Left/Right Critiques and Coalitions

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It would be grossly unfair to suggest that all information from the political right is inaccurate conspiracism. Right-wing groups are quite capable of producing factual investigative material and persuasive journalistic stories. For instance, every year "Project Censored" runs a contest to pick the ten top stories not adequately covered by the mainstream press. On a 1991 PBS television program reviewing the 1990 Project Censored stories, commentator Bill Moyers held up a copy of the Spotlight as an example of two such stories--one on aspects of U.S. foreign policy in the early days of the Gulf crisis, another highlighting repressive features of an anti-crime bill. Not all stories surfaced by the far right are accurate, however, and many feature convoluted and undocumented conspiracy theories featuring a paranoid analysis.

At the same time the right has been wooing the left, right-wing groups have been promoting a number of left resources such as books and videos that criticize certain aspects of government policy or ruling elites. For instance, Noam Chomsky's critiques of U.S. foreign policy, Holly Sklar's studies of the Trilateral Commission, and Brian Glick's manual on domestic repression are praised and distributed by right-wing book peddlers.

These cross-ideological pollinations do not imply any ideological connection between the left researchers and the right--any group can distribute a book--but demonstrates that the political right sees points of alliance with the left, especially around issues relating to government abuses of power.

Government repression and intelligence abuse are not the only areas of research on the left where convoluted theories are circulated. Unsubstantiated conspiracist theories, claiming secret circles of corporate influence in the United States, also flow between left and right pro-environmentalists. One Massachusetts environmental activist researches alternative energy sources, circulates materials on elite control of energy policy, and refers interested environmentalists to the work of Eustace Mullins who writes about the so-called Jewish international banking conspiracy. In his worldview, Mullins' research unraveling powerful industrial and banking conspiracies can help explain government antagonism toward environmental reform29. Mullins is best known as a critic of the Federal Reserve system, and in public appearances he avoids anti-Jewish rhetoric. His work was briefly promoted by Chuck Harder's "For the People" radio talk show program and a related newspaper which also promoted consumer advocate Ralph Nader.

Revisionist Letters, a periodical promoting the idea that the historical account of the Holocaust is a hoax, carried an article urging recruitment from "a powerful potential source of supporters--the radical Left! Leftist disillusionment with Israel and Zionism is growing rapidly."

Several far-right commentators with ties to Liberty Lobby and its Spotlight newspaper were interviewed on radio stations affiliated with the progressive Pacifica network. The most troublesome and widespread aspects of this phenomenon have occurred in California where some radio hosts have promoted Sheehan and Davis of Christic along with right-wing persons in Liberty Lobby and the conspiratorial right as jointly working together to expose the government's corrupt maneuverings. Radio personality Craig Hulet has encouraged this belief in interviews by warning of attempts to criticize those who are "kicking George Bush." Hulet, in fact, specifically named Sheehan, Davis, Marchetti, Prouty, Gritz, and himself as researchers who needed to be defended against those who criticized coalitions between the left and the right.

On one forum for activists on a national electronic computer based network, excerpts from LaRouchian and Liberty Lobby publications have been uncritically posted by persons who primarily circulate information from left and progressive sources. This builds the credibility of the LaRouchians and Liberty Lobby circles and implies that they are natural allies. The circulation of messages promoting racist and anti-Jewish ideas and praising the theories of Liberty Lobby and the LaRouchians has become widespread on the USENET computer telecommunications system that links many universities.

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