The Death of Reason Posted by: Dale Franks
on Sunday, April 13, 2008
I really wonder, sometimes, why crackpottery seems so prevalent these days. Case in point, Richard Falk, Milbank professor of international law emeritus at Princeton University.
He's been chosen by the UN to report on human rights issues in the Israeli/Palestinian conflict. Since he has a long-standing record of anti-Israel bias, this, of course, makes him the perfect UN representative in this matter.
On March 26, Richard Falk, Milbank professor of international law emeritus at Princeton University, was named by unanimous vote to a newly created position to report on human rights in the conflict between Israel and the Palestinian Arabs. While Mr. Falk’s specialty is human rights and international law, since the attacks in 2001, he has devoted some of his time to challenging what he calls the “9-11 official version.”
On March 24 in an interview with a radio host and former University of Wisconsin instructor, Kevin Barrett, Mr. Falk said, “It is possibly true that especially the neoconservatives thought there was a situation in the country and in the world where something had to happen to wake up the American people. Whether they are innocent about the contention that they made that something happen or not, I don’t think we can answer definitively at this point. All we can say is there is a lot of grounds for suspicion, there should be an official investigation of the sort the 9/11 commission did not engage in and that the failure to do these things is cheating the American people and in some sense the people of the world of a greater confidence in what really happened than they presently possess.”
Mr. Barrett, who is the co-founder of the Muslim-Jewish-Christian Alliance for 9/11 Truth, said in an interview yesterday of Mr. Falk, “I would put him on a list of scholars who are sympathetic to the 9/11 truth movement.”
He added, “Unlike most public intellectuals today, he is both honest and very, very knowledgeable in that he understands the probable reality of 9/11. He understands that the evidence that it was a false flag operation is very strong.”
Ah, the 9/11 Truthers. The antithesis to 500 years of rational and skeptical inquiry. Or, perhaps, rational and skeptical inquiry gone haywire.
On the other hand, in Professor Falk's case, it does seem to be less surprising than it is in some.
In a February 16, 1979, op-ed for the New York Times, Mr. Falk praised Ayatollah Khomeini and bemoaned his ill treatment in the American press. He wrote, “The depiction of him as fanatical, reactionary and the bearer of crude prejudices seems certainly and happily false.”
That, my friends, is a singularly keen analysis. No doubt he brings these same intellectual skills to both the Israeli/Palestinian Conflict and the "9/11 Truth" controversies as well.
But, let's not forget that it isn't just lefties that can go off the deep end. back in the 1990s, when I had my radio show in Los Angeles, I used to interview Morgan Reynolds, who was associated with the national Center for Policy Analysis, was an econ professor at Texas A&M, and who had been the Chief Economist for the labor department in the administration of George H.W. Bush.
Sadly, he's now a member of Scholars for 9/11 Truth, which is crackpot central.
I wonder if it isn’t just that the crackpottery is more front and center because the issue of the conspiracy, 9/11, has had more of an impact on our lives than, say, the moon landing. It seems to me it’s made people feel more comfortable sharing their crazy ideas with others.
For instance, yesterday I was at the local public library, and the guy checking out next to me is animatedly engaging the lady in conversation about this excellent movie he’d just seen, which "THEY don’t want you to see". His evidence is that it took two whole weeks after its opening to get to our smaller town. The film? Sweeney Todd. Then, he advised her to read a book he’d just read about the first dog in space, which contained the TRUE story, the one that "THEY don’t want you to hear about", because that story will "change your whole life. I mean, it just tore me up inside, changed my whole life." About the first dog in space. It was obvious this guy didn’t have any hesitation that he, and only he, knew the unvarnished truth. I guess I should have interjected and asked him if he was a professor.