Can Anything Be Done?
Paul Craig Roberts
Clearing House" -- -- Many readers have praised me for my courage in
broaching taboo subjects and stating obvious truths. Others denounce
me for “being unpatriotic and distrusting our government.” One
reader, Susan Hartman, wrote to me that I was obviously in the pay
of Islamic Jihadists and that she had reported me to the FBI.
Despite the lack of evidence to support their belief, a number of
readers remain confident that Saddam Hussein had weapons of mass
destruction and that America narrowly missed being annihilated.
These readers know for a fact that Hussein had WMD, because “the
President would know, and he wouldn’t lie.”
In other words, whatever Bush says is true, and all who doubt him
are unpatriotic. “You are with us or against us.” The facts be
damned. There are a large number of Susan Hartmans in the body
A group of scientists, engineers, and professors are
trying to start a debate about the collapse of the three World Trade
Center buildings. I reported one of their findings: There is an
inconsistency between the speed with which the buildings collapsed
and the “pancaking theory” used to explain the collapse. Another way
of putting the problem is that there seems to be a massive energy
deficit in the explanation that the buildings fell as a result of
gravitational energy. There simply was not sufficient gravitational
energy to produce the results.
For reporting a scientific finding, I was called a “conspiracy
theorist.” Only in America is scientific analysis seen as conspiracy
theory and government lies as truth.
Applications of the laws of physics and scientific calculations can
be reviewed and checked by other scientists. Scientists, like the
rest of us, can make mistakes. However, questions raised about the
collapse of the WTC buildings are not engaged but ignored.
The 9/11 scholars findings seem to be in sync with public opinion.
Polls show that more than one-third and as much as one-half of the
American public does not believe the government’s 9/11 story.
The public doesn’t believe the John F. Kennedy assassination story
either. Nevertheless, experts who point out problems in the official
story are still called “conspiracy theorists” even though a large
percentage of the people share their doubts.
I think the reason so many Americans do not believe the Kennedy
story told by the Warren Commission and the 9/11 story told by the
9/11 Commission is not because Americans are knowledgeable about
ballistics or physics, or know how to do energy calculations, but
because the stories contain too many unusual happenings, too many
In the Kennedy case doubts are raised by such things as an
improbable bullet trajectory, the against-all-procedures absence of
Secret Service agents from the rear and sides of Kennedy’s limo, the
inexplicable access of an unauthorized armed civilian, Jack Ruby,
who was able to assassinate Oswald inside the jail before Oswald
could be questioned. Online at
there is a report that two scientists, Pat Grant and Erik Randich,
at the Forensic Science Center of the Lawrence Livermore Laboratory
have discredited the reliability of the “neutron activation”
analysis, which was used to “prove” that all the recovered bullet
fragments came from Oswald’s shots. Courts no longer accept as
evidence and the FBI no longer uses the analysis that was used to
close the Oswald case.
Any one of these things would be an oddity. The combination of
oddities becomes inexplicable, a statistical impossibility.
The same with the explanation of 9/11. Powerfully constructed
buildings collapse when there is no source of the required energy to
do the job. A large 757 hits the Pentagon but leaves a small hole,
and there is no sign of wings, engines, tail or fuselage. Every air
control and military procedure fails, and hijacked airliners are not
intercepted by jet fighters. The alleged hijackers’ names apparently
are not on the passenger lists, and some of the alleged hijackers
have been found alive and well in Saudi Arabia. Dr. Thomas R.
Olmstead used the Freedom of Information Act to get a copy of the
autopsy list of American Airlines flight 77, and he reports that
there are no Arabic names on the list.
My point is a simple one. Attentive people, even if they are not
scientifically literate, can sense when there are too many oddities
for an explanation to be believable.
If deception is sensed, there is a receptive audience when experts
or film makers speak. Denouncing inconvenient facts as “conspiracy
theories” is a way of suppressing debate and investigation.
This itself is telling. If the official explanations are safe, their
proponents should welcome the opportunity to show again and again
that the explanations can stand all challenges. Instead, the second
a challenge shows its head, it is branded a “conspiracy theory.”
That tells me that the official explanations can stand no challenge.
Don’t ask me who killed Kennedy and why, and don’t ask me who was
behind the 9/11 attack or what brought the three WTC buildings down.
My position is a simple one. The official accounts are too
improbable to be believable.
I won’t believe them until the government can explain where the
energy came from to bring down the three WTC buildings. With the
demise of the “single bullet” theory, there seems to be no
verification of Oswald’s magical shooting.
It seems to me that the real conspiracy theories are the
explanations that are overweighted with improbabilities.
Readers ask me what can we do? We can do very little as we have lost
control over our government. Elections, even if not stolen, change
very little. Government got free of our control when we forgot the
teaching of our Founding Fathers that government is always the
greatest threat to our liberty.
Paul Craig Roberts was Assistant Secretary of the Treasury in the
Reagan administration. He was Associate Editor of the Wall Street
Journal editorial page and Contributing Editor of National Review.
He is coauthor of The Tyranny of Good Intentions.