Media coverage of High-Rise Safety Initiative begins: Local Business Journal Crain's Covers the Campaign

Local Business Journal Crain's Covers the Campaign

Plus: First petition to be submitted one week from tomorrow!

Read the article:

With one week to go before submitting our first petition on July 3rd, Crain's New York Business, a leading local business and politics journal, has published a story about the High-Rise Safety Initiative, which was also picked up by the Gothamist and Gawker. Followed by all of New York's business and political community, Crain's has a weekly print circulation of 50,000 and receives 300,000 unique visitors to its website each month. We are now on the map, but this is just the beginning - so stay tuned!

9/11 conspiracy group could force its way onto ballot

Andrew J. Hawkins
June 25, 2014

For years, 9/11 conspiracy theorists have been marginalized if not utterly ignored, producing blog posts and online films that gain little traction with the general public.

But a small nonprofit dedicated to uncovering the “truth” behind the collapse of the World Trade Center buildings is making a big push to get its issue in front of millions of voters. The group has gathered tens of thousands of petition signatures and raised hundreds of thousands of dollars in an effort to force the city to investigate the destruction of 7 World Trade Center during the attack 13 years ago.

The group, NYC Coalition for Accountability Now, is following the steps to place a referendum on the ballot in November that would require the city’s Department of Buildings to investigate the collapse of any building taller than 20-stories dating back to 9/11, and in the future, but not including the Twin Towers. So far, only 7 WTC fits that description.

The group is supported by the 9/11 truth movement, a loose coalition of conspiracy theorists who believe the federal government was involved in the attacks. But the group's executive director, Ted Walter, insists his organization is a separate entity that is exclusively focused on uncovering the causes behind 7 WTC’s destruction and the prevention of future building collapses.

"The 9/11 truth movement by and large supports what we’re doing because if we’re successful it will lead to an investigation of Building 7’s collapse," he said. "We’re not directly affiliated with them."

The group, which now bills itself as the Highrise Safety Initiative, has previously attempted a ballot initiative and failed. In 2009, the city successfully challenged in court an attempt to include a referendum on the ballot calling for an investigation into 7 WTC’s collapse. Mr. Walter says he has learned from past mistakes: This time, they have raised more money—over $190,000—which they have used to hire a media consultant (Andrew Moesel of Sheinkopf Communications), an election lawyer (Leo Glickman of Stoll, Glickman & Bellina) and a petition-gathering consultant (the BrownMillerGroup).

The Highrise Safety Initiative has gathered more than 53,000 signatures, far beyond the requisite 30,000, which it will present to the City Council July 3. Assuming the council declines to act on the proposal—spokesmen for the council and Mayor Bill de Blasio declined to comment—the group would then gather an additional 30,000 signatures to submit in September to force its initiative onto the ballot. Approval by a majority of those who vote on the question would compel the city to act on its instructions.

Mr. Walter, who claims to represent dozens of 9/11 family members as well as architects and engineers who have doubts about the government’s official statements on the causes of the collapse, said there has never been a proper investigation into 7 WTC.

To be sure, both the Federal Emergency Management Agency and the National Institute of Standards and Technology have issued reports on 7 WTC, and both determined that fire, falling debris and faulty sprinkler systems were responsible for the collapse. NIST noted that it was the only known instance of a high-rise building being brought down by fire.

Mr. Walter said he is "unsatisfied" with NIST’s report, arguing that important forensic evidence was destroyed during the cleanup that prevented the agency from making a complete report. He also claims that NIST refused to release its modeling data to allow independent engineers to replicate the study.

"We’re just looking for an impartial investigation," he said.

A spokesman for NIST said via email that since completing its study in 2008 into the collapse of 1, 2 and 7 WTC "there has been no new evidence presented that would change our findings and conclusions, and therefore, nothing new that we can contribute to the discussion. NIST firmly stands behind its investigation results."

Asked whether he buys into the controversial belief that the federal government was responsible for the building’s collapse, Mr. Walter demurred.

"I don’t know," he said. "I reserve judgment on that type of question until we really establish what in my view would be a strong scientific explanation for the collapse of the building."

(In an online interview in 2010, though, he said the "alleged hijackers did not have the expertise to pilot the planes" and that he believed the buildings were purposely “demolished.” He told "A true investigation with full subpoena power would shatter the official story and lead to some accountability, though it will probably be impossible to identify everyone who was a part of the conspiracy.")

The 9/11 truth movement has been criticized for its ties to anti-Semitism. The Anti-Defamation League in particular has blasted members of the movement who have speculated about Zionist involvement in the attacks.

A spokesman for the ADL said the Highrise Safety Initiative did not appear to reflect anti-Semitic beliefs and he doubted it would necessarily "open the floodgates" to such rhetoric. "While it’s ostensibly dealing with building codes and safety now, if it does get some traction, then at that point we will definitely be monitoring and looking to see whether or not the more anti-Semitic elements of this conspiracy try to use it for their benefit in some way," he said.

Mr. Moesel, who works for Hank Sheinkopf, a prominent Jewish political strategist, dismissed those concerns.

“The Highrise Safety Initiative is run by a professional group of people that have legitimate safety concerns about New York City buildings,” he said. “We have no problem making that case to voters, who will ultimately be the ones who decide it on the merits.”

Raw Story and Washington Times

9/11 ‘truther’ measure on NYC ballot would force probe of 7 WTC building collapse
By Travis Gettys
Thursday, June 26, 2014 12:25 EDT

9/11 ‘truthers’ a step closer to NYC ballot measure

Media Coverage

I am afraid that media is bought by the bad guys who do not want any real information out. Dan Rather is the perfect example of what happens when you report real news.
Everything from the towers was taken away real fast so that no proper investigation can happen.
Dummy down America is their ultimate goal and many idiots still say "terrorists" despite the fact that I tell them it was pulled it is an obvious demolition. Silverstein the developer bought the towers 6 weeks before, and insured it with terrorist insurance. This insurance only became well known after the towers collapse.
While Silverstein needs to be in jail he keeps getting more and more insurance money and help from the government AS IF he had suffered at all by allowing 3000 to die at his hands. Dummy down America, wants to believe the easy story. So how this will end up changing is beyond my comprehension....
Just as they sealed the JFK case for 50 more years, they will seal all they can about 911.
We can fight, but whom????

'Terrorists' is indeed a correct answer

Does anyone doubt that the attacks were intended to terrorize the public? Therefore, they were the work of terrorists, by definition. Treating the answer 'terrorists,' in and of itself, as idiotic only attests to the success of the propagandists in leading even otherwise skeptical thinkers into internalizing THEIR usage, according to which perpetrators of acts of terror can only ever be Muslim bad guys--such that (in classic Orwellian Newspeak fashion) a different word would be needed to implicate anyone who doesn't fit that description. It isn't a question of whether or not such acts are the work of terrorists, but rather of who the terrorists actually are--that is the appropriate response to such an answer. Treating it as if it were inherently idiotic only gives a victory to the propagandists and helps carry their efforts forward in making the term's exclusive association with Muslims inextricable. Please don't give the 'but that's just what the word means now, like it or not' rationale. As Orwell warned, if you concede mastery over language and meaning to those who hold political, economic, and military power, you've conceded everything.

More coverage on this campaign...

9/11 ‘truthers’ a step closer to NYC ballot measure

9/11 ‘truther’ measure on NYC ballot would force probe of 7 WTC building collapse

9/11 Truthers Have Found Another Way To Remind You They Aren't Giving Up On This

New York Post - Democratic strategist teams up with 9/11 truthers

Join in on the comments if you feel so inclined.

Truthers and Trolls

That the media has branded this campaign as a 'Truther' event, indicates how opposition will be crafted through ridicule alone. Candy to the trolls. It's hard to argue with facts, so they won't.

More coverage or just more name calling?

The coverage regarding the High-rise Safety has been disgraceful to put it mildly not that I or anyone thought it would be different.