Well, we could talk about conspiracy theories for a long time. I’ll probably have a little more to say. For the moment, in my capacity as a retired English teacher, I’ll just point out that the word conspire derives from the Latin root for breath (e.g., respiration, inspiration, etc.) and literally means to breath with. Conspiracy can be an elusive concept, commingling with phenomena like group-think and consensus trance. Recognizing this subtlety, I think we have to admit that it might be technically possible to participate in a conspiracy without really knowing it.
Meanwhile, two items.
Ann Coulter is never really interested in getting the other side to listen to her; she’s mostly all about pissing them off. That said, on the subject of conspiratorial thinking, she scores pretty heavily in this piece.
And then there’s the ever-popular secret data base, once again poking its reptilian head out of the basket. What can all these ivy-league geniuses be thinking? John Cornyn’s letter addressing this issue is here. He asks the President to end the program of recording internet addresses that carry any info on the health-care bill which the White House (somebody –Emanuel, Axelrod, somebody– must be a Pisces) considers fishy. Failing that, Cornyn says:
At the very least, I request that you detail to Congress and the public the protocols that your White House is following to purge the names, email addresses, IP addresses, and identities of citizens who are reported to have engaged in “fishy” speech. And I respectfully request an answer to the following:
- How do you intend to use the names, email addresses, IP addresses, and identities of citizens who are reported to have engaged in “fishy” speech?
- How do you intend to notify citizens who have been reported for “fishy” speech?
- What action do you intend to take against citizens who have been reported for engaging in “fishy” speech?
- Do your own past statements qualify as “disinformation”? For example, is it “disinformation” to note that in 2003 you said:”I happen to be a proponent of a single-payer universal health care plan”?
I look forward to your prompt response.
Or teleprompt response, either one.