What makes a conspiracy? groups, not isolated individuals;
The Conspiracy’s illegal or sinister aims are not ones that would benefit society as a whole;
Orchestrated acts, not a series of spontaneous and haphazard ones;
Secret planning, not public discussion.
Katherine K. Young; Paul Nathanson (2010),Sanctifying Misandry: Goddess Ideology and the Fall of Man, McGill-Queen’s Press – MQUP, pp. 275–,ISBN 978-0-7735-3615-9
The menu has the existing conspiracy theories as expressed by the theorists. Bari’s Theory as reported by Nicholas Wilson includes any one of them except perehaps Ongerth’s and Cherney’s. Ongerth’s and Cherney’s theories are close to one another’s. It is a theory of Timber-FBI and someone unknown ie the bomber aka Lord’s Avenger. McLaughlin’s idea is far more complex with many more dots connected with names of his perps with extensive personal witness stories and deep investigations of each named suspect. Black Mariah introduces the notion that the letter is genuinely an expression of the bombers and thus the Army of God is worth considering. Nick Wilson favors a Maxxam-Hill and Knowlton-Contractor group. The AoG allegation is tested using what is described by its authors as a Conspiracy Test. The AoG Allegation is tested and the results of the test applied to all the conspiracies is reported.
Sometimes conspiracy theories become conspiracy facts. My favorite is Watergate. The article below has others that are important to our narrative.
by Jake Anderson
May 18, 2015
(ANTIMEDIA) In recent years, the mere notion of conspiracy theories has increasingly been stigmatized and ridiculed by mainstream news outlets, internet trolls, and “rational” thinkers. Yet, with powerful revelations by Edward Snowden, Chelsea Manning, WikiLeaks, and generations of intrepid journalists, we now know that many outlandish geopolitical and domestic “conspiracy theories” were and are cold-blooded truths of the modern world. Here are 10 that are well-documented and profoundly disturbing…
1) The Gulf of Tonkin Incident
The Gulf of Tonkin incident, a major escalator of US involvement in the Vietnam War, never actually occurred.
It’s true. The original incident – also sometimes referred to as the USS Maddox Incident(s) –involved the destroyer USS Maddox supposedly engaging three North Vietnamese Navy torpedo boats as part of an intelligence patrol. The Maddox fired almost 300 shells.
President Lyndon B. Johnson promptly drafted the Gulf of Tonkin Resolution, which became his administration’s legal justification for military involvement in Vietnam. The problem is the event never happened.
In 2005, a declassified internal National Security Agency study revealed that there were NO North Vietnamese naval vessels present during the incident. So, what was the Maddox firing at? In 1965, President Johnson commented: “For all I know, our Navy was shooting at whales out there.”
Worth pointing out: The NSA’s own historian, Robert J. Hanyok, wrote a report stating that the agency had deliberately distorted intelligence reports in 1964. He concluded: “The parallels between the faulty intelligence on Tonkin Gulf and the manipulated intelligence used to justify the Iraq War make it all the more worthwhile to re-examine the events of August 1964.”
2) Tuskegee Syphilis Experiment
Beween 1932 and 1972, the US Public Health Service conducted a clinical study on rural African American men who had contracted syphilis. The Public Health Service never informed these men they had a sexually transmitted disease, nor did they offer treatment, even after penicillin became available as a cure in the 1940s.
Tragically, it’s true. Rather than receiving treatment, the subjects of these studies were told they had “bad blood.”
When World War II began, 250 of the men registered for the draft and were only then, for the first time, informed they had syphilis. Even then, the PHS denied them treatment.
By the early 1970s, 128 of the original 399 men had died of syphilis and syphilis-related complications, 40 of their wives had the disease and 19 of their children were born with congenital syphilis.
Worth pointing out: A similar experiment conducted on prisoners, soldiers, and patients of a mental hospital in Guatemala actually involved the PHS deliberately infecting the patients and then treating them with antibiotics.
3) Project MKUltra
The CIA ran secret mind control experiments on US citizens from the 1950s until 1973.
It’s also true that in 1995 President Clinton actually issued a formal apology on behalf of the US government.
Essentially, the CIA used drugs, electronics, hypnosis, sensory deprivation, verbal and sexual abuse, and torture to conduct experimental behavioral engineering experiments on subjects. The program subcontracted hundreds of these projects to over 80 different institutions, including universities, hospitals, prisons, and pharmaceutical companies.
Most of this was uncovered in 1977 when a Freedom of Information Act exposed 20,000 previously classified documents and triggered a series of Senate hearings. Because CIA Director Richard Helms had most of the more damning MKULTRA files destroyed in 1973, much of what actually occurred during these experiments is still unknown and, of course, not a single person was brought to justice.
Worth pointing out: There is growing evidence that Theodore Kaczynski, otherwise known as the Unabomber, was a subject of the Project MKULTRA while he was at Harvard in the late 1950s. See Lone Actors/Unabomber/MKULTRA and UNA
4) Operation Northwoods
The Joint Chiefs of Staff of the US military drew up and approved plans to create acts of terrorism on US soil in order to sway the American public into supporting a war against Cuba.
It’s true and the documents are out there.
Fortunately, President Kennedy rejected the plan, which included: innocent Americans being shot dead on the streets; boats carrying refugees fleeing Cuba to be sunk on the high seas; a wave of violent terrorism to be launched in Washington, D.C., Miami, and elsewhere; people being framed for bombings they did not commit; and planes being hijacked.
Additionally, the Joint Chiefs of Staff, led by Chairman Lyman Lemnitzer, planned to fabricate evidence that would implicate Fidel Castro and Cuban refugees as the perpetrators of the attacks.
Perhaps most horrifyingly, Lemnitzer planned for an elaborately staged incident whereby a Cuban aircraft would attack and shoot down a plane full of college students.
5) CIA Drug Trafficking
During the 1980s, the CIA facilitated the sale of cocaine to the Crips and Bloods street gangs of Los Angeles and funneled millions in drug profits to a Latin American guerrilla army.
It’s convoluted and complex, but it’s true.
Gary Webb’s book Dark Alliance: The CIA, the Contras, and the Crack Cocaine Explosion outlines how CIA-backed Contras smuggled cocaine into the U.S. and then distributed crack to Los Angeles gangs, pocketing the profits. The CIA directly aided the drug dealers to raise money for the Contras.
“This drug network,” Webb wrote in a 1996 San Jose MercuryNews article, “opened the first pipeline between Colombia’s cocaine cartels and the black neighborhoods of Los Angeles, a city now known as the ‘crack’ capital of the world. The cocaine that flooded in helped spark a crack explosion in urban America . . . and provided the cash and connections needed for L.A.’s gangs to buy automatic weapons.”
Worth pointing out: On December 10, 2004, Webb committed suicide under suspicious circumstances, namely the fact that he used two bullets to shoot himself in the head.
6) Operation Mockingbird
In the late 1940s, as the Cold War was just getting underway, the CIA launched a top secret project called Operation Mockingbird. Their goal was to buy influence and control among the major media outlets. They also planned to put journalists and reporters directly on the CIA payroll, which some claim is ongoing to this day. The architects of this plan were Frank Wisner, Allen Dulles, Richard Helms, and Philip Graham (publisher of The Washington Post), who planned to enlist American news organizations and journalists to basically become spies and propagandists.
Their list of entrenched agents eventually included journalists from ABC, NBC, CBS, Time, Newsweek, Associated Press, United Press International (UPI), Reuters, Hearst Newspapers, Scripps-Howard, and Copley News Service. By the 1950s, the CIA had infiltrated the nation’s businesses, media, and universities with tens of thousands of on-call operatives.
Fortunately, our media is no longer lured in by corporations and governments to disseminate propaganda and disinformation….hmmm, never mind–strike that last statement.
COINTELPRO was a series of clandestine, illegal FBI projects that infiltrated domestic political organizations to discredit and smear them. This included critics of the Vietnam War, civil rights leaders like Dr. Martin Luther King and a wide variety of activists and journalists.
The acts committed against them included psychological warfare, slander using forged documents and false reports in the media, harassment, wrongful imprisonment and, according to some, intimidation and possibly violence and assassination.
Similar and possibly more sophisticated tactics are still used today, including NSA monitoring (see #10).
8) Operation Snow White
Operation Snow White is the name given to an unprecedented infiltration of the US government by the Church of Scientology during the 1970s. They stole classified government files regarding Scientology from dozens of government agencies.
In 1977, the FBI finally cracked Snow White open which led to the arrest and imprisonment of a senior Church official.
The core mission of the program was to expose and legally expunge “all false and secret files of the nations of operating areas” and to enable Church seniors and L. Ron Hubbard himself to “frequent all Western nations without threat.” By the end, of course, there was nothing legal about their endeavors.
9) Secret Global Economic Policies
For years, activists who feared a sinister globalist corporatocracy were told they were being paranoid. Whether you want to call it the New World Order or not: they were right.
In 2013, WikiLeaks released the secretly negotiated draft text for the entire TPP (Trans-Pacific Partnership) Intellectual Property Rights Chapter. It revealed a closed-door regional free trade agreement being negotiated by countries in the Asia-Pacific region, including Australia, Brunei Darussalam, Canada, Chile, Japan, Malaysia, Mexico, New Zealand, Peru, Singapore, the United States, and Vietnam.
The Electronic Frontier Foundation says TPP has “extensive negative ramifications for users’ freedom of speech, right to privacy and due process, and [will] hinder peoples’ abilities to innovate.”
Worth pointing out: In June 2014, WikiLeaks revealed the even more far-reaching Trade in Services Agreement (TiSA), a 50-country agreement that will promote unprecedented levels of privatization across the world. The agreement will essentially prevent governments from returning public services into public hands. This could dramatically affect our ability to enact environmental regulations and keep workers safe.
10) The US Government Illegally Spies On Its Own Citizens
This used to be laughed at as a dystopian fantasy derived from an overactive imagination, Orwell’s 1984, and a juvenile distrust of the government. When you claimed “they” were spying on you, people labeled you a paranoid conspiracy theorist, a tinfoil hat-wearing loon.
Even after it was revealed that the NSA has been illegally eavesdropping on us and collecting our cell phone metadata for over a decade, people still hedged on the meaning of it. Yes, they are analyzing our transmissions, but it’s under the auspices of national security. “In a post 9/11 world” certain liberties must be sacrificed for the sake of security, right?
It turns out that is patently untrue. Not only is there no evidence that the NSA has protected us from terrorism, there is growing evidence that it makes us more vulnerable. Thanks to revelations about the NSA and their Prism project, we know that the scope of the NSA’s eavesdropping is even beyond what we originally believed.
In early June of 2014, the Washington Post reported that almost 90% of the data being collected by NSA surveillance programs is from Internet users with no connection to terrorist activities. According to the American Civil Liberties Union, this is in clear violation of the constitution.
The ACLU is pursuing a lawsuit against the NSA, claiming that the dragnet-style mass collection of data violates the Fourth Amendment right of privacy as well as the First Amendment rights of free speech and association.
Author: Jake Anderson
Jake Anderson joined Anti-Media as an independent journalist in April of 2015. His topics of interest include social justice, science, corporatocracy, and dystopian science fiction. He currently resides in Escondido, California.
As conspiracy theories infest the internet in the wake of the latest mass shooting in the United States, it is important to remember they are not simply harmless jokes to laugh at, but can cause real damage.
By Patrick Stokes
Source: The Conversation 26 JUN 2015 – 4:58 PM UPDATED 28 JUN 2015 – 12:33 PM
There’s remarkably little philosophical work done on conspiracy theory, though intriguingly most of what has been done has been done by Australians and New Zealanders such as David Coady, Charles Pigden, Steve Clarke, and recently Matthew Dentith (I haven’t yet had a chance to get hold of Dentith’s new book on the philosophy of conspiracy theory but it looks interesting). Most of what has been done has concentrated on issues of rationality and epistemology: is it rational to believe in conspiracy theories?
Interestingly, the answer is: more rational than we might think. After all, conspiracy theories manage to explain all the loose ends (“errant data”) that the ‘official’ story doesn’t. Viewed purely as a form of inference to best explanation, conspiracy reasoning doesn’t seem to be inherently illogical on its face.
However, as Byford points out, conspiracy theory is a “tradition of explanation” (conspiracy theories don’t arise from nowhere but draw upon earlier narratives, often with deeply problematic origins) that has a shockingly bad strike rate. Real conspiracies have certainly happened – Watergate, Iran-Contra etc. – but how many have ever been uncovered by conspiracy theorists?
To believe in conspiracy theory, you must believe in conspirators. To maintain a conspiracy theory for any length of time, you must claim that more and more people are in on the conspiracy.
Academic discussions of conspiracy theory tend to focus on long-lived varieties, the ones that attract large numbers of adherents around a relatively stable core. It’s that duration that allowed Steve Clarke to analyse these theories using the framework of progressive and degenerating research programs, borrowed from the philosopher of science Imre Lakatos. In science, progressive research programs explain more and more observations and make successful predictions. When confronted by data that seems to disconfirm the theory, they posit ‘auxiliary hypotheses’ that actually strengthen the theory, by allowing it to explain and predict even more.
Degenerating research programs, by contrast, are stuck on the defensive: they don’t explain any new observations, nor make successful predictions, and are constantly having to defend themselves from new data that contradicts the theory. Clarke is right that most conspiracy theories are like that. If the various US shootings are government false flags designed to help Obama implement gun control, why is it taking so long? Shouldn’t at least one whistleblower have come forward?
A conspiracy theorist, led by the inexorable logic of their tradition of explanation, might double down at this point: the conspiracies we think we know about are just covers for the real conspiracies, while the reason conspiracy theory never seems to yield results is that the conspirators are making sure it doesn’t. Absence of evidence isn’t evidence of absence: it’s proof positive of a conspiracy.
You can see how that sort of theorising is, to a certain extent, a frictionless spinning in a void. Any observation confirms the conspiracy, and any data that seems to disconfirm it also confirms it. It’s an ‘explanation’ of observed reality that comes at the cost of making its central beliefs unfalsifiable. But that’s not the only problem.
To believe in conspiracy theory, you must believe in conspirators. To maintain a conspiracy theory for any length of time, you must claim that more and more people are in on the conspiracy. Clinging to degenerating research programs of this type involves making more and more unevidenced accusations against people you know nothing about. That’s not without moral cost. Suspicion should always involve a certain reluctance, a certain forbearance from thinking the worst of people – a virtue that is sacrificed in the name of keeping the conspiracy theory going. In the process, real human tragedy is made into a plaything, fodder for feverish speculation that does no real epistemic or practical work.
Our relationship to each other and to society as a whole also only works against a generalised assumption of trustworthiness. Imagine if you believed by default that everyone is lying to you: how could you possibly function, or even communicate? Laura D’Olimpio recently wrote on Cogito about the importance of trust, and the corresponding vulnerability that requires us to accept. One crucial dimension of trust as a pervasive phenomenon in our lives is its role in our epistemology: most of what we know, we actually take on trust from the testimony of others. I only know that Iceland exists because I don’t believe, to borrow a phrase from Tom Stoppard, in a ‘conspiracy of cartographers.’
To maintain a conspiracy theory requires us to throw out more and more of our socially-mediated sources of knowledge, and to give up more and more of the trust in each other and in our knowledge-generating mechanisms that we are utterly dependent upon. On some level, the ‘conspiracy theory of society’ ultimately asks us to give up on society altogether. And that takes us to a very dangerous place indeed.
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