The Conspiracy Page

  Whilst Science Fiction has been my favourite genre since I was a child, there is a subject which has become equally interesting to me as I have matured - conspiracies and conspiracy theories (my first published work is titled 'The Star Ring Conspiracy').
  Conspiracies surround us and are, I believe, an integral part of what you might call 'The Human Condition'. To elaborate on this, we first need to understand what a conspiracy is. To start with, let's take a look at a dictionary definition:

1) An agreement between two or more persons to do an evil act in concert; a plot; secret combination of people for an evil purpose.
  2) Law: A combination of two or more persons to commit any act punishable by law.
  3) Any striking occurrence of persons, classes or agencies.

  Point 3) is the most interesting, as it is almost deliciously vague. 
  The definition of conspire is also worth investigating:

To plot or scheme for; to form a plot, especially secretly, for evil or unlawful purposes; to concur in action or endeavour, as circumstances.

  So far, so good, but these definitions are a bit dry. We need to expand the subject by looking at synonyms:

  Cabal, combination, conclave, crew, faction, gang.
  A faction is more extensive than a conspiracy, less formal in organisation and less definitive in plan. It also has unfavourable overtones.
  A cabal commonly denotes a conspiracy of leaders
A conclave is a secret but larger group than a cabal and may have honourable use; as, the conclave of cardinals.

  This is a bit more like it, with political and subversive undertones bubbling away like a witches brew of intrigue.
  Now we need to refine the terms and for that I refer you to 'Use The Right Word':

Conspiracy can apply to any combination of persons united for the accomplishment of an unlawful or reprehensible end.
Cabal suggests a small, well organised group of highly placed people intent on a clearly defined goal which usually involves an attempt to bring about a power change in government structure or to overthrow someone in authority.
  Junta is the most specific and almost always denotes a group of people united for political intrigue. May also be a temporary government in a crisis or an emergency government set up after a revolution.

  Unsurprisingly we found ourselves gravitating towards scheming, underhand machinations for political and personal gain, but the best is yet to come. Look up the word conspiracy in a Thesaurus and you find a range of emotive and descriptive words and phrases:

Intrigue, plot, scheme, game, underplot, counterplot, confederacy, complicity, collusion, connivance, cabal, artifice, contrivance, scheming, plotting, finagling, machination, manipulation, maneuvering, engineering, wirepulling, pipelaying (US slang).

  There is one more word that appears in the Thesaurus which is so special that I have saved it for last - Machiavellan. Niccolo Machiavelli (1469 to 1527) was a Florentine statesman and writer on government whose most famous work is 'The Prince'.

Machiavellan: Of or purtaining to to Niccolo Machiavelli or the unscrupulous doctrines of political opportunism associated with his name; The theory and practice of power politics elaborated from Machiavelli's 'The Prince', envisaging;
  (1) Seizure, maintenance and extension of absolute power by the nicely graduated use of guile, fraud, force or terror.
(2) Control by the ruler of all forms of communication to deliberately mould public opinion.
  (3) The employment for surveillance and terrorist activities of subordinates who can be disowned and liquidated by the ruler, who thus escapes blame for their atrocities.

  It is amazing to me that wherever I look in the world today, I see Machiavellan practices being used as a matter of course with little or no serious objection. But then, maybe I shouldn't be surprised because, as I stated earlier, I believe that conspiracies are an integral part of being human. We all have our own private schemes and plots, we all feel that people or events conspire against us (and conversely that extremely successful people 'have the luck of the devil'). Throughout history the best loved tales involve conspiracies, plots and intrigue. In the most ancient stories it was often the Gods conspiring against men.
  Imagine how dull and dreary our lives would be without the concept of conspiracy.

  Please feel free to email me and visit my facebook page.




The Star Ring Conspiracy

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