by Mad Dog
The big problem
with conspiracy theories is that they assume a huge number of people can
work together and keep their mouths shut, neither of which is usually
||We all love a good
conspiracy theory. It doesnít matter whether itís Lyndon Johnson,
the Mafia, and the CIA conspiring to assassinate Kennedy ó or was that
Martin Luther King they knocked off? ó or virtually everyone who works
for the government refusing to let on that there are aliens stashed in a
walk-in refrigerator in the Senate kitchen right next to a huge vat of
bean soup, itís easy to find someone who believes so intensely that
you know they consider The X-Files to be a reality TV show. And
watch reruns over and over hoping the ending will change and the
conspiracy will become known for the true fact it is.
These are certainly prime times for
conspiracies. The CIA plotted the 9/11 World Trade Center attack in
order to boost the Presidentís popularity rating and give him an
excuse to avenge ďthe guy who tried to kill my dad.Ē Bill Clinton
still insists that a vast right-wing conspiracy was behind the attack on
his west wing. And according to my friend Peter, the World Bank is
behind both of those. And more. Much more.
The big problem with conspiracy
theories is that they assume a huge number of people can work together
and keep their mouths shut, neither of which is usually the case. Tell
someone a secret ó anyone ó and see how long it takes before you
hear it from someone else. Your best friend can be sworn to secrecy, yet
not be able to resist telling every person they run into that some
nights you stay at home, put on a wig, and stand in front of the mirror
imitating Cher while wearing only your underwear, but somehow you still
manage to believe that the thousands of people it took to make it appear
that we actually landed on the moon have been able to keep their
collective mouths shut for the past 30 years. Hah!
The second problem
is that the truth behind conspiracies are known by only a few chosen
people, which isnít to be confused with the Chosen People, who
everyone knows own all the banks. Or at least thatís the theory.
This doesnít mean conspiracies arenít happening, it just
means there canít be many people behind them. Thatís right,
theyíre all being perpetrated by the same small group of people. Thus
we have the Grand Unified Conspiracy Theory, which is much like the
theory of a similar name that physicists keep trying to cobble together,
a feat that isnít being made any easier by Stephen Hawking changing
his mind on key issues such as whether black holes come in different
colors so you can wear them after Easter and before Labor Day without
the neighbors laughing at you.
There are definite commonalities to
conspiracies. First and foremost, theyíre theories. I canít remember
ever hearing about a conspiracy law other than the ones passed by
Congress, and you know theyíre a conspiracy since getting Congress to
agree on anything other than it being time to recess requires a
conspiracy. Or an act of Congress. Iím sure every conspiracy nut ó I
mean, expert óout there will correct me, but I canít think of a
single instance of a conspiracy theory turning into a conspiracy fact.
You know, one we can call verified because it was featured in the New
York Times, has its own entry in the Encyclopedia Britannica,
or has been dropped from the approved-to-talk-about list on Art Bellís
radio show. Conspiracy theories are fiction based on a true story hoping
to one day be moved to the nonfiction shelf.
The second problem is that the truth
behind conspiracies are known by only a few chosen people, which isnít
to be confused with the Chosen People, who everyone knows own all the
banks. Or at least thatís the theory. Conspiracies arenít common
knowledge, if they are theyíre more likely to be found filed under
urban legend. Conspiracies are flexible, able to mutate with every
rebuttal, and improvable, hence the theory part once again.
I want to know whoís behind the conspiracy to make
the Scott Peterson trial a world-class snoozefest. Itís got all the
makings of an exciting trial ó murder, marital infidelity, Lady
Clairol ó but itís more boring than watching a parking meter
can be good business. Oliver Stone has done pretty well with them. So
has Michael Moore. There are a slew of Web sites about them, my favorite
which has information on over 1,500 conspiracy theories, a big alien and
UFO section, photographs and movies, and even a Conspiracy of the Week.
According to their Web site ďIt appears that Yahoo have, with no
warning or explanation, and after several years of service, terminated
our Yahoo Groups mailing list. We have no idea why.Ē Uh, could it
Their Top-10 list of conspiracy
articles includes an analysis of the Zapruder JFK assassination film
(yawn), a discussion about whether Kurt Cobain was murdered (double
yawn), and an article about supermarket ďclubĒ cards (zzzzzzzzzz).
Iím not sure where the conspiracy is with the last one unless itís a
conspiracy to help us save money. Mulder help us.
We really need to come up with some
newer, more interesting conspiracies. For example, I want to know
whoís behind the conspiracy to make the Scott Peterson trial a
world-class snoozefest. Itís got all the makings of an exciting trial
ó murder, marital infidelity, Lady Clairol ó but itís more boring
than watching a parking meter expire. Iíd like to find out whoís
behind the conspiracy to deny me press credentials for the Democratic or
Republican conventions. Sure I was late getting my applications in, but
so what? I also want to know whoís conspiring not to create anything
interesting to watch on TV. Iím tired of flipping through hundreds of
channels and ending up watching the Prevue Guide because itís more
entertaining than anything else on. And most of all, I want to know
whoís behind not giving me these answers. Itís a conspiracy, I tell
©2004 Mad Dog
Productions, Inc. All Rights Reserved.
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