I've spent half a century (yikes) writing for radio and print—mostly print. I hope to be still tapping the keys as I take my last breath.
Alex Jones has a syndicated radio show, appropriately named the Alex Jones Show, that is run out of Austin, Texas. He is said to have an audience that is bigger than Glenn Beck and Rush Limbaugh combined. His websites get more than a million visitors each day. The Internet tracking service Quantcast says Jones’ Infowars website get more traffic than the fact-checking site Politifact.com.
There is no conspiracy theory, no matter how outlandish, that he doesn’t love and promote. Let’s see. President Barack Obama is the head of al-Qaeda. The Sandy Hook Elementary School shootings didn’t happen. Lady Gaga’s Super Bowl Halftime Show was part of a Satanist ritual. And, of course, the moon landings were faked.
One World Government
Jones calls himself a truth seeker and a central theme of his is that a secret society of generals, politicians, bankers, and corporate leaders are plotting to take over the world. He refers to the “global Stasi Borg state,” thereby improbably rolling the real former secret police of East Germany into the fictional cybernetic collective of Star Trek fame.
Naturally, he’s a 9/11 Truther; he is one of the early adopters. He knows for certain that the terrorist attacks of September 11, 2001, were plotted and carried out by the U.S. government.
He also promotes the idea that shape-shifting lizard people from another planet control events on Earth. Apparently, they’ve been keeping themselves busy designing Obamacare.
However, in the strange subculture Jones inhabits, these beliefs are fairly mainstream. A bit more on the edge is his claim that wi-fi has been weaponized to control people’s thoughts. But wait, there’s more. Wi-fi is now being used to manipulate the DNA of people.
Bet you didn’t know that when you send young Sammy off to school with a juice box in his lunch you are unwittingly helping to turn him into a homosexual. We have to thank Alex Jones for unmasking this dastardly plot; he says that estrogen is put into bags of potato chips, juice boxes, and water bottles to feminize men.
It’s all part of a hideous plan to reduce the population so it will be easier for some mysterious globalists to take over the planet.
Jones has more sinister schemes than birth control through homosexuality to expose. The U.S. government, he says, has plans for the controlled release of bubonic plague. He also sees the potential for a “Government-lab-produced airborne Ebola.”
Fluoride in the water, radioactive isotopes, and toxins in food are part of the project to cut the population as well.
He told New York Magazine that the evil cabal that aims to control the world has the dream of “creating a super bioweapon, basically based on a mouse pox, and just turn it loose and kill almost everybody. It kills about 99 percent of whatever mammal you design it for. It’s their Valhalla, and they’re going to do it.”
Business elites, it seems, are conspiring to reduce the world’s population by “a staggering 95%.” In his 2007 movie ENDGAME, Jones notes that “For thousands of years their dark order grew. Now with the aid of advance technology the elite of the planet may be able to live forever. But first, 80% of humanity must die.”
Okay, so he’s a bit wobbly on the actual body count, but solid, documented facts rarely intrude on the Jones narrative. He doesn't explain why the corporate world would want to kill off almost all its customers.
What he calls “globalists” are conniving to destroy billions of people, according to the Jones media machine, by contributing massive amounts of money to UN population agencies. Bill and Melinda Gates, Ted Turner, and Warren Buffet are among those cited as being behind this diabolical plot.
Jones Goes Ballistic on British TV
Be Afraid, Be Very Afraid
Only Mr. Jones knows if he actually believes the malarkey he’s peddling or if he’s found a way of making a living by saying outrageous things. His popularity and reach did not happen by accident.
In the past, his loopy ideas would have been disseminated slowly through pamphlets, books and speeches to a few dozen zealots. The Internet amplifies his message so that he can hustle his theories to millions in an instant. He has brought the bombast of pro wrestling into the world of political commentary. The demographic that supports him seems to be the same as the one that turns up to watch Rusev and Stardust throw furniture at each other.
Unlike the people who buy the snake oil he’s selling, he seems to be quite a bright guy. However, from time to time, he has a meltdown and screams incoherently to give the impression he’s barking bonkers, although this may be part of the act to show he’s authentic so as to draw his audience deeper into his web of outrage.
His followers are frightened. They’ve been through the Great Recession and have not climbed back to where they were before the bankers blew everything up. They see barbarians at the gates in the form of crazed terrorists eager to slit their throats as they lie in their beds.
Fan in the White House
Some in the Republican Party see Jones as a conduit to the somewhat primitive and impressionable minds that can swing an election their way.
In December 2015, Donald Trump appeared on Jones’s show for a mutual love-in. The host fawned on the presidential candidate and he responded in kind: “Your reputation is amazing. I will not let you down.” And, he didn’t.
Trump said there were the thousands of Muslims in New Jersey cheering at the collapse of the World Trade Center. He continues to claim that millions of undocumented immigrants voted for Hillary Clinton. Jones bragged to Rolling Stone that “It is surreal to talk about issues here on air and then word for word hear Trump say it two days later. It is amazing.”
Since winning the presidency, Trump has not cut his conspiracy theorist friend loose. The two have phone conversations, because the president knows he has to throw red meat to his base. That’s the charitable explanation. The uncharitable one is that the “leader of the free world” is on board with the codswallop Jones is peddling.
Donald Trump likes to ramp up the scale of threat caused by terrorists. But here’s a reality check courtesy of international affairs writer Gwynne Dyer: “An average (including the San Bernadino deaths) of two people per year [are] killed in the United States by Muslim terrorists … Americans are 170 times more likely to drown in the bath than be killed by Islamist terrorists.” Perhaps, Mr. Trump would serve his nation better by organizing a ban on the importation of bathtubs.
“… as Trump pushes full steam ahead on his effort to delegitimize U.S. journalism, he is lending credence to a number of out-there Jonesisms, adding yet another “pinch yourself, this is happening” element to our national journey into the upside-down.” Jim Rutenberg, New York Times, February 21, 2017.
- “Meet Alex Jones.” Alexander Zaitchik, Rolling Stone, March 2, 2011
- “A Strange Man Is Following You.” Joe Hagan, New York Magazine, March 27, 2011.
- “ENDGAME.” Alex Jones, Infowars.com, 2007.
- “Gwynne Dyer: Obama and San Bernardino.” Gwynne Dyer, The Gleaner, December 8, 2015.
- “Donald Trump & Alex Jones: A Match Made in Wing-nut Hell.” Bob Cesca, Salon, December 3, 2015.
- “Alex Jones’ Mis-Infowars: 7 Bat-Sh*t Conspiracy Theories Alex Jones’ Mis-Infowars: 7 Bat-Sh*t Conspiracy Theories.” Eric Killelea, Rolling Stone, February 21, 2017.
- “Is Donald Trump Taking his Cues from Alex Jones?” Jim Rutenberg, New York Times, February 21, 2017.
This content reflects the personal opinions of the author. It is accurate and true to the best of the author’s knowledge and should not be substituted for impartial fact or advice in legal, political, or personal matters.
© 2017 Rupert Taylor
Rupert Taylor (author) from Waterloo, Ontario, Canada on February 27, 2017:
Thanks for your kind words Luke. I am leaning in the direction of Jones as the huckster who knows the product he's selling is garbage, but "Hey, it brings in the cash, and if the rubes buy it who am I to stop them?" With Trump I'm not so sure. I see an astounding lack of curiosity and intelligence; the sort of mindset that swallows Jones's crap without question.
JourneyHolm on February 27, 2017:
GREAT article, Rupert! I've followed Jones loosely for the past few years. Initially, his conspirator ways sparked my interest, but as I analyzed his words and thought more critically about messages, I realized him to be a person who uses conspiracy as a means for fame. It is quite scary that Trump is all about "alternative news" jargon, much of which Alex Jones shares on his show. The two are in cahoots, which makes me nervous, and are trying to destroy public media. I guess we'll see what happens. This article was nicely timed. Well done.