Tell Me Again Why "Conspiracy Theory" is a Dirty Label

Whenever any claim is made that the government has done anything wrong, government apologists say "that's a conspiracy theory!"

Well, let's examine what the people trained to weigh evidence and reach conclusions think about "conspiracies". Let's look at what American judges think.

Searching Westlaw, one of the 2 primary legal research networks which attorneys and judges use to research the law, I searched for court decisions including the word "Conspiracy". This is such a common term in lawsuits that it overwhelmed Westlaw. Specifically, I got the following message:

"Your query has been intercepted because it may retrieve a large number of documents."

From experience, I know that this means that there were potentially millions or many hundreds of thousands of cases which use the term. There were so many cases, that Westlaw could not even start processing the request.

So I searched again, using the phrase "Guilty of Conspiracy". I hoped that this would not only narrow my search sufficiently that Westlaw could handle it, but would give me cases where the judge actually found the defendant guilty of a conspiracy. This pulled up exactly 10,000 cases -- which is the maximum number of results which Westlaw can give at one time. In other words, there were more than 10,000 cases using the phrase "Guilty of Conspiracy" (maybe there's a way to change my settings to get more than 10,000 results, but I haven't found it yet).

Moreover, as any attorney can confirm, usually only appeal court decisions are published in the Westlaw database. In other words, trial court decisions are rarely published; the only decisions normally published are those of the courts which hear appeals of the trial. Because only a very small fraction of the cases which go to trial are appealed, this logically means that the number of guilty verdicts in conspiracy cases at trial must be much, much larger than 10,000.

Moreover, "Guilty of Conspiracy" is only one of many possible search phrases to use to find cases where the defendant was found guilty of a lawsuit for conspiracy. Searching on Google, I got 222,000 results under the term "Guilty of Conspiracy", 24,700 results for the search term "Convictions for Conspiracy", and 7,590 results for "Convicted for Conspiracy".

Given the above, I would extrapolate that there have been hundreds of thousands of convictions for criminal or civil conspiracy in the United States.

Finally, many crimes go unpunished, and the perpetrators are never caught. Therefore, the actual number of conspiracies committed in the U.S. must be even higher.

In other words, conspiracies are committed all the time in the U.S., and many of the conspirators are caught and found guilty by American courts. Indeed, conspiracy is a very well-recognized crime in American law, taught to every first-year law school student as part of their basic curriculum. Telling a judge that someone has a "conspiracy theory" would be like telling him that someone is claiming that he trespassed on their property, or committed assault, or stole his car. Its a fundamental legal concept.

So tell me again why "conspiracy theory" is a dirty label . . .

Obviously, people will either win or lose in court depending on whether or not they can prove their claim with the available evidence. Not all conspiracy allegations are true; neither are all allegations of trespass, assault, or theft. Proving a claim of conspiracy is no different from proving any other legal claim, and the mere label "conspiracy" is taken no less seriously by judges.

What Does The Phrase "Conspiracy Theory" Mean?

By Jon Gold

As 9/11 family member Donna Marsh O'Connor said at the National Press Club on 9/11/2006, "this Government has made me a victim of Conspiracy Theories, because they haven't answered fully, or allowed anyone to ask the true questions of September 11th."

Instead of answering all of the questions put forward by the 9/11 Family Steering Committee, and others, the Government, through the media, has labeled those with questions as "Conspiracy Theorists", and several other "colorful" adjectives.

If you need some examples, here are a few:

"Let Us Never Tolerate Outrageous Conspiracy Theories"
Scientific American Takes On The 9/11 Conspiracy Nuts
March Of The Conspiracy Theorists
Conspiracy Theories
500 Conspiracy Buffs Meet To Seek The Truth Of 9/11
A Question For 9/11 Conspiracy Buffs
9/11 Conspiracy Theorists Gather At L.A. Conference
Reuters: 9/11 Conspiracy Theorists Gather At L.A. Conference
NYTimes Writes An Op-Ed About Kevin Barrett: Conspiracy Theories 101
Some 9/11 Conspiracy Theorists To Boycott Oliver Stone Film

There are SEVERAL more examples, but you get the idea. They have taken the words "Conspiracy", and "Theory", combined the two, and created the phrase, "Conspiracy Theory(ist)."

According to them, that phrase means the following:

Conspiracy Theory

1. Outlandish Lie
2. Lunacy
3. Crazy
4. Wacko
5. Psychologically Disturbed

In reality, it means "silence anyone who dares question this Government."

As Ramman Kenoun said, "a tyrant has succeeded in his search for absolute power when his own people fear to question his actions."

It is our duty as citizens of the United States of America to ask our Government questions, and DEMAND answers. There is certainly nothing shameful in doing so.

Teddy Roosevelt once said, "patriotism means to stand by the country. It does not mean to stand by the president or any other public official..."

Please do not blindly follow this Government for fear of being labeled a "Conspiracy Theorist."

If that's what they want to label us, then wear it with pride. Change the meaning of the phrase. Make it mean:

Conspiracy Theory

1. Patriotic
2. Brave
3. Daring
4. Heroic
5. Caring

If you love this country, there is nothing more patriotic than questioning your Government.

As Thomas Jefferson said, "for here we are not afraid to follow truth, wherever it may lead."

Why isn't Dick Cheney in prison?

Its just a phrase coined to discredit critical thinkers

A large percentage of all criminal prosecution are under some form of conspiracy theory. RICO is an especially significant conspiracy based law. No, "conspiracy theory" is a phrase created to discredit critical thinkers. Just like "family values", "activist judges", "patriotism", "American values" or whatever other phrase the Neo-scum have conjured up to gain the subverviance of the American public, these phrases are trigger words ment to obfuscate, mis-direct or intimidate. Newt Gingrich once produced a list of "words" that the repukes should use, Im sure "conspiracy" is on that list.

Though the public education system of this country is now abysmal, it most certainly wasnt when I grew up. The general populace is getting wise to these charlentan tricks. The only thing hold back a reformation of the true American spirit, is the vast infection of the government/business sector by the facist/Neo-scum/NWO types. As with any infection, it takes time for the ancetode to take effect, antibodies have been awaken and are mobilizing to defeat this latest intrusion into the "Great American Experiment".

Look at who is lying or profiting about 9/11 and you will find out who is behind 9/11. Follow the $.


we live in the era of wikipedia. the time has come for consensus and the time is up for all those who stand in destiny's way.

granted, there are a million explanations for why the phrase shouldn't be derogatory, both in theory and practice, but when you begin what you hope would be an encouraging or convincing argument regarding anything whatsoever, it's an uphill battle from the start if you have to explain your way out of a stereotype to gain an intelligent audience.

it's only a derogatory phrase because people think it is. but, when you consider the alternative, a thoroughly paranoid consensus... do we really want everyone trusting NO one?

thought for food...

No, please, we are NOT conspiracy theorists

This time I disagree, disagree enough to take the risk of exposing my poor command of the English language in order to say: Let us not fall into this trap, friends!
Conspiracy theory is the protocols of Zion the elder, it is Illuminati, it is Templar knights, Jesuit conspiracy, it is androids from outer space is cooperating with the government, it is X-files, is all kind of paranoid fantasy, it is everything we are not. Conspriacy theory is entertaining lies, the opposite of boring truths. Hitler believed in a Jewish-communist-plutocrat world conspiracy. We cannot change the meaning of the c-word. And please let us recognize the true meaning of it.
Five long years I didn’t doubt the official conspiracy theory, not even consider it a conspiracy theory. Reading in the German magazine Der Spiegel that there were conspiracy theories about 9/11, I didn’t bother to read how Der Spiegel was arguing against these theories, because I knew that conspiracy thinking was entertaining bullshit and not worth wasting my time on, neither pro nor contra.
We cannot change the meaning of the c-word, but we can use it against THEM.
We know that Noam Chomsky, who never will go near a ”conspiracy theory” in the USA, has written the preface of December 13 : Terror Over Democracy by Nirmalangshu Mukherji; according to Chomsky it is obviously very good to promote ”conspiracy theory” as long as it is in far away India. Or should I say, it doesn’t occur to him that it is a conspiracy theory, as long as it is about India…
Let us rather turn the c-word against the official conspiracy theory and its defenders. The confession video of Osama bin Laden from December 2001 is as authentic as The Protocols of the Elders of Zion. Both were made by secret services, the first probably by some secret services of the Pentagon or the CIA, the second by the czarist Okhrana.
When it comes to cosmo political conspiracy, the official conspiracy theory is about a Muslim conspiracy to take over the world, and certain terrorist acts are only the impatient, activist, violent utterances of a long term strategy, a long term strategy just like the one Hitler attributed to the Jews.
If you want conspiracy theory to be something crazy, something paranoid, it applies perfectly to the official one. Even breastfeeding mothers face problems taking breast milk on board on airplanes, because of some paranoid security rules. Public paranoia, there you got the pathological official conspiracy theory.
To a conspiracy theory we would expect a certain degree of theory. But observe that in the debate David Ray Griffin vs. George Monbiot, it is the latter, defending the official theory, insists on discussing theory, whereas Griffin insists on discussing evidence; Monbiot wants to debate a priori, Griffin a posteriori, or as Kevin Ryan exclaimed in debate with Michael Shermer, we need less speculation here and more facts! In The War on Truth, Nafeez M. Ahmed writes that he will not discuss any theory, just give the facts; in The Road to 9/11, Peter Dale Scott has the same attitude.
To a conspiracy theory we would expect a high degree of conspiracy. But is ours a conspiracy theory, or a power abuse theory? Is it a conspiracy theory, or a compartmentalization theory? Loyalty is not conspiracy, obedience is not conspiracy, division of labor (compartmentalization) is not conspiracy, a command structure is not conspiracy, security agreement is not conspiracy, cowardice is not conspiracy, mass hysteria is not conspiracy, conformity pressure is not conspiracy, parrot repetition of the common opinion is not conspiracy, endemic corruption is not conspiracy. It is not conspiracy that TV-moderators and newspaper editors don’t have the audacity to insult high offices with crimes incompatible to democracy.

Well said, Felix5,

you made your point quite well and I think some of us will just have to agree to disagree on this one.

Years ago I sat on a jury that had to consider a conspiracy between two drug addicts that resulted in the death of a very frail, old lady. So, conspiracies are a part of every day life.

Are you familiar with the musician Jan Garbarek? He happens to be one of my favorites (I see that you are in Norway, yes? 30 years ago I played football/soccer with some very good Norwegians)

I hope that you and yours are well.


The truth shall set us free. Love is the only way forward.

I do remember

that the New York Times, when describing Lyndon LaRouche, called him, at least in their better moments, a "conspiracy theorist." LaRouch, of course, was later jailed, i think it was on credit card fraud or some such thing, and my guess is it was all trumped up. The government really hated Larouch. I do believe he is still alive, and his organization is active.

He had reporters, and they used to confront people the way WeAreChange does today, although WeAreChange appears to be more widespread in its program and better able to distribute the results to the public. I remember some of the confrontations were televised, and I witnessed one first hand, at a press conference at the Waldorf Astoria Hotel in Manhattan. We were all gathered around Henry Kissinger in the hallway, and this shortish woman began railing at him and confronting him about some charges that I could not then figure out, but he actually started to answer them, which surprised me at the time. Anyway, the whole press conference went to pieces. Everybody froze while the confrontation was happening, and there were no other questions asked.

How to stifle debate,logic,evidence and the American way.

Willhelm Marr used a two word phrase in a book in the late 19th century.Two words that stifle debate,two words that when used is like a hand grenade going off in the room.Those two words are Anti Semite!.Sometimes i feel that the same tactic is being used by using two more words,Conspiracy Theorist.Its the closer of all debate,all rational thought,all logic,all evidence.Conspiracy theorist gets thrown into debate and Bang! game over.NIST never had any intention of explaining how the towers collapsed but point that out to people and they recoil,go into automatic defense mode and throw in the CT bomb.Throw in some more evidence and they recoil some more and throw in lizards and tin foil hats.They think they are as free as a bird but don,t realize they live in a cage.They feel free to say whatever they want as long as they can quote from other people,usually because they have nothing to add to any debate.Questioning your representatives and dissenting is as American as Apple Pie.America was founded by dissenters.It is un American not too question authority because that would be cowardly.

The real reason why there are conspiracy theorists is because there are conspiracies.There have been conspiracies for thousands of years.James Thornwell was awarded $625,000 dollars in compensation from Congress,after proving the American Army conducted mind control experiments on him ,using LSD,without his knowledge.This is my own "Conspiracy Fact" bomb that makes the Free birds recoil up their own backsides.

How about correcting anyone who.....

...attempts to marginalize us with the term "conspiracy theorist", with the term "conspiracy analyst"? (Thanks Styve)

Then define conspiracy: 2 or more people planning in secret to commit a crime.

Then point out the Official Fairy Tale is a "conspiracy" itself.

Then mention historical government conspiracies both to commit and to cover-up (Watergate, Iran Contra)

9/11 Truth ends the 9/11 Wars

911 citizen's investigation

The truth about the 911 Truth Movement is that it is essentially a citizen's criminal investigation, necessitated by the unwillingness of our elected government to do a legitimate investigation.

The term conspiracy theorist can only stick if investigators are undisciplined and speculate wildly without a basis.

While speculation is a tool, used by all investigators, to develop scenarios which can possibly lead to fruitful avenues of investigation, it needs to be constantly checked by logic and how it actually fits with observation. The important thing is to scrutinize speculations and remove those which do not conform to evidence, logic, and observation. Investigations are evolutionary and speculation is a necessary and valuable tool which also needs to be controlled and used responsibly.

An example I would give, of speculation which should have been and was thrown out somewhat quickly by most investigators of the 911 crimes, was the notion of directed energy weapons being used to destroy the towers. There was simply no basis for it and that which was attempted proved to be explainable by much more coherent and natural means. The proposal that mini-nukes were used in the destruction of the towers is another example, after it was shown that there was no radiation above background in Lower Manhattan.

I very rarely hear those interested in investigating the crimes committed on Sept. 11, 2001 claim that directed energy weapons or mini-nukes were a part of it. The suspicion of the many grounded citizens trying to investigate this crime is that those who irresponsibly continue to push these theories, after they have been shown to have no basis, are possibly trying to poison the well of legitimate investigation.


You must realize the environment, and react accordingly.

Every apologist/pundit claims to have facts which prove that conspiracy theorists are "nut jobs."

My advice is to abandon the theoretical realm altogether and stick only to facts which contradict the official proclamations and lies.

It is for this reason that I penned this list, which contains more than enough opening salvos to please nearly anyone here:

70 Disturbing Facts About 9/11

You fight 'facts' with facts. Not theories. Theory is weaker than fact, as it is not proven, and retains the possibility of being disproven.

'Theorist' retains the possibility of being wrong, of being shown to be incorrect, of being portrayed as a fool or a liar or worse.

Theorizing is not necessary. We are pushing for "truth" not theories. (Well, I am anyway.) Truth is a powerful word and a powerful concept that has been dragged through the muck recently by people who claim to have the monopoly on it -- yet don't.

There is a great burden of responsibility that when you take the label "truth" that you stick to it, and don't veer off anywhere else. This standard has not been met by many, many activists that I have personally seen. This is a high, high standard, one that I haven't even met myself, yet struggle to achieve daily.

Yes, I have been wrong. I am very cautious in what I proclaim as "the truth" for just that reason.

I wish others were as concerned with getting it right.

Facts trump theories, and yet we still run the risk of believing false "facts" that were concocted as disinformation. It is a very difficult process vetting the information for accuracy, and exposing contradictory claims and postulations. It's a full time job just sifting through what we are to take as factual. No time at all for theories.

John Doraemi publishes Crimes of the State Blog

johndoraemi --at--