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Thursday, January 6, 2022

Lizard people, deadly orgies and JFK: How QAnon hijacked Hollywood to spread conspiracies

Anita Chabria
The Los Angeles Times
Originally posted 7 DEC 21

Here is an excerpt:

Bloom, the extremist researcher, said the familiarity of recycled Hollywood plots may be part of what eases followers into QAnon’s depths: Although the claims are outlandish, they tickle at recollections, whether from fiction or reality.

That sense of recognition gives them a level of believability, said Bloom — an “I’ve heard that before” effect. Part of the QAnon logic, she said, is that films and television shows that contain the conspiratorial story lines are viewed by believers as kernels of truth dropped by the elites — a sort of taunting acknowledgment of their misdeeds.

“Part of the idea is that Hollywood has been doing this for ages and ages, and they have been hiding in plain sight by putting it in film,” Bloom said.

That idea of using art to hide life is sometimes reinforced by actual events, she said. She uses the example of the 1999 Stanley Kubrick film “Eyes Wide Shut,” about a New York doctor, played by Tom Cruise, who stumbles into a deadly orgy attended by society’s power players. Some QAnon adherents believe that there is a cabal of influential pedophiles who murder children during ritualistic events to harvest a hormone that provides eternal youth and that the film was a nod to that activity.

She points to the Jeffrey Epstein case, and the current trial of his confidante, Ghislaine Maxwell, as factual instances of high-profile sex-trafficking allegations that seem pulled from those story lines, and have now been folded into the QAnon narratives.

“That’s one of the reasons some of the more outlandish things resonate, is because it sort of seems plausible,” Bloom said.

She also points out that the fear of sacrifices fits with the antisemitic trajectory of QAnon — it ties into centuries-old conspiracies about “blood libel” — the false belief of Jewish people killing Christians for their blood — which in turn can be tied to myths of European vampires.