Monday, June 28, 2010

Holocaust: the burden of proof

Jo Fo, an anonymous “beginner” with the CODOH Forum asks a core question:

“I am a newcomer to this forum and a relative newcomer to this subject in general so if my comments or questions seem a bit academic, please indulge me. Where does the burden of proof in this debate lie? Many in the "exterminationist" camp scoff at the notion that they should have to further substantiate what they already consider established fact. Is it the revisionist's task to disprove their conclusions or could they be fairly required to offer more credible evidence in the first place?”

After a dozen posts replying to this interesting thread, Jo Fo writes:

“So philosophically the answer is fairly straight forward: The burden of proof should fall on those who make the initial claim of deliberate mass murder. But in practice, it doesn't seem to play out that way. That it should allegedly take place during a devastating world war doesn't simplify the matter!

“Kingfisher's idea of getting people to "step back" and re-examine the entire issue is constructive. I would hope that this could one day be treated solely as the murder investigation that it never was. Discard all previous conclusions and invite an unbiased, disinterested third party with sufficient technological prowess (the Chinese or Indians?) to conduct a thorough forensic and historical investigation. Focus on primary documentary evidence and use modern forensic science to find out what really happened. I understand that limited ventures toward this end have already been attempted in the past, but they always seem to run into issues of credibility and integrity.

“Considering the opposition to such an undertaking, this is all pie-in-the-sky wishful thinking; and even if it were to take place, it probably wouldn't put an end to the controversy. I am grateful to all who have commented so far.”

For my part, the burden of proof lies first with those who accuse another of a specific murder. That would be the American Way if we were to ask the Fox talkers and most everyone else in media and the university. Of course, there must be exceptions made here and there, depending on your political, religious, or ethnic identifications. These exceptions must be, and are, defended with every contrivance available.

Sunday, June 27, 2010

What’s Laughter Yogurt?

Well, Laughter Yogurt probably does not exist. I received an email from Dr. Andrew Weil, MD., and the subject line, which I misread, actually read “Laughter Yoga.” Okay. I can live with the idea of Laughter Yoga, though I would confess that yogurt is more to my taste than yoga. So I’m a vitamin freak, as we used to say, and Dr. Weil is one of the guys I read occasionally.

Sunday my wife did not go to church because Mexico was playing Argentina in the World Cup and she was going to stay in bed and watch it. I said it was going to be a sad day in Mexico. She didn’t laugh. I was going to make coffee, as I do every morning, and asked if I could bring her coffee to her in bed. She said she would like that. “It’s going to be a sad day,” I said. I asked her if she would like a handkerchief. She said no. She would use the sheets. What a woman. In the end, Mexico lost three to one.

I’m always struck by the folk on television who talk about how in America you can be anything you want. The Glen Beck -- Shawn Hannity folk. American patriots. All you have to do is dream it, to work, to strive for it. About sixteen centuries ago a school of Chinese intellectuals challenged that idea, suggesting that no matter how much you dream of it, work and strive for it, you could not become even a dog. I’m probably somewhere in the middle there.

Of course, the Chinese were talking about life.

And then, speaking of the Chinese: Mencius is thought to have written about the goodness of man four centuries before Christ, a point of view that I have never paid close attention to. “If today men suddenly see a child about to fall into a well, they will without exception experience a feeling of alarm and distress. This will not be as a way whereby to gain the favor of the child’s parents, nor whereby they may seek the praise of their neighbors and friends, nor are they so because they dislike the reputation [of being unvirtuous].” That is, in the first instance, Man is by nature fundamentally good.

I was struck by this passage, it seemed right to me, that in the first instance that is how we would react to seeing a child in danger. The brain was picturing a Chinese child more than two thousand years ago perched on the edge of a well, about to tumble over. And then, faster than a speeding bullet, the brain replaced that image with that of me on the balcony of the hotel in Los Angeles that evening in 1979 when I first heard of Robert Faurisson and his views about the gas chambers of Auschwitz. The purpose of the brain in recalling that image, the recollection of which I personally played no role, appears to have been to suggest that my reaction to the Faurisson article that evening 30 years ago originated in innocence, that it was not intended to gain favor, or praise, or to appear virtuous. It was to suggest that my response was spontaneous, without thought, without desire.

So -- it’s not my fault then.

When stones nod their heads in agreement

The left eye is seeing an arc of black and white rectangular images to its own left. With the glasses or without. The brain identifies an arc of dominos. Distracting. Makes it difficult to see. How in hell can the brain focus when the eye is focused on a domino arc?

Finished the new template for Smith’s Report. Many delays. We have been using a Topica template carrying two links. The new template has nine links—they go all over CODOH. Lots of setbacks, time and so on, but we scheduled the first send for noon today and it’s out. The hope, as with all this work, is that it will bring more people to CODOH, and with them a handful of new contributors. We need them. We used a weak subject line. Live and learn. Sometimes.

Mucho noise and chaos in the casa, what with the daughter, the wife, the two grandkids, the brother-in-law who is sawing and hammering, the animals, the birds—all of it. I allow myself to be distracted. Swamped with email. I allow myself to be distracted with the email. Face Book makes new demands. Hernandez is taking care of most of that. Still, the distraction. Working on the new CODOH page dealing with what might be some identity issues with Elie Wiesel. Carolyn Yeager will take care of that. Still, the work, it all adds up.

Yu-Lan relates an anecdote about a 5th-Century sage who was so brilliant that when he spoke even the stones beside him nodded their heads in agreement. I like these anecdotal inventions. They mean more to me than Buddhism. In the end, maybe the anecdotes themselves are Buddhism. My sense of things is that there is nothing grand inside here, nothing grand out there. I’m not suggesting that both are not immense, only that they don't “mean” anything. The intellectuals, the big-brains of every stripe, want to reach the stars, investigate the origin of the cosmos. Science is all the rage. Except when it comes to relationship. Never mind that within relationship is the place where all the horror originates.

Received a special notice from Google: “Google Alert cancelled. Your Google Alert [ Yad Vashem Holocaust Denial ] has been cancelled. You will not receive Google Alert emails on this topic.”

When I go to my Google moderation page I find that all my alerts are gone, other than one to Michael Savage. All of them. A couple months back the director of the U.S. Holocaust Memorial Museum, Sara J. Bloomfield, took the time to refer to me in a pitch for funds for her Museum. Now Google is going to the trouble of interfering with my keeping up to date with what’s going on at Yad Vashem and any other page related to revisionism.

The USHMM, Yad Vashem, and now Google. Hundreds of millions of dollars out there with those folk. Who am I?

Saturday, June 26, 2010

The Anatomy of a Survival

As a 14-year-old "closet" Jew in 1944 Budapest, George Soros avoided the inconvenience of being deported with his coreligionists, as hundreds of thousands of them reportedly were in that year. In fact, in the matter of confiscating the property of these unfortunates, the (already) enterprising youth managed to reposition himself to the other side of the transaction and help out in the looting, in doing so perhaps anticipating the sort of activity in which he assumed truly gigantic proportions in later life.

Somehow, despite these deportations and the genocide that some say was the purpose and result of them, Hungarian Jews extensively populated the governing class of Hungary in the Communist regime that ruled the country immediately after the War.

If Soros had boarded the trains with those of his kind, the chances are that, like most of them, he would have returned to his native land after the War, to join the Communist nomenklatura. Poorer, perhaps, than he turned out to be in reality, but perhaps also wiser.

The problem of the others

Last night, waiting for the sleeping pill and the relaxing supplements to kick in, I was reading excerpts from the Journal I was keeping in 1979. I was surprised to see the uselessness of nearly all I was doing, surprised to wonder what I saw in it. Here and there a scene, a paragraph, a single line that was worth the trouble of typing it on a piece of paper. The way we worked before the Internet. I typed in full paragraphs from newspaper and magazine articles to comment on them. What did I have in mind?

This morning there was work on designing the Elie Wiesel page, work on Face Book which Hernandez is taking care of but which is work anyhow, work on the Founder’s Page getting Break His Bones uploaded in its entirety, chapter by chapter, with new formatting and so on. Work on the new template for the online edition of Smith’s Report, which is taking much longer than any of us expected. And so on. I did finally get issue 173 of Smith’s Report to the printer. We found some serious formatting errors, a number of typos and proofing issues to take care of. By the end of the hour there, I was exhausted.

Reading a brief history of Chinese philosophy by Fung Yu-Lan, it occurred to me that my life is more interesting when I am alone than when I live with others. This sense of things was emphasized last night when I read chapter seven in Bones. I was checking the formatting of the page for uploading, started reading, and there it was. When I have been alone I have been aware of the world. Sometimes. When I live with others I am aware of trying to earn an income to take care of all of us. Being the genius I am, I chose to make a living arguing that we should be able to question the orthodox Holocaust story, an argument for which there is no market. Never has been. Being unwilling to live alone, I have passed my life working to make a living. Too late now.

But now I realize that when I wrote Chapter Seven of Break His Bones, I was living with others in the little canyon in the Hollywood Hills behind Grauman's Chinese Theater. It's not the others then. I do not suppose it oftentimes is.

end

Monday, June 21, 2010

The death of the Holocaust

In the aftermath of the Gaza Flotilla debacle, Uri Averny writes that nobody in Israel seems to have noticed until now “the death of the Holocaust.”

“In all the tumult this affair has caused throughout the world, the Holocaust was not even mentioned.”

“For two generations, our foreign policy used the Holocaust as its main instrument. The bad conscience of the world determined its attitude towards Israel. The (justified) guilty feelings – either for atrocities committed or for looking the other way – caused Europe and America to treat Israel differently than any other nation – from nuclear armaments to the settlements. All criticism of our governments’ actions was branded automatically as anti-Semitism and silenced.”

“But time does its work. New tragedies have blunted the world’s senses. For a new generation, the Holocaust is a thing of the remote past, a chapter of history. The sense of guilt has disappeared in all countries, except Germany. … the Israeli public is shocked to see that the Holocaust has lost its power as a political instrument. Our most valuable weapon has become blunt.”

Sunday, June 20, 2010

French African comedian Dieudonne is back on stage in Paris

French African comedian Dieudonne is back on stage in Paris with a show that has a critical and ironic attitude toward revisionism and the Holocaust. He specializes in disputing the “official” history of the Holocaust, of Jews and of slavery. Opening his show with a parody of a Nazi speech he threatens to deport those viewers who will not turn off their cell phones. His monologue includes such claims that he has converted to Judaism because it’s a “religion of profit," that if Bernard-Henri Levy is truly a philosopher maybe the gas chambers did exist and, referring to the troubles of Robert Faurisson, that history is for idiots.

A stand-up guy (in both senses).

Saturday, June 19, 2010

The Palestinians are Doing it all Wrong

This is the opening of the script I used to shoot a YouTube video on 17 June. You can view the video here.

***

I want to say up front that I’m aware of the fact that what I understand about any matter is always a lot less than what I do not understand.

Which leads me, oddly enough, to the Gaza Flotilla story.

First, I want to read a couple three paragraphs of an opinion piece I wrote in 2001 titled The Palestinians are Doing it All Wrong. It was during a time of much fighting between Palestinians and Israelis, much brutality. I argued then that it might be well if Palestinians were to replace suicide bombings and mortar attacks with some kind of non-violent action.

I wrote:

"Everyone with a heart in his breast sympathizes with the Palestinian people in their struggle against Israeli power, influence and brutality.

"The courageous, self-sacrificing young Palestinians who volunteer to make bombs of themselves to kill Israelis are celebrated as heroes by Palestinians. In a traditional sense they are. Once upon a time we had a man ourselves who regretted that he had but one life to give for his country.

"Those young Palestinians who are willing to die as human bombs would certainly be willing to risk their lives – and that is what it would amount to – by just marching, just sitting down, just saying no to the deliberate killing of civilians, no to the initiation of violence, and no to their own inner rage."


Today then, as I noted above, we have the Gaza Flotilla story. We all know the outline of the story.

Saturday, June 12, 2010

Are You a Corpser?

The Canadian National Post reports that during a press conference in Toronto Salmon Rushdie and Elie Wiesel disagreed on matters of intellectual freedom. When Rushdie was questioned about censorship issues he said it is “ … inappropriate to think of any system of ideas as something that should be protected from debate."

Wiesel agrees to a point. He says the sole exception should be Holocaust denial, which “must be banned.” He says: "I don't want to touch the First Amendment.” At the same time, when he focuses on the "pain, humiliation and agonies" of the children of Holocaust survivors “I accept that freedom of speech in this case should be against the law.”

It is not reported on how Wiesel would think to criminalize holocaust denial without “touching” the First Amendment. Who is there who will ask him? The old fraud has created a universe.


I was to the other side yesterday (California--nothing exotic) to keep an appointment at the Veterans’ Hospital in La Jolla. Nothing big, a shot of steroids in the left knee so that I can walk on the Boulevard in the evenings. The VA is another expression of the “big guys” getting something right once in a while. Looks like they cured me of the lymphoma blood cancer. They ground out (literally) a carcinoma from the right temple, and last month cut off another from the right ear. I was thinking about that stuff yesterday because it appears there is a carcinoma budding on the left ear now. It’s still very small and I decided to not begin to get into it yet. But I was thinking about it as I returned south to Baja, taking care of this and that along the way.

And then last night I had an interesting dream. Maybe the dream is related to what was on my mind after the VA. Don’t know. In the old days the dreams were beautifully expansive, nowadays they are no more interesting than a stick in the dirt. This morning was neither.

Off and on my attention is drawn to the conspiracy theories around the events of
9/11. How much elaborate information there is available, so much of it appearing to present real questions about the downing of the towers themselves and how many professional engineers are contributing to the discussion. The word “Truthers” has become part of our vocabulary related to 9/11. Truthers want the truth to be revealed about the attack itself, and about those ostensibly behind the attack.

Truthers.

Okay. This morning I dreamed I was in a small office, there was a lady behind a desk and she had a few questions to ask me. The first question was:

“Are you a corpser?”

And that was the whole of the dream. What the hell is a “corpser”? We have the “Truthers,” and now we are about to have the “Corpsers”?




Tuesday, June 8, 2010

Dr. Mengele "Practicing" at Guantanamo

The New York Times reports that American doctors and other medical professionals are researching ways of inducing mental stress and pain without killing or permanently injuring their victims. The alleged experiments of the infamous Dr. Mengele on concentration-camp inmates were in many cases aimed at extending medical knowledge. Not so the work of his American successors: they are aimed at "improving" methods of torture and, supposedly, of interrogation.

Even this evil is, if possible, eclipsed by the work of other American medical professionals at the concentration camp in Guantanamo, Cuba, where efforts to keep recalcitrant inmates alive seem to succeed or fail according to the agenda of the captors and what they prefer to bury unseen and unheard in the prison's burgeoning cemetery.

It's chilling to reflect that the institution sponsoring these atrocities is the same one that sat in judgment at Nuremberg of Germans whose typical crime was to belong to the losing side of World War II. Even more chilling is the possibility that one day these modern Mengeles will find themselves at the mercy of a similar tribunal.

Thursday, June 3, 2010

A Norman Rockwell Painting

A strange reaction from the audience at Cal State Fullerton to the wind-up of the talk on 06 May, which reminds him of the Norman Rockwell paintings.

View this video here