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Re: Idiot's Guides.

Posted: Mon Jun 29, 2020 9:58 am
by Andy McDandy
OK, the problem with conspiracy theories is as follows - they all rely on 3 assumptions - that a) there are various nefarious schemes going on behind our backs, b) that only a select few people can figure this out, and c) that even so, there's nothing anyone can do about it.

While I'm happy to agree that governments, corporations and individuals get up to dodgy stuff, and that there's stuff going on that we don't know about, what I reject is this idea that there are shadowy string-pullers behind it all. Here's why:

1. It's a load of anti-semitic nonsense. As a Jewish friend of mine once put it, if the worldwide Jewish lobby is so powerful, you'd think that they could do a bit better than Israel, and what's more, there's the stumbling block of getting them all to agree on anything. But yeah, global conspiracy, shadowy tentacles, shadow government, it's all code, and a fairly obvious one.

2. Occam's razor. When the cover-up or "arranged accident" is more complex and unlikely than the at face value explanation, it's a pretty good clue that it's nonsense.

3. If the shadow government is so competent, why aren't they running everything openly?

4. Basic misunderstanding of human nature. People are curious, talkative, inventive. People in conspiracy theories are never any of these things.

5. Big fucking holes. If NASA never went to the moon, how come the Soviets never said anything? Why did they build and launch massive rockets if they weren't going anywhere? Why did they go to the moon to plant evidence of a landing that can be seen from Earth when they may as well have just gone there in the first place?

Re: Idiot's Guides.

Posted: Mon Jun 29, 2020 10:06 am
by Boiler
The only exception to the above I'd make is section 4 - they must be inventive to come up with the elaborate plots they do. See the occasional Grassy Knollington strip in Viz.

Re: Idiot's Guides.

Posted: Mon Jun 29, 2020 10:16 am
by Andy McDandy
The theories themselves can be very inventive, but they rely on everyone in them (who is not a sinister plotter) to not be so. I suspect it's about the theorist making themselves look cleverer than their audience.

Re: Idiot's Guides.

Posted: Mon Jun 29, 2020 10:21 am
by Oblomov
If wanted, I can ask my friend to do a write up of how people get indoctrinated into cults.

Re: Idiot's Guides.

Posted: Mon Jun 29, 2020 10:26 am
by Boiler
Andy McDandy wrote:
Mon Jun 29, 2020 10:16 am
The theories themselves can be very inventive, but they rely on everyone in them (who is not a sinister plotter) to not be so. I suspect it's about the theorist making themselves look cleverer than their audience.
I give you the 5G conspiracies bloke from the NE who says that the 450V capacitor on a circuit board he obtained from a LED street light is there to provide more powerful death rays, because 450 volts!

Re: Idiot's Guides.

Posted: Mon Jun 29, 2020 10:31 am
by Cyclist
Another hole:

5.5 The Leaker

How does the bloke in the pub, who you know is a welder in that little metal fabrication company on the local industrial estate, find out about this stuff, when the evildoers have such massive resources to use in the cover-up? How do they gain access to the information when people whose job it is to find things out never get a whiff of it? And why does this bloke continue to spill the beans when the evildoers can use their massive resources to arrange an innocent road accident or similar?

One thing that is totally alien to conspiraloons is logic.

Re: Idiot's Guides.

Posted: Mon Jun 29, 2020 10:37 am
by youngian
Boiler wrote:
Mon Jun 29, 2020 10:26 am
Andy McDandy wrote:
Mon Jun 29, 2020 10:16 am
The theories themselves can be very inventive, but they rely on everyone in them (who is not a sinister plotter) to not be so. I suspect it's about the theorist making themselves look cleverer than their audience.
I give you the 5G conspiracies bloke from the NE who says that the 450V capacitor on a circuit board he obtained from a LED street light is there to provide more powerful death rays, because 450 volts!
There used to be one about the 50hz mains frequency leaking to fry our brains. The Japanese know all about it, I was told by one dingbat but they've covered it up.

Re: Idiot's Guides.

Posted: Mon Jun 29, 2020 10:42 am
by Andy McDandy
Cyclist wrote:
Mon Jun 29, 2020 10:31 am
Another hole:

5.5 The Leaker

How does the bloke in the pub, who you know is a welder in that little metal fabrication company on the local industrial estate, find out about this stuff, when the evildoers have such massive resources to use in the cover-up? How do they gain access to the information when people whose job it is to find things out never get a whiff of it? And why does this bloke continue to spill the beans when the evildoers can use their massive resources to arrange an innocent road accident or similar?

One thing that is totally alien to conspiraloons is logic.
I'm reminded of a guy in the States who claimed that he had worked at Area 51 reverse engineering UFOs, until he tried to spill the beans. At which point all his qualifications were revoked and he ended up working as a bookkeeper in a brothel, which is how he ended up getting arrested for living off immoral earnings, your honour.

Re: Idiot's Guides.

Posted: Mon Jun 29, 2020 10:48 am
by Boiler
youngian wrote:
Mon Jun 29, 2020 10:37 am
There used to be one about the 50hz mains frequency leaking to fry our brains. The Japanese know all about it, I was told by one dingbat but they've covered it up.
Ah yes, the electromagnetic sensitivity sufferers. For some time there were recommendations not to have clock radios next to your bed. Think I even saw that in the Mail once.

However, this is really for another thread.

Re: Idiot's Guides.

Posted: Mon Jun 29, 2020 10:52 am
by Oblomov
Cyclist wrote:
Mon Jun 29, 2020 10:31 am
Another hole:

5.5 The Leaker

How does the bloke in the pub, who you know is a welder in that little metal fabrication company on the local industrial estate, find out about this stuff, when the evildoers have such massive resources to use in the cover-up? How do they gain access to the information when people whose job it is to find things out never get a whiff of it? And why does this bloke continue to spill the beans when the evildoers can use their massive resources to arrange an innocent road accident or similar?

One thing that is totally alien to conspiraloons is logic.
This is particularly dangerous with the advent of the politicised conspiraloons demographic on the youtube. It seems an epoch ago when I was curiously listening to some oddball in America describe how the earth was actually encased in a giant crystal orb (like a snowglobe basically) and all his ideas associated with that, to toxic channels like Paul Joseph Watson and Stefan Molyneux operating with more grounded theories that resist the "SJW leftist agenda" or whatever buzzwords they employ that week.

Re: Idiot's Guides.

Posted: Mon Jun 29, 2020 11:41 am
by spoonman
youngian wrote:
Mon Jun 29, 2020 10:37 am
There used to be one about the 50hz mains frequency leaking to fry our brains. The Japanese know all about it, I was told by one dingbat but they've covered it up.
That will of course explain how one half of Japan has its mains frequency at 50Hz and the other half at 60Hz.

Re: Idiot's Guides.

Posted: Mon Jun 29, 2020 12:22 pm
by Kreuzberger
Yebbut, microwaves do give you cancer and they make your baked spuds taste shit.

Re: Idiot's Guides.

Posted: Mon Jun 29, 2020 12:30 pm
by davidjay
The whole thing about conspiracy theories is that, rather like how the far left hold that you have to agree with them on everything or else you're a centrist melt, if you don't believe the lot you're one of the sheeple. In reality of course, it's possible to think that Lee Harvey Oswald had outside help and also laugh at the idea of an imminent New World Order.

Andy put it better than I could, but there are two main reasons why most theories are easily debunkable:

i) A supposedly chance happening has to rely on so many factors, not least split-second timing, yet so many things can alter this. Abers & I, I believe, live a couple of miles from each other yet if we arranged now to meet at the same place, at exactly the same time, it wouldn't happen. A red light, heavy traffic, a pedestrian crossing. They all have to be taken into account. And then, to take the most famous accident-based theory of all time; even if everything had worked out exactly as MI5/Prince Phillip had planned it, Princess Diana would still very likely have survived if she'd worn a seat belt.

ii) The long-term ones depend on many people being kept quiet. Again, the most famous - if the moon landings had been a hoax, revealing the true story would be the biggest scoop of all time. The source would be set up for life. And there's not been one exclusive, book deal or even deathbed confession in the fifty-odd years since that giant leap for mankind.