Alex Jones, eh? It is, to say the least, rather difficult to take him seriously as an intellectual. The bombastic left-wing radio personality who rose to prominence as a fierce critic of the Iraq war was recently ordered to pay $1.5 billion in damages for defaming the families whose children were murdered in the 2012 mass shooting at Sandy Hook Elementary School—which sounds a little excessive but not entirely undeserved.
Like most far-left activists, Jones has thoughts about the 9/11 terrorist attacks—"a government-orchestrated controlled bombing"—and has expressed some unsavory opinions about Jews. "I'm not against Jews, but at a certain point…" the shock jock said in 2016. He was just trying to expose the "weirdo" members of the "Jewish Mafia" who have their "fingers in everything, screwing us over."
Something to keep in mind, at least, when considering Jones's new book, The Great Awakening: Defeating the Globalists and Launching the Next Great Renaissance, in which the author describes the Jew-hating left-wing firebrand Louis Farrakhan as "one of the nicest, most thoughtful people" he's ever encountered.
"Don't look to me as the person who lived his life as one of rectitude," Jones cautions. Fair enough. The Great Awakening is a sequel of sorts to The Great Reset: And the War for the World, published in 2022. If that book is anything like this one, it reads like a meandering rant dictated by that obnoxious weirdo in the freshman dorm, hastily brought to market in an effort to defray the author's gargantuan legal liabilities.
At one point, Jones explains over the course of several pages how the military-industrial complex, Anthony Fauci, corporate diversity initiatives, genital mutilation, and People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals are all part of a nefarious globalist plot orchestrated by "neo-con warmongers" such as Jake Sullivan and Tony Blinken, among (many) others.
Jones's coauthor Kent Heckenlively, a Rand Paul fanboy who "will forever be proud of being banned from speaking about vaccines in Australia from August 2017 to August 2020," did not even write most of the words in the book. It's fattened up with lengthy quoted passages from articles, interview transcripts, and in some cases entire speeches.
Large portions of The Great Awakening are rendered tedious if not illegible as a result. Your humble reviewer was compelled to skip entire sections, such as the author's extended copy-pasted analysis of the Gulf of Tonkin incident and Operations Plan 34A. That was considerably less interesting than the chapter on notorious pedophile Jeffrey Epstein, which features lengthy quotes from Space Relations, a novel about intergalactic sex slavery written by former attorney general Bill Barr's dad.
Jones describes the Epstein saga as "the Rosetta Stone to comprehend the way our world really works." In short: The CIA, MI6, and Mossad are collaborating with "rich atheists," "globalist mad scientists," and other demonic pedophiles to create a master race of genocidal human cyborgs.
Granted, the self-described "truth teller to the best of my ability" occasionally concedes he is unable to "provide confirmation for all parts" of his conspiratorial claims. And yet, to the extent one can look past the paranoid bullshit, it's hard not to come away thinking that, on some basic level, this strange shouty man has a point.
The Epstein case is indeed a perfect example of elite institutional corruption. It's one thing to be "just asking questions" about 9/11, but Jones isn't wrong to note how it's pretty f—ing weird that so many basic questions about Epstein's global sex-trafficking operation, not to mention his "suicide," remain unanswered. Remember those pipe bombs planted outside the Democratic and Republican headquarters on the eve of the January 6 insurrection? We still don't know who did it, which is also pretty f—ing weird.
On a basic level, Jones wants Americans to be more skeptical of those in power and points out (correctly) that over the last few decades, our elite institutions have self-engineered the controlled demolition of their credibility. He is not unjustifiably concerned about giving these same institutions free rein to develop and administer powerful artificial intelligence tools. He laments the decline of religious faith and community amid the rise of social media addiction, despair, and isolation.
Jones is not a serious intellectual, but neither are the vast majority of American voters whose political views often defy clean categorization and gravitate toward crankery on both sides. He has more in common with the average voter than the average politician. For better or worse, he might be the only person in the country capable of beating Donald Trump in a Republican primary election.
Amid the teeming crankery in The Great Awakening, Jones delivers a better anti-Trump attack line than anything the so-called GOP contenders have mustered thus far. "COVID-19 was the hill a worthy president should have fought and died upon," he writes toward the end of an extended rant about our elite institutions' disastrous response to the pandemic.
Just don't ask him to elaborate, or else you'll end up hearing all about the "Satanist Illuminati Cult" determined to engineer a Maoist Cultural Revolution in America, or the "robot 'hive mind'" whose mission will be "hunting down the last free human beings."
Also, don't believe everything you read.
The Great Awakening: Defeating the Globalists and Launching the Next Great Renaissance
by Alex Jones and Kent Heckenlively
Skyhorse, 408 pp., $32.50