Coast to Coast cancels conspiracy show at the last minute after Dr. Kevin Barrrett requests fair time to respond
By Martin Hill
August 2, 2013
People who don’t like “conspiracy theories” have hostile tendencies, according to the latest psychological research
Coast to Coast AM, the internationally syndicated radio show and top late night ratings winner, has inexplicably “pulled it”- they cancelled an announced and publicized scheduled radio interview with conspiracy skeptic Dr. Michael J. Wood after Dr. Kevin Barrett asked for a chance to respond. It’s important to note that Dr. Wood, a defender of the establishment line, was specifically invited on the program to discuss Dr. Barrett’s article, noted in the Coast to Coast announcement [screenshot below.]. The coast to coast announcement stated
“First Hour: A story by Kevin Barrett on PressTV.ir has interprted a study as showing that conspiracists are “more sane” than conventionalists. However, that’s not correct according to one of the study’s authors, Mike Wood, from the School of Psychology at the University of Kent, Canterbury, U.K., who joins George Knapp to discuss the findings of his research. Further guest info, TBA.”
But when Dr. Barrett contacted Coast to Coast requesting an opportunity to respond, Coast to Coast scrapped the entire program and instead ran a segment on whales and dolphins at the last minute! It’s also noteworthy that Coast to Coast, while referring to Barrett’s article on their website, neglected to even link to it.
On July 27, Barrett noted that Coast to Coast cancelled the scheduled show, which had been slated for July 28th:
Conspiracy Theorists OK: Government Dupes Clueless, Humorless: “Coast to Coast Radio just canceled its plans to broadcast a show tonight on my widely-read Press TV article on research suggesting that “conspiracy theorists” are saner than government dupes. Note that they did not even link my article!!! Apparently they had planned to give Michael Wood, the author of one of the studies I cited, a platform to attack my article – while refusing to even link the article, much less invite me on the air to defend it. When I protested, and asked that they allow me to defend my article, Coast to Coast decided to pull the show. They replaced it with a show on cetaceans. You don’t have to be a “paranoid conspiracy theorist” to wonder why Coast to Coast is so averse to giving me a fair hearing. Below is my new article rebutting Wood’s attack on my Press TV piece. -KB”
LibertyFight.com sent an inquiry to Dr. Michael Wood asking about this matter:
“Dr. Wood, Do you have any comment on why Coast to Coast yanked your scheduled and announced interview at the last minute, only after Barrett requested a fair time to respond? Given the fact that this all started from Barrett’s article, why do you think they refused his offer of response or direct debate with you? Any theories on why they refused to link to the actual article which is the point of discussion? Additionally, would you be willing to debate Barrett directly on an hour-long live radio program?”
Dr. Wood responded:
|Dear Mr. Hill-Thanks for the inquiry. I don’t think it’s accurate to say that “this all started from Barrett’s article;” it started with my research, which C2C happened to find out about through Barrett’s article. When they first contacted me, they had read Barrett’s article and assumed that it was an accurate representation of the study, and wanted to have me on to talk about my research. When I told them that the article was inaccurate they said that was interesting in itself and wanted to talk further about what we’d found and how it lined up with the way it was portrayed in the alternative media. Controversy sells, I suppose, which is probably why they included a reference to the whole business in the show description.
When C2C called me to let me know that I’d been bumped in favour of the whale and dolphin show on the 29th, the producer said that they were just really excited to have the whale and dolphin people on ASAP so my interview had been pushed back a few weeks. They didn’t say anything about Barrett, in fact until I read the article you linked I had no idea he’d contacted them at all.
Anyway, any interview about the study in question would involve addressing some of the media misrepresentations of it – it’s part of publishing research that’s in the public interest. It’s not accurate to say that the show would be a “platform to attack [Barrett’s] article” except in the sense that discussing the details of my own research is at odds with his own interpretation of it. What debate there was has been pretty much hashed out in our various blog posts and articles at this point, so I don’t think a radio show debate would be necessary or constructive. Barrett’s either a poor journalist, a troll, or both, and in any case he’s not automatically entitled to a platform to debate everyone he misrepresents whenever they try to discuss their own work.
Barrett, a Ph.D. Arabist-Islamologist, author and radio host, once noted that he “got witch-hunted out of the University of Wisconsin for researching and speaking out on controversial subjects like 9/11 and Palestine.” He has been has been featured in the New York Times, FOX news and many other outlets. His website is truthjihad.com and he has a daily radio show. Archives can be found here. He also writes for Veterans Today.
The recent controversy all started when Dr. Kevin Barrett published an article on Press TV titled New studies: ‘Conspiracy theorists’ sane; government dupes crazy, hostile. In it, Barrett stated, in part, “But now, thanks to the internet, people who doubt official stories are no longer excluded from public conversation; the CIA’s 44-year-old campaign to stifle debate using the ‘conspiracy theory’ smear is nearly worn-out. In academic studies, as in comments on news articles, pro-conspiracy voices are now more numerous – and more rational – than anti-conspiracy ones. No wonder the anti-conspiracy people are sounding more and more like a bunch of hostile, paranoid cranks.” Barrett’s article was referring to Woood’s new study “What about Building 7?” A social psychological study of online discussion of 9/11 conspiracy theories. Note that Dr. Wood’s blog entry initially announcing and linking to his new study had only generated one single response, from a reader named John asking where the link for the report was. This testifies to the fact that mainstream apologists, whether they like it or not, do not generate the interest, publicity and discussion that the alternative media does. The only reason that this study got any attention at all is because Barrett made a issue out of it.
Wood’s blog dated July 10th where he made the announcement of his new study, along with the lone comment and Wood’s reply, is here: [Excerpt]
What does online discussion tell us about the psychology of conspiracy theories?
Posted on July 10, 2013 by Mike Wood
I’ve just had a new paper published in Frontiers in Psychology along with Karen Douglas, my co-author and PhD supervisor. Frontiers is an open-access journal, meaning that anyone can read the full text for free, so if you’re interested go ahead and check it out.
“What about Building 7?” A social psychological study of online discussion of 9/11 conspiracy theories
On July 13th Dr. Wood posted an update noting the publicity which his study garnered, thanks to Barrett, in which he rebutts Barrett’s claims [Excerpts]:
Setting the record straight on Wood & Douglas, 2013
Posted on July 13, 2013 by Mike Wood
“…Our recently published Frontiers study on online communication, “What about Building 7?” A social psychological study of online discussion of 9/11 conspiracy theories, has been the subject of some chatter on the Internet – but not quite in the way I had hoped. A story by Kevin Barrett on PressTV.ir has interpreted the study as showing that conspiracists are “more sane” than conventionalists, and, given that this is an appealing headline for long-suffering conspiracists, has been copy-pasted around the Internet in a highly uncritical fashion.”…..Anyway, the damage seems to have been done – the PressTV article has been reprinted on a lot of different websites, forums, and social media thanks to its sensationalised headline and smug triumphalism. I’m ambivalent about this – I like that my research is being recognised since I am inherently a media whore, but I’m less happy about the fact that it’s only seeing wide exposure after having been twisted and misinterpreted by an extremely biased article on Iranian state-run media. Still, the http://spp.sagepub.com/content/early/2012/01/18/1948550611434786.abstract”>last article that we published was met with headlines like “Psychologists prove conspiracy theorists are all crazy!” (there’s no room for nuance on the Internet, is there?) so I suppose it all balances out. I just hope that some people will read the paper itself rather than taking PressTV’s word for what it says.”
On July 28th Wood continues to write about his study and the Barrett controversy:
The Wood & Douglas (2013) commission report: Whitewash or coverup?
Posted on July 28, 2013 by Mike Wood
“As I write this the fuss about our Frontiers article, “What about Building 7?” A social psychological study of online discussion of 9/11 conspiracy theories, has mostly died down, so now seems like a good time to do a bit of a postmortem and take a look at some of the issues that have come up since the whole ruckus kicked off with Kevin Barrett’s awful PressTV article and its infinite copy-pastes around the blogspamosphere.”
Wood noted that he had been interviewed on two radio shows regarding the matter: Google Hangouts interview with the Renegade Variety Hour, and Legalise Freedom [MP3 here.] Wood then goes on to use the cynical demeaning ad hominem type smears regarding ‘conspiracy theorists,’ referring to ominous 3AM phone calls and blinking out Morse Code with his eyes:
“…Third, well, at least he’s not claiming I got a 3AM call from George Soros demanding that I go back on my findings. There’s no profit motive here, because any future employers would probably not take their cues from smear job articles on Iranian state media. I just don’t like people abusing my work to spread self-serving misinformation…” “…The one thing Barrett got mostly right, and which he’s still going on about, was the hostility finding: we did find that conventionalist comments were more hostile on average than conspiracist comments. Some people have looked at this finding and concluded that it constitutes evidence that conspiracists really are more mentally well-adjusted than conventionalists, that the rest of Barrett’s misrepresentations don’t really matter, and, for good measure, that They Got To Me (if you look closely, during the Renegade Variety Hour interview you can see that I’m blinking out SOS in Morse Code with my eyes)…”
Apparently Dr. Wood has been a guest on Coast to Coast am previously, as they still have a guest bio page up for him here.
Art Bell, longtime host of Coast to Coast, recently announced that he is going back on air soon. Bell, although he has a large fan base, is another shill and alleged pervert, who won’t touch the truth about 9/11/01.
–Martin Hill is a Catholic paleoconservative and civil rights advocate. His work has been featured in the Los Angeles Daily News, San Gabriel Valley Tribune, The Orange County Register, KNBC4 TV Los Angeles, The Press Enterprise, LewRockwell.com, WhatReallyHappened.com, Infowars.com, PrisonPlanet.com, Economic Policy Journal, FreedomsPhoenix, Haaretz, TMZ, Veterans Today, Jonathan Turley blog, The Dr. Katherine Albrecht Show, National Motorists Association, RomanCatholicReport.com, Republic Broadcasting Network, WorldNetDaily, OverdriveOnline.com, Educate-Yourself.org, Dr. Kevin Barrett’s Truth Jihad radio show, Strike-The-Root.com, ActivistPost.com, Los Angeles Catholic Lay Mission Newspaper, KFI AM 640, IamtheWitness.com, Redlands Daily Facts, BlackBoxVoting, The Michael Badnarik Show, The Wayne Madsen Report, Devvy.com, Rense.com, The Contra Costa Times, Pasadena Star News, Silicon Valley Mercury News, Long Beach Press Telegram, Inland Valley Daily Bulletin, L.A. Harbor Daily Breeze, CopBlock.org, DavidIcke.com, Whittier Daily News, KCLA FM Hollywood, The Fullerton Observer, Antiwar.com, From The Trenches World Report, and many others. Archives can be found at LibertyFight.com and DontWakeMeUp.Org.