One faded memory from my elementary- and middle-school years is that my mother used to read Jack Anderson‘s column religiously, in the Washington Post.
With what I like to think of as a greater wisdom that comes with age, I now wish I had followed her lead back then. I believe that, if I had, I might have become “awake” at a much earlier age.
It now strikes me that many of us researching “para-politics” and related fields of inquiry would do well to revisit some of Jack Anderson’s old columns. While I don’t think it would be quite accurate to describe him as a “conspiracy theorist,” it seems to me that he was well ahead of his time in being “hep” to many types of nefarious goings on.
The article I stumbled over today, in a digitized page from the Prescott Courier (May 25, 1978) is a case in point, relating the story of a private firm that, for a fee of $30,000 of taxpayers’ money, provided U.S. military chaplains with “solemn instructions on how to minster to military personnel who may belong to such unconventional religions as the Church of Satan [and the] Council of Witches.”
Quoting directly from the firm’s study, Anderson relates that “Many witches are currently military personnel…. They are expected to master ‘magick’ rituals and psychic development, and they worship inside a circle inscribed on a ground floor…. One faction, called the Gardnerian Wicca, has the chilly habit of worshiping au naturel ‘at the full and new moon.'”
Perhaps Anderson’s attitude about this at the time had a twinge of tongue-in-cheek incredulity, viewing this government expenditure as something that might have been worthy of the Golden Fleece Award from the venerated Senator William Proxmire.
From the perspective of many things we have learned since, however, perhaps it is no joking matter.