The Press' Poisonous Pens

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Was MUGGER born yesterday? At times I think so, especially when he writes about the smiling wallet-lifters at the Big Bagel Times. Last week, for example, he wrote that he'd never read anything as filthy as Frank Rich's column in which Rich exploited Daniel Pearl's death to smear Bernard Goldberg and his bestseller Bias. I guess MUGGER's fault is his youth and inexperience. To an old-timer like yours truly, the column was vintage Rich: filthy, low, lying, hypocritical, you name it. If Rich didn't try to exploit a death, he wouldn't be the truly awful person he really is. He's like our 42nd president, without the charm. Being lied about by people who, themselves corrupt, are unable to recognize honesty must be galling to an honest person. I've just been attacked by a pockmarked hack by the name of Richard Ingrams in an English daily. The best he managed to score on me was that I am a friend and admirer of Margaret Thatcher and the late Sir James Goldsmith. Such is the envy and hatred for anyone who is not of the lefty persuasion: the Riches and Ingramses of this world will demonize even the greats, such as Lady Thatcher and Jimmy Goldsmith. Rich is an artiste-manque, a propagandist posing as a cultural journalist, writing with the aim to please those he deems important and powerful. Nothing more, mes chers amis.

And speaking of low blows, The Boston Globe takes Billy Graham to task for a conversation he had in the Oval Office with President Richard Nixon and his aide, H.R. Haldeman. After Nixon decried the malevolent influence of Jews in Hollywood and the media, Graham, according to the Globe, "egged [him] on." "This stranglehold has got to be broken or the country's going down the drain," said Billy. The Globe called it anti-Semitic scapegoating on a par with what's going on in the Islamic world.

Well, let's see if I can get Billy off on the anti-Semitic slur. And I'll do it this way: How many of us would cast the first stone against Billy in view of never ever having said anything against anyone else's religion, especially in a private conversation that took place 30 years ago? I know one thing for a fact. Richard Nixon once told me in the privacy of his home that he could not figure out what happened to the Jews in Hollywood. Meaning that the Jews who made Hollywood, the Goldwyns, Mayers, Warners and Thalbergs showed America to be a great and well-meaning country, whereas the "modern" bunch showed Uncle Sam to be a low-down dirty rat, a fascist pig and so on. Now if that's anti-Semitism, I'm Monica Lewinsky.

And I'll go further. Many things are said in private that when made public sound far, far worse. Who among us, be they Christian, Muslim or Jewish, not to mention atheists, has not peppered his speech in the confines of his home with epithets they would never say in public and which they don't even believe in? How many times has the unmentionable Frank Rich attacked the Christian religion?in print?couching the attack in political terms? The Christian right is now equated with the Nazis, thanks to people like him. Better yet, I know of a nationally syndicated columnist of the Jewish faith who calls goys a bunch of murdering bastards who should all be crucified. He loses it over Israel, but this doesn't mean he means what he says. It's his way of letting off steam.

The Boston Globe, owned by the Times' owners, should cool it. Nixon and Billy Graham were not anti-Semites; they were just exasperated with the lefty media and Hollywood, which are predominantly Jewish. If the Globe wants to dig up dirt, it doesn't have to look any farther than Daniel Goldhagen's latest outburst, a libel on the Catholic church that identifies Christianity in general and Catholicism in particular as the world's greatest source of anti-Semitism. Goldhagen draws the schlock from Hitler's Pope, the John Cornwell hatchet job of Pius XII published in 1999. The fact that Pius worked heroically to save Italian and Hungarian Jews does not impress Goldhagen. Nor that the Pope did more for Jews than for the 2.6 million Polish Catholics, including many clergymen, whom the Nazis slaughtered.

Paul Gottfried, a Jewish professor of humanities at Elizabethtown College, writing in The Spectator, had this to say about Goldhagen: "[He] is not alone in his antipathy to Christianity. In the United States there are self-identified Jewish publicists and celebrities who have made a career out of flagellating American Christians for their supposedly anti-Semitic history and intentions. Allan Dershowitz, Leonard Dinnerstein, Abe Foxman, Ruth Wisse and Cynthia Ozick, to name a few? That being said, the fact remains that Jews have also been active in ripping apart Goldhagen and his questionable scholarship? My hand does not tremble with anxiety when I go after a fellow-German Jew for the arrant nonsense that Goldhagen and the New Republic dare to present as a 'moral reckoning.' If only Christians would act in the same manner!"

Don't worry, prof. Nor does my hand tremble.

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