Conspiracy Theory as Belief System

John Fraim

It is a few weeks after the inauguration. There is a strange lull in the air now. Somewhat like that tropical air in Florida in summers. You sense a storm is coming. The palm trees begin swaying and, out over the Atlantic, you can see the grey wall of a great storm moving towards the shore.

This mood of the nation is strange in these post-inauguration weeks. Before the election I was blogging about the videos of QAnon’s three spokespersons in the form of Simon, Charlie and Robert. I call them the Trio. It is my first serious attempt to know more of what Q says, the alternative reality that Q proposes. I watch the videos of the three each day. Am I watching experts at a modern form of gaslighting? The QAnon cnspiracy has been the most effective conspiracy theory in history. Is it because Q speaks an important (yet hidden) truth to many? Is it a system for getting information to millions through a bypass of mainstream media? Is it because many need to hear the Q version of reality?

QAnon presents the mother ship of conspiracy theories. One might even suggest it is a type of new religion. After all, it lays out an entire new version/vision of the current world. For those who accept its view. It is large enough to even contain an alternative history of the nation. The version it tells is so different from the version of reality I experienced. Yet, it draws a lot of strings together in ways I can’t draw them together. 

The Trio is tremendously active the weeks before the 2021 inauguration. I watch the Trio each day and write reviews of these for my List and Blog. The videos of the Trio, their character and presentation and offer of something magical they offer a continued hope for a captive number of hits on their sites and videos. In the first days of the new year, the hits on the Trio’s sites was at an all time high. I had my hands full monitoring all their communications each day and then transferring it to my readers in words that might encourage them to read more of the original materials from the Trio and not just take my word for it. That was the problem today. Everyone taking another’s word for things. Rather than creating their own words for things.

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A number of projects have been started over the past six months during the pandemic. There is a rather long (5,000 word) article on my pursuit of the phenomenon of gaslighting. It comes during the time I am following the QAnon Trio as their messages intensify before 1/20. Are millions being gaslighted by QAnon? Or is QAnon providing essential information to make a transformation to a new world? The claims of QAnon are certainly in the “new world” range of claims.

Behind eveything else, my directory on new sources of freedom continues to grow. It is now at 500 pages and forty categories. I continue to make contacts with friends for advice in the early stages of what might become an online database publication website. I need to update the list per the new congress and officials but it is pretty comprehensive in its attempt to tie together many groups in the nation right now and find some new commonality. 

While I have focused on writing about Q this past month, a lot of books have piled up in my Kindle library and on my desk. In the Kindle library is QAnon: An Objective Guide to Understanding Q by Michel Quinn; Revolution Q: The Story of QAnon and the 2nd American Revolution by Neon Revolt; Open Your Heart to Change: A Guidebook for the Great Awakening by Martin Geddes; I’m Just Charlie: The Autobiography of Charlie Ward by Charlie Ward and Gaslighting Games by Emory Green.

The QAnon Trio: Robert David Steele, Simon Parkes and Charlie Ward

On my desk is The Fourth Industrial Revolution by Klaus Schwab; Covid 19: The Great Reset by Klaus Schwab; Lost Prophecies by Michael Snyder; Why I Write by George Orwell; Josef von Sternberg: A Critical Study of the Great Film Director by Herman Weinberg; Chaos: Charles Manson, the CIA and the Secret History of the Sixties by Tom O’Neill and The Art of Creative Writing by Lajos Egri. These books form a foot high pile on the right side of my wall bookcase.

An eclectic mix of reading, as usual. I imagine at some point I’ll make an attempt to sum up what I’ve learned tracking the elusive Q. I feel somewhat like a modern detective. Maybe this is what modern detectives do? Track down conspiracy theories rather than criminals? Are the two the same? There are those who want us to think they are the same. Whatever or whoever Q is? What is the attraction of Q? Of anything or anyone who presents us with an alternative version of reality? Is much the attraction based on what people need to hear today rather than what is said? It seems to me that QAnon is so much more than a conspiracy group and more of a religious movement. It is not based on getting a president back in office but in battling global forces of evil.

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In many ways, Q represents a phenomenon of what Jung might call a modern myth or archetype. During the last year, few things made any sense except the messages of Q that put the pieces together and tied up all the loose ends, predicteding the outcome of all the craziness. The appearance of Q seems somewhat like the appearance of UFOs in the late 40s. As Carl Jung wanted to know, not whether they were real but why people believed in them.

This seems a useful approach to take with Q right now. More of an examination of the contxt of Q rather than messages related by QAnon. More the outward context of the story rather the inside of it as Conrad once said in a famous quote. There is an obvious symbolism to Q. A new type of hero? A hero born in the dark regions of the Internet who comes to a popular light in the form of a Trio of three middle-aged guys. One American and two Brits.

The QAnon following has grown spectacularly. Yet there is still a lingering uncertainty and mystery about Q. Is Q the great White Hat of the world or the great Black Hat masguerading as a White Hat? Does Q represent the force of Good in the world today? Battling against the force of Evil? It is a question that hasn’t resolved itself in my mind yet. In this sense, there is an atmosphere of a tightening but unresolved suspense hovering over the story of Q. Maybe it is this mystery that allows more participation of followers in the creation of Q? That turns Q into a “cool” participatory media as Marshall McLuhan might suggest.

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The greatest prediction of Q is that the insurrection will begin on inauguration day. The day comes and goes without anything happening. Many Q followers begin to jump ship and the Trio has its hands full calming down upset followers of Q. Like millions out there now, I wonder what the future of Q will be. Really, what will be our future need to believe in something like Q? Or, has it been Q;s purpose to make us believe in ourselves again?

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