The label “conspiracy theorist” conjures up visions of paranoid, tin-foil-hat characters who think that everything is a grand conspiracy, who are consumed by their vision, and who believe that only they know all the details. There really are people like that. It is a phrase, however, that is often used to belittle anyone who thinks outside of the official narrative told by the powers that be, those who have their own agendas, who are often involved in conspiracies themselves, and who have incentive to limit scrutiny. Whenever a prominent politician says, “Let there be no conspiracy theories!” it is highly probable that something is up. Conspiracy theories should be embraced to the fullest extent and all leads followed. If they don’t lead anywhere, great, they can be ignored, but a conspiracy theory is, as with all theories, the beginning of exploration, a way to start to make sense of a particular situation, to point the way forward, to gather evidence. All criminal investigations start out as theories, and as the pieces of the puzzle are put together, the theory is either advanced, adjusted, or abandoned.
Conspiracies happen every day. Political parties gather in secret to plan how they can push their agenda forward, often for partisan benefit, not for the good of the people. Remember, “You have to pass it to see what’s in it.” Business men and women conspire with lobbyists and politicians to pass laws that favor them and hurt their competitors. Union officials conspire with lobbyists and lawyers about how to force employers to bend to their wishes. The list goes on and on. Conspiracy is typically done in secret, and much of it, even if it is legal, is unethical. It involves hurting or abusing the rights of others.
We are now witness to one grand conspiracy theory that turned out to be an actual conspiracy reality of gigantic proportions and historical significance. Regardless of whether Donald Trump might have done anything that can be construed as obstruction of justice, whether or not impeachment proceedings are actually started, whether or not he is actually found to be guilty of obstruction, it should be clear to anyone and everyone that there was a very high-level, wide-ranging, multi-year conspiracy involving fraud, deception, and abuse of power, first to frame and smear a presidential candidate in order to throw the election, and when that didn’t work, to use the same methods to unseat a duly elected president.
This is a serious assault on the integrity of Constitutional government and on traditions that create stability and safety for the citizens. The conspirators betrayed the institutions organized to protect the rights of all people, and abused the rights of the people themselves, using illegal and abusive means to attack individuals innocent of the crimes they were trying to pin on them for partisan purposes. Many high-level politicians, unelected bureaucrats, security agency officials, and media insiders are included among the conspirators. As the drama of the farcical investigation subsides, every American should demand that all those who were involved be brought to light, be brought to trial, and be brought to justice. This should be the opening of the real drama, where the actual truth is put ahead of partisan politics. If people are not held accountable for the very serious crimes that they have committed, the continuous erosion of trust will accelerate, as will the decline of morality and respect for the law. The proceedings should not be to exact “revenge”, but to make it clear to anyone in the future that such attempts at subverting the constitutional process will not be tolerated and will be punished.
At this point, it is painfully obvious that there really are some people who will go to almost any extent, legal or not, to promote their agenda. We are all conspiracy theorists now, and we must follow where it leads.