A sign of slow awakening...? MCM
We used to laugh at conspiracy theorists, but from Fifa to banking scandals and the Iraq War, it seems they might have been on to something after all, says Alex Proud
By Alex Proud
12:18PM BST 15 Jun 2015
Conspiracy theories used to be so easy.
You’d have your mate who, after a few beers, would tell you that the moon landings were faked or that the Illuminati controlled everything or that the US government was holding alien autopsies in Area 51. And you’d be able to dismiss this because it was all rubbish.
Look, you’d say, we have moon rock samples and pictures and we left laser reflectors on the surface and… basically you still don’t believe me but that’s because you’re mad and no proof on earth (or the moon) would satisfy you.
It’s true that there was always the big one which wasn’t quite so easily dismissed. This was the Kennedy assassination – but here you could be fairly sure that the whole thing was a terrible, impenetrable murky morass. You knew that some things never would be known (or would be released, partially redacted by the CIA, 200 years in the future). And you knew that whatever the truth was it was probably a bit dull compared to your mate’s flights of fantasy involving the KGB, the Mafia and the military-industrial complex. Besides, it all made for a lot of very entertaining films and books.
This nice, cozy state of affairs lasted until the early 2000s. But then something changed. These days conspiracy theories don’t look so crazy and conspiracy theorists don’t look like crackpots. In fact, today’s conspiracy theory is tomorrow’s news headlines. It’s tempting, I suppose, to say we live in a golden age of conspiracy theories, although it’s only really golden for the architects of the conspiracies. From the Iraq war to Fifa to the banking crisis, the truth is not only out there, but it’s more outlandish than anything we could have made up.