OpinionConspiracy theories all have this in common: ideas that seem plausible whilst refuting generally accepted evidence, each of which has a valid explanation. As such, no conspiracy theory should be taken seriously.
      – Lee J Haywood, 2010-02-08 at 14:17:31   (9 comments)

On 2010-02-08 at 14:19:25, Lee J Haywood wrote...
I myself have spent (i.e. wasted) much time watching conspiracy 'documentaries' only to later investigate the points raised in greater detail. You come to recognise that conspiracy theorists selectively present arguments that are self-consistent and plausible whilst carefully omitting the very pieces of evidence that would contradict them.
On 2010-02-08 at 15:39:02, Thelevellers wrote...
I wrote an entire assignment after months of 'research' (all on conspiracy theory based websites) into 9/11 theories for college in Norway, and was even smart enough to phrase it all in a 'maybe there's something there' way, rather than 'THIS IS FACT! BELIEVE IT!' way - and did it well enough to give my teacher pause for thought, and everyone in the class to be seriously doubtful of the 'official' story... I have since studied engineering for 2-5 years (on and off), and have also applied some clear thinking and logic to it, and realised that it was mostly bollocks - steel may MELT at 1100C (or whatever it is), but it becomes structurally unsound LONG before! The only bit that I haven't completely dis-regarded is the Pentagon hit, which I haven't really looked into since, and was by far the most convincing, by dint of there being no real footage of that incident, so it was mostly conjecture. I think there's a point in there. It should be: I agree! :P
On 2010-02-08 at 21:42:05, BorgClown wrote...
I'd agree if the topic suggested to disregard most conspiracy theories instead of all. Conspiracies do exist, and when you lack fact you must theorize. Thus some conspiracy theories could be (at least partially) true. My favorites are the ones regarding all-powerful financial groups, even if they have been so blown out of proportion they've become entertaining readings instead.
On 2010-02-08 at 22:31:21, Lee J Haywood wrote...
@Thelevellers: I was happily mislead by a conspiracy video about the Pentagon attack, which focused on one particular image that showed almost no debris. Reading on Wikipedia later, the whole thing was blown away by the simple fact that there are more pictures than the conspiracy theorists would have you believe. Their picture was limited by a simple dip in the landscape, but the wider views clearly show massive engine parts - evidence, if you will - that they'd totally pretended didn't exist.
On 2010-02-08 at 22:33:20, Lee J Haywood wrote...
@BorgClown: Entertaining they may be - but when you have a lack of evidence, theorising is going to be fundamentally flawed. It's not that the theory must be wrong, but that it's falsifiable. If you actually look at the evidence it contracts pretty much all conspiracy theories but that doesn't stop anyone thinking that there might be 'some truth' to them.
On 2010-02-09 at 11:53:52, Thelevellers wrote...
@Lee J Haywood: Ha! I knew it - I didn't look into ANY secondary sources when I did that essay, and have had a nagging feeling that a few minutes search would pick crater sized holes in it all. I've just never got around to it. There ends the only conspiracy theory I thought had any chance of being real! I was at least unconvinced by the 'footage' from what was meant to be a CCTV camera near the pentagon showing 'what looks like a missile, not a plane', as I couldn't find it anywhere except conspiracy theory sites... (of course, that *should* have just proven how deep the conspiracy runs really! :P )
On 2010-02-09 at 14:15:16, Lee J Haywood wrote...
The CCTV camera was supposedly the only footage of the actual impact, that's true, but the photographs taken after the event are numerous. Of course if you search on Google you find that the top sites listed are those put up by conspiracy theorists, which kinda messes up your view of the world right away.
On 2010-02-09 at 14:25:09, George wrote...
Do people who deny that anthropogenic global warming exists and is a problem count as conspiracy theorists? Guess so, given that they have claimed that there has been a left wing/green conspiracy which has set the established climate change political agenda.
On 2010-02-10 at 09:35:52, Lee J Haywood wrote...
@George: Yes, because they go against the scientific mainstream. Adding politics into the mix only worsens their case as they're never actually pointing at a specific part of the science and explaining exactly why they think it's wrong.