Conspiracy Theories & Captain Obviov’s Razor
This post was co-written with Captain Obviov aka Zmey Gorynych aka Captain Gorynych aka Zmey Obviov. [Zmey Gorynych’s heads were blown off during a KGB experiment which went wrong. The head of mortally wounded Captain Obviov was transplanted onto Gorynych’s neck least affected by explosion.]
Captain Obviov’s Razor: why blame somebody for something when you can blame Russia/Russians for everything.
There are specific (‘untranslatable’) Russian words/terms which have a mild mind altering effect on foreigners interested in dissecting the ‘zagadochnaya Russkaya dusha‘ – mysterious Russian soul. Vladimir Nabokov popularized the term ‘poshlost’‘ (in the form of ‘poshlust’) which imho perfectly describes this Western (quasi)colonial sentiment. When these words are said/read/etc. suddenly vodka drinking bears in ushankas with balalaikas start rotating around a Russia-curious person’s head.
There’s a popular Russian slogan: “lokh eto sud’ba“, i.e. [being] lokh is destiny. Who’s a lokh? Lokh is a fool, blockhead, looser, dawdler, good-for-nothing, naive, credulous, gullible person. Obviously, lokh can be easily fooled. The state of being a lokh can be defined as lokhness (lochness). Among the characteristic features of lokhness is obsession with conspiracy theories, and it doesn’t even matter in what way – pro- or anti-:
Of course, there is an anti-Russian conspiracy. The only problem is that the entire adult population of Russia is involved in it. Viktor Pelevin, “Generation P” (1999).
I guess this quote is equally appealing to Russian and Western lo… gullible persons. It focuses on presumed Russians’ negative characteristics (which are the ONLY thing to blame here) without noticing a Big World outside of Russia.
The biggest conspiracy is the term ‘conspiracy theory’ itself. Uncritical use of this term and labeling all views contradicting the master discourse as ‘conspiracy theories’ is propaganda in its purest form.
So I’ll paraphrase Pelevin’s words:
Of course, there is Russian propaganda. The only problem is that all mainstream Western media spreads it 24/7 in the form of “anti-Russian propaganda”.
This is the conspiracy which almost nobody is aware of. Look around you – Russians are EVERYWHERE.
Let’s keep it a secret, OK? 😉