Kage Baker liked conspiracy theories. She didn’t believe in them – not many, anyway – she just liked them. The way she liked Warner Brothers cartoons, and Jack In The Box commercials; the way she liked funny video shows. They were amusing and inadvertent and improvisational, and most of the time they were weird as hell. It was Kage’s theory that no one actually had the organization to commit most of them, but composing them was an art – not a skill – and so could be indulged in by the logic-handicapped to hilarious result.
And there were always such marvelous plot ideas in conspiracy theories!
Caveat: I, myself, do not subscribe to any conspiracy theories, for much the same reasons Kage did not. I think any competent conspiracy is undetectable; if I can find out about it, it’s probably nonsense. But this is just my theory, you see – so if I stomp on some favourite of yours, Dear Readers, in this blog, please forgive me. I have no certain knowledge of any of these, only the rumours of their existence: and so I don’t believe in any of them.
There are hundreds of conspiracy theories available for your shopping pleasure on the Internet, though. They may the third most proliferated posting on the Interwebs, right behind porn and funny cats. Just like porn and cats, there is no accounting for tastes in conspiracy theories: there are enough of them out there, though, to both enthrall and amuse anyone. You may be wildly entertained by the theory that Pripyat (near Chernobyl) is thick with mutated voles and earthworms, but skeptical of their reality – even while the detailed news of the Taos Hum fulfills your deepest fears about government manipulation of electromagnetic forces.
Area 51 is a constant fave rave listing, even while it becomes clearer and clearer that what happens there is just top-secret military engineering. Kage always said she didn’t know what was funnier – the fact that intelligent people were willing to believe the Feds were churning out flying saucers (the same Feds that can’t successfully build earthen berms around New Orleans); or that the Air Force thought they could hide a top secret site by simply insisting that what was right in front of our noses was not there. But if you search through the links (there are always links) you can find an immense web of such conspiracy sites and theories. Apparently there are hidden bases everywhere under the American Southwest. The Federal Transportation Administration evidently does its best work 100 feet under the Mojave.
Another of Kage’s favourites was the theory that the rulers of most First World Countries were mind-bending reptiloids. She liked this one because of its contrast with the old stories of lizard men under Los Angeles – mostly because she never met anyone who saw a connection or believed both ideas. (But she thought George W. Bush, Prince Philip and William Buckley were especially poorly disguised.) She preferred the Los Angeles Lizard Colony, herself, and in fact wrote it into the Company series. Although the story where the operatives encounter the Lizard Men has yet to be written … hidden rivers under the Wilshire Corridor are involved, and I assure you: they are real.
Almost everyone is willing to believe something horrid about the Free Masons. Or the Catholic Church. Or the Federal Government. Kage felt the days of conspiracies by the Masons or the Vatican were either long past or yet to come again: neither of them had the energy to get up to much shenanigans in the present. She didn’t worry too much about the Feds, either – she said the track record we could see was piss poor, and she didn’t believe those people could conspire their way into a paper bag. Apple was a lot more likely to be back-engineering alien technology than the Pentagon.
Kage liked all the theories around Bigfoot sightings: that they were “thought entities” unleashed by Native American curses, or drove flying saucers, or were remnant Gigantopethecine apes, or remnant Neanderthals, or remnant hippies. And there is a fervent belief in each and all of those, and more besides. She liked the aliens, too, that evidently spend their nights cruising up and down American highways, and all the astonishingly clumsy government agencies that run around trying to clean up after them.
Today I found a serious alert about mutant animals arising in Japan – it’s starting with an earless rabbit, evidently, and Godzilla cannot be far behind. Also, that strain of e. Coli that was due to cucumbers, then not; then salad greens, then not; then bean sprouts, then not – it’s been deliberately designed as a bio weapon by persons unknown (but who evidently don’t like the Germans or the Spanish). And Canadian deer are being trained to attack hikers by First Nation activists. And a red-white-and blue striped building has been located on Mars using Google, and NASA is hiding the proof (but not the Google picture …).
I found all these just in one day. And I wasn’t even looking, which is what reminded me of Kage and brought the topic to mind. There is such a wealth of confabulation out there! And the chance that some of it, any of it might be true – that was what endlessly fascinated Kage. You just never know …
There are (badly) camouflaged metal plates on the side of Mount Hollywood, you know. Painted in rather garish greens and browns. People say they used to hide missiles launchers, for That Day when the next war started. But the missiles were removed in the 70’s. So why are there still silos locked on the mountainside? Why are motion-activated cameras still monitoring up there? Why, if you stray too far past the Hollywood Sign, do hidden loudspeakers advise you to remove your ass from the hill as soon as possible?