Tag Archives | Boston Marathon

A Response To The Question “Why Do People Believe in Conspiracy Theories?”

Pic: Steve Lee (CC)

Lately there have been a slew of “Why Do People Believe In Conspiracy Theories” articles, no doubt a reaction to the slew of conspiracy theories offered after recent tragedies such as the Aurora shooting, the Sandy Hook shooting, and the Boston Marathon bomb attack. The reasons given in these articles mirror many of the thoughts I have expressed when speaking to those with their own conspiracy theories. I frequently argue with conspiracy theorists here on Disinfo, but not for the reasons they typically give (“government shill” is the most common). I certainly believe there are and have been conspiracies within the US government to break the law at the expense of other people’s lives for the sake of greed and lust for power. What annoys me about the articles I mentioned is that they have all left out, or at the least severely underestimated, a very important reason people believe conspiracy theories.… Read the rest

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Missing Man Wrongly Identified as Boston Bombing Suspect Found Dead

SunilTripathi1Sunil Tripathi had been missing for over a month.

Via USA Today:

A body pulled from the water off Indian Point Park in Rhode Island has been identified as the Brown University student mistakenly linked by amateur sleuths on a social media site to the Boston bombings.

Health Department spokeswoman Dara Chadwick said Thursday that the body of Sunil Tripathi was identified through dental records.

It was not immediately clear when Tripathi, who was last seen March 15, died. The cause of death has also not been determined.

Tripathi’s body was found Tuesday by members of the Brown University crew team.

The Pennsylvania native was on leave from the Ivy League school but was living in an apartment near campus in Providence, R.I., with several other students.

After the April 15 bombings of the Boston Marathon, crowdsourcing groups drawing upon photos released by the FBI of a suspect erroneously reported via Reddit, a social news website, that the person in a baseball cap strongly resembled the missing student.

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Beyond the Marathon Massacre: Questions, Questions, and Questions

Two_suspects_wanted_by_the_FBI_for_the_bombingI started writing on Patriots day in Massachusetts, the State holiday commemorating America’s revolutionary war in one of the cities in which it began. It was also the anniversary of the Waco FBI massacre aimed at right-wing fanatics and the demolition of the Murrah federal office building in Oklahoma City by right-wing fanatics.

But I was writing about the events in Boston with the bomb attacks on the Marathon, and the manhunt that locked the city down in a military maneuver.

I worked in Boston media for 12 years, many of them at WBCN when it was located in the Prudential Center, for many years the destination of the race. I also lived on Norfolk Street in Cambridge where the two men alleged to have of triggered the bloody mayhem were said to be living. I took my daughter to the Cambridge Hospital where the other “suspect, “ Dzhokhar Tsarnaev  may or may not recover.… Read the rest

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Are Alex Jones’ Conspiracy Theories Beyond the Pale?

The Los Angeles Times is running a poll of its online readers and the scary thing is that only 60% of them are voting “yes” (so far – you can vote too!)

Screen Shot 2013-04-19 at 3.26.01 PM David Horsey writes the accompanying article explaining why the number should be closer to 100%:

Usually, it would be best to ignore conspiracy-mongers such as Alex Jones and not reward him and his angry gaggle of paranoiac followers with any sort of attention. But, in a week when thoughts of the dead and maimed victims of the Boston Marathon bombings weigh heavy on the hearts and minds of most Americans, it is worth pointing out what a worthless waste of skin and bones Jones and his minions happen to be.

Nearly as soon as I heard about the bombings on Monday, I was certain that somewhere in the nutty right-wing blogosphere someone was already concocting a storyline that would blame the crime on President Obama and the federal government.

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Reddit Under DDOS Attack

reddit ddosPopular social news aggregation site is currently under what it is describing as a “malicious DDOS attack”. Reddit has been in the news quite a bit over the last few days due to a few community members  who have been analyzing photos and videos of the Boston Marathon bombing in an attempt to identify suspects. There’s no indication that the DDOS and the internet sleuthing are related, and at present, no one has claimed responsibility for the attack.… Read the rest

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The Orwellian Warfare State of Carnage and Doublethink

George OrwellAfter the bombings that killed and maimed so horribly at the Boston Marathon, our country’s politics and mass media are awash in heartfelt compassion — and reflexive “doublethink,” which George Orwell described as willingness “to forget any fact that has become inconvenient.”

In sync with media outlets across the country, the New York Times put a chilling headline on Wednesday’s front page: “Boston Bombs Were Loaded to Maim, Officials Say.” The story reported that nails and ball bearings were stuffed into pressure cookers, “rigged to shoot sharp bits of shrapnel into anyone within reach of their blast.”

Much less crude and weighing in at 1,000 pounds, CBU-87/B warheads were in the category of “combined effects munitions” when put to use 14 years ago by a bomber named Uncle Sam. The U.S. media coverage was brief and fleeting.

One Friday, at noontime, U.S.-led NATO forces dropped cluster bombs on the city of Nis, in the vicinity of a vegetable market.… Read the rest

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Boston Marathon Bombings an Evolving Story

Picture by Twitter user Boston_to_a_T

Like probably a lot of you, I’ve been horrified and saddened by the round of bombings that occurred today at the Boston Marathon.

I’ve struggled with how we’d cover it at Disinfo, and have reached the conclusion that perhaps letting the story evolve before launching into an analysis of the event is the best thing we can do. I only wish that the mainstream media had reached the same decision.

For now, I strongly recommend monitoring social media for citizen’s eye reportage of the event (Twitter) as well as whatever media organizations you trust – if any. Additionally, Reddit.com is a great source for evolving news regarding the event.… Read the rest

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