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The Symphony of Conspiracies and Why It's Important to be "Anti-American" (Op/Ed)

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posted on Jun, 13 2006 @ 06:49 PM
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Distrust and dissatisfaction with the U.S. Government is at an all time high, creating a "perfect storm" environment of aggressive partisan politics and conspiracy speculation. The battle lines are drawn as the neocon base has circled the wagons and labeled their detractors as "anti-American" and defenders of terrorism. And to solidify the strategic divide, liberal talking points spew venomous exaggerations and a hodgepodge of accusations. All this against a worrisome backdrop of the most intense conspiracy theory speculation in the history of American politics. It causes us to wonder, these days, what isn't a conspiracy?
 


I can think of no time during my personal awareness of current events and politics (some 30 years) where we have experienced such an intense duality of political division and inescapable speculation of hundreds of conspiracy theories. Time may have dulled the memory, but I firmly believe that our current situation eclipses that of the Vietnam war by a significant margin.

One popular theme that has been recently echoing here on AboveTopSecret.com and many other communities that focus on these troubling times, is one of connecting harsh government criticism with anti-Americanism. These vocal wagon-circling defenders of the current administration have missed out on a critical component of the criticism on this website -- we are conspiracy theorists! It's in our nature to shine a blinding spotlight of searing criticism on whatever occupies the Greek revival buildings of Washington.

Gun fire in Dallas robbed us of an (at least) interesting President and ushered in the era of modern conspiracy theory. That painfully vivid moment in history and the oddities surrounding the miracle bullet nagged at a small subculture of critical thinkers who birthed a movement. Over time, the subculture quietly grew from a silly group that often had to bear the brunt of jokes and snickers, to a powerful background noise tempering contemporary politics. Major news outlets, global politicians, and even US politicians are increasingly nodding in the general direction of the deafening symphony of chaos coming from the Internet.

If considering these theories makes me "Anti-American", so be it.

If criticism of the holders of public office labels me "Anti-American", do we have a cool logo and where do I get the t-shirts?

If disagreement with the policies of my government is "Anti-American", how much are the club dues and who do I pay? (check, cash, or credit card?)

If hating how the political system of this republic has evolved into a method to divide the people and set them against each other is "Anti-American", it's never been more important to be "Anti-American".

And if enough of us add our "Anti-American" notes to the symphony of conspiracy chaos on the Internet, maybe, some day, a stunning movement will be heard that inspires change... and we can once again be proud to be "Pro-American".



What notes will you add?


[edit on 13/6/2006 by SkepticOverlord]




posted on Jun, 13 2006 @ 07:14 PM
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I consider myself to be very American. But to be labeled unamerican for questioning my Governments word on world matters makes me unamerican, then so be it. I love my country, and I would die for it in a heartbeat. But, I refuse to be blinded. If my voice means anything, I'll put it to use any time I can. And when I can't, I'll fight for my freedom. And if I die doing it, I die believing in my rights. We support our Government, they don't support us.



posted on Jun, 13 2006 @ 07:40 PM
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from SkepticOverlord
One popular theme that has been recently echoing here on AboveTopSecret.com and many other communities that focus on these troubling times, is one of connecting harsh government criticism with anti-Americanism. These vocal wagon-circling defenders of the current administration have missed out on a critical component of the criticism on this website -- we are conspiracy theorists! It's in our nature to shine a blinding spotlight of searing criticism on whatever occupies the Greek revival buildings of Washington.

Sorry, SO, but I'm not seeing that. What I am seeing here, though, are replies such as this:


from FallenFromTheTree
As far as I'm concerned, anyone supporting the Bush administration is a traitor to their own country.


Do you have any comment on that?



posted on Jun, 13 2006 @ 07:45 PM
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from FallenFromTheTree
As far as I'm concerned, anyone supporting the Bush administration is a traitor to their own country.


Originally posted by jsobecky
Do you have any comment on that?


Is that not the glory of Freedom of Speech? Is it not important for someone to able to voice their trust or distrust for people, even those who vote for a political party? Do we not as voters, bare some responsibility on those we vote into power?



posted on Jun, 13 2006 @ 07:49 PM
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Originally posted by jsobecky
Do you have any comment on that?


That would full under, "And to solidify the strategic divide, liberal talking points spew venomous exaggerations and a hodgepodge of accusations."



posted on Jun, 13 2006 @ 07:53 PM
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Originally posted by Odium
Is that not the glory of Freedom of Speech? Is it not important for someone to able to voice their trust or distrust for people, even those who vote for a political party? Do we not as voters, bare some responsibility on those we vote into power?

Yes, and "connecting harsh government criticism with anti-Americanism" falls under the same principle, doesn't it? So what's the point of creating a one-sided thread, other than to exercise that freedom?

I just don't get it.



posted on Jun, 13 2006 @ 07:57 PM
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Originally posted by jsobecky
Yes, and "connecting harsh government criticism with anti-Americanism" falls under the same principle, doesn't it? So what's the point of creating a one-sided thread, other than to exercise that freedom?

I just don't get it.


Maybe I can help you out there, from another thread:


Anti-Bush is Anti-American?

Disagreeing with the Administration is now un-American? How? Why? It seems that people of BOTH parties are getting of at the next stop. Yes, I went to Fox so that it couldn't be called biased:

www.foxnews.com...

So it seems that there is MORE than 50% of the American public that don't support this president. Doing the math I figure it at about 65-68%. That's 2 out of every 3. Are those 2 un-American? That makes no sense to me. Only 1/3 of the population is pro-American? What kind of logic is that?

That being said it would seem that ATS is in line with the majority of what the people are thinking. Not that that matters, this is a privately owned website. At least we, as a site, are critical thinkers, not being led by propaganda and the whims of opinion.



posted on Jun, 13 2006 @ 08:04 PM
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Originally posted by jsobecky
I just don't get it.


Some recent examples...
www.abovetopsecret.com...
www.abovetopsecret.com...



posted on Jun, 13 2006 @ 08:06 PM
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Originally posted by intrepid

Maybe I can help you out there, from another thread:

So it seems that there is MORE than 50% of the American public that don't support this president. Doing the math I figure it at about 65-68%. That's 2 out of every 3. Are those 2 un-American? That makes no sense to me. Only 1/3 of the population is pro-American? What kind of logic is that?

No help at all, intrepid. You are confusing approval ratings with support. From the same article you cited:


It seems clear that many Republicans, while they may still like and support George Bush, are growing uneasy with what may happen to their candidates — and the policies they support — in the November elections," comments Opinion Dynamics Chairman John Gorman.


So, the support is not gone; it is still there. Job approval is down. Unless you're talking about ATS, however. Then I'd agree that support is not only down, it was never there to begin with.



posted on Jun, 13 2006 @ 08:07 PM
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Originally posted by Odium
Is that not the glory of Freedom of Speech? Is it not important for someone to able to voice their trust or distrust for people, even those who vote for a political party? Do we not as voters, bare some responsibility on those we vote into power?



Originally posted by jsobecky
Yes, and "connecting harsh government criticism with anti-Americanism" falls under the same principle, doesn't it? So what's the point of creating a one-sided thread, other than to exercise that freedom?

I just don't get it.


No.

If you're Anti-America, you go directly against what America stands for at that time. However, America is not the Republican Paarty. If you disagree with the Republican Party, that doesn't make you disagree with the principle of the United State's [constitution] or even the System of Government that is present. It just means you disagree with the administration. Furthermore, America is the people. Until the people vote in favour as a majority [all 100% voting] the Government can never truly claim to represent the people. Thus not be America.

It's the same as me criticising an employee of a company, it does not mean I dislike the company over that individual.



posted on Jun, 13 2006 @ 08:12 PM
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Originally posted by SkepticOverlord
Some recent examples...
www.abovetopsecret.com...
www.abovetopsecret.com...

Well, the second example states:

the Bush Rodeo link with that Chinese woman being silenced is plainly promoting an anti-American thread.


He has a point.

How many weeks did that "Fun at the Bush Rodeo" slide show occupy the front page? Did nothing else newsworthy happen in the interim?



posted on Jun, 13 2006 @ 08:13 PM
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Sorry SO, but I have to take issue with the thrust of your article.




we are conspiracy theorists!


Not all of us are. By the way your article reads, non-conspiracy believers are not part of this community, similar to a virus attacking a healthy organ. I don't believe this to be true. This site may have started as a purely conspiracy related site, but the breadth of issues now discussed actually attract a wider audience. The nature of the site has changed, even though your nature has not. The only way to deny ignorance is to engage those with an alternative point of view, otherwise you will stew in your own self-denial. But that seems to be what some people want. If you truly believe that the World Trade Centre was blown up by the Government, no amount of "proof" to the contrary will sway your point of view. And that's fine. But to make those who don't agree with your point of view feel unwelcome here seems a little disingenuous to me.

This website brings together people who think at both ends of the spectrum. Like any extremism, it is never good to have one side too strong. Balance is what is needed. But to achieve balance, you need the other side. And all those in the middle. Please don't alleniate the members who have been here for a number years, simply because they don't subscribe to all the theories that you do. I have to admit, in recent months I have been questioning my continued presence here because of some of the vitriol that has been flying around (and I'm talking both sides of the equation). Your article just highlights for me that things may not be getting better any time soon.

Hope you take this with the good intentions with which I write it.



posted on Jun, 13 2006 @ 08:18 PM
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Originally posted by Odium


No.

If you're Anti-America, you go directly against what America stands for at that time. However, America is not the Republican Paarty. If you disagree with the Republican Party, that doesn't make you disagree with the principle of the United State's [constitution] or even the System of Government that is present. It just means you disagree with the administration.


And just who or what is this person disagreeing with?


As far as I'm concerned, anyone supporting the Bush administration is a traitor to their own country.


I could dig up plenty of other similar quotes. I just wonder why one side is being singled out here as supporting a noble cause while the other side is being castigated when both are equally guilty.

Unless it's just a rally call to muster the troops....



posted on Jun, 13 2006 @ 08:21 PM
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Thank You SO. Its about time people start wondering why its so wrong to disagree. I mean in one thread I stated that if the current pace we are on now, were to continue for 50 more years, I would hope there would be a civil war because of how unimaginably unamerican it would be. At this pace it would be fascism disguised as freedom, privately owned media (corporations deciding whats news), and constant fear of eachother in the name of being safe. After saying that a member called me crazy for wanting a civil war where millions would die and NOTHING would get better and EVERYTHING would be worse in the entire world all because we had a civil war.

Now granted if everything changed right now I would be content and would say hey, as long as we represent freedom again.



posted on Jun, 13 2006 @ 08:39 PM
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United We Stand,
The Rest, Is Not, An Option.



The spirit of resistance to government is so valuable on certain occasions that I wish it to be always kept alive.
-Thomas Jefferson

In the beginning of change, the patriot is a scarce man; brave, hated and scorned. When his cause succeeds, however, the timid join him, for then it costs nothing to be a patriot.
-Mark Twain



posted on Jun, 13 2006 @ 08:40 PM
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Freedom of speech means being able to call other people traitors. Its a pretty good diagnostic of liberty. If everyone gets along, its because some voice is being silenced.



posted on Jun, 13 2006 @ 08:44 PM
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All I can say is, I saw the WORLDS' MOST PERFECT BUMPER STICKER not long ago.

It sums it up exactly.......

it read,

"I love my Country, but Fear My Government"

Need I say more?



posted on Jun, 13 2006 @ 08:46 PM
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See, there's a difference between SO's version of anti-americanism -which, admittedly, is on ATS- and THIS kind:


posted by jajabinks

America deserves a nuclear bomb attack on one of it's cities..they think it's ok to go on the other side of the world and destroy cities and musrder thousands and rape their natural resouces..I think it's OK to go a. and nuke an American city, it would kill about 100,000 , the US hava murdered more that 200,000 in Iraq already.


In response to the above post:


posted by Agit8dChop

I think, if this happened it would be the greatest event for mankind.
Not because of the poor innocent people that have died, innocent people dying is horrible and wrong no matter WHAT government deems it to be justified.


From: www.abovetopsecret.com...

See, here I go thinking the T&C prohibits things like agitating for murder, and encouraging hatred for folks based on nationality. THIS kind of anti-americanism is alive and kicking on the boards, and THIS is the kind of anti-american sentiment is what people like Winchester Ranger T and myself object to. It's also the kind that the mods find permissible. This is why people say there's a left wind blowing.

I'm a bit of a conspiracy thoerist, more of a crazy. And this isn't a conspiracy board no more, it's an 'alternative topics' board.

DE



posted on Jun, 13 2006 @ 08:49 PM
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Ever hear of the expression "they can't see the forest for the trees?".

For those who haven't, it means that a person can be so concentrated on looking at particular trees that they don't notice they are part of a larger forest. In this case they can't see the symphony for the notes.

In our philosophically rational and analytically based society, the reductionist way of thinking is prevalent. It is the basis for the scientific method, the basis for crisis management, and even forms our approach to governing ourselves.

When something is not working people will look at the separate parts and replace what's broken. In science we dissect everything down to its smallest components to understand how it works and then (like in pharmaceutical medicine for example) apply solutions that affect only that component, which usually results in unforeseen side effects.

The failure of reductionist thinking is in the tendency to lose track of what is happening in the system as a whole. Systems thinking in engineering for example (and in some circles known as holistic thinking) must be part of the approach.

I see ample evidence on ATS of the reductionist approach.

Threads and posts present and discuss data points and delve into every minutiae possible. Arguments for and against are presented from every angle and the thread peters out from exhaustion, most of the time to be completely forgotten.

Then the same happens to the next data point, and the next, and the next, etc.

What never seems to emerge or never seems to occur to some people is the "big picture". What does the forest look like? Is there a trend? If my spark plugs need replacing again how are they being affected by the fuel, the air filter, the frequency of maintenance, by where, how and by who the car is driven?

It's easy for both champions and debunkers of a fact, an event, or a theory to support of refute it in isolation. But it's not the end of it. Short attention spans and lack of both analytical and systems thinking often means it is the end for far too many people.

In my biochemistry days I learned all of the minute details known at the time about how life operates. About how atoms formed molecules, which formed proteins, which formed tissues, which formed organs, which formed systems, which formed organisms, which formed colonies, which formed an environment etc.

Nevertheless, I found that most people who end up making a career in science are caught up in such a rarefied speciality that they cannot see the big picture. Political people have the same problem. They are so focussed on an issue or a point of view that they cannot see society beyond their own self-interests. Sometimes they even loose sight of what is actually in their own self-interest.

The reason I concentrate on things like geopolitics, economics, peak oil etc. in my free time is because I'm a big picture kind of person. I like studying systems and not get too bogged down in the minute detail unless it is critical to understanding the whole.

People who like to concentrate on refuting every data point and argue every minutiae in some personal gladiator type of contest with words and assume that it refutes the entire whole, usually miss the gist of the message. They also sap the fun out of learning and actively prevent people from grasping the big picture.

Just know that if you are the type of person who does that or who is constantly bickering about politics that people will just tune you out, and rightly so IMO. Waste of time and energy.

The Symphony of Conspiracies is playing in the background, can you hear it?
.



posted on Jun, 13 2006 @ 09:00 PM
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I think the current rash of conspiracy theories is in a big part due to the Internet in general, an overabundance of 24 hour news sources sensationalizing the rift between political parties to draw a larger market share and the sites like this one. Another factor is the jealousy generated by America’s success in the world marketplace causing an unreasonable hatred of Americans. Add to that a generation that has never had to suffer and die for the liberties they take for granted and you have a clear picture of what is going on. I would also add fantasy from the current movies to the mixture and pure conjecture and outright distortions of facts contained in them. It’s painfully apparent on this site that if someone makes a cool looking website and claims credibility that what they say is accepted as fact by many even if it is idiotic to do so. Also factor in those who are profiteering by selling bogus books and tapes. When people accept theory as fact it does more harm than good sometimes.

If you can come up with a way to research these theories without the interference of confidence men (persons [pardon me for the error ladies]) selling books and tapes, children pretending to be adults and those suffering from paranoia or other mental illness these inquiries may do some good. In this current climate any valid study gets lost in the fray. Watching the news these days requires advanced skills just to separate the facts from the political rubbish. All sides are lying most of the time it seems.



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