Jump to content
Todd A. Slee

Origin of the Term 'Conspiracy Theory'

Recommended Posts

     This sounds pretty feasible to me, especially considering known facts about the CIA; note the number of media outlets allegedly owned by the CIA, right in keeping with 'Operation Mockingbird':


Share this post

Link to post
Share on other sites

There have always been 'conspiracy theories'.  Ever since we advanced from being hunter-gatherers, society has been shaped like a pyramid. The people on the bottom are kept in ignorance of what the people at the top are doing, and try to come up with explanations. It's an often frightening world, and the people at the top DO make decisions that are not in the interests of the rest of us. So, in some very basic sense, the worldview of  conspiracy theorists has a solid justification for it.


But this doesn't mean that any particular theory is true. There are actually many conflicting conspiracy theories. They cannot all be true.


A good book to read here is Richard Hofstadter's The Paranoid Style in American Politics.


[ https://www.amazon.com/Paranoid-Style-American-Politics/dp/0307388441/ ]


The Paranoid Style in American Politics, acclaimed historian Richard Hofstadter examines the competing forces in American political discourse and how fringe groups can influence — and derail — the larger agendas of a political party. He investigates the politics of the irrational, shedding light on how the behavior of individuals can seem out of proportion with actual political issues, and how such behavior impacts larger groups. With such other classic essays as “Free Silver and the Mind of 'Coin' Harvey” and “What Happened to the Antitrust Movement?, ” The Paranoid Style in American Politics remains both a seminal text of political history and a vital analysis of the ways in which political groups function in the United States.


Hofstadter puts the leftwing populists of the 'Free Silver' movement into the same camp as rightwing conspiracy theorists, which later historians have disputed. I believe that the basic argument of these historians is, in a sense, correct: the ARE powerful elites, who don't advertise what they're doing, and whose interests are not the interests of ordinary people. For example, the people who closed down American industries, including ones vital to national security, and re-opened them in China. But their motives were clear: to make a dollar.  And these powerful people and groups often compete and clash with each other.


The classic conspiracy theory is one which blames the Jews for the evils of the world, allegedly as revealed in The Protocols of the Elders of Zion.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/The_Protocols_of_the_Elders_of_Zion  ] 


In the 1960s, a promising organization, The John Birch Society, which knew how to organize and campaign, was effectively destroyed -- or reduced to insignificance -- when it came out that its leader, Robert Welch, had said that President Eisenhower was "a conscious agent of the Communist conspiracy".  [Note the word 'conspiracy' -- not an invention of the CIA, they were just referring to what was common knowledge.]


The growing militia movment in the 90s was destroyed by being associated -- unfairly -- with the mass murderer Timothy McVeigh. Enemies of the militia movement put the nails in its coffin by inviting various crazy leaders of various militia groups, like Norm Olson, to testify before the Senate in Washington: Olson revealed that he believed that the Oklahoma bombing was carried out by the Japanese, in revenge for the Sarin Nerve Gas attack in Tokyo, which was, according to him, carried out by the United States. Who would want to join a movement led by people who believe things like that?


QAnon is only the latest of the mad theories. [  https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/QAnon ]

 The Left of course are very happy to use them to discrdit the Right, as for example here: https://www.salon.com/2019/08/18/qanon-is-the-conspiracy-theory-that-wont-die-heres-what-they-believe-and-why-theyre-wrong/


I myself am a believer in one conspiracy theory: namely, that they are very powerful and effective weapon in the hands of our enemies, who consciously spread them among us,  for the purpose of discreding conservatives.


Let me repeat: the nonsense we were taught in school, and the lies and bs of the Mainstream Media, can be dismissed with a wave of the hand.  In that limited sense, the conspiracy theorists are at the beginning of wisdom.  But their specific beliefs are a hindrance to discovering the truth and to taking effective action to take back our country.


You can get a lot further in life with a kind word and a gun, than with a kind word alone.

Share this post

Link to post
Share on other sites
Author of the topic Posted

     Some so-called conspiracy theories are nutty, for sure. One interesting one, which was probably widely accepted, appeared in Popular Mechanics not too long after 911. In part, it stated that the reason no engines were found at the Pentagon, or holes where the engines would have hit, and why the hole in the Pentagon was smaller than the diameter of the plane fuselage, is because at the speed the plane hit, the metal was partially melted before each section made it to the hole, and just sort ofpoured into the hole, being liquified, or something like that. I don't remember what the explanation was as to how a Boeing could go thru 3 cement walls, each 3 feet thick.

     By the same token, I've seen a case or two in which the feds presented investigative findings against corrupt informants,  lacking key evidence to prove beyond the shadow of a doubt what they had done, yet there was only one or two possibilities, and the cops claimed it was a conspiracy theory, so needed warrants weren't obtained. Feds do the same thing at times, even when it's mostly black and white. Kinda nuts.

Share this post

Link to post
Share on other sites

Join the conversation

You can post now and register later. If you have an account, sign in now to post with your account.

Reply to this topic...

×   Pasted as rich text.   Paste as plain text instead

  Only 75 emoji are allowed.

×   Your link has been automatically embedded.   Display as a link instead

×   Your previous content has been restored.   Clear editor

×   You cannot paste images directly. Upload or insert images from URL.

  • Who Viewed the Topic

    8 members have viewed this topic:

  • Create New...