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Archive for August 2008

Conspiracy classics Part I: William Rees Mogg, Queen Elizabeth, and the Oklahoma bombings

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The key to enjoying conspiracy theories is to treat them for what they are – glorious works of surrealist fiction. As an example of the genre, this has to be one of my all-time favourites, from the undisputed conspiracy king Lyndon Larouche, following the Oklahoma bombings in 1995.

My wife once had a careers advice session with William Rees Mogg – little did she know at the time about his shadowy underworld activities… Poe’s law strikes again!

Well, the ground was prepared, first of all, by the British, specifically by Lord William Rees-Mogg and his accomplice, Davidson, through their little Taxpayers’ Union, which is a Mont Pelerin Society outfit. The political profile of the forces in the United States which are working closely with Rees-Mogg’s neo-conservatives, are the same people who, like Rush Limbaugh, have been targetting President Clinton, and, in a sense, setting him up to be a target by all kinds of kooks in this country.

The people who led the misdirection after the explosion, in trying to get forces to chase somebody else other than the actual perpetrator, that is, the actual, real perpetrators, not the patsies, was the same Rees-Mogg and his friends, Ambrose Evans-Pritchard, the same people who are after the President…

 So, here we are, a case of this faction of the British Empire, the British monarchy, prepared and exploited a terrorist act against the United States, a terrorist act of military intelligence sophistication, way above the Special Forces level; and they’re the ones who benefitted. And that’s the kind of problem to which the President was referring in his address at the university in Moscow. This is the enemy. The President was diplomatic and did not mention {London}; but I’m certain that the President knows the British monarchy is the party that is responsible for this and other present, recent past, and possibly future
events of a similar gory quality.

Poe’s law revisited…

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“Poe’s law”, according to Rationalwiki, “relates to fundamentalism, and the difficulty of identifying actual parodies of it. It suggests that, in general, it is hard to tell fake fundamentalism from the real thing, since they both sound equally ridiculous. The law also works in reverse: real fundamentalism can also be indistinguishable from parody fundamentalism”

I had that Poe’s law feeling just now, when I stumbled across “Scienceguardian.com” (incorporating “New AIDS Review“, “Global Health Review“, and the Judo-tastically-named “Paradigm Overthrow.”).

Science Guardian, we are told, is dedicated to “defending the values of science and good scientists who dissent in the paradigm wars of HIV/AIDS, cancer, evolution, global warming, nutrition, religious belief and other disputes over new and different ideas.”

The website aims to “expose truths buried in the literature and commonly overlooked by the media, and review novel claims without the group prejudice against modern Galileos, whistleblowers, distinguished mavericks, past or future Nobelists, or any other original and independent good minds (such as the noted scientists Peter Duesberg and Kary Mullis) who may question scripture.”

Fake or folly? Click here to decide…

“In my line of work you’ve gotta keep repeating things over and over…”

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My all-time favourite quote from GWB…

Written by Richard Wilson

August 28, 2008 at 7:43 am

Attack of the ‘rogue state’ libel laws…

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Last week I wrote about the defensive measures being taken in the US to prevent Britain’s rapacious libel laws being used to undermine freedom of speech internationally. Now, via Craig Murray’s blog, I’ve learned that our rogue state laws may have claimed another victim. The longstanding politics discussion site “Harry’s Place” has reportedly been temporarily closed down simply by the threat of libel being made against the site’s internet service provider, following a dispute with a Sheffield academic, Jenna Delich.

Contributors to “Harry’s Place” have accused Delich of linking, via her own website, to the site of the far-right anti-semite KKK all-round bad egg extremist David Duke. Delich says that these claims are libellous, hence the reported take-down demand.

As is traditional in such cases (see here for a previous fiasco in which, bizarrely, Boris Johnson got caught in the crossfire), the full saga is now being recounted on a site hurriedly put together on blogspot, which is a) very easy to use and b) hosted several thousand miles outside of UK jurisdiction.

Written by Richard Wilson

August 27, 2008 at 11:00 pm

Shiny new books!

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While I was at work this morning I had a call from Heleen, who was at home because of a doctor’s appointment (our baby’s due date is more or less a month after the new book comes out!).

Ten shiny new copies of Don’t Get Fooled Again had just landed on the mat – (OK – it was actually the obligatory man turning up with a box and asking you to scribble incoherently on his Ipod, but symbolically it was mats all the way).

It’s the first time I’ve seen a finished copy – they look brilliant – I’m in awe of the graphic designer. After all the late nights, early mornings, emails, phone calls and footnotes, it finally feels as if the job’s done…

Written by Richard Wilson

August 27, 2008 at 9:36 pm

Contacted by the dark side…

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A lot things seem to be happening at once right now: The Guardian has kindly featured an article I’ve written about the latest shenanigans with the Foreign Office, my big sister Charlotte, and the extremist group who killed her in December 2000, Palipehutu-FNL. Burundi’s bad boys recently made contact with me via a supposedly neutral intermediary called Dieudonné Haburagira.

Less than 24 hours after that article was published, the Foreign Office gave their response to the Freedom of Information Act request I made several weeks ago, asking for details of their secret (not any more) meeting with the Palipehutu-FNL leader, Agathon Rwasa.  It makes for an amusing read – the letter listing their reasons for withholding most of what I’ve requested is significantly longer than the document containing the meagre information that they are prepared to give… 

More background on this here – and there’s a burgeoning Facebook campaign on the issue here.

PS – and here’s what my Mum thinks.

Written by Richard Wilson

August 27, 2008 at 7:48 pm

“We are pushing this material to UK media channels, eg a BBC radio programme exposing tensions between AQ leadership and supporters. And a restricted working group will communicate niche messages through media and non-media.”

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It’s difficult not to wonder at times about the provenance of some anonymous comments left on internet discussion sites such as the BBC’s “Have Your Say” and the Guardian’s “Comment is Free”. ‘Astro-turfing’ seems almost impossible to prevent in such circumstances, and for anyone with a vested interest in promoting a particular point of view, the temptation must be difficult to resist.

Now the Guardian reports that a UK government counter-terrorism unit is targeting media organisations “as part of a new global propaganda push designed to ‘taint the al-Qaida brand'”. A strategy document recommends that the authorities “channel messages through volunteers in internet forums”.

“We are pushing this material to UK media channels, eg a BBC radio programme exposing tensions between AQ leadership and supporters”, says the leaked document. “And a restricted working group will communicate niche messages through media and non-media.”

While it isn’t hard to understand the rationale for tackling Al Qaeda in this way (and it’s surely preferable to torturing people), the most obvious fear is that those who begin disseminating misinformation for the ‘greater good’ may soon find themselves on a slippery slope. If ‘astroturfing’ to discredit a hostile terror group is acceptable, why not a hostile foreign government? And if spreading misinformation in defence of UK security interests is acceptable, why not our economic interests, which are, arguably, ultimately tied up with our security? Or in defence of an unpopular government policy which ministers feel is essential for the good of the country?