A. Ralph Epperson, the dean of conspiratorial historians, has written books and articles proposing that "the major events of the past, the wars, the depressions and the revolutions, have been planned years in advance by an international conspiracy." Epperson calls this "The Conspiratorial View of History" and, as he points out, "is definitely not the view held by the majority of historians today."
He adds, in a telling comment at a page advertising his books at Amazon.com, "The more traditional view is called The Accidental View of History, and it holds that no one really knows why events happen – they just do."
Epperson is a determinedly non-mainstream writer. Dr. Mark Cheathem, an associate professor of history at Cumberland University, is trying to make conspiratorial history more mainstream.
On his website, jacksonianamerica.com, Cheathem writes, "As far as I know, I am one of only four history professors in the U.S. to offer a course on conspiracy theories. Kathy Olmsted, Robert Goldberg, and Jeff Pasley are the other three I know of. Pasley even has a website devoted to his course ...
"I'm not as ambitious as Pasley and certainly not as well known as he, Olmsted, and Goldberg. Regardless, I want to outline the structure of my course in case someone else is interested in developing his/her own."
Cheathem describes his course as follows:
Conspiracy thinking has been a part of American society from the colonial period through the present day. Americans have labeled as enemies numerous groups, including Catholics, Communists, Democrats, Jews, Masons, Mormons, Republicans, and women, to name just a few. They have accused leaders such as George H.W. Bush, Bill Clinton, Lyndon B. Johnson, and Franklin Pierce of working to undermine the American way of life, not to mention the various conspiracy theories about aliens, AIDS, and the One World Government.
This course will explore a sample of those theories in United States history. Using an array of written and visual sources (personal correspondence, newspaper articles, editorial cartoons, televised speeches, etc.), students will be exposed to the conspiratorial language used by Americans to explain the unexplainable. They will emerge from the course with a better understanding of the differences between conspiracies and conspiracy theories, the historical context for the belief in conspiracy theories, and the use of evidence and argumentation in critically analyzing conspiracy theories.
We can see from the language that Dr. Cheathem uses that he is probably skeptical of the idea, generally, of conspiracy theories when it comes to history.
But lately, a term The Daily Bell has popularized has taken hold in the alternative media. In fact, when we last looked, there are now some 25,000 cites of "directed history" on Google. We much prefer the term directed history to conspiratorial history because it expresses the reality of what is going on today.
History is not a "conspiracy" but it is certainly directed.
Citing The Daily Bell, Professor Steven Yates has constructed a four-part series on "directed history." Below is his introduction, as posted on March 17, 2012 at NewsWithViews.com. Dr. Yates eloquently sums up what directed history is and isn't.
Lately, I've found myself using the phrase directed history ... What it expresses is the idea that key events in modern history—wars, revolutions, transformations, concentrations of wealth and power, for at least the past 250 years but possibly longer—have not been random or the mere product of economic forces but were guided: directed. History has been taken in a specific direction by a powerful superelite, as I call them. I use the term superelite to distinguish from national elites.
The superelite are global. There is an excellent case to be made that their home base is the City of London (the "City Within the City"), which headquarters the British Crown, the Bank of England, N.M. Rothschild and Sons, the London Stock Exchange, and the London School of Economics (LSE) founded by the Fabian Society and contained within the University of London. Satellite bases are to be found in Basel, Switzerland (the Bank for International Settlements), Brussels in Belgium, New York City, Washington D.C. of course, and elsewhere.
Superelite goals: global economy (achieved, for the most part), global currency (a slow work in progress), global government (in the planning stages). While there is room for debate on the specifics on what the superelite want to accomplish—as a researcher drawing inferences from a variety of sources and not an insider, I don't have a crystal ball—I sense they would prefer transitions through all these stages that are seamless as possible. Perhaps they believe the world will be a nicer place if the populations of the nations of the world simply capitulate, or just allow events to take place unnoticed.
Directed history, as I conceive it, need take no stance on whether the superelite is benign or malevolent. Carroll Quigley, the macrohistorian whose ideas figure centrally into the story, believed them benign. I believe he was wrong. If they encounter sufficient resistance the superelite will have no qualms about plunging the world into whatever crises are necessary to accomplish their goals, be they economic depressions or destructive wars.
Such notions will, of course, get you branded as a "conspiracy theorist" (or worse) in mainstream media and academic circles. We all know what a terrible thing that is to be.
There is just one problem with the label: what the superelite are doing isn't a conspiracy. The term might have applied at one time to certain of their schemes like the creation of the Federal Reserve System, but not anymore. The reason: conspiracies by definition are hidden from you. A perfect conspiracy, could there be such a thing, would be undetectable. The first job of would-be conspirators is to hide the conspiracy, and arrange things so that no one outside the circle can rationally believe there is a conspiracy. The architects of the Federal Reserve System did this for over two decades.
Directed history isn't a conspiracy theory, because for the past couple of generations, the superelite have had members or supporting fellow travelers who were not hiding. They haven't been shouting their plans from the roof of Congress, of course. Nor will you see them on Fox News, much less MSNBC (although it isn't impossible). Those either believing that something was going on behind the scenes, and sometimes those actually working towards a global regime, have written down their thoughts: sometimes in books, sometimes in articles, and sometimes in speeches. Some of their writings aren't about specific plans, but provide dead giveaways where their priorities lies. Trust me: it isn't with We the People.