As summer begins to wind down, the controversy surrounding Alex Jones continues to simmer as social media and internet outlets ban the outspoken and outlandish host from their platforms. Now he’s getting kicked off not just digital media, but analog as well as the FCC announced that they are giving his Texas FM radio station, 90.1, the boot- as well as a hefty penalty.
According to the FCC lawsuit, FM 90.1, Texas Liberty Radio, the “Austin flagship” station for Alex Jones, the station had been broadcasting on the FM airwaves without proper federal consent from the FCC and had been allegedly doing so since 2013.
FCC agents traced the station’s signal to owners Walter Olenick and M. Rae Nadler-Olenick, who were transmitting out of an apartment in East Austin. In addition to shutting down the station, the FCC also handed the Olenicks a $15,000 penalty- a penalty that they are refusing to pay because, according to them, they never agreed to be regulated by the U.S. government, calling it “a conspiracy … to harass us and to intimidate us for and in retaliation of our very well documented assertion of our ‘right not to contract,” according to NPR.
However, according to the FCC, the removal and monetary penalties are not about the content, but rather the Olenicks’ lack of regard for following FCC protocol to get their station on the air.
According to FCC Chairman Ajit Pai , who testified before the Senate Commerce Committee in a previously planned session, “It is important to make clear that our pirate radio enforcement efforts — including this one — have nothing to do with the content of pirate radio stations air.”
The Olenicks staunchly remain adamant that they will not pay the fine and “are committed to spreading the word of truth.”
For Jones and his supporters, this is just the latest conspiracy in a long line of government conspiracies- or a lesson that free speech (over the radio) isn’t free.