The Conspiracy Theory Conspiracy
Directed by Adam Green (2015)
The Conspiracy Theory Conspiracy is about the US government psychological operations strategy of dismissing critics of government crimes as mentally unbalanced “conspiracy theorists.”
The documentary consists mainly of clips of corporate media pundits denouncing journalists, historians and social media activists who question the government’s official version of events. I haven’t watched the major TV networks in years and was shocked at some of the extremely bizarre denunciations – labeling dissident Americans as schizophrenic, mentally ill anarchists who drive people to violence and make life more miserable for everyone else.
Maintaining that the CIA has “weaponized” the term “conspiracy theory,” the film traces the origin of this psychological operation to a 1967 CIA memo to field agents dealing with CIA assets in the mainstream media. Filmmakers quote specific recommendations in the memo for techniques journalists should use to discredit scholars who were questioning the official version of the JFK assassination.
The film goes on to explain Operation Mockingbird, divulged during the Church Committee hearings in the mid-seventies, and Carl Bernstein’s 1977 expose (“The CIA and the Media”) in the Rolling Stone. Both sources thoroughly document the CIA’s history of paying editors, journalists and publishers across the media spectrum to publish government propaganda.
The filmmakers also feature excellent commentary by Abby Martin, Alex Jones, Charlie Sheen, George Carlin, Rosie O’Donnell, Jesse Ventura and Ed Asner challenging the government campaign to shut down all dissent by dismissing it as “conspiracy theory.”
The only weakness of the documentary is its failure to address the government strategy of “false sponsorship.” This is where government trolls invent extremely bizarre and contradictory “conspiracy theories” to compete with more credible critiques based on scientific or journalistic investigation. New World Order* “false sponsor” scenarios that incorporate antisemitic or apocalyptic narratives, talk about Wall Street plans to impose a socialist or communist world government, or accuse wealthy elites of being reptiles, demons and/or space aliens are examples of disinformation deliberately planted by intelligence trolls.
Over the past decade, the 9-11 Truth movement has also been heavily infiltrated by government agents disseminating extremely bizarre false sponsor scenarios.
*The strongest neoliberal “new world order” advocates (Bill Clinton, Bush senior, Bush junior and Henry Kissinger) never define exactly what they mean beyond vague notions of world peace through greater global cooperation. In the film, former congressman Ron Paul gives the clearest explanation of what neoliberals mean by “new world order” by linking it to the loss of national sovereignty through pro-corporate free trade treaties such as NAFTA, the WTO and TPP.
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Professor James Fetzer, co-founder of Scholars for 911 Truth is an excellent example of a government disinformation artist. Fetzer claims that the planes hitting the WTC on 9/11 were “holograms” despite thousands of live witnesses and millions watching it on live TV. Fetzer resorted to verbal, authoritarian-style abuses in my challenging his assertion that Bin Laden died before 9/11, and all of the post 9/11 tapes aired on Al Jazeera were faked. Fetzer insist UBL was a CIA asset at the time of the attacks, and that his code name, “Tim Osman”, well known in intelligence circles “remained the same”.
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I’m not so sure about Fetzer – whether he himself is a disinformation agent or whether he’s repeating disinformation supplied by another source. I’m inclined to agree with David Ray Griffin that bin Laden died in December 2001 and that any tapes produced after that date were faked. I found the evidence he lays out in Osama bin Laden Dead or Alive extremely convincing.
It’s not a good sign that Fetzer subjected you to authoritarian abuse – that’s a classic psyops strategy described in the 1967 CIA memo.