Blinded by the Right: The Conscience of an Ex-Conservative
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In a powerful and deeply personal memoir in the tradition of Arthur Koestler’s The God That Failed, David Brock, the original right-wing scandal reporter, chronicles his rise to the pinnacle of the conservative movement and his painful break with it.
David Brock pilloried Anita Hill in a bestseller. His reporting in The American Spectator as part of the infamous “Arkansas Project” triggered the course of events that led to the historic impeachment trial of President Clinton. Brock was at the center of the right-wing dirty tricks operation of the Gingrich era–and a true believer–until he could no longer deny that the political force he was advancing was built on little more than lies, hate, and hypocrisy.
In Blinded By the Right, Brock, who came out of the closet at the height of his conservative renown, tells his riveting story from the beginning, giving us the first insider’s view of what Hillary Rodham Clinton called “the vast right-wing conspiracy.” Whether dealing with the right-wing press, the richly endowed think tanks, Republican political operatives, or the Paula Jones case, Brock names names from Clarence Thomas on down, uncovers hidden links, and demonstrates how the Republican Right’s zeal for power created the poisonous political climate that culminated in George W. Bush’s election.
Already making national headlines, David Brock writes with stunning candor about a fascinating but deeply disturbing period of American politics. Blinded By the Right is a classic political memoir of our times.
to fund “intellectual refuges for the non-egalitarian scholars and writers in our society who today work largely alone in the face of overwhelming indifference or hostility. They must be given grants, grants, and more grants in exchange for books, books, and more books.” With Simon on its board, the American Enterprise Institute in Washington, a conservative think tank that housed Irving Kristol, Robert Bork, Jeane Kirkpatrick, and Charles Murray, among others, doubled its operating budget by the
fight liberalism and discredit its idea of achieving social advances through government. He gave $1 million to Richard Nixon in 1972 (in 334 separate checks to avoid gift taxes), but after Watergate, a dejected Scaife began to funnel his money into institutions rather than individuals. In the early 1970s, Scaife dabbled in publishing of a sort. According to published reports, at the behest of the CIA, Scaife subsidized a London-based news service called Forum World Features that disseminated CIA
dollar signs in exposing the Clintons. Soon after Clinton left them behind in Arkansas, the troopers began plotting among themselves to sell their story. A few reporters had approached them in ’92 sniffing around for Clinton sex stories, and they’d refused to talk, but things were different now. In the spring of 1993, they had gone for advice to Lynn Davis, their former boss, who took them to Jackson, who they hoped had the media savvy to strike a lucrative book deal. Though Cliff hid it from me,
struggle within the paper over whether or not to go with it. I guessed that the Times would spike the story, so, unbeknownst to anyone but Mark, I took matters into my own hands, breaking my word to Cliff. I had learned at the knee of Erwin Glikes, the publisher of The Real Anita Hill, that right-wing journalism had to be injected into the bloodstream of the liberal media for maximum effect, so I set out to coax an established media venue into repeating the troopers’ charges, leaking the galleys
Henderson, had signaled to Traylor to lay off the Spectator if he wanted conservative movement support for the case. Soon thereafter, Scaife made a cash contribution to the Jones case of $50,000 through an entity called the Fund for a Living American Government. Had these conservatives not intervened in the way they did, Jones might have sued the Spectator, rather than the president, and though I might have been in the dock, the catastrophic political consequences of her lawsuit might have been