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Old 09-17-2011, 10:54 AM   #1
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Default Popularity of conspiracy theories in the US?

It seems to me that in the UK, a substantial minority of people believe in conspiracy theories - such as 9/11 being an inside job. I think it might be increasing. Last week, I was really shocked when I asked a group of 16 year olds how many believed the 'official' version of events in the 9/11 attacks: only 2/20 put their hands up.

To put my cards on the table, my personal belief is that the 'official explanation' of 9/11 is the correct one, and that various alternative theories (like those promoted in the 'Loose Change' film) are wholly wrong. I also believe whole-heartedly that we did go to the moon, that JFK was assassinated by Oswald alone, that humans cause climate change, and that Marilyn Monroe died by her own hand

However, I really don't want to debate the truth or falseness of those beliefs, but I would be interested to know your take on how widespread conspiracy theories are in the USA. I mean, is this just a UK thing, or is it common over the pond too?

What proportion of US people do you think question the 'standard explanation' when it comes to things like: 9/11, the moon landings, JFK's assassination, etc etc.? Or does it vary widly according to which particular event it is?
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Old 09-17-2011, 11:22 AM   #2
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Whoops, accidentally posted this in forum rules section.

BTB, is it possible to move it?
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Old 09-17-2011, 02:45 PM   #3
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I believe in the case of 9/11 that the official verison is mostly right. I have seen loose change and a few other documentaries on the subject and they make a lot of great points, but I would like to think that we wouldn't do that to our own people.

Though I feel that the government knew a little more then they let on and the way the building fell are very suspicious. I know a few people who think that the building fell that way because explosives were placed in the building after the attacks so they wouldn't fall at an angle and cause a lot more death.

This is coming from a 16 year old in the US.
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Old 09-17-2011, 03:10 PM   #4
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Originally Posted by Tannhauser View Post
What proportion of US people do you think question the 'standard explanation' when it comes to things like: 9/11, the moon landings, JFK's assassination, etc etc.? Or does it vary widly according to which particular event it is?
I would say 25-30% of folks would believe most conspiracy theories if ask, but most of them are processing their decision on minimal information. I don't know many folks personally who have put much thought into 9 11, for example.

JFK....I think is very low on the scale. I don't believe many folks believe in the theories.

Moon landing, probably even lower.

I would say the highest over here has to be Roswell and all the mysterious lights. I might be wrong though. The government does a good job of trying to cover up operations on air force bases and this leads to a lot of crack pot ideas.

9 11 is probably the most interesting of all the conspiracy theories to me personally. While I have drawn no opinion on the information considered or labeled fringe, it does raise a lot of questions. Thermite. Detonations that appear to precede the collapse. The apparent mysterious death of one of the Tower 7 survivors.
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Old 09-17-2011, 04:24 PM   #5
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Thanks for moving the thread, BTB.

25-30% - wow, that's a lot.

So, sounds like the same general mistrust of the government? I don't mean the Obama administration, I just mean in general.

Has this got a lot worse since the failure to discover WMD in Iraq? Or had the rot set in before then?
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Old 09-17-2011, 04:39 PM   #6
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Thanks for moving the thread, BTB.

25-30% - wow, that's a lot.

So, sounds like the same general mistrust of the government? I don't mean the Obama administration, I just mean in general.

Has this got a lot worse since the failure to discover WMD in Iraq? Or had the rot set in before then?
Regarding the 25-30%...It's not exactly folks that put a lot of thought in things. Probably more a general distrust of the government. My wife works with a lady who believes the international space station is as big as Texas. These are the types of folks who also believe in pink unicorns, healing crystals, and other fringe nonsense.

The WMD was more a media thing. Some Americans cared, but it wasn't exactly a hot topic for most people I knew. Don't want to sound like I am minimizing it, but it just wasn't anything most were passionate about.

Most of the conspiracy belief comes from a general feeling that government is lying to us.
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Old 09-17-2011, 05:05 PM   #7
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Not sure about 9/11, a lot of things seem suspicious. After all, it seems as if America broke Japanese codes relating to Pearl Harbor in '41 but allowed it to happen. It seems incredible that the US government would allow 9/11 to just 'happen'. Regardless of what I believe, I really, really hope they didn't!!!

JFK was IMO not shot by Oswald, lots of video footage shows Kennedy being hit from a completely different angle than where Oswald is supposed to have fired from. CIA hit most likely, possibly followed by the mob as Kennedy annoyed some Chicago mobsters I think it was.

As for conspiracy theories, I think more and more people believe in them. 'Official' versions of major events are often riddled with holes and contradictions that makes you wonder.

Now where did I leave my tin-foil hat
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Old 09-17-2011, 11:54 PM   #8
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Government mistrust goes way back to colonial times. Good reason too. Some folks here are becoming aware of a global secret society that is controling all things (economies, politics, etc.). I wouldn't doubt it, but I've seen no proof. It wouldn't surprize me if it were true though.

I think much of the apparent mistrust comes from the erosion of our personal liberties that we once held dear. These are the things that set us apart from British tyrrany. Now, our own government has decided it needs to protect us from those very same liberties. Our government has grown and expanded and crept its way into areas that it (by definition of our Constitution) has no business being in. My humble opinion only.

As to 9/11. Very unfortunate. Here is what I don't doubt. There WAS an organized terrorist plan to hijack airliners and crash them into the WTC towers. Did we know about it? I don't know. Did someone "assist" by planting explosives and thermite? Possibly. This could also have been done by terrorists.

I do not doubt that Flight 93 was hijacked and crashed in Pennsylvania. I would like to think there was some heroics involved, but I can't say for sure. I think by the time it crashed, it was probably the only airplane in the sky, except for maybe some F-16's...which may have had something to do with its demise. Either way, it was most unfortunate. I still think that the hijackers could have been outnumberd and overpowered, and someone could have gotten control of the plane and gotten an assist in landing (just like the movies).

Here is where my faith in the official story fails. The Pentagon. Not enough wreckage. Not the proper wreckage. Not a big enough hole. Not enough "remembering the victims at the Pentagon." Striking a military target makes it easy to declare war. This episode smells of cruise missle all the way. I ain't sayin', I'm just sayin'.
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Old 09-18-2011, 12:13 AM   #9
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...I just want to add. BTB mentioned Roswell. Probably something to that whole incident. Probably not extra terrestrial though. I think we were experimenting with some technology we liberated from the Nazis. I think we continue to do so. It would not surprize me one bit to see a gigantic leap in how man travels through space by the end of this century. The government might be sitting on something and is waiting for the proper time to unveil. It might be too that part of what we went into Iraq for was some sort of technology that Saddam Hussein had come across. Everyone was expecting a bomb. It might have only been warp drive.

Again. I don't necessarily believe all this, but I'm just spilling it all out there for consideration.
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Old 09-18-2011, 02:45 AM   #10
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Originally Posted by BendtheBar View Post
9 11 is probably the most interesting of all the conspiracy theories to me personally. While I have drawn no opinion on the information considered or labeled fringe, it does raise a lot of questions. Thermite. Detonations that appear to precede the collapse. The apparent mysterious death of one of the Tower 7 survivors.
The fact that the buildings collapsed as through controlled demolition, and no central structure was left - when the builders themselves are on record as saying the towers would withstand the impact of a plane.

Building 7 collapsed in the exact same way, later in the day, with no similar plane attack. Metallurgical tests prove nothing inside the building could have caused the massive steel girders to have collapsed this way.

Between 5 and 7 of the people accused of doing the hijacking have turned up, alive, in a BBC documentary on 911.

I can go on, but these are some of the more established facts, in addition to those BTB mentioned.
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