Date: Wed, 04 Feb 1998 18:38:48 -0600
From: jack white
To: james fetzer
Subject: Re: Howard responds again
FETZER REPONDS TO FETZER!
4 Feb 1998 22:31:41 GMT
IN A TRULY BREATHTAKING DISPLAY OF UNFAIR PLAY, JAMES FETZER,
SCRUPULOUS IN THE EXTREME ABOUT HIS ARGUMENTS AND
COUNTERARGUMENTS, CHOOSES NOT TO RESPOND TO MY WORDS, BUT RATHER TO HIS OWN
CHARACTERIZATION OF MY WORDS -- MUCH OF IT FLAT-OUT WRONG. ONE CAN SEE HOW THIS
SERVES HIS PURPOSES, BUT NOT HOW IT SERVES THE PURPOSES OF THE MEMBERS OF THIS
NEWSGROUP. HIS MISSTATEMENTS ARE NOT MATTERS OF INTERPRETATION BUT, IN MANY
CASES, BLATANT LIES. I DIRECT ANYONE WITH INTEREST IN FETZER'S CREDIBILITY AND
HONESTY TO MY PREVIOUS RESPONSE TO HIM, STILL POSTED AS "FETZER DOES IT
BELOW, THE SMALL CAPS ARE ALL FETZER'S REINVENTION OF MY POST AND HIS
RESPONSES. THE LARGE CAPS ARE MY RESPONSES TO HIS REPSONSES.
>(AGAIN) TO HOWARD
>From: jack white
>Date: Sat, Jan 31, 1998 20:57 EST
>These simple-minded posts from Howard P. are quite ridiculous.
DISGUSTINGLY ABUSIVE AND NOT TO THE POINT.
>observe that, in those cases in which "credentialed experts"
>important discoveries--such as Mantik's
discoveries that the autopsy X-
>rays have been fabricated to conceal a massive blow-out to the
>the head, that others have been altered by the imposition of a
>metal object, and that the "magic bullet" theory is anatomically
>sible--he denegrates these results
IF YOU CAN SLOW DOWN AND LOOK AT WHAT I ACTUALLY SAID, YOU WOULD UNDERSTAND
THAT I'M INCLINED TO ACCEPT ONE OR MORE OF THESE FINDINGS -- DESPITE THE FACT
THAT NEITHER MANTIK NOR ANYONE ELSE IS EXPERT IN THE DETECTION OF AUTOPSY
FRAUDS, AND THAT THE ISSUE IS NOT THIS EXPERTISE ALONE, BUT ALSO INCLUDES THE
USE OF CERTAIN TECHNOLOGY IN GENERATING HIS RESULTS. INDEED, HIS METHODOLOGY
HAS NEVER BEEN ENDORSED AS USEFUL AND RELIABLE BY ANY OTHER DISINTERESTED
EXPERTS. REPLICATING HIS OWN RESULTS USING HIS OWN TECHNOLOGY IS NOT THE SAME
and discusses whether I (THE EDITOR)
>have the credentials to establish these findings!
SO THE WAY YOU WOULD CHARACTERIZE THE SITUATION IS THAT MANTIK
"ESTABLISHES" THESE FINDINGS AND YOU -- WHAT? -- "ACCEPT" THEM?
OK, THEN ALL I'M SAYING, AND HAVE BEEN SAYING FROM THE START, IS
THAT YOU ACCEPT THEM WITHOUT A WHOLE LOT OF QUESTIONING. NOT
ONLY SHOULD A GOOD PHILOSOPHER BE MORE DEMANDING, SO SHOULD A REAL EDITOR - MY
ACTUAL PROFESSION. BUT, HEY, WHAT DO I KNOW, BEING "SIMPLE-MINDED" AND ALL?
On virtually every
>point except the Zapruder film, "credentialed experts" have
NOTE "EXCEPT THE Z-FILM" -- A BELATED ADMISSION, AND I WOULD
ASSUME AN ESPECIALLY PAINFUL ONE TO HAVE TO MAKE TO ONE SO
SIMPLE-MINDED AS I.
>about the death of JFK in ASSASSINATION SCIENCE. Even if the
>ications of the members of our research group are less imposing
>tion to the discovery that the Zapruder film has been "massively
>using highly sophisticated techniques", I am not qualifying our
WHY THE HELL NOT? DON'T YOU THINK YOU HAVE THE RESPONSIBILITY TO ASK YOUR
CONTRIBUTORS QUESTIONS LIKE:
"WELL, DO WE KNOW HOW 8MM CAMERAS WORKED IN THOSE DAY?"
"HOW DO WE KNOW THERE WASN'T A LOT OF FRAME-TO-FRAME JIGGLING AS THE FILM MOVES
THRU THE CAMERA?"
"WHAT DO OTHER 8MM FILMS FROM THAT ERA SHOW IN THE SPROCKET
"DO WE KNOW WHAT KIND OF TAMPERING TECHNIQUES WERE AVAILABLE IN THOSE DAYS?"
A GOOD EDITOR WOULD PRESS HIS WRITERS ON THESE KINDS OF POINTS. ANYTHING LESS
IS CHEERLEADING, TO PUT IT MILDLY, AND HUCKSTERISM, TO PUT IT MORE BLUNTLY.
>That the film has been massively edited has been proven--and
>dence has been discovered by other since the publication of this
>Rereading the post, I see where I say "the result" when what I
>to say was "the situation" (meaning: with respect to our
>He misquotes me by using the phrase, "less THAN clear cut", and
>the HYPOTHESIS (that the film has been massively edited using
>phisticated techniques, about which there is, in my judgment,
YOU MEAN INEXPERT JUDGEMENT, DON'T YOU? DO YOUR POWERS OF
LOGICAL REASONING, SUCH AS YOU CLAIM THEM TO BE, GIVE YOU A RIGHT TO PRONOUNCE
WITH ANY KIND OF AUTHORITY ON THE APPLICATION OF OPTICAL DENSITY TECHNIQUES (OF
THE SPECIFIC SORT USED BY MANTIK) TO AUTHENTICATE X-RAY FILMS (A TASK FEW
PERSONS HAVE EVER HAD TO PERFORM MUCH LESS GET CREDENTIALED IN)?
SAME FOR HIS SPECIAL EFFECTS FILM EDITING ANALYSIS. WHY SHOULD
YOUR ENDORSEMENT OF HIS METHODOLOGIES CARRY ANY WEIGHT WITH ANYONE?
>and the CREDENTIALS of those who have established this result,
>meant to remark (about credentials) that the issue is "less
SURELY YOU JEST! YOU CLEARLY SAY ONE THING, I READ YOU
CORRECTLY. THEN YOU ADMIT YOU MEANT TO SAY SOMETHING ELSE -- YET SOMEHOW I'VE
"CONFUSED" MATTERS! THIS SOMEHOW BECOMES MY BLUNDER?!
MY GOD, YOU CAN'T EVEN APOLOGIZE FOR A SELF-ADMITTED ERROR
MOREOVER, I DON'T BELIEVE FOR A SECOND THAT YOU MEANT TO SAY THAT THE
"CREDENTIALS" OF YOUR EXPERTS ARE "LESS THAN CLEAR CUT" IN THIS AREA - ALTHOUGH
THAT WOULD HAVE BEEN A NICE CONCESSION IN AND OF ITSELF. I LEAVE TO OUR
READERS THE TASK OF APPLYING THE PRINCIPLE OF "INFERENCE TO THE BEST
EXPLANATION," WHICH YOU INVOKE SO OFTEN, TO THIS DISPUTE. IS THE BEST
EXPLANATION THAT YOU SAID "RESULTS" WHILE MEANING "CREDENTIALS"? I SUBMIT THAT
THESE TWO ARE SO FAR APART IN MEANING THAT IT WAS HIGHLY UNLIKELY YOU MADE THIS
MISTAKE. YOU ARE COVERING YOUR TRACKS HERE, AND RATHER BADLY AT THAT.
>Mantik has not only discovered that the X-rays were fabricated
in ways I >have described but has also replicated the results in
experiments of his
>own, some of which are described in his work.
(1) HE'S FOUND ODDITIES THAT SUGGEST FABRICATION. PROOF IS
(2) WHAT WE NEED IS A NEURORADIOLOGIST, NOT A RADIATION
ONCOLOGIST. EVER HEAR OF THIS SPECIALTY? CAN MANTIK GIVE US THE NAMES OF
NEURORADIOLOGISTS HE'S CONSULTED?
MANTIK'S CREDENTIALS MAKE HIS WORK IMPORTANT ENOUGH
TO TAKE SERIOUSLY, BUT THEY DON'T PROVE ANYTHING UNTIL THE
SCIENTIFIC COMMUNITY HAS HAD A CHANCE TO REPLICATE HIS RESULTS
(YOU ONLY GET SO MANY POINTS REPLICATING YOUR OWN RESULTS).
MANTIK KNOWS THIS. YOU KNOW THIS (AT LEAST I ASSUME YOU DO, OH
GREAT PHILOSOPHER OF SCIENCE).
WHY DO YOU NEVER RESPOND TO THESE BASIC POINTS BUT ALWAYS TRY TO ESTABLISH THAT
I MUST BE AN IDIOT TO EVEN THINK OF CRITICIZING YOU?
FRANKLY, THIS WHOLE DIALOGUE IS QUITE LUDICROUS. YOU ARE MAN WHO SIMPLY
REFUSES TO TAKE "I DON'T KNOW FOR AN ANSWER." CALL ME DENSE, IF YOU LIKE, BUT
WHY ARE YOU SO DEFENSIVE? IF YOU THINK I'M THE SIMPLETON YOU SAY I AM, WHY
EVEN BOTHER TO RESPOND AGAIN AND AGAIN TO MY POSTS? ARE YOU TYRING TO KEEP ME
FROM POISONING THE NEWSGROUP AGAINST YOU? BUT THAT WOULD SUGGEST THAT YOU
THINK THEY'RE SIMPLETONS, TOO, I.E., PEOPLE EASILY MISLED BY FALSE
PHILOSOPHERS, I.E., BY THOSE WHO CANNOT (OR CHOOSE NOT TO) USE PHILOSOPHERS
JARGON TO STATE SIMPLE POINTS (THE USE OF WHICH IS OBVIOUSLY INTENDED TO
ENHANCE YOUR STATUS AS SOMEHOW "ABOVE US ALL").
He has conducted painstak-
>ing research on the Zapruder film, including visits to the
>chives to compare the properties of various prints, making
>urements of differences within and between frames, etc. Here,
>be observed, his Ph.D. in physics strengthens his qualifications
>dertaking work of this kind. But the abilities he as developed
>preting X-rays (making very careful observations and
>his analyses affect life and death) are highly relevant. I am
>convinced that, at this point in time, Mantik is the leading
>the Zapruder film in the world!
IN A SENSE, YES. BUT DOES HE KNOW WHAT INFERENCES TO DRAW FROM ALL HE'S
Howard P. has cited Robert Groden and
>Martin Shackelford as examples of individuals whose research in
I NEVER SAID ANY SUCH THING. I HAVE ASKED WHY THE BOOK DOESN'T
CONSIDER CRITICISMS ALREADY MADE OF THE Z-FILM FRAUD THEORY.
Neither of them qualifies as a "credentialed expert", however,
>which means that he employs inconsistent standards. An
>ing example concerns Robert B. Livingston's conclusion that
>photographs of a brain in the National Archives must be of the
>someone other than John Fitzgerald Kennedy, which he denigrates
>ground that this observation has been made before! No doubt,
but not by
>a world authority on the human brain, precisely the kind of
>expert" that one would have though that Howard P. would insist
I THINK LIVINGSTON'S JOINING THE CHORUS IS GREAT. WE'VE HAD TO
MAKE DO WITH A LONE MAJOR MEDICAL GUNMAN, WECHT, FOR ALL THESE YEARS. BUT TWO
DOES NOT A POSSE MAKE. AND YOUR COMBATIVENESS AND THIN SKIN WILL MAKE IT THAT
MUCH ORDER TO EXPAND THE RANKS OF CREDENTIALED EXPERT-SUPPORTERS MUCH FURTHER.
>Those whom he cites as "experts" are curious cases. As I
>and I will no doubt be corrected if I am mistaken--Groden is a
>dropout and Shackelford is a social worker! And these are the
>Howard P. endorses as his preferred authorities on the Z-film
(1) I NEVER ENDORSED ANYONE'S ANALYSIS WHOLESALE -- ONLY THE
LIVINGSTONE/SHACKLEFORD HEADSNAP FINDINGS!
(2) I DON'T CARE WHAT THEIR BACKGROUNDS ARE IF THEY'VE RAISED IMPORTANT
QUESTIONS (AS HAS MANTIK, WHITE, AND EVEN YOU). YOU CONTINUE TO OVERSIMPLIFY
MY ARGUMENT CONCERNING CREDENTIALS. THIS HAS GOTTEN TO THE POINT WHERE YOUR
MISSTATEMENTS HAVE TO BE CONSIDERED WILLFUL.
JUST AS YOU WILLFULLY MISLED READERS BY WONDERING HOW ANYONE COULD OBJECT TO
THE "POSTAGE STAMP-SIZE PHOTO OF YOU ON THE BACK COVER" WHEN YOU KNEW DARNED
WELL THERE WERE OTHER PHOTOS IN THE BOOK OF A MUCH LARGER SIZE. WHY THE
HALF-TRUTH, JIM? DO YOU THINK WE'RE ALL IDIOTS, OR ONLY SOME OF US?
JUST AS YOU WILLFULLY IGNORED MY CATCHING YOU IN AN EMBARRASSING BLUNDER IN
YOUR OWN FIELD OF EXPERTISE. ARE YOU SUGGESTING I MADE UP THE CONCEPT OF A
"MIXED HYPOTHETICAL SYLLOGISM"?
JUST AS YOU WILLFULLY INSIST I'VE ENDORSED THE FINDINGS OF PEOPLE WHO I'VE
NEVER EVEN READ (THE ONLY FINDING I ENDORSED WAS LIVINGSTONE'S ON THE
IT JUST GOES ON AND ON...
IN FACT, I'VE ONLY "REVIEWED" THIS BOOK IN ITS BROADEST OUTLINES.
IF I HAD THE TIME OR DESIRE TO DO A PAGE-BY-PAGE REVIEW, HOW MUCH MORE EVIDENCE
OF SHODDY REASONING MIGHT I TURN UP? ONE SHUDDERS TO THINK THAT THIS IS THE
BOOK OF AN ACCOMPLISHED PHILOSOPHER OF SCIENCE. JUST GOES TO SHOW THAT WE'RE
BACK TO THE POINT HERE:
YOU COULD ANNOUNCE TO THE WORLD TOMORROW THAT YOU'VE FOUND A CURE FOR CANCER
-- AND EVEN HOW YOU DID IT -- BUT YOU WOULDN'T EXPECT EVERYONE TO ENDORSE YOUR
CURE IMMEDIATELY, WOULD YOU? YOU WOULD CERTAINLY ACCEPT "LET'S WAIT AND SEE"
AS AN ANSWER, WOULDN'T YOU? AFTER ALL, YOU ARE A MAN OFSCIENCE, NOT SOMEONE
PEDDLING SNAKE OIL. THEN WHY IS PROOF OF CONSPIRACY IN THE JFK CASE ANY
DIFFERENT? YOU'LL NEED A NEW CHAPTER IN YOUR BOOK TO EXPLAIN THAT.
even as he
>dismisses the work of Mantik on X-rays, Livingston on the brain,
>His position is completely and utterly incoherent!
NO, IT'S PERFECTLY COHERENT. IN BOTH CASES, I WANT TO HEAR OTHER PEOPLE MORE
KNOWLEDAGABLE THAN I AM COMMENT ON THESE "FINDINGS." FOR SOME REASON YOU
CHOOSE TO INTERPRET AS A PERSONAL AFFRONT TO YOU AND A BETRAYAL OF ALL THAT
PHILOSOPHY STANDS FOR. I CALL IT COMMON SENSE, SOMETHING EVEN PHILOSOPHERS
Moreover, he seems to
>want other "credentialed experts" to tell him what to think!
MY GOD, WHAT COULD I BE THINKING?! WHY BOTHER GOING TO A DOCTOR WHEN I CAN
ALWAYS DIAGNOSE MYSELF? I CERTAINLY DON'T NEED HIM "TELLING ME WHAT TO THINK."
I suggest to
>everyone who cares about these issues, take a good look at the
>of Mantik, Livingston, and others whose work is presented in the
>SASSINATION SCIENCE, and consider the evidence for yourselves.
>Robert Groden, and Martin Shackelford are ill-positioned to help
AND YOU AS AN EDITOR HAVE DONE THEM NO FAVORS.
>I should also observe that there are indications in this post
>P. may have not read all of ASSASSIATION SCIENCE or, at least,
not read it
>very carefully. In some of his closing remarks, for example, he
>the sorts of conclusions that I have drawn about the conspiracy
>up only follow if the evidence (of film alteration, for example)
>"explained away" on innocent grounds. But that is one of the
key points I
>make--and illustrate--in the introduction to the Epilogue on pp.
(1) SOME "KEY POINT"! -- SAVED UNTIL PAGE 345.
(2) WHY HAS IT TAKEN MORE POSTS THAN I CAN COUNT TO MAKE THIS
ADMISSION? COULD IT BE THAT SUCH AN ADMISSION WOULD BE
TANTAMOUNT TO ACCEPTING THE CORE OF MY VERY FIRST POST?
(3) A REVIEW OF THE PAGES CITED BY FETZER DISCLOSES A TWISTED
SHADOW OF THE "KEY POINT" HE CLAIMS HE MAKES. THERE HE LAYS OUT THE PRINCIPLE
OF "INFERENCE TO THE BEST EXPLANATION" AND DOES INDEED STATE THAT WHILE HE
BELIEVES THAT Z-FILM FRAUD HAS BEEN "CONCLUSIVELY" ESTABLISHED, IT IS POSSIBLE
THAT AN "ALTERNATIVE" EXPLANATION WILL COME ALONG. BUT DAMNED IF FETZER IS
WILLING TO GIVE ANOTHER EXPLANATION THE TIME OF DAY. IMAGINE A BOOK ABOUT THE
CREATION OF THE UNIVERSE THAT ADVOCATES THE BIG-BANG THEORY WITHOUT EVEN
MENTIONING ALTERNATIVE THEORIES.
THE BIG BANG IS PROBABLY BETTER ESTABLISHED THAN ITS ALTERNATIVES AND STILL ITS
PROPONENTS, WITH THEIR SCHOLAR'S HATS ON, FEEL OBLIGATED TO CONSIDER
BY CONTRAST, IT COULD BE ARGUED THAT THE THEORY OF EVOLUTION IS SO WELL
ESTABLISHED THAT MENTION OF CREATIONISM NEED NOT BE MADE FOR A TEXT TO BE
BY CONTRAST TO BOTH OF THESE DEBATES, THE AUTHENTICITY OF THE Z-FILM IS SO
HOTLY CONTESTED THAT IT OFFENDS THE PRINCIPLES OF
GOOD SCHOLARSHIP TO ASSERT INAUTHENTICITY, TO SAY (IN EFFECT)
THAT "IT'S LOGICALLY POSSIBLY I AM WRONG," AND THEN JUST WALK
NOT ONLY IS THIS BAD SCHOLARSHIP, IT'S BAD POLITICS. THE IDEA,
FOLKS, IS TO CONVINCE ENOUGH PEOPLE THAT YOU ARE RIGHT. YOU
DON'T DO THAT BY NOT CONSIDERING ALTERNATIVES AND DISMISSING
THOSE WHO WITHHOLD FINAL JUDGEMENT IN THE CRUDEST OF TERMS.
IT IS THE RESPONSIBILITY OF A GOOD EDITOR AND A GOOD TACTICIAN IN
WHAT IS A POLITICAL DEBATE TO ASK THE KINDS OF QUESTIONS THAT
WOULD HELP ADDRESS THE ISSUE OF POSSIBLE "ARTIFACT INNOCENCE" -- AS YOUR BOOK
IS BEING ASSEMBLED. FROM THE POST-PUBLICATION
FUROR, I SHOULD THINK FETZER WISHES HE HAD.
FETZER ALSO MAKES A MAJOR LOGICAL BLUNDER IN THIS SECTION. HE
LISTS THREE POSSIBLE ANSWERS RE THE KILLING OF KENNEDY: THAT IT
WAS THE PRODUCT OF (1) NO CONSPIRACY (2) A SMALL CONSPIRACY AND (3) A LARGE
CONSPIRACY. HE THEN GOES ON TO ASSERT THAT THE
MASSIVE EVIDENCE OF COVER-UP UNEARTHED ARGUES FOR THE ELIMINATION OF 1 AND 2,
WHEN, IN FACT, IT ARGUES FOR NOTHING. HE HAS ALREADY CONCEDED A DISTINCTION
BETWEEN CONSPIRACY TO KILL AND CONSPIRACY TO COVER-UP. EVIDENCE SUPPORTING THE
LATTER IS NOT NECESSARILY EVIDENCE SUPPORTING THE FORMER. IN OTHER WORDS, FROM
THE FACT THAT A COVER-UP HAS BEEN ESTABLISHED AT THE HIGHEST LEVELS OF
AUTHORITY, IT DOES NOT FOLLOW THAT A MASSIVE CONSPIRACY PLANNED AND EXECUTED
THE KILLING (THE CIA, ET. AL. MAY HAVE HAD ITS OWN REASONS FOR COVERING UP).
(FETZER WILL NO DOUBT RECOGNIZE THE AYERESQUE PHRASEOLOGY HERE, FURTHER PROOF I
ONCE WAS A MEMBER OF
HIS SELECT GROUP.)
>He also says, with regard to Mantik's conclusion that the "magic
>theory is anatomically impossible, that he ASSUMES this refers
>damage he "has heard about for years". But for anyone who has
>Mantik explains on pp. 157-158, there is no need to fake
PICKY, PICKY. I WAS WRITING FROM WORK AND ASSUMED THAT THE ITSY PHRASE
"ANATOMICALLY IMPOSSIBLE" MEANT SPINAL DAMAGE -- AND, LO AND BEHOLD, TURNING TO
PAGE 157 WHEN I GOT HOME, IT SEEMS I WAS RIGHT. I HAD RATHER HOPED THERE WAS
SOME NEW ARGUMENT FETZER WAS REFERRING TO IN HIS SHORTHAND WAY, BUT, ALAS, JUST
THE SAME ONE FROM AN UNPUBLISHED TALK BACK IN 1993 -- THE SAME YEAR I FIRST
HEARD MANTIK ARTICULATE HIS THEORIES. WHY FETZER WOULD FEEL THE NEED TO SAY I
"FAKE UNDERSTANDING" IS BEYOND SIMPLE-MINDED ME TO CONJURE UP.
>We should all stand-by for another inconsiderate, thoughtless,
>tirade from him telling us he is the only one who understands
SUBJECT TO YET ANOTHER STRING OF DEROGATORY REMARKS, I CAN
PERHAPS BE FOREGIVEN BY CALLING ATTENTION TO THE FACT THAT I AM AMONG THE FEW
PEOPLE WHO IS SAYING, OVER AND OVER AGAIN -- WITH SUCH REPETITION THAT ONLY THE
GROSSEST KIND OF OBTUSENESS COULD EXPLAIN FETZER'S INABILITY TO UNDERSTAND --
THAT I, IN FACT, DON'T SUFFICIENTLY UNDERSTAND THE ISSUES RE Z-FILM FRAUD.
AND THAT HE DOESN'T EITHER, FOR THE SIMPLE REASON THAT HE NEVER MADE THE KINDS
OF INQUIRIES NECESSARY TO ESTABLISH A MINIMAL BASE OF KNOWLEDGE REGARDING
CINEMATIC SPECIAL EFFECTS.
I REPEAT: THE PRODUCERS OF "ALIEN AUTOPSY" HAD THE PROFESSIONAL INTEGRITY TO
TURN TO CYRIL WECHT AND OTHERS FOR EXPERT COMMENTARY ON THE AUTOPSY AND
PHOTOGRAPHIC PROCEDURES USED IN THE FILM. I SEE NO REASON WHY FETZER SHOULD NOT
BE HELD TO SAME STANDARDS AS THIS TABLOID SHOW ASPIRED TO.