Sunday, March 02, 2008

The call of the French loon.

I regret to say I haven’t kept up with current films. I used to go weekly to the theater but over the last few years have not done so. So I really didn’t know who Marion Cotillard is. She supposedly had a part in Big Fish, a film I did see, but I don’t remember her. She recently did a film where she played Edith Piaf. Piaf I am familiar with, Cotillard I’m not. But probably all the better.

She won an Oscar for something. And apparently she is a total loon as well. Certainly she wouldn’t be the only Oscar winner with logic deficiency problems -- all we have to do is look at the certifiably crazed Tom Cruise to see that.

Cotillard has apparently bought into the tin foil hat theories on 9/11. These theories are so weak and so out of touch with the facts that I can’t see how any rational person holds them -- actually to be honest, I don’t think any rational person does hold them.

Cotillard started out with a reasonable conclusion: “I think we’re lied to about a number of things.” No doubt. A government that doesn’t lie is surely a rarity. And the Bush regime is particularly prone to telling whoppers in public. But Cotillard gets very specific and very stupid.

"We see other towers of the same kind hit by planes. Are they burned? There was a tower, I believe it was in Spain, that burnt for 24 hours. It never collapsed. None of these towers collapsed. And there, in a few minutes, the whole thing collapsed."

This is what I mean by loon. What other towers “of the same kind” were hit by planes? Here is the reality. No other towers of this size were hit by planes of these magnitude. The woman is totally daft if she thinks there were. Some planes may have hit some buildings but nothing of this magnitude has happened before, or since 9/11.

I read all the daft conspiracy theories I could find and the rebuttals. The conspiracy theories are just bonkers. Let us cover just the basic reasons for the collapse. The twin towers had two rings of supporting beams. One, on the outside of the building, and one set toward the center. The building was designed to stay standing if any one set had a major fault. But when the jets crashed into those buildings they severed the out support beams. The inner beams, though damaged continued to hold but they were being weakened by the intense heat of the burning fuel from the planes.

The inner beans didn’t melt and no expert on the topic says they did. This whole canard about not finding melted metal is conspiracy bull. What the burning fuel did was weaken the beams. Weakened beams by themselves should have held up. But they weren’t by themselves. You have to add in the fact that the outer beams were severed and no longer holding up the upper floors. The entire weight of the upper floors rested on the beams that were becoming progressively weakened by the intense heat of the fire. And at one point these beams buckled. The entire weight of the building came down on the set of beams below this level and they snapped as a result. You now how a weight that was getting progressively heavier with each floor along with the force of the collapse resulting in the pancaking of the buildings.

No other building has faced this situation. Cotillard is either woefully misinformed or just a lunatic. She also falsely claimed that the towers collapsed only a “ few minutes” after the impact of the planes. In fact, from the moment of impact to the collapse it took between 1 hour 15 minutes and 1 and 1/2 hours, depending on the tower, for the collapse to take place. This is not a “few minutes” even in France.

Her theory as to why this conspiracy took place is uniquely her own. She says the towers were “money-suckers” and that the cost of fixing them was higher “than destroying them.” Lest you think she’s sane she also isn’t sure that man ever walked on the moon. “Did a man really walk on the moon? I saw of plenty of documentaries on it, and I really wondered. And in my case I don’t believe all they tell me, that’s for sure.”

What I’ve never figured out is why anyone cares what actors think about topics. Just because one is good a pretending to be something they aren’t doesn’t make their opinion on other topics worthwhile. It is ludicrous to watch actors, even decent ones like Meryl Streep, testifying before Congress about anything other than acting. Just because Barbra Streisand can sing doesn’t mean she knows diddly-squat about economics.

If they want to talk about acting and Hollywood and films then I will pay special attention to what they have to say. But when they speak out on any other topic they are no different than any other person. In fact, because they spend so much time dealing with their acting careers they are often less informed about issues than others. Too often they embrace a cause for nothing more than the publicity to further their career.

Let’s be honest. If we were to give these Hollywood stars a blog, but put it out anonymously or under a pseudonym would anyone pay attention? Do they actually have anything to contribute on these topics? I’m not sure they do. They are merely trading their fame in one field in order to get attention regarding topics where they are ill informed.

Photo: The caption ought to say: "I hav one of dez so I am ze experrrt on anything."

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