MediaWatch: Professor Anthony James Hall & The Stó:lō Fish Story

Professor Anthony James Hall – The Don Cherry of the truther set!

So, the Stó:lō fish story continues- this time on the PressTV supported publication Veterans Today. Anthony James Hall, a professor at the University of Lethbridge, writes for Veterans Today, and has often appeared on PressTV- both publications have been backing the Stó:lō fish story. The big question I’ve been wondering is why has a government owned Iranian TV station put so much energy into this story? Well, the answer is quite shocking…

The title of Hall’s latest story explains it all From British Columbia to Israel/Palestine: The Trail of Kwitsel Tatel in Historical Context. You see, relations between Iran & Canada aren’t so good these days– and the key issue is over the Israel/Palestine conflict. Prime Minister Harper has joined the US in a call for attacking Iran, and the Iranians appear to be retaliating by creating division between the Canadian government and indigenous people. Professor hall appears to be working on the side of the Iranians.

For a man who is getting a government paycheque, it is rather astounding to see him work against his country on behalf of a foreign government- regardless if if he is wrong or right. In many countries this would be considered to be treason- perhaps even in Canada. Either way, to side with a foreign government in a subversive and divisive activity is a rather dangerous game.

Hall has been promoting a rather shaky court case- where Patricia Kelly (a.k.a Keitsel Tatel) was charged with a crime for illegally catching, and selling, salmon from British Columbia’s Fraser River. He starred in a news segment on PressTV a few weeks ago talking about how the Canadian government was intentionally trying to make salmon extinct as a way of punishing indigenous nations. This is the quality of education one gets at the University of Lethbridge.

A couple of weeks ago, Kelly was arrested for assault on a peace officer after she walked into the courthouse with a friend banging a drum and she got into a kerfuffle with the court’s sheriffs. It was an obviously intentional provocation- but, this didn’t stop PressTV from covering the story saying that she was ‘brutalized’. She ended up going to her court hearing wearing shackles and handcuffs.

Hall is trying to get recognized as an expert witness in Kelly’s case, but the court doesn’t seem to want to have anything to do with it. The court has been saying that Hall is not acting as an independent expert witness, but that he is biased and involved in her case. The court is right on the money with their assumption- and this article of Hall’s is perfect evidence of that. Reading it, there is no way one could could think he is an independent witness.

The article ends with a very long, and fishy, letter that Patricia Kelly (supposedly) wrote to the judge. The problem is that the letter is rather self-contradictory. Let’s look at what Kelly says in the fourth paragraph when she complains that the judge and prosecutor were speaking in legalese that she couldn’t understand:

“With Professor Hall off the stand you and Mr. Jensen entered into an extremely significant closed dialogue as if the matters the two of you were discussing in your own esoteric language were of no consequence for me. You excluded me from the dialogue. Neither you nor the federal Crown’s prosecutor attempted to clarify for me in layman’s terms the subject matter of your closed conversation and its implications for the entire course of this second stage of the trial.”

What’s curious about this statement is how it conflicts with the rest of the letter. If one is to believe that Kelly wrote this letter, then she does have a quite good understanding of legal language:

“Mr. Jensen may not view such testimony as “necessary” to the cultivation of the understanding you need to decide on the relevant facts of this case and then arbitrate them. The forces seeking to criminalize me through the denial and negation of my Aboriginal rights obviously want a very narrow circumscription of the relevant facts. But that type of tight circumscribing of what happens in your court will not serve the cause of justice or reconciliation. There is a significant imperative of necessity in giving a wide birth for an exploration of the relevant facts in this matter. Alternatively there would be much to lose if you were to choose to constrain the discussion of the constitutional dimensions of my case, one that unfortunately for me captures the essence of so many contemporary tensions in the ongoing history of Crown-Aboriginal relations.”

For someone who claims to have a poor understanding of legalese, Kelly has written a rather coherent letter. Something smells fishy to me. So, I pulled-out my favourite new online resource- the Language Style Matching tool created by James W. Pennebaker, a professor and chair of Psychology at the University of Texas in Austin. The tool takes two samples of writing and compares their similarity- giving a rating between .60 & 90. The average score is .78. This is a tool often used by professors to identify cases of plaguery.

When I compared the text in Hall’s article with the text in Kelly’s letter, the rating was an astonishing .86- so, it is highly likely that both writing samples were written by the same person. There are other clues here too- that the letter is incredibly long-winded (a trademark of Hall’s writing), and it mentions all of Hall’s pet concepts and ideas.

When the hearing re-convenes in two weeks, and the judge is ready to make his decision- he should ask Hall (under oath) if he wrote Kelly’s letter. If this is true, then the judge’s decision about letting Hall testify as an independent witness will be a no-brainer. Hall certainly couldn’t be considered an independent expert if he is writing letters for Kelly.

I’ll keep you updated as the drama progresses- this is one fish story I won’t let get away…

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    1. I’ve already linked to this story- but, thanks for doing it again Professor Don Cherry!

    • The Hammer on August 13, 2012 at 08:04
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    I assume it is only a matter of time before the University of Lethbridge has a course in holocaust denial. Wonder if James Keegstra will be invited to give a guest lecture?

    1. Perhaps the science department will start giving courses on how to make Zyklon B?

    • The Hammer on August 13, 2012 at 10:09
    • Reply

    Had a look through the PressTV “Democracy and Human Rights” area of the US section. It is curious to see there is nothing regarding homosexual rights there. You would think a news organization that is so concerned with “Democracy and Human Rights” in the US would have something on LGBT rights in the US. There was nothing though. Nothing on gay marriage, nothing on the Chick-fil-a gay marriage scandal, nothing on gay bashing, nothing on hate crimes directed towards members of the LGBT community. Why is that?

    1. That’s a very good point. I wonder if they have stories about stoning women adulterers though?

    • The Hammer on August 13, 2012 at 12:46
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    The Post published some key sections of the Iranian instruction manual on stoning. Not sure which section is more interesting. The part that gives men a major advantage of surviving the stoning or the part where they are instructed to use stones that “Are not so big as to kill the person with 2 or 3 stones” so that the suffering of the condemed is increased.

    Just checked. Nothing on stoning from that beacon of civil liberties, PressTV.

    1. Let’s hope that Professor Hall doesn’t take this guide to heart and use it on his students…

    • McLean on September 2, 2012 at 12:56
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    Been reading up on this guy. What an embarrassment to the University of Lethbridge. Apparently, even many of his students are not pleased, and, not sure how he got tenure, but, according to one student, the university has bounced him around from department to department until “Globalization Studies was created with only him in it. ”

    The student stated, eloquently, that one should not listen to: ” the rantings from a one-man pariah department; Globalization Studies. Tony Hall and his lackey are not to be taken seriously – they are not represenative of a logical pragmatic left but a looney unhinged minority. ”

    See comments of KM:

    1. It sounds like that student hit the nail on that description – Professor Hall is a total whack job, I can attest to that…

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