Last year it was Dope Inc., a book accusing five major Canadian banks of laundering drug money out of Southeast Asia—with the purported goal of destroying America through mass-scale drug addiction and, in the process, restoring the British crown to world domination (Maclean’s, Oct. 29, 1979). Now, with Lyndon Hermyle LaRouche, chairman of the controversial U.S. Labor Party (USLP), attempting again to become president of the United States, a new web of conspiracies has been spun.
Running in New Hampshire, his first primary this year, LaRouche and his 350 volunteers reacted characteristically when their campaign tactics were criticized by the influential Manchester Union Leader editor, Paul H. Tracy. In a press release sent to newspapers across the U.S., the “LaRouchies” maintained that Tracy had set LaRouche up for an assassination attempt and mentioned as co-conspirators, yes indeed, New Hampshire Governor Hugh Gallen, the Ayatollah Khomeini, the Carter White House, the Bush and Kennedy campaign organizations, Italian international terrorists, Archduke Otto von Hapsburg and Henry Kissinger. The tactic seems to have backfired. LaRouche predicted he would receive the blessings of at least 15 per cent of New Hampshire’s Democratic voters, but he received just two per cent as well as a lawsuit from Tracy. Why LaRouche should be running as a Democrat and not under the USLP banner (the political arm of the National Caucus of Labor Committees, an international cadre of “intellectuals” trained by LaRouche) as he has done in the past, is intriguing. Some observers suspect a connection with a decision by the U.S. Supreme Court late last year not to review a $30,000 decision against the USLP for libelling Grenville Whitman, an unsuccessful candidate in 1975 for the Baltimore city council. A former anti-war and civil rights leader, Whitman had been accused by the USLP of being a “drug user,” “a member of the SS” and “a murderer.” Another lawsuit has Union official Jim Rush for $350,000. He says his 1977 campaign was “totally destroyed” by a USLP publication falsely claiming he was “well known throughout the area as a dope pusher.” LaRouche seems to have disbanded his old political party rather than face financial ruin. (His tactics did little good in 1974—he received only .04 per cent of the vote.)
Despite his astounding claims—including that the founders of the Women’s Christian Temperance Union were “bands of axe-wielding lesbians” and that the “B’nai Brith started the Civil War and founded the forerunners of the Klu Klux Klan”—LaRouche was the third candidate for the presidency, after President Jimmy Carter and Howard Baker, to qualify for federal matching funds—$327,864 so far. And if even one USLP supporting delegate is selected, then August’s Democratic National Convention in New York will hear some of the strangest political rhetoric imaginable. André McNicoll
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