161 Comments

The author left out the most important and damaging conspiracy theory in US history: the Trump Russia collusion narrative. Fringe elements like QAnon and Roger Stone vs. the Federal intelligence agencies, DOJ, FBI, Congress and corporate media? A scheme involving all DC power centers vs. a gadfly like Stone and a group I have never encountered in real life? Hamstringing a duly elected President vs. Reddit posts?

What a joke.

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It’s hard to take seriously a piece like this that relies so heavily on figures like Roger Stone and QAnon. It feels like such inside the beltway MSM nonsense that it’s jarring to see it in The Free Press. A rare miss for Bari and team.

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If congress wants to dispel the myth that the USA is run by a conspiracy of pedophiles, they can release J. Epstein's flight logs.

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Lost me at QAnon. Are there really any supporters of Q in real life other than hard left wingers who use it as a club and a pejorative?

Up until then the lesson of the piece is don’t worship a politician. They really don’t care about you, just power and what it gets them

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This piece is a mess. It starts off with a facile comparison that America's cultural innocence was affected the same by a tragic murder of an unknown man as by the broad daylight assassination of our president and it just gets sloppier from there.

The fact that most Americans believe elements within the "deep state" (do we really still put that in quotes in 2023?) were responsible for JFK's assassination may be a signal that times are dangerous but whose fault is that, and who is really in danger? US state institutions, and many private ones as well, have lost their legitimacy. They have become corrupted beyond anything imaginable before JFK's assassination. I would argue that event led us to where we are.

We all know who killed Kennedy and have for a long time now. If powerful cabals can get away with that what kind of corruption isn't permissible? Bankrupting the nation to enrich war profiteers and funnel tens of trillions to banks that should have failed and been taken over in 2008? Perverting government entirely away from strengthening the national interest towards globalism, deindustrialization and decay? Comparing the era when finance was handmaiden to a robust manufacturing base, when things actually worked and problems were manageable, to the slow and now fast collapse of the last 40 years, is to miss the forest for the trees.

I guess if you lived through this era and things basically worked out for you it's easy (and characterless) to ignore the 90% or more of Americans for whom it hasn't. People who can really see that everything is corrupt, that lying (PR) is used as substitute for leadership, and the class that governs us is no longer fit for purpose.

Yes, it is a dangerous time. The class this piece implicitly supports with its bland assumptions and loose comparisons brought this dangerous time upon all of us while guaranteeing we won't be governed by anyone they don't select. It will not end well and they only have themselves to blame.

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At the risk of sounding just like one of the conspiracy theorists we are all lamenting, I pulled this paragraph from Tinline's post:

"Joe Biden, another East Coast Catholic, began his political career in the 1970s by modeling himself on Kennedy. To Gillon, the biographer, Obama and Biden alike “flexed their political and legislative muscle to push through legislation that was far more ambitious than anything JFK could have imagined, yet even they, and their accomplishments, appear diminished by the comparison to a mythical Kennedy.”

The bias in this statement is obvious.

Their accomplishments? What accomplishments and what legislation did Biden and Obama push through? Was it Biden's criminal justice reform, the negative consequences of which are still being felt today? And is it Obamacare?

The biggest accomplishment of Joe Biden was being elected President in spite of a decades-long career of mediocrity. Our country is suffering mightily as a result.

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The JFK 'towering-great-leader-we'll-never-see-his-like-again-Blah-Blah' mythology is perhaps most significant as one of the earliest instances of an emerging world in which people began to pick up their proxy-opinions (on everything beyond their real life experience) entirely from the mass media industrial complex. George Orwell was prescient: "people will believe what the media tell them they believe".

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Tinline is correct to acknowledge the danger of conspiracy theories in the modern world. This tendency is likely a byproduct of a dishonest news media, which can not be trusted to present reliable information to the public. Regrettably, he himself is one of the main purveyors of conspiracy theories, and those whom he accuses of being conspiracy theorists are in fact making interpretations of historical truth that are more fact based than the conventional and widely accepted narratives advanced by government and mainstream media. His chief conspiracy theory, based on no data, is that those who see nefarious activities in government are products of right wing extremism is highly polarizing rubbish. In fact those who support the CIA's role in the JFK assassination have presented a far more evidenced based and convincing argument than those who wish to dismiss the evidence out of hand as a conspiracy theory. Now that the term conspiracy theory is an accusation that has been widely brandished willy-nilly by supporters of a more conservative status-quo protecting bias (often masquerading as "liberals") the term has ceased to have any real meaning. Like "anti-vaxxer", the term conspiracy theorist is nothing but a slur intended to malign and discredit those whose opinions differ from one's own or from those paying the piper to write such tripe. They succeed only because there are sufficient numbers of individuals who are sufficiently ignorant and gullible to be swayed by such demagoguery, who refuse to investigate the evidence themselves, which would quickly give the lie to such propaganda artists.

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"We have transformed Kennedy into a metaphor of American greatness and judged all of his successors by that standard. "

"We??" Not me. Kennedy was a reckless sex addict and Camelot was a myth propagandized by his well financed Democrat allies. Heck even the PT-109 story was mostly fiction, elevating Kennedy's dereliction at the time to a tale of courage and sacrifice. Then there's the dalliances with an East German spy, a mafia don's girlfriend and Marilyn Monroe, whom he might have shared with his brother. Don't forget that he almost led us into WW III with his incompetence, which the media quickly spun into a fairy tale of resolute steadiness. And let's not forget that Kennedy led us into Vietnam, and the claim he would have gotten us out had he lived is a howler. JFK was nothing if not a talented actor. Nothing more. And if he was killed by the CIA? Just of a piece with his intrigues. The old man was a crook and a narcissist. The sons no different. The brother who left a young woman to die horribly and was reliably re-elected by the deluded denizens of MA until he died. Or the endless cousins and children who either murdered or abused women. Now we have another Kennedy seeking the presidency. Does his family name disqualify him? Well. I sure wouldn't cast my vote for one. And, if he weren't a Kennedy, would he even be in the mix of aspirants? Doubtful.

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JFK wouldn't be allowed within a mile of today's Democrat party. He was flawed, but basically an anti-communist who believed in the free market and in America. He'd be as horrified as any conservative by radical gender politics, open borders, and debt counted in the tens of trillions.

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Meh. I tend to dismiss anything that relies on "Q" or "QAnon" as a draw. Because I think that it is a tool to sow division. And boy does this piece do that. I also dislike articles, and comments, that position the writer as some sort of all-knowing, all-seeing centrist. Talk about a tell.

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The Q-anon reference is real special.

The mainstream theory of Kennedy's murder, promoted by our media and political elites is that he was killed by the flaws of middle America. We are guilty because we are traditional, garden-variety Americans.

The political manipulators (cue the chorus "conspiracy theorist!") downplayed that the killer was a devoted Communist. After all, if there were to be found culpability in Moscow, the required response would be horrific.

The campaign to demoralize America has only accelerated since 1963.

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Most of the “conspiracy” theories you dismiss here have quite a bit of evidence at least warranting investigation (covid origins, JFK assassination, etc). This reads like a dismissal of any criticism of security state organizations. I could have read this in the Post or NYT...”hey, don’t worry about the evidence that these powerful figures are acting in self interest. It’s just that you’re crazy”

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This piece wreaks of the sort of naive thinking that the mafia isn’t real. That organized crime is a figment of the imagination. Sorry to burst your bubble but there’s a sizable portion of the population that’s criminally minded and a subset of that population occupies political and bureaucratic positions of power. They collude and scheme and the public can either choose to get screwed, flee, or fight back.

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Dec 2, 2023·edited Dec 2, 2023

Ugh! Bari come on with the editing- just like there was no correction to the biracial piece that totally got an Iowa law wrong- in fact it said the opposite of what the author said now you’re pushing conspiracy theories from “Trump” voters at MAGA rallies? Are you sure those weren’t journalists at CNN? As the left say “Do better!” With your reporting of those on the right!

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I regard this article as a waste of time. I don’t care about fringe conspiracy groups and theories, nor do I need more speculation about what JFK would have done in Vietnam, or musings about his enduring political influence. Any given human event is the product of countless variables coalescing at once. It’s impossible to know the extent to which one person’s beliefs and actions derive from what somebody else is perceived to have done decades before. This article is full of surmises, both the writer’s and those he interviewed. I was left thinking that my guesses are as good as theirs.

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