Why Rational People Buy Into Conspiracy Theories?
Honestly, I think people who believe in the more wacky conspiracy theories are or were brainwashed just like someone is when they are becoming one of Jehovah's Witnesses. They probably grew into only believing one source of the information because either they cannot understand a certain source or strongly refuse to believe another source because of some personal or deep issues. Therefore, they are closed into a one-sided circle that continues to make more and more sense the more they are engaged in it.
littlerockguy: Interesting article.
I think there are a few keys to this. One is the feeling of superiority. Knowing what other people don't know. Some people just love to feel superior to others.
Also there is the delusion of thinking there is some sort of control over everything that happens. I heard people giving off comments about the attack in Paris being a "hoax" after only an hour when no official story on it had even come out. Maybe it's a feeling of security knowing there is a secret meaning behind all of this stuff and there aren't crazy people who would just go out and murder people.
To answer your question on 911 conspiracy stuff......being one who doesn't believe the official story, here are a few reasons I don't. The reason I believe in any as well are because looking at more facts than most have looked into, many things don't add up. I called the Ahmed hoax the day I saw the news, and when nobody was questioning anything, not because I desired anything but things didn't add up. With 911, things really don't add up! Here are a few examples.
1. The Pentagon
A. Out of all the security, only 1 cam that doesn't really show anything.
B. The pictures and video right after impact before it collapsed showed a circular hole with intact undamaged windows on both sides. No wings were detached at any point, and no wing damage hitting the building, as if the airplane was a rocket instead. If an airplane with a huge wingspan crashes into a building, I expect either damage w/ the wings going through teh building as well or the wings on the ground. Not a tiny hole with no surrounding damage.
2. PA flight
A. Looking at plane crashes, tons of debris, etc, everywhere. Yet the whole plane and all bodies just vaporized? Didn't at all look like a plane crash site.
3. WTC 7 - no airplane or anything hit this building, yet you can see in the video, it just imploded. A fire on the top floor of a skyscrapper. That day those 3 buildings went down just from fire. Yet everywhere else in the world and other times in USA w/ fires they won't take a building down, need a controlled demolitian. Also rocket fuel won't melt steel. Pictures of molten steel and metal from the trade towers, looking just like thermite went through them.
4. Immediately after this, the anthrax scare. Which was traced to a government facility. The person supposedly responsible ended up dead before could be questioned and "case closed, nothing else to see here, move along."
So are some of the major ones for me but there are a TON more things too! No idea why it would have happened, motive, etc, but I think there is a lot more to it then has ever and will ever be told. Looking back since then the only thing I can possibly think would be war mongering and profiteers. The 500+ billion a year. So far the military industrial complex has made a lot of money off it.
Anyway whether inside job or more to the story or not, it won't change my life so I don't waste time thinking about it since my initial research.
The thing is, when you call someone who believes a conspiracy theory a whack job, or some other negative pejorative, and say they do it to feel superior, I think you could be the pot calling the kettle black and your missing the point.
Is everyone that believes in a conspiracy theory crazy? Is everyone that believes a conspiracy theory totally unreasonable and unwilling to discuss alternate points of view? How many and which ones are reasonable to believe in and what are not? If you say you don't believe in any conspiracy theories, are you being reasonable?
Take for example, 9-11. Obviously the official story is a conspiracy, since it involved people working together and conspiring to do those things. Has the official story been proven beyond a shadow of a doubt? if you say you believe it happened just the way the government says it happened, you do believe in a conspiracy theory...it's just that you believe the official version and are therefore accepted by polite society.
It seems like you could safely say that that the Queen of England is not a blood-thirsty reptilian and that a person that believes the David Icke stuff might need more education or a shot of Haldol, but can you say for total certainty that there have never been any false flag incidents in the history of the U.S.? Or that corporate interests don't influence politics or hide egregious actions? That billionaires don't collude for their own interests? Or that the NSA always has our best interests at heart? That the people in charge always follow the rule of law and put the national interests first?
Going along with the party line all the time could be just as unreasonable sometimes as some of the more crazy theories out there. I think you always need to use your critical thinking skills. All through history,there are plenty of examples of people buying the political propaganda to their detriment.
Why do rational people buy Into conspiracy theories? Maybe they feel that someone else has control of their lives. And it's always sinister in nature not benign like aliens conspiring to make us happier in life or give us immortality.
It takes a certain level of intelligence and an ability to realize that more than one element is involved in producing any outcome. It also takes a certain level of patience and willingness to realize we do not understand everything, much less directly control everything, and that a certain degree of stochastic processes assist in determining any outcome. Conspiracy theorists tend to look for overly simplistic, causative reasons for particular outcomes. This type of thinking is almost always wrong, as the universe is not that simple.
Unfortunately, our culture enables, encourages and rewards this type of thinking. We often hear about the merits of the KISS principle, for example. What we almost never hear, is the other side of what is required for "keeping it simple", to actually work. Answers need to be complete enough to explain all possible observed aspects of any outcome. If they are too simple, facts either get ignored or purposely left out due to cognitive biases. Conspiracy theories always lack explanation for at least some parts of any outcome.
I haven't read the article but I think it's a question of scale. Is it simple suspicion of the media and politicians.....or is it that oddball stuff about the Royal family being lizard monsters or whatever.
I have suspicions about why the media feeds us certain stuff but not others....there's an agenda there....possibly money.
As for fake moon landings and hidden planets...sorry, I don't subscribe to that stuff.
In any case, how would any of it impact on my life? Not much...........unless a radioactive lizard monster from Buckingham palace eats me.
adjusted knowledge (Q) "Why do rational people buy in to conspiracy theories?"
The Rebel ;-
A) Conspircay theorists exist because things should be questioned.
B) Because many conspiracy theories are later proven not insane noncence but actually true.
When Charles Tate Russell founded this " W.T" organisation, his motives were subject to much controversy. So why was he allowed to create this evil organisation? Because the people that questioned him and said he was a fraud were not taken seriously. So why should sincere people not question the moon landing and everything?
Such questioning should not be a subject of ridicule. Hard SOLID FACTS should proove a conspiracy theory is without foundation. And nothing less.