The Lies (and misconceptions) of the "'truth' movement"

Intro (scroll down for entries)

I readily admit that I have no doubts that most members of the “truth movement” sincerely believe all the nonsense that they spout. I even think that most of the “leaders” of the movement, the ones who run the sites and write the books make the videos etc believe all of what they purport. However far too many of them present the facts in a less than honest fashion: quotes are taken out of context, contrary information omitted, rumors are reported as fact etc, others are too blinded by their preconceived notions to see the fallacies of their theories. I did want a blog title that would garner attention and ‘The Misconceptions of the Truth Movement’ just wouldn’t have the same ring to it.

I will address specific errors made by leading “truthers” in this blog and will erase any generic replies that have nothing to do with the entry topic. In other words if the entry is about Amanda Keller contradicting herself replies going on about the debris from flight 93 or Silverstein’s “pull it" comment etc. etc. will be deleted. Personal attacks and insults whether directed at me or other commenters, whether made by “truthers” or “debunkers” will be deleted as well.

Tuesday, May 12, 2009

Gage's missing architect isn't an architect / More on Gage's numbers

As I mentioned yesterday Gage claims he signed up "the AIA Chapter CEO in Virginia"  there's still no sign of him or the 40 odd missing architects including one who is also a structural engineer, but I digrees.

One note about the Virginian, John W. Braymer, Ph.D. he doesn't seem to an architect. 

- He is an "honorary" member of the AIA. 

- No one with his last name is licensed to do anything in Virgina

- A local paper reported, "Before his work with the VSAIA and the Virginia Foundation for Architecture, Dr. Braymer served as a Senior Legislative Analyst with Virginia's General Assembly and was Assistant Professor of English at the University of Richmond." 

Despite the fact Gage spent thousands of dollar to go to the AIA connvention and claims that their booth was "the busiest booth around us by far!"   and that he signed up 50 new architects, the out seems to have been a misrable failure since he really only signed up 1 - 6 new architects.

 Let's look at the numbers he claims that 20 - 24 thousand architects attended and that he and his group spoke to "hundreds of them", that "about 80%" were supportive and that "about 50" signed the petition but the number of architects and engineers in his group increased by 6 or less in the last 2 weeks. Thus, even assuming all the newbies were from the convention, among attendees his sign up rate was about 0.003% and of those he spoke to about 1 - 3%. 

Monday, May 11, 2009

Richard Gage's trouble with numbers and other lies.

One would hope that an organisation that claims to be "for truth" would make a point of being truthful but as I pointed out last year Gage's  claimed recruiting success rate didn't match up with his membership. Remember the cliche about the more thing change the more they stay the same? Gage once again is making claims about recruitment that don't match up with his current membership totals.

The latest news on the group's home page is their attendance at the American Institute of Architects annual convention which took place April 29 - May 2 at the Moscone Convention Center in San Francisco. Gage claims "we spoke to hundreds of architects and must have added about 50 to our petitioners over the course of 3 days"

The problem is that there is an April 23 (2009) press release on the same page which proclaimed "More than 640 Architects & Engineers for 9/11 Truth (AE911Truth) are calling for a new, independent investigation into the destruction of the World Trade Center" and a counter at the top of the page (as of a minute or two ago) indicates the group is made up of "647  architectural and engineering professionals" In other words in the last 18 days they've added at most 6 new "architectural and engineering professionals" even assuming they all were recruited at the convention  they're about 45 members short of Gage's claim. 

Another problem with his numbers is that  1 - 3 minutes into this video from the 1st day of the convention he and two other members of AE911T claim that 80% of the people they spoke to were supportive.  He also claimed that theirs was "the busiest booth around us by far!". As stated above on the group's home page he claims they spoke to "spoke to hundreds of architects" how exactly does 80% of hundreds come out to only "about 50" let alone the 7 or less new architects and engineers he signed up?

He also claims they had "a structural engineer who is also an architect stop by and sign our petition who has worked on 50 to 60 story buildings" and "also had the AIA Chapter CEO in Virginia sign the petition" but no people meeting this description have been added to the site

The convention took place 9 - 11 days ago which is more than enough time to check credentials and add names to their list. Live verification would be easier than over the Net signers could be asked to show photo ID and their status as architects or engineers could quickly be verified online, the Moscone Center has WiFi access.

That was not the only example of convention related dishonesty from AE911 for Truth . At 6:57 into the above video Gage starts interviewing J. Marx Ayres AE911T's CFO. About 40 seconds into the interview he said "...I'm an engineer with lots of experience and I've designed a lot of tall buildings it might add a lot of credibility to the organization". The problem is Mr. Ayres has never ever designed a building tall or short in his life. 

Mr Ayres as his own website points out has "over sixty years experience in the design analysis and construction of mechanical service systems for all types of buildings and facilities. Expert in heating, ventilating and air conditioning (HVAC), plumbing and fire protection systems." His CV paints the same picture "Mr. Ayres is a nationally recognized expert in building air conditioning design and analysis, energy conservation, thermal energy storage, commissioning of HVAC systems, and earthquake damage to building mechanical structures." While Gage did introduce him as a mechanical it quite possible that viewers would have missed this or not know that mechanical engineers don't design buildings. Gage made no effort to correct him.

This is not the 1st time Ayres and Gage have confused the nature of the former's experience. In his declaration for AE911T he said:

 "I am a consulting mechanical engineer with over 55 years of experience in the design and construction of all types of buildings including high-rise office towers. I am an expert in heating ventilation and air conditioning (HVAC) and fire protection for buildings..."

Previously on the same page Gage wrote:

"Mr. Ayres is a nationally recognized expert in building air conditioning design and analysis, energy conservation, thermal energy storage, commissioning of HVAC systems, and earthquake damage to building mechanical systems, with over 55 years of experience. Co-founder of one of the largest building engineering firms in Los Angeles, Mr. Ayres has been in responsible charge of the design of hundreds of major building projects, including high rise offices, commercial centers..."

This fits in with a pattern from many leading truther  sites of being less than straight forward about the credentials of their supporters. Commonly they  would describe... 

...Robin Hordon a former air traffic controller "posted to Boston Center where he worked for eleven years." [also here] without making it clear he last worked as an ATC over 20 years before 9/11.

...Jeff King as an "MIT engineer" [also here and here] without saying got a degree in electrical engineering from the school in the 1970's and a few years later enrolled in medical school and has worked as a family practitioner ever since.

Perhaps Gage should rename his group.