Nazis, Communists, Klansmen, and Others on the Fringe: Political Extremism in America

By John George; Laird Wilcox | Go to book overview
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22 The Dan Smoot Report

Dan Smoot began his radio-TV career for H. L. Hunt, the wealthy oilman, on a program called "Facts Forum." These broadcasts presented both sides of the pertinent issues, usually dealing with domestic political affairs or foreign affairs, but this approach to the news held little appeal for him, since he always had strong feelings about what was "patriotic" and "pro-American." According to Forster and Epstein in Danger on the Right, Smoot gave this reason for working with Hunt:

I wondered, when I was a member of the FBI Commie Squad, why those who oppose Communism were vilified and slandered. I learned the reason. It was because people were blindly following the philosophy of the New Deal, which stands for the total transfer of power from the individual to the Federal Government under the claim of using the power beneficiently. This is the same philosophy of the Fair Deal, the New Frontier, and Modern Republicanism. . . . It is also the basic philosophy of Communism, Fascism and Nazism. 1

Leaving Hunt amiably and without rancor in 1955, Smoot started a publication called Dan Smoot Speaks, which, less than a year later, became The Dan Smoot Report. Generally a four-page newsletter, the Report took a line quite similar to that of the John Birch Society--an organization Smoot applauded--minus the accusations regarding Communist sympathies of many respected national leaders ( Smoot never called Eisenhower and Dulles Reds).

Smoot was, however, a conspiracy theorist. His book The Invisible Government advanced the idea that the Council on Foreign Relations is the secret government of the United States. According to Smoot:

Since 1944, all candidates for President, both Republican and Democrat, have been CFR members, except Truman who became President by "accident." Every Secretary of State since Cordell Hull (except James Byrnes) has been a CFR member. Over 40 CFR members comprised the American delegation to the UN Organizing Conference in San Francisco, including Alger Hiss, Nelson Rockefeller, Adlai Stevenson, Ralph Bunche, John Foster Dulles, and the Secretary of State Edward Stettinius. CFR affiliates have controlled an unusual number of cabinet posts and top Presidential advisory positions. 2

Smoot's handsome face was well-known to many Americans because he was seen on a fifteen-minute television program for a number of years. Due greatly


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