There are conspiracy theories, often fed by government opacity or some other infernal thing, that are reasonable attempts to explain things that don’t seem to be adequately explained. Conspiracy theories sometimes turn out to be true, like the suspicions that the FBI had been running a program called COINTELPRO for years, infiltrating political organizations and fomenting violence that justified government clampdowns on otherwise legal, peaceful political groups. The revelation of this covert FBI program, after a Congressional investigation, explained much of the violence and several of the assassinations of leaders of the Civil Rights and Anti-war movements of the 1960s.
Then there is conspiracism, a deeply held belief that everything evil in the world is the result of an evil conspiracy. Conspiracists see a powerful secret cabal at work, usually blood drinking pedophile child-murderer types, very powerful, ruthless and always plotting satanically evil shit. Marjorie Taylor Green, with her cabal of satanic Democrat [sic] cannibal pedophiles (revealed by anonymous patriot anti-pedophile Q) and wild fire causing Jewish space lasers, is an example of a conspiracist, as are millions in her party.
Conspiracy theories often arise when credible information is kept hidden from the public. Conspiracism is a faith-based, global worldview that posits a titanic struggle between the forces of light and the forces of darkness and offers a one-stop explanation for all evil in the world. The specific details are crucial for conspiracy theorists, not really necessary for conspiracists who know what they know in their guts.
Here is an example of why people who are not conspiracists might develop a conspiracy theory to explain unexplained, or sloppily explained, phenomena. When terrorists attacked and destroyed the World Trade Center on September 11, 2001 a lot of unexplained things happened on that day, the several days before and in the days that followed. Pure coincidence, in the “shit happens” vein, or evidence of a larger plan at work on that day that will live in infamy?
The man in charge of NORAD, the agency that scrambles Air Force fighter jets to intercept any threat in the air, was on his first day on the job on that fateful September 11. There were also war games being conducted, involving numerous jet planes, on September 11. There was confusion at NORAD about whether reports of passenger jets highjacked and off-course were part of these war games or really happening. The delay in figuring this out was fatal to thousands. There was massive secret stock market activity, specifically the selling of airline shares, early on September 11– among parties who have never been identified, parties who made a killing based on advance knowledge of the attack.
Early in the post 9-11 period when no flights were allowed in US air space, a plane full of Saudis (almost all of the 9/11 suicide terrorists were Saudi), including relatives of Osama bin Laden, was given special permission to quietly leave the country — nobody on board was interviewed by the FBI. The gigantic, far-reaching Patriot Act, longtime dream of the neo-con group Project For A New American Century, was ready to be voted within days of the terrifying 9-11 attack. The administration blocked formation of a 9/11 Commission, and, when it was finally convened, the president refused to take an oath to tell the truth, or even to speak to the Commission without his vice president, Dick Cheney, present — on further condition that nothing they talked about in that secret session could ever be revealed.
The answer to why a frantic late August presidential security briefing entitled “bin Laden determined to use commercial airliners to strike buildings for mass casualty event” was never acted on went into the dustbin of history like the rest of these never to be answered questions. And so on.
All these things lead to the suspicion that powerful motherfuckers in the US government, whose power was greatly enhanced by the attack, or were cynically advancing larger ideological goals (the Patriot Act, its Project for A New American Century authors acknowledged, might take a generation to implement, absent a dramatic Pearl Harbor scale national catastrophe) knew the attack was coming and let it happen (if they weren’t even more intimately involved).
Conspiracism applies this kind of scrutiny to everything, without the necessity for all the details. It is a simplified world view, based on good and evil. If I lost my job, there is somebody to blame, a cabal of evil globalists, by God! Those who want to restrict gun ownership — clearly part of a cabal of child-blood drinking communists who want to take our guns so we can’t defend our children! Those who want black and brown people to be able to freely vote in huge numbers are for the Great Replacement, the plot to negate the rights of White People by replacing them with black and brown voters obedient to evil globalists who hate our God-given freedom. Ask Tucker, if you have any questions about that last one.
Robert Evans, a brilliant young journalist with a darkly mischievous sense of humor, hosts a podcast called Behind The Bastards. It’s an in depth look at some of the major scumbags in history, past and present. Evans researches the featured bastard and writes a script that he reads (sometimes quickly) as his guest reacts to the information he’s setting out. It is a great format, since the reactions of the guests so often mirror the reaction of the listener, and sometimes lead to great asides and surprising insights.
There is also frequent laughter about truly horrific details, which I find very welcome. How many people died building the Suez Canal? They look it up. 120,000! And Evans bursts out laughing. As I did, hearing his reaction to how fucked up that is.
This week the bastard that Evans is discussing is not a person but a thing: The Protocols of the Elders of Zion. This infamous and influential 1904 Czarist forgery continues to exert great power in the world and forms the basis for a conspiracist world view. One of the best history books I’ve ever read, Pogrom: Kishniev and the Tilt of History, scrupulously researched and beautifully written by Steven J. Zipperstein, does a great job setting out the origins of this hateful and pervasive myth.
Robert Evans makes the case that the Protocols of the Elders of Zion is the mother of conspiracism. He offers this concise exposition (which I will transcribe below) drawing a line back in time from the Nazi cult of mythologically powerful evil Jews to the Protocols, and before that, the birthplace of modern antisemitic conspiracy theory, the French Revolution. His guests interjections are also great, as is Evans’s little laugh at the end:
Naziism at its heart was a conspiracist theology. All of Germany’s problems could be laid at the feet of international Jewry who were responsible not just for the German defeat in World War One but for the overthrow of the Czars and the establishment of the USSR. When the war turned against the Nazis, Hitler and his high command diverted crucial war resources towards fueling the extermination camps in the east because eliminating the Jews was for them a military priority.
Not all conspiracist beliefs center around the idea of an international Jewish conspiracy, but conspiracism itself has its origins intricately tied to antisemitism and the most successful conspiracy theory ever made in human history: The Protocols of the Elders of Zion.
(with feeling) hmmmm!
The concept of grand conspiracies is not very old, as these things go. Conspiracy theories, grand conspiracy theories, go back about nine hundred years and have only really become operational in the last two hundred years. The inciting incident for all modern grand conspiracy theories is the French Revolution.
This makes sense, when you really think about it. One of the world’s great powers, the most powerful military force in the world at the time, the most established monarchy in the world, is overthrown, seemingly overnight, and replaced with a radical left-wing government. Blood letting and chaos ensues.
Many people felt the changes that swept France couldn’t possibly be the result of long-simmering unrest and kingly incompetence. It couldn’t be the king was dumb, he fucked up, people took their chance and they got lucky and things just worked out and they overthrew the government. It couldn’t be that, it has to be some cabal was plotting this.
And unfortunately for just a whole lot of people, the birth of modern conspiracy theory happened to very neatly coincide with something else — the birth of modern antisemitism. So these two things are really happening right at the same time. When I talk about modern antisemitism, I’m not just talking about, like… it’s, what is the difference between racism and antisemitism?
Antisemitism is a type of racism but not all different groups of people have the same thing that Jewish people go through with antisemitism, which is antisemitism isn’t just bigotry against Jewish people, it’s belief that they control the entire world, right? That’s not a thing that is universal in racism, it’s a thing that exists beyond that, but that’s a specific thing.
Yeah, with black people they’re never worried we’re in charge.
(chuckling) Yeah, yeahsource
I highly recommend this episode, the first of a two part presentation on the Protocols of the Elders of Zion. The Protocols detail the plans of people just like me, religious rabbis who are actually secular humanists, to dominate the world by destroying Christianity through the inculcation of anti-monarchism, secularism, liberalism and socialism — including the virus of human “equality” (for the most cynical of purposes), into the masses, by any means necessary. The very personification of the enemies of men like William Pelham “Bagpiper” Barr.
The wildly influential forgery (exposed as such soon after its publication) has been in continuous publication since the Czar’s secret police had it written more than a hundred years ago. Its mad, chilling storyline (the Jewish plan for world domination is stitched together from a number of sources, whole sections plagiarized from previous novels about Satanist and anti-monarchist plans), has been translated into countless languages and continues to be one of the best selling books in history, rivaled only by the New Testament, (and possibly Mein Kampf, a book owned by many Nazis, if read by few — try it sometime…)