Boulder Councilwoman Shared Video Claiming That 5G Is An ‘Extinction Level Event’

from the post-truth dept

Editor’s Note: After publication, we were alerted the that key story about the councilwoman, was actually from a few years ago, not recently. We regret the mistake and will make efforts to avoid such mistakes in the future. We’re leaving the original article below.

On the one hand, you have a wireless industry falsely claiming that 5G is a near mystical revolution in communications, something that’s never been true (especially in the US). On the other hand you have oodles of internet crackpots who think 5G is causing COVID or killing people, something that has also never been true. In reality, most claims of 5G health harms are based on a false 20 year old graph, and an overwhelming majority of scientists have made it clear that 5G is not killing you (in fact several incarnations are less powerful than 4G).

In the post-truth era, none of this ever seems to matter. Case in point: the city of Boulder, Colorado recently debated a 10-year lease for Verizon Wireless for a local 5G tower. During the process, numerous 5G conspiracy theorists came out of the woodwork, including, apparently, city Councilwoman Cindy Carlisle, who circulated a video with peers claiming 5G was an “extinction level event”:

“The video makes mention of “chemtrails” — a debunked conspiracy theory regarding the condensation trails left behind by aircraft — and was published by New Earth Nation, “a fellowship of sovereign nations and micro-nations founded in recognition of the primacy of consciousness, the unity of all life and the undeniability of the individual sovereign condition.”

Carlisle later claimed in an interview she sent the video to colleagues as a “tongue-in-cheek” and “ironic question.” Though she then proceeded to admit she didn’t know if the video (which also references “chemtrails”) was conspiracy theory or not. Random Americans are one thing, but that politicians increasingly don’t know what’s true and what isn’t — seems like kind of a problem.

Still, Carlisle at least did the right (and rare) thing in asking questions about Verizon’s request for tower placement, even if they were probably the wrong questions.

Debates like this over 5G tower placement are taking place all over the country without much fanfare. They’re usually dominated by two discourses: one the conspiratorial, and two, telecom giants that don’t want local towns and cities having much say in where towers are placed, whether towns and cities will get a cut of the proceeds if they’re on public land, or much of anything else.

The debates are too boring to usually make headlines, but they are fairly representative of how in modern U.S. policy and discourse, the one-two punch of corruption and conspiracy theory often leaves fundamental citizen welfare and basic factual reality far outside of the loop.

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Comments on “Boulder Councilwoman Shared Video Claiming That 5G Is An ‘Extinction Level Event’”

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PaulT (profile) says:

“a fellowship of sovereign nations and micro-nations”

Huh, why do I get the idea that these nations are not recognised by anyone but themselves.


“to ratify the Treaty you will need to establish yourself, your family, community or tribe as a sovereign micro-nation.”

Ah, so, lunatics who think they can write magic words to absolve them of the responsibilities of the society they live in.

“Still, Carlisle at least did the right (and rare) thing in asking questions about Verizon’s request for tower placement, even if they were probably the wrong questions.”

Which I would argue is worse than the questions not being asked. It would be better for questions not to be asked and issues being raised later, potentially leaving room to overhaul the entire process when it’s discovered that serious objections were not heard, than it would be to establish a pattern whereby the only objectors are people clearly not on speaking terms with reality.

David says:

Re: Re: That's an unfair characterisation

Intelligence is not an impediment but useful for keeping focus: you just have to keep it to yourself. Similar to being gay.

Like playing a drunk on stage, it’s easier to pull off effectively if you are not actually drunk.

You want to have the largest set of persuadable people saying “they are one of ours” as a politician. And stupid people are easier to fool.

Anonymous Coward says:

Random Americans are one thing, but that politicians increasingly don’t know what’s true and what isn’t — seems like kind of a problem.

Those politicians are, ultimately, coming from and elected by the Random Americans. If Random American can’t tell the reality from another conspiracy theory, there is no magic pill nor incentive to make politicians do better.

NARTE Engineer says:

Don't believe woo

1) 5G has low, mid and high bands.
2) Your microwave oven has only one frequency, in the ISM band which is not authorized for communications because it would interfere with radio astronomy. It’s a frequency that is efficient at heating water and fat molecules.
3) “microwave” is any frequency between 300MHz and 300GHz, although common RF engineering usage is 1GHz ~ 30GHz.
4) 5G above 30GHz can be referred to as millimeter wave, corresponding to the approximate wavelength.
5) Microwave transmissions have been common since the development of radar in WWII. Telephone relay towers, police speed radar and even automatic door openers used them for decades now.
6) Telecommunications RF radiation is NON-IONIZING. “Radiation” is a scary word to the uninformed but it also describes “healthy” sunlight and all forms of electromagnetism.
7) Exposure is proportional to distance squared. Your phone at 5mW and 1 inch from your head is equivalent to a base station @ 7.2kW and 100ft. But 5G base stations are limited to about 20W, and are most likely going to be MORE than 100ft from you.
8) The pseudo-science “industry” profits from page clicks, crystals and “orgone” generators.
9) Conspiracy “enthusiasts” need to have their importance validated, like gossips.
10) Electromagnetics is a complex topic and understanding takes more than reading fringe web sites. There are plenty of reliable sources: accredited universities, FCC, FDA and state Departments of Health, IEEE etc.

Arnold says:

Wi-fi pulsed wave radiation

There have been substantial health problems associated with constant exposure to wireless Electromagnetic fields.
It would be good if such governmental agencies as the FCC and FDA had done their job to test and regulate these emissions. BUT IN FACT THEY HAVE NOT.
The DC Circuit Couty of Appeals(one level below the Supreme Court) ordered th FCC in Environmental Health Trust v FCC, in August of 2021 to update their Standards for wireless exposure set in 1996 in light of the huge number of studies submitted to it. To date no action has been taken and FCC never mentions it in its plans to expand wireless communications. It gives one pause before dismissing uncomfortable news.

Anonymous Coward says:


There have been substantial health problems associated with constant exposure to wireless

Really, I have not seen any evidence of that working in the radio and TV transmitter industry, where levels of exposure are higher than and WiFi or mobile phone exposure. Also I have not seen any reports of ships crews suffering from exposure to radar, where they are exposed to higher levels than any domestic situation.

That is problems due to constant radio exposure would have shown up long before WiFi and Mobile phones became common.

Anonymous Coward says:

Local Politicans are elected from the local area, county, it would be should be not a shock that they use the Internet or that some of them believe ridiculous fake news or weird conspiracy theory’s. The type of person that says this is not the type of person who reads articles by real scientists or medical experts , they probably read a random link sent to them by a friend on Facebook there’s a whole industry of people who profit from posting bullshit fake news clickbait or gain followers by spreading stupid conspiracy theory’s

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