Something isn't true just because its on television, and most people know that. Acceptance of the fact that we live in a world where political and criminal conspiracies are a part of daily life actually rises in people that are more highly educated.
"We've found most people don't live in a binary world so when someone mocks your capacity for critical thinking, it's not a plus for the antagonizing speaker or writer. They often think they come off as witty or intelligent because they're bold enough to conform with popular opinion, but the exact opposite happens. What we hypothesized was that as people grew into adulthood in the modern era, they've watched people who had been smeared as 'conspiracy theorists' eventually become validated and grow into the voice of established fact. 'Crazy Bernie' described a rigged system and we saw that it was with the DNC leaks. He's not crazy anymore. Edward Snowden confirmed we live in a surveillance state, as many had alleged before that, and they who warned us never wore tinfoil hats. NSA architect and whistle-blower William Binney expounded on that, explaining that the truth was even more incredible than anyone imagined. People have learned that it is no longer the weaponized slur it used to be, rather than a stage of acceptance for any uncomfortable truth. Insecure people love to belittle those brave enough to challenge popular opinion, but these folks are really facing their own cowardice and reacting to that. Otherwise, why would it bother them? Most would say nothing at all, as people usually do.
"Why we find neurosis is because core elements in this behavior are distress and anxiety. Most people don't need their personal reality seconded, or usually humored, by everyone they see."
The study, "Powerful Correlation Between Over-Use of the Term 'Conspiracy Theorist' and Insufferable, Ignorant Assholes; Understanding The Turd-in-the-Punchbowl Self-Identification Syndrome," is a 1,200 page, 13 year effort involving 19,000 interviews, neurological testing and fMRI scans.
"We've also learned that people tend to take such mockery personally. If a strongly held and unspoken opinion on a controversial but uncertain variable is mocked, it is like unwittingly mocking a faith. They may not make a fuss about it, but they will avoid you, and you have created a negative impression. Consider your own experience with this phenomenon and how you reacted when your critical thinking was ridiculed. Thus, the validation of a fool is neither wanted or useful.
"Something isn't true just because its on television, and most people know that. Acceptance of the fact that we live in a world where political and criminal conspiracies are a part of daily life actually rises in people that are more highly educated.
"Let's take Rachel Maddow, for instance, who devoted a whole hour to 'debunking' a bunch of 'conspiracy theorists' who believed Hillary Clinton was gravely ill. No matter that this group included some of the best doctors in the country, and that Hillary had a major brain trauma in 2012 and that last July, she told the FBI it affected her memory to this day; Maddow chose a straw man, a false argument another media figure never made to attack the charge. Unfortunately for her, a couple of days later Hillary actually collapses at the 9/11 memorial, and may now leave the race.
"Again, we see a pattern where 'conspiracy theorist' is a term that precedes someone telling the truth. Our main finding was that these individuals appealing to this term are perceived by most to be 'insufferable, ignorant assholes' hungry for attention. Further, they are willing to settle for negative attention, as well. We call it the Turd-In-the-Punchbowl Self-Identification Syndrome.
Follow History: Conspirators Most Likely to Use the Term "Conspiracy Theorist"
"The physical symptoms were startling. Often the men suffered Penngilletism Nervosa. They grew ponytails and goatees, wore coke bottle eyeglasses, with all of them becoming obese and prone to doing shitty card tricks as the condition worsened. This we attributed to loneliness and depression that came hand in hand with ostracism. This was often in addition to the embittering subconscious processing of post-natal trauma from crawling out of abortion clinic dumpsters. These are not well-adjusted campers and tend to become sociopathic misanthropes with strong anti-social tendencies.
The main question posed in the study was the following:
Who is more likely to over-use the term "conspiracy theorist"?
a.) an educated person
b.) an uneducated person
c.) a conformist.
d.) a non-conformist.
e.) an insufferable, ignorant asshole.
"The number one response in questionnaires where we asked who is more likely to over-use the term 'conspiracy theorist' was the last answer, 'an insufferable, ignorant asshole.' 97% answered that. Amazing."
Fellow researcher Tim Wheeler added "We also followed the cars of those who over-used the term 'conspiracy theorist' to see what such a person lived like so we could evaluate the role of environmental influences, and often found they would drive home, stay in the car, curl into a fetal position, and weep uncontrollably because they had no friends. Often they would stare into their phones waiting for someone to call, and that call never came. They were social lepers. A sexually frustrated Maddow, for instance, was reduced to paying hobos to scissor her after her recent humiliation made her girlfriend cut her off."
Here is an earlier study on group conformity and how it makes us vulnerable to believing absurdities.