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Author Topic: The Earhart Conspiracy Theory Industrial Complex  (Read 15940 times)

Monty Fowler

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The Earhart Conspiracy Theory Industrial Complex
« on: April 05, 2014, 08:33:34 AM »

I have been devoting some serious thought to the upcoming Niku VIII trip (cross country flights are good for longgggg contemplative periods) and have centered on one particular idea and the possible outcomes of it.

What if TIGHAR is right ? - and this time comes back with the conclusive, no-way-it-can-be-discounted, any-idiot-artifactTM? What effect will that have on what I have dubbed The Earhart Conspiracy Theory Industrial Complex - TECTIC for short.

In a normal world populated by reasonable, rational people, the any-idiot-artifactTM would seem to demolish TECTIC at all levels, since it utterly refutes and destroys all assertions and foundational premises that TECTIC in its numerous permutations is based on. In a normal world.

But as anyone who has been involved in/following this two-decades-plus saga can attest, when it comes to TECTIC, words like normal and reasonable do not always apply. Take the time to review even a fraction of the many, many websites, listservs, blogs, etc., devoted to any facet of TECTIC. TIGHAR shows up fairly regularly, and the comments/assertions/statements directed at TIGHAR and its current Earhart hypothesis are generally anything but kind. Some border on what I would consider an almost pathalogical hatred.

How will those people involved in TECTIC to any degree react when then entire foundation of their known Earhart universe is abruptly and definitively removed, by irrefutable proof?  I can see two possible outcomes:

1) It will make absolutely no difference. The TECTIC true believers are true believers in every sense of the word. Not even God himself could shake them from their convictions. The any-idiot-artifactTM will be viewed as a temporary setback, nothing more.

2) The more reasonable of the TECTIC true believers will acknowledge that they were wrong. Those who do so will exhibit a commendable level of humility and grace by admitting that they are, in fact, human, and thus more than capable of making mistakes.

It's going to be an interesting summer ...

LTM,
Monty Fowler, TIGHAR No. 2189 CER
Ex-TIGHAR member No. 2189 E C R SP, 1998-2016
 
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JNev

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Re: The Earhart Conspiracy Theory Industrial Complex
« Reply #1 on: April 06, 2014, 11:42:08 AM »

As usual, Monty, you raise an extremely interesting point.

I'd say "TECTIC" is a very real thing.  Look at the hordes who remain transfixed on the probability, if not certainty as they see it, of a singular outcome for Earhart and whom so readily contest others who view it differently.

I'll not exclude myself from some of that, lest anyone take offense - I certainly do have a bias in terms of what I think happened, among other possibilities (well, duh, just follow a few of my posts... "it shows!" - Cap'n Ron).  But beyond us armchair weenies is a whole level of kingdoms, each crenelated in its own ways to hold fast to and defend the notion.  Add to that some very real property rights, e.g. copyrights, etc. to rather extensive writing in support of this or that 'answer' as to the lost aviatrix and it raises the stakes in a real way.  It is an industry, and it's complex alright - and to the point, quite organic.

I may have overlooked something, but so far as I've been able to tell to-date, TIGHAR may be the only one who openly holds her notions as hypothesis, something to not be concluded without further showing per se, but tested.  I pray others will point me to the evidence of my error if I have overlooked this approach in other seeking organizations.

To shinny a bit further out onto that limb, I'll add that only one outfit has laid hands on anything that could be sho' 'nuff evidence of an Earhart presence - all others still argue solely on a view of apparent probabilities, as they interpret the knowable (and sometimes speculated) actions of that flight that fateful day.  Not that some haven't tried - hats off to Nauticos, and those who dug at Saipan, etc.

Mostly the more common theme seems nested in a visceral conviction: as man gazes out on the scene, it cannot be missed that the Pacific is expansive, and my belief is that the human mind overlooks the focus of a Noonan to find land when in a land plane and the presumption is "so much water, that has to be it."  And yet Saipan and the Yellow Peril are irresistible hand-maidens in so many accounts, of course.

Are we all mad?  No, not enough to be committed, mostly, but fascinated - and as humans cannot seem to resist the apparently genetically-imprinted urge to encamp and industrialize ourselves in various clusters; and we cannot escape the human leaning that if we only work hard within our tribe we can gather more berries than the next, and therefore survive as the fittest.  So blindly in some cases, no doubt, that some will take any eventual smoking gun as a mere temporary set-back to their own pursuit ("...you'll see - we'll prove that thing washed up in a storm, she wasn't there...").

So yes, 'tis something Eisenhower might have been concerned with - "TECTIC" seems to be with us.  I guess I prefer to see it as a blow for liberty that it is, however, and not so much a threat.  Let the buffalo chips fall where they may, and may the most able tribe gather the most. 

One thing about 'chips - they may not taste so great, but they burn well.  So here's to seeing Ric come on one night with the great news of "there's plenty of buffalo chips" - it will be an interesting day in TECTIC.
- Jeff Neville

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Monty Fowler

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Re: The Earhart Conspiracy Theory Industrial Complex
« Reply #2 on: January 31, 2015, 09:55:45 AM »

The level of vitriol that TECTIC directs at TIGHAR continues to amaze and dismay me. The furor raised over the recent Smithsonian article is just one example. The sheer viciousness of the comments, many of them pointedly personal, makes it clear to me that there will most likely never be common ground where we can all meet in the middle.

Which is sad. Because all of us want the same thing, ultimately - to find out what happened to Amelia Earhart and Fred Noonan. They deserve to have the final chapter of their story written.

LTM,
Monty Fowler, TIGHAR No. 2189 ECSP
Ex-TIGHAR member No. 2189 E C R SP, 1998-2016
 
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Don Dollinger

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Re: The Earhart Conspiracy Theory Industrial Complex
« Reply #3 on: February 06, 2015, 10:45:01 AM »

Quote
What if TIGHAR is right ? - and this time comes back with the conclusive, no-way-it-can-be-discounted, any-idiot-artifactTM? What effect will that have on what I have dubbed The Earhart Conspiracy Theory Industrial Complex - TECTIC for short.

I saw a Kennedy Assassination Documentary a few years ago and one of the narrators stated (paraphrased) that if the truth ever comes out that so much misinformation has been put out over the years that no one will believe it.  He went on to state further that the conspiracy theorists are so emotionally invested in their belief that they will adjust their conspiracy theory to fit any new unrefutable evidence.  IMHO even the AIA will not convince some people. 

As proof of this, I saw video footage and stills on the internet from the recent China moon landing.  They flew over the area of the first US moon landing and you can still see the footprints as well as the tire tracks of the lunar roving vehicle (LRV) and the the LRV itself.  Following a link to a conspiracy theorist website had them all abuzz about how they could prove that the video and photos were faked because we never actually landed on the moon.

Depending on what is discovered during the next expedition it could prove to be a very entertaining interesting year watching the alternate Earhart theory forum websites.

LTM,

Don
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James Champion

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Re: The Earhart Conspiracy Theory Industrial Complex
« Reply #4 on: February 06, 2015, 06:30:06 PM »

It's similar to the conspiracy theorist who say that Amelia's flight was a cover for secret US reconnaissance of military bases on Japanese held islands. They never consider basics of their premise; 1) her plane did not have a large format high-quality camera (only Amelia's personal tourist-grade one), 2) her flight plans would have put her over most islands at night, 3) there were no hatches in the belly of the plane,  4) as we know from 2-2-V-1 research, the best window for photography was covered before she left Miami, and, 5) a single plane trying to do significantly-useful general reconnaissance is like trying to win the lottery by buying a single lottery ticket.

When it comes down to it, the conspiracy-type personality doesn't want to consider anything that might disprove their viewpoint, especially facts.  That's why I like Tighar and it's scientific approach to the investigation.
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Don Dollinger

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Re: The Earhart Conspiracy Theory Industrial Complex
« Reply #5 on: February 09, 2015, 02:33:06 PM »

Quote
When it comes down to it, the conspiracy-type personality doesn't want to consider anything that might disprove their viewpoint, especially facts.

Not to mention that I have read in multiple places that her friends stated that she was a known pacifist.  Doing anything that aided the "military industrial machine" would be completely counter to her pacifism.

LTM,

Don
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Craig Romig

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Re: The Earhart Conspiracy Theory Industrial Complex
« Reply #6 on: February 09, 2015, 05:02:18 PM »

Let us suppose this senario. Two planes
 Four aviators. Two directions. Amelia was the decoy flight. Or cover story. The other flight ended up in or on Mili Atoll. This was something that came to my mind the other night.
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Don Dollinger

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Re: The Earhart Conspiracy Theory Industrial Complex
« Reply #7 on: February 10, 2015, 01:58:57 PM »

Let us suppose this senario. Two planes
 Four aviators. Two directions. Amelia was the decoy flight. Or cover story. The other flight ended up in or on Mili Atoll. This was something that came to my mind the other night.

IMHO - Possible, but improbable.  What I have gleaned from that Theory is that it is nearly all supported by eye witness testimony.  I spent years in Asia (Japan, Korea, Phillipines) and if I had to pick an average looking Asian man out of a line up I probably could not do it unless they had a very distinguishable characteristic like a large scar.  My Asian friends would have the same difficulty picking out an American along the veins of "they all look alike to me".  That is not to say that an Asian friend that you spent time with would not stand out to you.  What physical characteristic would AE or FN have that would prompt someone to remember them from a brief glance of them years before?  Your scenario is definately food for thought though...

LTM,

Don
Don
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Craig Romig

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Re: The Earhart Conspiracy Theory Industrial Complex
« Reply #8 on: February 10, 2015, 04:18:51 PM »

I wouldn't put much thought into that senario. I doubt its true. I do wonder where the Mili landing story came from. How it was created.
 Its also interesting to think our government may have thought of a plan like that.
« Last Edit: February 10, 2015, 04:20:52 PM by Craig Romig »
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John B. Shattuck

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Re: The Earhart Conspiracy Theory Industrial Complex
« Reply #9 on: February 11, 2015, 06:55:26 AM »

Quote
Which is sad. Because all of us want the same thing, ultimately - to find out what happened to Amelia Earhart and Fred Noonan.

I'm not so sure Monty.  Certainly there are many who simply desire to find out what happened and see their final chapter written.  But beyond that, I think a lot of what fuels the TECTIC fires is the desire to be "the ones who solved the mystery"  or at least be on the team that had it right all along; the "winning" team as it were. 
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JNev

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Re: The Earhart Conspiracy Theory Industrial Complex
« Reply #10 on: February 11, 2015, 06:56:31 AM »

Fertile ground for novel writing, guys... wow.

Me thinks poor old Amelia was, at the core of her public persona, a rather basic aviator who loved flying and did learn to be the master of a transport airplane rather well - if not the full aviator's craft of radios, etc., by the time she perished.  It truly seems she was on a simple mission dreamt up by none other than her own ambitions and love of flying and her rather creative publicist husband, George Palmer Putnam, to do nothing other than fly around the world in a land plane along an equatorial route.  If she were to continue flying, the bills needed paying; a great story was needed.  Strangely, an even greater story came from her tragic end than would have been the case of a footnote triumph - and not one that Putnam welcomed, I'm sure.

If I get lost in the Pacific basin, it's three days of cookie cutter search and rescue effort and a kindly 'well he done it that time'.  Game over, no one left to wonder about it but my heirs.  Amelia gets lost... well, here we all are - nearly 78 years later! 

Funny thing, it seems like the conspiracy notions find new roots as time goes by.  Maybe that should tell us something.
- Jeff Neville

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JNev

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Re: The Earhart Conspiracy Theory Industrial Complex
« Reply #11 on: February 11, 2015, 10:01:51 AM »

Quote
Which is sad. Because all of us want the same thing, ultimately - to find out what happened to Amelia Earhart and Fred Noonan.

I'm not so sure Monty.  Certainly there are many who simply desire to find out what happened and see their final chapter written.  But beyond that, I think a lot of what fuels the TECTIC fires is the desire to be "the ones who solved the mystery"  or at least be on the team that had it right all along; the "winning" team as it were.

I've watched the 'TECTIC' notion for a while, and while I saw humor in the idea at times, I have to acknowledge the incredible passions and sense of competitiveness that drives much of this.  There's no stopping that - and every comment made about 'TECTIC' only adds more fuel, it seems to me.

Yes there is a greater community 'interest' out there, I think.  I also think they mostly watch silently and that it is a pity - like where religion is concerned and the 'unchurched' won't come in because of what they see that is wrong.  In fact if we're not careful we can resemble the same thing - blind allegiance to dogma, kool aid drinkers - you name it, we can be 'it'.  The ordinary guy on the street won't drop a nickel on that.

I think it is that way among many blogs where issues of most any interest are covered - and we who have much to say - positive, neutral or in vitriole, are the exception: if you consider the numbers that are recorded, far more watch for whatever reasons of their own than will engage - which leaves the engaged interests strapped for meaningful support.  And the more violent dissent that boils over, the more they watch silently and hold back - or so it seems to me, anyway.

So maybe there is something to skipping the whole TECTIC discussion (which I just stepped into, didn't I...) - and trying to do something that might be more positive for more to feel invited to join.  A 'broader community' might not be a bad thing to want.
- Jeff Neville

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Craig Romig

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Re: The Earhart Conspiracy Theory Industrial Complex
« Reply #12 on: February 11, 2015, 01:37:24 PM »

Exactly Jeff. The bashing of theories makes me kind of sick. I just want to know the truth. Reading about how others try to disprove theories is very upsetting to me as a reader. 
Bashing for use as a advertisement to a side or theory. May keep the search to the top. But the bashing drags it back down. Once you get there.
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JNev

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Re: The Earhart Conspiracy Theory Industrial Complex
« Reply #13 on: February 12, 2015, 06:11:11 AM »

Good points.  Especially as to bashing of theories.

The only way to disprove a theory about this loss is to prove another theory correct.

This, and some offline comment I received last night have brought me to think further about the competitve nature of this search and how some seem to embrace that.  It can be as if there is only a puny audience among whom the principles seek sponsorship.  Again, it is as if one could just knock the other theorist's off, then the 'right' theory could gain the sack of marbles. 

That is a form of 'zero sum budgeting' in my view that is false, and may help explain why public contributions are such a struggle for all (not that they would not be a struggle anyway - resources are not resources if not scarce).

I'm not well understood in the broader point, so I'll try once more: if the principals of these various searches could think positively in terms of a greater community of interest - one that is a large tent covering the whole of the various 'camps', they might attract more serious interest - and potential for support - in broad terms. 

Instead, we have a great deal of fairly negative critical commentary by this one and that flying about at times, and I believe the 'community, such as it is, just looks silly to the average lurker.  I know that because I've actually stepped back for a bit to observe this - and have real empathy for that point of view now.  Don't take my word for it, ask your not-so immersed friends and neighbors to look in for a while at this whole arena and then give their thoughts.  A few among them may already have thoughts: "interesting, but looks mostly like a bunch of people with different ideas trying to disprove the next guy, but not much positive in it; I'll just wait for the press to tell me if anyone finds her..."

Conversely, if the various principals - and again, I'm not singling any out - were more careful in dealing with their promotions to keep a positive image, a larger and more serious base of support might be fostered for themselves and all.

Goodwill can go a long way.  It is like cooperation among otherwise competitve air carriers during a major storm: pick each other apart and none will fly; help your neighbors and all may fly.

Not naming names or pointing fingers here, lest any feel trampled by my comments here - but it's in the eye of the beholder.  Perhaps if the beholder is wise and decides the shoe fits, the community may see a tiny shift toward a more positive atmosphere.  In time, should that catch on, those who don't embrace it will be seen more clearly as stubbornly withdrawn and dependent on a shrinking base of potential support.  Those who do embrace the positive and pitch their ideas on the merits of them may find more enthusiastic support.

All very lofty notions - and as I gaze about, I realize how unlikely these poor words are likely to resonate, other than to bring me an email or two or three demanding to know just what the hell I'm talking about...

So I will now go back to my vantage point as a lurker for a bit to simply watch and ponder the 'community', such as it is. 

It is disappointing.  Certainly I believe some search prospects are stronger than others and have my own baises, but when the more nasty criticisms fly I am certanly not drawn more closely to the source. 

So, it is refreshing to step back for a while at times... Not to name names.
- Jeff Neville

Former Member 3074R
 
« Last Edit: February 12, 2015, 06:20:54 AM by Jeffrey Neville »
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Craig Romig

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Re: The Earhart Conspiracy Theory Industrial Complex
« Reply #14 on: February 12, 2015, 11:24:11 PM »

What got me. Was the way the bashing was done on other websites.  In there presentations the bashing was strict and broke up the story that was being told. My first year in college one of our assignments was to go to college events (plays etc). We had to write two paragraphs about each event. One was strictly what the event was about. The second was our thoughts on the event. As a critic basically

So the way they had mixed thier bashing with the subject of the article made me sick. Not only of that article. But of the whole website and theories presented.

However you are right disproving other theories are one way to sway others that your theory may be more credible.  And that can draw advertisement to your theory.

How to do all of this is all in how it is presented. 
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