Friday, October 18, 2013


Before this goes down the Memory Hole I'd like to point out that whatever this sauced goose is having ought to remind us that the right wing vortex routinely spits out stuff that it condemns madly in Democrats. I mean, this is no more than to repeat "Its OK If You Are A Republican" but come on.  The original accusation, which circulated madly in right wing circles at the time, was that Hillary Clinton was no true Methodist but a crazed, satanic, holder of seances in the White House.  I can't find any links to those stories and sermons but they were always served up in a Janus faced format: for the true believers, the kind of people who morphed into the Tea Party, you would hear about this in sermons, jokes, and hate radio as a well known "fact."  Hillary herself admitted it, so it was true in some existential sense, but the gloss that was put on it was quite toxic and formed part of the generalized attack on the Clintons as alien/liberal/satanic products of an alternate and unamerican history in which Eleanor Roosevelt was admired and invoked as a patron saint.  For people interacting with a non evangelical or moderate audience the entire thing was offered up as a sign that she was kooky and fringey in a lefty kind of way. It wasn't asserted, there, that she was actually holding a literal seance or invoking ghostly spirits but more that she drew inspiration from the wrong people in a creepily liberal way.  So pervasive were both attacks that the Providence Journal, in a link that is now broken, had to report the rumors in this fashion:
Hillary Clinton says imaginary talks just ‘intellectual exercise’, The Providence Journal Bulletin, Tuesday, 6/25/96, p. A3. “Hillary Rodham Clinton said yesterday her imaginary conversations with Eleanor Roosevelt were merely an ‘intellectual exercise’ … Trying to douse what she called ‘sensational’ speculation, the first lady rejected inferences that psychic researcher Jean Houston, who led her in several White House sessions, was her ‘spiritual adviser’.”
“In a written statement, Mrs. Clinton was firm in her denial that there were any psychic or religious overtones to the sessions. ‘The bottom line is: I have no spiritual advisers or any other alternatives to my deeply held Methodist faith and traditions upon which I have relied since childhood.’ ”
“Mrs. Clinton met with Houston several times from late 1994 until March of this year, according to a new book [by Bob Woodward, 'The Choice'] that says Houston led the first lady through imaginary conversations with her hero, Mrs. Roosevelt and Indian leader … Ghandi … Mrs. Clinton said she engaged in hours of ‘freewheeling discussions’ with Houston.”

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