- I have no personal beef with Jones. I think that he is sincere in his beliefs and is only doing what he feels must be done to make the world a better place. That doesn't mean he's right, however.
- Nothing I post will be related to the nationality, religious affiliation, or lifestyle of Alex Jones. This blog is about the information Jones disseminates, not about Jones himself.
- I welcome dissenting views, but comments that are disrespectful toward Jones, his associates, or myself will be removed. I'm here to examine information, not to engage in flame wars or talk smack about anyone.
- I realize that not everything Jones says is inaccurate. He says a lot, so he's bound to be right once in a while.
- I do not subscribe to ridiculous, groundless theories that Jones is a disinformationist, a Jesuit, a Freemason, an alphabet agency agent, etc. You cannot defeat paranoia and rumour-mongering by indulging in paranoia and rumour-mongering, so I don't.
- Jones himself encourages his audience to check his information, and once in a great while he even provides a source. I'm just taking him at his word. If the things he says are correct, then they'll withstand any amount of scrutiny.
Why Alex Jones?
Why am I singling out Alex Jones? Why not Michael Savage, Rush Limbaugh, Glenn Beck, or other conservative personalities who consistently distort the news and get their facts wrong? Why not David Icke, Jack Blood, or other conspiracy theorists?
Well, it's rather simple. Jones has become outrageously popular. His appeal transcends class, age, race, ethnicity, politics, and religion. My city is plastered with PrisonPlanet stickers. Many educated, middle-class people I know preface sentences with "Alex Jones says...". His viral videos, numerous websites, and widely available radio show are spreading his message to thousands of people every day. This means his misinformation is reaching thousands of people every day.
Unlike Savage, Don Imus, Howard Stern, and other controversial radio personalities, Jones does not present himself as an "infotainer". He presents himself as a serious researcher, activist, and documentarian who is providing vitally important, factual information to the masses. Rarely does he admit, "This is just my opinion."
So those are the general reasons I'm singling out Alex Jones. To be more specific, I'm concerned that Jones:
- Spreads erroneous, discredited information
- Elevates rumours and conspiracy theories to the status of facts; rarely provides sources for outrageous statements
- Misinterprets and/or misrepresents news items, legislation, government documents, etc., to bring them in line with his belief that the world's elite are carrying out systematic repression against all people in preparation for the installation of a "New World Order"
- Uses this misinformation to instill fear, anger, and panic in his audience
- Provides a forum for guests who hold pseudohistorical and pseudoscientific views
- Provides a forum for guests who hold anti-Semitic views
- Provides a forum for guests who offer bogus medical treatments and cures
- Appeals to emotionality in lieu of logic/rationality
- Fosters an "Us vs. Them" siege mentality
- Encourages fear and distrust of all officials, law enforcement personnel, military officers, medical professionals, and educators
- Presents deeply flawed analyses of historical events as fact
- Retroactively reshapes descriptions of events so that he can claim, "Everything I say comes true!"
- Promotes "Satanic panic" (anti-occult hysteria created by misinformation and hoaxes)
- Fosters extremely dangerous anti-vaccine hysteria
- Exaggerates and distorts information to fit his worldview (a common media tactic, but still unacceptable)
- Gives inaccurate health and dietary advice, though he is not a medical professional and does not seem to have a medical advisor
- Discourages people from donating to the American Cancer Society and other nonprofit cancer organizations
- Inculcates fear and disrespect of law enforcement by exaggerating and harping on isolated instances of police brutality and malfeasance
- Provides scientifically inaccurate information about global warming, space exploration, food additives, and sundry other topics of which he has no specialized knowledge