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Oliver Stone Pulls the Wool Over Joe Rogan's Eyes, Part Two



Joe Rogan and Oliver Stone from their recent podcast.


Here is an excerpt from their recent discussion: (10:32 in the YouTube video)


Oliver Stone: They also, in the, in the matter of the autopsy, that the brain is intact. It was photographed as such. It was clean. The whole area was still there. Whereas it's impossible because the brain was seen, you see it spraying, spraying out in the car, in the Zapruder film. You see it, the nurse's, Audrey Bell is talking about it. It's the ... I can't remember the medical term, the whatever it's called, it's spilling out on the floor of Parkland ...


Joe Rogan: Yeah.

Oliver Stone: And when they weigh the brain as they do in an autopsy, it comes out normal.

Joe Rogan: Well, not just normal but extra large, right?

Oliver Stone: A little bit.

Joe Rogan: Larger than average. Like it was ...

Oliver Stone: It's impossible. And what's more important is, and this drives a stake, again through the heart of ... the photographer of the autopsy, John Stringer, the autopsy photographer, he's a straight guy, he's pro-Warren Commission, all that stuff. They, they bring him back, the ARRB brings him back and they, they show him the photos that we now have of ... that are in the National Archives, and he says, "I never photographed that."


Joe Rogan: Right.

Oliver Stone: He took an up view of the brain, he never took a basilar, you know from below, "I never photographed that." And that's very important.


This is what happens when two people who don't know the case talk to each other. It's all sound bites, with errors thrown in along the way.


I have covered the weight of JFK's brain here. Joe Rogan seems to assume that a weight substantially above average would mean that Kennedy's brain was "extra large."


Neither of them seems to realize that there is a range of weights of male human brains.


Here is a study of brain weights.

The average weight of male brains, in Kennedy's age range, is 1,386 grams. If JFK was closer to the maximum, his brain might have weighed 1,600 grams. If he lost 15% of his brain in the assassination, that would have put the weight at 1,360. Fixing the brain in formalin would have added about 100 grams of weight. So, a weight of 1,500 grams, as measured at the autopsy and after formalin fixation, is not out of the ordinary.


Another issue to be determined is the effect of the steroids Kennedy was taking for treatment of his Addison's disease. They might have also increased brain weight.


In the podcast, Oliver Stone claims that John Stringer, the autopsy photographer, said "I never photographed that," when discussing JFK's brain with the ARRB.


He never said that.


In his first interview with the ARRB, Stringer was asked about the autopsy photographs that he saw in 1966:

I discussed Stringer's deposition with the ARRB here. Once again, he confirmed to the ARRB that all of the autopsy photographs were authentic. You can read Stringer's deposition here. The plain fact of the matter is that John Stringer's memory wasn't the greatest. Just read his deposition and you will find many instances where he just could not remember. Stringer, like other witnesses, may have been aware enough to want to make an effort to avoid remembering things that did not happen.


Stringer does not deny that that the brain photographs are of President Kennedy. It's just that there is no identification tag, and Stringer did not remember if identification tags were used at the time the brain was photographed.


But to Oliver Stone and James DiEugenio, that is enough for them to reach another conclusion -- that a different brain was substituted, and this is the brain that was photographed.


The reason this is so important to conspiracy theorists is that photographs of JFK's brain show the left hemisphere to be virtually intact.

JFK Exhibit F-302: Drawing representing one of the brain photographs from JFK's post-mortem examination and held in the National Archives.


Here is an excerpt from the supplementary report of the autopsy:


Had Kennedy been shot from the grassy knoll that would not be the case. So, the only way to sustain a shot from the grassy knoll is to argue that there is something amiss with the photographs of JFK's brain.


So, which is more likely? A lack of memory for minor details after 32 years, or finding another brain with injuries that mimicked a shot from behind?


Jeremy Gunn, General Counsel of the ARRB, addressed the issue of memory in an address at Stanford University:


The last thing I wanted to mention, just in terms of how we understand the evidence and how we deal with what we have is what I will call is the profound - underscore profound - unreliability of eyewitness testimony. You just cannot believe it. And I can tell you something else that is even worse than eyewitness testimony and that is 35 year old eyewitness testimony.


I have taken the depositions of several people who were involved in phases of the Kennedy assassination, all the doctors who performed the autopsy of President Kennedy and people who witnessed various things and they are profoundly unreliable.


There were two, the two, there were two FBI agents who were present at the autopsy. They basically, I will exaggerate this, they were with each other all night long and they came out and they wrote a report about what they had seen. I took the depositions of these two people, 35 years later. Their stories just were not the same story. Neither one of their stories moved in any direction to prove that anyone had done anything bad or good with... didn't witness it, their testimonies are different. So you are going to come up with two different sorts of stories.


There is one doctor, this will be the conclusion of the eyewitness testimony, there is one doctor who was one of the treating physicians of President Kennedy at Parkland hospital whom I interviewed. And I asked him some questions and he said he remembered that day very, very vividly. He remembered being in the treating room with President Kennedy in Parkland Memorial Hospital. He remembered seeing Jackie Kennedy walk in. He had never seen her before and what a stunning moment that was for him and how traumatic it was. There was the President who had just died. There's his widow who was there with him. `That just burned in my memory', he said. `I remember Jackie being there in a white suit.'


And I thought absolutely everyone in the United States knows that Jackie Kennedy was wearing a pink suit. This is the only guy in the United States who thinks that she was wearing a white suit. There are people who were never present at the autopsy, were never present in Bethesda, never saw Dallas ...everyone knows Jackie was wearing a pink suit. Here you have one of the treating physicians who remembers Jackie wearing a white suit. I assume he wasn't lying to me. I assume he wasn't trying to trick me and I assume he didn't have a second suit theory.


None of that was true. But here he has this memory. And he described some other things about the autopsy, er, about the treatment of President Kennedy. Let's suppose that I think he's wrong on what he says about something that happened in the treatment room. What can I say? `This guy is so wrong he doesn't even remember what kind of suit Jackie Kennedy was wearing!' You can dismiss his testimony, just dismiss it.


Or suppose that I think what he says happened at the treating room is was what I think happened too. His memory of the suit, that's not relevant. What is relevant is his professional skill as a doctor. He's not into fashion, he's into being in medicine, so I can trust what he is saying there.


And that's one of the problems that you have with the Kennedy assassination. You have all this wealth of information and people pick and choose, and then they refute, they argue against one person, they can use an inconsistency that they have made, and you end up having all this confusion.


The Assassination Records Review Board discussed the issues of memory in their final report:


“Finally, a significant problem that is well known to trial lawyers, judges, and psychologists, is the unreliability of eyewitness testimony. Witnesses frequently, and inaccurately, believe that they have a vivid recollection of events. Psychologists and scholars have long-since demonstrated the serious unreliability of peoples' recollections of what they hear and see. One illustration of this was an interview statement made by one of the treating physicians at Parkland. He explained that he was in Trauma Room Number 1 with the President. He recounted how he observed the First Lady wearing a white dress. Of course, she was wearing a pink suit, a fact known to most Americans. The inaccuracy of his recollection probably says little about the quality of the doctor's memory, but it is revealing of how the memory works and how cautious one must be when attempting to evaluate eyewitness testimony.
The deposition transcripts and other medical evidence that were released by the Review Board should be evaluated cautiously by the public. Often the witnesses contradict not only each other, but sometimes themselves. For events that transpired almost 35 years ago, all persons are likely to have failures of memory. It would be more prudent to weigh all of the evidence, with due concern for human error, rather than take single statements as "proof" for one theory or another.”

Previous Relevant Blog Posts on JFK Revisited


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Steve Roe Blog Posts on JFK Revisited


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