KPFA.org Home
Support KPFA
Against the Grain with Sasha Lilley - January 8, 2013 at 12:00pm

Against the Grain, for January 8, 2013 - 12:00pm

Click to Play:

Download this clip (mp3, 10.28 megabytes)
Play this clip in your Computer's media player
Against the Grain with Sasha Lilley

Anarchist historian Peter Staudenmaier speaks about conspiracy theory as a substitute for social critique.

More from this show: About the Show | Archives of this Show | Playlists from this Show

Playlist for this Program:

Comments

I find this fairly shocking.

I find this fairly shocking. We had Mark Fenster a year or so ago with the same shtick.Pathetic that against the grain airs this none-sense. To be suspicious of power is ultimately preferable than the mindless zombie state that your guests support. Love to hear Mickey Huff or some of the other locals that could give the other side of this.I doubt these nerds debate anyone on the issue

It is interesting that these guys always paint the conspiracy theorists to be only to be able to think in black and white. this is of course a black and white analysis to begin with and offers no support for the claim other than relying on innuendo. Fallibility is a legitimate question yet Stauffy simply points to the possibility that a CT might be mistaken on some occasions, and that this somehow shows CT's are misusing analytics. I would ask what is the alternative? Do not expect anyone to behave in a predictable manner?

Much of what is argued is that causation is not simple. sure that's nice but then how can those who have the conventional notions that oppose the conspiracy theories be seen as more certain. Because if the claim is for complexity then neither side can be certain correct?

How to know if something is a

How to know if something is a "conspiracy theory"? If someone says that people in the government were illegally selling arms to Iran in order to fund a terrorist army in Nicaragua, That’s got to be a conspiracy theory, right? It’s got the government doing illegal things secretly… But wait, that was talked about in the corporate media and a fall guy was found and sent to prison (he’s now on Fox News). OK, if the corporate media talks about it, it’s not a conspiracy theory. Got it.

What if someone says that the CIA were (maybe still are) trafficking illegal drugs into the US in order to fund those Nicaraguan terrorists and who knows what other black budget that needed topping up. That has got to be a conspiracy theory even though Gary Webb of the San Jose Mercury did an excellent job documenting the whole thing with some pretty hard evidence to back it up.

However, the corporate media viciously attacked Gary Webb, not the evidence that he brought but him. They eventually forced the San Jose Mercury to distance itself form the story and post Gary to the proverbial Palookaville. There were even congressional hearings into the matter lead by Senator Kerry who found that “the Contra drug links included…payments to drug traffickers by the U.S. State Department of funds authorized by the Congress for humanitarian assistance to the Contras, in some cases after the traffickers had been indicted by federal law enforcement agencies on drug charges, in others while traffickers were under active investigation by these same agencies.”

Maybe scratching the surface but still a pretty damning conclusion. The corporate media responded by basically ignoring the whole thing. So, if the corporate media rejects it, it has got to be a conspiracy theory, right? I think I've got it now.

Your anti-conspiracy theorist

Your anti-conspiracy theorist Peter S. constructs a sort of ideo-pathology of the conspiratorial mind. Whatever. But he makes an exception for those like himself who assert that the Reichstag fire was a Nazi plot. Odd, since that plot remains a lively controversy, with Der Spiegel concluding in 2001, that, "The thesis which holds that [communist Marinus] van der Lubbe was the only arsonist involved remains the most plausible explanation." Which makes Peter S. either privy to some secret knowledge about Nazis that Der Spiegel is unaware of, or else a self-hating anti-conspiracist.

Blatantly an overpaid Cass

Blatantly an overpaid Cass Sunstein -type operative. What complete dreck, using the label "anarchist" to spew Government lies about events whose facts scream out to be genuinely investigated. I don't have time to adequately rant about this just now, but check back- I'll have at it ASAP. Maybe on the Show Page for "Against the Grain"..
Hey Ms. Lilley-- does your presenting this fool mean that you buy into his bull? (I haven't yet mustered the patience/time to listen to the hour for your particular angle as interviewer-- hearing the set-up made me quite nauseous and I had to switch to a real discussion on live radio (Alex Jones I think it was, discussing pending police state implementation.) Do you even listen to Guns and Butter? How do you refute the facts of, say, David Ray Griffin's books? You ought be hounded off the staff by saner staffers, were this a just world.

Peter doesn't differentiate

Peter doesn't differentiate between legitimate and fantasy "conspiracy theories", from what I heard, and uses a blanket criticism of them all, ignoring that some are well researched and don't necessarily attribute seamless broad organization and intentionality to the perpetrators. Yet some are useful in pointing out the unseen workings of our opponents.
I prefer to "know the enemy". Michael Parenti reports saying to those who chide him about "conspiracy theory" - "What do you subscribe to - the innocence theory?"

It is alarming that you keep

It is alarming that you keep trotting out this "conspiracy theory" theory. An anarchist(??) categorizing those who question the government"s version of important world altering events as psychological deviants? You can't make it up. I am beginning to wonder who you people might be working for. So out the window with all forensics and criminal investigation. An anarchist is telling us to just shut up and accept the establishment story of everything. No analysis of each event or anything. This only makes sense as propaganda.

I did not like Peter

I did not like Peter Staudenmaier's commentary much. I prefer conspiracy theorists to consequence theorists who use mealy-mouthed sophistry to make their arguments. At least the conspiracy theorists are aiming their fire at the secret societies who control us. Consequence theorists only create more confusion and self doubt for us all to unravel and wade through. So consequence theorists are really aiding the enemy in my opinion.

Listen Live:

Listen Live
     (64K stereo mp3)

KPFA 94.1 FM (24k mp3)

KPFB 89.3 FM (16k mp3)

iPhone: Public Radio App

Android: TuneIn Radio App

WebOS: Public Radio App

Click Here For Help Listening

KPFA Video Channel