Last night I spilled half a bowl of SpaghettiOs on my favorite pair of Batman pajamas while reading a Reddit post about the infamous radio personality Alex Jones, host of his own syndicated news/talk show dedicated to conspiracy theories.
A real wowzer showed up on Jones’ Infowars website last week, claiming that not only is he the famous comedian and pop icon, Bill Hicks (who faked his death and reconstructed his face), but is also possessed by the 29th demon of the Goetia, Astaroth. The article was quickly removed, but a generous contributor on Reddit reprinted it.
If you are unfamiliar with the Goetia (the Lesser Key of Solomon), it is a medieval magical grimoire and who’s who of the most infernal demons of hell, complete with instructions on how to evoke and bend them to your will.
Here’s the entry describing our good buddy:
“Astaroth, a great and powerful duke, appears like a foul angel riding on an infernal dragon and carrying a viper in his right hand. He must not be permitted to approach on account of his stinking breath, and the magician must defend his face with the magic ring. Astaroth answers truly concerning past, present and future, discovers all secrets and gives great skill in the liberal sciences. He will also discourse willingly concerning the fall of spirits.”
Anyone who’s brushed up against Jones’ work will undoubtedly find this to be an apt description of him. Particularly the bit involving the halitosis. It reminded me of my own experiences with his program and my reactions to it.
Three years ago, I became completely wrapped up in the Alex Jones worldview. His sources were legit, and his seemingly wild claims about government conspiracies often proved true in hindsight. The recent NSA data collection that has made the internet so angry, for instance, being reported over two years ago on Infowars.com.
The problem was that listening to his show for three hours a day was making me a nutcase. The universe had suddenly become a very hostile place to live in, with the apparently all-seeing 1% hunting down my freedoms and destroying them a little at a time. I was seeing the Illuminati everywhere, blinded to all the beauties of the world. I had enslaved myself to the forces of darkness, and they didn’t even need to lift a finger (or claw, or whatever). Jones had led me into a universe where I was a victim.
Interestingly, all I had to do to escape this terrible place was to stop listening to his show, and let the rest of the world in. I broadened my viewpoint, and was rewarded with a shiny new reality. The facts that Jones reported hadn’t changed. The universe hadn’t changed. Only I had.
It would be easy for me to laugh off this accusation of demonic possession as the obvious trolling that it is, but it’s not so easy to laugh off the reality tunnel that I allowed myself to be sucked into. Demon or no, I really had created the hell I was living in, and it had stained my psyche as permanently as the the processed tomato sauce has stained my pajamas.
Follow Up: Thanks to the magic of lemon juice and cold water, my jammies are as good as new!