Research has found that conspiracy theorists who believe that that the Apollo moon landings of the late 1960s and early 1970s were fakes are more likely to be “narcissists” than other individuals. The online research conducted by the University of Kent has apparently found that those prone to believing such conspiracy theories were more prone to being narcissists.
Narcissism is that affliction whose name is famously derived from that of the Greek myth of Narcissus who falls in love with his own image in a pool, unable to drag himself away from it until he dies. Not all narcissists love themselves or are actually vain. In fact, many are self-obsessed in the other direction: that is they feel totally inadequate/ugly/stupid etc. In fact, it is this narcissistic type with low self esteem that the researchers of the University of Kent have found are the ones who are more likely to believe such conspiracy theories.
Accusing someone of being a narcissist can, of course, get you into trouble. The arts commentator and broadcaster, Baroness Joan Bakewell, found this out for herself when she described the psychologically-compulsive slimming disease Anorexia as a form of narcissism. On this she is probably right (see above) but it came across badly and she received criticism from mental health charities. In the end, she had to apologise and note that it was the narcissism in society that she meant.
Worse, in some respects, was that she has also implied that body shape was not an issue in her younger days. Hmmm…not sure about that. The octogenarian Bakewell was a noted attractive individual during the 1960s and 1970s who actually became the lover of the intellectual playwright Harold Pinter. Not for nothing was she amusingly dubbed by the late Frank Muir, as “a thinking man’s crumpet.”
While perhaps we should pity the pretty in attracting such attention, the rest of us not-so-beautiful people have to suffer in our own ways, but we like to make light of it. However, all this controversy will probably now stop your correspondent copying from the wit of the late Sir Clement Freud as he jokingly explains his portly body shape as being due him being a “failed anorexic”. Anorexia, after all, in both Nervosa and Bulimia variants are, serious and sometimes life threatening psychological eating disorders, causing heartache for thousands families around the world.
Finally, as this writer gets over his own bout of self-loathing, he does accept that some conspiracies (a very few) may actually be true. The trouble is we don’t yet know exactly which. However, this list of true ones most probably does not include the one in which the manned moon landings are faked given the observable physical evidence left on the lunar surface. And the fact that there were six Apollo landings actually achieved (you can probably fake it once – but not six times).