A panicked Rachel Maddow took to her MSNBC platform Thursday night to launch an attack on Infowars.com – one in which she incredulously plugged products which help sustain the Infowars operation.
Lamenting Alex Jones’ and Infowars’ influence on Republican politics, the show host went on for more than ten minutes trying to wrap her head around how Jones’ unconventional ideas have garnered a wide audience.
At one point Maddow claims Infowars declared definitively: “Hillary has Parkinson’s disease,” but a graphic later flashed on screen shows a headline followed by a question mark (“Does Hillary Clinton Have Parkinson’s Disease?”), clearly indicating the article’s author was merely posing a question.
In fact, other article headlines published on Infowars related to Hillary’s Parkinson’s “rumors” have been credited to the people who made the claims:
We’re mildly fascinated and puzzled by Maddow’s weird obsession with Infowars, but we’re pleased she’s plugging our products and leading people to our website to discover the truth.
RACHEL MADDOW (HOST): You know, the secret ear piece thing, that’s journalistically sound compared to the rest of the stuff they’re putting out there. That could be sort of a mainstream scandal. This year in 2016 with Donald Trump at the top of the ticket for the Republican Party, Alex Jones is no longer just broadcasting to your fillings and your molars. He is apparently what the upper echelons of the Republican presidential campaign is reading and citing and circulating, even at this late date in the campaign. And matters because it’s not just the kook fringe, it’s just not the sort of remunerative conspiracy theory world of that part of the conservative media machine. It’s not even just whacky people who have made their way into Republican politics at a surprising height. This is now the top of the Republican ticket. And it’s after Labor Day, and this is a presidential year. And so, all day today, after Donald Trump Jr. tweeted the Infowars Alex Jones conspiracy theory, all day today, this was the headline about the commander-in-chief forum at the mega-conservative news site that drives more traffic online than anything else on the right.
This is like a snapshot, a microcosm of why this campaign is hard to follow. Sort of why it’s hard to get a sense of what the narrative is of the campaign this year. Why it can be sort of maddening to follow what’s going on in the campaign. Why it can be sort of painfully ridiculous to try to follow what’s going on in the campaign on any given day now.