Doubleplusungood Unpersons Guilty of Oldthink Never Actually Existed at All


And — oh yes — we’ve always been at war with Eastasia.


Josef Stalin (l.), with Nikolai Yezhov (r.),
People’s Commissar for Internal Affairs
(director of Stalin’s purges and trials)


Comrade Yezhov was arrested on 10 April 1939 and executed on 4 February 1940


Vladimir Lenin and Leon Trotsky: Now you see him.


Now you don’t.


A meeting of the St. Petersburg Union of Struggle for the Liberation of the Working Class, in February 1897


Alexander Malchenko was executed on 18 November 1930


As featured in Bruce C. Hafen, “A Disciple’s Life: The Biography of Neal A. Maxwell” (Salt Lake City: Deseret Book, 2002) — At an event for the Middle Eastern Texts Initiative at the Embassy of the Royal Hashemite Kingdom of Jordan in Washington DC. From left to right: Elder Neal A. Maxwell of the Council of the Twelve, Ambassador Marwan Muasher, Senator and Mrs. Harry Reid, President Merrill J. Bateman, and, representing what would later become the Maxwell Institute, Professor Daniel C. Peterson
(Click once to enlarge; click twice to enlarge fully.)


A screenshot of something noticed by a friend
(click to enlarge)


These items seemed a timely and appropriate photo montage to accompany this recent entry on my blog.



An important new letter from the Council of the First Presidency and the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles
"Montana Trio Applies for Wedding License"
Does support for gay marriage bring prosperity and improve quality of life?
Canaries in the coal mine?
  • Ryan

    That must hurt. I’m sorry to see it.

    Mercifully, I’ll never be smart enough to have the misfortune of working at a University.

    • DanielPeterson

      BYU has actually been a great place for me to work. I thoroughly enjoyed it until the summer of 2012. I had heard about vicious academic politics in various places, but had never really seen it at BYU and certainly hadn’t experienced it personally. Since June of last year, though, I think I may have overcompensated.

  • Tim Barker

    Wow! That is ridiculous!

  • aloysiusmiller

    You’re better off not shown in a picture with Harry Reid. He stains everything he touches. He subscribes to the Nevada Righteousness: “only for profit, not pleasure”. Consider this a small mercy.

  • Stephen Smoot
  • BHodges
  • BHodges

    Thanks for calling our attention to this, Dan. We’re in the process of rolling out the beta version of the new website, it’s a beta version, meaning it’s not yet complete. All of the images on the site were placed by the design firm, not by anyone at the Institute. This particular photograph, along with many others, were provided to the design team with the understanding that they would fill the image spots and we would update them with more permanent photos over the coming weeks. Many of the images auto-crop to fit the different photo spots. Since I haven’t edited these pages, only the blog, I don’t know if that is an autocrop frame but it looks to be one to me based on its dimensions and the cropped image next to it. Either way, no one at the Institute selected that photo, and it will be replaced when the site is ready for new edits. There was no insult intended and I apologize on behalf of myself and the Maxwell Institute for the mistake.

    We’re happy to receive any reports of bugs, suggestions, or questions, which can be submitted here:

    The new site announcement explaining its beta status is available here:

    Daniel C. Peterson’s published works with the Institute are available on his author page (the author pages in general are going to be slightly redesigned in the coming months for greater accessibility to specific articles rather than entire journals, etc.):

    Dan, let me know if you have an image you’d like is to use for your page’s banner instead of the current randomized image. You need to own the rights to the image, but I’m happy to let you choose yours if it is appropriate. You can contact me at blairhodges [@]


    • DanielPeterson

      Thank you, Blair, for your explanation. It was a rather amusing coincidence, don’t you think?

      A few weeks ago, there was a relatively lengthy article in the “Deseret News” about the LDS Church and interfaith relations, a substantial portion of it at the end drawing on information from someone at the Maxwell Institute. I was amused, in that article, to see my involvement with the Middle Eastern Texts Initiative (METI) reduced to having proposed the idea back in the early 1990s. But I was happy, I suppose, that my role with METI was remembered at ALL.

  • DanielPeterson

    Actually, I received credit as having “proposed the idea.” Rather a different (and lesser) thing. But, nonetheless, something.

  • RaymondSwenson

    An amusing irony that an institution whose goals include supporting honest scholaly accounts of Mormon history could have these kinds of omissions crop up, however unintentionally. At the very least it should restrain the impulse to criticize earlier Mormon historians and leaders for their editing practices.

  • Don Bagley

    You left out a couple of candidates for “now you seem him, now you don’t.” Bruce McConkie and Hugh Nibley. Maybe you youself, given time.

    • DanielPeterson

      They both died, and I’ll most likely die. So you’ve got me there.

      If, however, you’re suggesting that they’ve somehow been suppressed, I confess that I’ve missed that.

  • DanielPeterson


    Any other requests?

  • dangerdad

    If the shoe fits…. This was not an accident. I’m a software engineer of 15 years, and image processing/geometry reconstruction has been my bread and butter for most of it.

    There is no way an automated algorithm left Maxwell in but cropped Peterson out. No way.

    The vibe from NAMI has gotten creepier and creepier. I wonder when you’ll look around and realize the reason you’re getting compared to others who famously revised history is because the comparison is apt. Reminds me of this skit:

    • BHodges

      I’m able to log into the backend of the site now and I tested the full image. See here:

      I verified that the image was cropped before being placed. Evidently, this is because the image field is set to compress an image that doesn’t fit properly (see the screenshot above. Yes, I realize this could easily be faked, but it’s the best I can do, I hope people can take my word for it.). It seems the design company employee cropped the image in order to make it fill the entire space. As there is more negative space between Dan and MJ Bateman than between Elder Maxwell and the man next to him, it looks like this boiled down to a quick crop, one which also cut part of Elder Maxwell out. As I noted, all images were originally placed by the design firm by folks who are unaware of any potential controversies. Even though it was an oversight, I apologize to Dan for the mistake nevertheless. The proper images have since been added. We hope you like them, and I hope we can creep people out less in the future. :)

      Take care.

    • DanielPeterson

      I’m shocked and appalled that you would post this hilarious spoof of the Nazis, dangerdad, which my son first shared with me a few weeks ago. Horrible. I see that you constantly associate those you criticize with the most reprehensible kinds of people. Please stop reminding us that jokes exist. I’m determined to be offended.

  • noel

    Mormon missionaries in my city regularly hang around transit stations wanting to chat with people. Some hang around on a Friday evening in the city mall. These missionaries are trained in Chinese and attempt to talk with the many students that come to this country to study. I have chatted with this missionary a couple of times. It amazes me how little they know about their history after years in seminary and institute. He pointed out a young Chinese girl who had been baptised recently. She has been there each time and I get the feeling she likes to flirt with the missionaries.Some missionaries go in the foyer of the State Library and chat with the Asian students. Don’t you think it might not be ethical to be attempting to convert students far away from their families and for whom a change of religion would cause great problems.?

    • DanielPeterson

      I have to confess, noel, that the relevance of your post to anything in my blog entry completely eludes me.

  • RG

    Sigh… this would have been better without the hat tips to communist purges.