Wellington, Oct 27: Against conspiracy theories: Why our activism must be based in reality

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Anarchia's picture
Anarchia
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Oct 24 2011 22:47
Wellington, Oct 27: Against conspiracy theories: Why our activism must be based in reality

Against conspiracy theories: Why our activism must be based in reality

Date: Thursday October 27th

Time: 5:30 - 7pm

Location: Occupy Wellington, City to Sea Bridge

Facebook: http://www.facebook.com/event.php?eid=139154749519424

9/11, fluoride, chemtrails, Rothschild, Freemasons, satanists, and more. Theories around all of these have supporters within the Occupy movements around the globe, including Wellington. But what makes something a 'conspiracy theory'? Are they true? And what impact do they have on our activism?

In this workshop, I will argue that not only are these theories flat out wrong, but they are also incredibly damaging to attempts to create genuine change in our society.

We all live in the real world, and so, if we are to have any effect, our politics must also be based in reality. Examining and analysing what actually happens in the real world is the only way to discover what needs to be changed, and buying into conspiracy theories directly goes against our ability to do that.

This workshop will take the form of an initial talk, followed by open discussion.

All are welcome to attend, regardless of their own views on politics or conspiracy theories. Please invite your friends smile

Mouzone
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Oct 26 2011 03:37

Good luck with this, an important topic.

Convert
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Oct 26 2011 06:04

Disproving conspiracys to people who are into them will probably be pretty difficult and certainly time consuming. Maybe it would be more productive to demonstrate how a basic understanding of capital can explain far better the way the world is. And why they are irellevant i.e. what happens in the open is far worst than 9/11 etc??

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Entdinglichung
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Oct 26 2011 09:30
Convert wrote:
Disproving conspiracys to people who are into them will probably be pretty difficult and certainly time consuming. Maybe it would be more productive to demonstrate how a basic understanding of capital can explain far better the way the world is. And why they are irellevant i.e. what happens in the open is far worst than 9/11 etc??

by trying to disprove a conspiracy theory, you are becoming part of the conspiracy in the eye of the conspirationist wingnuts ... but it is important to reach out to those in the movement who are potentially vulnerable to fall in the conspirationists' trap

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JoeMaguire
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Oct 26 2011 10:54

@ Asher. Have you written a piece withy regards to the above? Also be good if it was recorded, as its a relevant theme.

Anarchia's picture
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Oct 26 2011 11:25

Convert: That's basically what this talk is about. I'm explicitly not going to be debunking / debating any specific theories, but rather talking about the issues with that whole worldview and why our politics need to be based in a real understanding of how capitalism and various forms of opression actually function.

JoeMaguire: It looks like my initial talk (though not the discussion after) will be recorded on video, assuming that all works out I'll chuck it up on Youtube after and put the link here. I'll probably also either transcribe it or at least flesh out my notes into a coherent piece too. Plus I'm hoping to get a handout finished before I go to bed tonight, but its already 12:30am so not sure if that will happen yet.

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Oct 26 2011 11:26
Entdinglichung wrote:
Convert wrote:
Disproving conspiracys to people who are into them will probably be pretty difficult and certainly time consuming. Maybe it would be more productive to demonstrate how a basic understanding of capital can explain far better the way the world is. And why they are irellevant i.e. what happens in the open is far worst than 9/11 etc??

by trying to disprove a conspiracy theory, you are becoming part of the conspiracy in the eye of the conspirationist wingnuts ... but it is important to reach out to those in the movement who are potentially vulnerable to fall in the conspirationists' trap

I think your right Ent. but you still have to try. I think this is a good initiative, there will be many people on the fence, who haven't heard of anarcho-syndaclism or libertarian communism. Like the 'big' communist parties in Europe (SWP here in Britain) it is just the first port of call when your pissed off because nothing else is publicly visible. These conspiracy nuts have been on a PR high ever since the internet and social media became widely available. Also if an occupation becomes infested with conspiranoids it is going to scare away those who know there is something wrong with the system, but think it has nothing to do with fluoride.

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Anarchia
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Oct 29 2011 04:32

The text of my talk is now up on Libcom at http://libcom.org/library/against-conspiracy-theories-why-our-activism-must-be-based-reality. Youtube video still to come.

About 55 people attended, which was definitely the biggest attendance of any workshop I've seen since Occupy Wellington began, so that's great. The talk was followed by a bit over an hours discussion which was mostly worthwhile, except for when some 9/11 conspiracy enthusiast called me a fascist for asking him to stop talking about 9/11 conspiracies.

tastybrain
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Oct 29 2011 05:36
Asher wrote:
The talk was followed by a bit over an hours discussion which was mostly worthwhile, except for when some 9/11 conspiracy enthusiast called me a fascist for asking him to stop talking about 9/11 conspiracies.

Reptilian Bilderberg flunky!!!