Recommended Read: Them by Jon Ronson

them‘I Wish My Life Could Be/ As Strange As A Conspiricy’ Primative Painters by Felt

And don’t we all. Conspricy is at the heart of some very popular  works of fiction: John Huston’s film Winter Kills, The X- Files, The Matrix

But is it so much fun in real life?

I remember reading and enjoying Welsh journalist  Jon Ronson‘s columns for the London listing magazine Time Out – this was in the early ’90s, I think – and catching some of his documentary series The Secret Rulers Of The World early in 2001.

Ronson is a funny writer but also very thoughtful and self-depreciating.

In the 2001 book Them (no connection with the ’50s sci-fi film -or is there, mmm), Ronson spends over five years with ‘extremists’ such as the Ku Klux Klan, Omar Bakri Muhammad, David Icke and Dr Ian Paisley. He visits a Jihad training camp,  an Aryan Nations camp and attends a weird pagan ceremony in California. He’s threatened, chased by Men In Black types and told to ‘F*** off’ by Lord Denis Healy!

On the way he finds out that all these extremists share a belief  in the  New World Order. A sinister cabal controlling the world. (Mostly Jews, apparently, although in Paisley’s case, unsurprisingly, the NWO are run by the Catholic Church.)

And so he digs further and tries to find out if there really is a NWO.

This is a fascinating and funny read which is also  infuriating, frighting and at times touching.

In the hands of,say, Louis Theroux it could have been a little smug or sneery but the warmth of Ronson’s personality shines through.