A bedtime story for my seven-year-old
by Brian Wright
Virginia, just for a moment I want to tell you a story about what happened after a mysterious big ‘blowup’ in a major American city to see whether public officials and law enforcement persons observed the highest professional standards in finding out what caused it. What happened was the complete destruction of a tall steel-frame building in lower Manhattan Island of New York City. First, please view the video of this building falling down by clicking the image on the right. Note that the video is only nine seconds long, and several of these seconds record the astounded reaction of people on the street.
I know you’re probably thinking the destruction of this building looks exactly like those videos you’ve seen at school when your political science teacher discusses urban renewal programs: When the city fathers have to get rid of a classic old, tall, historic building to make way for a playground or modern high-rise apartments subsidizing street criminals or a Chucky Cheese franchise, well, they hire special firms to demolish the building in a manner that doesn’t destroy anything else nearby. The video linked to the image below gives you a very nice assortment of what are called controlled demolitions also known as explosive demolitions, even implosions.
What makes the destruction shown in the first video at the top of this page so mysterious—to make things easy, let’s just call this building 47, for the number of storeys it had—is that it was wholly unscheduled. No one at city hall had announced that 47 was going to be demolished or otherwise brought down. In fact, for several years, local, state, and national officials completely ignored the fact that 47 had abruptly turned into a pile of rubble that day… maybe they thought nobody would miss it. (!)
But after seven years, a federal organization—NIMROD (National Institute for Making Ridiculous Official Disquisitions)—finally came along to make a report on what happened to 47.
[A lot of people had kept protesting that public safety was endangered by unexpected disintegration of so massive a structure, and that they needed to know what caused it in order to prevent it from happening again. Further, the owner of 47 was on record as having okayed the decision to bring 47 down. To top it all off, the mayor’s people had hired firms to remove or physically destroy all the structural components. The owner and the mayor were respected men in the community, but their actions said they thought they were above the law.]
In a scientific investigation, there’s a principle that says investigators shall begin with the most likely explanation, also that they seek the simplest explanation. My precious one, NIMROD didn’t even consider that 47 had been explosively demolished—despite evidence of residue of very specialized explosives in the debris field, eyewitness accounts of explosions, and molten pools of steel that endured for weeks. NIMROD ran some computer programs (not letting anyone else see the data they started with), then claimed ‘office fires’ caused a physically impossible event. [That physically impossible event was the descent of 47’s floors at the speed of gravity in the absence of any mechanism for instantaneously removing the material below them.]
Another fundamental principle of science is “Explanations must not imply that miracles have occurred.”
So, honey, that’s my bedtime story for tonight.
And it’s a true story.
If you or Daddy had been even in the same room as the owner on video stating why he approved the demolition of 47 or been with the mayor authorizing high-level city workers to destroy tens of thousands of tons of material evidence, my darling, we’d have been whisked away with black bags over our heads to a country where torture is legal… that’s right, the United States. So let that be a lesson to you as you’re growing up: In this country, not only are government officials and rich corporate executives above the law, they’re above the truth.
At least, that’s how it looks and works as of this five minutes.
You’re a good kid, Ginny, and I know it bothers you that these wealthy and powerful insiders can seemingly do anything horrible they want and get away with it. But as with most of the fables and stories I tell you: in the long run, a person who does something bad or evil or false doesn’t escape the consequences of his actions. Justice always prevails. Sometimes it takes a little longer when the people have the wool pulled over their eyes. Do you remember the parable I read to you The Emperor’s New Clothes? How about David and Goliath?
Tomorrow night, I’m going to read to you another true story with a happy ending in progress. Millions of brave and good people all over the world are standing up for truth and justice against evildoers—like the owner of 47 and the mayor of New York—of all stripes. Regular loving and caring people like us, like Dorothy in the Wizard of Oz, are choosing to face their fears and to pull the curtain away from the phantom menace… to stop the monster’s wars, debt, and otherwise rude behavior.
But relating directly to this Inconvenient ‘Poof!’ story of tonight, sweetie, a worldwide project is going into effect for all of September 2013 to seek a full people’s investigation of the destruction of 47 and its brothers. Those who committed the crime will be brought to justice. The good guys will win. Happy Ending! Now I see that lovely smile, that’s more like it. Don’t spoil your sleep tonight; tomorrow morning click on the image below. Tomorrow night, I’ll tell you one for the books, one for the kind of world worthy of my little darling. 🙂
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