Individuals who hold strong beliefs in conspiracies often also score high in narcissism and low in self-esteem, according to 2015 research.
The series of studies, published in Social Psychological and Personality Science, examined individuals to determine whether self-evaluation plays a role in predicting conspiracy beliefs.
“Previous research linked the endorsement of conspiracy theories to low self-esteem,” said Aleksandra Cichocka, principal investigator and corresponding author of the study.
“We propose that conspiracy theories should rather be appealing to individuals with exaggerated feelings of self-love, such as narcissists, due to their paranoid tendencies,” she continued.
In the first study, 202 participants completed a conspiracy beliefs questionnaire, a self-esteem scale, and an individual narcissism questionnaire. In the conspiracy beliefs questionnaire, participants rated the extent to which they agree with such statements as “A small, secret group of people is responsible for making all major world decisions, such as going to war” and “The American government permits or perpetrates acts of terrorism on its own soil, disguising its involvement.”
Scientists found that among participants, high individual narcissism and low self-esteem significantly predicted conspiracy beliefs.
In the second study, scientists sought to rule out the possibility that collective narcissism contributed to the results of the previous study.
“Because conspiracy theories often refer to malevolent actions of groups, we wanted to distinguish whether it is a narcissistic image of the self or the group that predicts the endorsement of conspiracy theories,” said Cichocka.
“For example . . .
A Professor of psychology from Victoria University sheds some light on the conspiracy theories surrounding illuminati.
By matt stewart via Stuff.co.nz
You don’t have to be mad to create conspiracy theories, but it certainly helps, new research suggests.
Just believing in them indicates you are more likely to be paranoid or mentally ill, a Victoria University study shows.
Widely held conspiracy theories range from harmless ones, such as the belief that the Moon landings were faked, to more dangerous delusions such as the one in Nigeria that polio vaccines were a Western plot to sterilise people. That led to vaccination crews being murdered and thousands dying from disease.
Clinical psychologist Darshani Kumareswaran is delving in to the psychology of conspiracy belief, and has found some believers are likely to endorse far-fetched plots in an effort to make sense of chaotic situations beyond their control.
Kumareswaran, who graduated from Victoria with a PhD in psychology this week, wanted to find out what made people more likely to believe in, or come up with, conspiracy theories – and whether the process was linked to mental illness.
Avid conspiracy theorists can put themselves under intense psychological strain with their tendency towards paranoid thinking and delusional beliefs, causing mental strain even when a conspiracy theory turns out to be a verified plot.
She also looked behind the common public image of the conspiracy theorist as a crackpot.
Despite evidence of verified conspiracies, such as the Watergate scandal, the public viewed conspiracy theorists in as negative a light as they did convicted criminals, she said.
“For the label to be so negatively rated by the public is quite a powerful finding.”
Study participants were asked to recall a situation in which they had no control, describe it in detail, and write it down. They were then put in a “psychological space” in which they felt powerlessness and were given 24 pictures that looked like snowy television screens.
Half featured obscured objects such as a chair or tent, the other half nothing.
Those who scored highly on a form of psychopathology known as schizotypy were more likely to see an object in the images where there was none, indicating they were more likely to make connections between unrelated things.
“I also found that someone who creates conspiracy theories is more likely to have some form of psychopathology, or mental illness such as . . .
by Gordon Bonnet via Skeptophilia
There’s an odd tendency of conspiracy theorists to eat their young.
Not literally, of course. I wouldn’t want that to get out as some kind of meta-conspiracy-theory. But I’ve noticed that although the conspiracy theories themselves never seem to die, the conspiracy theorists seem to have a relatively short half-life before they implode.
Again, not literally. Don’t get your hopes up.
I think the reason for this is that once you abandon logic and evidence as the sine qua non of understanding, you are out in some kind of netherworld of lies, suppositions, and paranoia, and it’s only a matter of time before you become victim to the same foolishness you were perpetrating. You give people the impression that no one is to be trusted, that anyone and everyone could be part of the conspiracy, and before you know it, your followers have decided that you’re right… and include you in the assessment.
Icke was outed, fittingly enough, in a YouTube video in which he is caught “shape-shifting into a Reptilian.” Odd, isn’t it, that these Reptilian overlords of ours are brilliant enough to infiltrate themselves into every level of government, break into the sanctum sanctorum of military intelligence, and then can’t remember to keep their costumes in place when they’re on the air? But yes, you heard it here first: Icke, who said that Reptilians are in control of everything from the CIA to the U.S. public education system, is himself a Reptilian.
Even more wryly amusing is the fact that Alex Jones had the whistle blown on the site Before It’s News, because they’re about the only website that is even more bizarrely paranoid than Jones’s own site InfoWars. Here’s the exposé about Jones . . .
MORE – – –
Also See: Who are the Anunnaki? What is the Planet Nibiru? (iLLuMiNuTTi.com)
Gang stalking is a highly coordinated operation, usually by a counterintelligence entity, to intimidate dissenters through a mob of watchers, harassers, prank callers, hackers, and irritants. To be gang stalked is to suspect everyone, to feel eyes fall upon you and not be sure whether it’s just another person in the grocery aisle or an agent paid to induce that exact feeling of uncertainty in your heart. And while gang stalking can be coordinated by anyone, from a personal enemy to the Mafia, the coordination tactics enabled by modern communication technologies and sheer computing power is most available to large corporations and governmental entities.
Gang stalking is also nonsense.
Gang Stalking Youtube Video – Window Into Delusion
Watch this Youtube video and you’ll immediately understand why:
The transparent paranoia in this Youtube video is evident to all but the gang stalking initiate.
Gang stalking, as experienced by most of its victims, is delusional. It’s the most serious conspiracy theory not because it reflects reality, but because gang stalking is the bridge between conspiracy theorizing as a hobby, and conspiracy theorizing as an all-consuming mental illness.
Why People Believe in Conspiracy Theories
People who believe that H1N1 Swine Flu was created by the miltary, that 9/11 was a Mossad operation, that world leaders worship owl demons at a summer retreat, or believe any of the endless permutations of conspiracy theory, are likely not mentally ill. My preferred theory is that they’re just incredibly dumb, but the current research into conspiracy theory ideation doesn’t really back that up either. Rather, conspiracy theorists are sane people, of normal intelligence, who have become trapped in a self-reinforcing belief system. It’s a convenient trick: anyone who can offer up evidence against the conspiracy theory is an agent of the conspiracy theory–a shill–sent to deceive you.
There are many motivations for believing in a conspiracy theory.
Some people believe that your brain encodes its actual meaning in reverse within everything you say.
Just when you thought there was nobody in the world crazier than yourself, along come people who believe that we all subconsciously say what we really mean in reverse, through the unconscious but deliberate choosing of careful words which, if played backwards, say what we actually mean. Get it? The idea is that I think some coffee is really horrible but I still want to be polite, my brain will subconsciously choose words to make my polite compliment that, if played backwards, would say: This coffee stinks.
Proponents of this hypothesis call it Reverse Speech, because they were really creatively inspired on the day they named it. This is a small group of people — I believe there were six of them at last count — who take this completely seriously and believe that a whole world of secret information and opportunities is waiting to be unlocked by analyzing peoples’ speech in reverse. They turn first to world leaders, play their speeches backward, and listen to learn what they believe is the truth underlying the speech.
A leading advocate for reverse speech, also called backward masking, is David John Oates, an Australian. He’s written several books on the subject and even used to have a syndicated radio show promoting his theory. Just about any time a reverse speech expert is interviewed on television, it’s David John Oates. His web site is ReverseSpeech.com, and it’s loaded with all the examples you could ever hope to hear, as well as quite a few products and services he’d like to sell you if you believe his claims. He believes strongly that the human brain secretly encodes its actual meaning in reverse into a person’s normal speech. You can use this to your advantage in business, by decoding what the people across the table are actually telling you; and you can even use it in personal development by listening to your own speech backwards and learning more about what you really want. One of the examples from ReverseSpeech.com is of this man giving a talk:
And when you play it backwards, turns out he was trying to comfort you with the message “You’re frightened, lean on me”:
Pretty interesting, but not necessarily convincing to a skeptic. A skeptic is more likely to dismiss these guys as conspiracy nuts and laugh at what paranoid delusionals they are, but it’s actually way cooler and more interesting (and more constructive) to ask if there is any science behind what they’re claiming. I’m not talking about science supporting the claim that people say what they actually mean in reverse; I’m talking about science behind the perception of order from chaos. And, it turns out, there is good science behind it. The journal Science published an article in 1981 by Remez, Rubin, Pisoni, and Carrell called Speech perception without traditional speech cues. By playing what they called a “three-tone sinusoidal replica”, or a complicated sine wave sound, they found that people were able to perceive speech, when in fact there were no traditional speech sounds present in the signal. So rather than laughing at a reverse speech advocate, instead appreciate the fact that there is good science driving their perception of what they’re hearing. They’re not making anything up, they’re just unaware of the natural explanation for their phenomenon.
To better understand what these authors did in their experiment, listen to this brief cue consisting of nothing but sine waves:
It almost does sound like speech, doesn’t it? But it’s not quite clear what it’s saying. Well, suppose someone told you that it says:
Now listen to it again:
This time, it’s almost impossible not to hear the words that you’ve been preconditioned to hear. Let’s play another one, this one is harder . . .
Holy crap. This woman accuses a postal worker of stalking her! Here is the video she took of her confrontation with the poor guy.
Is this lady serious?
If she IS serious, this video shows how one wackadoo’s delusions can escalate into somebody getting hurt. What if she was prone to violence and she truly believed this poor guy was stalking her? She could have pulled out a weapon.
If i were this postal worker i would have put some space between myself and her delusion by closing the truck door. I certainly wouldn’t have turned my back on this nut job.
Leave your thoughts in the comments.
Unfortunately some individuals take conspiracy theories to a disturbingly excessive extreme.
Ever been accused of being a government plant or paid off by “The Man”? Then you’ve never run into a hardcore conspiracy theorist. Be grateful, because such encounters are often as baffling as they are annoying.
That statement may ruffle the feathers of those who view such a comment as an attempt to make conspiracy theorists look “bonkers” (a favorite accusation of the more paranoid conspiracy theorists…).
However, at some point people need to be able to back up their arguments with facts and not the assertion that a total stranger is being paid to spread misinformation.
There is a big difference between indulging in the belief that things are being purposely hidden by individuals with nefarious purposes and the need to accuse everyone who doesn’t think like you of being on the inside of some master scheme.
It’s important to remember that unethical government and business practices are actually readily acknowledged by the average person as these events are often front page news.
[ . . . ]
So when do conspiracy theories go off the rails?
1.) When they are developed based on unsubstantiated fear and bigotry rather than supporting evidence. At the heart of the more bizarre conspiracies is often the belief that the theorist is in danger.
Really, if what you knew was so dangerous, it’s logical to believe that you’d already be dead instead of living to blab all over Facebook and Reddit from a computer that’s more traceable than you think.
There’s actually no reason to be afraid because…
2.) You’re just not that special. Some people seek to uncover the truth in order to bring a very real wrong to the attention of the world. Others spend all day discussing their opinion on the internet because of a need to convince the world of how much smarter they are than everyone else.
It’s easy to guess which group is useful and proactive and which group is full of ridiculously entitled windbags.
At the end of the day, conspiracy theories are suppose to be centered around a mysterious event. When each discussion is brought around to you and your ego…you’ve lost the plot.
3.) You are not entitled to know everything. Imagine that you knew everything there is to know about the universe and all events from the beginning to the end of time.
Via Dr. Phil.com
For the past four years, Matt, 51, claims that he has been stalked, wiretapped and hacked by thousands of people affiliated with a group that he calls "The Organization." Matt says that he believes his stalkers are "cyber geeks" who have nothing better to do with their time and money than toy with people's lives. Hear the evidence Matt says he has collected â€” and what a private investigator, hired by Dr. Phil, uncovers. Plus, Matt admits to past drug use involving methamphetamines but says that he's been clean for six months. He agrees to both a drug test and a mental evaluation to prove that his claims are valid – what will the results show?
I made this image today in honor of all those conspiracists who cite YouTube videos as their source of information to support their wacky theories. Enjoy and share everywhere!
Let’s have a big round of applause for my favorite moron … Alex Jones!
Surveillance by government of its people is, almost without question, something that does happen from time to time; perhaps more often than we think. In this age of mass-shootings and the threat potentials associated with terrorist acts, some would argue it has become a necessity; others would tell us that to believe such a philosophy amounts to “giving in,” and that doing so could constitute an unnecessary forfeit in the battle for our liberties.
But in truth, while the political argument (especially in the United States) is more recent, surveillance has been going on for quite some time. I remember the first time I was shown clumsy apparatus that my friend, Joshua Warren, had recently inherited from a family member who had worked in some official capacity. He appeared on the popular late night radio program Coast to Coast AM discussing the acquisition, which was comprised of a phoney watch that was wired with a lead connecting it to a remarkably bulky wire recorder which, in truth, was probably too large to fit in most breast pockets today. There had been recordings that accompanied the outfit, but due to rust and years that had corroded the wires, they were barely discernible.
- See-through-wall surveillance with WiFi shown at UCL (phys.org)
- Secret surveillance on the rise (sfgate.com)
- NSA Whistle Blowers Warn that the US Government Can Use Surveillance to ‘See Into Your Life’ (zionistoutrage.com)
- Former NSA Whistleblower Thomas Drake: Govt Violated Constitution with Post911 Surveillance Program (lissakr11humanelife.wordpress.com)
- Clinton Wants more Powerful Drone Surveillance Technology to Find Kony (12160.info)
As I have been observing conspiracy theories, and by extension, conspiracy theorists themselves. From my observations I’ve noticed that some of them may not be entirely truthful in what they believe, and that some of them may be out right frauds.
Continue Reading: The Soap Box: 8 Ways to tell a Conspiracy Theorist is really a Fraud.
- 5 Tools of the Conspiracy Theorist Trade (illuminutti.com)
- Facts about conspircy theorists and beleivers (illuminutti.com)
- Confessions of a Disinformation Agent, Chapter III: Debunking in the Heyday of 9/11 Truth. (illuminutti.com)
- Embarrassing Conspiracy Theories: The Government Kills Conspiracy Theorists (illuminutti.com)
- Jack Hunter Needs to Apply Common Sense When Responding to Conspiracy Theorists (libertychat.com)
- Embarrassing Conspiracy Theories: Radical Conspiracy Theorist = Dis-information Agent (illuminutti.com)
- Embarrassing Conspiracy Theories: 9/11 Controlled Demolition (illuminutti.com)
- 5 Conspiracies made against Conspiracy Theorists (illuminutti.com)
- Stuff They Don’t Want You to Know – Trapwire (illuminutti.com)
- Why Are Conspiracy Theorists Bullshitters? How To Spot The Frauds! (theageofblasphemy.wordpress.com)
One of the 9/11 conspiracy theories that some people believe, is that the Pentagon was hit by a missile, and not a Boeing 757.
Most people who do believe this, believe a missile must have hit, because they believe that with not much piloting training, a person could not actually fly a jumbo jet into the side of a building that’s only a few stories high, and that the damage to the building doesn’t appear to them as the type of damage that jumbo jet would do.
- Resources for debunking 9/11 Conspiracy Theories (illuminutti.com)
- Proof: A Missile Struck the Pentagon on 9/11!!! (illuminutti.com)
- 8 Ways to tell a Conspiracy Theorist is really a Fraud (illuminutti.com)
I’d like to take this opportunity to introduce to you a new series of articles being written by a fellow blogger. His name is Muertos and he’s one of the most rational thinkers i have come across.
When you get a chance, click the link (below) to his blog and feed your brain some great information!
Mason I. Bilderberg
Posted on July 3, 2012 by muertos:
This story is going to be a history of my experiences with conspiracy theories, including the time when I used to believe them myself. I’ll explain what got me into them, why they fascinated me, and eventually why I became a debunker. I have a very strange and complicated relationship with debunking. Sometimes I love it and look forward to it; at other times it’s something I hate and want to be finished with forever. Therefore, this piece is a very personal journey.
If you know me, you know what i think of Alex Jones. He’s such an a-hole he can actually be very funny. If you know anybody who prays at the altar of Alex Jones, simply show them this video and ask them to explain their allegiance to this nitwit.
But there is a downside to this video – It’s 5 hours long (Yes! 5 hours!)!!!! Naturally i don’t expect anybody to watch the entire video, but i’ll post it here anyway for laughs or if you just need a sanity check by watching a true paranoid clown.
People actually pay good money to watch, listen and believe what this guy says. Now THAT’S entertainment!
The Skeptic’s Dictionary definition of the day …
Self-deception is the process or fact of misleading ourselves to accept claims about ourselves as true or valid when they are false or invalid. Self-deception, in short, is a way we justify false beliefs about ourselves to ourselves.
Watch this EXCELLENT video – Michael Shermer: The pattern behind self-deception (19 minutes):
This leaked photo shows a cruise missile, painted like an American Airlines passenger jet, being ferried about a military base. Is this the smoking gun truthers have been looking for? Is this proof the Pentagon was struck by a missile on September 11, 2001?
For the answer, put on your critical thinking caps and click here to find the truth.
via The Soap Box
There is a big time conspiracy theory about something called “chemtrails”. This conspiracy theory is based on the belief that contrails coming out of a jet’s exhaust are laced with chemicals that’s propose is for population control.
There are several problems with this theory. First, there is no proof what so ever that what a person sees coming out of a jet exhaust is nothing more then a contrail, rather then the “chemtrail” that so many conspiracy theorist insists that they are. In fact, not one pilot, or any other person who would be involved in this alleged conspiracy, has ever even come forward and said that the government was spraying chemicals on the population.
Besides the fact there is no proof, spraying chemicals from two to three miles above the ground isn’t a very effective way to disperse chemical or biological agents. The wind from that high up would disperse the chemicals and biological agents throughout the upper atmosphere, and it would become so disperse that when or if it ever did come down, there wouldn’t be enough of the stuff to be effective. Take a look at crop dusting for instance. Crop dusting planes have to be very low to the ground to spray fertilizers and pesticides in order for them to get on the crops. It can’t be done from thousands of feet in air, because the wind would just blow it away.
MORE . . .
- Jet pilots fear ‘chemtrail’ attacks (illuminutti.com)
June 16, 2012 UPDATE: The group mentioned in this post (Chemtrail Geoengineering Lawsuit) now has a web page located at http://chemtrailgeoengineeringlawsuit.webs.com/
If you wish to discuss this issue, i suggest one of my favorite discussion forums: Metabunk.org
The Chemtrail Geoengineering Lawsuit over on facebook is a group «for those interested in filing a lawsuit for Geoengineering and Chemtrails that have evidence of Chemtrail toxins such as Barium, Aluminum, Strontium and other toxins in their blood or hair, urine, soil [or] rain water.»
I love it when people waste their time chasing phantoms down dead end streets. Anyway …
May 5, 2012 they boasted of having “1700 potential plaintiffs” in their complaint (and “growing VERY fast”), and they asked people to send money to their California attorney.
May 16, 2012 update: With 1,823 members of this group, this is the wall post:
Seriously ChemTrailers? 1,823 people in your group and not one dime has been given to your cause? We’re talking global catastrophe, the end of humanity as we know it! You need to participate – vinegar spraying is cheap, you must cough up some real money and expose this world-wide conspiracy!!!!
Then this just 5 hours ago:
I. Am. Crushed.
- ChemTrail Discussion
- Debunked: ChemTrails and ChemClouds (Video)
- Kill ChemTrails With Vinegar!!!!! (Video) (Spoof)
Paranoid Conspiracy Theorists (PCTs) consider the Bilderberg group to be but a small part of a bigger worldwide conspiracy known as the New Word Order (NWO), a secretive power elite with a globalist agenda … conspiring to eventually rule the world by replacing sovereign nation-states with an all-powerful, authoritarian world government. (Source)
According to PCT Alex Jones, the “Bilderberg group is responsible for plotting our wars, increasing our oil prices, causng the world economic crash” and causing pretty much everything except making the sun rise every morning.
What does Alex Jones offer up as proof of this NWO/Bilderberg omnipotence? Not much.
For example, PCT Jones and his wacky minions over at InfoWars and PrisonPlanet claim Bilderberg is super top secret, mysterious and all-powerful. Every time a Bilderberg event is reported, Jones and company love to use spooky words and phrases like “leaked”, “secretive” and “kingmakers”.
So how could I, your humble skeptic of all things unproven, have penetrated this secretive clique of industrialists, bankers, academic leaders and media figureheads to discover, for example, the Bilderberg group met more than 50 years ago on September 18-20, 1959 in Yesilkoy, Turkey? That’s very specific information, isn’t it? My source also informs me the Bilderberg group met twice in 1955, the first meeting was March 18-20, in Barbizon, France and the second meeting occurred September 23-25. I know what you’re thinking. You’re thinking, “What secret operative within the NWO did he have to meet with, in the shadows of a darkened alley, to acquire a full list of all the Bilderberg participants’ names since 2009?” (Because i DO have the list of names!) Or you’re wondering, “How much did he pay said informant to leak the list of the entire Bilderberg steering committee?” (Because i have that list too!)
You want answers, don’t you? You are demanding to know the name of my informant, aren’t you? Well, here is my secret: The Bilderberg group has a website!!!!!! Yes! The super top secret url is www.BilderbergMeetings.org! Quick, write down this military-grade encrypted web address before the Men In Black (MIB) kick in your door and erase your memory.
One of Alex Jones’ latest headlines reads “Secretive Bilderberg Group Set To Meet In Virginia May 31st-June 3rd” and these dates were chosen to “coincide with this year’s U.S. presidential election.” (source)
Hmmmm, were these dates set to coincide with the presidential elections? Let’s see. I went back to 1980 and found: 28 of the 32 Bilderberg meetings over the past 32 years were held in either May or (mostly in) June. Now I’m really confused. Did the Bilderberg group time their 2012 meeting dates to coincide with the presidential election or does the Bilderberg group tend to meet the same time every year and this year isn’t any different? No. Wait. I know what it is – they meet the same time every year to hide the fact they’re meeting the same time this year to coincide with the election. I think conspiracists call this “hiding in plain sight” or, as i call it, “projecting unprovable, unsolvable, end-of-the-world, apocalyptic meaning and hopelessness on to benign facts, patterns and random acts of chance while boasting of your own brilliant ability to decipher and unravel the conspiratorial mess you just created from nothing.” But I digress.
On the same Alex Jones page referenced above PCT Jones asserts “Bilderberg displayed their kingmaker status during the last two U.S. presidential elections when they selected Barack Obama’s running mate Joe Biden in 2008, as well as picking John Edwards to be John Kerry’s VP in 2004.”
As proof Bilderberg selected Joe Biden as Obama’s running mate, PCT Jones links to another one of his articles from May 23, 2008. Problem is, if you read the referenced web page there isn’t a single reference to Joe Biden. Nothing. Nada. Once again, PCT Jones fails to offer any corroborating evidence to support his assertions.
How about Bilderberg selecting John Edwards to be John Kerry’s VP in 2004? PCT Jones links to a web page at wnd.com from July 8, 2004 titled “Bilderberg ‘performance’ key to Edwards VP pick”, which does mention John Edwards by name in the same sentence as “the super-secret Bilderberg.” If this article from wnd.com was supposed to be evidence of Bilderberg knowing Kerry’s running mate before the rest of the world, then how did CNN know – a full two days before wnd.com – that John Kerry had chosen John Edward?
Once again, paranoid conspiracy theorists like Alex Jones come up empty.
Mason I. Bilderberg