the plane impact, that such devices could be installed (possibly throughout the entire building) without anyone noticing, etc. (And this doesn’t even touch on why the conspirators would fly planes into the building at all if they could just demolish the buildings with explosives.)

    The point here (and the point of bringing up Occam’s razor) is that the controlled demolition theory needlessly introduces a wide range of assumptions which need to be justified in order to give plausibility to the controlled demolition theory. Thus, the burden of proof is on Fullerton to demonstrate that his theory is more likely to be true. He cannot simply provide a single piece of evidence; his evidence must be extraordinary.

  3. Bruceon 30 Jun 2014 at 9:10 am

    Sorry,

    I had to stop reading just after he claimed to have over 2200 experts compared to the NIST report and a statement from 25 ASCE civil engineers and THEN he says Steve is committing an “appeal to the masses (AKA appeal to consensus) and appeal to authority”.

    Wait… do you have more experts or does Steve? If you have more experts is your fallacy bigger than Steve’s or is it simply how you use your fallacy that matters?

  4. The Other John Mcon 30 Jun 2014 at 9:12 am

    Some advice:

    You need you look up what it means for something to be “operationally-defined” you seem to completely misunderstand this concept, and what it implies for science beyond 5th grade levels.

    You need to consider “evidence” outside of your own bubble (i.e., not just Journal of 9/11 studies, and YouTube).

    Don’t whine & bitch about your supposed “disadvantages” in this debate, it makes you look petty and childish. Scientific debates, when they occur at levels beyond 5th grade, are interested in the evidence.

    You ARE at a disadvantage, because you are making extraordinary claims with basically no evidence in support of your theory not explainable by other interpretations. Any bomb residue? Any actual compelling data of explosions initiating collapse? Any eye witnesses who saw the bombs being planted? Anyone who was in on the conspiracy come forward? Any evidence at all?

  5. dudeon 30 Jun 2014 at 9:17 am

    I don’t know why I enjoy watching/listening/reading debates so much when I feel I have heard the arguments from both sides and have come to a conclusion that is not likely to change (but I am always open to new information). In these debates it is true that the side I agree with, to my eye is clearly shown to be correct.

    This however is not always the case, some people just don’t make good debaters or happen to lose the audience in a noticeable way. What I am trying to say is I think I can at least in part remove myself and try and judge a debate on the arguments rather than injecting how I feel (though not always the case, I can’t stand watching William Lane Craig and Dinesh D’Souza repeating lies they have already been called on). Having said all that I think I will be echoing a lot of peoples opinion when I say I can not in any way, shape or form understand how someone could read the three posts as they stand and think Michael Fullerton has even come up with the basics of an argument. For someone mentioning evidence and demanding it a lot he hasn’t even started to present any.

    I look forward to what I am sure will be a fantastic final post from Steve, it might even make for a fun segment of ‘Name that Logical fallacy’ or a fun guessing game of how many logical fallacies can you fit in one post. But how many people at this point feel that there has been anything said that needs addressing?

  6. jasontimothyjoneson 30 Jun 2014 at 9:32 am

    @Bruce I stopped at the exact same point as you, them went back to it and could not go any further than the “this isn’t fair because its on my opponents playground”

    Also for anyone thats interested (Mr Fullerton) in post hoc ergo propter hoc, a plane hitting a building and the building falls down is not ‘post hoc’ unless you consider a paper plane hitting a building, and the building falling down 10 years later. The classic example of Post Hoc is the rooster crows just before sun-up therefor the rooster makes the sun come up (also roosters crow all day long)

    Its true that correlation does not mean causation, but if I throw a ball at a window, and the window brakes, the window broke because I threw a ball at it you cant claim post hoc ergo propter hoc, I can argue that I didnt brake the window, the ball did, but the actions are relational, as much as if a plane hits a building and the building catches fire and is demolished as a result.

  7. Tafferon 30 Jun 2014 at 9:43 am

    So, I’m genuinely confused, with all this “only explains the initial collapse” business.
    Is he saying that planes hit building damaging the building+fire rages for hours, building sags as supports weaken and cause the top of the towers to fall, as supported by the computer model he himself agrees shows that, and THEN at that exact moment the buildings were deliberately demolished with explosives (or no explosives? is that what hes arguing?)

    Is it just me thats kinda confused as to what his version of events actually is?
    Did the tops fall because the planes, or not?
    Were there explosives? (he mentioned one of Steves weak points is that he assumes CD can only be done with explosives, but then also goes on to talk about how people say they heard explosions)
    If so, where were they and how did they get there? (does he ever say that?)
    If not, what was used?

    And this is just kinda my own musing, flying hijacked planes into very high profile buildings in a spectacular way and killing a bunch of people in the collision and inevitable huge inferno is pretty much really bad all on its own, and the main fear generated has been about air travel (as you assume it might, apart from people in other high profile sky-scrapers) and would have been enough on its own to do everything everyone later used 9/11 to justify…so assuming conspiracy, why did they even need to fully destroy the towers at all? Why not just not bother with any CD no the towers at all, and just have the planes do the work without risk having the massive operation to demolish the towers being revealed?

  8. pdeboeron 30 Jun 2014 at 10:00 am

    Cry me a fucking river! Just because the commenters are not on your side does not put you at a disadvantage in a debate.

    I know this is a rebuttal, but Fullerton is on the defensive even more so than his first post. His defense consists mostly of picking apart the official story’s evidence.

    When your explanation is the odd and improbable one, you should be the one providing valuable evidence and defending it.

    Eye witness accounts are significantly out weighed when there is tons of video/audio recording that don’t agree.

  9. Davdoodleson 30 Jun 2014 at 10:07 am

    “They absolutely do not have evidence that the falling upper block of each tower demolished the lower building. In spite of this lack of evidence they claim that it happened.”

    Um, dozens videos, taken from multiple different vantage points ALL show exactly that happening.

    There is no serious doubt that the portion of the building above the ‘plane impact site fell and pancaked each subsequent floor.

    Or are there really people that believe each floor individually, all the way down, was carefully timed to disintegrate, each a millisecond after the other, to flawlessly simulate precisely what would have happened anyway?

    The conspiracy theory assertion (as I understand it) is simply (blurgh) that the integrity of the structure at the impact site was as a result of controlled demolition, and not from the impacts and fires. No?
    .

  10. tmac57on 30 Jun 2014 at 10:14 am

    You know when a kid hands you one of those cheesy ,novelty cans of ‘Peanuts’ that rattle but feels light,and you are thinking to yourself “Oh great ! There’s a fake spring ‘snake’ in here,and they expect me to be scared and surprised when I open this”. But you think “Okay,I’ll play along just for fun…cause…you know…a kid”
    You kind of expect the snake will come violently jumping out,and by reflex you will be at least a little startled,so you brace yourself…then opennnnn….and the can turns out to be too old,and the snake has lost it’s tension,the cloth around it is tattered and falling apart,and the thing just drops limply to the floor…sigh!
    Everyone involved has wasted their time and energy on a dud :(

    Yeah..it’s kinda like that…

  11. jasontimothyjoneson 30 Jun 2014 at 10:16 am

    This is actually a genuine question, has anyone actually given a remotely credible reason, or any reason as to why there would have been explosives in the towers to begin with? Or was it just good luck that the planes hit a pre wired building

  12. jwadamsonon 30 Jun 2014 at 10:17 am

    The paragraph rebuttal of Steve is silly. Starts by saying steve claims that Controlled Demolition (CD) needs explosions and “rebuts” this by asserting it doesn’t always. Thereby ignoring all the other critiques raised (invisible, unrecorded, coordinated with the impact site and timing of other structural failure). Then goes on to state this was in fact a case of CD with explosives without trying to redress the other problems.

    I think this demonstrates how he fundamentally lacks of a concrete position. We are to believe it was a CD, but not a the Vérinage. If there was a better fitting demonstration of CD, he would have used that in the first part.

    I found the point of the Verinage to be not the specific style, but that a tall building will collapse symmetricallish and at near free-fall solely from an upper floor failure without any special preparation or effort. If the NIST report is convincing that initiation can be accounted for by the impact+fire, then we don’t need any other factors to achieve an symetricish quickish total collapse of the towers.
    “Novella falsely claims that I dismiss the official story evidence for collapse initiation. I don’t dismiss it. I am merely saying it does not in any way constitute evidence for the rest of the collapse.”

  13. regexpon 30 Jun 2014 at 10:25 am

    A 5th grade science student would demand more evidence in your rebuttal than what has been provided here.

  14. Phil Newboldon 30 Jun 2014 at 10:54 am

    I imagine Michael Fullerton having read a book on logical fallacies, just misunderstood pretty much all of them and not learnt more than their basic definitions, then trying to name as many as he could without understanding the actual characteristics of, or learning how to properly identify any of the logical fallacies he read about. He also seems to have no understanding of the difference between a formal and informal logical fallacy.

  15. jsterritton 30 Jun 2014 at 11:21 am

    Fullerton’s Wiki crash-course in logical fallacies is both galling and entertaining. He doesn’t command even a basic understanding of what appeals to authority, consensus, popularity, and ignorance mean; or how post hoc is constructed; or what the words, “I will not use logical fallacies” mean. The word “irony” is noticeably missing from his meagre playbook as well. Maybe it’s because I’m a “puerile sophist,” but I also take issue with having the lexicon of critical thinkers and skeptics co-opted. Fullerton calls us “denialists” and our beliefs “faith-based;” he challenges Novella on his belief in evolution, and accuses him of using God-of-the-gaps fallacious reasoning.

    Fullerton is making extraordinary claims, yet laments, “Why is it that I must have rigorous operational definitions for my evidence but [Novella] doesn’t?” Then he upbraids Novella for the offense of special pleading. Irony meter=fried. I said it before, I’ll say it again: If Fullerton intends to disprove the theory of gravity, he’s going to need impressive, airtight, and overwhelming proof. Novella just has to drop a pencil.

    Fullerton’s overarching debating point is his line in the sand from incredulity. From there, he shifts all burden of proof to Novella — not just proof against Fullerton’s arguments, but proof that will convince Fullerton that his unshakable conviction about 9/11 if wrong. If Novella cannot accomplish this impossible task, Fullerton will have no other choice but to count this debate a win for himself, a crushing defeat for Novella. What an a**hole (ad hominem, sorry).

  16. daviddb1on 30 Jun 2014 at 11:23 am

    The planes on their own would have been enough. A CD of the occupied buildings would have been enough. Why both? If you could enter these buildings, set up a CD and later initiate the CD, why would you bother with the planes? So many people were able to evacuate the towers and surrounding areas prior to their fall due to the planes. If you set up a CD, you could have initiated the event and have killed far more people. Far, far more effective as a terrorist event in my opinion. You still had flight 93 and the Pentagon to make people worry about transportation (Airlines/Airports). Imagine if the towers had been brought down with a CD minus the planes? Holy Shit that would have really freaked us all out! Who knows how much worse things would be now!

  17. Karl Withakayon 30 Jun 2014 at 11:28 am

    Fullerton seems to be engaging in the OJ defense. I don’t have to prove my position, I don’t even have to disprove your position. What I need to do is throw as many superficial specters of doubt on your position as possible, even if many of those specters are mutually exclusive or don’t hold up under close examination.

    Fullerton hasn’t provided a consistent, coherent hypothesis for what brought the towers towers down beyond the simple claim of controlled demolition.

    He also seems to feel that sprinkling claims of logical fallacies regularly throughout his response is equivalent to throwing trump cards on the tricks. ‘I win this paragraph because I played the Red Herring trump card; it’s irrelevant whether or not it actually applies here.’

    He has made some ridiculous assertions, too many to call them all out, but here’s one gem:

    “Anyway, if a pilot could easily perform the insanely complex maneuver of hitting the Pentagon why couldn’t they also hit pre-determined positions of the Twin Towers? Also, explosives can be engineered to withstand extreme heat or encased in protective shields.[11] ”

    Why was it “insanely complex” to hit some part of one of the world’s largest buildings (spans 28.7 acres) with an airplane. I’m not a pilot, and I could be wrong, but it seems to me that this was the easiest building to hit. Hitting a 110 story building in precisely the right spot to coincide with the placement of explosives is entirely different. Once you have a visual on the tower, the GPS wouldn’t really make a difference. It wouldn’t help you spot the right floor, and it wouldn’t help you maneuver to hit where you wanted. Good luck hitting a specific floor.

    Yes, there are insensitive explosives that can withstand fire and impact, but you’d also have to protect the detonation infrastructure from damage.

    Regarding controlled demolitions, those who claim CD completely ignore the massive amount of prep work required for controlled demolitions: The striping away of interior walls and insulation to expose the supports, the drilling into the concrete to plant the explosives, the wiring runs, the weakening of key steel with torches, etc.

    I’m still waiting on the details of what technique was used to perform the controlled demolition and how it was able to be done without anyone noticing all the explosive and wires all over the place or the prep work done to set it all up.

  18. Karl Withakayon 30 Jun 2014 at 11:30 am

    To clarify, when I said “one of the world’s largest buildings (spans 28.7 acres)” and “this was the easiest building to hit”, I was talking about The Pentagon.

  19. Vendetta88on 30 Jun 2014 at 11:35 am

    Ifound it odd that he pointed out that they had agreed to not use logical fallacies in part 1. I figured that it should be implied that logical fallacies should not be used. It is the same as claiming you are going to have a swimming race on a river and that you have agreed that you are not allowed to run down the bank of the river to the finish line. That rule is implied, or else it isn’t a swimming contest.

    Is there a situation where logical fallacies would enhance the debate?

    The purpose of that statement is quite obvious now, Mr. Fullerton was trying to preempt all of Dr. Novella’s arguments by calling them fallacies before he presented them. He was trying to rig the game so he could focus on calling out perceived fallacies rather than proving his own assertions.

    His rebuttal is nothing but tu quoque and, forgive me if there is a fancier term for this, fallacy fallacies, that is claiming fallacy where none exists, which is a variation of a straw man argument if you ask me.

  20. Belgarathon 30 Jun 2014 at 12:10 pm

    “Anyway, if a pilot could easily perform the insanely complex maneuver of hitting the Pentagon why couldn’t they also hit pre-determined positions of the Twin Towers?”

    Hitting the Pentagon with a plane isn’t insanely complex. It’s quite simple. I’ve trained many hundreds of pilots to land airplanes. Pilots routinely, even with almost no training whatsoever, can line up an airplane to land on a runway that is between 100 and 200 feet wide (on average). The World Trade Center buildings were about 208 feet on a side. If my goal was to get a pilot to hit a runway once and not care about the outcome, one could train any reader of this to do so within the first 20 minutes of getting in an airplane.

    Hitting the pentagon is a trivial matter for any pilot with even minimal training. Hitting the pentagon is similar to driving a car at high speed into a tunnel. It’s insanely complex to do so, yet humans do it every day.

    It really appears to me based on Mr. Fullerton’s statements around this that he is STARTING with the idea that WTC was a controlled demolition and then just filling in new assertions to fit the facts. ‘Oh, It would have been HARD to fly a plane into the pentagon, therefore pilots could have been trained to fly the plane into a specific floor where the demo charges were placed’

  21. Belgarathon 30 Jun 2014 at 12:12 pm

    @Karl Withakay

    It’s not insanely complex, it’s quite trivial. We just never see it being done because the vast majority of people flying airplanes aren’t intent on committing a mass murder suicide.

  22. the devils gummy bearon 30 Jun 2014 at 12:19 pm

    0 for 2.

    Also, if anyone hasn’t noticed, pointing out the error-laden logical fallacy fetish to fullerm, is pointless…

    It is, however, bemusing to behold and amusing to giggle about.

  23. the devils gummy bearon 30 Jun 2014 at 12:21 pm

    Maybe it’s performance art. A Canadian Andy Kaufman.

  24. Stepituppa2on 30 Jun 2014 at 12:22 pm

    Is this a debate or a fallacy defining contest? You can always tell when a person doesn’t quite know what they’re talking about, or just isn’t quite smart enough to engage in a high level debate when they keep trying to “sound” more educated than the other person by using all kinds of flowery language but they can’t effectively address a simple request with anything resembling a straight forward answer.

  25. mumadaddon 30 Jun 2014 at 12:35 pm

    I know the ‘logic’ in Fullerton’s first post has been picked apart already, but seeing as he’s added nothing new here…

    I just looked up a list of formal fallacies and realised that his whole argument is a formal fallacy: affirming the consequent.

    1. If P (controlled demolition) then Q (symmetrical, vertical building collapse)
    2. Q
    3. Therefore P

    Oh very dear.

  26. the devils gummy bearon 30 Jun 2014 at 12:36 pm

    Belgarath, you’re a pilot (I know this from the SGU forums). Didn’t the hijackers follow the Potomac until I-395, where they executed the turn/dive into the Pentagon?

    Complex? Meh. More like a few hours in Microsoft Flight Simulator. Kind of hard not to miss.

  27. Bronze Dogon 30 Jun 2014 at 12:36 pm

    The paragraph rebuttal of Steve is silly. Starts by saying steve claims that Controlled Demolition (CD) needs explosions and “rebuts” this by asserting it doesn’t always. Thereby ignoring all the other critiques raised (invisible, unrecorded, coordinated with the impact site and timing of other structural failure). Then goes on to state this was in fact a case of CD with explosives without trying to redress the other problems.
    I think this demonstrates how he fundamentally lacks of a concrete position. We are to believe it was a CD, but not a the Vérinage. If there was a better fitting demonstration of CD, he would have used that in the first part.

    Conspiracy woos seem to apply a rhetorical version of Heisenberg’s uncertainty principle: The more you examine the direction they’re trying to take the argument, the less certain you can be about their position.

  28. deltaVon 30 Jun 2014 at 12:39 pm

    ” In fact it is entirely possible that wireless CD devices were positioned all over the building and controlled with a computer program that could be easily reconfigured in a very short time frame to start where the planes hit. Anyway, if a pilot could easily perform the insanely complex maneuver of hitting the Pentagon why couldn’t they also hit pre-determined positions of the Twin Towers? Also, explosives can be engineered to withstand extreme heat or encased in protective shields.[11] Other technologies like energetic nanocomposites could also have been used for example.”

    Um…. Does that sound like special pleading to anyone else?

  29. cloudskimmeron 30 Jun 2014 at 12:40 pm

    You say that anyone with a fifth grade education would agree with you. Unfortunately for you, Dr. Novella has far more than a fifth grade education, and also has an interest in skepticism and logic that far exceeds your own. Your arguments are not coherently stated. Nor are they supported by anything like adequate evidence.

    “Anyway, if a pilot could easily perform the insanely complex maneuver of hitting the Pentagon why couldn’t they also hit pre-determined positions of the Twin Towers?”

    At last you inadvertently stumble into my area of professional expertise. Just look at the widely varying levels struck by the two airplanes on the WTC towers. That alone is good evidence that there was no precision in the level chosen for the attack. Hitting the Pentagon was certainly not insanely complex. It is well within the abilities of an average private pilot, particularly if one has trained only with the intent of conductIng this attack. You can also see that the second airplane doesn’t hit the tower straight on, but instead strikes the corner of the building. This left one stairwell intact, allowed some people to escape from above the impact level, and caused the top of the tower to fall at a significant angle, not a symmetrical collapse.

    In any event, you present no evidence for your guesses, and don’t link to good source material. You can’t even summarize your guesses in a coherent way. You don’t appear to have any experience in engineering, physics, or any aspect of aviation. You have squandered your opportunities to present your case. Instead you wasted your time with name calling, and one logical fallacy after another. And you wasted the time of anyone who reads your screed. Your statements will only appeal to the minority of people who are predisposed to believe your paranoid rants. Overall you did a terrible job of presenting your case. Is that because you lack the ability to present a coherent argument, or because you have no evidence to support your contentions? Both, I’d say.

  30. cloudskimmeron 30 Jun 2014 at 12:52 pm

    And by the way, posting a picture repeatedly showing the top of the south tower falling sideways doesn’t help your case either.

  31. wood757on 30 Jun 2014 at 1:01 pm

    Mark Hoofnagle’s Denialism Blog covers quite nicely what Michael Fullerton has been doing. The blog’s byline says it all:

    “Don’t Mistake Denialism for Debate”

  32. BBBlueon 30 Jun 2014 at 1:03 pm

    A big problem for me is that I am at a disadvantage in this debate.

    Bingo! And your disadvantage is the fact that you have not offered credible evidence.

    We do have physical evidence of planes crashing and burning, and the effect of the temperatures produced by burning jet fuel on the strength of structural steel is well understood. No evidence of similar quality has been offered in support of the CD theory. That theory dies two deaths; one because of lack of evidence and the other because of implausibility.

  33. jsterritton 30 Jun 2014 at 1:29 pm

    DGB: He does indeed have a “fallacy fetish.” Good stuff.

    Vendetta88: a very good summary of the absurdity with which Fullerton has constructed his debate, from his first breath as it were. As others have pointed out here, Fullerton has only a passing familiarity with what logical fallacies are. He speaks like someone who has only (very) recently learned what they are. Impressed with the novelty, he seems intent on three things: first, using as many as possible (without noticing); second, attempting to shoehorn Dr Novella’s statements into them; while, third, decrying their use from his opening paragraph. All of this hews to the “argument from the sixth grade” tenor of Fullerton’s debating style: in addition to sounding like a 6th grader explaining where babies come from to some 4th graders (and getting it entirely wrong), when he gets called out for being wrong he reverts to cries of “unfair!” or “nuh-uh!” or that gem of the schoolyard, “you’re all a bunch of puerile sophists!”

  34. steve12on 30 Jun 2014 at 1:43 pm

    So, so, so many problems, as everyone’s pointing out. This is a good example of the simple lack of rigor in evaluating evidence and composing arguments:

    “Novella states that the evidence I provided to support the use of CD actually weakened the case for CD. He is I’m sure referring to the last demolition in the Vérinage video I referenced.[9] He is implying that because this particular CD started near the top, the WTC Towers could have been natural examples of Vérinage. The devastatingly fatal problem with this argument is that Vérinage has only ever been used with buildings having load bearing walls, not steel-framed skyscrapers with thick central columns like the Towers were.”

    IF Fullerton wasn’t simply a believer, he would be able to see why including the verinage vids was a mistake from the get-go. They’re evidence in the opposite direction, but a believer always sees the same conclusions, evidence be damned.

    But NOW, he’s saying that the CD videos that HE put forth as models for the collapse of the towers are in fact bad models for the collapse of the towers. How embarrassing!

    A little intellectual rigor – even just playing devil’s advocate with yourself – can save you from a mistake this simple. But his arguments are formed in a conspiratorial echo chamber, where everything is evidence for what you want to believe.

  35. the devils gummy bearon 30 Jun 2014 at 1:48 pm

    jsterritt. I say we coin it. The new fallacy; Fullerton’s Fallacy or the argument from sixth grade. It needs to include the sophomoric comprehension (formal and informal) AND trigger happy zeal of declaring the world a fallacy of fallacy fallacies. Also, the relentless assertions, repeated ad nauseum, of “oppisite-day” word games. Literally, an argument from sixth grade.

    Or, eh… Maybe this unlettered and insufferable dolt doesn’t deserve the privilege of having something named after him, however derp it is.

  36. hammyrexon 30 Jun 2014 at 1:53 pm

    While the logical errors are somewhat disparate, it seems the overarching issue with Mr. Fullerton’s analysis is he neglected to provide evidence in support of CD, and instead only provides anomalies present with the “standard” story. However, the easy part of almost any scientific discussion is finding a problem with a given explanation; the hard part is actually building a new case that accounts for all evidence the previous theory did successfully, the evidence it failed to explain, and does not add any more assumptions. Based on the arguments presented, the CD hypothesis does not meet any of this criteria.

    I also strongly recommend Mr. Fullerton work on his prose. While a debate doesn’t have to necessarrily (and in my opinion should not) be a dry academic paper intended for publication, it also shouldn’t read like a rant.

  37. cloudskimmeron 30 Jun 2014 at 2:26 pm

    Karl Withakay:
    Sorry, I didn’t see your comments. I was so ticked off by Fullerton’s idiocy, I scrolled down to type my comments. You are absolutely right that the crashes weren’t hard to execute. The problem beginning pilots have is controlling their pitch (nose up/down) and making gradual changes to achieve a smooth touchdown. Pointing the nose at a target, making small pitch corrections to maintain your aim at the point you want to destructively impact is not terribly difficult, even for a low-time pilot. And some of the pilots had at enough experience to rent airplanes. If I recall correctly, there is some indication they had GPS receivers to help them navigate to their targets. In any event, there’s no indication that they had any great piloting ability; just enough to perform their destructive task. In terms of supporting the conspiracy theory, the WTC impacts were on different levels, which seems to indicate that there was no specific floor targeted. The gyrations the conspiracy theorists have to perform to justify both the airplane impacts and a controlled demolition are ludicrous. When it is stated that the wiring would be knocked out had the planes impacted the levels where the explosives were installed, they say “wireless detonators,” and of course they ignore the fact that teams of people would have been inside, punching holes in walls, fastening equipment to support columns, evidently throughout the building.

    And if the towers were rigged for a controlled demolition, why did the south tower fall sideways while the North Tower fell pretty much vertically. This is well-explained by the fact that the North Tower jet hit close to the center of the building side, impacting the core columns, while the South Tower jet hit the corner, causing the top to topple sideways towards the damaged corner.

    What about the timing? The south tower was hit second but fell first. Structural engineers explain that this was because it was hit lower, with more weight above the damage, causing more force on the weakening steel columns, so it fell earlier. The North Tower had less mass above, so the bowing of the steel due to weakening by fires took longer to cause a collapse. Again, in engineering terms, this all makes sense, whereas the CD guess is ludicrously unsupported by any evidence. It was early and lots of people hadn’t come to work yet. Those on their way did not enter the north tower. Many of them worked on the affected floors, and none have reported the extensive activity indicative of placement of explosives in the building. The CD theory is just nuts, with no supporting evidence. That’s why the truthers have been so interested in building 7, where they can look at photos of the undamaged side, ignore extensive fires burning inside, and claim that an undamaged building fell–it must’ve been a CD! What rubbish!

    This “debate” has been pointless, except that it demonstrates the utter failure of the conspiracy-buffs. It’s a lot like the evolution/creation “debates” where the creationists claim there is no evidence for evolution, therefore they win. Fullerton claims that the evidence supports his guesses, but presents no evidence, just empty assertions and a few nut jobs who have abandoned any training they may have to proclaim that they have THE answers. Fullerton is immune to reasoning and evidence.

    I wonder why he doesn’t show up in the comments to respond. Was there an agreement that the parties to the debate would not comment? It might be interesting if they did. Although what Dr. Novella writes stands up well and needs no clarification, I suppose Fullerton won’t try to actually reason with us anyway–it seems beyond his capacity. And his misuse of logic certainly shows a lack of critical thinking capability.

    His contributions failed to show us his concept of the attacks. Were there four airlines hijacked that day by Al Qaida extremists? Who was responsible for the attacks? Why would they rig the buildings for controlled demolition AND fly airplanes into them? And what about he fourth airplane? It presumably had a target that was not struck. That building should have had explosives planted in it to conduct a demolition. All you have to do is find that building, and find those planted explosives. Some people think the Capitol Building was a likely target, so were there explosives planted inside? Why weren’t they set off anyway to show off the power of the conspirators? C’mon, you have all the answers. Where is that fourth building rigged to detonate?

  38. mumadaddon 30 Jun 2014 at 2:57 pm

    To keep things simple I have only presented one piece of evidence in Part I, the rapid and symmetrical nature of the falls, because all I need is one piece to best the official story which has zero evidence.

    Ahah! So not presenting evidence is a debating tactic. Got it.

  39. mumadaddon 30 Jun 2014 at 2:58 pm

    ‘Logical fallacy’ – You keep using this phrase but it does not mean what you think it means.

    Claiming therefore that something is true because a majority of experts in the field believe it is true is a false argument. In fact, even using a consensus argument to claim one explanation is more likely than another is baseless.

    As I stated in Part I, arguing that a preceding event caused a following event involves the post hoc ergo propter hoc fallacy.

    They are saying “We have evidence that fire and plane damage caused the upper blocks to fall. We have no evidence that this first event caused the second event so the first event must have caused the second event”. This is an appeal to ignorance fallacy.

    This is a bit similar to the god of the gaps argument where gaps in scientific knowledge are interpreted as proof of God’s existence.

    He then trots out the red herring that in order for evidence to be considered it must be operationally defined.

    Why is it that I must have rigorous operational definitions for my evidence but he doesn’t? The answer is special pleading.

    Again, Novella claims that the South Tower was not symmetrical because it “collapsed on one side and the upper tower fell significantly to that side”. This is the same nirvana fallacy I dealt with in Part I.

    In most of these examples, it’s clear he’s not properly understood the fallacies he’s referencing, never mind correctly identified them in Steve’s post. This is some weird abuse of skeptic lingo reminiscent of leo100 and Scepcop’s attack on ‘psuedoskeptics’ (in fact, Fullerton has coined his own term, ‘pathological skepticism’).

  40. Karl Withakayon 30 Jun 2014 at 3:00 pm

    the devils gummy bear & jsterritt:

    I was thinking of the term Cargo Cult Skepticism. Going through the motions of superficially mimicking skepticism and critical thinking without really understanding or practicing any of the concepts of critical thinking or skepticism.

  41. fullermon 30 Jun 2014 at 3:08 pm

    Debate proposal

    I will debate any one of the delusional blowhards here that have falsely claimed that I have committed any logical fallacies in this debate (including false accusations of fallacy). It’s easy to spout BS but not so easy to back up your statements.

    Rules

    Select one person. That person must use his real name and have some sort of science degree. He can consult with any other people he wishes but only the selected person addresses me. I’m willing to do it here if Dr. N. sets up a new post or we can do it on skeptopathy.com. Time to put up or shut up.

  42. DanDanNoodleson 30 Jun 2014 at 3:17 pm

    In the post:

    This event is taking place on my opponent’s blog with copious posting of puerile sophistry from his unwavering uncritically thinking followers.

    And then, in the comments:

    I will debate any one of the delusional blowhards here that have falsely claimed that I have committed any logical fallacies in this debate

    Michael, please look up “argumentum ad hominem” and see if it qualifies in your mind as a logical fallacy.

  43. steve12on 30 Jun 2014 at 3:21 pm

    “I will debate any one of the delusional blowhards…”

    Oh boy…

    Why don’t you just answer some of the posts?

    Or how’s this: you finish your debate with Steve first. He’s doing a fine job, and you’re making almost no sense whatsoever. Think about your arguments a little more. Have a friend look it over.

    “that person must use his real name and have some sort of science degree.”

    Why on either count? What do names or degrees matter? It’s a debate.

  44. Gallenodon 30 Jun 2014 at 3:22 pm

    “CD does not require explosives.”

    dem·o·li·tion [dem-uh-lish-uhn, dee-muh-]
    noun
    1. an act or instance of demolishing.
    2. the state of being demolished; destruction.
    3. destruction or demolishment by explosives.
    4. demolitions, explosives, especially as used in war.
    adjective
    5. of, pertaining to, or working with explosives: A demolition squad attempted to blow up the bridge before the enemy captured it.
    6. of or pertaining to tearing down or demolishing: Demolition work had begun on the old building.

    So according to the definition above it is technically possible to demolish something by some means other than the use of explosives. Since he is apparently arguing that the absence of explosions just as the towers collapsed is not an impediment to his theory, perhaps Mr. Fullerton could strengthen his case by explaining just how the Twin Towers could have been demolished without explosives discharging at the time of and triggering the collapse other than as a result of being crashed into by jets and set afire. Maybe there were Gremlins inside with little copies of Mjolnir striking all the support beams in the proper sequence?

    This is looking a lot like the Bill Nye vs. Ken Ham debate. Nothing will get through the True Believer’s internal Reality Distortion Field and all the debate does is give Mr. Fullerton a platform for his nonsense and fodder for his “everyone’s trying to cover up the truth, so it must be true” rantings.

    “You are not entitled to your opinion. You are entitled to your informed opinion. No one is entitled to be ignorant.”
    – Harlan Ellison

  45. Karl Withakayon 30 Jun 2014 at 3:27 pm

    cloudskimmer

    “And what about he fourth airplane? It presumably had a target that was not struck. That building should have had explosives planted in it to conduct a demolition. All you have to do is find that building, and find those planted explosives. ”

    Even if you invoke special pleading and insist that plane was a smokescreen that was always intended to crash as it did and thus was never targeted for any building, what if the hijacking of either one of the two tower targeted planes had failed or been aborted in a similar fashion? How would you deal with those undetonated explosives? What if one of Fullerton’s special fire/explosion/ concussion resistant black box explosives failed to detonate and had been found/ detected in the rubble? What if enough key explosives failed and the tower stayed up with the remaining explosives intact?

    If it was a controlled demolition, why not crash the planes into lower parts of the buildings so people like Fullerton would consider the official story more plausible?

    Of course we’re still waiting for a detailed description as to how the controlled demolitions were done that produced the results observed, and why such a method was chosen considering how easily people like Fullerton have debunked the official story from watching YouTube videos.

    It’s the OJ defense. The destruction of the towers were skillfully executed controlled demolitions carried out by top experts who couldn’t figure out a more convincing way to bring down the buildings that wouldn’t be easily debunked by an average fifth grade with access to Google and YouTube.

  46. Bruceon 30 Jun 2014 at 3:28 pm

    “It’s easy to spout BS but not so easy to back up your statements.”

    You have proven that beyond a shadow of a doubt Mr Fullerton.

  47. Gallenodon 30 Jun 2014 at 3:29 pm

    And now that I’ve seen Mr. Fullerton’s one post challenging a single “scientist” that he will respond to, I will admit that I’m not a scientist. However, I did work in military munitions units for six years and I’ve seen my share of explosives and explosions. I submit that my Gremlims with hammers theory is a more credible, coherent explanation of how the towers fell than anything he’s submitted so far.

    Dale Long, Major (ret), USAF

  48. Karl Withakayon 30 Jun 2014 at 3:37 pm

    “I will debate any one of the delusional blowhards here that have falsely claimed that I have committed any logical fallacies in this debate (including false accusations of fallacy)”

    How about Steven Novella? No wait, it’s a trick; since nobody here has FALSELY claimed fullerm has committed any logical fallacies, it’s impossible to find anyone that meets the criteria for his invitation.

    Also since the people rightly pointing out fullerm’s actual logical fallacies aren’t, to the best of my knowledge, delusional blowhards, it is doubly impossible to find anyone that meets the criteria for his invitation.

    Why don’t you stick to the debate you’re currently in before you open another front?

  49. Enzoon 30 Jun 2014 at 3:38 pm

    I just don’t understand how Mr. Fullerton distinguishes between

    1. Plane hit building –> structural damage –> collapse

    and

    2. Plane hit building –> not enough damage –> controlled demolition triggered –> collapse

    What about a controlled demolition makes it so special that structural damage by a plane cannot cause a similar collapse? Especially when we consider the criteria for what a controlled collapse “looks” like is so open (i.e. we do not have experimentally meaningful numbers or parameters).

  50. Karl Withakayon 30 Jun 2014 at 3:38 pm

    ” It’s easy to spout BS but not so easy to back up your statements. ”

    Most unintentionally ironic comment of the whole thread.

  51. steve12on 30 Jun 2014 at 3:42 pm

    “I will admit that I’m not a scientist.”

    Don’t worry – neither is he! You have to be a scientist to debate a guy with a BS?

    Again – credentials do not mean shit in a debate. But the notion that he fancies himself a scientist and demands a scientist to debate with really reflects a delusional level of hubris with this guy.

  52. steve12on 30 Jun 2014 at 3:47 pm

    Enzo:

    “What about a controlled demolition makes it so special that structural damage by a plane cannot cause a similar collapse?”

    Because all of the previous instances of buildings going down in a similar manner were demolition, so this one must be demolition. Ot at least, we must assume that.

    It’s just this:

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Affirming_the_consequent

    And that’s his big gun. It actually goes downhill from there.

  53. MikeHon 30 Jun 2014 at 3:53 pm

    Don’t worry everyone I’m almost certain this is a super belated April fools joke. You almost had me Dr.Novella! No one would willingly drown themselves in bullshit like this. This stuff is George Lopez funny. I Can’t wait for part iv.

  54. Hosson 30 Jun 2014 at 4:12 pm

    “Rules
    Select one person. That person must use his real name and have some sort of science degree. He can consult with any other people he wishes but only the selected person addresses me. I’m willing to do it here if Dr. N. sets up a new post or we can do it on skeptopathy.com. Time to put up or shut up.”

    I’m kind of surprised the rules aren’t, “Whoever links to the most youtube videos supporting their position – WINS!!!”

    If you want to engage the people in this forum, I’d suggest using this forum. You could start by engaging individual arguments, but it seems you rather assert your correctness.

  55. cloudskimmeron 30 Jun 2014 at 4:12 pm

    Wow, I love the name of your blog: skeptopathy. Is that “pathy” as in “patho-” meaning disease or suffering, as in a diseased form of skepticism, or as in “pathetic”, meaning “evoking pity” and (my favorite) “miserably inadequate”?

    I am also reminded of Robert Todd Carroll’s summary of the truthers: “Ask disturbing questions, ignore the actual evidence, speculate about possible answers, assume the worst-case scenario, and then draw up your indictment. Once you’ve made up your mind, it is quite easy to find confirmation for just about any belief, no matter how farfetched or implausible.”

    Mr. Fuller: Do you accept that four planes were hijacked by 19 terrorists on the morning of September 11? Do you deny that they flew into prominent buildings? Why conduct the hijackings if the buildings were already rigged to explode that day?

    If the question was the initiation of the collapse, why does a CD, the setup of which was completely undetected by people working in the buildings, provide the best explanation, rather than the airplane crashes and subsequent fires, and the deformation of the visible surface of the towers which agrees with the engineering explanation? Have you seen the good explanation on PBS’s “Nova” program, “Why the Towers Fell”? You can watch it on the internet; it could be a good learning experience for you.

    And when you insist that you will only debate someone with a degree in science, does that disqualify you? After all, your degree, according to you, is in psychology and “computer science,” which isn’t really relevant to the issues of this debate. You really ought to be an engineer, and a structural engineer at that. Some knowledge of physics would also be helpful and keep you from thinking that the collapse of each floor would bring the entire upper mass to a complete stop before continuing. It is also necessary to bring actual evidence of your contentions to a debate. Thus far all I’ve seen is the argument from incredulity: you can’t imagine how a building constructed in the manner of the WTC towers falling except from a CD, therefore it was a CD, and anyone who shows evidence to the contrary is wrong. Ridiculous. Surely you can do better than that.

    And along the way, it would be helpful if you would give us a brief account of what happened on 9/11. It seems that you accept that planes hit the towers and started large fires, but that you cannot accept that steel softens at those temperatures, and their weight compromised the structural integrity until a collapse ensued. Do you say that the entire building was rigged with explosives? If not, how many floors were involved? When was the work carried out and who observed it? Who planted all those tons of explosives?

  56. Enzoon 30 Jun 2014 at 4:13 pm

    @steve12

    “…all of the previous instances of buildings going down in a similar manner were demolition…”

    I understand this, as unconvincing as it is to me. But what I would like to know what is it specifically about the collapse that rules out planes as a cause. Why can a demolition rig up cause the collapse while damage from a plane cannot?

    Mr. Fullerton seems to acknowledge that the WTC towers had structural features for which there is no upper floor demolition (Vérinage-like technique) example (not sure if that is even true):

    The devastatingly fatal problem with this argument is that Vérinage has only ever been used with buildings having load bearing walls, not steel-framed skyscrapers with thick central columns like the Towers were.”

    So how do we know what a steel-frame skyscraper would look like collapse from a “natural” Vérinage-like technique collapse? Especially a very atypical one caused by planes smashing and baking in jet fuel.

    Further, the lack of any observable deceleration when the upper blocks hit the lower buildings below proves conclusively that no Vérinage-like techniques were used on the Twin Towers.

    So Fullerton is here suggesting that a novel technique for top-floor-rigged demolition was used? Because presumably he believes the demolition triggers hidden within the towers were in proximity to the plane crash sites and still managed to cause a controlled demolition. With this, we can say Fullerton proposes there is SOME way to cause the collapse of the towers in the manner in which they fell…But that way cannot possibly be by plane –> structural damage? Why one way but not the other?

    I hope this is where the debate goes because honestly the other stuff is tiresome.

  57. the devils gummy bearon 30 Jun 2014 at 4:23 pm

    It’s easy to spout BS but not so easy to back up your statements.

    Michael, you owe me and everyone on the internet a replacement irony meter. You’re in a league of your own. We’ll work through your astonishingly silly BS in our own time, thanks.

    Pro tip: you could start by participating in these comments, you know, and address proper criticisms like a grown person before you go off making idiotic declarations or throwing down more debate gauntlets (they’re not going well for you) and demanding “rules”. Or, keep up this bad-mannered “fifth grade” school-child schtick of yours- It is impossibly amusing (completely at your expense of course).

  58. DanDanNoodleson 30 Jun 2014 at 4:24 pm

    One thing about Ref #2. From what I can tell, an important crux of your argument that a CD took place was that there were “extremely credible eyewitness reports” of explosions. Let’s take a look at this.

    First of all, adding the descriptive phrase “extremely credible” does nothing to strengthen your argument; in fact it sounds like confirmation bias. How do you know the reports were “extremely credible”? Why, because they agree with your theory, of course!

    Second, I read a bunch of those reports on the page you linked to, and virtually none of them say what you imply they say. Some of them, in fact, explicitly say the opposite, like this one:

    Then a large explosion took place. In my estimation that was the tower coming down, but at that time I did not know what that was.

    And this one:

    I looked up, and the building exploded, the building that we were very close to, which was one tower. The whole top came off like a volcano. [...] So now both towers have been hit by a plane. The north tower was burning. So the explosion, what I realized later, had to be the start of the collapse.

    And this one:

    my initial reaction was there was a secondary explosion, and the entire floor area, a ring right around the building blew out. I later realized that the building had started to collapse already and this was the air being compressed and that is the floor that let go.

    Even the ones that don’t explicitly say “the sound I heard was the building coming down” mostly say something like “I heard a loud sound, like an explosion”. Your mistake, Michael, is in believing that “explosion” means the same thing as “explosives”. The towers buckling and coming down would obviously create a lot of noise, which it would be entirely reasonable to call an “explosion”. That’s probably how I would have described the sound, had I been there. But that doesn’t mean that explosives were used. It just means there was a loud sound, which people generally associate with explosives.

    “Explosion” is very commonly used in a descriptive but completely non-literal way. “The room exploded with sound”, “he exploded with anger”, “there was an explosion of activity”, and on and on and on. Taking the fact that these people said the world “explosion” to mean the literally saying there was explosives detonated is just silly.

  59. the devils gummy bearon 30 Jun 2014 at 4:30 pm

    Select one person. That person must use his real name and have some sort of science degree. He can consult with any other people he wishes but only the selected person addresses me. I’m willing to do it here if Dr. N. sets up a new post or we can do it on skeptopathy.com. Time to put up or shut up.

    Actually, on SGU, Steve and the rouges called it; the lug was going to try to expand the debate somehow. Funny.

    As for put or shut up… I’d pay good money to see you do either.

  60. jsterritton 30 Jun 2014 at 4:37 pm

    DGB: no props to Fullerton, no matter how dubious, so we mint the, “Argument From The Sixth Grade,” where an argument is made with all the gravity, certitude, arrogance, and condescension of a sixth grader explaining to some fourth graders where babies come from (and getting it entirely wrong). I think we should also consider minting the, “Appeal to Puerile Sophistry” fallacy: basically a tu quoque ad hominem, but with even bigger words.

  61. steve12on 30 Jun 2014 at 4:39 pm

    Enzo:

    Re: all of the Verinage comparisons, remember – he’s the one that brought them to the debate (I talk about this above) as a model for what controlled demolition “looks like” – noting the similarity to the WTC towers.

    So we can conclude on the basis of similar appearance that this was demolition, BUT not the kind where you weaken one floor (say by smashing a plane into it) to bring it down. He wants the buildings as models for what happens once demolition is initiated, but NOT as models for what initiated it.

    That said, I doubt seriously he will say what that novel demolition technique is. This entire “logical” construction exists to make controlled demolition the null hypothesis, so he’ll simply say he doesn’t know what that technique was, but we have to assume it’s demolition based on how things looks previously.

    It’s a stunningly piss-poor argument. I think a few shandies and a night to prepare and I could come up with something better to make his case for him…

  62. steve12on 30 Jun 2014 at 4:40 pm

    “Michael, you owe me and everyone on the internet a replacement irony meter.”

    Simply outstanding…

  63. Karl Withakayon 30 Jun 2014 at 4:47 pm

    I don’t know if the animated image at the top is Fullerton’s choice or Steven’s, but over and over again, I see a lopsided, asymmetrical collapse.

  64. the devils gummy bearon 30 Jun 2014 at 5:01 pm

    Fullerton + Fallacies = Sideshow Bob + Rakes

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=tbd4t-ua-WQ

  65. jsterritton 30 Jun 2014 at 5:39 pm

    Karl Withakay…I like your idea, but do not ‘get’ the cult cargo reference (perhaps you can elucidate).

    What Fullerton is exhibiting is some kind of False Authority Syndrome, Fake Skeptic Brain Disorder (entirely made-up), Zelig-syndrome (our fault for letting him hang around with actual critical thinkers), or some inverted perversion of The Impostor Syndrome (wherein someone is unable to internalize their accomplishments and, despite external evidence of their competence, remain convinced that they are frauds and do not deserve the success they have achieved). To wit, Fullerton is unable to internalize his failings. Despite external evidence of his incompetence, he remains convinced of his authority and that he deserves to win a debate of ideas despite failing to make a cogent or logically sound argument.

    Fullerton’s relationship with fallacies of logic is pretty much Side Show Bob’s with rakes. Only Fullerton is like, I’ll show you…I just need more rakes!!!!”

    C’mon, Fullerton, call me a blowhard again — it’s downright Pickwickian.

  66. Steve Crosson 30 Jun 2014 at 5:52 pm

    Free advice for Michael Fullerton:

    You will NEVER be a genuine skeptic until you learn to be skeptical of your own conclusions. Every single word you have written has been from the perspective of a “true believer”. You have not listened to ANY of the arguments or valid questions presented by Steve and numerous commenters, and you certainly haven’t addressed any of them.

    Rather, you have done nothing but search (in vain) for any slim germ of a concept which you attempt to twist into a “gotcha” by egregiously misunderstanding and abusing almost every logical fallacy in existence.

    For starters, you have utterly failed to address the single most obvious question — WHY DO BOTH????
    i.e. CD and crashing planes into the buildings.

    Your own “evidence” proves that if “something” sufficiently weakens the center portion of a building, it WILL come crashing down. And don’t give me any crap about different construction methods. Actual engineers have done simulations showing exactly how the damage from the planes caused the towers to fall.

    Unless YOU personally have the knowledge and experience to design and engineer a similar structure, you have absolutely no basis on which to make any claims on what could or could not cause the collapse.

  67. Karl Withakayon 30 Jun 2014 at 6:06 pm

    jsterritt,

    The origins of the term cargo cult refers to when certain tribal societies come into contact with Western civilization.

    From a speech/book by Richard Feynman quoted on Wikipedia:

    “In the South Seas there is a cargo cult of people. During the war they saw airplanes land with lots of good materials, and they want the same thing to happen now. So they’ve arranged to imitate things like runways, to put fires along the sides of the runways, to make a wooden hut for a man to sit in, with two wooden pieces on his head like headphones and bars of bamboo sticking out like antennas–he’s the controller–and they wait for the airplanes to land. They’re doing everything right. The form is perfect. It looks exactly the way it looked before. But it doesn’t work. No airplanes land.”

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Cargo_cult_science

  68. wood757on 30 Jun 2014 at 6:08 pm

    Like many 9/11 Truthers, Michael Fullerton seems to fit this profile:

    “Psychologists To Study Growing Apantophobia Within 9/11 Truth Movement”

    http://911booger.blogspot.com/2007/05/psychologists-to-study-growing.html

  69. the devils gummy bearon 30 Jun 2014 at 6:10 pm

    jsterritt, cargo cults: http://www.sjsu.edu/faculty/watkins/cargocult.htm

    Cargo-skeptisism, by analogy, would be (this one at hand at least) Fullerton invoking “fallacies” and fallacy sounding things he doesn’t understand, in order to imbue his idiot declarations with what he thinks are science-y sounding things, thereby making his declarations scienc-y/logic-y.

    It’s basically mimicry.

  70. tmac57on 30 Jun 2014 at 6:17 pm

    Michael,do you have a germ phobia? Because I think you might have inhaled too much hand sanitizer.

    No wait! I’m so sorry. I shouldn’t have gone there.

    Please accept my apology for my Purell comment.

  71. Vendetta88on 30 Jun 2014 at 6:58 pm

    DGB:The Argument From Sixth Grade. Hilariously accurate. Way better than Fullerton’s Fallacy.

    I chcukled about that the whole way home from work.

  72. the devils gummy bearon 30 Jun 2014 at 7:18 pm

    Vendetta88, jsterritt gets credit for Argument From Sixth Grade.

  73. jsterritton 30 Jun 2014 at 7:41 pm

    Karl Withakay…

    That’s like the “Scientific People” in Alfred Bester’s “The Stars My Destination” who intone quasi-scientific ramblings, concluding each with, “quant suff!” (for quantity sufficient).

    Fullerton’s is much like the science of Gilligan’s Island, where things made out of coconuts vaguely resemble the ideas and mechanics of science, and work, because *magic*. Coincidentally, Gilligan’s Island was an inside job.

  74. wmmaloon 30 Jun 2014 at 7:57 pm

    Come on all you fourth graders, WTC number seven, a 54 story structure fell a free fall speed and was not hit by an aircraft.
    No steel framed skyscraper has fallen due to any fire and many have had severe fires. The Empire State building was hit by a B25 and the subsequent fire was extinguished. The building did not fall.
    There was no investigation into the responsibility of the WTC architect and engineers of such catastrophic failures for buildings designed to stand the impact of multiple aircraft. You people have got to get a clue.

  75. MikeBon 30 Jun 2014 at 8:09 pm

    How disappointing to find this on Neurologica.

  76. BBBlueon 30 Jun 2014 at 8:37 pm

    Hi fullerm,

    “I will debate any one of the delusional blowhards…”

    I guess we can add ad hominem to your ever-growing list of fallacies.

  77. tmac57on 30 Jun 2014 at 8:40 pm

    jsterritt- Since my teen years,I have been ‘just asking questions’ about Gilligan’s island.
    Let’s look at the facts:
    1. The mate was a mighty sailing man.
    2. The skipper? Brave and sure.
    3. They were ‘lost’ on a three hour tour. A three hour tour!!!!???

    Any 5th grader could calculate the speed of a tiny ship (tiny ships usually do not have much speed capability, (especially with 2 crew and 5 passengers) and draw a radius of a three hour range,thus limiting the potential search area. Large? To be sure,BUT not so large as to prevent a search team from eventually locating them in a reasonable amount time. Where were they for those 2 1/2 years?
    All but two of the people involved have died under mysterious circumstances,and the remaining two are said to be in hiding.
    Interestingly, the ship that they set sail on that day,was named The Minnow. A Google search led me to a site that details the DARPA project Operation Minnow! They are said to have created the Microwave Infrarsound Nearfield Nano Override for Weather!
    Just what DID cause “the weather started getting rough” that day? Coincidence? Just ask the ‘Professor’ ! Oh…that’s right…he’s dead!
    The Sheeple will wake up some day,but I am afraid it will be too late.By then there will be:
    No phone…
    No lights…
    No motor cars (maybe bicycles though)…
    Not a SINGLE LUXURY PEOPLE!!!
    We will all be living like (sic) Robinson Crusoe. As primitive…as…can…be…God help us all!

  78. jlowderon 30 Jun 2014 at 8:43 pm

    Mr Fullerton,

    Given your evidence has pointed towards a CD for these buildings, have you any pointers as to who was responsible for it?

    The American public have the right to this information, and your detailed forensic must have turned up some very real pointers as precisely who it was.

  79. Bronze Dogon 30 Jun 2014 at 8:55 pm

    wmmalo:

    Do you even know what the consensus on WTC7 is?

    Define “severe fire.” How much energy was involved in those fires you’re referencing? How high did the temperature get? Did these fires involve an impact that compromised the building’s fire proofing?

    How does that B25 impact compare with the WTC impacts in terms of energy? I expect math.

  80. theclimateguyon 30 Jun 2014 at 8:57 pm

    This debate almost seems like a joke. Unfortunately, I couldn’t even get through the first third of this argument. The fact that you can name a fallacy doesn’t mean the fallacy has been committed. If that were the case then I could say every explanation uses the post hoc ergo propter hoc fallacy. Every event follows some previous event, to include the cause of said event. We point out fallacies when the weight of the argument relies on the fallacious condition, not when the evidence necessarily leads to the conclusion.

    Also, I may have made it 1 paragraph further in this article if the third paragraph didn’t waste space. “Since Novella is hinting that the explanation is more likely rather than that it is true, I’m not going to call it fallacious even though it could easily be argued as such.” Then why write about it at all? Didn’t you commit these fallacies in your previous paragraph: “The fact that 2200+ architects and engineers question the official 9/11 story[1] seems to throw cold water on this ‘consensus’.”?

  81. BBBlueon 30 Jun 2014 at 8:59 pm

    MikeB,

    “How disappointing to find this on Neurologica.”

    On the contrary, I like a change of pace now and again, and this feeding frenzy is certainly that. It also gives greenhorn skeptics a chance to practice on a truly easy target.

  82. tmac57on 30 Jun 2014 at 9:10 pm

    Bronze Dog- My guess is that wmmalo’s comment is a Poe.
    If not..then facepalm!

  83. roadfoodon 30 Jun 2014 at 9:22 pm

    I think Enzo cut to the heart of the matter when he wrote:

    I just don’t understand how Mr. Fullerton distinguishes between

    1. Plane hit building –> structural damage –> collapse

    and

    2. Plane hit building –> not enough damage –> controlled demolition triggered –> collapse

    What about a controlled demolition makes it so special that structural damage by a plane cannot cause a similar collapse?

    What I see is this: Fullerton sees that the way the buildings fell is consistent with controlled demolition. I think we can even grant him that point, the collapses were consistent with CD.

    What he fails to show, however, is that the collapses were INconsistent with the buildings failing because of the combination of damage from a jet liner impact and structural weakening from the high-temperature fires.

    We have evidence for the consistency with CD; Fullerton has repeated this ad nauseam. Many buildings have been brought down via a CD.

    However, no other building before the Twin Towers was ever brought down because of a jet liner impact. So we don’t know what that would look like. So Fullerton has no evidence to support the hypothesis that the way the towers fell is in any way not consistent with a collapse caused solely by a jet liner impact.

  84. Bronze Dogon 30 Jun 2014 at 9:25 pm

    I once had to mock some twoofers who suggested the planes were holograms and that towers came down because of a satellite-based laser, complete with more physics-savvy skeptics having fun calculating the ridiculous amount of energy such a weapon would require and how visible the satellite would be to the naked eye, defeating any possibility of being a stealth satellite.

    There’s a reason Poe’s Law exists, after all.

  85. Greg Mayon 30 Jun 2014 at 9:44 pm

    “At any rate, like all other official story believers before him, Novella provides no evidence for the Twin Tower falls”

    There’s one piece of evidence that has been ignored here… Multiple Cameras filmed both planes crashing into the buildings. If the building’s “naturally” collapsed without obvious cause then maybe this would be a different debate, but we have a clear and undeniable origin for the collapse. That’s a huge chunk of evidence for the “official story”.

  86. wmmaloon 30 Jun 2014 at 9:49 pm

    I guess it really helps when an individual possesses the intellect, intelligence, aptitude, education, or whatever it take s to be able to visualize and subsequently discern and thereby identify the physics of a building falling down from a building being blown to shtteree, and then be able to hold’ with that personal assessment. Obviously, most comments here suggest that this ‘conceptual capacity’ is sadly absent.

  87. wmmaloon 30 Jun 2014 at 9:59 pm

    Let me see, the Empire State Building was built in 1931, a 103 steel framed structure. It was hit by a Mitchell Bomber lost in the fog and there were fuel fires. The accident did not compromise the building’s structural integrity, but it did cause fourteen deaths. Of course we don’t build like we used to, so a plane will not only knock down these later, deficient structures at will. With that in mind, how safe do you feel on the eightieth floor?

  88. tmac57on 30 Jun 2014 at 10:04 pm

    It is worth noting that with all the discussion about how even a single story being taken out could conceivably cause the collapse of the twin towers,that the fires and destruction spanned 5 stories in one tower,and six stories in the other.Thus it is likely that although the initiation of each collapse probably started at a discrete floor level,that once it began,it most likely was 5 and 6 stories together that collapsed,greatly adding to the momentum than what would have resulted from a mere single floor collapse,which in itself,should probably have been enough to bring them down.

  89. tmac57on 30 Jun 2014 at 10:13 pm

    wmmalo-Are you trying to sneak one past us? I am sure that you have seen the rebuttal for this right? Those two situations are not even close:

    http://www.911myths.com/html/empire_state_b-25.html

  90. the devils gummy bearon 30 Jun 2014 at 10:20 pm

    @jsterritt, you get a million high fives for bringing up the cargo cult in Stars My Destination.

    Actually, the Gilligan’s Island coconut tech is funny when you put it into the cargo cult context (I never thought I’d live to see the day where I put the word “funny” in the same sentence with “GIlligan’s Island”).

  91. willthepeopleon 30 Jun 2014 at 10:31 pm

    My God, Steve is going to have field day with this.

    I can’t understand what Truthers have to gain by disagreeing with the accepted explanation. Why don’t they simply claim that the government/NWO/whatever trained and financed the hijackers who then successfully completed their mission?

  92. wmmaloon 30 Jun 2014 at 10:43 pm

    What one must understand when wrestling with this ‘issue’, both the theory and the history, the debate and the conspiracy ‘truther’ bias, is that the event was witnessed by billions, and the consensus was fed to them by the American media. The first impression, the videos, had a soundtrack. Whoever you trusted then, to provide an accurate account of what you saw, echoes still in our psyche.
    All the comments here, and more importantly, the debaters arguments are woefully caught up by the mainstream, unconscious, accepted fabrication initiated September 11, 2001.
    Science and reason are sliced and diced to the point this forum has become mute. No one is listening, and even worse, no one can see.

  93. wmmaloon 30 Jun 2014 at 10:47 pm

    The most recent example of a spectacular skyscraper fire was the burning of the Hotel Mandarin Oriental starting on February 9, 2009. The nearly completed 520-foot-tall skyscraper in Beijing caught fire around 8:00 pm, was engulfed within 20 minutes, and burned for at least 3 hours until midnight. Despite the fact that the fire extended across all of the floors for a period of time and burned out of control for hours, no large portion of the structure collapsed.

  94. wmmaloon 30 Jun 2014 at 10:48 pm

    The First Interstate Bank Building is a 62-story skyscraper in Los Angeles that suffered the worst high-rise fire in the city’s history. From the late evening of May 4, 1988 through the early morning of the next day, 64 fire companies battled the blaze, which lasted for 3 1/2 hours. The fire caused extensive window breakage, which complicated firefighting efforts. Large flames jutted out of the building during the blaze. Firefighting efforts resulted in massive water damage to floors below the fire, and the fire gutted offices from the 12th to the 16th floor, and caused extensive smoke damage to floors above. The fire caused an estimated $200 million in direct property loss. It did not fall down.

  95. jsterritton 30 Jun 2014 at 10:55 pm

    roadfood…

    You have encapsulated Fullerton’s “logic” completely. The fallacy is major (fallacy of the undistributed middle):

    -All CDs fall rapidly & symmetrically.
    -Towers fell rapidly & symmetrically.
    -Therefore, the towers were CDs.

    The fallacy doesn’t necessarily invalidate the conclusion, but it fails to support it even a little. And since he keeps harping on it and relying on it as his sole argument, he fails to demonstrate a valid conclusion/result. We can also call this “affirming the consequent,” “begging the question,” “argument from ignorance,” special pleading,” “false cause,” and “being a dick.”

    It is simple math. We keep pointing it out. Yet it eludes him. He justs keeps getting up off the ground, threatening to kick our asses some more.

  96. wmmaloon 30 Jun 2014 at 10:55 pm

    The only reason I spend my time pushing the ‘truther’ bullshit is the pleasant reality that the number of comments slump when someone figures out three buildings did not fall down.

  97. kubushon 30 Jun 2014 at 11:00 pm

    This kid doesn’t even know how to apply basic fallacies. It is not a fallacy to appeal to a consensus and authority if they are an actual authority.

    And how do you conclude that any molten metal must be iron? What about aluminum or other metals that were in the building???

  98. wmmaloon 30 Jun 2014 at 11:00 pm

    We discuss, or argue for only two reasons; to prove a point or to listen and maybe even learn.

  99. kubushon 30 Jun 2014 at 11:03 pm

    The reported sounds of “explosions” were the elevators that came crashing down the shafts. Oh but apparently this kid couldn’t think of this as a possible explanation because it goes against his conspiracy theory. Durrr.

  100. kubushon 30 Jun 2014 at 11:07 pm

    “The First Interstate Bank Building is a 62-story skyscraper in Los Angeles that suffered the worst high-rise fire in the city’s history….The fire caused an estimated $200 million in direct property loss. It did not fall down.”

    Was the plane hit by a huge flying metal tube? No? Then how is it comparable???

  101. kubushon 30 Jun 2014 at 11:09 pm

    “No one is listening, and even worse, no one can see.”

    Right, blame the world. Everyone else is blind but the special few including you. It never crossed your immature mind that you may be blind yourself, which is why nobody buys your BS.

  102. kubushon 30 Jun 2014 at 11:14 pm

    Building 7 was hit by large chunks of debris which you seem to ignore. The building was structurally compromised as was attested by the firefighters on the ground BEFORE the collapse. Please explain that.

  103. laelon 01 Jul 2014 at 12:06 am

    wmmaloon,

    I had not heard about the Hotel Mandarin Oriental or First Interstate Bank Building fires before. To make sure we’re note comparing apples to oranges here, though, can you clarify what types of planes collided with those buildings?

  104. melisslynon 01 Jul 2014 at 12:56 am

    You’ve accused the readers here of discrimination due to ‘groupthink and driven by confirmation bias’. But sometimes discrimination means good judgement.

    Perhaps agreeing to a debate on this forum was an example of self-handicapping. But this ranting pathos over logos rebuttal really doesn’t help the cause, in my humble opinion.

    Before debating any of us ‘delusional blowhards’ I humbly suggest that you first consider the following social psychology terms: Frustration-Aggression Principle, false-consensus effect, and the overconfidence barrier.

    Note
    1. http://m.youtube.com/watch?v=4lgGZ1NFubw

  105. falloonacyon 01 Jul 2014 at 1:04 am

    “The only reason I spend my time pushing the ‘truther’ bullshit is the pleasant reality that the number of comments slump when someone figures out three buildings did not fall down.”

    Three buildings didn’t fall down, therefore three more shouldn’t have, either?

  106. Robneyon 01 Jul 2014 at 1:31 am

    I just want to say, all your claims that Fullerton is identifying logically fallacies fallaciously, are falicious.

    This is, of course, the old ‘fallacy fallacy fallacy’.

    Now, I know what you’re going to say ‘That’s just a fallacy fallacy fallacy fallacy’.

    Well, unless you are a scientist, don’t even bother trying to understand or refute my logic.

    I got your back, Mr Fullerton.

  107. Robneyon 01 Jul 2014 at 1:35 am

    These are my first post so hello everyone.

    Just want to pick up on a couple of Fullerton’s semantic arguments.

    Fullerton says;

    ‘Novella falsely claims that I dismiss the official story evidence for collapse initiation. I don’t dismiss it. I am merely saying it does not in any way constitute evidence for the rest of the collapse’

    So…he doesn’t dismiss it but thinks it ‘in no way constitutes evidence’ so he does kind of dismiss it in the sense that he….totally dismisses it.

    Fullerton says;

    ‘Novella tries to argue that my claim rests entirely on the fact that the Twin Towers look similar to other successful CDs. My actual claim is that the CD hypothesis for the Twin tower falls is the only scientific explanation because only it has supporting evidence’

    But the only evidence he presents is that they look similar to controlled demolitions! He bangs on about symmetry and free fall speeds etc but because he doesn’t operationally define these criteria (and apparently feel no needs to) all we are left with his his subjective interpretation that they look like controlled demolitions.

    and if the structural damage and fire had the same effect as a demolition removing a supporting floor wouldn’t the resulting collapse be the same in either case. So Fullerton’s claims about symmetry and free fall speeds are….red herrings!

  108. swesley_perthon 01 Jul 2014 at 1:36 am

    Explosion testimony? Please…

    Many times I’ve heard people on news describing a nearby car crash like “an explosion”.

    People reported the poor people that jumped from 80 storeys landing like “an explosion”.

    How many events in a falling building would sound like “an explosion”?

  109. grabulaon 01 Jul 2014 at 1:54 am

    I couldn’t read more than a paragraph or two. Fullerton is convinced his argument – keep in mind these are arguments that were made immediately after 9/11 happened and have since been deconstructed so thoroughly it’s mind boggling he hasn’t even got as ‘sophisticated’ as other truthers.

    For kicks I decided to log his mentions of fallacy/fallacies throughout his article:

    “He keeps repeating these false arguments because he has nothing else of any significance to offer.

    Note that Novella’s consensus argument is precariously close to committing two fallacies here: appeal to the masses (AKA appeal to consensus) and appeal to authority

    Claiming therefore that something is true because a majority of experts in the field believe it is true is a false argument.

    As I stated in Part I, arguing that a preceding event caused a following event involves the post hoc ergo propter hoc fallacy.

    The only “evidence” he has for the official story is a logical fallacy, a false argument

    This is an appeal to ignorance fallacy.

    Either way, these believers have only the sophistry of logical fallacies to support their purely faith-based beliefs.

    In his rebuttal, Novella commits the hasty generalization fallacy
    His argument is also a straw man.

    Using the wiggle word “seems” Novella is attempting to deflect another accusation of the use of a straw man fallacy.

    He then trots out the red herring

    By the way, where is Novella’s operational definition that a post hoc ergo propter hoc fallacy or appeal to ignorance fallacy can count as evidence?

    The answer is special pleading.

    This is the same nirvana fallacy I dealt with in Part I.

    Unsupported pronouncements like these are called bare assertion fallacies

    Such a claim is also what is referred to as the fallacy of retrospective determinism.

    Novella introduces an appeal to incredulity

    This creates an atmosphere thick with groupthink and driven by confirmation bias.

    Despite the fact that we agreed no fallacies would be used in this debate, Novella continues to rely heavily on the post hoc ergo propter hoc fallacy while creating straw men and spewing bare assertions, red herrings and other obscure fallacies

    Every attempt to reject this undeniable fact involves what is known as special pleading.

    the official story is propped up with sophomoric logical fallacies, i.e. uncritical thinking

    The official story with only logical fallacies to support it

    Which explanation can explain all available evidence with actual scientific support as opposed to entirely unsupported pronouncements and other logical fallacies?”

    He has a horrible grasp on how informal logical fallacies work but he certainly loves to invoke them. My theory here is that he’s been a truther so long, and been so utterly destroyed by a better understanding of logical fallacies that he’s attempted to try to turn it around on his decriers.

  110. grabulaon 01 Jul 2014 at 1:58 am

    @Fullerton

    Where the hell is the evidence for any of your claims? You’re what 3 posts into this already and haven’t provided a lick of it. All you’ve done is very poorly attack Dr. Novellas arguments.

  111. grabulaon 01 Jul 2014 at 2:00 am

    @dude

    “But how many people at this point feel that there has been anything said that needs addressing?”

    I think this has become less about debating 9/11 – because apparently only Dr. Novella is here to do that – and more about looking at how to build an argument and how to better understand logical fallacies.

  112. MaoJinon 01 Jul 2014 at 2:05 am

    There are some major ignorant statements in here.

    Since I just replied to one conspiracy theorist on the topic I might as well post responses here to the same claims made but I will not bother going through all of it again:

    Why was no jolt apparent?
    These buildings are arguably in large part empty space and most office materials disintegrate on collapse with ease and provide no resistance to collapse. So I wouldn’t say the WTC buildings “should have” jolted (or appeared to). The upper compartments arguably were too heavy for any jolt to be apparent also.

    It appears Fullerton also doesn’t grasp induction like the domino effect.
    I reckon it wasn’t expected in the 70s that large sections of steel columns (especially the central support columns) would be subject to thousand degree temperatures (instantaneously). Something we know – given steel rigidity and the actual footage – will bend columns (inward according to footage) and cause collapse of upper compartments which triggers domino effect.

    As for the AE911 that Fullerton cites I’ve already looked at their assumptions and also the 20 references they provided which doesn’t support their assertions.
    And almost none of these “professionals” are members of AIA which has over 80’000 members who accept the official NIST report and reject affiliation with AE911 [1]. Then there’s SEI/ASCE with 140’000 members that support the findings as well and every other major scientific body in the field like ASME with 120’000 members, IEEE with 370’000 members, AIChE with 40’000 members, AIAA with 35’000 members, and NFPA with 65’000 members that accept the official report. [2][3] This along with SFPA, AISC, SGH, CTBUH, SEAoNY, etc. that have assisted in the official NIST report as well.

    But that’s mostly just in the US and AE911 is an international petition gatherer. On that scale it’s practically expected by chance and the scientific community generally rejects the controlled demolition conspiracy hypothesis as stated by several experts. [4][5]

    Also to make the conspiracy more suspicious there’s no evidence to suggest that these supposed 2000+ are genuine signatures. In fact the signature process is rather deeply questionable [6] and it seems they may allow fake signatures as well. [7]

    But despite of that they have published nothing. They’ve only been marketing their DVDs, shirts, coffee, etc. for money thus far. [8] Why not use this money to conduct a study? Hundreds that are independent of NIST have already been done, even though the NIST report takes into account far more than anything proposed.

    A list of a few dozen other studies looking into the collapse:[9][10][11][12] And NIST responses to conspiracies: [13]

    [1] http://books.google.com.br/books?id=s7YbPRRrRwkC&pg=PA126#v=onepage&q&f=false
    [2] http://www.civil.northwestern.edu/people/bazant/PDFs/Papers/466.pdf
    [3] http://www.nfpa.org/newsandpublications/nfpa-journal/2011/september-october-2011/features/a-decade-of-difference
    [4] http://web.archive.org/web/20070809030224/http://www.civil.northwestern.edu/people/bazant/PDFs/Papers/466.pdf

    “As generally accepted by the community of specialists in structural mechanics and structural engineering (though not by a few outsiders claiming a conspiracy with planted explosives), the failure scenario was as follows: [continues with a four-part scenario of progressive structural failure].”

    [5] http://www.civil.northwestern.edu/people/bazant/PDFs/Papers/00%20WTC%20Collapse%20-%20What%20Did%20%26%20Did%20Not%20Cause%20It.pdf

    “Universally though has the foregoing explanation of collapse been accepted by the communities of structural engineers and structural mechanics researchers, some outside critics have nevertheless exploited various unexplained observations to disseminate allegations of controlled demolition.”

    [6] http://www.ae911truth.org/newsletter/2009/12/index.php
    [7] http://forums.randi.org/showthread.php?p=4900092#post4900092
    [8] http://www.shop.ae911truth.org/main.sc

    [9] http://www-math.mit.edu/~bazant/WTC/WTC-asce.pdf
    [10] http://ascelibrary.org/doi/abs/10.1061/%28ASCE%290733-9399%282007%29133%3A3%28308%29
    [11] https://www.era.lib.ed.ac.uk/bitstream/1842/1216/1/WTCpaper.pdf
    [12] http://forums.randi.org/showpost.php?p=4355078&postcount=165
    [13] http://www.popularmechanics.com/technology/engineering/architecture/4278927

  113. grabulaon 01 Jul 2014 at 2:06 am

    @Karl Withkay

    “He also seems to feel that sprinkling claims of logical fallacies regularly throughout his response is equivalent to throwing trump cards on the tricks.”

    I got the same impressions. Every time he pulled one out of the hat it felt like he really was saying see, he’s wrong and I’m right because I got words!

  114. grabulaon 01 Jul 2014 at 2:28 am

    @Vendetta88

    “I found it odd that he pointed out that they had agreed to not use logical fallacies in part 1. I figured that it should be implied that logical fallacies should not be used”

    I think some of us pretty much called this from the get go. He came out swinging basically setting up his terrible argument by pointing out this agreement – because it’s his point of attack. He also set it up by making the 5th grader reference so later, as he did in this article, indicate that basically if you don’t get his points you’re not smarter than a 5th grader.

    @Karl Withkay

    “I was thinking of the term Cargo Cult Skepticism. Going through the motions of superficially mimicking skepticism and critical thinking without really understanding or practicing any of the concepts of critical thinking or skepticism.”

    This is actually a great example of this. Fullerton works very hard to make himself sound like a skeptic does but fails to understand the claims he’s making. If you didn’t know what you were talking about – say you hadn’t made it past 4th grade yet – then you might think he’s on to something. But even skimming Wikipedia should provide enough guidance as to where he went wrong.

    @Fullerton

    “Attention grabbing proposal”

    FTFY

    @steve12

    “Why don’t you just answer some of the posts?”

    Exactly, he knows he can’t argue well against ONE skeptic, much less a gaggle (a murder maybe?) of them. It’s why he won’t respond to posts in the comments too much weight stacked against him.

  115. the devils gummy bearon 01 Jul 2014 at 2:28 am

    grabula,

    “…and been so utterly destroyed by a better understanding of logical fallacies that he’s attempted to try to turn it around on his decriers.”

    Indeed… Indeed. Cargo-skepticism. If you can’t beat ‘em, squawk about making noises that sound like ‘em.

    Changing for a moment; Yahoo! just saved Community tonight…. This is… HUGE! And really rather weird and unexpected and completely crazy…. Which is Community in nutshell. #sixseasonandamovie guys.

  116. Robneyon 01 Jul 2014 at 2:28 am

    Another point

    Fullerton claims that;

    ‘The Twin Tower collapses show no jolt when each upper portion hits the lower building.[3][4] How will Novella counter a violation of the law of conservation of momentum? The surest way to expose a crackpot theory is to show how it violates the laws of physics’.

    But as already mentioned, the lower floors only slowed the collapse by 6% (each floor). With the fidelity, resolution and frame rate of the video recordings (particularly compressed video on Youtube) of the event, would such minute jolting even be observable? I highly doubt it. And even if it was established that there was no jolting, what exactly is he proposing; each floor was demolished micro seconds before the impact from the falling floors above?

    Oh no, that last paragraph could tenuously be construed as a ‘straw man’ since Fullerton never explicitly claimed what I attributed to him. I take it all back. It was a cabal of Jewish space lizard illuminati with lasers what done it (that was the ‘bad attempt at humour fallacy’ in case anyone was wondering).

  117. the devils gummy bearon 01 Jul 2014 at 2:29 am

    *Changing the subject for a…

  118. grabulaon 01 Jul 2014 at 2:29 am

    @Fullerton

    Please present you evidence here instead of demanding some sort of one on one debate. Bring all the friends you like or want. You already have kyleb and wmmalo, a few more should make you comfortable.

    More so, please PLEASE try your fallacy accusations here…PLEASE!

  119. christopherasharpon 01 Jul 2014 at 2:43 am

    This is worth a read:

    http://www.ae911truth.org/images/articles/2014/06/Wayne_Chicago_Ethics/IEEEPoster_12.pdf

    Comment?

  120. the devils gummy bearon 01 Jul 2014 at 3:11 am

    Eh, he lacks courage, grabula (empty praises of courage are his boilerplate openings, in this little debate club in his head).

  121. grabulaon 01 Jul 2014 at 4:04 am

    I don’t expect him to step up. His argument is vacuous and appears to ride mostly on him accusing his opponents of logical fallacies. I think he chooses to battle one at a time because he knows he’d get crushed under the weight of reason in an open format.

  122. Godmilon 01 Jul 2014 at 6:14 am

    I’m loving this article. Never before would I have thought that I could dismiss something like Quantum Theory as just an “appeal to the masses” and an “appeal to authority”.
    A whole world of crazy new ideas await me. Thank you Fullerton :D

  123. Cognogginon 01 Jul 2014 at 6:42 am

    You guys keep making the same mistake:

    This isn’t about him being right, this is about developing a career selling books/doing shows/radio/tv.

    It’s about making a living.

    It’s. About. Making. A. Buck.

    So yes, you are 100% right on every logical level.

    I’m also 100% convinced the guy will continue, and I’m at least 99% convinced he doesn’t believe what he’s saying any more than you do!

  124. pablo escargoton 01 Jul 2014 at 7:28 am

    Agreed, I’m not sure I get the point of this. It’s obvious from reading his (Fullerton’s) explanation of how he named his blog skeptopathy, a phrase he coined defending the validity of cold fusion, that you will not be engaging in a discussion about the validity of the evidence.

    About the only thing he convinces me of, is that he doesn’t understand the difference between “post hoc ergo propter hoc” and “cause and effect”.

    I worry that all that is achieved here is 1) more attention than their websites usually receive by being referenced on a wildly more popular blog, and 2) Further muddying the waters for non initiated critical thinkers who may find this and give Fullerton’s position more credibility than it deserves.

    Fullerton was never going to convince sophisticated critical thinkers, but he uses (or rather misuses) enough of the skeptical communities language and arguments to appear as credible to the untrained eye… and this gives him a bigger platform than he usually has access to.

    Not convinced this is a savvy move Dr

  125. SteveAon 01 Jul 2014 at 7:50 am

    wmmaloon: “The most recent example of a spectacular skyscraper fire was the burning of the Hotel Mandarin Oriental starting on February 9, 2009. The nearly completed 520-foot-tall skyscraper in Beijing caught fire around 8:00 pm, was engulfed within 20 minutes, and burned for at least 3 hours until midnight. Despite the fact that the fire extended across all of the floors for a period of time and burned out of control for hours, no large portion of the structure collapsed.”

    Can you remind us of the make and model of the aircraft that crashed into the Hotel Madarin Oriental?

    “The First Interstate Bank Building is a 62-story skyscraper in Los Angeles that suffered the worst high-rise fire in the city’s history. From the late evening of May 4, 1988 through the early morning of the next day, 64 fire companies battled the blaze, which lasted for 3 1/2 hours. The fire caused extensive window breakage, which complicated firefighting efforts. Large flames jutted out of the building during the blaze. Firefighting efforts resulted in massive water damage to floors below the fire, and the fire gutted offices from the 12th to the 16th floor, and caused extensive smoke damage to floors above. The fire caused an estimated $200 million in direct property loss. It did not fall down.”

    Same with this one. Make, model, speed, fuel load, pilot’s favourite colour…anything you have.

  126. mumadaddon 01 Jul 2014 at 7:58 am

    I agree with so many comments here that it would take forever to be specific, and my apologies if I’m repeating something that’s already been said. My summation of Fullerton is that he’s spent a long time arguing with skeptics, and has decided to try beat us at our own game. What he’s completely failed to do though, is subject his own conclusions to any kind of skeptical analysis.

    As I, and several other posters have pointed out, his main argument is one giant exercise in affirming the consequent. His rebuttal is just a list of poorly understood and poorly applied logical fallacy accusations. In each case of him levelling one of these he’s either completely off the mark or his missed some subtlety in application.

    Eg:

    Claiming therefore that something is true because a majority of experts in the field believe it is true is a false argument. In fact, even using a consensus argument to claim one explanation is more likely than another is baseless.

    Deference to consensus of expert opinion in a field which is not your own is not an argument from popularity, or an argument from authority, it’s what should be the default position for any non-expert.

    I’m what you might call a ‘green’ skeptic; I only started posting here a month or two ago, but what’s amazing (and somewhat gratifying, if I’m honest) is how much true believers of all stripes seem to conform exactly to what I’ve been led to believe by listening to the SGU and other skeptical sources. It’s uncanny, seriously.

  127. mindmeon 01 Jul 2014 at 8:37 am

    Huh? Citing voluminousness amounts of peer reviewed research that has been vouched for by major technical societies relevant to the debate is an improper appeal to authority fallacy?

  128. Gallenodon 01 Jul 2014 at 9:51 am

    “Deference to consensus of expert opinion in a field which is not your own is not an argument from popularity, or an argument from authority, it’s what should be the default position for any non-expert.”

    mumadadd, that is brilliant.

    Steve, I nominate that quote for Skeptical Quote of the Week. :)

  129. BillyJoe7on 01 Jul 2014 at 9:55 am

    The appeal to authority fallacy occurs when:
    - the authority is speaking outside his area of expertise.
    - the authority is speaking inside his area of expertise but is not presenting the consensus view in that area of expertise.

  130. stimpyvanon 01 Jul 2014 at 10:42 am

    I’m disappointed that Mr. Fullerton was unable to produce even the tiniest piece of evidence for controlled demoltion.

    I was going to write a long post about the rescuers that spent the following days searching for victims in the debris piles failing to find even one unexploded demolition charge and the unlikeliness of every single charge detonating when and how it was supposed to, but…

    This conspiracy is so fucking stupid and so fucking farfetched, I’m not going to waste my time.

  131. Eliot89on 01 Jul 2014 at 10:56 am

    Steve,

    First I’m going to second Gallenod’s nomination for SQOTW. Really good one there mumadadd!

    Second, I think the only way you are going to get through to Fullerton, or any vehement reader on the denier’s side, is to do a Gorski level detailed primer on the nuances of logical fallacies. Fullerton’s entire argument is using logical fallacies as a bludgeon of truth. He seems to have absolutely no understanding of the subtle nature of a fallacious argument, nor the context in which statements that seem fallacious are perfectly valid conclusions (a question I asked out of legitimate misunderstanding myself that was graciously clarified in EP 459). In your first post you presented the full range of evidence (a word Fullerton used over 100 times in this post and yet has shown none and claims there is none for supporting your case). In your second we need a slog through the marsh pit that is the atrocious thinking of your debater, pointing out every little moss growth and every steamy puddle of boisterous claims with 0 intellectual backing. I’m really appalled at how closely his language mimics Skeptics’ speaking skeptically about popularly held beliefs without the smallest sliver of understanding of why the reasoning we plod through to reach a likely true conclusion is in every way different from making claims of truth because of a prior belief all the while SOUNDING as if you are using reason. Give us justice next Monday. Do us proud.

  132. fullermon 01 Jul 2014 at 11:04 am

    So no one here can debate me on the logical fallacies I’ve supposedly committed because either: 1) none of the blowhards here have a science degree or 2) they’re too frightened to use their real name or 3) ?

    Well if you’re claims are not idiotic driveling shite Dr. N. should include them in his rebuttal. Funny he mentioned none in round 2. Maybe he’s just smarter than you all put together.

    Fallacies 101

    If I present an argument and instead of attacking the argument you call me a moron you’re committing a fallacy. If I call you a moron for committing a fallacy I’m stating a fact not committing a fallacy.

  133. mumadaddon 01 Jul 2014 at 11:13 am

    Gallenod, Eliot89,

    Thanks for the compliment! If Jay Novella read out an original quote by me on the SGU, and shouted, “MUM-ADADD!!!” I think I’d die happy. It’d be all my future birthday and xmas presents rolled into one, and I’d dine on it for years.

  134. mumadaddon 01 Jul 2014 at 11:14 am

    …not that I’m any any way suggesting that he would, or should, by the way.

  135. The Other John Mcon 01 Jul 2014 at 11:20 am

    Seriously fullerm? you aren’t going to address any of the hundreds of criticisms brought up in this and the other parts’ comments sections? Just some vague blathering about Fallacies 101? You’ve got an opportunity here to convince a lot of people of your case, but you need to make your case first….we are still waiting…

    By the way, I’ve got a science degree (do you?), and yes I am much too frightened to use my real name in exchanges with you. You seem to be a whole other level of crazy that I am not interested in having drive by my house at night, yelling about fallacies 101 and 5th grade science, and you are spectacularly belligerent during what should be a straightforward exchange of ideas.

  136. mumadaddon 01 Jul 2014 at 11:30 am

    FullerM,

    Why not just try taking on a single one of our objections? The biggy, in my opinion (and other may disagree) is that your main (well, only, so far) argument is the formal fallacy of affirming the consequent:

    1. If P (controlled demolition) then Q (symmetrical, vertical building collapse)
    2. Q
    3. Therefore P

    Oopsie!

    Can you deal with this? Offer some explanation as to why it’s inappropriate, some mitigating factor or evidence? Or even just acknowledge it and move on to some other argument. You do have some, don’t you?

    It seems evident that you aren’t able to counter any of our objections, as evidenced by your increasingly aggressive tone in your rare appearances in the comments section. Commenters here aren’t dismissing your challenge to a debate because they are afraid, or because they don’t fit your bizarrely arbitrary criteria, but because it wouldn’t be interesting, or a worthwhile use of time.

  137. wmmaloon 01 Jul 2014 at 11:53 am

    This forum is, as most, a a gaggle of babbling goons, unreasonable and often rude. Your overlord Jay Novella leads this pack of pseudonymed non intellectuals through a convoluted web of non sequiturs.
    All the factual information is now buried under a groping attack on the principals of debate – all content lost.
    Physics cannot be argued, only recognized. The forces at work on 9/11 were not gravitational alone. Sixty columns of tensiled structural iron, standing a hundred stories in space do not disappear. Concrete does not turn into dust. Iron does not melt from fuel oil or building furniture.- to remain detectable as molten and at the temperatures it was documented below the debris field would mean it had to achieve a high initial temperature, around 5000 F to stay detectable as it cooled. Only a thermitic reaction can achieve this.
    You either get it or you comment here.
    Bring it on, more drivel.

  138. steve12on 01 Jul 2014 at 11:58 am

    Michael Fullerton:

    Let’s move past the name calling and respond

    Myself, Mumadadd, et all. have called out your argument for committing the fallacy of Affirming the Consequent.

    This is not name calling, and our degrees / identities DO NOT MATTER.

    How do you respond?

  139. steve12on 01 Jul 2014 at 12:00 pm

    “This forum is, as most, a a gaggle of babbling goons”

    Again, enough with the insults and nonsense.

    Michael Fullerton’s argument is fallacious because it is simply affirming the consequent.

    RESPONSE?

  140. Bruceon 01 Jul 2014 at 12:14 pm

    “Well if you’re claims are not idiotic driveling shite Dr. N. should include them in his rebuttal. Funny he mentioned none in round 2. Maybe he’s just smarter than you all put together.”

    In this thread we addressing the fallacies you have committed in part 3… how could he address them in part 2 when he had not seen part 3 yet?

    Do you understand the concept of time? Or perhaps you think The Doctor (Novella) is some kind of time travelling lord intent on not stopping world catastrophes but instead aiding in covering them up by debating random internet people…?

    (PS it is “your”)

  141. Newcoasteron 01 Jul 2014 at 12:30 pm

    The “big disadvantage” you have in this debate is that you appear to have no understanding of logical fallacies, despite your hubris in attempting to explain them to the readers of this blog in your first post.

    You provide no convincing evidence and seem to be unaware of the weakness and contradictions in your own “argument”, which has been very patiently pointed out by Dr Novella. You address none of the scientific and engineering arguments other than with magical hand waving and including them the conspiracy as well.

    Conspiracy theory appears to be a type of dementia to me. The person suffering from it is unaware that they have a disease that is obvious to others.

    I applaud Dr Novella for attempting to engage in a polite and public way, and providing a primer on to talk with a conspiracy theorist, but your contributions have been a huge waste of time.

  142. jsterritton 01 Jul 2014 at 12:47 pm

    Wow, have you got it backward, fullerm: everybody here already IS debating you. They’re winning the debate, because you refuse to (or cannot) present a sound logical argument or participate in a cogent discussion of a topic of your choosing. You can call us names (“blowhards,” “morons”), defame our remarks (“idiotic driveling shite”) and characters (that we’re “too frightened” of you), but these ad hominem attacks in lieu of answering or conceding to any of the many, many challenges and criticisms made of your argument are growing tired and offensive. So either have the debate or stop setting up ever more straw men to bully on your playground. And please stop making demands. Your negotiating tactics as poor as your debating skills. Moreover, you have no leverage, nothing we want from you. Pretty soon, we’ll all just start ignoring you and I get the feeling you’ll really hate that.

  143. Bronze Dogon 01 Jul 2014 at 12:57 pm

    Here’s the other thing that makes it stupid to whine that the commentator arguments weren’t in part 2:

    Steve chose certain points to focus on to provide a clear challenge on the major points and make it a bit harder to get sidetracked.

    We’re eager to talk about anything that comes to mind, however. That’s a thing about arguing on the internet: It’s easy for a topic to balloon up when the details and subtopics are elaborated on, and it makes it easy for someone to avoid confrontation on major issues by changing the subject to minor issues and irrelevancies.

    And yeah, I’ll vote in favor of emphasizing that Fullerton is affirming the consequent.

    Not only is he doing that, he’s shirking something that should be vital to the twoofer movement: Coming up with a better, coherent hypothesis. Even if there was something horribly wrong with the consensus, that’d only lead me to ‘I don’t know’ at the absolute most. He has to show us it was an inside job with controlled demolition. He has to show us lines of physical evidence pointing at people planting physics-obeying demolition devices in the building. He has to specify what those devices are and how they could be reliably triggered despite the extreme conditions of the building at the time. He has to show us a plausible logistical scheme that would allow the conspirators to plant those devices in the building without being noticed and caught. He has to show us how they could corrupt the investigation and the judgement of architects and engineers from all over the world.

    I don’t see anything extraordinary in the consensus hypothesis. Every material involved has known physical properties. Given how those materials were arranged and interacted with each other, including the volume of energy involved in the impact and the burning fuel, collapse seems like the most obvious outcome I’d expect. That’s the precedent that matters to me.

  144. JDunhamon 01 Jul 2014 at 1:11 pm

    “Was this a simple comprehension error or is he under the delusion that the start of an event is identical to the rest of the event?”

    Well, there’s your problem. You seem to think the beginning and end of one event (collapse) can count as two separate events and that it is a “post hoc ergo propter hoc” fallacy to link them. But that fallacy applies to separate events that are temporally linked, not two portions of one event that is continuous. Steve correctly observed the evidence for the collapse initiation is evidence for the collapse, because it is a single event.

    Let me provide an example of the ridiculousness of your position here. Your argument is akin to saying “the steering and brakes in this car failed and it started careening towards the edge of the road; it went off the road and crashed into a tree. I don’t dispute the mechanical problem, but the collision with the tree must have been drunk driving because we have evidence that the mechanical failures caused the car to go out of control, but no evidence that they caused the collision.”

    Michael, the major fallacy here is your motivated reasoning.

  145. the devils gummy bearon 01 Jul 2014 at 1:30 pm

    Affirming the consequent.

    He’s also arguing a non or anti-science position, i.e. NO evidence, and lacks any kind of hypothesis anyway (calling your belief/notion a “hypothesis” does not make it one, it must be a proper scientific hypothesis). Pure pseudo-science tactics. And unless Fullerton can answer to logic or elementary science, he’s preemptively lost every debate he’s reckoning he can have. The fact that he won’t respond to the most basic criticisms is revealing.

  146. steve12on 01 Jul 2014 at 1:39 pm

    Fullerton is right – I’m just a scared blowhard moron professing idiotic driveling shite ad him arguments.

    That said, I’d still LOVE to hear how Mikey responds to that whole affirming the consequent thing…

  147. steve12on 01 Jul 2014 at 1:40 pm

    ad HOM….pretty much ruined the joke.

  148. wood757on 01 Jul 2014 at 2:10 pm

    fullerm,

    It’s really very straightforward: in the almosrt-13 years since 9/11, not one piece of POSITIVE evidence has ever surfaced for any kind of intentional demolition by anyone. You have illustrated that you cannot do so either.

    Your attempt to shift the burden of proof from your shoulders is no different than any other 9/11 Truther’s attempts in the last 13 years.

    You really need to get a grip on the subject mater and your fallacious reasoning.

  149. jonathanjbell27on 01 Jul 2014 at 2:10 pm

    Fullerton is so insulting it’s getting on my nerves.

  150. roadfoodon 01 Jul 2014 at 2:15 pm

    Mr. Fullerton, I say let’s forget all this distraction about logical fallacies. The real bottom line is that you do not enhance your credibility when you respond with emotion and name-calling.

    You started out the debate talking about evidence. So I’d like to hear some evidence about one direct question, the one I asked above: Point me to one thing, anything, about the collapse of the Twin Towers, either at initiation of the fall or later, that is inconsistent with the hypothesis that there was no controlled demolition of any kind, and that the collapse was due entirely to the collision of the airplane and the resultant structural damage and weakening from the fires.

    I genuinely want to know if there is anything at all that can be construed as inconsistent with that hypothesis.

    I’ll say this again: I totally grant you that everything we see in the collapse is consistent with a CD. A CD would cause the sudden removal of structural support at the point(s) of the CD. After that, I’m assuming you agree, gravity causes everything above that removed support to fall.

    However, if we hypothesize that instead of the cause of the removal of the structural support being a CD, it is instead the sudden buckling of those support structures due to damage from the collision and weakening from the fires, it would also be the case that gravity would cause everything above that removed support to fall.

    Heck, I’ll make it even easier. Forget about pointing to actual evidence, how about presenting a hypothetical way that, given the evidence we have, those two scenarios (structural support suddenly removed via CD, vs. structural support suddenly removed due to damage from collision and weakening from fires) could be differentiated.

  151. jsterritton 01 Jul 2014 at 3:24 pm

    wood757 nails it. Fullerton has nothing. For the “debate” (or “controversy”) to continue, Fullerton must make noise somehow. In these pages, he has shifted his burden of proof to others, set up multiple straw men, argued from incredulity, treated his critics with scorn and derision, claimed special knowledge, demanded special treatment, and of course, begged the question by affirming the consequent.

  152. Robneyon 01 Jul 2014 at 3:48 pm

    Fullerton writes;

    ‘Fallacies 101

    If I present an argument and instead of attacking the argument you call me a moron you’re committing a fallacy. If I call you a moron for committing a fallacy I’m stating a fact not committing a fallacy.’

    haha, he even gets this wrong. Its not a fallacy, its just an insult. Its only fallacious if we say you’re wrong because you are a moron. I don’t think anyone is really doing that. Oh my god he’s committing a straw man!

  153. Robneyon 01 Jul 2014 at 3:52 pm

    By the way, I don’t committing a fallacy automatically makes one a moron since we are all prone to fallacious think. So calling people morons for using fallacies is a fallacy (non sequitor).

  154. Karl Withakayon 01 Jul 2014 at 3:55 pm

    Additionally, it seems fairly obvious that a key strategy for Fullerton from the start was to divert the debate away from any burden of proof on his part by accusing Steven of using logical fallacies.

    His strategy was almost comically transparent (in hind sight, at the very least) with in his opening paragraph “We have both agreed that no logical fallacies are to be used in this debate.” and by including his 10 Commandments of Logic.

    Fullerton presumably studied up on Steven and was determined to use Steven’s own tools, tactics, and reasoning against him and show he was following the rules of logic better than Steven. Instead Fullerton has only displayed his severely superficial of understanding of logical fallacies, skepticism, and critical thinking with his cargo cult skepticism.

  155. Karl Withakayon 01 Jul 2014 at 4:05 pm

    to Fullerton:

    I can’t imagine why anyone would even need to mention that Steven Novella had agreed to not use logical fallacies in any context unless they intended to later accuse him of doing so.

    Really, Steven agreed not to use logical fallacies? How hard did you have to twist his arm to get him to agree to that?

    Why mention logical fallacies at all unless you were laying some ground work/ land mines? You don’t need to promise not to use them, just don’t’ do it. It’s not like if Steven did actually use logical fallacies, we’d all give him a break because he never explicitly agreed not to do so. Your over-eagerness regarding your plan pretty much gave it away.

  156. laserfloydon 01 Jul 2014 at 4:49 pm

    Not even sure where to start, let alone say what’s probably already been said in the comments. I’ll focus on the initiation of collapse part.

    Fullerton says that explosives aren’t required for CD then says that extremely credible eyewitnesses reported explosions. What? Were there or weren’t there explosions? I need to be more specific on what I’m asking about. Explosion is a vague definition to a lot of people. You have differing types of explosives based on how powerful they are.

    I’ve personally never witnessed a controlled demolition but they’re fun to watch on TV or YouTube. One thing they all have in common is the unmistakably loud sound of a detonation. You also see/hear them going off sometimes several seconds before a collapse.

    Eyewitness accounts are only good to a point because we’re notoriously bad at remembering exactly what we saw or heard in stressful situations. We do have a crap ton of video footage though and that’s invaluable because I’ve never, in any of the, heard anything that remotely sounded like a detonation. I heard the plane impacts and the collapse itself but no series of timed detonations. One might argue the size of the building and the collapse itself would drown that out. I’d have to disagree. A detonation produces a shockwave. It’s basically a sonic boom. Several of them would be damn near impossible to miss, twice.

    If you ask me, thermite is out simply because of the nature of the thermite itself. Not sure if anyone noticed but those buildings were raging infernos. Thermite in the vicinity of those fires would likely have ignited. Thermite is not explosive in nature but the chemical reaction is extremely exothermic. Keeping what I’d have to imagine to be thousands of pounds (if not more) from igniting at the point of impact would be a monumental and likely impossible task.

    One might argue that the thermite was set off upon impact on purpose. I can’t get behind that because you had people evacuating the building near the site of impact. If you were anywhere near a thermite reaction, you’d know it. A collective group of witnesses would say they saw at least something of that nature. I know, I said witnesses are the most credible in these situations but a few dozen saying “I saw a pool of glowing metal blocking an exit” or something to that degree would be pretty believable since they’d be face to face with it.

    So, to sum up, no distinct ‘bang’ of detonations and the difficult task of keeping thermite from prematurely igniting.

    I don’t know why we’re still having this debate over a decade later. The opponents of the official story just dig in deeper it seems. *sigh*

  157. steve12on 01 Jul 2014 at 4:53 pm

    Karl –

    “it seems fairly obvious that a key strategy for Fullerton from the start was to divert the debate away from any burden of proof on his part by accusing Steven of using logical fallacies.”

    Yeah, I agree. He was a little obsessed from the get. He’s like a dialectic logic 101 student who just learned what the fallacies are, and now he can use them to play gottcha in arguments.

    But how ironic is it that he was obsessed with fallacies, yet his entire argument is built on affirming the consequent?

    Well, that and the fact that he’s using post hoc ergo propter hoc incorrectly. There’s plenty of evidence that the planes and the building falling are connected, he just chooses to ignore it so that he can continue to sophomorically employ this fallacy.

  158. steve12on 01 Jul 2014 at 4:59 pm

    Isn’t there someone better than Fullerton over at 9/11 scientists for truth? In all honesty, this guy is sort of over his head. He’s like a little kid – especially with obsessive over-reliance on certain factoids. Very child-like.

    I’m thinking that there must be someone who can form something of a cogent argument. At least better than this?

    Then again, considering the conclusion, maybe this is as good as it gets?

  159. Hosson 01 Jul 2014 at 5:29 pm

    Here is an interesting read of Fullerton rationalizing the “Myth of Emergence”.
    http://michaelfullerton.wordpress.com/article/the-myth-of-emergence-1hwr2894wxokh-2/

    “Conclusion

    It is imperative for philosophy and science in particular to divorce themselves from magical thinking. The magical thinking involved in outdated ideas like the theory of emergence furthers only to hinder our understanding of the true nature of reality. Physics clearly shows us that the world of our senses is an illusion in that virtually nothing is truly as it at first seems. All emergent properties in which we understand the physical mechanisms causing them to manifest turn out to be illusions. It is only rational then to assume that all properties in which we do not understand the physical mechanisms causing their manifestation should also be assumed to be illusions. The fallacies of division and composition have long been used to maintain the tenuous acceptance of emergence. Unfortunately, these fallacies only apply to illusory properties, not actual properties and are therefore largely meaningless. Systems then have only the actual properties of their parts. Any new properties that appear to arise out of thin air are illusions resulting from our primitive sensory systems that are not able to see the actual properties they are based on.”

  160. the devils gummy bearon 01 Jul 2014 at 5:36 pm

    Karl:
    Fullerton’s relationship to formal/informal logic is uncannily similar to Sideshow Bob’s relationship with rakes.

    Seriously, all Steve has to do next Monday is post a captionless gif of Sideshow Bob enduring rakes, and this whole thing will be done.

  161. grabulaon 01 Jul 2014 at 5:50 pm

    @Fullerton

    “So no one here can debate me on the logical fallacies I’ve supposedly committed because either: 1) none of the blowhards here have a science degree or 2) they’re too frightened to use their real name or 3) ?”

    Michael you’ve been issued a challenge to debate here. You got your way and failed with this mess with Dr. Novella.

    “Fallacies 101

    If I present an argument and instead of attacking the argument you call me a moron you’re committing a fallacy. If I call you a moron for committing a fallacy I’m stating a fact not committing a fallacy.

    You just made an ad hominem.

  162. grabulaon 01 Jul 2014 at 5:53 pm

    @stimpyvan

    “I’m disappointed that Mr. Fullerton was unable to produce even the tiniest piece of evidence for controlled demoltion.”

    He’s still fighting a battle that was lost about a decade ago.

  163. grabulaon 01 Jul 2014 at 5:57 pm

    @wmmalo

    “All the factual information is now buried under a groping attack on the principals of debate – all content lost.”

    We’re still waiting for fullerton to bring some content. ANY content other than a terrible understanding of what a debate is and and even more terrible understanding of what an informal logical fallacy is. He made a lot of promises in his first post but like the video he originally posted way back before this ‘debate’ began, there’s no actual content.

  164. the devils gummy bearon 01 Jul 2014 at 6:40 pm

    Robney:

    haha, he even gets this wrong. Its not a fallacy, its just an insult. Its only fallacious if we say you’re wrong because you are a moron. I don’t think anyone is really doing that. Oh my god he’s committing a straw man!

    Bingo!

    I hope we get more of these “101″ sermons. It’s like performance art or something.

  165. stimpyvanon 01 Jul 2014 at 6:41 pm

    @grabula

    “@stimpyvan
    “I’m disappointed that Mr. Fullerton was unable to produce even the tiniest piece of evidence for
    controlled demoltion.”
    He’s still fighting a battle that was lost about a decade ago.”

    Oh, I know. I haven’t paid any attention to the 9-11 Truther movement in years, so when I saw that this guy was going to debate Dr. Novella, I thought that maybe something had changed (like someone found some actual evidence). Links to more youtube videos and claims that, “only controlled demolition can cause a building to fall straight down at near free fall speeds!”

    I can’t help but wonder if this level of investment in a conspiracy theory isn’t a form of mental illness. In my opinion (& I admit I’m not a doctor), this kind of commitment to an idea for which there is no evidence is irrational.

  166. grabulaon 01 Jul 2014 at 6:43 pm

    Newcoaster hit the nail on the head for me:

    “You address none of the scientific and engineering arguments other than with magical hand waving and including them the conspiracy as well.”

    I think most of us were at least in part expecting a solid debate around the engineering involved. Instead what we got is fullerton trying to rig the deck by attempting to move the burden of proof to our court. In essence I don’t think Fullerton HAS an engineering argument. I think his basic strategy IS to attempt to make it seem as if non-truthers are required to explain away HIS extreme claims as a truther.

  167. the devils gummy bearon 01 Jul 2014 at 6:44 pm

    Or, less concisely, “your argument is wrong because you’re a moron.”

    -but-

    A moron’s argument is wrong? That’s unpossible…

  168. grabulaon 01 Jul 2014 at 6:47 pm

    @stimpyvan

    “I can’t help but wonder if this level of investment in a conspiracy theory isn’t a form of mental illness”

    Not sure if it qualifies as mental illness but it doesn’t mean he doesn’t suffer. That’s not an attack, I have serious questions based on his argument and his adherence to its fallaciousness.

    This is the first video he offered up before this whole mess began: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=o9lsNFYt5Ik

    It’s a debate that has no follow up by Dave Thomas (It’s not clear why he’s debating the dead creator of the Wendy’s franchise) and offers no argument. He challenged Dr. Novella to debate that video!

  169. the devils gummy bearon 01 Jul 2014 at 6:57 pm

    I tend shy away from discussing psych/LD/mental health issues in comments (suffice it to say, this was/is my objection to Steve going forward with this- putting a Leo100 or similar on air without vetting). We should focus on the argument(s)/assertion(s) and stick to relevant background information. If you really want to see the ugliness of mental health derision, go over to whatever that blog network is, the hyper-anti-FTBs one.

  170. wood757on 01 Jul 2014 at 7:03 pm

    fullerm,

    I think Noam Chomsky has a very good response to a 9/11 Truther on this subject:

    http://youtu.be/3i9ra-i6Knc

  171. wmmaloon 01 Jul 2014 at 7:59 pm

    Noam Chomsky, wtf, oh by all means, he is one hell of a scientist. This is a bewildering exercise in stupid, big stupid.
    Whether Fullerton argued according to your structured debate footing, or not, the facts remain, and regardless all the skewed knowledge this trough asserts, the reality is still out there, untouched by both the ignorance and denial of this group.
    The physics, the demolition or collapse, however you envision it, are documented and the videos will remain part of the debate, the real debate, not this pathetic pool of hair-splitting nit-picking evasion.
    The WTC towers were compromised in some fashion after being hit by commercial airliners.
    But there is no way in hell that damage created the subsequent uniform implosion of these three buildings.
    Argue to hell freezes over, call us twoofers, and ride confident in your resistance, but the facts will never change.

  172. wood757on 01 Jul 2014 at 8:46 pm

    wmmalo,

    I, as I am sure everyone here, looks forward to your presentation of irrefutable positive evidence for progressive collapse of all three WTC towers that your supreme confidence in your claim indicates you possess certain knowledge but are quite unwilling to share with us, NIST, or any of the tens of thousands of competent structural engineers, physicists, chemists, architects, or forensic scientists.

    Please proceed before some other person claims credit for your discovery.

  173. jsterritton 01 Jul 2014 at 9:05 pm

    wmmalo: “the facts will never change.” This, and your dismissiveness of all that’s been said in the debate proper and in the comments, is a big red flag that you are an ideologue who is arguing from “faith” or some kind of incredulous zealousness. More simply put, you are not open to reason, logic, debate, argument — and no amount of it will change your mind. What you call the “ignorance and denial of this group” and a “pathetic pool of hair-splitting nit-picking evasion” is actually the comments — sometimes thoughtful, sometimes hotheaded, or both at the same time — of many individuals. We have separately taken issue with Mr Fullerton’s command of the subject, his failure to debate, his (and your) petty rebukes. We are not a monolithic force toeing some line of unreality for ideological reasons — that would be you. You cannot decide what “facts” are and expect the world to take you at your word. As critical thinkers, skeptics, and scientists, we attempt to remove as many biases as possible as to better get at the truth. We struggle enough with our own biases and don’t need to adopt yours as well.

    You say, “the WTC towers were compromised in some fashion after being hit by commercial airliners. But there is no way in hell that damage created the subsequent uniform implosion of these three buildings.”

    Your confidence will never trump scientific consensus. It won’t even hold up against dispassionate analysis. Stop up your ears and believe what you want, but don’t demand that anyone else join in those beliefs. Rather, convince them with a plausible hypothesis and reasoned argument. You can’t just be angry that you are not getting your way. You’ll have to do better than that.

  174. grabulaon 01 Jul 2014 at 9:14 pm

    Yes wmmalo, since Fullerton had failed to provide evidence maybe you’ll step up to the plate instead on continuing to make ad hominems and baseless assumptions.

  175. hippiehunteron 01 Jul 2014 at 9:36 pm

    Does Mr Fullerton believe that all islam inspired mass murder is in fact some global conspiracy or just the murders committed on American soil?

    The idea that the mass murders in Bali, London, Madrid, Scotland, USSR, Thailand, Indonesia ad nauseum were perpetrated by islamic purists but attacks on America could not have been done by people of the same ideology for the same reasons strikes me as Americacentrism.

    Added to that I think it’s more than a little insulting to the victims of these murders to play ego enhancing games such as Mr Fullertons. Imagine telling someone thier mother didn’t die from cancer, she was poisoned by evil men in black and I am one of the few people smart enough to see that. It’s not just ignorant, it’s cruel and disrespectful.

    I see similarities between psychics and troothers they both prey on the greiving for thier own selfish ends.

  176. the devils gummy bearon 01 Jul 2014 at 10:30 pm

    …facts will never change.

    This is all factual.

    Funny thing about facts; they remain facts whether you believe in them or not. And wmmalo, you’re not dealing with facts. Just like Fullterton’s assertion that his argument is scientific, asserting that something is a fact does not imbue with factiness.

    I digress.

    The WTC towers were compromised in some fashion after being hit by commercial airliners.

    I would like to propose the ghost-girder hypothesis. Ghosts did it. The I-beams were ghost I-beams. Why not? If the CD was accomplished by invisible/secret, inaudible, undetectable perhaps “nano-thermite” stuff, perfectly invisible, designed to almost perfectly mimic what burning jet fuel would do… Then why not “ghosts did it”? When we get to this end of the crazy spectrum, ghost-beams or “ghosts did it” becomes the less implausible explanation. Seriously- invisible/silent/undetectable “stuff” that that no one can detect AT ALL, ever… Or, ghosts! What is the point of this invisible/inaudible/undetectable/unknowable conspiracy?

    -or-

    the USS Enterprise hypothesis- critical components of the steel and concrete structure were beamed out. I mean, why not?

    Anyone can stick the word “hypothesis” in front of any dumb idea, but in science, a hypothesis isn’t a hypothesis unless it is falsifiable. This is like fifth grade science stuff. Just sticking that word behind a pet notion or something you believe in does not make it a proper hypothesis… I feel like I’m beating a dead horse with this, but Fullerton continues asserting his science-fu is superior… But he’s not even getting the fifth grade stuff off the ground.

  177. the devils gummy bearon 01 Jul 2014 at 10:45 pm

    If I present an argument and instead of attacking the argument you call me a moron you’re committing a fallacy. If I call you a moron for committing a fallacy I’m stating a fact not committing a fallacy.

    Fullerton’s Law: s/he who declares 10 fallacious fallacy fallacies back to back automatically gets sent to the moron box.

    No?

  178. kston 02 Jul 2014 at 1:21 am

    A few questions:

    1. It’s been argued that no other steel-framed buildings have collapsed in this manner other than via controlled demolition. Other than WTC buildings 1, 2, and 7, what other examples are there of steel-framed buildings collapsing in *any* manner? I’m reasonably sure that no building of comparable height to the twin towers has ever collapsed. It’s difficult to argue that the WTC collapses are atypical of non-CD collapse of steel frame buildings if they’re the only examples of such collapses. (I don’t necessarily claim that there are no other examples, just that I’ve never heard of them.)

    2. Suppose a 110-story steel frame building suffers major structural damage around the 90th story (for whatever reason), such that the infrastructure at that level is no longer able to support the portion of the building above it. You now have, in effect, a 20-story building falling onto the top of a 90-story building. Is it plausible that the ensuing collapse would be anything other than nearly vertical and symmetric? As the building collapses, can its structure generate enough lateral force to cause a significantly asymmetric collapse? The argument against the official story seems to assume that a non-CD collapse would be more asymmetric than what was observed; is there any evidence for that assumption?

    3. The CD hypothesis, as I understand it, requires substantial advance preparation within both towers (and perhaps within Building 7 as well), preparation performed by people with specific skills. How plausible is it that someone would have been able to persuade such a group of people to participate in a conspiracy to commit mass murder, and to keep the secret of who organized and directed the plot for all the years since then?

  179. Robneyon 02 Jul 2014 at 3:53 am

    Obviously the collapse was CD because it looks exactly like a CD. That’s irrefutable scientific fact. Whereas there is absolutely no scientific evidence in the NIST so who exactly is peddling pseudoscience here, the truthers or denialists?

    I challenge anyone on this forum to debate me so long as you meet my criteria to establish that you are my intellectual equal.

    you must be a Nobel laureate, provide a copy of your birth certificate and promise not to use any naughty logical fallacies or fallaciously accuse me of using fallacy fallacies. We can do it on here or on my blog (because to be honest, I need the traffic. Seriously no one ever comments on my blog).

    But I warn you now, I know the name of every single logical fallacy and I can and will use your skeptopatholic (I coined that term on Usenet in 1993) lexicon against you.

    So come on Novella, Let’s see if any of your blowhard, puerile, sophist followers has the intellect to challenge me!

  180. mumadaddon 02 Jul 2014 at 6:46 am

    Robney – Brilliant; perfectly captured.

  181. laserfloydon 02 Jul 2014 at 8:42 am

    And one more thing. I’d say what the Blue Angels do is “insanely complex” in regards to flying. Putting a plane into a monolithic 110 story tall skyscraper… not so much. Sheesh, this guy.

  182. mumadaddon 02 Jul 2014 at 9:31 am

    I remarked yesterday how consistently true believers confirm to type, and this is a great example:

    wmmalo:

    This is a bewildering exercise in stupid, big stupid.
    Whether Fullerton argued according to your structured debate footing, or not, the facts remain, and regardless all the skewed knowledge this trough asserts, the reality is still out there, untouched by both the ignorance and denial of this group.

    This reminded me so much of another post from the ‘Brain is not a Receiver’ thread (which now appears to be broken… probably hit the max. number of comments allowed) that I had to dig it out:

    AliSina (remember him?):

    Facts are stubborn and at the end they rule. Science is not the ultimate authority: facts are! Any time facts and science collided, facts won and science had to change in order to accommodate them.

    Denial is futile. The evidence that consciousness survive the death is overwhelming. OVERWHELMING!

    The problem true believers have is the methods by which they establish what is ‘fact’. I’ll also not that AliSina’s main source of evidence was YouTube videos….seem familiar?

  183. mumadaddon 02 Jul 2014 at 9:41 am

    *note (not ‘not’)

  184. Bronze Dogon 02 Jul 2014 at 9:45 am

    The point on using real names really has me facepalming. Do the people who use this rhetorical tactic have no conception of the social landscape? I use my pseudonym online because I don’t trust the law to protect me from religious discrimination from employers who might find out I’m an atheist. There’s also an expectation of harassment because there are a lot of woos who have no sense of decency. Pseudonyms protect honest people, too. There’s nothing sinister about using one, despite what wannabe Big Brothers say.

    Of course, my cynical side tells me that’s exactly why woos want real names: So they and their friends can harass us over our phones and business email accounts, rather than pseudonym-related accounts we can take a break from checking. Frankly, in the information age, asking for a person’s real name in contexts where it doesn’t matter is often cause for suspicion precisely because of this sort of thing.

    It’s also a case of poisoning the well. It doesn’t matter whether the person who presents an argument or a piece of evidence uses a pseudonym or not because a cogent argument is a cogent argument.

  185. The Other John Mcon 02 Jul 2014 at 9:48 am

    Yep, good old YouTube videos and crackpot journals. Anyway to point out to these people that even their journals are garbage? What metrics would be useful (amount of self-referencing; as they tend to only cite themselves/eachother, few citations are outside the journal itself)?

    One of the ESP promoters from the other thread was always citing some dude’s research, who had an extensive list of fancy sounding publications, but all were either non-peer-reviewed outlets, or within a peer-reviewed crap journal (think it was Journal of Scientific Exploration). I guess I could see how to the non-scientists this is all very confusing and its not clear who to believe? I dunno…

  186. mumadaddon 02 Jul 2014 at 10:01 am

    The Other,

    One of the ESP promoters from the other thread was always citing some dude’s research, who had an extensive list of fancy sounding publications, but all were either non-peer-reviewed outlets, or within a peer-reviewed crap journal (think it was Journal of Scientific Exploration).

    Yeah, that rings a bell. My guess is Leo100. That would have been one of the responses he gathered from someone else through his blog; he was never even that sophisticated when he went solo.

    Your point about quoting from crappy journals or citing each other reminded me of ‘Dr.’ Gillian McKeith. Not sure if the US readers will know who she is but Ben Goldacre dedicated a chapter of ‘Bad Science’ to her. Her books were full of authoritative looking footnotes and references, but if you actually looked at the citations they were trashy women’s magazines or some other rag.

    You can read it on line for free here: http://www.badscience.net/2007/02/ms-gillian-mckeith-banned-from-calling-herself-a-doctor/

    Off topic but worth a look.

  187. SteveAon 02 Jul 2014 at 10:20 am

    mumadaddon: “Your point about quoting from crappy journals or citing each other reminded me of ‘Dr.’ Gillian McKeith.”

    McKeith was/is the perfect embodiment of the cargo cult ‘scientist’. Also the poster girl for the Dunning-Kruger effect.

    Hopefully she swallowed her own ridiculous dietary advice and is now lingering in the final stages of scurvy (you might think this harsh if you’ve not come across her).

    And shame on Channel 4 for allowing her to give every impression that she was a qualified MD.

  188. mumadaddon 02 Jul 2014 at 10:47 am

    For those who don’t know, her TV show gimmick was for her to rifle through people’s excrement (really) and berate them for its colour or consistency. She called herself ‘Dr’, implying, given that she’s dolling out nutrition advice, that she was, you know, a medical doctor. Complaints were made to the TV channel which broadcast her show and she was no longer allowed to use this title in this context, as it was rightly thought to be misleading. Her defence when all this came to light was that she does have a PhD – but this turned out to be from some unaffiliated institution in the US (no offence) that refuse to allow anyone access to her doctoral thesis.

    She also had her own range of ‘natural’ (of course) supplements such as ‘Horny Goat’s Weed’ (what implied claim do you think she made about this?), but IIRC she was forced to stop selling some of these by one of our regulatory bodies (can’t recall which – ASA?) for making unsubstantiated and misleading health claims.

    To cap all this off she’s litigious as hell… She is one of the most condescending, arrogant and exploitative people to ever walk the earth, IMO. Just a disgusting specimen all round.

    [/rant]

  189. AmateurSkepticon 02 Jul 2014 at 11:58 am

    Michael Fullerton, you must be one of the worst debaters in the world. Even though you’ve (at least theoretically) given it your best shot, so far you have convinced absolutely no one of the wisdom (cough, cough) of your position.

    In fact, if you read the comments carefully, you don’t even see any cases where anyone says “Well you make a few good points.” Not even any cases where anyone says “Well you make A good point”.

    No, quite the opposite. Virtually everyone here would agree that your “points” don’t even come within a few light years of being in the ball park of “good”. They have less gravity than a neutrino, less electrical charge than a neutron, and less staying power than a Higgs Boson (and harder to find). Your entire effort can be summed up in a single word “FAIL”.

  190. The Other John Mcon 02 Jul 2014 at 12:34 pm

    Never heard of this “dr” mckeith. Super interesting, thanks so much!

    Notice how she goes ballistic if anyone questions or disagrees with her? Sound familiar?
    NOT how science works, sorry, you gotta submit yourself to brutal criticism and questioning, it sucks and is uncomfortable but it’s how the process works. Trial by fire.

  191. mumadaddon 02 Jul 2014 at 12:47 pm

    Yep, Ben Goldacre eloquently and dispassionately tore her a new one… great stuff.

  192. mumadaddon 02 Jul 2014 at 12:53 pm

    Other John,

    I did read the your links from the ‘Turing Test’ thread, BTW – very interesting; seems like we’re a long way off true artificial consciousness though, or at least on a level we’d meaningfully recognise.

    Anyway…back on topic.

  193. the devils gummy bearon 02 Jul 2014 at 1:07 pm

    Rules

    Select one person. That person must use his real name and have some sort of science degree. He can consult with any other people he wishes but only the selected person addresses me. I’m willing to do it here if Dr. N. sets up a new post or we can do it on skeptopathy.com. Time to put up or shut up.

    Boy, you’ve come to the wrong the place to have a pissing contest with science degrees, mate. Weird choice, btw, to plaster the internet with your mighty (only) Bachelor’s from UCalgary. In this day and age, the only people who wallpaper themselves in degrees (almost exclusively sub standard or mail ordered ones) are cranks.

    Also, fullerm, your “rules” are moronic. Really weird, and really very stupid.

    Tantamount to blowing a debate onstage, then shrieking at the audience, lunging at them shouting, “I’LL DEBATE YOU, I’LL DEBATE YOU ALL!!! (shaking fist furiously) I’LL SHOW YOU ALL!!!”

    eh. You’ve had the opportunity to make your case, and you’ve been given every opportunity to respond to criticism.

  194. jsterritton 02 Jul 2014 at 1:16 pm

    DGB:

    “I’LL DEBATE YOU, I’LL DEBATE YOU ALL!!!”

    Rolling on the floor laughing.

    “All I need is MORE RAKES!!! The I’ll show you!!!”

  195. mumadaddon 02 Jul 2014 at 1:18 pm

    Doesn’t it seem odd that so few pro conspiracy types have shown up? I don’t think skeptopathy gets much traffic. Well, maybe it’s getting a couple of orders of magnitude more than normal at the moment, but that’s people that have come to point and laugh at the resident oddball… Still, it’s a spectacle alright.

  196. mumadaddon 02 Jul 2014 at 1:21 pm

    *who* have come to point and laugh. I know nobody cares, but I do, dammit!

  197. jsterritton 02 Jul 2014 at 1:31 pm

    AmateurSkeptic makes a salient point. Fullerton’s argument is so poor, his skills as a debater so absent, his manner so boorish, that he doesn’t garner a single, polite, “you have a good point,” from anyone. Of course, “you have a good point,” is just a mannered way of saying, “please be quiet why I argue just the opposite,” but it is still a nod and a nicety extended by adults engaged in discussion. That such social niceties and decorum have been denied Fullerton is not an indictment of commenters in these pages for being mean. Quite the opposite, it is reproof of Fullerton for his tone (which began as condescending and proceeded rapidly downhill from there) and proof that he is a special kind of bullying, boorish crank indeed.

  198. jsterritton 02 Jul 2014 at 1:32 pm

    *while* (I feel you, mumadadd). Damn you, tpyos!

  199. mumadaddon 02 Jul 2014 at 1:34 pm

    DGB,

    That, my friend, is spot on.

    “THEY THOUGHT ME MAD! MAD!! I’LL SHOW THEM, ONE DAY!”

  200. The Other John Mcon 02 Jul 2014 at 1:44 pm

    Thanks mumadadd: “seems like we’re a long way off true artificial consciousness though, or at least on a level we’d meaningfully recognize”. Agreed, it’s kind of a bummer, and you’d think we would be further along. But it *IS* a really, really, thorny, difficult, complex problem with a way forward that isn’t clear.

    Oh well, back on point, mock away! I’ll restart: Fullerton, if that IS your real name, wow us with your bachelor’s degree magic!

  201. the devils gummy bearon 02 Jul 2014 at 2:52 pm

    Others have pointed to the fact that Fullerton couldn’t make up his mind; one sentence arguing that explosions did indeed occur whilst simultaneously stating that they also did not occur or weren’t needed, paragraph after paragraph. He got so turned around in those weeds, trying to get a “gotcha” dig at Steve, that he literally kept arguing for and then immediately against “explosions” or explosives… Stupefying stuff to read through.

    Anyways.

    Major unstated premise: Nano-thermite paper-

    http://www.opednews.com/articles/1/Why-the-Harrit-Nano-thermi-by-Michael-Fullerton-090814-310.html

    Of ^note; Fullerton’s defence (and misrepresentation) of pay-to-play Bentham’s Open Chemical Physics Journal scandal. His positions are, of course, unsurprising. Still, it is interesting to see how far back and how deeply invested he is in this conspiracy-doctrine ecosystem.

  202. the devils gummy bearon 02 Jul 2014 at 3:03 pm

    Oh, I forgot… His conclusion:

    Every “debunker” argument leveled against the nano-thermite paper reeks of faulty reasoning and ignorance of the facts. Those that use illogical reasoning and who distort and ignore facts are not skeptics but pathological skeptics. Pathological skepticism has absolutely no place in science.

    Most lucid thing of his I’ve yet read (it broke the irony meter again, just when I got it back from the shop). I like that. “Pathological” skepticism, as in diseased/disordered skepticism, yes?

  203. tmac57on 02 Jul 2014 at 3:04 pm

    This is like Al Capone’s vault :(

    Oh wait! Did I just make a false analogy fallacy? Oh well,I’m sure someone will check me on that. (sigh)

  204. steve12on 02 Jul 2014 at 3:37 pm

    The Junior Scientist routine really is adorable, though. I half expect him to whip out a magnifying glass and tell me his name is Encyclopedia Brown.

    If you really believed that 9/11 was an inside job, would you spend this much time on the physics of the collapse?

    There have to be 1000 loose ends. If the conspiracy is true, someone had to coordinate the placement of tons of explosives in the towers, many people had to place them, someone had to coordinate the commandeering of the planes, etc, etc. There’s no evidence that any of this happened? All this shit went on, but the best evidence is that the towers “looked like” demolition?

    And what kind of maniac plan is this? What happens if one of the planes makes it and the other does not? Now there’s tons of explosives in the other tower just waiting to be discovered, cover blown. Why would any oligarch take such extreme risks when they were fleecing us already leading up to 9/11 w/o that risk? Yeah – Big Oil really needed to take this enormous risk, lest they would have starved!

    I kind of get the same feeling as with the bigfoot nutjobs – STFU trying to convince me bigfoot’s here because a drunk hunter swears he saw one and GO FIND A BODY! Enough with the collapse – get some positive evidence of the conspiracy, and shut up until you have it.

  205. the devils gummy bearon 02 Jul 2014 at 3:46 pm

    Someone in here said something very similar the other day, and I quote, “Time to put up or shut up.”

  206. Robneyon 02 Jul 2014 at 4:33 pm

    I just read the link for his thermite debunking article. What’s amazing is that he has been banging on about logical fallacies at least as far back as 2009 and yet still in 2014 demonstrates an inability to understand them or identify them correctly.

    I like this in particular;

    ‘There is absolutely no evidence that The Open Chemical Physics Journal is not a peer-reviewed journal’

    next paragraph

    ‘The paper was created by a computer program named SCIgen and contained nonsensical statements. This paper was allegedly accepted after undergoing peer review. Obviously the peer review process appears to have been conspicuously absent in this particular case’

    He also thinks that open journals are superior because they are more open to public scrutiny. I suspect he doesn’t have a lot of experience reading academic journals.

  207. Robneyon 02 Jul 2014 at 4:42 pm

    What irritates me I think is his writing style, I cant quite articulate why but he tries to adopt an authorative tone, e.g;

    ‘the fatal flaw in this argument’
    ‘what the scientist utterly failed to realise’

    its examples like these, why use ‘fatal’ or ‘utterly’ in these statements, its like he’s trying to strengthen his position with rhetoric rather than cogent arguments.

    assuming such an authorative and condescending tone while simultaneously demonstrating such a poor understanding of the concepts about which you are accusing others much more qualified than yourself of failing to grasp makes him look a little silly.

  208. Robneyon 02 Jul 2014 at 4:45 pm

    Another example

    ‘I will address each criticism in order of their comical absurdity’

    Mr Fullerton, these rhetorical flourishes add nothing to you arguments

  209. the devils gummy bearon 02 Jul 2014 at 4:52 pm

    Rhetorical flourishes, indeed Robney… Semantic games, and nonsense rhetoric, without the meat and potatoes of facts and logic.

    …a tale, told by an idiot, full of sound and fury. Signifying nothing.

    -Some guy.

  210. Bronze Dogon 02 Jul 2014 at 4:54 pm

    And what kind of maniac plan is this? What happens if one of the planes makes it and the other does not? Now there’s tons of explosives in the other tower just waiting to be discovered, cover blown. Why would any oligarch take such extreme risks when they were fleecing us already leading up to 9/11 w/o that risk?

    Not possible. The Illuminati is superhumanly competent. That’s how they were able to sneak in countless explosive devices and install a mile or two of wiring into a continuously occupied building without anyone sounding the alarm. You couldn’t even see the spackle on the walls they tore open.

    Yeah – Big Oil really needed to take this enormous risk, lest they would have starved!

    It’s funny. The world is already filled with enormous problems and ignored threats. You’d think they’d have enough to be scared of. But in many cases, I think it’s because the world is filled with problems, that conspiracy theories are paradoxically comforting because it means someone is in control and someone can be blamed for it all. I doubt the comfort is lasting, since it doesn’t give them any special insight into the future and still leaves them with uncertainties to deal with.

    We just skip all of that and recognize that we live in an uncertain world with numerous dangers. No point in inventing new ones.

  211. Robneyon 02 Jul 2014 at 5:09 pm

    With logical fallacies he is rather like blindfolded man wildly flailing his arms hoping to connect a punch. Despite missing everyone in the bemused crowd around him his absolute confidence that he can take them all on is unshaken.

  212. Robneyon 02 Jul 2014 at 5:13 pm

    The fact no one hits him he sees as proof of his superior fighting athleticism

  213. Karl Withakayon 02 Jul 2014 at 5:25 pm

    ” The Illuminati is superhumanly competent.”

    Oh yeah? If they’re so super-humanly competent, why couldn’t they pull off a staged destruction disguised as a collapse due to plane crash that a fifth grader couldn’t see right through?

    It’s the OJ defense.

    It’s what’s at the heart of nearly every conspiracy theory. It’s a complex, skillfully masterminded and executed conspiracy that’s so obvious and poorly executed & designed that any idiot can see right through. one executed by people who can control the government, media, scientists, and engineers, but for some reason have no control over random yahoos (that use their real names) on the internet. A conspiracy planned and executed people who have no qualms about killing thousands of people in a staged demolition of the Twin Towers, but for some reason can’t be bothered to take out the people supposedly busting the conspiracy wide open.

  214. tmac57on 02 Jul 2014 at 5:32 pm

    One of the funnier things about the 911 truthers is that they accuse the truly wackiest of the group as being part of a disinformation campaign to discredit the ‘real truth tellers’ of the movement…like that is really even necessary.

    Maybe this is actually one big sophisticated avant-garde performance piece that we, the unwashed, just cannot appreciate until the artiste is mort.

  215. tmac57on 02 Jul 2014 at 5:40 pm

    Karl- It’s just soooo obvious that it is hiding in plain sight…and also, sooooo Rube Goldbergly complicated at the same time. Truly incredible! (in the most obvious sense of the word).

  216. Karl Withakayon 02 Jul 2014 at 5:44 pm

    tmac57:

    Ergo, Fullerton is part of the conspiracy. He may even the mastermind behind the whole shebang.

  217. the devils gummy bearon 02 Jul 2014 at 5:44 pm

    The conspiracy theorists worldview/psycholgogy, regardless of the conspiracy, always seems to be comprised of:

    1) The duped masses (us)
    2) The conspirators (“THEY“)
    3) The Freedom Fighter/Truth Warriors (fullerm/Neo et al)

    Limitless spectral evidence is very convenient. I like the idea of magic paper, i.e. the nano-thermite stuff. Brilliant.

    My favorite conspiracy right now is the doctors have been implanting chips in children since 1980 one. The evidence that this is occurring? Doctors won’t admit to it or remove the chips. Beautifully elegant spectral evidence. Live, from the Bundy Ranch: http://winningateverything.com/22640

  218. SteveAon 02 Jul 2014 at 5:47 pm

    Karl Withakay: “A conspiracy planned and executed people who have no qualms about killing thousands of people in a staged demolition of the Twin Towers, but for some reason can’t be bothered to take out the people supposedly busting the conspiracy wide open.”

    I suspect Fullerton must have super Kung Fu skills (like Inspector Clueso) that render him immune from attack. And imagine the international outcry if someone of his intellectual standing were mysteriously killed…oh, hang on…Fullerton! Run! Run!

  219. tmac57on 02 Jul 2014 at 5:55 pm

    SteveA- You are just lending credence to the ‘wackiest are part of the CT’ idea.
    This goes deeper than we can imagine (and I can imagine a bottomless pit…like this thread )

  220. Geekoidon 02 Jul 2014 at 5:57 pm

    “No evidence whatsoever if given to support these claims.”
    Other then material science and physics?

  221. Karl Withakayon 02 Jul 2014 at 6:06 pm

    Seriously, I consider the proposition that Fullerton is part of a campaign of disinformation to discredit the truthers at least as plausible as the controlled demolition proposition.

  222. the devils gummy bearon 02 Jul 2014 at 6:08 pm

    “Other then material science and physics?”

    Such trivial matters are no match for Fullerton’s clearly superior science-fu.

  223. Bill Openthalton 02 Jul 2014 at 6:16 pm

    Bronze Dog –

    But in many cases, I think it’s because the world is filled with problems, that conspiracy theories are paradoxically comforting because it means someone is in control and someone can be blamed for it all.

    It’s indeed more comforting to believe that the bad things happen by design, instead of chance. I guess this is an extension of the good/bad dichotomy one finds in the christian and muslim world views. God and the devil are both personalised actors with a purpose, and the ultimate triumph of the good is assured.

    We find the same desire in the dualists — our mind/consciousness is not a limited device for survival, but part of a purposeful reality-transcending actor. They might not know the purpose, but they know it is there. We’re not mere flotsam, but part of a grand design.

    I see the same need for purpose (if only an evil purpose) in the Bantu view on disease, which is always caused by someone — usually a witch doctor casting a spell on behalf of a rival family or clan. The idea that “shit happens” is profoundly foreign to the Bantu mindset (at least it was in my youth 50 years ago), and based on the reasoning of Fullerton and his ilk, it is foreign to many Westerners as well.

  224. tmac57on 02 Jul 2014 at 6:30 pm

    Bill- Well to be fair,this “shit” didn’t just happen.It was indeed a conspiracy that was well planned and executed,and did achieve it’s stated goals. It’s just not the conspiracy that CTs choose to accept.

    Actually,I seem to recall that Bin Laden was surprised that his plan resulted in the collapse,so I guess he must have said to himself “Huh! I guess shit happens…Oh,and allah akbar”.

  225. Bill Openthalton 02 Jul 2014 at 7:11 pm

    tmac57 –

    I was waxing lyrically. You’re right of course, 9/11 was a real conspiracy, and the realisation the much ballyhoo’d CIA, FBI and other US security agencies (real and from the telly) didn’t prevent an attack by Arabs (OMG, Arabs!) is too much to bear. Must be the gubmint. Yes, it must be Dubya and his cohorts — they can’t run the economy but oh boy, can they run a conspiracy.

  226. DJCrashon 02 Jul 2014 at 7:15 pm

    I like how this guy doesn’t think passenger airplanes crashing into buildings can be considered data.

  227. Bronze Dogon 02 Jul 2014 at 7:51 pm

    TDGB:

    I like the idea of magic paper, i.e. the nano-thermite stuff.

    Yeah. One thing that started to stick out to me as I grew older, aided by my high school physics and chemistry classes, is that there’s a limit on how much energy you can cram into a tiny space in practical fashion. Science fiction often has power cells, micro-fusion generators, and other energy-related phlebotinum to power all the energy guzzling jetpacks and infantry laser weapons. These days, I see that sort of miniaturization being around the corner as fantasy. I just don’t think we can compact much more energy in chemical bonds without resorting to nuclear reactions.

    The idea of ‘nano-thermite’ that has significantly more energy than an equivalent mass of normal thermite just seems laughable. I expect a chemical that contains that much energy in such a tiny mass would ignite or explode if you shined a dim light on it or gently rubbed it. I read a chemistry blog series, ‘Things I Won’t Work With‘ and a lot of entries are azides full of nitrogen atoms wanting to break loose and dump all their energy into their surroundings at the slightest provocation. At least one involved a chemical name including ‘azidoazide’. The chemists working on that stuff had to go to ridiculous lengths to keep the crystals from exploding too much.

    Before anyone worries about these hyper-explosive chemicals being used for terrorist plots or whatever, you can take comfort in the fact that their highly explosive nature creates practical barriers against merely storing the stuff without it decomposing (explosively or not), much less moving it. What makes conventional explosives conventional is that they’re stable enough to explode when you want them to explode, rather than when you’re placing the charge. These chemicals inevitably explode even if you pamper them.

  228. wmmaloon 02 Jul 2014 at 7:56 pm

    True believers? You are as much believers as anyone, myself or Fullerton. The debate isn’t about facts, but about a consensus established in Sept of 2001. The convincing element was your loyalty to a mediated America and a uneducated population. You need the box-cutter scenario, Al Qaeda and the horror of an attack from outside this great nation, where the power brokers never harm their citizens – therefore the physics must suit the situation. Hold fast, never let go and your little reality won’t let you down.

  229. wmmaloon 02 Jul 2014 at 8:01 pm

    @Bronze Dog
    Thermite is iron oxide and Aluminum – it takes a blast of a least 1500 F, usually supplied by a small magnesium charge. Pampered, wtf.
    You don’t know shit about plastics or thermite. Research not bullshit.

  230. wmmaloon 02 Jul 2014 at 8:06 pm

    Nano thermite is used in demolition and the military uses it extensively. It can be fired by an electronic signal and wires are no longer necessary in CD. The charges are numbered and fed into a computer which runs the firing sequence, much like large fireworks display, coreographed. Don’t be so dull witted you think the ‘how’ is some great mystery.

  231. wmmaloon 02 Jul 2014 at 8:27 pm

    “But in many cases, I think it’s because the world is filled with problems, that conspiracy theories are paradoxically comforting because it means someone is in control and someone can be blamed for it all.”

    “Bill- Well to be fair,this “shit” didn’t just happen.It was indeed a conspiracy that was well planned and executed,and did achieve it’s stated goals. It’s just not the conspiracy that CTs choose to accept.”

    Two conspiracies, two theories, maybe even more, but neither are completely accepted and one is ‘official’ because the government and the media have impressed the population with the information they disseminated from the moment the planes took flight.

    I was in Rome and not speaking the language watched the event unfold without the media spin, account. There was no doubt in my mind I was witnessing the controlled demolition of three of the seven WTC towers. I was the only American and no one viewing this horror disagreed.
    An hour before building seven was ‘pulled’, we found a BBC station and got the “terrorist attack”distortion.

    You can feel safe with the official story, and the smug, arrogant tone of this forum speaks volumes, but sometimes the conspiracy is homegrown from execution to exploitation – you all been had.

  232. Bill Openthalton 02 Jul 2014 at 8:31 pm

    wmmalo –
    The problem with nano-thermite is that 9/11 predates the technology to produce it. Furthermore, wireless detonation is very expensive and unreliable, and would have been even more so prior to 2001.

  233. wmmaloon 02 Jul 2014 at 8:43 pm

    Bill Openthalt

    I am sorry but you are so wrong about that. Again, lack of knowledge, or you think this will convince the rest of this group. I worked with thermite in grad school and nano means nothing more than proportioning at normally iron oxide and aluminium, are in the form of extremely fine powders – lab shit, nothing more. Sulphur and phosphorus adjustments and you have one nasty metal melter. You people have to get on board, it’s the science, stupid

  234. wmmaloon 02 Jul 2014 at 8:46 pm

    Wireless detonation expensive? Tell the Afghans their cell phones won’t set off the IEDs that blew the legs off our men and women.

  235. wmmaloon 02 Jul 2014 at 8:47 pm

    MICs or Super-thermites are generally developed for military use, propellants, explosives, and pyrotechnics. Research into military applications of nano-sized materials began in the early 1990s.[3] Because of their highly increased reaction rate, nanosized thermitic materials are being studied by the U.S. military with the aim of developing new types of bombs several times more powerful than conventional explosives.[4] Nanoenergetic materials can store more energy than conventional energetic materials and can be used in innovative ways to tailor the release of this energy. Thermobaric weapons are one potential application of nanoenergetic materials.[5]

  236. tmac57on 02 Jul 2014 at 8:49 pm

    wmmalo-Your account of that terrible day says it all:

    You “had no doubt in (your) mind…” that you were witnessing a CD,despite the fact that you had absolutely no way to conclusively “know” that.
    That is what we call ‘confirmation bias’ in the REAL skeptical world.
    Doubt is a key concept of critical thinking.You should try it some time.
    Cock certainty without evidence is a fools game.

  237. jsterritton 02 Jul 2014 at 8:49 pm

    Fuck you wmmalo. I live at the corner of Liberty & Greenwich Streets. I lost neighbors and loved ones, my home and everything in it. I was there that day, without any fucking “spin.” Fuck you and your selfish, stupid assholery.

  238. grabulaon 02 Jul 2014 at 8:54 pm

    @kst

    “It’s been argued that no other steel-framed buildings have collapsed in this manner other than via controlled demolition.”

    There’s always a first time. The mistake truthers make is in thinking that because it hasn’t happened before, there must be something else going on. The simple fact is though a couple of planes have crashed into buildings nothing on this scale has been seen before so this IS the precedence. Never before have we seen multiple airliners moving at high speeds collide with structures this tall or built the way they were. In fact, we establish twice in one incident exactly what appears to happen when all of these things come together. You could argue that the first collapse is precedence for the second and so on. The important thing here is that truthers don’t understand,I believe willfully, the difference between other instances like this and the WTC situation on 9/11.

    “The CD hypothesis, as I understand it, requires substantial advance preparation within both towers”

    That’s right, and truthers have to go to some extremes to try to explain not only how this was done but how it’s been kept secret – leading up to and after the events.

    @amateurskeptic

    “Virtually everyone here would agree…”

    This is another one of those areas truthers don’t understand. If everyone you’re discussing with seems to agree you’re wrong, and consistently points out the same issues – there’s probably an issue there. Instead they resort to calling names and implying that we’re all just toeing the party line.

    @mumadadd

    “Doesn’t it seem odd that so few pro conspiracy types have shown up? I don’t think skeptopathy gets much traffic. ”

    I think that’s the point of this for fullerton. His ‘argument style’ doesn’t lead one to really understand where he’s trying to go so I would guess that even truthers have a hard time following him since they tend to focus on niggling technical issues these days. That brings up the other point, he’s still arguing from a truther point of view that’s about 10 yrs old. I think these two things combine to make it difficult for fullerton to drum up interest. I also suspect that he’s hard to deal with if you don’t agree with him even if you agree on some basic principles, whatever those are.

  239. grabulaon 02 Jul 2014 at 8:55 pm

    wmmalo

    “The debate isn’t about facts”

    I’m glad you’re able to admit you and fullerton are not debating facts. Thankfully atleast one of you sees this.

  240. wmmaloon 02 Jul 2014 at 8:58 pm

    “You “had no doubt in (your) mind…” that you were witnessing a CD,despite the fact that you had absolutely no way to conclusively “know” that.”

    But I did. Because that is what I witnessed.
    In your mind you knew what they told you was happening because you have no conceptual understanding of physics, or experience in engineering, architectural systems. I do know, it is you who has to trust those you relish as the authorities. I am sharing my knowledge, you are sharing theirs, not yours.

  241. grabulaon 02 Jul 2014 at 9:03 pm

    @wmmalo

    “Nano thermite is used in demolition and the military uses it extensively”

    All my time in the army and no mention of nano thermite. All those safe handling, hazmat lectures and yet…nothing.

    ” It can be fired by an electronic signal and wires are no longer necessary in CD”

    “Wireless detonation expensive? Tell the Afghans their cell phones won’t set off the IEDs that blew the legs off our men and women.”

    Lol, leave your highly explosive material vulnerable to radio waves. ‘Hey man, turn that song up… BOOM!’

    ” but neither are completely accepted and one is ‘official’ because ”

    Wrong, the second, you know about the islamic extremists is pretty well accepted these days.

    “There was no doubt in my mind I was witnessing the controlled demolition of three of the seven WTC towers”

    Being that your such an expert on controlled demolition and all.

    “MICs or Super-thermites are generally developed for military use, propellants, explosives, and pyrotechnics. Research into military applications of nano-sized materials began in the early 1990s.[3] Because of their highly increased reaction rate, nanosized thermitic materials are being studied by the U.S. military with the aim of developing new types of bombs several times more powerful than conventional explosives.[4] Nanoenergetic materials can store more energy than conventional energetic materials and can be used in innovative ways to tailor the release of this energy. Thermobaric weapons are one potential application of nanoenergetic materials.[5]”

    Hmmmm, worked with nano thermites in school but have to go to wikipedia for your facts? I smell government conspiracy…

  242. wmmaloon 02 Jul 2014 at 9:08 pm

    This debate thread is beguiling. There is no debate when there is a stubborn assuage to a myth , complete manipulation of science by a pig-headed group of very intelligent people waving the false flag over an extremely intriguing event. Under the horror and tragic loss of life hides the responsible consortium, and you shield them unwittingly.
    I ask you, what would a real investigation hurt and why are you so frightened by that idea you continue to belittle those of us who don’t see this as you?

  243. grabulaon 02 Jul 2014 at 9:16 pm

    @wmmalo

    “There is no debate when there is a stubborn assuage to a myth”

    See, even you are starting to learn something after only having been here a short while!

    “I ask you, what would a real investigation hurt and why are you so frightened by that idea you continue to belittle those of us who don’t see this as you?”

    It’s been done, a few times on several different aspects. What does it hurt for you to just accept you’re wrong and move on?

  244. Robneyon 02 Jul 2014 at 9:41 pm

    wmmalo,

    you know, as a community we are typically quite incredulous and skeptical about many claims made in the mainstream news media. In fact we often campaign and raise awareness about scientific misreporting in the media. What makes you think that when it cones to 9/11 we are totally credulous and swayed by the news?

    What you don’t understand is that as skeptics we try to apply skepticism to our own beliefs as well the news reports we see. We don’t selectively apply our skepticism. We accept the official story regarding 9/11 because we have weighed the evidence and come to that conclusion using the same skeptical tool kit that we use to investigate all other claims.

  245. the devils gummy bearon 02 Jul 2014 at 10:17 pm

    @wmmalo

    (yawn)…

  246. the devils gummy bearon 02 Jul 2014 at 10:26 pm

    …loss of life hides the responsible consortium…

    Speaking of which, does it ever occur to you lugs that maybe the victims don’t want you’re Fred Phelps style Truth-A-Con pushed on them? What if you’re wrong wmmalo? What if you’re the one holding the God Hates Fags sign in front of a victim’s family? Does this thought ever occur to you wmmalo?

  247. grabulaon 02 Jul 2014 at 10:31 pm

    @Devils Gummy

    “Does this thought ever occur to you wmmalo?”

    I think truthers have proven atleast a couple of things in the last decade or so

    1 – they don’t care about the effect they’re conspiracy mongering has on survivors/families

    2 – They will never admit they are wrong – if you’re in it this deep, you’ll never be convinced you could be wrong. wmmalo states he KNEW it was CD when he witnessed it on TV. The difference between that sort of talk and the talk of say a skeptic like myself is that I would say the EVIDENCE seems to show it wasn’t CD and supports plane collision = collapsing buildings model.

  248. the devils gummy bearon 02 Jul 2014 at 11:48 pm

    He knew in his gut he was watching a controlled demolition, aye?

    I only have one response to that: is it not unreasonable (wmmalo) to wait until the dust settles and the evidence comes in? I didn’t know what I was watching, all I felt in my gut was horror.

    Basically, what the great and late turtle-muppet said:

    But I try not to think with my gut. If I’m serious about understanding the world, thinking with anything besides my brain, as tempting as that might be, is likely to get me into trouble. Really, it’s okay to reserve judgment until the evidence is in.

  249. grabulaon 03 Jul 2014 at 12:02 am

    @wmmalo

    “In your mind you knew what they told you was happening because you have no conceptual understanding of physics, or experience in engineering, architectural systems. I do know”

    This is obviously BS. If you did understand these things the official story wouldn’t seem so bizarre. Remember wmmalo, saying it doesn’t make it so!

  250. grabulaon 03 Jul 2014 at 12:04 am

    @devils gummy

    wmmalo says (keep in mind he’s a self proclaimed expert in demolitions, nano stuff, physics and engineering:

    ” There was no doubt in my mind I was witnessing the controlled demolition of three of the seven WTC towers.”

    So this guy had everything figured out AS it was happening, meanwhile it took experts a couple of years to catch up…oh yeah, and they were wrong.

  251. grabulaon 03 Jul 2014 at 12:06 am

    Also, keep in mind wmmalo has followed the same path as his brother in arms fullerton – he hasn’t presented an argument, or evidence for his claims besides he knows what he saw. I don’t understand what these guys expect to accomplish not making arguments lol.

  252. the devils gummy bearon 03 Jul 2014 at 12:23 am

    “In your mind you knew what they told you was happening because you have no conceptual understanding of physics, or experience in engineering, architectural systems.”

    Actually wmmalo, would you like to know what my day job is? Or, does just presuming that you’re speaking to non-architects and non-structureal engineers put a nice little bow on your claptrap?

  253. jsterritton 03 Jul 2014 at 12:48 am

    wmmalo…

    I am making an outsized effort to rein in my anger at your callous comments, mostly because my original response will surely not be approved by this page’s moderators.

    I live at Liberty & Greenwich Streets in NYC. I lost neighbors and loved ones, my home and everything in it. I was there that day, without any “spin.” You and your selfish, crass, exploitative fellow-travellers — who have so much special knowledge of something they know nothing about — should be ashamed of yourselves for reasons beyond counting.

    I don’t claim to have any special insight, privilege, or inside information because I was there that day. The very idea that you would claim all of those things because you were not there is sickening.

  254. steve12on 03 Jul 2014 at 1:07 am

    wmmalo:

    “This debate thread is beguiling.”

    Just an aside – why are you writing like it’s Victorian era fan fiction? We get it – you’re smart.

    “I ask you, what would a real investigation hurt…”

    How exactly are we stopping anyone from investigating anything?

    Get to work, kid! Move past the physics of the collapse and get some POSITIVE EVIDENCE OF CONSPIRACY. There’s plenty of people who are very passionate about this (sad as that is) – pool some resources, crowd source some cash, DIY – work,work,work.

    Endlessly trying to convince us of this collapse business and starting new debates is not going to unearth any new evidence.

    Let me guess – you guys will stick to complaining a lot and linking to CD youtube videos that make our point for us instead.

  255. Robneyon 03 Jul 2014 at 2:39 am

    The idea that you have some special insight because you watched the news reports in another language so were therefor not swayed by the biased news reporting is weak.

    Presumably when you watched the towers collapse and instantly knew it was a controlled demolition you had prior knowledge of the design of the towers, the materials, the load bearing strength of each floor, the mass of the aircraft which hit and the amount of fuel you were carrying, you calculated the subsequent damage to the building, the mass of the upper floors and the force the exerted on the lower floors when they collapsed. Presumably you also had knowledge of controlled demolition techniques and at the time unknown explosive technology.

    And since you seem to think that the fact that everyone in the bar agreed with you holds some kind of weight, presumably it was of those well known Italian bars patronised only by engineers and demolition experts with intimate knowledge of the twin towers.

    By the way, l was used to believe 9/11 was a conspiracy. I wad not massively invested in it bit it fit with the political beliefs I held at the time and I found the Truther arguments compelling. I was too intellectually lazy to research the counter arguments and had not, at that time, developed critical thinking skills. The weight of evidence forced me to reconsider my beliefs.

    your assumption that us ‘deniars’ are all blinded by the media is absurd. sw

  256. Robneyon 03 Jul 2014 at 2:48 am

    *they were carrying

  257. Bill Openthalton 03 Jul 2014 at 3:51 am

    wmmalo –

    Compared to wire, wireless is both unreliable and expensive for controlled demolitions. It is difficult to ensure wireless coverage throughout a large building, especially a steel frame one. In the case of sequenced detonation, dust significantly alters wireless signal transmission, leading to possible failed firings. Based on the state of wireless technology in 2001, I seriously doubt it could have been used for the high precision firing sequences you propose.

  258. the devils gummy bearon 03 Jul 2014 at 4:03 am

    So the invisible undetectable inaudible impossible magic nano paper has WiFi now? Genius.

    Was it 801.11b or a (in ’01)? But wait, if the magic paper was installed and rigged WAY pre-801.11 standards… Then… More unknowable magical invisible spectral stuff. Again, what’s the point of this?

  259. the devils gummy bearon 03 Jul 2014 at 4:06 am

    “Ghosts did it” is less implausible than this magic WiFi boom-boom paper malarky.

  260. mumadaddon 03 Jul 2014 at 4:15 am

    wmmalo,

    This is special pleading over details without tackling the gaping hole that it is lack of any evidence. Explaining away details in pointless until you have something concrete (or steel, maybe) that points to a home grown conspiracy.

  261. RickKon 03 Jul 2014 at 7:37 am

    wmmalo,

    How is your confidence in your interpretation of what you saw any different than the people who are completely confident that the shadows they see on Apollo mission photographs prove that the pictures were taken in a studio and not on the Moon?

    What *I* see is an unprecedented event – the destruction of buildings that were like no other. What *I* see is the two towers collapsed from the top down, with no settling of the buildings indicating a loss of support below the impact sites. What *I* see is two buildings fall messily, but pulled straight down because where else would they go given how gravity works? As for WTC7 – I see a building warp and wobble and then lose some and then all of its supports.

    And what I see is people like you and Fullerton, getting some weird thrill out of clinging desperately to the same sort of impossible grand conspiracy as the Apollo landing deniers and those lovely people who think that the Sandy Hook shootings were a government fabrication. What I see is someone milking a tragedy so they can feel smarter or wiser than everyone else.

    Go ahead and invent secret government chemicals, perfectly timed explosions, holographic airplanes and a grand conspiracy involving hundreds of people keeping their secrets perfectly. But you should stop and think about all those grand conspiracy believers who’ve come before you, concocting similarly complex scenarios involving similarly large numbers of people keeping similarly devastating, dark secrets. You should consider why they believed these impossible scenarios, and whether their beliefs and motivations bear any resemblance to yours. Consider setting aside the literature on nano weapons and picking up a copy of “Voodoo Histories” by David Aaronovich.

    Never forget the thousands that came before you who were just as confident in their impossible scenarios, and were just as wrong.

  262. SteveAon 03 Jul 2014 at 7:41 am

    Robneyon: “And since you seem to think that the fact that everyone in the bar agreed with you holds some kind of weight.”

    It seems this is what passes as peer review in CD land.

    wmmalo: “Nanoenergetic materials can store more energy than conventional energetic materials and can be used in innovative ways to tailor the release of this energy.”

    You’ve started to throw around the term ‘nano’ in the same way the woo-mongers use ‘quantum’. It’s not a magic cure-all that explains it all away in a hand wave.

    As Steve12 said, it’s time to put in some work. Let’s see the figures.

  263. The Other John Mcon 03 Jul 2014 at 8:53 am

    Steve12: “Get to work, kid! – pool some resources, crowd source some cash, DIY – work,work,work.”

    EXACTLY! This is exactly the problem, I love it. Put in some frigging work people, stop with the YouTube video nonsense, you are accomplishing literally nothing with your word vomiting and video watching.

  264. The Other John Mcon 03 Jul 2014 at 8:54 am

    The armchair philosophers we’ve seen over the last few months demonstrate this exact problem, too. They think they can solve all the world’s great problems in their heads, just by thinking about them…but at least they weren’t linking to YouTube as their scholarly sources, I’ll give them credit for that.

  265. Hosson 03 Jul 2014 at 9:37 am

    wmmalo
    “I ask you, what would a real investigation hurt and why are you so frightened by that idea you continue to belittle those of us who don’t see this as you?”

    9/11 truthers won’t be much of a problem if ya’ll weren’t advocating a freaking witch hunt.

  266. Vendetta88on 03 Jul 2014 at 9:58 am

    Just when I think my interest in these comments is waning, Wmmlo comes back and makes it all hilarious again.

  267. stimpyvanon 03 Jul 2014 at 10:24 am

    @wmmalo
    Just to be sure I understand, is this the sequence of events?

    1) In 1996 or 1997, the FBI, CIA, and/or NSA begin planning with Al Qaeda to get terrorists into the US and signed up for pilot training,
    2) In 2000, while the terrorists are learning to fly airplanes, the FBI, CIA, and/or NSA are installing some combination of nano-thermite and/or demolition charges throughout WTC 1, 2, & 7. These charges are wired to radio receivers and are carefully shielded from both fire and physical shock so that when airplanes crash into the buildings, they won’t detonate prematurely. Some combination of Radio Frequency (RF) technology is used that assures both reception of the detonation signal and protection from stray RF signals causing a premature detonation.
    3) Not one of the thousands of people working in these buildings notices thousands of pounds of explosives being placed (or, if they do, they are “silenced”),
    4) On September 11, 2001, the terrorists successfully crash a large aircraft into each WTC 1 & 2 (I’m unclear on whether the terrorists were required to fly into a specific floor of each building or if the demolition charges were reconfigured “on the fly” to reflect which floors were hit),
    5) Even though portions of each plane penetrated the entire width of the building and set several floors of each building on fire, the shielding for the demolition charges worked perfectly and the charges did not detonate,
    6) An FBI, CIA, and/or NSA employee watching the events (presumably from WTC 7) decides or is ordered to destroy WTC 2 after it has burned for about an hour (I am unclear as to whether the decision was made because it had burned long enough or because the upper floors were beginning to collapse),
    7) WTC 1 burns for about 100 minutes then is destroyed in the same manner as WTC 2,
    8) Debris from WTC 1 hits WTC 7 and “sets it on fire” (*wink wink*),
    9) The FBI, CIA, and/or NSA clear out of WTC 7 then blow it up.

    This is easily proven by watching videos of controlled demolitions of buildings and comparing those to the collapse of the WTC towers.

    I think I’m convinced! Good job!

    BTW, are there any videos of uncontrolled building collapses on youtube? You know, as some kind of control?

  268. Bronze Dogon 03 Jul 2014 at 10:37 am

    @Bronze Dog
    Thermite is iron oxide and Aluminum – it takes a blast of a least 1500 F, usually supplied by a small magnesium charge. Pampered, wtf.
    You don’t know shit about plastics or thermite. Research not bullshit.

    Yeah, I know regular thermite is iron oxide and aluminum. The aluminum is the fuel, and the iron oxide is the oxidizer. Aluminum fires are nasty, but what keeps aluminum from igniting in everyday circumstances is that it forms a thin layer of aluminum oxide on the surface, preventing the oxidizing reaction from continuing.

    I was ridiculing the notion of “nano thermite” as a vague unobtainium. As far as I know, twoofers are positing an entirely different substance that merely behaves like a souped-up version of thermite to conveniently fill in one of the many gaps in their conspiracy hypotheses. They generally don’t elaborate on what they’re proposing, so I can’t take it for granted they’re actually talking about iron oxide and aluminum.

    So, how much thermite was used per charge in your hypothesis, and how much energy is released per mole of thermite burned? Realistically, how much of that energy is going to end up specifically in the support, rather than the surroundings? Can you make a shaped charge, and if so, what’s the shaping component made of to resist being burned through? Show me some math.

    If it’s stable to the point of needing a 1500°F ignition temperature, I kind of doubt it’s as energetic as you need it to be for its stealthy size. “Nano” implies small. About the only realistic expectation I have for how the term would be used is that the iron oxide and aluminum are in very fine ‘nano’ particles, which might let it burn a bit more thoroughly than conventionally manufactured thermite, implied to have coarser particles, but that wouldn’t impart special properties on it above and beyond normal thermite, just likely a small percentage increase in energy from burning a little bit more cleanly.

    It’s your theory, you’re supposed to present your evidence. I’m not obligated to do your homework. Besides, I suspect if I did your homework, I’d find flaws, counter-evidence, and such and you’d complain that I was erecting straw men, going after low-hanging fruit, or cherry-picking sources that are “obviously” pro-Illuminati. It happened all the time with other topics. That’s why I prefer to give woos rope, rather than go through a lot of trouble just so that they can nitpick, move goalposts, and equivocate their position.

  269. steve12on 03 Jul 2014 at 12:15 pm

    “They think they can solve all the world’s great problems in their heads, just by thinking about them”

    They have just enough knowledge to know that you’re wrong, but not enough to 1. know what’s been done up until now or 2. actually do any research.

    I’m just imagining walking around SFN or CNS telling everyone that they were morons and their posters were shit. Then when they say “Where’s your work?” I’d just point to my head “It’s all up here….”

  270. the devils gummy bearon 03 Jul 2014 at 1:07 pm

    The clues are in the pixels. Zoom in and enhance, sheeple.

  271. _Arthuron 03 Jul 2014 at 2:51 pm

    I don’t think the lack of an obvious noisy explosion, can support or infirm any of the two positions.

    The whole shebang must have been noisy as hell, and when the supports finally gave up, there must have been a tremendous noise undistinguishable from an explosion. And there were debris flying about, just like with an explosion.

    I think this argument will lead nowhere (just like many others).
    So there is no need to be invoking ninja thermite explosives either.

    To answer Carl’s question, all US buildings are wired for CD by an unrevealable 3-letter agency, just after they are built, just in case a terrorist plane hits them. Then the XKQ agents wait one hour or so, and then blow down the whole building, to deny the terrorists a victory.

  272. fullermon 03 Jul 2014 at 2:55 pm

    Aww…There’s a big clue on Reddit why a public debate on my “fallacies” will never happen.

    http://www.reddit.com/r/skeptic/comments/29ggno/911_truther_michael_fullerton_debates_steven/cilu2ix

  273. Hosson 03 Jul 2014 at 3:40 pm

    Wow, Fullerton just double downed.

    I define someone as being a moron if non-sequitors are pointed out in their thinking but they refuse to acknowledge or change them.

  274. the devils gummy bearon 03 Jul 2014 at 3:41 pm

    The public debate on your fallacies is coming to a close. Too bad you didn’t show up, you magnificently oblivious snowflake.

  275. the devils gummy bearon 03 Jul 2014 at 3:52 pm

    Aaaaaaaand 99% of that reddit destroys Fullerton’s arguments. reddit decisively crushes Fullerton, and Fullerton selectively links to the one uncritical bit? That’s unpossible. http://www.reddit.com/r/skeptic/comments/29ggno/911_truther_michael_fullerton_debates_steven/

  276. Karl Withakayon 03 Jul 2014 at 4:00 pm

    Arthur:

    RE: “To answer Carl’s question”

    Man, I go by the handle Karl Withakay (pronounced with a kay, and someone still spells my name with a C. :)

    As to “The whole shebang must have been noisy as hell, and when the supports finally gave up, there must have been a tremendous noise undistinguishable from an explosion”

    I don’t concur. I’m mostly making educated speculation here, but I suspect that high velocity explosions would likely be audibly distinctive and detectably different and separate from the subsequent sounds of the buildings crashing down or any sounds of the weakened supports failing immediately prior to the collapses. The supports didn’t become brittle and snap, they softened and collapsed. I wouldn’t expect any explosion like noises from the supports. I could be wrong, of course.

  277. the devils gummy bearon 03 Jul 2014 at 5:13 pm

    I’m just gonna go out on a limb here, but the sub/r/comment Fullerton just linked to, a comment made by a “cmatrix”… Yeah, cmatrix claims to own Vernon 9/11 Truth? Fullerton’s outlet?

    Oh Michael….

    http://www.reddit.com/r/AskReddit/comments/28034h/employers_of_reddit_what_is_the_most/ciabxbf?context=3

  278. the devils gummy bearon 03 Jul 2014 at 5:25 pm

    Yep. cmatrix is Michael’s handle on the jref forums. Oh dear oh dear. You poor thing…

  279. the devils gummy bearon 03 Jul 2014 at 5:34 pm

    Just to reiterate:

    Aww…There’s a big clue on Reddit why a public debate on my “fallacies” will never happen.

    http://www.reddit.com/r/skeptic/comments/29ggno/911_truther_michael_fullerton_debates_steven/cilu2ix

    Fullerton, aka cmatrix, just disingenuously linked to his own post on Reddit.

    And grammatically…. Here’s the money shot:

    Anyone who thinks this is affirming the consequent neither understands logic nor science. No wonder no one has the courage to debate the supposed logic errors, they’d be ripped to bloody shreds. I hope Novella has more sense than to take any heed of the gibbering imbeciles commenting on his blog.

    Sound familiar? Yeah.

    Sad.

  280. Hosson 03 Jul 2014 at 5:50 pm

    Nice find DGB.

    mumadadd: “I know the ‘logic’ in Fullerton’s first post has been picked apart already, but seeing as he’s added nothing new here… I just looked up a list of formal fallacies and realised that his whole argument is a formal fallacy: affirming the consequent.
    If P (controlled demolition) then Q (symmetrical, vertical building collapse)
    Q
    Therefore P
    Oh very dear.”

    And cmatrix’s response(aka Michael Fullerton): “That’s a straw man. Such a statement was never made.
    Here a more accurate description:
    If P (rapid straight-down controlled demolition) then Q (rapid, symmetrical, vertical building collapse)
    Q
    Therefore Q is evidence of P
    In science evidence proof (truth). Q could also be evidence of X, Y, Z. Anyone who thinks this is affirming the consequent neither understands logic nor science. No wonder no one has the courage to debate the supposed logic errors, they’d be ripped to bloody shreds. I hope Novella has more sense than to take any heed of the gibbering imbeciles commenting on his blog.”

  281. the devils gummy bearon 03 Jul 2014 at 5:51 pm

    A lot of smack-talk about “courage” from the guy with the flaming pants. I’m done. DGB out.

  282. tmac57on 03 Jul 2014 at 7:23 pm

    Hey! has anyone heard about a crazy theory making the rounds that the brain is a receiver?
    Now that’s whack!
    ;)

  283. the devils gummy bearon 03 Jul 2014 at 7:44 pm

    Oh shit. A few more things, I can’t resist…

    So, some years ago, cmatrix aka Michael Fullerton got called on his shit and pulled this tired Fullerton-esque bullshit on the JREF. And he again resorted to the internet equivalent of “I’ll kick your ass behind the playground after school! I’ll kick all your asses!” (from: http://forums.randi.org/showthread.php?t=181227 )

    I will never discuss the contest here further so I guess in your minds that means the contest is a sham. If the contest is a sham, then you should have no problem explaining how the laws of physics referenced in the contest are not violated.

    Here’s my challenge to JREFies. I’ll debate the physics behind this contest with anyone anywhere. Just one exception. I want my own thread dealing only with this topic. I tried to start one but it was moved to the general pit of stupidity. I can’t discuss it here or it will also be moved. I simply cannot tolerate wading through a gigantic cesspool of electric JREF vomit and e-diarrhea.

  284. Argument from the fifth gradeon 03 Jul 2014 at 7:45 pm

    Long time lurker here but had to chime in on this thread. I’ve never seen someone be so thoroughly crushed in a “debate” before. Wow. Epic fail for Fullerton.

    The icing on the cake is after being so belligerent and demanding that he only debate people using their real names — he misleadingly links to his own Reddit comment under one of his aliases.

    I think I finally understand why Dr. Novella agreed to this! I’m not even sure part IV is necessary ;) Steve you can take a well-deserved break…you can do the blog equivalent of dropping the mic on Monday.

  285. the devils gummy bearon 03 Jul 2014 at 7:56 pm

    More Fullertonisms:
    http://forums.randi.org/showthread.php?t=183243
    http://67.228.115.45/showthread.php?s=d2a0b703e9c387b3a9cd9176700b1ec5&t=186819
    http://67.228.115.45/showthread.php?s=d2a0b703e9c387b3a9cd9176700b1ec5&t=201401
    http://forums.randi.org/showthread.php?t=226095

    Also, its kinda obvious why he demands people’s names http://www.reddit.com/r/AskReddit/comments/28034h/employers_of_reddit_what_is_the_most/ciabxbf?context=3 :

    I’ll be contacting your employer about this tomorrow.

    As an aside… So yesterday, just for S&Gs I snarkily said this:

    3) The Freedom Fighter/Truth Warriors (fullerm/Neo et al)

    And what is Michael Fullerton’s avatar on the jref? Yup; a flying Keanu in shades. That facepalm, I did it to myself.

    Anyway, in conclusion; We can top off Fullerton’s intellectual midgetry and logical incompetency and online bullying with this: Fullerton is a deceptive coward- I didn’t expect a sockpuppet to come out of this, but there we have it.

  286. grabulaon 03 Jul 2014 at 8:24 pm

    @fullerton

    “Aww…There’s a big clue on Reddit why a public debate on my “fallacies” will never happen. ”

    Because you get trounced publicly and brutally.

  287. grabulaon 03 Jul 2014 at 8:30 pm

    So this guy is just getting his ass handed to him at every turn and yet he continues to bust out his nonsense…

    I notice wmmalo has disappeared…most significantly after being called directly on his BS.

  288. grabulaon 03 Jul 2014 at 8:51 pm

    So back in 2010 Fullerton was still spouting this stuff off but he also seem to have some specific complaints:

    “No analysis is needed just two simple facts any non-moron should easily understand: 1) free fall means no resistance. 2) normal office fires can’t blow out 8 stories of structure simultaneously. If fire didn’t do it something else did which is not acknowledged in the US government’s official crackpot loony theory. So their crackpot theory violates the (conservation) laws of physics. Only violently obtuse crackpots like JREFtards believe in such insane theories. ”

    This is from the JREF link DGB posted. So he doesn’t seem to understand two basic points, and hasn’t been able to figure it out in at least 4 years. The first is that the buildings were shown to fall at NEAR free fall speeds, with a nominal loss in momentum, that’s apparently expected in a collapse like this. Second, he doesn’t seem to understand that no one is claiming that fires blew out any floors. Planes’ blew out chunks of those floors, and the fire proofing around many of the supports that survived the initial impacts. After an hour or so of these fires burning, and already in a weakened state, the structure lost its capacity to support everything above it and some mechanism in turn provided for total failure – probably the tons and tons of material raining down upon them.

  289. grabulaon 03 Jul 2014 at 8:55 pm

    Here’s another doozy from that thread:

    “Why do you need numbers? My simple irrefutable analysis clearly shows, to non-morons and non-lunatics at least, how the official crackpot theory violates the (conservation) laws of physics.”

    Fullerton doesn’t seem to understand that claims based on physics should be shown using numbers.

  290. the devils gummy bearon 03 Jul 2014 at 8:59 pm

    Back in ought 10, (the same jfref forum link grabula and I are mentioning), where Fullerton aka cmatrix got outed and taken behind the woodshed hard, this was the BS he was up to at the time:

    https://web.archive.org/web/20100601040747/http://www.vernon911truth.org/wtc7contest.html

    His own JREF-styled ≈$10,000 (Canadian) “challenge”. Needless to say, he got torn about a thousand new ones over the course of that thread…

  291. grabulaon 03 Jul 2014 at 9:14 pm

    I wish I’d been exposed to that JREF thread before this debate even began. My expectations would have been a little more accurate.

  292. the devils gummy bearon 03 Jul 2014 at 9:14 pm

    (i put too many jref links in a comment, and it’s waiting moderation. I stated that Michael Fullerton is a deceptive COWARD (on top of his more obvious failings) in light of his BS sub/r sockpupptetry today. Happy s’plodings, ‘Merikuns, and a happy TGIF for the people of earth)

  293. the devils gummy bearon 03 Jul 2014 at 9:36 pm

    …expectations would have been a little more accurate.

    I know, right?

  294. the devils gummy bearon 03 Jul 2014 at 9:47 pm

    This one’s pretty damned hilarious: http://forums.randi.org/showthread.php?t=183243

    Sword_Of_Truth, pointedly:

    If giving cmatrix what he wants (his own debate thread) is enough to make him quiet down and go away, is anyone else curious to see what announcing a “new investigation” will do to him?

    ROLFMAO

  295. grabulaon 03 Jul 2014 at 9:49 pm

    So basically what has come out is this: Michael Fullerton continues to claim no one knows what they are talking about when it comes to the events of 9/11 except him. He will throw a challenge out to anyone he thinks will get him some play time. He’s set up a ‘challenge’ in which he’s failed to provide specific criteria, or proof that the money he offers exists. He does flybys in order to get a little attention, drops some ad hominems, then the microphone and is out.

  296. string pulleron 03 Jul 2014 at 10:26 pm

    I’m grateful for this blog and these comments.. I genuinely didn’t know how to sort out the issues related to “This looks like a controlled demolition therefore it has to be”.. and I admit I was haunted by the possibility that this was true.

    Thank you Dr Novella for hosting this debate and for fullerm (and wmmalo for bringing up WTC7, which was surprisingly absent from fullerm’s presentation).

    Despite the horror and confusion of that day, I feel confident to dismiss the 9/11 was an inside job issue as nonsense.

  297. grabulaon 03 Jul 2014 at 11:08 pm

    @string puller

    “I’m grateful for this blog and these comments.. I genuinely didn’t know how to sort out the issues related to “This looks like a controlled demolition therefore it has to be”.. and I admit I was haunted by the possibility that this was true.”

    It’s easy enough if you really want to figure it out. As a skeptic and not an engineer, I rely on the little I know of the subject matter at hand and I trust the consensus that’s been built up over the last decade. A few minor details on how things happened may be up for debate but absolutely no evidence has been provided for CD of any kind. In fact when evidence is proposed then refuted you see goal posts moved like wmmalo’s nano-paper BS.

    My own real skeptical inclinations started because of 9/11. Before I’d come to the more rational conclusions on most things – religion, bigfoot, ufo’s etc. My buddy sent me a link to loose change when it got released and initially I was a little shocked. However it only took me a few moments to start asking the hard questions – the biggest in mind of which was how many people would have to be involved in order for a conspiracy of this magnitude to exist? I don’t have enough faith in humanity so to speak to believe it could be pulled off. Eventually the engineering and physical evidence began to get released and so on and it just really occurred to me how easily one could be duped into believing a thing if they didn’t bother to make an effort to really understand it.

    Of course guys like fullerton and wmmalo are making a different mistake these days. I know a lot of people who initially bought into an inside job concept, have stepped away after the preponderance of evidence against has been provided. Those people can be forgiven for being lazy or mislead. These guys have convinced themselves that they know better than hundreds of actual experts in the fields required to determine what happened that day. They spit in the face of literal video evidence and as some have pointed out, even use evidence that actually supports an argument AGAINST as an argument for lol. That’s not only intellectually lazy it’s deceitful.

    The ‘real’ argument these days that pertain to the events of 9/11 or really focused on how things progressed – NIST established collapse initiation but weren’t’ concerned with what happened afterward, the point really only being of interest from an engineering point of view. Anyone still arguing for CD or a conspiracy are really fringe by this point.

  298. grabulaon 03 Jul 2014 at 11:10 pm

    lol – this gem is part of Fullerton’s challenge pertaining to his challenge on JREF:

    “They created a separate thread in a misdirected attempt to discredit this challenge using their typical simplistic name-calling and hand-waving “arguments”.”

    I’m pretty sure he not only does most of the name calling and handwaving but also initiated the handwaving and name calling!

  299. the devils gummy bearon 03 Jul 2014 at 11:29 pm

    grabula, that entire jref thread is a gem… Why do you need numbers? Hehe… I was in stitches earlier. I haven’t had a laugh like that in a long time… Numbers… Hahahahaha… God damn it. It’s just too funny. It’s like Tina Fey is writing this guy’s lines.

  300. laelon 03 Jul 2014 at 11:58 pm

    I have this feeling that 9/11 Thruthers don’t believe an airliner crashing into a skyscraper could not ever bring that building down. Does anyone know of someone who has been challenged on this? I would really like to know what conditions they think would be necessary.

  301. the devils gummy bearon 04 Jul 2014 at 12:27 am

    http://vernon911truth.org/wtc7debate.html

    What a sore loser.

  302. grabulaon 04 Jul 2014 at 12:32 am

    @lael

    It’s a claim challenging the fact that the buildings wouldn’t have fallen just because a few measly airplanes crashed into them. In fact that’s the whole crux of the truther movement really. They HAD to come down via CD, no other way in their eyes.

    Their conditions are ridiculous, just read wmmalos here – crazy nano-thermite paper soaked radio controlled bombs planted by the hundreds of pounds in a very public location, secretly mind you. I mean beyond that look at the basis for even believing that crap – he KNEW upon seeing it in some foreign country it HAD to be CD, no other way. No background to give him any particular insight into what happened.

    That’s what got me about Fullerton right away – he throws around faith based belief, probably because it’s been thrown in his face so many times he’s decided to just turn it around and try it out on anyone who doesn’t believe him.

    At this point it’s not rational, and in my non psychologically based opinion, not sane. The preponderance of evidence is insurmountable at this point without creating crazy nano-radio, explody paper.

  303. grabulaon 04 Jul 2014 at 12:36 am

    @DGB

    priceless lol This:

    “In science, the prevailing theory for a particular phenomena must be the simplest theory available that best explains all the observed facts.”

    Followed at the end by:

    “One thing we do know is that scientists never ever support an easily falsified theory. Perhaps this is why no scientist wants to debate Fullerton.”

  304. grabulaon 04 Jul 2014 at 12:40 am

    LOL this is from his thread in the Skeptics Society Forums:

    “I notice that you completely missed that the thrust of the article is not about engineering or anything relating to building materials or explosives. It is about basic principles of science. The concept of what constitutes a valid scientific explanation is taught beginning in elementary school. Any high school graduate let alone a PhD in science should be able to explain how I’m wrong if I were.”

    In 2011 it was high school graduate level stuff. These days it’s 5th grade stuff! Also who needs an understanding of engineering when you can scream fallacy! fallacy!

  305. the devils gummy bearon 04 Jul 2014 at 12:46 am

    I know… Right down there at the bottom…

    One thing we do know is that scientists never ever support an easily falsified theory. Perhaps this is why no scientist wants to debate Fullerton.

    Totally. He nailed it. The derp is strong in this one.

    So dumb, so very very dumb. Insufferably dumb.

  306. the devils gummy bearon 04 Jul 2014 at 12:47 am

    So dumb… So so so dumb…

    - The official theory of 9/11 where terrorists conspired to demolish buildings by ramming planes into them is a conspiracy theory. Therefore any scientist who supports that theory is also conspiracy theorist and should therefore have no problem debating another conspiracy theorist.

  307. grabulaon 04 Jul 2014 at 12:51 am

    I wish I had the time to track his stuff back as far as possible. I have a feeling he’s sort of absorbed most of the sciency stuff from his truther buddies. After seeing them trounced over and over again he decided to attack from the fallacy/scientific thinking aspect – the sciency stuff being out of his domain. I think this would bare out if you looked at his history

  308. grabulaon 04 Jul 2014 at 12:54 am

    Actually scratch that. After reading this: http://www.foreignpolicyjournal.com/2011/02/14/a-scientific-theory-of-the-wtc-7-collapse/

    I think he started out by parroting the truthers he admired. My theory is that because he can’t really argue this stuff in detail – again it’s beyond his understanding – and got cornered so often by people attacking his fallacious thinking, he’s decided to try to throw that back at his decriers.

  309. laelon 04 Jul 2014 at 12:55 am

    @grabula

    I completely agree. I just would really like to see a truther pinned down on that point. Denying the consequent has been exposed constantly in this blog series, but I wonder if some deeper hidden premise is going on: Crashing a plane into a tower cannot make it collapse -> The two towers collapsed : Therefore, the planes did not cause the towers to collapse.

  310. the devils gummy bearon 04 Jul 2014 at 12:59 am

    Can we please get some intelligent Canadians round here? You guys got some ‘splainin to do.

  311. grabulaon 04 Jul 2014 at 1:06 am

    found in that article I last posted:

    “It is unavailable because NIST refuses to release it. NIST has stated that releasing the data “might jeopardize public safety”.[4] So because the NIST model cannot be verified, it is meant to be taken on faith. The NIST model, then, is faith-based, not science-based.”

    These are the kind of fundamental mistakes that have led Fullerton astray. He indicates that since NIST must be taken on faith and is therefore faith-based when in actuality what he prob means is that if you believe in a report you cannot see and hasn’t been exposed publicly you are practicing faith based belief.

    feel free to use that correction in further discussions Fullerton.

  312. laelon 04 Jul 2014 at 1:08 am

    @the devils gummy bear

    I’m not too far from the Fullerton, and I have nothing that I can say. Just found out the Canadian aspect from the Reddit link. I do have a friend who speaks in such flowery language as wmmalos does with no substance, though, so I can’t defend us all…

  313. grabulaon 04 Jul 2014 at 1:12 am

    This stuff kills me:

    “9/11 Experiments: The Great Thermate Debate”

    As if anyone of consequence is bothering to ‘debate’ this lol.

  314. the devils gummy bearon 04 Jul 2014 at 1:14 am

    The single “debate” this clown claims for a win, grabula? The Skeptics Society one you quoted (the only link the moron has for a debate “win”)… My god… He got taken to the F’ing cleaners. And he calls it a win?

    This guy is a 30 Rock character. Dennis Duffy stuff.

  315. the devils gummy bearon 04 Jul 2014 at 1:23 am

    @lael, I’m flying into Vancouver next Wednesday, and I’ll be staying over for a good long while this summer. Hehe… My peeps come from there. Of course, I’m only mocking leo100 and fullerm.

  316. grabulaon 04 Jul 2014 at 1:28 am

    @DGB

    “This guy is a 30 Rock character. Dennis Duffy stuff.”

    Exactly. He get’s trounced in every forum he claims a win in. Inevitably he falls to ad hominem and than bails – see above ‘debate’ for an example.

    After that link you posted on his debate offers/wins I realize his efforts to garner attention go beyond hits. That’s basically his trophy rack. He can point to it as he does at the bottom of the page, and say see, no serious scientist will debate me and no one who has debated me will win. It’s pathetic.

  317. the devils gummy bearon 04 Jul 2014 at 1:36 am

    Sore loser. Sorry display. He’ll declare a win and mount a stuffed Novella in his trophy case. But no one cares. No one gives a shit. No traffic. No comments. No audience. Guy’s not even bush league. Oh well…

  318. grabulaon 04 Jul 2014 at 1:38 am

    He does provide for hours of entertainment though lol

  319. grabulaon 04 Jul 2014 at 1:42 am

    I notice he is stuck on the idea of precedence:

    “I did not say CD is the only way for WTC 7 to have collapsed the way it did. However, CD is currently the only scientifically credible hypothesis that is supported by any evidence. For the fire hypothesis to be plausible there would have to be some supporting evidence, some precedence. But there is absolutely no supporting evidence and no precedence for the fire hypothesis. So you and Michael Shermer, publisher of Skeptic magazine, support a crackpot faith-based pseudo-science theory. Conversely, you both reject the only scientific hypothesis, the CD hypothesis, that explains all the facts and has several decades of precedence. Why?”

    He seems to think that with no precedence, that somehow invalidates a theory – even though 9/11 was unprecedented in a lot of ways.

  320. the devils gummy bearon 04 Jul 2014 at 1:48 am

    We should take a page out of Pyrrho’s book: http://www.skepticforum.com/viewtopic.php?p=244867#p244867

    And move on to discussing more substantial and consequential matters, like fruit fly traps.

  321. grabulaon 04 Jul 2014 at 1:57 am

    I’m not sure why but this idiocy is fascinating to me.

    Having read over his first ‘victory’ over Pyrrho in the skeptics society forum, he classifies a win as saying the same things over and over again, trying to poorly define science and the scientific method, refusing to address most of the specific questions asked of him. Finally he collapses into ad hominem and bails. The boy definitely has a pattern.

  322. the devils gummy bearon 04 Jul 2014 at 2:26 am

    It is fascinating to me as well. It is like reading a satire. It is very amusing. Tragic, but amusing.

  323. grabulaon 04 Jul 2014 at 2:29 am

    With the Shallit link: http://recursed.blogspot.ca/2008/03/fractal-wrongness.html he definitely sticks to message :

    “Mr. Shallit do you see anything wrong with the high school level science principles covered in this article:”

    I’m not sure but it also looks like he’s claiming his article in foreign policy journal counts as peer reviewed.

    This sound familiar?:

    “IOW you can’t address the arguments so you ignore them and instead attack the opponent and the publication the argument is published in. Pretty illogical for a comp. sci. prof. But entertaining to be sure. ”

    and:

    “Again, your repeated refusal to directly support your seemingly oddly illogical, completely unscientific beliefs with anything but low-brow insults and other sophomoric fallacies is highly suspicious. This is the kind of behavior we see in crackpot religious fundamentalists not scientists. What gives?”

    Keep in mind this is all Fullerton. On his trophy page he accuses Shallit of strictly ad hominem/fallacious reasoning (again, sound familiar?). I don’t know anything about Shallit but in this case Fullerton comes out swinging long before Shallit. On top of the immediate ad hominem, Fullerton refuses as usual to address specific points not on message. Admittedly I had to start skimming Fullerton’s stuff, it’s the same crap over and over again.

    So for the record, 1 of the 3 ‘wins’ he claims was private so who knows. The other two aren’t wins so much as Fullerton repeating his arguments ad nauseum, refusing to address specific claims not on target and finally, as is typical, ad hominem then the bail.

    I’m guessing once Steve posts his final rebuttal, Fullerton will have another trophy to claim – a ‘win’ I’m sure. In every case anyone with a head on their shoulders, not wearing blinders could see who’s winning in these discussions.

  324. the devils gummy bearon 04 Jul 2014 at 2:47 am

    And then the bail… He’s a broken record. He’s also an idiot. There’s no point dancing around it. He is one hot mess. I’m still in the weeds of the Skeptics Society… You’re so right, the mind starts skimming over his word salads because he’s basically repeating three cookie cutter sentences over and over and over, before lurching into fallacy fallies and ad homs and then… THE BAIL… He’s like the Batman of stupid. Woosh…

    I’m about to switch over to Shallit.

  325. grabulaon 04 Jul 2014 at 2:59 am

    It’s the same with shallit. I could probably throw Fullerton’s argument at this point I’ve read it so many times. He’s basically found a few points he thinks he’s refuted – mostly related to WTC7 and it’s collapse speed, how NIST got it wrong and it’s all faith based and the only scientific evidence supports CD and nano thermates and you’re an idiot who doesn’t understand 5th grade (high school?) science. BAIL!

  326. the devils gummy bearon 04 Jul 2014 at 3:03 am

    NOT BEFORE A ROUND OF FALLACY-FALLACY! The new internet game sensation, where a moron from the norwoods declares everything in the world in a fallacy!

  327. grabulaon 04 Jul 2014 at 3:17 am

    He’s got a hard on these days for trying to show he knows what skepticism is and isn’t:

    http://www.foreignpolicyjournal.com/author/michael-fullerton/

    http://skeptopathy.com/wp/?author=1

  328. grabulaon 04 Jul 2014 at 3:20 am

    I tried to muck through his blog but the articles I skimmed have the same problem this debate does. He doesn’t really provide evidence for anything, he just sort of rambles about his ‘theories’ and proclaims them truth!

    He’s consistent in two things. First he’s stuck on his pet theory for 9/11, but in the last year or so his focus has turned to trying to rationalize why he’s not included in the skeptical community.

  329. the devils gummy bearon 04 Jul 2014 at 3:23 am

    He rattles out a bunch of ipse dixits, about free fall, ipse dixits on NIST, bangs on a high school or fifth grade drum of “science”, declares everything a fallacy, declares and proclaims that everyone is “not reasoning correctly” or variously something something “pathological skepticism”, throws down more debate gauntlets which are really smoke bombs (thermite smoke bombs), and BAILS. He’s the Batman of stupid.

    Doesn’t even have two wits to rub together to make a singularly compelling thought.

  330. grabulaon 04 Jul 2014 at 3:34 am

    Is there a logical fallacy encompassing implied stupidity? One of Fullerton’s favorite tactics is to imply if you don’t get it you’re not as smart as a 5th grader. I’m not aware of any but I’m a little tired at the moment.

  331. the devils gummy bearon 04 Jul 2014 at 3:38 am

    At least the rainbow sprinkler lady had a kind of evidence. And a lucidity to her reasoning… Comparatively, anyway. Fullerton is just a brick.

  332. the devils gummy bearon 04 Jul 2014 at 3:52 am

    “Is there a logical fallacy encompassing implied stupidity?”

    Maybe a fait accompli or ipse dixit. I’m too tired myself…

  333. grabulaon 04 Jul 2014 at 4:19 am

    haha reading down the list on wikipedia: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_fallacies

    I’m pretty sure Fullerton commits most of them!

  334. grabulaon 04 Jul 2014 at 4:25 am

    Appeal to Ridicule maybe?

    “an argument is made by presenting the opponent’s argument in a way that makes it appear ridiculous”

  335. the devils gummy bearon 04 Jul 2014 at 4:52 am

    I wouldn’t give him that much credit for tact. It’s the irony that does him in. His pomposity and the preposterousness of his declarations, he’s a very ridiculous person.

  336. mumadaddon 04 Jul 2014 at 7:37 am

    Okay, this has been bugging me for a while. This is not a criticism of his ‘arguments’, but I just want to get it off my chest. From his photo, he just looks like a crackpot. There’s a mad glint in his eye alright…

  337. grabulaon 04 Jul 2014 at 7:58 am

    lol, I just think he looks as pompous as he sounds. Could be his personality coloring my view however.

  338. mumadaddon 04 Jul 2014 at 8:27 am

    This is from the Skepticforum thread:

    Fullerton:

    As a hard-core science-based skeptic, I am gravely perplexed as to why someone like Michael Shermer, an intelligent rational scientist and publisher of a skeptical magazine, promotes crackpot faith-based theories.

    Hah! No. Friggin. Way. That’s simply outstanding from a man that believes atheist to be a faith based belief.

  339. mumadaddon 04 Jul 2014 at 8:52 am

    [–]krucz36 2 points 2 days ago*

    hasn’t almost every respondent on the posts offered detailed descriptions of his fallacies? Here’s user mumadadd:

    mumadaddon 30 Jun 2014 at 12:35 pm

    I know the ‘logic’ in Fullerton’s first post has been picked apart already, but seeing as he’s added nothing new here… I just looked up a list of formal fallacies and realised that his whole argument is a formal fallacy: affirming the consequent.

    If P (controlled demolition) then Q (symmetrical, vertical building collapse)

    Q

    Therefore P

    Oh very dear.

    This is a short comment that pretty much annihilates everything fullerton says, isn’t it?

    permalink
    parent

    [–]cmatrix 1 point 14 hours ago*

    That’s a straw man. Such a statement was never made.

    Here a more accurate description:

    If P (rapid straight-down controlled demolition) then Q (rapid, symmetrical, vertical building collapse)
    Q
    Therefore Q is evidence of P

    In science evidence proof (truth). Q could also be evidence of X, Y, Z. Anyone who thinks this is affirming the consequent neither understands logic nor science. No wonder no one has the courage to debate the supposed logic errors, they’d be ripped to bloody shreds. I hope Novella has more sense than to take any heed of the gibbering imbeciles commenting on his blog.

    WTF? So at first it seems he’s managed to find one, single, solitary quote in his favour, which he parades around here like it’s some kind of victory, then it turns out it’s actually him under another name. Wow, that’s desperate.

    If that’s his response to the criticism, why not make it here? I wonder…

  340. mumadaddon 04 Jul 2014 at 9:06 am

    Repeated ad nauseam by Fullerton Skepticforum thread:

    your proposal is a crackpot faith-based pseudo-science theory

    Well let’s see then:

    Cold fusion:

    Everyone is probably familiar with Fleischmann and Pons’ claim that they had discovered a nuclear reaction that occurs at (or near) room temperature, compared with temperatures in the millions of degrees that is required for hot fusion. Furthermore, I bet everyone is also under the impression that their claim had been discredited – wrong!

    Panthiesm:

    If you believe atoms don’t have awareness then this means that you believe awareness magically arises out of nowhere when atoms in a certain configuration interact with one another. This is impossible…..Since an atheist does not believe any type of God exists, including the pantheistic conscious Universe, the atheist must believe that thoughts magically arise out of nowhere……The Universe is just energy and nothing more. If thought is a fundamental property of the building blocks of matter then this proves the God of pantheism is a fact.

    (a nice bit of begging the question in bold)

    Creationism:

    So there we have it. There is in fact not only a sentient God but a God continually enacting a form of intelligent design and creationism that is not just plausible but a logically proven fact.

    All from one issue of Skeptopathy. Crank magnetism.

  341. mumadaddon 04 Jul 2014 at 11:00 am

    This reminded me of our friend:

    The “vindication of all kooks” corollary to the principle of crank magnetism
    http://scienceblogs.com/insolence/2009/11/30/the-vindication-of-all-kooks-corollary-t/

  342. praktikon 04 Jul 2014 at 2:36 pm

    Have encountered that “I knew as I was watching that it was a CD” claim often in Truther circles and bizarrely used in debates with skeptics. This is pretty clear sign they are incapable of successfully navigating a debate, for this claim only lends credibility within their own circles. There it will be seen as a sign of a keen observer or perhaps even prescience.

    In the context of a debate with someone from our circles however, it comes across as a clear artefact of confirmation bias and motivated reasoning. It works against credibility. Why would anyone ever think making this claim would give their side credibility in a debate like this?

    The reason is that they are in fact, incapable of being sensitive to their audience – who is dealt with only in caricature (the “brainwashing” and alleged acceptance of all government PR lines and propaganda, the inability to pierce the veil of illusion the NWO has laid around us). For if they *were* in fact, capable of imagining a holistic, human opponent who thinks differently from them on 9/11 – they wouldn’t make these claims in the first place. They’d already know it would just hurt their case in a debate that is focused on evidence. What you imagined the moment it was happening is not evidence, even if it later turns out to be true – in that case it would merely be a matter of luck leading to later support by actual evidence.

    At core, when a Truther says something like “I knew it was a CD as I was watching CNN”, what they’re really doing is just asserting what tribe they belong to and that they deserve full status within that tribe for being such amazingly keen observers of the mechanics of the NWO. Its a status-seeking statement borne of tribalism, not a useful debate tactic.

  343. mumadaddon 04 Jul 2014 at 4:07 pm

    Fullerton,

    The fact that you can take something this horrific and make it your raison d’etre to convince everyone that their own government did it makes you one sick puppy. For what? What’s the best case scenario for you? One day the king of the world calls a press conference and declares you the one true skeptic? Then you’ll get your much craved validation and show all those fools that you were right all along. After how many years of making the same tired argument, clinging desperately to youTruth.

    Expletives don’t cut it to describe you.

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=b9QN3AkydYY

  344. mumadaddon 04 Jul 2014 at 4:51 pm

    And this,

    – The official theory of 9/11 where terrorists conspired to demolish buildings by ramming planes into them is a conspiracy theory. Therefore any scientist who supports that theory is also conspiracy theorist and should therefore have no problem debating another conspiracy theorist.

    is a fallacy of four terms (or equivocation).

    You’re using two different definitions of ‘conspiracy’.

    1.) Standard: A secret plot between two or more people. “terrorists conspired to demolish buildings by ramming planes into them”
    2.) A grand conspiracy: A plot effected by the impossibly powerful and competent overlords of society, the shadow government/illuminati/reptilians/aliens if you will, coopting many hundreds or thousands of people with deft precision and intricacy that only you and your army of light can unravel.

    Major premise: Scientists believe that 9/11 was a conspiracy (standard definition)
    Minor premise: I believe 9/11 was a conspiracy (a grand conspiracy)
    Conclusion: Scientists are conspiracy theorists

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Fallacy_of_four_terms

    You’re a total idiot as well as a morally reprehensible Internet thug.

  345. mumadaddon 04 Jul 2014 at 4:57 pm

    http://www.skepticforum.com/viewtopic.php?p=244803&sid=e3acca5a331dc8770a7b3ddd75f4a269#p244803

    I’m not the one with logic problems.

    Yes you are.

  346. Comorvon 04 Jul 2014 at 5:04 pm

    Dear Steven Nuvella,

    Although I really value the input you are placing in this “debate” (Technical data links, proper documentation, etc.), am a bit disappointed, mainly because am a HUGE fan of yours and of the Rogues, (listened to every single chapter of SGU and the long gone SGU 5×5).

    Shame on you, Perry would smack you in a second for taking up this debate with some one who is clarly and utterly below you.

    Mr. Fullerton has not only demonstrated that he has little to no education, but no intelect as well.

    This looks like a Colliseum fight, where you are a dragon and Mr. Fullerton (aka Fullerm, aka vernon911, aka cmatrix, etc.) is a small rat waving a small piece of toilet paper (used) and thinking its a huge shield.

    Shame on you.

  347. Comorvon 04 Jul 2014 at 5:08 pm

    Am sorry for the typos:

    it’s Dr. Steven Novella…

    and “clearly” instead of clarly.

  348. the devils gummy bearon 04 Jul 2014 at 5:30 pm

    @Argument from the fifth grade

    The icing on the cake is after being so belligerent and demanding that he only debate people using their real names — he misleadingly links to his own Reddit comment under one of his aliases.

    I know, right? This guy is something else.

  349. the devils gummy bearon 04 Jul 2014 at 5:47 pm

    mumadadd

    You’re a total idiot as well as a morally reprehensible Internet thug.

    Add to this: coward.

  350. mumadaddon 04 Jul 2014 at 5:53 pm

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=qhyu-fZ2nRA

    In the first shot you can clearly see that the central supports haven’t disintegrated all the way down. In a couple of the following shots you can see the spike sticking out from the rubble.

    I don’t know why I’m making the argument from Youtube. I suppose this whole thing seemed somewhat academic to me, being young and remote when it happened. Fullerton’s crap has made me watch some of the linked videos, and I followed the YouTube rabbit hole from there. Now it seems a lot more real, and I despise the guy.

  351. the devils gummy bearon 04 Jul 2014 at 5:59 pm

    Now it seems a lot more real, and I despise the guy.

    He’s despicable. But his own ad copy praises himself as a hero, which is disgusting.

    The footage of people jumping to their deaths, man. Fuck…

  352. the devils gummy bearon 04 Jul 2014 at 6:01 pm

    (let me re-phrase this comment, which is awaiting moderation)

    Now it seems a lot more real, and I despise the guy.

    He’s despicable. But his own ad copy praises himself as a hero, which is disgusting.

    The footage of people jumping to their deaths, man. F%#k

  353. mumadaddon 04 Jul 2014 at 6:01 pm

    5:15: “Jolt”. The falling portion of the building impacts the razed bit underneath, jolts, and topples over sideways.

    Lying mothe*****ers.

  354. mumadaddon 04 Jul 2014 at 6:05 pm

    He is a f***ing disgusting, vile bastard. Profiteering for his ego on the back of life changing tragedy. Peddling ridiculous sh*t in the face of people’s horror, to feed his own malformed ego. Abhorrent, deviant tw@.

  355. mumadaddon 04 Jul 2014 at 6:08 pm

    That might well get deleted. Which would be fair enough. Not very rational. True, none the less.

  356. the devils gummy bearon 04 Jul 2014 at 7:12 pm

    Well, this is all true. And what he’ll do is link to these comments in his trophy page, and point to how “irrational” and “deranged” “pathological skeptics” are, who believe the “official story”…

    But here’s the thing: no one will ever give a f**k.

    The next time this clown trends, in 2016 or 2017, people will unearth his BS again. On the JREF, on the Skeptics Society, and now here.

    Link away Fullerton, you profoundly unlettered moron. Link to this incredible debate fail of yours. By all means, and mention these comments in your copy.

  357. mumadaddon 04 Jul 2014 at 7:14 pm

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=qhyu-fZ2nRA

    5:15: “Jolt”. The falling portion of the building impacts the razed bit underneath, jolts, and topples over sideways.

    More sensible.

  358. the devils gummy bearon 04 Jul 2014 at 8:08 pm

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=qhyu-fZ2nRA

    mumaddad, for a “controlled demolition”, they really went to incredible lengths to make it look identical to what a skyscraper would look like if the top portion chunked off catastrophically after its supports warpped out of shape for the better part of an hour, with enormous portions of the facades crashing haphazardly in all directions, with a corner-spire remaining until it too gets pulverized away… A masterpiece. Making a “CD” look identical to a catastrophic and chaotic collapse.

  359. grabulaon 04 Jul 2014 at 8:21 pm

    @mumadadd

    “WTF? So at first it seems he’s managed to find one, single, solitary quote in his favour, which he parades around here like it’s some kind of victory, then it turns out it’s actually him under another name. Wow, that’s desperate.”

    lol, where are all his personalities having this conversation?

  360. mumadaddon 04 Jul 2014 at 8:22 pm

    DGB,

    for a “controlled demolition”, they really went to incredible lengths to make it look identical to what a skyscraper would look like if the top portion chunked off catastrophically

    Yep. Up until tonight I hadn’t watched any of the linked videos, and had given Fullerton the benefit of the doubt in that I assumed there would not be blatant factual errors in his description of the collapses. More fool me then.

  361. the devils gummy bearon 04 Jul 2014 at 8:28 pm

    Since we’ve been examining Michael Fullerton aka cmatrix’s history in the light of day, it occurs: Michael Fullerton has a 100% failure rate. Everywhere he shows up, he fails. And by his own “rules” of logic and science (for most people, this would be a clue that they’re not getting science or logic right).

    In the “free-marketplace of ideas”, this is rare.

  362. mumadaddon 04 Jul 2014 at 8:34 pm

    lol, where are all his personalities having this conversation?

    In the attention seeking cesspit that is his mind. We’re validating him right now, possibly. I suspect there’s an element of sado-masichistic attention whoring in there somewhere. When I say ‘element’….

  363. the devils gummy bearon 04 Jul 2014 at 8:37 pm

    I assumed there would not be blatant factual errors in his description of the collapses. More fool me then.

    As did I. One has to deliberately ignore factual evidence, seen from all angles… And only focus on very specific angles which reinforce a preconceived visual pareidolia.

  364. mumadaddon 04 Jul 2014 at 8:39 pm

    Although it is possible that he’s gaming us all, has some kind of ace up his sleeve and is playing a tactical game; waiting for Steve’s final post and then dropping the logical equivalent of the A-bomb on all the blowhard, shite-drivelling imbeciles. I wait in fear.

  365. the devils gummy bearon 04 Jul 2014 at 8:44 pm

    mumadadd, you haven’t happened to have watched his single youtube video, have you? (you mentioned a pic of mug)

  366. mumadaddon 04 Jul 2014 at 8:47 pm

    No, saw it on his blog. Do you have the link handy?

  367. grabulaon 04 Jul 2014 at 8:47 pm

    @DGB

    “In the “free-marketplace of ideas”, this is rare.”

    He has the same message and sticks to it. It evolves from around 210-2011 to now from an attack on the ’2.25 freefall problem’ of WTC7 to an attack on the ‘logic’ of those who can’t buy into it. He never bothers with an in depth engineering discussion, most of that kind of conversation he does engage in appears to be mostly rote. I say this because when confronted with engineering/physics/mathematical based evidence he either ignores it or switches immediately to ad hominem. In most cases he just states over and over again his faulty premises, as if saying it enough will make it so.

    It was interesting spending an evening going through his history on the internet. I was hoping to find something earlier than 2010 – his foreign policy bio claims he knew something was wrong about 2006 – but nothing beyond 2010.

    While his argument has shifted over the years the sophistication hasn’t and his strategy remains the same. Show up where real skeptics coagulate, demand a debate on his terms. If he gets the debate we see how that’s resolved here – a lot of fallacious claims including those on fallacious thinking followed by ad hominem. If he doesn’t get a debate, at least that he likes, the ad hominem attacks kick off immediately. In either case after a few ad hominem, he bails on the conversation. It’s so consistent he’d be easy to spot even under a pseudonym.

    He shows no sophistication in his attacks and he doesn’t seem all that particularly crazy, which I think was the most disappointing for me. I’ve seen two types of common truthers these days. The guys who’ve wised up and have begun nitpicking small engineering details in order to keep the argument alive – these are interesting because there’s a ton of good technical conversation involved. The second are the people who are way out there, I mean holographic airplanes, Bush planting the explosives himself, lasers from secret space stations built by aliens type crazy. These are just hilarious.

    Fullerton reminds me of a less sophisticated Ian Wardell. I think both of their problems is they’re convinced of their own intellectual superiority. Neither are particularly crazy, just narcissistic and that’s so disappointing.

  368. grabulaon 04 Jul 2014 at 8:50 pm

    @mumadadd

    “Although it is possible that he’s gaming us all, has some kind of ace up his sleeve and is playing a tactical game;”

    That’s assuming a sophistication he hasn’t evinced so far. The guy has a definite pattern. He won’t pop in anymore except to make one or two snarky remarks – he won’t reply to any criticism from us or Steve. Within a few days he’ll add this to his trophy page and chalk it up as win. I wouldn’t be completely shocked if he includes the few comments in these comment threads as wins as well. Seems all he has to do to win is show up.

  369. the devils gummy bearon 04 Jul 2014 at 8:52 pm

    Oh, where is it… It was in his first as fullerm… on the 9-11 Anomaly Hunting post… Ah, here it is (remember, when his boorish obnoxious gets to be too much for you, just glance down at the view count of the video): http://youtu.be/o9lsNFYt5Ik

  370. mumadaddon 04 Jul 2014 at 8:55 pm

    Grabula,

    Yeah, I noticed that with the incessant repetition of, “you support a faith-based crackpot theory”, and his insistence that disagreeing with the various non-evidence based positions he holds are faith-based, eg. atheism.

    Did you know that he’s proved both pantheism and creationism?

  371. grabulaon 04 Jul 2014 at 9:07 pm

    yep lol. I looked over his blog hoping for something earlier than 2010 but it only goes back a year. As I pointed out his articles are all very similar to this debate. Most of them aren’t exactly cohesive, and ultimately they’re just a couple of loose opinions he tries to pass off as ‘evidence’. Fullerton really has a hard time understanding the difference between opinion and evidence. Right away that was my problem with his video he posted when he began his assault on reason here at Neurologica. That video has no facts, it’s just him spitting out his opinions, again.

  372. mumadaddon 04 Jul 2014 at 9:07 pm

    TGD,

    Weird to see this guy in motion. Now he’s just some dude who obviously has problems, not the villainous bastard I’d presupposed. I had felt sorry for him previously but retracted that when I realised the full impact of the events he’s made his life about contorting. Now I feel a pang of sympathy for him again. Just a strange, slow talking guy with weird eye movements who thinks he’s found some deeper TRUTH the rest of us can’t grasp. This means a lot more to him than it does us. But it means a lot more to the families and friends of the victims I’ll bet. Still a total m*f*.

  373. the devils gummy bearon 04 Jul 2014 at 9:27 pm

    His boilerplate “courageous” statement about his “debate” opponent, the same one he opened up here with… My god… It just gets under my skin.

    The slow moving eyes, the strange slow speech…

    As for the content? There is none. His graphic (the same one he used here) is pointless (he still doesn’t have a proper hypothesis, and is therefor not making a scientific argument, I mean, it’s right there, right in his f’ing flow chart)

    When he first popped up with that video last month, it had like 140 views. Today it has 200 (about a dozen and a half were me… hehe, trying to put down a comment, but to no avail I guess).

    As for his written word, yeah… grabula, the manner in which he declares things to be “faith based”, ad nauseum, over and over and over… the broken record stuff, and it is always “opposite day” in the Fullerton-land, and his misuse/misunderstanding of fallacies, bold wrong-headed assertions, over and over, and then the ad homs, and then THE BAIL!

    And yet… So much mirth, so unintentionaly.

  374. grabulaon 04 Jul 2014 at 9:36 pm

    @DGB

    “it is always “opposite day” in the Fullerton-land”

    That’s almost literally the case here. Like you pointed out, even with a chart in front of him on how to form a hypothesis, he can’t do it properly, but is more than willing to accuse others of not doing it properly.

    It’s really been a huge disappointment. I was hoping he’d at least have the guts to stick around for a bit like most of the quacks here.

  375. the devils gummy bearon 04 Jul 2014 at 9:37 pm

    You do end up feeling kind of bad for him, for a minute… Until then you stumble across his incendiary language again.

  376. grabulaon 04 Jul 2014 at 9:48 pm

    I don’t have on iota of sympathy for him. If even after a few years he hasn’t figured out where he’s gone wrong, and continues to parade around the dark corners of the internet fanning the flame of his ego he gets everything he deserves.

  377. the devils gummy bearon 05 Jul 2014 at 1:12 am

    Insufferable. He’s an IQ vampire.

  378. jordaniac89on 07 Jul 2014 at 4:06 pm

    Has anyone researched this “Journal of 9/11 Studies” that Fullerton seems so fond of referencing? The editors have a Ph.D. in Buddhist Studies and a B.S. in chemistry respectively. Not only that, but take a look at some of the articles. You can tell just by the titles that this isn’t a “scientific” journal at all, but a conspiracy theory circle-jerk. Sorry, sir, but referencing youtube videos and pseudoscientific journal articles aren’t going to win you any fans around here…

  379. R.w.Fosteron 08 Jul 2014 at 4:42 pm

    “Anyway, if a pilot could easily perform the insanely complex maneuver of hitting the Pentagon why couldn’t they also hit pre-determined positions of the Twin Towers?”

    You mean the complex maneuver known as flying at a huge, flat – almost ground-level target – or down at an 85 degree angle?

  380. the devils gummy bearon 08 Jul 2014 at 5:36 pm

    “Has anyone researched this “Journal of 9/11 Studies” that Fullerton seems so fond of referencing?”

    -yes. It’s what seems to be. Junk science/pseudoscience at best, but mostly schizophrenia in print as filler.

  381. mumadaddon 19 Jul 2014 at 9:31 am

    The film ‘Philomena’ is based on the true story of Sister Hildegard McNulty, who was forced to give up her baby by religious loons in Ireland. I remember hearing Judi Dench (who played HM in the film) commenting in an interview that she was impressed by the fact that HM managed to ‘keep her faith’ despite what had happened. To some people, faith is a virtue: believe in something beyond the usual muck and mire, that you can’t demonstrate to be true; the harder you believe, the more virtuous you are. I saw some primal element of this in the way some of my friends reacted to England’s drop out in the world cup, as it happened.

    I think MF is a victim to this mentality in his own way. He’s a martyr to his cause almost on the level of Joan of Arc. He seems to truly believe that most of the world is deluded, that he’s the one true skeptic. He’s martyred himself here alright, delivered the 20 megaton nuclear suicide bomb of impossible to reason with faith in his own delusion. The problem (for him) is that nobody has been even slightly moved by any of his antics. In the end, it was all for naught.

  382. mumadaddon 19 Jul 2014 at 9:33 am

    This is very strange – 11 days’ worth of posts seem to have gone AWOL.

  383. mumadaddon 19 Jul 2014 at 9:34 am

    Oops, wrong thread…

  384. mumadaddon 19 Jul 2014 at 9:44 am

    “Timmmaayyy! Timmi-timmi-timmaaay!!”

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