Wednesday, April 28, 2010

Thomas Dalton responds to Roberto Muehlenkamp and Andrew Mathis (1)

In my previous blog, I mentioned an upcoming response to Andrew's and my statements during our radio conversation with Kevin Barrett on 24 April 2010, the record of which is available on Kevin Barrett's AFR page.

Said response has meanwhile been posted on Kevin's blog under the title Thomas Dalton responds to Roberto Muehlenkamp and Andrew Mathis. In this and the following blogs I shall respond to Mr. "Dalton"’s statements.

The response shall be divided into the following parts, each part corresponding to one blog:

I. Introductions - items (1) and (2) of Mr. "Dalton"'s response
II. Documents and Numbers - items (3), (4), (5) and (6)
III. Policy - items (7) and (8)
IV. Techno-babble and Conclusions - item (9)

I. Introductions

"Thomas Dalton" writes:
Hi Kevin -- Just wanted to say thanks again for the show. I thought it was well-executed and balanced. Here are my comments in reply to Ricardo and Andrew:


(1) First, I was happy to hear them say that they oppose anti-Holocaust denial laws, and that they support open and public debate. This position is rare amongst traditionalists. Nearly all prefer to stifle debate, harass revisionism, and use the law as a weapon. This, of course, only furthers the suspicion that the orthodox view is weak and unsustainable.

First of all, the name is Roberto, not Ricardo. If Mr. "Dalton" managed to get my name wrong despite having heard it several times before and during Kevin's radio show, and despite the conversations we already had on the HC blog spot (see the comments to the blogs Why the "diesel issue" is irrelevant and Old Herrings in a New Can: Thomas Dalton’s Debating the Holocaust (1), as well as the blog A discussion with Michael Santomauro and Thomas Dalton, Ph.D. including the comments), how can he with a straight face castigate eyewitnesses who were mistaken about details of events they witnessed that it is much easier to be mistaken about?

Regarding to the opposition to hate speech laws being "rare" among those that "Dalton" refers to by the silly label of "traditionalists": I wonder what opponents of "Revisionism" he can show me that "stifle debate, harass revisionism, and use the law as a weapon", especially the latter. They certainly do not include the non-"Revisionist" signatories of my Petition to the German Legislator (where I haven't yet seen the signature of "Thomas Dalton, PhD", by the way). Neither do they include Germar Rudolf’s nemesis Dr. Richard Green, who in his article The Chemistry of Auschwitz wrote the following:

I do not believe that Rudolf's offense would be criminal in the United States of America where citizens enjoy the protection of the First Amendment (a protection that would be lost were people like Rudolf and his hero Remer ever to come to power here). Not only do I disagree with such criminal prosecution on principle, but I think that it is counterproductive in that it gives people like Rudolf the ability to claim persecution. My task here, however, is to discuss the history of claims concerning the chemistry of Auschwitz-Birkenau and evaluate their validity. The fact that I think that people ought to be permitted to spread untruths does not make untruths into truths.

Deborah Lipstadt doesn’t qualify either, judging by the BBC news article Holocaust denier Irving is jailed:

But the author and academic Deborah Lipstadt, who Irving unsuccessfully sued for libel in the UK in 2000 over claims that he was a Holocaust denier, said she was dismayed.

"I am not happy when censorship wins, and I don't believe in winning battles via censorship... The way of fighting Holocaust deniers is with history and with truth," she told the BBC News website.

So let’s have some names here from Mr. "Dalton". Names of historians or other researchers, whether or not they actively confront "Revisionism", who "stifle debate, harass revisionism, and use the law as a weapon". The persons mentioned qualify for the "harass revisionism" part at best – if argumentatively showing that "Revisionism" (not to be confounded with revisionism in the proper sense of the term) is nonsense qualifies as harassment, rather than a legitimate exercise of the right to free speech that "Revisionists" claim for themselves. (Free speech works both ways, Mr. "Dalton". It gives you the right to disseminate "Revisionist" claims, and it gives me the right to tell you what I think of such claims.)

As to Mr. "Dalton"'s conjecture that hate speech laws and the endorsement thereof "only furthers the suspicion that the orthodox view is weak and unsustainable", I’d call that wishful thinking based on ignorant preconceived notions of why such laws are applied in certain countries. In my blog Old Herrings in a New Can: Thomas Dalton’s Debating the Holocaust (1) I gave the example of anti-denial laws in the German Federal Republic, about the background of which Mr. "Dalton" obviously knows nothing, or then he didn't allow better knowledge to disturb his articles of faith.

"Thomas Dalton" writes:
(2) Ricardo admits that he is not a “main guy” when it comes to the standard Holocaust view. This raises 2 questions: since he has not published any work (other than blogs) on the topic, nor proven his ability to conduct serious research, why should accept his responses? And furthermore, where are the real “main guys,” and why are they hiding from debate?

It is amusing that people like Mr. "Dalton" always want their opponents to have "admitted" something. When I said that I am not the "main guy" on the Holocaust Controversies blog spot (as opposed to "when it comes to the standard Holocaust view", as Mr. "Dalton" would have it), that I am no more important than my fellow bloggers Sergey Romanov, Jonathan Harrison and Nick Terry, I was not "admitting" anything, of course. I was just showing the kind of modesty that Mr. "Dalton" would do well to imitate.

As to my not having published "any work (other than blogs)", that's a rather hypocritical statement considering that my blogs are obviously a source of concern for Mr. "Dalton", to the point of having earned me several mentions in his book. In fact that book mentions the name Muehlenkamp in 5 places (pages 104n[ote]4, 114, 115, 124, 129n5), which according to the index is about as much as Dalton dedicates to historians Wolfgang Benz (mentioned on page 45), Martin Gilbert (mentioned on page 11n4) and Yisrael Gutman (mentioned on page 24) and demographer Sergio Della Pergola (mentioned on pages 52 and 53) together and leaves me close to Jean-Claude Pressac (mentioned on pages 24, 25, 136-138, 186n8), Charles Provan (mentioned on pages 104n4, 112n3, 124, 162-164), Polish historian Franciszek Piper (mentioned on pages 157, 158, 175, 176, 187n5) and "Revisionist" guru Friedrich Paul Berg (mentioned on 21, 27, 78, 82 and 230) as concerns this author’s distinguished attention. What books has Friedrich Paul Berg written, by the way?

Despite his pooh-poohing unprinted sources, Mr. "Dalton" seems to have realized that, as I pointed out in Old Herrings in a New Can: Thomas Dalton’s Debating the Holocaust (1), the key medium through which "Revisionist" propaganda is disseminated is the Web (which is also why "several complete revisionist texts are available free online", as Dalton approvingly notes in his book). It is therefore only logical that the Web, and not the book market, is the essential arena on which "Revisionism" is confronted, and that it is essentially on the Web that key anti-"Revisionist" material can be found.

Regarding my not having proven my ability to conduct serious research, it is hilarious to read that from someone who has produced a work as ill-researched as Mr. "Dalton"’s book. I submit that some of my blogs, e.g. those of my response to Carlo Mattogno, are more completely sourced than the showpiece of poor scholarship that Mr. "Dalton"'s book can at best be called. If people are interested in what I write (and that includes Mr. Dalton, whose rendering of my writings tends to be somewhat-less-than-honest), that must be because my arguments tend to be pertinent, reasonable and backed up by solid evidence.

Now to Mr. "Dalton" himself, as he sent these uncalled-for dismissive remarks my way: who in the world is he to claim attention from "a 'main guy' when it comes to the standard Holocaust view"? My reading further parts of his book has confirmed my assessment, shared by one of my fellow bloggers who read the whole book long before me, that Mr. "Dalton" does little more than parrot the claims of "Revisionists" more capable than him, such as Carlo Mattogno and Germar Rudolf. He occasionally rivals them only in the field of intellectual dishonesty, like in the example pointed out in Jonathan Harrison’s blog Is Dalton More Dishonest Than Graf?. If Mr. "Dalton" rhetorically asks why he should "accept" my responses, then I may ask why one should accept anything whatsoever from a disseminator of "Revisionist" propaganda who hypocritically claims to take "an impartial look" at both sides in his book, and who, while hiding his identity to save himself the potential unpleasantness related to being known as a Holocaust denier (and at the same time parading a supposed academic title), had no problem with exposing an innocent, uninvolved person to that very unpleasantness. The latter is worth expanding.

In one of the comments submitted via his publisher Michael Santomauro on the blog A discussion with Michael Santomauro and Thomas Dalton, Ph.D., Mr. "Dalton" wrote the following:

P. S. In reply to his incessant questions about my professional status, I was hoping to keep it a secret, but, oh, alright: I am a professor of economics at the Univ of Arizona. That stuff about teaching humanities was just a cover.

It happens that there is in fact a Professor Thomas Dalton at Eller College of Management, University of Arizona. Fortunately for this gentleman, I immediately checked the claim of our Mr. "Dalton" and got the swift reply that Professor Dalton of Eller College is not identical with the author of Debating the Holocaust.

The readership of the HC blog was large enough to expose the real Professor Dalton to a rather unpleasant situation, had I not taken the precaution of checking Mr. "Dalton"'s claim. Professor Dalton might one day have wondered why some of his students spit on the ground when they saw him, why he was being snubbed by colleagues, why he got applause from people he would rather not be seen with, etc.

It was obviously indifferent to our Mr. "Dalton" what consequences his impersonating a real professor at a US university might have for this person, who has nothing whatsoever to do with our discussion. Readers may decide for themselves what reliance is to be placed on an author whose behavior is not only dishonest but also reckless.

Introductions thus completed, I move on to Mr. "Dalton"'s response to my and Andrew’s arguments about the subject matter of the discussion.

Coming up next:
II. Documents and Numbers


snug.bug said...

Kevin Barrett lied to Noam Chomsky, claiming he'd lost a tenure-track position for his political beliefs, to lure him into an email exchange. Barrett is an incompetent scholar who can't even spell the names of the media figures he attacks ("Summer Redstone" and "Robert Murdoch"). He never had a tenure-track position.

After the email correspondence broke down, Barrett published the lot, though he'd promised Chomsky that they'd remain confidential. He still brags about it today.

I can understand why you felt it necessary to appear on his radio program, but please do not show him a respect that he does not deserve. His bigotry, disrespect for truth, and childish kookiness have done enormous damage to the credibility of the 9/11 truth movement. I hope that as he devotes himself to his holocaust denial and bigotry the truth movement can finally be quit of him.

Roberto Muehlenkamp said...

I don't care about the 9/11 truth movement and it is not the subject matter of this blog spot, so please take your quarrels with Kevin Barrett somewhere else.

I don't think that Kevin Barrett is into Holocaust denial. What is more, from our exchanges after the interview I gathered that he realized that Mr. "Dalton" is taking his readers for a ride.

If I appeared on Kevin's program it was in order to give a known denier a few slappings rather than allow him to spout his propaganda unchallenged, which I hope you will agree is a meritorious objective.

Robert86 said...

Just to be fair to "Thomas Dalton" it is now very clear that this name is a pen name and pseudonym. Frankly I don't see how he could use that name on a petition that is meant to show actual people oppossed to "hate crime" legislation that makes denial (oh sorry "Revisionism") a crime.

Now "Thomas Dalton" could use his real name but I wouldn't blame him if he declined to do so as that could still open him up for public harassment and loss of his job (especially if he actually is a college teacher).

Roberto Muehlenkamp said...

Now "Thomas Dalton" could use his real name but I wouldn't blame him if he declined to do so as that could still open him up for public harassment and loss of his job (especially if he actually is a college teacher).

I didn't know Arthur Butz or Robert Countess lost their jobs for being "Revisionists".

I wouldn't mind "Dalton"'s anonymity so much if he didn't at the same time claim academic credentials that no one can verify due to that anonymity.

What is more, "Dalton" paraded his supposed "humanities" background in the Introduction of his book:

"My background is as a scholar and academic, having taught humanities at a prominent American university for several years now."

Later he stated the following:

"P. S. In reply to his incessant questions about my professional status, I was hoping to keep it a secret, but, oh, alright: I am a professor of economics at the Univ of Arizona. That stuff about teaching humanities was just a cover."

That is, he belied the academic credentials he had previously invoked in advertising himself, thereby admitting that he had taken his readers for a ride regarding the "stuff about teaching humanities".

As to "harrassment", what do you think of "Dalton"'s framing a real professor by the name of Thomas Dalton and thus exposing that gentleman to the "harrassment" he intends to avoid by remaining anonymous?

Miguel said...


Why don’t you “care about 9-11 truth?”

Do you only care about mass murder when the victims are Jews?

And if so, why should you expect non-Jews to care about the Holocaust?

And why are you offended that Christians “deny” the truth about the Jewish mass murder of the past if you yourself you deny the truth about the 9-11 mass murder of the present?

Ever heard of Kant’s Categorical Imperative? It’s just a fancy way of saying: what’s good for the Christian-goose ought to be good for the Jewish-gander.


Charles said...

Let's just simplify this for a moment. Almost all professional historians will stake their career on the facts as presented by the US Holocaust Museum, Yad Vashem, the US National Archives, and Nizkor; the German Records Collection, Wikipedia and virtually every other major Holocaust research organization agrees with the figure. They all state that about six million Jews were murdered in the Nazi genocide against the Jews, known as the Shoah, or the Holocaust. I did not make this up. It is the result of six years of daily research for a published book. Any person, let alone a PhD historian, who wishes to deny or discredit this fact, might as well deny the existence of gravity. Any high school graduate learned this in History class.

But, forget the proof. What if the proof were only half correct? Of course, it is not; but what if only a million Jews were murdered? It would still remain the most egregious and vast genocide against a religious group in history; although the Crusades and the Spanish Inquisition (both also against Jews) would be similar in context. Regardless, millions of innocent Jewish men, women and children were taken by Nazis and Einsatzgruppen from their homes, forced into decrepit ghettos, sent into forced labor camps, enslaved, starved and finally murdered – all because of their religion. Hundreds of thousands were shot by Einsatzgruppen before they could be sent to a concentration camp.

The truth is that six million Jews were murdered by Nazi Germany. Yet, even if we were acknowledging the fabrications of Holocaust revisionists (deniers), it would remain the worst genocide in history. So, whether we accept the truth from professional historians, based upon thousands of thesis and dissertation research projects and the admission of Nazi leaders that they murdered millions of innocent Jews (see Eichmann), or whether we believe the fabrications of those who wish to revise history, either way the Shoah remains the worst genocide in history. So, why are we arguing? Either way, Nazi Germany perpetrated the vastest genocide in history. So, what’s the point here?

Winterhaven said...

@ Roberto Muehlenkamp,

I'm not sure if the real identity of the "Debating the Holocaust" author has been revealed yet, so I'm going out on a limb here with a couple of ideas. Couldn't it be that the book's author REALLY IS the econ prof at UAZ? Perhaps he's just denying the queries to avoid harassment, and at the same time "hiding out in the open." That technique could work quite well by throwing people off the trail and sending them on a hopeless excursion to find the real TD; every direction away from the cloaked source is the wrong direction. May not be too likely a tactic, but it's possible.


Do you suppose this person could be the author of the book instead of the prof. at UAZ? It's a related field. (shrug)