There have always been conspiracy theories. I imagine there always will be. I don't regard conspiracy theories as harmless. In fact, they can do considerable damage, being just another flavor of prevarication. And lies have a definite cost, not only in terms of driving misdirection and failure, but in terms of the disruption they foster in the liar's mentality. To the extent that conspiracy theories are an extension of outrageous mendacity, they do damage to our understanding of reality, and man, when it comes to reality, humankind does not need any more distraction, okay?
Now…if you were to make a conspiracy theory up as a joke…is that more tenable? Than your average lie? I mean, I would guess that every conspiracy theory offers the theorist an opportunity to be creative. And one person's creativity gives rise to other theorists, adding their own twist, branding, so important in today's market, to the base theory.
I'm not really asking for permission. I'm just trying to ascertain the advisability of starting a conspiracy theory of my own. It'll be fun! No? Forgive me, but I feel compelled. Maybe there's a rogue bipolar episode, racing towards me? Mox nix, as they say in Germany. It matters not. I don't care how sophomoric my routine is. It's all the name of good, clean fun.
So, here's my theory:
The coronavirus is not a bioweapon devised by the Chinese. No, what I've been able to learn is that the novel coronavirus is actually an alien life form.
Huh? Whataya think?
I like it, because it pulls a whole other conspiracy theory out of the big bag of conspiracy tricks to go along with whatever I can fabricate. Right? The literature is rich in information about UFO's. Science fiction is huge, in books, in movies, in people's imagination. All that speculation? Fertile territory, if you ask me. Plant a few seeds to nourish and promote growth. Obviously, we need information to get out regarding the space craft used by the alien to get to Earth. And, clearly, we could make some arguments about the nature of the alien life form—it's killed and hurt so many people, clearly it is a well-organized alien with plots and plans about subjugating the Earth's population.
Make it an open source conspiracy theory, that way people from all walks of life all over the globe could participate in this conspiracy theory.
I don't know about you, but I think there's a lot to work with. I think my conspiracy theory could have some real legs here. You feel me? With a few well-placed denials from the government?
Thinkin' about callin' myself a letter for a name, like, say, Q. Nah, Q is a lousy letter. Yeah, it's worth ten points in Scrabble, which is okay as long as you pick a timely U tile. I think my initial would be Y. In the mind, the letter Y evokes the homophone why. Get people asking why instead of who, and I'm in business.
And downstream…I see the usual harms. People, ignoring the experts, making hats from aluminum foil (you think the run on toilet paper was bad, what till you can't find a box of Reynolds anywhere!), creating crop circles in the xeriscape of the backyard, dogs having sex with cats. Sure, it'll be ugly.
It will also be humorous. Oh, I think it will. I don't believe my theory will drive deprivation (aside from aluminum foil) or destitution. It won't sink the economy, or breed an invasion of locusts, or blow up the super-volcano under Yellowstone. My ultimate objective is to create a broader and deeper effect than my last attempt at conspiring with theories.
That was when I started the rumor you could catch AIDS from flies.