BULLET-POINTS: actScripps-Howard, 36% believe that either federal officials

BULLET-POINTS: Sustein and Vermeule – 2009 – Conspiracy Theories Causes and CuresPolls showed:Zogby International, 49% of NY residents believe that the government knew about 9/11 attack and failed to actScripps-Howard, 36% believe that either federal officials participated or took no action to stop 9/11Canadian, 22% believe that Osama Bin Laden did not had anything to do with the attack but it was a plot by influential AmericansSeven Muslims countries, 78% believe that 9/11 was not conduct by ArabsBelieve that was a work from both USA and Israeli governmentsClasses of conspiracy theory involving academic literature By analytic philosophers and scientists asks what count as a conspiracy theory and whether the theories are methodologically suspect”a smattering of work in society and Freudian psychology on the causes of conspiracy theorizing”EXAMPLES of conspiracy related to terrorism post to 9/11 Section I: explores definition issues and lays out mechanisms that creates conspiracy theories and theoristsprimary claim those who believe in this theories are mental illness or do not have access relevant informational source (“crippled epistemology”)Another reason of why to believe: when there is an absence of civil rights and civil liberties, there is a lack of relevant information so people are more likely to accept the theorySection II: government responses and legal issuesTheories are immune to change because of their self-sealing quality Principal claim: is the value of the “cognitive infiltration of extremist groups” Expose indefensible conspiracy theoriesIntroduce informational diversity I.DEFINITION AND MECHANISMSA. DEFINITIONAL NOTES What’s a conspiracy theory?What’s wrong (if have one)?”an effort to explain some event or practice by reference to the machinations of powerful people, who attempt to conceal their role (at least until their aims are accomplished)” – pg,205 to considered if such theory is of conspiracy Theories mentioned (examples):CIA responsible for Kennedy assassinationAIDS was created in a labGlobal warming is a fraud Great depression was the result of actions from wealthy people to reduce wage of the workers The definition of the authors is why such theory is not considered a conspiracy theory is that because it was true High level officials from the department of defense proposed to simulate acts of terrorisms to blame on Cuba (never happened)Conspiracy theories are part of another subject that indicates false beliefs and harmfulBecause conspiracy theory has many arguments its more difficult to outsider’s question them   Only concern with theories that are false, harmful, and unjustifiedKARL POPPER:conspiracy theories are always caused intentionally by someone  theories fail to include inexplicable intentional incidents and the possibility to be a chance or hand mechanisms That is easier to people to believe in the simpler casual storiesLimitation of his view his explanationTheories that involved assassinations and the attacks of 9/11 Results of an intentional action Theory is wrong because the actors are misidentified Close society is easier to keep a secretEasier to believe in these theoriesHarder to show that it is false Lack of available informationalIf the press is freeHarder to keep secretHard to keep these theories hidden for longInstitutional checks make it less likely to powerful groups to keep such thinks in the dark Main point is that this kind of society such theories are less likely to either be true or be justified Lack of free press Have good reason to not believe in what the government says Such theories are often warranted, whether or not true Feature of conspiracy theory is that the people are extremely in denial to correction from governmental speeches Such product is show to be a conspiracy itself Resistance of falsification Covering tracks either then falsifying evidences B. HOW CONSPIRACY THEORIES ARAISE AND SPREAD I. Crippled EpistemologiesConspiracy theories product of mental illness (????)Paranoia or narcissism Similar conditionsAll or most of the members of community suffer from these conditions How people acquire their believes?Humans lack personal or direct informationRelay in what others think Extremist falls in this categoryNot from irrationality but from having little information And by believing and support their views in what they knowWhy is violence used?Terrorism is more likely to happened in countries with a lack of civil rights and civil libertyExtreme act of political protest Little information is available, so no trust of what the government says Information that do or not justify such theories or extremist or violence, terrorism is more likely to ariseII.  Rumors and Speculations How these theories begin?Spontaneously?Simultaneously in many social networks?On propose? (conspiracy entrepreneurs) for profit?Why some conspiracies hold and others do not?People believe because its seems plausible Or someone/something to blame Fits in deeply rooted beliefs The key for success or failure of theories are antecedent beliefsIII. Conspiracy cascades: The role of informationIf people do not have a better or more strong argument, they are more likely to believe in the arguments for the conspiracy theory People with low threshold initially accepts those theories Then high thresholders start to believe After higher thresholders begin to believe tooIV. Conspiracy cascades: the role of reputationPeople believe because they seek to curry favorReputational pressure causes people to believe in order to prevent social sanctions People have their own doubts V. Conspiracy cascades: the role of availability Informational and reputational cascades can happen without any specific eventBut such cascade can occur when the content of this conspiracy is available With available events conspiracy theories are invokedAs an explanation or as a symbolVI. Conspiracy cascades: the role of emotions Conspiracy believes circulate in the same way other beliefs do Gives weight to other views Attend to own reputations Angry people are more likely to focus in sorts of rumors and spread them If feelings are trigged in these rumors id more likely to be spread tooIf there is evidence that supports this theory people have mistaken beliefs, those views can be corrected but only with the right conditions to such thing happen VII. Group polarization Clear link between cascades and group polarization Informational influences play a big role Within a group the ones that have more extremist views will rise And as a results more extremist’s ideas are out More extreme views then the ones that they initially begin with People adjust their own beliefs toward the direction of the dominant position Group polarization is more likely to happen when people share sense of identity and are connected by bondsBecause of this, arguments of outsiders will lack and fail to reduce group polarization VIII. Selection effects Epistemology can arise not only by informational and reputationalAlso from self-selection within groups with extreme views Members isolate themselves in physical or informational way that outsiders can not challenge their beliefs Causes intensification into group polarizations II. GOVERNMENTAL RESPONSES Ban conspiracy theories?Impose taxation or some sort of financial in those who spread and make the theories available?Make a counter speech?  Hire professionals to counter speech? Contact such parties to help?Main policy: engage in cognitive infiltration in those groups Fist response to such theories is to keep an open society To reduce people that do not have access to information and therefore reducing number of people that belief in such theoriesIn free societies, these conspiracy theories are dislodging by either media or non-governmental actorsIf government reduce information to society, these conspiracies are more likely to spread and increase followers Main ideas to the government officials that response to such theoriesResponding to a fewer is better and creates a synergy benefit Infiltration in those groups, more likely cyber infiltration Even government administrations believe in conspiracy9/11, Bush administration believed that Saddam Hussein was involved with Al Qaeda on the attacks ARE CONSPIRACY THEORIES CONSEQUENTIAL?Does conspiracy theories matter?Only held by small portion of the population”quasi-beliefs”beliefs that people do not want to hold even a small portion, it’s possible to cause harmJames Fearon technological changes (nuclear power) make small groups dangerous and a significant treat   B. DILEMMAS AND RESPONSES Ignore or rebut the theoryAttempt to debias or disable Government might aim to persuade, debias, or silence the suppliers of those theories “players”government officialsconspiracy theoristsmass audiences independent experts (scientists)enlisted by the government to give credibility I. ignore or rebut?Ignore bring theorists to inference from the silence of the governmentCause: people to do not pay attention on the conspiracy Or, get it to be more relevant because of the silence or not having a got justification or evidence to contrary the theory To rebut a theory may be to legitimate it Second member can infer that many of the audience believe in the conspiracy or government would not rebut itMany use the information to create their own believes In this case the rebut increase the number of believersAnother strategy is to wait and see, wait until the conspiracy reaches a threshold level and then rebut it The conspiracy is silly Or the government cannot effectively deny it When the government rebut one conspiracy but not others it creates a legibility effect II. Which audience?Best option?Create the same single response to both audiences Or provide multiple responsesProblem with pitching governmental responses to suppliers of this theory is that the theories are self-sealing quality Resilient or in extreme cases invulnerable to contrary Government is folded into the conspiracy theory it self Government cannot be seen controlling independent experts Theories sometimes relay into independent third parties rebutsExample:News in a magazine, where the writer was cousin of a homeland official A response to geared to a mass audience will lead people to embrace it than reject it III. Cognitive infiltration and persuasion One tactic is the cognitive infiltration on those groups Infiltrate to break those extreme viewsEnter online chat rooms, social networks, or real space meetings To rise doubts Cause logicOr implications for actions Infiltrations brings risks, even more to the real space agents Theorists amore not likely to respond well to officials claims in public If theorists know the tactics of the government they are more likely to distrust other members and doubt of othersPhysical infiltration should exist? Or just leave the cyber interaction Agents can be unmasked by being asked for commit a crime (violence)Also the infiltrations can cause new conspiracy theoriesCONCLUSIONWhat’s the goal?Understand the sources of false and harmful conspiracy’s Examine government responsesNotes BIg topicsplot practical scenario and find out if there is a problem, coming to the wrong coclusion for the right reason and the right conclusions for the wrong reasons. why do some consipracy stheory get spread and some dont