Articles by Disinformation

Everyone probably experiences bullying at some time in their lives, and for some it can leave lifelong psychological scarring. For children, the right kind of adult intervention can make all the difference in the world. But what about the wrong kind? One organization, Little Baby Faces, offers free plastic surgery to bullied children, but their services aren’t just aimed at repairing disfigurements of various sorts. In the embedded video from CNN, one girl taunted for her “big ears” goes in for a consultation with Little Baby Faces and leaves with a laundry list of her physical imperfections.

Is it healthy when an adult not only reinforces the specious insults of a bully but then heaps on even more criticism? Does minor physical imperfections warrant plastic surgery? What kind of lesson does this teach to the bullied, and how will this affect their development as human beings?




[disinfo ed.’s note: this was first published on April 21, 2009. We have republished it in the midst of the current debate regarding mass murder, gun control, conspiracies and more regarding the Aurora, Colorado shooting incident, in the hope that it can provide some perspective.]

Russ Kick writes in Everything You Know Is Wrong: The mass shooting at Columbine High School in Littleton, Colorado still stands as the most infamous school shooting in US history. It remains seared into the public psyche as the archetypal school shooting.

Despite the controversies it triggered (provoking arguments about guns, Marilyn Manson, bullying, and parental responsibility, among many other topics) and the subsequent incidents and near-incidents it inspired, many unanswered questions swirl around the events of April 20, 1999.

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The bodies in Aurora, Colorado weren’t even cold before the inevitable conspiracy theories began to propagate in the bacterial petri dish that is the internet. While most people are content to let the investigation into the Dark Knight Rises murder spree evolve under the auspices of local and federal law enforcement, there exists a fringe for whom no amount of physical distance from, or baseless conjecture about, a national tragedy is too far to not support unlikely theories of United Nations false-flag attacks and other tinfoil cap speculations.

The current conspiracy du jour is that James Holmes’ attack on a packed audience watching a midnight screening of The Dark Knight Rises was in actuality an atrocity planned in advance by elements within the federal government and/or the United Nations. Those advocating this claim are pointing to several shaky bits of “evidence” that are in actuality nothing of the sort. This isn’t surprising, though: it costs practically nothing to make baseless accusations under the guise of “just asking questions”, and there’s much to be gained by doing so in terms of attention and notoriety. (Just ask Glenn Beck.)




[A vintage 1990s-era disinformation® essay-interview with Robert Anton Wilson by our former site editor, Alex Burns] Author’s note: This interview was originally published in REVelation magazine (#13, Autumn, 1995): 36-40. The many…