Two Kinds of Collapse
There’s THEIR kind of collapse and there’s OUR kind of collapse.
In the past, I have argued that we should completely stop using the word “collapse” when referring to the destruction of the WTC Towers.
My main points have been that 1) the word “collapse”, as a global descriptor, does not properly convey the explosive character of many of the dynamic features of the destruction and that 2) the government and media have exploited this fact in their relentless use of the word as a way to minimize citizen awareness of the explosive features.
Both of these factors work against us in our efforts to get the truth out, and in fact suggest that whenever we use the word “collapse” in this context, we are, to some degree, unwittingly endorsing government/media propaganda — in spite of whatever else we may be saying.
We can see parts of both buildings begin to collapse, but these are sub-dramas within the larger scope of the overall destruction. Our choice of descriptive language for the ENTIRE event must allow for ALL of its dramatic global features, including the release of tremendous amounts of non-gravitational energy. Frequent and exclusive use of global descriptors that suggest an energy-added event would greatly help our cause, I believe.
I’m bringing up this topic again (at the risk of becoming annoying) because I recently had a thought that I think is worth sharing...
When WE talk about how the Towers “collapsed”, it is with the idea that the “collapse” has been initiated by the use of some type of explosives or incendiaries. When NIST or NOVA talks about how the Towers “collapsed”, they are projecting the false assumption that a collapse is actually possible WITHOUT explosives. The intended communication in each case is thus the complete opposite of the other, but the language used is the same in both cases. This is very confusing, especially for Joe and Mary Citizen, who were told what to believe when they first saw it on TV.
We’ve all had the experience of trying to tell someone that the Towers collapsed because explosives were used and then the person will say something like “Oh, that’s ridiculous!”, and dismiss the entire consideration with a wave of the hand. In the introduction to David Ray Griffin’s new book, Debunking 9/11 Debunking, he presents an interesting analysis and overview of possible reasons for this sort of a priori truth rejection in relation to 9/11 questions.
It seems to me that a very specific kind of belief influence comes into play whenever we discuss the destruction of the Towers. For example, people who were persuaded and convinced by the highly produced animations and visualizations that MIT created for NOVA and the Discovery Channel “know” (or think they know) that the Towers really could have collapsed without any help from explosives. They saw it happen on TV! End of story. The scenario was made to seem like a real possibility and many believed without questioning.
Live news footage, animations and graphic visualizations have become melded together in memory in such a way that the average lay person is no longer able to separate them. They are remembered and interpreted as one impression. And throughout these formative media experiences, we were constantly told: “collapse, collapse, collapse…” The term “collapse” was installed as a trigger in people’s understanding, and it arouses beliefs and mental images that support the idea that buildings can simply fall apart all by themselves. The word has been booby-trapped.
Webster Tarpley examines this sort of media-based sensory empiricism in Chapter 13 of his book, 9/11 Synthetic Terror. We are dealing with a mass epistemological phenomenon wherein people believe what they have “seen with their own eyes” — forgetting that they actually saw it on a TV or computer screen. As part of our counter-strategy, I believe it helps us to become aware of the verbal triggers that are associated with these pseudo-empirical belief constructs.
When one of us says that explosives were used to cause the “collapse” of the Towers, the whole idea will seem ridiculous to a lot of people because they have beliefs and mental images planted in their memories that tell them that buildings WILL collapse WITHOUT explosives, so the explosives hypothesis seems bizarre and unnecessary as an explanation. These are the kind of people who trust the integrity of NOVA and PBS and think that 9/11 truth is just a collection of fantasies and political rhetoric by people who don’t like Bush. They think we’re annoying and that we’re getting in the way of more important issues.
We know, of course, that steel-framed buildings cannot possibly collapse without explosives, so when WE say “collapse” we’re arguing that explosives are causing the “collapse”. But for someone who has already been convinced (by media-fed sensory empiricism) that explosives are unnecessary, all of our arguments will be dismissed without consideration because they contradict his or her newly minted a priori assumptions.
On the other hand, buildings obviously, logically and unquestionably cannot “explode” without explosions. They can’t be destroyed without destruction and they can’t disintegrate without disintegration. The same can be said for dismemberment, pulverization, demolition, etc.
For many people, the word “collapse” has unfortunately been pre-loaded with false meaning (not unlike “conspiracy theory”). Why trigger unnecessary and avoidable resistance when we can seize the opportunity and reframe the question in such a way that true perception may once again become possible?