Message #1

---------- Forwarded message ----------
Date: Sat, 4 Jul 1998 15:05:14 -0500 (CDT)
From: james fetzer 
To: Clint Bradford 
Cc: Drmantik
    james fetzer 
Subject: Re: Mantik's Mistakes


A few comments on your comments are appended below.  David's response to
your earlier post will be posted sometime in the near future.  I have de-
leted portions of your comments that were irrelevant to my replies here.


On Fri, 3 Jul 1998, Clint Bradford wrote:

> Dr. Mantik,
> Thank you very much for your reply to my message posted in the JFK
> newsgroups.
> I purchased a copy of ASSASSINATION SCIENCE at the November JFK/Lancer
> sessions. I didn't have a chance to get to it while in Dallas, but I
> placed it in my carry-on luggage for the flight home. After viewing
> Groden's THE ASSASSINATION FILMS several times, and seeing the same
> definite limo slowing right before the final head shot(s), I was
> interested in what proof researchers had for "alteration" of
> the Zapruder film.
> I feel the "best" copies ( to the original as the
> general public can get) are contained on either Lifton's "Research Copy"
> videotape, and/or Groden's THE ASSASSINATION FILMS video. Groden offers
> over a dozen "treatments/versions" of the Zapruder film - from the
> contrasty, virtually worthless Clay Shaw trial-era copy to a copy that
> Groden claims is extremely close to the original film. Yet in each and
> every one of them, I see very consistent movements...
  The fact that Groden has several consistent copies does nothing to show
  whether the film has been edited/altered, since they are all copies of
  what is presumably the edited/altered film.  You do not say whether or
  not you have subjected the film to minute anaysis of individual frames
  or comparison with other films, etc., as David has done, so I find only
  the slightest reason to think that by viewing these films over and over
  you have a basis for maintaining that the film was not edited/altered.

> So when I began reading Jack White's list of points that "prove"
> tampering, I almost yelled out, "What is he looking at?" Groden may be a
> good photo manipulator, but he's not good enough to alter a dozen
> renditions on his video.
  Jack White is a meticulous investigator.  That you and he may or may not
  have been looking at the same thing is possible, but that does not show
  that you are right and he is wrong.  That is a presumption on your part.

> So that's where I'm coming from on this particular issue. I do not
> believe that Groden is a master manipulator of images, and he offers
> over a dozen renditions of the Zapruder film that are all consistent
> with each other. And all these renditions demolish almost all "claims of
> alteration" included in ASSASSINATION SCIENCE.
  See my point above.  Nothing here "demolishes" claims of alteration in
  ASSASSINATION SCIENCE.  I am surprised you would make such an assertion.

> I sincerely believe that we have to dismiss witness' statements of "the
> limo stopped" - as well as "slowed down" - if they were BEHIND the limo
> during this sequence. Just leave them out of the "number crunching."
> Here's why.
> Something dramatic is happening. People sense something's wrong. The
> Presidential limo is moving directly AWAY from them. At a downward
> angle. And the brake lights come on...
> We cannot hold eyewitnesses' testimony to be entirely accurrate in that
> situation - the difference of "slowing" and "stopped" in that situation
> just might be beyond the depth perception capabilities of humans.
> Try looking at vehicles moving down that street away from you and see if
> you really believe you can differentiate between, say, 10-11 MPH and 5
> MPH. It's a tough task. Even if you ARE looking for it with preconceived
> notions. 

  The way a theory or hypothesis is tested is by taking it seriously and
  attempting to determine whether or not it is supported by the evidence,
  which OF COURSE must be interpreted in light of the theory or hypothesis
  to see if it fits.  If it fits, then it supports it; if not, it does not.
  You cannot test the Copernican hypothesis that the Sun is the center of
  the system of planetary orbits without considering how things would look
  from that point of view.  That is not "looking with preconceived notions"
  with or without a grin.  That is instead a misrepresentation of research. 

> >>You go on to ask where my apology and errata are for this error. Your >>question assumes that this had already been pointed out to me (it had >>not). Is there reason to believe that someone had already brought this >>to my attention?
> Sorry. I saw what I thought were obvious errors in basic reporting. I
> mis-assumed that they had been brought to your attention earlier. I
> believe Dr. Fetzer has read similar critiques from me - and others -
> since the book was published.
  Every critique that was worth passing along was passed along, just as I
  passed along this latest post of yours.  (You seem to be implying that 
  I have been remiss somehow; but I am not on theses lists and only see
  what is forwarded to me by Jack or others, to which I respond as appro-
  priate.  Lots of nonsense has also been said about ASSASSINATION SCIENCE.

> >>Regarding errata, I am sending a copy of this response to our editor, 
>>Jim Fetzer, for possible inclusion on his Web site.
> That would be marvelous.
> This is where we both disagree. I have over a dozen renditions of the
> Zapruder film (mentioned above) that all show the exact "significant
> slowing" of the Presidential limo.

  Of course they do.  That is the degree to which slowing appears to have
  remained AFTER the original film was subjected to editing/altering.
> Since I have not met you, please know that this was not intended to
> "slur" you, personally.  I simply feel very frustrated seeing a book
> with the word, "science," in its title - but with chapters including
> mis-quotations, partial quotations, lack of  basic research...

  A book of 480 pages on any technical or complex subject is unlikely to
  be flawless.  I consider the points you have noted to be worth making
  but also incidental to the major conclusions drawn in the book.  They
  do no have enough significance to alter the findings David has drawn.

> There's a chapter in ASSASSINATION SCIENCE written by a gentleman who
> swears to this day that Greer killed the President. Roy Schaeffer cannot
> even identify the heritage of HIS copy of the Zapruder film: "It just
> showed up in my mailbox one day..." he told me in a telephone
> conversation. From what he told me, his must be a Clay Shaw trial-era
> copy - which is so contrasty as to be worthless, when compared to what
> we have available today. All that aside, his chapter on the limo's blink
> rate fails to offer the most basic of facts: how did you arrive at
> the manufacturer's blink rate? How do you know what it was supposed to
> be? Schaeffer doesn't offer answers to these questions - he does not
> know the answers.

  As I recall, I sent Roy Schaeffer a copy of Lifton's version of the
  film, whether or not he recalls my having done so.  What difference
  are you supposing it makes if Roy has what he takes to be evidence
  of Greer shooting Kennedy?  That was not an issue he discussed in
  his contribution to the book.  Are you implying that if anyone has
  an opinion with which you disagree, that his work on other subjects
  ought to be discounted?  I would also observe that, if Greer shot
  Kennedy, then that would have to be edited out.  Since we have lots
  of evidence the film has been edited/altered, how can you--or anyone
  else, including Groden, for that matter--tell that this is not some-
  thing that has been edited out?  In a situation where the evidence
  is inconclusive, the appropriate attitude to adopt is one that is
  inconclusive, namely:  that you simply cannot tell because there is
  not enough evidence available.  Maybe he did and maybe he did not.

> >>6. Finally, you ask about my motives...
> Again, I apologize for any personal/professional slur - that was not my
> point. My point was to make readers look at citations themselves, and do
> a little digging themselves. I am not a paranoid person, but I think
> we'd all be better off if we questioned authority a little more often.
> >>...I just want to know what happened...I trust that we can henceforth >>bypass issues of motive. They are usually dead ends.
> Agreed.
> >>Please feel free to forward any more editorial comments to Jim >>Fetzer..
> Jim wrote me earlier this year, when I stated that I was befuddled at
> what was published in his book, and that I was intending to publish an
> article refuting several claims in it. If I remember correctly, he
> desired a "first look" at anything I had to publish (a ridiculous
> request - I would write to individual authors involved for
> comments/input, though).

  I would have to look back for the post, but I was offering my assistance
  to you (if you wanted to take advantage of the offer) to field some of
  your criticisms to those who could most appropriately comment on them or
  respond to them.  There was nothing "ridiculous" about my offer, which
  did not impose any obligations upon you.  I was attempting to be helpful
  to someone who seemed to have a sincere interest in these matters rather
  than brushing him off.  I was offering to put your comments in the hands
  of the individual authors.  I did not intend to deal with them myself,
  unless that would have been appropriate.  Your attitude is unjustified.

> >>Surely there are more items that need to be revised in a second 
>>edition of our book--just keep looking!
> I do not believe that Dr. Fetzer, yourself, nor I would desire an "Open
> Forum" type of "Errata Page" on Fetzer's site for all-comers to post
> anything they desire. But I welcome the "avenue" to get items for an
> Errata sheet via Dr. Fetzer. I hope he takes you up on the suggestion,
> and offers regular, substantiated Updates to it.
> >>As a personal note, however, none of the critiques heretofore received 
>>(from >>anywhere) have affected my view that the Z film was altered...
> And healthy, honest debate should be welcomed. I was surprised as anyone
> when I - as NEW to this topic as I am -  was able to find "problems"
> with some authors' recently published writings.
> Again, I sincerely thank you for your reply. I hope to meet you at the
> JFK/Lancer November in Dallas 1998 conference.
>  - Clint Bradford
> cc: Jim Fetzer, Vince Palamara, Lisa Pease.
   While my reaction to your criticism and comments is qualified by the
   responses I have made above, Clint, at least you have taken the time
   to consider some of these issues seriously and in some detail.  That
   is far more than has been the case with certain other critics, whose
   remarks do not appear to have been motived by the search for truth.


   James H. Fetzer