A story had came out the other day, based on a study published in JAMA, about how lots of Americans believe in nutty medical conspiracy theories (i.e., flouride is bad, cell phone radiation is bad, etc) --
You're Not Alone: Medical Conspiracies Believed By Many
I found it nauseating to read and ending up commenting on multiple locations out of frustration, wasting time. But then I noticed that Voice of America was running the story (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Voice_of_america#VOA_as_a_propaganda_tool) and that Cass Sunstein was also writing about it, and it was even more nauseating, yet also, made sense. They are trying so hard to hold onto their control of things that their propaganda is practically glowing.
The good news is that about half of Americans see through it. The comments on these news articles indicated the views went about 50-50 -- half the people understood that being skeptical of every official claim is healthy and normal, and half the people were automatically defending authority without question
Tom Secker Interview
Interview published on January 17, 2014
MP3 and Link to Show Notes: http://themindrenewed.com/interviews/2014/406-int-38
Writer, researcher and film-maker Tom Secker joins us for a detailed interview on 7/7 (the July 7th 2005 London bombings). Drawing upon his several years of research, Tom shares with us many of the problems with the official story, delves into the backstories behind the alleged suicide bombers, and uncovers layer upon layer of suspicious information suggesting that 7/7 may well have been a false-flag terror event instigated by British Intelligence.
Tom also discusses how, in the run-up to the attacks, predictive programming in popular culture may have shaped public perception of 7/7, and how cognitive infiltration as a double bluff has negatively impacted the quest for 7/7 truth.
Is the Government Holding Back Crucial Documents? Would you like to know what the government really knows about the death of JFK? About 9/11? Other big mysteries? It’s “eat your broccoli time!” Here’s why you should pay attention to federal policy on releasing—and not releasing—documents.
By Russ Baker on May 30, 2012
Next year will be a half-century since the death of JFK. And the Obama Administration thinks we need to keep secret the records on the matter….a little longer yet.
Believe it or not, more than 50,000 pages of JFK assassination-related documents are being withheld in full. And an untold number of documents have been partially withheld, or released with everything interesting blacked out. But why?
Since the government and the big media keep telling us there was no conspiracy, and that it was all Lee Harvey Oswald acting on his own, why continue to keep the wraps on?
We don’t have an answer, but in understanding this and any number of other mysteries, we can begin looking for patterns in the way the administration handles information policy.
Posted by Luke Rudkowski on May 1, 2012
In a rare public appearance, The Obama Administration’s Information Czar Cass Sunstein gave a lecture at the NYU Law School in NYC yesterday, prompting Luke Rudkowski of WeAreChange to attend. Watch as Luke confronts Sunstein multiple times on an academic paper he co-authored back in 2008 entitled “Conspiracy Theories” in which he called for cognitive infiltration of conspiracy groups by the government.
You can download the paper for free here: http://ssrn.com/abstract=1084585
SALON article that appears in video: http://www.salon.com/2010/01/15/sunstein_2/
Warning: This Site Contains Conspiracy Theories
Does Google have a responsibility to help stop the spread of 9/11 denialism, anti-vaccine activism, and other fringe beliefs?
In its early days, the Web was often imagined as a global clearinghouse—a new type of library, with the sum total of human knowledge always at our fingertips. That much has happened—but with a twist: In addition to borrowing existing items from its vast collections, we, the patrons, could also deposit our own books, pamphlets and other scribbles—with no or little quality control.
Such democratization of information-gathering—when accompanied by smart institutional and technological arrangements—has been tremendously useful, giving us Wikipedia and Twitter. But it has also spawned thousands of sites that undermine scientific consensus, overturn well-established facts, and promote conspiracy theories. Meanwhile, the move toward social search may further insulate regular visitors to such sites; discovering even more links found by their equally paranoid friends will hardly enlighten them. Is it time for some kind of a quality control system?
Conspiracy Theories and Stylized Facts
Journal for Peace and Justice Studies 21.2 (Fall 2011)
ABSTRACT: In an article published in the Journal of Political Philosophy, Cass Sunstein and Adrian Vermeule argue that the government and its allies ought to actively undermine groups that espouse conspiracy theories deemed “demonstrably false.” They propose infiltrating such groups in order to “cure” conspiracy theorists by treating their “crippled epistemology” with “cognitive diversity.” They base their proposal on an analysis of the “causes” of such conspiracy theories, which emphasizes informational and reputational cascades. Some may regard their proposal as outrageous and anti-democratic. I agree. However, in this article I merely argue that their argument is flawed in at least the following ways: (1) their account of the popularity of conspiracy theories is implausible, and (2) their proposal relies on misleading “stylized facts,” including a caricature of those who doubt official narratives and a deceptive depiction of the relevant history.
[NOTE: I have included extended excerpts below, believing this to be within the scope of fair use.]
Includes interviews with John Judge and David Ray Griffin:
"I first became aware of Cass Sunstein’s ideas for controlling conspiracy theories after seeing several ads for a web site called America.gov run by the State Department. It’s a complex, well-funded site with more avenues than I’ve cared to examine, but what caught my attention was the section under International Relations: Peace and Security called “Conspiracy Theories and Misinformation” with the astounding caption: “Conspiracy theories exist in the realm of myth, where imaginations run wild, fears trump facts and evidence is ignored.”
Book Review of Griffin's 'Cognitive Infiltration'
A Noble Lie: http://tiny.cc/4828d
I was recently interviewed on a public access TV show called "Vermont Today" (for 90 minutes). We discuss an exchange of letters between four concerned citizens (including myself) and NIST. Credit for the revealing NIST correspondence goes especially to Wayne Coste of AE911Truth for drafting our letters for us, and to Jerry Carpenter for taking initiative locally.
The discussion may seem to start off a bit slow, as we were trying to get some legal analysis from a local prosecutor who is now running for Mayor of Burlington. He takes a very diplomatic position, and then excuses himself. In the later parts of the interview we discuss Cass Sunstein's paper and my critique of it, as well as "foiled terrorist plots" led by informants. Near the end I also discuss Barry Jennings. The most significant part--the only part where really new information is presented--is the discussion of NIST's response to our letters (which starts around minute 25). It is the particulars of NIST's evasions that I think are very telling.
And from Starbucks, I went down the rabbit hole. I found myself at a conference on Walker Street called 'How The World Changed After 9/11'. It was packed, but I managed to slide in at the back, to hear a guy called Webster Tarpley chant his own list of names. The names of the 46 military exercises and hijack drills (called things like 'Vigilant Guardian') that were actually taking place on the morning of September 11. "The greatest density of drills in US military history," Tarpley said.
What I heard, from speaker after speaker, was a heartfelt desire to turn away from the path of destruction, militarism and lies that America has been set upon after 9/11. Ray McGovern, a former CIA analyst, mourned for Iraq: "One million dead, 4m displaced, and that's a victory?" He sees the failure of Americans to comprehend the scale of the destruction wrought under their flag as nothing less than racist.
Alissa C. Johnson
As 9/11’s tenth anniversary approaches, the issues surrounding that seminal event are just as relevant today and a lot more urgent. Despite the change of management, we still bomb, still rendition, still torture, still illegally wiretap, still detain indefinitely without habeas corpus and without counsel, among other international crimes. These days we can add a few more items to that list like irradiate children, feel up grandma at the airport, and throw people in jail for not paying their credit card bills. Another thing we still do in America: obstruct the truth when it conflicts with the official 9/11 storyline.
Another article supportive of the 9/11 Truth Movement is published in a mainstream academic journal:
“Is Infiltration of ‘Extremist Groups’ Justified?” International Journal of Applied Philosophy 24:2, pp. 153-168. (Fall 2010). By Kurtis Hagen, Assistant Professor of Philosophy, SUNY Plattsburgh. (Yes. That would be me.)
Website for the International Journal of Applied Philosophy: http://secure.pdcnet.org/pdc/bvdb.nsf/journal?openform&journal=pdc_ijap
Unfortunately the article is not freely available, but here are some highlights:
ABSTRACT: Many intellectuals scoff at what they call “conspiracy theories.” But two Harvard law professors, Cass Sunstein (now working for the Obama administration) and Adrian Vermeule, go further. They argue in the Journal of Political Philosophy that groups that espouse such theories ought to be infiltrated and undermined by government agents and allies. While some may find this proposal appalling (as indeed we all should), others may find the argument plausible, especially if they have been swayed by the notion that conspiracy theories (or a definable subset thereof), by their nature, somehow or another, do not warrant belief. I will argue that Sunstein and Vermeule’s proposal not only conflicts with the values of an open society, but is also epistemically indefensible. In making my case, I will adopt their favored example, counter-narratives about 9/11. (p. 153)
It should be noted that, according to [Sunstein and Vermeule’s] definition, the notion that the Nazis were systematically exterminating Jews would have, at some point in time, clearly counted as conspiracy theory—one that turned out to be true. This is an important example. It shows that one cannot simply reject a conspiracy theory because it seems too extreme in the brutality it attributes to powerful figures, or because of the scale of complicity that would be required, or because of the industrial efficiency with which it is said to be carried out. Shocking though a theory may be, so too are known precedents. (p. 155)
Guns and Butter - "Cognitive Infiltration" with Tod Fletcher
January 26, 2011
Guns and Butter - "Cognitive Infiltration" with Tod Fletcher
We discuss David Ray Griffin's newest book, Cognitive Infiltration, which is a deconstruction and debunking of Obama appointee, Cass Sunstein's, paper, "Conspiracy Theories: Causes and Cures", in which Sunstein proposes a new government COINTELPRO type infiltration of groups which research and promote ideas and explanations that run contrary to US government narratives, most specifically about the events of September 11th. First aired in part on fund drive, today we air the entire show.
Although many people read the reviews of new books at Amazon.com, it's likely that most people stop reading reviews of a book after it has been out for a few months. But sometimes some of the best reviews have appeared late. I have here reposted three excellent recent reviews of David Ray Griffin’s “Cognitive Infiltration: An Obama Appointee’s Plan to Undermine the 9/11 Conspiracy Theory.”
A Case for the High Court, January 14, 2011
By Rev. Dr. Ronald David
Cass Sunstein is a highly regarded, pedigreed constitutional scholar and lawyer. He graduated from Harvard Law School magna cum laude, clerked for Supreme Court Justice Thurgood Marshall, and taught at arguably two of America's most prestigious law schools, the University of Chicago and Harvard. Mr. Sunstein is now the Adminisrator in the Office of Information and Regulatory Affairs (OIRA) for President Barak Obama.
By Ellen Nakashima
Washington Post Staff Writer
Saturday, November 6, 2010; 12:41 AM
The Pentagon's new Cyber Command is seeking authority to carry out computer network attacks around the globe to protect U.S. interests, drawing objections from administration lawyers uncertain about the legality of offensive operations.
Cyber Command's chief, Gen. Keith B. Alexander, who also heads the National Security Agency, wants sufficient maneuvering room for his new command to mount what he has called "the full spectrum" of operations in cyberspace.
Offensive actions could include shutting down part of an opponent's computer network to preempt a cyber-attack against a U.S. target or changing a line of code in an adversary's computer to render malicious software harmless. They are operations that destroy, disrupt or degrade targeted computers or networks.
Cognitive Infiltration: An Obama Appointee's Plan to Undermine the 9/11 Conspiracy Theory
Review of David Ray Griffin's Book
The Principles of Democracy: A Shocking New Low in Official Comprehension