Conspiracies, Plots and Other Anti-democratic Notions
By Peter Phillips
Special to The Putnam Pit
Paul Wellstone's plane crash wasn't an accident. The CIA bought stock
options on United Airlines before 9-11 making millions in profits. The
military sprays low-level bio-weapons on the public through airtanker
contrails. The tobacco industry plotted to deceive the public on the
negative health effects of smoking. Lee Harvey Oswald alone didn't
assassinate John Kennedy. The FBI deliberately caused the fire in the
Branch Davidian compound. Planted bombs from within the structure destroyed
the federal building in Oklahoma City. AIDs was created in a government
research lab. Mass inoculations are designed for citizen mind control.
General Motors and Firestone conspired to destroy public transit in the
U.S. The Bush White House interfered with FBI investigations into the bin
Laden family before 9-11.
Conspiracy theories abound in America and are directly related to the lack
of investigative reporting by the mainstream corporate media. The public
knows more about Winona Ryder's shop lifting trial then about the weather
conditions and circumstances of Paul Wellstone's air crash. The Los Angeles
Times printed 83 column feet on OJ Simpson during his trial, but has
ignored for decades the deliberate and successful plot before World War II
to dismantle LA's public transit system by General Motors and Firestone.
Oliver Stone's interpretation of the Kennedy assassination has been mostly
dismissed as "conspiracy theory" by corporate media. Questions regarding
the veracity or falseness of seemingly important conspiracies and plots
often go unreported by mainstream media.
The ten big corporations that now dominate media in America are principally
in the entertainment business. While the corporate media is narrowing its
content, with news reports often looking very much the same, the public's
access to the vastland of the internet is amplifying, and informational
snippets and unanswered questions leading to conspiracy beliefs are
increasingly available on-line.
The First Amendment provides for freedom of the press and was established
to protect our democratic process by guaranteeing an informed electorate.
Yet we just completed a national election with an all time low voter turn
out. Millions of voters refused to participate in the electoral process. We
denigrated and blamed non-voters for being uncaring citizens, yet the
corporate media has failed to address core issues affecting most people in
this country. Voter participation levels are directly related to issues
that the citizenry feels are important. Many people no longer trust the
corporate media to provide the full truth. This opens people's
susceptibilities to believing in conspiracies and plots to explain
unanswered questions. Cynicism has deterred voting for many.
How can we free ourselves from this dilemma? First off, We can think of
conspiracies as actions by small groups of individuals instead of massive
collective plots by governments and corporations. Small groups can be
dangerous, especially when the individuals have significant power in huge
public and private bureaucracies, but they can not possibly be interlinked
in a macro way bridging the gaps between thousand of corporations and
government bureaucracies. Micro-plots may well be the answer to some of the
conspiracies floating in our circles of cynicism. However, without accurate
through investigations we only stew in our distrust and experience widening
alienation from our democratic process.
Additionally, we can advocate strongly for mainstream media to invest in
democracy by supporting investigative reporting on key issues. The Director
of the Chicago Office of the FBI, Tom Kneir, admitted on August 17 at the
American Sociological meetings that the FBI conducted an investigation into
the pre-9-11 stock options, but he refused to disclose who bought the
stock. Mainstream media needs to pursue this issue using our freedom of
information laws to put the conspiracy questions to rest.
Finally, we can advocate for full and clear reporting on the policies and
plans emerging from the public and private policy circles of the American
corporate and governmental elites. Full analysis and disclosure of the
published plans of the Trilateral Commission, The Council on Foreign
Relations, The Hoover Institute, The Heritage Foundation, The Cato
Institute, The World Bank, and the Project for the New American Century,
would go a long way in showing the roadmaps that the policy elites are
building for the world. We don't need macro-conspiracy theories to
understand that powerful people sit in rooms and plan for global change
with private advantage in mind.
If open debate on socio-political policies were offered nationwide it would
certainly draw widespread citizen voter participation. Imagine a computer
programmer thinking about social policies that would prevent outsourcing of
his job to foreign firms. Imagine his enthusiasm voting for representatives
that would work to protect his livelihood. Imagine millions of reawakened
citizens informed and active in a real democratic process.
Peter Phillips is an Associate Professor of Sociology at Sonoma State
University and Director of Project Censored. This Op-ed may be republished.
Peter Phillips Ph.D.
Sociology Department/Project Censored
Sonoma State University
1801 East Cotati Ave.
Rohnert Park, CA 94928