Tag Archives | Conspiracy Theories

Malaysia Airlines MH370: The Persistence of Conspiracy Theories

A reflection on why conspiracy theories about Malaysia Airlines MH370 are enduring from Tom de Castella at BBC News Magazine:

Six months after the disappearance of Malaysia Airlines flight 370 it is still the subject of a slew of explanations. Why has this tragedy prompted such a wave of conspiracy theories?

Sudden, dramatic events often provoke conspiracy theories – particularly where the official version is disbelieved. Think JFK, Princess Diana, 9/11.

But in the case of MH370 there is not even an official version. Nobody knows what happened to MH370. It’s a modern mystery.

268ap - Malaysia Airlines Boeing 777-2H6ER; 9M-MRO@ZRH;07.12.2003 (5398092340).jpg

Malaysia Airlines Boeing 777-2H6ER by Aero Icarus (CC)

“It is very rare to be able to proffer no convincing answer for an event,” says Times columnist David Aaronovitch, whose book Voodoo Histories tackles conspiracy theories.

Then there’s the context. After the revelations by Edward Snowden about the extent of global surveillance by the US National Security Agency, it seems somehow hard for laymen to believe that an airliner can just disappear.

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[Poll] The most damaging U.S. president of the last 50 years?

United States Capitol by Phil Roeder via Flickr.

United States Capitol by Phil Roeder via Flickr.

It’s time for a quick poll recap. This past week, we voted on everyone’s favorite “conspiracy” theory. New World Order/Illuminati was in the lead for awhile, but the 9/11 conspiracies ultimately won out. This week, with the help of some fellow commenters, we’ll be voting on which US president has been the most damaging of the last 50 years.

Favorite “Conspiracy” Theory

  • The theories around 9/11 (21%, 156 Votes)
  • New World Order/Illuminati (18%, 135 Votes)
  • Who really shot JFK? (14%, 100 Votes)
  • Reptilian Conspiracy (12%, 87 Votes)
  • The theories around MKUltra (7%, 54 Votes)
  • The theories around Area 51 (7%, 49 Votes)
  • Faked moon landing (6%, 46 Votes)
  • FEMA Concentration Camps (4%, 32 Votes)
  • HAARP (4%, 29 Votes)
  • Water Fluoridation (4%, 26 Votes)
  • Chemtrails (3%, 22 Votes)

Total Voters: 735

The most damaging U.S. president of the last 50 years?

  • Barack Obama
  • George W.
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MTV Says The Illuminati Controlled Last Night’s VMAs

When MTV starts posting tongue-in-cheek articles about the Illuminati controlling its Video Music Awards (VMAs), you know that the Illuminati pop music meme has just about run its course:

Last week, we gave you two sides of a much-heated national debate. First, we gave you 16 examples that prove the Illuminati control the VMAs. Then, we flipped the argument on its head, giving 16 more reasons why they totally don’t. Both sides were compelling and convincing enough, but only last night’s epic show could settle the matter once and for all. Take a look at the evidence and judge for yourself.

The Snake Debacle

(C) MTV (Fair Use)

(C) MTV (Fair Use)

PRO-ILLUMINATI: Nicki Minaj sang a song called “Anaconda.” Which is a snake. A satanic snake. Need we say more? Even though she’s, uh, probably not singing about a real snake (we’re thinking it may be a metaphor), the symbolism is so there.

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Catch of the Day: Who Believes in Crazy Conspiracy Theories?

climate changeJust to wind certain commenters up (you know who you are), here’s Jonathan Bernstein’s critique of that article I posted “Conspiracy Theories Aren’t Just For Conservatives,” at BloombergView:

A catch to Andrew Gelman for correcting an attempted but inaccurate catch by Alfred Moore, Joseph Parent and Joseph Uscinski, who thought they had caught Paul Krugman in an error on the always-fun topic of conspiracy theories. Not so!

Here’s Krugman’s original assertion:

Unlike the crazy conspiracy theories of the left — which do exist, but are supported only by a tiny fringe — the crazy conspiracy theories of the right are supported by important people: powerful politicians, television personalities with large audiences.

Moore, Parent and Uscinski take that quote and attack it on the basis that both liberals and conservatives are equally likely to believe in crazy conspiracy theories. That part, as Gelman agrees, is correct. Plenty of examples in both items for those liberals who are skeptical of it, but I’ll add one more anecdotal one: the belief among liberals in 2003 and 2004 that George W.

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Conspiracy Theories Aren’t Just For Conservatives

911 Was an Inside JobConcluding that “Neither liberals nor conservatives are more credulous or crazy,” co-authors Alfred Moore (Research Fellow at the University of Cambridge, working on the Conspiracy and Democracy project), Joseph M. Parent and Joseph E. Uscinski (Associate Professors of Political Science at University of Miami and authors of American Conspiracy Theories), suggest that “Republicans and Democrats are equally prone to believing in conspiracy theories.” From the Washington Post:

Who doesn’t love a good conspiracy theory? Liberals, that’s who. Take Princeton economist Paul Krugman who ominously warns that:

Unlike the crazy conspiracy theories of the left—which do exist, but are supported only by a tiny fringe—the crazy conspiracy theories of the right are supported by important people: powerful politicians, television personalities with large audiences.

Krugman makes a fair point: in moderation conspiracy theories may show healthy skepticism, but in excess they can erode the trust needed for states to fulfill their basic functions and warp the respect for evidence necessary for sound decision making.

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The New Scientism

English: General Jack D. Ripper (Sterling Hayd...

It seems to be that science in general has donned a new mask not unlike the worn out mask of religious zealots. Call it dogma. Call it power trip. Call it vested interest in research money, or furthering a career. Call it stagnation. It seems to me, that some pop scientists and their sycophants would like to think they have a monopoly on truth. Either way, Robert Anton Wilson may have pegged it when he said:

The totally convinced and the totally stupid have too much in common for the resemblance to be accidental.
Disinfonauts and others, be prepared. For your favorite “conspiracy theory” may be trodden upon in this article. Remember… No scratching. No hair pulling. No eye gouging. No hitting boobs or below the belt.

via Jacobin (please follow the link to read the entire article):

We can value scientific inquiry without viewing the natural sciences as free of politics.

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Ron Paul Says U.S. ‘Likely Hiding Truth’ About MH17 Crash

Ron Paul, official 109th Congress photoEx-Congressman Ron Paul, libertarian hero and father of current presidential hopeful Rand Paul, has never been one to shirk a controversial statement, but really, an MH17 conspiracy theory? From his Voices of Liberty (click for audio of his reading the statement below):

The U.S. government has grown strangely quiet on the accusation that it was Russia or her allies that brought down the Malaysian airliner with a buck anti-aircraft missile.

The little that we have heard from U.S. intelligence is that it has no evidence that Russia was involved. Yet the war propaganda was successful in convincing the American public that it was all Russia’s fault. It’s hard to believe that the U.S., with all of its spy satellites available for monitoring everything in Ukraine that precise proof of who did what and when is not available.

When evidence contradicts our government’s accusations, the evidence is never revealed to the public—for national security reasons, of course.

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Alex Jones Wants To Be Taken Seriously: ‘I’m Not Making Jack Crap Up, I’m Not Making Nothing Up’

Apparently not satisfied with being America’s highest profile conspiracy theorist, Texas radio host Alex Jones wants to be taken seriously, reports Right Wing Watch:

Alex Jones said last week that he is sick and tired of everyone dismissing him as a conspiracy theorist, when actually he is a real man trying to tell people the truth!

“I am not making jack crack up, okay? I’m not making nothing up,” he charged. “We’re already in deep you know what but it’s getting deeper fast, and as a man, as a parent, my spider sense is just off the charts.”

He also warned “InfoWars” listeners that the government is getting ready to launch false flag attacks in order to start a civil war and commit mass arrests.

“We are in a progressing tyranny, it’s progressive like brain cancer, malignant cancer, it’s metastasized, it’s blooming right now and unequivocally I can say the people running things are clearly going to stage massive terror attacks and blame it on domestic groups and they are going to try to come arrest a lot of people,” Jones said

[continues at Right Wing Watch]

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Unholy Alliance: Ancient Astronauts and the New World Financial Order

Mreggmanfalling (CC)

Mreggmanfalling (CC)

[disinfo ed.'s note: The following is an excerpt from Lost Secrets of the Gods: The Latest Evidence and Revelations On Ancient Astronauts, Precursor Cultures, and Secret Societies, edited by Michael Pye and with contributions from Jim Marrs (below), Robert Schoch and others.]

 

Throughout history the two most prominent methods for controlling the human population have been religion and finance. Could these well-honed, time-tested control mechanisms be of extraterrestrial origin?

Early humans, seeing the beauty and symmetry in nature, instinctively knew that some guiding force lay behind the order of life and so they developed a reverence for spiritual matters. Over time, however, and with advances in scientific knowledge, the material trappings and theologies of the various religions should have fallen away. But they haven’t. Today, most of the world’s population continues to follow one religion or another, often leading to conflicts, wars, and genocide. Moreover, most large, organized religions are intertwined with the acquisition of money.… Read the rest

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