9/11 conspiracy theories? That’s so 2002

The Arctic Beacon, of which I’d not heard before, publishes an article about a “former Bush team member” (meaning, apparently, a former chief economist in the Labor Department) who thinks that the Twin Towers were demolished from within.

“First, no steel-framed skyscraper, even engulfed in flames hour after hour, had ever collapsed before. Suddenly, three stunning collapses occur within a few city blocks on the same day, two allegedly hit by aircraft, the third not,” said Reynolds. “These extraordinary collapses after short-duration minor fires made it all the more important to preserve the evidence, mostly steel girders, to study what had happened.

“On fire intensity, consider this benchmark: A 1991 FEMA report on Philadelphia’s Meridian Plaza fire said that the fire was so energetic that ‘beams and girders sagged and twisted, but despite this extraordinary exposure, the columns continued to support their loads without obvious damage.’ Such an intense fire with consequent sagging and twisting steel beams bears no resemblance to what we observed at the WTC.”

The whole thing seems mindbogglingly implausible — it assumes a malice and perhaps more importantly a competence on the part of malign forces within the government that is pretty hard to credit. But if you’re interested in such things this is one of the less obviously nutty presentations thereof. Something to take your mind off Guantanamo and Extraordinary Rendition and all-out assaults on Social Security and permanently exempting the hyper-rich from taxation and extensions of the Patriot Act. Ah, for the good old days when who was responsible for people dying horribly in flaming skyscrapers was all we had to worry about. That was the life.

Linked to from several places of late, like metafilter and Fortean Times.

UPDATE: A big ol’ rambling retrospective blog entry on the whole thing, bristling with links.

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