Why do people think conspiracy theorist is a synonymous with "irrational person"?

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Re: Why do people think conspiracy theorist is a synonymous with "irrational person"?

Post by Scott Mayers » Thu Aug 20, 2015 10:15 pm

Canadian Skeptic wrote:
Scott Mayers wrote:You can't always prove intentions directly though.

Yes, but again, my argument only applies to what people believe (and why), not what you can prove. Separate issues.
What anyone "knows" or simply has "faith without knowing" are both classified as "beliefs". As such, belief implies trying to prove some of them as real. If you argue against only those you think have the type of beliefs that imply "faith without knowing", you presume by default that their beliefs are not their 'knowledge' and believe they are thus unprovable. The exercise of us as skeptics is not to assume by default what is or is not a conspiracy but to take what one claims is a "conspiracy" and measure through reasoning which ones are viable or not. But I get the impression that many have adapted a strict belief that conspiracy theories actually don't exist as real, which to me is absurd.
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Re: Why do people think conspiracy theorist is a synonymous with "irrational person"?

Post by Canadian Skeptic » Thu Aug 20, 2015 10:56 pm

Scott Mayers wrote:As such, belief implies trying to prove some of them as real.
I'd rather not derail the thread about what constitutes "belief" and how to define it. In short, belief is a lot more than a logical argument about one's positions -- it's based on a whole world of unconscious drives that determine what we "believe." Very often, our rational justification -- our attempt to "prove" what we believe -- is post hoc, with the actual roots of our belief much more deep-seated than that. It's why it's so hard, even impossible, to change someone's mind through rational argument alone. Because rational argument is not, in fact, the source of our beliefs.
Scott Mayers wrote:...you presume by default that their beliefs are not their 'knowledge' and believe they are thus unprovable.
I have absolutely not made that claim, and specifically explained that I am not doing that. My argument is disinterested in what's true/false, but rather on what people believe, which very often is independent of what's actually true or false. We are not logical automatons, and our belief systems are more complex than philosophical paradigms (philosophical arguments play a part, but are not the whole story; not even most of the story).
Scott Mayers wrote:The exercise of us as skeptics is not to assume by default what is or is not a conspiracy but to take what one claims is a "conspiracy" and measure through reasoning which ones are viable or not.
Most conspiracy theorists actively reject the term "conspiracy." Regardless, I am very clearly and with no equivocation not making any claims about which conspiracies are true or false. I really do request that you understand what I'm saying before you reply.
Scott Mayers wrote:But I get the impression that many have adapted a strict belief that conspiracy theories actually don't exist as real, which to me is absurd.
I don't think you would find a single skeptic who would agree that all "conspiracy theories (conspiracies) don't exist as real." Many do categorically reject many specific and even at times general categories of conspiracy, for reasons I've indicated, but again, I'm not in any way talking about which conspiracies are correct/false.

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Re: Why do people think conspiracy theorist is a synonymous with "irrational person"?

Post by Scott Mayers » Fri Aug 21, 2015 12:59 am

I don't know what you expect here then. If you're not concerned about which are 'true' or 'false', you also cannot then allow an acceptance to determine things based on 'facts' or 'fictions', as these are just contingent truths or falsities involved in them. As to this discussion, the title references the concept "irrational" which is intended to determine who is being rational or irrational with respect to conspiracy theories.

AND with regards to skeptics, while you may disagree, when you see a comment such as, "Oh, here we go, another conspiracy theory," [only an example, not intending to say anyone said this exact quote] indicates that some really do automatically dismiss conspiracy theories as a form of irrational belief by default for someone speaking it. It is no wonder that some do have a justification to evade using the term, "conspiracy".
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Re: Why do people think conspiracy theorist is a synonymous with "irrational person"?

Post by Canadian Skeptic » Fri Aug 21, 2015 4:33 pm

Scott Mayers wrote:If you're not concerned about which are 'true' or 'false', you also cannot then allow an acceptance to determine things based on 'facts' or 'fictions', as these are just contingent truths or falsities involved in them.
Scott. I don't think you understand my point. I was talking about what people believe, which is not necessarily linked to what's true/false (only what they believe to be true/false), and the reasons people believe things, rightly or wrongly, are often not based on logical thought, but on a host of entirely distinct factors, such as their cultural upbringing, affective feelings about a topic, etc.

Yes, of course I have opinions about what's true/false, and how we can separate truth from falsity, and how logical argument (read: scientific empiricism) can direct us towards truth, but I was talking about an entirely separate issue: what and why people believe what they do.

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Re: Why do people think conspiracy theorist is a synonymous with "irrational person"?

Post by gorgeous » Fri Aug 21, 2015 5:52 pm

conspiracies are real
Science Fundamentalism...is exactly what happens when there’s a significant, perceived ideological threat to one’s traditions and identity.

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Re: Why do people think conspiracy theorist is a synonymous with "irrational person"?

Post by djembeweaver » Mon Aug 24, 2015 9:16 pm

I think that there is a relatively simple answer to this question: The phrase 'conspiracy theory' is intentionally pejorative and was brought into use by those wishing to discredit certain people who hold certain views. In particular it seems to have been popularized by the CIA to discredit criticism of the Warren Commission report (http://www.discip.crdp.ac-caen.fr/angla ... 35-960.htm).

In general it seems to be used to discredit anyone challenging an official account. Regarding specific events such as 9/11 or the assassination of JFK there are many 'theories' that seek to explain diverse aspects of these events and it is likely that at least some of them are valid (in fact some of these 'theories' are indeed fact and are matters of public record).

Reading the comments sections of videos concerning 9/11 'conspiracy theories' one would have to conclude that irrationality is pretty evenly distributed...

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Re: Why do people think conspiracy theorist is a synonymous with "irrational person"?

Post by Matthew Ellard » Tue Aug 25, 2015 1:13 am

djembeweaver wrote:Reading the comments sections of videos concerning 9/11 'conspiracy theories' one would have to conclude that irrationality is pretty evenly distributed...
Fair enough, however as skeptics, we are supposedly able to see through mere labels , like "this is just a conspiracy theory". In theory, skeptics wait for someone to make a claim (hypothesis) and set out their actual evidence. That many people in the real world simply pick teams without considering the arguments, is sort of expected and normal.

The fact that Skeptic organisations tend to be based on promoting education and critical thinking, is evidence that the same organisations understand that the general public is always going to need assistance.

It's not "a war on stupidity" or a game of "Skeptics are smarter than you are" but rather the slow haul of changing an existing culture, so humans always automatically think there is a benefit from actually applying critical thinking to all aspects of life. If someone doesn't want to use critical thinking, then that is also their right.

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Re: Why do people think conspiracy theorist is a synonymous with "irrational person"?

Post by supervitor » Tue Aug 25, 2015 9:05 pm

djembeweaver wrote:I think that there is a relatively simple answer to this question: The phrase 'conspiracy theory' is intentionally pejorative and was brought into use by those wishing to discredit certain people who hold certain views. In particular it seems to have been popularized by the CIA to discredit criticism of the Warren Commission report (http://www.discip.crdp.ac-caen.fr/angla ... 35-960.htm).

In general it seems to be used to discredit anyone challenging an official account. Regarding specific events such as 9/11 or the assassination of JFK there are many 'theories' that seek to explain diverse aspects of these events and it is likely that at least some of them are valid (in fact some of these 'theories' are indeed fact and are matters of public record).

Reading the comments sections of videos concerning 9/11 'conspiracy theories' one would have to conclude that irrationality is pretty evenly distributed...
I think you're being a little bit paranoid over there, mainly by suggesting that the meaning and conotation a word gets is somehow defined by decree. You haven't quoted anything from that document that led us to believe it's what happened..

Personally, I tend to think a word or expression gets its conotation by the use people give to it, a dynamic process hardly manageable by the CIA or "intentional". That's something a "real" "conspiracy theorist" would say, I guess.

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Re: Why do people think conspiracy theorist is a synonymous with "irrational person"?

Post by djembeweaver » Tue Aug 25, 2015 9:30 pm

"I think you're being a little bit paranoid over there, mainly by suggesting that the meaning and conotation a word gets is somehow defined by decree. You haven't quoted anything from that document that led us to believe it's what happened..

Personally, I tend to think a word or expression gets its conotation by the use people give to it, a dynamic process hardly manageable by the CIA or "intentional". That's something a "real" "conspiracy theorist" would say, I guess."

I wasn't suggesting that the CIA had absolute control over the usage but it does seem to be the case that the expression came into popular parlance after the Warren commission and the CIA played a big part in that. It is a fact that it is used pejoratively to discredit. Far from being paranoid I would say it is rather naive to think that the security services do not exert considerable influence on public opinion.

It is now a matter of public record that the CIAs Bin Laden unit (Alec station) were tracking several of the 9/11 hijackers in the USA prior to the hijackings and that they actively blocked the sharing of this information with the FBI. It has since come to light that 40 CIA agents were involved in this and its subsequent cover up. This satisfies most definitions of 'conspiracy' yet calling it a 'conspiracy theory' implies that it is an irrational belief that is not supported by evidence when in fact it is entirely rational since it is supported by a mountain of evidence (yes I can dig out references if required).

Personally I am equally skeptical of every theory until they can can be properly evaluated on the basis of evidence.

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Re: Why do people think conspiracy theorist is a synonymous with "irrational person"?

Post by Scott Mayers » Tue Aug 25, 2015 9:47 pm

What I find more significant about the topic of conspiracies is how, where they DO or MAY exist is how most of us "conspire" in ways that are not always a result of direct intent. I've always been interested in how we attend to abuses where we focus on the direct and obvious ones that often result in violence which we can easily witness. Yet, I think we have an equal, if not greater, need to investigate the apparently passive types of abuse, like neglect or ignorance, which are harder to prove because they indirectly harm others with both intent and no intent.

For instance, in economics or politics, for instance, where certain rational justifications exist that enable certain groups or organizations to optimize their benefits with common interest, an unspoken conspiracy can occur by default of the greater loss of any of these to opt NOT to participate. Corporate compassion is an example of this with regards to non-public interests (private). Where some DO try, often any 'sacrifice' some company can try leads to a loss of interest by investors due to the disrespect to the profit motive as a priority to conduct business.

I also see this in even regular social politics of relationships. And I think we do a great service to try to figure out how such apparently indeterminate intentions lead to the hidden abuses that we all participate in to some degree in some area of our lives. I think that it is therefore good to both present and challenge conspiracy theories so that we can figure out how these harder-to-see type of abuses operate.
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Re: Why do people think conspiracy theorist is a synonymous with "irrational person"?

Post by OutOfBreath » Wed Aug 26, 2015 5:57 am

I dunno Scott. I understand what you're driving at, but that's not a conspiracy. That's basic sociology/social psychology about how people function as collectives. All the definitions of conspiracy I've seen contain the word "agreement" which undoubtedly refer to conscious deal-making.

So I dont think there can be such a thing as an "unstated" conspiracy. You're generally talking about politics and social dynamics. Which is a worthy study, but shouldnt be equated with what we usually refer to as conspiracy theories. (Unless as a study of the phenomenon and characteristics of the people expressing belief in them)

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Re: Why do people think conspiracy theorist is a synonymous with "irrational person"?

Post by Scott Mayers » Wed Aug 26, 2015 5:40 pm

OutOfBreath wrote:I dunno Scott. I understand what you're driving at, but that's not a conspiracy. That's basic sociology/social psychology about how people function as collectives. All the definitions of conspiracy I've seen contain the word "agreement" which undoubtedly refer to conscious deal-making.

So I dont think there can be such a thing as an "unstated" conspiracy. You're generally talking about politics and social dynamics. Which is a worthy study, but shouldnt be equated with what we usually refer to as conspiracy theories. (Unless as a study of the phenomenon and characteristics of the people expressing belief in them)

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I understand this. Of course we need to try to attend to those with certain intent to conspire and for those that we find, I don't appreciate. However, I think the ones that lack more certain clarity as to intent drive people with more force to attend to even where they may not exist because in cases where they get more volatile, it is usually due to how most believe we have a right to remain silent when sometimes this silence can be used as a purposeful device to harm others.

Now I strongly support things like what became the Miranda Rights. For those not familiar with this, it is the function of a police to officially alert those they arrest what they are being accused or charged of and assert their right to remain silent so one does not get unduly pressured to speak and have that information bias them without warrant.

In some (many) cases, however, where real intent to harm others exist, it is a necessary function of the 'perpetrator' to use silence as a part of the effective tool-set they use to provide the unsettled state on others to achieve closure. For instance, if you walked into a room where you (a) believed you were welcome among friends, but (b) your 'friends' appear aloof or suddenly silent when you walked into the room, this can lead the person to question the apparent odd nature of their circumstances. Although one may not have perfect justification to accuse others of conspiring and such a scenario could be due to mere chance, it is still nevertheless evident that something may be wrong if it is a personal statistically valid induction from one's experience. But because one's personal experience acts uniquely subjective, to others who may be actually using information they derived from their environment, even without intent, the crowd in the 'know' of such information behaves in sync against others by simply selecting "not to be involved".

One of the reasons I like reality television programs, like The Bachelor/Bachelorette, Survivor, or Big Brother, is because we actually get to directly witness how these kind of things occur. We see, for instance, how some even accidental statement could suggest something about one individual and how this can explode into abuses by others who merely opt not to inform this individual who actually become realistically 'paranoid' when they walk into the room and people all of a sudden stop talking. But this individual is doomed if they should react by asking if something is wrong because it often even accidentally justifies the rumors by merely doing so. And so people begin to even amplify this behavior and isolate the individual more.

You might not think this relates to "conspiracies", but this is precisely the kind of power of this to actually encourage more obvious conspiracies that DO become harmful later on.

I highly recommend for others interested in the social psychology of this to watch one of these programs to see how this type of behavior unfold. In these programs, they use cameras to cover everything and include mandatory "Diary room" discussions which we hear of people's internal interpretations of what is going on in their thought processes in reaction to others. It appears that most internal interpretations of how others feel for them truly are justified about half the time.

The social psychology is that where one (1) locally NEEDS something or at least believes they value something of another with strength, and (2) those they believe they are dependent upon to provide this need is not being supplied when, (3), they witness others within that same group provide supports for one another in contrasting opposition towards them, this state of indeterminacy provides a strong and reasonable conflict within them that actually justifies their paranoia.

In such cases, the "in-group" may only have thought that they behave only to naturally favor their own interests in a positive way, not to impose harm to others negatively. Yet, when such lack of awareness of their roles to behave with bad intent is pointed out by the "out-group" (individual or group of people), the "out-group" responds with more force to reconcile their perspective of conflict in more obvious terms. They might accuse another person or group of 'conspiring'. Then this gets interpreted by the original "in-group" as violent or unusual imposition on them to provide a responds against such accusation to which they don't feel was valid because each independent member cannot perceive their role as intentionally harming others. Then both groups (or individuals) act conspiratorial as this escalates dependent on their own needs to make sense of their differing contradictions of the others.

So this is HIGHLY relevant. For this reason, I'm glad, for instance to see that the software of this site had removed the "thanks" button. While people don't think of a "thanks" as a bad thing, it acts to demonstrate how it may make some feel ganged up on where they lack the same attention they witness from others.
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Re: Why do people think conspiracy theorist is a synonymous with "irrational person"?

Post by Scott Mayers » Wed Aug 26, 2015 6:01 pm

Small example:

When I was a kid, we had a family dog who was getting old. There was three of us kids and yet we were all in our own world such that we each neglected to notice that our pet had disappeared. My mother opted to put her down for health reasons. But none of us noticed she was gone because we each neglected to pay attention. Normally, we presumed that someone else would have been there to take her out for a walk even without our participation. As such, our personal interests didn't posit any intentional harm nor indifference to our family pet.

Only after about a week did we begin to notice what was missing to which my mother informed us of what she decided to do. But I remember how much guilt I felt for not recognizing my role of neglect in caring for her. Our dog was dependent upon us [that NEED] but the spread of responsibility seemed to diminish our concern to think we had any 'fault' not to have noticed.

Neglect works this way by some just as this case. Often, however, such indirect harms are even more extreme. My mother was obviously attentive to this but in many cases, no one would notice when they lack a direct responsibility to help others when such responsibility is dispersed. Like a home pet, some do not recognize that others are literally dependent upon others for their survival. For example, in politics, a country that is land-locked is often dependent upon all the countries that surround them in order to survive. But while each of the other countries may act in their own interest, they lose sight of their own behaviors that collectively do harm to such a country. For instance, it may be the case that each surrounding country optimize their own interest to capitalize on that country's deficiency to have connections to the world by capitalizing on their dependence by charging unusually high costs for the trade of goods going both in and out of that country.

But if that isolated country were to attack one of those boundary countries to provide themselves for a free outlet to the world, they are perceived as being unusually violent even when they were acting in the same interest as those who intentionally or not created their need to respond for their survival.
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Re: Why do people think conspiracy theorist is a synonymous with "irrational person"?

Post by Gawdzilla Sama » Wed Aug 26, 2015 6:09 pm

The confusion would abate somewhat if people used "conspiracy mythology" rather than "conspiracy theory".
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Re: Why do people think conspiracy theorist is a synonymous with "irrational person"?

Post by Scott Mayers » Wed Aug 26, 2015 6:24 pm

By the way, I'm sure that some of you are likely following the shooting of the anchor and camera man by a presumed "disgruntled" employer at this moment. He was just pronounced dead by suicide now.

We don't know all the details yet, but even by the suggestion that the perpetrator of this violence had been previously troubled and even vocalized his concerns and tried to legally challenge being fired from the past due to his belief of discrimination indicates an example of this. While it isn't justified for this guy to have done what he did morally, as others may not have had any direct intent to harm him as he seemed to be thinking, he was apparently interpreted as being 'paranoid' without others being able to see things from his perspective.

It is sad to see this and recognize how everyone, including the perpetrator of this violence, being both innocent and guilty at the same time. Humans are still animals who are necessarily emotional and intellectual at the same time. But I believe if we recognize the 'triggers' of how this behavior occurs, we can begin to find some means to try to resolve these before they escalate. In this guy's case, had others recognized him as at least being sincere and rational, and then attend to him without demonstrating prejudice, we as a society could have a role to try to involve ourselves better. He may have been delusional, but this can also be sincerely non-delusional from his perspective with justice to his needs. As such, by respecting his potential behavior as valid, it might have given him at least a hope knowing that people understood his position but to help him find a different reproach.
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Re: Why do people think conspiracy theorist is a synonymous with "irrational person"?

Post by Scott Mayers » Wed Aug 26, 2015 6:32 pm

Gawdzilla Sama wrote:The confusion would abate somewhat if people used "conspiracy mythology" rather than "conspiracy theory".
True. Yet what if one is accused of having a myth if they inferred this 'real' by their perspective with justice if we could put ourselves in their shoes? If we call someone's belief as ''myth", this alone acts to pre-define them as being nuts and only aids to isolate them (either as an individual or some group). So we have to be cautious not to add force to their beliefs by diminishing them off hand.
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Re: Why do people think conspiracy theorist is a synonymous with "irrational person"?

Post by Gawdzilla Sama » Wed Aug 26, 2015 6:50 pm

Scott Mayers wrote:
Gawdzilla Sama wrote:The confusion would abate somewhat if people used "conspiracy mythology" rather than "conspiracy theory".
True. Yet what if one is accused of having a myth if they inferred this 'real' by their perspective with justice if we could put ourselves in their shoes? If we call someone's belief as ''myth", this alone acts to pre-define them as being nuts and only aids to isolate them (either as an individual or some group). So we have to be cautious not to add force to their beliefs by diminishing them off hand.
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Re: Why do people think conspiracy theorist is a synonymous with "irrational person"?

Post by Scott Mayers » Wed Aug 26, 2015 7:27 pm

Gawdzilla Sama wrote:
Scott Mayers wrote:
Gawdzilla Sama wrote:The confusion would abate somewhat if people used "conspiracy mythology" rather than "conspiracy theory".
True. Yet what if one is accused of having a myth if they inferred this 'real' by their perspective with justice if we could put ourselves in their shoes? If we call someone's belief as ''myth", this alone acts to pre-define them as being nuts and only aids to isolate them (either as an individual or some group). So we have to be cautious not to add force to their beliefs by diminishing them off hand.
Gods are myths. I'm not concerned with what the True Believers in either camp finds acceptable.
I share this with you. But realistically, I know that even this acts to diminish what others believe based on more complex issues that derive their beliefs. As a point to this, I've had to lose my own contact with family because they don't welcome my own skepticism of their own beliefs in God or religious-like beliefs. [especially with respect to how they opt to treat me in ways I don't approve of] I see them as supporting views that actually act abusively either directly or indirectly through such beliefs. In one sense I 'understand' them by their nature as animals to prefer comforts emotionally over intelligence. I still do not agree to their behavior but have only fostered their interpretation of me as being 'negative' by accident of being realistic instead.

I am at a loss at what to do or say to my family members as they opt to continue to neglect my concerns. But my own understanding of this at least helps me feel confident and validated in my own views without prejudice. It doesn't prevent me from not liking how I may be treated. But I know that my own recognition of this is what also allows me to also recognize that the best thing I can do is to not fuel my own need for their support by attending to other things that I can do something about. By focusing on trying to convince them of anything different, I only defeat myself by the very investment in them that can only end up creating further frustration in myself for continued and inevitable failure.

If people had recognition alone of what I'm saying, others who DO also share similar frustrations can be both validated and opt to attend to those things that they can actually be more successful with.
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Re: Why do people think conspiracy theorist is a synonymous with "irrational person"?

Post by Gawdzilla Sama » Wed Aug 26, 2015 7:32 pm

The use of the word "theory" makes CTers think they have a credible case. That's why I prefer "mythology". YMMV
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Re: Why do people think conspiracy theorist is a synonymous with "irrational person"?

Post by Scott Mayers » Wed Aug 26, 2015 7:53 pm

Gawdzilla Sama wrote:The use of the word "theory" makes CTers think they have a credible case. That's why I prefer "mythology". YMMV
For you, this interpretation may appear justified. However, by merely labeling them as such, you pre-define what you'll attend to or how you treat them. Since some of them may actually have a logical rationale even while being unable to communicate it, we have the advantage to help them by not diminishing them up front. Instead, we can opt to listen and try to understand things from their perspective in order to discover where they are either 'wrong' to themselves OR to help them decide to find some alternative means should they actually be sincere from their understanding their perspective as at least 'real' (regardless of being 'right' or 'wrong').
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Re: Why do people think conspiracy theorist is a synonymous with "irrational person"?

Post by Gawdzilla Sama » Wed Aug 26, 2015 8:11 pm

That's your view, and that's fine. However, that's how I DO treat them, so sounds like we're on the same page.
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Re: Why do people think conspiracy theorist is a synonymous with "irrational person"?

Post by Scott Mayers » Wed Aug 26, 2015 8:40 pm

Gawdzilla Sama wrote:That's your view, and that's fine. However, that's how I DO treat them, so sounds like we're on the same page.
But do you not recognize your own accountability to how others may interpret you in defiance of them to act with only more force to defy? As extremes, you can either opt to challenge others directly but disrespecting their human nature to be blunt and insult them OR oppositely you can ignore them. Both extremes don't help but only foster more abuses in some way. I DO respect your direct approach over ignoring though. At least one can own their view by speaking with such clarity and others can be able to fairly address it. But if taken too far without respecting a balanced approach, this might only give others justified fuel to not fix things with fairness but to act in equal but opposing kind.

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Re: Why do people think conspiracy theorist is a synonymous with "irrational person"?

Post by Gawdzilla Sama » Wed Aug 26, 2015 8:41 pm

I'm not interested in the feelings of the CTers, I want the fence sitters to think about what they're reading.
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Re: Why do people think conspiracy theorist is a synonymous with "irrational person"?

Post by Scott Mayers » Wed Aug 26, 2015 8:56 pm

Gawdzilla Sama wrote:I'm not interested in the feelings of the CTers, I want the fence sitters to think about what they're reading.
Then I assure you that it will only foster more CTers to persist which defeats your intention (unless your intention is precisely to foster your need for it if only to justify your own participation). This can come across as an incentive for CTers to accuse you of being a function of the very kinds of conspiracy they suggest. Is your right to entertain your honesty as an individual not disrespecting your accountability to others if you default to assuming them just as being dishonest up front?
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Re: Why do people think conspiracy theorist is a synonymous with "irrational person"?

Post by Gawdzilla Sama » Wed Aug 26, 2015 9:01 pm

One more time, I don't care what the CTers say.
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Re: Why do people think conspiracy theorist is a synonymous with "irrational person"?

Post by Scott Mayers » Wed Aug 26, 2015 9:10 pm

Gawdzilla Sama wrote:One more time, I don't care what the CTers say.
Then why do you bother speaking at all and instead do something you DO care about elsewhere? I don't believe your claim to not care. Otherwise it suggests only that you're acting only out of some need to speak out of some kind of boredom.
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Re: Why do people think conspiracy theorist is a synonymous with "irrational person"?

Post by Gawdzilla Sama » Wed Aug 26, 2015 9:13 pm

I've been dealing with conspiracy mythology for fifty years now. I'll continue doing what I've been doing where the {!#%@} I please to do it.
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Re: Why do people think conspiracy theorist is a synonymous with "irrational person"?

Post by Scott Mayers » Wed Aug 26, 2015 9:35 pm

Gawdzilla Sama wrote:I've been dealing with conspiracy mythology for fifty years now. I'll continue doing what I've been doing where the {!#%@} I please to do it.
Maybe your own belief then is only at least a mythical conspiracy against conspiracy mythology (conspiracies that don't actually exist!)
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Re: Why do people think conspiracy theorist is a synonymous with "irrational person"?

Post by Gawdzilla Sama » Wed Aug 26, 2015 9:45 pm

Scott Mayers wrote:
Gawdzilla Sama wrote:I've been dealing with conspiracy mythology for fifty years now. I'll continue doing what I've been doing where the {!#%@} I please to do it.
Maybe your own belief then is only at least a mythical conspiracy against conspiracy mythology (conspiracies that don't actually exist!)
Can you read?
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Re: Why do people think conspiracy theorist is a synonymous with "irrational person"?

Post by Matthew Ellard » Thu Aug 27, 2015 1:46 am

djembeweaver wrote:Personally, I tend to think a word or expression gets its conotation by the use people give to it, a dynamic process hardly manageable by the CIA or "intentional". That's something a "real" "conspiracy theorist" would say, I guess."
This is a legitimate academic discipline. The semantic meanings of words and expressions, divided along ethnic and cultural populations is best described by the Sapir-Whorf Hypothesis which is now called Linguistic Relativity

I agree that no single organisation can manage the meaning of words in a culture. George Orwell explores this in Newspeak in "1984". Have you read this book and the linguistic discussion at the end on Newspeak?
djembeweaver wrote: I wasn't suggesting that the CIA had absolute control over the usage but it does seem to be the case that the expression came into popular parlance after the Warren commission and the CIA played a big part in that.
Considering "conspiracy" had its same meaning in Medieval French, the CIA has nothing to do with defining it's meaning 400 years later.
http://www.etymonline.com/index.php?term=conspiracy
djembeweaver wrote:It is now a matter of public record that the CIAs Bin Laden unit (Alec station) were tracking several of the 9/11 hijackers in the USA prior to the hijackings and that they actively blocked the sharing of this information with the FBI.
That's great but other countries were independently hunting down Bin Laden and as the CIA was too close to Pakistan's ISI, they were not telling the Americans anything. ("friendly leaks") Yet the historic independent intelligence assessments all coincide.

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Re: Why do people think conspiracy theorist is a synonymous with "irrational person"?

Post by Matthew Ellard » Thu Aug 27, 2015 1:52 am

Gawdzilla Sama wrote:I'm not interested in the feelings of the CTers, I want the fence sitters to think about what they're reading.
Yep. You can't change the "mentally challenged" You can only hope to educate the rest of the population, so they can accurately assess the propaganda released by the mentally challenged, by using critical thinking.

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Re: Why do people think conspiracy theorist is a synonymous with "irrational person"?

Post by Gord » Thu Aug 27, 2015 2:56 am

Gawdzilla Sama wrote:The confusion would abate somewhat if people used "conspiracy mythology" rather than "conspiracy theory".
How about "conspiracy conspiracies"? That seems to be what they amount to: a bunch of people creating the mythology of a conspiracy, then spreading it around for malicious reasons while fighting to prevent it from becoming known that they had just made it all up for their own benefit.
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Re: Why do people think conspiracy theorist is a synonymous with "irrational person"?

Post by djembeweaver » Thu Aug 27, 2015 11:05 am

Matthew Ellard wrote:
djembeweaver wrote:Personally, I tend to think a word or expression gets its conotation by the use people give to it, a dynamic process hardly manageable by the CIA or "intentional". That's something a "real" "conspiracy theorist" would say, I guess."
This is a legitimate academic discipline. The semantic meanings of words and expressions, divided along ethnic and cultural populations is best described by the Sapir-Whorf Hypothesis which is now called Linguistic Relativity

I agree that no single organisation can manage the meaning of words in a culture. George Orwell explores this in Newspeak in "1984". Have you read this book and the linguistic discussion at the end on Newspeak?
djembeweaver wrote: I wasn't suggesting that the CIA had absolute control over the usage but it does seem to be the case that the expression came into popular parlance after the Warren commission and the CIA played a big part in that.
Considering "conspiracy" had its same meaning in Medieval French, the CIA has nothing to do with defining it's meaning 400 years later.
http://www.etymonline.com/index.php?term=conspiracy
djembeweaver wrote:It is now a matter of public record that the CIAs Bin Laden unit (Alec station) were tracking several of the 9/11 hijackers in the USA prior to the hijackings and that they actively blocked the sharing of this information with the FBI.
That's great but other countries were independently hunting down Bin Laden and as the CIA was too close to Pakistan's ISI, they were not telling the Americans anything. ("friendly leaks") Yet the historic independent intelligence assessments all coincide.
Of course the CIA had nothing to do with defining the meaning of the term 'conspiracy'. The term 'conspiracy theorist' as a pejorative term, however, came into popular parlance after the Warren commission and I am merely suggesting that the CIA used that to discredit their detractors.

Not sure what your point about the ISI is meant to imply. I was simply pointing out that some of the 'theories' that get lumped together and called 'conspiracy theories' turn out to be true conspiracies...

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Re: Why do people think conspiracy theorist is a synonymous with "irrational person"?

Post by Gawdzilla Sama » Thu Aug 27, 2015 11:15 am

Gord wrote:
Gawdzilla Sama wrote:The confusion would abate somewhat if people used "conspiracy mythology" rather than "conspiracy theory".
How about "conspiracy conspiracies"? That seems to be what they amount to: a bunch of people creating the mythology of a conspiracy, then spreading it around for malicious reasons while fighting to prevent it from becoming known that they had just made it all up for their own benefit.
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Re: Why do people think conspiracy theorist is a synonymous with "irrational person"?

Post by Gawdzilla Sama » Thu Aug 27, 2015 11:17 am

Matthew Ellard wrote:
Gawdzilla Sama wrote:I'm not interested in the feelings of the CTers, I want the fence sitters to think about what they're reading.
Yep. You can't change the "mentally challenged" You can only hope to educate the rest of the population, so they can accurately assess the propaganda released by the mentally challenged, by using critical thinking.
And that, again, is where conspiracy mythology is the clearly better term. I know the nut cases won't get it, and I don't care if they're offended. But the fence sitters need to know that there is mythology in the CTers agenda.
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Re: Why do people think conspiracy theorist is a synonymous with "irrational person"?

Post by Gord » Thu Aug 27, 2015 11:11 pm

Gawdzilla Sama wrote:
Gord wrote:
Gawdzilla Sama wrote:The confusion would abate somewhat if people used "conspiracy mythology" rather than "conspiracy theory".
How about "conspiracy conspiracies"? That seems to be what they amount to: a bunch of people creating the mythology of a conspiracy, then spreading it around for malicious reasons while fighting to prevent it from becoming known that they had just made it all up for their own benefit.
Thy own hoops thou shall jumpeth thru if thee hast sore need of avoidance of offense. For verily, the {!#%@} I giveth not are legion.
I disagree! :shakefist:
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Re: Why do people think conspiracy theorist is a synonymous with "irrational person"?

Post by Matthew Ellard » Thu Aug 27, 2015 11:29 pm

djembeweaver wrote: The term 'conspiracy theorist' as a pejorative term, however, came into popular parlance after the Warren commission and I am merely suggesting that the CIA used that to discredit their detractors.
Not in the intelligence services. The "conspiracy theorists" (analysts) are the ones that come up with the hypothesis that boys and girls have to go out into the field or some econometric assessment performed, to see if the theory has any merit. Otherwise the services would only be reactive, which is a bad thing.

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Re: Why do people think conspiracy theorist is a synonymous with "irrational person"?

Post by gorgeous » Fri Aug 28, 2015 2:02 am

the t.v. anchor shooting is a hoax...fake crying by all with no tears....going on and on and on about the tragic engaged couple---the most amazing couple ever...the dad of the woman and the fiancé needing to be on every single channel giving their prepared speeches about this most amazing woman and how they met over and over and over, the fiancé said he posted on facebook his undying love soon after he heard the news....yeah...that's normal...talking about gun control again and again, asking for money for a memorial fund...yeahhh normal behavior after such a tragedy....
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Re: Why do people think conspiracy theorist is a synonymous with "irrational person"?

Post by scrmbldggs » Fri Aug 28, 2015 2:13 am

/end thread


I guess that last post answered the OP quite adequately...
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Re: Why do people think conspiracy theorist is a synonymous with "irrational person"?

Post by gorgeous » Fri Aug 28, 2015 2:35 am

fake shooting evidence -----
Science Fundamentalism...is exactly what happens when there’s a significant, perceived ideological threat to one’s traditions and identity.