Now social science is catching up with physical science. The latest issue of American Behavioral Scientist, reviewed by Peter Phillips and Mickey Huff, examines the concept of SCADs: State Crimes Against Democracy. Phillips and Huff explain: "Professor Lance deHaven-Smith from Florida State University writes that SCADs involve highlevel government officials, often in combination with private interests, that engage in covert activities for political advantages and power."
Some SCADS, such as the CIA-orchestrated assassinations of dozens of heads of state including JFK, and the election fraud that twice put Bush in office, are designed to change policy, often in a more warlike or pro-imperial direction, by replacing one leader or group of leaders with another. Others, like 9/11, change policy mainly by impacting public opinion. This latter category is related to other deceptive publicity stunts which abuse democracy by foisting lies, often spectacular ones, on the general public. Lets call all of them, whether crimes or just hoaxes, LYPS: LYing Publicity Stunts.
One recent example: Republican operatives James O'Keefe and Hannah Giles hoaxed the media by claiming the community group ACORN dispensed advice to them when they were dressed up as pimp-and-prostitute. The pictures of their get-up had a powerful impact on public opinion. Yet it turned out that they had been dressed normally when they dealt with ACORN. Their dress-up act had nothing to do with ACORN. But thanks to the media's lack of due diligence--the NY Times has gone so far as to refuse to correct its false stories--the impression that ACORN helped O'Keefe and Giles when they were dressed in pimp n' ho costume will remain forever indelibly imprinted on public consciousness.
Young rank amateurs, O'Keefe and Giles got caught; most purveyors of LYPS, especially the old pros, presumably do not, even when pulling off scams on the scale of 9/11, "the most successful and most perverse publicity stunt in the history of public relations" according to Medal of Science winner Lynn Margulis. But then, what does "getting caught" mean? Prosecution? These acts are almost never prosecuted. Exposure in the mainstream media? The corporate monopoly media is very reluctant to expose such scams, perhaps because it is complicit in so many of them. Exposure in the alternative media? But which alternative media? Ultimately we are thrown back on our own resources, including our capacity for rational-empirical thinking and our built-in BS detectors, in figuring out when we have been lied to.
Readers of this blog already know that the Fort Hood shooting, the underwear bombing farce, the suicide plane-bombing of the IRS office in Austin, and the "truther shooting" at the Pentagon are all under greater or lesser degrees of suspicion.
But not all LYPS incidents are violent, "terrorist" events designed to make us turn to the government for protection. Here is a trade-wars LYPS candidate: the anti-Toyota scare stories currently saturating the corporate media, especially the runaway Toyota Prius of San Diego.
Why the anti-Toyota media terror campaign? Former National Security Agency officer Wayne Madsen reports in the Rock Creek Free Press (March 2010):
The Obama administration, according to WMR’s Asian sources, is waging an economic warfare campaign, coupled with industrial sabotage, against Japan through a pre-planned operation directed against the Japanese automobile manufacturer Toyota. WMR has learned that the Obama administration authorized the anti-Toyota campaign as a warning shot to Japan over its reformist government’s insistence that the US pull its military troops out of Okinawa.
More evidence that the U.S. oligarchy has declared economic war on Japan: One of the Japanese reformist government's top leaders, 9/11 truth seeker Yukihisa Fujita, was savaged last week in an absurdly deceptive Washington Post editorial. The Post, a reputed CIA mouthpiece, may be echoing the anglo oligarchy's fears that a newly independent reformist-led Japan may finally end the 65-year-old U.S. occupation, and perhaps even bring down the whole U.S. empire by exposing the truth about 9/11.
Given this background, consider the multiple implausibilities in the tale of the runaway Prius. According to the AP story, driver James Sikes spent more than 20 minutes panicking on the freeway with his Prius's accelerator stuck to the floor and the car racing along at over 90 miles per hour. During the twenty minutes of freeway terror, Sikes allegedly made two calls to 911. The joyride supposedly ended when "a California Highway Patrol officer eventually pulled alongside the car and told Sikes over a loudspeaker to push the brake pedal to the floor and apply the emergency brake" according to the AP.
The AP story tells us: He called 911 and reported that his gas pedal had become stuck, and spoke to dispatchers in two calls that spanned 23 minutes. The 911 dispatcher repeatedly told Sikes to throw the car into neutral and turn off the ignition. Sikes often didn't respond to her instructions, but he later said he had put down the phone to keep both hands on the wheel.
Twenty-three minutes at 90 m.p.h. before a speeding cop uses a bullhorn to tell him to apply the brakes?! I guess you had to be there.
The A.P. story continues: When asked why he didn't simply put the car in neutral, Sikes responded: "You had to be there. I might go into reverse. I didn't know if the car would flip. I had no idea how it would react."
If Sikes was panicked during the 20-minute joyride, he didn't sound like it when he was talking to 911:
Sikes spoke in calm, measured tones on the emergency call, and later said he was "embarrassed" by the incident. "I'm just embarrassed about that," he said. "You have to be there. That's all I can say."
If you're skeptical...well, so are the folks at Toyota, though it's tough for them to say so:
Don Esmond, senior vice president of automotive operations for Toyota Motor Sales, said all Priuses are equipped with a computer system that cuts power to the wheels if the brake and gas pedals are depressed at the same time - something Sikes was doing. "It's tough for us to say if we're skeptical. I'm mystified in how it could happen with the brake override system," he said.
Read their LYPS, Don. Then help us spread the word, so that someday, when people read trivial "news" stories like this--or momentously important ones telling preposterous lies about events like 9/11-- showing skepticism won't be so tough.