What is going on in the streets right now? Marches for constitutional rights are spreading conspiracy theories. And many might find it harmless because it sounds so ridiculous… Is there a secret world government that is spreading the Coronavirus with 5G mobile phone towers? Of course not, but why do people believe something like that? And where lies the danger of conspiracy theories?
With the example of the “New World Order” one can show how conspiracy theories work. This theory claims there is a secret organisation behind the states, controlling politicians like puppets and governing the world. Such spooky tales are very popular in the political right and extreme right. It can be understood as their reaction to materialist critiques of capitalism. While leftist, anarchist, socialist critique believes that capitalism is a system based on inequality and reproducing inequality, the “New World Order” theory counters this by attributing all injustice and exploitation in the world to Satanists, the Antichrist, lobby meetings like the Bilderberger or just plainly the Jews. This open or disguised Anti-Semitism is then used to push the agenda of a strong state, against the critique of the power of state and capital. The final goal of Anti-Semitism is mass murder of those externalised as the enemy.
Can there be any harmless varieties of these ideas? Of course there are lobby groups, powerful capitalist networks and growing monopolies in this world – but to attribute to them the power of running the world is trivializing the violent system that we live in. Conspiracy theories are not about a competition of world view between left and right, but the political right is fulfilling its role of defending the state against social movements. First fascist groups do the dirty violent work next to the direct repression of police and military, until the political unity with state and capital is reached, with the brutal consequences we know from the various fascist states of the 20th Century.
The “New World Order” idea emerged in Christian Fundamentalism in the US, and was later made globally popular through the Infowars host Alex Jones. The newest update to these ideologies can be seen in the US and meanwhile also on Berlin streets. With the “QAnon” conspiracy, Alt-right street activists and online nerds have cemented the view that Donald Trump is a warrior against a “deep state”, a secret government. This is the kind of politics that helps politicians like Trump and the antisemitic alt-right gaining ground. “QAnon” or the earlier “New World Order” variety: Conspiracy theories are no harmless populism, but a central ideological tool of fascism.
- «Αφηγήσεις #35» Αφιέρωμα του Shades: Το Γκόλεμ της Πράγας. Εβραϊκές ιστορίες του γκέτο. “Πως ήρθαν οι Εβραίοι στη Βοημία”
- Shades reading group Berlin: Ανάγνωση του πρώτου τόμου του Κεφαλαίου
- Η δίωξη των βετεράνων της Ταξιαρχίας Αβραάμ Λίνκολν – εθελοντές των ΗΠΑ στον ισπανικό εμφύλιο πόλεμο
- «The Physiocrats» από το βιβλίο Claudio Napoleoni, Smith, Ricardo, Marx, εκδόσεις Halsted Press, 1975.
- «Αφηγήσεις #34» Waterloo, συναυλία του Blood and Honour, Λονδίνο, 1992. Ένας προσωπικός απολογισμός