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-   -   Conspiracy beliefs on the rise... (https://www.englishforum.ch/swiss-politics-news/296794-conspiracy-beliefs-rise.html)

Mythical_L0tus 17.02.2020 22:10

Conspiracy beliefs on the rise...
 
It's a sad reality. Living in the Information Age seems to have turned into the Ignorance Age. And not the blissful type.

I'm in a slight state of panic and confusion, as the stupidity of conspiracy theorists has now spread to some of my family members.

Anti-vaxxers and climate "skeptics" are given a voice in mainstream media, as they're considered the "opposing side".

With regards to the US, I'm pretty certain Trump has had a massive contribution to the flourishing of this phenomenon. His entire speeches revolve around conspiracy theories. And facts are labelled as "fake news".

Given how most social media platform refuse to ban the nutjobs who try to instigate collective paranoia, is it reasonable to say that conspiracy views SHOULD NOT be protected by free speech?

The Supreme Court already ruled that yelling FIRE in a public space where no such danger is apparent, wasn't protected by the 1st amendment.

What about those who foster and spread fear about vaccines causing autism or death, those who claim climate-change is a hoax and other nasty stuff that's not worth repeating? Admittedly, conspiracy mongering produces much more severe consequences than a lunatic yelling out "fire" in a cinema.

Thoughts everyone?

me.anon 17.02.2020 22:58

Re: Conspiracy beliefs on the rise...
 
Indeed. I saw some ridiculous conspiracy theories lately, one even went as far as suggesting a Swiss firm being was being run by certain foreign intelligence services to ensure compromised encryption technology landed on the open market. Such conspiracy theories must be systematically silenced to avoid unnecessary negative reactions and generally misleading gullible people with false information. What will these conspiracy theorists think of next? Perhaps a Swiss pharmaceutical firm being secretly operated by a foreign intelligence service to produce spiked vaccines for use in some enemy country ? Who knows ?

Guest 17.02.2020 23:09

Re: Conspiracy beliefs on the rise...
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by Mythical_L0tus (Post 3149175)
Given how most social media platform refuse to ban the nutjobs who try to instigate collective paranoia, is it reasonable to say that conspiracy views SHOULD NOT be protected by free speech?

Stupidity itself should not get a ban and some conspiracies are indeed utterly dumb, others could a decade later to be considered the truth.
Quote:


The Supreme Court already ruled that yelling FIRE in a public space where no such danger is apparent, wasn't protected by the 1st amendment.

What about those who foster and spread fear about vaccines causing autism or death, those who claim climate-change is a hoax and other nasty stuff that's not worth repeating? Admittedly, conspiracy mongering produces much more severe consequences than a lunatic yelling out "fire" in a cinema.

Don't underestimate what causing panic can do with a crowd of people:

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_o...es_and_crushes

slammer 17.02.2020 23:22

Re: Conspiracy beliefs on the rise...
 
If you want a good read on this topic try „how munbo jumbo conquered the world“ by Francis Wheen. It really puts things into perspective

scipio 18.02.2020 06:50

Re: Conspiracy beliefs on the rise...
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by Mythical_L0tus (Post 3149175)
is it reasonable to say that conspiracy views SHOULD NOT be protected by free speech?

Thoughts everyone?

While I do think that we should take measures to inform the public better to prevent such "fake information" to spread, I would not go as far to have it not protected under free speech. After all, someone would have to decide what is considered a conspiracy theory/view, and almost certainly this would involve some political regulatory body. I have no trust that a fair, reasonable and scientific assessment is guaranteed under those conditions. After all, a very popular current federal councilor has in the past, i) supported the distribution of anti-vaxxer talking points to the general public, ii) supported unscientific medical treatment and the unscientific assessment of such treatment iii) spread lies and fear to fight GMOs. If such people would be in charge of executing the assessment, unreasonable decisions would be inevitable.

TonyClifton 18.02.2020 07:16

Re: Conspiracy beliefs on the rise...
 
Who is to decide what what the conspiracy theory is though?! This is why freedom of speech is so important! Anti-Vaxxers get given a hard time yet in Europe at least, homeopathy by and large gets given a free ride. Whilst I believe in Climate Change, in that global temperatures have risen by 1 degree in relation to pre-industrial levels and this is down to man made activity, I certainly don’t believe in the “Climate emergency” that is peddled by many parts of the media and the likes of Greta Thunberg. I believe this is a conspiracy theory. To hear both sides of the story allow us to form opinions of our own.

omtatsat 18.02.2020 07:37

Re: Conspiracy beliefs on the rise...
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by Mythical_L0tus (Post 3149175)
It's a sad reality. Living in the Information Age seems to have turned into the Ignorance Age. And not the blissful type.

I'm in a slight state of panic and confusion, as the stupidity of conspiracy theorists has now spread to some of my family members.

Anti-vaxxers and climate "skeptics" are given a voice in mainstream media, as they're considered the "opposing side".

With regards to the US, I'm pretty certain Trump has had a massive contribution to the flourishing of this phenomenon. His entire speeches revolve around conspiracy theories. And facts are labelled as "fake news".

Given how most social media platform refuse to ban the nutjobs who try to instigate collective paranoia, is it reasonable to say that conspiracy views SHOULD NOT be protected by free speech?

The Supreme Court already ruled that yelling FIRE in a public space where no such danger is apparent, wasn't protected by the 1st amendment.

What about those who foster and spread fear about vaccines causing autism or death, those who claim climate-change is a hoax and other nasty stuff that's not worth repeating? Admittedly, conspiracy mongering produces much more severe consequences than a lunatic yelling out "fire" in a cinema.

Thoughts everyone?

So what do you suggest. Lock everybody up because they have views opposing yours.Whatever happened to an open society?

What does it mean when someone says you live in a glass house?
1. A position or situation involving intense public scrutiny. 2. A phrase to remind someone that they're being hypocritical. Comes from the idiom and proverb "Those who live in a glass house should not throw stones at others" (meaning don't criticise others if you have similar weaknesses yourself). Deuteronomy 5

Take care of your own shit first. The other will take care of itself!

Full Circle 18.02.2020 07:42

Re: Conspiracy beliefs on the rise...
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by Mythical_L0tus (Post 3149175)
Thoughts everyone?

Absurd.

st2lemans 18.02.2020 08:12

Re: Conspiracy beliefs on the rise...
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by Mythical_L0tus (Post 3149175)
Thoughts everyone?

(Man-made) climate-change is a hoax.

Tom

omtatsat 18.02.2020 08:17

Re: Conspiracy beliefs on the rise...
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by st2lemans (Post 3149227)
(Man-made) climate-change is a hoax.

Tom

Yes. The hoax is only there to get more money out of the pockets of everyone. They have run out of sources and the hoax is a good reson to steal more money ( eg CO2 Tax ) They dont want less pollution. They want more tax. Less pollution is a BAD business model!

Blueangel 18.02.2020 08:34

Re: Conspiracy beliefs on the rise...
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by Mythical_L0tus (Post 3149175)
I'm in a slight state of panic and confusion, as the stupidity of conspiracy theorists has now spread to some of my family members.

Same here, but I don't stand for it and call them out every single time. We have one who started banging on to me about vape trails and my answer was "You don't believe that crap, do you?" and it shut her down. At the time, my partner and I worked at Heathrow and lived 3.5 miles from airport.

Also had that person's spouse drop the Holocaust denial bomb during a family dinner. I did the deep breath and count to 10. He wasn't dropping the matter despite insistance from others at the table, so I went medieval on him and excused myself from the table. I later apologised to his mum in private, and she said she was glad someone had stood up to him because it broke her heart to hear how "stupid" her son had become.
Quote:

Originally Posted by Mythical_L0tus (Post 3149175)
Anti-vaxxers and climate "skeptics" are given a voice in mainstream media, as they're considered the "opposing side".

With that particular issue, I've seen quite a few doctors decry how the matter isn't debated proportionally. If one in 100 doctors is anti-vaxx, to be debated in a manner that is visually correct, there should be 99 doctors debating the one who is an anti-vaxxer, not one representative from each side. It's not really feasible, but the optics would go some way to getting the message across.

What probably has a bigger impact is that two UK soap operas have very recently had anti-vaxx and holistic/alternative therapy storylines, two of which had tragic consequences. Yes, it's a fictional representation, but if it gets the message across...

omtatsat 18.02.2020 08:48

Re: Conspiracy beliefs on the rise...
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by Blueangel (Post 3149240)
Same here, but I don't stand for it and call them out every single time. We have one who started banging on to me about vape trails and my answer was "You don't believe that crap, do you?" and it shut her down. At the time, my partner and I worked at Heathrow and lived 3.5 miles from airport.

Also had that person's spouse drop the Holocaust denial bomb during a family dinner. I did the deep breath and count to 10. He wasn't dropping the matter despite insistance from others at the table, so I went medieval on him and excused myself from the table. I later apologised to his mum in private, and she said she was glad someone had stood up to him because it broke her heart to hear how "stupid" her son had become.
With that particular issue, I've seen quite a few doctors decry how the matter isn't debated proportionally. If one in 100 doctors is anti-vaxx, to be debated in a manner that is visually correct, there should be 99 doctors debating the one who is an anti-vaxxer, not one representative from each side. It's not really feasible, but the optics would go some way to getting the message across.

What probably has a bigger impact is that two UK soap operas have very recently had anti-vaxx and holistic/alternative therapy storylines, two of which had tragic consequences. Yes, it's a fictional representation, but if it gets the message across...

Well I must admit I hate the vape trails. Over Zürich there are sometimes so many that the sun hardly gets through. And I am not exaggerating!

st2lemans 18.02.2020 09:13

Re: Conspiracy beliefs on the rise...
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by omtatsat (Post 3149244)
Well I must admit I hate the vape trails. Over Zürich there are sometimes so many that the sun hardly gets through. And I am not exaggerating!

Clearly they should ban vaping!

Tom

omtatsat 18.02.2020 09:19

Re: Conspiracy beliefs on the rise...
 
1 Attachment(s)
Quote:

Originally Posted by st2lemans (Post 3149248)
Clearly they should ban vaping!

Tom

Stop the vaping

Attachment 138717

Axa 18.02.2020 10:15

Re: Conspiracy beliefs on the rise...
 
Don't be surprised if the antivaxxers also go for "alternative" cancer treatment. But......it's called freedom.

There are books, experiments and religions that say drinking is bad. With all the accumulated knowledge on drinking I wouldn't be surprised if someone called me stupid and ignorant for my habit. So, you find climate skeptics idiotic, I find smokers idiotic and teetotalers may call me an idiot :D

Since we live in a free society the thing ends in everyone calling each other an idiot. But, what if someone thinks I need to be freed from my meat eating addiction and liberating me it's worth reducing my freedom and restricting my access to meat? Some prison or re-education?

There's always the danger of authoritarianism. There's no way to eliminate bad things, we can only minimize them. An authoritarian out of control is much worse than antivaxxers. In this sense, freedom is a tool to keep authoritarians at bay, even if there's a risk for idiots to arise ;)

PS. all the things done to gays in the name of "correcting" them :(

curley 18.02.2020 10:22

Re: Conspiracy beliefs on the rise...
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by Mythical_L0tus (Post 3149175)
....
Thoughts everyone?

<< ..... views SHOULD NOT be protected by free speech?>>

That statement/idea is so wrong and it's scary, this thought is around.
But glad free speech exists, so I know the notion is out there. Or at least is being propagandized, in case you're a Chinese or Russian governmental bot or a Trumpian one. :msnsarcastic:

Quote:

Originally Posted by Blueangel (Post 3149240)
.....What probably has a bigger impact is that two UK soap operas have very recently had anti-vaxx and holistic/alternative therapy storylines, two of which had tragic consequences. Yes, it's a fictional representation, but if it gets the message across...

This is an other very disturbing thing I noticed (I don't follow soap operas, so it took me a while), the manipulation of the masses via soap operas, the stories people get so much into that they are sure, the actors are the figures and even ask them about story-events as if it hat happened in their real life, when they hunt them down for autographs. Completely unable to devide story from reality. :eek:
First it was product-placement, now it is opinion-forming. Total horror. And to think that those who notice even support it is even bigger horror!

About product placement there was protest and for a while they explicitly mentioned in the trailers "we have no product placement" - either this alertness/declaration is gone again or I simply don't watch enough tv anymore to notice it. I do still notice product placement though.

To think a team of soap-writers steer public opinion makes me shudder. :eek:

meloncollie 18.02.2020 10:39

Re: Conspiracy beliefs on the rise...
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by curley (Post 3149267)
To think a team of soap-writers steer public opinion makes me shudder. :eek:

And vice-versa, leading to a closed circle of confirmation bias.

Back in the day, as a young market researcher I worked on viewer response to soap opera storylines*, including gathering opinions on where the plot should next go, what topics should be addressed and how. The data was then used to write the ongoing story arc.

So if viewers expressed sufficient interest in a topic - current news, controversies included - it would work it's way into the storyline. And since keeping viewership was the goal, how the topic was addressed often reflected common bias.

Dreadful programming - but influential.





*One of the sins for which I will surely burn in hell. ;)

Ouchboy 18.02.2020 11:04

Re: Conspiracy beliefs on the rise...
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by Mythical_L0tus (Post 3149175)

The Supreme Court already ruled that yelling FIRE in a public space where no such danger is apparent, wasn't protected by the 1st amendment.

What about those who foster and spread fear about vaccines causing autism or death, those who claim climate-change is a hoax and other nasty stuff that's not worth repeating? Admittedly, conspiracy mongering produces much more severe consequences than a lunatic yelling out "fire" in a cinema.

Thoughts everyone?

Most of them don't meet imminent lawless action (i.e the brandenburg test) so no, they can't be banned, regardless of how stupid they and their advocates are.

MusicChick 18.02.2020 11:11

Re: Conspiracy beliefs on the rise...
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by Mythical_L0tus (Post 3149175)
I'm in a slight state of panic and confusion, as the stupidity of conspiracy theorists has now spread to some of my family members.

I understand your sentiment but think they think the same about you. More so if your exercised your theory of limiting their right to free speech.

Tom1234 18.02.2020 11:14

Re: Conspiracy beliefs on the rise...
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by TonyClifton (Post 3149209)
Who is to decide what what the conspiracy theory is though?! This is why freedom of speech is so important! Anti-Vaxxers get given a hard time yet in Europe at least, homeopathy by and large gets given a free ride. Whilst I believe in Climate Change, in that global temperatures have risen by 1 degree in relation to pre-industrial levels and this is down to man made activity, I certainly don’t believe in the “Climate emergency” that is peddled by many parts of the media and the likes of Greta Thunberg. I believe this is a conspiracy theory. To hear both sides of the story allow us to form opinions of our own.

The problem is, for example with the MMR vaccine, even with all the facts, and Wakefield exposed as a fraud, some of these people 'forming opinions of their own' are in charge of other people - like children and they're putting them at risk.


Quote:

Originally Posted by curley (Post 3149267)

To think a team of soap-writers steer public opinion makes me shudder. :eek:

It's been done for years in the U.K. -but never in a 'brain-washing' way but mainly as a public information service or as part of a health awareness campaign.

The Archers, a BBC Radio 4 soap set around a village in 'Herefordshire' (trust me on that) was originally produced to relay new farming information to farmers and other landworkers.

This same format was used in Afghanistan to inform women of their rights and deal with other issues such as womens' health.

Grange Hill, a childrens' drama about a school back in the 1980s-90s had a storyline about the downward drug-induced spiral of one of the lead characters which was released at the same time as a government anti-drug campaign.

If you want to ban these things, you really ought to ban half the internet too.


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