Obama Biographer Crude Propagandist
It’s presidential election season and Edward Klein has slithered out from under his rock again and produced another supposed exposé book about one of the candidates. The book is called The Amateur: Barack Obama in the White House.
What you need to know about the book is that it is surely no exposé at all, but like his previous over-publicized effort, The Truth about Hillary: What She Knew, When She Knew It, and How Far She'll Go to Become President, it is a fake opposition book, cunningly designed to help Obama rather than hurt him politically. We really needn’t bother to pick apart this latest opus, which certainly is less searching concerning our president than the few links I have in my song about the man. It is sufficient simply to look at who is talking about it and what they have to say, and most important of all, what they don’t have to say.
What no one is bothering to tell us is that Klein writes what is probably the most widely read column in the United States. Now if I had a book out that I wanted to sell and I had credentials like that, I think I’d want people to know it. But if that column happened to be a fairly transparent propaganda sheet masquerading as a celebrity gossip rag, then maybe I wouldn’t. Klein, you see, is “Walter Scott” of Walter Scott’s Personality Parade in Parade magazine. The Washington Post apparently slipped up when they told us that the last time around, and neither they nor, apparently, anyone else is making that mistake this time. It is really quite reminiscent of the old Soviet Union when some member of the Politburo had fallen from favor. Old photographs of the May Day parade reviewing stand at Red square would have the purged big shot airbrushed out. Klein’s “Walter Scott” identity has similarly been airbrushed out of his identity by America’s controlled press.
The most recent Personality Parade reveals the significance of the maneuver. Right there at the end, we have what looks like a harmless question about an actress:
Q. Why did Emily Blunt start laughing when she met President Obama? -- Martin, Syracuse, NY
A. Blunt, 29, thinks it was his demeanor that knocked her off balance when they were introduced at the Kennedy Center Honors. “I expected it to be so formal, but he was incredibly warm and accessible,” says the actress, who stars in Salmon Fishing in the Yemen, now on DVD. “It was surreal actually.”
If you think that Klein here is just giving an honest answer to an honest question from one of his readers, even if it happens to make the guy he supposedly savages in his book look good, then I have a bridge I’d like to sell you. The reach of his book is nothing compared to the reach of “Walter Scott.” Circumstances may change the prognosis between now and November, but what we have here is an important straw in the wind that Barack Obama has been anointed for reelection.
What follows below, by way of further explanation, is a complete reproduction of my July 14, 2005, article “Hillary Biographer Crude Propagandist.” But before we get there we have links to all the articles about Amateur on the Net that we have searched—all unsuccessfully—for any mention of the fact that Klein is or ever has been “Walter Scott”: The New York Times, Christian Science Monitor, New York Post, Newsmax, Huffington Post, Accuracy in Media, The Western Center for Journalism, American Thinker, The Christian Post, NewsBusters, Charleston Tea Party, Bookworm Room, Think Progress, Media Matters for America, ChicagoMag, Fox News Insider, The Blaze, A Superfluous Man, The Foxhole, News Corpse, and finally, a Fox News interview of Klein by Lou Dobbs on YouTube.
Parade of Lies, Part 6
Here's the big news in this June 21, 2005, Washington Post story about Hillary Clinton's most recent biographer, Edward Klein:
Since 1991, he has been the author of Walter Scott's Personality Parade in Parade, which is inserted into 37 million Sunday newspapers across the country.
Here's what he wrote on Nov. 1, 2001, in the wake of the 9-11 tragedy:
Q. Before our war on terrorists began, how well did Osama bin Laden and Saddam Hussein, the world's top terrorists, get along? - C. Barnes, San Antonio, Texas
A. Not well at all, but they worked together on the principle that the enemy of my enemy is my friend. Intelligence sources tell us Saddam encouraged attacks on U.S. targets because he harbors a deep resentment against George H. W. Bush, who created the coalition that defeated Iraq in the Gulf War. Our sources say Saddam figured the most effective way to punish the former President was to hurt his son, who now occupies the White House. It was a massive miscalculation. The recent outpouring of patriotic fervor pushed George W. Bush's popularity rating to more than 90%.
He was whipping up war fever against Iraq that early in the game, citing bogus "intelligence sources." Now don't you wonder what he's up to?
Red Pencils Are Drawn Over New Clinton Book
By Ann Gerhart
Washington Post Staff Writer
Tuesday, June 21, 2005; Page C01
Edward Klein is a prolific writer, and
what a supremely confident one. The author of three bestsellers about the
Kennedys, and a former editor at the New York Times and Newsweek, Klein was
casting about for a new book project even as he was striking a deal for an
account of Jackie Kennedy Onassis's final days, writing magazine profiles and
penning a weekly column...
His book, "The Truth About Hillary: What She Knew, When She Knew It, and How Far She'll Go to Become President" -- his fifth book in nine years -- goes on sale today. The bold assertiveness of the title, along with advance word from the publisher that Klein's "shocking new accounts" would do to a potential Clinton presidential run what the Swift Boat Veterans for Truth did to John Kerry, seems to have made many a Hillary-hating heart beat faster. Orders for the embargoed book caused Sentinel, the conservative imprint of Penguin, to print 350,000 copies, said Sentinel's associate publisher Will Weisser.
"This is a book full of blatant and
vicious fabrications contrived by someone who writes trash for cash,"
Philippe Reines, Clinton's press secretary, said yesterday...
Some conservatives touted the book in e-mails and blogs, but others have denounced some of the more sensational claims. The controversy apparently frightened off producers for the television morning shows, although Sentinel's Weisser said Klein would make the rounds of some TV talk shows, including Fox's "Hannity & Colmes." Bill O'Reilly, who hosts the No. 1-rated cable news program, said he would not invite Klein to appear, because he also had refused to interview author Kitty Kelley for what he called her "personal attacks" in her book about the Bushes.
Klein said yesterday he never has been an ideologue. He spent more than a decade at Newsweek, where he wrote cover stories on Vietnam and the India-Pakistan and Mideast wars before becoming assistant managing editor. He moved on to become executive editor of the New York Times magazine, where he spent 11 years before he was pushed out when the paper's top editor changed. In those years, he didn't vote.
After leaving the Times, he got married for the third time and began writing for Parade and Vanity Fair. (One of his sons, Alec, is a reporter for The Washington Post.) Since 1991, he has been the author of Walter Scott's Personality Parade in Parade, which is inserted into 37 million Sunday newspapers across the country. That job, which pays about $300,000 a year, and his bestsellers have made him far wealthier at 68 than his years as an editor did. (emphasis added)
"I certainly didn't go into this with a political agenda, at first," said Klein yesterday about "The Truth About Hillary." His research and manuscript have not been directed by conservatives, he said, and his conclusions are his own.
Asked whether he objected to his work being compared to "Unfit for Command," the book by Swift boat veterans that challenged Kerry's own account of his war service, Klein said, "Insofar as the Swift boat veterans were attempting to shed light on John Kerry's character, if I am being compared to them that way, I have no problems with it."
Interestingly, Klein seems not to be completely out of the closet as the infamous "Walter Scott." The Post itself, in a follow-up article on July 11, 2005, had only this to say about Klein's pedigree:
Klein, whose book has a major first printing of 350,000, is a man with solid journalistic credentials. He is a former editor of the New York Times Magazine and a contributing editor at Vanity Fair, which excerpted "The Truth About Hillary," and has written four previous bestsellers on such topics as the Kennedys, which he promoted on a wide range of shows.
On his book's dust jacket he is described simply as a "frequent contributor" to Parade and to Vanity Fair. This half truth really amounts to a lie, not a very good sign that what we're going to read inside is truthful. At Wikipedia, we find corroboration for the Post assertion. Still, in the raft of articles that have come out around the publication of Klein's Hillary bio, the one I have cited here seems to be the only one to have made any connection between Klein and what is probably the most widely-read column of any sort in the United States. There is power in having such a forum, and as we have seen in the "Parade of Lies" series, Mr. Klein—or more likely, his spook-world handlers—uses that power most perniciously.
Knowing his record as a very influential propagandist, we really must wonder what Klein is now up to with his greatly over-publicized book about Hillary Clinton. He denies that his book was directed by "conservatives," but it could hardly be clearer that it is directed to conservatives. As The Post article reports, the right-wing, Clinton-hating crowd is snapping it up. A major reason for that is that it is being heavily promoted on web sites that cater to conservatives, such as newsmax.com, frontpagemag.com, and nationalreview.com.
At the same time, it contains little of substance that is new, while keeping a generally negative tone about the senator and former first lady, starting with the book's title. That almost guarantees that right-wingers who already have no use at all for Hillary will be the only ones reading the book. Hillary benefits from all the publicity, from being treated as someone worthy of yet another book, and the American public remains more divided than ever, distracted from their real enemy, the controlling criminal elite who have made Mr. Klein a wealthy and "successful" man.
Shadow Boxing on Lesbianism, Foster
The real giveaway that this book is not really a serious anti-Hillary effort is that it pulls its punches, stopping well short of delivering any kind of a knockout blow. The evidence for that can be seen in how it treats two controversial subjects, allegations that Hillary is a lesbian and the death of Deputy White House Counsel Vincent W. Foster, Jr.
When it comes to the sexual activities of the Clintons, Klein has already established that he will lie to us. Check this one out from his Walter Scott's Personality Parade of February 26, 1995:
Q. How much truth is there to those
stories coming out of Washington that Bill Clinton is still an incurable
womanizer? -K. C., New York, N.Y.
A. If there were any hard evidence that the President of the U.S. was womanizing, you can be certain it would have appeared by now in the media. The days when the White House press corps respected a President's privacy and ignored his extracurricular activities-as with JFK-are long gone. Insiders say the salacious rumors about Bill Clinton often can be traced to Secret Service agents, who may be feuding with the First Lady. She reportedly suspects that some of the agents are snoops and tries to keep them at a distance. One agent recently spread a story that Mrs. Clinton had become so tired of her husband's wandering ways that she threatened to seek a divorce and run against him in 1996. No one believes that outlandish tale, but unfortunately it has made its way through the Washington gossip mill.
That, of course, was long before the Monica Lewinsky revelations, which did not come to light because of the work of any enterprising reporters. Klein's book is now being attacked for his hints that Hillary might have a sexual preference for those of her own sex. Surely, her apparent indifference to her husband's very public infidelity and her hard, unfeminine manner, are enough, in themselves to make someone suspicious. Her supposed sexual unavailability to her husband has been standard fare for late-night comedy for many years now. Klein's two big contributions to the suspicions are that she delved deeply into lesbian literature and culture as an undergraduate at Wellesley, and she has since surrounded herself with women bearing apparent lesbian attributes.
That's quite enough to reinforce the negative feelings that conservatives already have toward Ms. Clinton, but it does nothing at all to change anyone's mind about the woman. Klein comes across as a bit outrageous for even touching on the lesbian issue, but he chooses to ignore the best evidence out there that Hillary is, indeed, a lesbian.
And what evidence is that? First, there was this well-known passage on page 42 of Passion and Betrayal, the racy 1996 book by Bill Clinton's long-term paramour, Gennifer Flowers:
[W]hen I heard some rumors floating around Little Rock, I had to speak up. He was with me at home one evening, and I cautiously told him, “There’s something you need to know. I’ve been hearing tales around town that Hillary is having a thing with another woman.” I watched his face to see his reaction, and couldn’t believe it when he burst out laughing. I was stunned! I asked him what was so funny. “Honey,” he said, “she’s probably eaten more pussy than I have.”
Now one might question the credibility of the sort of woman who would carry on with a married man like Ms. Flowers did, but one must admit that this quote from Bill has a very authentic ring. It hardly sounds like the sort of thing that Gennifer would have had the imagination to make up, and it certainly does explain a lot of things. Furthermore, it is not the only strong, public assertion about Hillary's sexual preferences that Klein has chosen to ignore,
This comes from Alex Heard's profile of right-wing travel impresario, Jack Wheeler, in the February 1994 issue of Outside magazine, entitled "Lord of the Big Guys":
"This is going on now! My god! She
has that girlfriend. Mary, uh, Steinbogan? Steebogan? That actress, yeah.
That's one of her squeezes." The speaker is a hale, smiling man who's
looking gray after too many days of swallowing road dust. He pauses to wheeze,
dropping the grin for an insider's poker face better suited to what follows:
"Two Secret Service agents walked in on them in an anteroom of the White
House--in flagrante delicto. I mean, right then and there!"
"That actress," it emerges, is Mary Steenburgen, a skinny brunette best known for playing Steve Martin's wife in Parenthood. "She" is Hillary Rodham Clinton. Happily defaming both is Jack Wheeler, a 49-year-old adventure-travel impresario and right-winger extraordinaire who cheerfully insists that the First Lady is carrying on reckless "lesbian affairs." This story sprouted on the Washington, D.C., rumor vine during the Clinton administration's early days, then died for lack of fertilizing evidence. But Wheeler says it's fact, citing unnamed Secret Service agents who've allegedly told him that they can scarcely walk through a White House door without tripping over naked, wriggling she-tramps.
"It's hard to describe how disgusted they are," he sighs, gesturing weakly. One agent, he says, confided to him over a beer that thanks to Hillary's forbidden lust he doubts he could "take a bullet" for her. "And that," Wheeler groans, "is a verrry serious state of affairs."
One may call it the Washington rumor vine, but Wheeler apparently had several first-hand sources, although they are (understandably) unnamed Secret Service agents, and Wheeler, of course, is a political partisan. My own source for essentially the same story is third hand. It came from an associate with whom I never discussed politics, and it predates the Outside article by several months. The associate said that his son-in-law was a DC policeman who had friends among the Secret Service. He told me that they had told the son-in-law that Hillary had a regular woman that she brought in for sexual purposes.
If the days, as Klein says, are indeed gone when journalists generally "respected the privacy" of White House residents, there might have been some follow-up to the Wheeler revelations. If just my working in Washington was sufficient for the story to have come my way, one must surmise that those whose job it is to gather information would have caught some wind of it. Another one that came my way, in 1993, eventually made it into print in Jerry Oppenheimer's book, State of the Union: Inside the Complex Marriage of Bill and Hillary Clinton. In this instance it was fourth hand to me, as opposed to the third hand story about Hillary's "regular." As Oppenheimer told it, and then dismissed as rumor, the assistant to a prominent Washington, DC, veterinarian, sent to the White House to check on an illness to Socks, the cat, "opened the wrong door" and encountered Hillary in bed with another woman. This is very close to the story that was told to me some seven years before, except that the veterinarian is best described as "Washington area" as opposed to "Washington, DC," and nothing was said about the veterinarian's supposed prominence.
But why should Hillary's sexual proclivities and practices make a difference to us? Are we just wallowing in salacious gossip to discuss it? The charge might be valid if all the signs were not pointing toward Ms. Clinton as the inevitable Democratic candidate for president in 2008, and, quite possibly, the next president of the United States. Things would be different, as well, if she were an open, out of the closet homosexual. But if, as seems very likely, she is a covert lesbian, she would be at the mercy of the most cunning and ruthless blackmailers around, which might well explain why she is being foisted upon us. Anyone possessing information that can forestall such an eventuality has an obligation to place it on the table for public examination. For those who doubt that there are powerful elements who would employ blackmail to manipulate and control American leaders, please go to Who Killed James Forrestal? and do an edit/find for "blackmail."
Speaking of blackmail, hardly anything makes Hillary more vulnerable than the numerous scandals with which she and her husband have been involved, from the unlikely killing that she made in cattle futures to the cover-up of the murder of Deputy White House Counsel Vincent W. Foster, Jr. On the Foster death, Klein predictably parrots all the official lies supporting the story that Foster killed himself because he was depressed. What's really remarkable is that the biggest promoter of Klein's cover-up book is Newsmax, and Newsmax's editor is none other than Christopher Ruddy, who made his reputation exposing the official cover-up in the Foster case. Could it be that he has forgotten everything that he wrote about the Foster matter, as he rushes to embrace Klein, or is it not more likely that they are both just propagandists playing their separate roles?
At this stage of the game it's really unforgivable for anyone writing about the Foster death to pretend that there's any validity at all to the official suicide conclusion, now that the case has been blown wide open by the release of the Miguel Rodriguez tapes. Rodriquez was initially the lead investigator for Independent Counsel Kenneth Starr into the Foster death, but he resigned because he was not allowed to do his job.
"I saw pictures that clearly indicate to me that there is trauma on the neck. I believe it's a puncture wound on the neck," reports Rodriquez, which radically differs from the official story that Foster shot himself through the mouth.
Rodriguez goes on to say, "It's ah,
the result is being dictated by a lot higher, um, authority than I think people
really understand or appreciate and certainly more than I ever appreciated.
What with this whole notion ah, you know, of, of doing an honest investigation,
um, you know, you know, it's, it's laughable.
"I knew what the result was going to be, because I was told what the result was going to be from the get-go. And then there's all so much fluff, and a look-good job, it's just, this is all, all so much nonsense and I knew the result before the investigation began."
It can now be disclosed that these devastating revelations, along with much, much more, come from the legally-taped telephone conversations that Mr. Rodriguez had with the late head of Accuracy in Media, Reed Irvine. You can read the entire 4-part transcript by going to http://www.aim.org and searching "Miquel Rodriguez." (That's Miquel, with a q. Christopher Ruddy erroneously told everyone that it was spelled that way.) If you can do it, then Ed Klein could have done it, Ruddy could have done it, and any journalist in America could have done it, and, presumably, passed it on to the rest of us. But even in the unlikely event that they had been so inclined, that last step might have been more than a little difficult. Here's Rodriguez again:
I have talked to a number of people that – you know, from Time Magazine, Newsweek, Nightline, The New York Times, Boston Globe, The Atlanta whatever, um, you know there have been well over a hundred, and this – this matter is so sealed tight um, and, the reporters are all genuinely interested but the ah, the ah, um, – reporters are genuinely interested but the ah – when they start to get excited and they've got a story and they're ready to go, the editors – and they – I've gotten calls back, I've gotten calls back from all kinds of magazines worldwide, what the hell's wrong, why can't, you know, you were telling me that you, you didn't think this would go anywhere and sure enough I wrote the stories.
They went to all the trouble of writing, and then it got killed. Again, I, I, you know, I spent almost eleven hours with, with [Stephen] Labaton, or six hours with Labaton, and ah, you know, I know the guy knows, um, that there's a lot more, um, ah – I know, I know the New York Times has it – knows, and just won't ah, ah, I know that they won't do anything about it and I do know that, that many people have called me back. Reporters that I've spent a lot of time with called me back and said the editors won't allow it to go to press. The accepted media here has always had, ah, a certain take on all of this. And there's been story lines from the get-go.
In defending his pseudo attack book on Hillary, Klein claims that he is non-ideological, and he is quite right. No trace of a principle is apparent in anything he has ever written. His forte is following the approved story line, following it to fame and fortune for himself and toward the sinister ends of his superiors. In this most recent instance it is a story line that is designed, in its on very devious way, to put Hillary Clinton back in the White House.
Klein, with his softball smears, has given the mainstream press the opportunity to get on its high horse in Hillary's defense, evoking sympathy and making her look all the more like a worthy presidential candidate. The Washington Post, alone, has had at least four articles lambasting the book. They came on the heels of a front-page piece about Hillary's possible run for the presidency, which was accompanied by a Lassie-on-a-hilltop profile shot that made her look noble enough to be on a coin someday. Here are another couple of examples of the scores of articles that have been written along the lines etched out by the Post: See Hillary: First Lady, Senator, Lesbian? and The Hillary Clinton Lesbian Rumor.
The most telling article of the genre is perhaps the one by former Washington Post writer, David Remnick:
"On the strength of name recognition and a solid freshman term in the Senate, Hillary Clinton appears to lead all other potential candidates for the Presidential nomination of the Democratic Party in 2008. But Senator Clinton cannot become President of the United States. The reason, as her latest pornographer, Edward Klein, makes plain, is the lesbian situation," he begins his sarcastic commentary. "Throughout, Klein’s obsession with the girl-on-girl theme is equal to anything in 'The Well of Loneliness' or on 'The Howard Stern Show.'"
What's really interesting here is that Remnick is writing for The New Yorker, which is owned by the same people who pay Klein $300,000 a year for his "Walter Scott" disinformation and some more for whatever he may write for another of their publications, Vanity Fair. See Advance/Newhouse Group: Holdings.
Klein, Ruddy, Remnick. In our world of propaganda masquerading as journalism, they all have their roles to play.
A Literary Toast
Let's hear it for our propagandists,
The people who bring us the news.
Unencumbered by troublesome scruples,
They're proud of their compromised views.
There once was a time we admired them.
We thought they were principled fighters,
But what we see now is more worthy
Of the Union of Soviet Writers.
That they should be liberty's guardians
Is truly a shame and a pity,
These shills and these flacks,
These stooges and hacks,
These sold-out scribes
Who report on the tribes
Who rule from our capital city.
Let's hear it for news commentators,
Those masters of punditry,
Who share with us all their opinions,
Wide-ranging from A down to B.
Standing right there in the spotlight,
They could do some significant things,
But we'd sooner expect wooden puppets
To dance without handles or strings.
Impressing no one but their colleagues,
They're not even learned or witty,
These shills and these flacks,
These stooges and hacks,
These sold-out scribes
Who report on the tribes
Who rule from our capital city.
Let's hear it for all those reporters
Who learn how the contest is played.
If they will just write what's expected
They can be handsomely paid,
But most garner practically nothing
And eventually fall off the ladder.
The losers depart mostly wiser,
While the winners grow gradually sadder.
Let's hear it for all those survivors
Whose road to the top is not pretty,
These shills and these flacks,
These stooges and hacks,
These sold-out scribes
Who report on the tribes
Who rule from our capital city.
July 17, 2012