On a CNN Special Report looking into Infowars founder Alex Jones, former employees opened up about working for the conspiracy theorist — possibly most famous for claiming that the Sandy Hook school shooting, in which 26 people were killed, mostly children — was a hoax.
In the program, titled Megaphone for Conspiracy and airing Sunday, Robert Jacobson, who worked for Infowars for 13 years, put Jones’s relationship with the truth in no uncertain terms.
“He will just lie,” Jacobson said. “Straight up lie like nothing’s going on. Like it’s real. And the issue with that is, a lot of people believe him.”
Josh Owens, who left Infowars after four years, claimed there were multiple instances in which he was encouraged to lie to the audience.
“They wanted us to go to these majority Muslim communities and report on why are these people in these communities. What’s going on? This seems suspicious,” Owens said. “There was nothing to it.” “No Sharia law overruling the United States government?” asked CNN’s Drew Griffin. “No, no, but that’s what Jones wanted,” Owens replied. “We made up the stories because there was nothing to report on. In essence, we lied.”
Owens realized his job wasn’t to find the truth when he was sent to California to report on elevated levels of radiation from the Fukushima nuclear disaster in Japan, but didn’t find what Jones had hoped. This was at the same time that Jones was selling a dietary supplement to supposedly protect against nuclear fallout.
“None of us really knew how to use a Geiger counter,” Owens said. “We just posted videos saying that we weren’t finding elevated levels.” “And how was that received?” Griffin asked. “They had never seen him so angry, because we were posting what we were finding,” Owens replied. “I started to get the idea, like, ‘OK, maybe our job isn’t to report the truth. Maybe our job is to report what Jones thinks the truth is.’”
Jones has made hundreds of millions of dollars selling various products, and Caolan Robertson, who made a documentary with Jones and regularly appeared on Infowars, said that Jones cares more about sales than anything else.
“He’ll say, ‘Buy these products. Buy these products.’ And at the end, the first thing he’ll say when he goes into the briefing room after a show is, ‘What were the sales during the show?’” Robertson ecplained. “As in, how many people signed up live while it was broadcast, not, ‘Was it a good show? Did we expose the truth?’ So, truth doesn’t really matter at all.”
Jones’s ex-wife, Kelly Jones, agreed that for him it’s all about money, not truth.
“I think it’s important for people to understand that they’re paying money to, and aligning themselves with, an outlet that is entirely deceptive,” Jones said, “and that just wants their money.” “Sounds like a grift, really,” Griffin said. “Yes,” Jones replied, “I think that really is what it is. It’s a con.”
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