portland independent media center  
images audio video
newswire article reporting united states

9.11 investigation

ESTABLISHMENT LEFT--now handmaiden of Republican Right?

This cabal of lily-livered leftists, ensconced in their ivory towers, have decreed we are bad kiddies for even suggesting that the Bush administration was complicit in or took advantage of the September 11 attacks on the World Trade Center and the Pentagon, and the baddest of all is Michael C. Ruppert, who publishes From the Wilderness.
Has the Establishment Left become a handmaiden of the Republican Right?
 http://www.onlinejournal.com/Media/Conover060402/conover060402.html
By Bev Conover
Online Journal Editor and Publisher

June 4, 2002—Gangway for the self-appointed gatekeepers of the left who are on a crusade to spin, smear, attack, and label as loony anyone who won't accept the official line that the events leading up to and surrounding September 11 are nothing more than a series of coincidences and intelligence failures.

This cabal of lily-livered leftists, ensconced in their ivory towers, have decreed we are bad kiddies for even suggesting that the Bush administration was complicit in or took advantage of the September 11 attacks on the World Trade Center and the Pentagon, and the baddest of all is Michael C. Ruppert, who publishes From the Wilderness.

Matthew Rothschild, the editor of The Progressive, in his May 29 article, Crude Politics of Scandal, wrote, "The claim that Bush knew the U.S. would be attacked and intentionally let it happen for his own nefarious purposes is well beyond my significant skeptical powers. It assumes callousness at the loss of innocent American lives that I wouldn't want to impute to any President. And it greatly underestimates the likelihood of bureaucratic incompetence. (A hedge fund against such incompetence would be a sure profit-maker.)"

Someone should clue Rothschild that his "significant skeptical powers" have failed him, because we have a Supreme Court selectee in the White House, not a president. So it is not a president we are imputing such "callousness" or possible criminality to. Or has he joined the "get over it" crowd?

Among the others lobbing missiles at us from the battlements are Norman Solomon, executive director of the Institute for Public Accuracy; David Corn, The Nation's Washington editor; Michael Albert, co-founder of Z Magazine and system operator of the magazine's Znet.org; Steve Rendall, FAIR's senior analyst; Chip Berlet, senior research analyst for Political Research Associates; Larry Bensky of Pacifica Radio's flagship station, KPFA; and Noam Chomsky, writer, philosopher, and professor of linguistics at MIT.

Quite a lineup, eh? And there are others.

Ask yourselves why, if we are so loony—and Mike Ruppert is the looniest of all—why these gentlemen are expending so much energy in writing reams of copy denouncing us, with what has become the new epithet, "conspiracy theorists?" Why not simply ignore us? Pretend we don't exist?

What worse punishment can they mete out for our ignominious behavior than ignoring us? Or is there more to their motives?

Might this be a tip-off that the Ivory Tower crowd prefers not to soil its hands, but is using those of us in the trenches to do their work? This could explain Rothschild calling for an independent commission to get to the bottom of September 11, followed by, "But what we don't need is crazy conspiracy theorists coming from the left," then destroying his own argument with the following:

"Almost every time I've spoken in public since September 11, I've heard variations of the following theme: Bush not only knew about the attacks, but wanted the United States to be attacked so that he could (and here you can take your pick):

"a) Increase his popularity by waging war

"b) Justify an increase in Pentagon spending

"c) Boost the profits of the Carlyle Group, a private military investment group that includes Bush's father, among other heavyweights."

So the "crazy conspiracy theorists" are confronting him wherever he goes. That says something about people not buying in to the official spin. And some would even say that they would answer "all the above" to what George W. Bush & Co. knew or took advantage of.

Let us not forget the "dastardly" Rep. Cynthia McKinney, one of the few Democrats in Congress with some spine, who had the gall to call for an investigation into what warnings the Bush administration received before the attacks. Rothschild included her among the "arch conspiracists," leaving the others unnamed.

Corn, blowing a gasket for the second time over Ruppert's September 11 investigation—this time in a diatribe called The September 11 X-Files—stooped to the old Soviet trick, since picked up by the right wing, of questioning Ruppert's sanity.

The most malicious part of this smear is to stigmatize everyone who seeks psychiatric treatment, as Ruppert did while he was on the Los Angeles police force.

"Ruppert is not a reporter," Corn wrote, as if to imply journalism is some sort of elite club and one must possess special credentials to gain admittance. We don't license journalists in this country—yet. . Furthermore, Corn is also dismissing the fact that Ruppert does have credentials as an investigator. He was, after all, a cop.

He goes on, "He mostly assembles facts—or purported facts—from various news sources and then makes connections. The proof is not in any one piece—say, a White House memo detailing an arms-for-hostages trade. The proof is in the line drawn between the dots. His masterwork is a timeline of fifty-one events (at last count) that, he believes, demonstrate that the CIA knew of the attacks in advance and that the US government probably had a hand in them. Ruppert titled his timeline "Oh Lucy!—You Gotta Lotta 'Splaining To Do."

While ripping Ruppert's timeline, contending he has no hard proof, Corn, like the others, offers no hard proof that events surrounding September 11 were merely a series of intelligence blunders and coincidences with tragic results. He completely omits the fact that Ruppert's timeline is but one small part of a nine-month long and multi-faceted investigation, which includes pre- and post-September 11 geopolitics, and evidence of US government and corporate crime that no one else has touched.

Not content with trashing Ruppert and also bashing on McKinney, Corn dismisses Delmart "Mike" Vreeland, whom he calls Ruppert's "one truly original find," as a con man with a long criminal history. With no proof to counter Vreeland's claim of being a US Navy intelligence officer, Corn dismisses the memo Vreeland said he wrote last August, while being held in a Canadian jail on charges that were subsequently dropped, and gave to his jailers for safekeeping. This is the memo in which Vreeland claimed he had foreknowledge of the horror that was to transpire in the US.

Michael Albert and Stephen R. Shalom ramble on for 18 pages in an attempt to cast conspiracy theorists as nutcases, but "institutional theorists" as good guys, all in another attempt to debunk the very idea that there was anything conspiratorial in nature about September 11.

Norman Solomon, of all people, who for years has taken the corporate media to task in his weekly column Media Beat, has been at the forefront of the effort to discredit Ruppert, again without offering any hard evidence that refutes what Ruppert has been writing.

In his April 25 column, Solomon wrote, "A former Los Angeles cop named Michael Ruppert has been proclaiming that Vreeland 'was able to write a detailed warning of the attacks before they occurred' on Sept. 11. Ruppert has attracted a loyal following, but he's likely to lose all but the most faithful adherents if they look at the actual 'warning note' or find out a lot more about Vreeland's background."

He accuses Ruppert of being an "expert at combining facts with unreliable reports and wild leaps of illogic," when, like a good prosecutor, all Ruppert has been doing is laying out bits and pieces of information that seem to point to either the Bush administration's foreknowledge of September 11 or its callously taking advantage of the horror to strip the people of many of their constitutional rights under the guise of "homeland security"—a term that should be sending chills through every thinking person, not to mention an nonelected occupant of the White House who has taken it upon himself to declare war without end on some enemy defined only as "terrorists," when the Constitution says only Congress can issue a declaration of war.

Where Solomon has erroneously called those who have been helping and support Ruppert in his research "a loyal following," Steve Rendall has ratcheted that up to "Ruppertites," implying that they are nothing more than a bunch of mindless groupies. Shame!

Noam Chomsky, to some the father of the Establishment Left, who has been persona non grata on corporate-controlled US airwaves recently turned up on CNN with the "virtuous" Heritage Foundation fellow and Washington retread William Bennett, who on a previous CNN appearance with Paula Zahn dismissed Chomsky's bestseller "911" as appealing to "the kooks in our midst." That insult apparently didn't bother Chomsky one iota as he essentially agreed with Bennett that the September 11 attacks were carried out by "terrorists" because "they hate us."

Chip Berlet on Larry Bensky's Sunday Salon provided convoluted and erroneous responses as to why military planes weren't scrambled the moment it was known that a hijacking was in progress.

Said Berlet, "Why weren't there plans in place to scramble jets... why wasn't there an assumption that hijackers would seize planes and fly them into buildings?" And if you research every one of those questions, what you find is information that goes back, 5, 6, 7, 8, 10 years about discussions about the cost effectiveness of changing the way that hijackings are responded to. Remember that the air traffic controllers were out of New Hampshire, and they were sitting with a book in front of them, telling them what to do in what order, okay? And if you look... and this is all stuff that you can find, not on the web, but if you go to government repositories, you'll look at documents, and they'll say things like, 'You don't scramble planes until you've made contact with the hijackers.' Now why? Because the assumption, which turns out to be false, is the hijackers are either going to make a demand or want to land. And that if you hijack [sic] planes before you're talking to them, they could freak out and shoot the pilot. So you don't want planes flying next to hijacked airliners until you're talking to the hijackers. Now is that a bad idea, in retrospect? Sure it is, but it goes back 7 or 8 years."

Talk about pulling stuff from thin air. The FAA's and Joint Chiefs of Staff's instructions pertaining to hijackings say nothing about communicating with hijackers before taking action. To the contrary, it is the absence of communication with a plane that makes the situation an emergency. Has Berlet forgotten that in October 1999, when a twin-engine Lear jet carrying golf champion Payne Stewart and four others lost contact with ground controllers, shortly after taking off from Orlando International Airport in Florida for what was supposed to be a routine flight to Dallas, the FAA requested help from the military? Two Air Force F-16s were dispatched and followed the runaway plane as it raced across a half-dozen states, then ran out of fuel and crashed in central South Dakota, killing all aboard.

It gets better: "'Why weren't the planes flown out of New Jersey instead of the Cape?' Well, because the citizens of New Jersey who live around the air force base, which is being dismantled little by little, McGuire Air Force Base and several other air force bases which have been being deconditioned and lowered in status for the last 30 years because suburbs grew up around them, and they don't want jet fighters scrambling from those bases all the time."

All the time? How many planes have been hijacked or lost contact with ground controllers in the last 10 years? Is there something else we don't know about? And a New Jersey community's sensitivity to noise would hardly be a factor in such circumstances.

Yes, it is possible we could be wrong about the way the dots seem to connect. But September 11 did not occur in a vacuum and more and more keeps coming out each day. Moreover, the nonelected occupant of the Oval Office and his cronies by manipulating energy costs—oil, gas, electricity—started the economy on a downward spiral even before they were handed the White House. Now we not only have an economy in tatters, an empty treasury, the Social Security trust fund and the federal workers' pension fund tapped out to hide the fact Washington has defaulted on its loans, an illegal war that has been decreed to go on into perpetuity, but an administration that in a little more than 16 months has broken the record for scandals.

So how do we explain this behavior of the lily-livered left? If the Ivory Tower gentlemen are leaving it to us in the trenches to get to the truth, because they won't dirty their hands to help us collect the bits and pieces to connect the dots, why then are they so ferociously attacking our efforts? Are they currying favor with someone? Is it time for us to start following the money?

homepage: homepage: http://www.onlinejournal.com/Media/Conover060402/conover060402.html
address: address: Editor and Publisher of Online Journal

Definitely time 04.Jun.2002 23:16

j

to start following the money. much is rotten in the comfortable armchairs of the professional left.

Who Is OnlineJournal.com? 05.Jun.2002 07:38

hmmm...

Online Journal gave Bev Conover a platform for her vague allegations. But who's behind this website?

Why, it's Bev Conover herself.

OnlineJournal.com is an affiliate of the "Political Information Alliance" ( http://www.politicalinfoalliance.org/Affiliates/affiliates.html). Their mission statement states that "The Political Information Alliance is merely an informal umbrella organization for liberal and progressive Democrats." In the original, "liberal and progressive Democrats" is in boldface.

The domain for Online Journal is registered to the same person as the domain for the Political Information Alliance. So, it's safe to say that OnlineJournal is a Democratic publication.

So is the above article simply a way for a Democratic to place herself at the forefront of "the left" by discrediting more-radical figures? Yes, The Nation is merely liberal, not too different from, say, a liberal Democrat. But Noam Chomsky and the people at the Progressive and Z Magazine are not the types of people to settle for merely replacing Republicans with Democrats.

It sounds to me like some of the pro-conspiracy-theory complainers are jockeying to push out people who want more than meager reforms.

Follow the money? Yeah, and while you're at it, follow the money of OnlineJournal.com and the Political Information Alliance.



Registrant:

Online Journal
Bev Conover
XXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXX

Silver Springs
FL US 34488
 editor@onlinejournal.com

Phone: XXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXX


Domain Name: onlinejournal.com

Administrative Contact:
Bev Conover
XXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXX

Silver Springs
FL US
34488
 editor@onlinejournal.com

Phone: XXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXX


Technical Contact:
Bev Conover
XXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXX

Silver Springs
FL US
34488
 editor@onlinejournal.com

Phone: XXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXX
Fax:

Billing Contact:
Bev Conover
XXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXX

Silver Springs
FL US
34488
 editor@onlinejournal.com

Phone: XXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXX
Fax:

Record Created on........ 2000-08-11 15:29:27.000
Record last updated on... 2000-08-11 15:29:27.000
Expire on................ 2006-09-04 00:00:00.000

Domain servers in listed order:


ns0.aitcom.net 208.234.1.34
ns1.aitcom.net 216.117.186.139




Registrant:

Political Information Alliance
Bev Conover
XXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXX

Silver Springs
FL US 34488
 editor@onlinejournal.com

Phone: XXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXX


Domain Name: politicalinfoalliance.org

Administrative Contact:
Bev Conover
XXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXX

Silver Springs
FL US
34488
 editor@onlinejournal.com

Phone: XXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXX


Domain servers in listed order:


ns0.aitcom.net 208.234.1.34

Thank you, 'hmmmm....' 05.Jun.2002 09:42

indy reader

great digging, "hmmmm..." !!

That's some good info you turned up, and a compelling analysis. It's amazing what people in politics will do, and how convoluted they'll become. They can make a backstab look like an embrace, and vice versa, as suits their own ego-driven, ladder-climbing ways. Looks like you might have spotted something fishy here. Thanks for digging and posting !!

Mud-slinging 06.Jun.2002 12:55

Jack Straw

I know Bev Conover, cyber-wise. I don't agree with her re the Democrats (she's way too easy on them, though it's false to say she is simply a Democrat, she's very critical of the dominant wing of the party). But to pass off her critique of Solomon, Chomsky, et al as simply an attempt to push out stronger critics in favor of reformists is mud-slinging. Besides, it ignores the many people who are attacking the "lily-livered left" *from the left*, people such as myself. See < http://www.questionsquestions.net>, section on the Magic Bullet, for a selection of writings.

Editors can write editorials, right? 06.Jun.2002 21:32

Ed Rippy

"Hmmmm. . . " seems to think it's fishy that Online Journal gave Bev Conover a platform -- and Bev Conover is (surprise!) the editor & publisher of Online Journal. "Hmmmm. . . " then does some "digging" (which someone else applauded) and found that the Journal's domain is registerd to . . . Bev Conover!! Wow!! Whatta scoop! But wait -- right under Bev's byline, both on the Journal site and on the Indymedia repost, it says "Editor and Publisher." The last time I looked, it was quite routine for editors and even publishers to write pieces things for the periodicals they edit or publish. I don't see what "Hmmm..."'s point is.

What is your point? 06.Jun.2002 22:40

Bev Conover, Editor/Publisher, Online Journal editor@onlinejournal.com

I also own several other domains that have nothing to do with politics. Is there something criminal in that? And if you bothered to check, you would know that the Political Information Alliance is nothing more than a directory and Web Ring for liberal and progressive Democrat web sites. So much for surreptious doings, eh?

And when "hmmm..." and "indy reader" put in as many hours as I do with no pay, we'll discuss ego trips and ladder-climbing -- and, "hmmm...," cheap Freeper shots of posting my personal info while you hide your identity.

Too easy on Democrats, Jack Straw? You are mistaken, my friend. I have as much disdain for spineless Democrats as I have for right wing Republicans and smug Greens who stand on principle while the country is taken over by fascists.


Way to go, Bev! 07.Jun.2002 01:05

emily

Thank you for having the courage and integrity to take on the Left Establishment. This article is right on, correctly taking to task the so-called Leftists who are apparently now working for the Bush gang (consciously or unconsciously).

bev's address and phone number removed 07.Jun.2002 12:56

pdx editorial

bev requested that her street address and phone number be removed and the editorial group agreed to remove them

normally this sort of public information would not be removed.

However, due to serious threats she received by phone and at her residence from a previous posting of her information in a public forum, and to the fact that removing this information does not directly impact the informative nature of the post where they are listed, it was decided to do so in this case.

pdx editorial