What A Difference A Few Years Make
Back in 1998 the Mac Wallace fingerprint link to the assassination was being touted by two separate groups each with different theories as to who was involved. One group's spokesman was Dr. Walt Brown. Dr. Brown was so sure of his evidence he launched a press conference held at the Conspiracy Museum in Dallas.
Bill Teeter of the Fort Worth Star-Telegram asked my opinion of the conference. Since I was not invited and did not attend, I asked Bill what transpired. My comments were based upon his description of the conference.
As a result, Dr. Brown posted his objections to my thoughts on his web page. His observations (in blue) and my responses can now be viewed in light of his comments in regard to publication of Barr McClellan's Blood, Money, and Power: How L.B.J. Killed J.F.K.
I was really not surprised by your web page response to my Fort Worth Star-Telegram comments. Lately, I have noted that there is a tendency for Kennedy assassination "scholars" to not completely read, often misinterpret and/or thoroughly misquote from various reports and articles. Your most recent essay, which refers to me, is a case in point. Here is my response:
"The Fort Worth Star Telegram was also present, but the story was buried when the far more scholarly David Perry . . ."
Bill Teeter of the Fort Worth Star-Telegram called me and asked my opinion about the press conference. Since I was not invited and did not attend, I asked him what transpired. My comments, as shown below, were based upon his description of how the conference unfolded. I offered no conclusions about the subject matter. Since you were unhappy with my remarks, it appears you resorted to sarcasm to claim I am considered more "scholarly" than unnamed others. Actually, your remark, in my view, is somewhat childish, as level of education has little to do with ability to reason and use common sense. If you doubt this observation, check with your fellow Ph.D. and author, Ted Kaczynski.
"Forgive my anger, but I can't seem to locate his (Dave Perry) books on my shelf, and I would like to reread them"
I must assume you are one who prefers quantity to quality, for it looks as if you not only equate scholarship with intelligence, but authorship with research ability. Using this convoluted logic, the best source of information would be the Warren Commission. When I look on my bookshelf, I see they produced 26 volumes of evidence plus a Report. Using similar reasoning, I suppose the House Select Committee would come next, followed by Harold Weisberg and Robert Groden. For now, since I have not published a book, you will have to place me in the same category as Jan Stevens, Vince Palamara, Paul Hoch and Mary Ferrell.
"was given credence over "buff" Walt Brown, only a former Justice Department Special Agent and a Ph.D. in history."
Self-pity, in my view, represents insecurity. Believe me when my drain clogs, I'll take a plumber over a Ph.D. any day. On the Internet, several people mentioned the Fort Worth Star-Telegram referred to you as a buff. If true it would be unfortunate for you, but such a quote does not appear in that article. I did find "featuring Walt Brown, a spokesman for amateur conspiracy researchers, " and later, "At the Conspiracy Museum, Brown said assassination buffs known as the Texas Research Group..." My reaction is - WHAT DID YOU DO AND WHAT DID YOU SAY to make Mr. Teeter conclude the Texas Group were buffs?
"Mr. Perry has since questioned my expertise"
I never questioned your expertise and I challenge you to show me where I did. This is further proof that you read only what suits your purpose. In several PRIVATE E-MAIL POSTS, I questioned why the press conference took place in the fashion described by Bill Teeter.
One such exchange took place between Russell McLean and me. In a response to his questions about my reaction, I queried, "Tell me, if (David) Belin called a press conference and made claims that Oswald was guilty, provided no documentation for the media to review, and failed to name his experts, what would your reaction be? Would you race to his defense, or call him a lone nutter?" So far, Mr. McLean has not responded.
On May 31, 1998, Jack White complained on alt.conspiracy.jfk that "(coverage of the) Mac Wallace news conference by the Fort Worth Star-Telegram was very disappointing." "Then they give equal space to **JFK researcher** Dave Perry (the ubiquitous disinfo agent), who cautions that this information has already been debunked by California researchers, and that information such as this is usually overvalued by researchers and should be ignored by the general public."
This is an out and out fabrication of my remarks by Mr. White. The exact quote reads "Perry said two researchers in California, Mark Collom and Glen Sample, attempted to have a match made by experienced experts but were unable to do so." At least White recognized that the newspaper provided balanced coverage by talking with someone having alternative information.
Additionally, however, Mr. White was upset about what I had to say about fingerprint matching. White, like you, also seems to care little for what actually took place. I merely paraphrased the opinion of his friend and fellow researcher, John Armstrong! On May 5, 1998 Jack White posted to alt.conspiracy.jfk, under the heading "Fingerprint Caution," the following observation:
"Fingerprints should be approached cautiously, John Armstrong warns, after reading a recently released HSCA document which shows the committee studied the issue of 'counterfeiting' fingerprints, through a case which actually happened. A police forensic expert was convicted of fabrication of fingerprints to falsely convict an innocent man for a bank robbery."
Dr. Brown, what is it with you people? You decry the Warren Commission for changing witness testimony, modifying evidence and suppressing facts, yet you and some of your champions are guilty of exactly the same thing. Apparently, in your and Mr. White's mind, the message is less important, than who delivers it?
"What kind of person would dismiss the Wallace story that quickly?"
So far, I have heard only that a fingerprint match was made. Since I haven't a clue what additional evidence is to be presented, I have nothing concrete to either dismiss or accept statements made by you with respect to the Wallace on the sixth floor scenario.
When Teeter called, he asked what I thought. I told him I had seen snippets on the JFK Deep Politics Quarterly web page about a story involving Wallace. I knew little about the Texas Group, but indicated there was another pair of researchers on the West Coast, Mark Collom and Glen Sample, who had spent years investigating Wallace and had written a book claiming Wallace was on the sixth floor acting as an assassin. I asked Teeter if he had seen any of their material or viewed their web page. Teeter responded in the negative, so for background, I sent him a copy of their web page articles.
I then asked Teeter what the Texas Group and the fingerprint expert had to say during the question and answer period. Teeter answered the only person speaking was you, Walt, and you refused to provide reporters with the name of your fingerprint expert. Using hindsight, I now have to assume Teeter: (a) was lying - for what purpose I cannot conceive, or (b) was correct about the fingerprint expert not being there.
Understanding the latter to be the case, I then commented "If he (Walt Brown) held a press conference, made revelations about a Wallace fingerprint match and never produced the fingerprint expert for questioning by the media, I would have a problem. Do you?" Teeter responded that he did. Now you are revealing that the two theorists who started this controversy were in the room with you, but you hid their identities and presence from the news media. I wonder how Bill Teeter or any other journalist would evaluate that information!
"It was also carried on Channels 3 and 11 in Dallas."
You may be confusing Channel 3 with channel 13. There is no channel 3 here. Channel 13 is the major PBS station and it is not known for its news department. In Dallas, only FOX affiliate KDFW and CBS affiliate KTVT reported your press conference. Since your press release specifically said only media would be admitted why do pictures of the room show three or four children and one or two adults, all apparently tourists, in attendance?
"The Dallas Morning News did not attend, and anyone familiar with ownership of that publication, and an affiliate, Channel 8, will understand their absence."
I have to assume most readers are not "familiar with (the) ownership" of the Dallas Morning News and ABC affiliate WFAA, Channel 8. This is the same WFAA that produced a fifteen-hour retrospective of its Kennedy assassination coverage, complete with conspiracy references, for the twentieth anniversary in 1983. It is the same WFAA, which recently donated all its original footage to The Sixth Floor Museum for preservation and viewing by the public.
Just so there can be no misunderstanding, would you care to enlighten the readers as to what bias you believe the newspaper and TV station have that kept them from attending, and why? Additionally, can you explain why local NBC affiliate KXAS, Channel 5 (now co-owned by NBC) ignored your appearance?
This is the same KXAS that publicly chastised your former employer, the Justice Department, for failing to enhance the Bronson film as recommended by the House Select Committee. Did you perceive this as an ownership issue as well? And what about the absence of reporters from ABC, CBS, NBC, the New York Times, Wall Street Journal, USA Today, Washington Times, United Press International and Dallas Observer, all of whom have Dallas newsrooms? ABC, for example, is the same network that purposely risked expensive legal action to be first to show the Zapruder film. Do those organizations also have ownership problems?
Tom Bowden of the Conspiracy Museum indicated Reuters (the world's largest news organization) and CNN did attend the conference. Can someone find and post information about any media coverage other than the Fort Worth Star-Telegram, KDFW, KTVT or FOX?
"Also, the media has been burned with "revelations" in the past, and I traveled to Dallas fully knowing that."
If you knew about the media being burned in the past, what steps, if any, did you take to prevent a similar situation from happening? In recent years the local media heard about Roscoe White from J. Gary Shaw, Joe West, Bud Fensterwald, Larry Ray Harris and Larry Howard, John Elrod from the LaFontaines, Jim Files from Bob Vernon and Jim Marrs, James Earl Ray's mentor Raoul and his association with Jack Ruby from Beverly Oliver, the fabricated Oswald-Rubenstein fistfight from Jack White, Jim Marrs and John Armstrong, Wallace the shooter from Sample and Collom, and now Wallace the box stacker through you.
Weren't you aware that after the Roscoe White story and press conference of August 6, 1990 the media assumes all these latter-day revelations are hoaxes and is on the lookout for objective experts to help evaluate such astounding claims?
More than likely, some of these outlets now have a Walt Brown/Malcolm Wallace file, just as they probably have a JFK Assassination Information Center/Roscoe White file. The next time you appear with a new revelation, you may receive a far more hostile reception - IF ANYONE SHOWS UP.
"The rest of the story will be coming down the road as the i's are dotted and the t's are crossed."
Shouldn't this have been done first? Sample and Collom's experts came to a different conclusion by noting the number of dissimilar points between those prints and observing that matches cannot be made under those circumstances. Perhaps you can explain why your expert disagrees with that approach.
"...you are wasting your time knocking things down that need to be fully built before they are deemed worthy of occupation."
I agree with this rhetorical comment. Too bad you didn't fully build your case before rushing to a press release and conference. When this so-called fingerprint "evidence" is fully built I will all pay attention. However, I'm wondering how the media will react to the second coming of Walt Brown, Ph.D.
We live in a society where individuals fail to take responsibility for their own actions. Some blame the government, el Nino, cigarette companies, ozone or their parents for their own shortcomings or lack of self-control. As far as I am concerned, you are an élitist, enamored with your own credentials, who blew an excellent opportunity to conduct a meaningful press conference. Instead of accepting accountability for your actions, you are now obfuscating by touting your own credentials, attempting to shift the blame and looking for a scapegoat. You will not find one with me.
Dave Perry June 5, 1998