Anthony Hall academic freedom court case begins August 8th – Open Letter to University President Mike Mahon

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Here is Andrew Blair’s terrific open letter on academic freedom in general, and the Tony Hall case in particular. –Kevin Barrett, Veterans Today Editor

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An Open Letter to Pres. Mike Mahon on His Suspension of Academic Freedom in Alberta Canada, written and sent by Andrew Blair, Ph.D.

The lines of the contention are drawn on the eve of court proceedings beginning on August 8.

4 Aug. 2017

Dr. Mike Mahon,

President and Vice-Provost,

University of Lethbridge, Alberta Canada

Dear. Dr. Mahon;

I have always found universities to be the most wonderful of places. There is always so much going on, so much to do, and so much to learn. And, best of all, they normally encourage critical thought.

I see that the university has recently established a School of Liberal Education, and I whole-heartedly support its aims. But I find it baffling and very upsetting that the university administration is at the same time undermining Canadian democracy. I am sure that neither you nor anyone in the administration is intending to do this, but I think you are. How so?

The Canadian Charter of Rights and Freedoms guarantees freedom of conscience and freedom of expression. While these freedoms are not unlimited they can only be limited, according to Section 1 of the Charter, by “such reasonable limits prescribed by law as can be demonstrably justified in a free and democratic society.”

These fundamental freedoms are not cast off upon entering the workplace, especially not tax-supported workplaces engaged in education. In suspending Professor Hall, you have kept him out of the classroom, thus suppressing his freedom of expression and opposing his conscientious attempt to defend the oppressed of the world. In addition, I have reason to believe that you have augmented the intimidation that other academics feel, resulting in self-censorship.

I imagine that you believe that the actions that the university administration has taken do place justifiable limits on Professor Hall’s fundamental freedoms. If “anti-Semitic” were an accurate description of Professor Hall’s views it would indeed provide some support for such a limitation. But a very warped understanding of prejudice is required in order to make the description fit. It is akin to accusing someone of being anti-Christian because they say that residential schools were responsible for sexual abuse.

Moreover, it astonishes me that the complaint against Professor Hall to the Alberta Human Rights Commission makes claims which purport to be facts that take the side against Muslims, thus maligning them as a religious group in a far more stereotyping way than anything Professor Hall has said about Jewish people. For example, the complaint simply states, as if it were an established fact, that the attacks of September 11, 2001 were committed by “Islamic terrorists”.  (Here is a partial image of the complaint.) This is a widespread belief propagated by the U.S. government, but how do we know it is true? Are you able to cite some peer-reviewed articles that offer evidence for the belief? Are there peer-reviewed articles which grapple with the counter-evidence?

Aside from the prejudicial assumptions of the complaint, the logic is faulty. It supposes that if “Islamic terrorists” did 9/11 then the Israeli government was not involved. The term “Islamic terrorist” is an overly vague stereotype and the conclusion is a non sequitur. One plausible scenario, not envisaged by the complaint, is that the 19 9/11 hijackers, from Muslim countries like Saudi Arabia, were CIA assets labelled “Islamic terrorists”, used by deep state agents within the U.S. and Israeli governments as patsies in a false flag operation.

Until universities have given all arguments about 9/11 a fair hearing, including those to which Professor Hall subscribes, the public cannot know whether the official narrative is true. The very action you have taken against Professor Hall undermines the possibility of arriving at knowledge about this with even a minimal degree of certainty.

It is utterly against the spirit of democracy for a university to pronounce without evidence on a matter such as this, and then suppress the voice of those who have a different view. How can the truth emerge if some of the arguments are forbidden? Surely universities should endorse no institutional position about such matters, but encourage respectful dialogue, and defend the academic community against all who engage in character assassination.

The conflict between the university administration and Professor Hall is not merely a tempest at the University of Lethbridge. It is an episode in the development of “inverted totalitarianism,” to use a term coined by the political philosopher Sheldon Wolin. Such a political system pays lip service to freedom and democracy, while at the same time undermining it by management of public perception.

This tempest is not a matter of academic interest only. Lives are at stake. In this connection I refer you to an opinion piece of mine, titled Peace, Democracy and Academic Freedom, that was published in the Lethbridge Herald. It mentions that tens of millions have been killed in the post-9/11 wars in the Middle East. I did not arbitrarily make up this up. The source is Gideon Polya’s estimates, which include avoidable deaths caused by war, and not just deaths caused by direct violence.

I do not blame you if you do not see this tempest as I do, but my challenge to you is that you find a way to restore the reputation of the University of Lethbridge as a place of academic freedom, as identified as such in the Destination 2020 vision and strategy statement. I have a suggestion about how to do this. Hold a conference at the university, titled something like this: “Sifting Truth from Falsehood in Competing Conspiracy Theories: The Role of Academic Freedom and Responsibility”. (The official narrative of 9/11 is, itself, a theory about a conspiracy.)

If anyone else has some suggestions please feel free to make a comment on this letter. You could reply by email, but I would prefer that you make your comment public by posting in the comment box below this post of this email.

For anyone who wants more background on this case you could go to the home page of Academic Freedom and Responsibility. This site is being constructed by me and it is still under construction. My apologies to anyone who finds its structure to be confusing.

The opinion piece, Peace, Democracy and Academic Freedom, published on July 15, 2017 in the Lethbridge Herald, is very much related to this open letter. It makes the point that leaders of democratic countries are tempted to deceive the public when they want to go to war but the populace wants peace. Academic freedom provides a crucial constraint on this temptation.

If you are interested in pursuing still more detailed ideas about all this, you might want to look at my response to Gabrielle Brenner, who commented on a post of Professor O’Donnell’s.

Once again, President Mahon, I urge you to change course and uphold the principles which underpin democratic decision making. At this point changing course may be very difficult, but it is still possible to snatch integrity from the jaws of confusion. Why not have a conference in which the university community itself can address the issue of academic freedom and responsibility? We might all learn a lot from each other.


P.S. For those cc’d on this open letter, I am trying to draw attention here to the relation of academic freedom to democratic decision making, but there is an additional issue that the University of Lethbridge Faculty Association is trying to address: the obligation to fulfil contractual agreements.

In this connection I see that the University of Lethbridge Faculty Association has published a notice of a public court hearing on Aug. 8, 2017, at 2:00 pm. The Board of Governors is arguing that there should be a judicial review of Alberta’s Post-Secondary Learning Act, which they regard as giving the president the right to suspend Professor Hall without following the procedures laid down in the Faculty Handbook. But an arbitrator has already been appointed by the Alberta Labour Relations Board to resolve the matter, and so the Board seeks a stay of the arbitration process until the judicial review has been completed. The faculty association is arguing that there should be no stay granted, and that there is no need to review the law at all.

Sincerely,

Andrew Blair, PhD.

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Kevin Barrett

Dr. Kevin Barrett, a Ph.D. Arabist-Islamologist, is one of America’s best-known critics of the War on Terror.

He is Host of TRUTH JIHAD RADIO; a hard driving weekly LIVE call in radio show. He also has appeared many times on Fox, CNN, PBS and other broadcast outlets, and has inspired feature stories and op-eds in the New York Times, the Christian Science Monitor, the Chicago Tribune, and other leading publications.

Dr. Barrett has taught at colleges and universities in San Francisco, Paris, and Wisconsin, where he ran for Congress in 2008. He currently works as a nonprofit organizer, author, and talk radio host.

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10 COMMENTS

  1. I am writing this here so it is not buried in the comments section, about “Legitimate Academia”.Concise Oxford. “Legitimate” 1.Conforming to the law. 2.Able to be defended with logic of justification.From Latin ‘make legal’. “Legal” from Latin, legalis- law.Then “Law” 1. Rules or system of rules 2. A statement of fact,deduced from observation,to the effect that a certain natural of scientific phenomenon always occurs if certain conditions are present.4. A body of divine commandmentsas expressed in The Bible or other religious texts-(The Law) the Pentateuch)-(also The Law of Moses) the precepts of the Pentateuch.

    Let us start talking with Jews who believe in the Pentateuch as The Law and exclude the Talmud as opinionated commentary. Casuistic Legalise if you like. The Pentateuch was translated by Ezra from Hieroglyphics to Hebrew by Ezra in Babylon in 600 BC, that in itself is an issue. Jesus Christ clearly disagreed with the Southern Judaic Tribes interpretation of the Pentateuch and Northern Israel had a different approach. The Khazars follow the Babylonion Talmud. Legitimate Schlegitimate.

    My Hypothesis is that the Universal Christian Church inherited the mantle of Israel and that Judea had fallen into Heresy, gone away from the Pentateuch and Judges, broken The Covenant. Followed Kings and sacrified to Baal – still do.

    • Then there is “Academia” – See Academy.

      From Akademos – the hero from whom the garden where Plato taught was named. Plato had a mighty influence on Western Philosophy and Thought.

      Surely, this is what is supposed to be taught in Western Academic Institutions. Plato also had strong influence into Islam and the Greek speaking Jewish community of places like Alexandria, as well as into Christianity through men like Augustine of Hippo.

      Suffused within all this is Logos and logic. This inexorably leads to Morality and an Educated Conscience. It would appear that the so-called Academics at the University of Lethbridge have lost all touch with this faculty, which is intrinsic to Higher Thought. Rampant Political Correctness, Cultural Marxism and the verbiage of the Frankfurt School have taken over from good old fashion Common Sense. Neo Liberalism (Neocons) subscribe to “there is no basis for Morality in rational thought”, as well as a Dog Eat Dog neo Darwinian World. These people control the funding of “Legitimate Academia”. Lord John Acton said that “Conscience…tends to restrict authority and enlarge liberty…Liberalism is ultimately founded on the idea of conscience…”.

  2. I wish you much luck in this case Mr. Hall but I already lost hope for academic freedom, “Whose bread I eat those song I sing”…

  3. I find it also helps in bringing peace, prosperity, liberty, and freedom, seek out the great treasure of compassionate-foregiveness in human-to-human dealings. These four brilliant minds offer a next-step in global relations and taken together create the skeletal structure to assemble Civilization 3.0 – each with a personal philosophy that contains formal political elements of Reconciliation: (1) Katherine Austin Fitts, (2) Robert David Steele, (3) Dr Steve Pieczenik, (4) and especially Dr. Steven Greer and his CSETI, CE-5 Protocols: “CSETI – Our Best Path For Peaceful Planetary Change. — Learning CE-5 Protocols Will Change Your Life” http://www.buckleyrealty.com/eseti-our-best-path-for-planetary-change

  4. There are a number of issues to discuss here. In Loyola College v Quebec, it was argued by the Attorney General that a Catholic College could not teach from a Catholic point of view and had to teach secular content from a secular point of view. This argument was turned over on the basis that the Catholic Charter permitted a Catholic point of view and analysis. Now we have a supposedly Secular Institution teaching teaching a Faith based content often known as Holocaustianity. Further, Google “Scientific Method” and note that the starting point is to observe and then fromulate an hypothesis. That is then subject to wide analysis and criticism. Logic has been short circuited mostly in these sorts of discussions and the person formulating the hypothesis is immediately accused of “Anti Semitism” or “Holocaust Denial” or “Conspiracy Theorist”, with the expectation that there will be no further discussion. This is against the Scientific Method. I was given a Leadership Prize when I left Secondary College in 1968, about JFK. Now the FBI said that anyone who did not believe that “Lee Harvey Oswald was the Sole Assassin” was a “Conspiracy Theorist”. The video clearly show blood and brain matter bursting out of the back of JFK’s head, and yet Oswald was behind him. My hypothesis is that more than one person was involved apart from Oswald. This and 9/11 were not properly investigated.

    • I will put two hypotheses up for initiating a Scientific Investigation.

      1. There was not enough combustible material available to cremate Six Million victims in Eastern Germany and Poland during the middle to late period of WW2, together with the available transport links to move that material to the cremation sites.
      2. That Lee Harvey Oswald was not the sole assassin of JFK. That contradicts the often touted “Lone Nut” explanation for murderous events
      Neither of these two are “Conspiracy Theories”, but Plausible Hypotheses that warrant considerable and well funded further investigation, using The Scientific Method. These Hypotheses are not to be taken lightly, considering the Huge Impact that they have had on Modern History.

    • Which brings me my Third Hypothesis. “That it is technically impossible for two aircraft to drop three buildings into their own footprint, when those buildings had up to 200,000, tons of structural steel and up to 800,000 tons of concrete”. Bear in mind that much of this material appeared to be powderised. Further, this event had huge ramification and a Powerful Coalition, led by the United States of America, which President Eisenhower wrote in his own hand was controlled by a “Military Industrial Congressional Complex”, invaded seven oil rich Middle Eastern and African Countries. POTUS43 proposed a budget of $4 million to investigate this massive crime.

  5. The very polite letter by Andrew Blair, Ph.D. is water off a duck’s back when addressing intellectual whores like the addressee who is a total disgrace to every principle of academic freedom and must be told that in no uncertain terms however rude it might be. The disgusting ignoramus Mike Mahon obviously does not even understand the motto of the so called University of Lethbridge “Let There Be Light” and is acting to publicly gang rape every concept of freedom of inquiry in his foolish actions which seek to create a straw man standing on a religious house of cards to prevent and intimidate any criticism of anyone or any claims before the fact in an evil effort to shut down any and all criticism which might be offensive to anyone, before that criticism comes out of any mouth! Shame on him. He should never have been appointed and should have been fired from his undeserved responsible position long ago. Please do the public a favor and shut down this intellectual cesspool today before any more damage can be done to academic freedom.

    • But “Lucifer, son of the morning, source of light” is the Luciferian motto. A careful study of Theology and Philosophy leads us back to The Big Bang. Was there something behind it of not – Creation or Emanation (the unfolding enfolding principle).

      All Pantheistic and Gnostic Systems are based on the latter and in the Jewish case Yahweh was a Demiurge who inseminated the daughters of Israel. Good Life is trapped in Evil Matter – Classic Dualism, which is found through the Middle East with Zaroastrianism and leading to Manichaenism of the Roman Legions of Jesus’ Time.

      Post The Reformation and the so-called Age of Enlightenment, the catch cry was catch cry was “Light More Light”. Pride has led to Hubris and our journey of discovery has led to the realisation that Human Persons are Genetically 99.99% Primate, and the very real material body is indeed only The Tabernacle of The Spirit. Prideful man set out seeking the light and has ended up designing Nuclear Weapons.

  6. Claiming that 9-11 was done by Islamic terrorists is like claiming that Reichstag was burned by Dutch communists. So, we know for sure that both of these claims belong to the arch anti-semites. How? Well, if NAZIs are proven anti-semites then propounding their style of lies makes you equal, doesn’t it? That makes both governments of USA and Israel the spitting image of arch anti-semites, as well as many other western governements.

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