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Legends of Wingnut

By The Reverend Published: November 13, 2007

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In deciphering old religious myths it is necessary to understand the lengthy period of human history in which stories and legends were handed down by word of mouth. The great oral story tradition. Later, these oral myths and legends were written down, but not usually until the story had been embellished and tinkered with over hundreds and hundreds of years. Sometimes the finished version of the story lacked any resemblance to the original myth.

From today's legends of wingnut there continues to this day the most outrageous stories about Bill and Hillary Clinton. Frequent purveyors of Newsmax, for example, are quite familiar with not only reading about these oral traditions handed down from wingnut to wingnut, but also, in spreading the great wingnut legends to others.

Scaife was no run-of-the-mill Clinton hater. In the 1990s, the heir to the Mellon banking fortune contributed millions to efforts to dig up dirt on President Clinton. He backed the Clinton-bashing American Spectator magazine, whose muckrakers produced lurid stories about Clinton's alleged financial improprieties and trysts. Scaife also financed a probe called the Arkansas Project that tried, among other things, to show that Clinton, while Arkansas governor, protected drug runners.

The Arkansas Project largely came up empty, and most of the stories were ignored by all but the most avid Clinton antagonists. But one (Richard Mellon) Scaife-backed conspiracy theory got widespread attention. In 1993, White House aide and Clinton friend Vince Foster was found dead of a gunshot wound in a park outside Washington, D.C. Three official investigations concluded the death was a suicide. Yet Scaife dollars helped promote assertions that Foster had been murdered—the not-so-subtle subtext being that the Clintons had something to do with it. Scaife hired Christopher Ruddy, a reporter who doggedly pursued the conspiracy theory in a Scaife newspaper, the Pittsburgh Tribune-Review. Though discredited, the story resonated with people who believed Clinton was hiding dark secrets. Scaife and Ruddy later started Newsmax, a Web site and magazine that attacks their enemies and lauds their heroes. Link

I've often found myself perplexed at what appears at first to be a form of mental illness. Versions of events, as told by wingnut storytellers, don't ever seem to jibe with, you know, factual evidence and empirical data. In addition, no matter how many times the facts are insisted upon by reality based folks, the wingnut oral tradition about the story lives on, in a zombified "Night of the Living Dead", kind of way.

Historically, as wingnut lore goes, when a prominent storyteller from wingnuttia changes the great myth he once told with gusto, confusion and, oftentimes, unnatural head spinning occurs. It is unsettling to witness.

Wingnuts.....hold on to your heads....

...Ruddy tells NEWSWEEK he and Scaife believe Clinton's life since leaving office has been "very laudable," and that he is doing "very important work representing the country when the U.S. is widely resented in the world." He said they never suggested Clinton was involved in Foster's death, and insisted they were not among those hyping alleged Clinton sex scandals, though he acknowledged their work may have encouraged others.

Time for another wingnut re-write.

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