Ironically enough, there is a conspiracy theory surrounding the term "conspiracy theories". According to Ron Unz, the CIA started using the term "conspiracy theories" to manipulate public opinion after conspiracy theories surrounding whether Lee Harvey Oswald acted alone when he killed John F. Kennedy got started in the mid-1960s. Karl Popper, a political philosopher of Jewish ancestry who fled Austria in 1937, regarded "conspiratorial beliefs" as one of the causes of the rise of National Socialism. Ron believes that this and many other factors led to a scenario that made it easy for the CIA to discredit views by labelling them "conspiracy theories" and now that term is considered a negative one by the public. The term "conspiracist" was coined in 1975. It goes without saying that the description "conspiracy theory" does not say what is true or false.
- Ron Unz (8 September 2016). "How the CIA Invented and Promoted 'Conspiracy Theories' to Discredit Controversial Views". alternet.org. Retrieved 8 May 2017.
- "conspiracist". merriam-webster.com. Retrieved 8 May 2017.
- Michael Shermer (1 December 2010). "The Conspiracy Theory Detector". scientificamerican.com. Retrieved 13 May 2017.