Slate: Conspiracy Theorists Aren’t Really Skeptics

Mick West

Staff member
Interesting article:

The article contains a number of interesting links, one in particulars is an obscure blog on the psychology of Conspiracy Theories:

Which links to an magazine for psychology postgraduates in the UK that devoted an issue to conspiracy theories:

People who are actually conspiracy theorists would probably see all this as simply part of the conspiracy - an attempt to belittle their concerns, and label them as mentally ill. This kind of interpretation is a significant problem in achieving constructive conversation with such people.


Active Member
There's a number of things at work too. I keep saying they have an unequal standard of evidence. Government agencies and actual experts are spurned for someone from somewhere who heard from someone else that it happened. Or to take a page out of Wild Bill Cooper's book, they "saw" top secret documents, but didn't have the presence of mind to take pics of them. Their tenuous evidence trumps mounds of other evidence.

Joe Newman

Active Member
People who are actually conspiracy theorists would probably see all this as simply part of the conspiracy - an attempt to belittle their concerns, and label them as mentally ill. This kind of interpretation is a significant problem in achieving constructive conversation with such people.

I am all for constructive conversation, so here's to having one, as I found this excerpt as well as the article to contain a good deal of bunk.

I found this statement of yours in a different thread:
The point is I don't trust the government, or corporations, or rich people. And I don't think everything is fine.

I am in full agreement. The only difference I can see is that in global terms, I lean towards the conspiracy model of history while you and the majority of folks here favor the coincidence model.
The assumption here is that this is somehow beyond the pale, but what is that assumption based upon?
Ok. Why is it so hard to believe that an operation of this size cannot exist? Is there anything involved in the specs that is beyond our present technical capacity? Is it strictly an either/or choice re planes or explosives? Is there a sound reason why it couldn't be both?

Regardless of how one views that aspect, it has no bearing on whether it was planned or allowed to happen.
I assume most people in all those agencies were deceived.
I can't speak for anyone else, but given the two options laid out, I am skeptical because I find it far, far more absurd to believe that all those agencies involved in the US and abroad are so riddled with incompetence as to be completely caught off guard, allowing events of this magnitude to happen.

I'm skeptical because I cannot fathom a system so dysfunctional that all the clues and weirdness re the various suspicious events leading up to that day were completely missed or that all the folks pointing to them were lying or mistaken or whatever excuse is used to brush that aspect aside.

I'm skeptical because I find it far more absurd to believe that events of this magnitude "just happen."
This is just overgeneralized poorly reasoned mush. Am I the only one who notices that it says that not only are cters not skeptics, but neither are you debunkers ("the rest of us")?

Regardless, whatever one believes about the elites in power, and I certainly don't believe they are omnipotent, it is not exclusive to the other aspects of one's worldview.
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