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May 4, 2017 6:11 PM   Subscribe

Alex Jones Will Never Stop Being Alex Jones After two decades toiling at the fringes of politics, Alex Jones and his Infowars media empire have architected the current moment and helped usher a president into office. Now, the only person standing in Jones' way is Jones.
posted by nevercalm (90 comments total) 8 users marked this as a favorite
 
And the only inanimate object standing in his way is a big bowl of chili.
posted by Copronymus at 6:24 PM on May 4, 2017 [3 favorites]


I just don't understand how he possibly thought he could win custody of his kids, considering his antics. I mean, I don't even think Republicans think he's stable, although they love his propaganda, he's not exactly the sort of model anyone would consider a good person to parent kids.
posted by Homo neanderthalensis at 6:26 PM on May 4, 2017 [1 favorite]


Truth Bang has usurped Jones and taken the lead on his primary issue.(not directly linking to Jones because duh)
posted by robocop is bleeding at 6:30 PM on May 4, 2017


I don’t even think Republicans think he’s stable

This is a large group generalization it might be worth pushing against: which Republicans don’t think he’s stable? Because a heck of a lot of them would seem to be part of InfoWars’s outsider audience. The Republican party is a big white male tent.
posted by Going To Maine at 6:44 PM on May 4, 2017 [5 favorites]


Always Be Grifting.
posted by LastOfHisKind at 6:50 PM on May 4, 2017 [15 favorites]


Architected? Is that what architects do? I confuse.
posted by Floydd at 6:55 PM on May 4, 2017 [8 favorites]


I'm not arguing that the vast majority of Republicans think he's not great as far as his shtick goes, what I'm saying is they like that he's their clown- but he's still a clown
They might like what he does for them, but soon, sometime soon, in order to try to save the larger Republican party, they're going to throw him under the bus. "Oh he's the source of all the bad things, I mean have you watched his show?" and they'll try to pin it all to him.
Hopefully it won't work- but that's what I mean when I say they know he's not stable. It's just for now they can use that- but soon, it will be their way of saving face.
He is the definition of a useful idiot.
posted by Homo neanderthalensis at 7:01 PM on May 4, 2017 [9 favorites]


I do not grok people who find him funny or amusing. Same goes for people who listen to right wing radio or televangelists not because they agree but because they think it's funny. Even at its most divorced from anything that might result in actual harm, it's still just fucking stressful to listen to these vein-popping screamers.

I'm still waiting to hear more from Jon Ronson about his frenemiship with Jones because that is another thing I do not get.
posted by soren_lorensen at 7:03 PM on May 4, 2017 [18 favorites]


Always Be Grifting

I think you mean “crifting”
posted by Going To Maine at 7:05 PM on May 4, 2017


I'm waiting for Jones to provide the proof for the clockwork elves because he talks about how what he says is totally based on facts!
posted by rough ashlar at 7:09 PM on May 4, 2017


I'm still waiting for his acid techno album.
posted by lmfsilva at 7:21 PM on May 4, 2017 [1 favorite]


Now, the only person standing in Jones' way is Jones.

and family court
posted by indubitable at 7:21 PM on May 4, 2017 [3 favorites]


I’m still waiting for his acid techno album.

There was a decent techno mix of one of his rants on the first Election Profit Makers mixtape. I can no longer listen to it because of the painful memories, but if you don’t have them it might be worth a try. Jones didn’t participate in making the mix, but his influence is palpable.
posted by Going To Maine at 7:34 PM on May 4, 2017 [2 favorites]


Jones always reminds me of the Harlan Ellison story "Flop Sweat". Jones is actually one of the harbingers of the end times despite claiming to warn about them.
posted by benzenedream at 7:57 PM on May 4, 2017




Architected? Is that what architects do?

Boom! You've been Architected!
posted by Greg_Ace at 8:08 PM on May 4, 2017 [1 favorite]


Boom! You've been Architected!

That is pretty much what happened to me the other day in Mass Effect: Andromeda because I was really not prepared for my first encounter with a Remnant Architect.
posted by Hairy Lobster at 8:20 PM on May 4, 2017 [7 favorites]


Alex Jones is the greatest comedian of this or any other age.
posted by R.F.Simpson at 8:20 PM on May 4, 2017 [1 favorite]


Boom! You've been Architected!

That is pretty much what happened to me the other day in Mass Effect: Andromeda because I was really not prepared for my first encounter with a Remnant Architect.

Oh god I know right?
posted by Homo neanderthalensis at 8:36 PM on May 4, 2017 [1 favorite]


I'm with you, soren_lorensen. Something about screaming white men who are aggressively misinformed is less than entertaining to me.
posted by Kitty Stardust at 8:59 PM on May 4, 2017 [24 favorites]




I take umbrage with "empire" but yes, Alex Jones is his own worst enemy. Well, he and the Lizard People of course.
posted by Aya Hirano on the Astral Plane at 10:21 PM on May 4, 2017


I can see how someone who saw/heard his old schtick back in the early 00s could find it funny. Back then it was all about the Bilderbergers, the New World Order, FEMA, etc. and how literally all the global powers were in truth controlled by a couple of vast conspiracies who were accumulating all the wealth and preparing to put everyone into camps. Occasionally aliens and lizard people, also. It was more quiet revelation of the vast global conspiracy to take over our lives and less loud condemnation of specific people.

Back then he wasn't really selling anything but blanket paranoia, didn't shout so much, and would certainly never have aligned himself with any political party, since they were all just tentacles of the larger organization. Apparently seeing Glenn Beck make bank on his hybrid conspiracy nut/Teahadist platform made AJ jealous, so he sold out and became a slightly nuttier version of the standard right wing talk show host. Either that or he got brainwashed on one of his Bohemian Grove infiltration missions.

I spent like a month reading/watching his shit way back when because I had a morbid fascination with all the bizarre conspiracy theories at the time. I didn't believe any of it, but I was trying to understand what the fuck they were on about. One of my friends had a parent who had a trove of shitty photocopied New World Order etc. pamphlets back in the day, so I had always wondered where the crazy came from. (And knowing that guy, it was plainly obvious how nuts it really was)

Come to think of it, it may well be that lack of direct personal interaction with the people who buy into the idea of these vast conspiracies that has allowed them to go relatively mainstream. Back when the main introduction to this stuff was some grubby guy handing you a crappy booklet with zero production value. It was obviously fringe, and the sort of people who tried to spread the word were visibly a bit unhinged. That initial experience was itself a bit discrediting and perhaps a bit uncomfortable, thus encouraging skepticism and inoculating the person on the receiving end against similar ideas.

Now similarly unhinged ideas are first seen on slickly produced (or at least not obviously questionable) TV or radio shows and websites, so there is no reflexive guard-raising.
posted by wierdo at 10:27 PM on May 4, 2017 [17 favorites]


Architected? Is that what architects do? I confuse.

Yes dummy there was an episode of 99% Unpossible about it.
posted by Alvy Ampersand at 11:55 PM on May 4, 2017 [6 favorites]


I can see how someone who saw/heard his old schtick back in the early 00s could find it funny.

I'm not sure it's his subject matter people find funny. Sometimes it's his subject matter, but more fundamentally it's his hamminess, especially when he gets himself really worked up about the most ridiculous things.

Now he's just becoming another right wing media guy though.
posted by atoxyl at 12:15 AM on May 5, 2017


I did a little comic on Alex Jones (the Nib)
posted by The Whelk at 12:53 AM on May 5, 2017 [14 favorites]


“Working for Alex was like a combination of Blackbeard meets Hitler,” one former employee said. “One minute just on a high and swashbuckling and calling us to action; the next, punching out walls.”

Which is those two employers would you actually want to work for, though?
posted by Going To Maine at 2:17 AM on May 5, 2017


I find the growing normalization of Alex Jones to be really troubling. He's obviously peddling nonsense without even the pretense of journalistic standards. He regularly says outrageous things. His personal affect is that of an insane man. And yet his worldview is slowly seeping in to polite society, in to mainstream politics, in to the popular consciousness. I mean, the president of the US met with him and praised him during the campaign. And Infowars fever dreams regularly get transformed in to Republican talking points. It's terrifying.
posted by Nelson at 2:50 AM on May 5, 2017 [23 favorites]


Which is those two employers would you actually want to work for, though?

Blackbeard's parties were legendary.
posted by Faint of Butt at 3:34 AM on May 5, 2017 [4 favorites]


But will Bill Hicks ever stop being Alex Jones?
posted by save alive nothing that breatheth at 4:01 AM on May 5, 2017 [3 favorites]


Even at its most divorced from anything that might result in actual harm, it's still just fucking stressful to listen to these vein-popping screamers.

I'm starting to think that most every interest group has these kinds of people. We have them in the video game community, fer cryin' out loud. It's mostly 20-somethings raging at the camera about old NES games they think are terrible with a side of racism. I really don't understand the appeal. "I'm just playing a character," they say when forced to defend their actions. Sure, kid. Whatever you say. *rollingest of eye rolls*
posted by Servo5678 at 4:40 AM on May 5, 2017


But will Bill Hicks ever stop being Alex Jones?

If this is true, then I assume Denis Leary will be launching InfoBattles sometime soon.
posted by TedW at 5:27 AM on May 5, 2017 [7 favorites]


Alex Jones is the greatest comedian of this or any other age.

I liked Xandor Korzybski better the first time.
posted by octobersurprise at 6:05 AM on May 5, 2017


I'm starting to think that most every interest group has these kinds of people.

For sure. I don't enjoy watching Keith Olbermann either, though at least with him he doesn't actively terrify me because what he's screaming about is people trying to remove human rights from other people and not how I'm evil and should be taken out and shot by the nearest militia.



especially when he gets himself really worked up about the most ridiculous things
OK but see, his followers don't think these things are ridiculous and there are real actual people who are really actually affected.

He's either very publicly demonstrating severe untreated mental illness, or he's very intentionally calling for the destruction of... well, like, me. Either which way, it's not amusing.

Irrational screaming men are terrifying to most women. There's a reason for that.
posted by soren_lorensen at 6:23 AM on May 5, 2017 [20 favorites]


I have a hunch that if Jim Jones and Charles Manson were born several decades later, they'd probably have some kind of InfoWars type of scene going.
posted by jonmc at 7:26 AM on May 5, 2017 [8 favorites]


QVC for conspiracy

If only. QVC sells legit brands like KitchenAid, offers money-back guarentees on everything they sell, and once dropped a vendor because an associate called in with an "unbiased" testimonial.
posted by Room 641-A at 7:55 AM on May 5, 2017 [8 favorites]


I find the growing normalization of Alex Jones to be really troubling.

What elements are troubling?

That there is a 'war on for you mind'?
That there is document X that says Y? (Where X and Y can be lots of different things that you can find some people won't believe.)
That police abuse their power?

Is it troubling that Jones would not be able to function if the people who represent power were honest in their dealings with others who have less power? Jones HAS the 'normalization' because various power-based systems are broken for the people who power is supposed to serve. (And at some point there will be a Jones-type that springs from the issues of black lives matter. Cuz man, those are also some broken power systems.)

Jones CONCLUSIONS and the inferences drawn on inferences that get him to the conclusion are where he goes off the rails. As the buzzfeed article points out there is a kernel of truth in (many? Most? Some?) of his rants.

From Jones making the statements that DMT is in the acacia tree is what lead me to look that up and go "huh. That's actually a thing.". But is it a "thing" that Masonic ritual has parts about acacia trees and eye symbolism and therefore the Mason's are all about using DMT to open the 3rd eye of its members?


He's obviously peddling nonsense without even the pretense of journalistic standards.

Now these "journalistic standards" - what are they that OTHER 'journalists' have? Because I'm betting any 'standard' one can claim someone else can point to NYT coverage of the post 9/11 Iraq War runup, Fox news lawsuits, CNN videos, and years of Eddie Bernays books on people manipulation can be laid out at the feet of people claiming there are high standards being met.

Jim Jones and Charles Manson ... InfoWars type of scene going.

Selling supplements?

Infowars could be overlaid on a template of mega-church. You have documents which are held out to truths and you'd not know what to think about 'em without the guiding light of Dear Leader to explain to you what they mean.

The supplements can be a straight up sale of something that isn't a t-shirt that says someone should go to jail and can sell over and over. But seems to hit the MLM template more. At least it is not small roadsigns like Herbalife.....yet.
posted by rough ashlar at 8:14 AM on May 5, 2017 [2 favorites]


Supplements? I wouldn't buy Jones', that's for sure.
posted by jonmc at 8:39 AM on May 5, 2017


What elements are troubling?

All of them, Katie.
posted by octobersurprise at 8:46 AM on May 5, 2017 [9 favorites]


soren_lorensen: I'm still waiting to hear more from Jon Ronson about his frenemiship with Jones because that is another thing I do not get.

During the 2016 campaign Jon Ronson released a short piece on the alt right as a Kindle Single. Ronson uses his relationship with Alex Jones as a bridge into the alt right and how the movement held up the Trump campaign as their tangerine knight in an ill-fitting suit. Alex Jones comes off as both less crazy and more crazy than he did when Ronson first met him -- less crazy because he has handlers, more crazy because he's fully transformed into the Alex Jones personality.

The Elephant in The Room

posted by nathan_teske at 9:05 AM on May 5, 2017


I find the growing normalization of Alex Jones to be really troubling.

What elements are troubling?


Jones builds nothing. All he teaches is distrust. He is the mind-killer. The fact that he so readily incorporates factoids into his worldview is impressive but unhelpful. The factoids are the trees. The forest is nihilism.
posted by Going To Maine at 9:48 AM on May 5, 2017 [10 favorites]



I'm waiting for Jones to provide the proof for the clockwork elves because he talks about how what he says is totally based on facts!


I think what happened here was that Alex's friend Joe Rogan told him about Terence McKenna's "DMT Elves" idea and Jones naturally misunderstood the concept, put sinister spin on it, and worked into his schtick. It's a hilariously clueless tirade he goes.
posted by Liquidwolf at 11:27 AM on May 5, 2017 [1 favorite]


It's just like the gay frogs thing. There is a kernel of truth to it. We do know that chemicals can disrupt the systems of amphibians causing them in response to change sexes which is normal under certain environmental pressures. But conflating that with homosexuality is a complete fabrication and shows Jones inability to grasp the difference between sex, sexual preference and gender identity.
posted by Kitty Stardust at 11:41 AM on May 5, 2017 [1 favorite]


For some reason, I always thought it was some sort of virulent offshoot of Art Bell's Coast to Coast AM, but you know... serious. I guess I considered it just as plausibly laughable. Apparently most of his listeners don't. Then again I never listened to his show. I considered the info wars site to be up there with prison planet in conspiracy theory tinfoil hat range.
posted by Badgermann at 12:32 PM on May 5, 2017 [1 favorite]


My mom and her husband are seriously into infowars and it's basically ruining my relationship with her, as it's increasingly becoming impossible to relate to someone who seems to be allowing any critical thinking skills or distinct opinions of her own to go out the window. I also work in the kind of underserved rural areas where infowars kinda stuff definitely takes hold and am around more than a few people with infowars bumperstickers and the like. The scary thing is that these people seem otherwise normal and not the kinda of unsettling conspiracy theory nuts you'd imagine. I really think this kind of thing is really hitching on to people with an overactive amygdala and penchant towards authoritarianism. I think it's comforting to some to feel like their fear is always justified and to have some "strong" figurehead who boldly advocates for them in this sense.
posted by giizhik at 1:04 PM on May 5, 2017 [9 favorites]


We do know that chemicals can disrupt the systems of amphibians causing them in response to change sexes which is normal under certain environmental pressures.

The irony being that they deny that there are any environmental concerns. It's obviously because frogs are choosing to be gay and not because humans are disrupting nature.
posted by Room 641-A at 1:11 PM on May 5, 2017 [2 favorites]


Talk to enough people who know Alex Jones and a clear portrait emerges. Dozens of interviews reveal him as distractible, prone to foul moods, fiercely loyal until crossed, and extremely vindictive. Someone whose outward confidence has a kind of gravitational pull, and who thrives in the spotlight. A guy who’s thin-skinned but constantly picking fights. A man obsessed with advancement of the brand he’s been building since long before anyone took him seriously. You get the sense that he truly is a singular human being. That is, until you recall Donald Trump.

This passage interests me because I disagree with the comparison. A key aspect of the distinctive thing about the President is his compete shallowness. (I also think that this is less distinctive than we want to make it out to be, just less publicly displayed, but leave that aside.)

Vindictive, prideful leaders don’t seem that rare in the world. Jones’s schtick is partly Glenn Beck (though the latter may have ripped off the former, given that they’ve both been in the business a while), partly Limbaugh, and perhaps -as suggested upthread- partly Olbermann. The notion of building one’s brand isn’t even particularly novel; we’ve been stewing in that idea for at least a decade. It’s the established hucksterism of the President’s brand that’s interesting, not the fact that he happens to use his name as a label. Warzel wants to convince us that these two men are somehow soul mates, but I’m not buying it. Or rather, I’d buy it more if he used the President as a lens through which to view conservative media, and not as a way of calling out Jones as an exceptional pairing.
posted by Going To Maine at 1:25 PM on May 5, 2017 [1 favorite]


I'll say this for Alex Jones. He's given us a conservative Steven Colbert character even funnier than the host of the Colbert Report. POOPING IS A CHOICE!
posted by JHarris at 3:00 PM on May 5, 2017 [2 favorites]


Going to blow the lid off of the ol’ Colon Blow conspiracy, I see.
posted by Going To Maine at 4:34 PM on May 5, 2017


He's either very publicly demonstrating severe untreated mental illness, or he's very intentionally calling for the destruction of... well, like, me. Either which way, it's not amusing.

I'm not trying to argue with anybody who doesn't find him funny - I really don't find it hard to understand why you wouldn't find him funny. I'm just trying to unpack a little why other people do find him funny - especially when he was further out-there and less another right-wing paranoia-whipper - in a way that they probably would not were he someone else presenting the same material.
posted by atoxyl at 5:49 PM on May 5, 2017


I guess a pertinent question would be to what extent is he aware that he is something of a comic figure, and does his viral appeal help on hinder the effectiveness of his message? I definitely get the sense that he goes OTT on purpose, but then some of the stuff coming out of his family court debacle is suggests maybe that's really just him.
posted by atoxyl at 5:54 PM on May 5, 2017


I think the answer is “yes to all” - he knows some people find it comical, he is that emotional, and he chooses to let those emotions out because it makes for good viewing. Everyone shares it, ironists and believers alike, and then he sells more supplements.
posted by Going To Maine at 6:48 PM on May 5, 2017


I guess a pertinent question would be to what extent is he aware that he is something of a comic figure

A 'comic figure' does not pay for a staff of researchers/data verifyers. Nor would a comic figure bring the pile of papers to parties (to seemingly show proof of their POV) per buzzfeed.
posted by rough ashlar at 8:58 PM on May 5, 2017


I agree with rough ashlar that a lack of openess in power combined with a lack of standards in media to hold them accountable has created a vacuum filled with the likes of Alex Jones. I've had half a thought that maybe Jones was a plant or stooge of some kind to descredit through his crazy over the top excess whatever kernels of truth there might otherwise be in what he's saying, but doesn't really sound like it from the courtroom appearances.
posted by blue shadows at 1:06 AM on May 6, 2017 [1 favorite]


Now these "journalistic standards" - what are they that OTHER 'journalists' have?

The idea of standards in American journalism is pretty well understood. If you're not familiar with them, Wikipedia has a basic overview. Here's the NYT version of it, and SPJ's version of it.

But from the rest of the comment I see you're making a false equivalence. That because the NYTimes screwed up the Iraq War reporting, all journalism is equally awful.

That is sophist nonsense. The difference is journalists mostly try to get the story right. They make mistakes, and some individuals break the rules all the time. But they make an effort.

Alex Jones just makes shit up. Crazy conspiracy stuff because it sounds fun, or appeals to his listeners' bias, or helps sell diet supplements. Or maybe I'm grandly mistaken; feel free to point me to the Infowars info on ethics and standards of reporting. What's their sourcing policy, for instance?

When the NYTimes screws up a story as big as the Iraq War, they do a lot of soul searching. Too little and too late, but at least they made the effort. When Alex Jones reports that all those murdered kids in Sandy Hook were fake, everyone just says "huh" and moves on. Some people believe it and go on to harass the parents of the murdered kids, for years.
posted by Nelson at 1:19 AM on May 6, 2017 [10 favorites]


When the mechanisms of power are this opaque, this unresponsive to people's needs and material conditions, it's completely unsurprising that people like this dude and David Avocado Wolf have gained traction.
posted by Joseph Gurl at 4:04 AM on May 6, 2017


Nelson - you say different in kind, I say different in degree.
posted by Joseph Gurl at 4:07 AM on May 6, 2017


From Chaos to the Brain
posted by Joseph Gurl at 4:10 AM on May 6, 2017


But from the rest of the comment I see you're making a false equivalence. .... That is sophist nonsense.

There is a reason John Swinton (is claimed to have) said: "The business of the journalists is to destroy the truth, to lie outright, to pervert, to vilify, to fawn at the feet of mammon, and to sell his country and his race for his daily bread. You know it and I know it, and what folly is this toasting an independent press? We are the tools and vassals of rich men behind the scenes. We are the jumping jacks, they pull the strings and we dance. Our talents, our possibilities and our lives are all the property of other men. We are intellectual prostitutes."

Alex Jones just makes shit up. Crazy conspiracy stuff because it sounds fun, or appeals to his listeners' bias, or helps sell diet supplements.

I believe Alex was doing the 'this point, this thing, and this claim therefore proves this conspiracy' LONG before he determined that he could sell his advertising space to himself and make bank on "supplements".

Alex spends (at least the last time I bothered to listen) FAR more time on what he thinks is the WHY of the Who, what, where, when and why of "news" than other "news" outlets. Why is opinion page fodder and while that is part of a "newspaper" it is typically not considered "news". Why is gonna be "made up" often. On any 10 minute YouTube video rant of Alex he spends 1-2 sentences on the thing that is the 'kernel of truth' (if it IS an actual truth VS something repeated over and over and assumed to be a truth of course). Perhaps he's changed his why's but most of the why's seem to want to tie things to some kind of coordinated apex VS "meh, just a collection of selfish assholes". "Meh, just a collection of selfish assholes" may explain Congress and TrumpCare but isn't actionable for people because if effective action was possible VS a collection of selfish assholes humanity wouldn't have Congress/TrumpCare.

He spends time reminding the consumers of his media of how "I pointed this out early on and it turned out to be true." Then does a link to this is why you should trust him, believe him, et al. So Alex is gonna rush to be 1st on a statement to later be able to make the claim above. Want the craziest statements from Alex - see what he says at the start of some kind of major violent event.
posted by rough ashlar at 6:38 AM on May 6, 2017 [1 favorite]


Cocaine is an ugly drug, and Jones is the poster boy for the perils of coke addiction.
posted by dbiedny at 7:01 AM on May 6, 2017 [4 favorites]


Alex spends (at least the last time I bothered to listen) FAR more time on what he thinks is the WHY of the Who, what, where, when and why of "news" than other "news" outlets. Why is opinion page fodder and while that is part of a "newspaper" it is typically not considered "news".

How does that compare to typical talk radio hosts?

This is perhaps slightly deraily but my impression is that many complaints about the media are that it should be taking more of an editorial slant. Or, more precisely, when people complain about newspapers presenting two sides of an issue as presenting a false equivalence it is easy to construe that as a request for more editorializing.
posted by Going To Maine at 10:41 AM on May 6, 2017


Alex spends FAR more time on what he thinks is the WHY of the Who, what, where, when and why of "news" than other "news" outlets.

Yes, but he is insane and spouting poisonous nonsense. There's no point in hearing Alex Jones' opinions on the WHY of 9/11 being a false flag operation. Because 9/11 was not a false flag operation and everything that follows from that assertion is dangerous nonsense.

But maybe I'm an agent of the conspiracy. You probably shouldn't believe what I'm saying. Try biting down on some tin foil over that filling in your molar, you can tune in the truth that way.
posted by Nelson at 11:15 AM on May 6, 2017 [1 favorite]


Yes, but he is insane and spouting poisonous nonsense. There's no point in hearing Alex Jones' opinions on the WHY of 9/11 being a false flag operation. Because 9/11 was not a false flag operation and everything that follows from that assertion is dangerous nonsense.

The referenced comment wasn’t really defending this as good practice, though - rather, it was saying that that was what Jones does. It’s fine and good that we all agree that 9/11 wasn’t a false flag, but Jones doesn’t start with that as an assertion. Jones starts with, say, the existence of the Masons in government, the use of false flog operations at other times and places, the ambiguities of the JFK assassination, COINTELPRO, the NSA, the overthrow of the Shah of Iran, the CIA’s experiments with LSD, and goodness-knows-what-else before he even reaches 9/11. 9/11 isn’t an assertion that gets proved - it’s part of a never ending stream of conspiracy-minded events that are fueled by self-serving interpretations of any factoid. It’s very hard to pick apart an infinitely expanding web, and once someone believes that 9/11 could have been a false flag the assertion that it wasn’t no longer holds the same water it once did.
posted by Going To Maine at 3:17 PM on May 6, 2017


Jonathan Tilove in the Austin American-Statesman, waaaaay back on April 24: “In midst of custody battle, Alex Jones reveals that at 16, ‘I’d already had over 150 women.’”
While talking about how he had grown up appropriately fast, Jones says that unlike his arrested-development friends, “by 24, I had a son.”
Jones turned 24 in 1998. That would that make that son 18 or 19 now. But the son who he is seeking to retain custody of in court is 14. So, if Jones had a son when he was 24, that was another son. That’s completely possible. And, he is, of course, under no obligation to tell writers when they are doing profiles of him that he has another son. It’s just that it’s not something that’s been mentioned in anything I’ve read about Jones.
posted by Going To Maine at 3:34 PM on May 6, 2017


Jones starts with, say, the existence of the Masons in government, the use of false flog operations at other times and places, the ambiguities of the JFK assassination, COINTELPRO, the NSA, the overthrow of the Shah of Iran, the CIA’s experiments with LSD, and goodness-knows-what-else

And every one of these has some form of paperwork/documentation that lets Jones make statements about how he only goes from facts/from documentation/or whatever his claim is about truth. (cept the what else of course because one can cherry pick where its not true.)

Other than the Masons/what-else, this list is where the US has been abusing power in some way. That abuse is what provides the ability for Jones to thrive. If the US of A had not done that list and goodness-knows-what-else how could Jones exist as the Alex Jones we are discussing?
posted by rough ashlar at 7:45 PM on May 6, 2017 [1 favorite]


Metafilter: false flog operations
posted by Joseph Gurl at 7:56 PM on May 6, 2017 [2 favorites]


Yes, but he is insane and spouting poisonous nonsense.

"he is insane" - you know this because?

"spouting poisonous nonsense" - when Alex mentions Northwoods or the overthrow of the Iranian 1950s government ... is that nonsense? Or poisonous because people might walk away not trusting Government? For some not trusting government IS toxic so I grok how saying something that poisons the government gets power from the governed relationship.

If one should trust the Government - then why worry about this Trump-time?
posted by rough ashlar at 8:00 PM on May 6, 2017 [1 favorite]


Other than the Masons/what-else, this list is where the US has been abusing power in some way. That abuse is what provides the ability for Jones to thrive. If the US of A had not done that list and goodness-knows-what-else how could Jones exist as the Alex Jones we are discussing?

This is a bad question. Someone has always done something everywhere. All governments make mistakes, because they are human institutions. Jones’s only faith is fear and distrust, and there are always things to be fearful of. So yes, Jones would be just fine if the government hadn’t done thing x or thing y because he wants to believe. The idea that we should discount the Masons above is a telling caveat - Jones doesn’t discount the masons, so why give him credit. This is what he does: he seizes your paranoia, and he works on it.

Con men and fear-mongers have existed for a long time; they existed before any of the random events that I picked out above, and they did a swell business. Yes, absolutely, Alex Jones would do just fine even if the US were as pure as the driven snow.
posted by Going To Maine at 8:12 PM on May 6, 2017 [1 favorite]


Metafilter: false flog operations

So imitation BDSM?
posted by Going To Maine at 8:13 PM on May 6, 2017 [1 favorite]


Jones exists because facts can be construed negatively. That’s probably the simplest form.
posted by Going To Maine at 8:15 PM on May 6, 2017


All governments make mistakes, because they are human institutions.

Northoods, Iran overthrow, Iraq War--you call them "mistakes"? You're a very charitable person indeed.
posted by Joseph Gurl at 8:39 PM on May 6, 2017


All governments make mistakes, because they are human institutions.

Northoods, Iran overthrow, Iraq War--you call them “mistakes”? You’re a very charitable person indeed.

Okay, all governments do morally objectionable things, because all people (in aggregate) do morally objectionable things. My reading of Jones remains.
posted by Going To Maine at 9:34 PM on May 6, 2017


So imitation BDSM?

Please, fake BDSM.
posted by Room 641-A at 9:41 PM on May 6, 2017 [1 favorite]


"he is insane" - you know this because?

Because I can fucking read what he writes and hear what he says. But charitably, maybe he isn't insane. Maybe his insanity is just an act. Maybe his consumers are insane.

The inadequacies of the modern media are no more to blame for Jones, than the inadequacies of modern religion were to blame for Jim Jones or L. Ron Hubbard. Jones is a charlatan and a con-man who would be preying on the vain, the ignorant, the credulous, the bigoted, and the terrified, regardless of the state of the world or the media. If he wasn't selling conspiracies and dietary supplements, he would be selling something else. Watching smart people try to apologize for him just demonstrates how good he is at his job.
posted by octobersurprise at 8:35 AM on May 8, 2017 [2 favorites]


Wait--who's apologizing for him?
posted by Joseph Gurl at 10:10 AM on May 8, 2017


rough ashlar is definitely apologizing for him. Have the Illuminati fnord-ed his comments on your screen? And claims that Jones is no worse than the "MSM" or that Jones is only as bad as he is because modern media/the world at large is worse are also apologies by any definition. Alex Jones is either insane, a con-artist, or both, and frankly, I suspect anyone who tries to suggest differently of being of one of three as well.
posted by octobersurprise at 10:44 AM on May 8, 2017 [2 favorites]


But have you considered the role of the Rothschilds, octobersurprise? There are a bunch of sea lions who know all about it and will continue to share that information with you.
posted by Nelson at 11:05 AM on May 8, 2017 [1 favorite]


The one thing I will say for Jones is that, going by a profile cited in the Austin American-Statesman op-ed I linked earlier, the police department in his home town was well and truly corrupt. I wouldn't be surprised if that exacerbated his malign attitudes.
posted by Going To Maine at 11:10 AM on May 8, 2017


the police department in his home town was well and truly corrupt.

Even there, tho, consider that such an experience would've driven some people to a career in law, or politics, or social work. It drove Jones to a career as a radio conspiracy-monger, defamer of dead children, and snake-oil huckster.
posted by octobersurprise at 12:08 PM on May 8, 2017


Oh absolutely. I consider it an excellerant. I mean, Jones was also ostensibly happily buying drugs from cops.
posted by Going To Maine at 2:02 PM on May 8, 2017


Er, accelerant. It didn't make anything more excellent.
posted by Going To Maine at 2:34 PM on May 8, 2017


Yeah, if Jones learned anything from his corrupt small town, it's that crime pays.
posted by octobersurprise at 2:34 PM on May 8, 2017 [1 favorite]


"he is insane" - you know this because?

"Macron Gives Victory Speech In Front Of Illuminati Pyramid" –Alex Jones on Twitter
posted by Nelson at 12:12 AM on May 10, 2017 [1 favorite]


I've finally gotten around to reading Lawrence Wright's Going Clear: Scientology, Hollywood, and the Prison of Belief and I'm finding the resemblance between the younger Hubbard and Alex Jones to be very striking, Hubbard's mania, narcissism, grandiosity, pathological untruthfulness, satyriasis, and a fundamental need to always be grifting is almost indistinguishable from Jones'. In fact, the only difference I can see between the two is that over the long run, Hubbard was much better at it. (But then, Hubbard never helped elect a President, so maybe there's a draw there, too.)
posted by octobersurprise at 1:09 PM on May 11, 2017


rough ashlar is definitely apologizing for him.

I disagree and think that's a clear mischaracterization.
posted by Joseph Gurl at 7:14 PM on May 11, 2017


(and this armchair psychology and accusations of "insane" are super shitty.
posted by Joseph Gurl at 7:17 PM on May 11, 2017


[Please take the debate about "insane" to MetaTalk. Thanks. ]
posted by restless_nomad (staff) at 10:24 PM on May 11, 2017


All I'm saying is when you find yourself on the internet defending Alex Jones over perceived slights to his dignity, you should maybe stop and examine your goals in life.
posted by octobersurprise at 7:30 AM on May 12, 2017 [1 favorite]


And this discussion reminds me of this gag "Where's my invite? David Icke asks BBC"
The former professional goalkeeper and sports presenter who now believes the Queen is a lizard, said he was keen to take part in a ‘civilised’ discussion with Andrew Neil and David Aaronovitch.

The 1980s Grandstand anchorman admitted he felt ‘very unloved’ after watching yesterday’s Sunday Politics interview with Alex Jones, the exploding toilet.

Icke, who claims he can ejaculate at least 1.4 million times a day, added: “I wouldn’t shout and talk over people.

“I would explain why the Duke of Kent is a space-werewolf and then I’d listen respectfully while David Aaronovitch puts forward his counter-argument.

“And if he asked me, ‘why haven’t they eaten you?’ I’d say, ‘to be perfectly honest David, I don’t know’.

“I certainly wouldn’t come out with a load of nonsense.”
posted by octobersurprise at 7:47 AM on May 12, 2017


I will say this about Alex Jones: Waking Life would age a lot better if Linklater had left him out.
posted by TedW at 1:54 PM on May 12, 2017


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