So, Gaines has this interesting theory about LOST I wanted to go ahead and share. We already know, of course, that there's this time difference when you leave the island. But, what if the different trajectories used to leave the island also puts those who leave at a different WHEN? So, for example, if Lapidus the pilot had gone just a little farther off course, the helicopter might've ended up on the freighter even later than it did! Or earlier!
I would imagine that if this island space-time connectedness is true, then Ben knows about this and how to exploit the time difference upon leaving the island. Which is why he has all the passports and identities, and also helps explain why the others (like his daughter) don't notice that he is gone all the time. Not only can he go anyWHERE in the world, he can also go almost anyWHEN (at least, within a reasonable distance from the now, like a few years, maybe.) Although that is pure speculation on my part.
So, here's the main point of the theory: when Ben gave Michael those coordinates in season 2, we think he sent Michael (and Walt) BACK IN TIME a few years. (This helps explain why there is a "taller, older Walt" appearing on the island.) And somehow Ben found him at those coordinates, and had him change his name and go into hiding and get him to work for him. So, for the last few years, there has been this other, second Michael just waiting for the first Michael to leave the island...and when he does (and subsequently goes back in time), the second Michael somehow gets himself on the freighter. In fact, maybe Michael is the captain?!
I think it sounds just crazy enough to be right. What do you all think?
I also think that the upcoming "Meet Kevin Johnson" episode might be the flashback of how Michael ends up on the freighter. I think "Kevin Johnson" might just be the alias that the second Michael uses when he goes back in time. I cannot wait until the next few episodes to find out if we are right!