Conspiracy Theories and Elections

 

The drumbeat of conspiracy theories picks up whenever America gets close to an election. I have said this before, but I really want to call attention to this tendency. I want to know if it has repercussions in terms of who gets elected. How much do these “myths” and the hype around them influence votes?

In 2016 Conspiracy Theories were used to help demonize Hillary Clinton.

 

Now an anonymous internet figure called by the quirkiest letter in our alphabet, Q, is appearing all over the internet and at Trump rallies. It does not supplant the old conspiracies which claim the 13 families and Democrats including the Clintons are all pedophiles, child traffickers, and even have demonic ceremonies sacrificing babies (which, I guess, is one step further than kidnapping children and putting them in cages with only a metallic space blanket to comfort them). Rather it suggests that Trump is the chosen one to rescue the world from these sickos. (Yikes!) Trump, according to this view, is actually one of those superheroes who presents a face to the real world that belies his role as a rescuer. Good disguise!

In 2018 Conspiracy Theories are being used to demonize all Democrats and to lionize Trump

 

 

I don’t know about you, but for me this is a bit of a reach (and that’s an understatement). I do not see the resemblance between Trump and any heroes, from comics or real life.

But I am curious about how well these Conspiracy Theories work as propaganda. Clearly they attract followers. Does this translate into votes for one group; against another; or both? A study of this effect would be very interesting.

Also see: https://www.thearmchairobserver.com/the-big-conspiracy-theory-that-explains-everything/

Photo Credits: From a Google Image Search: latently.com, You Tube, capitolhilloutsider.com, You Tube, You Tube

 

Conspiracy Theory and Political Identity

Paranoid Android

One of my news feeds on one of my devices brought this very interesting new article summarizing her polls about the correlations between conspiracy theory and political identity by Kathy Frankovic to my attention. My source tells us that she “is one of the world’s leading experts in public opinion polling. She has been an election and polling consultant for CBS News and other research organizations.” Find the full article at

https://today.yougov.com/news/2016/12/27/belief-conspiracies-largely-depends-political-iden/

These graphs, for the most part, back up what many of us already thought was true – that many of the conspiracy theories circulating right now are subscribed to by more voters on the right than on the left.  Empirical data is usually satisfying in offering backup for what we believe, unless, and in this case, you are from the right and you dismiss this all as counterfactual because it probably just comes from the left. What crazy times we live in? I did not foresee that the Fox News/ Talk Radio folks would lie so often that truths would seem to be mutable elements. Those on the right would say that I only like this data because it validates my worldview and that I am, once again, deluded. But I think history will be on my side in the end, for what that’s worth.

Belief in conspiracies largely depends on political identity

 

 

 

These polls shocked the media last week when they saw that 46% of Trump voters still believed that Clinton emails linked her to a pedophilia and child trafficking ring. What puzzles me is why the media was so surprised.