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by Chip Berlet - Political Research Associates


Jeremiah Films and Books and Christian Conspiracism


Jeremiah Films and Books and Christian Conspiracism

"The Clinton Chronicles" and the subsequent The Clinton Chronicles Book are both by Patrick Matrisciana, founder and president of Citizens for Honest Government, a group organizing for the impeachment of President Clinton. Both are in turn a product of Jeremiah Films and Jeremiah Books, a Christian right outfit run by Matrisciana. Jeremiah has a large collection of conspiracist videos. Caryl Matrisciana, wife of Patrick and a leading author of Christian right books with conspiracist themes, co-hosted a thirteen-part video series from Jeremiah titled "Pagan Invasion." The series included videos that claimed evolution is a hoax, Freemasonry is a pagan religion, Halloween is a tool for Satanic abduction, and Mormonism is a cult heresy. The Jeremiah video on Mormonism earned rebukes from mainstream religious commentators for its bigoted intolerance toward the Mormon faith.61

Jeremiah Films made the homophobic video "Gay Rights, Special Rights," which claims gays and lesbians are degrading the civil rights movement.62 This video featured Senator Trent Lott as the major on-camera figure. Republican Party stalwarts Ed Meese (the former attorney general) and William Bennett (the former secretary of education) appeared along with notorious conspiracists such as David Noebel of Summit Ministries. Noebel has written an entire high school curriculum that claims to expose the secular humanist conspiracy.63 Another video of note is "The Crash - The Coming Financial Collapse of America." According to the Jeremiah Films web page, the video:

"Features expert Biblical and economic analysis from: Larry Burkett, Ed Meese, U.S. Senator Trent Lott and others. Find out what you can do to protect your family and future. 45 minutes. $19.95"

Burkett is a well-known Christian financial analyst who also writes novels in which heroic Christians battle vast powerful conspiracies involving government officials, environmentalists, Chinese communist spies, and the Illuminati.64

The Clinton Chronicles Book, from Jeremiah Books, has many cites to standard ultraconservative sources such as the Washington Times, Insight, and Human Events. One chapter "compiled by Citizens for Honest Government" includes condensations of articles by Ambrose Evans-Pritchard, who has written numerous articles for London newspapers based on unproved and frequently conspiracist allegations about Clinton. Another chapter by Scott Wheeler claims liberal media conspire to circulate "engineered information" in an "onslaught of manipulated facts" to protect Clinton.65

A chapter by Lt. Col. Tom McKenney (retired), titled "Bill Clinton--The Unthinkable Commander in Chief" asks: "How could we have a Commander in Chief of the U.S. Armed Forces who holds the military in contempt, who is anti-patriotic, who long ago embraced the dream of world socialism, and who, if he were not President, could not receive a security clearance." McKenney cites to the article "Whom Have We Elected?" by William F. Jasper in The New American, the magazine of the conspiracist John Birch Society. One cite is to a conspiracist classic: Covert Cadre: Inside the Institute for Policy Studies, by Dr. Steven Powell. Homophobia abounds in the treatise, with cites to an article "Military Necessity and Homosexuality" in the ultraconservative First Principles and "The Feminist Assault on the Military," by David Horowitz of the Center for the Study of Popular Culture. Notable in this regard is the cite to The Homosexual Network by Father Enrique Rueda, a massive work sponsored by the Free Congress Foundation. The book claims that a huge conspiracy of homosexuals has penetrated all facets of the government and other public institutions.

An appendix of cites allegedly tying Clinton to "The Mena Airport Drug Smuggling Operation" includes articles based in part on claims by a source, Richard Brenneke, who decribed a vast conspiracy but was later shown to have misrepresented his knowledge. One article cited was by Frank Snepp of the Village Voice, who later retracted his articles based on Brenneke's assertions in a published article exposing Brenneke's unreliability. Another article cited is from Executive Intelligence Review, published by the followers of conspiracist demagogue Lyndon H. LaRouche, Jr.

Of the wide variety of Christian evangelicals and fundamentalists in the US, only a small segment actively propagate conspiracy theories about secular humanist immorality and treason. However, several important leaders of the Christian right have promoted conspiracist theories for many years, including Pat Robertson, Jerry Falwell, and Timothy LaHaye. While conspiracism is more widespread among Protestants, there is a small contingent within the Catholic right, including groups such as Human Life International, which distributes tracts about a vast freemason conspiracy to create a New World Order.66

In the conspiracist sector of the religious right, ultraconservative activist Howard Phillips of the Conservative Caucus attempted to recruit Pat Buchanan to run for President on his U.S. Taxpayer Party ticket. Phillips also approached Dr. James Dobson with a plan to have Dobson support the USTP/Buchanan run. Although Dobson refused the overture, he is a key figure in that sector of the Christian right that urges a hard line rather than pragmatic concessions in electoral politics, and pushes the Republican Party to the right on issues such as abortion and gay rights.

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