Saturday, September 05, 2009

Open Twoofer Thread

Had breakfast with my parents today and saw how well their efforts at getting settled in are going. My dad's Man Cave is looking less cave-y and slowly looking like it might turn into an office. Anyway, over breakfast he told me about a National Geographic show he watched and recorded on the DVR. (My parents love it because they don't have to fetch me to program the VCR whenever they go out.) I believe the title was "9/11 Science and Conspiracy." So I watched about the first 45 minutes of the two hour program. I'm looking forward to seeing the rest when I'm in a better mood.

Anyway, what I've seen so far moves pretty well in favor of the science. It goes through the general idea behind the official story (which happens to be backed by science, from what I can see). They got a couple of twoofers to look at an experiment they performed, showing that a (smaller than the support pillars) steel beam loses its strength under the heat of a jet fuel fire. It only took 3 minutes, 50 seconds, and the building fires lasted about half an hour. The segment started off talking about investigating how the twoofers interpret evidence, and one bit particularly caught my attention. One of them called "straw man" on the experiment because it doesn't debunk the controlled demolition (AKA the ninja drywall worker) theory. Uh, guy, that wasn't the point: It was about verifying one of the basic principles behind the official story: Intense heat can weaken steel without melting it. You were the one erecting a straw man there.

Anyway, that, along with everything getting cut and/or rattled by the impact of a 767 with a lot of inertia pretty well cemented the reasonableness of the official story. One point my dad covered more explicitly in our conversation was static and dynamic load. Once you had one floor falling on another, the expected happened. If if a floor had a high static load, that doesn't translate into dynamic load. I may have been able to carry some of my furniture to my apartment with my dad, but we'd have a much harder time catching that same weight.

Still more to come, from my dad's description. I'll update in the comments when I see it. I'm looking forward to the thermite experiments: It sounds like it's a lot of flash with little result: The stuff apparently burned off far too quickly to maintain any sort of high temperatures. I'll be seeing it myself, soon. Maybe stop over later on Labor Daybor.

As for the "feel" of the show: It's kind of like Mythbusters with a straight face. I don't expect any surprising results, though.


Joshua said...

Minor nitpick. I believe the 9/11 planes that hit the towers were 767s, not the (much larger) 747. Doesn't change the point, but if I didn't say it a Truther would have popped up to do it instead. ;P

Bronze Dog said...

Fixed. 747's just more iconic, so it stuck in my head, to my mistake.

Bronze Dog said...

Watched another big chunk of the show, and liking it still more. Got to hear one of the demolition experts crack the joke about the conspirators needing "stealth ninjas" to pull the job off.

Did like the thermite experiment. Twoofer appeals to "super-" and "nano-" thermite (real stuff, btw) fell kind of flat: Yeah, I'm sure that stuff has some real nifty advantages, but I don't see how being able to paint it on, having finer "nano" granules or whatever is going to make it that much more powerful. 175 pounds of the regular stuff wasn't able to damage a much thinner beam. I doubt a layer of painted thermite would do any better, even if it was more efficient or whatever.

There's only so much energy you can get out of available mass.

The show also went into the motivations behind conspiracy theories: Denial and narrative. In short, they can't accept that some low-tech guys were able to cause so much damage, just like many people couldn't accept that a lone gunman was able to kill the President of the United States of America. They also need to come up with stories that fit what they know. In short, a lot of them are trying to apply genre savvy to the real world.

Additional point that was made: The number of conspirators needed to pull off the Goldberg device. It got LOL-funny with the hypothesis of "rogue" copies of the planes filling in for the real ones, that land at secret government airstrips.

Unknown said...

Thank you for this post.

Having argued with twoofers, conspiracists, terrorist apologists, deniers or just about any general degenerates, I've since learned that it is better to simply ignore them or ridicule them than to try to logically argue with them as they are pretty much constitutionally incapable of reasoned arguments and debate.

The real mystery is how such a loose collective of failed abortions have managed to not spontaneously miscarry themselves before birth, ha!

Maybe twoofers make more sense than we originally thought: (read further I'm going somewhere with this) Maybe "twoofism" is nature's way of telling us to stay the hell away from the organism (the twoofer) as the "infected" individuals could carry deleterious mutation. So from an evolutionary perspective they would serve a function! That...or you know, they just suck :P

Twoofers, sucks to be you (yeah, 'you') Ha!