These days, when I hear any variation of the phrase “conspiracy theory,” I’m bound to roll my eyes. There was a time back in the day when a conspiracy theory had to involve Area 51, Hitler’s brain being kept alive in a jar, and time travel in order to be subject to ridicule or contempt. Nowadays, such a ‘conspiracy theory’ is any explanation or conjecture that challenges explicit or implied establishment narratives.

The Right Wing Noise Machine has been successful beyond its own wildest dreams in this regard. It is especially sad now to see self-imagined progressives and liberals vehemently denigrating someone for offering up logical and understandable–if not always verifiable or reality-based— criticisms of U.S. foreign and domestic policies. When the rantings and kaleidoscopic delusions of imperialistic, money-grubbing, sociopathic assholes are given at least as much respect as the voices of reason, you know your society is in deep shit.

Of course, this is all reinforced by a system of corporate media that has grown quite skillful at disseminating distortion while hiding pertinent truths in plain sight (if not vanishing them entirely). Case in point:

Iran dumps U.S. dollars in oil transactions

Do you think this has factored into the Bush administration’s posturing toward Iran? You’d never know it from reading corporate media coverage of relations between the U.S. and Iran. Then again, should we expect more from a media regime that starts our history with Iran by mentioning the hostage situation of ’79?

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