Because I need something to do with my spare time.
Anyway, once a week, I'll try and give my take on a well known (or not so well known) conspiracy theory that is doing the rounds on the web (or not). They can be historical or current, topical or picked totally at random and I'll give a quick overview of the theories, what I think about them and some helpful links for those interested to follow up on.
Today, however, I'll just talk about Conspiracy Theorism in general, as quite a few people seem to not understand my take on this.
Alot of people interested in the counter-culture in general and particularly the three ring circus of Discordianism, the CotSG and affiliated Subcordian asshats, take a deep interest in conspiracy theories and the workings of secret cabals which are hostile to our very existence. I don't necessarily need to describe such groups as I'm sure you know what I mean. The Illuminati, various arms of The Conspiracy....Them, in short.
Obviously, many ordinary people do not believe in any sort of Them at all and so these groups have perhaps jeopardized their "credibility" (as if what Pinks and Greys think actually matters) in certain circles. However, a lot of people are wasting their time in this general area of inquiry. Thats not to say there are not conspiracies, because there are and they are very real, but most people have been hoodwinked into looking in totally the wrong direction for them. I certainly don't have all the answers, but I am in a position where I can quite legitimately research the linkage in the corridors of power and am able to tell you what I know.
I wont name names however....not real names. Rule 1: everyone is a disinformation agent. Its all too easy for false information to be fed to you or me, so I'll just sketch out the general 'shape' of whats going on, letting you fill in the blanks yourself. I'll also tell you what is likely not true and why I think thats the case. Firstly, the liars.
Many Conspiracy Theorists come from the Christian Patriot Movement, a collection of pig-ignorant degenerates and criminals who couldn't find their backsides with both hands, let alone highly intelligent conspirators working in the shadows. Invariably these idiots will make racist claims of "International Jewish Bankers" and...well, I barely need to go on. The sort of shit you can read in The Turner Diaries and other pieces of infantile fantasizing interspersed with horrific racist violence and disgusting characterization. If you believe anything that comes from these circles, chances are you're a brainwashed idiot duped by some charismatic leader with a Messianic complex.
Building on from example one, there is the general "Jewish Conspiracy" which is popular among the far-right (just ask Nick Griffin), the far left and various religious groups. This is quite frankly utter horsecrap....going by history, we should probably have a White Christian Male conspiracy, as these are usually the people involved in such things. Its basically scapegoating and stems from a religious need to place the blame for the death of Jesus on anyone but the Romans, who actually did him in. Anyone with any real knowledge of history would dismiss the idea of any single ethno-religious group being behind all conspiracies, or even just a large one as utter crap.
The UN is another one also taken from the far-right. Apparently they are a godless and evil organization preparing to take over the USA and occupy it with foreign troops....whereas the depressing truth is in fact the UN is nothing more than a device for the USA to legitimize its actions abroad. It doesn't always work of course, but given the powers the US gave to itself as a charter member....well, its a testament to the power of propaganda that people can think its anything but a slightly unruly tool of the USA.
Intelligence services are often a favourite one, for obvious reasons. Cloaked in secrecy, given wide powers to act pretty much outside the law, the similarities with secret police of bygone times, yeah here we are onto something more plausible. However, it should be remembered that almost always these are merely foot soldiers for higher powers and if they are doing something, its because they have been directed to do so. Running drugs, assassinations and so on, while invariably blamed on a rogue faction, do serve a greater political or security purpose.
The Satanic cult is another favourite, particularly among David Icke sorts, who can combine it with the relatively more interesting alien abduction theories. Satanic Ritual Abuse is probably one of the greatest scare stories of the 80s, one for which there is very little to no real evidence. Most Satanists are....well, jerks basically. Smart people, very quick mentally, but real assholes. The CoS is basically a money making device and the Temple of Set...well, its occult so its not my cup of tea, but its no worse than what Wiccans get up to. What is often referred to as organized Satanic abuse in fact is usually widely disorganized and carried out by...mentally ill Christians. Who, coincidentally, are the sort of people most likely to promote this theory.
Alien abduction is interesting....in the few cases where there is genuine reason to believe that is in fact what happened. However, in most cases they are part of a carefully crafted government disinformation project. Not only does it explain experimental aircraft tests quite nicely, it also keeps a whole bunch of people on a wild goose chase, either keeping them distracted and ruining their credibility, or causing the believers to fall under the sway of irrational terror and hopelessness. I'll explain more on this another time, but there is evidence to suggest that intelligence agencies have in fact staged many of these events, either as part of a general disinfo project or as covers for other activities.
International Banking is actually one of the few areas where the theorists may have a point. If you throw in the various multinational companies involved with them, as well as a few NGOs. The World Bank and IMF are essentially tools of the European and US governments, used to "crack open" foreign markets, totally undermine the economy, then buy up previously state owned companies at bargain basement prices and bleed the plebs. Its the modern day version of colonialism, only it actually makes a profit.
Secret societies are of course the number one favourite for conspiracy theorists. Been around a long time, naturally secretive....the problem is most of them are basically talking shops. Anyone can join the Freemasons and while there are a few specific lodges that have been involved in some nasty shit, the majority are quite dull. The Illuminati have never been proven to exist beyond their downfall in 1785 and the Priory of Sion were always a sham. Most of these are generally beneficial organizations anyway, the Freemasons in particular being closely aligned to Enlightenment ideals expressed by writers like Voltaire and Diderot.
So what do I believe?
I think there are certain...factions at the very top of the political-economic structure, whose membership is hard to ascertain but who can be judged by their actions. At least one is highly antagonistic, ultra-nationalist and allied with certain sectors of big business. These are closely allied with certain Theocratic nuts, with whom there is overall agreement, though each dislike the other for certain reasons relating to their own beliefs. There is one whose view could most accurately be described as Neo-Liberal, who are largely benevolent and are closely linked to a benevolent movement for world governance. And there is another who wants the same world governance, but for entirely less high-minded reasons.
And of course, within each group there are sub-groups, factions and dissent.
One final tip before I end this - don't look to fancy sounding names and titles, because thats entirely the wrong way. Look towards bland sounding committees and think tanks, with boring names like the Committee for a Free Britain or The American Enterprise Institute....also watch out, as certain groups (such as the Project for a New American Century) are likely to shed their skin and change when exposed to too much light (as when they changed into the AEI).
Apart from those, for me Conspiracy Theorism is rather like Alternate History discussion, its an interesting look into how the world could be, as well as fuel for the imagination.