I actually believe in some conspiracies. For example, I think it's very possible the US navy shot down flight TWA 800 and covered it up. I think the shot was an accident, but, still, there were cover ups and misdirections after the fact, and that's where the conspiracies lie.
I also think I could be wrong. That's kind of crucial to not letting a preset conclusion become the start of how you see all the evidence that may or may not be there.
Which is where almost all the conspiracy theories that run rampant in the cryptocurrency world lose me. They start with the conclusion that various powers that be are out to destroy crypto in order to preserve current power structures, and then work backwards to whatever inference can be twisted into supposed "evidence."
Who exactly is behind this plan to suppress everything that crypto could become? The Bilderberg group, the Illuminati, "statists," bankers, the 1%... they're kind of whoever you need them to be in order to believe they have the power and resources to be capable of all the things people want to attribute to them.
This is another hallmark of fantastical conspiracy thinking, an expansive and boundless scope. "They", whoever "they" are, are in all the halls of power, in the government, the banks, the secret services, the rich, the influential, whoever they need to be in order to execute any recent set back against crypto.
Generally speaking, the conspiracy theories in the world of crypto stop a little short of a New World Order controlled by aliens, but only just barely.
Nonetheless, a general conspiracy by the global elite runs wild in the world of Bitcoin and cryptocurrencies in general. "They" don't want us to have financial freedom, so "they" are trying to sabotage Bitcoin by using all sorts of psy-ops campaigns, financial manipulation, and government opposition.
Starting from the assumption that the US Federal Reserve Bank, or CIA, or whoever is working against Bitcoin, it becomes possible to see their hand in every slightly odd occurrence, anything that seems to go against the desires of the person proposing their involvement.
One reason I don't believe in most of the conspiratorial thinking because of a lack of concrete evidence. It's just a lot of reading what one wants to see between the lines. But the biggest reason I don't believe in a grand conspiracy against Bitcoin is a bit of Occam's Razor. Occam's Razor is often defined as "the simplest explanation is often the correct one," but is more accurately, "the explanation requiring the least amount of assumptions is more likely to be correct."
There is enough greed, stupidity, and competition among humans to adequately explain all the failings and infighting in the world of crypto without having to also add in the supposition of shadowy actors trying to push a specific agenda that ties everything together into a coordinated master plan.
For example, one of the big conspiracy theories in the world of crypto, particularity among supporters of Bitcoin Cash, is that the company Blockstream is the front for some larger conspiracy to sabotage the Bitcoin project. There are some aspects of Blockstream's involvement in Bitcoin that feed into conspiracy theories. They took a lot of investment, where not all the amounts or sources are known, and then started making decisions that a lot of people believe crippled Bitcoin's development. Decisions like forcing people to use Lighting, which puts control of their money into custodial, centralized services. Some say that crippling was deliberate, because otherwise, Bitcoin could become a legitimate competitor to the US dollar, and global power, and blah, blah, blah.
I think it was simple profit motive. In a way, Blockstream was, is, trying to solve the same problem that Amaury Sechet was trying to solve with his funding proposal. The fact is that miners get money to mine, but developers don't get money to develop. It is a fundamental disparity in the cryptocurrency space that many people have tried to address in different ways. Pre-mines, ICOs, and so on.
Blockstream managed to get investment by proposing that the huge potential future profits of Bitcoin could, at least in part, be siphoned away from miners and into the pockets of developers and their backers so long as people could be convinced to move their transactions onto side chains.
And an interesting thing happens to people when money is involved. Upton Sinclair alluded to it when he said, "It is difficult to get a man to understand something, when his salary depends on his not understanding it." In other words, when people believe their income, their livelihood, maybe even their survival, are at stake, they believe whatever they need to believe that supports the income stream they have.
I bet the people in Blockstream who push Lightning, or whatever, legitimately believe that blocks can not scale. To not believe that would mean resolving cognitive dissonance in a way that forces them to accept uncomfortable truths. That's what people do. They lift themselves up and then believe whatever narrative can assure themselves that what they did to get where they are was honorable, natural, and right.
When people are faced between a choice of believing a fact, or believing that they are a good person, they will almost always abandon facts in favor of self image. And then do whatever backward rationalizing needed to make it all make some kind of sense.
This seems like a much simpler explanation with less moving parts than a grander conspiracy backed by shady global power elites with secret back room dealings.
Of course, it's not my place to tell anyone what they should believe, and I don't think anything I say here, or anywhere, will convince anyone to stop believing in the conspiracy theories anyway.
I just sigh with disappointment any time I'm hanging out in Bitcoin Cash communities, online of off, and people start casually talking about Bitcoin is being suppressed by forces in power that want to see crypto fail. Partly because it's a self serving narrative that reduces the complexities of the world down to comforting bed time stories about battles between good and evil. It's also notably self serving, in that of course the people who put forth these ideas get to imagine themselves as the good guys.
More than disappointing, though, if I'm being totally honest here, it's embarrassing. I'm cautious about how I talk to my friends about my involvement or interest in crypto, because probably the second biggest reputation crypto has after that of being a meaningless Ponzi casino, is that of crypto being a community of paranoid delusionals who LARP as freedom fighters in a secret war against the global Illuminati.
There are a lot of people doing good work with crypto. Building infrastructure and services, trying to on board people who are as yet unable to participate in the world economy as it is, and trying to promote a very simple and powerful premise: that currency need not necessarily be backed by government. I'd love for crypto to be known for those things.
But all those concepts are easily undermined each time someone comes along to say, "... but of course, they don't want crypto to succeed, because they are trying to control you..."