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Nothing beats this conspiracy theory for bizarreness: a deep dive by RawStory.com

2020-09-01
falling by John Forster courtesy of pixabay.com– rabbit hole

This long tale in RawStory.com, published August 31, is the third installment in a series on QAnon, that notorious conspiracy theory of theories. It describes the ancient origins of many of the theories within QAnon, going back to the 1970s and even before. The author describes attempts by his “friend” to convince him of conspiracy theories supporting the Republican Presidential candidate:

According to my friend, initiates of the Illuminati had teamed up with subterranean demons to torture, rape and eat kidnapped children in underground military bases ruled by [redacted]’s mortal enemies.

The story goes into great detail to describe the ancestors of the conspiracy theories that are now prevalent on the alt-Right. It seems that many of these theories can be traced back to such documents as the book “Fear and Loathing in Las Vegas” by the late Dr. Hunter Thompson (allegedly a work of fiction.)

That book described the fictional “adrenochrome” which was extracted from young children (who were then killed) and used by fictional wealthy and elderly individuals to fictionally rejuvenate themselves. In the modern version of the conspiracy theory, however, “adrenochrome” is a real substance and their “proof” that it exists is the reference to it in that book.

Back then (in the late sixties), left-wing conspiracy theorists held that the CIA, through projects like MK ULTRA, was experimenting with mind control through drugs and other means. Ideas (or “memes”) like this are now part and parcel of modern conspiracy theories, which use them without attribution and probably without realizing their ancient origin. The difference from past versions of these theories is that they are used by those on the far right to make their case for such falsehoods as “cannibalistic pedophiles who use Comet Ping Pong (a real pizza joint in Washington DC) as a base.”

This long and involved story piece is a fascinating read if you can tolerate the bizarre, involved, and nauseating ideas involved and understand that they are pure figments of the imagination. It seems that the new conspiracists can’t tell the difference between truth and fiction.

One of the techniques used by practitioners of “Big Lie” propaganda is to repeat false statements over and over again until they become more reasonable-sounding because of their familiarity. You should beware of people who repeat the same statement twice or three times, as if for emphasis, but really to make the statement seem more reasonable by repetition. The technique is dangerous because experiments have shown that it really works. It is known by logicians as the “argumentum ad nauseam.”

Other logical fallacies found in modern propaganda include ad hominem (“against the man”) which includes personal insults like “weak”, “loonies”, “losers”, and the like. Another is the appeal to fear, which uses images or words designed to cause fear in the listener– this is very popular with modern rightists. Other popular fallacies include the “black and white fallacy“, the “cult of personality“, the “thought-terminating cliche” (“it is what it is”), and “whataboutism.” Look these up in Wikipedia under “Propaganda techniques” so that you can become familiar with them and be on your guard when they are used on you (mainly by Republicans but even by some Democrats as well.)

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