May 9, 2002 5:46 AM   Subscribe

Conspiracy...Theory. A string of scientists working on similar projects all over the world are found dead. (via cursor)
posted by bittennails (19 comments total)
The theorists have already won.
posted by pracowity at 5:52 AM on May 9, 2002

More on this story, which appeared already on Slashdot. Others dismiss it as a coincidence. I think it's eerie and worth investigating.
posted by talos at 6:10 AM on May 9, 2002

What I always find interesting with conspiracy theories is not the theory itself (although I must admit this one is a doozy), but the mad rush by some (not all) people to dismiss anyone who brings it up or suggests that further investigation might be in order (see the /. comments for some excellent examples of this).

Law enforcement would be remiss if this were not investigated further. Even if it turns out to be nothing but a string of weird coincidences, it is by checking into trends of this very sort that Law enforcement often achieves its greatest successes.

Thanks for the cool and thought-provoking post.
posted by anastasiav at 6:46 AM on May 9, 2002

I was sure that this link would be about googlebombing.
posted by websavvy at 6:48 AM on May 9, 2002

How does one die from exposure to nitrogen (Nguyen Van Set, 44)? Like maybe if a cylinder falls on your head or it's at high pressure and freezes your ass.

My lungs are pretty exposed to nitrogen all the time, it's useful to avoid being drunk off my ass on o2.
posted by Leonard at 6:49 AM on May 9, 2002

Do a search for Nitrogen gas.
posted by kush at 6:57 AM on May 9, 2002

earlier bio-defense related thread on metafilter.
it seems that working outside the bio-engineering mainstream is a more dangerous passtime than working as a sky-diving instructor, or something. hrm.
posted by asok at 7:01 AM on May 9, 2002

Man, the Signal to Noise ratio of these comments is atrocious. Why do people insist on being stupid?

Having said that, back on topic.

I think this is incredible...I saw it on /. when it was first posted, and I read it then and was a bit chilled. It was like the first time I read about the number of people involved with the Clintons who've died....the number is something like 6 times more poeple have died under unusual circumstances than normal....that's 600% for all you visual learners :).

I simply don't think this could be coincidence. With the police changing their stories (he was beat [no he wasn't] okay he had a stroke) and the number of people who died of strokes or "dizzy spells", this just points out a need for more investigation. I mean, really...why don't we know more about the murder suicide? Is there even a frickin' motive?! If it was a love triangle or something, perhaps it could be explained away....but if there wasn't...something dirty is involved.

Anybody who knows anything about spying knows that most intelligence operatives are spymasters...they recruit locals to do the spying for them. Could be along that kind of vein. I was just reading the history of Mossad that was posted earlier, and it mentioned how they assassinated people related to their nuclear program if they left the country. I don't think it's insane to imagine that something like that could be happening.
posted by taumeson at 7:07 AM on May 9, 2002

Don't worry, it will come out as a spy thriller or movie soon.
posted by mecran01 at 7:36 AM on May 9, 2002

No mystery about Robert Schwartz's death.
posted by MrMoonPie at 8:05 AM on May 9, 2002

"a spy thriller or movie soon"

see Greg Bear's novel Vitals.

"Hal Cousins's investigations into prehistoric life forms lead him to nearly discovering the secret of longevity and mark him as a target by competing scientists, unscrupulous officials, and a mysterious mastermind. As Cousins tries to piece together fragments of precious clues, he uncovers a dark and deadly conspiracy that spans generations and continents. The author of Darwin's Radio continues to break new ground in imaginative and too-plausible sf, combining nonstop action and hard science to produce a powerful biotech-thriller that is both timely and frightening." (from Library Journal)
posted by anitar at 8:33 AM on May 9, 2002

MrMoonPie: that link does not work, tried a few searches, could not come up with it. Is it perhaps a part of their paid archives? If anyone else has a link to that please indulge me and post it, I'm probably going to spend a bit of time reading up on this, fascinates me, maybe I am one at heart ;)
posted by bittennails at 8:44 AM on May 9, 2002

I have a book about the "Alternative 3" conspiracy that has an interesting chapter about the number of scientists that dies while working on SDI research in the 80's. I think that there was a heart attack and suicide rate of more than 20x the national average.

I agree that there ought to be investigation in these cases... even if it is nothing it could be an organized group killing with impunity -- and that is something to be feared.
posted by n9 at 8:51 AM on May 9, 2002

Not the paid archives, not sure why it's not working. The guy was hacked to death by his daughter's friends, a bunch of satanic oddballs. The Memphis Flyer article conveniently omits the fact that the daughter has confessed her complicity (though there is some debate about the degree).
posted by MrMoonPie at 9:14 AM on May 9, 2002

Run a Google search for "Clara Jane Schwartz".
posted by MrMoonPie at 9:15 AM on May 9, 2002

We do know more about the motive for the murder-suicide - the victim had fired the perpetrator, then gone on to be much more successful. The dying-in-a-room-full-of-nitrogen is a sort of typical industrial accident - you don't realize that you're being deprived of oxygen, pass out, and die. These people weren't working on similar projects - they were scattered all over the map.

Remember this conspiracy theory? What did we say to people who said that it was eerie and needed investigating?
posted by jaek at 9:34 AM on May 9, 2002

It was like the first time I read about the number of people involved with the Clintons who've died

What did we say to people who said that it was eerie and needed investigating?

Well, you could always just say bullshit.
posted by yhbc at 9:44 AM on May 9, 2002

Not enough information for a conspiracy, yet, really -- but it is pretty eerie, and without an obvious political axe to grind (which would much more easily discount it). I mean, the Don Wiley death was pretty weird all by itself -- on that one alone, people were speculating about some kind of plot -- and though some of the others may have perfectly reasonable explanations, quite a few seem to be mysterious beatings in parking lots and that sort of thing. Maybe it's all just a statistical fluke, the homicide equivalent of a hot streak. But if I were a microbiologist, I'd be buying extra life insurance, and a gun.
posted by dhartung at 11:03 AM on May 9, 2002

From the list of Clinton deaths:

14. Florence Martin - Accountant for the CIA and had information on the Barry Seal case. Three gunshot wounds to the head.

On 23 October 1994 69-year-old Florence Martin of Mabelle, Texas (40 miles from Wichita Falls) was murdered in her home by three gunshots to the head through a pillow. She wasn't an accountant for the CIA, though: She worked the graveyard shift at a convenience store in nearby Seymour and had lived in that area for decades. The murder is still unsolved. "

That one creeps me out. There are about three or four in there that look like unsolved foul play, whether they are related to Clinton or not. Arkansas seems like the embodiment of Southern Gothic Horror.
posted by mecran01 at 6:24 AM on May 14, 2002 [1 favorite]

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