CASS SUNSTEIN ~ CONSPIRACY THEORIES AND OTHER DANGEROUS IDEAS ~ 2014

~ A-CT-IAETESEOPBRT-TSMOPPWHAMTCTR ~ A – Conspiracy Theory – Is An Effort To Explain Some Event Or Practice By Referring To – The Secret Machinations Of Powerful People Who Have Also Managed To Conceal Their Role

~ CTGATCAEP:TP-TC-TMS-ASF-TWBTTAPSP-AEUTGRAT-D-W-ITE-M-AA-B-AODOTRFTCITFP ~ Conspiracy Theories Generally Attribute To Certain Agents Extraordinary Power: To Plan – To Control – To Maintain Secrets – And So Forth – Those Who Believe That Those Agents Possess Such Powers – Are Especially Unlikely To Give Respectful Attention To – Debunkers – Who – In Their Eyes – May – After All – Be – Agents Or Dupes Of Those Responsible For The Conspiracy In The First Place

~ CT-TOTCAD-O-OAB-WAATBCODACO-SSP-DAETI-OS-GADNURSFVL ~ Conspiracy Theorists – Typically Overestimate The Competence And Discretion – Of – Officials And Bureaucracies – Which Are Assumed To Be Capable Of Devising And Carrying Out – Sophisticated Secret Plans – Despite Abundant Evidence That In – Open Societies – Government Action Does Not Usually Remain Secret For Very Long

~ IACS-SAFETK-A-DOOAMAGDOS-ISS-CTABMLTBTAHTDILOAI ~ In A Closed Society – Secrets Are Far Easier To Keep – And – Distrust Of Official Accounts Makes A Great Deal Of Sense – In Such Societies – Conspiracy Theories Are Both More Likely To Be True And Harder To Disprove In Light Of Available Information

~ TIAPHTTTTEACBIA-EBTWSTB-‘CB’-A-FTR-CTHCBUA-OTPTTOAFE-SO-O-RF ~ There Is A Pervasive Human Tendency To Think That Effects Are Caused By Intentional Action – Especially By Those Who Stand To Benefit – “Cui Bono?” – And – For This Reason – Conspiracy Theories Have Considerable But Unwarranted Appeal – Overlooking The Possibility That The Outcome Arises From Either – Spontaneous Order – Or – Random Forces

~ MPDNLTBTSEW-CB-B-O-G-L-A-MPNCS ~ Most People Do Not Like To Believe That Significant Events Were – Caused By – Bad – Or – Good – Luck – And – Much Prefer Nonarbitrary Causal Stories

~ POWM(U)CTUITTWBTMAHAKOSDOAK-PI-AAWTMIDFTTBAAA ~ Part Of What Makes (unjustified) Conspiracy Theories Unjustified Is That Those Who Believe Them Must Also Have A Kind Of Spreading Distrust Of All Knowledge-Producing Institutions – In A Way That Makes It Difficult For Them To Believe Anything At All

~ HMOT-M-NBB-IWA-NTB-S-A-B-SMDA? How Many Other Things – Must – Not Be Believed – If We Are – Not To Believe – Something – Accepted – By – So Many Diverse Actors?

~ CE-P-DOI-F-PTPT ~ Conspiracy Entrepreneurs – Profit – Directly Or Indirectly – From – Propagating Their Preferred Theories

~ TEPO-A-WPAO-TAATMLTSCTJTES-A-ATATETIA ~ Terrible Events Produce Outrage – And – When People Are Outraged – They Are All The More Likely To Seek Causes That Justify Their Emotional States – And – Also To Attribute Those Events To Intentional Action

~ SPPBIACT-O-ALSTD-B-TSTCF-O-TAD ~ Sometimes People Profess Belief In A Conspiracy Theory – Or – At Least Suppress Their Doubts – Because – They Seek To Curry Favor – Or – To Avoid Disfavor

~ FCTAGDB-PCAI-FMTB-PO-TF-LRTCTITMAFAOS ~ False Conspiracy Theories Are Generally Debunked By – Private Citizens And Institution – Far More Than By – Public Officials – The First-Line Response To Conspiracy Theories Is To Maintain A Free And Open Society

~ IOR? ~ Ignore Or Rebut?

~ ISNCBABGFCT ~ Isolated Social Networks Can Be A Breeding Ground For Conspiracy Theories

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