Anthrax Case

Now that microbiologist Bruce Ivins has died, there will be no criminal trial to establish (or fail to) Ivins’s guilt. Instead, the FBI’s plan is to establish the convincingness of their case against Ivins by publishing papers in the peer-reviewed scientific literature that demonstrate that the spores in the mailed anthrax letters are derived from a particular anthrax culture that Ivins had access to.

This is all very nice, but it doesn’t tell us jack diddly shit about how convincing the FBI’s case against Ivins is. In order to know how convincing the case against Ivins is, we need to know how convincing is the evidence that Ivins was the motherfucker who actually prepared and mailed the fucking letters. This is not a scientific question.

The FBI is trying to dazzle with fancy-ass bullshit.


  1. says

    That last sentence made me think about FBI guys dressed in sequins doing dance routines… that would be some dazzling, fancy bullshit-distraction, yeah?
    Sometimes my brain does weird things.

  2. George Smiley says

    “The FBI is trying to dazzle with fancy-ass bullshit.”

    They had to convince themselves first. They may well discover that that was the easy part.

  3. says

    You said it, mate. Identifying the flask from which the anthrax came isn’t enough to make a case to the inclusion of Ivins personally or the exclusion of anyone the heck else. Thanks for pointing this out!

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