Tag Archives: Conspiracy Theories

What Is The Point Of A Conspiracy?

What Makes A Believeable Conspiracy Theory?

In my last post, I wrote about Conspiracy Theory Plots and how these are structured. But I also asked, “are Conspiracy Plots and Conspiracy Theories for real?” As a bit of a conspiracy theorist myself, I like to think they are – at least some of them anyhow. But I am also a realist and I know that there are many people who want to believe conspiracy theories just because they are conspiracies. I also know that Conspiracy Theories themselves, can be set up as ‘diversions’ to take our minds away from the real conspiracy.

So where do we go from here? Is there any way to tell whether a Conspiracy Theory is based on actual facts? And if so, are those ‘facts’ correct?

I tend to take a simple view – Motivation. I look for what our so-called ‘Villain’ wants to get out of his conspiracy. What does he want to achieve through his dastardly plans? What motivates the leader of a conspiracy?

  • Religion: Many of the best conspiracy theories are based on the premise that a group of people with particular beliefs (and often particular needs…) insist that everyone in the world should follow their path. Look at one of the most popular conspiracy theories doing the rounds at the moment – Zeitgeist. The first part infuriated Christians by the thousands. Many of them were so incensed with the premise of Religious Conspiracy (in this case, that Christianity was a re-hash of earlier religions) they failed to look at the rest of the movie, and see it was also about…
  • Greed: Karl Marx’s Das Kapital was considered by many to be an illusion of a Capitalist Conspiracy to take over the World. I wonder how many people feel the same way now…
  • Self-Protection: It is not hard to imagine that a country, race, or social group who have experienced dreadful wrongs in the past would want to take power to protect themselves from further attack. When you look at how Jews and Arabs have suffered in their history, it is not hard to take this one step further and build up a conspiracy theory that these people (not together of course) would want to take control, to put right past wrongs. It could be argued that is this the basis of many false conspiracy theories, set up by a coalition of government and media moguls, to keep us all scared.
  • Madness: Many claim Adolph Hitler was mad (although others do not agree). They argue that his plans to Rule The World were not based on reason, but on a psychological flaw in his character. Those who helped him with his goal followed out of greed or fear of reprisal if they did not. Others say that Hitler’s plan to take over the world was based on an extended definition of fascist politics and carried forward with such force because of his…
  • Ego Mania: The Ego Maniac may not be mad, but it would not be hard to tip him that way. He or she has an unshakeable belief that they are right and others are wrong. Therefore they must take power, to ensure that ‘right wins out’. The ego maniac will fit into any of the above groups.

All of the above groups appear to have Motivation To Rule The World (or a large part of it). To Take Power.

But what happens if the motivations get mixed up?

Is Zeitgeist A Believable Conspiracy Theory?

I’m thinking particularly of the movie Zeitgeist. Moving forward from the debate on Religious Conspiracy, which I have no problem with, the remainder of the argument is based around taking power via financial, psychological and physical control. Shutting out whole communites from participating in society at large, controlling us all by taking over financial exchange, and, for good measure, microchipping us all to control our actions. And the conclusion is, that we will be so brainwashed with fear by this time, that whole populations will ask their governments to do this for them.

The way things are going in the developed World, it isn’t hard to believe any of this.

But I have to ask myself “What is the Point?” Who exactly is behind this massive conpiracy? What exactly is their motive?

Is it pure greed? Ego Mania? Madness? What Exactly Is Behind The Conspiracy That Is Outline In Zeitgeist?

The film producer has not come up with a coherent answer; just a mesh of other conspiracy theories. And, although many of these theories do make sense, the mix of them here does not. I wish it did, because the gut reaction I get from Zeitgeist is that it is more likely to be right than wrong, but this grand scheme to grab complete power and domination doesn’t, for me, show the real concise underlying motivation behind the conspiracy plot. It just throws different models into the mix.

And I have to know What Truly Motivates A Conspiracy in order to take the step towards believing it.

With Zeitgeist, I am more inclined to ask what was the motivation behind making the film itself? The producer claims it is just to make us ‘question the truth’.

But this applies to Zeitgeist too. Shouldn’t we be asking who produced the film and what their motive was? Could Zeitgeist, compelling as it is, be another false conspiracy to turn us off our tracks and hide a much better organised plot?

Conspiracy Theory Plots

How A Conspiracy Theory Works

I love a good Conspiracy Theory. Some of them even turn out to be true, and I like dissecting them all; just to see if the scenario they propose is viable.

A Conspiracy Theory contains a Simple Plot:

The ‘villain’, who wants to achieve power of some description and will do anything to get it. He, or she, will have to lie, cheat, steal and bribe other villains.

A problem for The Villain is that most of the free World believes in some form of Democracy. People believe that their freedom/political thoughts/homes/families/right to live… are sacred. Our societies are also extremely complex. Therefore our villain has to devise a cunning and complex plan.

The villain will seek to control our minds. The best way is to do this by fear, but he will need help to achieve this.

Therefore, the villain will aquire Allies: those who are also greedy for power (or just plain greedy), but are not quite as capable of rising to the top of the pile as our villain.

The Allies will use their various skills, contacts and political/financial strength to manipulate society. This will usually involve Setting Up a False Scenario in order to fool the people and make them afraid of losing the things they hold dear.

And, as “you can’t fool all of the people all of the time” (Abraham Lincoln Quotes), this scenario, or plot, will have it’s sceptics and investigators. So the Conspiracy Plot has to be extremely complex, with many twists and turns, so that anyone who investigates will be the continually sent down the wrong path to a dead end.

The Conspiracy Plot Will Involve:

  • A Crisis: This will involve a threat to ‘everything we hold dear’. The ‘everything’ will depend upon the group the crisis is targetted at.
  • A villain, or group of villains of the Allies’ making (for clarity, we will call them ‘scapegoats‘…) who are Causing The Crisis.
  • A ‘Hero’ (or group of ‘heroes’) who will make it their live’s purpose to thwart the scapegoats.
  • The Crisis will remain in place for a long time, because the scapegoats will be strong and cunning. They will be hard to beat. But beat them we must ‘for the safety of the (particular) society we hold dear’.
  • It will be as well to make the Crisis as long and drawn out as possible, with the ‘Allies’ constantly finding new ways to demonstrate to the people they still need the ‘heroes’ to fight for them. To ‘keep them safe’.
  • Because, once the crisis is resolved and all the scapegoats are thwarted, the people may wonder why they still need the rules set in place ‘to protect them’.

From time to time, new Rivals will emerge who want to overthrow our Villain. These will be True Rivals, rather than the scapegoats set up by the Allies. The Rivals will sometimes be as cunning as our Villain and it will take all his Allies’ resources to beat them.

New Rivals will involve a new set of complex plans and new plots to fool the people. Some Villains will win this round and others will fail. Some will lose their Allies to the opposition.

Either way, the people will still be left with a Villain in charge and new Conspiracy Plots to deal with.

And that’s why I love Conspiracy Plots. They read like a good thriller. But this thriller can be serialised in many parts.

But are Conspiracy Plots and Conspiracy Theories for real? I’ll look at that next time.