David Cole/Stein, Michael Shermer, Holocaust Denial, and Mystery Religions

 

…by Jonas E. Alexis

 

cole and shermer

Michael Shermer and David Cole/Stein

The Sexual allegations seemed to have been a devastating highlight in Michael Shermer’s career as a self-proclaimed skeptic, particularly when people like David Cole (now David Stein) were observing the passing scene.

Cole, who was a flaming Holocaust revisionist in the late 1980s and 1990s, disappeared for a while and renounced his Holocaust views due to death threats from Jewish organizations and groups like the Jewish Defense League, founded by Jewish terrorist Rabbi Meir Kahane.[1]

Kahane was replaced by Irv Rubin, who became the chairman of the organization. Rubin, like Kahane, had an appetite for terrorist activity and was quickly charged for getting involved in terrorist activities, including the killing of Alex Odeh, the local chairman of the pro-Palestinian American-Arab Anti-Discrimination Committee and a decent man.[2] We are also told that

“On December 12, 2001, Irv Rubin, JDL Chairman, and Earl Krugel, a member of the organization, were charged with conspiracy to bomb private and government property.

“The two allegedly were caught in the act of planning bomb attacks against the King Fahd Mosque in Culver City, California and on the office of U.S. Representative Darrell Issa, who is Arab-American.

“The two were arrested as part of a sting operation after an FBI informant named Danny Gillis delivered explosives to Krugel’s home in L.A.”

To make a long story short,

“In November 2002, while imprisoned at the Metropolitan Detention Center in Los Angeles awaiting trial, Rubin slit his own throat and then tumbled off an 18- to 20-foot balcony. He had been threatening suicide in the days before.

“The injuries from the fall resulted in his death at Los Angeles County General Hospital several days later.”


meir-kahane

Meir Kahane

In return for his life, Cole confessed his Holocaust sins to Rubin, wrote a letter of apology, and paid his dues. Shortly thereafter, the JDL posted Cole’s letter on their website, which read in part:

“This statement is given in an attempt to set the record straight about my current views regarding the Holocaust and Holocaust denial. As anyone who follows the subject of the Holocaust denial knows, from 1991 until 1994 I was well known in the movement as a Jewish Holocaust denier (a self-described ‘revisionist’).

“For the last three years I have no longer been associated with this movement, having realized that I was wrong and that the path I was taking with my life was self-destructive and hurtful to others.

“I have spent the last few years in silence on the subject of my time with the denial movement, a silence caused mainly by my shame at what I had done with my life and my desire to distance myself from that life…

“I would like to state for the record that there is no question in my mind that during the Holocaust of Europe’s Jews during World War Two, the Nazis employed gas chambers in an attempt to commit genocide against the Jews.

“At camps in both Eastern and Western Europe, Jews were murdered in gas chambers which employed such poison gases as Zyklon B and carbon monoxide (in the Auschwitz camp, for example, the gas chambers used Zyklon B). The evidence for this is overwhelming and unmistakable.

“The Nazis intended to kill all of the Jews of Europe, and the final death toll of this attempted genocide was six million. This atrocity, unique in its scope and breadth, must never be forgotten.

“During my four years as a denier, I was wracked with self-hate and loathing, a fact that many of my critics were quick to point out. Indeed, this self-hatred was obvious to most, but I was too blind to see it.

“The hate I had for myself I took out on my people. I was seduced by pseudo-historical nonsense and clever-sounding but empty ideas and catch-phrases.

“When my eyes were finally opened, thanks to several good, kind friends who refused to give up on me even at my worst, I was horrified by what I had done.

“My instinct was to flee and never look back, but I now understand that I owe it to the people I wronged to make a forceful repudiation of my earlier views.

“I also owe a very large apology, not only to the many people I enraged, and to the family and friends I hurt, but especially to the survivors of the Holocaust, who deserve only our respect and compassion, not re-victimization…

“And just as I must set the record straight concerning my views, it is also incumbent on me to set the record straight regarding the video “documentaries” and media appearances I did from 1991 to 1994.

“These ‘documentaries’ are merely videotaped garbage filled with self-hatred and pseudo-intellectual nonsense. My ‘media appearances’ were nothing but an embarrassment.

“My glazed look, specious reasoning, and talking-in-circles during my talk show appearances would have hopefully alerted any astute viewers that this was a man not in touch with reality.

“It has been brought to my attention that Bradley Smith is still using one of my videos in advertisements he is running on college campuses.

“Therefore, I would like to make these additional points: This video is being advertised without my consent, and I denounce this video as being without worth. Bradley Smith is no historian, and denial is no ‘historical field.’

“Students on college campuses should look elsewhere to find out about the Holocaust. To these students I would say, look to books like Hilberg’s ‘Destruction of the European Jews,’ Yahil’s ‘The Holocaust,’ and Dawidowicz’s ‘War Against the Jews’ for correct information.

“If your school library doesn’t stock these books, have them order copies. Do not pay any attention to any ‘David Cole’ videos, except to rightly denounce them as frauds.”

Rubin, finally, was relief and thought that he achieved victory. And for more than ten years, Cole was nowhere to be found in Holocaust revisionist circles. People were disappointed precisely because they looked up to him.

Cole seems to compare his case with Galileo, whom he believed was forced to confess his astronomical sins[3]—a purely fictitious claim.[4]

RubinIn any event, Rubin died in 2002 in jail while “awaiting trial on charges of conspiracy to bomb private and government property.”

By 2013, Cole seemed to have realized that he was purged and cleansed from his Holocaust sins. “I haven’t changed my views,” he told the Guardian. “But I regret I didn’t have the facility with language that I have now. I was just a kid.” He continued,

“For 15 years I have been David Stein. Now the genie is out of the bottle. I’m done. I’m finished. I’m not going to try to remain as David Stein.”[5]

Cole, who is now 45, continued,

“My friends are horrified. They rang and emailed to ask if it really was me. The Hollywood types are the ones hurting the most right now because they could be harmed by this. I’m feeling a certain amount of guilt.”[6]

Cole had been working in Hollywood, and when some people in the industry realized that it was that Jewish boy who was causing trouble in the early years, they almost wet their pants. One entertainment industry declared,

“When people found out it was, ‘Oh my God, get the fuck away from him.’ There was debate about whether everyone would look guilty by association. The reason we were all so pissed at him is it plays into every horrible stereotype about the right.”[7]


Cole came out with the publication of Republican Party Animal, in which he has a long chapter about his strange relationship with Michael Shermer.

davidShermer is trying his best to ban the book from circulation, which is quite strange for a person who superficially styles himself a skeptic. Cole says that that Shermer

“got his lawyers to serve my publisher with a demand to ‘refrain from publishing or distributing’ my book! This is a man who slams religious institutions for stifling free inquiry and suppressing facts. And he wants to ban a book.

“Oh, and one other thing…along with the “cease and desist” order the lawyers sent to my publisher, they sent me one as well, with a pre-written statement of recantation that I was supposed to read publicly on Youtube….

“Anyway, Mikey’s law firm was no match for me. In a matter of hours, they retreated like that mangy dog that got its ass kicked by a cat a few weeks ago.”

Shermer feels threatened for good reason because Cole, in the early days, recorded much of his conversation with Shermer, in which Shermer actually made some stunning admission about Holocaust revisionism.

But before we get into this, it must be pointed out in passing that last year Cole decided to contact Shermer about the rape accusations precisely because Shermer deliberately accused Cole of being a racist in order to literally destroy Cole’s revisionist ideas. Cole wrote to him saying,

“Hi Mike,

“It’s the guy you never get tired of attacking, David Cole. I’ve been keeping up with this whole rape accusation thing, and, of course, I have no special knowledge beyond what I’ve read. But, and here’s the reason I’m writing to you…

“Has this experience…made you any more sympathetic, or perhaps given you a bit more empathy, regarding the things you said about me? How you branded me a ‘racist’ (the modern equivalent of calling someone a ‘witch’). How you admitted you lied. And how you refused to retract your accusation even after admitting you lied.

“So I’m interested in asking you if your current dilemma has perhaps birthed in you some small regret for having lied about me. I have no knowledge of the truth or lack thereof regarding the accusations made against you. If they’re true, there is no punishment that is too harsh for you.

“But if they’re false, well…it kinda stinks having folks print lies about you, huh? Is this a ‘chickens coming home to roost’ moment for Dr. Michael Shermer?”

Shermer responded,

“Thank you for the frank and forthright letter. To cut to the chase and answer your question, yes the libelous and defamatory comments being made about me has [sic] made me more sympathetic and understanding to how I have interacted with creationists, Holocaust revisionists, New Age gurus like Deepak Chopra, and others…

“I don’t think you are a racist David, and I’m sorry for the things I said about you. So yea David, the chickens have come home to roost, so please accept my apology for some of the things I said about you.”[8]

Shermer has made thousands of dollars in books misrepresenting people, but in secret he is apologizing to his critics. Listen to what he says in Why People Believe Weird Things:

“Christian apologetics is filled with tautologies: Is there a God? Yes. How do you know? Because the Bible says so. How do you know the Bible is correct? Because it was inspired by God. In other words, God is because God is.”[9]

Sounds like Shermer has been reading comic books and using them as a basis for his source. He certainly did not cite any serious thinking Christian who believes this, and surely he would not even attempt to scholarly interact with people like Peter van Inwagen, Alvin Plintinga, William Lane Craig, Richard Swinburne, Robert Merrihew Adams, John C. Polkinghorne, Stephen M. Barr, Mortimer J. Adler, among others.

The easiest way to ridicule your opponent is to apply a cartoonish version to his position and go after it like a bull that sees a red handkerchief.


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Denying History was already a bad and silly book, and I simply was appalled to read some of the argumentations presented.[10]

What was so amazing was that some people took those arguments seriously, which showed that those people have never been exposed to serious argumentation.

But if Cole is right about Shermer, then Denying History is perhaps the greatest joke in the history of Holocaust studies—probably much worse than Daniel Jonah Goldhagen’s Hitler’s Willing Executioners and more recently The Devil That Never Dies.

But the commonality between both Goldhagen and Shermer are quite striking: Goldhagen wanted to sue people like Ruth Bettina Birn for documenting that Goldhagen forged some of his sources, and Shermer wanted to sue Cole for largely recording Shermer’s own words and then reproducing them in his book.


michael-shermer1-271x320Shermer and Cole got in touch about Holocaust discussion in 1993, shortly after Cole’s appearance on the Motel Williams Show, during which both Cole and Mark Weber of the Institute of Historical Research defended a number of revisionist positions.

Cole wrote that Shermer “was impressed by my knowledge on the subject, and he wanted to dive head-first into the issue.” Shermer specifically got in touch with Cole because Shermer really thought that Holocaust revisionism would boost the readership of Skeptic magazine and move his career to a new height.Cole writes,

“After getting the chance to hear my views one-on-one, and after I shared some of my private documents, he was ecstatic.

“He felt that this topic, Holocaust revisionism, would be the golden goose with which Skeptic could lay eggs all over the humiliated face of the rival Skeptical Inquirer. From a letter dated December 28, 1993 [which is quoted in part here]:

“We are, by the way, planning a print run ten-times are [sic] normal size for this issue (from 6,000 to 60,000) because I believe the subject is timely enough to justify a broader marketing of Skeptic. Thus what we are doing takes on even more significance.

“Another disturbing fact I have encountered is the unwillingness of my fellow historians to debate you in the media. They do not wish to appear on television or on the radio in a ‘debate’ or ‘split-screen’ format because it might look like you have a legitimate position to debate.

“We do not feel this way at Skeptic and, in fact, it is our job to investigate extraordinary claims and confront them head-on in public debate. Thus, if you receive media calls in which they are looking for someone to debate you it would be acceptable if you gave them our number.”

Sure enough, Cole got Shermer got on the Phil Donahue Show, and things did not go well.

But weeks before the show, Cole told Shermer point-blank:

“But here’s my concern; you’ve only been studying this issue for, maybe, three months, at most. It’s been my entire life for five years. How exactly do you plan to debate me?”

Shermer responded, “I’m just going to have to cram a lot of reading into the next few weeks.” Cole:

“I have a better idea. Let me make a proposition. I will write out for you every single point I’ll bring up on the show. Basically, I’ll show you my hand. Now, you’ve got contacts who would never speak to me, never take my call. But they’ll talk to you.

“Especially if you tell them that you’re going up against Cole on national TV, and you need some ammo. So what do you say? I give you every point I’ll make on the show, and you take those points to every mainstream Holocaust historian, and you get the ammo to demolish me. Deal?”

“Deal,” was Shermer’s response. Here is Cole’s account of what happened next:

Holocaust-Denial- (2)“The next day, I faxed Shermer the points, which I had written as questions, to make them less threatening to the historians Shermer was going to contact. Anything I might talk about on the show would be from that list.

“Shermer was true to his word, not out of some innate sense of honesty, but because he didn’t want to look bad on TV by not having answers to my questions.

“He showed them to Michael Berenbaum (then-director of the U.S. Holocaust Memorial Museum and its research institute), Sybil Milton (senior historian at the United States Holocaust Memeorial Museum) Henry Friedlander (a Holocaust survivor who, for a quarter of a century, taught history in the Department of Judaic Studies at the City University of New York), and Alex Grobman (founding editor-in-chief of the Simon Wiesenthal Annuel.

“NBC flew us to New York on the same plane, and we stayed at the same hotel….We had dinner together that night, to discuss the show. I asked him the results of his attempts to get Berenbaum, Milton, Friedlander, and Grobman to address my points.

“Michael told me, bluntly, that they were unable to address them all. In fact, he said, these foremost ‘experts’ seemed stymied by the issues I raised regarding Auschwitz and Majdanek.”

Shermer told Cole that he would tell the truth on the show, but things changed swiftly.

According to Cole, right before the show, Phil Donahue had a private meeting with Shermer and he soon realized that Shermer was not able to show that revisionism was just historical fiction.

Throughout the show, Shermer tried mightily to make a case, but even Donahue, who railed against Shermer prior to the show, was himself a little frustrated.

“I would hope that there would be some room for a full and enthusiastic response to these kinds of statements [revisionism] made by folks in the spirit of free speech,” he said.

“It seems to me that those who died in the hand of anti-Semites and dictators and fascists, the memory of those people would be honored by a vigorous rejoinder [and] inquiry. So that’s what confuses me about why we don’t have more informed people [and] tell the truth about this.”

Shermer mightily tried to regain ground with no success and then shifted the burden of proof.

“The burden of proof is not on us to prove the Holocaust happened,” Shermer declared. “That’s been happening for fifty years. We’ve established that. The burden of proof is on them to prove that it didn’t happen.”

How has the Holocaust been happening for fifty years? Well, Shermer tells us that Holocaust historians base their arguments on key foundations: a convergence of evidence made by eyewitnesses, documents, photographs, and physical evidence.[11]

Yet Shermer never tells his readers that there was a “convergence of evidence” showing that people were gassed at Belsen, Dachau, and other places; there was a “convergence of evidence” showing that the Nazis used Jewish fat to make soap. Alleged eyewitnesses were summoned, supposed documents were used, photographs were forged, and physical evidence was fabricated.

Those claims were made by a wide range of Jewish organizations, including Simon Wiesenthal. These stories, particularly the soap story, spread like wildfire in Poland, Slovakia, and even Germany.

This was so popular that “by July 1942 rumours were rife all over Eastern Europe that Jews were killed in great numbers and ‘boiled into soap.’”[12]

Now no serious Holocaust historian believes those stories. They were first challenged by people labeled “deniers,” some of whom were persecuted for challenging accepted dogma.


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Alex Odeh

Alex Odeh

To make a long story short, Shermer and his co-author wrote Denying History, but behind closed doors, Shermer was apologizing to Cole and others about what he wrote.

On the Phil Donahue Show, Shermer declared that Holocaust historians were trying to answer Cole’s questions, but in private Shermer admitted point-blank that those “experts” were remarkably “ignorant” about those issues.

“After having learned that neither Sybil Milton, Henry Friedlander, Michael Berenbaum, or Alex Grobman could address any of my points regarding the gas chambers, Sherm got even worse news post-Donahue when he interviewed Raul Hilberg and berenbaum at length, on tape (he supplied me with the transcripts).

“Hilberg flat-out stated that British-obtained ‘confession’ of Auschwitz Commandant Rudolf Hoess was written by the Brits in English, with absolutely no input from Hoess, who was tortured into signing a document he was completely unfamiliar with, and which he could not read. ‘He didn’t even know what was in it,’ Hilberg admitted, ‘but he signed it. They forced him to sign it anyway.’

“And Berenbaum? He admitted that he hadn’t examined, not once, the ‘gas chamber’ evidence in his own museum.”[13]

Yet in books and articles published by Skeptic, Shermer tells a completely different story about Holocaust revisionism. Once again, Cole confronted Shermer on this very issue and recorded the conversation.

Cole: “That part [in Shermer’s article] where you claim I was in the wooden not the brick building during my investigation, makes me look stupid, like I didn’t know wood from brick.”

Shermer: “Well, It sorta came down to, that was the final segment of the article that needed to be done, and, uh, uh, with, with like, one night to go, uh, and, and that was, the best I could do.”

Cole: “What do you mean, the best you could do?”

Shermer: “That was the best I could do to answer your questions. Either that or leave them out entirely, which I didn’t want to do.”

Cole: “But you realize though, at this point, that that wasn’t the wooden barrack that I was in. You realize that we’re talking about the brick building and not the wooden barrack.”

Shermer: “Yeah.”

Cole: “And you know that I could have told you that, if you’d just asked me.”

Shermer: “Right. Well, I didn’t.”

Cole: “[laughs] So if you were going to mention my work, you had to put something in there…”

Shermer: “Yes…”

Cole: “as a kind of an answer…”

Shermer: “Yes…”

Cole: “…even if you yourself don’t really think it’s a legitimate answer.”

Shermer: “At the time I wrote it, that’s what I was thinking.”

Cole: “Just so we’re clear, because we have talked about these things before, you do realize that that really isn’t an answer to my question.”

Shermer: “Right.”

Cole: “Well, isn’t there anything better you could have done?”

Shermer: “Well, I couldn’t get any other answers, from anybody. On those questions.”

Cole: “Well, couldn’t you have said, ‘Cole’s questions, while not necessarily leading to the conclusion Cole has made, are still as of yet unanswered?”

Shermer: “Well, you should say that.”

Cole: “But I’m askin’, maybe you could have said that.”

Shermer: “Yeah, yeah I could have.”

Cole: “You say [in the article], ‘revisionists like Weber, Zundel, Irving, Cole, and Smith have tried to convince me they are not racists and have no political agendas, but they have been contradicted from within their own ranks.’ But then you don’t go on to explain anything, any kind of ‘contradiction,’ about me, even though you just included me in that grouping.”

Shermer: “Yeah, I was sorta lumping everyone I had covered in the article…”

Cole: “but that’s not fair to me.”

Shermer: “Yeah, that’s true. That’s right.”

Cole: I mean, you don’t think I’m racist…”

Shermer: “No, I don’t.”

Cole: “But, you do understand that that might give the impression I am, for people who read it who don’t know me…”

Shermer: Yeah, yeah…it would.”

Cole: “I mean, honestly, that’s not really fair to me, is it?”

Shermer: “I would agree.”

Cole: “You yourself didn’t find some kidn of solution to my question about the small levels of Zyklon B traces in the ‘homicidal’ gas chambers as opposed to the [high levels of traces in] the delousing ones.”

Shermer: “Not really, no.”

Cole: “So you still couldn’t really find any answers for that.”

Shermer: “Right.”

Cole: “But you didn’t pass that on to your readers.”

Shermer: “Well, again, David, it wsa not my goal to make you look good.”

Cole: “At the very least, you can say that my questions about the [gas chambers] forensic issue have not really been answered yet.”

Shermer: “I would say that’s true. I don’t know that there aren’t answers, I just know that I haven’t been able to get them.”

Cole: “From any of the people you’ve asked.”

Shermer: “Right.”

Cole: Maybe they have them [answers], and just chose not to tell you.”

Shermer: “No, I mean, Grobman sent ‘em off, I sent ‘em off, I haven’t heard anything back in writing. When I had talked to Sybil Milton, she was very short, uh, with me, very busy, same as Henry [Friedlander]. Now Berenbaum, I think doesn’t, I’m sure he doesn’t know. I think his knowledge is limited, from what Grobman has told me about Berenbaum, he’s kind of on the weak end of the top scholars…I don’t want you to get made, because you are, but…”

The conversation went on and on, but you get the point. Cole has also put some of the recording conversations online, during which Shermer admits that he deliberately misled his readers into thinking that Cole was a racist.[14]

Shermer continues to propound the same old game even in his new book The Believing Brain. He writes that David Irving had a slogan which basically says, “no holes, no Holocaust.” Shermer showed no citation and no source.

When I contacted Irving and pointed this to him, he wrote back and said he never said it. Irving said in reply:

“He is confusing me with Robert Faurisson. He says that. That is his catch phrase. I will defend or comment on what I say in talks, I don’t have to defend others.”

michael_shermer_menuI contacted Shermer to find out where he got the citation, but he said it probably came during one of Irving’s talks. I also pointed out to him what Irving said, but that did not stop him from repeating the same straw man in TheBelieving Brain.

So here is how Shermer reasons against some of his opponents: put a dumb label on them and then attack that label accordingly.

Shermer knows very well that he would immediately fail a logic class if he even dares to use that kind of argumentation. But that does not stop him from misleading his readers. Why?

Well, that’s how you make money and become famous these days. Listen to what he said about Irving:

“David Irving, for example, claims that there are no holes in the roof of the gas chamber at Krema 2 at Aschwitz-Birkenau. So what? So plenty, he says.

“No holes in the roof of the gas chamber at Krema 2 means that the eyewitness account of SS guards climbing up on the roof and pouring Zyklon-B gas pellets through the holes and into the gas chamber below is wrong, which means that no one was gassed in Krema 2, which means that no one was gassed at Auschwitz-Birkenau, which means that no one was gassed at any prison camp, which means that no Jews anywhere were systematically exterminated by the Nazis.”[15]

The astonishing fact is that Shermer has cited many of Irving’s books, which means that he is at least familiar with the citations and the claims made in those books! Irving admits that many Jews died in Nazi Germany, and the six-million figure is a completely different issue.

In short, Shermer deliberately put words into Irving’s mouth and then attack them. Can a serious person take Shermer seriously here?


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hitchens

Christopher Hitchens

If Shermer has problems with the claims that no one has yet to prove that Jews were gassed, he should have also attacked the late Christopher Hitchens.

Chitchens made it clear in the L.A. Times that “there were no gas chambers or extermination camps on German soil, in other words, at Belsen or Dachau or Buchenwald.” Even Raul Hilberg told Hitchens,

“Look, David irving has made me go back and look at things again. David Irving has made me reexamine things I thought I knew for sure. David Irving has made me go over some ground, ask me how I know things, and I welcome this kind of challenge.”

Hitchens continued,

“I also became aware, through conversations with Deborah Lipstadt, Christopher Browning and other ‘mainstream’ writers on the subject, that there was a ‘grey area’ of what might be called Holocaust mythology: an area where it had to be admitted that certain long-held beliefs were in error.”[16]

Yet in published books, those authors and so-called experts never mention those “grey area.”

For example, in published works, Browning maintains that the Nazis wanted to exterminate “every Jew of Europe,” and this policy was “initiated by Adolf Hitler in the summer of 1941 in the euphoria of his greatest successes and his seemingly imminent victory over the Soviet Union…”[17]

The evidence? Browning simply leaves his readers completely adrift. As we have seen in previous articles, it is crazy to postulate that Hitler wanted to exterminate every Jew in Europe; there were thousands upon thousands of Jews in Nazi Germany.

Furthermore, I wonder if Shermer is willing to call Hitchens a Holocaust denier, an anti-Semite, or even a crook for saying the following:

“The Holocaust has become a secular religion, with state support in the form of a national museum.”[18]

Hitchens went so far as to say that David Irving

“is in fact not a ‘denier,’ but a revisionist, and much-hated by the full-dress ‘denial’ faction. The pages of Goebbels, as in his books on Dresden, Churchill and Hitler, contain some highly important and damning findings from his work in the archives of the Third Reich.”[19]

It seems that saying things like these would invoke cries of anti-Semitism, but Hitchens moves on to say that his mother’s family was of German and Polish Jewish descent and his wife’s family produced an Auschwitz survivor.

Foreseeing that this preface would ease his statements, Hitchens further declared, “I look forward to a time when I won’t feel any need to mention this.”[20]

Hitchens continued, implying that it was “revisionists” who first made it clear that 1) there were no gas chambers at Belsen or Dachau or Buchenwald; 2) the Nazis did not turn Jews into soap; and 3) Rudolf Hoess’ “confession” “was extracted by force.”

If a person wants to remain a serious historian, he has to abide by these historical facts now recognized by World War II historians.

If Shermer is not willing to call Hitchens a denier, why in the world is he labeling Irving a denier for saying the same thing that Hitchens is saying?

No reasonable and thinking person should take Shermer seriously. And I have no intention to plunk down the money and buy his next book because they are largely worthless when it comes to intellectual honesty and serious scholarship.

Perhaps it is time for him to grow up, leave the show business behind, and get serious about doing solid research. His Believing Brain “synthesizes thirty years of research to answer the question of how and why we believe what we do in all aspects of our lives.”[21]

Yet after thirty years of research, Shermer could not even produce a coherent argument in his book. Perhaps he was right to warn that “Beliefs come first, explanations for beliefs follow.”[22]

Throughout his book, Shermer put a heavy emphasis on evolutionary psychology, which he believes has uncontestable evidence. But evolutionary biologist Jerry Coyne is not impressed. Some of the arguments propounded in evolutionary psychology, Coyne tells us, are “not science, but advocacy.”

Those evolutionary psychologists, he continued, “are guilty of indifference to scientific standards. They buttress strong claims with weak reasoning, weak data, and finagled statistics…[and] choose ideology over knowledge.” Coyne moves on to say,

“Freud’s views lost credibility when people realized that they were not based on science, but were actual ideological edifice, a myth about human life, that was utterly resistant to scientific refutation…Evolutionary psychologists are now building a similar edifice. They, too, deal in dogmas rather than propositions of science.”[23]

Other atheist scientists such as Massimo Pigliucci and Dan Agin have the similar problems with many of the theories in evolutionary psychology.[24]

Shermer, who pretends to approach any issue with a skeptical doubt (except his own cherished belief), declared,

“For a materialist such as myself, there is no such thing as ‘mind.’ It ultimately reduces down to neurons firing and neurochemical transmitter substances flowing across synaptic gaps between neurons, combining in complex patterns to produce something we call mind but is actually just brain.”[25]

When you ask Shermer the evidence for this, we hear things like, “That’s the principle of reductionism that is such an integral part of science.”[26]

The scientific evidence is unavailable, but Shermer believes this axiomatic premise anyway—and that is science! Let it be noted in passing that a number of scientists and philosophers have abandoned that dogma because it lacks coherency and logical consistency.[27]

In a nutshell, Shermer’s brain is doing his thinking. His brain is actually the hero of the plot. If it tells him to proposition a woman while his husband is elsewhere in the same room, Shermer cannot resist that lustful temptation. For him, it seems that chasing after women’s skirts is much more alluring than controlling his sexual appetite and erotic calculus.

the_selfish_geneFurthermore, the argumentation as proposed by Shermer and others here is a complete mess. Dawkins for example emphatically declares in his popular book The Selfish Genes:

“We are survival machines, robot vehicles blindly programmed to preserve the selfish molecules known as genes.”[28]

Yet we are told that in the same book that

“We have the power to defy the selfish genes of our birth and, if necessary, the selfish memes of our indoctrination…

“We are built as gene machines and cultured as meme machines, but we have the power to turn against our creators. We, alone on earth, can rebel against the tyranny of the selfish replicators.”[29]

We? Can robots defy the selfish gens of their birth?

This materialist ideology simply does not work, most specifically when it is applied to other areas such as music, literature and art—both ancient and modern.[30]


Finally, Shermer brings an issue in The Believing Brain that merits a response, since this has sprung up in a number of internet websites. He writes,

“Virgin birth myths likewise spring up throughout time and geography. Among those alleged to have been conceived without the usual assistance from a male were Dionysus, Perseus, Buddha, Attis, Krishna, Horus, Mercury, Romulus, and, of course, Jesus.

“Consider the parallels between Dionysus, the ancient Greek god of wine, and Jesus of Nazareth. Both were said to have been born from a virgin mother, who was a mortal woman, but were fathered by the king of heaven; both allegedly returned from the dead, transformed the idea of eating and drinking the flesh and blood of the creator, and both were said to have been liberator of mankind.

“Resurrection myths are no less culturally constructed. Osiris is the Egyptian god of life, death, and fertility, and is one of the oldest gods for whom records have survived…

“Widely worshiped until the compulsory repression of pagan religions in the early Christian era, Osiris was not only the redeemer and merciful judge of the dead in the afterlife, he was also linked to fertility and, most notably, the flooding of the Nile and growth of crops.”[31]

How interesting that Shermer did not cite the primary sources for these fraudulent assertions. The impression he seems to give here and elsewhere in the book is that Christianity seems to have borrowed much of its ideas from mystery religions.

cultThese ideas have been made popular in a slightly different tone on the internet, specifically with the movie called Zeitgeist. Nothing could be further from the truth.

Osiris for example was the son of Nut, the sky-goddess, and Geb, the earth-god. Nut was an adulterer and was formerly the wife of the Sun. While Osiris was inside Nut’s womb, he fell in love with his sister Isis, with whom he had sexual intercourse and produced a child named Horus.

Nut also had other offspring, whose names were Nephthys, Set, etc. After their birth, Osiris again had sexual intercourse with Nephthys, the wife of his brother, Set. Filled with anger and rage, Set ended up drowning Osiris in the Nile River and cutting him into 14 pieces.

Isis found the pieces but could not find the last one, Osiris’s sexual organ. As a result, she reconstructed it with pieces of wood and began to have sexual intercourse with him. The mythological story goes on and on.

Likewise, Dionysus was the Greek god of wine and revelry, madness, and ecstasy, which also encompasses religious dance and, according to Herodotus, demon possession.[32]

Dionysus, according to mythology, also had a sexual relationship with Zeus and eventually died. Zeus was a masturbator and ended up spilling his seed on the side of a mountain, which became a pomegranate tree, and which gave birth to Attis.

Nearly all the gods had some form of sexual infatuation, including Buddha’s mother, Horus, Jupiter, Mercury, and even Krishna.

Silvia for example was raped by Mars, and Attis’ mother got pregnant by a dismembered penis of Adgistis.[33] Attis was sexually promiscuous and unfaithful to his lover, who eventually drove him completely insane. In the process, he castrated himself and bled to death.

Here’s what the Apostle Paul says,

“But I say, that the things which the Gentiles sacrifice, they sacrifice to devils, and not to God: and I would not that ye should have fellowship with devils, Ye cannot drink the cup of the Lord, and the cup of devils: ye cannot be partakers of the Lord’s table, and the table of devils. Do we provoke the Lord to jealousy? Are we stronger than he?” (1 Corinthians 10:20-22).

Moreover, when Paul was on top of Mars’ Hill, when he mentioned the resurrection to the pagan philosophers, “some mocked, and others said, We will hear thee again of this matter” (Acts 17:32).

As one writer has pointed out, they could have just said something like, “This sounds like the stuff we have read from Homer and others. No difference.”

Christians, from the first century and all the way to the fourth century, were killed, tortured, decapitated, thrown to the lions, for believing in monotheism and were even called “atheists” for rejecting the very essence of the Osiris-Dionysus-Bacchus and pagan worship, and now we are being told that they got their ideas from mystery religions!

Ancient historian Manfred Clauss of the Free University of Berlin argues that it does not make any sense to interpret the mystery religions “as a forerunner to Christianity.” He adds, “Mithraism was an independent creation with its own unique value within a given historical, specifically Roman, context.”[34]

Likewise, scholar of antiquity Edwin M. Yamauchi argues that Mithraism could not have influenced Christianity in any theological or historical context for the very reason that Christianity is older than Mithraism and the texts for Mithraism are dated after A.D. 140.

Moreover, what is made available to scholars is only dated from the second, third, and fourth centuries A.D. In a similar vein, other scholars and archeologists such as Richard Gordon declare that the story of Mithraism was not popular until the reign of Hadrian! In other words, the historical evidence for mystery religions in first-century Palestine is non-existent.

In addition, mystery religions were secret cults and operated within two basic principles: “The injunction to silence, intended to prohibit ritual details from reaching the outside world; and the promise of salvation to the initiates.”[35]

In other words, they were forerunners of Freemasonry. Yet both Jesus and many of his diciples, when they were on trial, declared that they did nothing in secret (John 18:20; Matthew 10:26-27; Acts 26:26). In the words of Oxford scholar E. J. Yarnold,

“The fervor with which historians used to detect wholesale Christian borrowings from the Mithraic and other mysteries has now died down.”

In a similar vein, Oxford historian Robin Lane Fox denounced those who draw parallels between Christianity and pagan religions as irresponsible.[36] Others scholars such as L. Patterson and Gary Lease have made similar remarks.

Interestingly enough, the idea that Christianity borrowed from pagan religions was started by none other than Richard Reitzenstein (1861-1931), a German Jewish classical philologist who started the History of Religions School in Germany.

Then the idea began to mutate in the minds of other Jewish scholars such as Hugh J. Schonfield who wrote Those Incredible Christians. Then it progressively migrated into a book that is known only to scholars named The Golden Bough, by James Frazer (1854-1941).[37]

Then popular authors began to adopt the idea and spread it into the cultural landscape. Timothy Freke and Peter Gandy’s The Jesus Mysteries and Tom Harpur’s The Pagan Christ are classic examples.

Yet the story became even problematic for those mythicists when their theories are confronted with a core historical claim. Noted historian of antiquity T. N. D. Mettinger, responding to these allegations, declared,

“There is, as far as I am aware, no prima facie evidence that the death and resurrection of Jesus is a mythological construct, drawing on the myths and rites of the dying and rising gods of the surrounding world.”

Moreover, the mythicists’ comparison between Christianity with Mithraism is a terrible non-sequitor.

For example, Jesus was born of a virgin, but Mithras was born out of a rock! And all through the early centuries, the early church fathers pinned Mithraism as a satanic cult.

All through the New Testament, Christians are told to “keep yourselves from idols” (1 John 5:21). In Athens, Paul’s “spirit was stirred in him, when he saw the city wholly given to idolatry” (Acts 17:16).

Yet now we are being told that the early Christians borrowed from those cults. It simply boils down to fanciful speculations, some of which are summoned deliberately. As scholar Ronald H. Nash pointed out,

“The uncompromising monotheism and the exclusiveness that the early church preached and practiced make the possibility of any pagan inroads…unlikely, if not impossible.”

There is still time for Shermer to grow up. But until then, we should never pay attention to many of his bold claims and comfortable hoaxes.


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[1] See for example Mark Juergensmeyer, Terror in the Mind of God: The Global Rise of Religious Violence (Berkley: University of California Press, 2003), 54-55.

[2] See Ed Pilkington, “Renewed Push to Investigate Alex Odeh Murder Begins 28 Years After Bombing,” Guardian, October 15, 2013.

[3]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Zu1Q6VMgI8w.

[4] For historical studies on this vitally important issue, see for example Ronald L. Numbers, ed., Galileo Goes to Jail and Other Modern Myths (Cambridge: Harvard University Press, 2009); Edward Grant, Science and Religion,400 B.C. to A.D. 1550: From Aristotle to Copernicus (Baltimore: Johns Hopkins University Press, 2004); Gary Ferngren, ed., Science and Religion: A Historical Introduction (Baltimore: Johns Hopkins University Press, 2002); John Hedley Brooke, Science and Religion: Some Historical Perspective (New York: Cambridge University Press, 1998); David C. Lindberg and Ronald L. Numbers, God and Nature: Historical Essays on the Encounters between Christianity and Science (Chicago: University of Chicago Press, 1986); When Science and Christianity Meet (Chicago: University of Chicago Press, 2003).

[5] Quoted in Rory Carroll, “Hollywood conservative unmasked as notorious Holocaust revisionist,” Guardian, May 3, 2013.

[6] Ibid.

[7] Ibid.

[8] David Cole, Republican Party Animal: The “Bad Boy of Holocaust History” Blows the Lid Off Hollywood’s Secret Right-Wing Underground (Port Townsend, WA: Feral House, 2014), chapter 6.

[9] Michael Shermer, Why People Believe Weird Things: Pseudo-Science, Superstition, and Other Confusions of Our Time (New York: Henry Holt and Company, 1997 and 2002), 57.

[10] We have already looked at some of those arguments in previous articles.

[11] Shermer, Why People Believe Weird Things, 214.

[12] Walter Laqueur, The Terrible Secret: Suppression of the Truth about Hitler’s “Final Solution” (New York: Henry Holt, 1998), 145.

[13] emphasis in original.

[14]http://www.countercontempt.com/archives/5297.

[15] Michael Shermer, The Believing Brain: How We Construct Beliefs and Reinforce Them as Truths (New York: Times Books, 2012), 251.

[16] All citations are from Cole’s book.

[17] Christopher R. Browning, “‘Final Solution,’” Israel Gutman, ed., The Encyclopedia of the Holocaust, Vol. II(New York: Macmillan, 1990), 488-489.

[18] Christopher Hitchens, “The Strange Case of David Irving,” LA Times, May 20, 2001.

[19] Ibid.

[20] Ibid.

[21] Shermer, The Believing Brain, 6.

[22] Ibid.

[23] Quoted in Joan Roughgarden, Evolution’s Rainbow: Diversity, Gender, and Sexuality in Nature and People (Berkley: University of California Press, 2004), 174.

[24]Massimo Pigliucci, Nonsense on Stilts (Chicago: University of Chicago Press: 2010), 304; Dan Agin, More Than Genes (New York: Oxford University Press: 2010), 303.

[25] Shermer, The Believing Brain, 27.

[26] Ibid.

[27] See for example Thomas Nagel, Mind and Cosmos: Why the Materialist Neo-Darwinian Conception of Nature Is Almost Certainly False (New York: Oxford University Press, 2012); Robert C. Koons and George Bealer, ed., The Waning of Materialism (New York: Oxford University Press, 2010); Edward Kelly and Emily Williams Kelly, ed., Irreducible Mind: Toward a Psychology for the 21st Century (Lanham: Rowman & Littlefield Publishers, 2010); David J. Chalmers, The Conscious Mind: In Search of a Fundamental Theory (New York: Oxford University Press, 1997); John Foster, The Immaterial Self: A Defense of the Cartesian Dualist Conception of the Mind (New York: Routledge, 1991).

[28] Richard Dawkins, The Selfish Gene (New York: Oxford Univ. Press, 1976), 215.

[29] Ibid., preface.

[30] For a similar study on this, see for example Aniruddh D. Patel, Music, Language, and the Brain (New York: Oxford University Press, 2008); Isabelle Peretz and Robert J. Zatorre, eds., The Cognitive Neuroscience of Music (New York: Oxford Univ. Press, 2003); Gilbert Rouget, Music and Trance: A Theory of the Relations Between Music and Possession (Chicago: University of Chicago Press, 1985); Peter Wilson, eds., Music and the Muses: The Culture of “Mousike” in the Classical Athenian City (New York: Oxford University Press, 2004); Frances S. Connelly, The Sleep of Reason: Primitivism in Modern European Art and Aesthetics, 1725-1907 (University Park, PA: Pennsylvania State University Press, 1995); Bram Dijkstra, Idols of Perversity: Fantasies of Feminine Evil in Fin-de-Sicle Culture (New York: Oxford University Press, 1986); Carl Roebuck, ed. The Muses at Work: Arts, Crafts, and Professions in Ancient Greece and Rome (Boston: MIT Press, 1969); Steven H. Lonsdale, Dance and Ritual Play in Greek Religion (Baltimore: Johns Hopkins UniversityPress, 1993); Efrossini Spentzou and Don Fowler, eds., Cultivating the Muse: Struggles for Power and Inspiration in Classical Literature (New York: Oxford University Press, 2002); E. R. Dodds, The Greeks and the Irrational (Berkley: University of California Press, 1951); Rosamond E. M. Harding, An Anatomy of Inspiration and an Assay of the Creative Mood (New York: W. Heffer & Sons, 1948); John Bartholomew O’Connor, Chapters in the History of Actors and Acting in Ancient Greece (New York: Haskell House, 1966); Lillian Feder, Madness in Literature (Princeton: Princeton Univ. Press, 1980).

[31] Ibid., 205.

[32] See E. R. Dodds, The Greeks and the Irrational (Berkeley: University of California Press, 1951), chapter 3. This was one reason why Nietzsche favored Dionysus over the Christian God because Dionysus, according to Nietzsche, would bring about the transvaluation of all values, including sexual values. Nietzsche introduced the idea in The Birth of Tragedy, first published in 1871 (the year in which Darwin published The Descent of Man), and moved on to expand on it in nearly all his other writings. For scholarly accounts on Nietzsche and the Greek god Dionysus, see Charles Segal, Dionysiac Poetic and Euripides’ Bacchae (Princeton: Princeton University Press, 1982); John Burt Foster, Heirs to Dionysus; A Nietzschean Current in Literary Modernism (Princeton: Princeton University Press, 1981); Martin Persson Nilsson, The Dionysiac Mysteries of the Hellenistic and Roman Age (New York: Arno Press, 1979); Ismene Lada-Richards, Initiating Dionysus: Ritual and Theater in Aristophanes’s Frogs (New York: Oxford University Press, 1999).

[33] For studies on all these issues, see Richard S. Caldwell, The Origin of the Gods (New York: Oxford University Press, 1989); William Hansen, Classical Mythology (New York: Oxford University Press, 2004);Carl Olson, Original Buddhist Sources (New Brunswick: Rutgers University Press, 2005); Robert E. Bell, Women of Classical Mythology (New York: Oxford University Press, 1993); Anna Libera Dallapiccola, Hindu Myths (Austin: University of Texas Press, 2003); Dimitri Meeks and Christine Favard-Meeks, Daily Life of the Egyptian Gods (New York: Cornell University Press, 1996); Carole Newlands, Playing with Time: Ovid and the Fasti (New York: Cornell University Press:,1995); Helen Morales, Classical Mythology (New York: Oxford University Press, 2007).

[34] Manfred Clauss, The Roman Cult of Mithras: The God and His Mysteries (New York: Routledge, 2001), 7.

[35]Ibid., 14.

[36] See his long treatise on the history of Christianity and paganism in Pagans and Christians (New York: Penguin, 1986).

[37] For a sociological and historical critique of Frazer’s work, see Rodney Stark, Discovering God: The Origins of the Great Religions and the Evolution of Belief (New York: HarperOne, 2007).

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39 Responses to "David Cole/Stein, Michael Shermer, Holocaust Denial, and Mystery Religions"

  1. stephanaugust  July 5, 2014 at 5:47 am

    Guess what! In the German edition, Walter Laqueur does not deny the soap story, he only writes that in July 1942 there were rumors of Jews being killed and “cooked to soap” in large numbers, but “Weismandl and Gisi Fleischmann refused to believe it.”

    • Jonas E. Alexis  July 5, 2014 at 6:00 am

      What year was the German edition published? Laqueur may have changed his mind about some of these issues, or maybe he had no control over what the German editors had to say on this issue. I am just speculating here, as this has happened before. (A classic case would be Albert Speer’s Inside the Third Reich.)

      In any event, if Laqueur is toe-dancing around the facts here, that would not surprise me at all, since he has done the same thing in books such as The Changing Face of Anti-Semitism.

    • stephanaugust  July 5, 2014 at 7:37 am

      It is from 1981, but the case is as you say, that changes are made by editors.

      Another cut book is Simone de Beauvoir’s The Second Sex; two volumes with 650 pages and 450 were edited into a one volume edition with 900 pages, and I would guess that the new edition uses larger fonts and more parahraphs. An antiquary told me that when socialism was en vogue, a lot of socialist content was edited out of books.

      As for Laqueur, I ordered a used English edition of The Terrible Secret. (There was no “free” download available.)

    • stephanaugust  July 5, 2014 at 7:42 am

      Hmmm, either my answer is in the pipeline, or in the internet nirvana, let’s wait a while

  2. 60sstreetpunk  July 1, 2014 at 5:04 pm

    Michael Kay- the problem actually is that people like you are smug. You dismiss everyone who you feel doesn’t buy into what you believe. You talk like you have all the answers to the universe, but you do not realize just how ignorant you are or how pathetic you make yourself look when you print the self serving stuff you add here. You are a conceited and smug. It is people like you that gives ammunition to the ADL types.
    I remember not so long ago you taking such delight that you are German-Anglo. I remember you stating that you were going to kill all Catholics so as to do society a favor for the future. I do not give a damn what your nationality is as nationality means nothing when it comes to human decency.
    You are actually a Bolshevik as you want to get rid of anyone who does not agree with you.
    I would not want your type in any of our platoon’s squads in Marine Corps 69. I would never trust your type.
    If anyone wants a nice concise historical review of Christianity, get Paley’s book on Christianity. He was an Anglican priest and wrote this masterpiece in 1851. Stirling books has a nice abbreviated version. I bought one at Barnes and Noble for $8.I am in my mid 60s. I read anything by anyone as long as it checks out historically. The origins of Christianity check out very well. One’s race, nationality, religion does not matter when it comes to honesty and superb research.
    If one wants to delight in his or her genetics, fine, but see how great you feel when you are old.

    • Mike Kay  July 1, 2014 at 6:53 pm

      60’s,
      Guess what, last time I checked you didn’t get to decide who was in your platoon, but I guess things were different in your army, eh?
      You, like just about every christian I have ever met, puts whatever limited brain power they have into “park” whenever the issue of your religion comes around. Why should your religion be immune to examination?
      Oh, wait, it must be conceit to realize that your precious indoctrination, and your fake ordered universe have failed.
      What is particularly amazing about the christian perspective is the fluid definition given to anything christians want to excuse, followed by the uncompromising sneer they deliver when they pass judgement.
      Here is the truth for you 60s, your fear and outrage will not stop, or alter, the work currently being done that exposes your religion as a fraud.

  3. Yehuda_Abraham  July 1, 2014 at 5:47 am

    If Cole believes that “gassings” took place in the Eastern camps, then he doesn’t have the faintest idea of what he is talking about, nor does he have any evidence to support such rot.

    The “gassings” in camps like Treblinka was created by one man, Yenkel Wiernek. You can read his Book “A Year In Treblinka” on line. It was created by the Jewish Communists whose American headquarters was in New York, at the same building that housed the Jewish Daily Forward. This building still exists, and has busts of Marx and Engels carved into the building’s face.

    The Jewish Superman, Wiernek, decided he would help the Germans who were too stupid to build a gas chamber by themselves. So old Yenkel went into the forest with an axe and came out with finished lumber in order to build the gas chambers to gas his fellow Jews…………with Diesel smoke!

    I doubt Cole would be ignorant enough to believe such rot, so clearly he doesn’t know what he is talking about.

    • Yehuda_Abraham  July 3, 2014 at 8:26 pm

      There is much to respect about David Cole, and he has done as much for revisionism as almost anyone in the movement. He is also very brave, in spite of his forced recantation.

      I will say though that David Cole often ventures into areas that are ridiculous, and he should know better. I listened to an interview with him where he claimed that German submariners wore Jew-hair booties!!!

      His ignorance about Treblinka is also telling. I am not saying this to discredit his other work, but I am suggesting he should avoid such ridiculous nonsense.

  4. Worker Bee  July 1, 2014 at 4:21 am

    So the SS used Zyklon-B to exterminate…

    fleas and lice. Got it.

    • Yehuda_Abraham  July 1, 2014 at 5:52 am

      Or, as the popular myths go, the SS used bug spray to exterminate Jews.

  5. Jonas E. Alexis  June 30, 2014 at 8:01 pm

    Hey Eddie,

    Thanks for your honest and thoughtful response. I did not mention people like Daniel Dennett in the article because I have addressed their faulty premises in other articles. See for example my article entitled “God and the Intellectuals (Part II).”

    I have never even remotely suggested that Christianity can be examined or considered outside its Greco-Roman context. But it is historically fallacious and demonstrably false to say that Christianity’s theological teachings were drawn from mystery religions—too much to detail here, but the article just pointed out the tip of the iceberg. I also cited many of the scholarly and primary sources.

    Now, you seem to grant the premise that “Jesus and the early church writers may not have drawn upon mystery religions…” If that is the case, should we not examine Christianity based on what its founders and early followers taught? If I were to examine the life and philosophy of Bertrand Russell, which source would be much more reliable–what Russell himself wrote and taught, or what some later writers said about him? I think you and I would agree that we should put much weight on what he actually said. If we want to be intellectually honest, shouldn’t Christianity be examined in the same way?

    • Worker Bee  July 1, 2014 at 9:02 am

      For your premise to hold, you either have to take the heretical view of following only the New Testament, or you must also show (pre Talmudic) Judaism not to be based on “mystery religions”.

  6. lawson  June 30, 2014 at 7:30 pm

    This is an amazingly comprehensive article, but I have one serious concern, which is the quote that leads to it; what we used to call “The Cowcatcher” in commercial radio, as follows

    Christopher Hitchens “The Holocaust has become a secular religion, with state support in the form of a national museum.”

    No! NO! NOOOOOOOO! There can be no such thing as a “secular religion”, and Christopher Hitchens was wrong to coin such a term. I have just been exchanging comments on a video about Barbara Spectre Learner and her advocacy for a “non-denominational institute of Jewish learning”. Need I say more?

    This and Hitchens’s term constitute double speak, just as is using the name for a grouping of languages to derive the all-encompasing accusation of hatred or dislike for one single religious entity Judaism. Of course I refer to the falsity of the term anti-semitisim.

    As much as I admire most of Christopher Hitchins’s writing and commentaries, I sincerely hope that this little ersatz gem of his “secular religion” does not enter the English language as a defining term for anything, least of all the so-called holocaust.

    • Yehuda_Abraham  July 1, 2014 at 5:51 am

      You are a bit late in your plea, because the HolyCo$t religion is well established around the world. And Holyco$t synagogues are being erected (at taxpayer expense) in most every country in the world.

    • Worker Bee  July 1, 2014 at 9:18 am

      “…hatred or dislike for one single religious entity Judaism.”

      Hatred of Jewish tribal politics would be a better phrase, since many atheist Jews follow anti-goyim practices.

    • lawson  July 1, 2014 at 6:20 pm

      No, Worker Bee, I meant what I wrote, you have changed its sense by isolating a particular phrase

      “. . . to derive the all-encompasing accusation of hatred or dislike for one single religious entity Judaism.”

      The point being that no matter what someone says or writes about anything that could have even the remotest connection to Jews, or how some of them behave, or the Jewish religion or some of its practices, the good-old-reliable accusation of anti-Semitism, works; at least in the eyes of those who are ignorant about its basic dishonesty.

      I don’t like what Israelis are doing to Palestinians = anti-Semitism
      I don’t like the way that Jews control Hollywood and the mainstream media = anti-Semitism
      I don’t like the way so many Jews are in control of so much money = anti-Semitism
      I don’t like the way that AIPAC controls U.S. foreign policy = anti-Semitism
      I don’t like the way that “Friends of Israel” are manipulating so many politicians = anti-Semitism

      Yet each and every one of the concerns expressed above are quite legitimate ones, and are probably consistent with the views of the majority of most thinking non-Jews, and maybe even a lot of decent Jews, around the world.

  7. Gary Walker  June 30, 2014 at 5:07 pm

    I agree with you about Shermer. I do not subscribe to his mag anymore. I think he is a liar.
    But Jonas, is the Catholic church aware of 1John 5 21? Do you have a plastic Jesus? And is Mary a god now?

    Just wondering,
    Infidel

  8. potai  June 30, 2014 at 9:34 am

    Shermer heads the CSI (Center for Skeptical Inquiry), and organization that was founded by Dr. Paul Kurtz (now deceased) who was a philosophy professor at SUNY-Buffalo, but clearly had a second life (or lives) as a Jew, Humanist, and (probably) intelligence asset. A big player in CSI today is also James Randi, an illusionist by profession. I really hate it when Shermer puts on that phoney smile of his while reciting the (ideological) party line. These are not folks one wants as neighbors.
    The rabbit hole goes much deeper than most people imagine. Shermer, methinks, is not an atheist at all. Put it another way, Shermer is as much atheist as Bobby Dylan (aka Zimmerman) who remarked to Ed Bradley that he was keeping up his end of the bargin with the ‘Chief’, the one who manages ‘this world and the one we can’t see.’ The Joos are merely the face of a greater beast who claims to own us like we own cattle. A really mucked up bunch, these folks. The big secret that few know is that we are indeed their property, but we don’t have to be.

    • Gary Walker  June 30, 2014 at 5:13 pm

      I thought Dylan converted to Xtianity after a motor cycle accident? True or not?

  9. Yehuda_Abraham  June 30, 2014 at 7:19 am

    Shermer had the guts to appear at an IHR conference debating revisionists, who kicked his backside all around the room. By the end of the “debate” Shermer was admitting “this is all wrong” (re gas chambers) but he then claimed “the people who could explain this were not there to answer my questions”

    This was back in the mid 90’s, I believe. 20 some odd years have passed, and yet Shermer still persists with his nonsense. It should be obvious by now that Shermer is an egregious liar.

  10. caribbeancritic  June 30, 2014 at 6:07 am

    Threatening phone call from a ZEEP

    Goodness me I may not sleep

    They know my number know my name

    Where I am it’s such a shame

    Dead man walking I was told

    The JDL they’re very bold

    What is his name it must be heady

    But I know it’s Danny Levi

    His big mistake was on the phone

    Recognized his you-tube drone

    Three hundred friends computers too

    Tracking down his home and who

    When the profile is complete

    It will be passed to secret police

    A name I know may not be true

    Friends computers show a few

    An Alias a safe bet

    Anonymous on the net

    Have a nice day Mister. Danny Levi

  11. HISTORICVS  June 30, 2014 at 5:40 am

    Romans were tolerant of all gods, and never demanded conversion to the “true faith.” But they were a superstitious lot and, like Pat Robertson today, imagined that calamities were the result of the gods’ anger at being insufficiently worshipped. To their way of thinking the unprecedented political, social, military, economic and natural crises of the second and third century were vivid proof that the gods had withdrawn their favors. It was reasonable from this perspective to assume that the growing presence of
    Christians was the source of these woes, yet the “persecution” amounted simply to be required to make a token gesture to the state’s patron deities.
    The end of religious liberty in the Roman world finally came under the Christian Emperor Theodosius in 381 CE when he banned all other forms of worship.

    • timwebb  July 1, 2014 at 3:47 am

      One assumes that this “token gesture” was similarly observed by Nero when he threw the Christians to the lions and incinerated them on poles in his private chambers and in the arena.
      You write that the Romans had a “reasonable perspective” on the cause of their woes. But a more reasonable perspective surely would have been to pay a small amount of attention to their wilful debasing of the currency; a practice which is being emulated by other once-great empires in our own times, and with identical social, military, and economic consequences.

  12. ani  June 30, 2014 at 2:02 am

    George Bowling in the FaceBook section above (LOL)

    My first seven years on Planet Earth were Lived in the Haarlem of the Netherlands.

    My mother survived the WWll years in Amsterdam, and to this day will not hear one word against the Jews, no matter how many decent Dutch died for protecting the Jews.

    Not so long ago I was very privileged to visit NYC. Amongst those privileges was a visit to the Statue of Liberty, where I was so moved by many facets, including ‘give me your tired….’

    While waiting for the ferry, I bought a stunning/lyrical book at the book store – Russell Shorto’s “The Island at the Centre of the World”, which chronicles the Dutch/EU settlement of Manna Hatta

    I did not ‘know’ then, the scourge of the Jooze.

    • etominusipi  June 30, 2014 at 7:58 am

      ‘give me your tired…’ is from the sonnet The New Colossusby Emma Lazarus, a friend of Emerson and early supporter of Jewish emigration to Palestine who inspired Julie R Enszer* to speculate recently I relish the possibility that the woman who shaped the meaning of nation for the United States in the twentieth century was all of these things—woman, Jew, and lesbian. Emma died young. her poem waited 12 years until the plinth was supplied through Joseph Pulitzer’s fund-raising drive. in the light of post-1913 and particularly post-911 developments it is ironic that two Jews were so closely associated by America’s sculpted icon of liberty.
      * http //www.poetrysociety.org/psa/poetry/crossroads/old_school/Julie_R_Enszer/

    • stephanaugust  June 30, 2014 at 12:16 pm

      Maybe a paid brand ambassador for Jewish-American relations …

  13. Charlotte NC Bill  June 30, 2014 at 1:44 am

    Rep. Peter King is a liar on a leash who knows Mossad did 9-11….knows about the Holohoax but has to bark for his illuminati cabalist elite that own our central bank, media, entertainment industry, politicians, etc ….The one thing I don’t like about Henry Makow is that he still pushes the holohoax.

  14. stephanaugust  June 30, 2014 at 1:12 am

    Is Walter Laqueur’s book, ‘The Terrible Secret Suppression of the Truth about Hitler’s “Final Solution”,’ revisionist or anti-revisionist?

    • Jonas E. Alexis  June 30, 2014 at 1:19 am

      Anti-revisionist. He was kind enough to declare that the soap story was completely fake. It took him years to admit that point.

    • stephanaugust  June 30, 2014 at 12:12 pm

      Thank you Jonas. This makes it worth buying the book, copying the passage, and posting it under the headline

      Walter Laqueur Denies The Holocaust-Soap

      I will check the pages around/after page 145 in the German edition.

  15. stephanaugust  June 30, 2014 at 1:02 am

    “We are survival machines, robot vehicles blindly programmed …”

    Why then do people like Shermer want so much change? Given “blindly programmed,” change appears to be an illusion.

    • stephanaugust  June 30, 2014 at 1:05 am

      I mean people like Dawkins. But people like Shermer would not be incorrect.

  16. Mike Kay  June 29, 2014 at 9:54 pm

    Mr. Alexis,
    I do wish you would constrain your bias long enough to write accurately on pre-and early christian history. I fully expected you to butcher the Orphic Mysteries, and in fact, that is what you did. I also was unsurprised at your sophomoric rendering of Dionysus, and your blatant fixation with overt sexuality for its own sake.
    Eusebius, the great liar and self appointed apologist and “historian” of christianity admitted that christianity ripped off extant pre-christian traditions. So there you go, a christian admitting what anyone with honesty in research can discover.
    The perspective of christ as myth comes directly from the intentional mythic nature of the christ narrative. Long before christianity we find the cross, the sacrifice, and the two wedded in imagery and myth. To claim that no mythic quality is found here is either outright charlatanism, or flat ignorance elevated to absurd status.
    Here is the truth. There was no christian church before the 4th century. There was no historical pacifist christ running around with his gang of boys. Christian ritual and practice, from holiday observations, to ritual clothing, to the eucharist itself were lifted wholesale from pre-existing traditions. Christianity is a mind control device invented by the Caesars.
    No matter how much lipstick you smear on it, a corpse is still a corpse.

    • Mike Kay  June 30, 2014 at 3:15 pm

      WH,
      The documents exist that link the Flavians with the Jewish historian Josephus, as the creators of a parallel judaism that became Christianity.
      The false narrative of christian persecution at the hands of Rome was nothing beyond the engineered victim status we discover so incessantly deployed by organized jewry, and mimicked by their descendents.
      Christians must always be “right”, rather than “wrong”, but the need to define the world in such basic terms was never part of the spiritual tradition of the Levant, Egypt, Greece, or the greater Mediterranean.
      The absolutism you, and much of the world has been subject to is the justification for keeping the slave a slave.

    • timwebb  July 1, 2014 at 3:52 am

      You appear to deliberately conflate Roman Catholicism with Christianity, as do legions of other self-appointed humanists.
      It will no doubt surprise you to learn that the Bible refers to this religion of satan as The Great Whore, Babylon the Great, etc, whose end will come in a single hour.

    • wolf  July 1, 2014 at 7:25 pm

      Agreed Tim. The two should be considered as mutually exclusive. They are not the same.

    • timwebb  July 1, 2014 at 3:33 am

      Here is some more truth. You are a dissembler at best, and unquestionably something far worse, were the unvarnished truth to be told.
      You write “Long before Christianity…”.
      If we are to believe that the immortal first verse of Genesis records a time at the beginning of all things, then we must examine this verse most carefully.
      The Hebrew language is composed of an alphabet whose very letters mean something intrinsically. These letter definitions are provided for us in Psalm 119 and elsewhere.
      The first Hebrew word in Genesis is “Barasheet”; we translate this as “In the beginning”. These six Hebrew letters may be read, as indicated, as six words, or ideas.
      Thus we read, as the very first word spoken to man by YHVH at the beginning of time, the sentence
      “The Son of God will die by His own hand upon a cross”.
      Accordingly therefore, Christianity was already fully prefigured and essentially in existence at the very beginning of time, as befits the Creator by Whose power all things are, and have their being, and substance.
      You will be aware that the caesars of whom you speak, the first sixteen of whom were sodomites and thus rebels against the commandments and the majesty of their Creator, were not in existence at this early stage of earthly history.
      You might also like to know that the first ten patriarchs from Adam to Noah in the line of the Son of God had names which likewise mean something. The meanings of their names, written chronologically, spells out

    • timwebb  July 1, 2014 at 3:40 am

      …the sentence “Man created mortal sorrow, the Blessed God shall come down teaching, His death shall bring the despairing rest and comfort”.
      You may reassure yourself that this sentence does not refer to any of the pagan gods of antiquity, but to the Sovereign Creator of all things, before Whose feet you are commanded to fall, and Whose Holy Name you are required to finally acknowledge, before you are cast into the Lake of Fire, in which location you will breathe your last, before passing eternally into oblivion.

    • Mike Kay  July 1, 2014 at 2:42 pm

      TW,
      You are a bloviating disinformation artist at best.
      The OT is a syncretic amalgam of tradition from at least three very different fertile crescent civilizations. In case you still don’t get it, let me spell it out for you-your ideological nonsense is not evidence.
      The NT is a mixture of Gnostic, Roman, and Jewish source material that was edited, and re-edited with every generation of christian “scholars”. These are the same charlatans who invented history, altered the spelling in key documents, and waged campaigns of murder and book burnings to cover their tracks.
      I am sorry that the divine redeemer complex has so infected your mind that you cannot differentiate key concepts and symbols, but until you do, you will contribute nothing to this discourse.

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