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Posted: 9/1/2004 11:39:31 AM EST
A poisonous kind of justice
When Dr Thomas Butler noticed vials of plague bacteria were missing from his Texas university lab, he did the right thing and informed the FBI - only to find himself the prime suspect in a bio-terrorism investigation. Now he's in jail, but his fate was sealed by paranoia and prejudice. Rose George investigates
31 August 2004

news.independent.co.uk/world/americas/story.jsp?story=556734
Link Posted: 9/1/2004 11:45:06 AM EST
Why am I not surprised that a lesbian activist is angry with John Ashcroft, and using left-wing internet e-rags to bash him?

Link Posted: 9/1/2004 11:45:27 AM EST
Fuck this Ashcroft bashing. He's the most pro-2nd amendment AG the US has ever had. God help us all if the fat lesbian (Janet Reno, not Rosie O'Donnell) had been AG during 9/11. White male gunowners would be in detention camps by now.

God Bless AG Ashcroft!
Link Posted: 9/1/2004 1:25:18 PM EST

Originally Posted By Jeepster:
Fuck this Ashcroft bashing. He's the most pro-2nd amendment AG the US has ever had. God help us all if the fat lesbian (Janet Reno, not Rosie O'Donnell) had been AG during 9/11. White male gunowners would be in detention camps by now.

God Bless AG Ashcroft!



What he said...
Link Posted: 9/1/2004 1:26:37 PM EST

Originally Posted By motown_steve:
Why am I not surprised that a lesbian activist is angry with John Ashcroft, and using left-wing internet e-rags to bash him?




Ditto....
Link Posted: 9/1/2004 1:27:08 PM EST

Originally Posted By Kacer:
A poisonous kind of justice
When Dr Thomas Butler noticed vials of plague bacteria were missing from his Texas university lab, he did the right thing and informed the FBI - only to find himself the prime suspect in a bio-terrorism investigation. Now he's in jail, but his fate was sealed by paranoia and prejudice. Rose George investigates
31 August 2004

news.independent.co.uk/world/americas/story.jsp?story=556734




he didn't inform the FBI, he informed campus security


After Butler had spent the weekend looking for the vials, he did what he was supposed to do and called the university security officer. Together they searched again. Maybe the containers had been misplaced or accidentally sterilised. It happens in labs: vials go through the autoclave at the end of a busy day by mistake. It's no big deal. But Butler didn't find them, and the FBI was called in.


Link Posted: 9/1/2004 1:30:50 PM EST

Originally Posted By Max_Mike:

Originally Posted By Jeepster:
Fuck this Ashcroft bashing. He's the most pro-2nd amendment AG the US has ever had. God help us all if the fat lesbian (Janet Reno, not Rosie O'Donnell) had been AG during 9/11. White male gunowners would be in detention camps by now.

God Bless AG Ashcroft!



What he said...



and what he said
Link Posted: 9/1/2004 1:31:38 PM EST
I'd be willing to bet there is a lot more to this story than this liberal reporter/writer included in the article.
Link Posted: 9/1/2004 1:38:54 PM EST

Originally Posted By Kacer:
A poisonous kind of justice



And this article (and anyone who believes its spin) is a poisonous kind of moron.
Link Posted: 9/1/2004 1:40:57 PM EST

There are two sides to every story.

This article said the FBI nailed him for "lying" to them - but won't say what that "lie" was, only that he finally admitted that the vials had been accidently autoclaved or destroyed and then suddenly, boom, on go the cuffs. Umm... I don't think so.

I think there's a LOT more to this story (and to the good Dr.'s actions) that this article is not saying.

And being a "highly respected and world-renown scientist" means diddly-squat. I've personally been involved in a case where a Nobel prize candidate-level scientist was fired for a myriad of misconduct including falsifying data and other gross violations. Prestigious honors and fame mean nothing.


IMO, there's a LOT more to this story than what you're being fed by this account, you can bet on it.

Link Posted: 9/1/2004 1:42:24 PM EST

Originally Posted By Red_Beard:

Originally Posted By Kacer:
A poisonous kind of justice
When Dr Thomas Butler noticed vials of plague bacteria were missing from his Texas university lab, he did the right thing and informed the FBI - only to find himself the prime suspect in a bio-terrorism investigation. Now he's in jail, but his fate was sealed by paranoia and prejudice. Rose George investigates
31 August 2004

news.independent.co.uk/world/americas/story.jsp?story=556734

he didn't inform the FBI, he informed campus security

After Butler had spent the weekend looking for the vials, he did what he was supposed to do and called the university security officer. Together they searched again. Maybe the containers had been misplaced or accidentally sterilised. It happens in labs: vials go through the autoclave at the end of a busy day by mistake. It's no big deal. But Butler didn't find them, and the FBI was called in.

Yep.

And it doesn't say WHO finally called the FBI. I bet it wasn't the good Dr. Butler.

Link Posted: 9/1/2004 1:44:45 PM EST
Let's see.......

If Ashcroft is causing liberals to go into complete coniptions, then he MUST be doing it right!
Link Posted: 9/1/2004 1:47:21 PM EST
The bottom line way I look at it is this:

If he ran the lab-and he KNEW there are/were extremely dangerous toxins, bacterias, etc. present, HE'S FUCKING RESPONSIBLE FOR THEM MISSING NO MATTER WHAT.

Like these "super intelligent" fuckwads at Los Alamos that keep "losing" or "misplacing" critical nuclear weapons data. Lock 'em up, throw away the key. Teach responsibility to the next crop of researchers.

Come on-you don't LOSE that kind of stuff. It ain't paperclips or your stapler.
Link Posted: 9/1/2004 1:51:40 PM EST

Originally Posted By motown_steve:
Why am I not surprised that a lesbian activist is angry with John Ashcroft, and using left-wing internet e-rags to bash him?




+1
Link Posted: 9/1/2004 1:54:35 PM EST
[Last Edit: 9/1/2004 2:03:11 PM EST by The_Macallan]

Originally Posted By gamesniper:
The bottom line way I look at it is this:

If he ran the lab-and he KNEW there are/were extremely dangerous toxins, bacterias, etc. present, HE'S FUCKING RESPONSIBLE FOR THEM MISSING NO MATTER WHAT.

Like these "super intelligent" fuckwads at Los Alamos that keep "losing" or "misplacing" critical nuclear weapons data. Lock 'em up, throw away the key. Teach responsibility to the next crop of researchers.

Come on-you don't LOSE that kind of stuff. It ain't paperclips or your stapler.




er...um... that's... oh... um... stapler.... uh... that's my...


um...have... um... you have... um.. stapler... ra... fr.. em.. burn... building...


Link Posted: 9/1/2004 2:08:39 PM EST
I remember this. The doc took them himself or some such idiocy. It was a righteous bust.
Link Posted: 9/1/2004 2:21:44 PM EST
FAS supports Butler, their web site tells the truth of what the good Dr. did.
Seems to me he fucking LIED about what he did and was caught.

www.fas.org/butler/
Link Posted: 9/1/2004 2:40:44 PM EST

Originally Posted By KA3B:
FAS supports Butler, their web site tells the truth of what the good Dr. did.
Seems to me he fucking LIED about what he did and was caught.

www.fas.org/butler/



Where do you read THAT?

Geeze you guys are SO ENTRENCHED in the GOP that all Republicans MUST be Angels, and all Dems MUST be devils! Whereas I think MOST (politican-like) Republicans AND Democrats are likely "devils" and only a very FEW of each party are indeed angels.

Obviously Ashcroft is CORRECT on his 2nd amendment stance, and while that is certainly appreciated, it does NOT excuse behavior that is ill-befit of an individual in his position! (Any more than Clinton's behavior should have been excused... (By many Dems and liberal types, myself NOT included) you know the "cigar" thing ;)

FAS Note: Thomas M. Lehman, a distinguished geologist at Texas Tech University, sent this letter regarding the Thomas Butler case to colleagues and interested others on April 9, 2004.
--------------------------------------------------------------------------------

Dear --
The following letter is an addendum to my earlier "essay" on the trial of Dr. Thomas Butler. I am writing again because several of my colleagues and acquaintances here at Texas Tech have stopped me in the hall to ask what I may know, and it was apparent to me that most folks here on campus still do not have any idea what happened right here to one of our own colleagues.

Again, the following comments are solely my own perceptions and opinions - and they are very decidedly biased ones now. I am convinced that a great injustice was committed against Dr. Butler, and I have definitely taken a side in this matter. Some colleagues here were critical of the personal and emotional tone of my previous letter, but I make no apologies for my defense of Dr. Butler. It is difficult to witness someone's life being ruined before your eyes - and really, for no good reason.

I heard via e-mail and phone from many people (literally around the world) because my earlier letter was posted on the FAS website (fas.org/butler). I have not been able to respond to very many of you, but I can assure you that Dr. Butler was well aware of the great outpouring of moral support for him.

I was at the sentencing hearing for Dr. Butler on March 10, along with quite a few of his supporters. Not unexpectedly, the Lubbock news media has done its usual job of "in depth" reporting on the case. In other words, unless you were there, you have no idea what happened in the courtroom. For instance, in the headline story on the day following Butler's sentencing, the Lubbock Avalanche-Journal incorrectly reported the length of his prison term. Many of you read that article, but how many read the correction on page 2 the following day? And this was the culmination of what the AJ had earlier labeled their "number one news story of 2003." One great lesson I've learned in following Dr.Butler's case is that you literally should not believe ANYTHING you read in the paper or hear on the evening news. Like most people I have been quick to make a judgment for or against someone on the basis of scanty, subtly (or not so subtly) biased reports on the news (e.g., Martha Stewart, Michael Jackson, etc...Oh SURE she's guilty, and OF COURSE he did it - well; now I'm not so sure). Anyway, what happened to Tom Butler has taught me that, unless you yourself sat in the courtroom everyday, and listened to all the testimony, and investigated the matters yourself, you are kidding yourself if you think you can come to an informed opinion on the basis of what we call "the news." Unfortunately, I had to leave town for a week following Dr. Butler's sentencing. And so, I've only now had the chance to sit down and give you my thoughts on the matter (if you care to read them).
Link Posted: 9/1/2004 2:52:39 PM EST
Link Posted: 9/1/2004 3:16:31 PM EST

Originally Posted By Kacer:
Obviously Ashcroft is CORRECT on his 2nd amendment stance, and while that is certainly appreciated, it does NOT excuse behavior that is ill-befit of an individual in his position!



What "behavior that is ill-befit of an individual in his position" are you talking about? Actually investigating a possible criminal activity with bioterrorism implications?
Jesus, the pathological hatred some people have towards AG Ashcroft really boggles the mind. The country survived Janet Reno (well short a few thousand citizens who would probably be alive if she hadn't prevented us from taking BinLaden when the Sudanese offered him because there wasn't enough evidence to support an indictment). All AG Ashcroft has done is help prevent another major terrorist attack in the USA, while respecting civil liberties.
Link Posted: 9/1/2004 3:36:44 PM EST

tinyurl.com/3pyrc

"They seem to be trying to destroy him," Professor Robert Curl of Rice University, who won the Chemistry Nobel Prize in 1996, told The Scientist. "This is the kind of behavior that says, 'You're going to plead to something or we're going to overwhelm you. You're going to have to defend yourself on so many fronts, you can't manage,'" Curl said.

"I would plead with other scientists to get active in this case, contribute what they can to the Butler defense fund," Agre said. "I don't think the American population is going to put up with this," he predicted. "Plenty of scientists I know are not liberal democrats. Some of them are quite conservative, and they are appalled as well," he said.

Some scientists have already admitted publicly that the prosecution of Butler has turned them away from bioterrorism research. Stanford University Professor Stanley Falkow, a noted plague researcher, said last month that he has since destroyed all his samples to avoid possible conflict with the government. Agre said that he knows another eminent researcher who has done the same, but withheld that scientist's name to protect the person's privacy.

tinyurl.com/5fjdg

"As you may (or may not) know," Dr. Lehman wrote to his colleagues, "politically speaking I am a very conservative Republican -- and so it came as quite a shock to me to discover that my government and its agents, and my university and its agents, could and would actually come after a good man with the clear intent of destroying him -- even though it had to be patently obvious to them, as it was to me, that he is a good and honest man."

These are NOT the words of liberals, but those of conservatives.... and granted, we MAY NOT be getting the entire "story"... but it looks pretty damn suspicious to me.

Plus, the ACTIONS of what MAY be an over zealous persecution of a scientist, if that is indeed what it was... and from all accouts, that's what it looks like... is causing MANY scientists to DISCONTINUE any research into those areas, and they MAY WELL be the areas we, in the future, will most NEED to be researched thoroughly....
Link Posted: 9/1/2004 3:54:25 PM EST
Link Posted: 9/1/2004 4:13:54 PM EST
[Last Edit: 9/1/2004 4:14:28 PM EST by The_Macallan]
So much whining and it all sounds so very familiar - I've seen the exact same thing before. An enormously respected researcher is driven out of the profession on some "witch hunt" for "no good reason" while a bunch of supporters (who have nothing to do with the case) write letters and publish hugely biased articles blah-blah-blah... been there done that.

The question remains - WHY? If the Feds are going after this guy "for no good reason" that is the most irrational and paranoid explanation I could imagine and EXACTLY the kind of paranoid crap I've seen from the inside. Believe me, scientists are NOT great harbingers of truth, wisdom and virtue and can EASILY be turned into highly vocal stooges defending a truly unscrupulous colleague for all the wrong reasons.

There's a lot to this story and we still have only seen one side of it.

So far, NO ONE has explained WHY the Feds would want to bring down THIS particular guy "for no good reason".
Link Posted: 9/2/2004 4:06:38 PM EST

Originally Posted By The_Macallan:
So much whining and it all sounds so very familiar - I've seen the exact same thing before. An enormously respected researcher is driven out of the profession on some "witch hunt" for "no good reason" while a bunch of supporters (who have nothing to do with the case) write letters and publish hugely biased articles blah-blah-blah... been there done that.

The question remains - WHY? If the Feds are going after this guy "for no good reason" that is the most irrational and paranoid explanation I could imagine and EXACTLY the kind of paranoid crap I've seen from the inside. Believe me, scientists are NOT great harbingers of truth, wisdom and virtue and can EASILY be turned into highly vocal stooges defending a truly unscrupulous colleague for all the wrong reasons.

There's a lot to this story and we still have only seen one side of it.

So far, NO ONE has explained WHY the Feds would want to bring down THIS particular guy "for no good reason".



Mac,

I don't know, honestly... BUT it has been suggested "to make an example" out of him so that scientists in such areas in the future will "be more careful" which, DOES (obviously) need to occur... but IMO, this would NOT be the appropriate way to go about it.... seems to me it may well be "backfiring" if that WAS the intent...
Link Posted: 9/2/2004 4:14:27 PM EST

Originally Posted By redfisher:

Originally Posted By Max_Mike:

Originally Posted By Jeepster:
Fuck this Ashcroft bashing. He's the most pro-2nd amendment AG the US has ever had. God help us all if the fat lesbian (Janet Reno, not Rosie O'Donnell) had been AG during 9/11. White male gunowners would be in detention camps by now.

God Bless AG Ashcroft!



What he said...



and what he said




Link Posted: 9/2/2004 4:23:39 PM EST
Ashcroft is a local, and a good ole boy, but I don't know who you are.
Link Posted: 9/2/2004 4:25:57 PM EST
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