The Dark Side of "Conspiracy Theory"

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posted on Jul, 25 2009 @ 12:10 PM
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Some unpopular claims I am making:

* 70% of all "information" in the conspiracy-theory, paranormal, UFO and political circus is false.

* False information is the original seed of war, strife, decay of society and mental illness

* 50% of the internet-reading-population does not care whether information is true or false. They care more for a) entertainment and b) self-importance/ego-gratification.

* Many naively think that this amount of false information is somehow "OK" and poses no serious threat to humanity.

In terms of motivation, intention, journalistic integrity and result there are many different types of quality-levels within the "alternative press" and "conspiracy-theory" community. While there are many researchers and writings whos work is based on honesty and goodwill we will be focusing on the less known dark sides here.


Fear, Hate and Tabloid-ism

Many alternative-news and anti-establishment pieces do not intend to inform but to indoctrinate, not to expose but to pontificate, not to learn but to sow fear, hatred and the feeling of being a victim in a chaotic and hopeless world. Reading too many such pieces tends to weaken the readers spirits.

The quality-level then is not much different from that of Tabloid Journalism that seeks to cause divides, emotional shock and upheaval, unfounded paranoia, worry and suspicion towards ones fellow humans. After the damage is done to the unsuspecting reader, the story still does not prove true, still lacks facts, still lacks verifiability. Oftentimes this type of story is nothing more than hate-speech masking as "conspiracy theory".

Other info-streams peddle messages of impending doom, death, downfall, totalitarian tyranny. These have been turning out to be boys-who-cried-wolf since a long time. A close examination of "prophecies" for example reveals less than 1% having come true (while disasters that were not predicted by doomsayers such as 9/11 did come true).

While the "conspiracy theorist" often purports to be anti-mass-media, he will often filter out the most negative news spoon-fed by just that mass-media and overblow it tenfold. One (of hundreds) of examples is the Swine Flu. Mass-Media prescribes that it is a problem. The CT will make an even bigger problem out of it, claiming with absolute certainty that civilization is doomed and will be eradicated by Swine Flu within weeks. (Of course no mention is made that more people die of normal flu on a yearly basis). In a type of self-fulfilling-prophecy the hype will cause more instances of illness to happen.

Racial and Partisan Propaganda masked as "Conspiracy Theory" is another symptom of this quality-level. In this mindset, some group is singled out as evil and then proof is collected to confirm that. Journalism would mean to first look at a situation unbiased and then collect proof from all sides, not to collect proof based on pre-conditioned beliefs.

This whole mindset looks at the world from the belief that evil is the norm, not the exception. What is overlooked is that by preaching fear and hatred, one is feeding that evil. This supposed establishment or government they rant about all the time would have a difficult time staying in power if nobody feared them anymore. Inducing fear of the awesome powers "they" supposedly have, this attitude is actually helping those in power to maintain power. In this sense, conspiracy-theory is often in itself a conspiracy.

The deeper seated psychological issues from which these types of writing arise:

Narcissism (They are out to get me!)

Broken Trust in Childhood (Authorities cant be trusted!)

Megalomania (I have found the truth nobody else can see! I will awaken the world!)

Lack of Personal Responsibility (Its their fault that my life sucks!)


The inadequate antithesis: "Skepticism"

After learning that I view 70% of "conspiracy-theory" as trash, some will conclude that I am a "disinfo agent" or "a skeptic". "Skepticism" arose out of the protest of the aforementioned circus. Unfortuantely it is just as small-minded and fallacious as conspiracy-tabloidism itself. It uses mechanistic reductionism masking as "science", antagonism masking as "rationality". There is nothing at all intelligent about making claims as to what-is and what-is-not, considering the fact that the human only perceives 0,000000000000000000000001% of reality.

Those who conclude that I am a "disinfo agent" (Ive been called this many times on this site and sites like it) have bought into the conspiracy-theory-cult to an extent that they are no longer able to discern reality from irreality. While most think that this is "OK", its actually not OK. Approving of a culture that thinks mental illness is "OK" is an even more serious problem than the mental illness itself.


When entertainment and ego are more important than truth

Propelled by Blog-and-Website culture, entertainment, shock-value and narcissism have become more important than journalistic truth. Attracting readers and sparking controversy is valued more than presenting reliable information.

Abusing Relativism

All this in part comes from the proponents of relativistic worldviews in which it does not really matter what is true or not as "truth is in the eye of the beholder" and "one mans terrorist is another mans freedom fighter" and "everything is a matter of perception". While this is correct and true to some extent, it is abused by those who seek to bend reality according to their own agenda rather than what is actually going on. In a world based on distorted relativism, even murder is then "OK" and its "a matter of opinion" whether its good or not.
_______________________________________________________________

The only solution to the virus of irreality sweeping over the world via the Internet is humility- Humility puts experience before opinion. Humility puts facts before opinion. Humility values friendship more than being-right and making-others-wrong.

[edit on 25-7-2009 by Skyfloating]




posted on Jul, 25 2009 @ 12:33 PM
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Sky I'd agree with all your points, and would like to add that many of the discussions or statements are a result of a majority of readers/posters need to be infallible or justified in their opinion, or to find co-dependency in their paranoia, distress mis/understandings. In otherwords they post and argue (include me at times) to find community.

Your last paragraph about humility is simply breathtaking.
Humilty is the result of understanding yourself and others, and more of it is needed when discussing or reporting the content we discuss.

I'm not sure of your motive however for this thread?

The figures on these kind of postings you give...should they stop? Is that what you are asking? surely would severly deplete revenue from traffic on this site, that can't be a goal?

Is it a result of general frustration of what you have to read daily?

Is it to steer to more quality content? Is it to try ammend quality not numbers of posts due to more informed reader and poster understandings? If so...good luck




edit:spelling




[edit on 25-7-2009 by zazzafrazz]



posted on Jul, 25 2009 @ 12:47 PM
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Originally posted by zazzafrazz
Sky I'd agree with all your points, and would like to add that many of the discussions or statements are a result of a majority of readers/posters need to be infallible or justified in their opinion, or to find co-dependency in their paranoia, distress mis/understandings. In otherwords they post and argue (include me at times) to find community.


Yes indeed. The point I was making is that other factors are valued higher than truth/reliability.



I'm not sure of your motive however for this thread?


To deny ignorance...even if it means not being befriended.



The figures on these kind of postings you give...should they stop? Is that what you are asking? surely would severly deplete revenue from traffic on this site, that can't be a goal?


The entire point being that both "alternative media" and "mass-media" value site traffic over truth. I think this is detrimental to society.



posted on Jul, 25 2009 @ 12:52 PM
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reply to post by Skyfloating
 





The entire point being that both "alternative media" and "mass-media" value site traffic over truth. I think this is detrimental to society.


Thanks for your reply


A very true statement.....hope the bosses still give you a christmas bonus!



posted on Jul, 25 2009 @ 12:56 PM
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Sky,

I agree with most of the points you made.

However I will say the 9/11 was predicted by both conspiracy theorists and intelligence agencies before the event. Perhaps this is .00001 % you were referring to.



posted on Jul, 25 2009 @ 12:58 PM
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I agree almost entirely with your posting.


I have personally stressed many of the same opinions as you express on this and other sites.
Simplified, the content of the internet is virtually worthless unless filtered with more traditional information gathering, critical thinking and common sense.

I am also firmly of the belief that a disclaimer similar to those required by phone psychics be posted before 'net access is granted: "For entertainment purposes only". I think that alone would help.

I could add more, and you expressed it better than I, but it is worth repeating:

The MSM/and the Alternate Media are the same animal. Be wary of both.


Excellent post.



posted on Jul, 25 2009 @ 01:05 PM
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reply to post by Skyfloating
 


Great post Skyfloating. I totally agree with what you say. I have tried to point all the dangers of this kind of thinking to people, and the fact that some of them may be suffering from mental illness. I dont mean harm, but I am constantly called a troll, disinfo agent, etc... Hopefully you will not be attacked for your opinion on the matter.



posted on Jul, 25 2009 @ 01:08 PM
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Originally posted by Leo Strauss
However I will say the 9/11 was predicted by both conspiracy theorists and intelligence agencies before the event. Perhaps this is .00001 % you were referring to.


Fair enough.

And when a conspiracy-theorist uses the word "perhaps" I trust his information more than if he presents something as irrefutable although it isnt. So thanks for inserting the word "perhaps".



posted on Jul, 25 2009 @ 01:13 PM
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Originally posted by grapesofraft
Hopefully you will not be attacked for your opinion on the matter.


I originally wanted to make a blacklist of dishonest "conspiracy-theories", but changed my mind.


Maybe another time...

[edit on 25-7-2009 by Skyfloating]



posted on Jul, 25 2009 @ 01:20 PM
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reply to post by Skyfloating
 


I will be waiting with baited breath (whatever that means
) for that thread. You better be prepared for their devil horns to start showing when you make that thread.



posted on Jul, 25 2009 @ 01:26 PM
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Yes, this "dark side" is definitely there. Personally i think that it is up to individual to deal with what could be a real conspiracy,what could be a harmless theory and what is something driven by totally different interests. There are people who double check different sides and sources, there people who blindly believe and there are people who are blindly skeptical. Of course same people can apply different approaches depending on what theory is closer to and what is farther from them disregarding real objectivity (if it exists at all). I am prone to this too ,naturally. Maybe it all gets easier with life experience?


[edit on 25-7-2009 by ZeroKnowledge]



posted on Jul, 25 2009 @ 01:54 PM
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Originally posted by ZeroKnowledge
I am prone to this too ,naturally. Maybe it all gets easier with life experience?



Once you acknowledge that you are prone to it you are no longer much prone to it, imo. It certainly gets easier with life experience.

I feel for the innocent, young and naive. I used to be wide-eyed and gullible and Im dismayed at all the BS I used to buy into.


The dreamy, visionary, trusting nature of the human is being exploited by cynical propaganda-artists.



posted on Jul, 25 2009 @ 02:43 PM
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You know, after reading your post stating that it doesn't matter if it is MSM or a site like this, it got me thinking on another topic.

Power doesn't corrupt.

The whole "corrupt" aspect is already there in many people...it is just when given power, they can fully express such corruptness.

My point?

It doesn't matter if you are at the bottom of the chain or at the top, people are always looking for views and ideas that entertain or make them feel "better".



posted on Jul, 25 2009 @ 03:10 PM
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Some examples of all the stuff that is supposedly evil...

"Science is evil"

(but without it that internet-poster would probably already be dead as life expectancy was not too high before we had scientific breakthroughs in medicine)

"Religion is evil"

(but without it that internet-poster would probably already be dead as religious institutions have uplifted society from barbaric primitivism to a set of ethics)

"Capitalism is evil"

(said the Internet-poster who is using the internet while sipping on a soft-drink)

"Freemasons are evil"

(said the conspiracy-theorist who is still alive because he lives under a Constitution which was crafted by Freemasons)

"Jews are evil"

(said the nazi who's fruits are truly evil)

"the NWO is evil"

(said the conspiracy-theorist who applauds North Korea as "heroes against the NWO" without noticing that their regime represents the totalitarianism he is so afraid of)

____________ (fill in the blank) is evil

(said the internet poster who is looking for someone to blame)

one could go on and on...



posted on Jul, 25 2009 @ 03:12 PM
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You are right in almost everything, but there is always that "but" : if there are disinfo agents they would do their job in that moody waters of conspiracies sities, because its the best place to do it.
And the second: how much obiective, quality journalism have you seen recently(%)??
As with most of human activities we need ourselfes separate what can be true from the urban mitology etc. We need to use our brains ...

[edit on 25-7-2009 by ZenOnKwalsky]



posted on Jul, 25 2009 @ 03:17 PM
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reply to post by ZenOnKwalsky
 


Reality is already distorted to an extent that you dont need anymore disinfo-agents except for the ocassional spin-doctor in politics.

Quality Journalism? Not too much on the Internet. More in books. Its difficult to get quality journalism from someone who wants to sell you something or wants to make friends.

Someone who has nothing to gain or loose is more likely to report reliable information.



posted on Jul, 25 2009 @ 03:35 PM
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One thing that really bugs me is when people flame others for not agreeing with them on 9/11. Just because someone doesn't believe that the government Planned the attacks, doesn't mean they're ignorant. Don't forget: it's called CONSPIRACY THEORY. But whenever someone makes their "anti 9/11 truth" statement, there is always someone coming out of the dark with rude comments such as "You live in a world of ignorance" or "Why can't you see the truth?!"

We're all on a conspiracy theory website. This site lacks common sense and logic...and at times, reality.

We rather overreact to things that may be in fact really just plain simple. Not everything has to be a conspiracy.

But we love fear and paranoia, don't we?



posted on Jul, 25 2009 @ 03:47 PM
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reply to post by GorehoundLarry
 


You disagree with a conspiracy-theorist and he often assumes you are disagreeing because you havent read some book or website or are ignorant of some info. He imagines that you only watch CNN and believe everything the government says.

The "I have info and insights that the rest of the world does not have" or "I am one of the select people in the know about the secret machinations of the world" is like a mind-trap that makes it look like everyone except oneself is completely ignorant.

The psychology involved is pretty amazing to watch...



posted on Jul, 25 2009 @ 03:55 PM
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This is why we must educate people and people must educate themselves.

It's pretty much all about the question: "what's the reality of this situation?"

But is there a reality? Or is it simply the common experience?



posted on Jul, 25 2009 @ 03:57 PM
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I agree with what your saying, but where are you getting your statistics from? Has a survey been carried out or is it more of generalisation of your own experiences?
With regards to swine flu as an example of things being overblown apart from the overwhelming amount of posts on the subject, as far as I can make out it seems to me the majority feel, it is the regular media who are making a 'mountain out of a mole hill' as the saying goes, its not the swine flu most people are worried about but the vaccine, and maybe rightly so.
I think with a site this big your bound to get lots of 'out there' theorys and non factual info, and even biased opinions on things that are just pure nonsense! Whats really annoying for me is the amount of replies to posts I find myself sifting through that are just plain ignorant in some form or other, Im really glad Im not a mod!
The thing is, everyone should have there own personal filter, and ego blocker, and should expect the inevitable outlandish theorys, stupid comments, and wade through it all to find the true gems hidden amongst the trash! Thats the bueaty of ats, if nothing ellse it serves as great tool for people to find what they woundn't have otherwise known about, and form there own opinions. Its just a shame as you rightly point out that many try to to impose there opinions on others.





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