Back in 2003 while crawling the internet for streaming TV (before the days of SurfTheChannel and AllUC were around) I was on WinAmp’s video streaming section- basically 100 porn channels and a handful of Star Trek & Simpson’s/Family guy channels. It was fairly ghetto but allowed people to set up their own TV station on the internet with little to no money and without a lot of skill. Here is where I found Aqua Teen Hunger Force, among other things. The other channel I found of interest was called “Freedom TV”. This channel played a lot of documentaries about the war in Iraq, the Federal Reserve, and conspiracies. Here is where I found out about 9/11 conspiracies and the grandfather of the 9/11 ‘truth’ movement, Alex Jones.
When I turned to Alex Jones, he was frothing at the mouth, going on about Black Hawk helicopters and mind control devices. I watched at first because he was fairly entertaining and I’m a sucker for a good conspiracy (the year before, I’d watched all I could about JFK and Watergate). Alex brought something new to the table, a real fervor and had what appeared to be actual facts to back up his claims. He had ‘documented proof’ that the World Trade Center had been an inside job, that bombs had gone off in the buildings, and that no plane had hit the pentagon. By this time, he already had 7 documentaries, chocked full of information that apparently no government official would acknowledge or investigate. It was like music to my ears. I was in my early 20s and was full of angst. There was something wrong with the world and Alex Jones had the answer.
For years I followed Alex Jones and those like him. I read everything I could about an assortment of topics, from economics to religion, to ancient history to the occult. I wanted to find out the truth about our world, to find the dark menace that was controlling our daily lives. Day after day I’d sit in my room as if I were Neo looking for the matrix. I needed to know the truth. At one point I seriously considering becoming a Sumerologist, thinking that the cradle of civilization was the key to unlocking the secret.
In 2006, I joined an anarchist free school and taught a class on conspiracies, hoping to connect with others to fight the “New World Order”, or “Illuminati”. This is when my perspective started to change. The anarchists were a cool bunch. They provided me with a space to teach my class however I wanted, and would promote it for me too. Being anarchists, they put no restrictions on what I did or who came to the class. Since the promotions were pretty underground (you can’t exactly promote a class called The Secret History of the World in the Globe & Mail) I got the underground coming out. My class of 25 consisted of young university educated protest types, old christian conspiracy nuts, homeless people- each group having a different agenda and mostly always in conflict with each other. Everyone understood that something was wrong with the system, but had no plans for a remedy. That now became my task…
(more to come)