1. Dryriver
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    Dryriver Senior Member

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    What is your take on "Conspiracy Theories" ? Do you, personally, believe in any ?

    Discussion in 'The Lounge' started by Dryriver, Jul 16, 2013.

    Hello fellow Writers,

    The darker corners of the Internet are full of "conspiracy theories".

    They come in all shapes and sizes and flavors... from formations of UFOs buzzing major cities at night to ├╝berpowerful - and secretive - elites ruling the world, to the moon landings having been faked in a film studio or aircraft hangar.

    And sometimes they actually prove to be true - it had been rumored for a long time, for example, that the U.S. secretly eavesdrops on electronic communications around the world.

    Now, with Edward Snowden's revelations, this particular claim is no longer a "conspiracy theory" - it has, instead, been proven to be very "real".



    So here is my question to you:

    - Are there any "Conspiracy Theories" that you, personally, believe in?

    - If you do believe in specific conspiracies, why do you believe in them, as opposed to others?

    - How do you separate a rather fanciful & ridiculous "conspiracy theory" somebody has made up for kicks, or out of uncontrollable paranoia, from one that, perhaps, isn't fanciful or ridiculous at all?


    I have asked this question on other forums before.

    But I've never asked it in a "Writing Oriented" Forum before.

    I'm very curious what kind of responses I'll get! :)
     
  2. MainerMikeBrown
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    MainerMikeBrown Contributing Member

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    When it comes to conspiracy theories, I find it hard to believe that Lee Harvey Oswald was the lone gunman that killed President Kennedy. I find it hard to believe that he could be that accurate shooting from way up a number of stories in a building in Dallas. And considering that many people who were there saw gunsmoke from the grassy knoll, no, I think it's unlikely that Oswald was the only guy trying to kill Kennedy on that day.
     
  3. GingerCoffee
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    GingerCoffee Web Surfer Girl Contributor

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    Or you might consider the rational explanation: When something very significant is carried out by someone very mundane, humans, because of the nature of our thought processes, want the significant thing to have been carried out by something more significant than one lone nutter.

    But look at how many other lone nutters carried out similar significant events.

    It's not that conspiracies never occur. But real ones tend to be exposed. Just as humans believe in conspiracies when they need a larger reason to explain something tragic, humans are also very bad at keeping secrets.
     
  4. maskedhero
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    maskedhero Active Member

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    Lacking evidence, they're silly. My favorites involve one small point as the launch of grand theories, like with the 9-11 conspiracies. "They won't release a video, therefore..."

    The only ones I'm apt to believe in are those involving major political change (in small countries, like a coup)-Sometimes secret agents may be involved, and we wouldn't likely know about it for a long, long time.

    Fanciful theories use one point and build from it, disregarding proof. More believable theories involve some evidence, which is often lacking.

    As to what ones I believe...only after the facts come out, making them fact, not a theory. :)
     
  5. EdFromNY
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    EdFromNY Hope to improve with age Supporter Contributor

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    Why, who wants to know?!
     
  6. Lemex
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    Lemex That's Lord Lemex to you. Contributor

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    I don't have any time for them in all honestly, I find most of them either infantile or ridiculous. Or both. I've always gone off the maxim of 'What can be asserted without evidence can be dismissed without evidence'.
     
  7. chicagoliz
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    chicagoliz Contributing Member Contributor

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    Similar to Ginger, I don't believe humans are capable of carrying out the more vast and complicated conspiracies. Those would require large numbers of people to be in on it and there's just no way that at least one of them would not reveal the conspiracy to others. Also, what, truly, would be the point? Do enough people have enough to gain by putting all of this energy into maintaining the conspiracy?

    I think they tend to come about as people try to come up with ways to explain terrible things, or things that they don't understand.
     
  8. shadowwalker
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    shadowwalker Contributing Member Contributor

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    I don't believe in most conspiracy theories. Having said that, I do believe there are a great many things in the world for which information has been intentionally withheld, things that TPTB have determined would cause more harm than good. So I guess I'm in the middle of the spectrum - I look with skepticism on those theories with no proof, but I look with equal skepticism on those who completely dismiss them because they can't be proved. It's like a court of law - people get acquitted because they can't be proved guilty beyond reasonable doubt - that doesn't mean they aren't guilty.
     
  9. thirdwind
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    thirdwind Contributing Member Contest Administrator Reviewer Contributor

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    I can't say I believe in any current conspiracy theories. But there have some crazy theories in the past that turned out to be true. For example, there's the US government program MK-Ultra, which attempted to study mind control techniques by forcing unwilling subjects to become human guinea pigs.
     
  10. jmhoffer
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    jmhoffer Contributing Member

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    Ninety-nine percent of all conspiracy theories can simply be dismissed without further thought, ones that have easy counters.

    America didn't make it to the moon? Why didn't the Soviets call them on it?

    ...

    Actually, I pay so little attention to conspiracy theories, that's the only one I can think of right now.

    But what makes it a conspiracy theory and what makes it people with an agenda simply manipulating things and hoping no one notices? Climategate, for instance? Is it a conspiracy theory to believe that the warming is exaggerated when all the models are 50% off or more? Is it a conspiracy theory when out of the over 50 solutions offered to the IPCC for dealing with AGW, they picked the carbon tax, ranked as the least effective and most costly solution?

    When is it a conspiracy theory? That's the real question.
     
  11. GingerCoffee
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    GingerCoffee Web Surfer Girl Contributor

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    The real mechanisms behind control and power are well worth investigating and educating oneself about.

    Critical thinking and media literacy are key skills if only we could teach them to more people. It only took a couple companies and a few million dollars invested in an ad campaign to sell global warming science doubt.

    The mainstream news isn't crap because of a conspiracy, it's crap because it's a commodity.

    And corporate influence on the government is right out in the open, but ignored because the influencers understand marketing science.
     
  12. jmhoffer
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    jmhoffer Contributing Member

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    Oh God, I read your first link and just about died laughing.

    The creator of DDT ate a teaspoon of it at breakfast every morning and lived beyond average lifespan. The amount of DDT he consumed in his life was thousands of times more than the amount you could take in from DDT being in the general environment and moving up the food chain.

    The 'dangers' of second-hand smoke never existed. The guy that headed the original study that was used to justify smoking bans, after retiring, publicly stated that his findings were skewed for political reasons and that he himself had concluded that there was no statistically significant danger from second-hand smoke.

    The effects of acid rain are only measurable in places around lakes that have been acidified by industry. Not downwind from these lakes, but around the lakes and in the waterways that feed from them.

    Anyone open minded need only read Watts Up With That to see how much of the 'science' isn't really science in the so-called 'climate change science'. ("There is no such thing as settled science." -Every physicist on Earth that doesn't have an agenda.)

    And the fact that authors are celebrating a review from Al Gore, the maker of the MASSIVELY inaccurate "An Inconvenient Truth"? You'd have to pay me to read it because the moment someone quotes Al Gore as an authority on climate change, you know that they have no idea what they are talking about. It's like claiming Mr. Burns is an authority on charity.
     
  13. erebh
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    erebh Contributing Member Contributor

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    Who says they are 'human'? :)
     
  14. Lemex
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    Lemex That's Lord Lemex to you. Contributor

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    Yeah, I remember reading about MK-Ultra. It's things like that that make me unable to dismiss all conspiracy theories outright. But the outlandish, David Icke bullshit about the British Royal Family being reptile lizards from the planet Xeno or something ... no, just no. :p
     
  15. jmhoffer
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    jmhoffer Contributing Member

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    Please link me to more info on that so I can study it and trick my friends into thinking I believe it!
     
  16. GingerCoffee
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    GingerCoffee Web Surfer Girl Contributor

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    I see you drank the Koolaide.

    Pity.
     
  17. Lemex
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    Lemex That's Lord Lemex to you. Contributor

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    Oh, dude, you'll love some of the stuff out there. Honestly. I'll try and find some of it for you, it's wonderful. He's also said he was the son of god, that the world would end in the 80s, and that the moon was made by the Soviets.

    Edit: Here's some stuff on David Icke:

    Time Magazine article on Icke and his 'theory':
    http://www.time.com/time/specials/packages/article/0,28804,1860871_1860876_1861029,00.html

    Wikipedia article on the 'theory':
    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Reptilians
     
  18. jmhoffer
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    jmhoffer Contributing Member

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    Notice that you don't refute anything I pointed out? Just parrot a bunch of propaganda?

    As I said, only requires an open mind. Thanks for confirming what you have. ;)
     
  19. GingerCoffee
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    GingerCoffee Web Surfer Girl Contributor

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    There's no reason to dismiss every conspiracy theory, there's reason to look at the evidence and mechanisms by which they occur to filter out the chaff.

    ENRON was a real CT. Government secrecy is a real CT. I'm pretty sure some the the stuff said about J Edgar Hoover's secret files was true.

    It's not a surprise to find out idiots in the military carried out some pretty ludicrous and awful stuff in the past and they continue to do awful, though different things today. Bradley Manning exposed some of it. "Taxi to the Dark Side" exposed some of it. We have evidence and motive.
     
  20. Lemex
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    Lemex That's Lord Lemex to you. Contributor

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    I wholeheartedly agree. But some claims require more proof than others as I'm sure you'd also agree. :p

    I've edited my last post to have some links about Icke. :)
     
  21. jmhoffer
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    jmhoffer Contributing Member

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    I wonder how long I can pull this off for. Probably not long, all my friends are too intelligent, but I'm still going to try!
     
  22. GingerCoffee
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    GingerCoffee Web Surfer Girl Contributor

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    The book you dismissed without reading refutes everything you posted. I can't waste my time on people who dismiss the scientific process and instead buy an Exxon commercial and a few political slogans.


    You're essentially saying 97% of the climate scientists are in on some conspiracy to what? Get research dollars? Because they like Al Gore? Because you don't like their conclusions?


    It takes drinking koolaide to dismiss such a vast amount of scientific evidence.
     
  23. EdFromNY
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    EdFromNY Hope to improve with age Supporter Contributor

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    I would regard this as axiomatic. The news industry makes no secret, nor shows any shame, that it regards itself as a commodity. The goal is the same, be it CNN, Fox News, MSNBC or the old Big 3 - to sell soap. They don't need to conspire to do it - they all follow the same instinct.

    And, moreover, was etched into constitutional law in the US in the Citizens United case.

    All that said, most conspiracy theories aren't worth the breath it takes to deny them.
     
  24. GingerCoffee
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    GingerCoffee Web Surfer Girl Contributor

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    I'm quite familiar with Icke. He's hilarious.



    People in this thread might get a kick out GodLikeProduction's conspiracy forum.
     
  25. jannert
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    jannert Contributing Member Supporter Contributor

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    The thing that tore it for me, even as a 14-year-old (as I was at the time) was Jack Ruby. If Lee Harvey Oswald acted alone, possibly as a Russian agent, then what was Jack Ruby? A heartbroken man with connections to the mafia who detested Oswald enough to kill him at point-blank range as he was being transferred to prison. Oh, I don't think so. And he conveniently died himself in jail, shortly afterwards? Oh, come on people...
     

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