In the beginning, it was a dark and stormy night, so you can call me Ishmael. Or Al. Doesn’t matter.
Lemme tell you, as I start this post, it’s unpleasant in Atlanta, kids. The wind was pretty impressive this evening, as was, not coincidentally, the amount a certain tree near my apartment can bend without breaking and my sudden desire to purchase renter’s insurance. But not even 2 tons of wood accelerating at 9.8 m/s/s through my roommate’s bedroom would stop me from bringing you the week in conspiracy.
Let’s just hope it doesn’t come to that.
- So, let’s get some of the goofier stuff out of the way. Apparently, UFOs are dropping “ominous” care packages to earthlings. At least, that’s the takeaway from this BIN post. Oddly, according to BIN’s online polls, fewer people think that the boxes washing up on shore is likely to be true than those who believe the pyramids at Giza are beaming energy to a strange space cloud. I don’t understand you earthlings.
- Now, let’s visit the Amateur Geology Corner. This week, conspiracists revisited the Japanese earthquake. First, in a post by some guy on the Internet that will scandalize “Big Geology” into squirting milk from its nose comes the hypothesis that there was no 9.0 earthquake in Japan last year. At the same time, the conspiracy theory-o-sphere reported that the number of large earthquakes in 2000 is 10 times less than those in the last year. If their data is correct, I don’t know if the spike represents better data 10 years on or the fact that most of the increased activity surrounds one of the greatest releases of energy on the planet in recorded memory (which, of course, never happened). Of course, you should never have a sample size of “two non-continuous years.”
- The GOP and CPAC yielded their own rather fetid load of donkey’s kidneys this week. Let’s start with Rick Santorum’s assertion that global warming is a “hoax.” The suspiciously French-sounding Wayne LaPierre, President of the NRA, tried to scare the crap out of his supporters (again) by asserting that Obama was out to destroy the Second Amendment. Of course gun control legislation hasn’t been on the President’s radar, so nobody would take that seriously, right?…”Obama Vows to Outlaw Guns if Reelected.” Now, the funniest/scariest thing to come out of the CPAC was Iowa Rep. King’s contention, to use Prairie Weather’s epic headline: “Weird Lightbulbs in Republican Offices on Capitol Hill Were Put There by Communist German Janitors.” I mean, wow.
- Lastly, Ron Paul is going to speak to Sovereign Citizens, the scariest sumbitches I know of. In fact they are one of the groups the FBI is most concerned about. I know that Crooks and Liars is biased, so I check up on the conference, and, yep, they are out there. I notice that they are hosting Susan Lindauer, who was brought up on charges of espionage for Iraq, but was found to be so delusional as to be incapable of contributing to her own defense. Here’s the indictment. From the trial summary: “Dr. Goldstein, the defense psychiatrist, was somewhat less tentative, dismissing as ‘classic examples of the grandiose variety’ her claims that she was ‘a preeminent government operative who was not sufficiently appreciated’ and had contact with high-level government figures, and was possessed of psychic powers. (Goldstein Report 5/20/06 at 3) He reported also that ‘many of Ms. Lindauer’s delusions are classic examples of the persecutory type.’ (Id.)” Ron Paul will fit right in.
- How does the left help goofiness on the right spread?
- I’ve been beating up on the right. Here’s one about the left being batty. Monsanto does not allow its employees to eat GMOs.
- From Natural News, the worst site in the universe, comes the headline “Arrogant scientists say NY students’ neurological symptoms caused by mass hysteria, not chemicals”. If by “scientists” they mean “neurologists who have examined the girls directly and know what poisoning looks like and decided this ain’t it,” then why “arrogant”? It’s their job to make these decisions. Epidemiologists would likely tell you that if it were poisoning from the environment (like the superfund site hypothesis I’ve heard lately), we wouldn’t expect a sudden spike in twitchy teenagers; instead the teens in that area (and probably not just the girls) would have always been more twitchy. So, yeah, this is an outbreak of contagious mental illness. My favorite mass psychogenic illness outbreak was in 1962 in Africa, when a laughing epidemic broke out. Although the meowing nuns come close. I love my job. Have I mentioned that?
- Here’s a video of the entrance to the hollow earth. The guy who posts it says that if it’s real it’s “some crazy shit.” I’d say it continues to be “some crazy shit” if it is not real.
- Wow. Veterans Today. Wow.
- The ever-classy Alex Jones opines about Whitney Houston’s death. For more expert analysis, see Mark Dice’s video. He’s this week’s worst person ever. (He’s made it on here twice now. Hm.) And not to be left in the playpen all alone, Vigilant Citizen comes out with the shocking–shocking!–revelation that Houston’s death confirms everything that he has ever believed about the music industry. Twit of Ages Mike Adams finds that Houston is a victim of the pharmaceutical industry, not you know, a lifetime of alcoholism and drug dependency. Thanks for waiting for the coroner’s report, you ghoul. Jason Bermas, of 9/11 Truth’s Loose Change: Beyond Thunderdome Director’s Revised Cut Reloaded fame, claims that Fox fingers the pharmaceutical industry as the culprit, though this seems to be a reading comprehension problem. And at the Grammys, Nicki Minaj, who I never heard of until the Super Bowl, was signaling who killed Whitney through the Illuminati-approved medium of Versace clothing. (The update on this one is pretty hilarious.)
- Also from Mike Adams’ site, pharmaceutical runoff makes shrimp “commit suicide.”
- From Mother Jones, a list of 109 separate things Republicans think Obama has declared war on.
- Black Helicopters have landed in Chicago “in Mass,” according to Intel Hub. I bet the priest was annoyed!
- Tesla, the Elvis of impossible technology enthusiasts, was MuRdErEd!
- Oh, no! Anonymous has gotten hold of dangerous Xtranormal technology! In the “Protocols of the Illuminati” video, the speaker claims that the Protocols of the Learned Elders of Zion is the Illuminati’s playbook, the fact that they were debunked as a word for word forgery of a couple of different sources almost immediately notwithstanding. You know, replace “Illuminati” with “lizard people” and you are David Icke. Something tells me that Anonymous’ B-team is putting together the Xtranormal vids.
- File this under “forgotten/forbidden knowledge”–Ancient nuclear blasts and flying machines:
- I don’t know what this is…but I like the idea…Space Nazis!:
- Oh dear. this weekend I’m going to a talk about maafa and abortion, I think. This is this is related to this guy’s interview.
- DHS released a study (which they funded, but did not carry out) about terrorism and various forms of extremism over the last few decades which is meant to illuminate characteristics of threats. This was, of course misrepresented in conspiracy theory land: “According To A New DHS Report, If You Love ‘Individual Liberty’ Of If You ‘Believe In Conspiracy Theories’ You Are A Potential Terrorist.” Of course no one of these characteristics alone makes you more likely to carry out a terrorist attack. Only in clusters and with increased intensity do otherwise non-indicative signals correlate with a capacity for violence. You know, like members of the Hutari militia, who wanted to take out the Feds and whose trial starts very soon.
- Is the US Government hiding evidence of Egyptian expeditions to the Grand Canyon?
- Dude in Missouri: “US public schools are a Klan conspiracy.“
- “Exo-scientists” confirmed that humans have alien DNA this week. I looked for the link to the peer-reviewed science journal, but could not find one. Go figure.
- Intel Hub reports: “Going Rogue: Giant Wave Damages Cargo Ship, Is Electromagnetic Experimentation To Blame?” Oh, that’s easy. No. You’re welcome.
- The Atlantic turned its attention to conspiracy theory this week. The first article is about “Agenda 21,” or as the Atlantic puts it, “Is the UN Using Bike Paths to Achieve World Domination?” Also, ooh! an excerpt from a new book about conspiracy and rightist rage. Want! Want!
- Oh, jeez. ABC is going to create a show about an editor of a skeptical magazine who uncovers a conspiracy theory. Page Ben Radford!
That’s it for this week, folks. No conspiracy theory of the week. Oddly, nothing struck me as absurd enough. I hope that doesn’t mean that I am building up a tolerance. I’ve started working on a story about UFOs in the Renaissance. I may try to peddle it to, well, Ben Radford. We’ll see. Take it easy! Also, Eve, who has been a little AWOL lately, is working on something utterly hilarious. I hope that will be up soon.
Apart from being a loose rehash of post-Blavatskyan Hollow Earth/UFO theosophy coupled with Nazi Wunderwaffe speculation, Iron Sky is actually a very cool thing. It started when an aspiring Finnish CGI artist posted a demo reel on YouTube eight years ago or so, and it went viral. Thousands of small investors got involved, they crowdsourced the scenario, got a real director and lots of onscreen and behind-the-scenes talent (Udo Kier is in it! Udo Kier! Udo Kier as a scenery-chewing, overacting Moon-Nazi. There are not enough exclamation points. I adore Udo Kier.)
It’s being marketed as a comedy, but that’s just what they want you to think, isn’t it?.
It’s going into limited international theatrical release next month, with DVDs to follow. I’m looking forward to it.
Very cool. That’s good to know. Thanks! The art was awesome.
You can link to the regular (not Facebook) version of the Monbiot story at:
By the way, this article looks right up your alley:
OH THAT IS SOOOOOO SWEET! YAY! Thanks, David!
Though it’s not clear why they got a creationist to comment on Dawkins, except to place a virtual sign at the entrance of the University of Warwick saying “ABANDON BRAIN ALL YE WHO ENTER HERE”.
The hit on Higher Superstition too seemed unwarranted, as if he missed the entire point of that book. I guess he thinks that snubbing the scientists’ genuine expertise in their fields somehow strengthens his authority?
I’m not sure that Steve Fuller is a Creationist, but he does seem to have a severe case of Epater le Bourgoise. I do however like his hit of Steven Pinker’s book The Blank Slate. The book contained a enough strawmen to burn down New York City if they caught fire.
The book also displayed an amazing ignorance of major strands of the Western intellectual tradition. I was esspecially annoyed with the shoddy discussion of the idea of the “Noble Savage”. The book also contained one of the most transparent examples of the polemical artificially created middle I’ve ever read.
“Intelligent design” is precisely “creationism” in a funny hat. The Wedge Document is the smoking gun that the term was coined as a more marketable term for creationism. There is no difference.
Yes I know that “Intelligent Design” is Creationism, and I know that Steve Fuller has defended it. However given some of his comments about it and Evolution I’m not sure if he actually believes this stuff or is doing it to put peoples noses out of joint, i.e. epater le bourgoise.
He feels put upon by joined-up thinking in general, yes.
[…] This Week in Conspiracy (11 February 2012) (skepticalhumanities.com) […]