Ben Thomas asks the Hard Question(s)

No, seriously, he does. I’ve known Ben for a while now; I remember clearly him dragging me into his office at Cracuum, where he played me his first received death threat on the old answer-ophone.

Yes, those were the days.

Anyway, in lieu of actual posting (I have drafts a-plenty) I thought I would point people towards local Conspiracy Theories. The one that seems to have had a lot of blogosphere attention has been Cameron ‘Whaleoil’ Slater and Clint Heine’s credulity over an obvious (and malacious) prank. The details need not be repeated here (if you want the goss, so to speak, then you need not go past this post on Public Address and this one on Poneke’s Blog). Ben, who now politically edits the news for the National Business Review, had this to say in response to Clint Heine’s assertion that the prank was all a part of Labour’s attempt to stay in power.

Okay, I’ll be the idiot who asks the obvious question: WHY do you think that? On what grounds? How does it follow from the fact you are lazy and easily fooled by a malicious prank that there is some organised conspiracy by the Labour Party?

It’s a good question; Cameron Slater and Clint Heine were duped and are now trying to make out that they weren’t. It’s conceivable that they even believe this; embarrassment can make a `man’ revise his previously deeply held beliefs and do it in such a way that they think they never thought otherwise (George Orwell’s `1984′ and the eternal war come to mind). It’s also conceivable that they are hoping we’ll believe them so that the burning shame that must be filling the space between their ears won’t be revisited upon them again and again and again. Whatever the case, Heine does seem to be alleging Conspiracy; he’s engaging in a Conspiracy Theory where nasty old Helen Clark and Mike Williams are setting up poor innocent bloggers like himself and Slater to take falls.

Still, when it comes to true vapidity (which turns out to be a word) me old mucker (and I use the term lightly) Trevor Loudon turns the credulity all the way to 11. Believe me when I say, to paraphrase the Fundypost, I read this so you don’t have to.

Trevor, in his latest `expose’ of the Greens has published the contents of an e-mail he received. The anonymous tipoff claims that the Kotare Trust building has raw sewerage running through it and people have become ill. Loudon, by way of supporting evidence, supplies what he takes to be the salient part of a newsletter:

This meeting was particularly good for those of us who integrate our understanding with our action – we took a walk around the grounds and checked out the various concerns and celebrations – including wonderfully growing plants, new chickens, the wetlands, sewerage filter station, and where we will plant our trees to off set carbon emissions generated by travel…

You can almost hear his reasoning; the people who run the Kotare Trust are Enviromentalists. That makes them Luddites. They have a sewerage filter station. Ipso facto, the sewerage must be washing around their feet. ((Plus, of course, because they are Lefties they are hard of heart and eat babies for breakfast.))

Or something like that. He claims to have reported the so-called incidence to the Police and report back on whatever actions are taken, insinuating that a lack of action will indicate something malign. So we get a `Nasty Lefties’ stories (they are so uncaring), a dose of anti-environmentalism and the old `the police are just a tool of the Establishment’ rolled into one proto-Conspiracy Theory. I eagerly await the results of his work.

Back to your regularly scheduled programming.