Part two of a report by Crikey political correspondent Bernard Keane on the awarding of an airport body scanner contract by the Australian Government without conducting a risk analysis
So who is the real beneficiary of the government’s decision to impose body-scanning technology on international passengers?
Step forward L-3 Communications, a key member of the US defence establishment and one with links to some of the worst scandals of the past decade.
The company will reap $28 million dollars from the government’s obsession with security theatre that has no demonstrated security benefits, through its provision of body scanners.
L-3 began as an orphan company after a Lockheed merger saw several business units sold off to two former Loral executives funded by Lehman Brothers, which still has a big stake in the company and a board seat. Since then, L-3 has grown into one of the top 10 US defence contractors. The company earned nearly a billion dollars in profit in 2010, from revenues of more than $15 billion.
Along the way, it has been involved in some of the US’ biggest defence and procurement scandals. In the late 1990s, the company’s lobbyist Linda Daschle helped the company get a Federal Aviation Authority contract to supply airport baggage scanners courtesy of legislation passed by her husband, Senate Majority Leader Tom Daschle. The scanners were later revealed to be faulty, but the FAA was obliged by Daschle’s legislation to continue to purchase them.
The company later acquired defence contractor Titan, which has been implicated in several procurement scandals. Titan provided “interpreters” at the US Army’s Abu Ghraib prison in Iraq, and the company was sued by a victims of US torture and abuse there, until the US Supreme Court finally dismissed the case in 2011. In 2010, a division of the company was suspended from providing any services to the US government after it was found using US government networks to spy on competitors. There have also been several lesser procurement scandals typical of the US defence industry.
But even as the US looks to cut back defence spending, with flow-on effects for big suppliers such as L-3, the fertile field of security theatre has opened up as a revenue source — there’s little or no political will to cut war-on-terror funding. By 2010, the company had provided nearly $US40 million worth of body scanners following the “underwear bomber”, having massively ramped up its lobbying effort. Not unhelpful is the fact that several US congressional representatives have big L-3 shareholdings, including former 2004 Democrat presidential candidate John Kerry.
In 2010 the FBI invaded the homes of peace activists in several states and seized personal possessions in what the FBI--the lead orchestrator of fake “terrorist plots”--called an investigation of “activities concerning the material support of terrorism.”
Subpoenas were issued to compel antiwar protestors to testify before grand juries as prosecutors set about building their case that opposing Washington’s wars of aggression constitutes giving aid and comfort to terrorists. The purpose of the raids and grand jury subpoenas was to chill the anti-war movement into inaction.
Last week in one fell swoop the last two remaining critics of Washington/Tel Aviv imperialism were removed from the mainstream media. Judge Napolitano’s popular program, Freedom Watch, was cancelled by Fox TV, and Pat Buchanan was fired by MSNBC. Both pundits had wide followings and were appreciated for speaking frankly.
Many suspect that the Israel Lobby used its clout with TV advertisers to silence critics of the Israeli government’s efforts to lead Washington to war with Iran. Regardless, the point before us is that the voice of the mainstream media is now uniform. Americans hear one voice, one message, and the message is propaganda. Dissent is tolerated only on such issues as to whether employer-paid health benefits should pay for contraceptive devices. Constitutional rights have been replaced with rights to free condoms.
The western media demonizes those at whom Washington points a finger. The lies pour forth to justify Washington’s naked aggression: the Taliban are conflated with al Qaeda, Saddam Hussein has weapons of mass destruction, Gaddafi is a terrorist and, even worse, fortified his troops with Viagra in order to commit mass rape against Libyan women.
President Obama and members of Congress along with Tel Aviv continue to assert that Iran is making a nuclear weapon despite public contradiction by the US Secretary of Defense Leon Panetta and the CIA’s National Intelligence Estimate. According to news reports, Pentagon chief Leon Panetta told members of the House of Representatives on February 16 that “Tehran has not made a decision to proceed with developing a nuclear weapon.” http://www.denverpost.com/nationworld/ci_19978801?source=rss However, in Washington facts don’t count. Only the material interests of powerful interest groups matter.
At the moment the American Ministry of Truth is splitting its time between lying about Iran and lying about Syria. Recently, there were some explosions in far away Thailand, and the explosions were blamed on Iran. Last October the FBI announced that the bureau had uncovered an Iranian plot to pay a used car salesman to hire a Mexican drug gang to kill the Saudi Ambassador to the US. The White House idiot professed to believe the unbelievable plot and declared that he had “strong evidence,” but no evidence was ever released. The purpose for announcing the non-existent plot was to justify Obama’s sanctions, which amount to an embargo--an act of war--against Iran for developing nuclear energy.
As a signatory to the non-proliferation treaty, Iran has the right to develop nuclear energy. IAEA inspectors are permanently in Iran and report no diversion of nuclear material to a weapons program.
In other words, according to the reports of the International Atomic Energy Agency, the US National Intelligence Estimate, and the current Secretary of Defense, there is no evidence that Iran has nukes or is making nukes. Yet, Obama has placed illegal sanctions on Iran and continues to threaten Iran with military attack on the basis of an accusation that is contradicted by all known evidence.
Personal Statement from Kurt Haskell, Delta 253 Passenger Kurt Haskell.
I wish to thank the Court for allowing me these 5 minutes to make my statement. My references to the government in this statement refer to the Federal Government excluding this Court and the prosecution. On Christmas Day 2009, my wife and I were returning from an African safari and had a connecting flight through Amsterdam. As we waited for our flight, we sat on the floor next to the boarding gate. What I witnessed while sitting there and subsequent events have changed my life forever. While I sat there, I witnessed Umar dressed in jeans and a white t-shirt, being escorted around security by a man in a tan suit who spoke perfect American English and who aided Umar in boarding without a passport. The airline gate worker initially refused Umar boarding until the man in the tan suit intervened. The event meant nothing to me at the time. Little did I know that Umar would try to kill me a few hours later as our flight approached Detroit. The final 10 minutes of our flight after the attack were the worst minutes of my life. During those 10 minutes I sat paralyzed in fear. Unfortunately, what happened next has had an even greater impact on my life and has saddened me further.
When we landed, I was shocked that our plane taxied up to the gate. I was further shocked that we were forced to sit on the plane for 20 minutes with powder from the so called bomb all over the cabin. The officers that boarded the plane did nothing to ensure our safety and did not check for accomplices or other explosive devices. Several passengers trampled through parts of the bomb as they exited the plane. We were then taken into the terminal with our unchecked carry on bags. Again, there was no concern for our safety even though Umar told the officers that there was another bomb on board as he exited the plane. I wondered why nobody was concerned about our safety, accomplices or other bombs and the lack of concern worried me greatly. I immediately told the FBI my story in order to help catch the accomplice I had seen in Amsterdam. It soon became obvious that the FBI wasn’t interested in what I had to say, which upset me further. For one month the government refused to admit the existence of the man in the tan suit before changing course and admitting his existence in an ABC News article on January 22, 2010. That was the last time the government talked about this man. The video that would prove the truth of my account has never been released. I continue to be emotionally upset that the video has not been released. The Dutch police, meanwhile, in this article (show article), also confirmed that Umar did not show his passport in Amsterdam which also meant that he didn’t go through security as both are in the same line in Amsterdam. It upsets me that the government refuses to admit this fact.
I became further saddened from this case, when Patrick Kennedy of the State Department during Congressional hearings, admitted that Umar was a known terrorist, was being followed, and the U.S. allowed him into the U.S. so that it could catch Umar’s accomplices. I was once again shocked and saddened when Michael Leiter of the National Counter terrorism Center admitted during these same hearings that intentionally letting terrorists into the U.S. was a frequent practice of the U.S. Government. I cannot fully explain my sadness, disappointment and fear when I realized that my government allowed an attack on me intentionally.
During this time, I questioned if my country intentionally put a known terrorist onto my flight with a live bomb. I had many sleepless nights over this issue. My answer came shortly thereafter. In late 2010, the FBI admitted to giving out intentionally defective bombs to the Portland Christmas Tree Bomber,the Wrigley Field Bomber and several others. Further, Mr. Chambers was quoted in the Free Press on January 11, 2011 when he indicated that the government’s own explosives experts had indicated that Umar’s bomb was impossibly defective. I wondered how that could be. Certainly, I thought, Al Qaeda wouldn’t go through all of the trouble to plan such an attack only to provide the terrorist with an impossibly defective bomb.
I attended nearly all of the pretrial hearings. At the hearing on January 28, 2011, I was greatly disappointed by the prosecution’s request to block evidence from Mr. Chambers “as it could then be able to be obtained by third parties, who could use it in a civil suit against the government”. It really bothered me that the government apparently was admitting to wrongdoing of some kind as it admitted that it was concerned it would be sued. It further upset me to know that the government was putting its own interests ahead of those of the passengers.
When I attended the jury selection hearings, I questioned why versions of the same two questions kept coming up, those being:
1. Do you think you’ll be able to tell whether something is actually a bomb? and 2. Do you realize that sometimes the media doesn’t always tell the truth?
I continued to be greatly saddened at this point as I felt the truth continued to be hidden.
When Umar listed me as his only witness, I was happy to testify, not on his behalf, but on behalf of the truth. I never expected to testify, as my eyewitness account would have been too damaging to the myth that the government and media are putting forward. A mere 5 days after I was announced as a witness, there was an inexplicable guilty plea which exasperated me as I no longer would be testifying.
In closing I will just say that regardless of how the media and government try to shape the public perception of this case, I am convinced that Umar was given an intentionally defective bomb by a U.S. Government agent and placed on our flight without showing a passport or going through security, to stage a false terrorist attack to be used to implement various government policies.
The effect this matter has had on my life has been astounding and due to this case, I will never trust the government in any matter, ever.
In regards to sentencing, nothing I’ve said excuses the fact that Umar tried to kill me. He has waived his valid claim to the entrapment defense. Umar, you are not a great Muslim martyr, you are merely a “Patsy”. I ask the court to impose the mandatory sentence.
by James Corbett
February 21, 2012
Of all of the myriad agencies, bureaucracies, laws and legislation that have sprung up to oppress the American citizenry in this age of the unending war against an abstract noun, perhaps none have garnered as much ire and opprobrium as the innocuously named Transportation Security Administration.
Created in the wake of 9/11 under the pretext of “fixing” the system that had “somehow” allowed 19 men with box cutters to supposedly commit the most egregious violation of American airspace in history (aided in no small part by the simultaneous “failure” of the entire American intelligence establishment and the most sophisticated air defense in the world), the TSA was originally placed under the Department of Transportation and tasked with securing the nation’s transportation system from future attacks. It was just a matter of months, however, before the TSA was transitioned into the newly-created Department of Fatherland Security and began turning the relatively benign process of clearing airport security into an ordeal that traumatizes and humiliates virtually everyone who has to endure it.
Taking advantage of the general public’s ignorance of their rights in the legally ambiguous airport screening areas and the 21st century American citizenry’s newfound penchant for prostrating themselves before anyone with a badge and a uniform, the TSA quickly began positioning itself as the most totalitarian agency in the entire complex of the American security establishment. And that is no small feat. [see this and this and this and this and this and this and this and this]
Supposedly set up to “fix” the holes in airport security, the TSA has in fact failed miserably in their task. Not only that, but the agency has consistently lied about its aims, intentions and operations.
Reports of TSA failures to find knives, massive shipments of narcotics, loaded guns, and even the very types of box cutters used on 9/11have been so numerous over the years that it would be impossible to enumerate them all. Sadly, even the government’s own testing of the TSA procedures has confirmed time and again that the agency fails in providing even the most basic level of security for airline passengers.
In 2006, government investigators found that they were able to slip 75 percent of their fake bombs through checkpoints at LAX, one of the busiest airports in America, and 60% through Chicago O’Hare, one of the busiest airports in the world.
The TSA attempted to defend itself by pointing out that the tests in question had been conducted in 2004 and 2005, citing changes in regulations that they assured the public meant that they were better prepared to protect the public. But that didn’t stop TSA testers in 2008 from successfully smuggling a mock bomb past yet more TSA agents. And a 2008 report from the Government Accountability Office blasted the agency for failing to follow up on why its agents had failed to spot the guns, knives and bombs identified in previous tests.
In February 2011 it was revealed that the invasive naked body scanners that had been installed to ostensibly ensure that guns and other weapons could not be snuck through security had failed repeatedly to detect handguns during testing. In April 2011 the GAO blasted the TSA yet again, this time pointing out 23 occasions since 9/11 when the agency had failed to detect terror suspects who boarded planes in the US. In November of that year Congressional investigators issued their own blistering report on the agency, calling it an “enormous, inflexible and distracted bureaucracy” and pointing out that Americans “are no safer today than they were before 9/11″ despite the 60 billion dollars that had been wasted on the TSA.
Even John Mica, the Congressman who authored the legislation establishing the agency itself, came out in September of last year to call the agency “a complete fiasco” and calling on it to be dismantled.
And then there are the lies.
They lied in November of 2010, when they responded to public fury over pat-downs of children at airports by saying that they would stop subjecting children under 12 to such treatment, only to be found consistently breaking their word, patting down young children and even one 8-month-old infant.
They lied in December 2010 when TSA spokesman Nico Melendez told AOL News that the naked body scanners were not equipped to record images of travelers naked bodies. A FOIA document obtained by The Electronic Privacy Information Center showed that the TSA specifically required that the machines have the ability to record, retain and export images.
In 2011, it lied about the US constitution itself, stating in an official blog post that the Texas House of Representatives couldn’t ban the TSA pat-down procedure because the constitution’s “Supremacy Clause” “prevents states from relating the federal government.” Constitutional scholars were quick to call the TSA out on its blatant misrepresentation.
Given this track record of abysmal and utter failure, it is flabbergasting that the public has not demanded the immediate dismantling of this governmental monstrosity. In fact, the public did plan one overwhelming, undeniable protest that would surely have caused changes to the system, but the TSA artfully dodged the public’s ire with a simple sleight of hand.
Outraged by the invasive new full-body pat-downs the TSA was delivering to those who decided to “opt out” of the agency’s naked body scanner screening, Americans appointed November 24, 2011 as National Opt-Out Day. Despite (or perhaps because of) pleas by the likes of TSA chief John Pistole to urge Americans not to opt out of the naked body scanners and thus cause delays during the nation’s busiest air travel day, the Thanksgiving holiday, millions of Americans mobilized online and prepared for their stand-off with TSA security.
Rather than face a humiliating PR defeat, however, the agency merely turned off the naked scanners at airports across the country for the day, thus depriving the people of their chance to make a dramatic and visible protest.
Given the gross abuses of human dignity that the agency engages in every day, the reprehensible nature of its history of lies to the American people, and its utter failure to perform any of the tasks that it has been assigned, it is no wonder that the TSA is one of the most universally derided agencies amongst a government that is increasingly aiming the apparatus of its oppressive power at its own citizenry. In numerous ways, people have been continuing to mount protest against this agency and to draw attention to the flagrant violation of basic constitutional rights that it represents. (see this and this and this and this and this and this)
Still, for all of the protest and backlash that the TSA has garnered through its atrocious and reprehensible conduct, it still enjoys the tacit support of a significant percentage of the public, who — sickened as they may be by the entire security theatre ordeal they are forced to endure at airports, train and bus stations, and even on the highways — have mentally resigned themselves to the process. In effect, they have allowed the system to win by failing to exert their rights, hoping that the system will allow them to get by with “just” a naked body scan or “just” an invasive full body pat down. After all, they have places to get to, and how can just one person make a difference?
It is only by combating this mentality, by standing up for our rights and refusing to allow any government-appointed goon with a badge to tell us that he has the right to take them away, can we ever hope to effect a change in the police state that America and so many other countries have lamentably become.
The alternative is to continue allowing the TSA to grab ever more power after every staged, concocted, manipulated or provocateured “failure” in that security that they have so signally failed to provide. Because it must be remembered that the security that Americans and others need most be concerned with is not the security from terrorists, or from random insane people who are bent on killing themselves and others. No amount of scanners or goons with badges will ever provide security from that. The security that we need is the security from government abuse of authority, an abuse which has long since become the norm, not the exception.
If the founding fathers of the United States knew that the greatest threat to liberty comes from government, the question must be where did that knowledge disappear to, and how can the public regain it?
A new model of the way the THz waves interact with DNA explains how the damage is done and why evidence has been so hard to gather
Great things are expected of terahertz waves, the radiation that fills the slot in the electromagnetic spectrum between microwaves and the infrared. Terahertz waves pass through non-conducting materials such as clothes , paper, wood and brick and so cameras sensitive to them can peer inside envelopes, into living rooms and "frisk" people at distance.
The way terahertz waves are absorbed and emitted can also be used to determine the chemical composition of a material. And even though they don't travel far inside the body, there is great hope that the waves can be used to spot tumours near the surface of the skin.
With all that potential, it's no wonder that research on terahertz waves has exploded in the last ten years or so.
But what of the health effects of terahertz waves? At first glance, it's easy to dismiss any notion that they can be damaging. Terahertz photons are not energetic enough to break chemical bonds or ionise atoms or molecules, the chief reasons why higher energy photons such as x-rays and UV rays are so bad for us. But could there be another mechanism at work?
The evidence that terahertz radiation damages biological systems is mixed. "Some studies reported significant genetic damage while others, although similar, showed none," say Boian Alexandrov at the Center for Nonlinear Studies at Los Alamos National Laboratory in New Mexico and a few buddies. Now these guys think they know why.
Alexandrov and co have created a model to investigate how THz fields interact with double-stranded DNA and what they've found is remarkable. They say that although the forces generated are tiny, resonant effects allow THz waves to unzip double-stranded DNA, creating bubbles in the double strand that could significantly interfere with processes such as gene expression and DNA replication. That's a jaw dropping conclusion.
And it also explains why the evidence has been so hard to garner. Ordinary resonant effects are not powerful enough to do do this kind of damage but nonlinear resonances can. These nonlinear instabilities are much less likely to form which explains why the character of THz genotoxic effects are probabilistic rather than deterministic, say the team.
This should set the cat among the pigeons. Of course, terahertz waves are a natural part of environment, just like visible and infrared light. But a new generation of cameras are set to appear that not only record terahertz waves but also bombard us with them. And if our exposure is set to increase, the question that urgently needs answering is what level of terahertz exposure is safe.
On tonight's show I am joined by Josh Jackson, to discuss the escalating middle east crisis in the wake of news that the Iranian oil bourse will start trading oil in currencies other than the dollar from March 20.
This development is discussed in the context of the crony capitalist system, which uses currency manipulation as the base tool for global domination.
We reflect on the possibility that the Iranian "nuclear threat" was concocted in order to provide a justifiable cover for obliterating Iran, whose real threat to the west is in its economic power, derived from the fact that Iran holds the third largest oil reserves in the world.
The ruthlessness of the plan of the globalist powers to destroy Iran is highlighted in the attempt to overthrow the Syrian government - one of Iran's strongest allies in the region.
We look at the way in which news coverage of events in Syria is in effect war propaganda designed to provide cover for the brutal intentions of the US and its allies, all driven by the fear of Iran's economic power.
We put forward the proposition that it is time for all honest citizens of western counries to stand up and demand that their governments desist from this criminal agenda..
No cost-benefit analysis was conducted before the government’s decision to impose body scanning on international passengers departing the country, the government has revealed.
On Sunday Transport Minister Anthony Albanese announced that a $28 million program to install scanners at international airports would proceed after “a successful trial” at Sydney and Melbourne airports. Passengers selected for scanning who refused would not be permitted to fly, the same policy as applies in Britain (in the US, passengers who refuse have the option of a highly invasive pat-down search).
However, when asked what evaluation of the trial had taken place or whether a cost-benefit analysis was conducted by the Office of Transport Security within the Department of Infrastructure, a spokeswoman for the minister advised that “the decision was made based on accuracy and minimising inconvenience to the travelling public”.
The decision to roll out scanners at the nations airports had its origins in the knee-jerk response to the “underwear bomber” Umar Abdulmutallab during Christmas 2009, when his plan to blow up an airliner using a small quantity of liquid high-explosive failed. A later experiment suggested the aircraft would not have crashed even if the terrorist had succeeded in detonating the explosive he had secreted in his underwear.
However, governments across the world immediately rushed to roll out airport scanning technologies claimed to detect liquids, including the Rudd government, which announced it was introducing scanners and allocated money in the 2010 budget.
X-ray-based scanners are now banned in Europe after serious health risks were identified. The scanners used in Australia are millimetre wave scanners that have no known safety issues. The scanners can also be set to not display anatomical features of the scanned individual and not record scans. There have been several instances overseas of scanner operators keeping images of, ogling or commenting on the anatomy of passengers and co-workers.
But the scanners cannot detect liquids secreted within body cavities, are prone to generating false positives, particularly from perspiration, and suffer the same problems of operator error as other forms of scanning equipment: a US Transportation Security Agency official carrying a firearm was able to pass through a scanner at a US airport. They are also supposed to be coupled with a form of profiling to ensure suspicious passengers are more likely to be scanned than the rest of us; anyone who has travelled within the US will know that in fact they’re used by officials if they don’t like your attitude or simply take a dislike to you.
Categories: [ 9/11 Truth Movement ]
Editor’s note: This is Part 1 of an extensive report by researcher Adam Taylor that exposes the fallacies and flaws in the arguments made by Popular Mechanics in the latest edition of Debunking 9/11 Myths. We encourage you to submit your own reviews of the book at Amazon.com and other places where it is sold.
|The revised version of Popular Mechanics’ book Debunking 9/11 Myths continues to defend myths that are scientifically impossible|
A decade has passed since the tragic events of September 11, 2001, and many people feel that we have still not had a real investigation into what really happened that day. Many believe that the investigations into the destruction of the three WTC skyscrapers by the National Institute for Standards and Technology (NIST) were either fraudulent or incomplete, and have joined the 1600+ architects and engineers at AE911Truth in calling for a real, independent investigation into the attacks. However, Popular Mechanics (PM) has been the primary cheerleader in the mainstream media in defense of the NIST reports ever since its book, Debunking 9/11 Myths: Why Conspiracy Theories Can’t Stand Up To the Facts, was published in 2006.
For the ten-year anniversary of 9/11, PM put out a second version of its book, which was updated in an attempt to dismiss new findings that corroborate the controlled demolition hypothesis. The main sections of the book that were revised are on the collapse of the Twin Towers and World Trade Center 7. This report demonstrates that PM has still not adequately explained the numerous anomalies surrounding the collapse of these three buildings that prove they were destroyed with explosives.
(Quotes from Popular Mechanics’ book are shown in red and with page numbers.)
World Trade Center Towers 1 & 2
The introduction to PM’s chapter on the collapse of the Twin Towers briefly discusses the main theory put forward by members of the 9/11 Truth movement regarding the Towers’ destruction: “The buildings were brought down intentionally—not by hijacked airplanes, but by government-planted bombs or a controlled demolition” (pg. 28). PM then goes on to give a few examples of people promoting this theory. One of the people they cite is a Danish writer named Henrik Melvang, who, according to PM, “markets his book and video claiming the Apollo moon landings were a hoax” (pg. 28). This is obviously an attempt on PM’s part to portray those who question the collapse of the Towers as conspiracy theorists who have irrational beliefs. PM also cites Morgan Reynolds, the former chief economist at the U.S. Department of Labor during President George Bush’s first term, as someone who believes that the Towers were destroyed through controlled demolition.
We must ask ourselves why PM would choose to cite these people as examples of those who question the collapse of the Towers. Why didn’t they cite anyone with experience in the fields of engineering and building construction? According to PM, it’s because the 9/11 Truth movement doesn’t have any technical credentials. In their 2011 book, they state that:
Though Reynolds and a handful of other skeptics cite academic credentials to lend credence to their views, not one of the leading conspiracy theorists has a background in engineering, construction, or related fields. (pg. 28-29)
This statement is by far one of the most remarkable passages in PM’s book. One need only look at what most consider the lead organization in the 9/11truth community, Architects & Engineers for 9/11 Truth, to see that there are currently over 1600 professional architects and engineers with backgrounds in engineering, architecture and building construction who question the destruction of the three WTC high-rise buildings. How can PM possibly have omitted over a thousand experts who agree that the Twin Towers and WTC7 were brought down with explosives? In PM’s entire 216 page book, there is not a single mention made of AE911Truth or its founder, architect Richard Gage, AIA.
|Popular Mechanics did a poor job of updating their book, leaving in claims from their 2006 version (excerpt shown above) that no leaders of the 9/11 Truth movement have backgrounds in engineering. They completely ignore the hundreds of engineers at AE911Truth who have examined the WTC evidence and are demanding a real investigation|
When one looks back at their 2006 book, we can see that this exact same statement appears on the exact same pages.
This fact shows how PM has decided to structure their new book: i.e., update it only where it benefits them. As we will see, this tactic is used more than once in PM’s grossly flawed book.
|The debate over the airplane crash at the Empire State Building is irrelevant because the design of the Twin Towers was far more robust than that of older high-rises|
1.1 The Empire State Building Accident
PM discusses the incident in 1945 where a B-25 bomber lost in the fog crashed into the side of the Empire state building. They claim that “some conspiracy theorists point to [this incident] as proof that commercial planes hitting the World Trade Center could not bring down the towers” (pg. 29). To counter this assertion, PM discusses the construction of the Towers compared to the construction of the Empire State Building and how the Towers’ structures “were in some ways more fragile” (pg. 30). They also quote structural engineer Jon Magnusson as saying that “These structures look massive, but they’re mostly air. They are air, punctuated with thin layers of concrete and steel” (pg. 30). While it is true that the Towers were mostly empty space by volume, this is true of any large skyscraper. The idea that the Towers were in some way less structurally sound than the Empire State Building is contradicted by a variety of technical sources, including this telegram written by Richard Roth, partner at Emery Roth & Sons, which was the architectural firm that designed the Twin Towers:
THE STRUCTURAL ANALYSIS CARRIED OUT BY THE FIRM OF WORTHINGTON, SKILLING, HELLE & JACKSON IS THE MOST COMPLETE AND DETAILED OF ANY EVER MADE FOR ANY BUILDING STRUCTURE. THE PRELIMINARY CALCULATIONS ALONE COVER 1,200 PAGES AND INVOLVE OVER 100 DETAILED DRAWINGS.
4. BECAUSE OF ITS CONFIGURATION, WHICH IS ESSENTIALLY THAT OF A STEEL BEAM 209' DEEP, THE TOWERS ARE ACTUALLY FAR LESS DARING STRUCTURALLY THAN A CONVENTIONAL BUILDING SUCH AS THE EMPIRE STATE BUILDING WHERE THE SPINE OR BRACED AREA OF THE BUILDING IS FAR SMALLER IN RELATION TO ITS HEIGHT.
5. THE BUILDING AS DESIGNED IS SIXTEEN TIMES STIFFER THAN A CONVENTIONAL STRUCTURE. THE DESIGN CONCEPT IS SO SOUND THAT THE STRUCTURAL ENGINEER HAS BEEN ABLE TO BE ULTRA-CONSERVATIVE IN HIS DESIGN WITHOUT ADVERSELY AFFECTING THE ECONOMICS OF THE STRUCTURE.i
Female passengers say they are being targeted by TSA screeners for sexual harassment, with one Texas woman being forced to pass through a naked body scanner three times so chuckling male TSA workers in a back room could get a good look at her “cute” figure.
The incident occurred at DFW International Airport earlier this month. Wife and mother Ellen Terrell was asked by a female TSA screener “Do you play tennis?” When Terrell asked why, the screener responded, “You just have such a cute figure.”
Terrell was then told to go through the naked body scanner not once but a second time. She then heard the TSA screener talking into her microphone saying, “Come on guys, alright, alright, one more time.”
After Terrell was forced to undergo a third blast of radiation from the body scanner, the male TSA agents in the back room who were obviously enjoying the show tried to send her through yet again to see more images of her naked body.
“Guys, it is not blurry, I’m letting her go. Come on out,” the female TSA screener said, finally ending the ordeal.
“I feel like I was totally exposed,” Terrell told CBS 11. “They wanted a nice good look.”
An investigation by CBS 11 News has prompted New York Senator Charles Schumer to introduce legislation that will mandate the TSA provide “passenger advocates” who will be on duty at all times to respond to complaints at every airport in the country.
The investigation found that female travelers are victims of a “peep show” by TSA workers who are using naked body scanners to target attractive women.
“CBS 11 News dug through more than 500 records of TSA complaints and found a pattern of women who believe that there was nothing random about the way they were selected for extra screening,” states the report, which lists numerous examples of men forcing women to pass through the scanners in a clear pattern of sexual harassment.
“Going through security at our nations airports should not be a humiliating or degrading experience,” remarked Schumer after hearing about the investigation. “Because the TSA has refused to put passenger advocates at our nation’s airports, today I’m introducing legislation that would force them to do so.”
However, critics argue that the position would just be filled by another TSA worker, and that such a program will only be worthwhile if the advocate is independent.
A far better solution would be for airports to take advantage of a newly passed law that enables airports to apply to have TSA screeners evicted altogether.
As we have exhaustively documented, TSA workers tasked with operating naked body scanners have found themselves embroiled in an epidemic of criminality, abuses of power, and sexual perversion, with new cases appearing on an almost daily basis.
These people are the least suitable candidates to be providing security at America’s airports, which makes threats by Democrats and people like Joe Lieberman that a “new 9/11″ will occur if the TSA is marginalized all the more asinine.
Announcing the launch of WeWillNotBeScanned.org!
Naked body scanners are an affront to human dignity with the sole purpose of training human beings to supplicate before the supreme authority of the state. We pledge to resist this attack on democracy and human rights using all legal means available.
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, “they based the program out of aohtner country, England.”“They routed it back to the NSA building, which was 14 stories below the ground!” Now isn’t THAT special!!!The European Parliament published a report of its investigation of Echelon in 2001, describing it as “a global system for the interception of private and commercial communications.”It was originally created to monitor the military and diplomatic communications of the Soviet Union and its Eastern Bloc allies during the Cold War in the early 1960s.Echelon was capable of interception and content inspection of telephone calls, fax, email and other data traffic globally. Get it? EVERYTHING!Former Lockheed Martin employee Margaret Newsham exposed her work with Echelon in top-secret hearings in Congress in 1988 and to a journalist in 1999. She worked for Lockheed from 1974 to 1984, mostly in Sunnyvale, but was based in 1977 at the largest listening post in the world, RAF base Menwith Hill in Yorkshire, England.She designed programs for Echelon’s global surveillance network.“As early as 1979 we could track a specific person and zoom in on his phone conversation while he was communicating,” Newsham said. “Since our satellites could, in 1984, film a postage stamp lying on the ground, it is almost impossible to imagine how all-encompassing the system must be today.”Another witness went on to state, “ Echelon analysts used a computer program capable of scanning all communications for specific key words.” “They were listening to everything,” he said. ” … They know what everybody does.” This witness went on to say his company “built satellites over there able to read the data on a dime.”Is there proof of this actually having happened and is happening right this minute? Sorry, YES! Bloomberg TV and media outlets reported, its sources confirmed, that thousands of technology, finance and manufacturing companies were exchanging “sensitive information” for “benefits” from the government. Now, add to this data mining flow all newly minted Technology giants imagine what’s REALLY goin’ on.Bloomberg’s four sources said Internet and telecommunications companies work with the National Security Agency, the Central Intelligence Agency, the Federal Bureau of Investigation and the military to “data mine” all communications of every type in all the USA of all Americans.This has morphed from Echelon, to Thin Thread, then Trail Blazer and now the latest incarnation PRISM. Pray. Amen. Feel safer now? And these Congressional phonies are upset???They knew about this all along. HAH! Bunch o lying SOB’s!!! Snoop on this!!! Join a Tea Party! Protect Our Constitution.
By German on 2014 09 16 - 10:35:05
From the entry 'Is surveillance a tool of political oppression?'.
opening this plant will have no effect on gboall warming because its individual contribution is miniscule in comparison to the gboall problem. But nevertheless, the plant’s contribution will be ~202 million tons of CO2 over the life of the 15 year permit that the Dep’t is considering granting it.That’s not a small contribution, but what does the law, the country, the Dep’t, and the atmosphere have to gain from a long, NEPA-driven analysis of the impacts of that much carbon from this one power plant? So what? There is no underlying statute that says cumulative effects cannot rise above a certain level of import, nor is there an underlying statute limiting the amount of carbon a power plant can emit (so long as it meets Clean Air Act standards, anyway). It seems that cumulative effects are just a way of talking about direct effects, not a separate category of “effects” at all. Because if they don’t rise to a point where they have a direct effect, our environmental law doesn’t have much to say about them.
By Maman on 2014 09 16 - 09:51:40
From the entry 'In which everyone becomes a (16 digit) number'.
They may then offer you the quote. Typically, their presents are deslarbie and you’ll be completely satisfied with that. They also make immediate payments in money. They don’t charge anything for towing away your junk car out of your property. As a result, it truly is the ideal option to sell a junk vehicle to such firms and get a substantial quantity in return.These firms sell spare components to automotive dealers dealing in spare components and recycle the recyclable components. They normally have their own tow trucks and can tow away your car without having any problems. The vehicle kept within the backyard has otherwise no worth besides occupying space and causing inconvenience. If the car isn’t getting used to get a long time it could be proper to dispose it off to ensure that you can employ the space elsewhere and get some further money as well. It really should be sold off as early as possible along with the longer you delay the sale the reduce could be the price tag you get..
By Hueso on 2014 09 16 - 08:51:37
From the entry 'David Chandler weighs in on 9/11 Pentagon questions'.
Although late, I would like to comment on your “Mass Delusion” post. No. There is no “mass dlioseun” on the parts of those that know the indicators of a missile launch. However, “mass dlioseun” of those that believe the opposite might be true. ContrailScience.com relies on Google Earth to prove its points. However, Google has numerous contracts with the U.S. Government, including both the CIA and Department of Defense. Both Google and the U.S. Government are not credible here because both have strong vested interests in proving that the November 8th event was not a missile launch. And, because ContrailScience.com relies so heavily on Google Earth, it looks and smells as if ContrailScience.com also has a similar vested interest. I have worked for a major airline at LAX for 32 years. My work takes place in a large maintenance bay alongside the longest and most actively-used runway at LAX. During my lifetime, I have witnessed hundreds of thousands - if not millions - of jets taking off, along with their contrails under appropriate conditions. Under the right conditions, contrails evolve off of the tips of an aircraft’s wings. Aircraft have TWO wings, not one; thus, if an aircraft was involved, there would be TWO contrails not ONE.Moreover, no passenger aircraft would engage in such a steep angle of attack on departure out of LAX. And, no, single-engine military aircraft do not depart out of LAX. Although I am employed at LAX, I commute to and from work from my home, situated near Vandenberg Air Force Base (VAFB). Since 1981 I have personally witnessed hundreds, if not thousands, of missile launches. The one-contrail event of November 8 was a definitive missile launch. If conditions were right for aircraft contrails, one would have seen evidence of two THIN contrails, not one gigantic plume! Moreover, even the contrail pattern itself reflects that this was a missile launch. When missiles near their cruise altitude and thus alter their angle of attack,they always falsely “appear” as if they are slowing down or stopping. In reality, the missiles are merely leveling out. ContrailScience.com is a lovely site with wonderful, colorful pictures. However, the site’s information on this particular issue appears to be nothing more than usual propaganda.
By Yasemin on 2014 09 16 - 08:35:56
From the entry 'Contrails dissipate quickly whereas chemtrails linger?'.
I agree with the other poster,Kyoto means noihtng without China, and I think you need to add India and Brazil to that.I still think that America and Australia will be stubborn about it, even though America has a president who seems to know what he’s doing for the first time in years.I don’t think it will be difficult as long as there are allowances made for developing nations, and by that I don’t mean China. China has experienced exponential growth in the past few years and need to recognise the effect on the planet.However,if we make economies like China slow down, who are arguably holding up the world economy, then there could be horrible economic circumstances, especially in the current economic climate. The economy and the planet need to meet half way until we’re out of this mess
By John on 2014 09 16 - 06:39:33
From the entry 'Professor Bob Carter on the latest NIPCC report'.
It must be very exciting! Are you plnnaing on homeschooling Aiden? It seems to early to consider this, though. In the meantime, just enjoy your time with him! Now that my eldest is 21 and my youngest 16, I miss the days when they were babies. Of course, having grown-up children has a plus side to it. They help with the housework and carrying the heavy suitcases when we travel.
By Fatou on 2014 09 16 - 05:55:50
From the entry 'Australians For Syria Protest in Sydney'.
Twitter: I agree that if you’re going to say thank you, it’s better to do it all in one tweet than to send out a starem of thank-yous, but I think Angie Schottmuller’s suggestions provide more value, not only to the person receiving the thanks, but to everyone else who is following.Janet Barclay recently posted..
By Jonas on 2014 09 16 - 05:49:34
From the entry 'Chris Emery on recent film projects'.
Twitter: It had a similar efefct on me. It was just so automatic to click Reply and send a thank you message!I’m not really a big fan of group tweets of any type. Although it’s nice to be recognized, being included in a list just doesn’t have the same impact as a personal message that continues the conversation or provides value in some other way. It does get challenging sometimes, such as when one of your tweets gets a LOT of attention, but I think it’s worth the effort to respond to each one in a meaningful way, even if you can’t do it immediately.Janet Barclay recently posted..
By Manuel on 2014 09 16 - 03:01:47
From the entry 'Everywhere is War'.
Too many soehple Too many soehple want fast answers and won’t look into the sky.. much less a book. It’s obvious we can’t inform everyone only the willing and has little to do with tested IQ and formal education. This issue is a jigsaw puzzle with 10 thousand pieces or more .All the whistleblowers have been intimidated and a surprising number are essentially gagged when NSA issues them top-secret security clearances as mechanics and crew. Was this answer helpful?
By Desti on 2014 09 16 - 01:54:04
From the entry 'A chat with Amber Lyon'.
I heard it on radio and called hubby who was blslfiulsy sleeping to turn on the TV. He saw the scene, thinking it was some freak accident by a private jet, went back to sleep!!!I had to call him three more times before he actually comprehended the whole scenario. I reached office, people were in a frenzy. People I had never spoken to expressed concern in the parking lot. We rushed to the office to catch a glimpse on TV. It was shocking to say the least.My first thought went to my friends who worked in the WTC. One guy narrowly escaped (jumped from the ground floor window and ran for his life), while my other friend’s laziness saved her. She was late to work. Even now she cries thinking of that day when she lost many of her colleagues.My uncle and aunt who were sight seeing in Washington DC saw the flight crash in the Pentagon when they were taking a tour of the Whitehouse. Uncle took pictures!!My whole day went by trying to call my friends in NY & DC. It was terrible.
By Cherry on 2014 09 16 - 01:14:22
From the entry '9/11 Troll Alert'.