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0 characteristics of conspiracy theorists
A useful guide by Donna Ferentes
1. Arrogance. They are always fact-seekers, questioners, people who are trying to discover the truth: sceptics are always "sheep", patsies for Messrs Bush and Blair etc.
2. Relentlessness. They will always go on and on about a conspiracy no matter how little evidence they have to go on or how much of what they have is simply discredited. (Moreover, as per 1. above, even if you listen to them ninety-eight times, the ninety-ninth time, when you say "no thanks", you'll be called a "sheep" again.) Additionally, they have no capacity for precis whatsoever. They go on and on at enormous length.
3. Inability to answer questions. For people who loudly advertise their determination to the principle of questioning everything, they're pretty poor at answering direct questions from sceptics about the claims that they make.
4. Fondness for certain stock phrases. These include Cicero's "cui bono?" (of which it can be said that Cicero understood the importance of having evidence to back it up) and Conan Doyle's "once we have eliminated the impossible, whatever remains, however unlikely, must be the truth". What these phrases have in common is that they are attempts to absolve themselves from any responsibility to produce positive, hard evidence themselves: you simply "eliminate the impossible" (i.e. say the official account can't stand scrutiny) which means that the wild allegation of your choice, based on "cui bono?" (which is always the government) is therefore the truth.
Everyone has heard, and has probably used the term "conspiracy theorist," and the fact of the term being in common use, also indicates that we generally agree on what it means. I saw a movie by that name, and the title character was a raving lunatic who kept his food in thermoses with combination locks to reduce his chances of being poisoned by imaginary enemies.[
Regardless of how the stupid movie turned out, what's important here is the common perception people have of someone to whom that label is applied, and just as important, is who it is that applies the label. The common perception is that someone who is labeled a "conspiracy theorist" is suffering from some type of psychological disorder, and that label is usually applied to people by our government, and our news media. The next thing to consider, is that the label is applied to anyone who questions our government's version of events in any matter. Doesn't it logically follow that the media are teaching us to assume that anyone who questions the government is insane? When that label is applied to a person, doesn't it become easy to dismiss everything they say without even hearing it? How convenient for them.
Continued next post....
Mod Note: Trim Those Quotes - Please Review this link
[edit on 4-5-2008 by DontTreadOnMe]
I think the label first became widely used to slander people who questioned the details surrounding the JFK assassination, and forty years later, there aren't too many thinking people who still believe the Warren Commission's "lone gunman" explanation. That explanation is doubted by everyone who has taken the time to look into the details, and believed only by people who refuse to.
Which is "theory" and which is fact? In the absence of a full confession, this can only be decided by a preponderance of evidence, and it would be silly to come to a conclusion on any matter without looking at all the evidence available. This is only common sense, just as it is safe to assume some degree of guilt or complicity on the part of anyone who lies about an event, or tries to hide, plant, or destroy any type of evidence.
Conspiracy theories arise from evidence. After the government releases an explanation of a particular event, a conspiracy theory is only born because evidence exists to disprove their explanation, or at least call it into question. There's nothing insane about it, unless you define sanity as believing whatever the government tells you. In light of the fact that our government lies to us regularly, I would define believing everything they tell you as utter stupidity.
I think a lot of mainstream thinkers use the CT label to make people look dumb who do not follow mainstream ideals.
Originally posted by wisefoolishness
I really dont catch much crap, but that's because I don't talk about it. If those who do not seek to find truth want to make fun of those who do, let them. *adjusts tin hat* That's better...
Yes, the tin hats have many uses. Keep aliens, and the government out of your mind, increase the quality of your radio reception...
And believe it or not, but conspiracy theories have also made me more discerning and skeptical along the way.
Originally posted by wisefoolishness
reply to post by AccessDenied
I think I would stop wearing one if ATS mix started playing in my head all the time...
Just kidding..I love you Dave and Johnny..
Originally posted by antar
Excellent thread AD. An important question you raise.
I do not think it is inherent. However my parents may have had something to do with thinking for myself and seeing the world as it is rather than how many are blinded into percieving it.