G. Edward Griffin is, like Des Griffin, one of those people who attempt to synthesize all loon, and does arguably manage to take it even a step further than his namesake. G. Edward Griffin is a film producer, author, and political lecturer, perhaps best known as the author of The Creature from Jekyll Island, a less than ideally coherent critique (conspiracy theory, really) of modern economic theory and practice, specifically the Federal Reserve System. It was, despite its coherence-related shortcomings, actually praised by Ron Paul. Basically, it claims that the current economic system is a conspiracy to keep people in debt, and that the United Nations, the Council on Foreign Relations, and the World Bank are working to destroy American sovereignty through a system of world military and financial control; the interesting thing is that Griffin is not content to identify what he takes to be flaws with the current economic system, he has to identify some shadowy agent behind said flaw with a nefarious agenda (what the agenda is, remains somewhat nebulous). Given his default identification of intent behind any event or system it is perhaps little surprise that he is also a creationist.
But Griffin has a long career as producer of pseudo-documentaries and books espousing his take on manufactroversies (his whale.to page is here), and as you all know, having your own whale.to page is pretty damning evidence against your ability to reason). For instance, Griffin is deeply into cancer woo and a promoter of laetrile as a cancer treatment, which is pure, dangerous quackery, and indeed often recognized as the canonical example of such.
Despite his lack of any background in medicine, Griffin is nevertheless the author of World Without Cancer, in which he asserts that cancer is a metabolic disease facilitated by the insufficient dietary consumption of amygdalin. This is, to put it tactfully, not a mainstream view, but Griffin doesn’t exactly have any qualms about appealing to conspiracies: “eliminating cancer through a nondrug therapy has not been accepted because of the hidden economic and power agendas of those who dominate the medical establishment,” says Griffin. (There is a very tactful and moderate critique here). In 1976 he founded The Cancer Cure Foundation “as a non-profit organization dedicated to research and education in alternative cancer therapies.” The research part has somehow been stuck in parking mode.
He has also been deeply engaged in what might charitably be called the Noah’s ark controversy, with Griffin claiming that the ark is located at the Durupınar site, as opposed to other Biblical young earth creationists who claim it is located near Ararat. One wonders what counts as “evidence” among these groups. Actually, in the case of Griffin, at least, his position is based on the book The Discovery of Noah’s Ark by David Fasold, who later admitted that the claims were wrong. Already deeply mired in conspiracy theories, Fasold’s admission has not seemed to affect Griffin, who has claimed the Ark continued to exist in fossil form, allegedly based on photographic, radar, and metal detector evidence, and that towns in the area have names that resembled terms from the Biblical story of the flood (keep in mind that Griffin has no background in archaelogy, etymology, or the languagaes of the area either). After Fasold backed out, Griffin continued to promote the view, together with Fasold’s “co-researcher”, none other than the legendary Ron Wyatt.
To return to his main obsession, however, Griffin has been a staunch opponent of the Federal Reserve since the 1960s, claiming that it amounts to a a banking cartel and an instrument of war and totalitarianism (there is a less than ideally hinged interview here), and in 2002 he founded the individualist network Freedom Force International to combat it without measurable success. In fact, Griffin is a staunch proponent of liberty dollars, stating that they are “real money” (it is unclear what that even means in this case).
Griffin also served as speechwriter for candidates from the American Independent Party, and been a member and officer of the John Birch Society. Apparently his 1969 video lecture, “More Deadly Than War: The Communist Revolution in America” remains among his most prominent claims to fame.
Diagnosis: Yep, this guy’s got it all – the range of lunacy is virtually complete. Moreover, Griffin’s got some influence, especially among the less reality-apt segments of Paulbots. Magnificent.