One guilty pleasure in the life of a curious person is indulgence in the world of conspiracy theories. Conspiracy theories serve an important purpose for one major reason: they contain plenty of truth or of verifiable fact in resistance to secret, corporate or government entities that are not forthcoming with the truth about strange, criminal, covert or extra normal events.
Conspiracy theories help humans to imagine the worst. Imagining the worst helps to prepare the human mind and society for the worst. Preparing for the worst is essential to survival.
The first element or stage of a great conspiracy theory is the knowledge of, witnessing or experience of an unusual and important event by people who are sound and stable members of society. When such individuals maintain their positions and refuse to recant their statements, they take on even more legitimacy, especially when they have proof that dirty tricks or acts of intimidation were used to silence or coerce them.
Examples of stable and appealing witnesses include astronauts, community leaders, police, solid citizens, soldiers and pilots who have seen UFOs. Scientists who have worked for shady government, corporate or secret organizations may reveal information concerning activities that they are concerned about. Investigators, either private or government may reveal what they can after making discoveries of important matters.
The second element and stage of a great conspiracy theory are the ongoing revelations and surmisals that the conspiracy is of a magnitude that will affect at least hundreds of thousand of humans, create major environmental impacts, change life as we know it or will repeat the great crimes of history, including genocide, totalitarian coups and illegally giving power to the financial and social elites.
Examples include fears of risky scientific experiments such as the huge radio antenna array in Alaska that can heat the atmosphere, the Hadrion Collider that could open up gateways to life laden alternative universes, or biological work that can wipe out mankind. There is a secretive group that is supposed to have a goal of killing all but a few hundred thousand humans.
The third great element of a great conspiracy theory is that the likelihood of a major event or catastrophic result is relatively high. The year 2012, ideas of a major proton storm from the sun, a massive earthquake in California, a massive oil...oops...that is real. Anyway, impending doom that has good science behind it will quickly elevate a dormant or lesser conspiracy theory into the major leagues of conspiracy theories!
As examples, there are concerns about huge underground survival shelters at the "new Area 51" that are only for the academic, genetic, political, financial and social elites. The latest concept of triggering doom is supposed to come from proton storms that will decimate all of the world's power grids.
The final great element and stage of a great conspiracy theory lies in the many devoted and dedicated heroes who keep them alive. Conspiracy theories that are tied to a specific time frame, such as the 2012 apacalypto, die with the end date. But such individuals work to gather information, to compile it and to publicize it so that everyone, from the most obsessed conspiracy buff to the individual with an open mind to the idea that much is hidden from us, has a way to keep up on the latest evidence and support for the major unsolved theories.
In the end, it is a known fact that secrecy conceals much more than information that would compromise national security and safety, or that would protect privacy or proprietary rights. Secrecy is regularly abused to conceal acts of criminal, immoral, risky and damaging nature too.
Conspiracy theorists, investigators, reporters and buffs will always shine a light of public interest and concern on any endeavor that might impact the whole of mankind, but is cloaked in unreasonably overwhelming secrecy. When that secrecy is supported by borderline criminal forces of suppression that are not required to undergo some form of government oversight or public scrutiny, such conduct is the great amplifier of conspiracy theory.