Why Coronavirus and Conspiracy Theories Produce Deadly Politics.

Discussion in 'Coronavirus Pandemic Discussions' started by Kranes56, Mar 26, 2020.

  1. Kranes56

    Kranes56 Well-Known Member

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    Hey, did you hear about this? I heard that bunch of democrats actually found the cure for the Coronavirus, but they're holding onto it because they actually want Republicans to die. That time they rejected the stimulus package? It's because they wanted to buy time to put more chemicals in the water. To turn the frogs gay and make our children transgender. Or have you heard about the time that a cure was found, but Big Pharmacy wanted to wait it out a bit longer? Or did you hear about the time Trump was going to give masks out only to political supporters? Or how China wanted to weaken other countries by creating a virus and unleashing it unto the world? Conspiracy theories as far as I can tell. But so what? What's the harm?

    Conspiracy theories are serious. They make figuring out what is true and what isn't harder because we have to sort through more information to figure out what's true and why. But what happens when it's related to politics? What happens when conspiracy theories become politicized by one political party? Siddiqui looks at this, and while in the context of Pakistan, it is worth noting we see the same thing in the U.S.

    "In authoritarian states, emerging democracies, and well-established democracies alike, alternative accounts that contest official state narratives are common. Why do people believe such accounts even in the absence of supporting evidence? While this question has been explored in the United States, relatively little research has assessed it in other contexts. Through a survey experiment carried out in Pakistan, this article tests the impact of cues by political parties on belief in such conspiracy theories. The results provide evidence in favor of partisan cueing: When alternative narratives are endorsed by political parties viewed favorably by the respondent, they are more likely to be believed. I suggest that political parties are able to capitalize on misinformation and a lack of trust in official institutions for tactical advantage. Results differ by subgroup: Higher income and urban respondents are swayed more by their own party source than are lower income and rural individuals."
    https://journals.sagepub.com/doi/abs/10.1177/1354068817749777

    If you want access to the full article, let me know and I can see what I can do.
    But basically political parties have a tactical incentive and advantage if they can mobilize people on conspiracy theories. Now why is this deadly? Imagine someone breaking social distancing because of a conspiracy theory. It's pretty hard to convince someone to take the right action, when a political party has a vested interest in going against the advice of people who know better. People will die because of this, and that's just the immediate affect. Think long term damages to the economy, family life and security, social stability, future strains on hospitals. All because political parties wanted an electoral advantage. I didn't share this to lecture to people, but to give a warning. When you post something, you need to trust it. You need to believe that what you are posting is factual, and that it will save people's lives. When you make conjecture against the advice of public officials, you better make sure you're not being lead to beliefs by political machines, but because it actually is true. Because if you don't, then you need a mirror to find who to blame for everything that is happening.

    Know before you post. It might save a life.
     
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  2. modernpaladin

    modernpaladin Well-Known Member Donor

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    Nah. There really are bad people who plot things in secret. Not worrying about them until Snopes verifies it as fact isn't a good way to try to prevent it.
     
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  3. HereWeGoAgain

    HereWeGoAgain Well-Known Member

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    Most conspiracy theories are crackpot nonsense. It is the easy explanation when a person isn't smart enough to understand the real world; or they are too lazy to make the effort to learn the facts from credible sources. Just sit and listen to Fox, Rush, et al., and look at the Breitbart page all day. They will give you all the chemical rushes you need to stay addicted to idiocy and fantasy as if they were heroin. This is what destroyed the country.
     
    Last edited: Mar 27, 2020 at 12:36 AM
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  4. Aleksander Ulyanov

    Aleksander Ulyanov Well-Known Member

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    People who believe in conspiracy theories are never going to be convinced otherwise. They already think that a lack of supporting evidence just shows how good the conspiracy really is.

    And most of them are just support for things most people realize aren't true anyway. It's not at all surprising how many of them "prove" that blacks are subhuman, all Italians gangsters, etc, etc.

    OTOH some are intriguing, full of the love of mystery and the appeal surrounding the exotic and arcane. They are the stuff of exciting novels, but they just as much have no place in the halls of government. I want my politics to be boring thank 'ee
     
    Last edited: Mar 27, 2020 at 12:48 AM
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  5. FatBack

    FatBack Well-Known Member

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    I got to the first two sentences and decided I had wasted enough time.

    TL/DR...
     
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  6. FatBack

    FatBack Well-Known Member

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    LOL. I bet the irony is not evident.
     
  7. modernpaladin

    modernpaladin Well-Known Member Donor

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    Destroyed? What have we lost that you consider us 'destroyed'?
     
    Last edited: Mar 27, 2020 at 1:13 AM
  8. a better world

    a better world Well-Known Member

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    A degree of bi-partisanship?
     
  9. a better world

    a better world Well-Known Member

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    So true.

    BUT....."it's the economy, stupid", and when everyone believes that governments must balance their budgets like private citizens must balance their budgets, then we have a potentially deadly problem on our hands.

    Example 1. Let's say the science is correct, and we must stop burning fossil fuels and transit to renewables ASAP.

    What is the stumbling block? We have all the resources, know how and labour to begin the job immediately and continue ASAP. (Use of pumped hydro storage technology can serve until better battery technology is developed).

    Example 2. The present pandemic requires the closing down of much of the non-essential economy, to minimise close contact between people.

    What is the problem? The nation has the resources, knowhow ......and labour, though MUCH less of this is actually required for the duration of the pandemic.....in order that the government can allow all non-essential industry to go into 'hibernation'.

    But people will keep asking: "how are we (ie, the government and/or individuals) going to pay for it".

    Indeed - "it's the economy, stupid".....ie resources, knowhow and labour.... but it's NOT about money.

    Anyone understand?

    Trumpy's panicking because he doesn't want to be faced with huge unemployment figures in November, so it seems he might even be prepared to endanger the nation's health ("we are a people who believe in an open economy, so let's set Easter Sunday as the return-to-work date").

    But he could actually tell the nation to enjoy an extended holiday - as well as people can while meeting the requirement to mostly stay at home, while at the same time richly rewarding essential industry workers.

    And who pays for it?

    The necessary macro-economic management of resources, know and and labour "pays" for it, in short, by employing the unique currency-issuing capacity that resides in sovereign currency-issuing governments.

     
    Last edited: Mar 27, 2020 at 2:22 AM
  10. 10A

    10A Chief Deplorable Past Donor

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    This is what destroyed the country? Funny, you forgot CNN, MSNBC, Vox, New York Times, Huffington Post, Mother Jones, et al. Why is that?
     
  11. a better world

    a better world Well-Known Member

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    Care to move beyond blind partisanship?

    If so, see post #9 above.
     
  12. Sleep Monster

    Sleep Monster Well-Known Member

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    None of those are pushing conspiracy theories, or spreading Trump's horse pucky about getting back to work or filling churches on Easter Sunday. All of the media sources you listed are providing us with more actual science about this virus than the federal government.
     
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  13. Aleksander Ulyanov

    Aleksander Ulyanov Well-Known Member

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    Isn't that the controversy between "Debt Optimism" and "Debt Pessimism"? (and Alexander Hamilton's
    "Debt Realism" )
     
  14. Kranes56

    Kranes56 Well-Known Member

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    You hear a noise outside at night so you burn the house down along with whatever made the noise. Does that sound responsible to you?

    That's part of it yes. But I would also be willing to say that a lot of it is politically motivated as well. It's not just that conspiracy theories are not disprobable, it's that they're political ammunition when it comes to elections. Do you think the Corona virus would be as big as it is if it wasn't an election?


    I'm sure you did. I'm sure you don't want to engage with the ideas.
     
  15. FatBack

    FatBack Well-Known Member

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    When leftist stop posting garbage like "Trump's fault some guy drank fish tank chemicals" then maybe I could "engage with the ideas".
     
  16. FatBack

    FatBack Well-Known Member

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    Yeah, none of them pushed the "Russia" nonsense for two straight years, day in and day out...
     
  17. modernpaladin

    modernpaladin Well-Known Member Donor

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    No. But neither does staying on the couch and turning the volume on the TV up...

    I go outside with a flashlight.
     
  18. Kranes56

    Kranes56 Well-Known Member

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    True, but is that what conspiracy theorists are doing when they don't find anything?
     
  19. Kranes56

    Kranes56 Well-Known Member

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    Blaming others for one's own problems does not make an intelligent fellow.
     
  20. FatBack

    FatBack Well-Known Member

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    Make sure and inform them of such. I'm fully aware a person's choices are their own.
     
  21. modernpaladin

    modernpaladin Well-Known Member Donor

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    By 'anything' do you mean lack of proof or lack of evidence?
     
  22. a better world

    a better world Well-Known Member

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    I don't know the details of that particular controversy, in those terms.

    However:

    Hamilton: (Wiki) He took the lead in the Federal government's funding of the states' debts, as well as establishing a national bank.....,

    (His was a tragically short life full of amazing achievements, no doubt admired by Stephanie Kelton).
     
  23. Kranes56

    Kranes56 Well-Known Member

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    No they're not.

    Something along those lines yes.
     
  24. modernpaladin

    modernpaladin Well-Known Member Donor

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    Which one? They're very different.
     
  25. Sleep Monster

    Sleep Monster Well-Known Member

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    It wasn't nonsense, and Russia is still doing it.
     

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