I live in Wiltshire, which is a four hour, sixty pound train journey via multiple changes and a tube ride away from Cambridge, but only 45 minutes away from Bristol. So while I couldn't attend Gage's talk at Cambridge University last saturday, I was able to see him in Bristol on tuesday. I had intended to stick around meet him afterwards but the Q&A dragged on too long and I didn't want to miss the last train home so I had to leave early. Anyway, I can assure you there was no 'conspiracy theory' in his presentation. In fact he's even taken out Larry Silverstein's 'pull it' comment. When asked about this in the Q&A he said he took it out because he was fed up with arguing with people over what 'pull it' meant, prefering instead to stick to the science.
Now assuming the presentation I saw was the same as the one given to RIBA in London, I know David Aaronovitch is talking crap when he says "What they mean is that George Bush and the Zionists brought down the towers. The RIBA let itself out to a conspiracy theory organisation whose theories are utterly insane."
The only theory that is utterly insane is NIST's thermal expansion theory. At one point in the presentation I saw, after outlining the thermal expansion theory, Gage said something like "There are so many things wrong with this, but for the sake of time I will only list twelve!" and then went on a rapid fire tirade simply on why the idea of heated floor beams remaining rigid, breaking numerous bolts and studs in unison and pushing against a girder, instead of just sagging, is ludicrous. If Aaronovitch, who attended the RIBA lecture, accepts the official story of 9/11, then that is what he endorses!
Apparently, Aaronovitch has agreed to debate Gage ...
When question time began, quick on his feet and first to the microphone was David Aaronovitch, Times columnist and self-styled expert on ‘conspiracy theories’. Charlie Skelton, a freelancer who writes for The Guardian, observed that of all Aaronovitch's four points, presented as questions like ‘what happened to the passengers on the planes?’, none addressed the subject matter of the presentation. Gage's bald answer to each was essentially: ‘I don’t know. I’m not an expert on conspiracies but on building design.’ When Aaronovitch complained that the meeting was biased against the official story of 9/11, he was challenged to take part in a balanced debate with Richard Gage. Two hundred people heard him say yes, but one organiser predicted that he never would.Of course Aaronovitch consistently claims that there isn't any evidence for our position. Richard Gage's presentations are full of such hard evidence which Aaronovitch claims doesn't exist. So Aaronovitch's ego drives him to engage in all kinds of mental gymnastics to dismiss the evidence being presented. As I've said before, it's very much like Cartman in that South Park episode with the 'Fishsticks' joke. There's some psychology for you Mr Aaronovitch!
And what does Aaronovitch say about the presentation? ... absolutely nothing whatsoever ... other than an anecdote about someone in Gage's audience and his apparent anti-semitism. Note the highlighted box quote: "Most of us can avoid sharing air time with known racists". Does he have anything other than guilt-by-association arguments?