Let's take a ride down the conspiracy theory rabbit hole, shall we? Shortly after the Boston Marathon bombings when an InfoWars stooge crashed several law enforcement press conferences, I was speaking with The Daily Banter founder Ben Cohen about Alex Jones. We were joking about circulating a rumor that Jones was actually a government covert operative manufactured and trained to infiltrate the fringe conspiracy theory groups on the far-right.
Ben and I speculated that perhaps the government had instructed "Special Agent Jones" to invent a roster of crazy over-the-top theories meant to deliberately distract conspiracy theorists from real-life conspiracies. You know the list. FEMA is constructing concentration camps; juice boxes are stripping men of their testosterone in order to produce more gay people; the moon landing was faked; Obama is an al-Qaida operative, all of it delivered in the form of googly-eyed, self-satirical performance art that includes Joker make-up and throat-chafing rants about 1776 rising again -- the wet fever-dreams of paranoid schizophrenics, thus distracting them from other, more heinous government black-ops because, you know, they were getting too close to the truth.
In other words, Jones himself is a false flag.
Of course we'd never seriously consider engaging in this kind of deception, especially while trying to build a legitimate reputation and readership for The Daily Banter. But, nevertheless, just as a mischievous way to troll the InfoWars people who were spamming me on Twitter after I wrote an article about Dan Bidondi and the Boston Marathon conspiracy theories, I tweeted an obvious joke about how perhaps Alex Jones was a covert operative for the government. Cue dramatic fanfare. In response, Oliver Willis wrote to me and said that there's an actual conspiracy theory along those lines.
After some digging around, I confirmed what Oliver told me: in the darkest, most delirious hyper-fringes of the internet, there are people who believe Alex Jones is a government operative. The reigning king of all conspiracy theorists is, himself, the subject of an anti-government conspiracy theory.
One website, called Truther.org, "a false-flag and state-sponsored terror whistleblower website," claims that Alex Jones is a "double intelligence agent" for a global intel firm called Strategic Forecasting, Inc., or STRATFOR for short. The author of the article, David Chase Taylor, connects Jones to STRATFOR in several ways, including the fact that both Jones and the intel firm are based out of Austin, Texas. Also, STRATFOR was founded by a "Zionist" (Taylor's word) named George Friedman in 1996, the same year that Alex Jones got his start in broadcasting with a local cable access television show. Jones, the website claims, is married to a "Zionist" woman and therefore is sympathetic to Friedman's cause. Taylor also insists that Jones was involved in a government false flag plot to explode a nuclear weapon at Super Bowl XLV, held in Dallas in 2011.
But wait. There's more.
Another website called SpirituallySmart.com claims, "Alex Jones is CIA DISINFORMATION agent/asset of the continued Project Mockingbird and Jesuit Temporal Coadjutor and alternative Media Gatekeeper for the Vatican." Yeah, that's a mouthful -- a mouthful of horseshit to be exact. The mental patient who maintains this site connects Jones to the Vatican, the CIA, the Jesuits (incidentally, gasp!, the new Pope is a Jesuit), time travel (I think) and Operation Mockingbird. The latter item, Mockingbird, is a common throughline among the various Alex Jones conspiracy theories. Mockingbird was evidently a CIA psy-op designed to infiltrate the news media in order to deliver government propaganda. In 1976, the project was abandoned by then-CIA Director George H.W. Bush when Jones was only two-years-old.
Let's go deeper, shall we?
A site called "ATS" or Above Top Secret reports that Alex Jones might have a secret ex-wife who released a YouTube video (since removed) in which she claims that Jones' real name is Alexander Christian Lafayette and that "he is part of the Holy See and CIA operative, and part of 'Operation Mockingbird.'" Mockingbird again. The author concludes that Alex Jones' apoplectic performance on CNN was "intentional so that 'conspiracy theorists' could be painted to be total lunatics with a wide wide brush."
The website HenryMakow.com (formerly "savethemales.ca") also flogs this theory. Makow writes that Jones' CNN rant was intentionally over-the-top in order to discredit the pro-gun militia movement: "Jones was there to look bad, and to make Piers look good. Jones was there to look like an idiot, a bully, and a psycho." Interesting take, given that Makow praises an obscure author and militia wackadoodle named Milton William "Bill" Cooper who, among other things, hated Jones. Before his death, Cooper also theorized that President Kennedy was assassinated because he was about to reveal an alien invasion of Earth. Cooper died during a shoot-out with law enforcement officials who attempted to arrest him on a variety of charges. Timothy McVeigh was a Cooper fan. And yet Jones is the crazy wingding who discredits the militia people. Okeedokee.
Another maniacally obsessed Jones hater observed on his site, "Alex has filmed himself many times coming into government offices with cameras and a megaphone yelling about how evil the government is. He literally speaks crazy enough to get people to want to riot, yet not one time is he tazered, knocked to the floor, or tackled by police! If any of us tried that we would be in deep trouble!"
Clearly all of this is way outside the mainstream, but these people exist, and there are a surprising number of sites dealing in this nonsense. Most of the sites are run by militia/gun zealots, anti-Semites and anti-Catholic bigots, and I imagine more than a few of them should probably be institutionalized or, at the very least, heavily medicated. Then again, psych meds are a conspiracy, too, according to Jones, so that's out of the question. The upshot, though, is that none of these conspiracy theories are any more or less ridiculous than the ones that Jones himself projectile vomits into the atmosphere every damn day. It's all a gigantic pile of hooey, either for profit or by severe chemical imbalance or a combination of both. Jones deals in the exploitation of easily-deceived loners and weirdos who, in their severely deluded conditions, want to believe that they're exclusively privy to the truth -- ironic, given how they're being thoroughly snowed by this professional for-profit cult leader. But it's no wonder that these people who are taught to be suspicious of everything and everyone would eventually complete the ouroboros and become suspicious of their own leader. The bottom line is that the entire universe of Alex Jones is poisonous, especially knowing that too many prominent conservatives are beginning to take seriously his conspiracy theories and are therefore mainstreaming the Alex Jones cuckoo's nest of lies.
But ultimately, no, Alex Jones isn't a CIA operative or a Jesuit coadjutor or whatever.
Or, then again, maybe I'm just saying that because I'm a liberal and I'm attempting to throw you off the trail. Maybe I'm working with Jones and we're colluding with the government to deceive you. Interesting, by the way, how his InfoWars reporter Dan Bidondi commented extensively on an article I wrote and his responses were perhaps intentionally illiterate as a means of embarrassing the conspiracy theory movement. Also, how did he know about about my column anyway? Come to think of it, how did Bidondi know to be in Boston on April 15 with an official press pass and an InfoWars mic flag at the ready? Hmmmmm. Did Alex Jones send him there because Jones was aware of the bombings before they happened?