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Old 26th August 2009, 02:26 AM   #161
releaseeabode
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Originally Posted by Caustic Logic View Post
I recommend you take a breath, slow down, and observe patterns some more until you can be more or less sure of what's going on here. You can't even understand a basic joke (due to perhaps some filter?) and are here saying the forum is like a cult.

There is soooome sort of truth to something like that, a prevailing ethos, and sometimes it gets thicker than I'd like, but hey, that's a forum. Getting in a tizzy isn't going to help you any. Productively sticking on topic will.
Don't worry, I'm chilled. I may not understand the "in jokes" but, I can assure you I have observed here for a very long time. My observations are based upon years rather than days.

Interestingly, the "in jokes" are indicative of exclusivity rather than inclusivity. Another sign of cultism.

Actually you make a good point, we ALL should stay on topic.

I'll shut up now and enjoy reading the posts from the former "Truthers".

Last edited by releaseeabode; 26th August 2009 at 02:29 AM.
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Old 26th August 2009, 06:45 AM   #162
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Originally Posted by ref View Post
I am looking for written experiences from people who used to be on the truther side, but are not anymore. I know there are many on this board. What I'd especially like to know are follows:

a) How did you once become a truther? I am not looking for answers, like "watching Loose Change". If possible, I'd like you to write in a bit more detailed manner, like "I watched Loose Change, and started surfing the internet. All I could find were more truther sites, which further reinforced my truther status... etc" or something like that.

b) What convinced you back from truther to non-truther? Once again, I hope you do not respond something like "truthers are dumb", but a bit more specific.

c) What are your thoughts nowadays about your time as a truther? What mistakes you made back then? Were you 100% convinced, agressively promoting the truth? Whatever comes to your mind.


I can give examples from my own experiences.

a) Conspiracy theories were very remote to me before 9/11 truth. Of course, I had heard that there were some JFK conspiracy theories, but had never gone through any of the claims in detail. Then all of a sudden, I was exposed to some truther propaganda. I went surfing the internet and found only more and more stuff reinforcing the conspiracy point of view. I guess it was the lack of any previous exposure to any conspiracy theories, combined with the massive amounts of conspiracy material so easily found in the internet, that made me a truther for a short while. I had no experience dealing with this kind of false claims. I thought at least most of the stuff had to be for real.

b) I started debating my (conspiracy) point of view, but every time I came out disappointed. I always thought I had a weaker case. But still, I could support my case pretty cleverly, if I only distorted some evidence a little bit, ignored some other evidence, etc. Until I reached the point, when I was so frustrated with it all, I knew I had no case. I knew very well the points each side was making. It was a non-contest. I became a debunker overnight. But it took me a couple of months of trutherism and defending my weak points, before I fully realized I was wrong.

c) I am somewhat embarrassed, that I was lured into the conspiracy world so easily. I had always thought I was critical of evidence. I had always thought I cannot be fooled. And there I was, claiming WTC demolition. But that time also taught me a lot. One has to be very careful with stuff that sounds exiting, but you have no previous experience with. Because once you take the first wrong step, it is very easy to convince yourself with further evidence supporting the wrong conclusion, while twisting in your mind the evidence that doesn't.


Share your thoughts, all people that once believed even some of the truther stuff. I might do some writing about this subject, if I get enough material.
As a former Truther I assume that you thought WTC7 looked like a controlled demolition. Do you still think it looked like a controlled demolition ?
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Last edited by bill smith; 26th August 2009 at 07:15 AM.
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Old 26th August 2009, 08:28 PM   #163
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Originally Posted by releaseeabode View Post
... Another sign of cultism.
... I'll shut up now and enjoy reading the posts from the former "Truthers".
The best part is one day you will become a cult member of physics, math, and logical thinking. You will be posting here as an ex-truther. I thought I saw it in your posts, a ray of intelligence indicative of someone who will be able to break the shackles of delusions from other people and start thinking for yourself. It is a matter of time and all based on your finding your freedom to think on your own.

The cult of skepticism, critical thinking, throw in some physics, and a bit of logic; the only requirement to be in this cult is the ability to think for yourself. When will you take the responsibility to drop your delusions and join the reality cult?

You seem to have some potential, whereas BillSmith is doing her best to avoid reality or display a future potential to do so.

Last edited by beachnut; 26th August 2009 at 08:31 PM.
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Old 26th August 2009, 10:46 PM   #164
Caustic Logic
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Originally Posted by DC View Post
frightening.

alot people claimed I belive it simply because it is less scary than a bunch of Terrorists. Thats not the case, i find Terrorists alot less frightening than a Government turning against its own people.
Just wanted to second that sentiment. It got annoying hearing "normal people" explain how we were all comforted by the thought that our muderous government could kill us anytime they wanted to justify more wars, etc. I should think believing is external terrorists who will try to strike again, but the government's working on protecting us, is much more comforting. Not that I would ascribe "normal people" beliefs to such a simple emotional calculus.

On there other hand there is a certain satisfaction in feeling that you're at least aware of the evils closer to home. You imagine the others are more enslaved and vulnerable since they're still ignorant of the situation. Does the "normal people" side have any corollary smugness any one here has encountered?

As the others say, welcome back to more solid ground DC. Sorry it took so long.

Last edited by Caustic Logic; 26th August 2009 at 10:49 PM.
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Old 27th August 2009, 12:15 AM   #165
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Originally Posted by releaseeabode View Post
I can assure you I tossed fruit at no one.

That was grenerd's first post on here, and his/her last from the looks of it!!!!

Given the subject that grenerd was posting on and the depth of personal analysis he/she was going into it hardly seems appropriate to start demanding evidence and throwing fruit at the poster. I would like to understand from Brainache exactly what the motivation was so, stop apologising for him and let's hear it.
I was using the Forum in-joke of a one word post "Evidence?" which was the trade mark of a poster here named Claus Larsen. (I'm not sure if he is still around so I'll use past tense) Claus prided himself on being the most skeptical skeptic in all of Skepticville. I was being facetious and demanding evidence which I knew could not be provided. As others have pointed out, it was a joke. The smilie should have given you the clue. I made a silly statement and then ducked to avoid the fruit I expected would be thrown my way.

The fact that you need this explained to you mystifies me.

Oh well, I hope this ends the derail.

Now back to more heart warming tales of people recovering from Conspiranoia...

ETA: Good to see DC back from the Dim side.

Last edited by Brainache; 27th August 2009 at 12:20 AM. Reason: Slow typer.
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Old 12th September 2009, 07:21 AM   #166
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Bumped both for the anniversary and relevance!

This has been a most interesting and educating thread about CT-thinking. As more and more people is leaving and has left the truth-movement, all you ex-truthers please share your honest accounts. But please do read OP first, all of you.
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Old 12th September 2009, 11:15 AM   #167
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I completely dismissed all of the 9/11 conspiracies till 2008. I had a friend who strongly believed in them, who I argued with for several months. I ended up reading Fetzer's book "The 911 conspiracy" and David Ray Griffin's "Debunking 911 debunking" which ended up convincing me of their claims. In the last couple months I've been browsing through posts here, and looking at other debunking websites and little by little I began to let go of certain claims. First I let go of the pentagon claims, then shanksville and just recently the collapse of the towers and building 7. I think I just had an extremely late start in this debate, so that's why it seemed to take me so long to find out the truth. I'm glad I did research the counter argument thoroughly,because I now understand the sociology behind it all. Not just 9/11 but JFK and any other conpiracy theory or pseudoscience. I apologize for the few posts I had on here as a conspiracy believer.
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Old 13th September 2009, 02:52 AM   #168
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Originally Posted by riptowtan View Post
I completely dismissed all of the 9/11 conspiracies till 2008. I had a friend who strongly believed in them, who I argued with for several months. I ended up reading Fetzer's book "The 911 conspiracy" and David Ray Griffin's "Debunking 911 debunking" which ended up convincing me of their claims. In the last couple months I've been browsing through posts here, and looking at other debunking websites and little by little I began to let go of certain claims. First I let go of the pentagon claims, then shanksville and just recently the collapse of the towers and building 7. I think I just had an extremely late start in this debate, so that's why it seemed to take me so long to find out the truth. I'm glad I did research the counter argument thoroughly,because I now understand the sociology behind it all. Not just 9/11 but JFK and any other conpiracy theory or pseudoscience. I apologize for the few posts I had on here as a conspiracy believer.
Good for you for rationally sifting through the evidence (or lack of evidence on the truther side). And kudos for admitting your mistakes and making an apology. Well done all round.
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Old 13th September 2009, 02:54 AM   #169
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Originally Posted by spin0 View Post
Bumped both for the anniversary and relevance!

This has been a most interesting and educating thread about CT-thinking. As more and more people is leaving and has left the truth-movement, all you ex-truthers please share your honest accounts. But please do read OP first, all of you.
Welcome to the forum! What led you to first post in this thread and subforum in particular?

Kind regards,
Orph.
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Old 13th September 2009, 03:53 AM   #170
spin0
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Thank you for the welcome! I'm a long time lurker in JREF forum (years), and as my first post I decided to bump this most educating thread for the anniversary and for great justice

Since I have never been a truther or a CT-believer, I don't have personal experiences to add in to this thread. The accounts posted here are very interesting to read and I hope this thread continues to grow with more win.


ETA: Very big thank you to all of you ex-truthers for your accounts. It takes a lot of courage to admid having been wrong. Hats off to you!

Last edited by spin0; 13th September 2009 at 05:18 AM.
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Old 27th February 2011, 04:05 PM   #171
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I also think this is the treath to make my introduction. Some of know me from other forums.

a) How did you once become a truther?
I saw Loose Change back in 2006, I was convinced by it for about a day. But when I really become a truther was spring of 2009 when I heard a radio-interview of Hannu Yli-Karjanmaa, the number one conspirasy theoretic here in Finland. I went and bought his book, that was when I was convinsed.

b) What convinced you back from truther to non-truther?

Well, it was what it was for you. I started debating my case, everytime these guys ref and spin0 defeated me. So after while there was nothing left but say "I was wrong".

c) What are your thoughts nowadays about your time as a truther?
I actually do think it was valuable experience for me. I had education and I though I had critical thinking in me, I had none. Through that experience of trutherism I have learned what critical thinking is!

Nowadays I have spend my time trying teach others have some critical thinking. ref once said to me it makes it all worth while if I have been able to get through just one person.
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Old 28th February 2011, 01:58 AM   #172
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Welcome Epic, and thanks for your comments nice to see your development. Glad you found your way out of that funk.
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Old 28th February 2011, 02:19 AM   #173
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This is a really inspiring story. Thank you for sharing it.
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I've seen it here and in several other places that there is no Illuminati. That doesn't even make sense. There's a Wikipedia entry that talks about it. I'm not saying that everything on Wikipedia is true, but if you read it, it's just really clear how the Illuminati controls the world.
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Old 28th February 2011, 10:24 AM   #174
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Originally Posted by ref View Post
Welcome Epic, and thanks for your comments nice to see your development. Glad you found your way out of that funk.
Thanks, haven`t seen you around for awhile guess you got tired of this. Can`t really blame you, I also have already become pretty frustrated with the truthers. In fack I have been thinking about making a site or a blog in finnish since there really isn`t one. I have a theory that truthers can be divided to three groups:

The silent truthers that are the biggest group, they have been exposed to truther propaganda but don`t spread the word anything. The number of these people can be up to hundreds of thousand here in Finland alone. These are the people that should be reached.

The deniers are ones that are making the fuss. These are the people that we are reaching in forums. But since they are deniers, debating them has absolutely no effect. The number of these people is small, here in Finland the number is about 50.

Finally the mentally ill. They are not as loud as the deniers since they also have other things to attend to, like chasing UFOs and wondering what are trails from aeroplanes. Hard to say what number of them is, but it don`t matter because they are beyond our help.

So I was thinking to put together a site that would be targetted to silent ones. Somewhat similar to your site, take all the most common claims and write just few sentences about them plus give links where to find more information. When silent ones go to google they are much more likely to read something that is short and is in their native language. I bet it would have much more impact than debating the deniers.
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Old 28th February 2011, 10:52 AM   #175
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Originally Posted by Epic View Post
Thanks, haven`t seen you around for awhile guess you got tired of this. Can`t really blame you, I also have already become pretty frustrated with the truthers. In fack I have been thinking about making a site or a blog in finnish since there really isn`t one. I have a theory that truthers can be divided to three groups:

The silent truthers that are the biggest group, they have been exposed to truther propaganda but don`t spread the word anything. The number of these people can be up to hundreds of thousand here in Finland alone. These are the people that should be reached.

The deniers are ones that are making the fuss. These are the people that we are reaching in forums. But since they are deniers, debating them has absolutely no effect. The number of these people is small, here in Finland the number is about 50.

Finally the mentally ill. They are not as loud as the deniers since they also have other things to attend to, like chasing UFOs and wondering what are trails from aeroplanes. Hard to say what number of them is, but it don`t matter because they are beyond our help.

So I was thinking to put together a site that would be targetted to silent ones. Somewhat similar to your site, take all the most common claims and write just few sentences about them plus give links where to find more information. When silent ones go to google they are much more likely to read something that is short and is in their native language. I bet it would have much more impact than debating the deniers.
Welcome:

What makes you believe there is a large group of "silent truthers"? I'm a bit confused about this concept. Are you saying you have evidence a large group in Finland believe the "truther" talking points or just "distrust" American politics? If it's the latter, no ****.
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Old 28th February 2011, 11:22 AM   #176
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Originally Posted by DGM View Post
Welcome:

What makes you believe there is a large group of "silent truthers"? I'm a bit confused about this concept. Are you saying you have evidence a large group in Finland believe the "truther" talking points or just "distrust" American politics? If it's the latter, no ****.
Thanks for the welcome.

The number in Finland is no bigger than in any other country. They really are not truthers, but they have been exposed to propaganda and not to debunking material and do think that something is not right with 9/11, they don`t really even known much about it. Number is estimate that I made up to give some ballpark, have no evidence to back it up. I have became to this conclusion mostly from polls around the world and every now then I hear someone saying something that can be interpret as trutherism.

ETA. There is 5,4 milj. people in Finland if let`s say 2% have some 9/11 conspiracy believes that would make 108000 people. So if 4,2% of Americans believe the Government "Made it happen" in Zogby poll. I think 2% in Finland is not far from the truth.

ETA2. In Sweden 7% didn`t believe al-Qaida was responsible for the attack. And that 7% is what would qualify as silent truthers.

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Old 1st March 2011, 03:24 AM   #177
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Originally Posted by Epic View Post
Thanks, haven`t seen you around for awhile guess you got tired of this. Can`t really blame you, I also have already become pretty frustrated with the truthers. In fack I have been thinking about making a site or a blog in finnish since there really isn`t one.
There are many reasons, but yes I haven't been paying much attention to this topic for a while now.

Let me give you a little of my thoughts. I also thought about translating at least parts of my site to Finnish. I already started doing that a couple of years ago, but I gave it up pretty quickly and never thought of doing it again. There are a couple of important reasons I decided not to do it.

- It was a lot of work doing it in English, it's a lot of work all over again doing it in another language.
- Most of the people in Finland understand English very well.
- Most of Finnish truthers have become truthers by reading American truther sites or watching American truther documentaries or Youtube, which means they already know english, so there is no additional value for translating stuff into Finnish.
- Most truther points are originally made in english, so translating them into Finnish might lose some information in the process. The target audience might not think about the same thing as the person doing the translation. Something might become lost in translation.
- To most truthers it doesn't matter what the language, they don't care about any counterpoints to their beliefs, so it's mostly a lot of work for nothing.

So my advice would be, that it's not worth the effort to put much thought into putting up anything in Finnish. You can do it, but I think directing people into english sites would do the same trick to those who care.

Another advice is not debating the stubborn truthers anymore, once you already see they don't care. They make the same points no matter what, and nothing happens. It gets nobody nowhere. If someone new comes around, there might be reason to give them a chance, but to those who have made the same points for years, let them be who they are. They are not going to change. You can pretty quickly see who are maybe likely to change and give your words a thought, and who are not. You did it and I'm happy for that.
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Old 2nd September 2011, 12:47 PM   #178
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I know this is a pretty dead topic but I wanted to ask a related question about CT beliefs. Why is it that they seem to "snowball?" Believing in one CT seems to make you more vulnerable to believing in another, and another and another. Logically there should be a (very) finite number of possible "enormously complex conspiracies" in the world and yet the majority of CT with whom I have had interaction believe in dozens of them. Many of a contradictory and self-excluding nature (e.g. the government is actually run by both crypto-communists and by crypto-Muslims).
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Old 2nd September 2011, 01:10 PM   #179
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They all pretty much boil down to "teh illuminatiz"

Essentially each successive paranoid and silly theory goes a long way to proving the previous.

For instance, since the jooz were responsible for 9/11, it's pretty clear that they are also the masterminds behind the fake holocaust....

Or something like that.
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Old 2nd September 2011, 02:13 PM   #180
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Originally Posted by Robrob View Post
I know this is a pretty dead topic but I wanted to ask a related question about CT beliefs. Why is it that they seem to "snowball?" Believing in one CT seems to make you more vulnerable to believing in another, and another and another. Logically there should be a (very) finite number of possible "enormously complex conspiracies" in the world and yet the majority of CT with whom I have had interaction believe in dozens of them. Many of a contradictory and self-excluding nature (e.g. the government is actually run by both crypto-communists and by crypto-Muslims).
A CT thrives on distrust for the government/ruling elite. Once a CT is proved the evilness of the government/ruling elite is reinforced, the distrust deepens, making it easier for the next CT to be accepted. And off it goes.
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Old 2nd September 2011, 04:12 PM   #181
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Is anyone here or knows who:

1) Began this 9/11 journey as an educated non-truther and switched to a truther.

2) Is a 9/11 non-truther but believes in other conspiracy theories, e.g. JFK, Moon landing, Pearl Harbor foreknowledge, et al.
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A Truther is a True Believer convinced by lies. You can't reason someone out of a thing they weren't reasoned into.
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Old 2nd September 2011, 04:45 PM   #182
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How I became a truther: I am an engineer, design tall buildings for a living, worked at ground zero and I came across this forum in 2009. I started off having technical arguments with truthers and was pretty much ignored. I think that the truthers who understood my arguments were not really interested in discussing them.

Anyway when I lost my password one day I decided to open a new account as Telltale Tom the "honest truther". And since Jan 2010 I have tried to argue the case from an honest truther perspective: I have assumed that Richard Gage believes what he says ( which I don't, I think he lies) and I have tried to imagine what he had to think to enable him to reconcile his arguments with what happened. So I have taken delight in pointing out the obvious crazy technical inconsistencies in his arguments.

Why I changed my mind: Ten years after 9-11. There is no truther argument on this forum and nothing new is happening. It is time to walk away ... and this is my very last post. I don't think there is a truth movement any more: a small scam going on but nothing more.

And seeing all the 9/11 videos makes me wonder why I ever believed there was a truth movement. Engineers are not that gullible which is why I have tried to remind you on many occasions that there is only one or two registered structural engineers (PE's) from the thousands in the State of New York who have signed the ae911truth petition. Unfortunately one or two have signed it and they like to be different or are just challenged; not sure which.

Reflections from today: It's time to go. I had fun and I hoped I helped a few people see the "truth" Good luck all and good bye!
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Old 2nd September 2011, 07:28 PM   #183
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Telltale,

Sorry to see you go. Reading your posts always made me laugh, and absolutely enjoyed the honesty that you put forth.

But, I understand your position. There really is just nonsense.

Cheers and good luck to you sir!

~Tri
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Old 2nd September 2011, 07:57 PM   #184
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Originally Posted by Telltale Tom View Post
How I became a truther: I am an engineer, design tall buildings for a living, worked at ground zero and I came across this forum in 2009. I started off having technical arguments with truthers and was pretty much ignored. I think that the truthers who understood my arguments were not really interested in discussing them.

Anyway when I lost my password one day I decided to open a new account as Telltale Tom the "honest truther". And since Jan 2010 I have tried to argue the case from an honest truther perspective: I have assumed that Richard Gage believes what he says ( which I don't, I think he lies) and I have tried to imagine what he had to think to enable him to reconcile his arguments with what happened. So I have taken delight in pointing out the obvious crazy technical inconsistencies in his arguments.

Why I changed my mind: Ten years after 9-11. There is no truther argument on this forum and nothing new is happening. It is time to walk away ... and this is my very last post. I don't think there is a truth movement any more: a small scam going on but nothing more.

And seeing all the 9/11 videos makes me wonder why I ever believed there was a truth movement. Engineers are not that gullible which is why I have tried to remind you on many occasions that there is only one or two registered structural engineers (PE's) from the thousands in the State of New York who have signed the ae911truth petition. Unfortunately one or two have signed it and they like to be different or are just challenged; not sure which.

Reflections from today: It's time to go. I had fun and I hoped I helped a few people see the "truth" Good luck all and good bye!
Good luck Tom! I've always enjoyed your posts and your act.
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Old 2nd September 2011, 08:44 PM   #185
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Originally Posted by Telltale Tom View Post
How I became a truther: I am an engineer, design tall buildings for a living, worked at ground zero and I came across this forum in 2009. I started off having technical arguments with truthers and was pretty much ignored. I think that the truthers who understood my arguments were not really interested in discussing them.

Anyway when I lost my password one day I decided to open a new account as Telltale Tom the "honest truther". And since Jan 2010 I have tried to argue the case from an honest truther perspective: I have assumed that Richard Gage believes what he says ( which I don't, I think he lies) and I have tried to imagine what he had to think to enable him to reconcile his arguments with what happened. So I have taken delight in pointing out the obvious crazy technical inconsistencies in his arguments.

Why I changed my mind: Ten years after 9-11. There is no truther argument on this forum and nothing new is happening. It is time to walk away ... and this is my very last post. I don't think there is a truth movement any more: a small scam going on but nothing more.

And seeing all the 9/11 videos makes me wonder why I ever believed there was a truth movement. Engineers are not that gullible which is why I have tried to remind you on many occasions that there is only one or two registered structural engineers (PE's) from the thousands in the State of New York who have signed the ae911truth petition. Unfortunately one or two have signed it and they like to be different or are just challenged; not sure which.

Reflections from today: It's time to go. I had fun and I hoped I helped a few people see the "truth" Good luck all and good bye!
Take care Tom...your posts often made me laugh and pointed out obvious issues within the "Truth Movement"...

Sorry to see you go.

Of course it is likely that each one of us will eventually follow in turn....there really is no debate anymore and the several debunking websites, thousand of posts on this forum, and various articles by experts are more then enough to answer every single truther talking point.

The up and coming debate this September will likely be one of the last ones of it's kind......after 10 years I think even some of the debunkers will begin losing interest in repeating the same stuff over and over.

Take care and thanks for your perspective.
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Old 2nd September 2011, 10:23 PM   #186
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Originally Posted by Telltale Tom View Post
... It's time to go. I had fun and I hoped I helped a few people see the "truth" Good luck all and good bye!
I hate to see you go when there is so much more to this place than the CT forums.
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Old 3rd September 2011, 03:56 AM   #187
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Originally Posted by Telltale Tom View Post
Reflections from today: It's time to go. I had fun and I hoped I helped a few people see the "truth" Good luck all and good bye!
Awww! Some people disapproved of what you were doing, but amidst the joking I thought you also often made some really good points. It'll be a shame to lose that, but I also understand your reasoning, it's not like there's anything new to say. Good luck and goodbye to you, too.
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Old 3rd September 2011, 04:23 AM   #188
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Originally Posted by Pantaz View Post
I hate to see you go when there is so much more to this place than the CT forums.
Damn, I should have thought of saying that! Heed Pantaz's words, dear Tom! This place has a place for every topic of conversation, and I'd love to hear your thoughts on other things.
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Old 3rd September 2011, 11:16 PM   #189
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Originally Posted by Telltale Tom View Post
And seeing all the 9/11 videos makes me wonder why I ever believed there was a truth movement. Engineers are not that gullible which is why I have tried to remind you on many occasions that there is only one or two registered structural engineers (PE's) from the thousands in the State of New York who have signed the ae911truth petition. Unfortunately one or two have signed it and they like to be different or are just challenged; not sure which.
Psychological origins

According to some psychologists, a person who believes in one conspiracy theory tends to believe in others; a person who does not believe in one conspiracy theory tends not to believe another.

Psychologists believe that the search for meaning is common in conspiracism and the development of conspiracy theories, and may be powerful enough alone to lead to the first formulating of the idea. Once cognized, confirmation bias and avoidance of cognitive dissonance may reinforce the belief. In a context where a conspiracy theory has become popular within a social group, communal reinforcement may equally play a part. Some research carried out at the University of Kent, UK suggests people may be influenced by conspiracy theories without being aware that their attitudes have changed. After reading popular conspiracy theories about the death of Diana, Princess of Wales, participants in this study correctly estimated how much their peers' attitudes had changed, but significantly underestimated how much their own attitudes had changed to become more in favor of the conspiracy theories. The authors conclude that conspiracy theories may therefore have a 'hidden power' to influence people's beliefs.

Humanistic psychologists argue that even if the cabal behind the conspiracy is almost always perceived as hostile there is, often, still an element of reassurance in it, for conspiracy theorists, in part because it is more consoling to think that complications and upheavals in human affairs, at least, are created by human beings rather than factors beyond human control. Belief in such a cabal is a device for reassuring oneself that certain occurrences are not random, but ordered by a human intelligence. This renders such occurrences comprehensible and potentially controllable. If a cabal can be implicated in a sequence of events, there is always the hope, however tenuous, of being able to break the cabal's power – or joining it and exercising some of that power oneself. Finally, belief in the power of such a cabal is an implicit assertion of human dignity – an often unconscious but necessary affirmation that man is not totally helpless, but is responsible, at least in some measure, for his own destiny.

Last edited by Robrob; 3rd September 2011 at 11:18 PM.
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Old 3rd September 2011, 11:25 PM   #190
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Originally Posted by Robrob View Post
Psychological origins

According to some psychologists, a person who believes in one conspiracy theory tends to believe in others; a person who does not believe in one conspiracy theory tends not to believe another.

Psychologists believe that the search for meaning is common in conspiracism and the development of conspiracy theories, and may be powerful enough alone to lead to the first formulating of the idea. Once cognized, confirmation bias and avoidance of cognitive dissonance may reinforce the belief. In a context where a conspiracy theory has become popular within a social group, communal reinforcement may equally play a part. Some research carried out at the University of Kent, UK suggests people may be influenced by conspiracy theories without being aware that their attitudes have changed. After reading popular conspiracy theories about the death of Diana, Princess of Wales, participants in this study correctly estimated how much their peers' attitudes had changed, but significantly underestimated how much their own attitudes had changed to become more in favor of the conspiracy theories. The authors conclude that conspiracy theories may therefore have a 'hidden power' to influence people's beliefs.

Humanistic psychologists argue that even if the cabal behind the conspiracy is almost always perceived as hostile there is, often, still an element of reassurance in it, for conspiracy theorists, in part because it is more consoling to think that complications and upheavals in human affairs, at least, are created by human beings rather than factors beyond human control. Belief in such a cabal is a device for reassuring oneself that certain occurrences are not random, but ordered by a human intelligence. This renders such occurrences comprehensible and potentially controllable. If a cabal can be implicated in a sequence of events, there is always the hope, however tenuous, of being able to break the cabal's power or joining it and exercising some of that power oneself. Finally, belief in the power of such a cabal is an implicit assertion of human dignity an often unconscious but necessary affirmation that man is not totally helpless, but is responsible, at least in some measure, for his own destiny.

Other evolutionary psychologists, my handlers among them, believed that human and human society has evolved to favor conspiracy-type behaviours. In other words it is an intrinsic human trait, as normal as religion or music.

Obviously there will be an selective advantage gained by any group that shows strong in-group identity and mutualism, and stronger exclusion and ostracism of out-groups. But an even more powerful selective advantage is persuade the out-group that you have a co-identity with them (and there-by benefit from their in-group mutualism behaviour) yet still maintain a secret and stronger identification with your actual in-group. In a sense using a biological strategy of camouflage.

This is really the essence of conspiracy.
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Old 4th September 2011, 01:37 AM   #191
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Originally Posted by Robrob View Post
I know this is a pretty dead topic but I wanted to ask a related question about CT beliefs. Why is it that they seem to "snowball?" Believing in one CT seems to make you more vulnerable to believing in another, and another and another. Logically there should be a (very) finite number of possible "enormously complex conspiracies" in the world and yet the majority of CT with whom I have had interaction believe in dozens of them. Many of a contradictory and self-excluding nature (e.g. the government is actually run by both crypto-communists and by crypto-Muslims).
I think it stems from a lack of critical thinking ability.

They don't have the logical tools to filter the fallacies from the facts.

They read an article and accept it on face value, and if it's a conspiracy theory, it likely contains other fallacies that they adopt and add to their beliefs, even if it contradicts other beliefs. e.g. "They heard explosions" > "it was thermite", and then not accepting that thermite does not go "boom".

Of course, a "stick it to the man, man" attitude also helps ignore anything authoritative that might ask them to question something they've seen or read. They do like to adopt beliefs that not many people believe, because it makes them feel smarter than they actually are.
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Old 4th September 2011, 08:09 PM   #192
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Originally Posted by little grey rabbit View Post
[snip]

No points for using so many words to say "tribalism".
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Old 5th September 2011, 12:32 AM   #193
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Thanks, good bye, and good luck in the future to you, Tom.

And thanks to all the participants for keeping this one of the most civil and on topic threads in this subforum's history. The stories in this thread are amazing.
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Old 11th September 2011, 01:09 PM   #194
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I never was a Truther but I argued against it with a friend for years. On her request I went to a few meetings, watched Steven Jones videos, hated all of it. One day she blew up and at me and said I'm holding your feet to the fire until you REALLY look at this and research it! I watched the Richard Gage video Blueprint for Truth, and was impressed with his presentation. I kind of wondered for awhile.

I stopped wondering when I asked 14 physicists from local colleges etc about gravity and stuff. Then I personally asked other people: chemists, engineers, etc. and kept telling my friend about these things. She was not happy to see how my research was coming. Finally I challenged a local 9/11 Truth guy to a debate last October. Then I challenged Richard Gage to a debate in March. Now I have all those YouTube videos out (chrismohr911). Richard suggested I join jref to help prepare me for that debate. Wow did I get help.

I never was a Truther but my anger at Bush made me wonder sometimes if maybe gage was right. I have no regrets about those wonderings. Nothing wrong with being skeptical about the government. What's important is the willingness to ask and then not filter out answers that contradict your own inner Official Story!

My friend is not happy at how much I've researched 9/11 now.
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Old 11th September 2011, 01:37 PM   #195
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Quote:
My friend is not happy at how much I've researched 9/11 now.
The old saying "Be careful what you ask for." comes to mind.

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Old 12th September 2011, 02:36 PM   #196
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Originally Posted by Bell View Post
I Googled "debunk Loose Change" and ended up at Loose Change Guide. On that site, some guy named Mark refered to the JREF forums, and that's how I ended up here.

Yep, that's how I ended up in this messy place as well.
How's Mark doing? Long time no see, eh?
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Old 6th October 2011, 05:37 AM   #197
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a) How did you once become a truther?
I became a truther because of Alex Jones. I had seen him in the movie Waking Life I believe, and I wondered who he was. A quick IMDb search found him and from that I found the movie JFK II: The Bush Connection, and it left an impression on me. I've watched it again recently and it's still amusing because of how crudely edited it is.

From that, I found videos of Alex Jones talking about 9/11. You have to understand I was into hardcore punk when I was a bit younger - this is around 11 or 12 years old; I'm 19 now. That genre taught me to be a one-sided skeptic: DON'T TRUST THE GOVERNMENT! So I ate it up, I had no problem believing the government killed it's own people for a reason I really didn't understand.

b) What convinced you back from truther to non-truther?
I saw an episode of South Park called Mystery of the Urinal Deuce. I remembered the line "1/4th of Americans are retards.". It made me laugh, but I knew they were calling me retarded. It didn't offend me, but, it made me wonder why they would think it was stupid to believe 9/11 was an inside job. I thought of the creators of South Park as geniuses at the time.

I simply ignored the fact I believed it, and I ignored the official story as well. I didn't care at that point; what was presented as evidence was becoming confusing, especially now that I was actually questioning my beliefs instead of blindly accepting a conspiracy due to bias.

It wasn't until recently that I've started thinking about it again. I believe my research began with finding the site Debunking 9/11. The rebuttals to all of the main theories just made sense. There's also logistic problems I had with the conspiracy: How did they plant CD explosives/thermite, knowing exactly where the planes would impact? Why would they suspiciously take down WTC7? Why would Silverstein admit it on national television? Why not just have a plane hit the Pentagon and land in Shanksville?

c) What are your thoughts nowadays about your time as a truther?
Currently, I'm leaning more to the official story rationally, emotionally I still think of the idea as a possibility. These emotions are an appeal to authority due to guys like Steven Jones and Richard Gage. They claim to have evidence of thermite, but the users here question that due to faulty methodolgy.

I guess I'm still on the fence, somewhat. This is because physics and chemistry are way beyond anything I know.

I guess I just grew up.

Last edited by wollclark; 6th October 2011 at 06:06 AM.
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Old 6th October 2011, 07:15 PM   #198
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Originally Posted by Telltale Tom View Post
How I became a truther: I am an engineer, design tall buildings for a living, worked at ground zero and I came across this forum in 2009. I started off having technical arguments with truthers and was pretty much ignored. I think that the truthers who understood my arguments were not really interested in discussing them.

Anyway when I lost my password one day I decided to open a new account as Telltale Tom the "honest truther". And since Jan 2010 I have tried to argue the case from an honest truther perspective: I have assumed that Richard Gage believes what he says ( which I don't, I think he lies) and I have tried to imagine what he had to think to enable him to reconcile his arguments with what happened. So I have taken delight in pointing out the obvious crazy technical inconsistencies in his arguments.

Why I changed my mind: Ten years after 9-11. There is no truther argument on this forum and nothing new is happening. It is time to walk away ... and this is my very last post. I don't think there is a truth movement any more: a small scam going on but nothing more.

And seeing all the 9/11 videos makes me wonder why I ever believed there was a truth movement. Engineers are not that gullible which is why I have tried to remind you on many occasions that there is only one or two registered structural engineers (PE's) from the thousands in the State of New York who have signed the ae911truth petition. Unfortunately one or two have signed it and they like to be different or are just challenged; not sure which.

Reflections from today: It's time to go. I had fun and I hoped I helped a few people see the "truth" Good luck all and good bye!

You were great. Sail on and good luck!
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Old 6th October 2011, 08:50 PM   #199
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Originally Posted by wollclark View Post
a) How did you once become a truther?
I became a truther because of Alex Jones. I had seen him in the movie Waking Life I believe, and I wondered who he was. A quick IMDb search found him and from that I found the movie JFK II: The Bush Connection, and it left an impression on me. I've watched it again recently and it's still amusing because of how crudely edited it is.

From that, I found videos of Alex Jones talking about 9/11. You have to understand I was into hardcore punk when I was a bit younger - this is around 11 or 12 years old; I'm 19 now. That genre taught me to be a one-sided skeptic: DON'T TRUST THE GOVERNMENT! So I ate it up, I had no problem believing the government killed it's own people for a reason I really didn't understand.

b) What convinced you back from truther to non-truther?
I saw an episode of South Park called Mystery of the Urinal Deuce. I remembered the line "1/4th of Americans are retards.". It made me laugh, but I knew they were calling me retarded. It didn't offend me, but, it made me wonder why they would think it was stupid to believe 9/11 was an inside job. I thought of the creators of South Park as geniuses at the time.

I simply ignored the fact I believed it, and I ignored the official story as well. I didn't care at that point; what was presented as evidence was becoming confusing, especially now that I was actually questioning my beliefs instead of blindly accepting a conspiracy due to bias.

It wasn't until recently that I've started thinking about it again. I believe my research began with finding the site Debunking 9/11. The rebuttals to all of the main theories just made sense. There's also logistic problems I had with the conspiracy: How did they plant CD explosives/thermite, knowing exactly where the planes would impact? Why would they suspiciously take down WTC7? Why would Silverstein admit it on national television? Why not just have a plane hit the Pentagon and land in Shanksville?

c) What are your thoughts nowadays about your time as a truther?
Currently, I'm leaning more to the official story rationally, emotionally I still think of the idea as a possibility. These emotions are an appeal to authority due to guys like Steven Jones and Richard Gage. They claim to have evidence of thermite, but the users here question that due to faulty methodolgy.

I guess I'm still on the fence, somewhat. This is because physics and chemistry are way beyond anything I know.

I guess I just grew up.
Good post. You're doing well.
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Old 7th October 2011, 06:20 PM   #200
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This is incredibly fascinating and gives me hope that all my youtube video rebuttals of Gage's theories can be of some use. We have MANY stories here of former 9/11 Truth believers being convinced they were wrong by skeptics. Over 15,000 views and counting of my rebuttal videos in the past couple months (YouTube keyword chrismohr911) makes me think there may be many others who did not find this thread.
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