A video by Alex Jones, facetiously titled “Gun Control Works,” has recently been making the rounds on social media. In it, Jones and a collage of supporters declare that “democide, or death by government … has been the number one cause of unnatural death in history.”
While there’s no doubt totalitarian government has been a brutal force, the specificity of Jones’ claims leave the curious observer to wonder about the origin of his information. Like some others in the recent trend of bullhorn-wielding, internet “confrontation reporters,” Jones has typically not engaged in original investigation or research. His programming normally takes the form of mash-ups of information previously reported by sources in the mainstream media, which the host then connects together by identifying broad patterns and themes. Despite this, however, Jones is usually very good about crediting his MSM sources during his shows and on his website. Not so, however, in the “democide” video.
Where did the theme for the “Gun Control Works” video originate and why has the source been obliviated? The answer to that question takes us to the offices of University of Hawai’i emeritus professor of political science Rudolph Rummel.
The word “democide” is not one found in popular lexicon. The word’s use has been almost completely confined to the works of Dr. Rummel – the man credited with coining it. Many other lines in Jones’ video appear directly lifted from Rummel’s works. For instance, at one point in the video we are told “government murdered four-times as many people as were killed in all the international and domestic wars combined.” The line is almost identical to one on Rummel’s website which declares government has murdered “four-times those killed in combat in all international and domestic wars.” Keyword searches reveal obvious sourcing from Rummel’s website for most other facts cited in the video.
So who is Rudolph Rummel, with whom Jones is so ideologically aligned?
- First, Rummel is a researcher funded by the most shadowy of government cloak-and-dagger agencies, the Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency (DARPA). His 2000 study, “Dimensions of Conflict Behavior Within and Between Nations” is one of several of his reports underwritten by DARPA to aid in conflict modeling. (DARPA is a favorite Jones target – just last week his website presented their most recent denouncement of the agency.)
- He’s, second, an author of bizarre fiction. His series of adventure novels “Never Again” – published by Aeon/Lumina Press, a vanity publisher for authors who can’t get pick-up from a major publishing house – tells a weird, frantic story about time traveling lovers who go back to the turn of the 20th century with a crate full of weapons from the future to blow-away Muslims.
- Given these two qualifications, it’s not surprising he’s, third, an interventionist of the most extreme variety. Most recently he called for the creation of an international body that would intervene to “democratize” places including Pakistan, Syria, Iran, China, Indonesia, Angola, Zimbabwe, Algeria, Rwanda, Burundi, Sierra Leone, Somalia, Sudan, Cuba and Colombia.
Rummel has unquestionably powerful academic credentials and is clearly a brilliant and respected researcher (though, perhaps, not a very good fiction writer). But does Jones’ uncredited promotion of Rummelian/DARPA theories “out” the controversial radio host as the neo-con disinfo agent some have always claimed?