David Icke Makes Angry Appearance on Australia's "Today" Show, Doesn't Take Well to Being Challenged
Yesterday morning Australian time, conspiracy theorist David Icke appeared on the Nine Network’s Today show to discuss his upcoming tour of Australia, and things did not go according to plan. Icke seemed agitated and combative, and his nearly obsessive insistence on repeating a few fixed talking points without seeming to be able to go off script eventually left the normally genial presenters, Karl Stefanovic and Lisa Wilkinson, dumbfounded and exasperated. In other words, it was a great seven minutes of television.
The results of Icke’s appearance were especially surprising since Stefanovic is, to put it bluntly, a bit of a space cadet himself and has repeatedly expressed interest in UFOs, the paranormal, and other unusual phenomena. “I love these theories, but I’m not slugging people a hundred bucks to listen to my rubbish,” Stefanovic said, taking issue with the steep charge for tickets to Icke’s speaking engagements, which run up to $100 Australian ($76 US) for a twelve-hour lecture. (Maybe that is high in Australia, but that is right in range for a 90 minute rock concert here.) Icke reminded the hosts that the ticket price funds “a whole team of people” who travel with him around the world to produce his stage show. Of course, this doesn’t quite make the case that “they” don’t want you to know what Icke has to say, but… details!
Icke then told the hosts that they likely earn much more money than he does.
From the get-go Icke was in a bad mood, starting his appearance by informing the hosts that his audience have self-respect and plan to do their own research without the news media telling them what to believe. He was already angry, a sure-fire method for winning new fans.
It was particularly interesting to see that Icke is leaning more into the ancient astronaut hypothesis thanks to the success of Ancient Aliens, and he repeatedly referenced claims from ancient astronaut hypotheses. Since he was in Australia, he discussed what he believes to be Aboriginal Australian contact with extraterrestrial beings. Ancient Aliens just did an hour on the same subject, though as a Brit Icke probably hasn’t seen that episode yet.
What was quite clear, though, is that Icke has a series of memorized speeches that he uses, and he is not very good with extemporaneous discussion. In response to questions, he launches into prepared lectures that are so familiar that even I—who has barely listened to Icke at any length—have already heard more than once, particularly his noxious line about how what he wrote about in his books in the 1990s is now “being read” on the news today, a line I’ve heard in at least three different recent Icke appearances, each time repeated virtually verbatim.
Wilkinson asked Icke to discuss his belief that the moon is a hollow space station, and this is where the problems really started. Icke began as he always does with his usual speech about the way the hypothesis was first proposed by Soviet scientists in a “detailed” scientific account. Just for those keeping track at home, the hypothesis was proposed by Soviet scientists, but not as an area of academic inquiry. Mikhail Vasin and Alexander Shcherbakov published speculation about a hollow moon in 1967 in the propaganda journal Sputnik, aimed at a Western audience. Their claim was intended, along with other Soviet ancient astronaut articles of the time, to undermine Western religious values, but by 1968 the Soviet Academy of Sciences changed their official line and closed down ancient astronaut speculation, having done their job of seeding Western publications with ancient astronaut theories, a propaganda coup for Soviet atheism.
Wilkinson noted that the scientists were Soviets, with the (correct) implication that their work cannot necessarily be trusted. Icke countered that the was “a book written some years ago, again by serious people, called Who Built the Moon?, which was breaking down all the extraordinary anomalies that relate to the moon” Does that sound familiar? It should. That book isn’t a scientific work at all but a poorly researched pile of speculation by Alan Butler and Christopher Knight, who speculated about how the moon might have been the work of time traveling Freemasons.
Yes, Alan Butler is now David Icke’s “serious” source for his major claim that the moon is artificial.
Wilkinson asked Icke to explain how the lunar space station was parked in orbit around the Earth, and Icke nearly lost it because he wasn’t prepared to be asked a factual question. “It was moved,” he said, nonsensically. Thrown off his game, Icke started to spout random rhetorical questions to cover his ignorance of his own claims: “How does a spacecraft move?” he demanded. “You’re the one with the theory, not me!” Wilkinson said in response. “You don’t even know what my theories are,” Icke replied, while refusing to actually explain his ideas in any practical way.
Stefanovic stepped in to save Icke by asking him about aliens, but even he had to note that Icke gets “very defensive” about his claims. “No, I get exasperated,” Icke responded. He went on to attack the mainstream media and announced that he felt the interview was a joke.
On social media, fans of Icke criticized the Today interview as disrespectful and an example of the mainstream media attempting to suppress the truth by intentionally making Icke look ridiculous.
I am an author and researcher focusing on pop culture, science, and history. Bylines: New Republic, Slate, etc. There's more about me in the About Jason tab.
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