The Other Half of History Columns

The Clinton Impeachment

“The very definition of a republic is ‘an empire of laws, and not of men.'” John Adams

In May of 1994 Paula Jones, a secretary working for the Arkansas state government, filed a sexual harassment lawsuit against President Bill Clinton, alleging that he had harassed her while serving as Governor of Arkansas. In preparing their case, her lawyers interviewed female government employees who had been subordinate to Clinton, in an attempt to establish a pattern of workplace misbehavior on his part. Quite a few women told stories of inappropriate sexual advances, and Clinton denied them all.

One of the women deposed by the Jones legal team was a White House intern named Monica Lewinsky, who had had a sexual affair with the President quite literally in the Oval Office. Understanding how damaging this workplace affair could be to his defense in a sexual harassment lawsuit, President Clinton went to extremes in his attempts to cover it up. With assistance from United States Independent Counsel Kenneth Starr, the Jones legal team was able to prove that President Clinton’s denials about Monica Lewinsky were false, and in 1998 the President was impeached by Congress on the grounds that he had perjured himself, and tampered with witnesses and evidence, to cover up the Lewinsky affair.

The reason President Clinton was impeached is that he tried to deny Paula Jones her fair day in court, in a nation where the principle of “Equality before the Law” is supposed to be sacred. But don’t expect to hear that in a college history class.

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Hitler and the “Right Wing”

“If you tell a lie big enough and keep repeating it, people will eventually come to believe it.” Joseph Goebbels

Sixty-five years after his death, Adolf Hitler is still the hardest working man in politics. Leftists too lazy to construct a reasoned argument use the words “Hitler” and “Nazi” to disparage anything or anyone with whom they disagree. If Hitler could have one of his sins forgiven every time an American liberal uses his name in a political argument, he’d have full sainthood by now, and be guarding the gates of Heaven in place of Saint Peter.

Mao alone has murdered five or six times as many innocent people as der Fuhrer, but somehow only Hitler has his name used for purposes of political demonization.  The reason leftists always use “Hitler” to disparage conservatives, rather than “Stalin,” or “Mao,” or “Pol Pot;” is that no one has ever been able to portray those mass murderers as being part of the right wing. Left-leaning professors and textbook writers are reluctant to mention the crimes of Communist dictators at all, and no self-respecting liberal would ever use one of their names as a metaphor for evil. Hitler is always portrayed as part of the right wing, hence he can be the personification of everything bad.

But was Hitler really a right winger?

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Columbia University Today

“The problem for the world today is how to deal with the unparalleled and unprecedented power of the United States.” Professor Edward Said

Last week’s HistoryHalf post  described Columbia University’s historic role as a meeting place and recruitment center for Soviet sympathizers  and agents during the Cold war. From 1917 through the late 1980’s, Soviet Communism was a great unifying cause for leftist radicals, and Columbia was the most Moscow-friendly of all the universities in the United States. The Columbia scholars profiled last week all communicated with the Soviet government through one channel or another, and most of them actually worked as spies.

This week’s column is about left wing extremists at Columbia who were never known to have worked directly with the Soviets. The world is full of anti-American, anti-democratic, anti-capitalist movements, some of which were never closely connected to the Communist International or the Soviet Union; and Columbia professors and grads have been among the leaders of most of them.  

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Columbia University and Communism

In 2009 the University of Alabama won its seventh AP-recognized national championship in football. Crimson Tide fans could probably be forgiven for thinking that their school is the nation’s all-time number one in football, but in reality there are several other universities with comparable records of excellence on the gridiron.

When it comes to left wing politics, however, one university stands alone as the all-time champion. Columbia University has been a training ground for America-hating radicals since at least the start of the twentieth century. The left has had to take new directions since the collapse of the Soviet Union in 1991, but before that, leftist scholars from Columbia often expressed their loathing of the American way by supporting Soviet-centered Communism, as the following examples will show.

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The Left and the Far Left

“The campaign against subversion redrew the boundaries of acceptable Democratic liberalism to exclude both Communists and those willing to cooperate with them.” Professor Eric Foner

Political beliefs in this country run the whole gamut from the far right to the far left, but most Americans hold views that are fairly close to the center. The political mainstream includes people who differ with each other on important political issues, but continue to see themselves as loyal Americans, and endorse and support our current constitutional form of government.  

People on the radical fringes make up a very small minority of the America population, but they tend to put themselves in positions of influence in government, in the media, and especially in academia. College faculties attract left wing extremists the way a picnic attracts ants, and history faculties, for whatever reason, appear to have an especially strong appeal for radicals.

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