Quiz 1 Answers

Question: Which of the following are/were conspiracies?

  1. 9/11
  2. Sasquatch (aka Bigfoot)
  3. The 2016 presidential election
  4. Watergate
  5. Bill Gates’ philanthropy

Surprise! Every one of these is a conspiracy except for #2. However, it might be possible to argue that #2 is a conspiracy as well, so give yourself credit for that one regardless of how you answered it.

9/11 ˆ

1. The 9/11 “terrorist” attacks were an obvious conspiracy. After all, four commercial airliners couldn’t have crashed or disappeared within the space of a few hours by coincidence, especially when two of them were filmed crashing into the World Trade Center. Someone planned 9/11 in advance.

However, there is widespread disagreement regarding the identity of the conspirators. The U.S. government claims 9/11 was perpetrated by radical Muslim terrorists, while other people believe it was orchestrated by the U.S. government and/or Israel.

Sasquatch ˆ

2. No one (that I’m aware of) claims that Sasquatch was manufactured by the U.S. government in a laboratory or created by Monsanto as some sort of genetically modified food experiment gone crazy.

In other words, there are no conspirators (unless you think Sasquatch himself is playing games with people’s minds).

To put it another way, Sasquatch is a theoretical animal, which places it in the realm of science, not politics. Therefore, this would not appear to qualify as a conspiracy any more than the first scientists to speculate that humans might have evolved from ape-like creatures were conspiracy theorists.

This doesn’t mean that Sasquatch is real. A striking lack of evidence suggests that it is not. Nevertheless, the idea isn’t as farfetched as some people believe.

Many species of human-like creatures have evolved and died out in the Old World (many likely exterminated by our ancestors). It’s theoretically possible that some of these creatures could have migrated into the New World as so many other species, such as the woolly mammoth, did. However, there’s no evidence that any of these creatures did cross over into the Americas. Apparently, humans made the journey alone.

On another note, manipulation of Sasquatch for political purposes (e.g. using Sasquatch to make conspiracy theorists look foolish) could qualify as a conspiracy. In fact, the Sasquatch legend could qualify as a conspiracy if it was originally manufactured by propagandists. However, the story appears to have deeper roots, perhaps even supported by Native American legend. The legend may have later been hijacked or manipulated by propagandists, but the original Sasquatch is probably best described as a legend and/or hypothetical animal, not a conspiracy.

But do I know that for a fact?

No. It is possible that Sasquatch originated as a prank, which might qualify it as a conspiracy. So give youself credit for #1 regardless of your answer.

The 2016 Presidential Election ˆ

3. The 2016 presidential election was a mega-conspiracy. For all practical purposes, there was no election at all.

In fact, virtually all elections for state and national office in the U.S. are probably drowning in conspiracy. I learned my lesson when I first ran for office in 1999, gunning for a seat on the Seattle School Board. The (s)election was so corrupt it made my head spin.

Watergate ˆ

4. Watergate…DUH. Several individuals involved in Watergate were indicted for—drum roll—conspiracy, as well as burglary and violation of federal wiretapping laws. Were you aware that people can be (and often are) prosecuted for conspiracy to commit various crimes?

In fact, Watergate might be regarded as three conspiracies in one. It began with some corrupt politicos bugging the offices of political opponents (a clear conspiracy). After their conspiracy was discovered, the conspirators unleashed a desperate cover-up, which qualifies as another conspiracy.

President Richard Nixon then created yet another conspiracy when he launched an attempt to cover up the cover-up. As Wikipedia puts it, “Nixon created a new conspiracy—to effect a cover-up of the cover-up—which began in late March 1973 and became fully formed in May and June 1973, operating until his presidency ended on August 9, 1974.”

In fact, one could probably uncover literally hundreds of conspiracies related to Watergate, including possible government efforts to make such conspiracies more difficult to discover and prosecute in the future. In case you haven’t noticed, virtually all U.S. citizens are now being spied on by the government (and probably by the corporate sector as well). This is a vast, ongoing conspiracy that operates 24/7.

Bill Gates, Philanthropist? ˆ

5. St. Bill Gates, Philanthropist. If you believe that one, I have some prime cranberry bogland in Nevada for sale.

Bill Gates has undoubtedly donated some money to worthy causes, which would supposedly qualify him as a philanthropist. But suppose it was discovered that Pol Pot, the pedophile Jeffrey Epstein and Henry Kissinger each donated a million dollars to orphanages. Would that qualify them as philanthropists?

Bill Gates hired a team of propagandists to whitewash his prior image as a nerd and crappy software developer. When Microsoft couldn’t clean up its act, Gates was symbolically divorced from Microsoft to become head of the Gates Foundation, which is really nothing more than an investment firm.

The conspirators include Bill Gates, the propagandists working for him and the corporate media, which never stop promoting Gates as a philanthropist.

Again, Gates has donated some money to worthy causes, but virtually all such donations have had strings attached. Whether they can legitimately be described as “donations” is a question we’ll explore in more detail.

Therapy