For people living through a ruinous financial crisis or devastating climate change — or even through rapid social change that has no material effect on their lives — it can be hard to make sense of a cascade of events that seem to have no plainly evident causal chain, or even identifiable human authors. How do you account for a world we’re meant to master, but is so complex its workings seem essentially opaque?
This topic connects well to so many related topics in TOK. How do we acquire knowledge? What ethical responsibility do media companies (like youtube) have to promoting “truth”? How do we produce knowledge in the natural sciences? How reliable is intuition in acquiring knowledge?
Related video on Netflix, Behind the Curve
Presenting fringe theories as the essence of conspiracism gives the impression that conspiracy theorists are a handful of kooks who will believe even the most ludicrous ideas. But conspiracy thinking — the inclination to entertain conspiracy theories in general — is much more widespread than belief in any particular theory.
A really great website devoted to debunking popular conspiracy theories.
“Metabunk.org is dedicated to the art and pastime of honest, polite, scientific investigating and debunking. It is primarily a discussion forum, however the focus is on providing concise useful resources, and attempting to avoid repetitive debate and arguments.”
“Conspiracy theories can be stubborn, particularly in the echo chamber of the internet.
“One persistent belief in some quarters is that the government — or business, perhaps — is deploying a fleet of jet aircraft to spray chemicals into the sky to control the population, food supply or other things.”