It attempts to marry conspiracy theorists, with violent extremists of all creeds all for the purposes of pushing a new "Digital Literacy" agenda in The Education Department. And fails.
As DEMOS publications show time and time again, they are not written for the intellectual.....
There are so many factual inaccuracies with regards to the ideology of some groups, why they engaged in certain actions and the listing of groups no longer in operation is a moot point.... but of course, don't listen to me: I’m a conspiracy theorist.
DEMOS clearly have zero idea of which groups are threats to "national security" and which aren't.
However they worrying part of this document is clear when you reach this quote:
"The Department for Education and Skills must review how far the education system equips young people to navigate false information and counter knowledge. Despite dramatic changes in the scale and type of information that people access on-line, and the fact that the net has become the primary source of information for the majority of young people in the UK today, there is no part of the national curriculum dedicated to digital literacy."
This appears to suggest that children will be (dare I be sensational here?) trained not to question authority, and that accessing any alternative views in the pursuit of a balanced argument would be entirely ridiculous. It is merely reactionary conjecture, and a vain attempt to legitimatise stasi schooling. I write this at a time where a friend who is a teacher recently received a severe warning for showing clips of the documentary “Taking Liberties” because, and I quote “It showed the police in a less than favourable light”.
If young people are only given one half of a story, how on earth are they expected to develop critical thinking? Have their own opinions?
This is censorship it its most bare form, should people not have access to Extreme right/Extreme left/ Conservative/Judeo Christian/Anti-Fascist/ White supremacist/ Anarchist/ Democratic/ Truth Movement/ Islamic/ Republican and Totalitarian literature, from where will they decide whom they are and what to follow or believe? (Apologies to the thousands of political/religious groups I left out here).
DEMOS conclude that "Conspiracy theories are a reaction to the lack of transparency and openness in many of our institutions."
Wrong again- there are many wide and varied reasons that people will adhere to what the mainstream media refer to as conspiracy theories, and that particular reason isn't the first to come to mind. The popularity of hit television shows like "The X files" holds more weight to me. Human beings, as a species, are not to keen on being lied to, and when scandals protrude from the media to show us how our elected represtentatives have failed us time and time again, from the Iraq war to the expenses scandal, regular ordinary folks take to the net and start to ask questions, they may find the answers in the form of Aliens/Bilderberg/Reptilians or the latest Wikileaks folder.
The Afghan diaries couldn't have been more transparent or explicit if they tried, even just at a scan through the pages, and lets be fair here, the "Dead-dropping" of classified documents has been going on long before the internet, if anything the Security Services are more transparent, whether at their own behest or not.
By far my favourite quote was this one "Security and policing agencies must continue to develop personal relationships with communities to build up trust."
Because that works and there is no such thing as a double-agent. :-p
The only white knight (No templar jokes please) is that if the Security Services make more information "transparent" as they put it, perhaps the cases us "loonies" are interested in will become easier to research (Al Megarhi/David Kelly et al).
But who would believe a tall tale like that? ;-)
Rainbow Castro, Glasgow September 13th 2010