Popular Investment Adviser Chris Temple Has Neo-Nazi Ties
In the last two years, Chris Temple became a star of the financial press, despite his neo-Nazi ties. That was the first surprise
By Heidi Beirich and Mark Potok
Temple was also a radical "Christian" who got into a running battle with local officials in McGraw, N.Y., over home schooling. (Educating children, he says, is "totally outside the jurisdiction of civil authority.")
Although Temple does not detail the battle, he has written that he and his family were "on the run" from local sheriff's deputies and decided, in 1990, to move away to Montana. At the time, Temple was already producing his first financial newsletter, Your Money Today.
He was also buddying up to open neo-Nazis — and adopting tenets of one of the most radical and anti-Semitic theologies known. In October 1989, Temple was photographed marching with members of the Aryan Nations in Pulaski, Tenn. And by May 1990, he was writing for a newspaper called The Jubilee.
Both Aryan Nations and Jubilee are proponents of Christian Identity, a theology that says whites are the real Hebrews of the Bible, Jews are biologically descended from Satan and blacks are soulless "mud people" created outside of the Garden of Eden.
Living in Montana, not far from a concentration of white supremacists who lived around the Aryan Nations compound in Hayden Lake, Idaho, Temple seemed to plunge into the movement with abandon.
He co-founded the United Citizens for Justice, a radical group formed as a result of a standoff between white supremacist Randy Weaver and the federal government. He was a speaker at a key 1992 meeting of radical-right leaders in Estes Park, Colo., which many believe helped to kick off the modern militia movement.
He attended a number of Christian Identity events and gave speeches at a series of the Aryan Nations' annual congresses in Idaho.
And he wrote for The Spotlight, becoming the newspaper's financial writer in the mid-1990s. According to Temple, he and Carto formed a partnership where his newsletter — now renamed The National Investor — would be half-owned by Carto and would receive promotions in The Spotlight in return.
That arrangement fell apart after Temple accused Carto of draining $70,000 from their newsletter operation, but Temple did not definitively break with Carto and The Spotlight until 1999.
Temple wrote scores of articles for The Jubilee and The Spotlight during the late 1980s and the 1990s. A few had plainly political themes, discussing the Randy Weaver case, the standoff in Waco between cultists and the federal government, the Montana Freemen, and various episodes from his own past.
In one piece, an explicit attack on universal suffrage and democracy, Temple quotes Hitler for an entire six paragraphs, saying the führer's words were simply "too eloquent to ignore."
But the vast majority of Temple's writing is financial. He wrote on the stock market, gold, interest rates and any number of other financial matters — typically without resorting to conspiracy theories about Jews and other enemies.
Even as the pages of The Spotlight hyped the alleged threat from a computer crash at the start of the new millennium, Temple avoided that kind of Y2K fear-mongering, dispensing reasonably sound advice to his readers.
He often focused on gold — with its special appeal to radical rightists who believe that only gold, unlike money, has intrinsic value — but he did not only promote its purchase. Often, he suggested selling.
The pages of his National Investor were even more sober and well written. Indeed, Temple quoted from the United Nations, labor union studies, and even Jewish financial officials like Alan Greenspan as a matter of course — an unexpected approach from a man with a dense network of ties to the neo-Nazi right.
He did talk about a "conspiracy" in the gold market, and he was critical of globalization, but in terms that appeared quite similar to those used by many other commentators.
But he remained highly active in his political life, too. He began attending meetings of the Council of Conservative Citizens, a white supremacist hate group, in the late 1990s, and soon became managing editor of its tabloid, Citizens Informer. In December 1999, after the break with Carto, Temple became co-editor with white nationalist writer Sam Francis, who would take over as the sole editor in 2000.
In 2002, Temple joined with an old colleague and co-religionist, Jubilee Managing Editor Paul Hall, to purchase a magazine called Media Bypass.
Media Bypass had been an enthusiastic supporter of the antigovernment militia movement, but almost immediately after its acquisition by Hall and Temple, it began to take on a starkly anti-Semitic tone.
In recent months, it has published stories by radicals like neo-Nazi Kevin Alfred Strom, who wrote about how the results of "racial mixing" are "poverty, filth, social conflict and political malaise." Last May, a Media Bypass conference hosted by Hall and Temple featured several key anti-Semites.