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The Great Conspiracy – I see it all now!

This morning I was reading the letters section of The Herald-Sun.

Now, I know what you’re thinking, but whenever I go to a coffee shop I always pick up the Murdoch paper for three reasons:

  1. I think that it’s good to read alternative viewpoints, just so I’m not operating in my own echo chamber.
  2. While I’m reading it, I’m stopping someone else who may be influenced by their propaganda.
  3. Reading the letters section always makes me feel smug and superior.

And, of course, I’m not buying it, so I can kid myself that my boycott of Rupert Murdoch is going a long way toward sending him broke.

All right, I shouldn’t justify myself. I should just let you be the judge of my actions, but unfortunately, like Tony Abbott, I’m worried that if I don’t constantly tell you about how superior I am, you may not notice, and so I have to justify myself at every opportunity.

Getting back to the letters, I was particularly struck by one which put forward the view that it was very convenient that we were discovering that this could be the hottest year on record just before the Paris talks. The writer went on to suggest that people were “cooking the books”.

Personally, I’d be more concerned if they’d suggested that this was the hottest year on record last April, and it seems to me that the fact that it’s nearly the end of the year may have had more to do with the announcement than the Paris Climate Conference.

The previous letter was also concerned about climate change. Or to be more precise, it was worried that all the leaders were in Paris discussing something as insignificant as that when we had the more pressing problem of Islamic State.

I wondered if there might be a way to get Andrew Bolt supporters onside by suggesting that climate change was part of Islam State’s plan to destroy the rest and that by using less fossil fuel we were actually winning the war on terror.

Now, don’t get me wrong. I think that everyone has the right to be sceptical, and I fully understand that just because 97% of climate scientists have a particular view that doesn’t mean that they’re right. What disturbs me about much of the commentary from so-called “climate sceptics” is the idea that anyone who thinks that man-made climate change is even a possibility is either part of a giant conspiracy or a gullible fool. Rarely do any of them approach it as though it’s a matter of scientific disagreement that needs more investigation. When the models prove even a little inaccurate, this is used as evidence that the world hasn’t been warming for eighteen years, even when it’s saying nothing of the sort.

But after reading the letters today, rather than feel superior, I had an epiphany. Why complicate my world view by gathering evidence, thinking about things and trying to work out the truth. My life would be simpler if – like the letter writers -I simply accepted the Donald Trump view of the world. “I’m right and everyone else is wrong and any evidence is just a conspiracy”.

Yes, I can picture the next time I’m out to dinner and I order dessert and my wife mentions my need to shed a few kilos.

“Why,” I’ll say.

“Well, it’s not healthy to be overweight,” she’ll tell me.

“Au contraire,” I’ll assure her, “all the evidence about excess weight and poor health outcomes is just part of the giant Weight-Watchers/Jenny Craig conspiracy.”

“But didn’t your doctor tell you…”

“Not listening to my doctor any more. If she wants me to lose weight, then she’s part of the conspiracy. By getting us to refrain from dessert, they’re trying to destroy the sugar farmers and the economy can’t afford that. I’ll think about losing weight when the economy picks up.”

“You’re insane!” she’ll tell me.

And I’ll smile quietly, knowing that I’m one of the few who doesn’t listen go along with the brainwashed majority and that I can feel even more superior than I do when reading the letters section of The Herald-Sun!


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  1. Terry2

    Good on you, Rossleigh, you’ve seen through at least one conspiracy : chocolate eclairs also help support the subsistence cocoa farmers in west Africa !
    Have another – don’t mind if I do.

    I’ve just been reading an article in my coffee shop Weekend Australian by serial conspiracy theorist Hedley Thomas. Having finally got over the Julia Gillard AWU matter that seemed to occupy him for several years, is now delving into the reasons why the Newman government in Queensland crashed so spectacularly having won with greatest electoral majority in the state’s history in 2012. His theory is that the business relationship between LNP President Bruce McIver and Clive Palmer brought the whole ‘can-do’ show to an electoral rout in 2015.

    Sorry, Hedley I’m a Queenslander and I was here when the appalling Newman government came to power and then sought to destroy the state with its ideological idiocy and its hatred of anything that wasn’t connected to big business or coal.

  2. diannaart

    I believe you are on to something

    a way to get Andrew Bolt supporters onside by suggesting that climate change was part of Islam State’s plan to destroy the rest and that by using less fossil fuel we were actually winning the war on terror….

    If only we could wean off oil… however, using blame as a tool for persuading the truculent can’t hurt, might help, they lerrrve blaming others.

  3. Gilly (@GillyBW16)

    Don’t be apologetic about superiority, it is what keeps sane

  4. Denisio Fabuloso

    The world is now overrun with Dunning Krugers… especially in the political, religious and corporate world. Social science has pretty much proven that those of the religious persuasion – and by association the right wing – are more likely to have a few too many of those kangaroos well and truly loose in the top paddock. Run a little silly season social test yourself. See if I I’m not correct.

  5. brickbob

    I get links to Bolt and his readers on a right wing site i visit sometimes to also see what the ””” other side ”””’ are thinking,and i must say i was astonished at the pure hatred they have for Turnbull and what they refer to as the ”” leftist”””
    Theý reserve all their vitirol and hate not towards Labor or the Greens,although there is some of that of course,but these people really hate and despise the Left Government of Turnbull,and they call Scott Morrison and Bishop and Pyne and the rest of Turnbulls cabinet ”’Lefties”’ and they especially hate Bishop and swear on their mothers grave that they will not be voting fot the lefty Turnbull Govt come the next election.
    If these people think that Pyne and Morrison are filthy progressive left leaning scum then my god they must be 10 degrees to the right of Donald Trump. They all kept talking about voting for a new Conservative party called the ALA which i have never heard of,but i presume stands for the Australian Liberal Alliance or something.
    Strange days indeed.””””””

  6. Wally

    “a way to get Andrew Bolt supporters onside”

    Must have missed something I though the only person who supported Andrew Bolt was Andrew Bolt. If the letters supporting Bolt are actually written by individuals (who are just as stupid as Bolt) and not by Andrew Bolt himself Australia is a much scarier place than I thought it was. Even if global warming is a load of croc humans need clean air to breath!

  7. JeffJL

    Rossleigh. I started laughing as I read and then you had your epiphany. Now I am in shock. It is too true. Too true.

  8. margcal

    Wally: Even if global warming is a load of croc humans need clean air to breath[e]!

    And “Even if global warming is a load of croc”, humans can’t keep using non-renewables at the rate we’re using them.

  9. Chris

    Good on you margcal I think Wally needs to look into this further….

  10. Bronte ALLAN

    Love your comments etc about the “Hun”, it seems that almost all the columnists who appear in his rags are all tarred with the same brush! They all “accept” his views about climate change, “illegal” immigrants etc, & woe betide anybody who dares mention any of these idiots by name, they will sue the pants off of you! As you say though, there are so many uneducated, poorly educated or just plain stupid people out there that actually think like these columnists, thank goodness in Australia it is compulsory to attend a polling booth to vote or not to vote. In the United States voting is not compulsory, so they continually get all the red necks, the flat earth, the tea party & the NRA etc idiots only bothering to vote. Is it any wonder that American politics is so screwed up? Naturally Uncle Redneck & his rags over there are so popular with all these people!

  11. win jeavons

    Sadly, clear thinking at Matriculation ( HSC, VCE) level English ( Compulsory subject) was discarded in the 70’s and has not returned. It shows! Even ‘blind Freddy” ( remember him?) could see through the rubbish that daily passes for commentary. Media grammar is sadly sub-standard too . Perhaps this is why the old prefer to forget ?

  12. oldfart

    You do realise there is a flaw in your Jenny Craig / weightwatchers conspiracy. Does the name Macca’s mean anything to you?

  13. guest

    I have some sympathy for win jeavons’ lamenting of the passing of clear thinking in Matriculation English in the 70’s. Some of us would like to have compulsory English for all students in Year 12. But on reflection one must ask what students are doing now in Years 1-11 English and in all other subjects if not clear thinking.

    However, I do wonder when I read some of the letters in the media which express opinions which must surely lack clear thinking. The biggest problem in the thinking expressed is that they think they can express a complex matter in a sentence or two. One recent example told us that the Great Barrier reef is not under threat, carbon dioxide is good for plants, there is little or no temperature increase and Antarctic ice is increasing, not decreasing.

    The statements clearly omit so much that their simplicity as explanations is laughable.

    More recently we have a letter claiming that the Left’s agenda is to create a climate slush fund for the redistribution of the wealth of developed nations.The old UN conspiracy idea with black helicopters.

    Where do people get these ideas from? Does it just come out of the air around the weekend barbecue? Is it required knowledge for membership of specific political persuasions?

    Or are they just trollings of the drip down kind designed to create static and obfuscation of the argument? Certainly, so much of talk about climate change and global warming is a clear indication that there is in some circles in Oz a lack of clear thinking.

    Such trolling frequently ridicules climate change science as being some kind of belief. Yet denial which cannot articulate a clearly scientific explanation is no science at all – just blind belief of the kind which says, Well, it’s what I think.

    Season’s Greetings. Keep cool.

  14. Do Youself a favour

    Despit the fact that there is absolutely no evidence that can withstand the slightest scrutiny to support the official account of 9/11.. people that show a healthy skepticism to the lack evidence, all the while citing irrefutable evidence and the common understanding of the laws of physics, that show why it is not unreasonable to question the official account, are often derided as “conspiracy theorists” or “truthers”

    Now.. disregarding the fact that the official account of 9/11, is, itself, by definition, nothing more than a theory of conspiracy, because there is nothing of substance to support the tale that can withstand the slightest scrutiny beyond all reasonable doubt.. the idea that being a truther, someone who supports the truth, is itself worthy of ridicule.. speaks volumes for the lack of argument on the side of those that wish to push the official account, and the desperation of their futile efforts rings loudly when the likes of the british PM recently announcing that anyone who disagrees with the baseless official theory is as dangerous as terrorists like ISIS.

    finally though, there is going to be, an unfettered, transparent, open investigation into one of the most remarkabel aspects of the events of that day.. what actually caused a steel framed building to fall at freefall acceleration through the path of most resistance..

    There are many many examples, if anyone cares to query their favourite search engine, of historical accounts of false flag events, many countries admit their own involvement, the proposition is not as outrageous as some would have us believe, and there are many thousands of qualified experts, from many different fields of endevour, politicians, military, psychiatrists, engineers, architects, pilots, military, etc etc etc.. around the globe, willing to stake their livliehoods, their reputation, and even their lives, to say simply, what we are being told, doesnt pass the sniff test.. it stinks..

    9/11 is but one example.

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