Existence is strange and there’s no way
we can ever manage to understand all the many mysteries of life, the universe and everything.
When we come across something we don’t understand, most of us turn to teachers, parents, smart
friends and probably Wikipedia, in an attempt to sort out what’s what.
Some people though, like to close their eyes, stick out their finger and believe whatever
crazy solution it lands on. And this isn’t just reserved for the darkest corners of the
internet, many well-known public figures and celebrities have dived head first into the
pool of pseudoscience, conspiracies, and good old fashioned nonsense. Today we look at 5
famous people with outrageous theories and beliefs.
Gravity seems to be a problem in a number of wild theories but one of the best surely
has to come from internet personality David Avacado Wolfe. He’s the least famous person
on this list, but he deserves first billing because of the sheer ludicrousy of his beliefs.
You probably all have a friend who shares his steady stream of vague and generally harmless
motivational memes. He has almost 6 million followers on Facebook and built a career as
a raw food enthusiast, promoting a variety of super foods and supplements. Oh and he
beliefs gravity doesn’t exist as we know it, it is actually a toxin that we should
get rid of. There are many videos of him, both interviews
and recordings of public lectures, where he puts forward a range of theories about various
foods and the body. But his gravitationally questionable theory is that he believes salt
is basically the gatekeeper of water and, to quote him, “the reasons why the oceans
are salty is that’s what’s needed to hold the water onto the earth, if that didn’t
happen the water would levitate right off the earth and that would be the end of it.”
He doesn’t say what happens to unsalted freshwater rivers and lakes but let’s assume
they’re tied down with magic rope or maybe the fish just grip onto it really, really
tightly. He loves salt for its ability to keep water retained in your muscles. He even
recommends just having it around your home to prevent allergies, insomnia and migraines.
Have you even seen a peanut with a migraine? No? Exactly.
But the Wolfe’s expertise do not end there. Here is a brief outline of some his other
wonderful theories; “Chocolate lines up planetarily with the
sun, chocolate is an octave of sun energy.” And that, children, is why you should always
eat up all your KitKats! But seriously, “chocolate lines up with the sun”, what does that even
mean. Here’s another omniscient quote of his…
Mushroom spores can “levitate off the planet because they are surrounded by a shell of
Ormus, which is actually trying to get to the centre of the sun”
I don’t think mushroom takers intend to get quite THAT high. In case you’re curious,
ORMUS is an idea created by David Hudson in 1975; they are precious metals without molecular
bonds; so all the atoms exist separately. And yes, you’re right, that is complete
nonsense. And one more of David Wolfe’s theories is
that: “Deer antler is not a product. It’s a cosmic
substance.” I’m not sure the deer will feel that way,
as you chop the space horns off their heads. He believes the horns make you younger. Did
I forget to mention he’s also a flat earther too, along with a whole load of other nonsense
theories, but we’ll stop there, I need to go and eat some salt before I float away again.
Another David now, this time ex-BBC sports presenter David Icke. David Icke started out
as a goalkeeper. Unfortunately, arthritis forced him to retire at just 21 but he went
on to carve out a successful career as a sports presenter, eventually co-hosting the BBC show
Grandstand, the most watched sports show in the UK.
Due to his arthritis, he began looking into fringe medicine and new age philosophy, which
led him to become involved with the Green Party and also to an important meeting with
a psychic, who told him he had been sent to heal the world. She didn’t say exactly what
was wrong with the world, some sort of stomach bug I presume. But nevertheless David Icke
was the man to heal it, apparently. He began developing an ever more elaborate
theory about why the world had got into such a state of war, sickness and poverty, realising
that there must be a shadowy cabal behind all the mischief. He believes that civilisation
was set up by a group of alien reptiles called the Babylonian Brotherhood. Their bloodline
continues to this day and they control everything from the UN to the media, led by the famous
Illuminati, a mysterious group of world leaders feared by tin foil hat wearers and internet
keyboard warriors across the world, yes I’m looking at you.
The reptiles came from a constellation called Draco and were drawn to earth, not for the
margaritas and well organised bus routes, but for the “monatomic gold”, which is
just another name for the ORMUS that we mentioned earlier, that impossible form of metal where
none of the atoms are bonded together. Yes, you’re hearing me correctly, David
Icke believes the world is run by lizards, with notable figures such as The Queen and
most prime ministers and presidents being part of this omniscient lizard species. The
reptiles are shape shifting and can take human from, so you’d better keep your wits about
you. If you catch anyone looking hungrily at a dead insect, then it’s probably best
to bow down to them in case they are one of your overseeing lizard lords. Oh one more
thing, he also believes he is the son of god. I’ll just leave that out there.
Do you believe in life after love? Yes I do, Cher, but I’m not sure I believe in life
after relying solely on homeopathic treatments. Cher is not alone in her support of homeopathy,
a whole host of stars from Pamela Anderson to Tina Turner, Monica Bellucci and many others
have all come out in favour of it. Now, alternative medicine is a complicated
field, containing many treatments that may do real good but have yet to be proven scientifically;
things like acupuncture, traditional Chinese medicine and chiropractic for example. There
is a lot of anecdotal evidence about their effectiveness but this has not been backed
up by clinical testing, yet. The same cannot be said however about homeopathy.
Trial after trial has proven, without a doubt, that the practise has no benefits, beyond
the placebo effect. In one of the most recent tests, Professor Paul Glasziou, from Bond
university in Australia, oversaw 176 individual studies and found absolutely no difference
between homeopathy and the placebo effect for 68 different illnesses. Hopefully, they
can now begin looking into other more important theories such as; “If eating carrots helps
night vision, if I eat rabbits will I see in infa-red?”
So, what is homeopathy? Invented by Samuel Hahnemann in 1796, it follows three laws;
the law of similars, the law of infinitesimals and the law of succussion. If the last one
sounds like a made up word, well that’s because it is.
The law of similars means finding a cure that is similar to the symptoms, such as caffeine
for insomnia or onions to treat the streaming eyes from hay fever.
Then, the law of infinitesimals means the more you dilute the substance in water, the
more it increases its potency which is just as ludicrous and contradictory as it sounds.
The law of succussion just tells you to shake or tap the container during each mix, so that
the water maintains a “memory” of the substance.
A lot of medicines are sold as 30C or 100C, where the C stands for centesimal. 1C is one
drop of the substance added to 99 drops of water. 2C is one drop taken from that the
previous solution (which remember is 1% substance, 99% water) and added to another 99 drops of
water. So 30C is this same process repeated 30 times over, making it one part per million
million million million million million million million million million (1 in 1060). Numbers
this big are kind of meaningless so let me give you an analogy; to dilute one full drop
of a substance in a 30C solution, you would need enough water to cover every single planet
in 500 million universes. So I’ll get a bucket, you better start that rain dance.
Basically, when you buy homeopathic treatments, you are literally paying for very expensive
water. When asked, most homeopathy consumers thought they were actually taking pills containing
some kind of herbal extracts, but in reality the original substance which was diluted in
it was lost long ago during the repeated dilution process. What you’re left with, is water
infused sugar pills. But, having said all this, the placebo effect
is real, it even works on animals, and something with a long standing history like homeopathy,
even if it is based on a scientific falsehood and we have repeatedly proved that it doesn’t
work, is actually still quite likely to work and be effective on individuals who “believe”
it to be true, because their placebo effect after the treatment will be more powerful.
Now, if homeopathy requires you to reject some of your understandings of science, Grammy
nominated rapper B.o.B would like you to tear up all your text books and make a new paper
mache model of the world. In his single Flatline he laid out his belief that we live on a flat
earth. He claims we have all been “Indoctrinated in a cult called science” and calls out
famous astrophysicist Neil De Grasse Tyson, claiming he has been paid off. The scientist,
along with his nephew, even created a retaliation rap.
How did B.o.B end up with his bizarre conclusion that the world is a spinning plate? Mankind
has actually known the world is round for a very long time since it explains the way
ships disappear over the horizon and why during a lunar eclipse it is possible to see the
shadow that Earth makes on the moon and you can quite clearly see that it’s a sphere.
Flat Earthers believe the world is a disc with the Arctic Circle in the middle and the
Antarctic acting as a wall of ice surrounding the big plate. You can’t walk over the edge
because the wall is guarded by NASA, possibly all disguised as penguins.
Now I’m sure you have some questions like; what about the sun? What about planes and
satellites? And “If earth is a plate, does it mean we’re someone’s lunch?”
According to flat earthers the sun and moon are apparently spheres measuring 51 kilometres
across and they move in circles above the earth, just under 5000 kilometres away, shining
down like spotlights. The sun has a slightly spiralled orbit to account for its changing
position in the seasons. There’s also an anti-moon, which causes eclipses, and is made
of crackers so you can eat it together with the cheese from the actual moon. Oh wait,
that’s Wallace and Gromit. How the sun stays up there is a different
matter since gravity isn’t real. According to their theory, the earth is accelerating
upwards at 9.8 m/s2, like we’re on some sort of interstellar pancake elevator. So
when you slip, you’re not falling, the world is just high fiving you in the face.
All of NASAs achievements have been faked of course and every shot of the round earth
is just a nifty bit of photo-shopping. And when it comes to air travel, well all GPS
has been rigged so pilots think they are travelling around a sphere but in fact are just wasting
all our time, taking the scenic route in a big circle.
The approach of the believers is to follow something called the Zetetic Method which
values sensory observation above everything else. So if the world looks flat, it must
be flat, right? By this logic, that tree is not far away, it’s just very small and Donald
Trump is exactly what he appears to be; an angry genetically modified potato.
Billy Corgan sprang to fame in the 90s as the face of the band Smashing Pumpkins, who
became one of the largest rock bands of the era. Their albums Mellon Collie and the Infinite
Sadness and Siamese Dream are ranked at 82 and 362 in the Rolling Stone Magazine’s
list of greatest albums of all time. But Billy dreams no longer, recently describing
himself and Motley Crue drummer, Tommy Lee, as “awake”. This is conspiracy theory
lingo for seeing what is really going on behind the shadowy curtain. And one of his current
theories of choice is the notorious chemtrails. When you look up into the sky, on a bright,
cloudless day, you’ll occasionally see the white plume, left in the wake of a passing
plane. Corgan, along with other stars such as Beck and Kylie Jenner, believe that these
clouds are chemicals that the government is intentionally pumping into the atmosphere.
Why would they do this? Well perhaps to make people sick and get money through pharmaceutical
sales, maybe as some sort of mind control technique, weather modification, or perhaps
just to use the sky as a gigantic etch-a-sketch. In reality, these trails are caused by a couple
of factors. Most importantly, the exhaust coming from the engines is hotter than the
surrounding air so this difference in temperature allows water to condense and then freeze,
thanks to the ambient temperature of the high altitudes. The particles in the exhaust, such
as soot and sulphur compounds, often serve as a site for this condensation and freezing
to take place. It’s also possible for the change in pressure, caused by the wings and
the body of the plane, to act as a trigger. These “contrails” (condensation trails)
can remain for minutes or hours, depending on the atmospheric conditions at the time.
These trails may have an environmental impact, since they can form sizeable clouds, but their
effect is limited to how they reflect heat radiation, rather than the chemical content
of the clouds themselves. Even if Chemtrail believers reject these explanations,
there’s still a major flaw in the theory since, given the height of the planes, any
chemicals being sprayed out would dissipate over hundreds of miles and lose their potency,
long before they reached the ground below. But as for Billy, he still believes that we
cannot be saved. Musicians, nutritionists and sports presenters
are one thing, but what happens when the world’s most powerful man has a bizarre theory close
to his heart? Former US president Ronald Reagan was an avid believer in Numerology.
Numerology covers a range of superstitions about the relationship of numbers with people
and events, often in the realm of the paranormal and relating to divination and astrology.
Some form of number based belief is common in many cultures, with lucky and unlucky numbers
being created from the sounds and symbols of the words, or perhaps with their religious
connections, such as the Holy Trinity or the twelve apostles in Christianity and May 4th
in Jediisim. For Reagan, led largely by his wife Nancy
and her favourite astrologer Joan Quigley, this mostly manifested itself in how he scheduled
certain events. He delayed his inauguration as Governor of California by 9 minutes to
put it at the most opportune moment. He even used numerology to decide on the set up of
the Reykjavík Summit in 1986, where Reagan and Gorbachev laid the groundwork for the
end of the cold war. I would not have liked to have been the translator who had to tell
Gorbachev “we’re just waiting untill Mars enters Uranus.”
Maybe his many psychics did help him though as he was able to finally overcome the Curse
of Tippecanoe. 9th president William Harrison was involved in a war with a Native American
tribe called the Shawnee, including the Battle of Tippecanoe. Supposedly, a Shawnee prophet
called Tenskwatawa cursed Harrison and since then every president elected on a 20th year
anniversary of William Harrison (1840) has died in office. This includes Lincoln (1860),
Garfield (1880), McKinley (1900) and JFK (1960) as well as Harding’s (1920) heart attack
and Roosevelt’s (1940) cerebral haemorrhaging. But after Reagan became president the curse
seems to have been broken. Thanks to Reagan’s belief in magic numbers,
George W Bush, elected in 2000, was able to survive 3 attempted assignations, an attack
by a journalist’s shoe, choking on a pretzel and was one of the lucky members of the White
house not to be shot in the face by Dick Cheney while hunting.
It’s somehow reassuring to know that no matter how famous or powerful you become,
you can still be scared of monsters under the bed and believe in the magical cures and
treatments that could fix us all in an instant. I personally, sometimes have the creepy feeling
that I’m being watched by mysterious strangers from around the world. Ha, silly isn’t it?