Why more highly educated people are less into conspiracy theories
I've seen discussions here about how Jehovah's Witnesses seem to be prone to believing conspiracy theories...
This last paragraph seems particularly relevant:
Importantly, Van Prooijen said his findings help make sense of why education can contribute to “a less paranoid society” even when conspiracy theories are not explicitly challenged. “By teaching children analytic thinking skills along with the insight that societal problems often have no simple solutions, by stimulating a sense of control, and by promoting a sense that one is a valued member of society, education is likely to install the mental tools that are needed to approach far-fetched conspiracy theories with a healthy dose of skepticism.”
I believe in U.F.Os.
The reason I believe in U.F.Os is that I have seen them.
But if we look deeper at my statement," I believe in U.F.Os, I have seen them" what have I said that is questionable or makes me appear mad? In my opinion nothing, because a U.F.O is an unidentifiable flying object. However most people would assume I have said that I claimed I have seen a space ship from outer space.
I therefore think conspiracy theories are often because people have a serious question that remains unanswered to their satisfaction on the subject. In this world I am not highly educated, but I like to think I don't suffer fools gladly. I also think it reasonable in a free society to question some of the controversial topics people call " conspiracy theories"
Most often people who promote a " conspiracy theory" have an agenda, book sales, power, ego, but occasionally they have done serious research, and raised important questions that need answering, before the " conspiracy theory" is dismissed.
hi mickey mouse - great topic -
“By teaching children analytic thinking skills along with the insight that societal problems often have no simple solutions, by stimulating a sense of control, and by promoting a sense that one is a valued member of society, education is likely to install the mental tools that are needed to approach far-fetched conspiracy theories with a healthy dose of skepticism.”
I am finding the person on a raft existence quite attractive. This kind of person must make repairs to his/her raft by putting their weight on the unbroken part of their raft while repairing the broken part while at sea (as explained by Earnest Sosa)
I was a pyramid type person having solid foundations that went down deep and from whichever part of the pyramid that my foundations were visible - even the tip - the foundations were solid.
I'm wondering where conspiracy theorists would be in this kind of scenario? is it a sort of risk assessment?
I personally have never been able to understand why more people aren't at least open to conspiracy theories.
Even in my own day-to-day experience, I have seen many conspiracies play out. Where I used to work employees would conspire against each other all the time. One falsely accused her supervisor of sexual harassment. Another committed vandalism in an effort to frame their coworker so they could get their position. The company's CPA tried to frame me for embezzlement in order to disguise her own habitual thefts. If common people of mediocre ambition would engage in conspiracies, what naive fool doubts that the rich and powerful are involved in much broader and more intricate schemes?
We must also take into account the conspiracy theories that have since been proven to be conspiracy facts. There are too many to list in a single post, but here is a short list in no particular order that anyone can google and verify for themselves:
- The assassination of just about every rabble rouser in history from Julius Caesar to Martin Luther King Jr.
- The Roman Catholic Church's massive conspiracy to conceal, aid and abbet child molestors within their ranks.
- The Bolshevik/Communist conspiracy against the Czar (read 'Catechism of a Revolutionary')
- The P2 banking scandal in Italy
- President Eisenhower's foreknowledge of the Pearl Harbor attacks.
- The US governments Prism spying program recently exposed by Eric Snowden.
- The CIA's MKULTRA program.
- The CIA instigated coup d'état against Guatemalan president Jacobo Árbenz over some fruit.
- The CIA's plot to overthrow president Mossadegh of Iran for daring to nationalize the country's oil. Hell, virtually EVERYTHING the CIA has done in its 69 years of existence would qualify as a conspiracy!
The problem is that historically conspiracies fail, someone always gives the game away in the end. People are very bad at keeping secrets because we are social animals. I have no problem believing in real proven conspiracies. So for example I don't believe that Eisenhower knew about Pearl Harbour before the attack because it makes no sense. A thwarted attack would have had the same effect as a successful one. The previous poster seems unaware that for most people a brief search on the internet is not going to take them to some fringe website but to more traditional online encyclopaedias that make use of evidence rather than hearsay and conjecture.
As per usual, evidence is the thing that makes the difference to thinking people. Contrary to the previous poster I think a more educated person is much more likely to be sceptical than the sort of swivel eyed loon that believes in every paranoid fantasy out there.
Why more highly educated people are less into conspiracy theories - and governments take advantage of this whenever it suits them.
After Dr David Kelly died, the UK government of the day called it suicide, and manipulated events so that the coroner's inquest was stopped and a non-statutory public inquiry (where nobody was forced to attend or was under oath) into his death happened instead.
It's probably important to establish the difference between, a conspiracy and a, "Conspiracy theory."
The assassination of Abraham Lincoln is a fairly well documented conspiracy that most historians agree on, at least when it comes to the major details.
The idea that the Holocaust never happened is a conspiracy theory contradicted by a ton of evidence.
There is no reasoning with someone who embraces a conspiracy theory, because every single piece of evidence is written off as part of the conspiracy.
I have 2 college degrees. The argument is invalid.
Most conspiracy theories involve governments. Governments control education systems.
Sure, there are some downright silly conspiracy theories out there. However, not all of them are.
Educated people TEND to be able to think critically more often and in greater depth than those who have little education.
Good thread. Thus, we know why the Watchtower does not want the R&F to get an education.
There is no bigger conspiracy theory than the God-Satan battle for world sovereignty.