I am often asked to explain how a spin doctor operates. I think this tale illustrates the craft.
Judy Wallman, a professional genealogical researcher, discovered that Hillary Clinton’s great-great uncle, Remus Rodham, was hanged for horse stealing and train robbery in Montana in 1889.
The only known photograph of Remus shows him standing on the gallows.
On the back of the picture is this inscription: “Remus Rodham; horse thief, sent to Montana Territorial Prison 1885, escaped 1887, robbed the Montana Flyer six times. Caught by Pinkerton detectives, convicted and hanged in 1889.”
Judy e-mailed Hillary Clinton for comments. Hillary’s staff sent back the following biographical sketch:
“Remus Rodham was a famous cowboy in the Montana Territory. His business empire grew to include acquisition of valuable equestrian assets and intimate dealings with the Montana railroad. Beginning in 1883, he devoted several years of his life to service at a government facility, finally taking leave to resume his dealings with the railroad. In 1887 he was a key player in a vital investigation run by the renowned Pinkerton Detective Agency. In 1889 Remus passed away during an important civic function held in his honour, when the platform on which he was standing collapsed.”
And that is how it’s done, folks