By Rob Ficiur
One of the great things about conspiracy theories is that they never have to prove anything. Conspirators can ask their questions without providing any facts and then leave the conversation open ended. It is as if asking the question puts the onus on “the establishment” to prove the conspiracy theory wrong. In the age of the internet all you need is a computer to start a new conspiracy theory.
1. Conspiracy Theory #1: The Titanic was sunk on purpose. From a supposedly “reliable” internet site I found this theory. Secretly, the Titanic was transporting a chemical smuggled out of the German Empire by British spies, and being shipped to America for further study when in the holds of the ship the Chemical is released and the crew and 3rd class passengers begin to turn into Zombies.
My conclusion: The sources I found were all in the last two years. I doubt this theory is true because so far (104 years later) Zombies have not taken over the world.
2. Neal Armstrong and the moon landings were staged. This theory has been around for decades. In this theory, all the moon landing video and pictures are faked. The theory is that it was easier to fake the moon landings than to actually go there.
My conclusion: These theorists have several “supposed facts” that show how the pictures were wrong. I conclude their theory is wrong for one big reason. It has been 46 years since the moon landings. If they were faked the cover up would have involved many people. Some time in almost half a century someone would have come forth in a dying confession or a book deal to expose the conspiracy theory.
Sports, like history, has many conspiracy theories that don’t stand up to the facts:
3. Since Gary Bettman hates Canada, there are no Canadian teams in the 2016 playoffs. These theorists have a list that supposedly proves that Gary Bettman has planned against anything Canadian. We will look at the two hottest “proofs” to this conspiracy theory.
(a) In 2016 all seven Canadian NHL teams missed the playoffs for the first time since 1969-70. (b) No Canadian NHL team has won the Stanley Cup since 1993.
Conclusion (a) – Canadian teams missing the 2016 playoffs has more to do with mismanagement than the commissioner’s evil plan to freeze the north out of post season hockey. How can this evil commissioner force seven teams to continually make poor draft picks, bad trades? Each of the seven teams has made choices in the last couple of seasons that lead to this “lost playoff season.” Three Canadian teams are in the top ten in salaries and three are in the bottom ten. So we can’t blame money. Many pre-season predictions suggested that Montreal was the only Canadian team that was a strong cup contender. A season long injury to all-star goalie Carey Price derailed their season.
Conclusion: (b) in the last eleven years four Canadian teams have been in the Stanley Cup finals. Calgary, Edmonton and Vancouver were one win away from a championship. Calgary and Vancouver each had two games they could have won it all. In these 11 seasons the four Canadian teams in the finals account for 18% of all finalists. During this same time Canadian teams accounted for 22% of NHL teams. Canadian teams have made the finals about as often as statistics say they should. If I was running a conspiracy I would keep them out of the finals because any team can win a series.
4. Major League Baseball wants to the Toronto Blue Jays to lose. Evidence: In game #2 of the 2016 season Jose Bautista slid into second base. When the dust cleared the umpires applied a new sliding into second base rule and there was a double play against the Jays.
Jose said after the game that it was “clear” the umps were after him. If the umps were all against Jose it must be because the league told them to… right? See how easily we can escalate conspiracy theories?
Conclusion: The only thing that was clear in the replay was that Jose reached out and touched the short stop’s foot. It was not a big hit or push but he touched the short stop. Last year it would have been ignored, but with the new rule, he made a mistake. So I ask Jose why did you go out of your way to touch the short stop? The easiest answer is habit. He has played the game a long time and until this year it was mostly legal.
If your team loses you can always come up with a conspiracy theory as to why they are losing. You can chose to use, invent or twist facts to help prove your point if you wish. Or you can make up a series of emotionally charged allegations and let your ranting be the proof that brings your conspiracy theory to the point of credibility.