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We are shocked, shocked to discover sexual harassment, bigotry and excessive shirtlessness going on in Alex Jones’ establishment (allegedly)

He didn’t mean to turn you on

By David Futrelle

So the Daily Mail is reporting that two former Infowars employees have filed complaints with the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission accusing head Infowarrior Alex Jones and other staffers of harassment and discrimination, describing a workplace lousy with racism, homophobia, anti-Semitism, sexual harassment and way more shirtless Alex Jones than anyone should ever be subjected to.

Documents filed by ex-Infowarrior Rob Jacobson suggest that working for Jones as a Jewish person was, well, a lot like one might imagine it would be to work for Jones as a Jewish person.

According to the Daily Mail,

the controversial Infowars owner joked with staff who called … Jacobson ‘The Jewish Individual’, ‘The Resident Jew’ and shouted ‘Yacobson’ across the office, it’s claimed.

Jones allegedly continually bullied, ridiculed and humiliated Jacobson – who worked for Jones’ company Infowars for 13 years – before firing him last May.

Apparently working for Jones as a black woman isn’t much of a treat either.

Ex-Infowars production assistant Ashley Beckford says “the discrimination began almost immediately” after she started work there in 2016, the Daily Mail reports.

According to an EEOC complaint she too has filed: ‘I was subjected to different terms and conditions of employment, in comparison to my non-Black African-American peers, when it came to my salary/wages and benefits (travel), and in regards to my dress, including my hair style.

‘I also was subjected to harassment and racial slurs by Respondent’s management and some peer colleagues, as well as subjected to sexual harassment and a hostile, sexually offensive work environment.’

In a series of allegations,  Beckford, who is African American, says she was ‘mocked’ for her skin tone, called a ‘coon’ by a senior manager, and denied promotions to match the salary of other coworkers, according to the complaint documents.

She also accuses Jones and several other supervisors and colleagues of ‘commonly leering at women in the office’, and making ‘sexual gestures and advances’. …

Beckford claimed that Jones groped her behind with his hand and commented to others, ‘Who wouldn’t want to have a black wife?’ …

She claims he made ‘sexual advances’ towards her and made comments about her having a ‘good body that looked like I worked out a lot’ …

She added: ‘Alex often spent his time shirtless, and endlessly leering, with or without a shirt, at female guests and employees while creating a disgusting, hostile environment.’

Apparently, the Infowars offices are also full of dudes who love guns (and Donald Trump) a little too much.

Beckford … claims she was intimidated by the constant display of guns in the infowars’ office in Austin, Texas, which created an ‘extremely hostile work environment’ and alleges she was reprimanded if she ever questioned the actions of President Donald Trump.

For more of the sordid details, check out the documents posted by the Daily Mail.

Alex Jones, for his part, says it’s lies, all lies. “I mean nobody accuses me of stuff like that,” he told the Daily Mail. “No, no and in fact I’m not the type of person to say those kinds of things. So that’s why my feelings are hurt. Wow. That’s all I can say.”

Jones’ dad, who runs the Human Resources department at Infowars (!), wasn’t quite as definite in his denials, admitting to the Daily Mail that at least one of Jacobson’s accusations might sorta be true, maybe. “That might have been a case of 30 seconds of somebody giving him some crap, I can see that, it’s like a damn locker room,” he told the Daily Mail, choosing his words very uncarefully.

Presumably since this interview Alex has confiscated his dad’s phone.

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EJ (The Other One)
4 years ago

Hey WWTH,

I am back, yes. Thank you for that gif, you’ve always been one of the highlights of posting here. I dunno where the lion is, I’m afraid. I should play around with logins but I can’t remember what I was doing last time.

When was I last posting, August-ish? I had a months-long bout of really bad depression, which was not helped by the fact that I wasn’t employed at the time. I basically fell off the internet entirely.

I’m getting better. I missed this community a lot. How have things been?

sarah_key_gee
sarah_key_gee
4 years ago

Eh, I agree with Diego to a certain point. It doesn’t take 13 years to figure out Infowars in general and Jones in particular is profiting* by pushing propaganda that vilifies all minorities and vulnerable people, and Jews are definitely included in that. Much in the same way I don’t consider Megyn Kelly a feminist hero, since she was happy to take a paycheck from Fox News for years, I don’t have a ton of sympathy for this guy.

None of which is to say he “deserved” the treatment or that Jones shouldn’t be held accountable. That’s a different argument and the two are not mutually exclusive. I hope this guy, the other woman, and anyone else who was abused by Jones finds a good lawyer who can sue the pants off Jones (except he’d probably enjoy that) and drives him from the airwaves forever.

*Technically they profit from selling snake oil supplements and tactical taint wipes, but they use the propaganda as a tool.

RosieLa
RosieLa
4 years ago

The amount of anti-semitism in many a workplace is unreal. You hit a point where you just get used to it, and stay silent about it all.

Scildfreja Unnyðnes
Scildfreja Unnyðnes
4 years ago

<3 EJ, you're a treasure. Welcome back!

Diego Duarte
Diego Duarte
4 years ago

@weirdwoodtreehugger

I do not condone, nor defend what Alex Jones did to these people, nor believe that they somehow deserved this. I agree that we need to create an environment where people who go through this sort of harassment can come forward.

Where I do disagree with your post is where these conspiracy theories are not blatantly bigoted from the get go. I will take exactly zero excuses for people propagating this type of behavior.

Let us not elide conspiracy theories, like the famous Roswell conspiracy, with the conspiracies peddled by Alex Jones, which are all White supremacist in nature. This type of conspiracies are nothing short of gaslighting against groups suffering discrimination. The purpose of them is to derail conversation and deflect from the very visible oppression these groups are facing, towards overly cartoonish villains, who just happen to be Jewish.

I am not at all comfortable with anybody who propagates these type of conspiracies, which are specifically designed to hurt PoC and other vulnerable groups, nor with the people who believe them. They are all trash.

Just because someone holds a sincere belief that does not make it any less bigoted. Just because they have “good intentions” that does not make the harm they cause any less real.

The Alex Jones crowd is White supremacist trash. They are Nazi-adjacent and, in the case of Jones himself and some of his followers, blatantly Nazi.

Katamount
Katamount
4 years ago

@Diego

I think WWTH is offering how one might become a conspiracy theorist and why one might remain one. It’s the same mentality that leads people into the arms of cult leaders.

Funny thing (not in the “haha” funny way, given the subject matter)… I was almost snookered by a conspiracy theorist myself: Kevin Annett of Port Alberni BC. When I was looking for videos regarding the residential schools in Canada, I came across his documentary film Unrepentant and ended up watching it because it contained harrowing interviews with residential school survivors and was uncompromising in placing the blame squarely on the government and the churches, related through the lens of Kevin Annett’s defrocking by the United Church of Canada after he began asking questions about why there were so few native people in his congregation. When he learned about how the United Church ran the local residential school, he started to become marginalized by church officials and was eventually kicked out. It begins as a noble story about a humble young family man taking on a system that had abused native people for more than a century, but as the documentary goes on, Annett starts to drop in things about mass graves and bodies burned in incinerators, which are pretty sensational accusations, but you’re primed to believe it because the abuses were quite real. It was only after I did a little follow-up did I find an article from thetyee.ca from 2008 concluding that Annett has no proof of mass graves (and although we can never know how many native children died given poor record keeping, mass graves tend to include a lot of bones.) It also pointed out why I had never heard Annett’s name spoken about during the long media spotlight on the Truth and Reconciliation Commission: no First Nations band actually backs him up on his claims. In fact, he goes on to describe his own native detractors as “government paid” (sound familiar?).

This is a picture perfect example of why conspiracy theorists are so dangerous and even those who start with a noble mission can pervert it with self-deception. They take a grain of truth, or even a mountain of truth, and start building more and more elaborate wrongdoings on top of it, which only serves to blur the lines between reality and fiction on matters of absolute importance. That Star Trek TNG episode “The Drumhead” is another great encapsulation of how people starting on a noble mission who cloak themselves in good deeds may use it to hide other motives. Now, I don’t know what Annett’s game is (if I had to guess, it would be self-aggrandizement combined with white saviour complex), but a YouTube search of Annett’s other interviews brought me to one Alex Jones on Infowars.com.

So… Jones’ material is not limited just to white supremacist crackpot ideas. He is (or at least was) into any crackpot idea he could sink his teeth into. He certainly didn’t give a shit about the First Nations people of Canada and he’s certainly as racist as he comes off, but I think he’s opportunist first, bigot close second.

Alan Robertshaw
4 years ago

@ katamount

mass graves tend to include a lot of bones.

That’s not necessarily true in the case of children. One of my friends is a forensic osteo-archelogist. She used to do regular archeology, but now she works for the War Crimes Tribunals. That pretty much is just excavating mass graves. She’s full of fascinating taphonomy* facts. And one of those was how quickly children’s bones can decompose completely. It’s grim to think that’s something she has to take into account in her reporting.

(* which is what the science is called apparently)

Diego Duarte
Diego Duarte
4 years ago

@Katamount

Duly noted. I understand that plenty of conspiracy theories can have a grain of truth in them, and even a lot more than that.

In case I didn’t make it explicitly clear, Alex Jones does not fall into this category of conspiracy theorists, given that his theories fall far more on the ludicrous side.

Secondly, I entirely disagree that he is an opportunist first and a bigot second. Although he peddles other types of conspiracy theories, Alex Jones has a clear agenda. There are plenty of conspiracy theories out there, but Jones only chooses to promote the ones which delegitimize social justice movements. He also actively seeks out to demonize any sort of grassroot movement which isn’t explicitly Right wing.

One of the cornerstones of Nazism, and the reason why it was very efficient, was precisely the spread of misinformation and the constant vilification of vulnerable groups and their defenders. This is the sort of behavior Jones engages in on the regular. The man has even been calling for Civil War for a while now.

Make no mistake, he might be an opportunist, but he also has a clear and dangerous agenda. One that involves disenfranchising women and minorities, and killing his “enemies”. You can guess where we fit in that spectrum.

Shadowplay
4 years ago

Welcome back EJ. Never talked, but I have missed your wit.

weirwoodtreehugger: chief manatee

Yes, what Katamount said. The thing about dog whistles is that not everyone is a dog. Once you learn to spot them, you can’t unsee them and they become so obvious that it’s hard to believe everyone can’t spot them. However, a lot of people are not politically savvy at all.

I should also note that it was the election of Obama that really brought Alex Jones’ racism to the forefront. Conspiracy theories were my trainwreck to be mocked of choice before I found this blog and switched my mockery energies to the manosphere. So I’ve been following this type of stuff since the 1990s and know a fair bit about it. During the George W Bush administration, Jones and Infowars came after the Bushes hard. He even came after Arnold Schwarznagger in part for having Nazi leanings. Undoubtedly Alex Jones always had plenty of racism and anti-Semitism and misogyny and homophobia in him, but in his older stuff it was not very blatant and it is very easy to see why someone who was not bigoted at all could’ve been sucked in in the pre-Obama days.

Like Katamount said, Jones is an opportunist. I think in the Bush years he exploited the fears a lot of progressives and moderates (rightly) had of the US turning into a big business endorsed religious right theocracy. When Obama came to office, he exploited the racism instead and his followers became more right wing over time. Now that right wing flavor seems to be entrenched as Jones and his people are all about Trump even though he’s more authoritarian than any president we’ve had in any of our lifetimes and Infowars was supposedly started to oppose that.

I’m drifting far from my original point though. I’m not really trying to Infowars followers let alone Infowars itself. My point was more that even if it’s not the intention to victim blame, it’s not really cool to start trashing the victims of harassment in a post about the harassment. It’s something that reactionaries love to do. Take a look at any of the archived posts about Gamergate. There were constantly gaters coming in here to say they thought harassment is bad but Zoe Quinn is terrible and Anita Sarkeesians videos are trash. It’s a way to stealthily victim blame while maintaining plausible deniability and you can see it any time there is ever a mention on the internet of any harassment allegation. I’d just rather not see our side trash harassment victims even if there’s no victim blaming intent because it enables real victim blamers. In any other context, I have no issue with criticisms and mocking of Infowars and any of its fans.

PeeVee the Tired
PeeVee the Tired
4 years ago

Hi, EJ! *Waves*

Agree, WWTH…with everything you’ve said.

Diego Duarte
Diego Duarte
4 years ago

My point was more that even if it’s not the intention to victim blame, it’s not really cool to start trashing the victims of harassment in a post about the harassment. It’s something that reactionaries love to do. Take a look at any of the archived posts about Gamergate. There were constantly gaters coming in here to say they thought harassment is bad but Zoe Quinn is terrible and Anita Sarkeesians videos are trash. It’s a way to stealthily victim blame while maintaining plausible deniability and you can see it any time there is ever a mention on the internet of any harassment allegation. I’d just rather not see our side trash harassment victims even if there’s no victim blaming intent because it enables real victim blamers. In any other context, I have no issue with criticisms and mocking of Infowars and any of its fans.

Duly noted, this is something I can agree with. I apologize, it is not my intention to minimize workplace sexual harassment and bigotry. I wanted to bring to light how these people are, more than likely bigoted as well, but from what you said I can see how doing so can be a front to deflect from the main issue and entirely derail a conversation.

EJ (The Other One)
4 years ago

Hello, PeeVee. I missed you. Thank you very much, Shadowplay.

(Also, hello Penny Psmith, Lanariel, Miss Verstandnis, Claire, and everyone else who reads but doesn’t post much. You are also beloved.)

@Diego Duarte:
In a capitalist system, the price for standing on one’s morals can be that one starves in the street. This is especially true for people with fewer sought-after skills, or people who are structurally disadvantaged.

Sadly, Jones and other employers like him are hardly rare.

In your opinion, is it better to starve on the street, or undergo other-but-not-as-severe deprivation, in order to avoid working for Alex Jones and other people like him?

This isn’t a rhetorical question. Saying yes here is a radical position but one that I can respect, and have taken myself in similar circumstances in the past.

(EDIT: You clarified and apologised while I was writing this. Apologies if it comes across as dogpiling.)

banned@4chan.org
banned@4chan.org
4 years ago

Jones allegedly continually bullied, ridiculed and humiliated Jacobson – who worked for Jones’ company Infowars for 13 years…

…on the bright side, I’m not the only person struggling with the urge to victim-blame.

(Not) Rick Sanchez
(Not) Rick Sanchez
4 years ago

The only think that shocks me about this is that Infowars, which is as anti-human as one can get on this planet, has a Human Resources department.

Also, welcome back, EJ. You don’t know me, but I missed your humor and wit. 🙂

Alan Robertshaw
4 years ago

Hi EJ, welcome back!

Hope you’re feeling a bit better and life’s picked up for you.

Saying yes here is a radical position but one that I can respect,

That’s such an ethical dilemma. The morality is probably an open question. The law’s a bit simpler. ‘Necessity’ is (theoretically*) a defence to anything except murder. Of course we spend a lot of time arguing about what counts as ‘necassary’; it’s a pretty high bar.

(* if you steal bread for example, you’d have to show that you had no alternatives to starvation)

Shadowplay
4 years ago

Considering wwth and Katamount’s points – I am going to apologise for the lack of clarity and compassion in my first comment about Jacobson. Shouldn’t have said it so scornfully.

Jones can still go piss up a rope though.

weirwoodtreehugger: chief manatee

Thanks, Diego Duarte. FWIW I do know you didn’t bad intentions.

Katamount
Katamount
4 years ago

@Alan

Huh, I did not know that. I’ll have to do a little more research into the topic (biology was always my weakest subject), but you learn something new every day.

Naturally, we’d still need some kind of proof of these mass graves before we accept Annett’s claims–and his claims continue to multiply… multiple mass graves and bones buried in walls. Pretty much everything short of native children being buried in end zones next to Jimmy Hoffa.

@Diego

I see your point and certainly his racism drives his love of Trump, but merely interviewing Kevin Annett at least demonstrates that at one time, his conspiracy theories weren’t necessarily used against emancipatory and social justice movements. That said, I haven’t watched the interview, nor do I have a date for it, so it’s possible it was the early days of InfoWars and Jones was hard-up for guests to appear, so I could be mistaken.

But as WWTH pointed out, there has been a fundamental shift in InfoWars’ trajectory. People that traffic in conspiracy theory and persecution complexes have a tough time convincing others that there’s secrets afoot and people are out to get them when they have all the power. That’s why the right-wing media complex had such a profitable time during the Obama years: he was the perfect boogeyman and scapegoat. Jones must have been giddy with excitement when Obama won re-election. Whatever he saw in Trump (probably an audience to fleece), I’m willing to bet he was more than a little apprehensive when he actually won, because without Hillary in office, they don’t have a plausible boogeyman–the “Deep State” is the best they have to explain why despite being in charge, they can’t pull the trigger on their agenda.

This is all a digression from the accusations against Jones; I just wanted to share a personal anecdote to illustrate that even intelligent and well-meaning people can fall victim to a conspiracy theory.

Female Yid
Female Yid
4 years ago

Just the idea of having a shirtless Alex Jones gawk at me for lengthy periods of time makes me want to take a shower. That sounds so violating.

The anti-semitism doesn’t surprise me either. Globalist, a term Jones uses frequently, is just a dog whistle for Jew.

Alan Robertshaw
4 years ago

@ katamount

Yeah, not suggesting that necessarily means mass graves; ‘abscence of evidence is not evidence of abscence’ and all that. Just thought I’d mention it though as a consideration.

Re; infowars

First encountered Alex Jones on a programme here by a guy called Mark Thomas. He was a regular contributor. Back then it was mainly Bohemian Grove type stuff, which fitted in with the general tone of the programme; commentary about the political elite. Another regular contributor was Michael Moore. But he seemed relatively legitimate on that programme, if a little conspiracy minded.

Diego Duarte
Diego Duarte
4 years ago

@EJ and Alan

That’s such an ethical dilemma. The morality is probably an open question. The law’s a bit simpler. ‘Necessity’ is (theoretically*) a defence to anything except murder. Of course we spend a lot of time arguing about what counts as ‘necassary’; it’s a pretty high bar.

Indeed. Personally, I draw the line where my behavior might actually hurt the disempowered or disenfranchised. But then that can be subjective as well. With regard to InfoWars I have little to no tolerance, given that it is a platform which seems to exclusively cater to deliberate hurting minorities, and gun violence victims, by any means necessary.

Given his propensity for violent outbursts it’s a wonder that Jones hasn’t gotten an aneurysm yet.

weirwoodtreehugger: chief manatee

My mom’s coworker gave her some Infowars DVDs back in the early 2000s. My favorite was the one about how George W. Bush murdered John F. Kennedy Jr. by having the CIA brainwash Kennedy’s co-pilot into becoming a Manchurian Candidate type assassin. The evidence for this? George Bush Sr. was involved in the original Kennedy assassination. This is presented as a given. Also, Dubya supposedly didn’t make any public appearances that weekend even though he was campaigning for President and should have been around. The only possible explanation for his absence must’ve been that he was plotting murder. The murder was Dubya’s proof of loyalty to the New World Order. JFK Jr. was a man of integrity and not part of the NWO, therefore he was a good target.

I wonder if I still have those DVDs. They would make a good thing to watch with friends + booze.

Moon_custafer
Moon_custafer
4 years ago

Also, Dubya supposedly didn’t make any public appearances that weekend even though he was campaigning for President and should have been around. The only possible explanation for his absence must’ve been that he was plotting murder

Shouldn’t he have been doing all his plotting *ahead of time* rather than the same weekend as the murder? In any case, it doesn’t sound as though they’re claiming he pulled the trigger himself, so what does it matter whether or not he made public appearances at the time of the plane crash?

Alan Robertshaw
4 years ago

having the CIA brainwash Kennedy’s co-pilot

A teensy flaw in that plan is JFK jr didn’t have a co-pilot.

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