The Null Device
Posts matching tags 'conspiracy theories'
Speaking of the tinfoil tendency, recently the annual Bilderberg conference, in which the world's rich and powerful get together to talk about stuff and/or make dastardly plans, was held in Watford of all places; unlike previous Bilderberg conferences, it included an unofficial fringe festival, with talks by famous conspiratologists like David “giant lizards rule the world” Icke and Alex Jones. VICE Magazine sent a reporter to talk to people attending the gathering and found a lot of awakening and raised awareness, but nobody knowing exactly about what:
"I started to wake up about a year ago, when I had a stroke on the left side of my brain. Afterwards, my aware side woke up and I started to notice that the news was a load of rubbish. I started doing my own research into Egyptian pyramids, the Mayans, sacred geometry, the whole package – and aliens. They all sort of came together in a package and I put the pieces together myself... The message is the same – back to the Mayans, back to the Egyptians and back to the Atlantians even before that: You are God; you are one."
"They’re just making people aware, which is great. I love the fact that they’re here doing the right thing and speaking the truth."
"What are they making people aware of, specifically?"
"Of what exactly is going on in the world. We’re not listening to the media and all that. This is actual, y'know, important stuff."
"What brings you here today?" I asked a girl named Bryony, who was in the midst of a hooping.The article also quotes Alex Jones, who goes into a wrestlerly oration about cancer viruses and necrophilia. Alas, there is nothing about what truths David Icke brought to the table.
"People, everyone, connecting and information," she replied.
"What information, specifically?"
"Uh, about the… people in there. What are they called?"
"The Bilderberg, yes. We shall not surrender to these people who are trying to control us and oppress us. And poison us."
"How are they poisoning us?"
"They’re poisoning us by putting fluoride in the water and genetically modifying nature."
The Australian Greens have a fine line to walk; maintaining an integrity of values whose lack doomed the third party which preceded them, the now-defunct Australian Democrats, whilst avoiding becoming a single-issue party (as their name suggests), or allowing themselves to be tarred with the brush of extremism. So far, they have succeeded modestly; having some of the most scientifically literate MPs in Parliament and a commitment to evidence-based policy helped, though could only go so far when the Murdoch-owned 70% of the press vilifies them as
witches Stalinists and the remaining Fairfax papers deny them the oxygen of publicity, making it easy for people who don't read New Matilda on the tram in between cycling to their favourite vegan café to joke about them as a bunch of dippy hippie rainforest mystics. Gradually, though, with the internet, and the effort of party workers, they have been making slow inroads towards mainstream acceptability.
That is, until the New South Wales branch (why does it always have to be the NSW branch, in every party?) called for an inquiry into fluoride in the water supply, at the behest of the tinfoil-hat community having lost a court challenge to water being fluoridated. As yet, no plans for inquiries into chemtrails, UFOs or whether or not world leaders are shape-shifting reptilians have been announced. But still, despite all their hard work and generally impeccable rationalist credentials, Tim Ferguson's caricatures of the Greens looks slightly less ridiculously inaccurate.
I can see this possibly costing the Greens seats in the next election. The ALP has been faced with a drain of educated, progressive-minded voters to the Greens in recent elections, which has cost them inner-city seats such as Melbourne (where the Greens' Adam Bandt will be fighting off a challenge from Labor). The threat of a sweeping landslide in favour of a hard-right Abbott government, whose promises not to feudalise industrial relations, ban abortion and generally drag Australia back to the penal-colony era via Howard's white-picket-fence father-knows-best 1950s have not convinced everyone completely, could compel the proportion of the electorate who don't understand how preferential voting works to vote Labor first, bleeding votes from the Greens. If the Greens manage to keep up the momentum, the appearance of leaflets, quoting their NSW MP John Kaye about fluoride and suggesting that a parliament with Greens in it will be tied up with chasing moonbeams at the taxpayer's expense, rather than (as has been the case) holding the two old parties to account on issues such as health care funding, schools and renewable energy, could swing the vote against them. So yes, nice work, Mr. Kaye.
The Cold War isn't over everywhere: An article in Foreign Policy accuses the authors of travel guides of fashionable leftist sympathies, falling over themselves to praise anti-US dictators like Castro, Chavez and Ahmadinejad and enthusing about how gloriously free (of Coca-Cola and McDonalds, that is) Pyongyang is whilst trotting out the same old obesity/religion/guns/geographical ignorance stereotypes whenever America is mentioned.
There's a formula to them: a pro forma acknowledgment of a lack of democracy and freedom followed by exercises in moral equivalence, various contorted attempts to contextualize authoritarianism or atrocities, and scorching attacks on the U.S. foreign policy that precipitated these defensive and desperate actions. Throughout, there is the consistent refrain that economic backwardness should be viewed as cultural authenticity, not to mention an admirable rejection of globalization and American hegemony. The hotel recommendations might be useful, but the guidebooks are clotted with historical revisionism, factual errors, and a toxic combination of Orientalism and pathological self-loathing.
THERE IS AN almost Orientalist presumption that the citizens of places like Cuba or Afghanistan have made a choice in rejecting globalization and consumerism. From the perspective of the disaffected Westerner, poverty is seen as enviable, a pure existence unsullied by capitalism. Sainsbury refers to Cuban food as "organic" and praises the Castro brothers' "intellectual foresight [that] has prompted such eco-friendly practices as nutrient recycling, soil and water management and land-use planning." Meager food rations and the 1950s cars that plod through Havana's streets, however, don't represent authenticity or some tropical version of the Western mania for "artisanal" products, but, rather, failed economic policy. It's as much of a lifestyle choice as female circumcision is in Sudan.It may well be that the authors of the guidebooks are a cabal of Cultural Marxists, and that the Communists who (according to Margaret Thatcher) run the BBC, and thus Lonely Planet, are pushing the doctrinaire anti-US line. (I don't doubt that, among travel writers, there are some who subscribe to a romanticised, orientalist leftism, to the point of making apologies for the other side; I once read a somewhat myopic travelogue set in the two halves of Berlin in the 1980s, by an English author who delighted in contrasting the refreshing joy of the East (and dismissing as embittered hacks the dissidents who lost their jobs for criticising it) with the abject, junky-squat nihilism of the West.) On the other hand, a more economical explanation is in the nature of guidebooks and their function.
Guidebooks, by definition, are intended to be taken to the countries they describe as guides. If those countries lean towards totalitarianism, books which criticise their regimes, or reflect too strongly the point of view of the hostile state in which they were published, might not make it in through the border, or may cause trouble for the hapless tourist who buys them. As such, it makes sense that guidebooks to authoritarian states have, by definition, to be somewhat fawning, at the very least refraining from any criticism more than strictly necessary to be credible to a Western tourist and to leaven that with some praise of the President-for-life, explanations for why his secret police are not at all menacing and aspersions on the sorts who would criticise his beneficent rule. (I would venture that this wouldn't apply merely to fashionably anti-American states with iconically stylish martyred leaders: I'm guessing a tourist guidebook to Pinochet's Chile (which was, after all, a US-backed libertarian/authoritarian dictatorship) wouldn't have gone on about the death squads, human rights abuses and the optimism of the Allende years. Similarly, were the US to somehow roll back the First Amendment and criminalise hostile speech, I suspect that even the hippies in the Lonely Planet boardroom and the Communists in the BBC who control the purse strings would, from within their haze of funny-smelling cigarette smoke, decide to drop all superfluous references to guns, televangelists and junk food and stick to praising the beauty of the Grand Canyon and the prodigious variety of taco trucks.
And today, in International Zionist Conspiracy news: the Iranian government has stated to the International Olympic Committee that it will boycott the 2012 Olympics unless the logo is changed, on the grounds that the logo spells the word "Zion" if you rearrange the elements of it, and thus is a coded assertion of British support for Israeli supremacy. Or perhaps Rastafarianism or something.
According to the state-backed Iranian Students News Agency, which is frequently used to convey official pronouncements, the letter says: "As internet documents have proved, using the word Zion in the logo of the 2012 Olympic Games is a disgracing action and against the Olympics' valuable mottos. There is no doubt that negligence of the issue from your side may affect the presence of some countries in the Games, especially Iran which abides by commitment to the values and principles."Meanwhile, Hamas, the Iranian-backed Islamist group which rules half of the Palestinian territories, has vowed to prevent United Nations schools in its territories from teaching children about the Holocaust.
"We cannot agree to a programme that is intended to poison the minds of our children," said a statement from the ministry for refugee affairs. "Holocaust studies in refugee camps is a contemptible plot and serves the Zionist entity with a goal of creating a reality and telling stories in order to justify acts of slaughter against the Palestinian people."
Ging, a passionate advocate of the rights of Palestinian refugees and a vocal critic of Israel's policies towards Gaza, said Palestinian children needed to understand the great injustices of the 20th century, including the Holocaust, in order to fight legitimately for their own cause.
Twitter has denied rumours that it suppressed traffic promoting student demonstrations in the UK at the request of the police. The allegations claim that the #demo2010 hashtag had been suppressed from trending topics, and that the Twitter account "UCLOccupation", used by protest coordinators, had been disabled during the protests; Twitter claims that there was no censorship of trending hashtags and no disabling of accounts.
It's not clear why the organisers were unable to use the UCLOccupation account during the protest; perhaps it coincided with part of Twitter's network being down. The other alternative is that the internet surveillance powers Britain's authorities have allow them to use deep-packet inspection to selectively suppress the traffic of troublemakers as to maintain order, and that the surveillance boxes installed on all internet trunks have facilities to take out Twitter posts in this fashion. That wouldn't explain the non-appearance of the #demo2010 hashtag, though, unless the government's black boxes were designed to suppress posts for everyone but the original poster.
A couple in New York are charged with defrauding a wealthy musician of somewhere between $6m and $20m after he asked them to remove a virus from his laptop. Vickram Bedi and Helga Invarsdottir, who operated a computer shop, allegedly discovered, upon learning of their client, pianist and PC user Roger Davidson's wealth (and possibly other things; perhaps his browsing history revealed a propensity for fantastic stories and/or conspiracy theories?), that the virus on his laptop was merely the tip of a vast, sinister conspiracy against him by intelligence agencies, foreign nationals and the shadowy Catholic sect Opus Dei (best known as the villains in a Dan Brown novel), and then offered him "24-hour protection" against the threats for the low, low price of $160,000 (a bargain for protection against the arrayed forces of evil itself, I'm sure you'll agree). Anyway, Bedi an Invarsdottir apparently managed to convince Davidson so well that he paid up, and kept paying for some six years.
Via Daring Fireball, an article blowing open the shadowy web of connections between the open-source/copyright reform movement and Google's world domination plans. It seems that there is a sinister power bankrolling the freetards' campaign to destroy intellectual property (and thus civilisation as we know it), and that power is none other than
Moscow Peking Mountain View. Or something like that.
A Lebanese-American Muslim woman wins the Miss USA beauty contest; America's right-wing commentariat goes nuts:
Conservative commentator Debbie Schlussel pulled out all the stops, using Fakih's Shia Lebanese background to brand her a terrorist "Miss Hezbollah" and dismissed the colourful business magnate Donald Trump, who is one of the sponsors of the event, as an Islamic "dhimmi".
Another problem Schlussel's conspiracy theory runs up against is the fact that Hezbollah, being a conservative Islamic organisation, it is unlikely to be recruiting a scantily clad beauty queen as an agent provocateur. In a contorted effort to explain this, Schlussel falls back on an old neocon chestnut: "Muslims frequently go against Islam in this way for propaganda purposes. It's a form of taqiyyah, the Muslim concept of deceiving infidels."
In 1951, residents of a small French village named Pont-Saint-Esprit were struck by a wave of violent hallucinations. At least five people died, and dozens ended up in mental asylums. The hallucinations were believed to have been caused by bread contaminated with ergot (such incidents had occurred from time to time throughout history, and in the Middle Ages, were known as "Saint Anthony's fire"); but newly revealed information suggests that the hallucinations were the product of a CIA experiment into the use of LSD as a weapon:
One man tried to drown himself, screaming that his belly was being eaten by snakes. An 11-year-old tried to strangle his grandmother. Another man shouted: "I am a plane", before jumping out of a second-floor window, breaking his legs. He then got up and carried on for 50 yards. Another saw his heart escaping through his feet and begged a doctor to put it back. Many were taken to the local asylum in strait jackets.
Mr Albarelli said the real "smoking gun" was a White House document sent to members of the Rockefeller Commission formed in 1975 to investigate CIA abuses. It contained the names of a number of French nationals who had been secretly employed by the CIA and made direct reference to the "Pont St. Esprit incident." In its quest to research LSD as an offensive weapon, Mr Albarelli claims, the US army also drugged over 5,700 unwitting American servicemen between 1953 and 1965.
(via Boing Boing)
There is growing speculation that the recent attack on embattled Italian PM Silvio Berlusconi was staged, to give his flagging popularity a sympathy boost and allow his allies to push through useful restrictions to civil liberties:
A video sequence posted on YouTube shows television footage in which Berlusconi immediately covers the lower part of his face with a black plastic bag after the attack and keeps it there while being bundled into a car with no blood visible.
The first video asks why Berlusconi emerged from the car a few minutes after the attack, showing his bloody face to the cameras, including a deep wound below his left eye which did not appear in the first images.
These people claim that manufactured pop electrovixen Lady Gaga is an Illuminati mind control parroting puppet, with everything from her makeup to her nonsense lyrics being allusions to Satanic symbolism and Illuminati mind-control techniques. Other tools of the conspiracy are Transformers 2, Beyonce and even the Flintstones. And here are their top 5 most sinister corporate logos.
In September of last year, millionaire adventurer Steve Fossett took off on a routine solo flight in Nevada, in near perfect conditions, and was never seen again. Extensive searches revealed no wreckage and no trace of him, and he was declared dead in February. Now claims are emerging that he may have faked his death:
The faked-death story goes as follows. In the months leading up to his death, Fossett may have been leading what breathless news reports describe as "a secret double life".
As Fossett's many previous collaborations with Sir Richard Branson suggest, he was a born showman, meticulous about maintaining a gilded public image. According to the faked death theory, disappearing off the face of the earth would allow him to avoid both fates – while leaving a fitting personal legacy after a swashbuckling career that had started to enter its teatime years.
According to the case against Fossett, the plane he was flying might also have been designed to make a rescue operation difficult. Most of its lightweight structure is invisible to radar and infrared detectors. It is also easily dismantled and hidden.Update: They found the wreckage of Fossett's plane; they're still searching for remains.
The Council on Foreign Relations, the New York-based organisation that may or may not be part of the Illuminati's grip on world power, has just admitted its newest member, Angelina Jolie. The actress and celebrity, who adopted children from the developing world before it became trendy, joins the likes of Henry Kissinger, George Soros, Thomas "The Lexus and the Olive Tree" Friedman and most of the neocons behind the Bush administration, presumably in giant lizard form.
Project Censored has published a list of the top 25 news stories you didn't hear of in the mainstream media:
1 Future of Internet Debate Ignored by Media
2 Halliburton Charged with Selling Nuclear Technologies to Iran
4 Hunger and Homelessness Increasing in the US
11 Dangers of Genetically Modified Food Confirmed
14 Homeland Security Contracts KBR to Build Detention Centers in the US
18 Physicist Challenges Official 9-11 Story
24 Cheney's Halliburton Stock Rose Over 3000 Percent Last Year
(via Boing Boing)
Everybody Loves Eric Raymond, a web comic for penguinheads, involving Richard M. Stallman, Linus Torvalds and Eric S. Raymond living in a shared house.
And then there's Buzz Aldrin's Conspiracy Smackdown:
A Member of the Scottish Parliament is calling into an inquiry into allegations at traffic light controllers in Edinburgh and Glasgow are deliberately creating traffic mayhem to encourage people to use public transport, undoubtedly motivated by some extremist green agenda. There have been rumours of this sort of thing happening in London too; could Loony Left Red Ken be behind it?
The Bilderberg group, either an informal social gathering for the world's movers and shakers or a shadowy Illuminati-like cabal, possibly comprised of shape-shifting reptilian aliens, that controls the world (depending on whom you ask), are now meeting, somewhere in northern Italy.
(I don't think that the existence of meetings of high-ranking politicians and business tycoons is a worry in itself; these sorts of things are going to happen, informally, in any system. Even communist states like the USSR and China did business with the ultra-wealthy where it suited them. Democracy and, more importantly, transparency exist to keep such things in check. (On any large scale, centralised democracy serves mainly to make elite influence over power less efficient and keep it in check, rather than any more idealistic purpose; on a large enough scale, public opinion approximates a low-pass filter on the opinions of the Rupert Murdochs of this world.) What's more worrying is the concentration of corporate control over news media and the inherent constraints on democratic discourse when mainstream media buries uncomfortable stories or issues.)
50 suspicious things about the Nick Berg killing; from Berg's unusual circumstances (what he was doing alone in Iraq with an Israeli stamp in his passport, why he was travelling at night, his stated intention to leave, the 3 FBI visits he received whilst in custody), what exactly happened between his release from custody and capture by the killers (if he was handed over, that would have saved Osama Bin Laden from having to procure an orange jumpsuit for him), the timing of the release of the tape (which mentions the prison torture photos apparently before they were released), the increasingly implausible "al-Qaeda" assassins' builds, accents and hands, and even questions of whether the decapitated man was, in fact, Berg. Something's not what it seems. (via jwz)
Conspiracy theories about the Nick Berg killing. They come down to (a) where did the killers get the orange jumpsuit (though I'm sure al-Qaeda's budget would extend to those if they needed them), and more seriously (b) Berg's presence on an "enemies list" of treasonous liberals who opposed the war, and (c) the identities of the hooded killers, whose white hands, build and body language are allegedly inconsistent with them being Middle Easterners -- but consistent with them being US military/paramilitary personnel. (via tyrsalvia)
An interesting essay on the subject of taboos and intellectual fashions, by Paul Graham:
The word "defeatist", for example, has no particular political connotations now. But in Germany in 1917 it was a weapon, used by Ludendorff in a purge of those who favored a negotiated peace. At the start of World War II it was used extensively by Churchill and his supporters to silence their opponents. In 1940, any argument against Churchill's aggressive policy was "defeatist". Was it right or wrong? Ideally, no one got far enough to ask that.
Moral fashions don't seem to be created the way ordinary fashions are. Ordinary fashions seem to arise by accident when everyone imitates the whim of some influential person. The fashion for broad-toed shoes in late fifteenth century Europe began because Charles VIII of France had six toes on one foot. The fashion for the name Gary began when the actor Frank Cooper adopted the name of a tough mill town in Indiana. Moral fashions more often seem to be created deliberately. When there's something we can't say, it's often because some group doesn't want us to.
Suppose in the future there is a movement to ban the color yellow. Proposals to paint anything yellow are denounced as "yellowist", as is anyone suspected of liking the color. People who like orange are tolerated but viewed with suspicion. Suppose you realize there is nothing wrong with yellow. If you go around saying this, you'll be denounced as a yellowist too, and you'll find yourself having a lot of arguments with anti-yellowists. If your aim in life is to rehabilitate the color yellow, that may be what you want. But if you're mostly interested in other questions, being labelled as a yellowist will just be a distraction. Argue with idiots, and you become an idiot.
(Via Slashdot, where it has devolved into the usual melange of Hitler references, Libertarian/Objectivist railings against the collectivist tyranny of taxation, flames directed respectively at Bush/neoconservatives and effete Europeans/elitist liberals, assertions that global warming is a lie perpetuated by a powerful environmentalist conspiracy, unsubstantiated claims about Israeli involvement in 9/11 and rants about why feminism and the homosexual agenda have ruined America; and not a word about Bill Gates being a Sith lord either. Looks like Slashdot has turned into talkback radio.)
20 unanswered questions about 9/11; from who shorted airline stock on September 10, 2001, and why Pentagon officials cancelled commercial air travel plans before September 11, to whether the 19 men named as the hijackers were in fact the actual hijackers, and the EPA's cover-up of toxins released after the WTC collapse (which could probably be said to be just standard Bush-era environmental policy).
The BBC report on the Bilderberg meeting in Versailles last Thursday, where
Earth's reptilian rulers feasted on human flesh a bunch of rich old men gathered to play Illuminati and/or control the world. Apparently one of the delegates there was Henry Kissinger. (Hang on, isn't he legally a fugitive in France? If so, what's to stop the French police from swooping down at some opportune moment and dragging him off in chains to The Hague?)
What kind of dirt could the CIA possibly have on Tony Blair that would compel him, a nominal socialist who lived through the Thatcher Era, to jump through hoops unequivocally supporting anything that comes out of the Whitehouse? Well, these people reckon that he's protecting a high-ranking paedophile ring involving many senior government officials, and suggests that his born-again Neo-Conservative beliefs may be the result of his being blackmailed by US intelligence agencies over this. Supposedly the Dunblane school massacre was connected to this, and the truth about the massacre has been sealed under the 100-year rule.
There are only three levels of secrecy in the UK for state secrets, the 30 year rule, the 80 year rule and the 100 year rule. Normal secrets, like Cabinet discussions, government papers, espionage, all that, are under the 30 year rule. Only a very small number of things ever reached the 80 year rule, particularly events in the Sudan with Kitchener in 1902, where it seems that an act of genocide was committed... Of them, the darkest of state secrets, when the events of '02 were getting a bit close to their limit for comfort, a further class of secrets was created to last a hundred years, and tiny number of things were put in it - e.g. Kitchener in '02, some World War I things." But none of these things can be said to apply to Dunblane. That was a case of a common criminal [and] sexual pervert committing some fairly ordinary murders, of a kind that happen from time to time. There must be issues of profound national importance working here, and I put it to you that anything that involves certain events in Scotland is more likely to be someone of cabinet level than anything else.Of course, given the nature of the site this was posted on, its credibility may be somewhat questionable. Can anybody shed any light on it? (via Leviathan)
Japanese journalist buys a vintage map of Tokyo, and notices inconsistencies between the locations of subway lines. Digging a little deeper, he comes to the conclusion that there is a secret network of tunnels beneath Tokyo, dating back decades, whose existence is still being actively covered up by governmental authorities. So he publishes a book about this, only to find himself virtually blacklisted by the media. Is Shun Akiba a paranoid crackpot of some sort (like the ones you hear complaining that the establishment is "suppressing" their revolutionary new theory of physics), or is there really a conspiracy of silence about the tunnels under Tokyo? (I recall that Japan doesn't have a strong tradition of transparency in government.)
Idea to ponder: believing in conspiracy theories as explanations of events is similar to believing in a god or gods. Both are products of the human tendency to ascribe intelligent design and planning to patterns and complex phenomena, an instinctive bias part of the human psychological makeup.
A Valentine's Day card has caused a homeland security alert in Pittsburgh; the man who bought the card for his daughter noticed that it contained the word "Jihad", and the message "It's Time To Be Mine". Could Osama bin Laden be using Valentine's Day cards to communicate with his sleeper agents?
The World's Greatest Democracy: According to this article, the company which makes all the voting machines used in US elections is owned by Republican-affiliated companies. The software in the machines is, thanks to hard lobbying, proprietary and thus not open to external scrutiny. Which is not to say that the machines are designed to rig elections; just that things look somewhat fishy, and if the manufacturers decided to give the voters a hand in making their choice, they'd have an easier time of it. (via Stumblings)
Conspiracy theory of the day: is the Bush administration drawing up plans to
put Prozac in the water supply to head off the mass protests that are inevitable when Bush
steals wins his second term and continues screwing things up?
(via New World Disorder)
They noted that since the election of George Bush, the use of Prozac has increased by 30% and it was the opinion of this board of Department of Defense psychologists that if Bush has another term in office, it could lead to mass depression in the United States, wherein suicide and homicide rates could continue to rise.
There is also a memorandum from the FBI, expressing concerns about this -- that if Bush is allowed a second term in office, there could be not only an economic depression but also a mass psychological depression in the United States.
And then there's the connection between financial statistics and violent crime:
There's another reason why the Department of Defense wants to put Prozac in the water supply. The Department of Justice has begun to notice a very disquieting correlation - a rapid and tremendous increase in violent crime over the last six months. These include murders, kidnapping, rapes, and assaults, and this has occurred in correspondence with the time when people get their IRA and 4o1(K) statements.
Of course, they could just legalise marijuana and encourage everybody to toke up. It's remarkably useful for making people passive and docile, increasing snack food consumption (thus patriotically boosting the profits of companies like RJ Reynolds and Mars) -- and it has that countercultural cachet of rebellion and underground culture which will make some of those most prone to oppose The Man self-medicate into compliance. (The Netherlands, where cannabis is all but legal, has had surprisingly nonviolent international football matches, some believe due to the effects of all the hooligans taking advantage of the local ganja bars and getting mellow.)
Though, of course, it won't happen; the War On Drugs fundamentalists in the Republican party (and US government as a whole) are too committed to their ideology. Though it could be achieved surreptitiously; for example preventing the police from arresting cannabis growers, or even having the CIA start funneling high-grade skunk to the suburbs (as they allegedly did with crack cocaine in the inner cities). That would have the advantage of not risking diluting marijuana's underground cachet.
At the same time, synthetic cannabinol-based medications without the fundie-scaring image of Marihuana ("The weed with roots in Hell!"), and a milder buzz, could be developed and put on the market, all profits going to Republican-donating drug/food companies. Perhaps a genetically-engineered THC-bearing tobacco strain could be developed to get around the ban, ending up in "extreme cigz" for pierced, wallet-chained mooks.
Film festival: Tonight I saw a documentary titled Much Ado About Something; it was about theories that the plays and sonnets attributed to William Shakespeare were written by someone else (it mostly focussed on Christopher Marlowe, but also mentioned Francis Bacon). It presented both proponents of such theories and orthodox debunkers, and, in the balance, the question is still open to doubt. (For example, there is no evidence that Shakespeare had the degree of education required to write his plays; though this could be just as easily evidence of collaboration or partial plagiarism. The facts about the "death" of Marlowe also seemed a bit suspicious as they were presented there.)
Anyway, those in the US will apparently be able to catch this documentary on PBS soon.
The Grand Unified Conspiracy Theory Diagram showing how everything's connected. But who's this Toni Blair bird? (via Charlie's Diary)
Did Big Oil/the MIE complex engineer the WTC terrorist attack to get carte blanche to bomb Afghanistan into compliance? A roundup fnord of details of conspiratological significance about the whole affair.
In Britain, a flight engineer has published a detailed paper asserting the U.S. took the joysticks out of the pilots' hands using a method of remote control developed by the American military in the 1970s.
Now think about this for a second: The Independent in London questions how Bush could claim in two public appearances to have seen the first plane hit the first tower long before any such TV footage was broadcast. The paper also asks why Dubya continued sitting with elementary school students after the second tower was hit and he'd been told, "America is under attack." Very mysterious, when standard procedure for such a situation is to whisk the president away to safety. Unless -- and here is the nub -- unless he knew something more than we did that morning.
Conspiracy theory of the day: Russia's Pravda reckons that Fidel Castro was really pissed off about the WTC bombing -- because now he won't be the first to strike at America, Or was he?
in 1983, Castro ordered Cuban MiG 23 pilots to program their computers to attack targets in Florida. Among the selected targets was the Turkey Point nuclear plant, which Castro said had the potential of producing a nuclear disaster larger than Chernobyl. According to Gen. del Pino, Castro's words were: "I don't have nuclear bombs, but I can produce a nuclear explosion." The plan included the possibility of suicide attacks, crashing Cuban planes against American nuclear plants and targets in Washington D.C.
Undoubtedly, the suicide bombers were familiar with the structure of the buildings, and knew exactly where to crash their planes to cause maximum structural damage. Short of a computer simulation model, only a close inspection of the WTC towers, or to a building with similar characteristics, would have allowed them to discover the weak points in the building's structure. Did Fidel Castro bring with him some of his highly trained army demolition engineers to study the structure of the Petronas towers?
Though, given that the author compares Castro to Hitler, I suspect that he may have a slight chip on his shoulder.
Death Disco: Is Hillary Clinton a key investor in a Nazi-themed disco near Auschwitz, or did someone along the way forget to take their medication? The mind boggles indeed. (from the Psychoceramics list)