April 2012

The Rothschild Conspiracy

Does this rich European family pull the world's puppet strings?


One of the many conspiracy theories that keeps popping up, linked to dozens of other theories, involves the Rothschild family. The Rothschilds are inarguably one of the world's richest families. This German Jewish family has its origins in the 1500s, and began its long climb to fame in the mid 1700s. The Rothschilds began as money changers in the Jewish ghetto of Frankfurt. Their success led to the creation of an independent house of finance, and the Rothschilds have remained heavily involved in finance ever since.
When people talk about an "international Jewish banking conspiracy," they are more or less talking about the Rothschilds. It's difficult enough under ordinary circumstances to separate legitimate conspiracy fears from plain old anti-Semitism. In the case of the Rothschilds, one must begrudgingly admit that this is a Jewish family which made a lot of money as bankers, and who have at times exercised their power in an unsavory fashion.

UFO spotted near sun?

Recent NASA imagery shows an unusual shape

NASA recently released some images of our sun which seemed to feature some sort of structure orbiting the sun. Dubbed the "Icarus Craft" by some, the shape appears to be two gray lines joined by a ball in the center. The lines are at about an 120 degree angle, facing the sun, as if to collect sunlight or solar particles.
UFO speculators have described the two straight lines as "boom arms," and the entire thing as a jointed craft. The obvious UFO conclusion is that it is parked at the sun like a car at the gas station, tanking up on the sun's energy in order to continue zipping around the universe.
The idea of aliens hanging around our sun is not a new one. Last December, some UFO hunters spotted what appeared to be an alien craft lurking behind Mercury - in other words, in roughly the same area where the Icarus Craft was photographed.

The Jersey Devil

Not exactly debunked

Somebody recently told me that the Jersey Devil legend had been debunked, so I went and looked it up for myself and found out it's not quite so simple. The article in question is on a website called Skeptoid, which tells you what the author's bias is right off the bat. To his credit, though, he avoids the most common fallacy of professional debunkers- assuming that if you can come up with some vaguely possible non-supernatural explanation of what might have happened, you have effectively disproved the entire legend.

Warren Buffett: Tool of the Illuminati?

As a rich white dude, naturally many people believe that Buffett is a tool of the Illuminati, and/or the Rothschilds.


Last week when I was thinking about the conspiracy theories that surround the success of hip hop and rap artists like Jay-Z and Tupac, I found myself thinking "I bet it's just people being racist because they don't think a black person could be successful in a musical genre that they hate. I bet there aren't any conspiracy theories about white guys like Warren Buffett!"
And then I did a quick bit of Googling which immediately rendered my theory invalid. In fact, quite a few people are supporting conspiracy theories about Warren Buffett. And interestingly, these two beliefs - about Jay-Z and Warren Buffett - intersect at several points.

Forest Service May Dynamite Frozen Cows

How else to dispose of their carcasses in a remote Colorado wilderness?


Nine miles outside Aspen, Colorado in the Maroon Bells-Snowmass Wilderness Area stands the abandoned Conundrum Creek Cabin, property of the United States Forest Service. (Pictured here, in balmier days.) It's still the middle of winter up there, with a substantial snowpack. 
Last month, two Air Force Academy cadets on snow shoes made a startling discovery: six dead, frozen cows are packed inside the ranger station. Other dead cows are scattered around the outside of the cabin, as well.

Conspiracies Swirl Around Suge Knight, Tupac, and Baphomet

Knight says he thinks Tupac is still alive - but he would say that, wouldn't he?!


Like some bad Scooby Doo "play within a play," Coachella's seeming revival of Tupac from the dead (in hologram form) has stirred up a lot of conspiracy talk around Tupac's death - or feigned death.
In a recent radio appearance, Suge Knight said he doesn't believe Tupac is dead. According to Knight, his theory explains why the police never found the murderer - there wasn't one! "Nobody seen Tupac dead," Knight said. He added that he gave the man who "supposedly" cremated Tupac's remains, but the crematorium employee was never seen again.

Tupac Comes Back From The Dead - As A Hologram

"Hol-O-Pac" makes waves


A lot of people were pretty startled when Tupac Shakur returned from the dead at this year's Coachella music festival… as a hologram, who performed on stage with Dr. Dre and Snoop Dogg. The effect cost almost a half million dollars, and by all accounts was remarkably realistic. (And may I say, death has apparently been good to Tupac. Dude was RIPPED.)
But despite the big special effects budget, Tupac's post-mortem performance was basically an effect which has been used to create paranormal hoaxes for decades. Basically, Tupac's ghost was simply projected onto a sheet of transparent plastic.


Mean little fairy creatures

Fans of JRR Tolkien are familiar with “Orcs,” the monstrous humanoid thugs of Sauron and Saruman. And fans of a host of lesser fantasies and role-playing games are familiar with them too, often in rather silly permutations. If you've read “The Hobbit” as well as “Lord of the Rings,” you know that Tolkien's Orcs were originally referred to as goblins. But what is a goblin, exactly?


Chinese Teen Sells Kidney for iPad, iPod, and iPhone

A Chinese youth has put himself in critical condition after selling an organ illegally to buy Apple products.

Apple products are major status items now in our second decade of the 21st century. As the company’s impressive stockpile of cash can attest to, some $450 billion at last count, iPads, iPods, and iPhones are sought the world over for their performance and design, but also for the social cred conferred to their owners. Perhaps this is why people are donating their organs to the black market to get their hands on them.

As reported in the BBC News, five people have been arrested in China after a teenager there sold his kidney for $3,000, enough to purchase an iPad and iPhone. The teenage boy, a youth from the Hunan province of southern China, was reported to the authorities by his mother, who noticed the new electronics. When she asked where he got the money for them, he said he had sold his kidney. The teenager is now reportedly in renal failure, in a Hunan hospital. The group that has been detained, which includes the surgeon that performed the operation, earned an estimated $35,000 for the kidney, according to state-run Xin-Hua News.

Three Killed As Sacrifice to Mexican "Saint Death"

Sounds impossibly lurid, but it's true


Authorities in Mexico recently arrested a poor family in the Mexican copper mining town of Nacozari. The Meraz family lived in a shack with a dirt floor. The women are suspected of earning money through prostitution. The men in the family eke out a meager living as trash pickers. You can perhaps glimpse the desperation of such crushing poverty, the uncertainty, the constant threat of danger.
Desperate times call for desperate measures, or so they say. But how desperate would you have to be, to engage in human sacrifice in the hope of gaining a saint's protection?
The Meraz family are being accused of having lured three people to their deaths in the last three years: two 10 year-old boys, and a 55 year-old woman. The victims were killed, their throats and wrists cut, and their blood smeared on an altar to Santa Muerte, a sort of rogue saint who is gaining popularity among criminals and the very poor.


Is it real?


We've all heard of brainwashing, but is it actually real? Can people be hypnotized or manipulated into acting against their own core values or best interests? The whole concept of brainwashing comes from the Korean War, when some American POWs made pro-communist statements or even refused to come home after the war was over. Of course, there were several reasonable explanations for this. Some of them could already have been communists- communism had a lot of American adherents at one point. Or the soldiers could have been tortured or starved or intimidated into making those statements. Or a few soldiers could honestly have been “converted” to communism through conversations with their guards.