Psychologists explain why some people support alternate conspiracy theories concerning 9/11

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posted on Sep, 22 2011 @ 10:49 AM
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In the medical journal Applied Cognitive Psychology, Volume 24, Issue 6, Psychologists Viren Swami, Tomas Chamorro-Premuzic, and Adrian Furnham published an article explaining the psychological anatomy of they types of person who would reject all empirical evidence and support alternative scenarios (specifically involving the 9/11 attack) regardless of the complete absence of evidence or logic. Their findings are...

a) One of the major predictors of conspiracy theorism is the belief in other conspiracies in addition to 9/1 conspiracies. To quote Swami and colleagues: "believing that John F. Kennedy was not killed by a lone gunman or that the Apollo moon landings were staged increases the chances that an individual will also believe 9-11 conspiracy theories." People build a consistent world view. For these conspiracy theorists, their consistent world view is that the truth is always being covered up. Although this may seem like an obvious finding in retrospect, this didn't have to be true. People could have picked their conspiracy theories based on their political views - then these notions would not have all hung together. But no, people who believe some conspiracy theories are more likely to accept additional conspiracy theories for the simple fact that it conforms with their view of the world.

b) The personalities of those who accept such conspiracy ideas regardless of the complete lack of any evidence whatsoever have common characteristics, defined according to Openness, Conscientiousness, Extraversion, Agreeableness, and Neuroticism. For example, openness, as defined by the authors, defines how a person accepts new experiences and information, and their findings show that conspiracy theorists have a higher degree of openness to new experiences and thought patterns than others. People who display Openness to Experience are considered intellectually curious, open-minded, and creative. But sometimes being open to creative, unusual ideas may introduce naive information processing mechanisms and lead people to accept unusual ideas in similarly unusual ways. For example, someone who believes the 9/11 attack was staged by a clandestine organization of Satan worshippers would be more likely to accept circular logic and interpret the lack of any evidence as being a coverup by these same Satan worshippers, despite the lack of any evidence for this, either.

c) Interesting enough, agreeableness was negatively related to belief in 9-11 conspiracy theories. People who are less agreeable were more accepting of 9-11 conspiracy theories, as people who score low on agreeableness are generally more likely to have higher skepticism and be more suspicious about other people's motives.

d) The general conspiracy theory belief scale was predicted by other factors - in particular, cynicism and a rejection of the political system. Those who hold political beliefs that involve extreme cynicism of the system would instinctively lead them to disbelieve any explanation that the system would provide.

The entire article, written by highly educated professionals in their fields, can be reviewed here: Applied Cognitive Psychology article

In short, this article supports everything I have been stating, namely...

First, people who subscribe to these conspiracy theories generally subscribe to one or more other conspiracies. Once someone has built for themselves a mechanism that allows them to accept alternative ideas that have no basis in critical analysis or emirical evidence, they can and will instinctively use the mechanism to interpret other events, and due to the sheer enormity of the emotional impact of the 9/11 attack, it naturally becomes a obvious target for conspiracy theorism.

Second, it is their natural skepticism and suspicion of other people's motives that leads the conspiracy theorists to go to these damned fool conspiracy web sites shovelling out these conspiracy claims to begin with, and it is their skepticism and suspicion of other people's motives along with their openness to accept unusual ideas that leads them to accept these conspiracy claims that have little basis in fact.

Third, which is the most important observation of all, the conspiracy theorists aren't subscribing to these conspiracy claims out of any real consideration of any evidence. They subscribe to these conspiracy claims simply because they want to believe they are true, as they serve as an emotional outlet for their own antiestablishment outlook on life.

I invite comments from both sides of the conspiracy aisle for their thoughts. After all, this is the work of published psychologists Viren Swami, Tomas Chamorro-Premuzic, and Adrian Furnham, not mine.




posted on Sep, 22 2011 @ 10:53 AM
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i'm going to say this once to the psychology crowd, nano, freaking, thermite.

need any more emperical evidence?

ed: probably so, how about all the scrap that disappeared before investigation.
edit on 22/9/2011 by whatsinaname because: (no reason given)


ed: normally I would not be as rude as to simply post something without my findings in clear detail, but considering its been ten years, and this has been pulled before, ie highly payed mind specialists telling people why they arn't thinking correctly, I just don't buy it anymore.
edit on 22/9/2011 by whatsinaname because: (no reason given)



posted on Sep, 22 2011 @ 11:10 AM
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reply to post by GoodOlDave
 


I don't know if reading and understanding, and largely seeing the value of, Machiavelli makes me cynical, but it certainly makes the notion that conspiracy theories can and do happen seem the realistic view.

I don't mind that conspiracies happen, heck if I get the chance I will happily profit from them. But I do mind if people don't even bother to take the effort to make the conspiracy artful and try to contort science to their ends. Politics is fair game, but not science.

My worldview is that there are regularities in nature which can be studied and assessed by observation and hypothesis building. If that comfy worldview is attacked you bet I will get my hackles up.
edit on 22-9-2011 by Darkwing01 because: (no reason given)



posted on Sep, 22 2011 @ 11:14 AM
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Your picture is very fitting, it is what I feel every time I read one of your posts.

People who believe 9/11 was a conspiracy believed that conspiracy first, and then moved onto other conspiracies like JFK, at least people who were too young to really understand the JFK issue. 9/11 was the breaking of the dam by which people started to investigate other conspiracy theories.


To quote Swami and colleagues: "believing that John F. Kennedy was not killed by a lone gunman or that the Apollo moon landings were staged increases the chances that an individual will also believe 9-11 conspiracy theories."


For me, it was the exact opposite. I never cared much for conspiracies until I realized 9/11 was one. And the reason 9/11 was the "king" of all conspiracies is because the government strayed from their lone gunmen trump card, and instead moved to a group of 19 CONSPIRATORS. So telling people not to believe in 9/11 conspiracy theories is telling them to also not believe in the OFFICIAL CONSPIRACY THEORY.

edit on 22-9-2011 by filosophia because: (no reason given)



posted on Sep, 22 2011 @ 11:22 AM
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reply to post by GoodOlDave
 


in regards to BOTH psychologists 9/11 threads. Being a psychologist, doesnt put you in a position to explain how or who did 9/11. They can only suggest why people would think, or react in response to such an event. So thaank you psychologists. You believe you know how peoples minds work.. But you can only base it on prior cases and examples. Doesnt mean they know more than you, or that they are smarter. Discover for yourself what you wish to believe, but remember, live on.



posted on Sep, 22 2011 @ 11:31 AM
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Originally posted by filosophia
For me, it was the exact opposite. I never cared much for conspiracies until I realized 9/11 was one. And the reason 9/11 was the "king" of all conspiracies is because the government strayed from their lone gunmen trump card, and instead moved to a group of 19 CONSPIRATORS. So telling people not to believe in 9/11 conspiracy theories is telling them to also not believe in the OFFICIAL CONSPIRACY THEORY.


In that case, perhaps you can explain something for me. You say you have doubts about the 9/11 Commission's report due to their straying from lone gunmen to 19 conspirators, but by the same token your conspiracies rely exclusively upon armies of secret technicians sneaking into the WTC and planting demolitions everywhere, which necessarily requires even more co-conspirators within the NYPA to allow it to happen unobstructed. Then, the conspiracy people are claiming that all the evidence is manufactured, all the eyewitnesses are disinformation agents, all the NIST, FEMA, MIT, etc engineers are willingly covering up the conspiracy, etc etc etc.

How do you justify your dismissal of the findings of the 9/11 Commission report based upon the unlikelihood that so many co-conspirators were involved and then turn around and use the exact same answer to justify your own conspiracy claims? The authors are essentially stating that conspiracy theorists are interpreting the 9/11 event according to their own personal view of the world and all you're doing is showing that their statements are correct.

How do you explain this contradiction?



posted on Sep, 22 2011 @ 11:36 AM
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Originally posted by filosophia
Your picture is very fitting, it is what I feel every time I read one of your posts.

People who believe 9/11 was a conspiracy believed that conspiracy first, and then moved onto other conspiracies like JFK, ...


Um... Not so. Most who seek the truth and accept the evidence started believing the OS, but had the personal strength to get past the cog. dis. to accept the evidence.

So where are You pulling this from?



posted on Sep, 22 2011 @ 11:37 AM
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reply to post by GoodOlDave
 


theres no proof you would need 'thousands' of secret workers planting explosives. None.. And I dont recall anyone stating, "there were thousands of workers planting explosives in weeks prior.". So stop using such a claim. That assumption is the official story believers conjuring. It could have been 1 for all anyone who doesnt know, knows.



posted on Sep, 22 2011 @ 11:37 AM
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reply to post by GoodOlDave
 


No, you misunderstand. For a long time, the government relied on the lone gunmen. John Wilkes Boothe with Abraham Lincoln, Lee Harvey Oswald with JFK, Ted Kaczinski, Sirhan Sirhan, Fort Hood shooter, Jared Lee Loughner, the list goes on, and on. All lone gunmen. But with 9/11, it's impossible for one person to do all that. They tried to create a lone gunmen out of Bin Laden, but obviously he needed his hijackers, CO-CONSPIRATORS, so the government was pushing a conspiracy theory.

Before, the government would have blamed things on the Communists, or the Nazis, but for some reason, instead of going with an enemy state, they went with a group of conspirators. I suppose they tried to rectify this by going after Iraq, but that was too little, too late, since most of the hijackers ended up being Saudi Arabian, so no matter how you look at it the government conspiracy theory falls apart, because it's just too complex. A lone gunmen is simple, you can bring all the lies and cover ups back to just one person, but with a huge event like 9/11, is it any wonder people will start to wonder?


How do you justify your dismissal of the findings of the 9/11 Commission report based upon the unlikelihood that so many co-conspirators were involved and then turn around and use the exact same answer to justify your own conspiracy claims? The authors are essentially stating that conspiracy theorists are interpreting the 9/11 event according to their own personal view of the world and all you're doing is showing that their statements are correct.

How do you explain this contradiction?


How would you explain 6 out of the 10 commissioners of the report doing the exact same thing?

By the way, I never made a theory as to who did 9/11, you are assuming that one.

"Based upon the unlikelihood that so many co-conspirators were involved..."

Wrong again, I never said this, I said the government made a fatal flaw by going with a fake conspiracy theory as opposed to a fake lone gunmen theory. Your comprehension skills continuously put words into other people's mouths, so much so that I find it hard to believe you are doing this unintentionally. I don't think I have ever given a number as to how many people I think were involved, and yet you assume I believe it is a certain number. Epic straw man argument. Refer to your picture.
edit on 22-9-2011 by filosophia because: (no reason given)



posted on Sep, 22 2011 @ 11:55 AM
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Originally posted by GoodOlDave
... but by the same token your conspiracies rely exclusively upon armies of secret technicians sneaking into the WTC and planting demolitions everywhere...


I bet five guys in delivery uniform bringing in boxes labeled "Dell" could move a mountain of explosives into a building - with, say, even two months' notice. People in workman uniforms (maybe They changed) could easily be missed as a threat as They set up the explosives. (*I* surely wouldn't know the difference between two Humans dressed as workmen, one fixing the universe and the other setting explosives.)

Armies? Heh. Only a small handful, actually.



posted on Sep, 22 2011 @ 11:55 AM
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Okay... Lets talk about phsycologists for a moment. People with a few extra years of college and their own suitcases of emotional baggage. My parents had neighbors living accross the street, and down one house, that were both psycologists. The man was Jewish and had been in a Natzi concentration camp, the wife was German and was a pepetual drunk. She would get drunk and call up my mother. They had a telescope in their living room that they had pointed at our house. WEIRD.

People seem to like to label others, it gives them stability and predictibility. Anyone else's opinion not welcome to their comfort zone or hidden adgenda. Certain people get off on telling others what to think. These are the manipulators of the truth. Liars are everywhere and they have their adgendas. Speculation to the truth is not conspiracy. It is an investigation. Nacisists are running around rampid in the News Media, the Governmnet, people in Religious positions. I had an awful renter who was a Priest. His four kids tore up the house, and he still owes me $600 USD I'll never see. If so many people didn't lie and take advantage of others, there would be less speculation... if the truth was self evident and available freeely for all.



posted on Sep, 22 2011 @ 11:55 AM
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Is this video of building 7 a FAKE... does look very real to me

www.youtube.com...

Those psychologists know very well that people's fears in the FEMA, NIST and every other agency keep them EASILY from trying to find the truth,

Really it is very amusing how hard they tried to justify any of that day ... I would be rolling on the ground in laughter watching the amazing effort into proving something that is impossible to be the answer.



posted on Sep, 22 2011 @ 11:57 AM
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Originally posted by Myendica
reply to post by GoodOlDave
 


theres no proof you would need 'thousands' of secret workers planting explosives. None.. And I dont recall anyone stating, "there were thousands of workers planting explosives in weeks prior.". So stop using such a claim. That assumption is the official story believers conjuring. It could have been 1 for all anyone who doesnt know, knows.


Um. Thousands? I doubt it. Especially if They were working it over months (or years). Maybe max... 15.



posted on Sep, 22 2011 @ 12:03 PM
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I'd love to see a psychological profile of the exact opposite - someone who believes everything the media tell them, without question.

That would be even more interesting, IMO.



posted on Sep, 22 2011 @ 12:04 PM
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Originally posted by frugal
Okay... Lets talk about phsycologists for a moment. People with a few extra years of college and their own suitcases of emotional baggage. My parents had neighbors living accross the street, and down one house, that were both psycologists. The man was Jewish and had been in a Natzi concentration camp, the wife was German and was a pepetual drunk. She would get drunk and call up my mother. They had a telescope in their living room that they had pointed at our house. WEIRD.


Ah. So all of Them must be. Not. What is the point of dragging in one example of a "WEIRD" psychologist?



People seem to like to label others, it gives them stability and predictibility. Anyone else's opinion not welcome to their comfort zone or hidden adgenda. Certain people get off on telling others what to think. These are the manipulators of the truth. Liars are everywhere and they have their adgendas. Speculation to the truth is not conspiracy. It is an investigation. Nacisists are running around rampid in the News Media, the Governmnet, people in Religious positions. I had an awful renter who was a Priest. His four kids tore up the house, and he still owes me $600 USD I'll never see. If so many people didn't lie and take advantage of others, there would be less speculation... if the truth was self evident and available freeely for all.


Well this I agree with. But I also contend that if We got rid of the need for money (by adding what it represents: energy), Humans would no longer be twisted and tempted by the root of evil which grows in money's soil (the LOVE of money).

If We could do that, Humans would behave quite a bit better towards One anOther, having lost all but interpersonal motives to behave poorly. Instill a Betterment Ethic in place of the slaves' ethic (work ethic), and Humanity will shine.



posted on Sep, 22 2011 @ 12:07 PM
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The art of a good conspiracy truther is one that can use Youtube to scrounge up any vid that remotely backs some or a little of their wild theories.

NANO THERMITE as someone said....well now I have stopped laughing, have you noticed how all truthers used everything from aliens, jews, secret governments, CIA spies all the way upto and including nano thermite and EMP weapons. Grasping as anything they may be able to hold on to.

Easily swayed but lavish Star Trek concepts and yet they can not explain why the Government after killing 3000 people have not Killed Avery or Jones and why is it that every Western Government also backs the OS. Are you saying they are ALL in on it? At every level? From Blair to Cameron to Brown and from Clinton to Bush to Obama, adding to that the French leaders, German Leaders, Australian Leaders, Canadian Leaders, Spanish Leader - you see where I am going.

Not one of these Governments has stood up and said "WE think the US government was complicit in the 9/11 Attacks"

Only Iran and a few e countries from the middle east have reared their ugly heads opposing this.



posted on Sep, 22 2011 @ 12:11 PM
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Originally posted by FOXMULDER147
I'd love to see a psychological profile of the exact opposite - someone who believes everything the media tell them, without question.

That would be even more interesting, IMO.


I myself would actually like to find someone who really does "believe everything the government tells them". That's the excuse the conspiracy theorists always cling to in order to sooth their bruised egos from not getting anywhere with their conspiracy evangelism, but I haven't met even one person who does "believe everything the government tells them".

My mother is in her 80's and she's more cynical about the gov't than anyone here.



posted on Sep, 22 2011 @ 12:16 PM
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Doesn't COGNITIVE have to do with KNOWING.

What is PHYSICS about? Do we KNOW if skyscrapers have to hold themselves up? Do we KNOW if the distribution of steel has to be gotten correct for that to happen?

So physics trumps psychology. Any psychologists that don't understand the grade school physics are just DUMB.

Can psychologists do an experiment where the top 15% of a self supporting structure can crush the rest?

If the physicists can't do it....

The real psychology question is: "Why didn't the physics profession shoot this crap down in 2002?"

psik



posted on Sep, 22 2011 @ 12:19 PM
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Originally posted by GoodOlDave
For example, someone who believes the 9/11 attack was staged by a clandestine organization of Satan worshippers would be more likely to accept circular logic and interpret the lack of any evidence as being a coverup by these same Satan worshippers, despite the lack of any evidence for this, either.


This kind of strikes at the heart of the issue for me. The 9/11 conspiracy theorists do not employ or in some cases possess any critical thinking skills. I agree that many psychological factors go into the CTists but I think the core is always the same: they have no mental abilities to recognize B.S. when they hear it, nor how to recognize when they're being sold a bill of goods, nor have incentive or interest in investigating the truth or falsehood of a claim.



posted on Sep, 22 2011 @ 12:21 PM
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Originally posted by psikeyhackr
The real psychology question is: "Why didn't the physics profession shoot this crap down in 2002?"


That is a great question.
And the answer is because there's nothing suspicious about the physics of 9/11.





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