Much of the appeal of conspiracy theories is that they tend to be more complicated than the truth, thus allowing you to show off that you are the smartest guy in the room. For example, I would imagine that Oliver Stone felt pretty proud of himself after creating a state-of-the-art three-hour movie showing that JFK was assassinated by a conspiracy of both the entire military-industrial complex and a clique of eccentric French Quarter homosexuals, including Joe Pesci in an apricot-colored toupee as a defrocked monk upon whom the military-industrial complex`s vast plot depends. (I probably shouldn`t have to warn you about Joe Pesci clips by now, but Joe`s language is NSFW).
They said it couldn`t be done, but Ollie did it!
Similarly, consider today`s popular conspiracy theories about American social realities. For example, what`s the explanation for the high crime rate and low intellectual achievement rate seen among African-Americans?
The less than scintillating Occam`s Razor answer is simply: Well, that seems to be kind of how blacks on average are.
I mean, after all, it`s been like that for a long time, it`s like that everywhere in America, and it`s like that most places in the world. Billions and trillions of dollars have been spent to Close the Gap, but, year after year, nothing much happens.
But, what`s the fun of that?
Instead, the rewards come for people who dream up Invisible Knapsacks * and Stereotype Threat and White Privilege, all controlled by the shadowy White Male Power Structure. Concocting the most baroquely implausible conspiracy theory proves you are the smartest guy in the room.
*By the way, I don`t get the Invisible Knapsack metaphor. I assumed it was saying that blacks were weighted down by invisible knapsacks on their backs (just think of how high LeBron could jump without that invisible knapsack holding him down). But, my assumption appears to be backward — the invisible knapsack instead lifts whites people up because it contains an anti-gravity device. Or something. To be honest, I`m not really clear on the concept. But, whatever it is, it seems to be popular.