UPDATE 8/21/2013 @ 7:22 pm: The Young Turks report that Hastings had taken an attention deficit disorder medication Adderall on occasion, a pharmaceutical drug that would show up in a test as the ‘trace amounts’ of amphetamine found in Hastings’ system. Again, all the media reports admit these ‘trace amounts’ had nothing to do with Hastings’ crash and that Hastings was not intoxicated at the time of the crash, but the headlines continue to portray him as a meth and pot junkie that got messed up and simply drove his car into a tree, diverting attention away from the completely suspicious circumstances surrounding his death. This is a smear campaign, character assassination and nothing more. Hastings deserves a real investigation!
Dancing in step to the establishment tune on cue, the mainstream media has jumped all over another excuse to titillate its audience with the second act of the spectacle we are currently witnessing.
noun \ˈspek-ti-kəl also -ˌti-kəl\
1:something exhibited to view as unusual, notable, or entertaining; especially : an eye-catching or dramatic public display
In short, you couldn’t write a better movie script than this morbid theater that’s being rolled out like a red carpet before our eyes, ladies and gentlemen.
The coroner found traces of amphetamine and marijuana in Hastings system. Let the media’s games begin.
The Associated Press began it’s report on Hastings autopsy with, “After 14 years of sobriety, journalist Michael Hastings had returned to drugs” (nevermind that would have made him 19 years old, a teen at the time when he last did drugs, something our own President has admitted to numerous times).
Prior to even reading the story itself, let’s consider the LA Times headline: Coroner, family link Michael Hastings to drug use at time of death. It’s pretty straightforward; the LA Times is suggesting drug use played a role in Hastings’ car wreck. But then the story actually says:
“Coroner’s officials said Hastings had traces of amphetamine in his system, consistent with possible intake of methamphetamine many hours before death, as well as marijuana. Neither were considered a factor in the crash, according to toxicology reports. ” [emphasis added]
So now Hastings is painted as using meth and pot hours before his car exploded, even though it was admittedly not a factor in his death. Let’s continue:
“Hastings had arrived in Los Angeles from New York the day before the accident, with his brother scheduled to arrive later the day of the crash ‘as his family was attempting to get [Hastings] to go to detox,’ the report stated.
Hastings was believed sober for 14 years, but had recently begun using drugs again in the past month or so, according to the coroner’s office, based on interviews with family members. A medical marijuana card was found in Hastings wallet and had been prescribed for treatment of post-traumatic stress resulting from his time as a war journalist in Iraq and Afghanistan.
Hours before the crash, Hastings had last been seen by one witness “passed out” sometime between 12:30 a.m. and 1 a.m. The crash occurred just before 5 a.m.”
Since posting the above, the LA Times has posted several more stories, including a new spin, “Michael Hastings May Have Suffered PTSD from Work as War Journalist“.
The actual coroner’s report includes an “Informant/Witness Statement” that is an account based on a Hastings family member (the report alludes to it being one of Hastings’ brothers, as it discusses “another brother scheduled to arrive” and Hastings had two brothers) who came in from New York “as the family was attempting to get the decedent to go to detox” even though it’s followed by saying Michael Hastings had only started using drugs again “the past month or so”. That’s a quick intervention.
The witness account goes on to claim a laundry list about Michael Hastings: reportedly Hastings had crashed his car into a pole years earlier and the witness believed Hastings to be under the influence at that time. Hastings had a medicinal marijuana card for Post Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD) suffered from his time as a reporter in Iraq and Afghanistan. The witness also claimed that Hastings was taking DMT (not found in his system according to the toxicology report) and “added he would not be surprised if any stimulants were found within the residence, including cocaine”. The witness also claimed that Hastings “believed he was ‘invincible,’ believing he could jump from a balcony and would be okay”.
So the American people and the world are supposed to believe that Hastings — the journalist who ended General Stanley McChrystal’s career with his exposé in Rolling Stone and later wrote that he was threatened with death over it — succumbed to post-traumatic stress and suddenly fell off the amphetamine wagon he hadn’t rode on since he was 19 years old within the last month and was on meth and pot right around or just after the same time he was telling his editor and others that the feds were investigating his “close friends and associates” and that he needed to go off the radar to cover a big story?
Michael Hastings was reportedly working on a story about Central Intelligence Agency (CIA) Director Michael Brennan. Why?
One might consider a Wikileaks email of hacked CIA contracted intelligence firm Stratfor (Hi guys! Just being courteous since we all know you like to email these stories around when you’re mentioned.) which notes that the White House has a “specific tasker” to “go after anyone printing materials negative to the Obama agenda”. The email, sent by Stratfor President Fred Burton in September 2010, goes on to say, “Even the FBI is shocked. The Wonder Boys must be in meltdown mode…”
The message also mentions that Brennan (then counter-terrorism czar) is “behind the witch hunts of investigative journalists learning information from inside the beltway sources.”
Connected to this leaked email is journalist Barrett Brown, who is currently awaiting trial in federal prison on charges related to these hacked emails and others Brown reported on from hacked intelligence firms that were contracted by government agencies. Cryptome explains:
“Before his untimely death, Hastings was working on a story about Barrett, announcing mysteriously to his followers “Get ready for your mind to be blown.” Hastings had been in touch with Barrett’s lawyers, and intended to interview him in June for the story. Barrett has been in prison for 281 days pending trial, and faces over a hundred years imprisonment for what Hastings called ‘trumped up FBI charges regarding his legitimate reportorial inquiry into the political collective known sometimes as Anonymous.’”
The CIA responded that “any suggestion that Director Brennan has ever attempted to infringe on constitutionally-protected press freedoms is offensive and baseless.”
Offensive. That’s the word the agency used: offensive. Brennan, labeled the American government’s drone program ‘architect’, oversaw the program during the time that teenage American citizen Abdulrahman al-Awlaki (whom many sources have said was never involved in any illegal activity or terrorism at all) was struck down by a drone without any due process whatsoever. Yet it’s totally offensive for anyone to suggest that Brennan might do anything that might infringe on the Constitution.
Surely Brennan had nothing to worry about considering a story was set to come out written by the guy who many credit with ending General McChrystal’s whole career.
Only in America (and Jerry Bruckheimer films) can cars crash and burst in such fantastic flames as was seen in the wreck of Michael Hastings.
Hastings was driving a brand new Mercedes. The story goes that he was speeding down the road when his car suddenly turned at a 60-degree angle and slammed smack dab into a palm tree.
Reportedly, there were no skid marks. Tire marks, yes, but no skid marks. For more proof on that, you can look at videos of the scene uploaded by YouTubers like this one which was shot three days after Hastings died. So Hastings made zero attempt to brake or stop the impending collision?
The burning wreckage itself leaves even more questions. The video of Hastings’ wreck shows a fantastic explosion. A source who has had a 40-year career as a mechanic explained to me that cars do not simply blow up like that, and he added, “especially not a Mercedes”. (Not that any of us should really need a mechanic to know that cars just don’t do that in real life.)
The brilliant intensity of the flames cannot be explained by the impact either. LAnewsLOUDLABS filmed Hastings’ car burning for minutes after the crash. Watch this footage and compare it to other videos of wrecked cars on fire (of which there are many on YouTube to choose from). You’ll notice a glaring difference right away.
To posit that Hastings’ car would burn at a different color temperature and intensity for as long as it did because of the speed of the impact (which is also disputed) does not make a lot of sense, either. Check out this video of a car in a high speed chase with police hitting a barrier on the side of the highway and bursting into flames. The flames still are not the brilliant white shown in Hastings’ crash; even this video where a car is blown up with tannerite on purpose does not produce the intensely hot, sustained white flames that Hastings’ car wreck did.
Take a look at this picture of the wreckage:
Notice anything strange here? The metal buckled inward. Also, why has a white sheet been placed over the entire hood of this car?
When a car hits a tree head-on, it tends to look a lot like this:
Or this picture of a wreck in which a man hit a tree reportedly going 100 mph:
Notice not only did none of these cars blow up on impact (even though one was reportedly going 100 mph) but the engines of these cars are still inside the car.
One crucial piece is missing at the scene of Hastings’ wreck: his engine. Hasting’s engine was found reportedly 130 feet from where his car hit the palm tree.
It doesn’t take a forensic specialist here. If a car slams into a tree head on, the hood typically buckles in, wrapping the rest of the hood around each side of the tree like a hug, trapping what’s under the hood between the body of the vehicle and the tree. Engines are not typically completely disconnected and blown out of vehicles and thrown over a hundred feet simply from force of impact. Even if the hood blew off and flew straight up into the air, and the engine was able to completely free itself from the car, it would still have had to go around the tree if the collision was head on.
Speaking of head on collisions, check out this photograph of Hastings wreck from the other side:
The car’s hood is not wrapped around the tree; it’s on the side of the tree. So if Hastings hit the tree dead on hard enough for the car to burst into the fantastically intense white flames shown in the video above, why isn’t it wrapped around the tree? Why is the car sitting next to the tree? If the collision was hard enough to cause the car to explode like this, that is:
While this writer does not claim to be any type of scientific expert, these questions should be allowed to be asked. The mainstream media should be asking them. They deserve answers.
Instead, the media is involved in character assassination that diverts attention away from the real controversies surrounding Hastings’ death and the chilling effect it could have on other investigative journalists who expose establishment corruption.
Within days, the LA police department had already determined ‘no foul play‘ in Michael Hastings’ death. Hastings’ wife Elise Jordan, a former Director of Communications for the National Security Council from 2008–2009 and speechwriter for former Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice, told Piers Morgan that “it was just a really tragic accident”.
So now the final act of the spectacle we have all been watching is nearly through. The police ruled no foul play and the coroner ruled Hastings’ death was an accident. The irrelevant fact that trace amounts of drugs were found in his system will quash further inquiry into the bizarre nature of the crash scene and the circumstances surrounding his death, and the mainstream press will have a field day killing a dead man’s reputation. Roll Credits.
Now the world can sit back and wait for Hastings’ final piece on CIA Director Brennan to be printed in the upcoming issue of Rolling Stone, which will apparently be completed by Hastings’ writer friend Matt Farwell.
Surely Hastings’ final work will be 100 percent complete, without any parts missing… surely it will not be changed, tampered with or watered down for public consumption.