Below is an exchange from the Paracast Forums, where I can no longer abide the administration's lack of fairness and intellectual integrity. My comments are bolded blue; the rest are by other posters there, and are presented in black without bolding. They were made after I had criticized the unfairness of banning "Emma Woods" for posting anonymously, while allowing "Archie Bedford" to post unsupported attacks on Carol Rainey. The post by "Bedford" that crossed the line for me is included in the exchange below, highlighted in yellow ("Bedford" has since revealed his identity to me in a private message, which totally misses the point) .
Res Ipsa Loquitur.
Originally Posted by "ArchieBedford"
Do you see me carrying out a persistent and vindictive campaign to trash the reputation of a single public figure, 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, for 4 years? Where is my website in which I fabricate fraudulent evidence to destroy someone, and send out thousands upon thousands upon thousands of emails directed at the entire staff of the university where the target of my vindictive hate campaign is employed (including some long-retired and even dead)? Have I persistently mailed every author, researcher and public figure who has even the remotest interest in the UFO issue again, and again, and again, with tons and tons of attachments, all aimed at trashing and destroying one single individual - all under an assumed name?
Produce your evidence of equivalence, please.
Yes, I do... although you actually go after more than just one. Take the post above, re: Carol Rainey. One can have legitimate disagreement with what she writes, but you make it personal, and claim an intimate knowledge that goes directly to her motivations... but you provide not a scintilla of evidence for it. Shameful that you would do this, and shameful that people here have let it go on while at the same time stifling other voices that present an alternative point of view.
Here's the flipside of the "Who are you, Emma Woods" question: who are you, "Archie Bedford"?
This isn't about taking sides in the dispute - this is about trying to ensure that an even standard is practiced in this forum.
Or maybe the following has come to be considered fair, honest and objective commentary supported by the hard facts that people have demanded from others here:
"because I know Carol so well and the tricks she uses, I am almost 100% certain she is perpetrating some kind of fraud here with this handwriting business - probably taking two separate letters from the same person and pretending them to be allegedly from two different people in order to get the testimony of this 'expert' on film. It's relatively easy to fool a gullible audience on youtube this way, and Rainey is very practiced at it."
Originally Posted by The Pair of Cats
Let's just ban everyone who doesn't totally agree with whatshername.
That's not what it's about - it's about looking for the same standard for everyone. If you're going to ban Emma Woods for being anonymous and attacking people, the same standard should apply to anyone else, in this case the equally anonymous "Archie Bedford".
But the Paracast seems to be satisfied with the double-standard, so good for everyone here. For my part, I expect more... and I just don't see that here in this case.
Look, I can be a confrontational guy, and I tick a lot of people off because of it (you should see some of the "debates" I've been in at the local pubs). Part of it comes with the territory of being trained as a lawyer, part of it comes from being raised by two great parents who taught me to never be afraid to express my opinions forcefully, and part of it comes from my own unwillingness to suffer fools gladly, because life is too short. Call that last part ego, or arrogance - call it whatever you like, but at least you'll know who you're talking about, because something else that my parents taught me was that when you criticize someone else publicly, you better make sure that you have the intellectual integrity to do it in person, under your own name.
Like me, or dislike me - I don't care. But you'll always know who I am, what I say, and where to find me.
Now, "Emma Woods" is a difficult case. She has remained anonymous to all but a few people, while mounting a serious and sustained campaign against David Jacobs that questions his integrity. But she has also provided some evidence, incomplete though it may be, to back up her claims. That evidence can ultimately be examined without reference to her identity.
"Archie Bedford" has provided nothing. Nothing.
And yet "Emma Woods" is not welcome at The Paracast, and "Archie Bedford" attacks Carol Rainey with impunity. That's the kind of fundamental error that tells you everything you need to know about a person, or a group of persons. It's a proverbial line in the sand for me... and it should be for you, too.
Barring a complete mea culpa by Gene Steinberg, who runs The Paracast, and is ultimately responsible for what goes on there (memo to Carol Rainey: when someone accuses you of "fraud" without any supporting evidence, you might want to contact your lawyer), I won't be listening anymore. I can guarantee that you won't ever hear me on the show again, and you won't see me post in their forum anymore - and I encourage everyone reading this to do the same, from potential guests to potential listeners.
Just as the truth abhors a vacuum, it abhors a double standard of the kind that The Paracast practices. My only regret is that it's taken me so long to see it for what it is. But my parents taught me something else - better late than never.