The Curse of Oak Island… does the narrator ask more questions than he provides commentary? Anyway, I can’t shake the feeling that the curse is actually thinking that something valuable is hidden. And a kind of metaphor for those who have become hooked on watching it too. I remember watching Al Capone’s vault back in 1986, and how the build-up didn’t match the reveal. Oak Island feels a bit like that, but the ending hasn’t been written yet…

I’m not questioning the evidence that something is underground. What I don’t quite understand is why anyone would go to all the trouble to create an elaborate hiding place for treasure in such a way that makes it impractical to access it for themselves. Or is there something I’m missing? I’m trying to figure out their motivation – why would anyone spend a bunch of time and money to hide a bunch of valuables that they (or their great-great-…grandkids) can’t access? If you had a treasure, would you spend money to hide the money you’ll never be able to spend?

But I understand the appeal of a good mystery – I grew up enjoying Encyclopedia Brown and Scooby Doo. So to some, maybe the journey to maybe find nothing is worth more than spending your remaining days on earth doing something else. But that’s the hook of a conspiracy, and it reinforces the idea that if someone went into all this effort, there’s gotta be something valuable hidden. There just has to be. There are too many dots to connect, and once you see some patterns, you get sucked into believing they’re real.

Some may argue that all this Russian collusion stuff is similar to Oak Island in this regard – people enjoy a mystery, they think they see some dots to connect, and then presume a particular picture must emerge. So when a 300+ page report gets summarized to 4 pages by the same person who wrote a 19 page unsolicited memo critiquing Mueller’s investigation and essentially elevating the bar regarding what might constitute obstruction of justice by a president, it’s reasonable to notice the pattern that those in power do not want us to recognize the pattern of their behavior and lies.

Though the activities on Oak Island do not need to pass the prosecutorial threshold of ‘beyond a reasonable doubt’, I’m uneasy about simply disregarding the incessant protesting by those who were under investigation. To me, it’s similar to having the owners of the treasure lead an expedition of treasure hunters to look for clues to the treasure they’ve hid. The treasure hunters notice a treasure chest on the beach with a big painted ‘X’ on the top, and the owners are yelling, “Cold, COLD, COLD!!!” as the expedition moves towards the chest. And then, after everyone approaches the chest, the owner’s lawyer volunteers to open the chest alone and tell everyone if there’s any treasure in it. And, of course, tells everyone it’s empty – this is not the treasure you’ve been looking for – it’s getting dark, let’s go home. Now, maybe whatever is in the chest is not worthy to be called a treasure. Maybe it’s a pile of plastic trinkets easily disregarded. Or maybe there are some valuable gold nuggets or diamonds hidden within the chest that only a careful observer would notice. We’ll never know, because we weren’t given the chance to look in the chest ourselves. But I believe there will be evidence of the existence of collusion, but likely not enough evidence to prove the existence beyond a reasonable doubt.

When the search for truth is subservient to any dominant narrative, justice cannot be served. The law and order that many proclaim to be the basis for our republic is a mirage, but a comfortable delusion for those in power. Just as it’s not clear to me why anyone would spend money to bury money they’ll likely never access, it’s not clear to me why persistent lies are told about events that apparently were innocent. Why lie about the meetings if they occurred? Why lie about the topics discussed if there’s nothing to hide? Why gaslight those who are choking from the dense smoke by insisting there’s no fire? We’re being told that mountains of evidence (the treasure) either doesn’t exist or there’s nothing valuable in it. We’re expected to simply trust and believe the summary from those who have a vested interest in making sure no one looks at the evidence. They play us as fools and call us the crazy ones. Because they can.

We humans are fickle – we desire mystery so much that we’re willing to imagine what is likely not there, and are unwilling to admit the evidence in plain sight. Self-deception, for the sake of power or winning, is a powerful narcotic. Humility is its kryptonite, and is seemingly in short supply. Maybe our thirst for ‘special knowledge’ greases the skids to conspiratorial nonsense. Maybe our curse is that we prefer to deny reality, in whatever form it presents itself.

Maybe there’s nothing on Oak Island. Maybe there’s nothing to the Russian relationships. One thing is for sure – both endings are yet to be written.