55. Real conspiracies are far more noticeable.

Hollywood, TV, and sensationalistic novels have done a great deal to heighten people’s misperceptions about conspiracies. The common story of a vast, super-powerful, and super-secret organization pulling the strings behind world events is so well known that many confuse it with reality. In truth, however, conspiracies are typically a weapon of the weak, not the strong, and they have very limited objectives, rather than a perpetual life.

Take for example, the 9-11 Attack on America. Al-Qaeda’s plan was a conspiracy, but once it was executed, it was over. They could remain silent about what they had done, which they did (issuing no statements of responsibility) but they could not cover up what they had done. There were only nineteen high jackers and most of them did not know all the deals of what they were doing or when the plan would be put into motion, until they absolutely had to. A few other people in the organization were involved in operational support, but most members of the group only learned of the attack along with the rest of the world. Once they found out, of course, they were very happy, because they saw the United States as their enemy and they believed they were justified in striking any blow against America that they could.

By contrast, consider the version of reality that so many 9-11 “truthers” imagine. Here, al-Qaeda is just a false flag being waved by the CIA or some ultra-secret group in the government we haven’t even heard of. These people planted explosives in the twin towers and crashed planes into those buildings, to make sure they would come down. Actions that would take a lot more than just nineteen people to carry out. Then they got teams of first responders, investigators, journalist, and historians to lie about the facts and back up this act of mass murder against their fellow Americans, despite the fact that the mass murder of Americans went against everything that most of these men and women believed in and stood for all their lives. Finally, this hidden group of puppet masters needed to set up an ongoing team of spies and thugs to watch out for any hint of “the truth” getting out and stopping it, through bribery, blackmail, and murder, for generations to come.

The contrast between the actual 9-11 conspiracy of history and the Hollywood-style story told by self-professed truthers could hardly be sharper. The same could be said for so many events, from the assassination of President Kennedy to the Sandy Hook Elementary School shooting, where the actions of unstable individuals are creatively transformed into conspiracies so vast as to boggle the mind. And the more you study real, historical conspires, the more you understand why so-called conspiracy theories are just fiction in disguise.

They Live (1988) is an interesting conspiracy film because anyone can see it as an allegory for whatever group they hate (Jews, Capitalists, Communists, the Military Industrial Complex, etc.). It’s also pretty funny, if you like campy humor. The story centers on a homeless man who finds magic sunglasses that allow him to see the space aliens who secretly rule over humanity (similar to the lizard people stories
popular in some fridge conspiracy theory communities today).

Most viewers may find a film like They Live to be laughably absurd, but the basic assumption that some unnamed group is controlling the country, or the world, is readily accepted by many of these same people. To better understand the limits of control, I suggest you check out the HBO produced film, Conspiracy (2001), which is based on an actual historical event, the Wannsee Conference in 1942, where the logistics of the “Final Solution” (aka The Holocaust) were hammered out.

Conspiracy is the second film to deal with this topic. The first,
Die Wannseekonferenz (1984) is also worth checking out, but it’s in German, so you have to read subtitles.

We typically describe the Nazi State as a “totalitarian” one, which is reasonably true, but no government is 100% in control of its citizens and everything that happens within its borders. There are always competing interest groups and personalities that make up any society. Even within, “the government,” there are different departments and leaders, vying for the advancement of their interests and desires over the interests and desires of others. Furthermore, there are other governments and groups beyond the borders of an individual state, who have own ideas and agendas.

Even in the Nazi State, Hitler never signed any documents ordering the mass execution of Jews and other, “undesirables,” nor did the government overtly advertise what they were doing. Even at the Wannsee Conference, participants were ordered to burn their notes of the proceedings, which all but one of them did, because they knew that the majority of the general population would not support the mass murder of anyone. Here too, conspiracy was not a weapon of strength, it was a weapon of weakness; employed by those who believed they were right, but knew the majority of the world did not agree.

To imagine that a conspiracy like the alleged cabal that murdered President Kennedy is true, is to imagine a conspiracy far more powerful and all-consuming than anything done in Nazi Germany, Soviet Russia, Communist North Korea, or anywhere else you care to name. Never in history has there been a conspiracy so vast, yet so well hidden that no actual proof of its existence leaks out. And never in history has there been a conspiracy so at odds with the values of the people who would need to carry it out.


Return to the complete list of 55 reasons to accept that Oswald acted alone.

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