Consistent facts turn conspiracy theories into criminal investigations.
I spent much of yesterday on Twitter trying to interest ‘the mainstream media’ in the Lord Windbag shareowner story. No responses as yet, so this is either Not Invented Here syndrome, or Daren’t Touch It Disorder. That’s nothing new, but from a personal viewpoint, interest in the yarn on the site was enormous: 1450 hits on the page, and The Slog as a whole had a record day.
I’m intrigued as much as ever by the degree to which editors (especially of US sites) fall over themselves to print speculative conspiracy theory tosh about almost anything, but shy away from sensational stories with a ring of truth. As a parallel reference to one’s schooldays, it reminds me of music theory vs music practical. For me, the latter was always far more fulfilling than the former. As a site-owner, it still is.
There are three such possible conspiracies on the go here at the moment, and they all merit some examination.
There first one has been a bone for me to chew at over the last few weeks. I’m no apologist for Prince Andrew; people tell me he is the world’s most uninteresting man, and something of a lech. But there is far more to the current concerted press attacks on him than simple tabloid frenzy. (This and other tips led me to devote HackGate Day 49 to the issue recently).
The four main newspapers worried about the Hackgate scandal blowing ever further open are The News of the World, The Sun, The Times, and the Telegraph. I say this because, according to my research, journalists at these titles have the most to explain away in relation to what they were doing using private detectives during 2006.
Prince Andrew is allegedly angry about past phone-hacking of the York family. So this current hounding of him by those same four titles is good conspiratorial meat for the paranoid feast. It being a Royals story (and no way am I an expert in that area) we may never get anywhere near the truth.
But my educated hunch is that the Duke of York is having his credibility demolished as a defence against any future accusations he or his agents might make about the press media. Never underestimate the evil of some of those involved in this….on both sides.
The second is based on some careful research – and one passing contact who struck me as credible. It concerns the role of Putin in Middle Eastern affairs, and at the same time owes something to Russian websites. Many such sites are in English, and well worth a visit. One never quite knows what the agenda is in such matters (I’m not a Russian expert either) but overall it isn’t difficult to build a case suggesting that the North African unrest has been far from spontaneous in many cases.
‘Whatever the eventual outcome of the Arab world’s social upheaval, there is a clear economic winner so far: Vladimir Putin. Russia pumps more oil than Saudi Arabia, and is reaping a windfall from the steep rise in global energy prices sparked by instability in oil regions of the Middle East and North Africa. Riding the high oil prices, the Russian ruble has risen faster against the US dollar this year than any other currency, which is helpful because it will curb consumer inflation during a [Russian] election year….’
As this is exactly the line I’ve been promoting, I’m encouraged that a medium as stolid as the WSJ is – if nothing else – accepting the basis of The Slog’s theory.
Finally, there is the Central Bankers and interest rates story. The single (and simple) premise of this theme is that the world now faces a choice between saving the banks or saving society*. The reason the banks are heading for another disaster – the terrifying reality of a heavily-wagered interest rates derivatives sector – is at the core of this debate.
The entire idea is based on empirical data, not barmy the-Yanks-never-went-to-the-Moon stuff. Here too, Mervyn King’s outburst at the weekend (dismissed by too many in the commentariat as self-expulcation) adds weight to The Slog’s contention that another Tsunami is coming. My point is that central bankers may well be choosing the banks ahead of the People. All we can do is wait and see; but the utter ineffectiveness of Ben Bernanke’s QE2 programme does suggest that he is persevering with it on the basis of fears he dare not express in public.
What I’m arguing in this piece is that conspiracy theory is more sensationally newsworthy, but conspiracy practical is what we seem to be experiencing in some key areas of the zeitgeist. I have not, for instance, included in this selection Hackgate itself as conspiracy theory, as the evidence of serious and pernicious perversion of Justice therein is now so overwhelming, it is no longer even conspiracy practical – it is an obvious, open secret.
I would like Sloggers to remain reassured that this site deals in evidence, not lunatic fringe speculation: but the readers must be the ultimate judge. If people think the explanations being purveyed here are bonkers, they won’t come back. So far, I’m happy to say, the core of sane loyalists is growing quickly.
*Conspiracy theorists might well have a field day with the information I can now convey – namely, that my piece on Bankers v People has given The Slog Rock Star status in Finland. I haven’t the faintest idea what it is about that unfortunate country that suggests a higher than normal belief in the banker as Beelzebub. All I can say is that Finland has been 15% of my hits for the last two days, and this isn’t normal.