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Author Topic: TIGHAR Legal Defense Fund  (Read 617448 times)

Tim Mellon

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Re: TIGHAR Legal Defense Fund
« Reply #570 on: April 03, 2014, 07:57:25 PM »

Thank you Jeff, for that eloquent endorsement. I spent Monday and Tuesday in Casper, Wyoming (I'm making my way homeward today).  On Monday we took Mr. Mellon's deposition and on Tuesday his lawyer took mine.  All-day sessions of being grilled by lawyers is nobody's idea of fun but Tim and I were up to the task.  We conducted ourselves like the gentlemen we try to be.  I won't say there wasn't a tight jaw from time to time but there was no acrimony, no furniture was thrown, and no animals were harmed in the taking of the depositions.

I am, of course, not at liberty to disclose what was said but I think it's fair to say that the depositions were an educational and perhaps enlightening experience for all concerned.

From my personal perspective, I am impressed with, and tremendously grateful, to our legal team who spent many hours in preparation and two grueling days in carrying out these depositions.  I'm also keenly aware of the cost we must bear for that work.  TIGHAR attorney, board member, and expedition team member extraordinaire Bill Carter is working pro bono at great expense to himself. Wyoming attorney John Masterson and his associates don't have that option but their dedication to our cause is no less than Bill's.  We were about $30,000 in debt to the firm BEFORE this go-'round so the need to fund this rodeo is real and immediate.  Your help is important and appreciated.

I agree, in general, with Ric's assessment.

I am counting on Bill Carter's ambassadorial talents to bring some closure to our differences.
Tim
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Ric Gillespie

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Re: TIGHAR Legal Defense Fund
« Reply #571 on: April 04, 2014, 09:45:59 AM »

I am counting on Bill Carter's ambassadorial talents to bring some closure to our differences.

I share Tim's faith in Bill Carter.  He has the advantage of being not only a skilled attorney but also a member of TIGHAR's board of directors.  Bill is intimately familiar with all of TIGHAR's work having served on numerous TIGHAR expeditions including three trips to Nikumaroro. He is a man of many talents. Let's hope he can, as Tim says, help us bring some closure to our differences (but NOT the way he brings closure to our differences with scaevola). :-)
 
« Last Edit: April 04, 2014, 09:52:16 AM by Ric Gillespie »
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Monty Fowler

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Re: TIGHAR Legal Defense Fund
« Reply #572 on: April 05, 2014, 04:58:14 AM »

*looks at photo of Bill, involuntarily thinks of that Godawful film Texas Chainsaw Massacre.*

LTM, who finds dry paint pretty darn interesting,
Monty Fowler, TIGHAR No. 2189 CER
Ex-TIGHAR member No. 2189 E C R SP, 1998-2016
 
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Ric Gillespie

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Re: TIGHAR Legal Defense Fund
« Reply #573 on: April 05, 2014, 06:43:29 AM »

*looks at photo of Bill, involuntarily thinks of that Godawful film Texas Chainsaw Massacre.*

True story:
It was the 1980 Yankee Magazine article "The Unfinished Flight of the White Bird" that first got me interested in cold-case aviation accident investigation. The author of that article was an Icelandic immigrant by the name of Gunnar Hansen.  Gunnar was a giant bear of a man and in 1974, as a grad student in Texas, he had picked up some extra bucks playing the villain Leatherface in - you guessed it - The Texas Chainsaw Massacre. 
In 1984 Gunnar and I collaborated on the early pre-TIGHAR searches for the engine of the White Bird in the Round Lake Hills of Washington County, Maine.
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Dale O. Beethe

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Re: TIGHAR Legal Defense Fund
« Reply #574 on: April 05, 2014, 08:12:00 PM »

Personally, I'm impressed with a lawyer who can run a chainsaw and is willing to get good and dirty!  By the way, I find the "White Bird" just as, if not more so, fascinating than the Electra.  I'm hoping y'all can get to that one someday as well!
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Ric Gillespie

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Re: TIGHAR Legal Defense Fund
« Reply #575 on: April 05, 2014, 08:16:57 PM »

By the way, I find the "White Bird" just as, if not more so, fascinating than the Electra.

Don't tell anyone, but so do i.  L'Oiseau Blanc is the most important lost airplane in history.

  I'm hoping y'all can get to that one someday as well!

We fully intend to get back to that project (30 some-odd expeditions to date).  Stay tuned.
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Ric Gillespie

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Monty Fowler

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Re: TIGHAR Legal Defense Fund
« Reply #577 on: April 17, 2014, 08:56:18 AM »

One word - Next!

And, I like the way Dr. Kaufman writes: "...it is in my judgment an utterly, vanishingly small probability."

LTM, who finds dry paint really interesting right now,
Monty Fowler, TIGHAR No. 2189 CER
Ex-TIGHAR member No. 2189 E C R SP, 1998-2016
 
« Last Edit: April 17, 2014, 09:32:31 AM by Monty Fowler »
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Ric Gillespie

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Re: TIGHAR Legal Defense Fund
« Reply #578 on: April 17, 2014, 08:57:26 AM »

As with Tim's expert reports, TIGHAR's expert reports have been filed with the court and are now public.  They are attached here for your edification.
Note that we have not named Jeff Glickman as an expert witness in this case.  We remain confident of Jeff's expertise but we felt that fresh eyes on the video would be useful not only from a litigation standpoint but also for helping us better understand the underwater environment and plan our best way forward in finding actual wreckage.

Neither Jim Ebert nor Les Kaufman have any previous association with TIGHAR.
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Monty Fowler

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Re: TIGHAR Legal Defense Fund
« Reply #579 on: April 19, 2014, 05:57:49 AM »

The closure that I am hoping for, and hoping for before Niku VIII, is that both parties just walk away.

Kind of like the moment in those old Clint Eastwood spaghetti Westerns, where the music builds to a fever pitch and everyone's eyes are squinty and fingers are flexing over their pistols ... but in this case when the music hits the cresendo, the gunmen come to their senses and say, "Nahhhhh, not worth it" and simply walk away.

Into a glorious Niku sunset, of course.

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: TIGHAR Legal Defense Fund
« Reply #580 on: April 19, 2014, 06:33:43 AM »

These two gentlemen - Kaufman and Ebert, are impressively qualified - and very impressive not only in capability, but in their dispassionate detachment.  They make clear and reasonable statements as to their own observations and do so very objectively. 

I'm carried beyond the answer that was so needed to the suit and on to something larger for us to live by in certain of Kaufman's words in particular, as he speaks of the plaintiff's expert's report -

"...entirely lacking in rigor...it is important to remain skeptical of any purported identification unless the object has been examined directly... Nothing of the sort can be done with only a video in hand."

These words represent a gold standard for the researcher and must be the timeless handmaidens of well-founded research, IMO.  I would not know how to sum the whole thing better than that - scientific rigor and the need to go and touch to verify are utterly vital; the footage alone suggests many things, depending on the observer, and can prove nothing.

These experts also reveal overwhelming reasons, in my view, as to why these things are very likely NOT Electra wreckage.

In the end, Tim is of course entitled to his personal view of the footage and what it means.  I can respect that, but that does not mean the rest of the community must accept his view. 

Now we have opposing expert witnesses and our own judgment to rely on.  That judgment must be clear to most observers.  So with all due respect and hoping that ambassadorial goodwill is at-work, I hope that these realities will help carry us to an early and happier conclusion than we've been living with for some time. 

I am grateful for the level of scientific rigor finally visited upon this issue and find it done in the best spirit of what TIGHAR is about.  Rigor and highly qualified objectivity have come to bear.
- Jeff Neville

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« Last Edit: April 19, 2014, 06:36:19 AM by Jeffrey Neville »
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Monty Fowler

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Re: TIGHAR Legal Defense Fund
« Reply #581 on: April 19, 2014, 10:36:00 AM »

All very true, Mr. Neville, sir.

And that is one of the things that so many people find so frustrating about this whole mystery - me included some of the time. "How can this (insert artifact/research/theory here) be anything but the final answer?" people will ask, or declare, sometimes rather loudly.

Because sometimes, a cigar really is just a cigar. And sometimes, the cigar is really a llama. Llamas spit. And don't ask me how I know that.

LTM, who finds dry paint really interesting right now,
Monty Fowler, TIGHAR No. 2189 CER
Ex-TIGHAR member No. 2189 E C R SP, 1998-2016
 
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Mark Appel

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Re: TIGHAR Legal Defense Fund
« Reply #582 on: April 19, 2014, 02:14:56 PM »

"...Rigor and highly qualified objectivity have come to bear..."

What he said...
"Credibility is Everything"
 
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Ted G Campbell

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Re: TIGHAR Legal Defense Fund
« Reply #583 on: April 20, 2014, 08:43:39 PM »

All,
If Mellon’s experts have identified and outlined certain “aircraft parts” in the 2010 video can’t we scale backwards to see if there is anything there?  What I mean by back scale is:

Hopefully we know the depth of the camera at the time the object was photographed and the distance to the sea floor or the focal length of the camera.  And;

Would it then be possible to back scale the object outlined i.e. if we find by back scaling the object – say a wheel outlined – and find it would be 10 times larger or smaller then the original L10 equipment this should shut down the claim.

Also, I was re watching the “Dive 14” video and noticed something at 15:58:44:04 that appears to be a perfect dark rimmed circle – has Jeff taken a close up look at this object?

Ted Campbell
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Mark Appel

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Re: TIGHAR Legal Defense Fund
« Reply #584 on: April 21, 2014, 12:11:15 AM »

All,
If Mellon’s experts have identified and outlined certain “aircraft parts” in the 2010 video can’t we scale backwards to see if there is anything there?  What I mean by back scale is:

Hopefully we know the depth of the camera at the time the object was photographed and the distance to the sea floor or the focal length of the camera.  And;

Would it then be possible to back scale the object outlined i.e. if we find by back scaling the object – say a wheel outlined – and find it would be 10 times larger or smaller then the original L10 equipment this should shut down the claim.

Also, I was re watching the “Dive 14” video and noticed something at 15:58:44:04 that appears to be a perfect dark rimmed circle – has Jeff taken a close up look at this object?

Ted Campbell

"Scale" is a very real issue in the identification of the objects in question. However, as TIGHAR's experts have pointed out, that's only one of many legal, scientific, and evidentiary challenges the plaintiffs face. Despite these, it is clear Mr. Mellon and his team share the same ultimate goals as TIGHAR.

I for one am hoping that the sheer weight of those combined evidentiary challenges persuades all involved that good faith should and will prevail and TIGHAR can turn all of its very modest resources to the very damn serious fund raising required for Niku VIII. Only a well-planned and funded Niku VIII can resolve any of the issues or questions that precipitate from existing videos or sonar images. Anything else is the waste heat of speculation, dissipated to the atmosphere and doing no work...
"Credibility is Everything"
 
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