Unveiling the Heir to Cox’s Media Empire – Young. Communist. Gun-owner. Multimillionaire. Pro-Palestine. Pro-Hamas. Meet James ‘Fergie’ Chambers


James “Fergie” Chambers, speaking at at pro-Palestinian rally outside General Dynamics in Pittsfield last month. Chambers is a multimillionaire who is backing and organizing socialist revolutionary movements in the U.S.

By Heather Bellow

He thinks the political left should get as comfortable with guns as the right.

James “Fergie” Chambers’ also thinks the left should get as familiar with guns as he is.

It isn’t just this that’s frightening people in Berkshire County.

It’s Chambers’ social media posts that read like a threat to anyone who supports Israel. Or anyone who supports capitalism, for that matter. (He maintains the posts aren’t attempts to foment violence.)

It is, somewhat, that he is a founder of Berkshire Communists, a group he headquartered off East Road in Alford (population, 486), one of the county’s sleepiest — and wealthiest — towns with no local police department of its own. (Chambers says he rarely spends time in Alford.)

It is his money. Chambers, an heir to the Cox Media empire, says he has hundreds of millions of dollars. (He has estranged himself from the family. All but one.)

It is the open secret that law enforcement has its eyes on him.

It is that he’s bankrolling an array of what he calls “truly radical movements” here and elsewhere.

It is that his statements and his presence here has rattled people reeling from Hamas’ massacre in Israel last month, the continued carnage in Gaza and an explosion of antisemitic racism in the U.S.

‘The most horrific thing’

In an Eagle interview, Chambers said he personally is not keeping his guns at his Alford properties or at Berkshire Communists’ Berkshire People’s Gym training center on East Road. (He said in an Instagram post on Wednesday that “there aren’t any [expletive] guns there past a shotgun or two owned by people permitted to own them who live on a mountain with wild animals.”)

He keeps the few guns he owns, he said, in New Hampshire. He moved to the Granite State for “tax reasons” and to build a new and “different” revolutionary organization — one that will support related activities across the United States and, according to his social media, fuse the Palestinian struggle with American social justice movements. Chambers also operates a People’s Gym in New Hampshire.

“I don’t have a ton of guns,” Chambers said. “I live on a mountain in New Hampshire and have shotguns, you know, like everybody else.”

Chambers, 38, brushes away suggestions that he is heavily armed. Although, he deleted an Instagram post on Tuesday of one of his guns after being asked about it — a photo of his KelTec SUB2000 carbine rifle, a .40-caliber semiautomatic, foldable model. In that post, which the New York Post linked to in a story about Chambers this summer, Chambers called his guns “my buddies.”

He said he bought the SUB2000 about 10 years ago in Georgia, that it’s legal in New Hampshire and that it’s the only “AR-style” gun he owns.

The weapon’s maker says the rifle “comes with more pistol magazine options than a cat has lives.”

“Folded, it tucks away nicely in situations where space is limited,” KelTec states on its product page, “but it’s quick to deploy in situations where time is of the essence.”

The political left should not be so squeamish about guns, Chambers said.

The reasoning is this. Learning to shoot is a way to get on equal footing with right-wing groups and law enforcement agencies who are working for “capitalist overlords.”

The Eagle asked Chambers about the social media posts that are prompting people to call the cops.

In particular, one post on X, formerly known as Twitter — in response to a post about Israel’s bombing of a hospital in Gaza — was not a call for violence, he answered.

It was a call, rather, for “direct action against what is an ongoing genocide right now and the most horrific thing that we have seen in a generation or two,” Chambers said.

This is what his post said: “We need to start making people who support Israel actually afraid to go out in public. We need to make all of wyt america” — as in, white America — “afraid that everything they have stolen is going to be burned to the ground. That’s what makes them listen.”

What Chambers said he meant by instilling fear in white Americans and those who support Israel, he later wrote in a text message, is that people who are defending Israel and its occupation should be afraid to lose jobs and friends and “should be made into pariahs.”

Institutions and businesses, likewise, should suffer, Chambers said. “I am not advocating for any form of violence, in any way. My messaging is incredibly consistent.”

Chambers was more cryptic about an Instagram story posted to his profile over the weekend.

In it, Chambers conflated any of Great Barrington’s Israel supporters — “professional Hasbara gaslighters” — with those who have “economically edged out” the county’s low-wage workers. Those workers, he wrote, “are coming for you one day soon,” and “there won’t ever be enough cops to call.” (The loose definition of “Hasbara” from the Hebrew is, “explaining.”)

What did he mean by “coming for you one day soon”?

“Coming for them as the people of the world see fit,” he told The Eagle.

And on Wednesday, he pointed The Eagle to new Instagram stories. One shows the paper’s logo with a red arrow pointing down at it (he told the paper this is a “joke” taken from Palestinian resistance memes that point such arrows at “occupier targets.” It’s basically a symbol, he said, of giving the bird to organizations believed to be pro-Zionist.)

In another story, he complained about the paper’s following up on questions about his guns, saying they deflect from the important issues at hand. (“But for the sake of my comrades and the struggle in MA, I’ll make it real [expletive] clear.”

The post goes on to say that “no one is raising a militia in Alford.” He speaks to accusations of antisemitism: “We have Jewish members and Jewish residents, who despise Zionism, even its liberal shades, more than anyone.”

And then he gives the Berkshires a walloping. Including its food co-ops.

“We are anti-weekender, anti-Zionist, anti-landlord, anti-racist, anti-Railroad Street, anti-Theory Wellness, anti-fake [food] ‘coops,’ anti-General Dynamics, Anti-Williams College, anti-Mass MoCA, anti-local being stuck in wage slavery and housing hell, anti-Amerikkka.”

In another IG story he says what he and his comrades are for. This includes “Mahican sovereignty,” socializing medicine and ownership of infrastructure “and the means of production.”

“Housing for all, reformation of the zoning laws to favor the working masses, the mountains and forests and rivers, an arts community unhindered by economic clout…”

Also, “reappropriation of hoarded farmland for common local food security, self-defense training, people’s retreat centers for urban comrades who need it …”

And lastly, “the death of the US empire.”

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This nut case should get along just fine with Bill Gates.