Lionel’s Tutorials: The Dread Conspiracy Theory

No one uses tin foil, we strictly prefer aluminum. Or aluminium, to my UK’ers. This is precisely the meme. This is exactly what the term conspiracy theory connotes or, more precisely, is designed to connote. It’s designed to refer to the paranoid and delusional, the pathologically frightened and unrealistically suspect, the psychologically disenfranchised. The loon, the nut, the emotional outlier. Wikipedia, as it does so unbelievably often, provides this fascinating review of the term.

Hoosegows are packed with conspirators. The term refers to cognizable law, a law that has resulted in scores of Americans arrested and incarcerated for a host of crimes they’ve conspired to commit. It’s been hijacked by the meme masters to spin and confuse. From the same guys who refer to illegal immigrants as refugees. Freedom fighters versus terrorists. Illegally seized foreigners as enemy combatants.

But first, a word about the term’s juridical and historical antecedents.

If two or more persons conspire either to commit any offense against the United States, or to defraud the United States, or any agency thereof in any manner or for any purpose, and one or more of such persons do any act to effect the object of the conspiracy, each shall be fined under this title or imprisoned not more than five years, or both. [18 U.S. Code § 371 – Conspiracy to commit offense or to defraud United States]

See, there are conspiracies that government repeatedly imprison for. But that’s not what we’re talking about.

Nonpareil brilliance. None other than one of my heroes Gore Vidal said inter alia the following on the dread conspiracy. I quote him incessantly and watch his YouTube masterpieces most often. Along with Carlin and Bill Hicks, we often mistook their entertainment factor as a disqualifier for prophet. Why? Because we conflate entertainment with frivolous irrelevance. I’ve always said that the editorial cartoon often speaks louder than the editorial. Word.

  • “Apparently, ‘conspiracy stuff’ is now shorthand for unspeakable truth.” [Source]
  • “It is an article of faith that there are no conspiracies in American life.” [Source]
  • “I’m not a conspiracy theorist—I’m a conspiracy analyst,” [Source]

The 10 minute tutorial. It’s critical that youre aware of the ploy and argument technique to lump and mischaracterize political reality as the red herring conspiracy theory. Funny, isn’t it, that gross incompetence is far more preferred as an explanation than the truth.

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