Message #28


Date: Tue, 20 Jan 1998 19:06:18 -0600
From: jack white 
To: james fetzer 
Subject: Re: Re Assassination Science: Response to Howard (fwd)

Jim...here is the howpl reply, **Part1**.


Subject: 
             Platzman Reply to Fetzer - Part 1 
        Date: 
             20 Jan 1998 21:56:00 GMT 
       From: 
             howpl@aol.com (Howpl)
Organization: 
             AOL http://www.aol.com 
 Newsgroups: 
             alt.conspiracy.jfk


james fetzer wrote:
>
>
> Howard P. apparently missed my response to Shackelford
   and also seems
   to think that the personal exchange between Howard P. and me occurred
> prior to my response to his earlier post, which is not the case.  Con-
> sequently, some of his comments seem to me to be motivated by misunder-
> standings about when I received his personal post regarding his back-
> ground and training.
THERE'S A LOT OF CONFUSION HERE ABOUT WHO SENT WHAT TO WHOM AND WHEN?   THIS
E-MAIL CONFUSION IS OF LITTLE INTEREST TO THE NEWSGROUP, SO I WILL SAY THAT (1)
I DIDN'T MISS YOUR COMMENTS TO MARTIN'S SECOND ROUND OF REMARKS AND (2) I FOUND
THEM NOT ENTIRELY SATISFACTORY.  GIVEN YOUR HISTORY WITH HIM (WHICH I KNEW
NOTHING ABOUT WHEN I WROTE WHAT YOU CONTINUE TO CALL MY "REVIEW"), I'M INCLINED
TO THINK THAT MARTIN HAS GROWN WEARY OF THE DEBATE.
 I shall reply--hopefully, for the last time--but
> this personal stuff is extremely distracting from the contributions to
> understanding the assassination of JFK made in this book.
JIM, THE RATIONALE FOR MY REMARKS IS PRETTY MUCH CAPTURED BY
THE CAUTIONARY WORDS YOU WROTE ME, I.E., THAT "THE MESSAGE IS THE ISSUE, NOT
THE MESSENGER."  YOU SAY THAT MY "ATTACK HAS DONE DAMAGE TO THE CAUSE."  I'M
SURE THIS OVERSTATES MY INFLUENCE, BUT MY HONEST FEELING IS THAT, IN THIS
REGARD, YOU MAY BE YOUR OWN WORST ENEMY.  IN READING IT, AND BEFORE TALKING TO
ANYONE ABOUT IT OR SEEING ANYTHING WRITTEN ABOUT IT, I GOT THE FEELING THAT YOU
WERE IN FOR IT.  THE FACT THAT IT CAME FROM MARTIN SHACKLEFORD (JUST ABOUT THE
MOST EVEN-TEMPERED GUY IN THE RESEARCH COMMUNITY, JUDGING BY HIS POSTS [WE'VE
NEVER MET]) WAS A SHOCK, AND, I BELIEVE, SHOULD SAY SOMETHING TO YOU.
  Howard him-
> self asserts toward the end of his post that HE IS NOT ADDRESSING THE
> SUBSTANCE OF THE BOOK!  Well, surely he ought to be and the fact that
> he is not indicates the shallow character of his posts.
SORRY, BUT WHAT I AM SAYING IS THAT THE CHOICES YOU MADE IN EDITING THIS BOOK
HAVE RAISED THE VERY ISSUES YOU AND I BOTH AGREE ARE UNPRODUCTIVEA AND
DISTRACTIVE.  AND NOW YOU'RE ONLY COMPOUNDING THE DISTRACTION BY MAKING, SHALL
WE SAY, DUBIOUS STATEMENTS OF FACT.  FOR INSTANCE, YOU ASK WHY I OBJECT TO "A
POSTAGE-SIZE PHOTOGRAPH OF THE EDITOR ON THE BACK COVER." YOU NEGLECT TO
MENTION TWO LARGE PHOTOS BETWEEN THE COVERS WITH MANTIK AND LIVINGSTON.
WHETHER THIS IS OVERDOING IT OR NOT, A FAIR SELF-APPRAISAL SHOULD AT LEAST
INCLUDE AN ADMISSION THAT THESE EXIST.
Ask yourself,
> would it matter IF I WERE THE WORLD'S GREATEST EGOTIST if the work that
> I had helped to bring to publication were important and illuminating?
ABSOLUTELY NOT. THE PROBLEM IS THAT I SIMPLY DON'T KNOW HOW ILLUMINATING THE
PUBLICATION IS SINCE ALL OF THE INTERESTING ANALYSES ARE COMING FROM PEOPLE WHO
ARE NOT TRAINED IN THE DISCIPLINES THEY ARE WRITING ABOUT.  PLEASE LET'S NOT
GET INTO THE DEBATE OVER WHO IS AN "EXPERT" AGAIN. THAT IS NOT THE POINT. THE
FOLLOWING, FROM A CORRESPONDENCE WITH JACK, IS THE POINT: "THERE STILL IS NO
GETTING AROUND THE FACT THAT EXPERTS IN
CINEMATIC SPECIAL EFFECTS DO EXIST AND THEY CAN AND SHOULD BE
CONSULTED, ESPECIALLY WHEN ONE LACKS SUCH EXPERTISE.  HECK, EVEN THE MAKERS OF
"ALIEN AUTOPSY" INCLUDED REACTIONS FROM WECHT AND OTHERS ON THE MEDICAL ASPECTS
OF THAT FILM AND STAN WINSTON AND OTHERS ON ITS CINEMATIC ASPECTS.  I CAN
THINK OF NO REASON WHY "ASSASSINATION SCIENCE" SHOULD NOT AT LEAST BE HELD TO
THE STANDARDS SET  BY THIS "TABLOID" SHOW.

I'VE SAID IT ONCE AND I'LL SAY IT AGAIN. I AM IN NO POSITION TO DETERMINE IF
MANTIK OR WHITE IS DRAWING THE CORRECT CONCLUSIONS FROM THA ANOMALIES THEY
FIND.  AND NEITHER ARE YOU.
>>
I
> am merely the messenger; the message is what is fundamental.  As Jessie
> Jackson has said on more than one occasion, keep your eyes on the prize!
 
> P.S.  Readers should refer back to the original post from "Howard. P."
>       I respond in indented lower case text to his comments in CAPS.
>
> > Fetzer lower case; Platzman in CAPS
> >
> > Debra Conway has forwarded a commentary on ASSASSINATION SCIENCE by
> > someone identified as "Howard P.", who claims to have a Ph.D. in
> > philosophy.  After reviewing what he has had to say, I can assert
> > with a high degree of confidence that Howard P. may have studied
> > philosophy but he obviously mastered very little.
> >
> > A CHEAP SHOT BUT ONE THAT EVEN I WOULD HAVE FOUND DIFFICULT TO RESIST.
> >
>     This was not a "cheap shot" but a rhetorical assertion intended to
>     contrast the writer's background with the poor quality of the post.
>     The blunders he makes here about the role of credentials and appeals
>     to authority are further evidence my initial appraisal was correct.
>
YOU SAY IT'S A POOR QUALITY POST. I SAY (1) A LOT OF PEOPLE ARE SAYING THE SAME
THING AS I'M SAYING ABOUT THE EGO ISSUE, (2) YOU HAVE THE OBLIGATION TO PUBLISH
BOOKS THAT CONSIDER ALTERNATIVE EXPLANATIONS AS THE BOOK IS BEING PUT TOGETHER,
AND (3) HAVING FAILED TO DO THIS, I REFUSE TO JUMP TO ANY CONCLUSIONS ABOUT THE
AUTHENTICITY OF THE FILM.  YOU'VE TAKEN ME TO TASK FOR WRITING A "HATCHET JOB"
"REVIEW" BECAUSE I DON'T ADDRESS THE SUBSTANCE OF THE BOOK. ALL I'M DOING IS
ASKING FOR HELP FROM THOSE TRAINED IN CINEMATIC SPECIAL EFFECTS TO HELP ME
REACH SOME CONCLUSIONS ABOUT THE SUBSTANCE OF THE BOOK.  THAT SEEMS LIKE THE
APPROPRIATE THING FOR SOMEONE WITH MY "BACKGROUND" TO DO.

FOR YEARS NOW, I'VE FELT THE GRODEN/LIVINGSTONE/MANTIK ARGUMENTS RE THE
AUTHENTICITY OF THE X-RAYS AND PHOTOS HIGHLY INTRIGUING, BUT HIGHLY INTRIGUING
TO A MEMBER OF THIS NEWSGROUP DOES NOT TRANSLATE INTO TRUTH, MUCH LESS THE
ABILITYTO CONVINCE THE WORLD YOU'RE RIGHT. YOU SHOULD HAVE UNDERSTOOD THIS AND
EDITED YOUR BOOK ACCORDINGLY.

WE'LL GET TO "BLUNDERS ABOUT THE ROLE OF CREDENTIALS AND APPEAL TO AUHTORITY"
BELOW.

> > This review is a transparent hatchet job that is intended to discredit
> > the work
> >
> > SOMEONE SO CAREFUL IN ASSESSING EVIDENCE SHOULD TRY TO GET HIS FACTS
STRAIGHT
> > BEFORE ARTICULATING A RESPONSE.  MY POST WAS NOT A "REVIEW" BY ANY
> > STRETCH OF
> > THE IMAGINATION. I VERY CLEARLY SAY THAT:
> >
> > (1) I AM MERELY REPORTING AN "IMPRESSION" OF THE "TONE" OF THE BOOK.
> >
>     The function of your earlier remarks appears to be precisely what I
>     described it as being, "a transparent hatchet job".

"FUNCTION" AND "APPEARS" DOESN'T EQUATE TO " INTENTION." BECAUSE OF THE
RELATIVE ANONYMITY AND/OR SAFETY OF DISTANCE IT AFFORDS, THE INTERNET IS,
UNFORTUNATELY, AN OPEN INVITATION TO OVERSTATEMENT.  I AM SORRY IF MY REMARKS
SEEM OVERLY HARSH.  I'M NOT A PAID CHARACTER ASSASSIN; I'M JUST DAMN TIRED OF
ALL THE PROMISES OF CASE-CRACKERS OVER THE YEARS (WHERE'S TOM WILSON ANYWAY?)
AND, YES, UPSET WITH YOU FOR DOING ALL THAT HARD WORK AND THEN COASTING ACROSS
THE FINISH LINE.

The description
>     of it as a "review" was intended to categorize it with respect to its
>     content, which offers a brief characterization and evaluation of the
>     book, which is the function of a review.

I OFFER A BRIEF CHARACTERIZATION OF THE TONE OF THE BOOK AND I STATE MY
DISCOMFORT WITH THE EXCLUSIVE USE ON NONCREDENTIALED EXPERTS ON THE Z-FILM.
INDEED, I SAY THAT I CAN'T EVALUATE THE BOOK RE ITS CONTENT PRECISELY BECAUSE
OF THESE 2 MATTERS. IS IT SO HARD TO ACCEPT THAT I'VE NOT MADE THE WHOLESALE
REJECTION OF YOUR BOOK THAT YOU ATTRIBUTE TO ME.  I'M THE FIRST ONE IN THIS
NEWSGROUP  TO CALL FOR A DISCUSSION OF ITS CONTENTS!  IF I SAY I NEED TO HEAR
FROM PEOPLE BETTER SCHOOLED IN THIS SUBJECT THAN I, THAT STRIKES YOU AS
UNACCEPTABLE?

That it is not a "review"
>     in some other sense is consistent with my description and merely re-
>     flects that some "reviews" are more formal than others.  The tone of
>     your post, in either case, was grossly unfair to me and to the book.
>
> > (2) I DO NOT INTEND TO DISCUSS THE SPECIFIC ARGUMENTS IN THE BOOK UNTIL
> > I HAVE
> > HAD A CHANCE TO THINK THEM THROUGH THEM A BIT MORE (AND, PERHAPS, CALL
> > UPON
> > THOSE MORE EXPERT THAN I)
> >
>     I only hope that your readers will understand that the exceptionally
>     strong negative remarks you have made here and in your earlier post
>     are directed at me personally as the book's editor and that they have
>     no significance whatsoever for the evidence, the arguments, and the
>     conclusions that are presented there.  (See further comments below.)

MY "READERS"?! NOW I'VE GOT A COLUMN WITH READERS IN WHICH I WRITE BOOK
REVIEWS. I'M ALONE AT MY COMPUTER CONVERSING WITH OTHERS THAT SHARE MY INTEREST
IN THE JFL CASE.

AS FOR THE PERSONAL STUFF, I STILL SAY YOU BROUGHT IT ON YOURSELF.  WHEN I
FIRST SAW MARTIN'S POST, IT BLEW ME AWAY, TOO.  I DIDN'T KNOW IF ANYONE SHARE
MY SENSE OF THE TONE OF THE BOOK.  NOW I'VE HEARD FROM SEVERAL PEOPLE WHO KNOW
AND LIKE YOU THAT THEY FEEL SIMILARLY AS REGARDS THE EGO ISSUE.  LET'S FORGET
IT ALREADY, PLEASE. I MYSELF HAVE BEEN CAUGHT IN UNPRODUCTIVE EXPRESSIONS OF
EGO, TOO. THE MORE IMPORTANT QUESTION IS HOW FAR HAS YOUR BOOK TAKEN US.  I
HAPPEN TO THINK THAT YOU COULD HAVE DONE A BETTER JOB OF ESTABLISHING YOUR
CREDIBILITY, BUT I DO CREDIT YOU FOR A BOOK THAT PUTS FORWARD THE MOST
SUSTAINED STATMENT RE Z-FILM FRAUD YET AND FOR INCLUDING A WORTHY, IF RAMBLING,
ARTICLE BY MANTIK ON THE X-RAYS.  LET'S MOVE ON FROM THERE, PLEASE.
>
> > (3) I AM PREPARED TO ACCEPT THE TRUTH OF THE Z-FILM TAMPERING THESIS,
> > BUT NOT
> > UNTIL I HEAR MORE ON THE SUBJECT.
> >
>     This, of course, is a personal observation about your own standards
>     of credibility, which might be too high, too low, or just right.  It
>     does not follow from the fact that you are presently unconvinced that
>     you or anyone else should NOT be convinced.

OK - CONVINCE ME.

Since you place so much
>     emphasis upon "credentials", my qualifications for the appraisal of
>     arguments are far stronger than are your's

HOLD IT, RIGHT THERE.  I WAS TRAINED IN ANALYZING ARGUMENTS JUST AS YOU WERE.
THE FACT THAT I AM EMPLOYED OUTSIDE ACADEMIA SAYS NOTHING ABOUT OUR RELATIVE
CURRENT "STRENGTHS."  BY CONTRAST, NEITHER WHITE NOR MANTIK WAS TRAINED IN
CINEMATIC SPECIAL EFFECTS. THE ANALOGY BREAKS DOWN.
and I not only find these
>     arguments to be "convincing" but explain precisely why they are pro-
>     perly regarded as establishing that the Zapruder film has been edited.
>
WOW - THIS IS A REAL BREAKTHROUGH. A NEW LOGICAL FALLACY - "APPEAL TO YOUR OWN
AUTHORITY."!!!!  C'MON, JIM, IS THIS REALLY NECESSARY.

DO YOU THINK IT WOULD BE HARD TO DRUM UP SOME OTHER PRACTICING PHILOSOPHERS WHO
WOULD BE MORE CAUTIOUS IN DRAWING THESE CONCLUSIONS?  SHALL WE MEET AT THE NEXT
APA MEETING TO FIND OUT?  HELL, EXPERTS IN EVERY FIELD DISAGREE WITH EACH OTHER
ALL THE TIME. YOU DON'T GET TO PULL RANK ON AN "OUTSIDER" (SOMEONE NOT
CURRENTLY TEACHING BY HIS OWN CHOICE)  JUST BECAUSE YOU'RE AN INSIDER. THAT
FLIES IN THE FACE OF ALL YOU'VE BEEN SAYING ABOUT THE ROLE OF CREDENTIALS.
 
> > without actually discussing its contents, the nature of the argu-
> > ments it presents or the character of its evidence.  No one would
> > know from this commentary, for example, that the researchers whose
> > work is reported here include a world authority on the human brain
> > who is also an expert on wound ballistics, a Ph.D. in physics who
> > is also an M.D. and board certified in ratiation oncology, an ex-
> > pert on photographic evidence who assisted the HSCA during its re-
> > investigation of the case and later advised Oliver Stone in the
> > preparation of the film "JFK", a physician who assisted in treating
> > JFK at Parkland and three days later his accused assassin, or a
> > former Marine Corps officer who is also a professor of philosophy
> > and an expert on critical thinking and on scientific reasoning.
> >
> > AGAIN, I DID NOT WRITE A BOOK REVIEW. I EXPRESSED FRUSTRATION AT THE
> > ABSENCE OF
> > CREDENTIALED EXPERTS ON CINEMATIC SPECIAL EFFECTS IN IT - NOTABLE
> > BECAUSE THE
> > Z-FILM PIECE IS THE CENTERPIECE OF THE BOOK.  I DON'T DOUBT THE
> > BRILLIANCE OF
> > ANY OF YOUR CONTRIBUTORS, THEIR KNOWLEDGE OF SUBJECT MATTERS THEY MAY
> > OR MAY
> > NOT BE CREDENTIALED, OR THEIR ARGUMENTS (I MYSELF CONTINUE TO HARBOR
> > SERIOUS
> > DOUBTS ABOUT THE X-RAYS AND PHOTOGRAPHS).  I SIMPLY NOTE THE INSULAR
> > APPROACH
> > TAKEN BY THE BOOK. I'M NOT TALKING ABOUT "EQUAL TIME," JUST ABOUT THE
> > KIND OF
> > THING YOU DO AS A MATTER OF COURSE IN WRITING FOR A SCHOLARLY
> > PUBLICATION. YOU
> > SUMMON THE BEST ARGUMENTS OF THOSE WHO OPPOSE YOUR VIEW AND YOU
> > CRITIQUE THEM.
> > WHERE ARE GRODEN'S BEST ARGUMENTS? OR SHACKLEFORD'S? OR THE
> > CREDENTIALED
> > EXPERTS'?
> >
>     The fact is that I have responded to arguments that Shackelford and
>     Groden have made in other places such as THE ASSASSINATION CHRONICLES.
>     Such arguments as Shackelford has advanced are of very poor quality,
>     and Groden has published a rebuttal without bothering to look at the
>     evidence (In DEEP POLITICS QUARTERLY October 1997).  I find it odd
>     that you would suggest that this book should include critiques of its
>     arguments that could not properly appear UNITL AFTER ITS PUBLICATION.
>     What you should find more distrubing is that Groden, who claims to be
>     an authority on the film, simply takes for granted the film has not
>     been edited without reading, reviewing, and considering the evidence.
>     (Charles S. Peirce labelled this approach "the method of tenacity".)
>
> > THERE MUST BE A REASON WHY DEBATE ON YOUR BOOK HAS BEEN LARGELY ABSENT IN
THIS NEWSGROUP, COMPOSED LARGELY OF BRIGHT-TO-BRILLIANT AMATEURS ON BALLISTICS,
FORENSIC PATHOLOGY, AND FILM.  THE REASON IS THE SAME ONE I USE IN CITING MY
DISCOMFORT WITH THE BOOK, I.E., NONE OF US HAS THE SPECIFIC EXPERTISE,.
FINALLY, TO SAY WHAT INFERENCES CAN UNMISTAKABLY BE MADE FROM THE "EVIDENCE"
CITED.
> >
>      How do you know this is "the reason"?  Have you conducted a poll?

IT SURELY CAN'T BE BECAUSE ALL ARE UNANIMOUS IN AGREEMENT WITH YOUR
CONCLUSIONS?  NEITHER CAN IT BE THAT ALL DISAGREE WITH YOU? FRANKLY, I'M WROTE
THE ORIGINAL POST BECAUSE I COULDN'T UNDERSTAND THE ABSENCE OF DISCUSSION.  I
STILL DON'T, SINCE THIS NEWSGROUP WILL ATTACK OTHER SUBJECTS THEY MAY NOT BE
CREDENTIALED EXPERTS IN.  MY BEST GUESS IS THAT THIS TERRITORY IS SO
UNFAMILIAR, SO ESOTERIC, THAT THE KIND OF KNOWLEDGE IT CALLS FOR IS RARE.
PERHAPS EVEN MORE IMPORTANT IS THAT THE TEXT IS NOT ACCOMPANIES BY PHOTOS, SO
ONE EITHER ACCEPTS WHAT IS WRITTEN OR CHOOSES TO WITHHOLD JUDGEMENT.
>      Are you simply taking for granted that you know without bothering
>      to find out, like Groden on whether the film has been edited?

NO, I'M ADVANCING HYPOTHESES.
>      is a rather substantial book, chock full of evidence and arguments.
>      I would have assumed it was being read and studied before commenting
>      and publicizing opinions, which would be the responsible thing to do.

THIS WOULD BE ADMIRABLE, BUT IT'S BEEN OUT FOR SOME TIME NOW.

> > No one would know from this commentary that the book is divided
> > into four sections, that the first concerns the medical evidence
> > in this case and how it has been distorted by the JOURNAL OF THE
> > AMA,
> >
> > A STORY EVERY BIT AS HORRIFYING AS YOU SAY IT IS - BUT NOTHING NEW.
LIVINGSTONE HAS RAKED THEM OVER THE COALS PRETTY GOOD.
> >
>      It would have been helpful if you had read my response to Shackel-
>      ford's post, which made a similar remark.  KILLING THE TRUTH (1993)
>      included considerable discussion of the intervention of JAMA in the
>      case largely based upon the work of David Mantik, Robert Livingston,
>      Gary Aguilar and--surprise, surprise!--me.  Since you make this re-
>      mark, I assume you have not actually read the book or you would know
>      better.
I'VE READ THE BOOK.  THE REMARK IS THAT JAMA IS OLD NEWS TO THE TENS OR
HUNDREDS OF THOUSANDS OF PEOPLE WHO'VE READ LIVINGSTONE. YOU SAY YOUR BOOK IS
FOR THE MASSES. SO WAS HIS.

  (The same, by the way, goes for Shackelford!)  Books by dif-
>      ferent authors have different content, significance, and standing.  I
>      was covering the case in Part I and Part II from the inside as some-
>      one who had been involved in efforts to inform the trustees of the
>      AMA about the misconduct of the Editor-in-Chief of JAMA and attempts
>      to set the record straight with supporting documents and arguments.
>      ASSASSINATION SCIENCE was written for a general audience in a manner
>      that is intended to make it self-contained.  I am of course delighted
>      that Livingstone discussed the matter in KILLING THE TRUTH, but this
>      book make additional contributions that go beyond those it has made.
>
ADDITIONAL CONTRIBUTIONS TO THE JAMA DEBATE?  PERHAPS, I'D HAVE TO COMPARE THE
TWO SIDE BY SIDE. BUT NOTHING NEW CAME ROCKETING OFF THE PAGE AT ME (I WILL
CONFESS TO A POOR MEMORY) AND I DO THINK LIVINGSTONE MERITED MORE THAN A
PASSING REFERENCE.

> >  that the second reports the content of a national press con-
> > ference during which important findings concerning the medical evi-
> > dence in this case--including the fabrication of autopsy X-rays of
> > JFK, the falsification of the "magic bullet" theory, the substitu-
> > tion of diagrams and photographs of the brain of someone else for
> > that of JFK--were presented (none of which was reported to the Am-
> > erican people by our national press),
> >
> > AGAIN, NOTHING NEW HERE. I HAVE THE SAME QUESTIONS YOU DO.
> >
>      Because I viewed the kinds of complaints you had lodged in your
>      first post to be largely non-substantive and ad hominem attacks
>      upon me, I used the opportunity to attempt to convey a somewhat
>      more balanced description of the contents of the book for those
>      who might know no more than your highly prejudicial commentary.

I GAVE NEXT TO NO DESCRIPTION OF THE CONTENTS OF THE BOOK. WHAT I SAID WAS
"NONSUBSTANTIVE" ONLY IN ONE SENSE - THAT IT DOES NOT DISCUSS THE ARGUMENTS
(MARTIN DOES, I DON'T).  I DO THINK I RAISE IMPORTANT SUBSTANTIVE ISSUES IN THE
WAY THE BOOK WAS PRESENTED, ISSUES THAT COULD BE RAISED WITH MUCH OF THE
ASSASSINATION LITERATURE, BUT WHICH BECOME MORE POINTED WHEN A BOOK PROMISES TO
DELIVER THE SCIENTIFIC CONCLUSIONS OF EXPERTS.

>
> >  that the third publishes mycorrespondence with the Department of
> > Justice in
> > (what turned out to be) a futile attempt to convince it that a
> > reopening of the
> >
> > case was warranted by new evidence,
> >
> > AGAIN, I JUST THINK THERE'S TOO MUCH HERE ON YOUR PERSONAL TRAVAILS. WE
> > ALL
> > KNOW WHAT A BITCH IT'S BEEN TO GET DOCUMENTS RELEASED AND
> > INVESTIGATIONS
> > STARTED. THIS CORRESPONDENCE ADDS NOTHING TO THE DEBATE. BETTER TO USE
> > THE
> > SPACE TO PUBLISH ANOTHER EXPERT'S TAKE ON THE EVIDENCE.
> >
>       This is a nice example of the ad hominem quality of your remarks.
>       It would not have mattered if someone other than I had written to
>       the Department of Justice to inform them of our new discoveries,
>       which completely pull the rug out from under the HSCA inqiury and
>       more than warrent reopening the case, if only someone other than I
>       had done so!


Part III was not intended to "add to the debate" (in
>       your sense) but to illustrate what happens when a critizen who has
>       new evidence in this case writes to convey this information to the
>       Department of Justice.  It was included to demonstrate that we had
>       taken such measures and the character of the response we received.
>       Every citizen of the United States should find it worth reading.
>
>       It would have been a mistake to have not reported these efforts
>       to bring these matters to the attention of the Department of Jus-
>       tice and to correct the record being left by The New York Times,
>       because otherwise it might look as though none of these things had
>       been done.  It was important that they were done, but my role here
>       again was that of the messenger and not that of the message itself.
>       (It does not take a philosopher to appreciate such a distinction.)

I'M JUST SAYING ITS OVERKILL. YOU MADE YOUR POINT. MOVE ON.

THIS WOULD BE AD HOMINEM ONLY IF I SAID YOUR ARGUMENTS WERE MISTAKEN BECAUSE OF
THE OVERKILL.  I'M NOT ARGUING ARGUMENTS HERE. I'M ARGUING TACTICS.  I'M SAYING
YOUR CREDIBILITY SUFFERS,  AND THEREFORE THE WAY YOUR BOOK WILL BE GREETED WILL
SUFFER.  IF THIS IS SUPPOSED TO BE A SCHOLARLY BOOK, WHICH IS WHAT I HOPED WHEN
I PICKED IT UP, IT SHOULD ONLY BE AS PERSONAL AS NECESSARY, I.E., AS IMPERSONAL
AS POSSIBLE.

> > or that the fourth part presents a series of studies of the Zapruder
> > film,
> > which "prove" (invarious senses that I explain) that the film has been
> > massively
> > edited using highly sophisticated techniques, apparently by the
> > CIA, which had the film in its possession already Frdiay night.
> >
> > AGAIN, YOU SAY IT'S PROOF. I SAY I'VE HEARD THAT SONG BEFORE.
> > THERE WAS A TIME, LIKE UP UNTIL A YEAR AGO, THAT THE BACKWARD HEAD SNAP
> > "PROVED" A SHOT FROM THE FRONT.  PERHAPS WE WILL FIND ULTIMATELY THAT
> > THE
> > CINEMATIC ANOMALIES ARE INNOCENT ARTIFACTS JUST WE ARE NOW BEING TOLD
> > (TO MY
> > GREAT HORROR AND SADNESS, I MIGHT ADD) THAT THE BACKWARD HEADSNAP IS AN
> > ARTIFACT OF FILM DOCTORING.  YOU HAVE TAKEN AWAY ONE OF THE FEW
> > "INDPENDENT
> > FACTS" POINTING TO CONSPIRACY AND MADE TIED IT INTO A MUCH MORE COMPLEX
> > CASE
> > THAT, TO MY MIND, STILL NEEDS TO BE PROVEN.
> >
>       If the truth about these matters has proven to be elusive, that
>       may be because so much of the evidence has been reprocessed, fab-
>       ricated, and faked.  The work I was doing with David Mantik, Bob
>       Livingston, Jack White and others was devoted to determining which
>       of the evidence is and which is not authentic and therefore reliable
>       as a basis for drawing inferences about the assassination and the
>       cover-up.  If the head-snap were an authentic phenomenon that ac-
>       tually occurred during the assassination, then of course it could
>       be evidence to support a shooter from the front.  In fact, we have
>       a great deal of evidence of a shooter from the front (and more than
>       one, as I view what has been discovered), but we have also found a
>       great deal of evidence that the film has been extensively edited as
>       well.  It is ironic, I would agree, that the head-snap should now
>       appear to be an artifact of film editing; but the very fact that it
>       has been extensively edited is vastly more damning as evidence of a
>       cover-up--involving the CIA and its assets already on Friday night!

WELL, IF IT'S EITHER PROOF OF A SHOT FROM THE FRONT OR PROOF OF EDITING, THEN
I'D PREFER THE FORMER.  PROOF OF EDITING IS PROOF OF A CONSPIRACY TO COVER UP;
IT'S NOT NECESSARILY PROOF OF A CONSPIRACY TO KILL.
>
>       Everyone ultimately has to decide for themselves what has or has
>       not been "proven".  I would have thought that, given your emphasis
>       upon credentials, that you would like the fact that my extensive
>       work and publications in the philosophy of science and the theory
>       of knowledge well-position me to address these issues.  After all,
>       I am a professional philosopher of science who has been engaged in
>       teaching and research in these areas for more or less thirty years.

SEE COMMENTS ON CURRENT OCCUPATION ABOVE. ALSO, SEE YOUROWN/JACK'S/ALAN'S
COMMENTS ON THE ROLE OF CREDENTIALS.

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