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Michael Fullerton

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Why is someone a "conspiracy theorist" merely because they question the government account of something? Isn't that plain old skepticism?

Skepticism is supposed to involve objectively questioning claims based on evidence. Why then is someone called a conspiracy theorist when they merely question a government's extraordinary claim which is seriously lacking in evidence?

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    Aug 1 2013: No, it is not plain old skepticism. Conspiracy theorists are wildly misguided.

    Think of all the damaging political scandals that those involved would have liked to keep secret, if they could have. Here's an incomplete list of those in the United States:

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_federal_political_scandals_in_the_United_States

    These involved only a few or a few dozen people over a singular event, and couldn't be kept secret. But conspiracy theorists would have us believe in plots ranging far and wide, involving hundreds or thousands of people across multiple organizations, all with the flawless secrecy of the Illuminati. And yet not one person breaks the silence or produces a shred of evidence. That's the difference between a conspiracy theorist and a simple skeptic.
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      Aug 22 2013: You're engaging in and Appeal to Incredulity fallacy and the Argument From Conspiracy Fallacy as explained here:

      http://skeptopathy.com/wp/?p=76

      One example: the Nazi's conspired to exterminate Jews. At one time this was a theory.
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        Aug 22 2013: Alright, how about this then:

        Skeptics hesitate to believe something without sufficient evidence. Conspiracy theorists hesitate to disbelieve something without sufficient evidence to the contrary

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