Author Topic: How to stop the wildfire of conspiracy theories?  (Read 2106 times)

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Offline MirrorMask

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How to stop the wildfire of conspiracy theories?
« on: August 08, 2020, 05:04:25 AM »
Some days ago I was randomly watching the TV and a program was about crop circles, which reminded of the good old days of when people on the internet were so sure they were signs from aliens (and I'm not-young enough to realize when they were just plain circles, hence the correlation with aliens: they were supposed to be the physical marks of the UFOs landing), and this gave me nostalgia.... remember the times when the worst conspiracy theorists could do were sending you a chain mail about crop circles?

Well, welcome to our reality, where everyone has an opinion equally worth on social media, and where conspiracy theorists don't vaccinate kids, don't wear masks and destroy phones antennas in fear of 5G.

Now, the point is not the conspiracy theories per se, they were always around, but the internet gave a big echo to all of them, and so people that 20 years ago were just the village idiots talking bullshit at the bar, now can find each other on the web and gain credibility through confirmation bias.

Until they believe the Earth is flat, you can laugh at them, but antivaxxers and antimasks are no laughing matter. How long until this goes even further? how long until someone attempts to murder Bill Gates for "wanting to install a microchip in people"? politicians are already exploiting racism, you have in every country the politician that tries to make it look like immigrants are the cause of all problems and that they're the only one who can stop the "invasion", how long before politicians try to find votes among conspiracy theorists and start to promise choice for vaccines or other inane causes?

So, to come back to my initial question: how do you symbolically slap the entire internet on the face saying "that's enough, get back to your senses"?

- A president of a nation makes a speech about the dangers of the web and of conspiracy theories? he's one of them, he's part of the elite.
- A brilliant comedian makes fun of them? that's just satire, there are already pages that explain point by point how absurd some conspiracies are, but they're just preaching to the converted.
- Raise awareness on TV? I strongly support the idea of a section on the news called "Stupid things people believed this week", but then again, the fanatical ones would claim that this is just slandering from the elite that controls the media.
- Ban discussions online and close forums, threads and pages? that's an attack on free speech and people would claim dictatorship. You can't outlaw the idea that the moon landings were faked (but something more serious, holocaust denying, have been thankfully and rightfully outlawed, but how do we put the line on this? should no vax positions be outlawed as well?).
- Invite people to publicy discuss these theories and have an expert fight them in a debate? doesn't matter, when you disregard the burden of proof you can say anything you want, and you give even more publicity to stupid claims.

The more extreme believers in conspiracy theories are to me no different from religious fanatics. I don't see much difference between "My god is the only exisiting one and if you say he doesn't exist it's because you're possessed by the devil" and "Lizard aliens have replaced the elite and if you don't believe it you're a dumb sheep or maybe you're one of them". Or, "A scientist explaining that the moon landings could not be faked is part of the conspiracy to keep up the illusion". It's hard to deal with fanatics.

How do you think would be the best way to smack some common sense into people's heads, giving the potential dangers posed by the current conspiracies?

Also, another side effect of all these conspiracy is that they kill critical thinking, and make non nutjobs skeptics of even LEGIMITATE theories. We're so used to see so much stupid crap from people, that once someone will raise a legitimate doubt about something, we'll file that under the "tinfoil hat category" as well.

It's like the tale of the boy who cried wolf basically; we are connected to thousands of people who are claiming that the wolf speaks, that the wolf shoots laser from his eyes, that the wolf is an alien, that the wolf stands on his feet, that the wolf feasts exclusively on babies whose parents vote a specific party, that the wolf can turn into a human, have unprotected sex with you and then turn into a wolf again. When a wolf will REALLY come, we won't even notice it because we won't believe anymore the legit cry for a wolf among so many stupid people crying for the most stupid and impossible of wolves.
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Offline Ben_Jamin

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Re: How to stop the wildfire of conspiracy theories?
« Reply #1 on: August 08, 2020, 09:06:39 AM »
You can't because of Deception and Perception.

Perception, involves everything, including traditional customs, upbringing. Those in turn, are necessary in us developing our beliefs.

I will tell you, My cultural traditional beliefs have been told to us since we were here, yet Non-Spiritual people might see them as Imaginary, make believe, the same way they see Jesus Christ and the bible, or Greek Mythology.

To your question, TV plays a very big part of Narratives. Many, are now seeing just how deceptive News has become, to the point no one is sure what the news says is true or not, it's made us turn into Investigators and digging, reading, researching for ourselves. That in turn, has led many to discover many things that the News, or Those in Power, have been denying or covering up, or straight up ignoring the elephants in the room.


I may be into Conspiracy Theories, but also, I am critically thinking, I don't believe Trump is the one and only savior, I don't believe Trump is the one to destroy the PTB.


What interests me with Q, is how many people are actually seeing it as gospel, when in actuality it is not. Those people, no matter what, would likely believe anything without even questioning anything, Blind Faith. Not all who are into Q are like that, actually Q isn't about that at all. All I see, is Q is getting people to actually research, learn, develop conclusions based on your evidence and research, coming to your own conclusions. If someone calls Wolf, now people are "OH, Really?...Come on, let's go see"
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Offline MirrorMask

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Re: How to stop the wildfire of conspiracy theories?
« Reply #2 on: August 08, 2020, 09:14:59 AM »
If someone calls Wolf, now people are "OH, Really?...Come on, let's go see"

The problem is not somebody calling wolf. The problem is that today somebody could call "Wolf that speaks with a jamaican accent, stands on his feet and farts lightnings from his butt" and thousands and thousands of people would believe it, share it on social media, and call zoologists idiots and slave to the system.

To use a more grounded example, let me quote an italian doctor who fights anti vaxxers: "We live in an era where someone who says that 2+2=5 is a free thinker who rebels against the power of calculators". How do you stop THAT?
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Offline Elite

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Re: How to stop the wildfire of conspiracy theories?
« Reply #3 on: August 08, 2020, 09:22:41 AM »
I hear you MirrorMask, and itís something that frustrates me to no end. I love how you managed to pit a lot of my thoughts into words basically. I think youíre right that confirmation bias has a large part in this, but what always baffles me is that people who claim they think critically and donít simply accept anything because government/science/some authority tells them something, will believe in this most absurd of theories without giving those theories any critical rebuttal whatsoever.
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Offline El Barto

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Re: How to stop the wildfire of conspiracy theories?
« Reply #4 on: August 08, 2020, 09:29:01 AM »
That's a good post, and sadly, there are no satisfying answers. I've been pondering conspiracy theories a bit, myself, and it's all quite annoying. As I see it, it's just one symptom of a greater problem as our society circles the drain. My take is that it goes back to the existential nature of politics that we've created for ourselves. Bigfoot, crop circles, the moon landing, all pretty harmless. Even JFK was, in the grand scheme of things, not such a big deal. For twenty years now we've become more and more convinced that our safety and/or our values are under attack. This inevitably extends to segments of the government, or the rich elite, who want to kill us, or enslave us, or transform us. That's when a huge chunk of the populace can accept that 911 was an inside job, or that vaccinations cause autism. Those things align with the perceived goal of government.

This isn't an intelligence thing. My best friend, and one of the most intelligent people I know, is a truther. When I asked him why the first inclination is to look for a nefarious basis for things such as this, his reply was something along the lines or "when your next door neighbor is a family of criminal psychopaths, you don't just assume that missing cats and the occasional burned down building are merely happenstance." While it doesn't negate the need for proper techniques of scientific investigation, it's a valid point. I'm just not inclined to assume that our government is actively trying to kill us, or enslave us, or transform us. The thing that fascinates me about these folks is that once you start down the rabbit hole it gets easier to find what you're looking for. Once you accept that your neighbors are criminal psychopaths you essentially put on the Wayfarers and see aliens and hidden meanings everywhere you look. Going from 911 to Sandy Hook or 5g is a really short hop.

As for the solution, and here's the unsatisfying part, I think it's largely a symptom of our failing society. People believing 5g will kill them is part and parcel with the fact that we're fixing to choose between two genuinely pathetic candidates under the guise that they're to be our saviors. The people inclined to believe that we allow big pharma to rake in billions at the expense of children's lives are the same sorts that think cops have declared open season on black folk, or that libruls want to disarm them and force them to fornicate outside of their own gender norms. Solve the deep problems within our society and I think the conspiracy theorists go back under their rocks and stop being a cause of concern.
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Offline Ben_Jamin

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Re: How to stop the wildfire of conspiracy theories?
« Reply #5 on: August 08, 2020, 09:34:52 AM »
If someone calls Wolf, now people are "OH, Really?...Come on, let's go see"

The problem is not somebody calling wolf. The problem is that today somebody could call "Wolf that speaks with a jamaican accent, stands on his feet and farts lightnings from his butt" and thousands and thousands of people would believe it, share it on social media, and call zoologists idiots and slave to the system.

To use a more grounded example, let me quote an italian doctor who fights anti vaxxers: "We live in an era where someone who says that 2+2=5 is a free thinker who rebels against the power of calculators". How do you stop THAT?

That example is funny though, because you can stop THAT specific situation by using physical reality to prove, 2+2 doesn't equal 5, just look at your hand.


This is big question of Humanity. It's one that many can spend their lifetime trying to figure out. Why do people tend to fall for deceptions?

I see it also as an effect of being deceived and lied to, so many times it started to have a numbing effect, that has many losing Trust, many not having honor, or loyalty to another.

We need to have faith in ourselves, trust each other, respect each other, have loyalty in one another by being there in difficult times, have honor in our beings of Humanity.

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Offline MirrorMask

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Re: How to stop the wildfire of conspiracy theories?
« Reply #6 on: August 08, 2020, 09:55:06 AM »
If someone calls Wolf, now people are "OH, Really?...Come on, let's go see"

The problem is not somebody calling wolf. The problem is that today somebody could call "Wolf that speaks with a jamaican accent, stands on his feet and farts lightnings from his butt" and thousands and thousands of people would believe it, share it on social media, and call zoologists idiots and slave to the system.

To use a more grounded example, let me quote an italian doctor who fights anti vaxxers: "We live in an era where someone who says that 2+2=5 is a free thinker who rebels against the power of calculators". How do you stop THAT?

That example is funny though, because you can stop THAT specific situation by using physical reality to prove, 2+2 doesn't equal 5, just look at your hand.

Yeah, you can literally convince people to count their fingers, but don't be so optimistic about other stuff.

The whole anti vax thing can be shut down in a sentence: "No, vaccines don't cause autism, there is no scientific proof about it and the study that suggested it was biased and conducted in the wrong way". That's all there is to it, really. But it simply won't go away.

Another more harmless example, end of the world in 2012: "The Maya never predicted the end of the world. They had a cyclical conception of time and the last big cycle happened to end on 21th December 2012, that's all. Furthermore, the cosmic alignment in the sky happening on that day happened a lot of times in Earth's history, and the last time it happened modern humans were already walking the planet". Again: that's all there is to say about the 2012 Maya thing. That didn't stop people from believing it and a movie being made and books being sold.
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Offline Ben_Jamin

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Re: How to stop the wildfire of conspiracy theories?
« Reply #7 on: August 08, 2020, 09:57:38 AM »

As for the solution, and here's the unsatisfying part, I think it's largely a symptom of our failing society. People believing 5g will kill them is part and parcel with the fact that we're fixing to choose between two genuinely pathetic candidates under the guise that they're to be our saviors. The people inclined to believe that we allow big pharma to rake in billions at the expense of children's lives are the same sorts that think cops have declared open season on black folk, or that libruls want to disarm them and force them to fornicate outside of their own gender norms. Solve the deep problems within our society and I think the conspiracy theorists go back under their rocks and stop being a cause of concern.

Said it way better than I did.


I'm just not inclined to assume that our government is actively trying to kill us, or enslave us, or transform us.


Hey man, I'm the same, as there are good people. It's the bad ones that tend to have control at this moment. It's also why, I don't support destroying America. Because, The founding fathers had heard what is known as "The Great Law of Peace", they found if insightful and decided to base their New World, off this very principle. In omitting some aspects of "The Great Law of Peace", the founding fathers therefore are (and currently) not following it correctly, hence why America is struggling, the laws are not complete.

Knowing this, America's constitution is almost how the great peacemaker wanted us to live.

Yet, The American Government has killed, enslaved and transformed my people. So, we as a people have every right to assume they will do it again, in reality it hasn't stopped or ended. All we want is for our sacred sites to be left alone, and for us to be allowed to live our life, our traditions are our way of life, it's how we have always lived. One big way that can change is by showing, in maps of the states, the Sovereign Nations. Show where our borders lie currently, which would reveal to people just how much is considered native land.
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Offline Ben_Jamin

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Re: How to stop the wildfire of conspiracy theories?
« Reply #8 on: August 08, 2020, 10:08:35 AM »
If someone calls Wolf, now people are "OH, Really?...Come on, let's go see"

The problem is not somebody calling wolf. The problem is that today somebody could call "Wolf that speaks with a jamaican accent, stands on his feet and farts lightnings from his butt" and thousands and thousands of people would believe it, share it on social media, and call zoologists idiots and slave to the system.

To use a more grounded example, let me quote an italian doctor who fights anti vaxxers: "We live in an era where someone who says that 2+2=5 is a free thinker who rebels against the power of calculators". How do you stop THAT?

That example is funny though, because you can stop THAT specific situation by using physical reality to prove, 2+2 doesn't equal 5, just look at your hand.

Another more harmless example, end of the world in 2012: "The Maya never predicted the end of the world. They had a cyclical conception of time and the last big cycle happened to end on 21th December 2012, that's all. Furthermore, the cosmic alignment in the sky happening on that day happened a lot of times in Earth's history, and the last time it happened modern humans were already walking the planet". Again: that's all there is to say about the 2012 Maya thing. That didn't stop people from believing it and a movie being made and books being sold.

That's a belief that THE WHITE MAN convinced himself was fact. The only way to know would be to ask a MAYAN what it means. Has anybody done that? Are there any Mayans that still know what it truly means? Would they even tell THE WHITE MAN the truth, after the deceit they have been shown?

That's what I am getting at with deception.

Those anti-vaxers and hardcore conspiracy theorists, don't feel trust in the government, they feel like they are been lied to. Why is that?

In turn, if there are more people tending to believe in these theories as fact, it shows how many people feel they have been deceived. And are Losing Trust of their government and news they've been fed. Losing loyalty in the government and it's constitution. Losing loyalty and trust in those in the government (many of whom have been there their entire lives, made it a career).
« Last Edit: August 08, 2020, 10:15:43 AM by Ben_Jamin »
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Offline lordxizor

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Re: How to stop the wildfire of conspiracy theories?
« Reply #9 on: August 10, 2020, 08:20:10 AM »
If you're not plugged into it, most of these things seem like they're all based on one lie, or one meme, or whatever. But most of them are far more sophisticated than that, involving studies, papers, experts in the field being on board, etc. But basically every single one of them boils down to a core concept: immense distrust of those in power and those with a big financial stake in the mainstream view. In the case of anti-vaccine people, they will never trust data put out by the government, FDA, CDC, or vaccine manufacturers because they have too much at stake to admit they might have been wrong and vaccines are in fact far more dangerous than they've previously admitted. They will only trust "independent" data.

Honestly, I don't give a shit. Let people believe what they want. Let's all just mind our own business and do what we think is best for ourselves and our families.

Offline Ben_Jamin

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Re: How to stop the wildfire of conspiracy theories?
« Reply #10 on: August 10, 2020, 08:34:45 AM »
Honestly, I don't give a shit. Let people believe what they want. Let's all just mind our own business and do what we think is best for ourselves and our families.

Thank You. I wanted to say this, but didn't know how to say it without coming off as harsh and blunt.
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Offline kingshmegland

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Re: How to stop the wildfire of conspiracy theories?
« Reply #11 on: August 10, 2020, 08:47:25 AM »
Extremism is the poison that infects us all and that is magnified in conspiracy theories.

Lordxizor.  100% agree, problem is, too many people think their thoughts and opinions are more important than yours and need to point that out.
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Offline MirrorMask

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Re: How to stop the wildfire of conspiracy theories?
« Reply #12 on: August 10, 2020, 08:53:15 AM »
Honestly, I don't give a shit. Let people believe what they want. Let's all just mind our own business and do what we think is best for ourselves and our families.

Thank You. I wanted to say this, but didn't know how to say it without coming off as harsh and blunt.

The fact that someone believes that the moon landings were faked me does not affect me whatsoever.

If someone doesn't vaccinate their kids they put in danger other kids, especially immunodepressed ones. If someone burns down a 5G antenna, people can't use phones in a whole area. Not all things fall into the "eh, live and let live" category.

As I said: how long until someone commits a murder because he thinks he targets a member of the illuminati? politicians are already weaponizing racism, how long until they weaponize a conspiracy theory which is just enough this side of crazy to appeal to a lot of people?
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Offline Stadler

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Re: How to stop the wildfire of conspiracy theories?
« Reply #13 on: August 10, 2020, 09:01:46 AM »
As for the solution, and here's the unsatisfying part, I think it's largely a symptom of our failing society. People believing 5g will kill them is part and parcel with the fact that we're fixing to choose between two genuinely pathetic candidates under the guise that they're to be our saviors. The people inclined to believe that we allow big pharma to rake in billions at the expense of children's lives are the same sorts that think cops have declared open season on black folk, or that libruls want to disarm them and force them to fornicate outside of their own gender norms. Solve the deep problems within our society and I think the conspiracy theorists go back under their rocks and stop being a cause of concern.

I wish I wrote this.  This is beautiful.

I have my ideas about the deep problems in our society (ultimately, I think they are rooted in the crippling insecurity caused by our brains/knowledge/awareness exceeding our emotional capacity to handle that knowledge/awareness) but I certainly agree that this is a deeper issue requiring a much broader solution. 

Offline Shadow Ninja 2.0

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Re: How to stop the wildfire of conspiracy theories?
« Reply #14 on: August 10, 2020, 09:06:27 AM »
Completely agree with MirrorMask. If you're stupid enough to think the earth is flat, or the moon landing is fake, whatever. Don't give a fuck.

Antivaxxers endanger others by their actions. They risk not only the lives of their children (antivaxxers themselves have generally already been vaccinated, so on a personal level they're not really risking anything), but the vulnerable people in society who can't be vaccinated who rely on the rest of us to provide them with immunity. There have been outbreaks of measles in Washington because of people who weren't vaccinated. A disease that's absurdly easy to prevent now is recurring because of these people.

Saying everyone should 'just mind their own business' doesn't work because, unlike flat earth, the antivaxxers cause harm to other people. The same thing with the coronavirus conspiracy theorists. Their stupidity costs lives, and not in a hypothetical way.
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Offline Stadler

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Re: How to stop the wildfire of conspiracy theories?
« Reply #15 on: August 10, 2020, 09:21:00 AM »
If someone calls Wolf, now people are "OH, Really?...Come on, let's go see"

The problem is not somebody calling wolf. The problem is that today somebody could call "Wolf that speaks with a jamaican accent, stands on his feet and farts lightnings from his butt" and thousands and thousands of people would believe it, share it on social media, and call zoologists idiots and slave to the system.

To use a more grounded example, let me quote an italian doctor who fights anti vaxxers: "We live in an era where someone who says that 2+2=5 is a free thinker who rebels against the power of calculators". How do you stop THAT?

That example is funny though, because you can stop THAT specific situation by using physical reality to prove, 2+2 doesn't equal 5, just look at your hand.

Yeah, you can literally convince people to count their fingers, but don't be so optimistic about other stuff.

The whole anti vax thing can be shut down in a sentence: "No, vaccines don't cause autism, there is no scientific proof about it and the study that suggested it was biased and conducted in the wrong way". That's all there is to it, really. But it simply won't go away.

But of course, it's not that simple.  The other studies that show no connection were of course conducted by the pharmaceutical companies themselves (they who SELL the vaccines) and the government agencies that are in cahoots with them, either to keep profits - and thus tax dollars - in the United States, or are staffed by people that make career moves out of going back and forth between agency leadership and corporate governance. 

I think the biggest mistake in looking at conspiracy theories is in assuming that it's as simple as "2+2" and that people are comfortable and willing to confront their own "stupidity".   That flies in the face of the vast majority of people, at least here in America.  They're NOT stupid, in fact often they're quite the opposite, but it becomes a matter of pride or status.* 

This is, ironically, supported by some of the research we're seeing on the psychology side, including but not limited to something I've referenced here a bunch of times, the concept of the "in-groups" and "out-groups".

I also think it's a mistake to focus on WHAT the conspiracy is, as opposed to the fact that it IS a conspiracy theory.  That's not to say that every runny nose is caused by the same bacteria/virus, but I think it matters less what the conspiracy theory is than whether you are prone to that type of thinking to begin with.

(* And no, that's not my "confirmation bias", applying that to every problem I see; it's more complicated than that, in that I see the "every problem" as really more like symptoms of one deeper problem.)
« Last Edit: August 10, 2020, 09:40:05 AM by Stadler »

Offline Stadler

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Re: How to stop the wildfire of conspiracy theories?
« Reply #16 on: August 10, 2020, 09:39:21 AM »
Completely agree with MirrorMask. If you're stupid enough to think the earth is flat, or the moon landing is fake, whatever. Don't give a fuck.

Antivaxxers endanger others by their actions. They risk not only the lives of their children (antivaxxers themselves have generally already been vaccinated, so on a personal level they're not really risking anything), but the vulnerable people in society who can't be vaccinated who rely on the rest of us to provide them with immunity. There have been outbreaks of measles in Washington because of people who weren't vaccinated. A disease that's absurdly easy to prevent now is recurring because of these people.

Saying everyone should 'just mind their own business' doesn't work because, unlike flat earth, the antivaxxers cause harm to other people. The same thing with the coronavirus conspiracy theorists. Their stupidity costs lives, and not in a hypothetical way.

So what?   I mean that seriously, not as an attack, but why does "they hurt people" matter in the context of the issue itself?  "Harm" is, in and of itself, a relative thing that we  as humans aren't good at assessing either.  We over prioritize acute harm over chronic harm (even if the severity of the harm doesn't track as well) and we very much over prioritize physical harm over psychological harm.   How many of the kids that potentially get measles because some fam didn't vaccinate their kids are also getting metric tons of second hand smoke from their parents puffing away like chimneys?   As recently as the mid-1990's, seeking mental health was considered a "red flag" (when I first applied to the Bar in the mid-'90's, it was widely assumed that disclosing you were seeing a therapist - for any reason - could be grounds for denying acceptance in my state.)

Even though I'm usually the "free will/individual choice" guy, it's not even a matter of that, really.  I think there's a decent argument that "free will" isn't really, at least not in the objective sense, and that we are just products of our personality type vis-a-vis risks and choices.  If that's true, it factors in here HEAVILY, since it seems to indicated that we're asking people to act against their own human nature.   If you're not careful, and you do that with the wrong human inclination, you're not a "critical thinker", you're a bigot. 


Offline Stadler

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Re: How to stop the wildfire of conspiracy theories?
« Reply #17 on: August 10, 2020, 09:52:30 AM »
Honestly, I don't give a shit. Let people believe what they want. Let's all just mind our own business and do what we think is best for ourselves and our families.

Thank You. I wanted to say this, but didn't know how to say it without coming off as harsh and blunt.

The fact that someone believes that the moon landings were faked me does not affect me whatsoever.

If someone doesn't vaccinate their kids they put in danger other kids, especially immunodepressed ones. If someone burns down a 5G antenna, people can't use phones in a whole area. Not all things fall into the "eh, live and let live" category.

As I said: how long until someone commits a murder because he thinks he targets a member of the illuminati? politicians are already weaponizing racism, how long until they weaponize a conspiracy theory which is just enough this side of crazy to appeal to a lot of people?

We already do this as a matter of general discourse.   Pick a level:  Politics?   Bernie Sanders: "The economy is rigged against the working people of America, while an ultra-wealthy few get richer and richer."  That's way more extreme than "well, the very poorest of us all need a little help to stay above water".  Nope, that's calling into question the very foundation of the system, and playing on the fears and emotions of those that don't want to be "harmed".   That's weaponizing a conspiracy theory.     (And I use that not to blast Bernie, and not to take sides, but to remove the idea of the "conspiracy" from simply "crazy".   Bernie is an elected Senator of our nation - the second highest national elected office - and a credible candidate for our Presidency.)

Whether you believe in the single gunman theory or not (BTW, go to Dealey Plaza first; from my couple hours there, it's pretty definitive to me that it was just Oswald), it's pretty easy to cast the assassination of Kennedy in the context of someone acting homicidally on a conspiracy theory.   

And finally, I think we're being too literal and linear in what "harms me".  I'm not at all convinced that things like Bernie's theories don't directly impact me (not saying they are bad, just that they have impact).  Every time someone calls me a "bot" or a "Trump sympathizer" because I'm unwilling to call him "Donnie Darko" or "Drumpf" or "Herr Fuhrer", we're all suffering.  My opinoin is being marginalized and minimized.  That harms all of us in the long run, whether it kills us immediately or not. 

Offline Shadow Ninja 2.0

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Re: How to stop the wildfire of conspiracy theories?
« Reply #18 on: August 10, 2020, 09:59:49 AM »
Completely agree with MirrorMask. If you're stupid enough to think the earth is flat, or the moon landing is fake, whatever. Don't give a fuck.

Antivaxxers endanger others by their actions. They risk not only the lives of their children (antivaxxers themselves have generally already been vaccinated, so on a personal level they're not really risking anything), but the vulnerable people in society who can't be vaccinated who rely on the rest of us to provide them with immunity. There have been outbreaks of measles in Washington because of people who weren't vaccinated. A disease that's absurdly easy to prevent now is recurring because of these people.

Saying everyone should 'just mind their own business' doesn't work because, unlike flat earth, the antivaxxers cause harm to other people. The same thing with the coronavirus conspiracy theorists. Their stupidity costs lives, and not in a hypothetical way.

So what?   I mean that seriously, not as an attack, but why does "they hurt people" matter in the context of the issue itself?  "Harm" is, in and of itself, a relative thing that we  as humans aren't good at assessing either.  We over prioritize acute harm over chronic harm (even if the severity of the harm doesn't track as well) and we very much over prioritize physical harm over psychological harm.   How many of the kids that potentially get measles because some fam didn't vaccinate their kids are also getting metric tons of second hand smoke from their parents puffing away like chimneys?   As recently as the mid-1990's, seeking mental health was considered a "red flag" (when I first applied to the Bar in the mid-'90's, it was widely assumed that disclosing you were seeing a therapist - for any reason - could be grounds for denying acceptance in my state.)

Even though I'm usually the "free will/individual choice" guy, it's not even a matter of that, really.  I think there's a decent argument that "free will" isn't really, at least not in the objective sense, and that we are just products of our personality type vis-a-vis risks and choices.  If that's true, it factors in here HEAVILY, since it seems to indicated that we're asking people to act against their own human nature.   If you're not careful, and you do that with the wrong human inclination, you're not a "critical thinker", you're a bigot.

Why does it matter? I don't even know how to answer that. Why am I not allowed to punch random people as I walk down the street? Why am I not allowed to build a nuclear bomb in my backyard? Why am I not allowed to pour hazardous chemicals out on my property that will sink into the water table?

I am honestly completely baffled by this entire discussion. Can we not agree that promoting ideas that revive diseases that had functionally been eliminated up until now is NOT THAT GREAT?
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Re: How to stop the wildfire of conspiracy theories?
« Reply #19 on: August 10, 2020, 10:35:40 AM »
Completely agree with MirrorMask. If you're stupid enough to think the earth is flat, or the moon landing is fake, whatever. Don't give a fuck.

Antivaxxers endanger others by their actions. They risk not only the lives of their children (antivaxxers themselves have generally already been vaccinated, so on a personal level they're not really risking anything), but the vulnerable people in society who can't be vaccinated who rely on the rest of us to provide them with immunity. There have been outbreaks of measles in Washington because of people who weren't vaccinated. A disease that's absurdly easy to prevent now is recurring because of these people.

Saying everyone should 'just mind their own business' doesn't work because, unlike flat earth, the antivaxxers cause harm to other people. The same thing with the coronavirus conspiracy theorists. Their stupidity costs lives, and not in a hypothetical way.

So what?   I mean that seriously, not as an attack, but why does "they hurt people" matter in the context of the issue itself?  "Harm" is, in and of itself, a relative thing that we  as humans aren't good at assessing either.  We over prioritize acute harm over chronic harm (even if the severity of the harm doesn't track as well) and we very much over prioritize physical harm over psychological harm.   How many of the kids that potentially get measles because some fam didn't vaccinate their kids are also getting metric tons of second hand smoke from their parents puffing away like chimneys?   As recently as the mid-1990's, seeking mental health was considered a "red flag" (when I first applied to the Bar in the mid-'90's, it was widely assumed that disclosing you were seeing a therapist - for any reason - could be grounds for denying acceptance in my state.)

Even though I'm usually the "free will/individual choice" guy, it's not even a matter of that, really.  I think there's a decent argument that "free will" isn't really, at least not in the objective sense, and that we are just products of our personality type vis-a-vis risks and choices.  If that's true, it factors in here HEAVILY, since it seems to indicated that we're asking people to act against their own human nature.   If you're not careful, and you do that with the wrong human inclination, you're not a "critical thinker", you're a bigot.

Why does it matter? I don't even know how to answer that. Why am I not allowed to punch random people as I walk down the street? Why am I not allowed to build a nuclear bomb in my backyard? Why am I not allowed to pour hazardous chemicals out on my property that will sink into the water table?

I am honestly completely baffled by this entire discussion. Can we not agree that promoting ideas that revive diseases that had functionally been eliminated up until now is NOT THAT GREAT?

But you're misunderstanding my question; you yourself used perhaps the most egregious example possible, and for that there are several rationales that have nothing to do with your specific "harm".  Notwithstanding the fact that it might actually destroy the planet entirely, it's not JUST about the fact that one human hurts another.  It's as much about the nuclear material itself and who has it.   I CAN actually buy the materials to make a conventional bomb.   It might raise red flags, but it isn't illegal per se.       

I'm talking about the notion of harm in general.  You made a distinction that something "has harm" and something else "doesn't".  Even if we agreed on the idea of regulating things that "have harm", we still get to the question of "what is sufficient harm to warrant control" and the more important question of "what is the sufficient response"?   That's where I'm going.   You're firm and seemingly certain (even, maybe, a little sanctimonious) over the importance of the "harm" of a recurring microorganism.    Is your harm there more or less important than the harm caused to all of us by, say, social media?  Or if you refuse to buy into that, the "harm" of the Chinese Government taking over the world economically and, perhaps politically?   I'm curious where the lines are; immediate physical harm?  Potential physical harm?   Your argument seems to imply that one is entitled to never come to harm at the hands of someone else's decision-making; I don't necessarily agree with that.  If I don't like the rules of my jurisdiction regarding vaccines, I can act accordingly. I can pull my kid from school and send him or her to a school that requires full immunization.  What about the harm from those whose politics impact me directly as well?  Do I then have to leave the country?  That argument didn't get much traction when the MAGA crowd made it ("America, love it or leave it").

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Re: How to stop the wildfire of conspiracy theories?
« Reply #20 on: August 10, 2020, 10:35:51 AM »
My two cents as a former conspiracy theorist on the David Icke level of dumb crap to believe in.  When I was entrenched in conspiracy theories (circa 1997-2001ish) not only was that the part of my life where I was literally stoned from the time I woke up until I fell asleep perhaps affecting my judgement.....but I was just 'lost' in general. No real direction at all....floundering in life. The conspiracy theories gave me a level of 'power' so to speak because I felt like I knew something that the 'normal' people didn't.....that I was somehow 'smarter' than the 'normal' people who just couldn't see it.

But not coincidentally during that time period of my life I suffered from crippling panic and anxiety attacks and was pretty much a hermit....shunning the outside world so to speak. I'd go to work and that was it. Thankfully I eventually wised up and broke out of that funk.....met my wife in 2003 and the rest is history.

Basically, if the world is really controlled by shape shifting reptiles from the 4th dimension and if our planet was really populated by the Annunaki who were escaping a dying planet Mars because it was hit by a massive asteroid......I really don't give a  :censored    Have at it for all I care  :lol   Because 'if' that's the 'truth' then there's nothing any of us can do about it anyway.
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Re: How to stop the wildfire of conspiracy theories?
« Reply #21 on: August 10, 2020, 12:33:54 PM »
Stadler, while you say interesting and reasonable things, I wonder.... do we really need to throw 467 examples into a debate? do we have to make a melting pot of everything? yes, we live in a complex world which is interconnected, no man is an island and all of that, but why do we need to consider everything else, always, at the same time before having an opinion on something?

If we're talking about the dangers of smoke, can't we talk about the dangers of smoke? do we need to make a comparison with the dangers of drunk driving? do we need to launch into a social commentary about what vice is more accepted by society and then thrown in obesity in kids and have a long debate about McDonald's? can't I just say that smoking is bad without considering candies for kids?

At the same time, and I repeat that I know and understand that the whole world is connected and no issue can be addressed in a vacuum, but why do I have to take in account whatever China is doing economically and politically before being allowed to say that it's a damn disgrace if an immunodepressed kid dies because he's in a class with the son of someone who has no medical knowledge, can't pick between "you are" and "your" to save their life, but didn't vaccinate his son because he read it on Facebook from a Karen that vaccines cause autism?

And about politicians weaponizing conspiracy theories... whatever words Bernie Sanders choses to make his political point are his own decision. I meant politicians jumping on a bandwagon of something already out there. For example in Italy we have a lot of people that have decided that 5G kills birds, will cause cancer, will spread the virus and blah blah blah. Some majors didn't allow for 5G antennas to be installed in their towns. Why? are they genuinely uninformed and take a cautious approach? are they making a calculated move by assuming jumping on the "No 5G" bandwagon will bring votes?  that's what I meant with politicians weaponizing conspiracy theories. I think it's a real risk that someone will try to get votes, in the not so distant future, from something which is a silly bullshit originated online.

The conspiracy theories gave me a level of 'power' so to speak because I felt like I knew something that the 'normal' people didn't.....that I was somehow 'smarter' than the 'normal' people who just couldn't see it.

And this is why people continue to fall for them. Conspiracy theories are the intellectual lottery. When you win the lottery, you win all at once a sum of money you need years, or maybe lifetimes, to earn. Buying into a conspiracy gives you a (false) sense of being part of the elite, of the restricted few who know better than the others. Why spend a lot of time, possibly years, studying astronomy, geology, photography etc etc when you can just share a random photo of the moon landings where pareidolia tricks you into seeing a "C" on a rock and be suddenly part of those who understood that the landings were faked?
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Offline Shadow Ninja 2.0

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Re: How to stop the wildfire of conspiracy theories?
« Reply #22 on: August 10, 2020, 01:18:02 PM »
Stadler, I think there's a pretty clear distinction between the vague, nebulous 'harm's you're suggesting and the fairly direct one that results from people not giving their kids vaccinations. My point about the bomb wasn't that I can't buy the parts for it, it's that I'm not allowed to go around blowing people up. Use the hazardous material in the water table example if you want, it's probably a clearer analogue.

Re: just moving your kid to a different school. It's cool that you have the freedom and financial latitude to do that. Not everyone does. It's not reasonable to expect people to have to move away so they don't die of easily preventable diseases. Same thing with the MAGA example you brought up, which I assume you also think is unreasonable. Believe me, I hate this fucking country and I'd love to just leave but unfortunately that's not feasible. And that's probably the crux of the issue here for me: how do you prevent harm from China doing whatever they're doing? No idea. How do you separate the negatives of social media from the positives? I'm coming up empty. How do you prevent the recurrence of diseases we have vaccines for? GET A VACCINE.

If all society used this sort of whataboutism every time an issue was discussed, there never would have been any Civil Rights act. Just move to where someone will hire non-white people, no big deal. It paralyzes any kind of progress and makes virtuous the idea of never changing anything just because that's already the way it is.
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Offline Stadler

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Re: How to stop the wildfire of conspiracy theories?
« Reply #23 on: August 10, 2020, 02:15:46 PM »
Stadler, while you say interesting and reasonable things, I wonder.... do we really need to throw 467 examples into a debate? do we have to make a melting pot of everything? yes, we live in a complex world which is interconnected, no man is an island and all of that, but why do we need to consider everything else, always, at the same time before having an opinion on something?

If we're talking about the dangers of smoke, can't we talk about the dangers of smoke? do we need to make a comparison with the dangers of drunk driving? do we need to launch into a social commentary about what vice is more accepted by society and then thrown in obesity in kids and have a long debate about McDonald's? can't I just say that smoking is bad without considering candies for kids?

At the same time, and I repeat that I know and understand that the whole world is connected and no issue can be addressed in a vacuum, but why do I have to take in account whatever China is doing economically and politically before being allowed to say that it's a damn disgrace if an immunodepressed kid dies because he's in a class with the son of someone who has no medical knowledge, can't pick between "you are" and "your" to save their life, but didn't vaccinate his son because he read it on Facebook from a Karen that vaccines cause autism?

I'm not sure what your point is.  The implication is that conspiracy theorists are either stupid or working from incomplete information.   And you're going to justify working from incomplete information?   

I don't really care what people assess or not, or where they draw the lines.  if you want to account for China, fine, if you don't, that's fine too.  But too many of these conversations - especially the ones about vaccines and masks - have an inherent judgmentalism, and an inherent authoritarianism.   If you're (now I'm self conscious about getting that right! :O) going to draw lines, fair enough, but consider that others might draw them in different places that conflict with yours.  And doubly so when the result is driving behaviors.  I'm simply making the point that there are multiple ways of looking at these things.   You may not think so, but I'm of the opinion that many people forget that. 

Quote
And about politicians weaponizing conspiracy theories... whatever words Bernie Sanders choses to make his political point are his own decision. I meant politicians jumping on a bandwagon of something already out there. For example in Italy we have a lot of people that have decided that 5G kills birds, will cause cancer, will spread the virus and blah blah blah. Some majors didn't allow for 5G antennas to be installed in their towns. Why? are they genuinely uninformed and take a cautious approach? are they making a calculated move by assuming jumping on the "No 5G" bandwagon will bring votes?  that's what I meant with politicians weaponizing conspiracy theories. I think it's a real risk that someone will try to get votes, in the not so distant future, from something which is a silly bullshit originated online.

Respectfully I see no distinction.   Isn't the case either way that we're less relying on hard truth and instead relying on emotional reaction (fear)?   
« Last Edit: August 10, 2020, 02:58:10 PM by Stadler »

Offline Stadler

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Re: How to stop the wildfire of conspiracy theories?
« Reply #24 on: August 10, 2020, 03:23:14 PM »
Stadler, I think there's a pretty clear distinction between the vague, nebulous 'harm's you're suggesting and the fairly direct one that results from people not giving their kids vaccinations. My point about the bomb wasn't that I can't buy the parts for it, it's that I'm not allowed to go around blowing people up. Use the hazardous material in the water table example if you want, it's probably a clearer analogue.

Re: just moving your kid to a different school. It's cool that you have the freedom and financial latitude to do that. Not everyone does. It's not reasonable to expect people to have to move away so they don't die of easily preventable diseases. Same thing with the MAGA example you brought up, which I assume you also think is unreasonable. Believe me, I hate this fucking country and I'd love to just leave but unfortunately that's not feasible. And that's probably the crux of the issue here for me: how do you prevent harm from China doing whatever they're doing? No idea. How do you separate the negatives of social media from the positives? I'm coming up empty. How do you prevent the recurrence of diseases we have vaccines for? GET A VACCINE.

If all society used this sort of whataboutism every time an issue was discussed, there never would have been any Civil Rights act. Just move to where someone will hire non-white people, no big deal. It paralyzes any kind of progress and makes virtuous the idea of never changing anything just because that's already the way it is.

So as long as it's simple for you, then it's okay? That sounds way snarkier than I mean it; I'm trying yet again to inject the sense of point of view here, the sense of one person's perspective when that perspective conflicts with someone else's.    You're assessing this from your perspective on an issue that for you is black and white, and making value judgments against things that are still grey for you; you don't know the impact of the Chinese or how to stop it, but there are experts in international geopolitical economics that do.  There is/are a Dr. Fauci and a Dr. Birx for that too.  And in social media (I know we have some here, but I've spoken to several PhD's in psychology, and not one of them is an advocate for social media en masse).   Some of the things you're talking about are "nebulous" to you; I lost a years income (and, ultimately, a marriage) from what I see as a very direct, very consequential response to the policies of President Obama.  There's nothing "nebulous" about it.  That's my reality to solve, no one else's.  Whereas you're deciding that because the odds favor YOU, I - all of us - should inject a vaccine INTO MY BODY, and that of my children.   It makes perfect sense to you but why is that even YOUR call to make?   Or the scientists, or anyone you decide makes your best argument (including the majority)?   You (and Mirror Mask) rejected my examples as being of a different level of certainty, but there are others; how is this different than, say, abortion?   If we can decide to infringe on someone's right to liberty (essentially where this falls), why not demand that women with fetuses that fall into a certain category get abortions?   Those "467 questions" aren't important to you, but they may be important to others. 

Don't misunderstand me, please.  I get the role of society and government, and if we, via our duly elected government decide that a policy is appropriate, through the system we all have in place, then so be it.  That's how the process is supposed to work.  I'm not pushing back against vaccines specifically - I'm vaccinated as are all my children - it's the judgment and the lack of accounting for positions that differ.  The idea that someone might be "stupid" or "ignorant" or "lesser" for being what we determine, without ever talking to them or getting their point of view on things, is wrong.  There is no "whataboutism" here (except in the attempt to make the point).   It's really about an equal amount of respect for those that prioritize and account differently than we do (i.e. disagree with us) as for those that think like we do (i.e. agree with us).   

(By the way, civil rights is different, in that the argument FOR civil rights is in my view the same argument AGAINST vaccines.  It's not about a collective will, it's about the inherent rights of the individual.   In the society of pre-1964 a majority of society deemed certain classes of people to be inferior or lesser, and in my argument, that's not the case.  A human being, with a beating heart and a sentient brain had a certain set of inalienable rights, and none of those rights were dependent on their skin color.) 

Offline MirrorMask

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Re: How to stop the wildfire of conspiracy theories?
« Reply #25 on: August 11, 2020, 02:48:28 AM »
As I said: on one hand I understand that we don't live in a bubble and that we have to consider many angles, on the other hand I still stand by my humble and maybe naive opinion that I'm allowed to think that smoking is bad without having to present at the same time an opinion on how to deal with every single vice (drinking, gambling, bad eating habits) and the socio-economical ramifications of it.

I think I'm allowed to have an opinion about how to deal with rapists without having at the same time present a full and coherent plan about how I'd deal with cannibals, pedophiles, human traffickers and the likes.

And I think I'm allowed to have a negative opinion about anti vaxxers without the need to back it up with my ideas on how to deal with abortion, China's economy and Bernie Sanders' speeches. Whatever the other pressing issues of the world at hand are, it doesn't change the fact that people were living stuck in iron lungs and that a vaccine for polio made those obsolete. Imagine if the era of fighting polio was now, coinciding with social media, we'd have people condemning other people to end up in an iron lung because of their assumptions based on whatever was written in a random Facebook group by someone with no medical experience or knowledge whatsover.
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Re: How to stop the wildfire of conspiracy theories?
« Reply #26 on: August 11, 2020, 03:31:20 AM »
^ That's a good post and I agree with all of that, although I don't get how you arrive at the point that you need to have opinions on other issues before you can say something about something completely unrelated. I agree with the idea you're posing, let that be clear though.

Sorry I'm not really contributing much more than that at this point, but I'm reading everything in this thread, because it interests me greatly, but at this moment I don't have anything more to say than 'I agree' or 'I disagree'.
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Offline MirrorMask

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Re: How to stop the wildfire of conspiracy theories?
« Reply #27 on: August 11, 2020, 03:55:53 AM »
^ That's a good post and I agree with all of that, although I don't get how you arrive at the point that you need to have opinions on other issues before you can say something about something completely unrelated. I agree with the idea you're posing, let that be clear though.

It was my way of explaining my perplexities at Stadler's anyway good points presented, as discussed above, and - even if they are good and thoughtful questions to pose and to considerate- how much their addressing, or lack of, is absolutely vital for the matter at hand (the most dangerous conspiracy theories).

ShadowNinja said:

"Can we not agree that promoting ideas that revive diseases that had functionally been eliminated up until now is NOT THAT GREAT?"

Stadler replied:

"You made a distinction that something "has harm" and something else "doesn't".  Even if we agreed on the idea of regulating things that "have harm", we still get to the question of "what is sufficient harm to warrant control" and the more important question of "what is the sufficient response"?   That's where I'm going. [...]    You're firm and seemingly certain (even, maybe, a little sanctimonious) over the importance of the "harm" of a recurring microorganism.    Is your harm there more or less important than the harm caused to all of us by, say, social media?  Or if you refuse to buy into that, the "harm" of the Chinese Government taking over the world economically and, perhaps politically? [...]


Rest of the post can be found above obviously.

Hence why my humble and maybe naive, and possibly wrong, doubts about wether I should really consider my opinion on the chinese government's policies before saying that anti vaxxers are full of BS, and then the paragon "I talk about the dangers of smoking and I'm being asked to take into consideration all the other vices of the world".
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Offline Shadow Ninja 2.0

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Re: How to stop the wildfire of conspiracy theories?
« Reply #28 on: August 11, 2020, 06:47:24 AM »
Stadler, I think there's a pretty clear distinction between the vague, nebulous 'harm's you're suggesting and the fairly direct one that results from people not giving their kids vaccinations. My point about the bomb wasn't that I can't buy the parts for it, it's that I'm not allowed to go around blowing people up. Use the hazardous material in the water table example if you want, it's probably a clearer analogue.

Re: just moving your kid to a different school. It's cool that you have the freedom and financial latitude to do that. Not everyone does. It's not reasonable to expect people to have to move away so they don't die of easily preventable diseases. Same thing with the MAGA example you brought up, which I assume you also think is unreasonable. Believe me, I hate this fucking country and I'd love to just leave but unfortunately that's not feasible. And that's probably the crux of the issue here for me: how do you prevent harm from China doing whatever they're doing? No idea. How do you separate the negatives of social media from the positives? I'm coming up empty. How do you prevent the recurrence of diseases we have vaccines for? GET A VACCINE.

If all society used this sort of whataboutism every time an issue was discussed, there never would have been any Civil Rights act. Just move to where someone will hire non-white people, no big deal. It paralyzes any kind of progress and makes virtuous the idea of never changing anything just because that's already the way it is.

So as long as it's simple for you, then it's okay? That sounds way snarkier than I mean it; I'm trying yet again to inject the sense of point of view here, the sense of one person's perspective when that perspective conflicts with someone else's.    You're assessing this from your perspective on an issue that for you is black and white, and making value judgments against things that are still grey for you; you don't know the impact of the Chinese or how to stop it, but there are experts in international geopolitical economics that do.  There is/are a Dr. Fauci and a Dr. Birx for that too.  And in social media (I know we have some here, but I've spoken to several PhD's in psychology, and not one of them is an advocate for social media en masse).   Some of the things you're talking about are "nebulous" to you; I lost a years income (and, ultimately, a marriage) from what I see as a very direct, very consequential response to the policies of President Obama.  There's nothing "nebulous" about it.  That's my reality to solve, no one else's.  Whereas you're deciding that because the odds favor YOU, I - all of us - should inject a vaccine INTO MY BODY, and that of my children.   It makes perfect sense to you but why is that even YOUR call to make?   Or the scientists, or anyone you decide makes your best argument (including the majority)?   You (and Mirror Mask) rejected my examples as being of a different level of certainty, but there are others; how is this different than, say, abortion?   If we can decide to infringe on someone's right to liberty (essentially where this falls), why not demand that women with fetuses that fall into a certain category get abortions?   Those "467 questions" aren't important to you, but they may be important to others. 

Don't misunderstand me, please.  I get the role of society and government, and if we, via our duly elected government decide that a policy is appropriate, through the system we all have in place, then so be it.  That's how the process is supposed to work.  I'm not pushing back against vaccines specifically - I'm vaccinated as are all my children - it's the judgment and the lack of accounting for positions that differ.  The idea that someone might be "stupid" or "ignorant" or "lesser" for being what we determine, without ever talking to them or getting their point of view on things, is wrong.  There is no "whataboutism" here (except in the attempt to make the point).   It's really about an equal amount of respect for those that prioritize and account differently than we do (i.e. disagree with us) as for those that think like we do (i.e. agree with us).   

(By the way, civil rights is different, in that the argument FOR civil rights is in my view the same argument AGAINST vaccines.  It's not about a collective will, it's about the inherent rights of the individual.   In the society of pre-1964 a majority of society deemed certain classes of people to be inferior or lesser, and in my argument, that's not the case.  A human being, with a beating heart and a sentient brain had a certain set of inalienable rights, and none of those rights were dependent on their skin color.)

The issues of 'China' and 'social media,' though, regardless of relevant PhDs, doesn't have anywhere close to the universal consensus on the right solution that NOT BEING VACCINATED IS BAD does. The issues aren't equivalent and presenting them as if they are feels intellectually dishonest to me. Some things just are black and white, or as near as anything can be.

Not all points of view are equal. A position doesn't deserve respect or consideration just because it exists. When NASA is building a spacecraft to go to Europa, they don't get a flat earther in the room to make sure they're 'considering every side of the issue,' because the people who run NASA aren't morons. (Well, Bridenstine seems all right, at least)

It's a nice idea to be respectful of other points of view. But when the action taken based on that idea is 'just let people decide for themselves whether or not to risk spreading easily preventable and deadly diseases' it crosses a serious fucking line. You can define this an infringement on someone's right to liberty; I'd say the same about forcing immunocompromised people to either run away from anywhere where people 'decide for themselves' or stay there and die. If your society is one that looks at the deaths of people who are susceptible to these diseases and says, well, freedom, nothing we can do about that, just the cost of doing business, then your society is intrinsically fucked.
« Last Edit: August 11, 2020, 07:12:03 AM by Shadow Ninja 2.0 »
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Offline Ben_Jamin

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Re: How to stop the wildfire of conspiracy theories?
« Reply #29 on: August 11, 2020, 06:56:35 AM »
Well, Big Pharma, the ones who create and make profit from the vaccines, ignore the possiblity of using Natural Remedies as Remedies. No studies are done, No funding is really spent, yet some have been proven to work.

My dad is a perfect example, He was on insulin, until we went on a trip and he took the wrong insulin jar that was almost empty. After that, He was told about Fork Over Knives, he read it and watched it and decided to try a Vegan diet. Now he is off insulin, and all it took is a simple diet change. Yet, no push for people to change their diets.

Why won't they say it, because They'll lose money and their investors will also lose money.

I don't know how they can be so proud of winning with them odds. - Little Big Man

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Offline lordxizor

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Re: How to stop the wildfire of conspiracy theories?
« Reply #30 on: August 11, 2020, 07:05:32 AM »
Well, Big Pharma, the ones who create and make profit from the vaccines, ignore the possiblity of using Natural Remedies as Remedies. No studies are done, No funding is really spent, yet some have been proven to work.

My dad is a perfect example, He was on insulin, until we went on a trip and he took the wrong insulin jar that was almost empty. After that, He was told about Fork Over Knives, he read it and watched it and decided to try a Vegan diet. Now he is off insulin, and all it took is a simple diet change. Yet, no push for people to change their diets.

Why won't they say it, because They'll lose money and their investors will also lose money.


The sad reality is that most people don't want to make lifestyle or dietary changes to make their chronic illnesses better. They'd rather just take a pill. Also, when there is no money to be made, no one has the incentive to spend millions of dollars on studies and research into natural remedies. While I think most traditional natural remedies are little more than placebos, there are certainly many that are beneficial.

Offline XeRocks81

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Re: How to stop the wildfire of conspiracy theories?
« Reply #31 on: August 11, 2020, 07:06:47 AM »
wait, there's plenty of push in society for people to change their diets and lifestyle to a healthier balance.   For type 2 diabetes it's pretty common that a change in those areas produces results. 

Offline Ben_Jamin

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Re: How to stop the wildfire of conspiracy theories?
« Reply #32 on: August 11, 2020, 07:17:07 AM »
wait, there's plenty of push in society for people to change their diets and lifestyle to a healthier balance.   For type 2 diabetes it's pretty common that a change in those areas produces results.

And that's the point. People will be people and believe things for many reasons. The only way to know why is to ask them. And guarantee the responses will be vastly different from each other.

Have you had a face to face conversation about these conspiracy theories with people. You'll understand more of why that person believes that.

Well, Big Pharma, the ones who create and make profit from the vaccines, ignore the possiblity of using Natural Remedies as Remedies. No studies are done, No funding is really spent, yet some have been proven to work.

My dad is a perfect example, He was on insulin, until we went on a trip and he took the wrong insulin jar that was almost empty. After that, He was told about Fork Over Knives, he read it and watched it and decided to try a Vegan diet. Now he is off insulin, and all it took is a simple diet change. Yet, no push for people to change their diets.

Why won't they say it, because They'll lose money and their investors will also lose money.


The sad reality is that most people don't want to make lifestyle or dietary changes to make their chronic illnesses better. They'd rather just take a pill. Also, when there is no money to be made, no one has the incentive to spend millions of dollars on studies and research into natural remedies. While I think most traditional natural remedies are little more than placebos, there are certainly many that are beneficial.

That to me, shows those people are not strong-willed, and stubborn and just set in their ways. Since, Diabetes is a rampant pandemic in Native American communities, it's stunning how stubborn and set in ways people are, they don't want to give up meat, frybread, and the greasy shit that's bad.

I don't know how they can be so proud of winning with them odds. - Little Big Man

"We can't rewrite history. We can learn our own history, and share it with other people. While, we learn, from them, their history." -Me,Myself,I

Offline Stadler

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Re: How to stop the wildfire of conspiracy theories?
« Reply #33 on: August 11, 2020, 07:47:34 AM »
As I said: on one hand I understand that we don't live in a bubble and that we have to consider many angles, on the other hand I still stand by my humble and maybe naive opinion that I'm allowed to think that smoking is bad without having to present at the same time an opinion on how to deal with every single vice (drinking, gambling, bad eating habits) and the socio-economical ramifications of it.

I think I'm allowed to have an opinion about how to deal with rapists without having at the same time present a full and coherent plan about how I'd deal with cannibals, pedophiles, human traffickers and the likes.

And I think I'm allowed to have a negative opinion about anti vaxxers without the need to back it up with my ideas on how to deal with abortion, China's economy and Bernie Sanders' speeches. Whatever the other pressing issues of the world at hand are, it doesn't change the fact that people were living stuck in iron lungs and that a vaccine for polio made those obsolete. Imagine if the era of fighting polio was now, coinciding with social media, we'd have people condemning other people to end up in an iron lung because of their assumptions based on whatever was written in a random Facebook group by someone with no medical experience or knowledge whatsover.

But bear in mind, I'm not saying any of that.  I'm not saying YOU have to assess every possible permutation.  I'm saying that you should consider that OTHERS MIGHT, or that their one permutation is different than yours.  You have to account for that.   

Maybe not you, maybe not Shadow - you guys are being very reasonable - but there are far too many people that assume their way is right and just, and everyone else is a [insert disparaging word of choice].  It might seem I've been giving Shadow a hard time about vaccines, and I'm sorry for that; I'm actually with him on the specific issue of vaccines.  But process matters, and if we should have learned anything from the "Pizzagate" issue and the 5G antennaes, and the windmills, we can't always rely on the PEOPLE, so the process is all we have.  YES, the pro-vaccine people have a slightly higher hurdle to cross, but their arguments are so much better.    Now at least the rest of the arguments have a higher hurdle, and since some of those aren't all that strong, it may serve to weed out some of the nonsense. 

It's the same with Congressional gridlock.  Many people (including some who run for office) scream that we have to move FAST!   No, we don't.   We have to move diligently.  Because YOU (general) think your idea is great and we "have to move fast" doesn't mean that all ideas are great.  We can't trust the people - the Trump's, the Schiff's, whoever - of the world to make that call for us, so we MUST rely on the process.   It's the ultimate failsafe, the ultimate check and balance. 

Offline El Barto

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Re: How to stop the wildfire of conspiracy theories?
« Reply #34 on: August 11, 2020, 08:15:20 AM »
Well, Big Pharma, the ones who create and make profit from the vaccines, ignore the possiblity of using Natural Remedies as Remedies. No studies are done, No funding is really spent, yet some have been proven to work.

My dad is a perfect example, He was on insulin, until we went on a trip and he took the wrong insulin jar that was almost empty. After that, He was told about Fork Over Knives, he read it and watched it and decided to try a Vegan diet. Now he is off insulin, and all it took is a simple diet change. Yet, no push for people to change their diets.

Why won't they say it, because They'll lose money and their investors will also lose money.
Why is it their responsibility to point out alternatives? Moreover, they're providing a product people want. On top of that, who's to say that a vegan diet would work for everybody? Why not just prescribe them all a joint a day and hope for the best? I understand that there's a lot of bad stuff going on with big pharma, but one thing I'm not going to do is hold them to the fire for not pushing alternatives to their own product when their own product does the job. Just as I wouldn't expect the folks at Briggs Stratton to go around telling people to plant grass that doesn't grow tall.

Also, going from American to vegan is hardly "a simple diet change."
Argument, the presentation of reasonable views, never makes headway against conviction, and conviction takes no part in argument because it knows.
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