Sunday, July 11, 2010

Coincidence or Conspiracy?

(This is the first article in a three-part series.)
The title of this article suggests a paradigm that’s familiar to all of us. Regardless of whether you explain events by coincidence or conspiracy, you perceive that there’s often a link between the two. I believe that the paradigm is too small. Please bear with me as I propose a broader paradigm.
Studies have shown that coincidences are far more common than most people realize. An understanding of just how common coincidences really are can lead us to previously unseen possibilities.
Take for example a series of simple coin tosses—heads or tails. According to one study, reported in the book Freakonomics, people guessing the outcomes of a series of coin tosses tend to limit their guesses to no more than two heads (or tails) consecutively. In actual fact, three or four heads (or tails) in a row are far more common than the guessers imagined.
Take another situation. Imagine two people in a crowd having the same birth date. How large a crowd would it have to be before this coincidence would occur? Most people would say 183 or 184, which would be one person for over half the days in a year. Actually, you’d need only 22 people for the odds to be in favor of two sharing the same birth date.
Coincidences are all around us. A friend from Columbia, South Carolina, once visited New York City for a few days and had a chance encounter with a Columbia resident she hadn’t seen in years.
In Vietnam, I happened to meet someone in my high school graduating class (of 40 students.) Neither of us had known that the other was there. On a bus in California, while I was reading the autobiography of Will Rogers, I happened to meet an elderly lady who had known Will Rogers.
I’ve had other chance encounters and experienced other surprising coincidences, and you probably have as well.
(In case anyone wonders, it was no coincidence that Lou Gehrig died of Lou Gehrig's Disease.)
I said earlier that the paradigm “coincidence or conspiracy” was too small. Here’s where we begin thinking out of the box.
Coincidences are so common that I’ve learned to be suspicious when I observe a complete absence of coincidences over time. Over time, coincidences are to be expected. When they don’t occur, I want to know why. A complete absence of coincidences may sometimes be taken as evidence of conspiracy.
Imagine this: You regularly post messages to an Internet meet-up group and often repost to them messages you’d found in your email box. On a particular day, you haven’t checked your meet-up group in a few days, open your account and repost a message. Ten minutes later, you open the post of someone else in the group and find that he had posted that message two days earlier.
It’s a little embarrassing because it suggests that you don’t read that person’s posts. It’s just a coincidence, and it happens to almost everyone who regularly reposts materials. After all, you can’t know specifically what’s in someone else’s post until you open it.
Now imagine this: Suppose three or more people each repost as many as five items a day on the same narrow subject. That’s over 5,400 posts a year on the same subject. What if not one of them ever reposted the same material as one of the other two?
They’re working together as a team, aren’t they? They’re being fed their materials by an invisible “other” party, aren’t they? Who’s that other party and what do they gain from this ruse?
Welcome to the world of disinformation. These disinformation agents aren’t singling out your particular meet-up group. One of them recently got careless and sent out a post without using the bcc (blind carbon copy) feature. He was sending the same disinformation to around three dozen groups.
What does the disinfo agent feel he has to gain from deceiving people in this manner? Well, the answer is not ideological.
Many years ago, the late actor Robert Mitchum suggested an answer to that question. An interviewer asked him why he became an actor and why he continued. He replied, “Where else could a no-talent bum like me earn a comfortable living?”
I’ve seen how disinfo agents write when they’re provoked into using their own words and not words provided to them by their handlers. Where else could someone with no talent, no skills, no education, no conscience, minimal intelligence, and minimal training hope to earn a comfortable living?
I said that disinfo agents have a minimum of training. To recognize the work of disinfo agents (they often work in teams), it’s helpful to know the 25 strategies of disinfo agents and the 8 traits (Thanks to this article, there are now 9—you heard the ninth one from me first.) (Click here.)
Now let’s get to the question of who is spending millions of dollars to pay the trolls to disinform people in Internet meet-up groups and why they’re doing it.

A few decades ago, the flow of information we charitably call news was dominated by 88 companies—that’s worldwide. Now there are 6. All of them get most of their information from only two sources: the Associated Press (AP) and Reuters. (Click here.)
The Internet changed all that to some extent. More and more people, distrustful of the propaganda from those six corporations, are turning to the Internet for news. That’s a gap the architects of the New World Order are trying to plug.
I observed their efforts while researching for an article last week. A few months ago, I found a site proving, by the Flight 77 manifest, that there were no Arabs on the plane that supposedly crashed into the Pentagon on 9/11.
When I looked for that information last week, it was hard to find. The first few pages were filled with sites claiming to debunk that claim. Not one of them disputed the information on the flight manifest; instead, they provided other information that could easily have been manufactured. Interestingly, CNN, which was the original Internet source of the manifest information, had removed it from their site.
Internet meet-up groups are other ripe targets of opportunity for disinformation agents and their trolls. Here’s how Pak Alert Press describes it:
“Because the MSM’s bag of tricks has been so exhausted over such a long period of time, many bitter and enraged consumers of information are now turning to alternative news sources, most of which exist on the collective commons we call the internet. At first, it appears, the government and elitists ignored the web as a kind of novelty, or just another mechanism they could exploit in spreading disinformation. As we all now well know, they dropped the ball, and the internet has become the most powerful tool for truth history has ever seen.
“That being said, they are now expending incredible resources in order to catch up to their mistake, utilizing every trick in their arsenal to beat web users back into submission. While the anonymity of the internet allows for ascertain immunity against many of Saul Alinsky’s manipulative tactics, it also allows governments to attack those trying to spread the truth covertly. In the world of web news, we call these people “disinfo trolls.” Trolls are now being openly employed by governments in countries like the U.S. and Israel specifically to scour the internet for alternative news sites and disrupt their ability to share information.”
Their article on disinformation tactics is worth reading in full. (Click here.)
There we have it: the motive, the means, and the opportunity. The motive behind the motive is money and power, no matter how many innocent civilians are killed in unjust wars, deliberate oil spills, or other highly profitable disasters. Thus it has ever been.
We can defend ourselves from the dangerous criminals who hire these pathetic losers by familiarizing ourselves with the trolls' tactics, and by acquiring critical thinking skills. Challenge them.
On one occasion, I offered an unexpected challenge to a troll regarding his messages. I asked something like, “When you get people stirred up to hate other people because of their religion, which is your obvious intention, what do you want your readers to do? “ His response was vague and almost incoherent.
That’s just it. They don’t want our action; they want our acquiescence. The architects of the New World Order will provide the action. We should, instead, do the very things they don’t want us to do: work with each other instead of against each other; turn on the New World Order and their trolls instead of accepting the fate "those people" have planned for us.
(To read part 2 of this series, click here.)
(To read part 3 of this series, click here.)

Pray for wisdom in the 2010 elections.
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