Are People Who Hate Conspiracy Theories Crazy?

Immortal Technique is doing more to educate America's youth than all our history teachers put together
Immortal Technique is doing more to educate America’s youth than all our history teachers put together

The New York Times just published six short op-eds collectively entitled “Are Conspiracy Theories All Bad?” Amazingly, they’re not ALL bad. (The articles, not the theories.) Amidst the claptrap from figures like 9/11 cover-up criminal Cass Sunstein and airhead “social psychologist” Karen Douglas, the Times features decent short essays by Annie Jacobsen, Timothy Melley and Harriet Washington.

But the whole exercise begs the million dollar question: Are the best-known “conspiracy theories” – starting with the alternative narratives of the JFK and 9/11 coups – true? In those two cases, only an ignoramus could possibly fail to answer with an unqualified “yes.”  (Or maybe “duh!” would be more appropriate.)

Given that the USA has suffered at least two obvious murderous coups d’état by psychopaths who are still in power, yet its citizens largely keep their heads firmly planted up their – er, in the sand – it’s pretty obvious that the nation as a whole, and its anti-conspiracy contingent in particular, is suffering from some kind of collective psychosis.

I recently published an article on this subject at Press TV, which unfortunately changed the headline. Here it is, with the original headline restored.

Are People Who Hate Conspiracy Theories Crazy?

By Kevin Barrett, VT Editor, for Press TV

Government propagandists want you to hate “conspiracy theories.” But according to a growing body of evidence, you’d have to be crazy to obey.

Two American professors, Lance DeHaven-Smith and James Tracy, have pointed out that the CIA has weaponized the terms “conspiracy theory” and “conspiracy theorist” to conceal government misdeeds. CIA document 1035-960, revealed by the New York Times in 1976, is the smoking gun.

That secret document was distributed by the CIA in response to widespread skepticism surrounding the assassination of President John F. Kennedy. It ordered the CIA’s thousands of Operation Mockingbird media assets to begin squawking insults. Those targeted included historians, journalists and researchers who had discovered that the JFK assassination was a coup d’état.

Today, the mainstream media has grown even more controlled. And the weaponized “conspiracy theory” meme has been deployed more massively than ever before… especially since the coup d’état of September 11, 2001.

During the past 13 years, thousands, then millions, now billions of people have awakened to the 9/11 inside job. (Polls show that more than one billion Muslims, nearly one billion Chinese, as well as one third of Americans and large proportions of Europeans all view 9/11 as a likely false-flag operation.)

As a new global majority calls the 9/11 myth into question, panicking propagandists have attempted to “stop the contagion” by medicalizing the search for truth. According to government-sponsored mind-control operatives like John A. Banas and Gregory Miller – the University of Oklahoma’s third-rate epigones of Edward Bernays and Joseph Goebbels – the “truth epidemic” must be stopped through “inoculation” of the public. In “Inducing Resistance to Conspiracy Theory Propaganda: Testing Inoculation and Metainoculation Strategies,” Banas and Miller brandish a medical metaphor to disguise the fact that they are advocating mass mind-control in service to high treason and crimes against humanity.

Banas and Miller spin their anti-conspiracy-theory inoculation program as a public health measure. But evidence cited by mental health professionals, including Frances Shure, M.A., L.P.C., suggests the opposite is the case. By trying to inject the public with an unconscious emotional block to impede rational consideration of the evidence surrounding 9/11, Banas and Miller are in fact undermining public health.

Frances Shure is the author of a series of articles published by Architects and Engineers for 9/11 Truth under the collective title “Why Do Good People Become Silent – or Worse – About 9/11?” (Listen to my interviews with her here and here.)

In her articles, Shure points out that emotional resistance to “conspiracy theories” is a pathological, fear-based reaction that impedes healthy engagement with reality. While refraining from diagnosing people who resist conspiracy theories as mentally ill, Shure does observe that they often exhibit a troubling inability to come to grips with plain and obvious facts:

“How, for example, can some people watch World Trade Center Building 7 (WTC7) implode and collapse into its own footprint and not see what is right in front of them – even when they know about its free fall acceleration and the other characteristics of controlled demolition? These people may feel compelled to intensify their resistance with intellectually contorted measures to convince themselves and others that this was not controlled demolition. Others will content themselves with shaming anyone who wants to investigate the 9/11 evidence that contradicts the official sacred myth.”

For a dramatization of what might be called “Building 7 denial syndrome,” please watch Anthony Lawson’s brilliant youtube video “WTC 7: This Is An Orange”:

What explains such denial? Shure explores various factors including: A built-in human propensity to obey authority no matter how insane, as exemplified by the experiments of Stanley Milgram and Philip Zimbardo; the Orwellian “doublethink” process of “consciously inducing unconsciousness;” Leon Festinger’s notion of cognitive dissonance i.e. the rejection of realities that conflict with ingrained values or assumptions; the “irrational conformity” experiments of Solomon Asch and Elizabeth Noelle-Neumann; Irving L. Janis’s studies of groupthink: the evidence that some of these cognitive deficiencies are rooted in the physiology of the brain as posited by George Lakoff and others; terror management theory’s suggestion that unconscious fear of death drives 9/11 denial; and signal detection theory’s demonstration that “noise” such as mainstream media propaganda can drown out even the most obvious truths.

In upcoming articles, Shure will continue her analysis by considering Seligman’s studies of learned helplessness, Douglas Rushkoff’s study of mind control in Coercion, Bruce Levine’s work on American society’s institutional pathology, and other insights into why people irrationally refuse to engage with political and social reality in general and 9/11 truth in particular.

Though Frances Shure’s work on conspiracy denial is the most comprehensive treatment of the subject, many other scholars, psychologists and psychiatrists have discovered evidence that supports her analysis. Twenty Ph.D. psychologists and psychiatrists representing such universities as Harvard, Duke, Rutgers, and others “have concluded that the official version of 9/11 is false, and that those who believe the official version suffer from defense mechanisms.” The 156 members of Medical Professionals for 9/11 Truth undoubtedly represent only a minuscule fraction of medical and psychiatric professionals who agree but prefer not to risk the wrath of the authorities by going public.

As I explained in last year’s Press TV article “New studies: ‘Conspiracy theorists’ sane; government dupes crazy, hostile,” a growing list of psychological studies and peer-reviewed publications all point toward the same conclusion. Examples include: The findings of British psychologists Wood and Douglas that people who oppose conspiracy theories behave like stereotypical angry cranks more than pro-conspiracy people do; psychology professor Laurie Manwell’s work on how the suppression of so-called conspiracy theories puts Western nations “in denial of democracy,” and the recent emergence of a whole new academic field studying State Crimes Against Democracy (SCADS), including the JFK assassination and 9/11.

Tens of millions of Americans watched mob hitman & CIA gunrunner Jack Rubenstein murder self-proclaimed JFK-hit patsy Oswald on live TV. Yet we’ve all gone on pretending we didn’t see the coup d’état in Dallas. What’s wrong with us?

What will happen when the American people, and those of other Western nations, emerge from their cocoon of denial and face the reality that their rulers are among the worst criminals in human history? Will the people follow their leaders’ example and lapse into lawless, psychopathic behavior? Will Western leaders “flee forward” by launching wars designed to conceal the bloody tracks linking them to past misdeeds? Or will the pathocracy be overthrown and replaced by something more humane?

On such questions hinges the future of humanity. Given the high stakes, you would have to be crazy not to help spread the truth, change the system, and save the planet.



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Dr. Kevin Barrett, a Ph.D. Arabist-Islamologist is one of America’s best-known critics of the War on Terror. He is the host of TRUTH JIHAD RADIO; a hard driving weekly radio show funded by listener donations at and FALSE FLAG WEEKLY NEWS (FFWN); an audio-video show produced by Tony Hall, Allan Reese, and Kevin himself. FFWN is funded through FundRazr. He also has appeared many times on Fox, CNN, PBS, and other broadcast outlets, and has inspired feature stories and op-eds in the New York Times, the Christian Science Monitor, the Chicago Tribune, and other leading publications. Dr. Barrett has taught at colleges and universities in San Francisco, Paris, and Wisconsin; where he ran for Congress in 2008. He currently works as a nonprofit organizer, author, and talk radio host.