'Fantasyland' Author Kurt Andersen: Millions Of People, Including The President, Believe Goofy Conspiracy Theories


Kobi Libii examines an explosive online conspiracy surrounding Robert Mueller's Russia probe, and discusses America's obsession with fringe theories with author Kurt Andersen.

Kurt Andersen, author of Fantasyland: How America Went Haywire: A 500-Year History, talks about "The Storm," the biggest online political conspiracy theory of the Trump era, in this clip from Comedy Central's ' The Opposition w/ Jordan Klepper.'

The book "is about how these kinds of nutty conspiracy theories and all kinds of magical thinking really are pretty fundamental to the American character," Andersen said.

"So you're saying that there is nothing more American than a conspiracy theory?" Libii said.

"No, we're not. People can look at something like this and say it is silly, goofy, funny. But there are a lot of people --in the millions-- who take this kind of thing very seriously, and that is where it gets dangerous."

"And now it has reached members of Congress and the president -- who is really a kind of conspiracy-theorist in chief. Birtherism, a conspiracy. Millions of people illegally voting, a conspiracy," Andersen said.

"The Storm is just a short hop skip away from those kinds of thinking," Andersen said about the president's past claims.

"So conspiracies are heading mainstream? Awesome."

Andersen also appeared on the Sam Harris Podcast this year, where he talked about "the American aptitude for unfounded belief, the religious lunacy of the Puritans, populist mistrust of authority, the link between postmodernism and religious fundamentalism, the unique history of American religious entrepreneurship, the Trump phenomenon, the effect of fame on politics, and other topics."

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