Home Main Forums General Discussion Dems have a plan. They call us "conspiracy theorists"…

  • madfloridian (1938 posts)
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    Dems have a plan. They call us "conspiracy theorists"…

    to debunk anything we progressives might say that is uncomfortable for them.

    Cass Sunstein was a regulatory advisor to Obama.  He had earlier written a paper called “Conspiracy Theories”.   Here’s some parts of a summary I found at a blog.

    From 2015.

    Cass and Samantha – an ideology of nuptial proportion?

    Samantha met her husband, Cass, when they worked as campaign advisers to Barack Obama, their friend and his former colleague at the University of Chicago Law School.

    To understand Samantha, and perhaps the mindset of the White House, one should study the philosophy of her hubby, Cass. From Wikipedia:

    “Cass Sunstein co-authored a 2008 paper with Adrian Vermeule, titled “Conspiracy Theories,” dealing with the risks and possible government responses to conspiracy theories resulting from “cascades” of faulty information within groups that may ultimately lead to violence. In this article they wrote, “The existence of both domestic and foreign conspiracy theories, we suggest, is no trivial matter, posing real risks to the government’s anti terrorism policies, whatever the latter may be.” They go on to propose that, “the best response consists in cognitive infiltration of extremist groups.

    I’m thinking they really expanded their definition of what can be called “extremist” groups.  Now it seems they apply that definition to progressive truths seeking the truth.

    When you see the current efforts to monitor the internet and phone calls, Cass’ “cognitive infiltration” looks like the philosophical basis of today’s intrusive government surveillance.

    “The authors declare that there are five responses a government can take toward conspiracy theories: “We can readily imagine a series of possible responses.

    (1) Government might ban conspiracy theorizing.

    (2) Government might impose some kind of tax, financial or otherwise, on those who disseminate such theories.

    (3) Government might itself engage in counter speech, marshaling arguments to discredit conspiracy theories.

    (4) Government might formally hire credible private parties to engage in counter speech.

    (5) Government might engage in informal communication with such parties, encouraging them to help.” However, the authors advocate that each “instrument has a distinctive set of potential effects, or costs and benefits, and each will have a place under imaginable conditions. However, our main policy idea is that government should engage in cognitive infiltration of the groups that produce conspiracy theories…”

    (The above list was all in one paragraph..I separated them for easier reading.

    It just seems to me now that even the most sensible thoughts on the most sensible subjects can be twisted and turned into a CT.

    It’s become a convenient way for the Democrats and the complicit media to try and make us leftists, liberals, progressives look bad.

    They don’t want to stand strongly for issues, so it’s easier for them that way.

    There was an article at The Nation in 2008 in which Cass Sunstein made it clear we needed to work in harmony with the other party and not be too critical.  Can’t find the link, but here’s the quote.

    Netroots face bipartisan attacks on the rule of law.

    Politicians, legal experts and progressive activists grappled with Republican abuses of power at the third annual netroots convention on Friday, debating how an Obama Administration might restore the rule of law. Cass Sunstein, an adviser to Barack Obama from the University of Chicago Law School, cautioned against prosecuting criminal conduct from the current Administration. Prosecuting government officials risks a “cycle” of criminalizing public service, he argued, and Democrats should avoid replicating retributive efforts like the impeachment of President Clinton–or even the “slight appearance” of it. Update: Sunstein emailed to emphasize that he also said and believes that “egregious crimes should not be ignored.”

    Sunstein would rather live in harmony with the right wing it seems.  But his article shows that he would not object to turning progressives (the real ones) into conspiracy theorists.

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    If a person is required to be loyal to a political party and not question their stands on issues, then any semblance of real truth is lost. https://twitter.com/madfloridian

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  • 2 weeks ago #10
    • bemildred (4108 posts)
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      1. "cognitive infiltration" == gaslighting.

      Crooks, and you can see that they know they are crooks too.

       

      It ain't the things you don't know that hurts you, it's the things you know that ain't so.
      • madfloridian (1938 posts)
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        2. Yes, that it what it is.

        Exactly.  :hi:

        If a person is required to be loyal to a political party and not question their stands on issues, then any semblance of real truth is lost. https://twitter.com/madfloridian
    • Ferd Berfel (4514 posts)
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      3. When they cant dispute reality

      They will be using something akin to ‘asymmetrical” warfare

      …and you think you’re going to stop this simply by ‘pulling a lever’, in a booth, behind a curtain, every 2 years? - Know yourself. And if you need help with that, call the FBI. -  There is only ONE solution to this mess:  New Party !  
    • INTJ (2171 posts)
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      4. Classic 'soft' bigotry in the game of us vs them.

      This is why racist sexist bubbas engage in name calling.   We watched as Her campaign put that behavior on bioidentical hormone therapy.

      The Dems have triangulated themselves right into that behavior.  They’ve got nothing going to secure their access to power but name-calling and the not too creative use of erudition to hide epithets in language that appeals to the elite

       

      WARNING: Dem products are know to cause Progressive voters anxiety and chronic depression.  Donations less than $2500 do not provide membership benefits and should not be expected to yield fair primaries, better representation, or legislative favors.    All donations are deemed voluntary and are not bound to typically false campaign promises.  Upon receipt the DNC is free to redirect all donations to its best friends forever.
    • winter is coming (871 posts)
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      5. Lying to me and about me is a surefire way to get my vote.

      :sarcasm:

      • Enthusiast (8865 posts)
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        21. It's working out real well isn't it.

        "The NSA’s capability at any time could be turned around on the American people, and no American would have any privacy left, such is the capability to monitor everything. There would be no place to hide."  Frank Church "When plunder becomes a way of life for a group of men in society, over the course of time they create for themselves a legal system that authorizes it and a moral code that glorifies it." - Frederic Bastiat, 1848
    • Hobbit709 (2425 posts)
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      6. Here's the clincher

      “Prosecuting government officials risks a “cycle” of criminalizing public service”-in other words, “It’s OK if we break the law and get away with it.”

      If a few more public officials were actually prosecuting for committing crimes while in office, maybe there would be a little less corruption.

      What ALL public officials need to fear is the law coming down on their ass for ANY malfeasance, much less what we’ve been seeing.

       

      I won't shut up and I don't waste my time teaching pigs to sing
    • Average Gazoo (1041 posts)
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      7. They proposed displacing conspiracy theory with conspiracy fact ?!

      What geniuses.  They acknowledge their own circularly self-defeating strategy:

      …they suggest that “government can supply these independent experts with information and perhaps prod them into action from behind the scenes,” further warning that “too close a connection will be self-defeating if it is exposed.

      The best way to destroy a flawed conspiracy theory is to present facts in a straightforward way which render the theory invalid but being straightforward didn’t make their list apparently.

      Julian Assange famously declared that he would place a kind of tax on secrecy. He sought to enhance democracy worldwide by putting those who rely on secrecy at a disadvantage.  We are now at the dawn of the Age of Transparency. The Democrat Party leadership still doesn’t want to acknowledge this as the Yes Men proved in Pasadena this weekend.

       

      • Enthusiast (8865 posts)
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        22. There will be no straightforward! Just forget it! (authoritarian Barney Fife)

        "The NSA’s capability at any time could be turned around on the American people, and no American would have any privacy left, such is the capability to monitor everything. There would be no place to hide."  Frank Church "When plunder becomes a way of life for a group of men in society, over the course of time they create for themselves a legal system that authorizes it and a moral code that glorifies it." - Frederic Bastiat, 1848
    • Koko (3579 posts)
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      8. MF…this is an interesting read from Robert Parry: "Dawn of Orwellian Future"

      Thanks for your reminder post.  It seems Cass Sunstein’s plan is already being implemented and it will probably get worse:

      —–

      The Dawn of an Orwellian Future
      July 28, 2017

      Exclusive: The U.S. mainstream media continues to spread its own “fake news,” like the falsehood about an intelligence community “consensus” on Russia-gate “hacking,” as algorithms begin to marginalize dissent, reports Robert Parry.

      By Robert Parry

      In early May 2017, the Times chimed in with a laudatory article about how sophisticated algorithms could purge the Internet of alleged “fake news” or what the mainstream media deems to be “misinformation.”

      As I wrote at the time, “you don’t need a huge amount of imagination to see how this combination of mainstream groupthink and artificial intelligence could create an Orwellian future in which only one side of a story gets told and the other side simply disappears from view.”

      After my article appeared, I received a call from an NPR reporter who was planning a segment on this new technology and argued with me about my concerns. However, after I offered a detailed explanation about how I saw this as a classic case of the cure being far worse than the disease, I was not invited onto the NPR program.

       

      Continued at:
      https://consortiumnews.com/2017/07/28/the-dawn-of-an-orwellian-future/

      • madfloridian (1938 posts)
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        12. Did you see that Parry won the Gellhorn award in London in June?

        http://johnpilger.com/articles/robert-parry-wins-2017-martha-gellhorn-prize-for-journalism

        If a person is required to be loyal to a political party and not question their stands on issues, then any semblance of real truth is lost. https://twitter.com/madfloridian
        • Koko (3579 posts)
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          28. Yes…saw that and he so deserves that recognition!

          :-)’s

      • Enthusiast (8865 posts)
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        23. Wow!

        "The NSA’s capability at any time could be turned around on the American people, and no American would have any privacy left, such is the capability to monitor everything. There would be no place to hide."  Frank Church "When plunder becomes a way of life for a group of men in society, over the course of time they create for themselves a legal system that authorizes it and a moral code that glorifies it." - Frederic Bastiat, 1848
    • Fire with Fire (601 posts)
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      9. How's all that working out for Cass and Company?

      Trump is President and a majority disapproves of him while an even bigger majority disapproves of Hillary.  We have dueling calls for criminal investigations coming out of the Congress after the GOP spent the election season yelling “Lock Her Up” and the Democrats cannot make themselves stop claiming that Trump is a Russian mole.  Trump’s government leaks its “assessments” of how the Russians put him office, while he tweets back the silliest shit in American history.

      Institutional credibility is at an all time low.

      So how’s Sunstein’s advice playing out?  Unless he really was suggesting that we turn politics itself into a joke to keep the permanent government in unquestioned power as dueling conspiracy theories paralyze the political process . . . .

       

      • 99thMonkey (3519 posts)
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        32. Watch out Mister!

        You are starting to sound a bit like a Conspiracy Theorist, what with asking uncomfortable questions and all.

        :sarcasm:

    • Fawke Em (3742 posts)
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      10. Tweeted this out.

      Needs to be widely read.

          
      • madfloridian (1938 posts)
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        11. Thanks a lot.

        They really are gutsy in the way they think of new methods to harm anyone who doesn’t fit into their agenda.

        If a person is required to be loyal to a political party and not question their stands on issues, then any semblance of real truth is lost. https://twitter.com/madfloridian
        • iggy (1153 posts)
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          14. We are at War

          ..for the hearts and minds of those we care about.

          Truth has no Expiration Date. Life without Dignity is Slavery.
    • iggy (1153 posts)
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      13. "Government might engage in informal communication"

      I’ve attempted to engage people in conversation but have been rebuffed, in a friendly way. This is OK with me, because I understand the implications of being sucked-in to a scenario with entities that might not have my best interest in mind.

      Truth has no Expiration Date. Life without Dignity is Slavery.
    • TRex (2468 posts)
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      15. Been that way since day one, I said it since day one. They don't have the mental

      capacity to discuss issues rationally or can up to a point then turn into upset juveniles. At that point they call the other person ‘retarded’ or even an entire group of folks that have been consistently correct on world events. They are now the Fringe, slaves to their NWO.

      It is soreloserman syndrome. They all have it.

       

      We can thank the rich for one thing - times are changing due to the silent depression in the working class. I don't think the rich will be happy with the changes, but they forced it upon themselves through greed and avarice.
    • Satan (2295 posts)
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      16. Ass Sunstein was on the "short list" when Kagan got the Supreme Court nomination

      Though she was still to the RIGHT of Republican Justice Stevens (whom she replaced), I guess we should be somewhat thankful it wasn’t Sunstein!

      Fuck Kamala Harris. Fuck Borey Crooker. Fuck Joy Reid. And FUCK Hillary Clinton & her husband for destroying the Demoncratic Party.
    • Marym625 (23443 posts)
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      17. On The Daily Radical!

      Anything to not have to do the right thing.

      They make me sick!

      Oi245KQ-1 "Once the decision was made to go into Iraq as an invader and occupier,  it’s like our nation lost its conscience. And it has not yet gotten that conscience back." Madfloridian  
    • iggy (1153 posts)
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      18. I'm supposed to feel bad, beg for forgiveness and fall in line..eh?

      Now that I think about it, I will go down to Town Hall and DEMEXIT.

      No point in registering, the primary is fixed, so my vote won’t count there. So what’s the point?

      Truth has no Expiration Date. Life without Dignity is Slavery.
    • peacecorps (3427 posts)
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      19. The right has lived in 'CT land' for years. From bitherism to climate change as

      a Chinese conspiracy to “pizzagate” to ‘Seth Rich’ to the “deep state” and on and on. They have all been originated by Fox News or other conservatives and their media.

      The beauty of their system is that, no matter how often they are wrong, their base eats up the next CT they come up with. I am sure they will come up with another CT that explains why ‘liberals’ are causing the problems that beset the Trump administration.

    • Enthusiast (8865 posts)
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      20. They engage in conspiracies of the most diabolical kind imaginable.

      Then, when the conspiracy is exposed, they whine around about conspiracy theories.

      I call bullshit on that notion.

       

      "The NSA’s capability at any time could be turned around on the American people, and no American would have any privacy left, such is the capability to monitor everything. There would be no place to hide."  Frank Church "When plunder becomes a way of life for a group of men in society, over the course of time they create for themselves a legal system that authorizes it and a moral code that glorifies it." - Frederic Bastiat, 1848
    • Entrepreneur (1828 posts)
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      24. I did not know, but guessed that his real beef is exposure of 9/11. I Ducked him

      and got this:

      Cognitive Infiltration:
      An Obama Appointee’s Plan to Undermine the 9/11 Conspiracy Theory
      Sunstein and Vermeule propose that the government and its allies infiltrate groups that promote conspiracy theories deemed (somehow) to be “demonstrably false.” They take conspiracy theories about September 11 as their “running example.

       

       

      No longer GoneFishin.  Truth is I've never GoneFishin.
    • Coldmountaintrail (989 posts)
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      25. Sunstein defines false conspiracy theories as

      “an attempt to explain an event or practice by reference to the machinations of powerful people, who have also managed to conceal their role.”

       

      Powerful people would never ‘machinate’ to get what they want; they’re all so very nice.

      Only unpowerful low-class ‘crazy’ ‘fanatical’ people do that kind of thing.

      How can anyone believe this crap anymore?  The powerful constantly ‘conspire’ with each other and have each others’ backs to get what they want.    And the more wealthy/powerful they get, the easier it is to do so.

      And ‘conceal their role” – duh.  They’re not going to conspire to get their way and broadcast it to the world — except long after the fact, when it’s too late to do anything about it and no one’s paying attention anyway.

      Let me give one example:

      When slavery was a thing in the US, it was a very small % of the population who had slaves and an even smaller percent who had LOTS of slaves.  Say .01% of the population who had lots; I used to have the figures, but i don’t.  And an even smaller percent of the population who engaged in slave trading to make a living.

      And I’m telling you, a lot of great fortunes that have lasted to the present day were built on all of the above.

      But somehow today it’s the damned direct descendants of the slavers who pretend to be the ‘good guys’ today – and actively tar the 99% of the population who 1) are not direct descendants of slaveowners or traders — that is: the people who never profited historically from the institution are tarred as the racist white trash bubbas; though pretty well powerless, and the powerful who built their fortunes on the institution are the oh-so-nice folks who just want to ‘help everybody get along’.

      Did they conspire?  Do they still?  Hell yes.

      Whitened sepulchres.

       

    • Flygirl (2757 posts)
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      26. Conspiracy Theorist..checking in!! Check me off in attendance!!

      According to the DNC I am a Wife of a Taco Bowl Member!
    • Chop Chop (10 posts)
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      27. Greenwald wrote a great article about this piece of filth Sunstein

      Way back when he was writing for Salon

      January, 2010: Obama confidant’s spine-chilling proposal
      Cass Sunstein wants the government to “cognitively infiltrate” anti-government group

      Cass Sunstein has long been one of Barack Obama’s closest confidants.  Often mentioned as a likely Obama nominee to the Supreme Court, Sunstein is currently Obama’s head of the Office of Information and Regulatory Affairs where, among other things, he is responsible for “overseeing policies relating to privacy… more: http://www.salon.com/2010/01/15/sunstein_2/

      A free people claim their rights, as derived from the laws of nature, and not as the gift of their chief magistrate - Thomas Jefferson
      • Koko (3579 posts)
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        29. ….!

        I remember that article..and yes Sunstein is a piece of pumped up filth.  Working in shadows but holding much influence over Dems.

      • madfloridian (1938 posts)
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        31. Thanks, I missed that.

        Glad you posted the link.

        Welcome to JPR.  :hi:

        If a person is required to be loyal to a political party and not question their stands on issues, then any semblance of real truth is lost. https://twitter.com/madfloridian
    • Bubzer (147 posts)
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      30. I see stuff like this and wonder how I stayed a democrat for so long…

      • madfloridian (1938 posts)
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        36. It's easier to see and speak truth if we're not tied to party ideology.

        :hi:

        If a person is required to be loyal to a political party and not question their stands on issues, then any semblance of real truth is lost. https://twitter.com/madfloridian
        • Bubzer (147 posts)
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          38. Right. I hate admitting I was pretty well a party yes-man.

          I didn’t start doubting the democratic party until some zealous feminists, following Hillary the way a starving dog follows the smell of meat, started attacking me for no better reason than my gender. Self-proclaimed democrats were attacking me in what I thought was a decidedly un-democratic way. I was utterly dumbfounded.

          Turns out soft-bigotry is perfectly acceptable to them… and is ‘explained’ away with nonsense like “patriarchy” and “mansplaining”. Because I was being unjustly attacked, it got me listening, for the first time, to what non-dems were saying… and checking to see if there actually was some truth to what the democratic party told me were just lies.

          I still don’t believe a majority of what I hear and read from conservatives… especially some of their ‘news’ sources… but I’m considerably less willing to just dismiss them anymore.

    • 99thMonkey (3519 posts)
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      33. In 1967, CIA Creates the Label "Conspiracy Theorists" to attack detractors

      .. from most any official narrative, and boy did it work like a charm.  At the time,  I think they may have been  fending-off people who were rightfully suspicious of the “official – magic bullet/lone assassin” version of how JFK was murdered .. but then it soon proved to be a very handy tool, pushing their official cover-up versions of who murdered RFK and MLK.

      In 1967, the CIA Created the Label “Conspiracy Theorists” … to Attack Anyone Who Challenges the “Official” Narrative ** Zerohedge ** feb. 23,  2015 ** Geo, Washington

      Sunstein is briefly mentioned, though in a slightly more favorable light, here..

      But powerful insiders have long admitted to conspiracies. For example, Obama’s Administrator of the Office of Information and Regulatory Affairs, Cass Sunstein, wrote: 

      “Of course some conspiracy theories, under our definition, have turned out to be true. The Watergate hotel room used by Democratic National Committee was, in fact, bugged by Republican officials, operating at the behest of the White House. In the 1950s, the Central Intelligence Agency did, in fact, administer LSD and related drugs under Project MKULTRA, in an effort to investigate the possibility of “mind control.” Operation Northwoods, a rumored plan by the Department of Defense to simulate acts of terrorism and to blame them on Cuba, really was proposed by high-level officials ….”

      The zeroHedge article concludes with this:

      Conclusion
      The bottom line is that some conspiracy claims are nutty and some are true. Each has to be judged on its own facts.

      Humans have a tendency to try to explain random events through seeing patterns … that’s how our brains our wired. Therefore, we have to test our theories of connection and causality against the cold, hard facts.

      On the other hand, the old saying by Lord Acton is true: “Power tends to corrupt, and absolute power tends to corrupt absolutely.”
      Those who operate without checks and balances – and without the disinfectant sunlight of public scrutiny and accountability – tend to act in their own best interests … and the little guy gets hurt.

      The early Greeks knew it, as did those who forced the king to sign the Magna Carta, the Founding Fathers and the father of modern economics. We should remember this important tradition of Western civilization.

      Postscript: The ridicule of all conspiracy theories is really just an attempt to diffuse criticism of the powerful.

      The wealthy are not worse than other people … but they are not necessarily better either. Powerful leaders may not be bad people … or they could be sociopaths.

      We must judge each by his or her actions, and not by preconceived stereotypes that they are all saints acting in our best interest or all scheming criminals.

      And see …”

      http://www.zerohedge.com/news/2015-02-23/1967-he-cia-created-phrase-conspiracy-theorists-and-ways-attack-anyone-who-challenge

      • madfloridian (1938 posts)
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        35. Yep..this sentence is so true.

        The ridicule of all conspiracy theories is really just an attempt to diffuse criticism of the powerful.

        Very true.

        If a person is required to be loyal to a political party and not question their stands on issues, then any semblance of real truth is lost. https://twitter.com/madfloridian
    • bobthedrummer (2525 posts)
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      34. Conspiracy realist here-for many decades. Wonderful topic, my friend.

      https://cryptome.org

      All power to the People.
      • madfloridian (1938 posts)
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        37. Wow, what a archive.

        One could get lost in there.

        If a person is required to be loyal to a political party and not question their stands on issues, then any semblance of real truth is lost. https://twitter.com/madfloridian