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March 20, 2008

Is Hillary Clinton a Hitler-worshipping cult member?

Quick Answer: No, she's more the Mao worshipping type. At least in sartorial attire.

Longer Answer: Apparently, some conspiracy embracing writer at that "reality-based" magazine "The Nation" thinks she is.

I know the far left is imploding over the fall of the Obamessiah. But this is really pushing bullshit and, I believe, religious bigotry, to the outer limits:

You can find all about it in a widely under-read article in the September 2007 issue of Mother Jones, in which Kathryn Joyce and Jeff Sharlet reported that "through all of her years in Washington, Clinton has been an active participant in conservative Bible study and prayer circles that are part of a secretive Capitol Hill group known as "The "Fellowship," also known as The Family. But it won't be a secret much longer. Jeff Sharlet's shocking exposé The Family: The Secret Fundamentalism at the Heart of American Power will be published in May.

Ahhh. The Nation citing Mother Jones. Wheels within wheels. Of lunacy.

The Family's most visible activity is its blandly innocuous National Prayer Breakfast, held every February in Washington. But almost all its real work goes on behind the scenes--knitting together international networks of right-wing leaders, most of them ostensibly Christian. In the 1940s, The Family reached out to former and not-so-former Nazis, and its fascination with that exemplary leader, Adolf Hitler, has continued, along with ties to a whole bestiary of murderous thugs. As Sharlet reported in Harper's in 2003:

During the 1960s the Family forged relationships between the U.S. government and some of the most anti-Communist (and dictatorial) elements within Africa's postcolonial leadership. The Brazilian dictator General Costa e Silva, with Family support, was overseeing regular fellowship groups for Latin American leaders, while, in Indonesia, General Suharto (whose tally of several hundred thousand "Communists" killed marks him as one of the century's most murderous dictators) was presiding over a group of fifty Indonesian legislators. During the Reagan Administration the Family helped build friendships between the U.S. government and men such as Salvadoran general Carlos Eugenios Vides Casanova, convicted by a Florida jury of the torture of thousands, and Honduran general Gustavo Alvarez Martinez, himself an evangelical minister, who was linked to both the CIA and death squads before his own demise.

At the heart of The Family's American branch is a collection of powerful right-wing politicos, who include, or have included, Sam Brownback, Ed Meese, John Ashcroft, James Inhofe and Rick Santorum. They get to use The Family's spacious estate on the Potomac, The Cedars, which is maintained by young men in Family group homes and where meals are served by The Family's young women's group. And, at The Family's frequent prayer gatherings, they get powerful jolts of spiritual refreshment, tailored to the already powerful.

Let me tell you guys something. I know a little something about Hillary Clinton's bible studies, at least as they pertained to her arrival and first few years in the Senate.

One of my previous employers was a United States Senator who attended the same Bible study classes that Hillary Clinton attended. I asked him once if he thought Clinton's joining the class were sincere or if it was a phony political thing.

He told me he believed it to be sincere, and that Clinton was an active participant and that she made valuable contributions to the Bible Study group.

You want to know who lead the Bible study classes?

The Chaplain of the United States Senate. This position was not held by the current Senate Chaplain, but by a predecessor who I am not going to name as he doesn't deserve to be associated with this kind of bullshit. (Neither does Chaplain Barry Black, by the way. But the time period suggested by Nation/Mother Jones may implicate a predeccessor.)

This is among the things that the Senate Chaplain is tasked to do, by the way:

Chaplain Black’s days are filled with meeting Senators about spiritual and moral issues, assisting Senators’ staffs with research on theological and biblical questions, teaching Senate Bible study groups, encouraging such groups as the weekly Senate Prayer Breakfast, and facilitating discussion and reflection small groups among Senators and staff.

I am actually pissed off about this. I do not believe for one minute in this nefarious cult like "Family." Hillary Clinton, and several of the Senators mentioned in the Nation piece, attended Bible Study. Hillary Clinton attended as a professed Methodist. Other's attended who professed different denominations. Senators from both parties, representing the entire political spectrum, were in attendance at these classes.

This strikes me as the desperate gasps of the supporters of a dying campaign. Having seen their own secular Messiah crucified by his ties to a hate-filled preacher, they are striking back by impugning the one commendable aspect of Sen. Clinton's persona: her religious faith.

The entire article reeks of religious bigotry. Hillary Clinton's attendance at Senate Bible Study classes is in no way equivalent to Sen. Obama's 20 years association with Rev. Jeremiah "Was a Bullfrog" Wright. (Because, apparently, Obama 'never understood a single word he said'.)

I by no means support Hillary Clinton. I oppose her fully and ardently. I believe she, and her husband, represent the worst of sleazy politics. The thought of her getting even as close to the White House as the Democratic nomination disgusts me.

I also believe she is a tougher general election candidate than Obama for McCain to defeat. So I'm not coming to her defense as one who wants to see her prevail.

I'm simply offering a defense of her because of what I know firsthand. I attended one of these classes with my boss. Senator Clinton was present.

By the way. Full disclosure. I've been to The Cedars mentioned in the article.

It's a nice place.

No one has ever called me to invite me back. Or to attempt to have me meet them alone because I knew too much. No one followed me around when I made phone calls outside.

You want me to believe your bullshit is not just hate-filled conspiracy drivel, Nation? Produce some freaking evidence. Put some clips on YouTube.

Like those Wright clips.

I hear they are dynamite.


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posted by Jack M. at 06:49 PM

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