Alex Jones, insane pitchman? Much like TV-sales icons Crazy Eddie and Ron Popeil, Infowars may be more QVC on steroids than a fake news show. That, according to HBO’s non-pitchman John Oliver, is that Infowars is all about: selling overpriced items. Oliver claims that Infowars generates in excess of $45 million annually from the sales of products from its website. He also claims the products are overpriced. We decided to test Oliver’s claim………..and he was right. In fact, he may have understated the rip-off ratio of prices on Infowars’ website.
We looked at a number of items pitched by the infamous Mr. Jones and sold at the Infowars website. Take, for example, Jones’ “Patriot Blend 100% Organic Coffee”. Sold for $17.95 per pound. This is touted as fair trade coffee produced in Chiapas, Mexico.
Compare this to Chiapas-sourced fair trade coffee sold on Amazon for about $13.50 per pound (when adjusted from grams to ounces) and you’d be paying 33% premium for essentially the same coffee.
OK, since not all coffees are exactly the same, and since we aren’t going to attempt a taste test, we looked for something that was more comparable. How about organic mouthwash for about $20. For just 8 oz. of “cruelty-free” 1:10 concentrate, you can buy “organic” mouthwash. (truthfully, we didn’t know that flavored alcohol could be organic!)
Apparently, it’s not popular, as it wasn’t easy to find organic mouthwash on the Internet. Funny how Jones’ unique blend of organic mouthwash is almost identical to another seller of organic mouthwash. The label is pretty much the same, as is the 1:10 concentrate.
That’s not a surprise because there really isn’t much to “organic mouthwash”. We found an “organic” rinse sold at Amazon for about $5 for 8 oz. (more precisely, $8.90 for 16 oz). That’s about 75% less than what Infowars is offering for its “organic” product.
However, if you really want to save money on this very expensive “organic” product, you might try boiling 2 cups of water. Add in 1 teaspoon of fresh organic mint leaves, 1 teaspoon of organic cloves and 1 teaspoon of organic rosemary leaves. Let this boil for about 20 minutes. Once cooled, it is ready to go, all for about $1 for 16 oz. (Or if you grow these products at home, it’s as close to free as you can get).
An even bigger rip-off is their “Emric’s Essentials” spf-30 face and body lotion. 4 oz of sunscreen for about $16.00. Compare this with two other 30-spf top-rated sunscreens sold on Amazon that range from $7-13. And this one, sold at Amazon for $10.00. In fact, a whole host of high-quality 30-spf sunscreens sell on Amazon for less than $2 per ounce, or about half the price of Emric’s Essentials. Consumer Reports’ highest rated sunscreen is a 50spf lotion sold at Walmart for $9 per 16oz bottle………about 70 cents per ounce or 85% cheaper than Emric’s Essentials!
But perhaps the most breathtaking rip-off on the site is 3 oz. of the “Winter Sun Vitamin D” for $29.95. It offers 2,000 IU per dose. Vitamin D is a relatively low-cost vitamin — available at Vitacost for between $5-10 per bottle. And Amazon offers an even higher-potency liquid Vitamin D3 at less than $8.00 per bottle or approximately $4 per liquid ounce. Compare this to Winter Sun that comes it at $10 per liquid ounce. The mark-up amounts to 150% more than what others will charge for essentially the same product, without the hard-core hype associated with Infowars products.
Infowars 3-month supply of emergency survival food will set you back about $500. At 450 servings, that’s about $1.25 per serving of freeze-dried foods that include oatmeal, pudding, rice and powered drinks. If you head over to Costco.com you can find an extensive selection of survivor foods. One offering is two buckets containing 700 servings for less than $200, or about $.25 per serving of meals like tomato pasta, black bean burgers, rice casserole and lots of starches like oatmeal, multigrain cereal and black beans. You’d be paying 500% more and receiving 250 fewer servings to buy the Infowars selection of emergency food.
And we can’t help but mention the “Patriot Seeds Organic Seed Vault” or the “garden in a can” for only $29.95 at the Infowars site. It claims to offer 21 different seed varieties, although it declines to mention how many seeds you actually get. Compare this with a collection of 16 different vegetable seeds offered on Amazon for about half the price ($15.99) except Amazon actually lists the number of seeds you get: “Know Exactly What You Are Getting!! Tomato: Beefsteak 75+ Seeds, Cucumber: 50+ Seeds, Broccoli: Waltham 29 300+ Seeds, Spinach: Bloomsdale Long Standing 50+ Seeds, Green Pepper: Yolo Wonder 50 + Seeds, Cauliflower: Snowball 100+ Seeds, Romaine: 400+ Seeds, Green Beans: 25+ Seeds, Carrots: Imperator 58 250+ Seeds, Beets: Detroit Dark Red 50+ Seeds, Cabbage Red or Green:150+ Seeds, Radish: 125+ Seeds, Salad Bowl Lettuce: 150+seeds, Celery: Utah 1,000 Seeds or Bok Choy Seeds”.
At this point, you should probably get the point. If you buy any product from Infowars, expect to pay an Alex Jones-premium for the honor of supporting his cause. You’ll pay between 30-500% more, just based upon the products we reviewed. And, unlike Amazon or some other sites, the “reviews” are highly suspicious: most every product is reviewed at between 4.5 and 5 stars and the reviews read like advertisements. The bottom line is that, if anything, John Oliver understated how much you overpay if you buy from Infowars Store. In fact, if you buy multiple products from Infowars, you’ll be making a sizeable, albeit perhaps inadvertent, donation to his particular conspiratorial causes. And our reportage is documented, decidedly unfake news.