Conspiracy Theory: The World's Finest News Source
It is generally believed and accepted that all politicians lie. Without lie detector tests or any scientific proof, the majority of Americans, if not the world, agree that politicians hurl mistruths with nary a second thought. Accepting this at face value, the immediate question becomes, "What are they lying about?"
Most people assume it's pretty generic stuff: "I did not have my political opponent/spouse/therapist gunned down, I did not engage in sexual misconduct with that stripper/stewardess/chimpanzee." You know, the stuff everyone lies about.
But there are people among us who don't bother worrying about these little lies. These people are trying to find out what important stuff big brother is lying about: who really shot JFK, what actually happened at Roswell and whether or not the CIA is trafficking drugs into our country. These are the conspiracy theorists, brave men and women who try to dig up the real dirt on the government. Some call them crazy and paranoid, others call them the last seekers of truth, but these theorists are out there and they aren't going anywhere until they get some damn answers.
I got into reading conspiracy theory based on one simple fact. I hate the news. I hate watching it, listening to it and reading it. The reason is twofold. First, there is never any good news. Around the world we have thousands if not millions of scientists working every day, one of them must have made a discovery that won't depress the hell out of me. Instead, all I get is war, destruction, famine, pedophiles and people bitching about video games. Second, the news really bores me, mostly because it's the same thing every day. This group of schmucks is protesting this schmuck, some schmuck is blaming another schmuck for all sorts of bullshit, and the U.N. did something to either battle or enhance schmuckery. The news is theoretically supposed to be new, but nothing new ever happens. The same story with different parties involved.
Most people think I hate the news because it's all biased, but that's not really the case. I can pretty much take the bare bones of any event and leave the commentary behind. But I must admit, conspiracy theorists have the best bias of all time: it's not left-wing, it's not right-wing, but rather both wings and everyone in between. If you're in the government, then you're hiding something important, period. No one is safe from the paranoid journalist.
If you've never read any conspiracy theory before, there are three important requirements to any well-rounded and thought-out theory. Most importantly, the issue in question hasn't been proven or disproven (thus the term 'theory'). Next, someone in the government knows the truth and they're not letting us in on the big secret. Finally, by carefully compiling and analyzing any news reports remotely connected with the issue, we might just be able to figure out what's going on.
A final, common addition to conspiracy theory, but not required, is the inclusion of aliens. But more on that later.
We'll take a sample theory out there, something that's made the news and is being diligently investigated by more then just the average theorist. Did the current governmental administration have prior knowledge of the 9/11 attacks? Many theorists began digging into this when Congresswoman McKinney allegedly stated that Bush had prior knowledge of the event. This part is countered by reading the transcripts from that particular congressional meeting, where she actually said that Bush had no knowledge. Not like that tiny fact will change many minds.
Next, many claim that since the buildings crashed straight down instead of to the side, they were really brought down by explosives planted inside the building. Why do this, you ask? Why, to elevate the fear in the country. If the towers just got hit by planes, it wouldn't be nearly as terrifying as if they were brought down. This is opposed by those who state that the buildings were engineered to collapse in just such a manner to minimalize any further destruction.
And I'm sure that there are some out there who think that aliens are to blame for the WTC attacks, but I am reasonably certain that isn't the case..
This is one theory that has been bouncing around for a few years, very similar in message and style to the theory that the Roosevelt administration had prior knowledge of the Pearl Harbor attacks. Books have been written on both subjects, they are still under dispute and will be for years, if not decades, to come.
Personally, I like to think that our government, Republican or Democrat, wouldn't just allow something that fucked up to happen if they could have stopped it. Other reasons could be found to take on Al Quaeda, such as the '93 WTC attack and the bombing of the USS Cole, both of which Bin Laden and his cronies have taken credit for. But I haven't investigated the issue too much, so I won't make a definitive ruling.
There are a great many pros and cons to reading and writing conspiracy theory. Some of the benefits include an enhanced awareness of the fact that the establishment hasn't and never will tell us everything, which is pretty important, since trusting the government too much can lead to all sorts of problems. You can see a great variety of opinions on just about any matter, since theorists will research both sides of an argument before coming to the conclusion that it's all a cover-up. And lastly, it's pretty entertaining. When you start thinking that your life really sucks, search the internet until you find some guy's webpage that leads you to believe he wears an aluminum-foil hat and you'll feel much better. Unless you start thinking that he's really on to something, which becomes quite a predicament.
The cons are simple. Paranoia can be a good thing in moderation. Being worried about a great many things can keep you out of harm's way, but being too worried leads to electro-shock therapy and straight-jackets. Finding the middle ground is the best path here. The biggest con of all time is that if you really stumble on something, you will simply disappear. Since The X-Files always has the NSA as the bad guys, I'll assume they're at fault for the myriad vanishings of a great many theorists.
There are three types of conspiracy theories. The plausible, the possible but not likely, and the fringe theories (also known as pure insanity).
These theories are the ones that either get some air time on television or seem to have some form of good reasoning behind them. The most well-known conspiracy that's still unresolved: the assassination of President John Kennedy. Dozens, possibly hundreds of books are out there on the subject, and Oliver Stone even made a movie about it. For the record, the best book I have found on the subject is Crossfire by Jim Marrs. Nearly exhaustive in it's research, Marrs discusses every little "fact" or speculation out there, from the magic bullet to Jack Ruby's involvement. My particular favorite section is an appendix covering "convenient" deaths of those involved in the investigation.
While dozens of people have used the best technology available to demonstrate that the government's official stance on the assassination is faulty, I recently saw a show on either Discovery or the History Channel that went out of it's way to prove that the assassination happened exactly how the government said. They even managed to recreate the "magic bullet" which bounced around Kennedy's body before exiting and implanting itself in the arm of a man riding in the front seat. Since there is compelling evidence on both sides of the issue, you pretty much have to take a stance and start digging.
Another theory that I like to research in my spare time is the New World Order, which states that some ultra-powerful group of assholes is creating a one-world government that will inevitably be fascist in form. I plug this into the "plausible" category for any good number of reasons, one of which is that since we are swiftly moving towards a global economy (globalization in other words), a global government wouldn't surprise me in the least.
There is a lot of speculation as to who's actually behind this threat. The most common is the Freemasons (who, according to conspiracy theorists, are behind everything). Others blame the Republicans or the Democrats, and some blame the aliens. Personally, I think if this is an actual plot being worked out, the U.N. is my candidate for the antagonist. My favorite dash of reasoning behind this is that in all the conflicts the U.N has involved itself in, they have never tried to stop an act of Communist aggression, and I consider Communism a form of fascism.
The Possible but not likely
This category fits over a wide range of theories, primarily over strange scientific experiments that may or may not have happened, but it also includes one of the greatest theories of all time. What happened in Roswell, New Mexico?
For those unaware of the Roswell incident, it took place around fifty years ago. Allegedly, an alien spaceship was struck by lightning and crashed onto a farmer's property. The government rushed to the scene, cleared away all the wreckage and told the world that it was a weather balloon, which was answered with a cry of "cover-up!"
Most theorists who bother with this theory will point to new technology and advances in medicine that came out shortly after the Roswell crash, stating that the technology came from the alien spacecraft. Of course, the question that gets raised is why haven't we made such a spacecraft since then (which is answered with, we have made them but the government doesn't admit to it). Over the years people have come forward, stating that they were working for the government at the time and it really was a spacecraft, but their credibility is always questionable.
My big question is, if alien beings can travel hundreds upon hundreds of light years to visit our planet and probe the ever-lovin' hell out of us, why couldn't they protect their ship from a simple bolt of lightning? Maybe such electrical occurrences don't happen on the planet Zoltar.
This goes in the possible but not likely category since I just think it's a cool theory, and everything the government did at the time just screams cover-up. Seriously, if you're going to try and hide something so earth-shattering, be a bit more discreet. You'll only draw attention to yourself otherwise.
Next, we come to my all-time favorite conspiracy theory, the Philadelphia Experiment (which was actually made into a movie with Michael Pare). The theory goes thusly: the government was testing a method to "bend light" around a Navy battleship to turn it invisible. The test was met with success, but when the ship was supposed to re-materialize it didn't. Some thirty minutes later, some two-hundred miles south, the ship reappeared. Several members of the crew were missing, others dead, a few implanted in the sides of the hull, and the survivors had all gone mad.
So what exactly happened to the battleship? Some say the government stumbled upon the secrets of teleportation, as the ship couldn't possibly move 200 miles in half and hour. Others say big brother discovered time-travel, and time travel is one of my fascinations. I once tried to make a time-machine by taping an alarm clock to the side of my lawn mower. It didn't work, but at least I could check the time while I was trimming the grass. But someday I will complete the lawn/time mower-machine and will start creating all sorts of paradoxes. Dinosaurs wearing berets, nude polaroids of Marie Antoinette, and J. Giles Band CD's discovered in the year 1920.
So how exactly did we pull off a disappearing ship? The prevailing theory is through the use of a contraption called a "Delta Generator", possibly designed off of the notes of Nikolai Tesla.
Why do I even consider such madness possible? Pretty much because I think it's a cool theory. You want evidence, I got none. But the fact that this theory has gotten enough coverage to earn a movie leads me to believe something actually happened, and this isn't just an urban legend.
If you're interested in time travel like I am, look into a book called Forbidden Archaeology. It's full of strange findings from prehistoric eras that really shouldn't be there, including a fossilized print of what looks like someone's sneaker (possibly mine, left when I was trying to fit a fedora onto a brontosaurus). It's a neat book, but may all be strange coincidence.
This section is on the beliefs of certain people who should be in asylums. Theories like these are pure, unfounded madness, and are likely to entice laughter in the masses rather then panic.
First, the theory that our government is being controlled by aliens. No fucking way. I think a college student came up with this bullshit as a joke and some schizo found the idea and figured it had to be the truth. I subscribe to the theory that Al Gore is a robot for obvious reasons, but aliens don't control our government and never have. I'm not going to present the evidence of those who believe this, as I don't want to infect anyone else with this trash. Pretty much anything to do with aliens, outside of Roswell, goes in this category.
And if you happen to be one of those who thinks aliens are in control, don't e-mail me with your proof and explanations. I don't want to hear it. I'm sure that if you manage to prove this garbage the news will reach my ears one way or another. But until you get your story on CNN, leave me the hell out of it.
Next comes another dash of madness, so take your Prozac and anti-psychotic pills before you read this. There supposedly is a massive government-operated concentration camp underneath the Denver International Airport. I've read this theory with all sorts of airport's names in there, but I first heard it once the construction of DIA was completed and it seems to be the most commonly used flight-center.
Once again, no fucking way. I can think of much better places for a concentration camp then the Denver International Airport. Like NORAD, or maybe Camp David. And for what possible reason would the government want to enslave us? Well, I'm sure they have some reasons, but they won't be paying the slaves so they can't tax them. On top of that, if they want their indentured servants to live more then a few days they have to pay for food and water. Zero profit for the government there, theory goes out the door.
And once again, keep your proof to yourself if you think this is a good theory. If I get an e-mail from someone trying to convince me that this not bullshit, I'm using my time machine to stop your parents from ever having sex. You won't be born, I won't have gotten that e-mail after all, the fabric of time will be pleasingly destroyed from paradoxes and everyone will be happy.
So now you know the ins, outs and in-betweens of conspiracy theory. Ready to start digging into news archives to prove the New World Order is an imminent crisis? Planning to infiltrate Area 51 and steal yourself a flying saucer? Have at it, and good luck.
Unless you want to research alien mind-control, in which case I'll reserve you a padded room at the straight-jacket hotel.
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