Tuesday, August 28, 2007

NEW SITE: RedDirtReport.com


Hope to see you over there!

-Andrew in OKC

Thursday, August 16, 2007

OK Gazette asks: Are giant octopi eating swimmers in Oklahoma lakes?

This had to be one of the more bizarre non-stories to grace the cover of the tried-and-true Oklahoma Gazette.

Giant octopi? What about real investigative pieces? How about a story looking into the murder of Oklahoma City Police Officer Terry Yeakey following the Oklahoma City bombing? C'mon Gaz, we expect more from y'all!

Monday, August 13, 2007

LAST MAN OUT: William Rodriguez takes '9-11 Hero Tour' to Tulsa

By Andrew W. Griffin
Red Dirt Report
Posted: August 13, 2007

TULSA, Okla. – Amidst the chaos, death and destruction of the attacks on the World Trade Center on Sept.11, 2001, one man was able to save many people and get out alive himself – just barely.
That man is William Rodriguez, a native Puerto Rican who worked as a janitor in the North Tower of the World Trade Center for 20 years. Traveling around the world, Rodriguez brought his compelling and harrowing tale of strength and heroism to a group of 200 at the Renaissance Tulsa Convention Center on Aug. 8, sponsored by TulsaTruth.org. This visit is part of his “Last Man Out” 9-11 Hero Tour which has taken him to Britain, Malaysia, Venezuela and many other countries.
Rodriguez, as it turns out, is a very engaging and interesting guy. He breaks the ice by joking about how he resembles and sounds like Desi Arnaz of “I Love Lucy” fame. But it isn’t long before Rodriguez is telling the crowd how he almost didn’t come to work on that fateful morning, telling his boss he just didn’t feel up to it, mainly because his task includes being in charge of cleaning 110 floors of stairwells.
But his boss convinced him to do otherwise, and Rodriguez came in – late. As he later notes, his tardiness saved his life and the lives of others, as it turns out.
“I went to the North Tower basement where our office was located and it was at 8:46 that there was an explosion that was so loud. BOOM!! That came from below us.”
There were five more basement levels below where he was with the other workers.
“I suspected the generator blew out,” Rodriguez said. “I had the sensation of being pushed up.”
Seconds later, as he was getting his bearings, Rodriguez said there was another explosion, this time far above them. This was the first airliner striking the tower many floors above them.
“There were two different events separated by seven seconds,” Rodriguez said, adding that someone was screaming ‘It’s a bomb, it’s a bomb.’ Rodriguez, it should be noted, survived the 1993 bombing of the World Trade Center.
Meanwhile, his fellow workers are screaming in terror not sure what to do. It’s then that an Aramark vending machine worker named Felipe David makes his way into their office, his burned skin hanging off of him.
“He was crying ‘Help! Help!’” Rodriguez said. “I put a towel around Mr. Felipe and told him we’re going to get out.”
And they made their way out of the basement area and up to the street, finding an ambulance for David.
At this point, emergency vehicles were arriving and he’s beginning to get a better sense of what is going on. Looking up, he sees the top of the tower on fire, where the plane had struck it. Immediately he thought of all his friends on the 106th and 107th floor where the Windows of the World restaurant is located. In fact, on a normal day, he’d be up there having his free breakfast and working his way down to the bottom floor. But, since he came in late, that wasn’t the case. In all, he said he lost 200 friends on 9/11.
Going back inside to his office, the sprinklers are flooding the offices and it’s then that he hears screams. It is two men trapped in a freight elevator which is also filling up with water.
Not sure how to get them out, Rodriguez says he was able to find an unsecure mop and is able to use it to help the two trapped workers make their way to freedom.
Around this time, the firemen are figuring out how to go in and save people still inside the tower. Because Rodriguez carries the coveted master key, which opens all floors and offices, he tells the firemen that he will lead them in there, opening each door.
“These guys are my heroes,” Rodriguez said of the fire fighters. “They had between 55 to 125 pounds of equipment on their backs, not to mention their protective suits and boots. I mean, they were just struggling to get up the stairwell.”
As Rodriguez was leading them up those first dozen-or-so floors, opening doors and checking offices for people, three more loud explosions could be heard coming from below. While one fireman suggested it was gas tanks in the kitchens blowing up, Rodriguez said building codes don’t allow gas in skyscrapers like the WTC 1. They’re all electric.
By the time he reached the 33rd floor, he had managed to call his worried mother in Puerto Rico and assure him he was all right. While on the 33rd floor, Rodriguez got spooked by the sound of something huge being scraped along the floor of the 34th floor just above him.
“I knew that was an empty floor,” Rodriguez said. “What I heard sounded like a metal dumpster with metal wheels scraping across the floor.”
What this was, Rodriguez wouldn’t speculate. However, he did say this was the only floor he didn’t enter.
About this time, Rodriguez hears another explosion, this time coming from the South Tower. The second plane had hit. The force shook the North Tower as well.
Realizing he’s never going to make it to the top floor to save his trapped friends, Rodriguez begins making his way back down towards the main floor.
Along the way, he hears the screams of people trapped in elevators. Unfortunately, he didn’t have the tools to get them out and had to move on.
In the main lobby, Rodriguez said he was stunned by the destruction. The elevator doors were blown upward as if something blew up from below. The marble tiles on the walls were blown off and the glass blown outward. It was utter chaos. Going outside, Rodriguez sees cops nearby screaming at him to not look back. Of course he does look back and sees the remains of people who had been forced to jump from the higher floors.
“I started screaming in total shock and crying,” he said, adding that he thought he recognized the clothing of a friend of his from Windows of the World.
He also saw a woman he had saved earlier who had been cut in half by a piece of glass.
This horrifying scene was overwhelming, he said. It was then that the cops began running away and chunks of the building began coming down as the earthquake-like destruction of the complex began to take place.
He knew he had seconds to find safety, and as he made his way to a nearby fire truck, Rodriguez prayed to God that if they found his body that it would be intact for the sake of his mother.
The building fell all around him, burying him under the debris as the firetruck held up under the strain. He mentioned that his training as a magician (by the Amazing Randi, interestingly enough) helped him survive.
The dust burned his lungs and skin, but incredibly he was pulled out of the rubble – alive and no bones broken.
Rodriguez said he shared his harrowing tale of survival on CNN and other networks and talked about bombs going off in the building, particularly on the sub floors. This was broadcast for about three days until it was finally stopped. Apparently, he said, his story wasn’t fitting in with the official story. Bombs going off everywhere? It was only a plane that caused the building to come down into its own footprint.
Rodriguez said that over time he fought for legislation to be passed to help the children of 9/11 victims. He also spoke to the 9/11 Commission but his testimony was never used. The rest of his friends’ testimony was ignored by the Commission.
Rodriguez said there are so many things that are clearly wrong with everything related to this attack on the World Trade Center. The Giuliani administration did little to adequately protect first responders – 160 of which that have died, along with all the rescue dogs.
“We have 62,000 people are sick in New York City due to the toxic dust from that day,” he said.
Why? He said the Environmental Protection Agency didn’t warn people about the toxicity of the Ground Zero environment because they wanted Wall Street to reopen.
Rodriguez is totally disgusted with the way they’ve treated the regular folks, survivors, first responders and others connected to the tragedy.
“They’ve used this tragedy to push their international political agenda,” he said. “And now we live in a quasi-dictatorship. We keep losing our rights.”
Rodriguez said the only ‘conspiracy theory’ out there is the one told to us by our own government.
“We owe the truth to the victims, survivors and those affected by 9/11,” Rodriguez said.
Rodriguez, in the intervening years, has lived under a bridge – broke – and has traveled the world. In Venezuela, he was being tailed by an FBI agent and was ultimately given protection by the Chavez government. He knows the U.S. government is not happy with him spreading the word of 9/11 truth around the world via his “Last Man Out” speaking tour.
“I suffer every time I relive my story. I feel those souls on my shoulders, still waiting for answers,” he said.
For more information on William Rodriguez, go to www.911keymaster.com.

Tuesday, August 7, 2007

Heavy Mental

In case you missed it, the latest issue of the state magazine Oklahoma Today, has a terrific article, by Enid News & Eagle reporter Scott Fitzgerald, about the life of Enid native and "heavy mental" New Age guitarist Michael Hedges, one of my all-time favorite Okies and artists.

Hedges received worldwide acclaim for his albums "Aerial Boundaries," "Taproot" and others, in the 1980's and 1990's. I personally became a fan when I helped run a program in college at John Brown University called "Reflections," on KLRC. Hedges' beautiful acoustic music was a staple on the program.
Tragically, Hedges died in the fall of 1997 - nearly 10 years ago - in an auto accident in California. During this same period, several other great singer-songwriters - Rich Mullins and John Denver - died in accidents involving forms of transportation. Denver in an experimental plane and Mullins in a car. Very sad time.
But Hedges left behind a great collection of music which is widely available via the terrific Windham Hill record label.

And on this subject, check out Enid Buzz's blog post "A Moment in Time," which is about Hedges' home in Enid and a recent gathering of some of the Hedges family.

Wednesday, August 1, 2007

They've looked at clouds from both sides now

Here's a link to my Norman Transcript story about a cloud study performed by OU scientists and feds, including NASA.

And when I inquired about "jet trails" (i.e. contrails or chemtrails), Dr. Pete Lamb said he wrote a paper on contrails. He didn't take it any further.

Monday, July 30, 2007

Israeli counterterrorism expert warns of multiple terror attacks 'within 90 days'

Israeli counterterrorism expert Juval Aviv said an "Al Qaeda" attack could strike up to seven U.S. cities within the next 90 days.

Read the report here.

Sunday, July 29, 2007

Pet deaths concern neighbors

Rather disturbing report comes out of Edmond involving a mutilated cat.