Robert Cargill on Simcha’s Suit

Bob left the following in comments to the earlier post but I’m elevating it to a posting of its own since it is vintage Cargill: intelligent, sage, and precise.

Simcha Jacobovici is suing Joe Zias. *Suing* him…in court…for money.


I guess arguing a case on the merits of the argument is just not Simcha’s strong suit. Apparently Simcha prefers *lawsuit.* (It’s simpler, there’s more money in it, and you don’t have to mess with all those pesky archaeological *facts*.)

There *really* must be a *lot* of money at stake if Simcha is claiming $1 million dollars in damages. I don’t know of any legitimate archaeologist in the sciences and/or humanities who makes that amount of money per project. Oh wait…

It just goes to show why Simcha does what he does. When scholars ask, “Why does Simcha continue to make unsubstantiated claims about religiously-based archaeology to the public when scholars have vociferously opposed every claim he’s made for a decade?” we now know the answer: money. BIG MONEY. MILLIONS OF DOLLARS money. And Simcha will resort to suing his critics to protect his money.

I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again. For Simcha, it is, and always has been, about the money. Not scholarship. Not facts. Remember, this is an entertainer who fully admits: “For the record, I am not an archaeologist, nor am I an academic.” (- Simcha Jacobovici, “The Nails of the Cross: A Response to the Criticisms of the Film,” p. 45.) It has nothing to do with religion whatsoever. Nothing to do with faith. Nothing to do with the advancement of the study of archaeology, Judaism, Christianity, or for that matter, sound reason, rationality, or logic. It is, and always has been, about the money. It is about profits for his business, Associated Producers, Ltd., as evidenced by this lawsuit. As we now see, when Simcha’s profits are lost in a down economy with a TV market that is becoming saturated with fake documentary shows making sensational archaeological claims about aliens and conspiracies, in Simcha’s mind, it simply *can’t* be the market saying, “No more. We’ve had enough. The demographic is saturated with Indiana Jones wannabes,” or a network saying, “Thanks, but no thanks.” It *has* to be someone’s fault. Someone has to be blamed, and the money must be recouped. So, Simcha sues a vocal critic. It is, and always has been, about the money.

How much do you want to bet that this law suit was filed a couple of months before the release of Simcha’s ‘next big thing’? Wouldn’t it be something if this lawsuit was simply part of a media strategy to intimidate critical scholars by suing someone just prior to the release of some crazy new claim. The cherry on top would be another ossuary claim, because the world doesn’t have enough sensational ossuary controversies. Just watch. Let’s see if this is what happens. If so, Simcha will have proved me correct, and the world will know precisely what this is all about.

Exploiting the masses using rampant speculation to make a profit for a corporation – now *there’s* an Occupy movement I can get behind. “Occupy Simcha”. I am part of the 99% of scholars who are tired of the unsubstantiated speculation, circular arguments, and damage to the discipline of archaeology.

Robert Cargill, PhD

Truly well said Robert.  I hope the judge in the case is as wise.

2 thoughts on “Robert Cargill on Simcha’s Suit

  1. Good for Zias! I remember trying to figure out how Jacobovici could keep producing this nonsense. I recall I concluded that:

    ” I don’t blame Jacobovici. I mean, if you’re a person who has completely desensitized yourself to sober analysis and intellectual sobriety why not just keep making these outlandish documentaries and riding the gravy train. No, it is the media corporations that keep him addicted that I blame. Its their job to spot the chancers and intellectual muggers who till try it on. Its their duty to their viewers, most of whom will have little prior interaction with the field, to ensure that they will be receiving accurate, sober analysis. While a highly tentative documentary on a scientific or social proposal on T.V. would immediately get reprimanded, with the media corporation receiving a bloody nose from public outcry and the presenter put into an extended stay into documentary making exile; any old nonsense regarding ancient history gets lapped up as being courageous, daring, controversial and can pride itself on its role in challenging of old orthodoxies. What would be a vice in one field is lauded in another. It will be praised by the public and become a source that we will see banded around on comment boxes and coffee shops for years to come. But so long as it is only academics and the biblioblogosphere that gets fired up well fine, to the public their complaints just look like jealously or pedantry. And Jacobvici has noticed this gap in the market. The man is a naked entrepreneur, not an archaeologist. Good for him”

    It seems society will tolerate pseudo-science with relation to archaeology and history but it wouldn’t with regards to other subjects. It takes people like Zias to stand up for it an make themselves a nuisance of themselves, and sadly become the objects of a court case.


  2. Dr. Cargill, Dr. West,
    You just couldn’t put it in more accurate, precise, direct words. Thank you for expressing the feelings of most of us, professional archaeologists!


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