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Inside the Minds of Conspiracy Theorists

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posted on Nov, 12 2013 @ 10:04 AM

The challenge is to differentiate such warranted doubt from the style of reflexive skepticism that leads to the belief that yetis trained by Mossad killed Elvis because he could prove that the moon landing was faked.

, That is one of the many defamatory statements in a recent Wall Street Journal. The article goes into detail about studies etc...etc.... But its still basically just the "You can't argue with a conspiracy theorist" arguement.

This may provide us with a quick rule of thumb for judging the rationality of someone's skepticism. Suppose the powers that be announce that X is the case. If someone says, "I'm skeptical. It could be X+1, or it could be X–1 instead," they may be on to something. But if someone says, in effect, "I'm skeptical. It's both X+1 and X–1," you are probably dealing with a person who believes that Jimmy Hoffa is working under an assumed name as a backup singer for Lady Gaga.

So what this article saying is that science tells us conspiracy theorist will believe anything but the truth, to be honest I have meet a few of those at my years on ATS.

The Wall Street Journal


posted on Nov, 12 2013 @ 10:15 AM
I am as skeptical as I can be open minded. The one thing that sticks out is CT will believe anything but the truth. Here on ATS we know that sometimes the truth is a convenient lie.


Trained Yetis did not kill Elvis. They killed Marilyn Monroe. The Yeti hates Tenn and the smell of peanut butter and Marilyn lived in the Hollywood hills. You draw your own conclusion.

posted on Nov, 12 2013 @ 10:37 AM

Here on ATS we know that sometimes the truth is a convenient lie.

Signs seem to indicate that it is swiftly progressing from "sometimes" to "every possible opportunity". The problem is no more or less than people realizing how easy it is to get the truth confused with lies and deciding to switch it up for their own benefit.

In other words, people want to be lied to. Their only objection is a low quality deception when they could have bought one that would have made them much happier with their lives. For instance, ask yourselves how many people would choose to take the red pill if given the same chance Neo had. Would you trade a normal illusion for a hellish reality? Would you give up everything you thought you knew for something that would make you question everything you are? Would you give up the chance to die happy for the possibility that you might die not knowing anything?

At the very core of this world, it is human nature that is in question. And quite frankly, human nature is the crux of more than a few popular conspiracies. The fact is, we are just too familiar with ourselves and those around us to take for granted what those in more favorable positions are willing to do for their own benefit.

But that's from the perspective of a casual conspiracy theorist/philosopher. So what the hell do I know?

edit on 12-11-2013 by AfterInfinity because: (no reason given)

posted on Nov, 12 2013 @ 10:40 AM
reply to post by ALOSTSOUL

Yes, all conspiracies are just "theories". That Mainstream Media generated term reminds us of how to cage it in our minds.

Just like all rifles can only be used for "assault".

And all "Regimes" Have to go.

posted on Nov, 12 2013 @ 10:41 AM
reply to post by ALOSTSOUL

I could be thinking like a conspiracy theorist here, but I think this article was written by someone with more than a little bit of a bias against conspiracy theory in general.

Let me tell you why I believe that.

In my time here, I have been party to several threads on 9/11, all manner of threads about chemtrails, and all manner of other controversial topics as well. Although it is true that these threads, are full of the sort of mutual contradiction that the article in the OP refers to, that does not apply to all persons posting on the topic.

Specifically in relation to the 9/11 topic, there are several angles from which the subject has been approached by conspiracy theorists, which have never been adequately addressed by those who would seek to quiet all question on the topic. With focus toward the statement that conspiracy theorists do not point toward evidence to back up their claims, I would direct the writer of that statement to this site, and some posters in particular, who do indeed point to evidence, use scientific understanding to cut through the BS in the world.

The article simply fails to take this into account. Now, some may say that conspiracy theorists who back their claims up with evidence or at least some valid science which might support the general principle behind their theory, are rare. I would say that may be a fair cop, but I would say that the number of conspiracy theorists who back their claims up with evidence is only proportionate to the number of anti-conspiracy theorists who would do so.

I suppose that what I am saying is, if ATS hand picked the very best of its conspiracy theorists, and sent them to the WSJ to discuss this piece in some detail with the author, that author would have to either print a revised version of their piece, or retract it completely. What people who do not share the taste for such thinking must accept, is that just as there are brilliant researchers and authors who have nothing to do with conspiracy theory, there are also some fantastic researchers, authors and investigators who have slightly more open minds.
edit on 12-11-2013 by TrueBrit because: REASONS!!!!

posted on Nov, 12 2013 @ 11:31 AM
reply to post by TrueBrit

Keeping your mind "open" or neutral during long periods of data acquisition is the sign of self actualized critical thinking. Angrily defending belief is not critical thinking --you've locked your mind into binary mode.

If someone asks you if you believe in ghosts, angels, aliens, time travelers etc. Try this... say, "I haven't formed a strong opinion yet" then stand back and watch the fireworks.

Human intuition is very powerful at pattern recognition. So powerful, there are frequently false positives.

Believing something because you read it on the internet and it can be "tooled" to fit some large, complicated, "master framework" is a fallacy. Serial fallacy is delusion/psychosis.

posted on Nov, 12 2013 @ 11:33 AM

How do we distinguish between critical thinking and nutty conspiracism? Psychologists have repeatedly demonstrated a key feature of conspiracism, namely that people who believe in one type of conspiracy theory are more likely than chance to believe in other unrelated ones. In other words, it's a deep psychological trait, a world view that transcends any given case.
- Op Source
Wait, lemme guess, psychological traits expressed by low IQ Conservatives who use more of the "fear part" of their brain as it is larger.

Not only is it biased and contrived but didn't expect better coming from a WSJ opinion piece, it's naive and stereotypical. That is as intended. Not every CT or persons taking interesting conspiracies follow the same pattern of thought or rules to assessing their take on it. Take that faux psych evaluation of CTs.

edit on 12-11-2013 by dreamingawake because: (no reason given)

posted on Nov, 12 2013 @ 12:21 PM
reply to post by ALOSTSOUL

Conspiracism is an extreme expression of this need. It predisposes someone who intensely believes in one conspiracy theory to accept a similar theory about unrelated events: "There they go again, trying to pull off another fast one, so don't believe that official explanation either."

Considering the sheer volume of lies and denials coming from the governments this seems like a red herring to me. Simple facts are that you can't believe proven liars which lead people to question so many things they are told.

Obviously this WSJ article is a psyop by the NSA / CIA / ETC.

posted on Nov, 12 2013 @ 12:25 PM
The article does sort of lump it all into one but it was actually focussing on those who are extreme - don't take anything as truth; oppose all explanations with everything being a lie, and all events are explained by out of the norm possibilities rather than taking the most likely scenario. It certainly paints people who think critically and question the status quo into a category analogous to oppositional defiance disorder.

People generally feel more empowered, and less gullible/vulnerable with more information. So if something does not sit right with someone they may want to look at the process of elimination - how did these people come to their conclusions. An investigative and skeptical mind does not have to equate to a paranoid and untrusting one. It depends on how far people take it and there are always those who go to the extreme.

For example - Marilyn Monroe is dead. Nothing has convinced most that she is alive and in hiding. Rather, exploring the cause of death may become more intriguing; revisiting what seemed like an unfinished investigation. Just because a part of the story "might" be covered up does not mean every story is covered up or that all of the story is false.

There's a balance. If we didn't question what may be hidden from us we would truly be like children guided by a well meaning parent (or not). These people might even be happier - able to go about their business believing there is nothing amiss in the world and if there is - mom/dad have it under control; the children don't need all the gory details. We wouldn't have the information we do on Fukushima if we took all fed to us so even reporters are conspirators (hunch there is more so investigate). It's on a continuum...from those who question nothing to those who question everything and then take the opposing view even if that means lack of anything to support it.

posted on Nov, 12 2013 @ 12:47 PM
The biggest, most long-lasting 'conspiracy theory' of all time is 'Jesus died for your sins', a fully ridiculous convoluted fantasy. And yeah, about 1/3 of the world's population vehemently supports that idea, and wants everyone else to believe it also, if only to increase the population of one imaginary place (heaven) and decrease the population in another imaginary place (hell). I've always found it strange that they're more worried about what happens to people after they die, than while they're living, and meanwhile wave their flags and support wars so gladly.

The words 'conspiracy theorist' are thrown around like monkeys slinging poo, and by about the same level of thoughtful minds. If ridicule against someone for merely trying to understand the world is all you've got, you ain't got much.

I proudly consider myself a conspiracy theorist, or perhaps I'm more of a puzzle solver. I like to read voraciously from all sources and put the pieces together. A lot of times you end up going down a rabbit hole but it's fascinating what connections you can make once you're down there. While some theories don't pan out in time, you can never know where they're going to lead you unless you pursue it.

The debunking, ridiculing crowd has always seemed to me to be dimwitted and wholly lacking in curiosity. How many of them on any given site are paid trolls and shills, we have no way of knowing, but people are coming forward and testifying now that they had jobs such as this, and had dozens of fake identities they would post under. You can always tell them by the short, usually vile responses, totally lacking in true content.

It's time to stop worshiping money and consumption and start worshiping the truth, because if we don't know what's really going on, and what's being done in our name and with our money, we're complicit.

posted on Nov, 12 2013 @ 02:17 PM

Recent studies by psychologists and social scientists in the US and UK suggest that contrary to mainstream media stereotypes, those labeled “conspiracy theorists” appear to be saner than those who accept the official versions of contested events.

Someone posted this link in the comments section of George Monbiots article in the Guardian today: George Monbiot

I was hoping it was an ATS'er

posted on Nov, 12 2013 @ 04:24 PM
Five True Conspiracies. They have been proven true, but for quite some time they were just "theories" espoused by "nutjobs." A couple of them are still not believed by a majority of people. There are a lot more than five true ones, believe me. After all, at one time, a round Earth was a conspiracy theory believed only by a few open-minded thinkers (AKA "nutjobs").

posted on Nov, 12 2013 @ 04:29 PM
Wait a minute...

Jimmy Hoffa is working under an assumed name as a backup singer for Lady Gaga.

I never knew.... /endsarcasm

posted on Nov, 12 2013 @ 05:39 PM

There are always freaks that make up stories or believe everything. But it is no reason to discard the numerous others that back up their ideas with reasoning/logic and sometimes facts.

How many professionals renowned world-wide (very smart and talented people) have suddenly been laughed at and their reputation destroyed because of an idea??? Thousands (without counting those that simply disappear)!!! You really think it is a coincidence? That all just got mad/crazy/stupid suddenly? Well, then go watch TV, drink beer and stay quiet, cause you are the one stopping development and understanding. Or sit down, an try to go more deeply into the subject (going over the reasoning and the different points of view) and when you start feeling dumb for some of the critiques you said/thought, then you should be happy cause you understood and can go forward.

By the way, most people probably only did memorization in their history classes, cause history shows hundreds of examples of wild new ideas rejected by most and inevitably found to be true. Today is the same, so many reject ideas that aren't impossible at all. Where is the scientific curiosity???

posted on Nov, 12 2013 @ 06:10 PM
Well here is a other 33 more story LOL

posted on Nov, 12 2013 @ 06:39 PM
reply to post by TrueBrit

I suppose that what I am saying is, if ATS hand picked the very best of its conspiracy theorists, and sent them to the WSJ to discuss this piece in some detail with the author, that author would have to either print a revised version of their piece, or retract it completely

Wouldn't it be pretty to think so?

Unfortunately, methinks he would simply stick his head further up his own ass and then write an even more scathing article claiming that the loonies sent their emissaries to spew even more CT nonsense, etc. etc..

And to think I used to like the WSJ.


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