ENTERTAINMENT

Bookworm: ‘Know’ won’t change minds, but it might clarify or de-clutter

Terri Schlichenmeyer
Columnist

“Stuff They Don’t Want You to Know”

  • By Ben Bowlin with Matt Frederick and Noel Brown
  • c. 2022, Flatiron Books
  • $29.99, 240 pages

They’re coming to get you. They’ve done their mischief, their dirty work, things you can’t even imagine they’re capable of doing. Now you’re next, and you won’t even know when they strike because they’re sneaky like that. They act, then you pay. Or maybe not. Read “Stuff They Don’t Want You to Know” by Ben Bowlin with Matt Frederick and Noel Brown and learn the truth about the “facts” and what’s really real.

Here’s a big shocker: “Your government is lying to you.”

“It’s happening right now,” say the authors and you may have spent considerable time worrying about it in the past few years. It’s absolutely true that the government has been involved in some rather sketchy things, but it’s also true that some of what you believe isn’t a conspiracy and that there’s probably a not-so-nefarious explanation.

“Stuff They Don’t Want You to Know” by Ben Bowlin with Matt Frederick and Noel Brown.

Take, for instance, the whole idea of chemtrails, HIV, pandemics, and your health.

It’s true that in the past, the U.S. government conducted experiments with biological weapons, cloud seeding, and the like. It’s true that a lot of what happened then is still classified today. The reality is, though, that there are “very straight-forward scientific and sociological explanations” for all those things.

African Americans have a “complicated” history in this country and it didn’t suddenly begin in the twentieth century. What happened in Tuskegee, with syphilis, was real, not a rumor, but nobody’s selling one-off sodas today with the sole purpose of sterilizing or sickening entire neighborhoods, and restaurants aren’t out to experiment on you.

Are you being tracked by the government? Probably, but not because of a vaccine. “The government doesn’t need a chip in a vaccine,” the authors say. You already have plenty of them in the cell phone you carry.

“Stuff They Don’t Want You to Know” author Ben Bowlin with Matt Frederick and Noel Brown.

UFOs are real, by definition: If you can’t identify what you see in the sky, it’s a UFO. Another word for “propaganda” is “advertisement.” And yes, absolutely, there’s a form of voting, a “shadow system” in which you cannot participate and so far, it’s perfectly legal ...

You learned it from your father’s step-aunt’s knitting Facebook group, so that kooky story you heard must be true. The surprise is that “Stuff They Don’t Want You to Know” could corroborate what you heard – or it could take things completely and methodically apart.

Think of it as a private argument finisher for the upcoming family holidays. Authors Bowlin, Fredrick, and Brown help readers learn what a conspiracy theory is and how to ask the right questions about it, to ascertain its validity. Their experiences with the “Stuff They Don’t Want You to Know” podcast lends authority when they’re destroying harmful myths, and their confident, casual tone grants breezy believability as they explain the nuggets of truth within what may seem to be out-there rumors and concepts.

This book is probably not going to change minds, but it might clarify or de-clutter some. “Stuff They Don’t Want You to Know” could also help to understand those with different thinking – and for that, you should be going to get it.

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The Bookworm is Terri Schlichenmeyer. She has been reading since she was 3 years old and never goes anywhere without a book. Terri lives on a hill in Wisconsin with two dogs and 11,000 books. Read past columns at marconews.com.