More than anything, government is incompetent. It is staffed by people who, by and large, have been or would be unsuccessful in the private sector – whether the receptionist at your local motor registration office or the Prime Minister of Australia.

Ultimately, we are aware of this. However, thanks in part to television programs such as The West Wing and House of Cards, we simultaneously believe the government is comprised of savant-level masters of psychoanalysis and manipulation.


Perhaps one of the biggest tactical failings of libertarians and anarchists is the tendency to view the government as one cohesive and comprehensive entity. While it is true that most Western governments are behemoths, they are not homogenous. Rather, they are comprised of a number of disparate departments competing for their slice of tax revenue. 

Good leaders should be able to admit their faults and avoid acting on emotion

Both libertarians and authoritarians like to think that government departments work in tandem, sharing relevant information and working together to overcome an obstacle or bring down the ‘bad guy’.

While they do undoubtedly work together at times, we should all be very hesitant to assume that is typical. Often, it is in the interests of the self-serving bureaucrats who lead various government departments to work against other departments. 

What is better for the Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade (DFAT) than to prove the incompetence of the Department of Home Affairs? If you were a self-serving bureaucrat at DFAT, you could leverage that to demand more scope, which means more funding, a bigger empire, and perhaps more money in your pocket.


Whenever we are presented with government inconsistencies, we should always consider incompetence before conspiracy. That is not to say that government conspiracies do not exist, but the level of expertise required to pull off many of the conspiracies posited is something that is simply not possible for the incompetent people who have comprised our governments for many decades.

When attempting to determine the likelihood of a conspiracy theory being true, it is always worth examining:

  1. The number of co-conspirators required.
  2. The profit or benefit for the conspirators.
  3. The use of unfalsifiable statements and arguments.
  4. The deliberate misinterpretation of events.
  5. The excessive use of baseless arguments.
  6. The number of assumptions required.
  7. The false messiah.

It is true that most Western governments are behemoths, they are not homogenous. 


Even when we look at recent Covid tyranny, the most likely culprit is old-fashioned pride. While homegrown tyrants like Dan Andrews and Mark McGowan do not deserve to ride off into the sunset of retirement without facing the accountability of the people, that does not mean they were motivated by a global conspiracy to imprison their own constituents and usher in a social-credit-style system at the behest of the World Economic Forum (WEF). Occam’s razor dictates that their real fault was the inability to detach their own pride and ego from the policy they prescribed. We all find it difficult to reverse our instinctive position and admit that we were wrong. 

This does not excuse tyranny; good leaders should be able to admit their faults and avoid acting on emotion, but it is important we recognise the banal origins of tyrannical behaviour. We are all capable of extreme tyranny.


All this is to say that there are some conspiracy theories out there that are ridiculous, yet refuse to die. Flat earth, reptilians, QAnon and fake moon landings are just a few that immediately come to mind. These theories are not only completely ridiculous, but dangerous. They serve to ideologically neutralise those who believe them: instead of directing their investigation towards actual, observable corrupt government and corporate institutions, they are too busy chasing shadows, fighting imaginary adversaries and worshiping false messiahs.

What have any of these conspiracy theorists actually accomplished? Have they created a thinktank that has shaped public policy? Have they run a successful candidate? Have they meaningfully gained influence and shaped culture? Have they captured a single reptilian? Have they found real evidence demonstrating the earth is flat? Have they proven anything? All they have achieved is increased sales of their “natural remedies” they advertise.

Julian Assange and Edward Snowden showcased actual government corruption and exposed real conspiracies in their entirety. Meanwhile, when it comes to grifters like Ricardo Bossi or Q, the revelation is always “just around the corner”.

Challenging narratives and thinking critically isn’t just about calling out corporatist media propaganda and government corruption, but also the grifters within our own movements.

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  1. With all due respect, the so-called “conspiracy theorists” have accomplished more than any other group in slowing the grotesquely incompetent and corrupt government from screwing the country and her citizenry even more than they have and are. Because, the “conspiracy theorists” are simply the first people to call public attention to whatever the Government’s latest shady, secretive, sham is.

    I do not think that it matters whether the ‘theory’ about a conspiracy is correct or not. The important point is that all of the obvious lies, nonsense and the Government’s BS is being called out and discredited. 9/11 is the best example of this. I have no idea what really happened that day, except I do know with 100% certainty that the Government’s account of it is absolute 100% BS.

    Finally, the proof that the “conspiracy theorists” are accomplishing something significant comes from governments everywhere going so berserk to silence them. Notice that nobody is censoring, doxing or deplatforming flat-earthers or reptilian-believers; because everyone knows that is nonsense. The Government has no care at all about censoring anything stupid or known to be untrue, no matter how “dangerous”. But they are going crazy to silence anyone exposing the Governments lies; such as the lies about the vaccines being safe and effective.

    Conspiracy theorists are the first to bring attention to the grotesque corruption and incompetence of Government. That is why Governments worldwide are going out of their way to silence them and why we need to listen to them, even when their specific theories are wrong.

  2. John Hyde, the former Member for Moore, observed that in his day, during party room debates about a new policy proposal, there’s was invariably a party room member who had worked in the industry or profession being discussed. That person would stand up and speak knowledgeably about what would happen if such a policy were to be introduced. In a party room of up to 100 members, it covered just about every industry and profession in the country. These days, MPs and Senators go straight from university to working for a union or political party or politician and then become politicians themselves. Many of them have never had a proper job. They know how politics works but they don’t know how the world works. The results are there for all to see.


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