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Brexit supporters more likely to believe conspiracy theories

(42 Posts)
Moussemoose Mon 26-Nov-18 21:51:22

Researchers also looked at a number of other popular conspiracy theories. Both Trump and Brexit voters were more likely to believe that climate change is a hoax, vaccines are harmful, and that a group of people “secretly control events and rule the world together”. “We found the existence of a conspiratorial worldview linking both electorates,” said Leal

Brexit supporters are more likely to engage with 'science denial'.

Basically, there is no point debating facts, referencing and trying to use logic.

We may as well give up and start prepping.

ARhythmlessMan Tue 27-Nov-18 00:41:31

You omitted this part "The view that “*the truth about the harmful effects of vaccines is being deliberately hidden from the public*" ranged from lows of 10% in Britain to a startling quarter of the population – some 26% – in France.
Doesn't quite fit your narrative does it?

PineappleSunrise Tue 27-Nov-18 06:31:47

Oh, are research reports called "narratives" now? Interesting.

Peregrina Tue 27-Nov-18 07:33:58

Vaccines can cause damage in some cases - there is a compensation scheme for this, so this isn't necessarily believing conspiracy theories. I think things like flying saucers existing or the moon landings being faked, or there was a big conspiracy to kill Princess Diana are more the sorts of things that are likely to be believed but most would dismiss as conspiracies.

However, so what? Brexit supporters tend to be older and had less formal education and so much less likely to have had a scientific training, to say understand the theories behind climate change. For quite a lot of Leave voters it was all about feeling - until Cameron called his stupid referendum most people neither knew nor cared about the EU. But they did like their cheap budget airlines and an ease of taking foreign holidays undreamt of two generations ago.

Moussemoose Tue 27-Nov-18 07:38:24

@ARhythmlessMan I think you may well have proved my point.

The point about vaccines is not that the harmful effect are hidden but a large number of people form "The view that.."

The report assumes vaccines are a good thing and is pointing out that people who believe the harmful effects are hidden are conspiracy theorists alongside climate change deniers and the belief that Muslims want to control the world.

I would also point out it is not my narrative but is a report published by Cambridge university. Cambridge is usually regarded as a reputable institution. I will continue to believe it's research unless you have a theory that proves there is a conspiracy?

Mistigri Tue 27-Nov-18 07:38:27

*You omitted this part "The view that “the truth about the harmful effects of vaccines is being deliberately hidden from the public" ranged from lows of 10% in Britain to a startling quarter of the population – some 26% – in France.
Doesn't quite fit your narrative does it?*

In fact it completely supports the OP's narrative ... I live in France and I will guarantee you that a majority of the 26% who are anti-vaccine also voted for Le Pen or Melenchon at the last election (if they got out of bed to vote on the day of the election) - ie they support euro-sceptic, populist political leaders.

I'll also put money on there being a large overlap between vaccine deniers and the "gilets jaunes" currently setting fire to Paris and preventing ambulances from reaching sick people (note that these people are mostly Le Pen and Melenchon supporters). They are certainly climate sceptics as the origin of the movement is protest against taxes on fossil fuels!

RoseAndRose Tue 27-Nov-18 07:41:00

It's also been 'proven' that you are less likely to divorce if you choose butter rather than other threads.

Correlation does not mean causation

And be very careful about how individual papers are reported by third parties. Because the methodology and caveats are next to never even mentioned.

Moussemoose Tue 27-Nov-18 07:53:42

Perhaps I'm just old fashioned but I kind of think the people from Cambridge may have done some research before and when they publish on their website it isn't cobbled together rubbish.

But if you choose to believe it's a conspiracy against Brexit voters then believe away - there is nothing I can do to change your mind. The report kind of points that out.

Childrenofthesun Tue 27-Nov-18 08:03:59

I read about this a day or two ago. I can't remember which article it was, but the gist seemed to be that when Trump voters in the USA were compared to Clinton voters, a much higher proportion of them believed the conspiracy theories such as anti-vaxx or flat-earth.

When the same study was done amongst leave and remain voters in the UK, the results showed that not many people in general believed the flat earth conspiracies etc, but that there was a big difference in regard to conspiracy theories about immigration, particularly of Muslims. I believe there was one question about whether people believed immigration from mainly Muslim countries was a secret attempt by the government to Islamicise the UK and the figures were something like 31% yes for Leave voters compared to 5% for Remain voters.

The study seems to show more about attitudes to immigration naming Leave voters than anything else, which I guess we already knew. Interesting that some people who dismiss other patently ridiculous conspiracy theories will believe in them if they involve Muslims.

Childrenofthesun Tue 27-Nov-18 08:04:58

among not naming

PineappleSunrise Tue 27-Nov-18 14:56:13

Yes, the research has discovered a very interesting correlation in beliefs. It doesn't say that voting Brexit MAKES people believe there is a UK gov conspiracy about Muslims. There is nothing in the research that suggests that.

The correlation is the point.

MyNameIsArthur Tue 27-Nov-18 15:11:59

Your thread OP is just a childish attempt at having a dig at those who voted to leave. It does not help with any intelligent discussions and just helps to cause further divide. Why don't you just concentrate on mature debate on the Brexit issue itself and try and persuade others of the legitimacy of your views regarding remain.

Talkinpeece Tue 27-Nov-18 15:18:51

The issue matters because Brexit supporters who believe conspiracies are going to be incredibly angry after the event when life does not suddenly get better for them
and they will then seek explanations
which may lead to more populism and division

In the same way that the rise of fake news / conspiracy theories has brought the US legislative system to an utter gridlock

BorisBogtrotter Tue 27-Nov-18 15:37:40

Well it ties in with the level of education points:

People who believe in conspiracy theories are more likely to believe in simple solutions to complex problems.

It also goes along with the low levels of education point because people like to think they know "more" about something than others.

Moussemoose Tue 27-Nov-18 17:19:31

A childish attempt? My thread doesn't help with intelligent discussion? I think that boat has already sailed as those nice people at Cambridge University have pointed out.

AbbyMCMLXXX Tue 27-Nov-18 17:27:58

Conspiracy theories like our water will all run out?

What a load of twaddle. The idea that those who wanted to leave the EU are somehow ill educated "deplorables" is getting about as tired as calling people racist for daring to talk about Muslim rape gangs.

Change the record.

It's about time we all, leavers and remainers, got together as British people and throw this nonsensical 'deal' May has signed up for in the toilet where it belongs, or we really are up shits creek without a paddle.

Everything else is just identity politics and virtue signaling, which can follow the deal into the toilet as far as I'm concerned.

PineappleSunrise Tue 27-Nov-18 17:31:44

Why the freak out? This is a reputable study. If you don't think it resembles you, then maybe you were in the group of people who voted Brexit and DON'T believe in conspiracy theories and/or simple solutions to complex problems.

Stop throwing your toys out of the pram. It's almost like you're looking to be professionally offended.

Talkinpeece Tue 27-Nov-18 17:38:40

It's about time we all, leavers and remainers, got together as British people and throw this nonsensical 'deal' May has signed up for in the toilet where it belongs, or we really are up shits creek without a paddle.
And then do what exactly ?

AbbyMCMLXXX Tue 27-Nov-18 17:51:56

WTO? C++.... Why not? Because it doesn't work for 20% of our foreign trade already?

Oh and maybe actually take control of our laws, money and border as was promised in the Conservative manifesto.

None of which this deal does, in fact, quite the opposite.

I'd rather sign up for a deal written by the Marx Brothers than this utter shit-show.

The fact is that if this goes through Parliament (which I highly doubt) no one wins. May has attempted to appease all, and has ended up proposing something that will be detrimental to everyone. The sooner we stop rowing over conspiracy theories and other such nonsense, and realise this situation for what it is the better.

But I guess people prefer a bit of delusion and Twitter thesedays. Ce la vie.

Moussemoose Tue 27-Nov-18 19:20:07

We aren't rowing over conspiracy theories. Cambridge university has noticed a correlation between people who support Brexit and people who believe conspiracy theories.

To get out of this crisis we need to have the majority of the country behind a particular view point. Traditionally you engage with people using logic, experts and common sense.

If you are arguing with people who believe the earth is flat then you need to change the way you present your points. Or do you? Is that giving in to the lowest common denominator?

jasjas1973 Tue 27-Nov-18 19:32:36


I'm an ardent remainer but in all honesty?ell, i'd rather go no-deal then Mays deal.

AbbyMCMLXXX Tue 27-Nov-18 19:44:43

What's the definition of a conspiracy theory?

I can't be bothered to look it up for you, but it's not about flat earth theory, area 51 aliens and planned demolitions on 9/11.

There are conspiracies happening all around us, of which this EU exit deal is one. A group of people have 'conspired' to achieve an end result. In particular the 27 member states representatives, with Juncker at their helm.

The narrative that the children at Cambridge have decided to push, is that flat earth theorists and creationists (and their ridiculous ilk) are somehow similar to those in the UK who voted to leave the EU.


And without sounding pretentious, I was myself educated at a fairly reputable university, and have many Oxbridge graduates in my family and friends...and if you think these people are "experts"... I've got a bridge for sale.

My own brother for his masters degree by filling in a form online and paying a tenner, simply because he got his undergraduate degree from Cambridge.

He's a good guy, but not much of a master in anything.

This nonsense isn't worth the blog entry/nonsensical study it's written on.

"96.3,% of statistics are made up on the spot" - Vic Reeves.

Hopefully you see the point. If not who cares. Let's at least try and agree that this (May's) plan is no good, and we need to reject it wholeheartedly.

Or it's a Corbyn government. And socialism is the last thing we need.

AbbyMCMLXXX Tue 27-Nov-18 20:11:53

jasjas1973 and as an ardent leaver, this is where we can actually agree and start to form some solidarity as a country.

We're all on the same side now. The side of ensuring our country isn't the whipping boy of the EU for the next "XX" number of years.

Oh how our fallen fathers must be turning in their graves.

Moussemoose Tue 27-Nov-18 20:27:42

Yes the 'children at Cambridge' what do they know?

They are not saying flat earths and leave voters are similar they are saying in a Venn diagram there is a big overlap.

The type of people who dislike experts (sound familiar?) and believe in other conspiracy theories and more likely to vote Brexit.

This is not nonsense published on YouTube - although Brexit voters are likely to get their information from YouTube - this is published on the Cambridge university web site.

By dismissing the study out of hand because you don't believe 'experts' you prove the point they are making.

AbbyMCMLXXX Tue 27-Nov-18 20:42:27

OK, so you belive everything you hear from Cambridge, and I know numerous graduates from the establishment who I wouldn't trust with the remote control to my TV.

And yet you think I'm ill informed and get my information from YouTube.

You're boring me with your strawman nonsense and identity politics, and quite frankly I'm the only reason this thread is still alive.

So let's let it die. I've got better things to do.

Bye bye.

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